A Poem at Dawn

Sometimes, the Muses come visiting at unexpected moments, just like in the early hours this morning. Thus this reflection-poem of mine came to be.

I

 Waking up at dawn

 I see darkness around

 Only flickering lights

 Beaming from buildings afar

 Cast a shimmering glow

 to everything below

 For a second I wonder –

Who’d need the stars?

 Nothing ever though

 can Overshadow

 the Wondrous shine from

 Those heavenly bodies…

 Yet

 in that hour,

Blackness covers the sky.

 II

Sleep still tugging at me

 I recline on the seat

 By the window

 and turn my gaze

 at the sleeping city

beneath my feet…

Everything is still

 Everything quiet

 Save for the rumblings

 in my mind

 which I quell

by my Prayers

III

Gazing by the window

I wonder

Could there be any other soul

Brooding as I do

Over the vast view

of our side of the metropolis…

Or perhaps someone

from his own window

Watching me

Watching the world outside?

The Broken Glass: A Reflection

God heals a broken heart, but He has to have all the pieces.

This quote came to mind after I broke a glass by accident, and I was keeping it away intending to wrap it carefully before I’d relegate it to the trash bin.

Despite the damage, a sparkling glean radiated – like a glint of the rising sun – from its sharp, broken edges and the shards scattered at the bottom, transforming the broken glass into a stunning beauty!

Reflection

We are just like that glass ~~  broken, crushed at times. Yet we can appreciate ourselves even more, if we can look at ourselves through God’s eyes. And if despite our weaknesses, our failures, our struggles, we carry on and lift to God our pains and sorrows, we strengthen our character; we strengthen our faith in God and in ourselves.

But we need to trust God, first of all. Trust that He can work His miracle in us if we allow Him to do so. Thus, we need to lift up to Him all our cares, our sufferings — He has to have all the broken pieces” of ourselves to make us whole again, and again, and again…

Times when I do get angry at myself for some reasons, such as not meeting my goals for the day, or when stuck at a certain task, or faced with situations that make me think low of myself. Tears flow, especially when the hurt inside is much like the pain caused by the sharp edges of a broken glass. Yet I remember to pray – sometimes, it’s a real struggle to, still I cry my heart out to Him.

At that point, God’s Peace and Mercy fill my heart to the brim, and I get the confidence to move on. Indeed, I can start to love myself wholly again, for God makes me whole again with His undying Love.

A Prayer to the Holy Spirit

Come, Holy Spirit…replace the tension within us with a holy relaxation.

Replace the turbulence within us with a sacred calm.

Replace the anxiety within us with a quiet confidence.

Replace the fear within us with a strong faith.

Replace the bitterness within us with the sweetness of grace.

Replace the darkness within us with a gentle light.

Replace the coldness within us with a loving warmth.

Replace the night within with Your day.

Replace the winter within us with Your spring.

Straighten our crookedness, Fill our emptiness,

Dull the edge of our pride, Sharpen the edge of our humility,

Light the fires of our love, Quench the flames of our lust.

Let us see ourselves as You see us.

That we may see You as You have promised,

And be fortunate according to Your word:

“Blessed are the pure of heart, for they shall see God.”

(prayer courtesy of the St. Joseph Convent of Perpetual Adoration, Hemady, Quezon City)

 

(I edited this piece because the glass photos that came with this post could no longer be used since I updated the theme of my blog…)

Finding Contentment

When life gives you lemons, make some lemonade.

Thus the saying goes. And I say, when there’s brownout (power cut-off), take some photos.

So what else is there to do when it’s raining, with a pestering brownout to boot – almost eight-hours long. You take photos, just like I did.  Thus, during yesterday’s heavy afternoon downpour that led to that long power cut-off, I busied myself with my simple phone camera looking for interesting angles, textures and patterns.

And here they are. Be warned though; they’re not pro. These are just snapshots meant to amuse, and let the creative juice flow. Just my way of finding beauty in the mundane – just as in my previous post with the same title– even during a heavy rain.

Looking through the rain-covered window

Finding contentment, seeing beauty even in the most mundane…

reflection in the rain
light and shadow
tangled wires and bamboo leaves freshened by the passing storm

 

a glow in the dark

 

 

Finding Beauty in the Mundane

I enjoy looking at beautiful landscapes. They make for great photographs, especially sweeping panoramas – of mountains, fields, the sea.

Yet, as I spend more time developing my photography skills, I discover so much beauty in the mundane as well.

Silver, one among the greens in my tiny garden
Playing with angles and light and texture
While others may pull weeds from their plot, I simply let them be, including the blur.

Textured layer

“I have always been caught by the pull of the unremarkable, by the easily missed, infinitely nourishing beauty of the mundane.”
Tana French, Broken Harbour

 

 

BlueMoon Rising

“The moon stays bright

when it doesn’t avoid the night” ~ Rumi

The Moon ~~ that fascinating piece of Nature that has held me spellbound all these years. My alter ego I’d tell my younger self in those days when at times I could be affected by teenage self-insecurities, and I needed to perk up my confidence anew.

Somehow, I feel there’s something that binds me and the Moon.

With the Blue Moon’s recent visit, I was jolted into the realization what a strange coincidence it was when she appeared as well in the early part of my stay in this quiet, secure neighborhood as I was delightfully easing myself into the comfortable ambience of the community and its residents. The Blue Moon was a reassuring, welcoming thumb-up sign from my Creator that everything was well. God knows how drawn I am to the drama, mystique of His creation.

But between then and now, there have been challenges that seem to overwhelm me, and what more, I am about to leave this wonderful place, my pet stray felines whom I’ve grown to love; changes are afoot once more. So while I’m eager for the next phase in my life’s journey, there’s also a certain sadness as I leave.

