She must learn again to speak
starting with I
starting with We
starting as the infant does
with her own true hunger
and pleasure
and rage.

-- Marge Piercy

A Collection of Small Stones for Mindful Writing Day

Getting God in real life.  That's what we're all about here: seeing the extraordinary in the ordinary, the story behind the story, the miracles and magic that live inside everyday moments.

So when we heard about Mindful Writing Day and the idea of "small stones," we, along with a few of our readers, jumped in with both feet.  According to the Writing Our Way Home website, a "small stone" is created by "paying proper attention to one thing and writing it down."  That "one thing" can be anything, and we're not just talking about the beautiful, fun, happy, wonderful things.  The difficult, challenging, frustrating, heartbreaking things are pieces of our story that also need to be told.

Stories move in circles.
They don't move in straight lines. 
So it helps if you listen in circles.
There are stories inside stories and stories between stories, and finding your way through them is as easy and as hard as finding your way home.
And part of the finding is the getting lost, and when you're lost, you start to look around
and to listen.

-from Everyday Sacred by Sue Bender

Thank you to Keith, Genora, Erica, Laurie, Diane and Cindy for sharing your small stone stories with us.

Everyone else, the comment box is open and ready if you'd like to share a story of your own!

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Blazing Red Maple
Clouds on fire
The sun awakes

-Genora Willcox Powell

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a morning can bless you by looking in your own backyard.

-Keith Halverson

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At the end of the day,
someone to greet her,
carry her load,
hold her hand,
match her footsteps...
for the long walk home. 

-Alizabeth Rasmussen

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It’s 2:30 am, and you are trying to climb into our bed as if the dream that chased you from your own is still prowling the house behind you. I can feel the gallop of your heart as I pick you up; wiggling in between your dad and me, you push your tiny body into the curve of my ribcage, warm and insistent. I wait for you to sigh and finally settle, wondering for a desperate, crazed moment how it is that I am 52 years old and being pulled from much needed sleep by a toddler. I don’t know…can I really do this again after all these years? But in another few hours, when the alarm goes off and the day begins, you’ll raise your rumpled little head, look at me with those impossible chocolate eyes and wag your tail, and the answer will be hell yes.

-Michele Morgan

* * * * * * * * * *

Chemotherapy prep:
Underwater breathing while harsh lights spin
Disinfectant swab swirls chill on my chest
Hexachlorophene makes my head swim
Masked nurse briskly 
fans fumes away
Vomit averted
once again.

-Erica Sternin

* * * * * * * * * * 

Copper streaked back flares a signal,

your camouflage now blown.

Fierce sentinel, you guard these spring green orbs of juiciness

 with watchful eye, admonishing encroachers;

 dare not pluck the fruit of this vine!

-Laurie Clark

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The apple green praying mantis, drawn by the warmth, somehow made her way inside our house, where I found her sitting on top of the bookcase by the front window. I slowly, gently, put an upside down plastic container over her, slid a piece of paper underneath, and carried her back outside, where I let her go in the pot of golden chrysanthemums. It was a bittersweet moment, knowing that soon a hard frost would come and her life I’d saved would be over.  

-Cindy Read

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Two days.  That's how long I drove around with the raggedy tortilla on my windshield.  Every time I got in the car, its presence would delight and surprise me all over again.  Driving from place to place, I made up stories about how it got there.  I marveled at its refusal to be carried away by the wind, even at freeway speeds.  I thought it might have some tortilla wisdom to impart, but no...its sole purpose was my amusement.

-Alizabeth Rasmussen

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Turquoise and Ruby Red Stones

Around a neck,

Compliments of Beauty and Grace.

Turqoise and Ruby Red Stones

Circling the counter tiles,

Earth and Sky!

-Diane Easley

* * * * * * * * * *

The Earth breathes in
Reds, yellows, browns.
Swelling Earth grows
Sleepy and the sky
Sheds a quilted blanket
Of dew, rain, hail and snow

And for a moment
Earth rests.

-Genora Willcox Powell

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Exprayeriment #21 -- Praying the Hours: Vespers

Exprayeriment #20 -- Praying the Hours: None