"We're all just walking each other home." - - Ram Dass

Saturday, March 31, 2012

Whispering with the Wind

We spread our blanket out
the ground still hard, 
resistant to the early spring,
remembering the weight of the snow upon its back.

Our bodies point out in different directions,
heads touching at the crowns.

"Listen." I whisper.

"What should we hear?" Asks the boy already growing man under the marvel t-shirt.

"Only what the wind wants you to hear." Is my soft reply.

Sister has remained silent and still, which for her is quite a feat. Her passion always propels her forward - but for now she sits expectant, eyes darting across the trees.

I knew she could hear it.  The stories swirling above her.  Shifting impatient through the leaves, ready to be shared.  And as he eased his body into the moment even he, perched on the cusp of leaving nymphood, could feel it too.

Out spilled the stories told by the gentle breeze, translated in the way that only half-fairies can.

And, oh, this mama heart hurt - for the growing, stretching wide and deep, to hold this moment in.

For I knew as fast as that wind could carry a song, the stanzas of this life keep their metered pace, never to repeat. 

...The way his jaw line cast a sharp shadow upon the speckled birthmarks on his neck.

...Or the way her cheap hairclip dazzled in the sun like a precious jewel; holding back the baby-fine strands  growing long down the tumble of shaping shoulders.

I knew I couldn't keep the memory of each story they shared,
 for I just bore witness to the conversation held between two divine elements, meeting on this earthly stage.

 But I will hold forever their precious hearts flung open wide to the sky above them.

My spirit daughter telling me that not only could she hear the wind, but that she could smell it too.

I drew in a deep, life-sustaining breath.
Laundry detergent,
Heads warmed by the afternoon sun, 
Air - the fresh kind- sweet yet a touch bitter,
filled my lungs.

The smell of life.
Love lived simply.
Dressing us as regally as the lily of the field.

"Do other mamas do this with their kids, too?" He asked after some time past.

"I hope so, baby." My whisper picked up and swept away...

{Linking with Jen, Shanda, Just Write, painting prose}

Monday, March 26, 2012

My Mother Lilacs and I

"One. Two. Three" 
His thick full hands lift from my eyes.

I blink,
still nestled in my sleeping bag, laying on my prescribed left side in the den.
Our bed had not yet arrived, but such formalities wouldn't keep 
me from resting my head in our new home.

There they were.  Two tiny planters.
The lilac bushes I always dreamt would be beside my house.

"I got you two.  One for this baby, and one 
for the future child we hope will come.
Happy first mother's day."

My eyes brimmed.
I was carrying this child for us,
but he was nourishing my deep need for roots. Permanence. Family.

Barefoot and jammie-clad, we plotted.
The shovel catching the rising sun in his work worn hand.
Mine, worn smooth from the absent-minded circles I traced across the swell of 7 months.

He broke ground in the back V of our yard,
a beautiful pin to hold up a corner of my world.

I waited.
                   And waited.

But those bushes didn't bloom.

Yet, ever faithful, first sign of spring, I would go -
that second hoped for baby now nestled on my hip,
and check for signs of life.

These years ran hard on us both,
the she trees and I.

The dry seasons-
Finding ourselves in unfamiliar soil.

The wet seasons - 
When it was hard to lift our heads in the face of the winds and weight of it all.

No. They did not even bud. But nor did they falter.
They kept root and held fast.
6 years coming...
 a tangle of boy scrambled urgently to find me.

"Mama! Come quick!"

I ran out the door. 
Breathless with the anticipation of danger to be navigated - yet none appeared.

"What? What is it?"

"I found buds!"

Two pairs of hands, 
smudged with jam and grace,
tugged me to examine closer.

There we stood. Then, like now.
taking in the back corner V with the same circling strokes of mother to child,
only now, across the head that stands mid-chest.

He, all limbs and branches. Steady. Strong.
And the silver-spun giggle of her beside me,
sweet as the fragrance and as life affirming as the bloom.

We stood face to face -
my mother lilacs and I,

and we laughed.

Me with my children and she with the wind.

Both standing tall where we were planted.
Drawing open in the sun.

