Poetry for Rosemarie

Hello sunny skies and warmer weather! The dogwood and magnolia trees planted three summers ago are budding – a perfect sign for the season of renewal.

I’m eager to plant annuals and transplant some perennials. My peonies will burst soon and they’ll need more room. After hours of toiling with a spade, I’ll be lulled to rest on the back porch by the tinkling of the garden fountain and wind chimes. 

I think of my mother while gardening. She said she felt closest to God when on her knees digging in soil. She nurtured hollyhocks, hens and chicks, begonias, impatiens, and more.

Mom appreciated nature’s beauty and hard work. Having grown up during the Depression, she was an industrious and focused woman who frequently told me to “be productive.”

In recognition of my mother and National Poetry Month, here’s a fitting piece by Edgar Guest.

Results and Roses

The man who wants a garden fair,
Or small or very big,
With flowers growing here and there,
Must bend his back and dig.

The things are mighty few on earth
That wishes can attain.
Whate’er we want of any worth
We’ve got to work to gain.

It matters not what goal you seek
Its secret here reposes:
You’ve got to dig from week to week
To get Results or Roses.

Nature’s Balm

Sharing words of inspiration during our time at home in April, National Poetry Month.

Walden Pond, Concord, MA

The Peace of Wild Things
by Wendell Berry

When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water,
and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars waiting with their light.
For a time I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.

An Angel Named Ginny

You never know where an angel may appear. I didn’t know what kind of reception I’d get for my memoir, Jimmy and Me. After publication, I spent a year promoting the book at local events and libraries and attending book club meetings.

My friend Peggy graciously hosted me at her book club near the town in Pennsylvania where I grew up. The 20 members gave me a warm reception and asked insightful questions.

A couple of months later, one member named Ginny contacted me to say she was an avid Philadelphia Flyers fan just like my dear brother Jimmy who has special needs. She asked for his address and said she wanted to send him hockey swag.

Shortly thereafter, Jimmy opened a box filled with Flyers t-shirts, hats, a signed puck, a variety of other goodies, and a personal note from Ginny. He called me to share his excitement and expressed a sense of wonder that someone he’s never met sent gifts related to his beloved Flyers.

I’m still in awe of the kindness of someone who came to know Jimmy only by reading about him. Never did I imagine my words would impact a reader who’d feel an urge to do something to bring my brother joy in his mid-60s.

Ginny’s selfless act reminds me why writing the book was worthwhile and it far surpasses any public recognition I could receive.

 

College in One Day

Imagine going to college without worrying about term papers or exams. You can do it like I did recently at One Day University.

Colleges around the country host professors from premier universities to speak about science, literature, history, art, and many other subjects. These award-winning professors consistently garner the highest ratings by students.

I attended a 4-hour program at Tufts University titled “A Day of Genius.” Three dynamic and captivating professors spoke about:

  • The Scientific Genius of Marie Curie
  • The Restless Genius of Benjamin Franklin
  • The Literary Genius of Shakespeare

The lectures were informational and entertaining and left me feeling energized.

If you seek educational enrichment, consider going to college for a day in a nearby city.