Poetry to My Eyes and Ears

“Poetry is when an emotion has found its thought and the thought has found words.”  -Robert Frost

In the United States, April is National poetry month!  And of course, I didn’t realize this until the month was almost over.  I enjoy reading poetry.  It is like having a heart to heart conversation with someone you don’t know.  But in time after reading a poets work, you begin to think of them as an old friend who knows exactly what to say when you need to hear it.

Poetry is beautiful to read.  It is also beautiful to hear it read aloud.  Especially by the poet who has written it.  If one cannot listen to the poet read their poetry, I highly recommend reading it aloud to yourself.  The words take on shapes and feelings that you cannot see when reading silently.

As someone who loves poetry in many forms and writes the occasional haiku poem herself, I felt the necessity of sharing some poets and poetry with you.

The following are poets that I follow on WordPress.  Some of these poets write poetry and prose while  others write haiku poetry.  And one writes poems, prose and micro burst poetry.  They are all very different in styles and content; but, I greatly enjoy their work.

One of my students, who has become a good friend, D. Eric Hanson is a published poet.  He does not have a blog so I am featuring a few of his poems on mine.  If you are interested in reading more of his poetry his books, Acedia and Psychology 101, are available on Amazon.

Poems from Acedia

Refuting Einstein
When I was with you,
It had no meaning.

Reduced to Writing Poems on a Napkin in a Bar II
I have two fateful women that
Within my brain reside.
And for my thoughts they do compete,
So striving side by side.
Now one has had enough of me
And so my life has left.
The other finds me bearable
And I am not bereft
Of her company just yet,
And still I find I fear
That with the passing of each day
That portent time draws near.
So now I sit of liquor full
And mind in such a fog
To write down all my vague concerns
Upon a napkin log.

Poems from Psychology 101

Imperfect Deception
A voice says you don’t matter much,
It says that I’m okay.
I simply need leave you alone
To just keep things this way.

And yet another one I hear
That calls a different tune.
It says that I must speak with you
And can’t do so too soon.

My mind says travel one way
My heart bids take the other.
I’d hate to choose the wrong route and
Nascent hope to smother.

I must select the course and yet,
Which ever voice to heed,
I fear that dread finality
And folly of the deed.

The words they flow an avalanche,
Shards and Splinters; poetic fragments.
But nothing now will seem to take
Not find a form or suitable shape.
The letters come in odd met groups
But do not wish to be made words.
When once the poems seemed to flow
They now no longer wish to do so.
I miss the spring of musings
And catharsis of the verse.
I cannot seem to find the source
That shaped the boundless words.


According to Miriam Websters Dictionary, the definition of the word clarity is “the quality or state of being clear.”

Montana is the source of many rivers.  A lot of the lakes and rivers run clear.  One can see the bottom of the lake or even watch fish swimming through the depths.  But the further the river gets from its source, the more sediments it picks up, making the water less clear.  One could even say muddy.

So much of life is like that.

You start with an idea in your head.  And it feels very clear to you what you want and where you are going with this idea.  But as you try to bring this idea into fruition, what seemed so sharp and clear has become nebulous and foggy.

I have an idea for a pagoda box.  I have tried several times to take this idea from my head and the sketch book and bring it to life.  None of the samples turned out quite right.  Each attempt, however, is a chance to work on my skills.  Some of the things that didn’t turn out quite right in the pagoda box, worked for other projects.

This also happens to me sometimes in my writing.  I have an idea for a short story.  I know what I want to happen.  The beginning is good and the end is good.  The middle is a muddled mess.  There are blog posts that I have worked on that I have to save and come back to at another time to revise them.  To me some feel too personal or not personal enough or I just didn’t like the way it is turning out.  I struggled and struggled with a haiku poem I was writing. I wanted to use a particular word but it didn’t work in the constraints of the haiku poetry.  Around and around I went.  Even though my writing goes through these murky moments, the more I write, the better I get.

This lack of clarity can happen with beliefs, ideas, platonic relationships, pretty much anything.  For example, you meet someone.  It is very apparent that there is mutual respect, caring and interest.  The relationship develops and you feel that you are sharing everything with this person.  When you have an idea, question, just want to hear his voice, you share with this person first.  Then communication from this person begins to get less regular.  They ignore your calls and texts.  This person who you had shared everything with is now a ghost.  What you thought was a very clear progression in a relationship is now an unclear memory.  And you ask yourself, did I ever really know this person at all?

