anyway and everything….

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It’s groaning with gratitude,  my anyway jar,
filling up with goodness glinting like unpolished gold
in these hardscrabble times
and my heart grins brighter with each plunk of plenty
and I remember laughing how I thought I’d fill one quicker
with “stuff that sucks”

and I think that maybe,  in time,  I’d have had to dump
the “holy crap,  this bites” pile into the
“thanks for this brilliance” jar and see it all true
and call it all good,  the whole lump of it,

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because it’s all being worked together that way,
crafted into something I wouldn’t have wanted to miss
or control
or sleep through dull

and now  I’m thinking thanks for it all,
the bits that are beautiful and blistering and balmy and broken;
I’ll take it all grateful
because loving genius is weaving the parts
into story large and strong
and I can trust this resourceful heart
with my everything.

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Just doing a little heartcheck as the year unfolds
and the one little word I chose
*anyway*
still challenging me.
Do you have a word that’s speaking to you?

If you are kind,  people may accuse you of selfish ulterior motives.  Be kind anyway.
If you are successful,  you will win some unfaithful friends and some genuine enemies.
Be successful anyway.
What you spend years creating,  others could destroy overnight.  Create anyway.
If you find serenity and happiness,  some may be jealous.  Be happy anyway.
In the final analysis,  it is between you and God.
It was never between you and them,
anyway.”

- attributed to Mother Teresa

Thirty-one years the journey….

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It began in a rose garden,
this journey thirty-one years long,
and I’m thirty-one reasons glad
for this weathered, wizened kind of strong…..

~for his beautiful hands with their firm,  kind touch,
~his quiet way,
~how when he laughs,  really laughs,  it’s music,
like my grandpa’s was,
~his fierce love for our kids,
~the compassion that rises up and takes him over
when  he senses genuine need,

~that he keeps learning,  keeps growing,  keeps opening to change
even when it challenges and chills him,
~that he notices nature  with childlike eyes,
~that he still surprises me,
~the way he cares for my car,
~that he takes life’s hits and keeps moving forward,
~how he wouldn’t quit on us…wouldn’t let me quit,  either
….the peacefulness that’s come,

~the way his eyes smile to me in a crowd,
~the feel of his hand on the small of my back,
~the iron-sharpening-iron way he challenges
with his oh-so-different-from-me-ness,
~the happy squeeze in my belly when we ride the same wave,
~the way he’s learning to be free about me being me,

~how we’ve learned to fight hard and often and well,
~the way his straight lines sometimes bend to blend with my wavy ones,
~the way he lives his own truth and keeps it real,
~his calm courage when I lose it and come undone,
~his humility when I’m the braver one,

~that his heart is tender,
~his prayers are real,
~his love is faithful,
~his art is forgiveness,
~and his story is strong,

~the way he loves his mama,  feels his music,  and lives out his love
for me real and raw and true,
~the way we’re creating something simple in a hard,  chaotic world,
~that our journey becomes daily an adventure more
~and though it’s a messy one,  it’s our story
~and growing still is the freedom to do life as we
while being true to the me’s
we both celebrate and see.

And I’m thirty-one seasons grateful.

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“Give your hearts,  but not into each others keeping,
for only the hand of Life can contain your hearts.”
-Kahlil Gibran

Like someplace made of sky…..

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August rolling in under stormy skies
and my heart pounding hard on the keys,
singing songs I’ve never heard before
while strong winds blowing in some cool change
and I need to pull thanks around me snug
to keep out the chill
because I’m unnerved
and gratitude has the potent power to steady
where we tremble.

I want to be curious in the places where I shy,
to be open to the mystery of the messy in-betweens
and so I fling ebullient thanks for summer soup growing wild,
for blossom to apples,  tender sprouts to pickles in a jar,
and baby bump to laughing child,

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to lean into it grateful
the hope I hold inside
for a roominess of life
that feels like somewhere made of sky

Now can be delicious,
and it’s what I’ve got,
a rich full slice of it to notice and nuzzle.

And what’s around the riverbend that we can’t dare to see?
…. it may be startling goodness
we wouldn’t ask or dream.

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“If you don’t die from thirst,  there are blessings in the desert.
You can be pulled into limitlessness,  which we all yearn for,
or you can do the beauty of minutia,  the scrimshaw of tiny and precise.
The sky is your ocean,  and the crystal silence will uplift
like great gospel music,  or Neil Young.”
-Anne Lamott

tripping the light fantastic….

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I want to believe in rest,
the kind that finds me when I’m true,
the sort of peace that soaks through honest
to the real  of me
and it’s scary still
because it can feel like stepping into fog on a ridge
that may give way if I step down the full of me solid.

Rest is so like trust that way.

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But I want to believe in it,
especially when I’m feeling driven to please
and hungry for sanctuary,
my molecules charged with rush,
jarred to attention,
soul strings strung tight
and plunked too hard and fast.

Do you ever get like that?

Codependent.
I’ve re-learned,  healed,  developed, and come a long way,
but sometimes I feel dragged
back into that strange and strangling undertow.

When I begin to remember what I’ve forgotten to love
and care for
(do you sometimes  forget yourself,  too?)
I’m swept back into the real deal,
that healing,  balancing,  life-giving dance,
tripping the light fantastic.

 

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“Healing may not be so much about getting better,
as about letting go of everything that isn’t you
-all of the expectations,  all of the beliefs
-and becoming who you are.”
-Rachel Naomi Remen

The winner of this week’s giveaway
is the beautiful and soulful Liz Adams;
my handmade zine on the way to you on loving wings:)

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again with the hope….

freak flag
There’s a fierce little word fluttering around in my heart
and I want to bring it to you like a gift I’d leave at your door
in an old blue bottle that I bought  for a dime,
washed of decades of dust and disappointment,
and filled with fresh water and a single surprising flower
whispering one single word
“again”

because sometimes hope needs to be recycled,  too,

and I want you to notice it in your lovely wings,
the divine quiver pulsing softly,
calling gently,
crying out,  dear braveheart,
dare again.

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That thing you wished,  once upon a time
….wished it so hard it hurt?
wish it again.
knock and ask and call again,
imagine again,
dream again,
dig and plant and believe again

Open again to the flickers of firsts,
soften again to possibility,
because it’s the stuff that bliss is made of
to let your heart go wilding for it’s true song.

I’m hearing it strong in the whispering winds,
defy the disappointment,
Go again.

Hear?
Listen again.

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My mama always said life was  like a box of chocolates.
You never know what you’re gonna get.”
-Forrest Gump

The winner of the drawing for my little monthly zine,  Ripplesongs July
(giving me SO much joy,  this)
is Michele Bergh,
webmaster extraordinaire:)
Package on it’s way,  dear one!

Leave a comment and I’ll pull another name
from another hat
next week
(I love this stuff)