Tag Archive | spring

churr-churr

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churr-churr!  he calls to me as I pick up

my morning paper; again he sings to me

in the afternoon as I begin my daily walk;

a twitter of friendship, kinship in this greening

world of spring;

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or maybe not—perhaps a simple warning

to keep my distance from the nest he and his lady  

friend have crafted for their soon-to-be

red-bellied young;

 

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or perhaps he doesn’t notice me at all,

just churr-churrs his two-word poem

for the simple joy of being alive, the brilliance

of his red head shining his delight,

inviting me to sing, churr-churr

with him the sparkling of a world drowned

in a sea of colors spinning out the springtime

hope we share;

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hope for tiny feathered souls;

hope for secret nestlings brooding midst the darker

secrets of our hearts; hope for children tented

in crowded camps, tweeting needs and fears against

the noise that shrouds the colors of their world,

colors that yet push out through cracks

in concrete walls, push up through all the carnage

of our wars, colors churr-churring hope that springs

insistent, firm, across our sordid, wearied world.

 

Magdalene Crocus

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Burst of sun-soaked brightness,

brave against the winter’s brittle shards of

last year’s grass; like Magdalene,

I want to clasp and hold these beauties close;

force them to linger, gentle paint, refresh

the withered fringes of my fingers, eyes, and soul;

but holding on would only mar the fleeting

beauty of their fragile strength; like them, I too

am but a passing guest in this grand wonder

of a world; so let it be its yellow, purple,

crimson, heart-breaking, beautiful self;

enjoy! enjoy! these little flowers say,

savor every color, every promise sprouting

from winter’s gray, forbidding cold; but

fingers always open; springtime hearts as well.

Easter Forsythia

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They tiptoe, dance, and spin

bright sun across my tired yard,

still dressed in her old tattered

coat of winter’s shadowed cold.

Wee flowerets sing to me their

yellow song of rising life;

shout golden hallelujahs,

he is risen; he is risen indeed;

trumpet bold the tidings,

shake the air, pierce through my

fears; spill out their earthy psalm of

wonder, jubilation at the mystery of

life beyond the winter’s ice, of life

beyond the stone cold mask

of every sullen death.

Of Windows and Walls–a Photo Essay

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There are days when my walls feel thick. Oppressively thick. Thick and dark, as though they’re pushing in on me and taunting my CFS/ME persistent need for rest. Days when I simply want to be outside these walls. Out and “doing,” rather than simply “being,” forever sitting on the maroon and cream colored roses that pattern my sofa. It’s not that I’m never able to be out and about.  I am able at times to take short walks, enjoy an occasional visit with a friend, even attend worship now and again.  I am grateful for each of these, but I so wish they were not so infrequent.  

I’m grateful, too, for my sturdy walls and their protection from the bitter cold of January. From the heat of August. From rains and snows and winds. Grateful for these walls, oh yes. But there are days of weakness when I want to break them down and simply be done with all this resting. Exchange my sofa roses for the lilies and the iris that grow outside the confines of my barricades. I do not always like my walls.

But I have windows too. Bright openings in my walls. Openings that calm and reassure. That pull me out of torpor. That open up my walls, push back their taunts, and call me to a place of mindful, humble praise.

One of my windows, the window that watches while I sleep, looks to the west, through branches of an aging dogwood tree. One dogwood branch in particular has become a special friend. Constant in presence. Constant in attentiveness to mercies and beauty new every morning.

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Her white blossoms greet me each spring.

 

 

 

 

 

winter lace

 

 

 

In winter, she sometimes tats a delicate lace of snow…

 

 

 

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…or tosses soft balls of cotton clouds into the sky.

 

 

 

 

 

In the evenings, I often see her through the window, waiting beneath a darkening sky that evokes in me a sometime shudder. Recently, however, there was a different night. I went to close the blinds but opened them instead, transfixed by bursts of light breaking through the menace of the black. Bursts of the Beyond, bursts of Light that shines, of Light no darkness will ever overcome.

 

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Other evenings, not many, but a few, a grand cacophony of soundless color arches through the vastness of the sky. It’s then I almost hear my branch friend’s silent laughter chortling to defy the taunts of my thick walls.

 

sunset

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Another window opens up directly across from the sofa roses of my rest. In spring, the vista through this opening is soft and promising, singing gentle songs of busy growth, renewal; sheer joy in all that is alive.

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In the heat of summer, these same branches splash right through my window, bringing with them a sea-green coolness—so welcome and refreshing.

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Then in the fall, the brilliance of the branches once again lights up my indoor space. Beautiful, but a bit foreboding as well. Drawing me into reveries of dyings I have known, more dyings that will come—for friends, for loved ones, one day for me. “Let them be,” I softly pray, “let them be endings both as bright and as unassuming as the falling of these radiant leaves.”

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Through this window, too, in every season, my sea-toned wind chimes sparkle, some days with a stillness that quiets every fear that threatens me. Other days they skip and dance, almost bringing the wind inside to ruffle my hair and lift my sagging spirits.

chimes

Windows. They make me rich with wonders manifold. These wonders don’t exactly make my walls come Jericho-a-tumbling down. But windows have a way of pushing out the walls. A way of letting in the light. A way of lifting me, opening me, connecting me with what’s beyond. And I am grateful.  

Grateful and aware. Aware that there are many in our world confined behind walls far thicker than mine. Walls of painful, crippling illness. Walls of oppression. Walls of punishment. Walls of prejudice and hate. Walls often with only tiny windows or with no windows at all. Walls that shrink minds and souls. Walls that leave spirits damp and dead.

So as I lay my window thanks upon my altar of gratitude, I lay as well a prayer for windows everywhere. A prayer for windows that will enrich, encourage, and embolden all who live behind life’s walls. A prayer for hastening of that day when walls—all walls—will be no more.

Taste of Daffodil

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So brave, my daffodils; as

chill winds blow across our yard, they

graceful bow and sway in dance

attuned to rhythms buried deep

beneath the soil; endure cold nights,

stand firm in cruel April days to

yellow winter browns and silent

shout their joy at fading icy frosts.

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Tasty, too, my daffodils;

sipping from their sturdy cups, I

savor memories of youthful spring;

hand in hand with my beloved under

warm Midwestern skies, dreaming

fields of daffodils, endless, firm, and

bright, outshining all life’s winter woes.

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We’ve had our share of golden blooms,

sufficient through the grays and

browns rough painted through our lives;

now autumn years; a mellowed

tang to daffodil; honeyed, holy

wine; floral sign and seal of

life beyond that’s rooted in an

ancient tomb that rolled away the

cold of death and planted in its stead the

promise of another spring when we will

hang our tears upon the stars; forever

dance with saints and daffodils.

in loving memory of my late brother-in-law Fred Bruin who now

forever dances with saints and daffodils

and

with gratitude for 52 years of life with my husband Merold