Anything is Possible!

With Love, Hope, and Perseverance


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A Quote from Maya Angelou’s “A Brave and Startling Truth”

“…Out of such chaos, of such contradiction

We learn that we are neither devils nor divines….”

Maya Angelou

This quote is from Dr. Maya Angelou’s powerful poem, “A Brave and Startling Truth.”

We, this people, on a small and lonely planet
Traveling through casual space
Past aloof stars, across the way of indifferent suns
To a destination where all signs tell us
It is possible and imperative that we learn
A brave and startling truth

And when we come to it
To the day of peacemaking
When we release our fingers
From fists of hostility
And allow the pure air to cool our palms

When we come to it
When the curtain falls on the minstrel show of hate
And faces sooted with scorn are scrubbed clean
When battlefields and coliseum
No longer rake our unique and particular sons and daughters
Up with the bruised and bloody grass
To lie in identical plots in foreign soil

When the rapacious storming of the churches
The screaming racket in the temples have ceased
When the pennants are waving gaily
When the banners of the world tremble
Stoutly in the good, clean breeze

When we come to it
When we let the rifles fall from our shoulders
And children dress their dolls in flags of truce
When land mines of death have been removed
And the aged can walk into evenings of peace
When religious ritual is not perfumed
By the incense of burning flesh
And childhood dreams are not kicked awake
By nightmares of abuse

When we come to it
Then we will confess that not the Pyramids
With their stones set in mysterious perfection
Nor the Gardens of Babylon
Hanging as eternal beauty
In our collective memory
Not the Grand Canyon
Kindled into delicious color
By Western sunsets

Nor the Danube, flowing its blue soul into Europe
Not the sacred peak of Mount Fuji
Stretching to the Rising Sun
Neither Father Amazon nor Mother Mississippi who, without favor,
Nurture all creatures in the depths and on the shores
These are not the only wonders of the world

When we come to it
We, this people, on this minuscule and kithless globe
Who reach daily for the bomb, the blade and the dagger
Yet who petition in the dark for tokens of peace
We, this people on this mote of matter
In whose mouths abide cankerous words
Which challenge our very existence
Yet out of those same mouths
Come songs of such exquisite sweetness
That the heart falters in its labor
And the body is quieted into awe

We, this people, on this small and drifting planet
Whose hands can strike with such abandon
That in a twinkling, life is sapped from the living
Yet those same hands can touch with such healing, irresistible tenderness
That the haughty neck is happy to bow
And the proud back is glad to bend
Out of such chaos, of such contradiction
We learn that we are neither devils nor divines

When we come to it
We, this people, on this wayward, floating body
Created on this earth, of this earth
Have the power to fashion for this earth
A climate where every man and every woman
Can live freely without sanctimonious piety
Without crippling fear

When we come to it
We must confess that we are the possible
We are the miraculous, the true wonder of this world
That is when, and only when
We come to it.”

― Maya Angelou, A Brave and Startling Truth

One-Liner Wednesday and Just Jot it January are brought to us by Linda Hill.

For more one-liners and jottings, visit Linda’s post HERE.


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Good News Tuesday for Jan. 18, 2022: Five Nations Agree to Avoid Nuclear War, Honoring Women, a Champion of Earth, and My JJJ Prompt is Up Today

Seeking Balance One Tuesday at a Time

Five Powerful Countries Agree to Avoid Nuclear War and Work for Disarmament

Earlier this month, China, France, Russia, the UK and the US signed an agreement to avoid nuclear war and work toward global disarmament. These five nations released a joint statement affirming that “…a nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought.” The ending of the five-paragraph joint statement is especially positive: “We are resolved to pursue constructive dialogue with mutual respect and acknowledgment of each other’s security interests and concerns.” You can read more at The Guardian.

