Peaceful Resolution

My mind
Can hardly
Separate
The words
From melody
Notes rising
And falling…one
After the other
In seasons of distress and grief
Can you hear it?
I silently sing
The phrase
As I write-
Many times
It has entered
My thoughts
Unannounced…
Waiting for
A phone call
Sitting in a
Hospital room
Driving to
A funeral…
The music repeats
Easing tension
On the last note
The last word
Of the new phrase
My soul has often found relief
Listen closely
A peaceful
Resolution
Sweet hour of prayer

Sweet Hour of Prayer Kelley Morris, piano

Growing Up

My husband likes to tell people I was raised in a commune. I was not. I suppose, however, that a simple description could be misinterpreted. Let’s see.

Picture a two-lane country highway winding through small towns. Between two of those towns, turn onto a narrow paved road with thick trees lining both sides. Drive about a quarter of a mile until you see a clearing. My house was the first on the left.

Here is the unusual part. My grandparents’ house was in the center. And at any time over the last fifty-plus years, between four and six of their nine children lived nearby. Not a typical neighborhood with straight streets and cull de sacs. More like a valley. When standing in the middle, you could see almost everyone’s home.

Of course, we were free to come and go as we pleased. 😉 And though I left at the wise-old age of seventeen, there is no other place I would have wished to grow up.

Growing up there meant family. It meant security. And no, it was not a peaceful utopia. There were disagreements. But none that could not be solved over a cup of coffee or a few days of staying home.

My mom also grew up there, though, during her childhood, there were more forests for exploring. And with nine children, they needed the space to roam. The original house was small, with only two bedrooms and an outhouse.

I have heard stories of sleeping sideways on the bed, lots of giggling and being scared to go outside at night. Mom remembers as a small child when men came to dig a hole for their first electricity pole.

As you can imagine, they were hard workers. Whether planting in the field or washing clothes on a scrub board, there were always chores to be done. But there was also always fun to be had.

Some days, her dad would come home with a pocket full of penny candy. Enough for everyone. On Fridays, they would have chili dogs and ice cream. Can you imagine dividing a carton of ice cream for nine children? They would open the entire carton and cut it into equal squares.

My mom is now in her seventies. Four of the siblings (including my mom and dad), some grandkids, and great-grandkids live in the clearing today. Only one of her siblings, her oldest sister, Pearl, is no longer living.

Mom recently shared some thoughts that touched me. She described being overcome with emotion thinking of how hard her mom worked to make sure the kids had fun times. She was so young herself; it could not have been easy. Mom said the older she gets, the greater her appreciation for her mom grows. I think I am beginning to understand…

If I Were Made of Glass by Kelley Morris — The Stories In Between

Update: The paperback is available on Amazon today! https://www.amazon.com/dp/B095DRCXNH/ref=cm_sw_em_r_mt_dp_10SVGW2ZKGD56QHABRXV

Also check out https://pottersgrovepress.com/product/if-i-were-made-of-glass/ The ebook will be available there tomorrow!

Available to pre-order now is the debut poetry collection from Kelley Morris. Amazon release date for eBook and paperback is June 15, 2021. The eBook will be available on June 8 from the Potter’s Grove store. Click here to pre-order The poems in this collection are reflections and stories of both the beauty and heartache […]

If I Were Made of Glass by Kelley Morris — The Stories In Between

Only two more weeks until the official release date! Just in time for summer!

Simply Sunday

Dirt On My Hands

I am the first to admit I can be a little prim and proper regarding dirt and sweat. I have fun memories of playing in the mud as a kid. Didn’t bother me then.

Yesterday, I suggested we go by flowers to plant in our front bed. My husband agreed. But guess what? They don’t transplant themselves.

My job was taking the plants out of the pots, breaking up the soil, and carefully placing them in their new home. My hands got dirty. Black, rich soil even managed to get under my fingernails.

Before you pat me on the back, this was a short project. Only a little dirt and sweat. 😉 The results? Definitely worth getting a little dirt on my hands.

