Family

Family…the nucleus of the world.
How can we love people across the
globe when we can not get along
with our family? Let us look at
our values in the relationships
closest to us. Do we practice
compassion, patience, affection
with our family members? Do we
forgive and also ask for forgiveness?

Is integrity–I say, I do, a cornerstone
of our system of values? Unconditional
love is the practice and goal of all
actions we make, including those with
our family. Look closely at your
relationships with your family members
for they say a lot about where you are
spiritually.

********

A favorite quote of mine, which is by Ram Dass, said that if you want to know how spiritually evolved you are, spend a week with your family. 🙂

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Do Not Forget

Why do you forget to pray
for your brother? Would
you take your arm and
cast it away? Pray for all
to learn the lessons of
life. Ask for forgiveness and
never again forget to pray
for your brother who is
the twin of your heart.

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The Illusion of Death


Death in front,
it’s twin behind
around us everywhere.
We watch in fear
as each one leaves
and wonder if
our time is near.

Does the caterpillar cry
when she spins her cocoon
and sees it as her final shroud?
When her death is over
what thinks she
of her emerging form
with rainbow colors
and sweet mystery?

The day is dying;
skies fill with brilliant hues.
Golden ball of glory,
sun makes it final descent.
It’s dark and cold,
will it be like this
for all time? I cry,
and tremble in the night.

Look up, my child,
all is not lost, only changed
into a sea of stars,
more than grains of sand.
Milky ways glitter without end,
new moon’s crescent glows.
A night of splendors
when fairies dance, and
lovers sigh and kiss again.

No, we need not fear death,
for it is simply a time of change.
The cocoon opens
in the morning sun,
we spread our wings to dry,
then flutter and flit
in gardens new and marvel
at what we’ve become.

Friend or foe?
Death is what we make it,
transformation or damnation,
what will your death be?
And what about mine?

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1000 Reasons To Be Grateful

I am starting a gratitude list to help me remember this prayer: “Dear God, may we always be grateful.” I believe that gratitude is the key to serenity.

Truly gratitude is a transformer in our lives. The more I cultivate it, the more joy and serenity I find in my life. Please feel free to add to this list in the comment section…or start your own gratitude list.

