lisa helene donovan bacalski

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On Tadpoles, Ducks, and Rainy Days

Tadpole

Get ready for rain drops on roses, puddles in driveways, and a small creek between our patio and the parking lot.

Get ready for rivulets on the windows, nonstop dancing on the roof, and mud tracked across the gray tile of our kitchen floor.

DunkingDrakeForget your rain gear and weather reports.
Slide into the water like a duck. Swim. Fly. Hop.
See the world like a tadpole: new, fresh and game.

Get ready.

The sky will be gray, relentless and constant.

Decide now to drown in its kisses.

Get ready.

The sun will be absent, tentative and weary.

Choose now to forgive its weakness.

Get ready.

The storms always come.

Resolve to meet them with love.

 

Today’s poem was inspired by “On Tadpoles and Joy,” a homily by Fr. Brian Zumbrum, OSFS. Oh, and the weather report.

 

Tadpole Photo credit: RayMorris1 / Foter / Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Duck Photo credit: ViaMoi / Foter / Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

A Prayer in Every Step

PathFletchersCove

The Capital Crescent Trail near Fletcher’s Cove

Today I walked 6 miles at an average pace of 15:17 and it felt great, especially after the challenges of the past two weeks.  When we started this quest, I was a little overwhelmed. Now I’m completely high (and yes, a little sore).

Here’s a poem inspired by my experience with Team in Training…

A  Prayer in Every Step

Our footsteps are a chorus
on the road to peace

Listen, they say:
We can do this together

Our hearts drum
with anticipation
propelling us forward
when our legs grow weary

Excuses live in our minds
but they can not
carry us home.

Instead, we say a prayer
with every step
join hands and
journey through the night.

 

Like it? Share it!  And support TeamBacalski! Thanks for all the love…

 

Happy 100th Birthday, Rosa! Have We Walked Far Enough Yet?

Several years ago, I wrote a poem called “Rings Around Rosa” which was published by poeticdiversity. It was inspired by the reading I did about Rosa Parks following her death and I offer it today in humble tribute to her:

Her casket the size of a child,
she lies in the Capitol rotunda
honored by a country that did not
welcome her quiet rebellion,
her reminder of what children
already know – that we are
all born free.

later, presidents and priests
sing her praises while children
retell her story on classroom stages
and millions weep gratefully in
their hearts for her life of courage.

She had no children of her own
but everyone needed her
for their mother,
from kings to country women:

She gave us faith
She gave us hope
She gave us love

and these three rings around Rosa
grew into pillars of freedom.

Sometimes it seems those pillars need to be shored up. Too many of our children live surrounded by poverty or violence. Too many of their parents struggle against discrimination and inequities of opportunity. Yet Rosa Parks inspired the people of Montgomery, Alabama to walk to work and school for 381 days. Her dedication and perseverance are sustenance for all of us.

April Fool’s Quest

April is National Poetry Month and while there is certainly plenty of poetry in the world, many poets celebrate this occasion by writing more. Daily poem writing challenges abound, offering prompts and forums for poets to share their work. Two good ones are NaPoWriMo.net and Robert Lee Brewer’s Poetic Asides, a Writer’s Digest blog. I’m planning to write daily, but I may alternate between the sites depending on my whims… and how hard the prompts are! Whatever I do I’ll share a draft here, and draft is a key word because there’s no way to promise perfection and quantity. Even so, I welcome your comments about what works for you or doesn’t. And I promise to cheer you on when you commit to doing something crazy for 30 days.

This one came from Poetic Asides, and it’s already changed twice since I posted my initial response.

For today’s prompt, write a communication poem. The communication could be dialogue between two (or more people); a postcard correspondence; a letter; a voicemail; a text message; a series of tweets; or whatever. Heck, I guess a poem is a form of communication–so there’s really no way to screw up today’s prompt (outside of writing nothing at all). Let’s get this party started!

Missing the Note

listening but not hearing
as the cantor sings, our choir swings
standing with the sopranos
striving to make the perfect sound
my ears fill, my nose twitches,
and right before we start the descant
I sneeze.

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