From the Birds

I watch the birds
Flitting around
In my backyard
Each one hatched
From its own egg
With no choice
In the hue of
Its feathers
Or location
Of its nest
Each flying free
Singing a melody
Taking a turn
At the feeders
Happily sharing
Tree branches-
Perhaps there is
A lesson in
Their song
Their flight
Their feathers
A brilliant
Display of beauty
Found in diversity-
I think they are wise,
Those birds-
Not a single one
More important
Than the other

Blackbird by Paul McCartney and John Lennon Kelley Morris, piano

Raindrops and Sunshine

I love those
Rare moments
Where sun
And rain
Merge
Droplets
Twinkling
In sunlight
Dreamlike
Moments
Happening
Before you
Realize what’s
Happening
Moments
Easy to miss
If only focused
On stormy
Gray clouds
Moments
Lasting only for
A short time
And also for
A lifetime-
Raindrops
Cooling
My skin
Sunshine
Warming
My face

Long-Hauler

Missing Coffee

I miss coffee
The rich aroma
In the morning
Waking up senses
Before the first sip

I miss coffee
A sweet flavor
In the afternoon
Conversation over
A cup, hot or iced

I miss coffee
An offering
At the end of day
To share in
Restful silence

I miss coffee
Aroma, flavor
Stolen away
By an unseen
Silent culprit

I miss coffee-but
Memories remain
Conversations flow
Rest still comes
I am thankful

When considering the destruction brought by COVID, coffee seems a small price to pay. So many have suffered major health issues, and many have died. The numbers are hard to fathom. And easy to forget, if not made personal.

This virus leaves lingering effects for many. COVID long-haulers has become a common term. And though symptoms vary greatly, none are pleasant.

I was diagnosed with COVID in January 2021. Everyone in our home tested positive. We all lost our sense of taste and smell to some degree. We all began to get them back to some degree. Then my symptoms took a strange turn.

One afternoon, I noticed a smell of rotten meat. That is the best way I can describe it. There was no rotten meat. Other things began to smell and taste bad. I now have a long list of things I cannot eat or drink, including coffee, chocolate, and most meats. And a shortlist of things I can tolerate.

I hesitated to write about this strange phenomenon. Did not want to complain. Then today, I thought more about why I miss coffee. I’ve always called it my comfort food. My first memories of drinking coffee are with my grandma. Coffee is part of family gatherings. It’s what I offer guests to make them feel at home. And the list goes on.

I am hopeful this will eventually go away, that my senses will return to normal. Until then, I remain thankful for my health in other respects. And I will continue to enjoy London Fog tea lattes-a pretty tasty substitute. Stop by-I will make you one. 🙂

If I Were Made of Glass by Kelley Morris — The Stories In Between

Available to pre-order now is the debut poetry collection from Kelley Morris. Amazon release date for eBook and paperback is June 15, 2021. The eBook will be available on June 8 from the Potter’s Grove store. Click here to pre-order The poems in this collection are reflections and stories of both the beauty and heartache […]

If I Were Made of Glass by Kelley Morris — The Stories In Between

Only two more weeks until the official release date! Just in time for summer!

Simply Sunday

Simply Sunday is back! The last weeks of school were busy! Full of fun, full of goodbyes, full of relief. Being home this weekend surrounded by family is exactly what I needed. ❤

Safe Landing

Family-
Where I land
After a busy day
Good news or bad
Laughing or crying
Family-
Where I land
After teaching
Thru a pandemic
Wearing a mask
Family-
Where I land
In cushioned
Rest-erasing
Any turbulence
Family-
Where I prepare
A safe landing
For those on
A later flight

Spaces

Certain spaces
In this life
Feel empty
Certain spaces
In this life
Look dark
Even though
They are not-
Not completely-
Each of us
Fills the moments
Of our days
Each of us
Fills the span
Of our years
No matter
The length
Of said spaces
Even when
We are alone
Light remains-
Your light
May seem faint
For a time…wait
Allow me
To see it
And together
Our days
Will be brighter
Our years
Fulfilled

Yesterday was the last day of school. The last day of school for a tough year. Teaching and attending during a pandemic created challenges we continue to process.

Certain times of the year felt dark, frustrating. But as time went on, stresses seemed to lift a little at a time. We accepted our new normal and continued to do what we do.

As school ended yesterday, I was not prepared for the tears from students. Uncontrollable crying over the idea of leaving their current teachers.

Teacher friends, don’t ever doubt the influence of your light in the classroom. Even while dealing with our own concerns and fears, students saw lighthouses in the storm.

Now it is time to rest. Time to reflect. Time to stoke the remaining embers and prepare to see those faces smiling back at us in August!

Happy Summer! ❤