The most valuable thing one can do for the psyche, occasionally, is to let it rest, wander, live in the changing light of a room. – May Sarton
I needed a rest this afternoon – and thought about you at my side.
And you belong right here, where you’re home,
and where I hold you close,
Of all the wonders I’ve ever known,
you’re the one I love the most.
From You Belong Here by M.H. Clark, Illustrated by Isabelle Arsenault
There is nothing better than snuggling with you under one of the beautiful blankets from our travels together.
all the singing is in
the tops of the trees
where the wind-bird
with its white eyes
shoves and pushes
among the branches.
Like any of us
he wants to go to sleep,
but he’s restless —
he has an idea,
and slowly it unfolds
from under his beating wings
as long as he stays awake.
But his big, round music, after all,
is too breathy to last.
So, it’s over.
In the pine-crown
he makes his nest,
he’s done all he can.
excerpt from White-eyes by Mary Oliver
I liked where we lingered and kissed and made plans for Valentine’s Day.
All houses wherein men have lived and died
Are haunted houses. Through the open doors
The harmless phantoms on their errands glide,
With feet that make no sound upon the floors.
We meet them at the doorway, on the stair,
Along the passages they come and go,
Impalpable impressions on the air,
A sense of something moving to and fro…
from Haunted Houses by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
I grew up in a neighborhood where the homes were identified, not by street numbers, but by the surname of the first owners. It didn’t matter how long the first residents had lived in the house, their surname was retained despite subsequent owners who may have lived there for much longer.
Furthermore, it seemed that whatever that state of emotion the first owners possessed, either happy or sad, the house seemed to attract the same sort of owner. I don’t know why, but when I visit a home, I can sense immediately if it is a comfortable or uncomfortable space – one where the inhabitants thrive in harmony or one where is there is upset and discord. (This is independent of color, lighting, furniture, or any other physical aspect of the house.)
I hope that when anyone enters my home they feel that they are not only entering a welcoming, happy, and comfortable place but one that is nurturing, creative, and flourishing!
Success consists of going from failure to failure without a loss of enthusiasm. – Winston Churchill
My father loved sports and games. He was a fierce competitor and exuberant victor. I revered him and from a very young age wanted to get in on the action. I knew that I would never beat him at the chosen sport or game, but it was thrilling just to be in his realm while I played opposite him. He didn’t believe in throwing a game or giving handicaps – if I were to win, it would have to be a completely unambiguous victory.
As the years went on, I accepted defeat – most of the time it was utter defeat, complete annihilation, actually. But in my teens I figured out a way to play against him that became enjoyable. Rather than concentrate on the final outcome, always defeat for me, I played by point spreads. To my surprise, I actually got better at the sports and games and wanted to play more often. I became a warrior and found enjoyment in the challenge! I never did beat him at any sport or game but I always had a good time.
After reviewing my 2021 New Year’s Resolutions, I realized that I had completed only three of the thirty listed. Hardly a victory. But I had a good time trying and I am actually further ahead than this time last year. I now have another list for 2022 – do I really think that I will complete it? No. But I will enjoy the challenge!
Photo by David Dodds
Help Hoe Hay Harvest for Victory. Much like the Soldiers of the Soil in WWI, “The Farm Commando Brigade of the Ontario Farm Service Force is composed of all those men and women who offer their services to those engaged in producing and processing food (farmers and canners). The work they offer to do starts from early spring seeding (tractor, force drawn or hand sown) through hoeing, haying, harvesting, canning, threshing, silo filing, etc.”
During WWII my father was too young to enlist so he joined the Farm Commando Brigade of the Ontario Farm Service Force and worked on a farm in southern Ontario, Canada. He was born and raised in the city of Toronto, but he really came of age on the farm. The lessons he learned about farmers, large animals, raising crops from the soil, and the farming community stayed with him his entire life. More importantly, he learned about hard, physical labor – the value of honest toil – and he passed these on to his children. I carry these with me today, long after his service on the farm ended.
It must have been moonglow, way up in the blue
It must have been moonglow that led me straight to you
I still hear you sayin’, “Dear one, hold me fast”
And I keep on prayin’, “Oh Lord, please let this last”
We seemed to float right through the air
Heavenly songs seemed to come from everywhere
And now when there’s moonglow, way up in the blue
I’ll always remember, that moonglow gave me you
Moonglow also Diana Krall
The moonglow crept into my room last night. It beckoned me to the window to make a wish on that magnificent orb in the night sky.
I thought of you.
When we know about our ancestors, when we sense them as living and as supporting us, then we feel connected to the genetic life-stream, and we draw strength and nourishment from this. – Philip Carr-Gomm
I have only a few memories of my Dutch grandfather, however, he certainly made an impression on me, and I wish I had had more time with him. When I looked through some photos of the first few years of my life, I noticed that there were many, many pictures of us together. I can’t help but wonder how not just his DNA, but his physical presence influenced my growth and my life.
Love never dies a natural death. It dies because we don’t know how to replenish its source. It dies of blindness and errors and betrayals. It dies of illness and wounds; it dies of weariness, of witherings, of tarnishings. – by Anaīs Nin
I know that our love is still alive – it just needs a careful polishing.
Models: Lauren DiMarco and Oleg Galagan
Weary with toil, I haste me to my bed,
The dear repose for limbs with travel tired;
But then begins a journey in my head,
To work my mind, when body’s work’s expired:
For then my thoughts–from far where I abide–
Intend a zealous pilgrimage to thee,
And keep my drooping eyelids open wide,
Looking on darkness which the blind do see:
Save that my soul’s imaginary sight
Presents thy shadow to my sightless view,
Which, like a jewel hung in ghastly night,
Makes black night beauteous and her old face new.
Lo! thus, by day my limbs, by night my mind,
For thee, and for myself, no quiet find.
Sonnet XXVII by William Shakespeare
In that wonderful place between wakefulness and sleep, I think of you.
Model: Lauren DiMarco