The Summer Day by Mary Oliver

On Wednesdays, I share posts, fables, songs, poems, quotations, TEDx Talks, cartoons, and books that have inspired and motivated me on my writing journey. I hope these posts will give writers, artists, and other creatives a mid-week boost.

This month, I’m sharing my favorite poems by Mary Oliver. I was first introduced to her poetry when a friend shared the last two lines of the following poem.

The Summer Day

Who made the world?
Who made the swan, and the black bear?
Who made the grasshopper?
This grasshopper, I mean-
the one who has flung herself out of the grass,
the one who is eating sugar out of my hand,
who is moving her jaws back and forth instead of up and down-
who is gazing around with her enormous and complicated eyes.
Now she lifts her pale forearms and thoroughly washes her face.
Now she snaps her wings open, and floats away.
I don’t know exactly what a prayer is.
I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down
into the grass, how to kneel down in the grass,
how to be idle and blessed, how to stroll through the fields,
which is what I have been doing all day.
Tell me, what else should I have done?
Doesn’t everything die at last, and too soon?
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?


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The Swan by Mary Oliver

On Wednesdays, I share posts, fables, songs, poems, quotations, TEDx Talks, cartoons, and books that have inspired and motivated me on my writing journey. I hope these posts will give writers, artists, and other creatives a mid-week boost.

This month, I’m sharing my favorite poems by Mary Oliver. Her creativity is stirred by nature, and her poems are filled with imagery from her daily walks near her home. In an interview, she commented. “I go off to my woods, my ponds, my sun-filled harbor, no more than a blue comma on the map of the world but, to me, the emblem of everything.”

The Swan

Did you too see it, drifting, all night, on the black river?
Did you see it in the morning, rising into the silvery air –
An armful of white blossoms,
A perfect commotion of silk and linen as it leaned
into the bondage of its wings; a snowbank, a bank of lilies,
Biting the air with its black beak?
Did you hear it, fluting and whistling
A shrill dark music – like the rain pelting the trees – like a waterfall
Knifing down the black ledges?
And did you see it, finally, just under the clouds –
A white cross Streaming across the sky, its feet
Like black leaves, its wings Like the stretching light of the river?
And did you feel it, in your heart, how it pertained to everything?
And have you too finally figured out what beauty is for?
And have you changed your life?


Celebrating National Poetry Month

On Wednesdays, I share posts, fables, songs, poems, quotations, TEDx Talks, cartoons, and books that have inspired and motivated me on my writing journey. I hope these posts will give writers, artists, and other creatives a mid-week boost.

April is National Poetry Month, a month set aside to celebrate poetry and its vital place in our society. Today, and for the next three Wednesdays, I will be sharing my favorite poems by Mary Oliver. The winner of numerous awards, among them the Pulitzer Prize, she has been described as “far and away, this country’s best-selling poet.”(New York Times).

The Journey

One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
kept shouting
their bad advice–
though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt the old tug
at your ankles.
“Mend my life!”
each voice cried.
But you didn’t stop.
You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations,
though their melancholy
was terrible.
It was already late
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.
But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do–
determined to save
the only life you could save.


A Comforting Prayer

On Wednesdays, I share posts, fables, songs, poems, quotations, TEDx Talks, cartoons, and books that have inspired and motivated me on my writing journey. I hope these posts will give writers, artists, and other creatives a mid-week boost.

I like to start my day with the following prayer from Saint Teresa of Avila.



On Working Very Hard

On Wednesdays, I share posts, fables, songs, poems, quotations, TEDx Talks, cartoons, and books that have inspired and motivated me on my writing journey. I hope these posts will give writers, artists, and other creatives a mid-week boost.

I enjoy reading Zen stories, especially when I feel overwhelmed with too many tasks and deadlines. Here’s one of my favorites:

A martial arts student went to his teacher and said earnestly, “I am devoted to studying your martial system. How long will it take me to master it.”

The teacher’s reply was casual, “Ten years.”

Impatiently, the student answered, “But I want to master it faster than that. I will work very hard. I will practice everyday, ten or more hours a day if I have to. How long will it take then?”

