My parents have been buying honey from the same man for years. There was always a jar sitting on our kitchen counter. Drizzling it over vanilla ice cream was a treat!
As an adult, these beautiful golden jars of goodness became treasured gifts, usually at Christmastime. My parents made sure we were well-stocked. Whether used to sweeten hot tea or drizzled on toast, the taste was unmistakable-rich, pure, and unfiltered.
In more recent years, I experienced the process of purchasing this honey for myself. The last time was in September when I was visiting my Mom and Dad. It occurred to me we were almost out at home. So, my parents and I went for a drive.
At the top of the driveway sat a quaint house with a simple stand. An empty jar with a slit in the lid placed there to accept my payment-the honor system. I deposited my money and picked up my honey.
Actually, on this trip, I bought two jars-one for a friend. 🙂
The beauty and innocence of this sweet experience gave me a whole new appreciation for the honey I’d been enjoying my entire life. My most recent jar, now over half-empty, sits on my kitchen counter. Every day it sweetens my hot tea and provides comfort thru its connection to home.
Buzzing bee flits From flower to flower Briefly alighting on a petal. But not to rest To scope out tiny Grains of pollen Gather them up And fly back to its nest. Not its own singular nest As is the kind belonging To the bluebird and her babies No, a communal nest Endless golden hexagons Connected to hold the future While providing sweet gain- Healing golden drippings- Suddenly the spoonful Of honey that sweetened My cup of tea this morning Does not seem so simple
The mountain comes into view, As I drive across the river bridge. A drive I’d love to take today. To me, a majestic outline, though Small in comparison to other mountains Barely high enough to garner the name
Hiking to its peak as a child was Like standing on top of the world Peering out over tops of trees Roads, cars, and houses below Appearing as toys in a tiny Land of make-believe
Was home really as small as it appeared?
Time for exploring always Ended too quickly-never enough Time to stand on the edge. But laughter followed as we Made our way down the steep trail Into the green valley below
The world again at eye-level My head forever in the clouds
I hear it first in my memory Although the words escape me The tune is clear One note leading to the next And the next and on and on A flawless string of sounds Floating thru the air Seamless as a priceless String of pearls Made perfectly complete as The notes in my head move From my thoughts thru My eyes, my ears Traveling the path to My tired, aching fingers Breathing life back into These tired, weary bones
Rain fell all night long. Very little ebb and flow A steady downpour Almost angry at times Or maybe that was me. Awakened once again From restless sleep Thinking how the rain Must be trying to Wash away the year Ridding the landscape Of any remaining Seeds of hatred Before they can Take root in the soil. Or perhaps the rain is Offering to carry away The sorrows of the year At least for a moment A comforting thought As I finally decide to Give up on sleep And listen closely Its anger seems to Have disappeared Mine as well Ready to welcome The new year With an open heart
When the clock strikes midnight tonight, I know there will be no magic wand to wave away all the hurt and loss of this past year. Although it may provide a fresh perspective, a reminder that time continues on.
This year has brought new experiences. Some were not good, not pleasant, not on a list of wishful repeats. Others are most certainly worth remembering and repeating.
Early in my quarantine experience, I began participating in poetry circles. I had no idea what to expect. The first time I clicked that zoom link, I was nervous. But those butterflies quickly disappeared as I was welcomed by unfamiliar yet friendly faces on my computer screen.
This process of listening, writing, and reflecting through poetry has brought so much joy during this challenging time. It also brought the gift of friendship, even across great distances.
Rain poured all night long. Thunderstorms make for sound sleep, but not this kind of rain. Sounded more like a flood.
I woke up several times during the night. Yep, it’s still raining. Made me feel restless.
When I finally decided to crawl out of bed and get my coffee, the sky was dark and gray. Still raining.
No lazing around. My husband and I had appointments for COVID tests this morning. Not exactly how I would have chosen to start the day, but necessary. (Feeling fine. 🙂 I will update later.)
