Shy Violet

Shy Violet was quiet,

more thoughtful than active.
Pale in appearance, her colorful side hidden to most,
The morning sun would show her loveliness
To those privileged to be allowed near.
Shy Violet had
Rainbows on the walls of her small room.
Only those who woke early enough
could enjoy an acquaintance with the inner beauty of
Shy Violet.
When I moved into my final dorm room my senior year in college, I found a small handwritten note in the desk that said “This room painted in Shy Violet.” The walls appeared white except in the day time sun, when the violet shade would deepen. This was strongest around noon in winter when the sun would shine through the leafless branches of the trees on the riverbank outside my window. Midday was the only time that my hanging crystal would get enough sun to make rainbows on the light purple walls.

Beauty in simplicity

My garden isn’t lovely
in the conventional sense.
It is home to vegetables, not flowers.

Shades of green
With an occasional spot of color:
Golden squash blossom, yellow bean, orange and red tomatoes

But the real beauty
Among the deep green of the spinach or the deep rich brown of the composted soil
Is hearing my kids call out, with complete honesty,

“Mom’s playing in the dirt again!”


Blooming Field Drive has neither
nor blooms.

Foxglove Lane is a lane,
If a lane leads to a strip of condominiums
where the closest thing to a foxglove
is the digitalis in a medicine cabinet.

Who had the brilliant idea
to replace a Blooming Field,
a thriving prairie
of diverse and beautiful grasses and flowers
with large boxy houses painted gray
and name it after the previous tenant –
the Field,
with its lovely, now deceased,


The invader is armed with
Viral strength
Gripping power
Knowledge of my vulnerabilities and
my stress-weakened immune system.

My defenses are limited.
Waterbottle mixed with Airborne.
Neti pot.
Extra vitamin C.
A nap.

Heating pad for my aches,
Anti-inflammatories to lessen the fever and soreness
Apple cider with cinnamon stick for comfort and hope —
Hope for a good night’s rest to re-energize and fight the invader again tomorrow.

Where I’m From

(inspired by a post at The Little Egg Farm)

I’m from city sidewalks, the kind that need shoveling in winter and grow hot enough to blister bare feet in summer.

I’m from four distinct seasons. I’m from vehicles with heat and air-conditioning, in a climate where both need to be in working order.

I’m from trees of all sizes, giving shade in summer, giving leaves in autumn and if we’re lucky, maple sap for sugar and syrup in spring. I’m from climbing thick branches, seeing old behemoths fall in storms to become fuel for the fireplace around which we gather.

I’m from snowmen, snow angels, and dangling icicles, spreading rock salt and litter and sand when walking becomes precarious. I’m from mittens and boots, gloves and scarves, lined jackets thick enough to withstand any wind.

I’m from earth such rich, dark brown it’s almost black, grass so very green when it rains, and flowers of every hue; fresh vegetables in August, rhubarb from the freezer in January, and homegrown basil and thyme in pots on the piano all year round.

I’m from chalkboards, pencils, and multi-colored pens. I’m from reusing papers and copying half sheets on the back of old pages. I’m from books to read, stories to write, experiments to explore.

I’m from the arts, music, drama, storytelling, and the multitudes of venues for self-expression.

I’m from song and dance, stage and scenery, prose and poetry. I’m from rhythm and rhyme, andante to allegro, opera to jazz, vocal to orchestral to symphonic brass.

I’m from the land of Green and Gold, a home with at least one headpiece made of “cheese,” and Sunday afternoons spent with the big screen TV tuned to Lambeau Leaps at the not-so Frozen Tundra.

I’m from a homeland where hearing, seeing, and neurotypical development are never taken for granted.

I’m from a land where all the women are strong, the men are good-looking, and the children are above average. Wait – strike that, it’s one state to the west of mine.

But I am from a changing and evolving local culture, a place where family counts, a neighborhood where neighbors share their cookies and coffee. It’s a great place to visit, and I wouldn’t want to live anywhere else.


At once
With little warning
The sun leaves us, taking with her the light.
Without stopping at Navy blue,
The moon pulls the lavender blanket from the sky,
Cloaking the Earth in black.

The Ensemble

Click- click- click- click- click
Shuffle, shuffle, slip, pad, pad,
Tiptoe, tiptoe, bounce and flounce
Ballet flats. Mary Janes.
Flip, flip, flip, flip, flip, flip
Flip flops.
Cross trainers!

Pumps, slingbacks, high heels and low.
Walkers unused to the elevation wobble and lean,
Give in and walk through halls in their stockings or bare feet,
Donning the dressy shoes for the actual moments of their performances.
Ballet flats in more than black
Keep time with updated Mary Janes in shiny patent leather
Or plain but perfect matte finish.
Dresses, skirts, and at times casual but pretty capris
Accompanied by their footwear
as their wearers are accompanied by the piano
Create an ensemble of like — or unlike — fashion.

This post was created and inspired by Scribbit’s Write Away Contest for May on the topic of (you guessed it) Shoes. It is cross-posted at Compost Happens.

Music soothes

Music soothes.
Breathing slows.
Shoulders relax.
Mind is open, yet restful.
The rise and fall of a phrase shapes a melody and a memory.

Music calms.
Blood pressure settles.
Pulse steadies.
Listening continues.
Listeners smile, relax.
Rhythm draws in the body.
Lyrics reach the soul in symphony and sympathy.

Music inspires.
A voice becomes an instrument
Produces more than sound

And finds

Things to neglect while ill

Cleaning house — as long as no one visits.
Laundry — at least until someone runs out of underwear.
Redoing the fireplace mantle. It’s not green and gold any more, it’s hard to care.
Schedules — it’s 3:00, I suppose I’d better eat lunch before I think about supper, eh?
Cooking. That’s what Lean Cuisine is for, isn’t it?
Changing litter in bunny cage — until I can’t stand it any more
Opening mail — if the pile isn’t so high it falls over.
Socializing — I don’t feel social, no one wants my germs, we’re even.
Quality time with teenager — he’d rather surf YouTube anyway.
Discuss politics — thought takes energy, one thing that really lacking in me right now.
Whining — who wants to hear this anyway?

Chill. Just drink water, take a nap, and all will be well with the world. Eventually.