Category: Hope

Deeper Places

When we began this blog on December 19, 2009, one of my goals was to reprint published poems and say “thank you” to the editors and all involved with the journals.  “Deeper Places” has found many homes, and the poem was the first post here.  It is an old poem, and I’d like to share again as written then, and then reflect upon a few thoughts now.  Thank you.

I want to live
in the deeper places

where flowers
always get to bloom
at their appointed time

and are loved as much
weathered and dormant
and covered with snow

I want to live
in the deeper places

where loss is felt
tears are cried and
night becomes a friend

and then loss
dies too
new life arrives again

Oh, I want to live
in the deeper places

Published in Time of Singing (2003); Bell’s Letters (2004);The Discerning Poet (2004); Blogging Along Tobacco Road (2009); Bell’s Letters (2009).

The Raymond Flory Explorer Award (2010).   The Eve Jeanette Blohm Award (2010).   Both awards through Bell’s Letters Poet.

I have continued to develop these thoughts over the years in poetry and prose.  New life has arrived again in many ways.  My father died when I was 29, and I was in the hospital for my 40th birthday.  Loss did not die, but rather was transformed.  I learned that new events may bring back old memories, and that love endures and grows.  My health problems young made me a better caregiver for my mother.  I was reading Luci Shaw again yesterday, and she shares about her aging in a generous way.  Her poetry and memoirs are a part of my life.

Karl’s photo of the swans on Lake Michigan is from several years ago. 

Ellen Grace Olinger

blessings

poetry books
by my chair
a few snowflakes
music and silence

stir-fried vegetables
in olive oil this morning
cooked in my new
cast iron skillet

all the voices and designs
colors of fruits and vegetables

verses from Psalm 23 –
He restoreth my soul . . .
my cup runneth over . . .
goodness and mercy . . .

Ellen Grace Olinger

“Charity Never Faileth” 1 Corinthians 13

And now
abideth

faith,

hope,

charity,

these three;

but the greatest
of these

is charity.

The title of this post is from 1 Corinthians 13: 8.  The above verse is quoted from 1 Corinthians 13:13.  King James Version of the Holy Bible, which is in the Public Domain.   I rearranged the words in this presentation.

Reprinted from a post in December 2009, when we began this site.

Poinsettia, 2015

Photo by Karl, 2014

Garden Journal Photos

In 2015, I began taking photos often.  Then a pause, and I began again yesterday.  It was the right time.  These are a few of my favorites.

This photo from April 2015 is of primroses beginning to grow again, through leaves from the previous autumn.  What a hopeful image.

This photo from May 2015 shows fallen forsythia petals on leaves, with some light in the garden.  I realized that poetry helps me to see the photos already present and waiting in the garden.  

Lake Michigan – May 2016

September 2015

December 2017

December 2017

I am grateful to all who make it possible to have flowers from stores in winter.  This photo is from February 2018.  

And since I began this post with primroses beginning to grow, I would like to end with a photo of primroses in bloom by Karl (May 2010).  The old leaves, the new leaves, and the flowers are in one image.

Ellen Grace Olinger

how lovely

how lovely
to have books around
and journals too

I create still life
arrangements that
change often

keep a book by my side
for company even
when I cannot read

trust the mystery
of who to read
and when

the words I need today
the words I needed then

Ellen Grace Olinger

Photo by Karl
Oostburg, Wisconsin
August 2018

a look at the gardens

raindrops on the windows
after the rain and some wind

reading, and I want to see
the gardens, as I did not stay
in touch with them as well
this year

though the perennials –
so reliable – were
as beautiful as ever

now is a good time
to begin again
with a closer look
from the windows

beautiful brown colors
of December and
some green remains

no work in the yard
needed today

a time of rest and
so much to look forward
to as the seasons continue

one moment at a time

Ellen Grace Olinger

Photo by Karl
July 2018