Category Archives: POETRY

Operation BBQ Relief Takes Generosity to a New Level

Operation BBQ Relief Offers Meals and Compassion

Kansas City Star

March 7, 2019

Voiceless Inmates Find Healing through Writing

Johnson County Library Program Gives a Voice to Incarcerated Writers

Kansas City Star   March 12, 2018

‘Voiceless’ Inmates Find Healing Through Poetry Program

U.S. News and World Report, March 16, 2018


Easter Sunday 2016

Easter Sunday Mount Ashland

Icy spring winds sing,

Through mountain pines flocked with Easter snow,

Fresh songs of love and hope

On Easter last year, a good friend, my dog and I hiked Mt. Ashland during a wildly windy snow storm, nearly a blizzard. I wrote the poem, above, to honor our joyful Easter celebration, playing in untouched snow drifts and chasing each other around sky-high evergreen trees. Our laughter echoed in the majestic silence, cradling us amid the unspeakable beauty. Though surrounded by winter’s purest and finest, if one looked and listened closely between the snowflakes, spring was whispering her promise of rebirth.

Today, Easter Sunday, 2016, I left early for church and walked out into a silent, serene snowfall. Enormous, wet snowflakes gently drifted from the dark gray sky, covering the ground. Again, through the snow, I felt the promise we are assured every year–even the coldest, longest winter will end and spring will come. Nature, and our spirits, will bloom and flower once again. In a world that doesn’t offer many guarantees, we have this promise and can hold this hope, even when winter is at its very harshest.

“In the midst of winter, I found there was, within me, an invincible summer.

                                                                                                                             Albert Camus

I Sew, You Sew

Whenever I sew, I think of you.

Mending a pair of jeans this evening, I thought about when you learned to sew.

Your art, and those skills, metamorphosed into the wings upon which your gift flies and has for many years now.

I watched you leave the nest, testing fragile, tentative feathers, despite being smothered by a broken heart–topped with disappointment from a door you wished had opened, but didn’t and wouldn’t.

You packed your own sunshine, and have carried it with you, wherever the journey has flown you.

Whenever I think of you, I am joy.

The Wise Sage….

The sage dwells among those things that can never be lost.

                                                                                     Change Tzuly

I read this profound quote recently and thought about what, exactly, those things are that can never be lost. Life is unutterably temporal, so what are those diamond-like slivers of light and love that are not.
Please add your own comments. Specifically, from your point of view, what are those things in life that can’t be lost?
My own “can’t-be-lost” list follows:
Dreams that came true
Dreams that still might come true
Your own God-given talent – unique from any other’s
Perseverance through seemingly insurmountable fears and obstacles–that go on much longer than you ever imagined they would or could
Goals accomplished against all odds–with grit, guts and soul you didn’t know you owned
Love you gave to another
Love you received from another
Your shamelessly, in-love heart placed in the hands of another–with abandon, regardless of outcome
Your first kiss
The first time you kissed your first child
Your most memorable birthday
Music that made your heart happy – then, listened to countless times over with the same joyful effect
Music you danced to
Art you swooned over
The moment you had the heart and wisdom to recognize the depth of another’s sorrow
The moment you offered compassion to that fellow human
The day you saw your own mercy, compassion or kindness in action–and the happiness and freedom it brought to that someone
The day you realized life will go on, despite a broken heart
The day you realized that broken heart is no longer your own headline news
A compliment from friend or stranger that lands you on top of the moon
Giving a compliment or smile that sends someone into the happiness stratosphere
A special, always-there-for-you animal that made you laugh, and loved you, without ceasing, every day–for years and years
More Prayers

Your list?

Recipe for Beauty

Setting sun.

Still October pond.

End-of-day sunlight crafting silver glass from cool water.

Fall’s best offering,

Leaves in red, yellow, orange,

weave shafts of golden light

 through self-made shadows,

that dance across the liquid mirror

to the silent song of dusk.

Easter Sunday, Mt. Ashland

Icy spring winds sing,

Through mountain pines flocked with Easter snow,

Fresh songs of love and hope

More About Dreams

When bad things happen and take everything away,
Dream big. Very big.
Then, watch those big dreams
Laugh at the bad things,
While on their way to coming true.

Your Rainbow

I wish you were here today
To see the rainbow that bridged the mountains,
Moments after a morning rain.
We would have watched,
Amazed to silence and perhaps reluctant to blink,
As the crystal ribbon of light kissed our eyes,
Becoming a memory in our hearts
To reach for on lonely, starless nights.


For Terrie

Her Other Car

For my friend,  Jamie, who is beauty. Some wear it. Some own it. She does both.

Her Other Car
She butters her toastWith rays from the morning sun;

She makes jewelry

With tools that sing beautiful songs

And she follows her dreams, riding a unicorn with wings