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wishing flower, vulnerable and beautiful

Let’s just say, I’m not an early morning girl.  Those who know me appreciate this and quietly leave me alone until I’ve had a chance to emerge from my pre-coffee zombie state.  However, there is a bird glee club that begins at about 3:30, yes in the morning.  It’s lovely and melodic; leaving me no choice but to listen.  Translated, this means I’ve been up before my norm.  The youthful hours are warm, but fresh; they beg for a walk, and so does Isabella.
Yesterday was a little cooler so our pace was speedy, at least for my little legs.  We passed cars and bushes and bugs zipping around … and the rejected weed.

pulled up by its roots discarded wishing flower tossed aside left at the edge of the sidewalk
the sun beat down life ebbing from the slender stalk, leaves drying, privately curling desperate to hold onto being
funny, how I noticed the thrown-away on a morning walk my thought to stop and pick up the mopped, fluffy head
full of wispy seeds of would-be, it held a fundamental artistry lying i…
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i didn't slow down

I didn't get it written down because I didn't slow down.

I was mindful of needing to physically slow down my walking pace. Your voice was clear; a tangible choice to make, mirroring what my soul needed to do. So, I did ... momentarily.

I was mindful of life to be seen in the desert. It had been hot and dry, but tiny wildflowers sprinkled the rocky, barren ground with dots of pink and purple with grey-sage leaves. Dragons darted in the parching air. Killdeer bobbed the earth while unseen birds crooned.

I was mindful of stepping onto the dock; the bleached boards reflecting the sun. Small, almost see-through fish schooled away from under the landing. I'd known if I watched long enough, searched enough times, they should be there; and they were, they are.

I'm mindful of how quickly these observations vanish like a mirage when my pace returns to frantic.


If you have been mildly amused, challenged or inspired by what you have read, please pass on my blog to a friend, co…

silencing the stranger

There’s icky stuff happening.

Everywhere you turn there’s strife, displacement, floods and fires. My heart goes out to those affected by hurricane Harvey, as well as all of the wildland firefighters here in Oregon, as we watch our forests be consumed by the flames.

Taking it a step broader, our culture, our world can’t agree on anything. Everybody’s right and nobody is wrong; or is it vice versa? We live in a gritty world of real needs and hurts. The stranger crawls in, abusing, demeaning and using. How will we emerge?

I trust you see the optimism in the last lines, for there is always hope, no matter how desperate situations appear. It takes a resolute effort on our part to see the woven crosses and to stand strong, not silent.

“Hush, be silent,” crouched in quiet              words of warning heard all too often
“Plug your ears, don’t listen,” put it out of your mind                 still, the sound of slamming doors and objects crashing … or people                                 seeps…

adding an "ing"

I like words. I use a thesaurus. Words are expressive. Words trigger thoughts and tell stories in and of themselves.

Recently, I’ve seen two words which are normally nouns turned into verbs; a thing became an action. Cool concept, right?

A little awkward to say: neighboring - storying

Common words – neighbor and story – were given an “ing” suffix. Instantly, they took on a new life. No longer was a neighbor just a person, it was an action, a way of relating to those who surround us. It implies presence, friendliness and hospitality. Neighboring requires something, the giving of a part of us. (See full article about “Neighboring” at Relevant Magazine)
Storying took neighboring to a different place. Movement was attached to the telling. It was used in relation to sharing about God with people living on Lake Victoria in Africa. Stories were put in context of the culture and given hands and feet.

I guess what I respond to in both words is they beg for my participation and presence.

How ofte…

after five days i let the horse run free

‘cause the desert had turned to sea
there were plants and birds and rocks and things
there was sand and hills and rings
- America, "Horse With No Name" -
I’m reentering our long, indirect road trip in May. Not by accident we had “America” as our ‘tripping music when we reached the ocean in SoCal.
Following an intentional wander through silent deserts, now it was time for plants and birds and crowded life. Just as the solitude of the desert is good for the soul, so is watching waves that go on forever while earthing your feet in minute grains of sand that can’t be counted.

The Northern journey to “Ventura Highway,” while actually driving on Ventura Highway was just as known and unknown as the desert trek. The beauty of travelling during the shoulder season is spontaneity; reservations aren't necessary. 
I'm gripped by the Missions, which are scattered throughout California, so they were on the agenda. If by chance we stumbled upon a few wineries and perhaps a handful of…

silent sounds of the desert

During my journey in the desert, I had the comfort of writing.  I wrote of activities and sites. I wrote descriptive phrases for photos. I wrote pieces of poetry that express more than pages and pages in my journals.
These words, I think I’ll keep close as they teach me a way to live in awareness and mindfulness. I hope  you, too will find some inspiration in the silent sounds of the desert.

road tripping: a desert trek

I love the freedom of road trips; stopping when you want, turning on a side road or adding an extra day to a particular place just because you can. The freedom of the road is romanticized in novels and movies, but some of those depictions are reality when traveling with your love and best friend.

We left early afternoon, and after pushing through the Oregon high desert with water levels equally high and wildlife abundant, we stopped for the night in Austin, Nevada. It’s a small, mostly boarded up, for sale town wedged on the side of the Toiyabe Mountains. Austin is mostly dead and abandoned, but not in a cool ghost town sort of way. Its rugged beauty though, includes a castle, stories of colorful silver miners and hiking, biking and other desert exploring stuff. 

Leaving, we dropped into the Big Smoky Valley on the Loneliest Highway in America. It widens and closes in as you travel, encircled by mountains which were still dressed in snow, defining the ruggedness that often goes unno…


waywardIt's not a word that just rolls off the tongue in everyday conversation. It has a disturbing, poetical rhythm to it, bringing up unsettled thoughts and meanings; in fact, one of the definitions for wayward is unsettled.

Think about how sailors would talk of wayward winds that would blow them off course to parts unknown. Then there's the wayward child, willful and capricious, wanting to follow their own inclinations instead of a compiled set of ways.
I initially jotted a few notes like: wayward disturbs a contented soulwayward has a mind of its ownI never was a wayward child in deed, but more in the mindI tend to think of wayward in negative ways - we all do.
However, as I revisit the three statements above, I see an interesting pattern unfolding; one where wayward might have a different definition. Perhaps it's good to have a disturbed soul. It gets us out of a rut. A mind of our own doesn't just follow because it’s supposed to. And, heaven forbid, there are ti…