Thursday, October 31, 2013


Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away  in barns, your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not more valuable than they? ~Matthew 6:26

Wading on yellow legs
In the icy bay
Gull watches for tidbits
In the sand and breaking waves
Her feathers ruffled by a cold wind
Shadows beginning to fall.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Late Bloomer

Don't worry about tomorrow for tomorrow will take 
care for itself.

Late flower of summer
Planted to catch the eye 
To cheer the heart
Pink dark three, pink light three 
Petals each
Bloom beginning to brown around the edges
Beginning to fade—presents
A green pompom of seed,
Says, "Hah, Winter,
We will be back!
Back to welcome Spring 
Thrive through summer
To make hearts sing with joy!"

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

A Vein of Thought

Commit your ways unto the Lord and He 
will direct your paths.~ Proverbs 3:6

Like the veins of a dragonflies wings
A green leaf is a filigreed
Beautiful piece of intricate art
Like roads that run 
This way and that
Marking paths changing, turning,
Trundling paths to somewhere;
Like gold that hides in the hills, 
Running through rock
To nowhere—somewhere 
We cannot see.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Small Gift

Be thankful for the least gift, so shalt thou be meet
 to receive greater. ~Thomas A Kempis

Overlooked blossoms
Small and yellow 
Fallen aside
From the showy clan
I rescued you
Brought you inside
Found in you
A small gift
 Salvaged light
Like lemony July sunshine
Your center fine gold 
Rare fragile filigree

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Velvet Rose

By faith we understand ... what is seen was not made 
of things that are visible. 
Hebrews 13:3

Curls and swirls
Paint dripped from 
God's moving brush
Color and light,
Velvet curves of 
Sweet-scented softness,
Red rose.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

October Feast

The good Lord gives us bright on bright to cheer our days.

Red on red
Red on green
Christmas colors
Feast for the birds,
Feast for my eyes,
Feast for the heart.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Farewell Summer

All flesh is grass, and all its loveliness is like the flower of the field. 
The grass withers, the flower fades,but the word of our God stands forever. 
Isaiah 40: 6, 8

Reaching from dried stems
Sprays of brown are left
Like little bursts of
Finished fireworks fading
In the autumn afternoon.

Gone the white lace
That dipped and nodded
At passing cars and curtsied
To the fiery cardinal 
On a sunny summer day.

Gone the saucers of bone china
Inviting butterflies and bees
To high tea on royal finery
Queen Anne sings farewell
As the winter dawns.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Shed Door

The old shed door speaks mystery 
Where locks and latches once clamped
Tightly shut, now the door can swing open,
Proclaiming there is nothing to hide:.
Stacks of clay flower pots, a shovel, an ax, 
Three bent buckets, a couple of rakes
Sleep inside, too old for their labors.
A rusty bicycle with a basket but no 
Hand brakes, leather strap hung on a nail
Beside a beekeepers canvas hood
Burlap bags have fallen in a heap
A nest for chipmunks or squirrels
A pile of black walnut hulls and shells scattered
About—another mystery.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013


Let the beauty of Jesus be seen in me
All His wonderful passion and purity
O, Thou Spirit Divine, all my nature refine
Till the beauty of Jesus me seen in me.
 Tom Jones and Richard Hainsworth

Would that the oft troubled 
Surface of my life
Reflected Jesus
As the surface of the lake 
Reflects the sky
Its brightness, its light, its beauty;
Not only on calm and quiet days—
But mid-crisis, post-crisis
When storms have dropped debris, 
When pieces float and drift and obscure
The view. I pray, I hope, my heart 
Still shines with Him.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Needles and Leaves

To everything there is a season.

Song of wistful notes
Far off melody heard in the night,
Not, no... just almost heard, 
Almost found, almost captured
Mysterious, haunting
As a remembered lullaby.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Reeds with Raindrops

All that I have seen teaches me to trust God 
for all that I have not seen.

