Sunday, July 30, 2017


Holding hands with friends and family. Sometimes oversleeping helps to bring things to the surface.

We overslept three times
This morning
Awakened to wonder
How to join hands
With the larger pieces
Of things
Of course
Are so much larger
Than we know.
Every time
We awakened,
We named the dream
Whose hands
We held.
The circle
Was so much larger.
I wonder
If we oversleep
Four times
Five times
A million
What it will bring

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Darn home

I think I know what home is. I don't. Even more, I don't. Even though it's been over a year since I've had a seizure, and the medications seem to be right. I still don't know where I'll wake up. Darn home.

Where is home?
It appears new
Every day.
I would like
It to stay
In one place.
I work
To make it so.
Make it so
Make it so.
Still it moves
Darn home
I never know
Where you will be
When I wake up
I think I know
Where you are
When I go to sleep.
Darn home
Changed again.

Friday, July 28, 2017

Spirit animal

Adventures at NIH

As I walk the halls
Of the hospital
My stuffed sloth
In the front
Of my walker,
The British woman
Asks me
If she
Is my spirit animal.
Oh no
 I reply
This is Rosemary.
My spirit animal
is a black panther.
Pleased to meet you,
She says.
We continue
To walk
Past the nurse’s station.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Wheelchair professionals

More airport adventures, There are professionals for everything, I wonder if there is special training for wheelchair professionals.

My beloved
Was not allowed
To wheel me
In the airport.
I’m sorry sir
That is only for
The wheelchair professionals.
I’m sorry sir
You must show
Your ID
To the wheelchair professionals.
I stood in my braces
In the security container.
The wheelchair professionals
Made sure
I wheeled through.
My beloved and I
Came out
The other side.
My beloved and I
Got on
The plane.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017


I am not happy with this. Or maybe happy is not the right word. I have resisted writing about this. I did not title it walls or wailing because it seems I might use those titles for another reflection. Still, it seemed I should write something. So this is it for today. My something.

The wall demolished
Which made Germany
The Wailing Wall
Oh yes
The Wailing Wail
It allows
If we build another wall
Either from one side
Or the other
No matter who
Pays for it.
If good fences
Make good neighbors
As the poet maintained
The neighbor piece
The good piece
Still means we have to see
Our neighbor,
As the Germans did
With family
On both sides.
We wail
We are so familiar
With walls.
We build them
All the time.
We put prayers
In the chinks.
There are always
There are always
And always
May we wail.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

No more adventures

With laughter comes deeper comprehension.

He tells me
“No more adventures.”
My beloved says
“How dare he”
“How dare he
Label your hospital stays
Your falls
Each one
Does indeed bear a note
Of tragedy.
Each one
Might have been
I see
Each one’s point.
I have to laugh.
With laughter
Comes deeper
No more adventures
As if
I set out
Like Robin Hood
Every day.
Every walk around the block
Is an adventure.
I have to laugh.
With laughter
Comes deeper

Monday, July 17, 2017


Only a few more perennials to plant: milkweed, bee balm. Then I think we're done. Meanwhile the kitten watches the robin.

The fledgling robin
Figures out
What he needs
To eat
Spreads his wings
Fluffs his tail
Scores a linden berry
An ant
A dirt bath.
Looks pleased
A few spots
On his chest.
The bare garden spots
Are his
Until he figures out
To fly south.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

On to the next thing

Here we go. Digging up dirt around the fountain, adding mushroom compost, planting bee balm for the bees, butterfly weed and milkweed, and some grasses we found at the nursery.

On to the next thing
Perennials around the fountain
Lavender and grasses
A few Echinacea.
They should have been planted
Last week
But thanks be to God
It poured rain
On Thursday
So they held off
For the weekend.
Now it’s time.

Friday, July 14, 2017


Every day has its mission. Some are more interesting than others. We are trying to decide who will be our next roofer. As I said, some missions are more interesting than others. The roof mission is before the new shutter mission.

The mission for today
Is to scope out
A roof in Bartlett.
I wonder if they will know
We are not prowlers
To stake out
Their home
But are only there
To see their roof:
Its style
Its composition
Its pitch
Its color.
Will they know?
Will they even
Be home?
And if they notice
Will they care?

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

I don't want to do this anymore

Nothing will be a favorite with everyone.

