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poetry, quotes & thoughts about life

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end of an era

No man is an island, 

 

 Entire of itself; 

 

 Every man is a piece of the continent,  

 

 A part of the main.  

 If a clod be washed away by the sea, 

 

 Europe is the less, 

 

 As well as if a promontory were: 

 

 As well as if a manor of thy friend’s 

 

 Or of thine own were.  

 Any man’s death diminishes me, 

 

 Because I am involved in mankind. 

 

 And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; 

 

 It tolls for thee. 

No man is an island by John Donne

Wild Nights – Wild Nights!

Were I with thee

Wild Nights should be

Our luxury!
Futile – the winds –

To a heart in port –

Done with the compass –

Done with the chart!
Rowing in Eden –

Ah, the sea!

Might I moor – Tonight –

In thee!
*

Wild Nights—Wild Nights! (249) by Emily Dickinson


Good-bye
A woman with a scarf over her head hoists her six-year-old up onto the first step of the school bus. “Good-bye,” she says.
A father on the phone with his freshman son has just finished bawling him out for his poor grades. There is mostly silence at the other end of the line. “Well, good-bye,” the father says.
When the girl at the airport hears the announcement that her plane is starting to board, she turns to the boy who is seeing her off. “I guess this is good-bye,” she says.
The noise of the traffic almost drowns out the sound of the word, but the shape of it lingers on the old man’s lips. He tries to look vigorous and resourceful as he holds out his hand to the other old man. “Good-bye.” This time they say it so nearly in unison that it makes them both smile.
It was a long while ago that the words God be with you disappeared into the word good-bye, but every now and again some trace of them still glimmers through.

 

~Frederick Buechner originally published in Whistling in the Dark and later in Beyond Words


I’ve been thinking about this for a while. Today is the day. As this blog ends I am so grateful for these past years. 

I will creating new things. I believe in poetry….it is foundational in my life and healing. 

I will do at least one last post to redirect those interested to my new spaces in the world. 

I leave you with a most exciting quote from my friend Peter Block: 

Every time we walk into a room the future walks in with us!  

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just this…

the sensual colors of poetry 

I like your wide open window soft abandon

your wild free wheelin rambunctiousness

your inexplicable

untamed

a soft new invention

a wilderness

a concoction of sensual indigenous aromas

and I want to hear you sing

your wild buffalo song

my axe wailing some new chord

with the sun on our backs

cool water in our packs

.

I want our hikes to go on for days 

months years

exploring everything wild 

and real

fully contaminated with green forest and wild herbs 

till our blood is so fully and completely inoculated

with chlorophyll and light 

that our dreams become plainly visible 

.

as the light runs from the skies

and the sun dims

we will lie on warm ground 

inventing a new perfume 

under a blanket of whispering stars

🔥

Adam A. DeFranco

I’m in an open relationship

with my heart.

How can I contain my passion for snails?

For otters, milkweed in autumn,

the holes in old socks that live

for decades in a drawer,

stray cats, lonely porcelain

Sleeping Beauty and the Prince

salt and pepper shakers,

coyotes moaning in the wetland,

wayward petals that wander

far from their roses

on rain-swollen breaths of September.

Each creature, I’m afraid,

is my favorite partner.

You, you above all.

I say that to everyone, don’t I?

After love making,

the universe and I just lie here

gazing through our tears.

Who is the sweat-beaded Dancer?

Who is the Witness wearing only

a necklace of stars?

One who burns completely,

leaving neither smoke

nor ashes,

becomes pure.

❤️
Alfred K. LaMotte


Yes, God is mysterious as fog,

but please, don’t give me that stuff

about God playing hard to get.

She is so into you 

I can’t believe you don’t see it.

She’s flagrant about it.

She writes you the steamiest letters

in the colors of sky and leaf, 

in stone and sea and child,

her hands are all over you,

she has moves that—admit it—

make you blush.

He’s in your dreams, 

whispers to you when you aren’t listening.

You think those scriptures are some dry text

but it’s him, fawning all over you,

saying your name.

She wears the most revealing outfits,

struts her stuff, begs for attention.

They’ve always been like that. 

Going on singles cruises,

trolling the skankiest bars in town,

hoping for luck.

She has no shame, no holding back.

I’d take her aside and talk to her

about decorum and such,

but golly, 

I can’t even get in the same room with her

without her climbing all over me. 

She’s yours, mate. 
Yeah, it’s a little wild. Razor’s edge.

I get why you pull back.

But listen.  

Secretly, so in the dark you don’t even know,

it’s your own heart that’s flirting 

with everything that moves.

