Category: Grief And Acceptance

Poem And Photo From 2011

Last week was another year since my father died. He was a veteran, and then taught history.

sunrise
after the storm . . .
glistening lake-waves
branches coated with ice
and a crow cawing

after the storm
driftwood washes to shore
from other places . . .
what we let go
what we keep

Karl took this photo on March 24, 2011. I wrote the poem the same day.

Lake Michigan
Oostburg, Wisconsin

Acrostic Poem for LETTERS

L  ove
E  xpressed
T  ranscending
T  ime
E  verlasting
R  emembrance of
S  ouls

I wrote this poem in 2010.

Gerbera Daisy Plant – August 2016

Ellen Grace Olinger

Winter Morning

The sky is completely grey, and lovely in a quiet way. Snow covers the yard, various branches, and safety railings along the wood and brick paths. I read a few pages, and keep looking outside. So will try and write a page – a post – about what I see.

There are large shapes of ice in Lake Michigan. What a contrast from warm summer days. I keep small blankets – some handmade from thrift stores – nearby.

as if they could
store the sun
small blankets
on a chair
add color to
the scene
as they await
to warm
another time

July 2014

Time – today is another year since my mother’s passing in 2004. At peace.

T  ried-and-true
nspiration and
M  emories to cherish
E  ternally

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)

Ellen Grace Olinger

Saturday Morning

The photo of a poinsettia is from February 2017. I like the light and shadow, as well as the colors.

rain in dark night
refreshes each leaf
today I think of you
no longer with grief

I wrote this poem for my father in June 2012. He lived on earth from 1915 – 1983. Today is his birthday.

In November 2018, I realized my parents had both been born over 100 years ago. I wrote a poem, and will reprint in this post:

TODAY I REALIZED

today I realized
my parents were born
over one hundred
years ago

I picture them younger

Mom in the yard
hanging clothes
on the line

Dad in his workshop
working on a crossword
puzzle

today I realized my parents were born
over one hundred years ago

most of all
I remember them older
when they must have known
at a deep soul level
their days on earth were fewer

each left a legacy

of unconditional love
which continues
in my heart to this day

And I remember this verse:  But he knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold. 
Job 23: 10 (KJV)

Blessings,
Ellen Grace Olinger

Poems: Carnations

carnations wait
by the window
sunrise

more memories
sometimes than
my heart can hold
I select one or two
write a poem

carnations from a store
in an old glass vase
from another store
wait by the window
sunrise

groceries for Mom
fresh flowers
always on the list

lasting a long time
heart-blessings
of a caregiver
and carnations
from a store this week

Ellen Grace Olinger

From Psalm 131

LORD, my heart is not haughty,
nor mine eyes lofty:
neither do I exercise myself
in great matters,
or in things too high for me.

Surely I have behaved
and quieted myself,
as a child that is weaned
of his mother:

my soul is even as a weaned child.

Psalm 131: 1-2 (KJV)

This afternoon, I am grateful for all that is in God’s hands.  I am grateful that my heart is still open to new poems.  I am grateful for the many skilled people, who are also kind, who help me be well.  Empathy.

Trumpet Vines and Time

how the
trumpet vines
grew on the wall
of my mother’s home
glorious
like her faith
her unconditional love
when God said
“It’s time…”

August 11, 2010

This poem was published
in Bell’s Letters 135, February 2011.

Ellen Grace Olinger