Thursday, November 30, 2023

On praying for signs

How many of us pray for signs 
To tell us where to go 
Or help us make decisions 
When the truth about our choices 
Could be obvious, if only we lifted our eyes, 
Looked beyond our own tangled thoughts 
And followed our feet, a single step at a time?

Wednesday, November 29, 2023

An invitation to drink

Glimpsed throughugh the trees, an invitation:
 Come, sit with me and drink 
The rosy colors of the sky; 
A wine that lifts the heart and feeds the soul.

Tuesday, November 28, 2023

At moonrise

Listen to your heart:
 Go outside to watch the moonrise 
 And let life gift you 
With the colors of surprise.

Monday, November 27, 2023

Pools of wonder

Let my words be a small pool
Of wonder, 
Reflecting all the beauty 
Gathered by my eyes

Sunday, November 26, 2023

Precious diamonds

The most precious diamonds to strive for 
Are not those formed of carbon, 
 But born in stillness: 
 The patterns formed when all opposites 
 Are balanced; gently flowing back and forth 
In perfect harmony, like the breath of the gods.

Saturday, November 25, 2023

Caught in the act

Caught in the act of nibbling 
Late fall flowers, she stands still,
 Hoping to fade unnoticed into the scenery;
 A child with her hand on the cookie jar;
 A politician, with one foot in the fountain.

Friday, November 24, 2023

Cloud dance

Clouds dance above the mountain; 
Teasing; echoing its shape before drifting on. 
Sun smiles at their antics, 
Igniting edges briefly before rising to her fullest 
To breathe light into the world.

Thursday, November 23, 2023

Thankful opportunities

You who walk through this world, 
Pay attention! Notice your surroundings! 
For while you stroll along, lost in thought 
You might pass by a small but perfect berry 
That could inspire a poem, an essay, 
A generous act, a wise decision, 
Or a new work of art! 
The world is full of opportunities to be thankful.

Wednesday, November 22, 2023

Moment vs memory

The waves leap forth repeatedly 
 To cover their own reflections in the sand, 
Creating, hiding, and redeeming 
 In the act of being themselves; 
Artistes who paint, then cover 
And paint again the same canvas, 
For whom the moment matters more than memory.

Tuesday, November 21, 2023

An uneasy truce

Stepping outside to shoot the clouds, 
I surprise a deer, sipping at his local fountain. 
He stares at me with haughty eyes,
 Ready to leap away, but meanwhile hoping 
I might be bringing food or drink: 
It’s that same uneasy truce we often find 
Whenever there’s an imbalance of power.

Monday, November 20, 2023

The seeds of resurrection

Each year we watch the trees losing their leaves, 
Turning from green to gold 
 And in their losses gilding 
 The edges of our street. 
The branches, then exposed, 
Etch graceful patterns on the sky, 
Then bud again in spring 
 With that astonishing yellow green 
That deepens, even as we watch, 
Yet still we find it hard to trust 
That life goes on after devastating loss; 
That deep within each being, each situation, 
Lie the seeds of resurrection, 
Waiting to redeem us, and bring to life 
The bright and glowing innocence of the new.

Sunday, November 19, 2023

Come walk with me

Clouds swim across the evening sky 
Like fish, lit golden by the setting sun, 
While down below the old path beckons: 
Come, stretch your legs and walk with me; 
Tell me how your day has gone 
And I will tell you mine.

Saturday, November 18, 2023

When mistakes are made

Having taken a running leap, 
My cat slides into the slippery rug, 
Which then wraps itself around him. 
So he settles in, wearing the white fringe 
 Like an Elizabethan ruff 
And pretending he meant to do this all along. 
Knowing it would make a pleasing portrait, 
He waits patiently for me to find my phone 
And photograph him, then leaps out of his nest 
And runs off in pursuit of his sister, 
Howling as he goes, rather like a human, 
Who, having made a mistake, 
Seeks someone else to loudly blame

Friday, November 17, 2023

Compare, compare

Last night, the sunset was so lovely, 
I kept going outside to take more pictures,
 Hoping to capture it at its peak. 
This morning I find 58 new photos on my phone.
 How can I choose just one to publish 
And throw all these other beauties away? 
Compare, compare, compare: 
Is that really how you want to spend your time?

Thursday, November 16, 2023

The mountain’s blush

All day and night, both ships and birds 
Are passing by the mountain 
But like a young girl waiting for her lover, 
The mountain only blushes with pleasure 
When her friend, the sun, appears.

Wednesday, November 15, 2023

Soul pleasures

High tide, a beach awash, 
 A sun-warmed cliff and a passing ship: 
Simple pleasures fill the eyes 
And simultaneously stir and calm the soul.

Tuesday, November 14, 2023


Lit by the radiance of the morning sun, 
Even my potting shed is beautiful. 
So, too, the beauty of a soul 
Lit by the inner radiance of … 
How would you end that sentence? 
Faith? Truth? Hope? Love? 
And the greatest of these is…

Monday, November 13, 2023

Fall fashions

Dressed for their autumn fashion show, 
Each tree displays her wares 
With an eye to setting herself apart. 
While standing on the street corner 
To attract attention,
 One discreetly dangles her golden leaves 
 Like a flapper’s string of pearls 
While another makes up for her lack of height 
By clothing herself in vermilion lace 
And waving in the wind.

