Anything is Possible!

With Love, Hope, and Perseverance


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Mysterious Sounds & a Song from my Heart

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Our Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday was “animal sounds.” “Write about the sounds animals make and how you experience them. Have fun!”

It was after midnight. I went out onto the balcony to look at the stars. The darkness was thick like a wool blanket over our mountain hideaway. A few stars peeked out through the evergreen trees. Cool, fresh air filled my lungs and tingled my face and hands.

Then I heard it. It sounded like a duck quacking at first. Then there was a screeching, snarling noise below, maybe fifty feet away. Were the two sounds from the same animal? Were two animals fighting. Was something hurt? I didn’t want to think about that. I waited and the same noise came again, both noises right after each other suggesting it came from the same animal.

Over the next few minutes, the noise repeated. The quacking diminished and the snarling increased.

I would have loved to have heard a wolf howl, or even a coyote. Or a bear grunting. A wolf would be better. When I was five years old my dad was stationed at the naval base on Newfoundland, Canada. We lived on base near some hills where wolves would howl at night. I don’t remember this well, at least not consciously, but oh how I would have appreciated this more much later in life.

After a while, the noise did not come back and the chill sent me back inside. I never found out what animal or animals made that sound. I’ll listen for it when we visit the mountains again.

Years ago, I wrote a song. It was back in high school, kind a corny maybe, but heartfelt. The song was about extinction. I added a stanza more recently, but for some reason, I don’t know where I put the words. I wonder if I can remember it now. I’ll try.

Once you could see

a million brown deer

We knew they’d be here for us

a l w a y s…… a l w a y s

Once you could see

the birds in the sky

We knew they would fly for us

a l w a y s…… a l w a y s

(bridge/guitar solo)

You can still see the birds

You can look, even feel

And they seem almost real

Yet somehow out of place

In their polished glass case.

And the deer in the park

stumble in the dark

And they seem kinds lame

But no one takes blame

For their blindness.

(Here’s the new part:)

Once we could hear

the wolf and the whale

Their voices would sail to us

a l w a y s…… a l w a y s.

But the wolf and the whale

No longer cry

They’re just stars in the sky.

No one stands by

For the singing.

(bridge/guitar)

Still we can see

the birds in the sky

We pray they will fly, always.

Still we might see

A million brown deer

We pray they’ll be here, always.

Still we can hear

the wolf and the whale

May wisdom prevail for them

a l w a y s…… a l w a y s……

© Joanne Macco, aka joannaoftheforest

 

great voices wolf pup

Hard to explain with no editing. I don’t remember if all these words are what I originally wrote, but it’s pretty close. On the guitar, I use chords …. wait let me check…. E, Em, and another chord I don’t know the name of in the beginning. Then there’s a bridge into the sad parts with G, D, A, and Em. Then back to the first chords for the hopeful part.

Dang. I didn’t write about Doodle howling when I tuned my guitar. But you can imagine.

Doodle w foot on head

I miss Doodle bug.

For more animal sounds in the stream of consciousness, and the rules for #SoCS,

visit Linda’s blog:

https://lindaghill.com/2020/02/21/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-feb-22-2020/

 


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Taken With The Jungle Book

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Today’s prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is: “ta.”  As Linda G. Hill, the promptress informed us, “The word, ‘ta,’ is British slang for thank you.” We are to  use it this way, or find any other word that starts with those two letters.

Well, I would like to say, ta, as in thank you, to the makers of the film, The Jungle Book. I’ve never read the entire classic by Rudyard Kipling, but I sure did read the children’s book versions to my kids over and over again when they were little. And of course I saw the Disney cartoon version when I was a child, or maybe I was a teenager. Never mind. I can see from this new movie, why the story is a classic.

I was taken aback, many times while watching the movie yesterday. Hey did you notice I used a word that started with Ta and a phrase with the initials T and A? Well, I was just taken with this movie. There were the exciting jump-out-of-my-seat scenes when the tiger, Shere Khan, came out of nowhere. And there were scenes that made me tear up, like the one with Mowgli’s wolf mother telling him that he would always be her son.

And I was awed by the scenes with the elephants who had a very special role in the movie.

Is it possible for film makers to create a movie that makes you believe that computer generated talking animals are real?

Yes. There were moments. And not only did they feel real, they had/possessed/delivered characters of resonance, honor, and lightheartedness. Bill Murray as the voice of Baloo, the bear, was endearingly clever. I just can’t say enough about how much I liked this movie. Can you tell?

It was perfect for Earth Day, or for Earth Month!

Here’s a trailer I believe you will enjoy.

 

If you’d like to be taken (in a good way) with the Saturday Stream of Consciousness, visit Linda’s blog here:

https://lindaghill.com/2016/04/22/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-april-2316/

Here are the rules:

1. Your post must be stream of consciousness writing, meaning no editing, (typos can be fixed) and minimal planning on what you’re going to write.

2. Your post can be as long or as short as you want it to be. One sentence – one thousand words. Fact, fiction, poetry – it doesn’t matter. Just let the words carry you along until you’re ready to stop.

3. There will be a prompt every week. I will post the prompt here on my blog on Friday, along with a reminder for you to join in. The prompt will be one random thing, but it will not be a subject. For instance, I will not say “Write about dogs”; the prompt will be more like, “Make your first sentence a question,” “Begin with the word ‘The’,” or simply a single word to get your started.

4. Ping back! It’s important, so that I and other people can come and read your post! For example, in your post you can write “This post is part of SoCS:” and then copy and paste the URL found in your address bar at the top of this post into yours.  Your link will show up in my comments for everyone to see. The most recent pingbacks will be found at the top.

