Putting it in Print

The digital world is a wonderful thing and the internet connects us with people and places far beyond our home turf. But there is something tangible and delicious about holding the written word in our hands, in a book we can pick up and hold, feel, smell; words printed out on pages we can flip thru, dog-ear, scribble on. And so I’ve published a print collection of essays and poems from both my blogs and it is available now at Blurb.

It is also available as an ebook for those who are committed to the digital world.

I invite you to click on the cover and go check it out. With many thanks….


book cover

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The Seeing

I’m on the phone with a friend who

is gazing out her living room window when

she notices a dead branch has fallen

across a live branch in a big pine

and formed a perfect cross.

In the center of the cross is a nest

and in the nest is a dove who is feeding

her three nestlings.


We were talking about how to keep

our souls alive in these difficult

political times and suddenly in

this seeing, and in her telling me

of what she sees, and in my seeing

thru her words the branches, the tree,

the nest and the doves,

we know.


This is how.

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Small Stone – Aug 8


Listen! The insects still singing in the silent trees on this slow rising summer day.

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Small Stone – Aug 4

What I look through:

this window spattered

with  shadows from

a million rain drops,

and here,

the ghosted streak

of a small birdwing

and two tiny brown feathers.


Wondering if we’re not always peering past some old catastrophe to a new day, like this one, thickly green and still after the rain, the sun rising?


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Small Stone – Aug 3

Kaspa, at Writing Your Way Home, is hosting another Small Stone invitation for August. He says: 

What is a small stone?

A small stone is a short piece of writing that precisely captures a fully-engaged moment.

Come on along…

The airport 

glittered before dawn

like rhinestones 

scattered on black silk.

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Daily Detail – Rain

Rain comes like soft sighing thru the leafy trees, petals falling on stone.

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Breakfast Detail – one egg

Yellow omelet folding over green avocado and soft pale brie.

(todays offering for the new practice: a detail written in 17 syllables,

an American Sentence)

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Daily Detail – Meditation

Untethering the mind, unclenching, releasing God from the details.


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The Daily Detail 5/17

A rainbow of little prayer flags droops in the windless morning rain


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The Daily Details

Challenged by a new practice: Writing a Detail every day. Kind of a Small Stone of observation. To help me notice, stay awake to the world, practice putting a few words around what I see. I invited my Wednesday Writing Group to join me. The idea is to really SEE something in the world around us, to name it, describe it, find the words.

As I write my Detail this morning:

See how the dull green moss grows over the reddish weathered brick where the gray mourning dove pecks for seed.

I’m reminded of the form Allan Ginsberg used he called The American Sentence. It was his American answer to the Haiku: a sentence of 17 syllables. So I rework my detail:

Screen Shot 2016-05-15 at 8.49.24 AM

No necessary information is lost but only condensed.

Here’s an article from writer and teacher Paul Nelson who I follow for our August Poetry Postcard Project:

http://paulenelson.com/american-sentences-2/shadow/ Where you’ll find some great samples of the form and as well as a lively discussion of The American Sentence.

I also think of Dave Bonta, a blogging writer I’ve followed for years at The Morning Porch where he posts a daily observation. It often sparks a poem in his readers.

We live in a culture now learning to communicate via text and tweet using very brief sentences to communicate. I wonder if we can capture full detail, make the Detail vivid and still use a minimum of words to say it? I’m going to give it a try. See if I can put my Details into 17 syllables. No guarantees I’ll always pull it off. Feel free to check me out by counting them! 🙂


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