She’s the one 

who’s holding you quietly, calmly, murmuring,

“Easy. Easy. I’m right here.

You’ve got me. It’s OK.”
______________________

Steve Garnaas-Holmes

Unfolding Light

http://www.unfoldinglight.net


I want to kiss you forever

I want to lay with you

in a tangle of sheets and tongues and crazy, wild hair

with the rain beating against the foggy windowpane

and touch your face 

as our warm 

eyes and souls and bodies 

melt into one

with God

the perfect trifecta 

I want to stay there

forever 

and then another endless, beautiful day

I’ll not ever ask for more

than to love 

and be loved

like this

by you

💋

Amy Lloyd (AL)


You can

die for it–

an idea,

or the world. People
have done so,

brilliantly,

letting

their small bodies be bound
to the stake,

creating

an unforgettable

fury of light. But
this morning,

climbing the familiar hills

in the familiar

fabric of dawn, I thought
of China,

and India

and Europe, and I thought

how the sun
blazes

for everyone just

so joyfully

as it rises
under the lashes

of my own eyes, and I thought

I am so many!

What is my name?
What is the name

of the deep breath I would take

over and over

for all of us? Call it
whatever you want, it is

happiness, it is another one

of the ways to enter

fire.

 ~ Mary Oliver, New and Selected Poems

Remember: Joy is not a sin; sacrifice is not a virtue. 

         ❤️ Paulo Coelho ❤️

awareness is the key to change 

I tell my father about the way 

I collect small things

in the sacs of my heart—

thick juniper berries

apple cores that retain their shape

and the click of shells

that sound like an oven baking.

He presses the mole on my shoulder

that matches his shoulder,

proof that I was not found

at the bottom of the sea.

I also got his feet, far from

Cinderella’s dainty glass slippers

—
and fingers, too wide for most

Cracker Jack wedding rings.

I read how some mammals never

forget their young—

their speckled spots, odd goat

cries, or birthmarks on curved ivory tusks. 

There must be some

thread of magic there

cooling honey to stone—where

like recognizes like or how

a rib seeks its twin.

🙋🏼🙋🏼

A Taste of Blue by Cynthia Manick


Our survival adaptations are so tough, but our wounds are so delicate. To heal, we have to lift the armor carefully- it saved our lives, after all. It’s like moving your best friend off to the side of the path. You don’t trample on her, you don’t hit her with a sledgehammer. You honor her presence like a warm blanket that has kept you safe and sound during wintry times. And then, when the moment is right, you get inside and stitch your wounds with the thread of love, slowly and surely, not rushing to completion, nurturing as you weave, tender and true. The healing process has a heart of its own, moving at its own delicate pace. We are such wondrous weavers…

💞

 – Jeff Brown


TO STAND HERE
is to stand

at the center

of circle 

after growing circle

and reach

in the mind

for a far circumference

that holds as focus

an interior so far in

so concentrated

with origin

we find ourselves

by looking out

at what looks back,

the lighted edge 

of rock and sky,

the sweet

unmoving darkness

over the horizon 

that makes

a perfect 

beckoning symmetry

to the night

beneath our feet,

the underground

where light cannot live

but whose darkness

makes a ground 

on which to stand.
The central 

ancestral story

of those who

lived here

looking out

at the same horizon

and the same 

surrounding

ground,

who saw a world

that witnessed them

at a privileged 

center,

their lives caught

like ours

in the glance

of what lies beyond

only 

for a fleeting

moment.

From LON’S FORT

From Pilgrim: Poems by David Whyte


Refuse to fall down

If you cannot refuse to fall down,

refuse to stay down.

If you cannot refuse to stay down,

lift your heart toward heaven,

and like a hungry beggar, 

ask that it be filled. 

You may be pushed down.

You may be kept from rising.

But no one can keep you from lifting your heart

toward heaven

only you.

It is in the middle of misery

that so much becomes clear.

The one who says nothing good

came of this, 

is not yet listening.

–Clarissa Pinkola Estes

Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will.

   – Mahatma Gandhi


I’m not here to live up to your expectations and you’re not here to live up to mine. 

    – Bruce Lee

say it your way    

Windows is shutting down, and grammar are

On their last leg. So what am we to do?

A letter of complaint go just so far,

Proving the only one in step are you.
Better, perhaps, to simply let it goes.

A sentence have to be screwed pretty bad

Before they gets to where you doesnt knows

The meaning what it must be meant to had.
The meteor have hit. Extinction spread,

But evolution do not stop for that.

A mutant languages rise from the dead

And all them rules is suddenly old hat.
Too bad for we, us what has had so long

The best seat from the only game in town.

But there it am, and whom can say its wrong?