The preschool
Offered many activities.
One day they dipped their feet
In black paint
Walked across newsprint.
The teacher
Carefully wrote
What each one said
About the experience
On their newsprint
“it’s wet”
“It’s squishy”
“It’s cold”
My favorite:
“I don’t want to do this anymore”

Grease traps

Everyone, everything, has his or her own field of expertise.

My beloved
Is the church expert
On grease traps.
I never knew
Such things existed
Knowing him.
These are no
Mere drains.
The kitten
Is the house expert
On catching flies.
Not just any flies
But house flies
And pantry moths.
Her eyes pick up
A wide range
Of flying things.
We watch them
I am not as interested
In grease traps.

Monday, July 10, 2017


I have never seen "connection" on any list of spiritual gifts. Nonetheless, it seems to be one of mine,

Everyone is gifted.
My gift seems to be
Getting people connected
One with another.
Oh you need a place
To work?
I say
Oh you have a job?
I say
Oh you have an office?
I say
Possible connection made.
On to the next one.

Sunday, July 9, 2017


My siblings and I learned to shoot up north at the cabin. It was not my favorite activity. I have never liked loud noises

My father
Took survival
We all learned
How to shoot and clean
A gun.
Guns were not toys.
Guns were never meant
To be taken lightly.
Guns were not meant
For hunting.
My father built
A fallout shelter
Before the Cuban Missile Crisis.
My father took survival
We learned from him

Saturday, July 8, 2017

The world spins

Everything moves,

On days such as these
I watch the sun
In and out
Behind the clouds
When really it’s the clouds
That move
Or maybe it’s me
That changes position.
On days such as these
Everything moves
Even me
With compromised feet.
On days
On all days
The world spins
The clouds move.

Friday, July 7, 2017


It's all relative

I am older.
You’ll notice I didn’t say
It’s relative
After all.
Older means
I take the color test
On the Internet
And test age 87
So I take it again
And test age 25.
I am actually
In between.
Such tests
Like IQ tests
Are meant for fun.
To be sure
Some days I feel 87
And some days
I wake up

Thursday, July 6, 2017


I was first introduced to Mihaly Czikszentmihalyi in an introduction to psychology class at the local community college. He described the term flow coupling it with imagination. I have been grateful ever since.

Like the river
Like the stream
Like the rivulets
In the garden bed,
Like the words
On the page
Which might prefer
To be left inside
But insist their way
Flow, I say,
There is no way
To flow,
To be left
But insist their way
And out
Like the river
Like the stream
Like the rivulets
Like the words.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017


I wonder if grandparents live on farms anymore. A whistle might scare the cows.

Someone gave the child
Behind us
A whistle
For the 4th of July.
We think it was
A grandparent
Who ate potato salad
And left.
The whistle stayed behind.
We think
It will be wrapped
For the next trip
To the grandparent’s farm
Only to be discovered
With joy
When the child unpacks
His luggage.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Psalms in translation

In a class on the Psalms people asked whether the new Prayer Book would have a new translation of the Psalms. Probably...I said...probably. Language is always in the process of change. We cling to old familiar things.

Are there people at work
On new translations
Of the psalms?
Who are they?
Are they people
Of deep prayer?
Do they care
About deer panting
For streams of water?
Or Lord
You have searched me out
And known me?
Is the Lord
Their shepherd
I ask you
Is the Lord
Their shepherd?
Do they walk
Through the valleys
Of the shadows of death
With Him?
With Her?

Sunday, July 2, 2017


In honor of Keith and Leo who didn't like loud noises either

More milkshakes
Because it is a holiday
And how else
To really celebrate.
I am not
A loud noise person.
The kitten doesn’t like them
We are on the same page
The gray tabby
Through everything.
Ah the 4th
Or the 2nd
Or the 3rd
Of July
More milkshakes
The proper way
To celebrate.

Saturday, July 1, 2017

After the milkshakes

Years ago we had a sphinx moth visit the nicotiana. Amazing creature.

After the milkshakes
We made a dent
In the garden store
Included a pink flamingo
With a spring
On its neck.
Today we plant
The perennials
Bee balm
Et al.
For the front pots
Nicotiana in hopes
The sphinx moth
Will return.
It’s late
To garden
But still
Never too late
I say.