Sunday, April 26, 2009

WOW! I'M GETTING WAY BEHIND!

I just can't believe that I haven't posted anything since April 17th. Guess you can tell that I don't have as much time as I used to. I was all set to post a couple of poems about 4 this afternoon when I had some special visitors and for these particular folks I always drop what I'm doing. As you've probably figured out by now, those special visitors were my two darling grandsons. They are so precious and watching them grow from such tiny pre-mees to these talkative darling children has been my greatest joy. Anyway, I ran across these two poems in my old file of poems that go way back.

The first one was actually commissioned by the church we belonged to at the time to be an addition to the church bulletin on the Sunday we were celebrating Confirmation.
I don't recall the year but it really doesn't matter. It was an honor to add my little poetic thoughts on this milestone in the lives of these eighth graders.

GROWN IN HIM
By Patty Lynn

When you were just a baby
Your parents brought you to…
The holy house of Jesus,
And there they baptized you.

You were too small to choose Him,
But Jesus took your hand,
‘Til you alone could make Him yours,
‘Til you alone could stand.

And then you grew in knowledge,
Learned of His ways so true,
And how He died to make you clean,
His blood was shed for you!

Today you stand before Him,
Your hand stretched out to His,
You know His hand’s protection,
What loving really is.

And so as you confirm your faith,
We pray your life remain…
Filled with His Holy Spirit,
Abiding love your gain!

The second poem was one that was written for a program at one of our local hospitals, called "Where the Rainbow Ends". The program was designed to introduce children to the hospital experience so that if or when they had to spend time in a hospital for treatment, it wouldn't seem so scary. These field trips by local schools used the characters from the Wizard of Oz to greet the children and take them on a tour of the facility. I was asked to write a little poem that could be incorportated into the handouts the children were given so that they could take them home and share what they learned with their parents. In addition, each child received a coloring book with the Oz characters.

WHERE THE RAINBOW ENDS
By Patty Lynn

Where the rainbow ends is a pot of gold
Filled with riches yet untold.
For it opens doors to fairylands
Where explorers walk o’re shifting sands.
These kingdoms lie both near and far,
Your own backyard, beyond a star.
So join me now where the rainbow ends.
Come follow me, bring all your friends.
For the riches lie with each book;
Just sit right down and take a look!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

COMPOSING ON THE SPOT

Last nite I just sat here looking at the scene and hoping for some inspiration. Well, as the attached poem will attest, it did'nt come. So I tried something I've only tried once or twice before, just writing a line and hoping for the best allowing thoughts to flow freely. If there was any inspiration to be had it was in the particular rhyme pattern. I had just gone back to a blog I shared last September called Penelope Pickel and I really liked the flow of that meter. From there I determined that I would try my hand at that form again. So I won't bore you anymore with the whole background thing. It's not my best, that's for sure, but it was an experiment.

COLDLY COMPOSING
by Patty Lynn

As I sit here a-staring, at the screen I'm preparing
To write a new poem for you all.
I'm sure it'll be, just fantastic, you'll see,
On my brilliance I'll just have to call.

Do you think this is easy, writing something to please me?
I'm a harsh little critic, it's true.
Must be careful to choose well, my words should be just swell,
I'm writing for me and for you.

An idea, I need one, when it's chosen 'twill be fun
To spin a poetic new tale.
Shall I write 'bout a person, from people we learn some,
Or maybe 'bout a dolphin or whale?

I'm trying so hard to be clever.
Gotta be the best poem that I've ever...
Composed on the spot, with the best that I've got.
It must be my finest endeavor!

Should it be short or long, set to music, a song?
The ideas, they just aren't a-coming.
The harder I try, why this just makes me cry,
Now my fingers are annoyingly strumming.

This is crazy, it's late, it's this dry spell I hate,
Wanting so much to start my composing.
Whether this, whether that, my thoughts are so flat.
What I should be is quietly reposing.

I’ve tried, yes, I have, but this poem is so bad,
Not the masterpiece I was expecting.
So I’ll quit while ahead, ‘twas here I was led,
Guess the best thing’s to stop, I’m suspecting.

Now the moral of my story’s don’t hope to claim glory,
When composing without at least planning.
As you stare at the page, an impossible gauge
For your poem is all set for the banning.

Yes, it’s best to retire with no thoughts that inspire,
Go to bed, get some rest for tomorrow.
Perhaps rested I’ll find, a renewal of mind
That brings triumph and joy ‘stead of sorrow.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

NONE OF US WANTS TO BE FORGOTTEN

THOUGHTS TO PONDER. . .

I bought my first home in Appleton in 1996. It was a peculiar transaction from the standpoint that I not only purchased the dwelling, I bought the contents as well. The circumstances of the sale were precipitated by the death of the owner, a local dentist who had been the sole caregiver of his dear wife, who was stricken with Alzheimer’s. He had been able to manage her care for 5 years of this devastating illness, but when his beloved wife got out of the house on several occasions and began wandering the neighborhood, he knew he could no longer care for her at home. It was a difficult and heart-rending decision, I’m sure, fraught with anguish and personal disappointment, but he finally realized he was just not able. It eventually took its toll on the dear man, and two weeks following her admission to a nursing facility, he keeled over and died. I tell this story because, unfortunately, stories like this happen every day, some similar, some different, but always a sad commentary on the ravages of aging.

