Old Friends

The rain stopped
Some drops lingered
In the rich soil
Beneath the tree-
Resting after the
Long journey
On the tip
Of a pine needle,
One drop called out
Or perhaps, up
To its dear friend,
Sunshine

It’s your turn!
I’m waiting!
Send your rays
My way-So that
We may have
A moment of fun
Can’t you see?
We belong together
Simply shine your
Light on me
And watch the branch
Begin to glisten

The sun obliged
Sending its rays
To pierce the clouds
And touch the Raindrop
The two old friends
Danced and played
While the branch
Glistened and smiled
Soon, each went their way
But neither said goodbye
Knowing they would
Meet again another day

Layers

I love the combination of a blue sky layered with clouds. Saturday was one of those days.

My husband and I took a short drive to a nearby peach orchard and store. Fresh peaches (and peach ice cream from the store) sounded like a perfect treat on a hot summer day. Yet, on the short thirty-minute drive, the sky had my full attention.

I noticed clouds moving in front of and behind one another. One cloud providing shade for the earth, but also for other clouds. Casting shadows in surprising places.

Of course, the sun plays a role in this phenomenon. It may be hidden from direct view, but its presence is undeniable. Somehow, its rays cause some clouds to glow. Allowing the creation of shadows.

Another key player-the wind. Its speed and direction cause the clouds to move-usually incrementally to our eyes. But if we intentionally watch, we can see the shifts.

Maybe more powerful, we can feel the shifts. A drastic change in heat felt as they pass over us. The relief, welcomed, even if temporary.

Now picture those clouds as people. Some gleaming, others providing shelter, and others being tossed about. Yet, all still human beings. All moving. Weaving in and out of life’s storms.

Some days I’m the one in need of shelter. And once I have gracefully accepted that provision of love, then I’m able to offer that same love. And so it goes-infinite circles of need, acceptance, compassion, love. As we help each other navigate this crazy world through beautiful layers.

Blue Sky Eyes

Something about a
Bright blue sky
The color first
Catches my eye
Reminds me of
My Dad’s eyes
Bright and true
Even a cloud
Drifting by
Cannot eclipse
Their honesty
Instead, the cloud
Brings clarity
Simply by contrast
Looking up
Toward the sky
I breathe in
The fresh air
It fills my lungs
Clears my head
Looking up
At my Dad
I feel safe
And loved
Thanks to the
Light in his
Blue sky eyes

Happy Father’s Day, Dad!
Blue Skies-Irving Berlin

Blue skies smilin’ at me
Nothin’ but blue skies do I see
Bluebirds singin’ a song
Nothin’ but blue skies from now on


I never saw the sun shinin’ so bright
Never saw things goin’ so right
Noticing the days hurrying by
When you’re in love, my how they fly


Blue skies smilin’ at me
Nothin’ but blue skies do I see
Blue days all of them gone
Nothin’ but blue skies from now on

Wasted Time

Shh-be quiet
Listen closely to
The falling rain
Some might say
It’s wasted time
But that rain has
A story to tell
A fantastic tale
Of drops filling
Fluffy white clouds
Until no matter how
Hard it tries,
That fluff can no
Longer hold the weight
The clouds give up
And the raindrops
Begin their free-fall
At first, racing
To the ground
But then landing
In perfect rhythm
Life-giving music
Serenading as it
Waters the earth
Providing a drink
For the flower
Sending relief
For the dry ground
Shh-be quiet
Listen closely to
The falling rain
It’s not wasted time
By the time
It can be heard
Its story is just beginning

Rhythm of the Falling RainThe Cascades

Listen to the rhythm of the falling rain
Telling me just what a fool I’ve been
I wish that it would go and let me cry in vain
And let me be alone again
Oh, listen to the falling rain
Pitter patter, pitter patter
Oh, oh, oh, listen to the falling rain
Pitter patter, pitter patter

Fresh Air

Clouds cover the day
Like a heavy blanket
Intended to comfort
Instead-suffocating
Tossed over me
Without permission to
Hide what is good
Steal what is lovely-
Just as the wind
Chases away the clouds
My feet must
Kick off the cover
Wrestling that blanket
Until once again
The good is visible
The lovely restored-
My feet able to walk
Under the blue sky
Accepting the clouds
As a gentle umbrella
Offering protection
A sweet shelter
Allowing my heart to
Heal in the fresh air

Sunshine or Rain


Left in the rain
Returned in sun
The dark turned to light
The night turned to day
What if it happened the other way
Left in the sun
Returned in rain
The day turned to dark
The light turned to night
Somehow, that doesn’t feel quite right
Words are the same
Order is different
Is that what caused the
Change in mood
Or could it be my chosen view
Each of us sees 
Thru a personal frame
Sometimes clouded
By our very own names
Yet, time will show
As day turns to night
Or dark turns to light
One truth remains
In sunshine or rain
Each one is needed just the same
Chopin Prelude Op 28, No 6 in B minor
I hear clouds and rain with a little sprinkle of sunshine. 😉

