The Sound of Spring Has Come to My Garden

Blogging 101: Make a Prompt Personal   https://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_assignment/blogging-101-personalized-prompts/

My first instinct when I read the 11th assignment was to just post this poem I wrote in 2006.  Instead of running and hiding behind these words I did write a post in response to the Daily Prompt

https://lightwalker1.wordpress.com/2015/01/18/assignment-11-make-a-prompt-personal-daily-post/

In addition to the assignment I decided I would also post the poem.   I hope you enjoy.

The Sound of Spring Has Come to My Garden

Listen,

Can you hear my garden grow?

I can.

It is not just a thought

my winter addled brain

has projected to confuse me

in the quiet, in the dark

hear the susurration of the spires

as they push, prod and propel

their way up from the depths

of earth’s frozen embrace

open your ears to the rustle

of the Bearded Iris

eavesdrop as the Tulips, red and yellow

thrust their way out

of the ground

the patter of the purple Crocus

reverberates as they pop and pierce

through winter’s debris

delight in the crack

snap and scratch of the blue

Silia as they shove

their way to sprout and swell

above the brittle leaves

the smell of decay is gone

my nostrils flare with the scent

of young verdant vitality

feel joy at their gain

the symphony is palpable

it resonates in my very spirit

tonight I can hear their fusillade

in the morning, I will witness their victory

Can you hear my garden grow?

I can

Listen…….

Cheryle Baker – 2006

Assignment 11 – Make a Prompt Personal – Daily Post

11th Assignment – Make a Prompt Personal

Daily Prompt  Turn, Turn, Turn   Seasons change so quickly! Which one do you most look forward to? Which is your least favorite?   https://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_assignment/blogging-101-personalized-prompts/

My favourite season is spring, 2nd favourite is fall.  I tolerate winter, from the inside and enjoy the summer, outside, if I can travel and play in the water.

Spring brings with it all the hope of a future filled with sunshine and infinite possibilities nurtured by the rain. The healing green of the newly unfurled leaves energizes the landscape to grow and reach for the sky. The Silia and the Crocus poke their leaves above ground, followed by bursts of colour.  Brilliant hues of blue, yellow and purple.    Watching the earth come back to life after a long cold winters dormancy, revitalizes my outlook. Brings me back to the present moment, one where I leave behind thoughts permeated by darkness and move ever so slowly toward the positive filled with light.

Spring brings new life and a new outlook
Spring brings new life and a new outlook

Fall finds me enjoying the cool breezes watching the decay, sensing the continued cycle of death and rebirth is coming to a close.  My garden is filled with blossoms.  The late season, Echineacea and Feverfew brighten the slowly greying days.  The harvest at the end of summer is ripe and ready for picking. The bright red berries hang heavily on the Mountain Ash and the luscious green squashes hide amoung the vines crawling over the Nanking Cherries lining the alley.  The first snow drapes an innocent shroud over the garden hiding the past and reminding us the future is on the verge of today.

Winter is dark and cold, wild winds whip the chimes into a raucous symphony.  The doors and windows shut tight against the icy intruder. Winter is for hibernation, just as the bears do.  A comforter and a movie entertain while I sleep the long dark nights away.

It’s opposite, summer sees the windows thrown wide allowing the warmth to waft in with the song of the chimes as the breezes dance with the wind catcher.  Summer is for play, jumping and splashing in whatever water can be found.   Even the sprinkler in the backyard will suffice to ease the heat.

These two seasons either move too slowly or too quickly leaving me wishing them away or hoping they would stay, just a little bit longer.

Each year the cycle repeats, Spring the new beginning, the Summer for my playful youth, Fall full of beauty and for preparation and Winter for the comfort of a warm blanket.

Assignment #10 – Spruce up Your Sidebar

Well, I completed the 10th assignment.  I read all the posts on widgets then added a few to my sidebar to spruce it up.  It needed sprucing as my blog isn’t very visually stimulating. The changes I made should add some colour and interest to the sidebar.

I changed the shape of the photos in the gallery in hopes that they will appear larger. I also added the Blogs I Follow widget which display photos of the blogs I follow.  I like seeing these friendly faces here.  I imagine anyone who pops in will too.   The text widget welcomes anyone who stops by giving them a quick run down on what I plan to write about. Basically, my interests and my goals.  I hope the changes are an improvement.

Assignments 8 & 9 – Blogging U 101 – Be a Good Neighbour and Be Inspired by your Neighbours

8th Assignment – Blogging U 101 – Be a Good Neighbour               January 13, 2015

9th Assignment – Be Inspired by the Neighbors                     January 14, 2015

I decided to combine the two most recent assignments into one.  By the time I had read the 8th assignment, “be a good neighbour”, I had already completed some of the assignment.  Unfortunately, I did not keep track, so started over and added in my inspiration as I proceeded.

Each of the blogs I commented on intrigued me for very different reasons which I will discuss below.  I look forward to checking in with them on a regular basis to discover more.