Amongst the contents belonging to the dentist and his wife was a large collection of books. One day, while perusing through some of them, I stumbled on the piece below, clipped out of some newspaper. Safely tucked away between the pages of one of the volumes, were these poignant words. I share them here as I feel they need sharing. A wise man once said, "To live life we must always be present in that life." I take that to mean that life needs to be savored, every minute, every hour, every day. Who knows how many days will get. How important it is to make the most of each one. At no time is it more important than at the point at which our elderly family member or friend needs us to be present, even when it may be difficult. . . for it will be OUR turn only too soon.


TIME TO REPAY
By Del Reynolds

With His hands and feet nailed to the cross, blood streaming down His face, with needle-like thorns piercing His head, and with thoughts of His trusted followers and disciples betraying Him, He raised His head and eyes to heaven and said---
FATHER, FORGIVE THEM FOR THEY KNOW NOT WHAT THEY DO.
I wonder how many elderly people in Nursing Homes can truthfully say: Father, forgive them for they know not what they do ---
As they sit quietly and wait patiently, day after day, for the faces of children they love, children they sacrificed for, perhaps for twenty years or more---children they loved
ABOVE ALL ELSE. . . and now they wait for them as they waited during the wee hours of the night when they were teenagers . . . just to be SURE that they were SAFE AND HAPPY.
Forgive them for they know not what they do? Can this really be said? My insincere friends, let me warn you---
You DO KNOW what you are doing to your Father or Mother or loved one as they sit there waiting, longing to see your face, if even for five minutes.
Yes, even five minutes if that’s all you have to give would be something towards the years they spent for YOUR safety and well being. If you go to see them even for a short time, even once a month. . . they’ll remember they are valued, loved, AND. . . God Himself will reward you. . . seven times seventy!!

Friday, April 10, 2009

OUR DAY TO DAY HABITS

Last night, about 9:05 pm, I was saying our nightly prayer with my husband and thinking how I was going to miss our usual 9-10 o'clock time together...again. As you all know by now, our lives and our habits have recently changed with the welcome addition of a new job for my husband. Getting up at 4:30 am each morning necessitates going to bed an hour earlier, so we pray, share a goodnight kiss and he goes off to bed. Sometimes I check my email, write a poem or even watch TV for another hour. Last night I used my hour by watching a program and then writing a new poem about our routine, you know, rise, work, supper, TV and bed. Not exciting, to be sure, but accurate. The practical side of life, the day to day habits, that we settle into, determined by our jobs, obligations, etc. As I was reflecting on all this, I wrote the poem below. It's a bit different than my usual fare in that it employs the use of the relaxed form of in' instead of ing. You'll see what I mean as you read along. The poem is genuine and down-to-earth, much the way we are. I hope you enjoy reading it and I hope you can see yourself in it's lines. Even the most mundane things can be engaging. Can you relate????

MUNDANE RITUALS
By Patty Lynn

I’m watchin’TV all alone in the night,
Too tired to think, but this doesn’t seem right.
“A waste” some may say, my daze, like a sponge.
But don’t you dare judge me, ‘s not for everyone…
This single “activity”(a strange choice of words)
We all fly together, like the best of the birds.
Workin’ hard in the day, makin’ supper for two,
Catchin’ one or two programs, and when the day's through…
Headin’ right straight to bed, pull the covers up tight,
Recallin’ the day in my prayers, thoughts take flight.
Will tonite be the night that sleep will come easy?
For sleep is the only thing to appease me,
For there’s nothin’ that frustrates like sleep that won’t come,
And I wouldn’t wish that on no one, not one.
Now these thoughts may not be an int’resting topic,
But here, all alone, I really can’t stop it.
Cathartic it is, ponderin’ the mundane,
Besides, to withhold it would drive me insane!
Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m sure not complainin
Though it’s not too excitin’, this is all that I’m sayin’:
You work hard, watch TV, get real tired and dozy,
Make your way to your bed, add some covers, you’re cozy.
Don’t think on too much or your mind will defeat it,
Only then will sleep come – now should I repeat it????

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

AND NO POEMS ARE FORTHCOMING...

