Monday, March 30, 2020

Poems for the Times

Photos: March 2020
Template: Canva.com
Hoping this finds everyone safe and well in these times of uncertainty. In my little corner of the world, spring is displaying her beauty and each time I went out for a walk in recent days (thankfully, I can do that in my neighborhood), I found myself snapping pictures along the way. Sharing a collage of the beauty here along with a haiku I penned in response to troubling times.

And speaking of poems in response to the times, have you seen the poem Lockdown, penned by Brother Richard Hendrick, a priest in Ireland? I found it here at Irish Central but understand that it was first posted on facebook March 13, and has since been viewed tens of thousands of times. Resonating words for many...

Lockdown
by Richard Hendrick
Yes there is fear.
Yes there is isolation.
Yes there is panic buying.
Yes there is sickness.
Yes there is even death.
But,
They say that in Wuhan after so many years of noise
You can hear the birds again.
They say that after just a few weeks of quiet
The sky is no longer thick with fumes
But blue and grey and clear.
They say that in the streets of Assisi
People are singing to each other
across the empty squares,
keeping their windows open
so that those who are alone
may hear the sounds of family around them.
They say that a hotel in the West of Ireland
Is offering free meals and delivery to the housebound.
Today a young woman I know
is busy spreading fliers with her number
through the neighbourhood
So that the elders may have someone to call on.
Today Churches, Synagogues, Mosques and Temples
are preparing to welcome
and shelter the homeless, the sick, the weary
All over the world people are slowing down and reflecting
All over the world people are looking at their neighbours in a new way
All over the world people are waking up to a new reality
To how big we really are.
To how little control we really have.
To what really matters.
To Love.
So we pray and we remember that
Yes there is fear.
But there does not have to be hate.
Yes there is isolation.
But there does not have to be loneliness.
Yes there is panic buying.
But there does not have to be meanness.
Yes there is sickness.
But there does not have to be disease of the soul
Yes there is even death.
But there can always be a rebirth of love.
Wake to the choices you make as to how to live now.
Today, breathe.
Listen, behind the factory noises of your panic
The birds are singing again
The sky is clearing,
Spring is coming,
And we are always encompassed by Love.
Open the windows of your soul
And though you may not be able
to touch across the empty square,
Sing.
March 13th 2020

Heart-touching and truth-telling...

Do you read poetry? What poets/poetry books particularly speak to you, both in good times and bad?

Wishing all the very best in the days to come. Stay well. Love. Sing.
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Friday, February 28, 2020

Value of a Walk, by Thoreau

Background photo February 2020

Grateful for morning walks still--I come back with so much more than when I went out. Perspective, inspiration, writing ideas, insight, renewed hope, sorting through the muddles, prayer--so many benefits. Yes, I vote with Thoreau--moving the legs makes the thoughts flow, and in a good way. How about you, does walking/being outside help open the spigot of helpful insights for you? 
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Friday, January 31, 2020

New Year, New Projects

"Trust that still, small voice that says, 'This might work, and I'll try it.'" --Diane Mariechild

Looking ahead to new writing projects, continued exploration of storytelling and poetry, and trying my hand at importing text to images--thanks to canva.com, a new playground for me.

What will be your creativity playground of choice this year?

background, canva.com

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Monday, December 30, 2019

Post-From-the-Past, December Archives

December 2019
Wow, closing out another year, closing out a decade and, for me, closing out ten years of blogging. And it's been fun looking back on the projects, writing and otherwise, that have filled some of my time in those years--one being the photo-a-day exercise I undertook back in 2012. So I have chosen my "Photo-A-Day: December" post to complete my post-from-the-past series. Hope you enjoy as you anticipate all those projects begging for your attention in the new year ahead!
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Monday, December 31, 2012


Photo-A-Day: December

"How did it get so late so soon? It's night before it's afternoon. December is here before it's June. My goodness how the time has flewn. How did it get so late so soon?" --Dr. Seuss

Not only did December seemingly get here before June this year, so did the new year the way the last twelve months flew by. Was it the same for you?

Yet as this year closes and another begins, milestones are noted and memories are catalogued. And in particular, my photo-a-day challenge comes to an end. Wow. So hard to believe it really got done. I surprised myself, really. Didn't have much confidence going in, I guess. But, the results?

366 days (Leap year, remember?) minus 4 equals 362 pictures. Well, many more than that actually since some days I took multiple pictures and chose one from the lot, but I did it. I only missed those four days total. Two because (ahem) I forgot. And two because I misplaced my camera. It had fallen out of my purse into the backseat of the car, and we couldn't locate it for awhile. Good intentions are good but life happens! Other than that, I looked forward to the moment each day that I picked up the camera. Some days I pocketed it as I went for my walk. Some days I was in the right place at the right time and had it handy. Some days--particularly on our fantastic November trip--I couldn't stop snapping photos. And then there were the late nights, just before going to bed, that I realized I had *almost* forgotten and so hit the deadline just before the night turned to the next day.

I found I loved the challenge. It was a great deal of fun. And as I snapped today's photo, the last of the last, I found myself feeling a bit  nostalgic. "You mean it's over already?"