Yet again, last nite’s Blue Moon was another reassuring message from God all will be well.

And as my little ode to the Blue Moon we just had, here are some of my amateurish attempts to photograph Sister Moon basking in the glow of her Brother Sun.

July Moon Sky - the night before Blue Moon's rising...
MoonGlow

 

MoonLight

 

 

 

It’s not what you look at that matters,

it’s what you see.” ~ Henry David Thoreau

 

 

 

 

Three things cannot be long hidden:

the sun, the moon, and the truth.” ~ Buddha

Adrift

Change course…

Far too long I’ve drifted

Like that bark on the stream

fallen from its tree

It seems;

The shore far from sight…

The horizon blurs in the distance

I sink in the whirlpool of my

imaginings

How can it be?

I get a grip

While the faint sound of the bell

beckons me still

Time is of the essence here

my dear

No time to waste.

Taking Selfies is An Art

It’s May, my favorite month of the year! And what an apt theme to go with my favorite month – Photo.

I’m not a pro, I’m not even half as good as the younger ones in my family/clan who are amazing with their photography skills. But taking photos is my passion – and with the coming of the age of Selfies, I’m drawn to it more than anyone else of my age, methinks.

Do you like taking selfies? Why or why not?

I do not find taking selfies bad at all, so I shall disagree with the supposed findings of the American Psychiatric Association that taking of selfies is a mental disorder.

Taking of selfies is an art form, not a mental disorder.

It may not be the best of hobbies – but it is fun, even for a midlifer like me. Nor is it vanity at all, though I must say, self-regulation, especially among the young ones, is of course needed. In which case, the findings of the American Psychiatric Association if this preoccupation with selfies goes overboard, indeed makes sense.

Seen in proper perspective, however, taking selfies is a form of artistic expression, an interesting one at that. I remember growing up with SLR cameras that needed black-and-white films which you had a photographer/shop develop for you. Unless you were a photo buff or expert, where was the fun in taking pictures or posing for one except in the enjoyment of the finished products.

Through taking selfies, one can give vent to her creative inclination just like me. I would love to paint portraits and scenes, including a self-portrait. If only I could. Thus, with selfies and the myriad of photo apps that abound these days, who am I to resist such imaginative yearnings?

Besides, as a grandmother, I do have one simple goal coming from the fun side of me — to collect as many creative selfies as I want – while I’m still bitten by the artistic selfie bug and transform these into interesting collages or dramatic mirages.

Then I shall present them all one day to my grandchildren — “Here is your grandma through the years!” — for sure, just for them I shall be a celebrity, and we’ll share a good laugh.

 

Life is A Garden, Indeed

Leonard Nimoy tweeted, “A life is like a garden. Perfect moments can be had, but not preserved, except in memory.”

Sometimes when I see a beautiful flower in full bloom, I am tempted to pick and put it in a vase to enjoy it. Yet flowers stay longer right where they are until their petals close, wilt and fade. Sometimes in the best of moments, we forget to capture it in a photograph — yet perfect moments we experience are sometimes better left untouched, spared by the camera, and kept private.

Can we ever capture enough of the joy or pain, or the happiness or sadness of a moment? Many times, they remain just as beautiful or poignant, or hurtful pressed in the deep recesses of our hearts and minds, much like pressed or dried flowers…

 

 

 

 

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Life is a garden indeed, for the journey we take, with all our experiences, good or bad, is the garden plot in which we sow seeds of growth in a variety of ways —

These are the flowers we cultivate as we nurture the garden of our lives into full bloom – developing ourselves, cultivating our potentials until we reach our full flourishing.So as we dig deeper into the soil, the foundation of our spiritual selves, we weed out, too, what can hinder our personal growth…

 

 

 

Each of our experiences, the people we have and encounter, are unique on their own, and provide for us an enriching life – despite the thorns and prickly bushes —

 

 

 

These are mistakes we make, the hurts we cause or are caused by others, the toxic people we sometimes meet — all these provide us invaluable lessons and insights so we become stronger, better persons…

Our failings do not necessarily mar the beauty and dignity of our persons, just as thorns do not mar the beauty of a rose…And life still remains beautiful!

 

 

Life is a Dash of Spice & Herbs from the Garden

Life is a dash of spice and herbs, so if I could grow a kind of food and be successful, I’d love to grow a spice-and-herbal garden….                                                            Image Source

I love food with spices and herbs; a simple everyday dish, sandwich or soup becomes a gourmet adventure, not to mention their medicinal benefits.                                                            Image Source

I fancy growing a spice-and-herbal garden, fragrant, vibrant and blooming – a feast for the senses, a feast for the soul, and a feast for the tummy with the yummy soups, dishes, and salads I can prepare for my family and friends, with freshly picked spices and herbs from my own home garden: basil, parsley, mint, rosemary, thyme, oregano, ginger, spring onions, red and green chilli, to name just a few…

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I also imagine my lovely spice-and-herbal garden to turn into a cozy nook where I can read or write in solitude while inhaling the mix of aromatic, tangy, sweet, lemony, spicy, peppery scents wafting from my plants…

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Or a snack corner for my family and guests, so preparing tea would be fun and delectable with the many choice herb leaves to add to our cups…                                                            Image Source

Or into a perfect outdoor dining area, right in its midst, with white-painted trellis in the perimeters, skylight, old style iron-wrought chairs, some soft settee and a long heavy wooden table. Hmmmm…

Spices and herbs are a delight indeed to have to perk up our meals and moments with loved ones, add zest to everyday rituals, and give a bit more life to our surroundings!                                                                   Image Source