Those are the break. Windows is shutting down.

📝
Windows is Shutting Down by Clive James 


My name is Tara and I’m 55 years old Precious Moments angel statue
 I would not classify myself as a hoarder, more of a rescuer of Target receipts 
When I first moved in it was just mostly boxes because  I was moving in then I tried to unpack but everything just got put wherever Martha Stewart magazines 
I just started asking God that I would like to know what it would be like to have an organized sea of stuffed frogs 
A bed looks like a bed with picnic baskets 
And your table doesn’t have stuff on it it’s a painting of a cornucopia
 And the couch you can sit on it people can sit on it like American girl dolls
 Well I’ve finally come to the realization I have too much Praise Hymn compact discs 
I told God that I just have this one wish and this one dream that Lord you just send someone to help Jesus Christ Hearts Me Florida license plate holder
 My mother, she had a one-bedroom Nativity set
 We all ended up sleeping in the same crumbling Family Circus comic strip 
I didn’t know how a house was supposed to be tangle of mismatched electronic cords
 I haven’t been in the closet in five years because Victorian dolls 
I realized I have to let some things go because how am I ever going to get out of this mayhem and foolishness if I don’t Walking in Wisdom Embracing Love 2005 calendar
 You have to be willing to do the work McDonald’s minions Happy Meal toys
 You have to be able to let it go uncashed paycheck from 2008 
If you don’t, it will swallow you flattened American flag balloon 
My brain is not wired for this 18-year old pile of unopened mail
 I’m trying to recover from a migraine marching penguin with Santa hat
 I’ll do that tomorrow but then tomorrow something else happens candy cane stuck to the floor
 Whoa, that’s my vertigo lint roller covered in lint
 I don’t want to deal with cordless phones coated in dust 
I need to breathe nearly natural poinsettias
 I’m hoping and praying for a miracle unused Trisha Yearwood tickets from 1999
 I always felt like if Jesus came to the door and opened the door I would have felt so shamed because I wasn’t showing
 gratefulness and pink Jesus Christ “Enjoy” baseball cap in Coca Cola font
 Those are mine, I keep those Bed Bath and Beyond crystal Kleenex holders 
I didn’t realize there was so much dust Easter bunny
 I have done the Lord’s work humbly Thomas Kinkaide puzzle of Cinderella castle
 Yes and with tears

💨

Hoarders: Tara by Kate Durbin



I drive down Copperleaf Lane
looking at those copper leaves
falling from the poplar trees
(well, to tell the truth, 
I’m not sure they’re poplars
but that fits well with my poem…
it’s called poetic license)
I see why the street is named thus, though
it is a copper way
on a copper day
Must have been named in fall
because other seasons the leaves were all 

not living up to their name

rule breaking in their seasons
flowery white
shades of green to green
or absent 
I love nature 
reveals so much about how we could live

freely
patiently

endlessly creative
one leaf 

or leaving
one name 

many names 

or none
one slow beautiful movement within them all
in each one precious moment in our time of time

paying no mind to the rules, we find

words, and trees, always finding their rhyme 
🍁

Amy Lloyd (AL)


I am here to tell you morning has come 

there’s this whisper promise 

in the breeze,

a bit of ethereal fog slipping between the sheets 

of night 

and dawn breaking.
there’s this rumor running 

afoot in this new born day,

a sideways glance of something – 

Oh it’s JOY! 

and all this glory burning hot. 
there’s this holy hushing

songs of angels,

a chorus of bluebells

bowing heads

softly clapping

as they watch it all approaching. 
there’s this first blush of light,

smudging darkness,

a bit like the bitter and sweet

mixed each day with our longing 

for joy to come nest. 
there’s a song playing on low

sometimes you forget to remember 

be still and know

as sure as spring follows winter

love always wins

listen to your heartbeat 

joy is our birthright 

right now

morning has come

🌞
Amy Lloyd (AL)


It could happen any time, tornado,

 earthquake, Armageddon. It could happen.

 Or sunshine, love, salvation.
It could, you know. That’s why we wake

 and look out — no guarantees

 in this life.
But some bonuses, like morning,

 like right now, like noon,

 like evening. 
Yes!
-William Stafford

At times, our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person. Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us.