1        Under new tag – Metaphysical:    Check out this Link    Expansiveness of Light

https://expansivenssoflight.wordpress.com/2015/01/14/living-in-two-different-worlds

Living in Two Different Worlds

My Comment:  I am glad you have followed your instincts and have started blogging.  I agree, as an empath, it is difficult to separate whose feelings, I am feeling, my own or someone else’s.  I appreciate your honest and open voice and look forward to more posts from the expansiveness of light.  In Love and Light

Discussion:  It eases my mind to know that I am not the only one who has difficulty walking in two different worlds.  One of my goals is to fully renounce the material world of sharks living in suits and walk among the peaceful in the world of love and kindness.  Each time I experience the stillness in meditation I move little closer.  I too am fearful of not having what we need to live in todays’ world, money.  It has been a struggle.  I have never had to struggle for anything.  This is my time for learning how.

2        Under new tag – Poetry   Check out this Link   [L]ittle Red Strings

https://littleredstrings.wordpress.com/2015/01/03/d-epression/

 [ d ] epression

My Comment:  What an accurate depiction of depression.  Quiet, Ferocious and Unrelenting.   It does devour and suck the life out of person.  A lovely poem about a very difficult subject to express.  In Love and Light Cheryle

Discussion:  I enjoyed many of the posts on this blog.  I selected [d]epression as the one on which to make a comment as my way to spread the word, so to speak.    Depression is an elusive illness. The poem touches many of the aspects that are so difficult to convey to someone who has never experienced the darkness it brings.  I found the language to beautifully portray the ugliness of depression and its’ insidious persistence. The more people can learn about this dis-ease the easier it will be for people to let go of the shame that shrouds those sadly suffering silently

3.       Under the Tag:  Life  Check out this Link   Daily Cup of Wisdom  light in the head, glow in the heart and a spark in the soul

http://dailycupofwisdom.com/about/

ABOUT

My Comment:  Hi Mabel:  Excellent Blog.  I like your About page.  You come across as a happy down to earth person, someone who everyone wants as their friend.  Your photos are beautiful as well as serene and your posts are inspirational.  Thank you for blogging.  In Love and Light Cheryle

Discussion:  I found the photography and the sayings to be both beautiful and inspirational, something we all need in our lives.

4        Under Tag – Daily Post   Check out this Link    Needle at Sea Bottom.. a whimsical look back at our world

https://hirundine608.wordpress.com/2015/01/13/blogging-101-keep-personalizing

Blogging 101 – Keep personalizing ….

My Comments:  I enjoy your phrasing, your voice flows very nicely. I also appreciate the images you selected. Thank you for inserting the link to Tom Veiga. I will certainly visit the site. I like reading your blog. Good Job Kind Regards Cheryle

Discussion:     What caught my eye on the “Needle at the Sea Bottom” blog was the visual stimulation hirundine608 offers the readers.  The balance of text and empty space drew me in to read more. It begins with the definition of personalize, laid out exactly as if I was reading a dictionary.  Interesting hook.  In addition to the unusual beginning I found the art work delicious.  I appreciated the link to the artist.

Not only did the beginning of this blog appeal to my desire to learn, the dictionary, it fed my eyes with the colourful images of Tom Viera’s artwork, it continued to stimulate my knowledge button, but providing me with a link to learn about the artist and see more of his work.  What a feast.

A lovely surprise for me, was the comment hirundine608 left on my blog.   A beautiful message that included the words to “Starwalker” a song by Buffy St. Marie with a link to the music video.  Overall this response touched my heart by the personal nature of the words written and sung by Buffy.

My Comments:   Wow!  What an awesome song. It touches me in so many ways, it resonates with who I am, who I want to be and Who I may one day aspire to be. You are so sweet. Thank you for offering it. In Light & Love Cheryle

In conclusion, this exercise certainly demonstrates the importance of connecting with your neighbours.  The resulting conversation can enhance your own writing experience in unexpected ways.

It is also an effective method of overcoming any resistance you may have in making comments or meeting new people.  A small comment left on someone’s blog can encourage them to visit your blog and continue the discussion.  You may also have experience or information that would help other writers improve their writing or help them make a decision they have been wrangling with.

In addition to increasing your community, you can learn new bits and pieces.  This exercise taught me to more effectively use the tool bar on the New post page and to use the side bar on the Reader.  This is where I discovered I can check on which blogs I have commented on and which blogs I have like.  Another tap to my knowledge button.

Assignment #7 – Keep Personalizing

Assignment #7 has been encouraging.  I am becoming more comfortable with the technicalities of blogging.  Even though I was reticent at first to play around with the appearance of my blog, I feel I am slowly progressing and am happy with the end result.  This assignment was to add a header and work with the widgets.

The header was fairly easy.  I uploaded a picture my husband took of me a few years back, when we stopped at an amazing abandoned farmhouse while on our way to Writing On Stone Provincial Park. The roof had caved in, the paint had been worn off by the wind and the trees had grown wild around what had been the farmyard. The memories we made that day linger in my mind reminding me that beauty can be found anywhere, even in the death of a once loved vibrant home.

