do you not want me
writing, hoping
-trying to understand? it is
all there. I see it.
you cannot make it
happen, but sometimes
you do.

trying, flopping
-calming the storm, but
the flames spark
wildfires.  it does not
matter who I am,
just know it is chaos
and your never found.

10/7/2017 jems

I much
like being confined
to words,
define the keys
and release me.

walk this dangerous place
called truth,
we remain confused.

10/7/2017  jems

(10/2/2017 diary entry.   I much like being confined to the words that define but so be it if the keys release me to a strange and dangerous place.  I may rebel!  Regardless the truth, I remain confused.)

What have you been up to?

I thought no one would ever ask.

“Oh, you didn’t ask.” Sigh. “Regardless, I will tell you.  I need to talk to someone, stuck in my thoughts all night, in dreams and visions.”

Every mountain is scaled one step at a time.  Santa Fe 2017
The past 9 years have been a struggle.  I have wrestled with who I am.  Pondering the why questions we all ask and struggle to understand

Dying. Is that what we have been doing? All these things piling on top of us, burdens to carry, burying us alive.

Screaming.  Albeit silent screams.

What if I take this cloak off and try on a new cape? I am not sure I know which one to wear today, but one thing rings true, I must learn to fly.  I must.  I must be someone’s hero today.  So must you.


just a little

I have been away so long, I forgot what it was like to wake up daily, excited I had churned some words around in my head.  And until I set the coffee cup down, and wrote them all on paper, and sent them on their way, I forgot what it was like to share this life out loud.

I am just a little sad that I have been away so long.
I am just a little sad I may be away for even longer.
I am just a little sad.

I have two more classes to go before I graduate.  The prospects of searching for a job, being away from my writing desk, even more than I am already away, is frightening.  I am at a loss to think I will eventually leave behind a chair, space void of all thought.  To think I will be alive, without all the people who have found my voice, leaves me just a little confused.  You heard me and listened.  And bothered to let me know you exist too.

And now it becomes just a little bit lost to life.

Liebster Award 

Thank you Charles French for nominating me for the Liebster Award. Its all fun! 

1.) What is your favorite, or one of your favorite, movies?

“Shutter Island” (Just one of many.)

2.) What is your favorite breakfast?
Oatmeal with banana, raisins, pecans and cinnamon sugar.

3.) What was the last live performance of a play that you attended?

Last night, 6/11/2017. Alladin.

4.) Are you a day or night person?

Early morning before the world breaks loose.

5.) Are you writing something now? If so, what are you writing?

I seriously want to pick 20 poems to polish and produce a chapbook. Damn mind won’t or can’t be still long enough. The blog keeps the creative mind well oiled, off and running….

6.) What is your favorite flavor of ice cream?

Chocolate Almond

7.) Is there a book that you reread?

All of Irvin Yalom books (famed existential psychotherapist) and Patrick McGrath books. 

Pick one? Yalom “Everyday Gets a Little Closer”.  McGrath “Asylum”

8.) Where would you like to visit that you have not yet gone to?

Croatia. Finland. My husband and I’s  heritage respectively.  I am planning a trip for our 30th anniversary next summer and Croatia is one of the destinations. 

9.) Do you have a historical time period with which you are fascinated?

More historical figures, i.e. Joan of Arc and Marie Antoinette.

10.) What is your favorite season of the year?

The time I am most productive! 

11.) Do you prefer coffee or tea?


 (I am away from my desk, i.e. WordPress apping it in Chicago, but will fulfill the obligation of nominating 11 others to a Liebster Award should they be willing to accept. 🐯🐘 🐒 in an Alladin mindframe now…J💛)

Cee’s Share Your World

We all mean something to someone.

Participating in Cee’s invitation to share breaks my social anxiety shell.  I really am shy.

Have you ever participated in a distance walking, swimming, running, or biking event? Tell your story.

I ran track in school and was really good in the relays, being the caboose and winning every race.  I also raced my brother in high school and by then he had matured and was stronger and faster than I would ever be.  In 2014 I participated in a Suicide Overnight walk in Seattle Washington, in honor of my brother.  I trained for the walk for a year and finished the 18 miles, only needing to stop once.  I was super proud of myself for walking alone, through some really dark alleys, never minding the men who scared the hell out of me.  The precept, mind over matter and you can do anything, rang true that night.  Towards the end of the 18 miles someone had taken the directional signs down and I ended up getting lost.  Thank goodness for cell phones.  My husband found me and we hailed a taxi back to the start.  We found out we were less than a 1/4 mile away.  It was a great experience and a necessary moment in my healing process.

Name one thing not many people know about you.
I am extremely shy.  I am amazed how I am stretching myself and sharing not only in Cee’s challenge but also posting my poetry and random thoughts.  Someday I will attend a poetry reading to read my poems, albeit miles away from home.  The fact I can barely read to or let my family read my poems attests to the monumental achievement that reading will be.  In the end, I am not sure I will ever be comfortable sharing but I’ll do it anyway.  Thanks for reading.

What is your favorite flower?  I struggle with this question.  I seriously do not have a favorite.  Every flower I love is for a different reason.  Spring wildflowers are hopeful, sunflowers and butterfly weed are encouraging, forget-me-nots signify my love and fall wildflowers are the last hurrah before I cocoon over the winter.