Honoring Inspiring Women

Matel is honoring black journalist and activist Ida B. Wells by making a doll in her image as part of the company’s “Inspiring Women” series which includes Dr. Maya Angelou, Eleanor Roosevelt, and Rosa Parks. Good Morning America has details. Poet Maya Angelou will also become the first Black woman portrayed on a U.S. quarter. Other women to be featured on coins will include astronaut Sally Ride; actress Anna May Wong; suffragist and politician Nina Otero-Warren; and Wilma Mankiller, the first female principal chief of the Cherokee Nation.” NPR has more on the coins.

A Champion of Earth

On Dec. 7th, The United Nations recognized Gladys Kalema-Zikusoka, a wildlife veterinarian, as one of its “champions of the Earth” for promoting the One Health approach to conservation in Africa. This wise woman connects the well-being of animals, humans, and planet Earth.

My #JusJoJan Prompt is Up Today

In personal good news, Linda accepted my prompt (cycle) for Just Jot it January, and it’s up today! Good News Tuesday cycles around every week, so make sure to drop by again for some good news! My #JusJoJan post, will hopefully be up before noon.

Got Good News?

Feel free to share your good news or GNT link in the comments!


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Peaceful Joy

Painting cup and Joy detergent

I know the photo looks like I might have a cup of Joy dishwashing detergent, bleh. It’s really a couple things that bring me joy. The handle broke off the cup, but I keep it for paint brushes. Blue is my favorite color, so I did my kitchen in blue and white, but it was too cold. Yellow brings me peaceful joy, so I’m constantly adding splashes of yellow. As time goes on, I have come to appreciate the little splashes of peaceful joy more than the jump up and down clap your hands joy, but those are nice, too.

Here’s to wishing you many joyful moments!

Thanks to theindieshe for this joyful prompt and to Linda Hill for Just Jot it January!

For more info visit Linda HERE.


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Anticipate the Best, but be Prepared

(Today’s prompt for Just Jot it January is Anticipation.)

Let’s anticipate good things.

Anticipate peace in spite of tension.

Anticipate love that’s right on time.

Anticipate a healthy planet before it’s too late.

Then we have to work for those things.

Prepare for the possibilities.

But don’t obsess on the fears.

Let us feed our hopes well,

and comfort our fears.

Lock the door and turn off the stove.

But don’t go back and check it three times.

Maybe just a double check.

Reduce, reuse, recycle

Put energy into clean energy.

Find common ground.

Anticipate healing.

~~~

Just Jot it January is brought to us by our host, Linda Hill.

Thanks to Pamela for today’s prompt: Anticipation.

Click here for details.


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SoCS: There’s Still Good in this World.

Our prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “opposites.” Use the word “opposites” or write about things that are opposites. Have fun!

It’s a good topic. Thanks, Linda. Though yes, I know, it’s a prompt, not really a topic in the SoC world. I don’t really believe in opposites. Oh, I know they exist – up/down, in/out, black/white…. But most things are somewhere in the middle. I don’t really like the opposite ends of the poles. We have enough polarization.

You might say, “but middle of the road is boring.” I don’t mean we all need to be smack dab in the middle. There are lots of colors in between black and white. Lots of places between up and down. It’s all relative. A person can be an antivaxer and still be a good person. Like maybe they like dogs for example. Dogs are a great uniter. I know people on the other end of the political spectrum from me who like dogs. It’s a bit baffling, but then, dogs are great. Unless you’re one of those people who don’t like dogs which I don’t understand. But maybe you have some good quality that I like or can relate to.

They say opposites attract. I’ve written about that before, about how David and I are opposite, or very different in some of our personality traits. But opposite isn’t the best word for that. We complement each other in that he is more of an extrovert, very practical, precise (except when he uses sarcasm which I kinda hate) and not very imaginative when it comes to seeing dogs in clouds. But he has a lot more energy than me, we both love dogs, and he’s learned to like Mama Cat. He’s a good guy. We have similar values when it comes to spirituality, politics and lifestyle.

Going back to in or out, maybe we want to sit on the fence, though that is not always comfortable. If Santa comes down the chimney, I hope he doesn’t get stuck in the spiderwebs. Yuck. That happened in the Hobbit movie. (Spiderwebs, not Santa coming down the chimney.) That’s one of the parts I don’t pay much attention to till the Elves come. I always watch the elf parts. What does that have to do with opposites? Are elves and dwarves opposites in LOTR? (The plural could also be dwarfs.) They are very different, but they fought together against the orcs. I don’t watch the orc parts either, until the elves come.

The point is, we can always find some kind of common ground whether it’s dogs, or fighting the dark side…. But what if someone is on the dark side? They probably don’t know it. Or maybe they do. Darth Vader was on the dark side, but there was still good in him, and the good won.

Speaking of good, I should rap this up and wish you peace on earth and good will to all, as in everyone being blessed. God bless us all, everyone!

Here’s Sam’s speech about there’s still good in this world, and it’s worth fighting for. Not fighting with violence, necessarily, but fighting to find the good, working for peace, or just putting one foot in front of the other, or giving a kind word of encouragement.

For more Streams of Consciousness, rules, and such, visit our good host, Linda Hill by clicking here.


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SoCS: Can We Just Go Without Screaming?

Revolution.

I’d like a quiet one, please.

Is that possible?

Anything is possible, right?

But we need to speak up

For a revolution.

Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves.

Children. Animals. Planet Earth.

But the planet is speaking to us.

Are we listening?

Not enough.

So we must speak for the planet.

Sing for the birds.

Dance for the children.

Hope. Believe. Speak.

Try to speak with kindness

Not with hate.

Whenever you can,

Strive for peace,

But not peace at any cost.

Balance the cost.

We each make a choice

Every day. Every hour.

All is not lost.

There are still possibilities.

Perhaps we may not go quietly.

Can we just go without screaming?