 

 – Albert Schweitzer

what fire am i?  


i am the fire on the mountain

i am the fire by the sea

i am the fire in the forest

burning down all of the trees


i am the fire in the desert 

i am the fire in the snow

i am the fire that will warm you

when your bones have grown cold


i am the fire for your shelter

i am the fire for your bread

i am the fire for your hunger

whenever you go to bed

i am the fire on the water

i am the fire that is near

i am the fire burning your words

consuming your doubt and your fear


i am the fire of your longing

i am the fire of your soul

i am the fire of your loving

i will never grow cold


i am the fire for your winter

i am the fire for your spring

i am the fire of your living

passion and life i will bring


i am the fire of destruction

i am the fire where you die

i am the fire of your Phoenix 

as you rise, as you soar, to the sky

🔥

Amy Lloyd (AL)


world changer 

You have to go through the falling down in order to learn to walk. It helps to know that you can survive it. That’s an education in itself.

    – Carol Burnett

A KEY TO HAPPINESS — SPIRITUAL HUMILITY

So many religions and philosophies, ancient and modern, set forth paths to happiness, fulfillment and the end of suffering. Many of these paths are filled with great wisdom and deep spiritual insights that have helped countless people throughout the ages. I have been inspired by so many of these spiritual traditions; and I have learned so many hard lessons though my own inner struggles and challenges, as we all have. Consistent with so many of the spiritual traditions, I have found that one of the keys to happiness and finding a deep spiritual connection is cultivating a spiritual humility — reaching beyond our egos as best we can by quieting our minds with a bit of wisdom, by opening our hearts to a bit of unconditional loving-kindness, and by expressing a bit of gratitude for the light and wonder that has been given and that touches us even in the dark times.
1. WISDOM AND THE INTERDEPENDENCE OF ALL EXISTENCE. We — and all of life — are interconnected in a vast and boundless divine tapestry. Our belief that we have a separate, “fixed” self is a delusion that cuts us off from the flow of life and the interdependence of all things. We are nothing but a wondrous part of a larger, interwoven whole. To see all this, even a little, leaves us humble, but also touches us with a deep wisdom that we are connected at our core to something so much greater than we can imagine.
2. THE INNER SPIRIT. As a part of that greater whole, we are truly children of God, at one with the divine essence. Yet, when we come into this world at birth, we put on a limited and fragile ego mask that we wear throughout our lives, believing that the mask is our real self and forgetting our true, inner spirit that is a part of the greater divine radiance. So, we struggle to keep this mask-self safe, closing our eyes to the flow of the divine presence through our lives. Seeing all of this, even a little, we begin to see the futility and childishness of so many of our self-important dramas; and, with the resulting humility, we begin to let go of the ego games and begin instead to focus humbly and joyously on our connection to others and to the greater divine reality. 
3. JUDGE NOT. Looking with an open heart at the cosmos, we may begin to see, even if dimly, the presence of a boundless divine power that supports all of existence, guiding the planets in their orbits, causing the flowers to grow, holding all of the law of physics in the palm of a hand, and supporting our very existence. But, when we grasp after our ego-mask self, and forget our own inner spirit and its connection to the greater divine presence, we begin to make judgments, limiting and defining God, ourselves and each other. We think that we know better — indeed, we think we “know” what is really going on — but the mystery and wonder of existence is beyond any knowing. We do not know, for instance, the truth of another person and where he or she is on the spiritual path. Indeed, we do not even know who we are ourselves. How, then, can we presume to judge others and where they stand in God’s plan? How can we truly judge ourselves? And, even more importantly, how can we judge God, the ineffable foundation of all existence and non-existence? Seeing all this, even a little, we can only begin to humbly let go of our limited, ego-based judgments and open our minds and hearts to a gentle faith in the divine, in ourselves, and in each other. 
4. SPIRITUAL PRACTICE. So, how do we come to see all of the above and cultivate a joyous spiritual humility? Each must find their own way. For me, it come from a gentle spiritual practice: 
(a) First, I try to be mindful of the interconnection of all life, as well as of the impermanence and transience of my own ego-mask self. Then, with a little inner quiet and stillness, I try to watch for the presence of ineffable wonder; I listen for the quiet whispers of my own inner spirit; and I open my heart to the rumblings and reflections of the presence of a boundless God beyond all knowing or grasping.
(b) Next, each day I try to practice a little kindness and unconditional love, as best I can and with as much wisdom as I can muster, quietly shining some light in the darkness on myself and those around me. We all can open a window in our hearts to the divine and let the divine presence shine through us, as if through a glass darkly — but we can polish that glass each day to let in more and more light.
(c) I judge God, myself and others so much. So, I practice not judging by being mindful of how much I do judge, and examining how much of that judgment comes from my own arrogance or insecurity. I then think about the the mystery and power of the divine presence — and the preciousness and miracle of all life, including my own — and stop for a moment and acknowledge, as best I can, that the divine presence is boundless in ways I cannot begin to fathom or judge.    
(d) Finally, I try to find reasons to be grateful: for the presence of wonder, wisdom and light, even in the darkness; for the preciousness of my own life and that of others; and for the blessings, sometimes hidden, that grace my life. There are so many opportunities to express that gratitude to those around me through words and deeds; and to God in my prayers and in the songs of my heart. Finally, I try to express gratitude to myself in the words I use in speaking to myself. We all can begin to appreciate more our own inner, luminous spirits. Humility in the face of the overwhelming wonder of the universe may cause us to begin letting go of our ego games, but it also opens our vision up to the magnificence of the cosmos and to the luminous wonder of our place in it.
Simple Inner Truth by Steven Jay