The teacher thought for a moment. “20 years.”

Source: 10 Short Zen Stories


10 Amazing Life Lessons from Albert Einstein

On Wednesdays, I share posts, fables, songs, poems, quotations, TEDx Talks, cartoons, and books that have inspired and motivated me on my writing journey. I hope these posts will give writers, artists, and other creatives a mid-week boost.

Born on March 14, 1879, Albert Einstein is considered one of the most influential physicists of the 20th century. The German mathematician and physicist developed the special and general theories of relativity and went on to win the Nobel Prize for physics in 1921. His work had a major impact on the development of atomic energy.

In 1999, Canadian scientists studied his brain and discovered that his inferior parietal lobe, the area that processes spatial relationships, 3D-visualization and mathematical thought, was 15 percent wider than in people with normal intelligence. It is not surprising that he had a passion for inquiry.

Here are 10 of his life lessons…



Spotlight on Kate Randle

I’m happy to welcome Wild Rose Press author Kate Randle. Today, Kate shares her writing journey and latest release, Taking Flight.

Here’s Kate!

Thank-you so very much to Joanne for hosting me on her blog today and giving me the opportunity to speak about my writing journey.

After writing more essays than I could count completing my studies at university, I decided to swap out the world of academic prose for something more exciting, romance novels.

I’ve always been drawn to the love of contemporary romance, so that’s where I began my writing career. The idea for my first novel, In Pursuit of Paradise had been bouncing around in my head for years. I finally put it down on paper 2016. After some interest from my publisher and an extensive rewrite, it was published by The Wild Rose Press in January of 2017. From there, I published a second novel with Extasy Books entitled, Searching for Sanctuary. My latest story which I’m going to share with you today is entitled, Taking Flight.

These stories are filled with all of the things I love about romance novels. Exotic locations, relatable heroines and of course handsome heroes. I’m now hard at work on my next manuscript and have had so much fun on this writing journey. I’ve taken various classes, attended workshops and a national conference. I never stop learning and trying to improve my craft. But I think the most fun I’ve had was meeting some amazing fellow writers who share my passion.

I live near Toronto, Ontario with my super supportive husband and two kids. Three adorable rescue felines round out my family to keep things interesting and covered in cat hair.

Blurb

Ivy Castlefield is a famous motivational speaker who has lost the drive to go on with her career and her life. But after six months of wallowing in her own misery, she decides to get back in the game and boards a flight bound for Las Vegas to present at a conference.

Lucas Freeman is the handsome pilot of this plane, but he strikes out when he approaches Ivy to introduce himself. When they reach their final destination, the pair are reunited and given another chance to reconnect. But can Ivy overcome the scars of her past and give Lucas and herself the chance at love they both deserve? And can Lucas fight off the demons that threaten to separate him from Ivy when they have only just found each other?

Excerpt

“Excuse me, Ms. Castlefield,” said that smooth, sexy voice she had heard before take-off. She thought she must be imagining things. Then she glanced up and saw him.

She was looking into the most exquisite green eyes she had ever seen, and the face surrounding them was unbelievably handsome. Strong cheekbones and a chiseled jaw stood out beneath naturally tanned skin. His hair was light brown and longish with golden streaks in it, like he spent a lot of time in the sun. He had a neatly trimmed goatee in the same shade as his hair. His breathtaking smile faltered as he looked at her. She needed to say something, but what?

“Hello,” she finally managed, tearing her eyes away from his and feeling her cheeks flush with embarrassment. What is the pilot doing here, sitting beside her in the vacant seat? He was dressed in a crisp, white shirt with gold and black epaulets emblazoned on his broad shoulders.

Ivy suddenly felt underdressed in her yoga pants and sweater now that she was faced with this gorgeous man in uniform. But he didn’t seem to notice. She had no idea what to say to him, but he broke the silence.

“I wanted to welcome you onboard Fantasy Airlines and ask if you were having an enjoyable flight today.”

“Um, yes, thank you, Captain. . . .”

“Please, call me Lucas.”

buynow

Where to find Kate…

Website | Amazon | Facebook | Twitter