~~~

I keep wanting to add something, to clarify…. Maybe we do need to scream. Maybe some things are screamworthy. This just reflects my stream of consciousness. I don’t like loud. Chanting is good. Singing is good.

Sing it with me: “All we are saying, is give peace a chance.”

And…

I’m stepping out of the stream a bit now, because I found this relatively short TED talk about a quiet revolution. Susan Cain talks about quiet leadership and empowering introverts for the benefit of all. She offers this quote from Mahatma Gandhi:

“In a gentle way, you can shake the world.”

~~~

Today’s prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is……. “rev.” Use “rev” or find a word that contains it. Have fun! Thanks, Linda!

For more streams, rules and such, visit our host, Linda Hill by clicking here.


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SoCS: No More Scary Ghosts!

Today’s prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “boo.” Find a word with the letters “boo” in it or use “boo” as is and base your post on it. Enjoy!

Knock, knock.

Who’s there?

Boo!

Boo who?

Well, you don’t have to cry about it.

Ooooold joke. Works best when spoken, with a grandchild, niece, nephew, or someone who likes simple silliness.

I haven’t cried in a long time. Not real crying where I need to remind myself to breathe so my stomach and head don’t hurt. I know how to do that. I mastered the art of real crying at the turn of the century. Thankfully, no need lately. Oh, I’ll tear up a bit at a TV show. Just yesterday, watching a Blue Bloods episode I’d even seen before, I got a tear in my eye. It doesn’t take much.

Whining is another matter. I try not to whine out loud, except to the cat. But I will whine in my head. Why did I have a touch of vertigo yesterday? Am I not able to bend over and arrange my little pebbles on my winding pathway just the way I want? Is it a sign that I am being too precise. Funny how I want a pebble just a certain way, in a certain place, but it’s gotta look wild and natural at the same time. That’s my landscaping style. Maybe this stream will come back around with some photos.

I don’t like to be scared. Maybe there was a time when I liked scary movies. Now, I’m ready for the Christmas movies. Remember when we could scare ourselves silly as teenagers at sleepovers? Or later going to visit the old railroad tracks? There was this thing in North Carolina called the Maco Light. It was near a railroad station in Maco, NC. The name is similar to my maiden name with one less c, but definitely no relation. Some guy lost his head in a train accident. He was workin on the railroad trying to warn an oncoming train with a lantern. His head was never found, or so the legend goes. When I was in my late teens, it was said that you could see old Joe looking for his head, swinging a lantern along the train track. A bunch of us convoyed to Maco one night to look for the light. We didn’t see it, but we scared ourselves silly walking along the track in the dark quiet near midnight. We screamed when a generator came on. Or was it really a generator? I have no idea. That was what? 1975? We had fun with just our imaginations. (Okay, maybe some beer, too.) I think they tore up the tracks after that. Keep those crazy kids from comin out disturbin the peace…

Now, I don’t want to be scared. Ba Humbug on scary movies and headless railroad ghosts.

I do like my neighbor’s decorations though.

Neighborhood Decorations. I like smiley ghosts.

And then there are Patrick Swayze ghosts. The movie Ghost wasn’t that scary, except for the bad guys. It was more of a romantic comedy about a ghost. I might watch that one again.

Getting back to the winding path….

It’s taken me a few months to get my winding path this far. I had a lot of roots to dig through and work around for the bricks. It’s till a work in progress. Maybe I’ll add some bottle caps and melted marbles. A little at a time.

