In The Garden With Regret


In The Garden With Regret

You left me here to tend and just think
I am under neither illusions nor weight
Neither false nor heavy

You had to go and win the bread
So I am here to water, a joint decision, shared
My intent, to steward well and leave my burdens

By the burgeoning beds of greens
(Radishes bulbous noses pushing through the richest soil,
I see you in their forcing. You mark this Earth, well

But while there I found regret
Shame attended me while I mimicked the Summer rain

I can whisper while you’re gone
And you may never know
The way the garden shows

Just how barren were those days
Before the garden
Reminds me, of how old love can grow

You would hate a garden
Littered with remorse
I have fertilized the soil of ours

Seedlings will greet you
When you return
You left me here to tend and think

I’ve left the garden of regret

A Few Things I Learned in August ( And Am Willing To Share)

You may have stumbled here. Welcome. Or you may follow along. Thank you. What a gift to have you reading. ¬†This is where I mix it up a bit. It’s the end of August and I am joining my friend Emily P. Freeman (I love that she uses her middle initial. Someone else I know does the same thing. ūüôā ) from the blog,¬†Chatting At The Sky . We are taking a¬†look back at last month, recalling some things we learned ¬†during August. Here are seven things I have chosen to share. You should see the ones that didn’t make the cut. They may show up in their very own blog post or poem.

Get out now. Well I really would rather you stayed but I am trying to sort of warn you. It gets very very random from this point forward.

This was fun in June and July. Follow the link to go back and review the summer highlight reel with me.


1. I learned what a “Dirty Chai” is. ¬†One of the recent things I have done slash happened upon which made no sense in hindsight involved lots of caffeine. ¬†At my favorite coffee shop one day around ” tired 4:00 ish pm” ¬†I asked if Chai Tea had caffeine in it. And the barista answered yes. And I then asked how can I make it more caffeinated and he responded “we call that a Dirty Chai”. Oh, ok. So one shot of espresso wasn’t enough so I ordered two. And a small wasn’t enough so I ordered ¬†a large. And the rest is sleepless history. It was deliciously caffeinated and I was really tired the next day. You’re welcome for the heads up.

2. So I am a big fan of Downton Abbey. ¬†Which opens up all sorts of other British drama possibilities once one goes looking. I am now a huge fan of “Call the Midwife.” I mean I am kind of NUTS about it. ¬†As in I may, may like it better… I can’t make that judgement. It is like picking a favorite ice cream or favorite child. ¬†After you watch an episode or two you can tell me what you think. Here is the trailer from PBS. The music is fab too. ¬†I believe we are up to Season 3, but don’t quote me. How do you like the royal we there. Oh and I follow them on twitter and facebook. So can you.

3. Parenting isn’t for weenies. And if I elaborate on this you will end up with a “War and Peace” ish tome on that very subject. I am just guessing, but I don’t think you signed up for that here. But I may be writing about it soon. #parentingisnotforthefaintofheart. I wonder if I can add 23 plus 18 plus 17 and round up since the birthdays are soonish and if that equals how many parenting years I have under my belt. #feellikeanewbie

4. Parenting isn’t for weenies. (that one needs to take up two line items of learned knowledge

5. I have decided I want to write music. Mildly obsessed with this, really. Maybe one day I will. But you all are so precious to listen to my dreams. It is number 5 because I sort of ran into this piece of knowledge. I mean, it kept haunting me. Finally, I said “Dream, nice to meet you. I think I will keep you.”

6. I am learning to seek poetry in more places. And I am increasingly fascinated by Instagram. Once a skeptic, now a big fan. (Should I rename this post “Some Things I Am ¬†A Fan Of This Month). Here are some fun peeks into my Instagram world. Am I following you on Instagram? I am @graceappears there.


The salt creek and brown pelicans will never grow old. To my soul they deliver joy and utter fascination.

I love this church at the end of my street. And though I am not a member, I love to visit. I don’t know why I want to giggle at The Chapel Of Ease, subtitle? It is probably really good theology. What if all Churches were chapels of ease, and grace and love and sweet warm invitation. Holy gracious goodness. I love this picture, this church and I love the front doors.



7. The “teacher” on Scrabble is sort of a show off. I have learned a lot from him/her and I do feel challenged by her skills. I play a two player Scrabble game where I take turns with myself. So after every move she grades me and says Outstanding, Excellent, Good or HMM. It’s when she says HMM that I get a little grumpy. And there are words, really, really that are words. Did you know “aa” is a word. And I could go on and on. Here are a few words I learned from the “Scrabble Dictionary”. I probably won’t be using any of these on my blog. And I just learned while I was looking up random weird words that I was using the British (Collins) dictionary. I switched it to the English (TWL) dictionary. Great. That should make a big difference. Aa,ab,ae,ag,oo,ee are all words and it gets weirder. She knows so many multi-syllabic words that I have never, ever heard of that it makes my head spin. Seriously, words I will never ever use in a sentence or a blog post. But I was taught not to question the teacher. So whatever. I think its like the casinos in Las Vegas. I am just guessing, the house always wins.

8. And 8 is my bonus item. I know I told you there were 7 but I learned that my neighbor’s parrot might be imitating me calling my dogs at night. I am going to post a video on Instagram of the parrot imitating me and then ¬†you can decide if you think it is me calling my dogs or the parrot. It is a hoot. When we were newly married, we had a parrot that imitated my husband calling me “Elizabeth, Elizabeth”.

I warned you it would get random here. ūüôā You all are good sports.