1. fresh breezes smelling of loamy ground after a gentle rain
2. little girl giggles that remind me to smile
3. sweet smell of puppies
4. ants marching in a row carrying leaves above their heads
5. raindrops that wash away tears
6. lilacs in the wind
7. friends who make me laugh
8. sweet potato pie with a hint of lemon
9. old men with hairy ears
10. red berries hidden beneath shiny green leaves
11. sweet memories of days gone by
12. mushroom prints that I make during rainy season
13. friends who call just to see how I am
14. walks in the floresta
15. page-turner books cozy quilt on a cold night
16. hic-ups from laughter
17. warm feet next to my cold feet
18. snooze alarms on cold mornings
19. spring water from a house faucet
20. little girls doing cartwheels
21. tadpoles changing
22. rain while the sun is shining
23. walking the beach at sunset
24. Grandmother’s pecan pie
25. books with woman heroes
26. blowing soap bubbles
27. coloring with my grandchildren
28. silly songs I sing for the children
29. birds taking baths in puddles
30. good books with sequels
31. reunions with old friends
32. poetry that lifts my soul
33. fragrance of fresh cut grass
34. grandmother’s rocking chair
35. kitty purrs
36. car with good gas mileage
37. spring tulips dotting my heart with color
38. socially acceptable burps and farts
39. belly laughter
40. old age’s patience
41. summer storm that cools the air
42. tea made from mint and lemon grass in the garden
43. people who read my poetry and leave me sweet notes
44. friends who see past my faults
45. clouds stripped with rainbows
46. God’s grace sprinkled throughout my life
47. sweet moments cuddled with my dog before I start my day
48. hearty soup on a winter night
49. images found in burning wood
50. the ability to laugh at my shortcomings
50. the ability to laugh at my shortcomings
51. frogs croaking making night music
52. spring water straight from the ground
53. story time with grandchildren
54. rocking chairs keeping time to our stories
55. tea made with lemon grass from the garden
56. baby’s first tooth
57. tiger eye marble
58. the chance to say “I’m sorry”
59. toddler’s delight in his rocking horse
60. mouse carrying her babies to safety
61. tiny humming bird nest
62. sleep over parties
63. giggles all night
64. roasting marsh mellows over a fire
65. combined nursing homes and kids day care
66. being blessed by a beggar
67. short sermons
68. emerging butterfly
69. large print books
70. young people offering seats to elderly
71. falling stars
72. church bells
73. concerts in the park
74. little girl ballerinas
75. boys with frogs in their pockets
76. white pebbles with silver glitter
77. jazz under the stars
78. singing in the shower
79. cold dark water creeks
80. cane fishing poles
81. going back to bed for a few minutes
82. licking beaters with chocolate icing
83. whispering secrets to a best friend
84. pajama parties
85. able to laugh at myself
86. full moon splendor
87. falling stars
88. other people’s babies
89. playing piano in church
90. whistling a happy tune
91. coffee at sunrise
92. giraffes and avocado seeds
93. rosy cheeks in the winter
94. frosting covered beaters
95. hand written letters
96. meeting people around the world
97. stories with happy endings
98. early morning sunbeams
99. beach breezes
100. puppies chasing soap bubbles
101. libraries, stores, thrift shops, yard sales, Internet full of books to read
102. 100 kinds of shampoo and soap…didn’t know I needed so many
103. long walks on the beach wondering why tattoos are everywhere
104. lips without rings in them…doesn’t that hurt when you kiss?
105. magic machines that give me money when I stick a red card in them
106. chocolate frosting bowl and beaters to lick
107. hand written letter from a friend
108. babies blowing spit bubbles
109. friends who don’t remember my stories
110. another day to be grateful
111. friends that make me laugh
112. hand cranked ice cream
113. daisies that always say “love me”
114. roadside wildflowers
115. delicious smells coming from a bakery
116. warm socks when my feet are cold
117. summer rain that cools the afternoon
118. summer tomatoes eaten in the garden
119. people who smile at me when they pass me
120. not having to wake up to an alarm clock
121. little flowers that grow in unexpected places
122. fireworks displays that don’t make noise and scare animals
123. to still have my teeth at 73 🙂
124. clothes that don’t squeeze or pinch
125. friends that call me for no special reason
126. my pen pal on Death Row who has taught me gratitude for tiny things I take for granted
127. internet friends that open the world to me
128. YouTube courses on almost everything
129. that my vision is still good enough to read
130. I am grateful for gratitude lists
131. friends who inspire me to be a better person
132. days when I can accept where I am and not need to try to be “better”
133. red balloons floating across the sky
134. staying up too late reading a good book
135. a friend who forgives me when I am being unreasonable
136. grief that reminds me that I have loved
137. sweet memories that pop up just when I need them most
138. when I wake up feeling peaceful after a time of sadness
139. a chance to try again
140. friends who remind me of my worth
141. sunset romps with our dogs
142. contagious laughter
143. grandbabies whose mother takes them back when they are crying
144. childhood taffy pulls at Halloween
145. times when I cry and laugh at the same time
146. puddles to splash in
147. jasmine on night breezes
148. flowers that bloom only at night
149. rocking my cat
150. plentiful food my whole life
151. meteor showers on a clear night
152. moon cycles
153. baby birds flapping their wings
154. poems that make me think
155. completing another book of poetry
156. not having to shave my legs or arm pits any more
157. being able to disconnect from others’ dramas
159. small stores where I don’t have to walk so far
160. polite people
161. my mother teaching me the value of good grammer
162. that which guides me within
163. my dog’s nonjudgment
164. color in my world
165. classical music that makes me cry with its beauty
166. beggars who teach me generosity and compassion
167. courage and faith to just keep trying
168. poor memory that makes me forget another’s mistakes
169. self-forgiveness
170. decreasing need for perfection
171. learning that need reminds me to turn to our Creator
172. quiet days of reflection
173. being able to enjoy a groups laughter even when I cannot hear what they are saying
174. cardinal on the window sill looking a me watching him
175. kind neighbor who mows our yard every week, for free
176. free library after years living were there were no libraries
177. books that make stay up late reading them
178. strawberry season
179. cat that likes to sleep in my lap
180. home delivery mail
181. having friends of all ages
182. summer rain for a afternoon nap
183. warm socks when my feet are cold
184. the feeling I have when I first lie down at night
185. alarm clocks that wake me up gently
186. when I wake up without needing an alarm clock
187. Internet friendships around the world
188. finding a great bargin
189. watching God’s grace work in my life
190. music so beautiful it makes me cry
191. feeling great after exercising
192. pink clouds in the morning
193. baby birds in the eves of the house
194. sweet summer corn
