Practicing Spontaneous Hospitality

One of my favorite places on the internet is Gracetable.org where I am honored to be a contributing writer. I am privileged to be one of several writers share this writing space and community.

If you know my writing home to be “poetry and prose through a lens of grace” there is a little piece of prose there. Today. One I chiseled out from the hard stone places of my heart. I know, there has been  poetry only here for a good long while. Follow me to Gracetable where I am wrestling with the idea of practicing spontaneous hospitality. What an honor to have you there. (Click here to go there. See you at Grace Table.) Spoiler alert. I think you may like it there as much as I do.

I did not need to offer a physical place at my table, an elaborate meal, or a cleverly designed invitation. I was invited to give the gift of my time. The gift of myself.

Another of my favorite writing homes is my own tiny letter, “A Quiet Place For Words.” Why? Because it is so quiet, off the beaten path and interactive. The format is my favorite, a letter from me to you, written every few weeks to subscribers. Well a favorite, along with my beloved poetry.

What joy to interact with subscribers. The newsletter is going out today. Have you signed up. Come pull up a seat. (Click here to subscribe there). Of course it is free.

Thank you for reading. Always.

peace and grace,

e

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A Gatherer’s Tale

 

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A Gatherer’s Tale

He dropped me off. Left me on a single slice of earth. Drove away in a watery wake. His back spoke a silent goodbye, good luck. I saw no one ahead or behind. Only the Oyster Catcher and the others. I had time. Space in all its facets, wet and dry. Solitude dominated the landscape. The sea, a metronome of well-timed lapping. The wind filled gaps of silence. Held me in his absence. Peace sat on her throne. Ruled the high seas. Reigned over me. While I began my gathering. The shoreline gives more than it takes. And offers more than the tangible. I heard cryptic murmurings to choose this and leave that. Pick this one and pass up that one. My small bag now filled with a story that would be written later. When puzzle piece meets puzzle piece. And the mystery makes more sense.Than not. I rinsed off my treasures with water, not from the raging sea. But from my quietude of fresh desire. To connect the dots of fractured wisdom passed from sea to me. Distanced myself from that slice of where I’d been. And read only what was in front of me. A dot dash dot, Morse code message made from collected things. Every symbol formed a word. Conjoined me to the shore, to tell me more of the world I’d gone in lonely search of knowing. I left parts of the story on the hemline of the world. They would wait for another day. But only if the tide has mercy. And lets them live to tell me more. He picked me up. And let me bring my bag of gathering home. Once heard and told, the stories never let you forget. The lessons they behold.

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Not Beethoven’s Ode To Joy

 

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Not Beethoven’s Ode To Joy

Nestled away from the throngs of discourse
(Still in earshot, every one )

Off shore
Where the peacemakers still
Come and go
Singing their muffled songs
Blended  harmony
Paul’s Epistle, the First One
And Ludwig’s musical composition
In the key of love

Ravenous scavengers of joy
Refuse to give up
Hungry for crumbs of hope
Cast wide their wholly nets

Old as dirt, new as momma’s milk
Music heals the wounded heart
Notes or not
Flat or sharp

Upon the raging sea

Twenty Sixteen is split right in two
Broken in halves and thirds and fifths
Thirsty for joy, parched for peace
We need more
Odes to joy

It is hard to beat the masters
Paul and Ludwig raise the bar
High and holy

But for the old salts
With graying hair, weary bones
And raspy throats
Worn out rope
Tethered to what’s left

Who never tire of amazing grace
Refuse to abandon a sinking ship
Or give up weary attempts
At writing their own

Ode to joy
Or at least
A hat tip to Ludwig

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And I Suppose

 

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And I Suppose

Dead-headed blood-red geraniums lay in a weary heap
Someone deemed them past their peak
Guilty as charged
I re-adhered them
Bloom by spent and weary bloom

In my imagination lit up with wild hope of on second thought
Second chances defied nature’s laws
For blood-red geraniums who’ve been sentenced to the gallows

I suppose I followed some fool’s
Unwritten rules
Instead of following my own
Protocols of beauty

For a time

And I suppose I am a first rate fool
For once practicing
Deceptive rules of beauty

Explicitly implicit
Many may be found on the compost heap
Beside the geraniums past their prime, clipped and deemed unworthy

One more chip

Shipwrecked ships

I am a fool
Following the broken to a watery grave
Compelled by the cryptic stories they beheld

And for building my own defense