During the windy storm-filled night
Pine boughs shook brown-sugary needles free
Oak trees and maples, willows and aspen shuddered
Ridding themselves of worn and browned leaves
Summer clothes worn and unneeded in winter
They fluttered, scuttered and flew 
The lake's edge catches and traps 
The beauties in its surface
Among the reeds, who are changing costumes too,
The afternoon sun reflects a clear sky
The storm is past; the wind has died
While last raindrops—like last notes,
Chime in at the end of a symphony

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Dressed for Fall

Give thanks to Him who spread out the earth 
above the waters, for His lovingkindness is everlasting. 
Psalm 136:6

The lake is feathered today
Fluttering with reflections
Weaving images of trees, clouds, sky.
Above the lake's sandy floor
With its clear-as-glass water
Like a mirror
Showing the green, shining back blue, 
Wrapped in white
Accessorized with orange and yellow, 
Accented with deep red,
And a touch of gold.
A costume fit for an October day
An embroidered sweater against the chill
Will serve until the lake dons her 
Woolly winter white snow-coat.


Friday, October 18, 2013

Old Boat

The glory of young men is their strength, and the splendor 
of old men is their gray head. 
Proverbs 20:29

Like the man 
Who once rowed you
Out onto the sparkling surface of the lake,
You have been turned upside down
You are topsy-turvy;
Your out-going's have been sideswiped.
You never thought you would sit so long
You might feel—if you felt—forgotten, unneeded, unused,
Bypassed for younger livelier models
Your paint peels; you have learned to 
Accept dents and spots of rust
But you should know we recall
Days when you hosted fishermen and fisher-boys.
With laughter and conversations,
Along with squeals of delight 
Echoing out across the water.
We recall how lovely a blue you used to be; 
We remember quiet trips out on the moonshiny lake.
Now we remember and treasure the memories
Still, you make us smile and laugh
We still feel safe knowing you are here.
 Like your owner, with family sheltered in his heart;
You shelter still, if only a rabbit on a cold day. 
Like your owner, you can never be replaced 
Though newer models come 
To help with some of the hauling and carrying.
Those dents and bits of rust and peeled paint 
Like his scars, age spots, and wrinkles 
Only makes you, like him, more precious to us 
They tell the stories of your life;
They show the measure of your days
Your worth immeasurable,
As his.

Thursday, October 17, 2013


Tree by the lake
Your leaves fly, flip, fall
Fluttering to the water
Become boats 
Slip-slip-slipping in the wind's current
Settling softly from the surface
To their storage shelf on the lake's bottom.

Tree by the lake
Your leaves tumble, twirl, swirl 
Pirouette across the pasture
Become lifejackets
Grip-grapple-grouping under lilac bushes,
Burrowing beneath the blue Spruce
To blanket the bare earth against winter's cold.

Tree by the lake
Your leaves lazily linger, loiter 
Lifting on the autumn wind
Becoming ships,
List-list-listing light as silvery sailboats, 
Ferrying summer's light and life
To the other shore safe beyond winter—to spring.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Rail Fence

Worn by wind
Weathered and weakened
The rail fence
Is a place to roost
For Blue Jays and
Black squirrels.
Offers a view,
A rest stop,
A step up to the nearest tree.
It used to be my
Favorite place to sit,
Now it is only a wisp
Of its former self
And childhood memories like
Wisps of smoke
Almost only unreachable feelings

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Apple Time

The cold wind in the winter, the pleasant summer sun,
the ripe fruits in the garden: God made them every one. 
Cecil F. Alexander

The apple tree out by the barn
Puts her fruit on
 Wears it set a bit askew
Like a pill box hat
Worn by an English duchess
It's her fashion statement
 Her jewelry,
 Her accessory,
Set off nicely against her green
And yellow dress.
She doesn't flaunt it
She wears it with confidence,
With grace that turns heads
The old tree!

Monday, October 14, 2013

In a Jam

Jars of plum jelly
Set to cool on a white towel
You bring to mind little girls,
On stage, dressed in red
Christmas gowns—angels
Their faces gleaming
Sweet mouths voicing
"O little Town of Bethlehem"
Heads crowned with golden halos.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Showing White

Pink seeps from petals
Deepens to darker purple
Leaves white lace exposed.