195. making this list
196. fresh summer corn so sweet and beautiful
197. friends with a good sense of humor
198. my new piano…have missed having an instrument since I returned
199. sitting on the beach reading a good book
200. internet friends who do not care if my thighs are flabby 🙂
201. books, books, books
202. another day to try again
203. mistakes that contain opportunities to learn
204. hot shower that always works
205. parks with places to walk, run, ride a bike
206. gratitude list which reminds me to be grateful
207. stars, stars, stars…reminding me of the greatness of our Creator
208. birds eating sunflower seeds at my window feedere
209. honest people
210. full moon that turns the forest silver
211. grateful that I can pray for and receive faith, strength, compassion
212. for the ability to cry openly and without shame or embarressment
213. Halloween pumpkins carved, lit with a candle, a charming tradition
214. my silver hair, a merit badge of age
215. wrinkles that are road maps of life’s adventures
216. big mamma spider full of babies living on my window
217. my pen pal on Death Row, he makes me realize how much I take for granted
218. showers full of rainbows
219. tree filled with plums in our yard; I didn’t know what it was
220. free time to enjoy all I love to do
221. exercise that strengthens my body and keeps me flexible
222. a good attitude toward life, a quite joy within that nothing can steal
223. a feather in my path which means God’s happy with my life (American Indian saying)
224. snail on my doorway reminding me to take life easy
225. piano scales that make my hands stronger and work like a meditation for me
226. more patience when I have lost mine
227. a night of peaceful sleep
228. free international calling to keep me in contact with friends around the world
229. frozen yogurt…mmmmmmm…
230. birds on our bird feeders
231. a chance to try again and again
232. forgiveness, mine and God’s
233. change, an opportunity to grow
234. gratitude lists which make me pay attention
235. gray days turning to sunshine
236. grateful to not need to be like others
237. to be 73 instead of 17
238. to laugh at my errors
239. to be old enough that sneezes, farts, burps don’t matter
240. laugh at social norms
241. birthday celebrations…mine and others
242. change just when I think I can’t stand something any more
243. an opportunity to play a grand piano today
244. fairies disguised as fireflies
245. good sense of humor
246. campfire on a cold night
247. cat that purrs in my lap
248. opportunity to try again when I fail
249. fuzzy socks
250. friends who like me even when I am not likable
251. sane moments in an insane world
252. transportation to where I want to go
253. sunny days, rainy days
254. cheerful people
255. sense of smell: puppies, jasmine, bread baking
256. today I am grateful for so many things to be grateful for
257. people who love me
258. people who do not love me for they teach me patience
259. little children–other peoples’
260. when pumpkin season is over
261. a special day once a year to be thankful
262. people who encourage me to keep exercising
263. a walk at sunset
264. a walk at sunrise
265. finding a whole worm in my apple instead of half
266. holiday leftovers and no cooking the next day
267. warm house when there is frost on the grown
268. knowing that no one can really disrespect me except myself
269. whistling a happy tune until I am happy again
270. old musical movies
271. blowing soap bubbles
272. being able to put my hands flat on the floor
273. not being in a hurry any more
274. empty beaches
275. being able to always wear comfortable shoes
276. lovely comments from people who visit this blog
277. children who have been taught to respect their elders
278. larger hula hoops for big hips
279. forests made from bodies buried with a tree on top
280. children who visit nursing homes at Christmas
281. vision for this past year
282. times when I am able to be quiet and give my unwanted opinion
283. patient friends who love me even when I am not so lovable
284. internet friends from around the world who show me there are many ways to look at everything
285. pine forest in front of our home
286. Serenity Prayer to remind me to accept what I can’t change
287. chance to try again if I don’t get it right
288. clear direction from God when I am not sure what to do
289. comfort foods
290. fireplaces
291. Umbrellas that work when you need them
292. sandal weather
293. bees that pollinate our flowers and foods
294. bees that make honey
295. honey in my tea
296. people who still hand write letters
297. reusable grocery bags
298. people who make environmental friendly things to replace plastic goods
299. unconditional love that animals give us
300. peanut butter and chocolate anything
301. warm socks when my feet are cold
302. instruments with which to make music
303. friends who still hand write letters
304. forks instead of chop sticks
305. clouds that look like animals
306. free books
307. e-books that allow me to enlarge the print
308. walks in the floresta by moonlight
309. people who forgive
310. patient people who graciously repeat when I didn’t hear them
311. New Year’s Day with its new beginnings
312. people who keep their word
313. people who are punctual
314. my mother teaching me good table manners
315. showers that never run out of hot water
316. dryers on rainy days
317. winter where sweaters are enough
318. singing a cantata with a beautiful orchestra
319. unity with diversity
320. people who are nonjudgmental
321. pizza, pizza, pizza
322. old movies, especially musicals
323. sweet moments I suddenly remember for no reason
324. another birthday soon approaching
325. rain on tin roofs
326. old Christmas movies filled with good memories
327. friends from around the world
328. my dog’s kisses that wake me up instead of an alarm clock
329. free phone calls that help me stay in touch with friends and family
330. electronic books that enlarge print so I can still read
331. traditions that keep me connected to others
332. buds on trees long before it is time for them to open
332. winter rain instead of snow
333. people who laugh at my jokes
334. people who leave sweet and interesting comments on my blog
335. reasons to laugh
316. reasons to cry
337. angels, mermaids, rainbows
338. poets and songwriters
339. live theater
340. classical music readily available
341. end of the year celebrations
342. a year’s worth of tough lessons
343. for people who open doors for me
344. respectful teenagers
345. short winters
346. discernment in choosing who I want to be with
347. snowed in days to be at leisure
348. friends from around the world
349. tiny birds at my window
350. cats that purr
351. the ability to be alone comfortably
352. tiny buds on trees reminding me that spring will come
353. spring seed catalogues
354. hot showers with lilac soaps
350. e-book readers that enlarge the print
351. cuddly dogs
352. granola when I don’t feel like cooking
353. losing weight when I didn’t try and am not sick
354. a well tuned piano
355. sheets dried on a breezy summer day
356. I do not have to respond to unjust comments
357. God always attends to my needs
358. I can ask for faith
359. life is not fair, or maybe I have not learned to see God’s justice
360. I am grateful even when I can’t think of something to be grateful for right now

