Gratitude List:

1.  This little, spotted-winged moth who keeps fluttering in front of my eyes.  Now she is resting on the desk.  Her tiny wings are so dainty, and she has striped legs.  What a marvel for the morning, even before the sun is awake.  Just the moth and I, and the sleepy-voiced birds who are at this moment beginning to twitter and chat.
2.  The Hive Mind.  I asked friends on Facebook to help me with some poetry ideas for my students.  I now have a shiny stack of poems here to offer for the next few weeks.
3.  My students.  They are so big-hearted, so earnest, so tricksy, so open, so ready for the world.  I love them.
4.  The view of the River and valley from the crest of Mt. Pisgah in the mornings when I am going to work and the mists are still whispering through the low places.
5.  Yesterday–first day of school for my children–went fine, and none of my anxieties materialized.  The kindergartener is happy and chatty about his teacher and his classmates.  The third grader is intent and eager to learn.

May we walk in Beauty!

Gratitude List:

1.  I think (knock on wood) that my poison ivy is clearing up.
2.  Feeling like I am in the right place.
3.  Reassurances.
4.  Finding my way.
5.  Dawn, lifting the veils of night.

May we walk in Beauty!

I wish for you,
when you lose your way,
a bright feather on your path.

I wish for you,
when your eyes are spangled with tears,
a shaft of shining light to prism you a rainbow.

I wish for you,
when the load is heavy,
a gentle wind to lift you up.

May your roads be green.
May your stars shine brightly in the night.
May the valley ahead be filled with small hearth fires
and the sound of singing.

Gratitude List:
1.  Thoughtful, helpful,kind colleagues.  A healthy community of teachers can develop a healthy community of students.
2.  First days.  New beginnings.  In the autumn when I have not returned to school, I have often been jealous of the people who do. Clean slate.  Sharp pencils.  Possibilities.
3.  Trusting the net to appear.
4.  Meeting my children’s teachers and new principal.  The boys will be well cared for, and in a rich learning environment.
5.  Letting go. I am ready for the first day of school, but the last minute brought up all the thousand things that suddenly need to happen.  Right now!  I will not get all the thousand things done in the next two hours.  Still, I can let them go, and know that the day will happen as it happens.  This is the first lesson.

May we walk in Beauty!

Deep breath.
Straighten the spine.
Scan the wide vista before you.

Feel the morning breeze
as the sun rises
over the far horizon.

Another deep breath.
Spread your wings.


Gratitude List:
1.  Beads, stones, stories, and a little bottle of water from Lake Victoria.
2.  This family.  The growing kids.  The cousins who take time and heart with the little ones.
3.  People who sing.  I love being around Winnie the Pooh and Bilbo the Hobbit types, who are always transforming the moment into a song.
4.  The color blue, from the peace of turquoise, to the love and nurture of Mary’s Robe, to deep visionary indigo, to crisp and intellectual cobalt.
5.  Leaping into the blue.

May we walk in Beauty!

Before you knew it
you were halfway across.
You had thought each step
would be an ordeal,
that you’d wrestle
the fear away
with every buck and sway
of the bridge.

But that bright butterfly
slipped along ahead of you
through the mist, the cloud,
and you followed it
until the cloud parted
and the valley lay out below you,
full of wonder.

The bridge,
you know,
the bridge itself
is the journey.

Gratitude List:
1.  Family camping-in-the-yard night.  Didn’t get much sleep, me.  But lots of snuggles and an great-horned owl lullaby and a crow and cuckoo wake-up call.  Worth it.
2.  Anticipating hearing the Africa stories this afternoon.
3.  Church.  I know.  But I love these people.  I can’t wait to get there and sing with people, and listen to the ideas and the stories.
4.  Kitty snuggles
5.  Bridges.  Made of language, of the future, of dreams, of feathers, of steel, of anxious wishing, of people, of hearts.

May we walk in Beauty!