This is so much fun, don’t you want to share a random thing you learned sometime recently in the comments. I would love to hear. Tomorrow it is back to poetry, but this rocks my world. Can’t wait to go to Chatting At The Sky to read some of the dozens of posts up over there. I love being a life-time learner. Life is never boring.

A Few Things I Learned In July

Now this is really fun to write. I do hope it is fun to read. You have been warned that extreme randomness fills the lines of this post. I do ¬†love joining Emily P. Freeman over at Chatting At The Sky,¬†her beautiful blog home. I especially enjoy the series “What I Learned…..”. You may want to visit the others who have linked up ¬†at Emily’s with what they learned this month. Some things are serious and educational, others are humorous and reveal a little ¬†of life’s craziness and/or the writer’s personal nuances. You may even learn something new about this writer.

I will say, I may take creative license and include some things I have learned NOT in July but in general and about which I ¬†feel ¬†utterly compelled to share. You can try to figure out which item falls into that category. You may want to get out now. You have been warned. ūüôā


1. I learned not to judge a writer by her writing. Well by that I mean this. I had a lovely meet up with two bloggers this week. Up until this point I only knew them by their blogs and social media. Amazingly they have two legs and two arms each and in this case they are both funny as all get out. I almost said something else but I didn’t. Self editing helps. I met Kendal Privette and Amy L. Sullivan for coffee at the quintessential coffee house, The Dripolator. These two women are the realest deal and both have hearts spun from pure gold. They drove out of their way to meet me. I am grateful. Thank you Kendal for the poetry book. I cherish it.

2. If you are leaving church, ¬†pulling out into traffic from said church’s parking lot OR if you have a sign of the fish on your car, be nice. I am just saying. That may raise the bar on your driving etiquette but people, this is the time to raise the bar on yourself. ¬†It is a good time to defer, slow down, pay it forward and just kill ¬†’em with kindness. There will be plenty of sweet tea at the after church buffet when you get there.

3. Editing is hard work. Well, proof-reading is hard work. My father and I are editing my mother’s book (twenty chapters long). Let’s just say it is not as easy as it looks. The next time you read a book and you find a typo, try not to be all, “Wow how did this book ever get printed and distributed, I mean with typos and stuff.” ¬†We are proof-reading behind several people, at least one of which was paid to find the errors. To forgive is divine. ¬†And I am convinced the eye reads what it thinks should be there, ¬†we ¬†often miss our own typos even after proof-reading five times or so. And thanks for grace here. I have had my few…..hundred myself.

4. One of the best places to dine out of doors is in my summertime back yard. Run don’t walk to The Grove Park Inn in Asheville. Well don’t run, just call and make ¬†a reservation if you are anywhere near Western North Carolina. And don’t quote me. I just happen to have had a wonderful experience there. Who knows, maybe you will too. The sunset over the valley and the Asheville skyline are beautimous.

5. Walking through life with an aging  mother is filled with intrigue and wonder. I learned this in July and I am learning it in August and hopefully will continue to learn from it for the rest of my life. I will definately be writing more about that and Dementia here.

summer veggies

6. I am obsessed with Instagram and with taking pictures of food, seeing it increasingly as  art. Instagram is like an art gallery of the lives and art of folks I seem to be followingРmostly family, friends, bloggers and magazines whose work I love. I am there at @graceappears on Instagram. It seems like a quiet place to be in  a very loud world. And yes, I realize that I contribute to the noise. Should I be following you.

7. Poets are some of the funniest people I know. At least the folks at Tweetspeak Poetry are. I recently participated in their “Take A Poet To Work Day.” Man that really caught on, like all around the globe. We started with flat puppets like flat Stanley. Whoever that is. And the rest is too hard to explain so I recommend you head over there and read the recap. It was a day of wit and whimsy and child’s play. Which takes me to my next point.

8. I am enjoying this summer almost more than I did when I was a child. And I am learning to play again. Though I am not quite there, I am making progress with becoming reacquainted with channeling the inner child. (see Instagram for examples of summer fun.)

summer picture JULY

9. When I make a salad, I am at my easel with paints and brushes and a blank canvas. One of my new favorite “paintings” is a peach salad. Here is the recipe. Fresh greens (I used red leaf which is not always a favorite but it was perfect here.) Fresh Peaches ( I like the peel on) sliced thinly and then cut bigger than bite size. I know I am weird that way. Blue cheese or gorgonzola crumbes. And candied walnut pieces.(I found them in the produce section. And then a vinegar and oil dressing. I added rotisserie chicken. Yummers. A meal.

10. I am thinking of and dreaming of two things. (Well more than that but… know what I mean.) ¬†I am going to begin to look for a publisher for a poetry book and I am dreaming of collaborating with another writer or musician on some song lyrics. Let me know if you know anything about either of these so that I don’t spin around in circles endlessly dreaming and scheming. Who knows, maybe by August’s list of “A Few Things I Learned in August” I will be able to report what I now know about dreaming of writing and publishing a poetry book.
trio in nature

11. I am amazed at the quality of my camera phone. #oldschool not an #iphone. ¬†And I am still using and totally ¬†obsessed with Pikmoney. (pikmonkey dot com) I don’t always photo edit, but when I do it is with Pikmonkey. Instagram has it’s own fun filters. But you already knew that.

See you in August. Wait. No. I hope I will see you around here before then. Poetry is popping up all over and almost daily. Sort of like the mushrooms. It is like the summer of mushrooms with all the rain, they are taking over. I digress.