~~~

Stream of Consciousness Saturday is hosted by Linda Hill. Thanks, Linda!

For more streams, rules, etc. visit Linda’s blog here.


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Good News Tuesday for Sept. 21, 2021 ~ Happy Peace Day! : Lawn Chairs for Peace, Restoring Coral, Italy’s Old Homes, and A Good Sign in the Hosptial Parking Lot

Seeking Balance One Tuesday at a Time

The International Day of Peace was established in 1981 by unanimous United Nations resolution. To learn more about peace day, visit: https://www.un.org/en/observances/international-day-peace.

Lawn Chairs for Peace

In Minneapolis, Minnesota , community and church folks are helping decrease violence by “seating themselves in lawn chairs on street corners in the most dangerous neighborhoods, and acting as “violence interrupters.” Police statistics show it’s working! Here’s more from the Good News Network.

Restoring Coral

Hoi Ha Wan, near Hong Kong, is now a protected coastal reserve. Past coral mining left nothing for coral to grow on and made restoration unlikely until a team working with Hong Kong university’s architecture department developed an artificial reef using a 3D printing facility. The reef is made from clay tiles. Learn more and watch an interesting video from CNN here.

Old Homes in Italy are Selling for One Euro

Towns in Italy are are selling abandoned old homes for one euro with the agreement for restoration. Read more about this innovative program at the Good News Network.

A Good Sign

Every day Donna was in the hospital for covid with no visitors allowed, her husband Gary stood outside her window with an I ❤ you sign. Donna is back home now and doing okay.

I’m following a story about firefighters working to save the oldest tree in ? California. Hopefully I’ll have good news on that soon. In the meantime, THANK YOU to all the firefighters, first responders, teachers, nurses, doctors, and medical workers doing their best to save lives all over the world.

Got Good News?

Feel free to share your good news or GNT link in the comments!


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SoCS: Least Favorite and Favorite Words

Here’s today’s interesting stream of consciousness prompt: “least-favorite word.” Use your least-favorite word in your post. If you can’t decide on one, use a word that just really bugs you. Enjoy!

Just one word?

There are plenty of words I don’t like. Maybe I’ll figure out my least favorite if I start rambling them off.

“Unbelievable!” is one my ex boyfriend used a lot. It got on my nerves, because I could believe things that were really cool. Unbelievable would be something like the pigs flying when they are not in heaven, because pigs go to heaven just like dogs. So if you see a pig flying, I mean really flying, you might be in heaven.

Impossible. No surprises there since my blog title is “Anything is possible.” My dad told me “Nothing is impossible,” when I was 12 and it stuck.

Tirelessly. I might have written about this before. Back when I worked in a stressful job with way too much paperwork, the boss gave a big speech at a banquet and talked about how we staff had been working “tirelessly.” But I was damn tired. If someone works tirelessly, they either haven’t worked very long, or they are on too much caffeine and will eventually burn out. Or at least need a rest. We’re human. We get tired. There’s a backlash going around about glamorizing overwork. Maybe I can find the meme. Be right back….

