Category: Grief

Luci Shaw

This week I am rereading Adventure of Ascent: Field Notes from a Lifelong Journey, by Luci Shaw (2014, IVP Books).  She writes so well and generously about her life and growing older.

more roses

Turning the vase
of flowers
there are
more roses

The Coffee House of the Poets (No. 131).


I am beginning work on a second large print chapbook, in the same style as Quiet Christmas Poetry.  My first step is to reread my archives, so I can remember my best short poems.  Then I will gradually know the sequence for the book.  The theme is Wisconsin seasons and encouragement.


Ellen Grace Olinger

Daily Prompt: Cherish


I cherish memories of the caregiving years with my mother and family.  I could not imagine blogs then.  My mother often asked, “Are you writing?”  She was called Home in 2004.

Grateful for a quiet Christmas this year.

And I have to review my archives to remember all I have written since the caregiving years.  One day at a time, and also trust for the “big picture” over time.


Taking turns
Letting each other go
Only to learn again
How love grows,

(Published in Bell’s Letters Poet No. 115, Jan. 2006.)


100_8299 (2)

Ellen Grace Olinger

Two Books

almost Christmas
through the evergreens
clear blue sky


And the Word
was made flesh
and dwelt among us . . .
full of grace
and truth.

From John 1: 14 (KJV)


From Quiet Christmas Poetry – Karl and I gave gifts to staff at thrift stores yesterday.  We also mailed copies to places that care for people who may be encouraged by the book.  Next year, we plan to gradually share copies with Wisconsin libraries.

Copies may be ordered from the Time Of Singing books page.  All proceeds benefit this poetry print journal.  The price is 5 dollars per copy, or 3 for $12.00.  You’ll also see information about Welcoming Hope: Poems for those in need, which is the anthology we published with Time Of Singing.  You can combine orders for both books, for the special 3 for $12.00 price.

The TOS books page
provides more information
about the editors, artists, and poets.

A Poem For You (1991)


I taped up a picture of you
It must have been your last
Healthy Christmas – long overdue,
But you understand
I know you do.

And I’m up early to have some
Time alone before teaching, too
And I understand even more now
You know I do.

Mom’s doing better now…
She told me how you stood
Between two railroad cars
All the way from Washington D.C.
To Chicago after World War II.

And I’m teaching my heart out
Giving essay tests, too
Pouring out my soul
Like you used to do.

It’s Christmas again, and I
Taped up a picture of you
I’m writing poems and
Taking walks – doing fine
But missing you
Has not ceased with time.


Published in Midwest Poetry Review (1993); Bell’s Letters (1993); The Spirit of Christmas (1994, Weems Concepts).

Also included in my first chapbook, And So My Soul (2001).  Out of print.  I dedicated this book to my parents, Harold and Enola Borgh.

My mother loved this poem.

Ellen Grace Olinger


Images: wpclipart