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.
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.
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,