Life isn’t clear.  You could say that it is muddy, messy, and down right dirty at times.

The question is how do we get through these less than clear situations?  There is no easy answer to this question.  What I try to do, is be true to myself.

And for me, the most important thing to do is to keep on creating and doing the creative work.  The clearest voice is my creative voice.  It is always there telling me to get to work and providing me with an abundance of ideas to work on.  That much is clear.

What is clear in your life?

Effort – 3 Day Quote Challenge – Day 3

I have been invited to participate in a 3 Day Quote Challenge by my friend who writes the blog The Moonlight Reverie.  She inspires me by writing sincere, heart-felt poetry and prose.  Her words are beautiful and I highly recommend her blog. Today is the final or third day of the quote challenge.  I have really enjoyed this challenge and hope that you are enjoying reading it as much as I am writing it.  I would like to thank my friend one more time for including me in this challenge.


  • Thank the person who nominated you.
  • Post a quote for three consecutive days (1 quote for each day).
  • Share why this quote appeals so much to you.
  • Nominate 3 different bloggers for each day.


Photo from the Garden of the Thousand Buddhas in Arlee, Montana

“It is you who must make the effort.  Masters only point the way.”           -Buddha

This quote is about two things:

  1.   One cannot sit idly by and expect growth.  In order to move forward, one must take on their own learning.  Learning requires effort.
  2.   Leadership

I want to address the leadership portion of the  quote first.  A friend and I have had on numerable occasions the conversation about what makes a good manager.  Manager, Leader, teacher etc.  A good one will give you the tools, make a realistic assessment of your abilities and then leave you to do the work.

Creative leadership is very similar.  A good teacher and/or creativity coach provides the tools, shows the techniques, and then steps back to assist where needed.

A true Master, Leader, Teacher, Manager, or Coach helps you shine.

So once you have the tools, learned the techniques, know your skills, it is time for your part.  Take the effort to learn and grow.  Expand your knowledge, learn even more skills, experiment.  Any effort you use to become better, is energy well spent.  Even if the experiment wasn’t successful.

I invite the following bloggers to participate in this challenge,.  I hope that they will enjoy the creative challenge of finding 3 quotes for 3 days.  I also hope that they will bring new perspectives on the words of others in the spirit of creativity!

Secret of Invention – 3 Day Quote Challenge – Day 2

I have been invited to participate in a 3 Day Quote Challenge by my friend who writes the blog The Moonlight Reverie.  If you haven’t checked out her blog, I highly recommend that you do.  It is filled with heart-felt poetry and prose.  Today is day two and I was very surprised how easy it was to write my post for day one.  I am really enjoying participating in this challenge.  I want to thank my friend once again for including me.


  • Thank the person who nominated you.
  • Post a quote for three consecutive days (1 quote for each day).
  • Share why this quote appeals so much to you.
  • Nominate 3 different bloggers for each day.

“Be alone, that is the secret of invention; be alone, that is when ideas are born.”          -Nikola Tesla

I think Nikola Tesla was a man before his time.  His mind was filled with amazing, creative ideas.  Our modern society uses many of the ideas and inventions that came from him every day.  Own a cell phone?  You wouldn’t have it without the genius mind of Nikola Tesla.  Hydroelectric power?  Tesla.  Remote control?  Tesla.  We could play this game all day.

Who doesn’t enjoy learning a secret that will help them succeed?  Nikola Tesla was not silent in his stance that in order to get things done, to think and to be, one needed to be alone.  The reason I chose this quote is I like being alone to do my creative work.

Whether it is working on a post for my blog, the latest short story or haiku poem, painting or creating a new collage or changing the construction of my boxes, I like to be alone and totally engrossed in my work.  I have been known to turn of my cell phone and tell people that I am working and not to be disturbed.