All Things Sunshine

Wishful Thinking-A Triolet


To feel the sunshine on my face
 
As it peeks from behind a cloud
 
Providing warmth, no need to chase
 
To feel the sunshine on my face
 
Although today it shows no trace
 
Wishful thinking, I am allowed
 
To feel the sunshine on my face
 
As it peeks from behind a cloud

The above poem is a reflection of recent cloudy days, but today the sun is shining! Except for some thin, wispy clouds near the horizon, the sky is so blue. I really needed this today, to both see and feel the sunshine on my face. A welcome relief.

The dreariness of the past few days had me focused on the sunshine or lack thereof. One morning not long ago I woke up with these words playing through my mind.

There is sunshine in my soul today
More glorious and bright
Than glows in any earthly sky
For Jesus is my light

I have not heard this hymn in years. It was a standard in the small church I attended as a child. So, what made me think of it now? Possibly all the complaining I’d been doing concerning the absence of sunshine…

Or maybe I needed to be reminded of God’s love. Always present, ready to provide light and warmth for my soul if I’m willing to accept.

Today the warmth from the sun is not just wishful thinking. For that I am thankful. I am also grateful for songs, old and new, which remind us of all things sunshine, both physical and spiritual.

Here’s one more of my sunshine favorites. Give it a listen. 🙂 https://youtu.be/Fb5ZyPH41vE

Pictures in the Clouds

This week I rediscovered the children’s book “It Looked Like Spilt Milk” by Charles G. Shaw.  I love this book!  If you’ve never read it, go look it up.  The author creatively takes his readers through a series of images in white on a dark blue background.  Childlike pictures are paired with simple, repetitive words, creating a beautiful backdrop for the imagination.

After reading this story to my students, I asked if they’d ever noticed pictures in the clouds.  Most excitedly raised their hands, eager to share.  We discussed the importance of using our imaginations, and I shared about finding pictures in the clouds when I was a kid.  Funny how that has become more difficult to do as an adult.

Creatively using our imaginations as a grownup often requires more intention than when we were kids.  Our adult minds are on information overload, concerned with family and job responsibilities.  Being imaginative gets put on the back burner, seen as a luxury instead of a necessity.  I wonder what would happen if that changed?  At the least, our stress levels would go down.

At the end of class I challenged my students to notice the clouds next time they go outside and report back to me what they see. Hopefully some of them remember.  Truthfully, I’m the one who needs to be challenged. Maybe my students responses will inspire me to take the time to go outside and look up.

The pictures in the clouds are always there, just waiting for us to imagine them. What do you see?

Layers

Clouds are fascinating.  Since I was a little girl, they always captured my attention.  Maybe it’s the sky in general.  After all, blue is my favorite color, especially when in contrast with white, fluffy clouds.  When I was younger, a variety of images would easily appear in the clouds.  Now finding the pictures is more of a challenge to my imagination.  Oh, I still look, but there is a certain amount of effort required.

These days I tend to notice the many different types and combinations of clouds.  I love how they paint the sky in layers, with contrasting colors and motion, sometimes allowing small patches of blue to appear in the background.  These paintings don’t last long, morphing with the blowing  wind.  Photos rarely capture their true beauty.  Paintings may come close, but part of the beauty is in the movement, the gradual changes.

In many ways, life can be like those layers of clouds.  Sometimes it’s the grey, swirly ones that get our attention.  How will we face the coming storm?  Those sheets of rain off in the distance? Then we see the still, almost motionless layers underneath providing calm.  The storm is not erased, but the ability to get through becomes visible.  If we continue watching, witnessing the continuous changes, that patch of blue or ray of sunlight will soon appear.

Hopefully we also experience those fluffy cloud days, light and ordinary.  Nothing unexpected, time to rest in moments of shade. Or the wispy, almost laughing clouds, reminding us of a funny story or memory.  That kind of memory that makes us smile. Those are the days that revive us, giving strength for when the storm clouds reappear.  We know they will return, that is life.

Although I may never be able to capture the beauty of those clouds blanketing the sky, I will keep looking.  Watching for those moments of light and color to break through.  Reminded that life continues, moving with the swirls, through the storms, to the calm.

Layers upon layers upon layers… 

clouds

Clouds

Condensed drops of water

Floating high in the sky

Easily spotted from the ground

Yet more than meets the eye

Shade for a weary traveler

Relief for the dry, parched earth

Inspiration for an artist’s canvas

Imagery for the poet’s verse

Aesthetic or empirical

Which description would you choose?

Go outside and look up!

What have you got to lose?