Birds of Prey

A young osprey

Bald Eagle having a dip

(For Bird Weekly challenge: birds of prey. Featured image is a Red-Tailed hawk escaping my lens.)

Our August

Augustine was the name chosen
should this new arrival be a girl
but as her mother laboured
she knew, with certainty
there would be no “ine”

She is August, born in May
esteemed and venerable
a name fit for a leader –
I can attest to her ability
to run the show –
definitely rules my heart.

(For Eugi’s Causerie Weekly Prompt: August.)

VJ’s Weekly Challenge #107: listen

Birdwatching for me is a meditative practice. It involves immersing myself in nature and finding a quiet place from which I can observe.

I begin with a prayer of acknowledgment and gratitude. I ready my camera and then I listen. Each bird has its own song and variations. It helps me determine where I want to focus, so I’m not frantically trying to follow the flitting of all the birds.

Not that I’m expert. I recognize many of the regulars by now, and there are still many I do not know. Listening helps me turn off my thoughts and centre myself on the goal.

This week, let’s focus on the art of listening.

To participate, create a post and then pingback here, or drop a link in the comments. I look forward to your responses.

To Touch or Not to Touch

She was quite eccentric, and visibly older than most of the students attending our program. I’d had five years between first and second year, so I guess she was drawn to my maturity. We both wanted to be teachers.

After graduation, she went on to her Bachelor of Education, and I gave birth to my third child. The next time we encountered each other, I was the parent and she was the teacher. Eccentric as ever. The kids loved her.

Except for the one that didn’t. That one complained that she touched the kids too much – her hugs and hair stroking unwelcome. Her license was at stake.

“If I can’t touch my kids, then I can’t teach,” she told me in confidence.

I never knew what became of the investigation, but years later when I would follow in her footsteps and have my own classes, I thought of her. It’s in my nature to touch, too.


The focus this week has been on the subject of touch. Thank you to all the participants for touching me with your creativity. Virtual hugs all around.

MMA Storytime
I Write Her
Eugi’s Causerie II
Culture Shocks
Heart to Heart
Stuff and what if…

(The featured image is my last photo of July, unedited. I am sneaking it in here for Bushbay’s challenge of the same name.)

See you tomorrow for a new challenge!

Of Winter

Where does the river go
when snow, blinding
claims the flow?

Houses nestled in wooded groves
shudder at the exposure of leafless days
brace against the chills of early eves.

How quickly we rejoice
at first thaw, eager to embrace
change – emotion often premature.

(For Lens-artists Photo Challenge: Winter)

VJ’s Weekly Challenge #106: touch

“Dear Grandma,
We love you with all our hearts. We miss you and wish we could
touch you and have sleepovers all the time. You are the best girl
in the world and I love you so much and hate the coronavirus.”

The note came in a homemade card, created and dictated by my four-year-old granddaughter. Touching people is the thing she misses the most.

“When this is over, I’m going to be giving lots of hugs,” my neighbour warns me. Seems he misses touch also.

This week let’s consider the role that touch plays in our lives.

To participate, create a post and link back here. Look forward to your responses. Photographs, poetry, prose, or any other form of creativity are welcome.

Rehabilitating the Cynic

Scratch any cynic and you will find a disappointed idealist.

– George Carlin

Born of losses,
the way I steel myself –
hard core belying

What if I acknowledged,
gave name to the pain –
forgave the circumstances
forgave myself?

Would I then melt
into softness, words
losing harshness
joy taking hold?


This week’s challenge was centred around the quotation:

“Strive to be uncynical, to be a hope-giving force, to be a steward of substance.”
(Maria Popova)

The responses are thought-provoking, inspiring, and entertaining. Please have a read:

Caged or free…, Heart to Heart
Dear Mr. Mouse, I Write Her
Moral Purpose, Eugi’s Causerie II
Power of Thoughts, Stuff and what if…
Looking forward to the other side, one letter UP
Hope, Sgeoil
Tomorrow, paeansunplugged

Thank to all. See you tomorrow for a new challenge!