You Reading This, Be Ready

 

Starting here, what do you want to remember?
How sunlight creeps along a shining floor?
What scent of old wood hovers, what softened
sound from outside fills the air?

Will you ever bring a better gift for the world
than the breathing respect that you carry
wherever you go right now? Are you waiting
for time to show you some better thoughts?

When you turn around, starting here, lift this
new glimpse that you found; carry into evening
all that you want from this day. This interval you
spent reading or hearing this, keep it for life –

What can anyone give you greater than now,
starting here, right in this room, when you turn around?

William Stafford
(1914-1993)

 

In the last month I’ve had a lot of changes happen in my life. Mostly for the better. Tonight, I joined Weight Watchers. Another positive change I’m dedicating myself to.  Sometimes I think, when you’re having a really hard time of it, you have to let go of a lot of negative things so you can hold on to the positive in your life.  That’s what I’m trying to do now. Choose the positive in my life, the good in my life.

Next…a walking group.

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One Day At A Time

In another one of Douglas Malloch’s poems I find a lesson I need to remind myself of way too often. I mean, I think that’s I’ve grown considerably in the way I deal with my fellow man on a day to day basis; but I find that in dealing with myself I am less tolerant and tend to linger upon things I should just let go of. In my search for expression through art I hope to learn to let go more often.  Reminding me that the state of today will not necessarily be how things will be two days from now.

I hope that you find inspiration in Malloch’s words as well and find it in yourself to live today for today and not hold on so tightly to the bad things that beset us along the way.

It’s Fine Today

Sure, this world is full of trouble
I ain’t said it ain’t.
Lord, I’ve had enough and double
Reason for complaint;
Rain and storm have come to fret me,
Skies are often gray;
Thorn and brambles have beset me
On the road-but say,
Ain’t it fine today?

What’s the use of always weepin’,
Making trouble last?
What’s the use of always keepin’
Thinkin’ of the past?
Each must have his tribulation-
Water with his wine;
Life, it ain’t no celebration,
Trouble?-I’ve had mine-
But today is fine!

It’s today that I am livin’,
Not a month ago.
Havin’; losin’; takin’; givin’;
As time wills it so.
Yesterday a cloud of sorrow
Fell across the way,
It may rain again tomorrow,
It may rain-but say,
Ain’t it fine today?

Poetry That Inspires

One of the first ways I found to express myself creatively was by writing bad poetry as a child and while I’ve found that I’m not TRULY a poet and never will be, that I enjoy poetry.  A while back, when I was still living in Fresno, I found a wonderful poem on the Big Yellow Farmhouse.  For a while it became my mantra.  I would read it out loud to myself every day to remind myself that it’s not always dark and doom and gloom.  Originally I thought the poet’s name was Douglas Matlock and could not find any information on him.  I finally got smart and did a web search for the first two lines of the poem and found that the poet was actually Douglas Malloch (1877 -1938).  I also was able to find several other poems by him that I find just as inspiring that I’ll be posting every couple of days to share with you.

I’m thinking about embroidering this poem with an intricate border to give to family members this Christmas.  I also found one that I would like to embroider for my brother for his birthday or Father’s Day to help keep him inspired.  Do you have a poem that inspires you?  A poet that is consistently your favorite?  Please share.

You Have To Believe

You have to believe in happiness,
Or happiness never comes.
I know that a bird chirps nonetheless,
When all he finds is crumbs.

You have to believe the buds will blow,
Believe in the grass in days of snow.
That’s the reason a bird can sing-
On his darkest day, he believes in Spring

You have to believe in happiness,
It isn’t an outward thing.
The Spring never makes the song, I guess,
As much the song the Spring.

Aye, many a heart could find content,
If it saw the joy on the road it went;
The joy ahead when it had to grieve,
For the joy is there – but you have to believe.