words and eye above by Jen Lemen 

imagine  

there is wonder 

in the shape of things

magnificence in patterns 

grace in the traced template 

outlining perfection

or a the very least, 

mind boggling excellence 

there is magic in a great shape

simply exquisite how I love things so much

my imagination immediately begins to conjure up favorite selections:

cotton candy clouds reorganizing in mid air

ferns unfolding into majestic fans for kingly trees

leaves dancing to grounded drum beats

random pieces of nature shaped into hearts

thick glass 6 oz icy coke bottle being pulled from the clanging machine

cupcakes with perfect frosting being deconstructed one finger swipe at a time

the outline of a baby cheek sleeping on the shoulder of the young man in front of you

Rama Desai’s sunshiny-yellow house, complete with porch chalk dragons

the most perfect button I’ve ever seen on a belly…

the fingers of my imagination slowly touching each one

lingering on you

my mind takes me into other worlds

cinema of beautiful shapes

wealth of living awareness

well beyond limits 

riches of the mystic 

always ready when I push play

stories to be shared

neighbors 

friends

family

lovers

each continuing at their own pace

💞

Amy Lloyd (AL)



check out Rama’s blog at: 

https://ramaink.wordpress.com




we are each uniquely made. we are each uniquely broken   – Wm Paul Young


Take me past

the guarded place

in you

where confusion

covers itself

in unrelenting confidence

then marches on

In lively steps

Take off the façade

let it fall away

into nowhere

Turn around and face me

I search the infinite depth

where beyond all entrenchments

I find your thirst

to be met 

and understood

the sadness in your bones,

the want of your silent cries

to be heard

and be known—

abiding within those 

unseen landscapes

is a world of precious

dreams

Let me touch where

the battle wounds

lie quietly healing—

Buried beneath

an armored sheath

rests a lifetime of love

and loneliness,

blame and triumph, 

honor and defeat

Within this blended web

of scars and treasures,

glistening with honesty,

there you are—

I found you,

beneath the soldier’s plated heart

So loosen the knots around my own

see all its agony bared and mending

and in between each open space

we’ll breathe upon the frailty

All the wishful longings to be had

bring to me yours

as I meet you there with mine.
Quest in Hope is a Traveler by Susan Frybort… https://www.amazon.com/Hope-Traveler-Susan-Frybort/dp/0980885973/

What Your Heart Knows
“And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together” (Colossians 1:17).

 

Oh, darling, I know you want to touch Me—to reach out your hands and feel Me tangibly. Might I feel more real, then? Might I be more easily recognized?
Look again.
Look again.
Where is your restless heart? To what does it turn, if not to Me?
What can you see more tangibly that distracts you from Me, when all my creation calls out my name? What calls out something else? What does not cry out holy? What does not cry out these words: I have you. I want you. I rescue you. I redeem you. I claim you. I made you. I beautify you. I hung on a cross for you and faced death and won?
What tears you away? 
From what do you get your self-worth? How do you decide the value of a day? How do you choose what is yours to do? What is your rhythm? How do you receive energy? How do you find rest?
Oh, my dear, where do I fit in?
My beloved, I did not come to play second. I did not come to trick you, con you into loving Me. You only know who you are and what you’re worth through my love for you—my dying for you on the cross. I would do it again for you. 
I would, you know.
But here’s the thing: I did. I did. For you.
I do not ask you to love Me out of guilt, out of obligation. I give you a heart that knows its way to Me. It knows its true self. It knows its name. It knows its place. It knows by whom it was made. It knows the giver of all good things and how things began and how ending isn’t an option until the time is finished here.
I say ‘it is finished’, and the beginning began again. I called ‘Father, I commit my Spirit to thee’, and that Spirit is now yours. And your heart knows my Spirit. You know Me. My children know their name.
So touch these scars. Touch these hands. Let these fingers wrap around yours. My Holy Spirit—Me in you—holds on tight.
So, come on now, sweet one, you hold on tight, too. We’ve got things to do together.
 – Loop

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