{ Linked with Jen, Just Write, Painting Prose}

Friday, March 23, 2012

Five Minute Friday: Tossing My Pebble Into The Sea Of Dreams

My heart is beating loud against my chest. 
In a matter of key strokes, and with a click of the "send",
off my dreams go...from my heart to black and white.

Just a few short weeks ago, I finally said it -
   "I want to be a writer"

Silly really, when that's all I've ever been.
But now, now I feel it spreading, proclaiming itself loudly
in all my God-sized dream places.

It still seems brazen to me...
this girl who has for 28 years
wrapped tight her soul against this type of potential failure.

And in these clarifying moments
the world seems to tilt
and steady itself all the same.

This space between thought and action
makes me weary,
unsure where to begin....

But no one learns to swim with only their toes in the water...

So today,
you witness
my loud splashing in.

This week's word: Loud

Monday, March 19, 2012

I Run For Their Lives

photo source: love146

I run for these nameless daughters
that have been given a number
for the price of their soul.

I think of these daughters who
at 8, 10, 12 have had more than their innocence stripped from them
but also their ability to find a safe-house in mankind.

My feet find their rhythm on the street
knowing that every minute my legs rise and fall upon that pavement
two children have risen to take the evil that has been thrust upon them.

Despair for what I cannot do
my arms pump wildly at my side
as if to frantically flee the haunting images of hell on earth.

Through the ache of burning breaths 
as the miles stretch on
I realize that they are not alone- 

No, we belong to each other.

Love protects.
Love defends.
Love restores.

As long as there are hearts to hear
and people called to action
we have not abandoned these daughters.

So I will put one foot in front of the other.
My voice in movement.
My humanity in motion.

I run for daughter 146.

I join my voice with running bloggers over at I Run For Their Lives where the Daily Mile Challenge is for each participant to run 146 miles to raise awareness {and maybe some cash} for this great cause.  

I've been kind of slow and sporadic at tracking my progress, but with the warmer weather, I am renewing efforts here, and will reach my 146 mile goal.

Wouldn't it be great if you too, by joining your daily exercise routine, could help raise awareness?

Should you not be a runner, there are plenty of other ways to support this organization, check out the video of how this organization got its start above, and go to Love 146 to find out more.

{sharing with soli deo gloriaJust Writepainting prose  }

Friday, March 16, 2012

Five Minute Friday: Taste of Freedom

This week's word: Brave

They stood frozen in anticipation. Their first taste of freedom being bought by lives. 


Flags gripped tight in dimpled hands.
 placed where heart and belly meet.

Waiting breathlessly to say 'thank you' to real men and women of bravery, as they marched directly across their land.

And as they past by us, we made witness to the years dedicated to our service. 

My heart, beat deep in time to the music, low and strong with the drum
when the new recruits, with the set jaws of youth, filed past.

oh, my mama eyes wild to find sight of my babies
wanting to protect them -  feel the reassuring weight of them by my side.

Knowing somewhere, these young boys mamas
were praying silently for a tomorrow to do the same.

I found them in the steady arms of their father
carrying the weight of these young lives with ease
teaching them to hold tight to 
and mercy

.... that it is the duty of us all.

Monday, March 12, 2012

A Letter To My Daughter

I read a couple really great letters from mama's to their babies for International Women's Day, I couldn't resist, even if a little late....

Source: pinterest

Little Bird,

I am not much of a celebratory person for holidays that aren't wrought with tradition, so every year this day comes and goes without so much as a nod from me.  But then, you've come along and are starting to unfurl, and now womanhood means so much more.

Since birth, you are the most intact soul that I've ever encountered.  Birthed full of your spirit, daring us mere mortals to question your worth.  You came in screaming. Craving me in ways that shook me, that I am still learning to lean into.

Oh, how you speak your mind.  But with all your bravado, the timbers of your soul are gentle and kind.  Compassion seeps from you, pouring onto people or animals that may need a champion, or at the very least a dear, dear friend.  You care deeply. Express freely. Allow life to move through you.

And this is how you grow me, dear one.  Before you, I never so fully felt the under current of this world.  The pulsing beat, that warm flow moving us all in the same direction through the years.