The creative process is different for everyone.  I know of another blogger who has said that she prefers to write in coffee shops.  She likes the feeling of people around her and listening to conversations gives her ideas for blogs.  A friend who is a painter has a studio with two other artists.  She likes working and having them around in the background.  She said that they don’t even necessarily talk to each other except to say hello, do you have some blue paint I could borrow or I am heading out for the day.  It is just nice to know they are there.

However you work best in creating, inventing, writing, or just doing the work, whether it is alone (like Tesla and I) or surrounded by other people, I just encourage you to keep doing the creative work you are called to do!

I invite the following bloggers to participate in this challenge.  I hope that they will enjoy participating in it as much as I am and  bring new perspectives on the words of others in the spirit of creativity!


Anything Can Happen – 3 Day Quote Challenge – Day 1

I have been invited to participate in a 3 Day Quote Challenge by my friend who writes the blog The Moonlight Reverie.  She has an amazing blog filled with poetry and prose that anyone and everyone can relate to.  I was very surprised to be invited to participate in this challenge; but, it is one that I think I can handle.  Thank you for including me.


  • Thank the person who nominated you.
  • Post a quote for three consecutive days (1 quote for each day).
  • Share why this quote appeals so much to you.
  • Nominate 3 different bloggers for each day.

“To succeed, planning alone is insufficient.  One must improvise as well.” -Isaac Asimov, Foundation

Isaac Asimov was an amazing creative writer.  He had written a book for every section of the Dewey decimal system of the library.  Yep, every section: fiction, non-fiction, children’s, mystery, biography, autobiography, etc.  Asimov was an incredible inspiration to many writers and science fiction writers.  And he inspires me.

As you can imagine, trying to choose a quote to write about was excruciatingly hard.  Asimov left so many wonderful quotes to choose from and there are his books too.  But in the end I chose the one listed above.

The reason it speaks to me is I hear all the time from friends, family and society in general about how you have to plan and prepare and be ready.  Yet, how often when we hear success stories that it was something unplanned where the person had to make a quick decision and improvise that changed their life and caused them to succeed.  Yes the planning was good but the fact that they could think on their feet was what made the difference.

I have written repeatedly in my blog that anything can happen.  And anything can happen!  Good and bad things will and can happen.  As much as we plan and prepare, we do not know the outcome of today’s events or what tomorrow brings.  Do not stop planning.  Planning helps you succeed.  But be prepared to improvise as well.

As a good friend of mine has often said, “Plan for the worst.  Hope for the best. And everything comes out somewhere in between.”

I invite the following bloggers to participate in this challenge, hoping that they will bring new perspectives on the words of others in the spirit of creativity!

Just Say “NO” to Influenza B

If only it were that easy.

Last fall, I read an article in the newspaper about how this is one of the worst flu seasons in years.  A couple weeks later, I remember hearing on the news about people getting the flu and dying.  I also heard on a NPR news program about the flu vaccine only being 36% effective against the strains of the flu virus active this year.  I’m not here to get into a debate about the validity or uselessness of a flu shot.  I had managed to not get any of the flu variations until about two weeks ago….

And then…. Fever, chills, cough, sore throat, runny and stuffy nose, muscle and body aches, headaches, extreme fatigue.  I guess some people had vomiting and diarrhea.  My stomach was upset on occasion and I think it was from all of the vitamin C, herbal and green tea, cough drops, Mucinex DM that I was taking to manage my symptoms.

Totally knocked me out for one week and I was only partially functioning the second week.  When I was first getting sick, I tried to do my day job by just pushing through being sick.  That just made things worse.  The reality of Influenza B is that it sucks all of your energy away.  You literally cannot do anything when you are sick with this virus.  The average amount of time it takes to get over Influenza B is three weeks.  I know why they call it Influenza B… this virus is a real B*tch!

There is a creative lesson in this.

Many of my students, friends and family have heard me talk about the oxygen mask.  How when you are on an airplane and the stewardess gives the talk about exits, water landing, and if the cabin should loose air pressure, oxygen masks will drop.  Put on your oxygen mask first before helping others.  Because if you don’t take care of yourself, you are no good to anyone else.

Sometimes you push to far for too long.  That’s what I did.  I got sick and I had to stop doing everything in order to get better.  I’m still not back to 100%; but, I am taking better care of myself and healing a little bit more every day.