Category: Encouragement

Short Poems About Birds

birds in the painting
from the thrift store
forever in flight

how small the song
of an unknown bird
quiet memories

in the backyard
birds back
and singing
never too old
to find this new

bluebirds
truly so blue
trustworthy friends

losses in life
low setting sun
through branches of trees
now rises again
as birds quietly sing

pink clouds
span the horizon
seagulls take flight
stretching to read
new books

afternoon rain
seagulls on pilings
wait to fly again

Images of seagulls are courtesy of wpclipart.

Poems are by Ellen Grace Olinger.

Short Poems: Growing Older

As many of you know, Karl and I began Poems From Oostburg, Wisconsin in December 2009. A lot can happen in 10 years! Hope you enjoy this selection of poems. I still hope to create a print book from this blog, which is my primary site, with Karl’s help and photos. There will be a page with careful credits, and also with dates and places for Karl’s photos (this will take time and patience). Sometimes, with posts over time, we realize we have achieved more than we knew. No small thing to begin and create a blog. Sometimes I’ve wondered if I can continue; and then I rest and trust and return. And begin another season of work, by God’s grace.

older now
used books settle
in their new home

All the Way Home: Aging in Haiku (2019)
Edited by Robert Epstein
Middle Island Press
West Union, WV

loved for years
and now I know your name
blue chicory

Charlotte Digregorio’s Writer’s Blog
Daily Haiku: May 27, 2017

we hold the door
for older people
memories of Mom

They Gave Us Life: Celebrating Mothers, Fathers
& Others in Haiku (2017)
Edited by Robert Epstein
Middle Island Press
West Union, WV

country cemetery
trumpet vines
growing taller
than the gravestones

Time Of Singing, 2012

seasons repeat
we tell the stories
we are given

“seasons repeat” has found many homes, including:
Mayfly, 58, Winter 2015 – Brooks Books Haiku
tinywords – 4 September 2015
Charlotte Digregorio’s Writer’s Blog – Daily Haiku: April 2, 2016
* Also selected for my Poet Profile at The Haiku Registry, The Haiku Foundation. Billie Wilson, editor.

looking at trees
I remember prayers
of friends

Quiet Christmas Poetry (2014)
Ellen Grace Olinger
Elin Grace Publishing
Oostburg, Wisconsin

reading
in a sunny corner
of the house
I could be
any age

WestWard Quarterly
Winter 2016

“He hath made every thing beautiful in his time…”

From Ecclesiastes 3:11a (KJV)

Daffodil Drawing is courtesy of Reusable Art.

Ellen Grace Olinger

Kindness and Service

Years ago, when I helped with my mother’s care, I was always alert to what might be on the floor, to guard against falls. She used a walker, and was trained by therapists and so careful. After her passing, I would continue to pick up a piece of paper in a store or parking lot, thinking of her. I would tell this story to others who observed.

We watch for opportunities to take someone’s cart from the parking lot to the store, if that seems appropriate and helpful. Karl and I shop together.

Now it is best to allow myself to be helped, and I am so grateful for the kindness and service at the stores and restaurants where we go.

We drive home on all the roads we know so well. Some might look a little bleak now. Karl wonders about new construction and keeps an eye on things. Being comfortable in a new place took time for me, and while I know sometimes over decades I needed to change, this time I am grateful I was able to stay. And feel at home. So I know I see some things differently now, than a new person might see.

It can take time for some in our lives to accept changes, as we age and/or health needs change. When the caregiver needs to retire in the sense of physical work, but always cares. I stay close to home now.

Yesterday in a parking lot, I saw a garbage can tipped over. And I knew their staff would take care of it right away. Time for me to go home. Rest, complete a post with one of Karl’s photos.

Image: wpclipart

Ellen Grace Olinger

Bible Verses and Photos

These are a few of the verses from the Bible that I quoted this year.

For a thousand years in thy sight
are but as yesterday
when it is past,
and as a watch in the night.

Psalm 90: 4 (KJV)

Come unto me, all ye that labour
and are heavy laden,
and I will give you rest.

Matthew 11: 28 (KJV)

A new commandment I give unto you,
that ye love one another;
as I have loved you,
that ye also love one another.

John 13: 34 (KJV)

Yet the Lord will command
his lovingkindness in the daytime,
and in the night his song shall be with me,
and my prayer unto the God of m
y life.

Psalm 42: 8 (KJV)

Mauthe Lake
Kettle Moraine State Forest – Northern Unit
Wisconsin State Parks System
April 12, 2019
Photos by Karl

Ellen Grace Olinger

Through the Light

through the Light
of Christmas
I found my way
home

from a hospital
and nursing home
through city and
small town
Main Streets

their streetlamps
with holiday lights

as my mother
was on her way
Home

the time we shared

and still share

I wrote this poem on December 3, 2013, and added a note:

A peaceful grey day here, with steady rain.  The evergreens are so beautiful.  We are also still seeing geese flying in formation.  Spring, Summer, Fall – all so glorious.  Yet I think I love this time most of all.  Yesterday I went to Target and the brown fields had a covering of frost.  I guess whatever time it may be is the best time.   The wonder of seasons, wherever we are.

Photo by Karl – 2014

Ellen Grace Olinger

Acrostic Poems for SEASON, COLD, and BOOKS

 ilence
E  nlivens
A  nd
S  olitude
O  pens
N  ew thoughts

To everything there is a season,
and a time to every purpose
under the heaven . . .

Ecclesiastes 3: 1 (KJV)

SEASON is one of the poems from Quiet Christmas Poetry.

C old and time to
O  pen books, new and old
L oved and saved – for a
D  ecember day

COLD

B  eautiful way to
O  pen hearts and
O  pen minds to
K  now new stories and
S  ongs

BOOKS

Photo by Karl – 2018

Ellen Grace Olinger