Oh, how could I forget, the vibrant Oriental Poppy!!  This just may be my favorite flower!! The papery petals whisk me away.  They will bloom in my garden soon and the anticipation is taking up my thoughts.  🙂

Things I want to have in my home (paintings, hot tubs, book cases, big screen tv etc)

Funny this question is asked because I was sharing this very dream house with my daughter last week. When I was young, in my teenage years, I drew my dream home over and over.  It was a one room beach bungalow, with a bed, expansive windows looking out on the ocean, a kitchen and a fireplace.  I think this dream is coming alive again.  I hope someday I can say I live in my dream house.

Optional Bonus question:  What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up? 

I made it to the dunes on Saturday 4/8/2017.  This Saturday, 4/15/2017, my son will be honored by the chemistry department at Indiana University for his four year involvement mentoring students and doing summer research with numerous scholarships.  In the fall he heads to Ohio State and begins working on his PhD research and dissertation.  So proud of him!! If you are reading Luke, way to go!!

Journal April 2, 2013

“Never move faster than the wind.” 4/2/2013

Sage advice to myself or just random thoughts scribbled down with no real meaning.  Today I think I could use a gush of wind to get me moving from this chair, typing away, thinking all the way back to March 1, 2008 and even beyond that to a great, great, great grandfather buried in Russiaville, IN, after dying in the War of 1812.  Did his actions make me who I am today?  And what about his father and the fathers before him? (Gregg and his wife, Frances, are buried in Russiaville Cemetery and I plan to get there soon to take pictures.  His wife’s stone only remains but his name is inscribed on it.)

Our family history is interwoven in the fabric of America, but even before that our family origins span England, Ireland, Finland and who knows where else.  People are travelers and most of us have a bit of differing culture dwelling in our genes.  What impact does any of this have on me? Us?

I have a great, great grandmother who befriended Black Hawk (aka Black Hawk War), in the Kickapoo Valley of Wisconsin.  The story goes that Black Hawk was roaming in the woods and in need of food and shelter for the night.  My great, great grandmother invited him in for dinner and a restful sleep.  She was a widow with children but took it upon herself, practicing her Christian beliefs, to help the unfortunate.  I take pride in this story.  She did what little she could do to provide sacrificially.  She was a strong woman surviving in the wilderness.

These stories give me a sense of humanity at the best and the worst.  War is inevitable but so is compassion.  I wonder where I would be had America never become who she is today? Family from Finland might never have reached the shores.  I just might never have existed.

Still Life

The juiciness of life
found in the core of being our self.
Origins. The ripening of soul.

September is a month to visit apple orchards. I love a bowl of oatmeal with apples and walnuts and plan to make apple pies and applesauce.

Third layer

Final layer

I made a second attempt at a watercolor, a feather the first. Next time I would not add pure black to shadow. It is an aphotic color that conquers the light. It seizes the fight depression makes.

I will continue to share my skill regardless the professionalism. My picture will be framed to enjoy. It is the courage that is beautiful. I encourage you to try something new every day.  It is liberating. It alleviates depression. I hope I am able to stay out of the black holes.

Push guilt to the side. Let it be in the corner of your mind.

Painting makes me feel alive. J

Wounded Healer

Washed ashore

I am
daring to be
look inside me
clearly I’m bleeding
skin is peeling
open wounds healing
anyone seeking


People talk about wounded healers. Carl Jung described this archetype as personal “hurt that gives a measure of…power to heal” and lived this life, as countless others, who dare to face darkness in order to open the curtains and let the light shine. Trauma causes pain and discomfort, but when processed, can open our eyes, wake us from a culturally induced slumber, and gift those who seek to conquer evil with purpose, to heal others.

As a child, I always believed I would be a teacher and counselor. My dreams were cut short by a series of traumatic events and those events were covered with superficial means to cope. I buried my pain in hopes that it never would surface. Yet from the depths of the ocean my pain rose to meet my fantastical reality. Chaos had arrived. I avoided the mirror. I avoided others. I became engulfed in the waves that crashed at my feet. Slowly, I floated out into the deep, to find I could not swim. Quickly, I was overtaken by depression, anxiety, voices, memories, and pain so severe I could not breath. I was drowning.

How did I survive? Countless hours spent talking with a trusted Christian counselor (I deliberately choose someone who believed) that I still confer when needed, started taking college courses to fulfill a dream, started blogging about my experiences of late and to muse about the past, and forgiving and learning to love with open arms. This is a journey that I am glad to partake, yet I grimace at my words. Are they good enough? I still feel inferior. I still harbor pain that is best shaken off. I still hold my breath in fear. The unknown is always a dangerous place. I guard my heart feverishly and give luxuriously. Take what you need and pass along to others along the way.

Psalm 22:24 For he has not despised or scorned
the suffering of the afflicted one;
he has not hidden his face
from him but has listened to his cry for help.


Happy writing,


The then small, insignificant step

toward the giant leap in understanding man.

That was the path she beckoned.

It curved away from the light

and fear began to well up inside.

Depression crippled. Anxiety followed.

Still she danced through the bramble,

not absent of pain, but carried by will.

She recognized the same dilemmas

that coursed through her mind in earlier days.

What had soothed her and had eluded him?

Colorado River at the Grand Canyon


How do you test what moves

and cannot be seen?

Was he blinded to the truth?