Your generation of women were birthed into mama's arms that had whispered since your creation that you matter.  That you should push, strive, and dream for everything because you are capable of it all.

I'm afraid in our gusto for you to know yourself better than we did; we have spoken the notion that we are each on our own.  A pillar of strength holding up this world on our backs.  But darling, your mama's generation, in its focus on independence, sat in lonely isolation, failing to see the other woman, at every post... helping with the burden.

You have taught me that like Sampson, blind, we will bring this world down on top of us. Crushing our very selves, if we pull, solitaire, with all of our strength.

You are teaching me that interdependence is far more beautiful than being fierce, yet alone.  You are teaching me to bend low.  To scoop others into my heart and when the time comes, rest my weary head on the shoulders that surround me.

For this world is forever wide, but we women - when we stretch our arms, reaching, chests thrown back and hearts exposed- can circle it.  Care for it with the innate wisdom that allows us to grow life in our darkness.  With a love that is womb deep.

Never underestimate your own strength, your own voice, little one.  You who look tender as a bird, and like your namesake, you leap out of that tree, eyes focused forward, tucking your feet up as you trust your wings to soar.

But too, never underestimate the power of brokenness and listening hard to lives that are not your own.  For this interconnectedness will keep you steady. Humbled. Bathed in grace.

For even the birds know it is far better to migrate through life together,
                                                                                           than to fly it alone.

'til the moon turns to dust,

Shared with sweet JenPainting Prose

Friday, March 9, 2012

Five Minute Friday: When You Find Meaning By The Water

this week's word: empty

There are days that seem small in significance. Days when the most important thing I feel I've contributed to the world is wiping up the jelly that is stuck on the counter.  Days when my my mind swirls if I'll ever get some of my dreams up off the ground, or whether it's just too late to even begin.  Empty of promise.

Then, there are days that the whole world can be charmed with a laugh...

 pohlkotte press

On a beach blanket, you can capture the fullness of your heart. And the fullness of their own. You see the man that raised you to believe you had promise, whispering his presence to your children, and right then, you're sure even if life doesn't work out just so, it has still been full.

pohlkotte press

Then it dawns on you, that you have to empty yourself of the notions you had before life began, in order to fill your life up with things your adolescent heart didn't know were possible.  Like how their heads bent together makes you ache for the tender.  And how the flash of their smile makes every toilet scrubbed, and lost sock eaten by the dryer worth it.

pohlkotte press

And how you are growing them, who are still building their foundations, to know that their dreams have merit, and you share your recent discovery...even if those dreams look a little different then you planned. 

 You will watch them take on this world, together.  And in that moment of significance, you know your life has worth.

pohlkotte press

Monday, March 5, 2012

Born Of Light

He tells me about it when he gets home;

     "They call it Code Red."

     "If we hear that, we turn off the lights, lock the door and hide under our desks."

My stomach plummets.

     "We do that in case of an intruder comes into the school. Intruders are bad guys, you know."

While my tongue sticks dry to the roof of my mouth. 

How do I tell him that instead of a no-named bad guy in the movies,
 it would most likely be a face he recognized across the barrel of that gun.
Another hurting child, who welds steel in order to be heard.

Oh, my mama instincts fight wild against the notion,
his five year old soul, forehead pressing down against the cool tile floor
arms covering face, as if sheer flesh alone could stop a bullet aimed.

And how is it, I wonder,
that we mamas pack their lunch the next morning
as if these dangers were not real.

As if these lessons
we are forced to teach our children are not present
and that the cruelty of childhood can't have such devastating effects.

I wish suddenly to lock my own doors,
sit silently in the dark.

holding him wildly against me,
never to let go.

I wish to shelter him
from this house of deceit

to protect him with my body
from the threat of

Yet, my heart knows well, that he is not mine to keep.

He is a force I have been called to love, called to nurture, but not to own.

He belongs free to the beauty and the misery that is, life.

He was born to instill wonder
to trickle laughter
to show a heart that bleeds true.

He was born to see the inner workings
of trains
of toys
of me

He was born to breath excitement
to articulate mysteries that elude the old
to drink in this world in all of its depths and store it deep in his soul eyes.

For he was not born of darkness
No, he is a child born of light.