On the other hand, there’s this thing lately about having trouble finding people to work. We saw that on a sign the other night when we went out to a restaurant and someone didn’t show up for work. The sign said,

Be nice to our servers, we are short staffed. People don’t want to work.

There must be some kind of balance. A need to treat people with respect. Expect responsibility and work, but not 50 hours a week with no overtime.

I guess I got off on a tangent.

There’s still no male component for the word, “bitch,” is there? I mean, it’s a female dog, and that’s okay, but, well you know the issue with a male who exhibits the same behavior being praised, except not by me.

I knew I was forgetting something, so went to ask David what word I don’t like. He thought for a minute, then said, “always.” Yes. How could I forget about “always,” and “never,” and “everybody.” They are rarely true. Can you think of an example where always, never, or everybody is true?

Okay, If you’re telling someone to always look both ways before crossing the street, that’s good. But saying, politicians always lie – there’s no proof of that. I mean, surely they one might tell the truth, sometimes. There are always possibly exceptions.

They say it never rains in California, but it does, sometimes, and I’m praying it rains more. A steady, but moderate rain to quench the dry earth and put out the fires.

Just for the sake of balance, here are some of my favorite words,

Possibilities

Rainbow

Bliss

Peace

Hope

Maybe

May it be……

Today’s SoCS prompt is brought to us by our host, Linda Hill. Find out more at:

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS July 17, 2021 | (lindaghill.com)


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SoCS: A Year of Challenge and Hope for Healing

Our Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “day/week/month/year.” Linda also invites us to write about the past year of pandemic, “how we have coped or not, to share our common experiences as a way to connect, to feel a little less alone.”

As a citizen of the United States, these past 12 months have been heavy, not just due to the pandemic, but also with the political divide and the racial injustice of the murders of George Floyd, Breaonna Taylor and others. It has been strange and confusing to have stay at home orders, masks and social distancing recommendations along with protests and demonstrations.

My hope is that with the pandemic calming down and someone less inflammatory at the helm, we can move into healing. It’s going to take a lot of work. A lot of compassion, listening, compromise, and seeking common ground… or higher ground.

I find myself feeling tired as I write this. There are bursts of energy when things get done, but maybe it’s a tired that comes with age. Still, my personal life has not been bad. I’m the oldest one in my family – my parents and siblings are deceased. Even Aunt Ruth in Wisconsin crossed over last year after a full life into her 90s. I am thankful not to have to worry about my parents anymore and feel for those who do. I am thankful to have the luxury of time and the freedom to study my father’s letters from Vietnam, and to write and paint.

Staying at home doesn’t bother me, except that I have not seen my granddaughter, son and daughter in law since October. I miss the mountains. It was in October that I last visited the mountains and first brought mama cat home from the church. She has kept me company when David is at his woodshop, and she has become much less feral.

Mama Cat has a plate of food.
She wants attention while I’m trying to write.

Having a cat has been a big change after being a dog person for so long. The pandemic and people not being at church much was one of two factors that led me to bringing her home. The other factor was the abduction of her daughter, Gray, in June. I still go to the church once per week to see if Gray has shone up, but I don’t think this is likely. I talk to Saint Francis and pray my hopes and thanksgivings.

St. Francis with last year’s hydrangeas

Not going to church and choir practice is probably the biggest change in my personal life. We do zoom church and I’ve sung and played a little guitar for that, because music is my favorite part of church. My voice is way out of shape when it comes to singing anything challenging. My friend Anne, who is in her 80s and teaches singing, is helping me with that. I’m thankful to have had both vaccines, in spite of the side effects, I’m glad to have a little more confidence if I do want to go out. I’ll still wear a mask and avoid crowds.

Hopefully we won’t have as much to protest or demonstrate for or against for a while. Maybe things will calm down and justice will grow. Maybe we humans will wake up, bridge the divides, and focus on healing Mother Earth as we celebrate diversity in all it’s beauty and strength.

Thank you to our host, Linda Hill for the consistency of SoCS through the year.

For SoCS rules and more streams, visit:

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS March 13, 2021 | (lindaghill.com)