Widgets are the bits of information added to the sidebar of the page which help readers access what I have to offer. Once I figured out what Widgets are, what they do and where I could find them, I removed a couple of the sections, added a photo gallery, a contact sections and a following button.  Cool!  I filled the gallery with a sampling of photos I’ve taken over the years, of places I’ve been, things I’ve seen and a few of my creative endeavours.

Ultimately I believe I have perked up my blog, giving my readers an opportunity to see me a little more clearly.

I hope you enjoy your visit.  Let me know what you like and what you don’t.

Assignment #6 – Make Your “About” Page Irresistible

OK,  I made my About page Irresistible.  Maybe.  Working on the technical aspects of blogging creates a fog in my brain.  I struggled through the grey veil to add a few things to the four year old post. I had forgotten I had created.   There is a photo I took while on Vancouver Island in 2004 and the About me exercise completed last week.    I hope you find it interesting if not irresistible.  Let me know.

Assignment #4 – Blogging U 101 – Write for Your Dream Reader

Dream Reader,  sounds like a song from the 70’s written by Gary Wright.

You are an esoteric.  Delving into topics and activities others have no concern for.  A creative individual happy to build something out of nothing or recreate beauty from ugliness or the tossed aside.  Happiness and health are your mantras. Even though people tell you there is more to life than that.   Dreaming that big dream of peace and tranquility, you follow your heart into practices of healing, spiritual expression and creation.

Meditation, Yoga, Chanting, Drumming, Healing, Dancing, Acting, Painting, Sculpting, Sketching, Gardening, Writing, Reading, Baking, Cooking, Travelling or Serving may be your expression of choice. An introvert or extrovert you have a unique way of communicating, not everyone understands.  It can be difficult at times to be on the outside, but so rewarding to know you have such beautiful gifts.  Your appreciation for your special abilities may not have developed early on, you needed to experience the mundane in order to blossom into the full bodied flower that you are becoming.  Filled with colour, heavenly scent and a strong stem you can stand on your own even in a strong wind.  Like the glow of the rainbow after the rain you stand out against the grey.  Difference is you mark, recognized by others you see you as the Way-Shower that you are, the Heralder of what could be, can be and will be.

Like the words in his song,  Your love, courage and humour,  “can get me through the night, fly me away to the bright side of the moon.”  You,   are my Dream Reader

Blogging U 101 – Assignment #3 – Say Hi to My Neighbours

Mr. Rogers had it right.  Won’t you be my neighbour.  Yes,  neighbours are an important part of social survival.  Whether your  closest neighbour lives in the farmhouse a couple miles away,  living the apartment next door separated by the concrete wall or are living in a monastery halfway around the world in Thailand.

Close or far each person is an opportunity to make your life more engaged, informed and ultimately richer in texture.  Today, neighbours do more than help to raise your barn, assist you with  the bags of groceries or shovel your side walk after a heavy snowfall.  They show you their vacation pictures,  teach you a new language and share their ideas on topics of interest to them or to both of you.  They open your eyes, widen your world and shrink the planet to the size of a computer screen.

I found today’s assignment to be a little daunting.   In the way walking up to a strangers  home, knocking on the door to say Hi, I don’t know you, but  you look interesting, won’t you be my neighbour can be.  I danced around for a little while as I struggled  with the discomfort of stepping forward with my hand outstretched.  Finally,  I stilled the voice whispering it is all too much for me.   I reminded myself I am learning to move beyond my little box.  I sat down,  figured out how to find the people, places, tags and blogs I might find interesting as neighbours.  Once I started clicking it was easy peasy.  So many people with such diverse interesting things to say, show or explain.

In a sense this assignment was a success for me in more ways than anticipated.    It was a reminder of a lesson learned long ago but forgotten along the way.  No matter where they live, people are nice, open and willing to share what they know,  to help others along their journey. Thank you Blogging U 101.

Blogging 101 – 1st Assignment

Blogging U 101 – 1st Assignment – Who am I, Why I am here.

Just reading the assignment gave me butterflies.  Public viewing of my posts!  Oh my – what a step, I might be judged, I might write something that is of no interest to others or even worse I might even offend someone!

Setting the butterflies aside.  I am stepping outside of my comfort zone, in what I hope to be a safe and supportive environment.  I dabble in writing, poetry, photography, painting and other creative endeavours that I keep to myself. It is safer that way.  Also, I then have no accountability to maintain any commitment to the discipline it takes to follow a concept to it’s beautiful fruition.   It is time for me to grow, expand my inner horizons and learn how to do this ”blog thing” correctly and in such a way it has a positive impact on my creative activities.

I teach meditation as part of a world-wide non-profit, Willpower Institute.  My practice has begun to percolate into my heart creating connections in the real world. It is these perceptible observations I wish to further explore and develop with my practice through writing, blogging and other creative activities.  I hope to connect with people who, like me, may not feel quite comfortable in their own skin, but wish to be.  Who are also interested in understanding their impact on the world around them and how to live a happier existence.

If by the end of this exercise I feel more comfortable sharing my voice with others, I will be content and consider the effort a success