Well, not really. I have all these things to carry with me from the experience like inspiration on:


DetailPatternsTexture. ContrastSerendipity. Surprise. IdeasVisualization. 
Light and Shadow. Wonder. NuanceThe UnexpectedFocal Point. 
Potpourri. Travel and Story. Fairy Tales.

Along the way I learned about nurturing the creative side, waking up to beauty in the simple things, the value of trying something new, perseverance. All lessons that will carry over into a new year's writing projects, too.

I'm still contemplating what might be my challenge for the new year. It will involve writing, of course, and reading. It should incorporate stretching--as in reaching for a new level--and passion. We'll see what ideas gel in the next few days.

In the meantime, here is the final photo-a-day gallery. You'll see that there was much to celebrate this month, including the birth of our second granddaughter, born 12/12/12, and special family time. Hope you enjoy. And thanks for stopping in with wishes to each and everyone for a wonderful, creative, and happy new year!
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Rewinding back to the present: Wishing all a happy new year :-) And if you'd like to review all the months of my photo-a-day project, check out the photo-a-day challenge link under the Words and Such banner above. (Oh, and the granddaughter mentioned above in the photos? She's now seven years old. Double wow!)
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Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Post-From-the Past, November Archives

November 2019
Sharing my post-from-the past for this month with wishes to all for a happy Thanksgiving. It's been six years since I first posted this, and I enjoyed reviewing it. Hope you enjoy it, too!

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Wednesday, November 27, 2013


November 2013

"On the banks of the James River, a husband erected a tombstone in memory of his wife, one of those 100 maidens who had come to Virginia in 1619 to marry the lonely settlers. The stone bore this legend: 'She touched the soil of Virginia with her little foot and the wilderness became a home.'"
                            --Eudora Ramsey Richardson



The power of a tiny step...
The power of a kind word, of an outreached hand...
The power of a grateful heart, of enduring hope...
The power of love.

Maybe it all starts so small.

Happy Thanksgiving!

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Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Post-From-the-Past, October Archives

October 2019
One of my granddaughters recently said that I have so many books, my house is like a library. I like the sounds of that, especially as the year begins to tip into the colder months and I relish the idea of cozying up to read on a chilly day. And so, in the spirit of those of us who love books and can't seem to not be able to collect more, I offer this month's post-from-the past, October 2014 archives:

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

A Love Affair: 14 Quotes on Books and Reading

photo courtesy of pixabay.com
Oh, this love affair with books. It will endure for some of us for a long, long time. Never-ending TBR piles, recommendations, classics, favorites. Why are they so special to us?

I decided to explore what others say about books and reading. Some of my discoveries:

1. "If you only read the books that everyone else is reading, you can only think what everyone else is thinking." --Haruki Murakami

2. "There are many little ways to enlarge your child's world. Love of books is the best of all." --Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis

3. "The books you don't read won't help." --Jim Rohn

4. "There is a great deal of difference between an eager man who wants to read a book and the tired man who wants a book to read." --Gilbert K. Chesterton

5. "It is what you read when you don't have to that determines what you will be when you can't help it." --Oscar Wilde

6. "Where is human nature so weak as in the bookstore?"-- Henry Ward Beecher

7. "I divide all readers into two classes; those who read to remember and those who read to forget." --William Lyon Phelps

8. "You know you've read a good book when you turn the last page and feel a little as if you have lost a friend." --Paul Sweeney

9. "A book is a device to ignite the imagination." --Alan Bennett

10. "A good book has no ending." --R.D. Cumming

11. "Books have that strange quality, that being of the frailest and tenderest matter, they outlast brass, iron, and marble." --William Drummond, Bibliotheca Edinburgena Lectori

12. "Modern writers are the moons of literature; they shine with reflected light, with light borrowed from the ancients." --Samuel Johnson

13. "I would rather be a poor man in a garret with plenty of books than a man who did not love reading." --Thomas Babington Macaulay

14. "Novels are sweets." --William Makepeace Thackeray, Roundabout Papers: On a Lazy Idle Boy

And we thought sugar was addictive? Ha!

Have a great rest of the week, everyone.
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Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Post-From-the-Past, September Archives

Of all the quotes on writing I've collected (many of them posted one time or another here at Words and Such over the past nine-plus years), the following is my all-time favorite. It's recorded on a small slip of paper and sits on my desk as a daily reminder. I run this post once again as my post-from-the-past choice for September in the hopes it inspires others, too:

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Inclination and Connecting the Dots

courtesy google images
"No pen, no ink, no table, no room, no time, no quiet, no inclination." --James Joyce

"The fourth quarter of the year is upon us (fourth? what happened to the other three??) and I'm determined to read this quote every day for the next three months. Simple words but very motivating. For the inclination (n: disposition or bent; something to which one is inclined) to write truly starts with something as basic as a pen. Add to that then a place, time, quiet...

And the dots begin to be connected, the story picture we have in our heads begins to be drawn. Inclination is fostered, not squelched. Nothing new here, but reminders are always good."

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