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Equal

Love and compassion
two sides of the same coin
one must perceive that all
wish to be free of suffering
to be happy, peaceful
not just ourselves.

On this basis, we’re the same
no one having the right
to fulfil their aspirations
at the cost of denying
another his right to the same.

Love cannot be partial
can we say we love someone
and have negative thoughts of them
is a act of kindness
a virtue if one resents it?

Love is pure
without expectation to receive
free of judgement
filled with compassion
love is a state of being
pure love is Divine.

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Still Here


I thought I would die
but I didn’t
even when you wished me to
somehow I am still here
reluctant
curious—but only a bit

The chair rocks
though I don’t know why
I didn’t think there’s
enough left of me to
create its creaking movement

You will go first
how angry that makes you
I prefer it be me
but we don’t get to decide
so here I sit
and there you are
neither of us her
anymore

*****

Before you all write me thinking this poem is about me and I am unhappy, it is not. It is about an older couple I knew many years ago. These poems from Source are about things many people face, not a personal diary of my life. But we are all One and thus share common feelings, hopes, etc.

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His Promise

Have you received
a promise?
God never breaks
His promises
unlike we who
again and again
break our word
to honor, obey
surrender to
He who loves us
and wants us to
change our selfish
ways, to love each
other as He loves us.

Blessed is the Grace
of the Lord.

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