Advent II – Peace


This singular moment between seasons
offers its own unique beauty.
The calendar may say otherwise,
but fall is over
and winter hasn’t quite begun.


Clematis in Winter


Snow comes and goes while
Leaves die and drop.
Regret for the passing pairs with
Anticipation for the coming.
We rest in limbo
And wait.


The season of


Advent II

~  ~  ~


“… ridged inch deep with pearl”


The snow had begun in the gloaming,

And busily all the night

Had been heaping field and highway

With a silence deep and white.


Every pine and fir and hemlock

Wore ermine too dear for an earl,

And the poorest twig on the elm-tree

Was ridged inch deep with pearl.


[James Russell Lowell — The First Snow-Fall]


(Click photos to enlarge)

Some gifts are like showers of blessings


Rain pours and puddles, splashing the grime of the deck onto our dove grey siding. Overfull eavestroughs spill waterfalls into the garden beds, and trees dribble on my head while I hurry to and from the car. As much as I don’t usually mind rain, I’m tired of weeks filled with dull, sodden days. Even my writing has suffered; spiritless, uninteresting words that I first type and then delete.

Into the gloom comes a shaft of warmth, a figurative ray of sunshine that instantly changes the oppression to a blessing. A poem inspired by a recent Facebook exchange I had with Sandra Heska King about, of all things, periwinkles. Sandra’s poem and photos make me smile, until I reach the end and see the words, “Dedicated to Carol Garvin.” Then I cry. What a beautiful gift!

There was a similar gift a couple weeks ago, when Joylene Butler sent the Inspirational Blogger Award my way. I don’t think of myself or my blog as being particularly  ‘inspirational’ so it was an unexpected and uplifting surprise.

Such gifts come from the generous and loving hearts of friends, but I believe the prompting for them comes from God. It’s his omniscience that uncovers my need and fills it with a spillover of lovingkindness from another’s abundance.  Neither Sandra nor Joylene could have known how much I needed the encouragement at that particular moment, but God did.

As I stand at the window and smile at the rivulets of rain, I am reminded of the old hymn, “Showers of Blessing.” Remember it?

May you be blessed to be a blessing today.


For great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised. [I Chronicles 16:25]
I will be glad and rejoice in thee: I will sing praise to thy name, O thou most High. [Psalm 9:2]


A New Notebook for Words


A brand new notebook! I’m giddy with excitement. Am I the only one who enters a store and heads straight for the stationery department? The only one to dally and daydream over choices before moving on to pick up other more mundane items on the shopping list?

I have a stack of empty notebooks that almost equals the height of my To Be Read pile of books. I love all writerly tools of the trade but I have a weakness for special notebooks, particularly journals with covers in colours and textures that inspire creative words.

Maybe only another writer can appreciate the delicious anticipation of opening the cover of a brand new book, and, with pen poised, choosing the perfect word to initiate the promising blankness. Unlike beginning a new manuscript, where the pressure to produce the right start to an entire story can push us into a panic attack, it’s a gateway into the adventure of free expression.

Now, as I run fingertips over the leafy texture and consider what that perfect first word should be, I remember this poem by Sandra Heska King (thank you for permission to reprint, Sandra):


What’s in a Word?*



mined from



planted on



dispersed with




jewel with



pregnant with


filled with


and rich


a million



Do writing tools make your senses tingle with anticipation for the word? Or are they simply a necessity required by the task? Not counting your computer, what’s your favourite writing tool?

(* Copyright March 2011, Sandra Heska King)


Windows on Winter

Windows on winter

Sun-blessed discoveries

On a chilly morn

Wandering ‘coon tracks

Across my back deck

Pressed in powdered snow

Glimpses of beauty

Branches of white lace

Tree spears stretching tall

Evergreens shiver

Showering snow flakes

To capture lost warmth

Fresh winter snowfall

Fluffy white crystals

Dusting winter’s day


What’s your writing day like?

Can you describe it in five syllable phrases?