5. Read at least one other person’s blog who has linked back their post. Even better, read everyone’s! If you’re the first person to link back, you can check back later, or go to the previous week, by following my category, “Stream of Consciousness Saturday,” which you’ll find right below the “Like” button on my post.

6. Copy and paste the rules (if you’d like to) in your post. The more people who join in, the more new bloggers you’ll meet and the bigger your community will get!

7. As a suggestion, tag your post “SoCS” and/or “#SoCS” for more exposure and more views.

8. Have fun!


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Saint Francis Tames a Ferocious Wolf

St Francis and the Wolf of Gubbio

(An imaginary letter  from 13th Century Gubbio, Italy)

My Dear Sister,

As you may remember from my previous letters, there has a been a dangerous wolf terrorizing Gubbio. The large wolf has been seen stealing sheep and goats, and has even taken away small children as well as grown men, or so I have been told. Yesterday, Friar Francis of Assisi, who has been a guest in Gubbio for some time, amazed us all by taming the vicious beast.

The wolf was outside the city walls chasing some sheep, as men gathered with pitchforks, rocks and slings to try to chase the wolf away. Our beloved Francis intervened and asked them to wait. The brave friar walked toward the wolf who snarled viciously and then charged at him with his mouth open. We could see the white of the wolf’s teeth from the city walls.

Then Francis made the sign of the cross, and the wolf stopped suddenly, closed his mouth and crawled on his belly toward the friar to rest at his feet. Francis appeared to speak to  the wolf who became as docile as a lamb and followed Francis back to the city. The friar told the townspeople not to harm the wolf.

“Brother Wolf has acted in evil ways due to his hunger. If you will feed him every day and care for him, he will not harm anyone. I ask you to forgive him and show him God’s mercy,” said Friar Francis.

He asked who would offer a piece of  food to the wolf. I looked down at the loaves of bread I was to deliver to my neighbor, and ignoring all common sense, I broke off a piece and walked toward Francis and the wolf. I do not know what came over me. In spite of the warnings of my friends, I knelt  cautiously before the wolf, and reached out to offer the bread. The wolf took the bread gently from my hand, like an old dog.

The people of Gubbio have promised Friar Francis to feed and care for the wolf, who is becoming a part of our community. We shall see how this unusual truce plays out. What is more unusual: I am considering joining the holy order of this Francis who some are calling a saint. Please do not tell our parents of this yet, as I know they wish for me stay here as the baker’s apprentice, and I am not sure if I will awaken from some dream about a wolf being tamed by a holy man.

My love in Christ,

Your brother, Antonio

______________________________________________________________________

I share my imaginary letter hoping to honor Saint Francis and his upcoming feast day, celebrated October 4th. The following article tells that the wolf lived in Gubbio for two years and offers evidence that there is some truth to the legend.

  “According to tradition, Gubbio gave the wolf an honorable burial and later built the Church of Saint Francis of the Peace at the site. During renovations in 1872, the skeleton of a large wolf, apparently several centuries old, was found under a slab near the church wall and then reburied inside.”

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wolf_of_Gubbio

One of my favorite sources on Saint Francis is this beautiful book by Robert F. Kennedy Jr:

http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/797841.Saint_Francis_of_Assisi

Is there a Blessing of the Animals in your church or community honoring Saint Francis this weekend? Does anyone know of a Saint Francis Festival? If so, I’d love to learn about it.


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Honoring Saint Francis

st-francis-of-assisi-and-birds from Robert Kennedy's book

Illustration by Dennis Nolan from Saint Francis of Assisi (A Life of Joy) by Robert F. Kennedy Jr.

     Today is the Feast Day of Saint Francis who was born in Assisi in 1182. He was a man ahead of his time. Years ago,  I struggled to find a link between my potentially pagan love for nature and animals and something (maybe a combination of motherhood and compassion fatigue from my job helping others) pulling me back to Jesus. Discovering Saint Francis was one of those “Aha!” moments. It was a relief to find this teacher who could bridge my two beloved spiritual paths to the Creator.

        I  was drawn back to church by a newspaper photo of an animal being blessed at the Church of the Good Shepherd. Back then, Good Shepherd may have been the first church in Southeastern North Carolina to bless animals. It started in the late 60s’ on Rogation Sunday, a time to give thanks for crops and livestock. Since that time, it has become a tradition at Good Shepherd and many other churches to bless the animals on the Sunday closest to the Feast Day of Saint Francis.  Blessing the animals to honor Saint Francis is much more meaningful to me, because our animal companions mean so much more than livestock. (Though I hope all the animals we now call “livestock” will someday be treated more kindly.)

     Our animal friends give us loyalty and patient companionship. They love us no matter what, and hopefully, they teach us mercy.  There’s a sweet little song called “God and Dog” in which Wendy Francisco sings about how dogs reflect the unconditional love of God. Saint Francis, the patron saint of animals and the environment, understood this relationship.  He cherished animals and the earth, praised the sun and the moon and cared for the lepers because they are all creations of God.

There is a wonderful book, written by Robert F. Kennedy, Jr about Saint Francis of Assisi. One of the stories in this book is a story about Saint Francis convincing a vicious wolf to stop terrorizing the town of Gubbio. Miraculously, “Brother Wolf” lived the rest of his life “peacefully in Gubbio- fed, cared for and loved by the townspeople, because it reminded them of Francis’ visit.

Let us remember today and always the words  of Saint Francis, ” Make me a channel of your peace.”

statue-of-st-francis-of-assisi-gino-rigucci