Category: Generations Of Faith

two poems

we wait and watch
the train go by
in our small town
memories of my
Swedish grandparents

My grandfather worked on the railroad, and I remember my grandmother’s kitchen!

train lights
and late afternoon
grey sky
Autumn begins
tomorrow

Image: wpclipart

Poems are by Ellen Grace Olinger.

Creativity Over Time

I realized that my two posts yesterday reprinted a poem published in 1994, and then another poem in 2014.

Poem and Garden Journal Photos

Lilac Bushes

writing over time
more than sometimes
I knew

lessons learned
lived again
anew

what was learned
can be applied again
with new wisdom

losses and griefs
changes
and health needs

so much creativity
and gratitude

rest and patience
always beauty, love,
faith, hope

Wait on the Lord:
be of good courage,
and he shall strengthen thine heart:
wait, I say, on the Lord
.

Psalm 27:14 (KJV)

Ellen Grace Olinger

Creative Notes: Turning the Page

Poem, Bible verse, and thoughts from a post in September 2014:

turning the page
of an older book
the age in my hands

Now also when I am old and grayheaded, O God, forsake me not; until I have shewed thy strength unto this generation . . .  Psalm 71: 18 (KJV)

I wrote the haiku awhile ago.  I’ve always been an “old soul” and always felt my gifts with the language arts would take a long time to begin to grow.   When I read verses in the Bible that encouraged me to take the long view, I had no idea blogs would be the answer.

And creative notes today:

I have a few drafts of chapbooks in progress, with my poems from our blogs. And I’ll add photos. Many ways to create, and each book can be different. I am still happy with Quiet Christmas Poetry, from 2014.

As I work through this process, the posts here with dates and any publication credits help a lot. I also save emails and letters from editors and have a few shelves where I keep print journals and books. Grateful to the editors and all readers for their encouragement.

Ellen Grace Olinger

These are two of my favorite photos by Karl from our recent visit to The Sheboygan River at Kiwanis Park. We saw many butterflies.

Books

I look at my shelves and think, “I love my books.” They are not perfectly organized, rather I make different arrangements here and there. I bought more used books at Goodwill in Sheboygan this week. And we have bought used books at the libraries in Sheboygan, Oostburg, and Cedar Grove. I enjoy reading and learning from different generations and styles of writing. Not necessary to always finish – not taking a test or teaching a class about the content. When my formal education years were complete, I had to learn how to read again, in a simple way.

When I search for used books on Amazon, I often look for books that had been in a library somewhere. I like seeing where the books have been.

And on a general note, how wonderful to have interests that can span a lifetime. I am not a math or science person, though cannot remember learning how to read. During my mother’s last illness, we kept books, newspapers, and magazines in her world. Just their physical presence was a comfort. And I read to her.

Books and blogs – gardens and flowers – so many blessings every day! Vintage art too.

Floral Card is courtesy of Free Vintage Art.

Ellen Grace Olinger

Age and Place

where one person may see
an empty building
I see the store that
was there before and
where I shopped
for my mother

the road may look grey
with rain today yet
I remember this road
on all kinds of days
over many years
and seasons

bookstores may have closed
yet shelves of books
to look at and perhaps buy
exist in different places
thrift stores and other stores
library discards too

one step at a time
a new life can grow
and sometimes later
we may realize that
we are more at home
than ever before

Ellen Grace Olinger

Peaceful Gratitude

I am thinking more about our early years here, and the kindness of the people who welcomed us. After being in the hospital and surgery at the end of 1993/early 1994, I remember gradually walking again, and a neighbor called after me, “Ellen, where have you been?” I think I then wrote him and his wife a note – I am better with writing for some conversations. At a local restaurant, that no longer exists, a group of retired men met for coffee. My father would have been one of those guys! The name of the restaurant was The Knotty Pine. Although closed, we remember. And we enjoy many wonderful restaurants in the area. I like the places where I am comfortable, and simple good food. Good service. And we see many of the same people.

Some though have passed away, and when I read their impressive obituaries, I am moved by how modest they were, how humble and caring. Service and kindness.

Sometimes kindness too is giving others their new space and time. I can no longer do the physical work of caregiving. Though I support emotionally. And I pray. This is respected, and I am so grateful. No small thing to write a note and pray. I can remember one or two sentences, a card, and how much that meant. Sometimes there is so much initial support – perhaps after a loved one dies – and then someone sends a note six months later. And life changes, and some friendships have changed. Some renew. Can always say a prayer for them. Keep a wise and kind heart. Good manners.

I cooked eggs this morning and remembered a poem from October 2012:

falling leaves
and silent sunrise

how easy today
to let go of old dreams

cook some eggs
wash the dishes
write this poem

And then I rediscovered this poem:

how quickly
another generation
grows
seems I only
looked away
for a moment

how good their work
how beautiful their art

Grateful for all ages – every day new, and full of memories and hope for the future,

Ellen Grace Olinger

Photo by Karl – August 2018

Spring Notes

We went for a walk in the neighborhood. Marsh Marigolds are just beginning to bloom – tiny yellow flower buds in an area with water. The air is so fresh, and we heard frogs singing.

We have many memories of neighbors from the generation older than us, who live in other places now. I especially remember their kindness when I was new here. Thank you.

Primroses – May 2010

Bleeding Hearts – June 2011

Photos by Karl