I quarter to ten on a Tuesday nite and though I feel like blogging, I can't for the life of me think of something poetic. I guess the reality is that I'm having some difficulty adjusting to the schedule for my husband's new job. By the way, he really likes it and from all that he can gather, they like him,too. You see it's hospital hours and though the old 1st, 2nd and 3rd shifts do still exist, they are a different configuration of hours. He's primarily working 1st & 2nd shift and the shifts may vary even within a given week. So, he either works 6 am to 2:30 pm or 2 pm to 10:30 pm. He's only been working the first shift last week and this week and that may continue next week, but he goes to bed at 9 pm and gets up at 4:30 am. Well, what can I say but that it will require some getting used to. I'm not complaining, heaven knows, he and I are most grateful that he was able to find a job in his field in this economy. But I kinda miss the guy, don't see him in the morning and when he works the second shift, I won't see him but briefly in the morning and then I won't see him at night. I, too, have to get a few hours of sleep a nite and waiting up will make it much too late. (Could this subject matter be more boring?) I'm putting myself to sleep!! I mean it. I've got to get to bed. Nighty night, all. Hopefully the next time I blog it'll be a more interesting topic.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

A WORD OF COMFORT

Tonight's blog is simply one of the poems that I wrote for my dear sister when she was going through some serious health issues. I tried to write a poem each week while she was in treatment as I felt in a time when I felt powerless, that I was "doing" something. My sister and I are so close, so tied together, that when either of us is hurting the other almost "feels" the other's pain. I'm happy that those health concerns are behind her now and I'm merely sharing this "prayer" in hopes that it may touch those who read it. If perchance you are going through difficult times right now or you know someone who is, this may be a comfort for you. If not, may it serve as a reminder that when we feel "power-less", God is even more "power-full". He is ready and willing to see us through, no matter what it is.

A PRAYER
By Patty Lynn

Oh, Lord, the God of miracles
My Savior and my friend,
I thought I’d take some time today
My heartfelt thanks to send.

I’m blessed, Lord, by your presence,
In ev’ry passing day,
A loved one’s kiss, a baby’s smile,
Your Word that points the way.

Relationships so rich, Lord,
My world’s a better place.
And thank you for the trials that come,
For strength, as each I face.

Some people say that miracles
Are few and far between,
But if they’d take the time to look,
At everything, I mean…

They’d see the world’s a wondrous place
Where miracles abound.
They’d see your hand in all that’s there,
In ev’ry sight and sound,

The changing of the seasons,
The plants that sprout and grow,
Spring’s gentle breeze, Fall’s vibrant leaves,
Fresh, newly-fallen snow.

And what is more miraculous
Than babies, Lord, I ask you?
But if there is a greater one
I wouldn’t put it past you!

For you are able to create…
The miracles around us,
The smallest bug, the tallest tree,
Each day they just surround us.

But, Lord, there’s something so profound
A gift you’ve given me,
That when I look into her eyes,
It’s You, Lord, that I see…

My sister, Lord, is such a source
Of joy and happiness.
I know I don’t deserve her
She simply is the best!

You know she’s struggling daily
With just so many things,
Her faith is strong and well she knows
The comfort that You bring.

So please, Oh God of Miracles,
Reach down your healing hand
Caress her face, embrace her heart,
And help her, Lord, to stand…

When she feels weak and frightened, too
Be there to raise her up.
And when she thirsts for answers,
Be there to fill her cup.

She’s oh, so precious, kind and true,
Unique in every way,
I love her and I wish I could
Wipe all her hurts away…

But only You can do that, Lord,
I lay her at your feet,
A miracle’s the answer, Lord,
Yes, that’s just what she needs.

So as I ponder all these things,
The blessings You bestow,
I thank and praise You, gracious Lord,
Just wanted You to know.

In the name of Jesus, Amen.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

DO YOU MISS ME YET????

Last Wednesday my sister and her husband left on vacation. They had planned it for months and I know they got a really good deal because "I know my sister!" She is by far the best bargain hunter I know and planning this trip to the Napa Valley was no exception. I don't know the rate they got on flights and rooms and events, I just know they would have to be fabulous. These two have taken some really nice vacations and I admire their "you only live once" philosophy.

My kids, too, have taken some wonderful trips and cruises and have gone to places my husband and I could only dream about. The last vacation we planned was a belated honeymoon on a Royal Caribbean Cruise. That was back in 2004. We decided to enjoy our night in New York where the ship would be boarded from the next day by getting a lovely hotel and tickets to a Broadway Show, The Producers, I think it was, although it wasn't the original cast. We'd planned and arranged and got ourselves so pumped about "our cruise" and couldn't wait to go. Well, the day before we were to fly out of Appleton to New York City, I was trying something on in a fitting room and the garment fell on the floor and ... I bent down. In that benign moment I heard a very peculiar sound coming from my back!


I don't know how I got home but I did and my husband rushed me to the emergency room and from there to the neurosurgeon's office and I was having back surgery when I should have been enjoying sultry breezes, white sands & blue sky. I had a trip alright, just not the kind anyone plans on taking. And so it goes...

These days with lost jobs and lay offs and whacks to retirement savings, we sit back and count our blessings and hope that if all goes well, we'll be going on a vacation in a year or so when we two with new jobs (thank you, God) have accrued some vacation time. Then we, too, can plan an excursion to someplace, maybe even someplace exotic and WARM! Spending Wisconsin winters in a warm climate eludes us at this point but a trip, a week or ten days, to a warm place would be nice. I hope so, and I really mean that, I have the hope that that will actually happen. Then I'll be able to call my sister as she called me today and say, "do you miss me yet?" And I really do miss her. She and her husband are our dearest friends and that truly is a blessing.