Wednesday, October 2, 2013
"Amazing things appear in our lives, almost out of nowhere — landscapes, seascapes, forgiveness – and they keep happening; so many vistas and so much healing to give thanks for. Even when we don't cooperate, blessings return to our lives, even in the aftermath of tragedy."
Anne Lamott: Help, Thanks, Wow
Sunday, August 18, 2013
Saturday, June 15, 2013
Monday, December 31, 2012
To know health, to feel safe, to feel calm in body and mind ...
— Leo in his red flannel pajamas
A Christmas morning walk around the block with Penguin-pajama-wearing Leo collecting and sharing sticks, acorns, and leaves
Floppy-ear greeting me upon our return trip home
Memories of loved ones created throughout this year and the years before —
... to know peace.
Wishing you goodnesses — "the lush province of joy" as poet Charles Wright notes — as we bid 2012 goodbye and turn now to embrace 2013.
Copyright Liz Kisacky Severn 2012
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 United States License.
Tuesday, December 18, 2012
Friday, September 21, 2012
The days bring quiet light and cool mornings. The drought has brutalized much of the country; here it has dried the soil but spared the crops. In our backyard garden, the grasses bloom spikes of silver and gold. The sunflowers offer yellow, the autumn sedum glows mauve.
Robins and mice strip grapes from the vines. The Northern Flicker visits for its share of fruit. It sings from the fence and then flies to the birdbath. The white-throated sparrows are migrating, bringing their song so well loved by my mother.
Floppy-ear — accompanied by other gray squirrels — comes to the sunporch window, looks in, waits. I open the door, toss. She takes.
Finishing week four, The Issues of Death and Grief students have shared their stories of loss and their opinions on the literature. They grapple with newfound knowledge that often stirs emotion in the classroom. We understand as Thomas Lynch notes, "If we love, we grieve."
After leaving campus, the spirit of the class revisited me when I arrived home to find a box from my cousin Patty, who writes in part:
“Dearest Liz: I wore the enclosed vest as a teenager on special occasions, like a night out disco dancing or performing with my small band in the high school talent show. I remember when I first saw it, how it sparkled before my eyes, and endlessly so. I admired it from a distance and up close. I still do.
“There are so many things I have parted with over the years … This was not one of them …
“As a teenager, I remember admiring Ellen’s beauty and sparkle. Her presence remained in a room long after she walked out. I wondered as I saw this vest of mine, hidden between my other treasures, why I felt so overwhelmingly compelled to guard it … I remembered I treasured it because it had belonged to Ellen and lit up a room accordingly …
Love, Cousin Patty"
I stood at my kitchen counter appreciating my cousin's timing and admiring Ellen’s vest. When had I held it last? January 1977? Ellen’s bedroom in our parents’ house as my mother and I removed clothing from hangers, noted Ellen’s extravagant taste. She was so often impractical in her selections that clearly suited her personality. In considering what to do with such clothing, we thought of my petite cousin Patty and carefully folded clothes for her.
In returning what once belonged to Ellen, Patty gave me a newly found moment with my sister. I can now picture Ellen here.
Copyright Liz Kisacky Severn 2012This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 United States License