Monthly Archives: July, 2015

The Seasons and the Reasons for Joy


The Seasons and the Reasons for Joy

The fairy garden nestled between the plants,
provides a bit of whimsy to match the season,
birds sing in sweet accord, proclaiming the end of winter,
squirrels play tag, chasing each other along the budding branches,
early, fragrant flowers burst forth in a dizzying array of colors,
a Bob Dylan song on the radio promises we’ll find the answer Blowin’ in the Wind,
then a choir joins in, harmonies begin,
it’s the kind of season when children laugh for no reason;
they roll in the fresh mown grass,
feel the cool spring breeze and hear the last school bell ring,
strangers smile at each other,
random acts of kindness occur so often they hardly seem random at all,

as spring turns to summer, the air shifts and taste buds drift
to ripe tomatoes, corn on the cob, hand-churned ice cream, and peaches
that drip down the chin,
where to begin with summer delights,
freshly washed sheets hang on the line,
hands deep in the soil urge plants to grow,
an elderly friend drops by; tasks are dropped, tea is made
so free, a day like this, free to smile, share a hug, be kind,
bumblebees and hummingbirds dance in the yard,
kids on bikes ride down a hill, wind at their backs;
shrieks of laughter float on the air,
fireflies at dusk, deep sighs, the time to relax sets in,
curl up with a book while a thunderstorm cooks up a rollick of thunder and rain,
then night settles in and the children run in to snuggle in their parents’ bed,
such a joyous thing, children at sleep; peace before day starts again,
a vacation is planned, time at the beach, a tent is pitched close to high tide,
the sunset’s orange streaks make room for the stars
and a full moon brings wondrous delight,
a kayak floats by, with nary a sound, the clouds casting shadows and light,
campfire songs, a big sing-along, the crickets pick up on the beat,
a walk in the sand, time to hold hands, just quiet with no need to speak,
I Love You is writ in the sand,
a beating drum cuts into the reprieve and school bells ring out once again,

new things are learned while the mockingbird sings
of a quickening change in the wind,
the colorful leaves, a riot it seems, burst forth like a song,
then they rustle and fall,
they crunch underfoot on a crisp, windy day,
while pumpkins and spice and everything nice seduce with exotic, fine scents,
warm donuts, hot cider, apple crisp, such bliss,
hay rides, goblin masks, raking tasks; it’s all a part of the fall,
we stop to give thanks and reach to embrace the folks that we love most of all,
a grandchild’s kiss, sweet moments like this
might hold us the whole winter long,

as the coldest months roll into stay, our dreams needn’t be put away,
like a novel with chapters unwritten, or a scarf being knit by the fire,
our desires remain in play,
as the day dawns anew, the sunrise peeks in to shake off the dew,
the smell of fresh coffee nudges thoughts of the past
when joy filled our hearts most of all,
it’s the simplest things we recall,
warm socks on our feet, a baby’s first smile, a walk in the park,
a song in our heart, a rainbow of magic that fills up the sky,
all of our friends who help us get by,
and on the dark nights when we turn out the lights,
we remember these things big and small,
and know the seasons and the reasons for joy
are the very best things after all.

This is an interactive poem created with prompts/submissions from 40 friends via my facebook page. They were asked to list things that bring them joy. Their responses brought me true happiness and provided me with two days of JOY as I worked to mold their beautiful words into a poem. A few of their comments were consolidated or reworded slightly but I hope I included the gist of what everyone was trying to say. Thank you to everyone! This project was a real gift!

I took the photo at a family wedding a few years ago.

There’s No Gold Star

coloring outside the lines


There’s no gold star on my artwork today,
I started with such care,
Staying inside the bold, black lines
With a calm, steady hand,
Moving the colors up and down,
Round and round, without a sound,
Smiling at the precise zones of color I created,
Separate but equal, I thought,
Don’t cross the lines and you’ll be fine,
But fine is not what I was after,
Not really, Not today, Not this way,
So I picked up the green, the red and the blue,
I followed with colors of most every hue,
I crossed every line, then crossed them again,
And did it with glee and a tilt of my chin,
And so there’s no star, not gold, red or green,
No simple reward to feed my esteem,
But who needs a star for playing it safe,
Who needs a star with so much at stake,
Who needs a star when the path that we take
Might lead to a rainbow of color.

Photo and Poem by Rita Bourland