Friday, October 11, 2013

Catching Sunlight

Like a bowl
You catch sunshine
And serve it fresh to us
Trapped inside our houses
 By the cold.
Your petals
Imitate the sun
Rays in primary red
Straight from a Crayon box
To our eyes.
You give us
Green of summer,
Yellow of sunrise, orange 
Of fruit from a southern clime,
Purple of sunset.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

My Father's Hands

My father's hands,
Like his heart, like his voice,
I know them;
I would recognize them in any room of hands
Without voices or faces.
Those hands held
My hand when I was afraid,
Gave comfort when I was sick,
Fed me when I was hungry,
Gripped an axe that split
Wood to warm me;
Tied flies, baited many a hook.
Cast a rod for rainbow trout
Pulled on canoe paddles down the river.
They planted seedling trees,
Trees I can walk under today.
With the waning wear of work in the woods,
They are softer, less calloused now;
They are supple from prayers, holding grandchildren,
Turning the pages of his Bible,
Or a field guide to birds, bees, or trees,
Stroking Mama's hair 'till she sleeps
Breathes calm—reassured of his presence.
Those hands—Daddy's hands
 I love them.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013


Purple, Princely, Profuse
Propagated around the world;
This plant gives us sweet deep red juice,
Rosy wine, table grapes, raisins, jellies and jams.
Even the seed's oil is curative and good;
Leaves for wrapping, cooking, pickling
Vines for wicker baskets.
Plant that replants itself
Spreads clinging with woody tendrils
Shies back in the winter
Springs up in the first days of summer
A gift from God
A wonderful plentiful plant 
Created for folks who complain 
Whine and beg for things,
Who want more and more
Isn't it enough that there are grape vines?

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Family Ways

Each tiny flower inside this
Sunflower's disk
Has come from the center
Turned itself
Swelled and pushed out from
It's beginning
Like a family
Each individual with his dream
Pushing outward
Reaching, growing, striving
Each with time gaining
Understanding wisdom
Turning a richer, less bright maybe,
 but fuller color
 Blending together, working together to fulfill
A family's purpose
Full, beautiful, sweet!

Monday, October 7, 2013

Spider Lily

God is creating at every moment of the world's existence... 
Arthur Peacocke

Spider lily
Surprise from the Master of Surprises
The one who springs daffodils on unsuspecting eyes,
Who throws red, orange, and purple in the sky at setting sun,
Who dances down maple leaves like so many ballerinas 
On an autumn afternoon.
Who laughs as He sets the harvest moon huge and orange
In the September sky,
The one who shocks us to tears with a baby's 
Entrance into the world
Who loves a great surprise, who loves startling us with beauty,
Like purple crocus pushing through whitest snow,
Like Puffin colors against gray rock and drear cold
Like water bubbling from a spring cold—so cold
Spider lily!

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Red Rose

You can live without bread but not without roses.
Jean Richepin

You were painted,
But not by my brush
You were painted without a tube of oils,
Without colors mixed in a chemist's lab.
God spoke you and you came up from the soil
Through branches and stems,
Where you formed a bud and grew and bulged
Like an infant swelling a mother's belly,
Sun warmed you, roots fed you in silence.
You burst on my day against green leaves 
Outside my window this morning
Just as God planned.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Fall Flower

Autumn's the mellow time.
William Allingham 

You bloom in the late heat of summer
Tonight you must pull your petals
Around you like a cloak
When the sun fades from the sky
With red and orange, all the warmth
Will fade too and chill will be in the air.
Autumn has come and you are
Just the right color.

Friday, October 4, 2013

Consider Lillies

Consider the lilies how they grow: 
They toil not neither do they reap, 
Solomon in all his splendor
 was not arrayed like one of these.
Luke 12:27

In the morning lilies 
Burst from waxen pods
Swish their colorful dresses
Like beauty queens crossing a stage
Throw back petals
Shout Hallelujah at the sky
And sing, sing, sing!

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Boy Blue

I love the sound of music of all kinds, 
but there is no greater music than the sound of 
my grandchildren laughing.
Sylvia Earle

A grandson is a treasure of joy and spirit
He makes you run with him
He tells you tall tales
He recites nursery rhymes
He sings you a song
He yells: "Watch me! Watch me!"
He hugs your neck and your heart!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013


Food for the body is not enough, there must be food for the soul.
Dorothy Day

A warm apple cake spells 

Tuesday, October 1, 2013


 Every particular in nature, a leaf, a drop, 
a crystal, and moment of time, 
is related to the whole and partakes
 of the perfection of the whole.
Ralph Waldo Emerson

What wonder in a single leaf
That floats softly - sadly to the ground;
In another world, the leaf's dimension, 
Is there a screech of pain
Or a sigh of relief, a squeal of joy,
A" humpt" of humility at the come down?
I wonder, wonder, wonder what
It's like to be a fallen leaf!