Today I’m writing, channeling really, the style and likes of author and poet, Ross Gay, who without hesitation fashions sentences as long as his arms (he’s lanky and his arms go on a bit) or as long as his legs (even longer).
I’m writing as him today, because I adore his writing and if you don’t mind, I want to be him for a little while, and besides, his “The Book of Delights” delights me, but also hopefully, given his personal propensity for delight, he might find it delightful that someone would go — not to the trouble of — but rather to the all-out-delight of attempting to imitate him. Which is, of course, impossible.
I’m so happy to let you know that I’ll be partnering with local poet and photographer Tracey Schmidt to present an evening of Mystical Poetry. Tracey and I were introduced to each other by Jean Cassidy of www.SheVille.org. She thought we might enjoy working together — and we do!
Date and Time: September 20, Friday evening, 7:30 to 9:30 pm. $15 love offering.
Location: Unity of The Blue Ridge, 2041 Fanning Bridge Rd, Mills River, NC 28759. 828-891-8700. firstname.lastname@example.org.
You’re writing me texts and emails saying the dearest things about 100 WORDS: SMALL SERVINGS OF WHIMSY AND WISDOM TO CALM THE MIND AND NOURISH THE HEART.
What I love about what you’re saying is that the words move you in some way — they speak to you, they matter. Because you took to heart the message from “As Above, So Below” you’re now “spilling shakers of light over stray concerns of the day.”
You mention how the little black sandals on page seventeen make you smile and give you hope for getting through a monumental change. Or that you appreciate the conciseness and brevity of each piece, or how a photograph took you by the hand into a poem.
One person said the last two lines of “On Love” became her mantra one day when she needed it most. “Love breathes you, moves you. It’s what built your heart.”
One person let me know she kept 100 WORDS on her nightstand to read a small sampling each night because, as she put it, “These are poems to be savored.” She appreciated the small bites.
One of my editor’s favorite poems is “How To Realize Your Beauty.” She tucked 100 WORDS into her traveling bag and read it aloud to a couple of groups she belongs to, and the sharing was well-received. The poem even prompted a discussion with her son. My daughter especially loved “Pearls in the Morning,” a poem about creativity.
My mother (who is 92) called me shortly after receiving her copy. She was smiling over the phone and said with a lilt in her voice, “I read your book last night. I noticed there’s a mention of a 92-year-old.”
I said, “Yes, Mom, I wanted to let you know I’m always thinking of you.”
What a sweet moment with my mother!
This week, a woman sent a text from the waiting room of her doctor’s office. She was reading (and crying about) “No Longer Here,” one hundred words about golf and love. The poem reminded her of her father, who passed years ago. He was a golfer, too, and she was missing the aspects of their relationship she loved most.
Another reader sent an evening email and I happened to see it as I was pulling back the heavenly comforter on my (heavenly) bed. She wrote, “I got my books. Read three pages. Found myself breathless. Just sitting here feeling thankful for the gift of you. And my books.”
I doubt if there’s anything more wonderful for a writer to hear than “your writing left me breathless.”
From your responses it appears that the words are swimming into the warmth of your hearts and resting there. I love that. I’m so thankful for that.
Thank you for your ongoing feedback. Thank you for reaching out to tell me what 100 WORDS means to you.
Today, I’m sharing a story about how I accidentally accomplished something on my bucket list. I ran through an exit gate while looking the other way. The hood of my car is scratched up, and one windshield wiper is a mess, but let’s have a good laugh about how we never expect what “getting what we want” includes!
It seems to be a growing fad these days to call someone a narcissist, or declare they are toxic.
Political name-calling is similar—we assign politicians and voters to categories, and brush them off as if they are unintelligent, inferior, or even worthless.
By labeling others, we miss their humanity. We gloss over their struggle, their best effort at dealing with life. We dismiss them.
We do to them what we believe they are doing to others.
Look past a label, and in the soft light of day, there stands a person like you or like me, coping as best they can. At the end of the day, no friend, parent, or lover making conscious choices intends to be mean, or to ignore, or to embellish. There is always more to the story.
If we label others, then for sure we label ourselves. We trap ourselves into believing we are less than. Or not enough. Or we don’t give ourselves the time and forgiveness to work through our “stuff.” Maybe, if we stopped accusing others of narcissism, we could forgive ourselves for those moments when we were narrow-minded, inconsiderate, or afraid.
When it comes to labels, nobody wins.
So, my dear people, I suggest we peer a little deeper into ourselves to investigate a need to separate ourselves from others by tacking them with a label filled with disdain or scorn.
It is my wish that you view this video and take it to heart.