beauty in the shadow of doubt

photo credit

Can she still be loved, the uncertain one?

The one with too many questions…

The one who is not denying the doubt-cry one day more.

Can she still love, she without the inspired brand of faith?

You Inspire Me. You Make Me Brave.

{By Sara Sophia}

if we look closely
the sunspots in our eyes
become lions and bears made of fire.

they glimmer and bare their teeth

i counted the freckles on her cheeks.
There are 27.
tomorrow they will multiply.

tracks left
by lions
by bears
constellations mapped out across her

and the day is all fierceness and flame.

bright like four lives in a jar
set free.

and they laugh louder under God’s gaze
and shoot up to pluck stars from the heavens

Mercy is this firepit

burning away the chaff
of every broken day before.

(written for my children after reading my favorite poet-mama)

(photo credit)

Nearly four years ago I sat in front of a computer screen with the idea of starting a blog.

My world had grown so small I could hardly breathe.

plant it, type it, tell it, go

{by Abby of Dear Abby Leigh}

i dream that i can write them grown,
to color and brazen bloom.
words like rain offer sudden life
to deep and buried truth.

drought has no place here in dream-dirt,
all is fecund soil.
the heat of plowing fingers, warms,
rewards the constant toil.

the sweat is sweet.
it sings of spring.
surprises emerge from weeds.

love is watching everyone you love leave you.

{by Mary Murdoch of Wild Tigers Have I Known}

(photo credit)

In order to accumulate a soul, you have to suffer.

As if, once enough suffering has tumbled down upon you,
building up like a mountainside,
your second life will begin.

Like Athena you will sprout from Zeus’ head and appear in a ball of light, naked and red.

Love is what brings all the suffering.
Love is watching everyone you love leave, die, perish- each person wilting slowly.
Like day old geraniums in a Mason jar that sat on the kitchen counter when I was eight years old.
They dried and mummified like King Tut wrapped in cheesecloth.
Carelessly, I knocked over the glass jar and at once, everything fell to the ground.

Two weeks later my dog died, and I was convinced the falling jar was an omen.
A sign from the other side that death was creeping over into the living’s territory in a dense fog
(like there are chalk outlines dividing space between life and death, war zones, agreed upon plots of land.)

It’s Okay To Be Quiet

(by Jen Lee)

It’s okay to be quiet.
You don’t need to give the full report just yet, you may not need to give it at all. Reporting requires understanding, and sometimes you just need to follow the path and see where it leads before you know where you are.

It’s okay to be quiet.
You can declare your hope in a loaf of bread you bake by hand, you can put unnecessary things on the stoop as an act of faith in future provision. You can let the apple pie you’re making invite company, and the space you’re preparing for friends invite joy.

It’s okay to be quiet.
You can say all you really need to say with one look, with one touch. You can express your gratitude for his love in the way you smile when you see him come into the room. You can let them know how they melt your heart in the tenderness of your kiss on their foreheads.

The words are the last thing to arrive, but the love is here all along.


Jen Lee inspires me to live.
Read her perfect life words here.

Bright Ships.

{by Mollie Green of Fresh Milk Delivered Daily}

bright, white in the sky, the moon bold faced and shining.
far away, a distance i only know in numbers, but clear,
valleys and summits in sharp gleaming gray inside the orb light of it.

here, the white bright moon, open and full overhead.
here, a night that breathes like curtains in open windows, in, out again.
here, a hope of spring in the corners of it, hope riding wings of mercy free, new.

All I have in me.

All I have in me.

{by Nish, The Outdoor Wife}

All I have is the unsung in me.
The unwritten, empty pages blank,
Words piled up thick behind the whites of eyes
and the skin of my teeth.
The tiny voice speaks bold and
claws out from fingernails,

I have a heart of superglued glass.
I have the ink on skin
that bleeds out onto paper.

All I have is hellfire passion
burning slow and set aflame by only
one man’s touch. His.
He unearths me with gentle hands to
untamed skin and I am left


(by Talon)

photo credit

Never pick the berries the birds don’t touch
you told me long ago
and I remembered your words
when I saw the red berries
glistening in the snow
and I didn’t touch them
because the birds ignored them
leaving the fruit to the muse of winter

Never make a wish on a waning gibbous
you told me long ago
for you said the wish became magic
under a waxing crescent
the new would herald beginnings
with endings tucked inside
and when I saw the moon near full
I stilled my secret

Passing the Bed.

{by Heather Westberg King}

photo source

He has asked so many questions that don’t have answers and I’m just so tired. I ask him to help his brother. I say, “He’s going to get hurt, can you help him?” He asks, “Why will he get hurt?” I answer through gritted teeth, “He just will! Just help him!” Then he sighs and his big blue eyes look sad and I wish I could find the strength for more patience and less surprising anger.

When I walk into my room to get dressed, I pass the crumpled bed and want to get in it. I want to curl up on my side and cry. I’m not sure why, but I want to do it. I start to walk that way and then I see her, the me in my mind’s eye, on her side in the bed where I am not. She looks like she’s repeating history. She is carrying this disease and she thinks she isn’t and then sometimes she thinks she is this disease. She is me and I am her and she is them and she is not.

She is so afraid that she’s given it to them.

I know that if I were to walk in and find her curled there, I’d think she should get up. I’d think she should shake it off. It’s not her fault she’s there, but she needs to get up, I’d say. Then I’d wonder if some of it is her fault, because I know memories of ridiculous choices can flood in and bring with them the funk, curling her up.

So I get dressed. I wash my face of yesterday’s make-up and I put one foot in front of the other to make sure that I’m not her or them or her past. I fight it because I know that when I do, it gets a little better.

I fake it sometimes, but strangely, most of the time I’m truly reveling in the buried joy. The miraculous happiness that comes through the eyes of my boys. We make a hide-out in a closet and they are thrilled with their flashlights in the dark. I well up with joy because they are who they are and I believe we can change this. Even if it doesn’t stop, it can be lighter, it can get better. Even if they feel it, they can learn that it doesn’t define them. I will tell them. They can learn from the truths we speak over them…

What I Didn’t Know When I Met Langston Hughes

{by Iris Arenson-Fuller from Vision Powered Coaching Visitors Center}


Before I truly knew all living things were kin
or that there was a larger menu of sexual preferences
than was served up in my family’s small vinyl papered
kitchen with the orioles and jays staring at my soup

Before I heard the first ugly name on my father’s lips
after the neighbors scurried like tattling roaches