Sunday, November 12, 2023

A grace-filled murmuration

The starlings gather in my yard, 
Chattering away as they swoop in, 
Landing en masse in the grass to feast 
On some unknown vegetation, 
And then, at some mysterious signal, 
They ascend as one into the air again, 
Circling until they alight again 
In some other part of the yard; 
Up and down, up and down,
A grace-filled murmuration, 
Like the Anglicans, who sit, then stand, 
Then kneel to pray, then sit and kneel again,
Then stand in church on a Sunday morning

Saturday, November 11, 2023

Patience rewarded

My husband named him Rocky, 
The tailless raccoon with the wounded foot, 
And has started leaving peanuts for him 
Under our deck, where the deer can’t get them. 
The stellar’s jays quickly figured it out: 
They swoop down from their favorite pine, 
Flashing their iridescent wings, 
And wait in the Rhododendron by the deck 
For their chance to sneak in and grab a peanut. 
Who knew retirement could be so entertaining!

Friday, November 10, 2023

Why create art?

The question asked, “why create art?” 
Has no one simple answer. 
I keep on painting, hoping to create 
Something beautiful, of which I can be proud, 
And with each one, when it’s done 
I feel, “Ah, this one; yes!” 
But later I come back and judge its flaws 
 Thinking it does not deserve recognition — 
Then, later still, with some, 
I return and see magnificence, 
And wonder if I’ll ever paint that well again: 
A never ending cycle 
 Of struggle, pride, embarrassment, 
Paint-overs and frustration, 
Marked with occasional and intermittent joy...

Thursday, November 9, 2023

Before the dark, a dawn

My cherry tree again, her flaming branches 
Echoing the crescendo of colors 
 In the sky above my neighbor’s farm: 
My heart soars with the beauty of the dawn, 
Whose glorious colors now, just moments later, 
Have faded back to gray; 
Now falls the rain. 
Today, instead of “darkest before the dawn,”
We seem to have dawnest before the dark…

Wednesday, November 8, 2023

At season’s end

The aging actress’ rosy lipstick, 
Rubbed off with time and words, 
Exposing the lined skin beneath;
 A beauty all its own,
 Framed by the memory of youth 
And promise that lives on 
In evergreen leaves of script 
To be performed again in future seasons.

Tuesday, November 7, 2023

Separate to reconcile

Like the road ahead of me here, 
There may be times we have to separate 
To get around some obstacle 
That’s risen up between us:
 It’s good to step apart 
 And take some time to think. 
But if we fail to reconcile; 
If we cannot find a way to share the road, 
We run the risk of sabotaging the journey;
 Of failing in our efforts to help 
The world become a better, kinder place.

Monday, November 6, 2023

With time, leaves fall

I’d like to think that as we age 
The search for validation 
 Becomes a search for truth and honesty; 
That, like this cherry tree, 
Once past the time we’re bearing fruit 
We glow briefly with accomplishment, 
Then humbly drop all that we were,
 Letting it fall to nourish what may come 
And stand with vulnerability 
 Exposed before the wind in humble testament 
 To what has been, now letting the world see 
Both what’s beneath and what’s beyond; 
What waits on the horizon.

Sunday, November 5, 2023

Blanketed by color

How blessed we are, to be enfolded in 
 So magnificent a blanket of colors in the Fall! 
It fills our eyes with memories 
 And warms us for the winter days ahead.

Saturday, November 4, 2023


Each day, however gray, a glimpse 
Of beauty to remind us just how fortunate 
 We are, to still be here; still be together 
In a world so torn apart by greed and grief; 
So stigmatized and traumatized by hate and war; 
All wickedness exacerbated 
 Each time we choose divide and separate 
 Over together, and community, 
Over collaborate, and compromise, 
Compassion, hope, and learning to forgive, 
When together, we could begin to mend 
All that has been broken.

Friday, November 3, 2023

A bit of quiet whimsy

Glimpsed through a break in the trees: 
A path to nowhere, guarded by flamingos — 
Another bit of quiet whimsy 
That reminds me yet again,
 Like another remarkable poem, 
A brilliant musical performance, 
Or a magnificently original painting, 
 How bound I am by my fearful assumptions 
 Of others’ expectations; 
 How rare it is for me to reach inside 
 And tap into the stream of creativity 
 That is the source of everyone’s uniqueness …

Thursday, November 2, 2023

The wind phone

I just read the story 
About the Japanese man in Otsuchi 
Who installed a phone booth in his garden 
After the 2011 earthquake 
So he could dial and speak to his lost loved ones. 
People came from miles around 
To dial their lost loves, 
Listening for their voices in the wind: 
What a gift to offer others in their grief… 
If you could access such a phone, 
Who would you call?

Wednesday, November 1, 2023

The fence of ignorance

A hard frost, a layer of fog, and a brilliant sunrise 
Add an aura of mystery to our neighbor’s farm — 
And given that we moved next door 
Just as the pandemic began, 
The mystery persisted 
 Til a power failure forced communications. 
How glad we are now, 
 To know them as kind friends, 
The fence of ignorance between torn down. 
Too often, lack of communication 
 Turns strangers into estranged — 
A problem cured by reaching out 
 In openness and trust…