About the time I was dressed, he said, “Look outside. It’s snowing!” Heavy white flakes were beginning to mix with the pouring rain. By the time we reached our test site, the precipitation had changed. No more rain. Just beautiful fluffy snowflakes!
I watched in awe of this lovely gift! I could feel a change in my spirit as the rain changed to snow- a perfect picture of this year that is about to end.
Yes, there has been much heartache. But there is still hope. And today, it comes in the form of countless snowflakes, each an original, falling from the sky to blanket the world outside.
Time is a funny thing. Looking at the clock, I see the seconds ticking away. Always the same, steady beat.
And yet, I foolishly think I have some control over its passing. Certain moments I try my hardest to slow down as if they will last longer. Others I try to push ahead, wanting them to be over already.
Here’s to taking each moment as it comes-all steady, sixty-seconds of it.
What if I lie Perfectly still In the dark Breaths shallow Muscles relaxed Surely time will Stop for a moment Allowing me a Space to hold One single note Ringing in the air A reminder of Joy that sings Even when Days are hard A simple request One moment Frozen in time Melting away only As your hand reaches Through the darkness To take hold of mine
Looking for the Fast-forward button Feeling like life Is busy taking Seldom giving Desire to connect Difficult to maintain When physical touch Is discouraged- But time passes No faster than On the days We can walk Hand in hand Arm in arm Whispering in One another’s ears No-there is no Fast-forward button To be found So, I wait Ready for Winter to pass Flowers to bloom Friends to embrace
Yesterday, I had the joy of watching adult children give gifts. Each gift was purchased with that one person or couple in mind, considering interests, wants, and/or needs. Cooking/kitchen, video games, music, and coffee were some of the themes.
We laughed, ate a delicious meal prepared by my husband, Gart, and enjoyed each other’s company. Yet, even in our joy, there were hints of sadness.
We missed my father-in-law, Bob, gone for five years now. Other family members, we could not invite because of Covid concerns. Not being able to go to the hospital and visit my friend who just had her baby. Not being able to travel and visit my parents.
While acknowledging our grief, I realize others are in much more difficult circumstances. Many have lost loved ones this season. Many are isolated and alone right now.
I need to hold on to our moments of joy in hopes they will grow. Not only grow but overflow. ❤
The vastness Of this world Lies beyond my Understanding- Both above and Below the waters Lives a state of Continuous motion Where all move From life into Death and Joy must exist Alongside grief- Many are left In need of rescue- If love is held back What happens to Those searching Staggering Feeling only sorrow- Will they fall into A pit of despair Or will joyful Hearts reach out Their hands into The vastness Ready to raise up Those who grieve Into the light of A hopeful embrace
I have not spent enough time at my piano in recent weeks. So this week, I decided to remedy that. With it being Christmas time, what to play was an easy choice.
As I played through several old Christmas hymns, the word balance kept coming to mind. No matter the context, there are always notes, voices, instruments, rhythms that need to be heard above the rest. And quite often, that spotlight is shared, giving others a chance to be heard.
Even though one voice might not be the momentary focus, it remains essential to the music. Where would that melody be without harmony? Or that jazz riff without the brushes of the drum floating behind it?
When I sat down to play this morning, I began by playing the hymns as written. Though tempting, I did not add any embellishments. My goal was to play so that the melody rang out clearly, while the harmony provided support.
After reading the music as written, I went back and added new rhythms, patterns, harmonies while keeping the melody clear. Both versions required the same thing-balance.
I have said this before, but the only time my brain is calm is while I am playing the piano. Somehow, it provides an inner balance. There is that word again. Outside voices are quieted. Worries of the day temporarily disappear.
Music reminds me that I do not need to raise my voice above the crowds. Although I may have something important to say, unless it is balanced with love for those in hearing range, I should probably remain part of the harmony.
Harmony-that is my prayer for this Christmas. For there to be less shouting and more listening. That we may experience joy amid our sadness. And hope that outweighs our fears. Merry Christmas!
Please enjoy a few Christmas carols! ❤ Kelley Morris, piano