Gratitude List:
1.  That spider whom I dislodged from a corner of a little-used bin yesterday.  As she scuttled away, I saw three swelling egg sacs.  I hung them carefully in an out-of-the-way place, and then found Mama Spider again and shooed her onto the egg sacs.  She immediately took up her guard there again.  Fierce Mama Protectiveness, even in Arachnia.
2.  New Computer.  I’ve been feeling a tiny little bit overwhelmed by the size of the technological learning curve as I prepare for school, but a little time playing and fiddling does go a long way toward making me feel comfortable in these new virtual rooms.
3.  Community Building.  I am pushing my getting-started classroom plans back a day or so in order to do some community-building exercises in my classes.  Before we talk about Narrative Structure in Literature, we’ll tell our own stories.
4.  Good conversations.  Thank you for being my village, friends.
5.  Even though I really loved that dress, I am incredibly grateful that it tore BEFORE I wore it to a day of school meetings rather than when I got there.  I’ll hem it up and make a shirt of it.

May we walk in Beauty!

When you wandered through that desert,
what was the summons that kept pulling you onward?
What color was the bright strand
that shimmered ever before your eyes?
What was the sound that filled your ears,
urging you not to give in
to the bone-aching weariness?
Remember it now
as you sit in this restful garden,
your hand in the cool quiet water,
breeze on your face,
the bells from the village
ringing across the valley,
in case you need it again some day.


Gratitude List:
1. People who are willing to gently say, “No, I think you might have it a little wrong there.”  To open up the conversation to new levels and learning.
2. Today is my first official day of school meetings.  I am actually excited to go to meetings!  New beginnings.
3. The BookWorm Frolic.  I think I might make it over there for a while after the meetings. It’s been a few years since I have been to the Frolic, but now I have a professional reason to go.
4. Those bright red waxy tips on the ends of the cedar waxwing feathers I found.
5. Beginning to learn the difference (perhaps a little) between making assumptions and using my intuition.

May we walk in Beauty!

What shall we do about the rain?
I mean, this rain,
the one that is filling up my ears.

I am spilling over,
remembering the paths
the water takes to the lake,
and how it thundered
on the tin roof,
how the doves sat in the yard,
wings extended skyward
to feel its baptism.

Today is the coming-of-autumn rain,
and we will harvest in the mud.

Gratitude List:
1.  The sound of rain
2.  The healing power of laughter
3.  Hours and hours of uninterrupted time to work
4.  Deadlines–really, how else would I get anything completed?
5.  The wild way those walnut leaves are dancing in the wind.

May we walk in Beauty!

Gratitude List:
1. A splendid birthday to set the stage for the coming year
2. Orange moon
3. Coffee.  It’s a good drug.  Perhaps it’s only a lovely little  legend, but I’m glad that ancient Ethiopian farmer watched his goats so carefully, was inquisitive enough to appreciate their pep and vim after they ate the beans from that little bush, and then was brave enough to say, “I think I’ll try some of that.”
4. That perfect little leaf stone that Macy gave me.
5. New beginnings.  This is the week for me.  Standing on the edge of the cliff’s edge, getting ready to leap, wind in the face.  Blessings to you, too, as you face your August beginnings.

May we walk in Beauty!

Today I turn 47.  Forty-seven is a prime number.  According to Wikipedia, it is the 15th prime number, it’s a safe prime, the 13th supersingular prime, and the sixth Lucas prime.  It is apparently a highly cototient number, and it is “strictly non-palindromic.”  Wikipedia also tells me that 47 is a Keith number, a Carol number and a Thabit number, related somehow to the amicable numbers 17296 and 18416.

Well, anyway, I seem to be entering my prime today, and it looks like I have a lots of mathematical research ahead of me if I really want to understand fully what that means.  But here I go.  Whee!

Gratitude List:
1. Aging.  I wouldn’t want to stay one age all the time.  As my numbers go up, it can occasionally be a little startling to me to see how fast they seem to be rising, but I wouldn’t want to stay in one place.
2. Silver hairs.  My friend Elizabeth calls them Unicorn Hairs.  I will wear mine proudly.
3. Fire circle on the hill.
4. Monarchs flitting about.  Fly well, Bright Ones!
5. Great Horned Owl calling in the trees.
6. That moon!


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