A couple of weeks ago on a road up Mt. Ranier in Washington state, our group stopped at a roadside area. We explored and found a waterfall that draws you in like a bee to nectar.
Nature’s charm began to mesmerize me from mind to the deepest part of the soul.
No thoughts. No worries. No concerns.
Roaring water sang a magical tune that dropped its spell over the heart. Rushing water crashing on rocks below washed the present away to expose a taste of eternity.
For two minutes in a public place I was hypnotized in a private world for what seemed two hours. No one was around, but people were everywhere. Continue reading A Peace in a Piece of Water
I bought a bust on clearance at Hobby Lobby. At 90% off I snatched the last one up like a large mouth bass after a Carolina rig.
It wasn’t until I got home that I realized my new purchase was damaged at the shoulder. In fact, it had a really big hole in it. At first I started to leave it like it was because looking straight at it, you couldn’t see anything wrong. But turn it ever so slightly, and there was the gaping hole.
With a little bit of plastic cement and some poor, ragged patchwork, the hole was fixed, even though it’s obvious it’s been repaired. After a couple of coats of spray paint, it was all the same color and not as blaringly obvious.
Now it’s on my desk in our home office. The pleasant, gently smiling woman looks like all is good, but on close examination, there’s “patchwork” hidden in plain sight. Continue reading People Patchwork
As a boy I couldn’t wait to get up before the crack of dawn. My Dad and I had a spot we fished about an hour’s drive away and the best time to get there was at dawn’s early light.
He had snacks and peanut butter sandwiches ready. I’d ride shotgun in the old pickup held together by rust and bondo. About the time the sun rose, we’d get to the lake.
Crappie, that’s what we were fishing for, and when they were spawning, we were certain to catch them.
Carefully hooking a live minnow in the back with a big gold rim hook, we’d drop 4 or 5 cane poles and couple of rod and reels.
Looking back, I realize I’d bait the first line I dropped in, but after that, Dad patiently rigged up the rest so I could fish right away. Continue reading Riding Shotgun
I, like you, feel deep compassion for the people of Santa Fe, and every other school, movie theatre, club, church and public location that has experienced a mass murder.
What to do? What do we do?
Well meaning people are now looking to, in fact, clamoring for the government to “fix” the problem and solve the dilemma. People are demanding legislation for sentences for “hate crimes”, creating programs to treat mental illness, gun control restrictions and regulating behaviors.
In my simple mind, it’s a paradox. It seems common sense that after planting plum trees, you get plums. You get the fruit of what you plant.
Stay with me.
Continue reading It’s Always Been About The Heart
Sometimes pictures get me. It sounds silly. Maybe it is. But sometimes, a picture hits me in my core, cutting, ripping, tearing away at soul and sinew.
Some pictures, some stories haunt me as assuredly as a ghost in a graveyard. I can’t sleep without it popping into my dreams. I can’t concentrate without it popping into conscious thought.
This picture sticks with me like a chain around the heart:
Continue reading Help This Boy
It was sad, really. She has no one. Maybe it was a conscience choice a long time ago. Maybe it was a forced decision that she didn’t want. Either way, the results are the same.
She lives alone in a nice neighborhood that we’ve driven through a thousand times. Her hedges are rarely trimmed and there are plants growing in the gutters. The yard is always green, but the grass always looks like it’s half grown, half mowed, somehow suspended in animation just enough to give the yard sort of a kept, but not maintained look.
She has a big sprawling house that is dark and uninviting, almost like where a horror movie could be filmed. In the four plus years of driving through that neighborhood, I’ve never once seen anyone outside, and the garage door is always closed. Occasionally, but not very often, there may be a light on at night somewhere in the house, but it would only be one, if any.
We were driving home through that neighborhood coming home from a symphony at 10:30 PM at night. Janet, my wife, told me we had just passed an old woman sitting in the grass by a mailbox waving for help. I turned around and there she sat. I left the car running with the headlights on to light the area as we checked on her. Continue reading Hermit House
Problems knock on everyone’s door. If not today, tomorrow. Troubles come. Troubles go. Some work out. Some don’t. Some people crater in the storm, some thrive, others just survive. Eventually the valleys, tunnels, the dark roads all reach an end, and in the end, there’s relief.
Still, it may seem impossible to get through. The mountains look too high. The valleys are too dark and deep. The water is over your head and you’re quickly losing strength. Energy fades. Determination wanes. Encouragement leaves. Continue reading It’ll Be Alright