Hard Winds

I love autumn and the scent, color, taste, touch, and sounds of the season. It brings a heightened sense of being more fully alive. But the shimmering ecstasy only lasts but a brief period of time before the glorious leaves, for example, are swept off the branches in a mighty wind or in the rhythmic cycle of approaching winter. We come to expect that natural departure every fall but sometimes it’s more than deciduous leaves … Read more

Seasonal Adjustments

It’s an odd paradox that tightening the faucet on busyness, opens the flow of creativity. Here in the northern hemisphere, September brings a gentle turn of season. Shadows fall long on the earth. Daylight eclipses towards the heavy-lid slumber of approaching winter. There’s a sense of slowing, a sense of closure. Thoughts of baking bread, making soup, and embracing pen to paper come to mind—quiet moments to reflect and behold. Recently back from a family … Read more

Oh, Lulu

Out here in the West, it’s common to see old barns, cabins, or piles of debris across a field or at the edge of a developed lot. The wood timbers have simply decomposed over time in all kinds of weather and have fallen to the earth. Whose hard-working hands cut the trees, sawed the logs, notched and chinked the frame into being? What hopes and dreams lay cradled in the remains of those composted dwellings? … Read more

The Great Leveling

I look out from the top of the planet where the highest paved highway in North America winds precariously to the height of Mount Evans in Colorado. Mountain ranges rise up from meadows before my very eyes. I am speechless. My breath is stilled. Panoramic views of 360 degrees surround the summit at 14,271 feet. The vast expanse of land masses and waterways and trees and open sky humble me in an instant. I feel … Read more

The Gift of Story

The old preacher-woman silently held a story in her weathered hands on a bench in the Kawuneeche Valley of Rocky Mountain National Park and looked up from the page. “Did you see the moose?” she said to me as I drew close to her in the meadow. “She won’t let the calf near the water.” Not far from where we spoke grazed a cow moose and her calf at the headwaters of the Colorado River … Read more

What’s Beneath

Sometimes it’s difficult to discern what’s beneath something directly in front of us. Cracks of thunder and blinding flashes of lightning bolted me out of bed in the night. Pea-sized hail teemed against my window and I feared for the delicate petals of flowers I had planted the day before and the supple leaves that had newly emerged on the trees. By morning though, the storm had cleared. I looked out my window over the … Read more


Sometimes you run into messengers or they run into you. Two of them happened to appear in my life on Wednesday of Holy Week before Easter. One had two legs, the other four. A young man probably in his late twenties or early thirties ran up behind my husband and I as we were hiking. He was running with a white mixed-breed Labrador Retriever trailing on his heels. Immediately, I noticed the young man’s bright … Read more

There’s Always a Mountain

There’s always a mountain. When disappointment comes, lineages fray, tragedy breaks a heart . . . what to do? Sometimes what you need to see, when you need to see it, becomes visible before your very eyes. Four Peaks – I looked over my shoulder and saw something that literally took my breath away. A mountain I’ve known since my childhood in the desert, four glorious peaks rising up to the clouds, was cloaked entirely … Read more

Hear my Heart

“Gonna hear the beat-heart.” When my daughter was about one and a half years old she scurried ahead of me into the obstetrician’s office with a snack baggie of teddy grahams and all the determination she could muster to listen to the beat of her not-yet-born brother’s heart. An ultrasound is a useful tool to access the pulse of life and she was intent to hear that beautiful sound. Years later, I walked into the … Read more

The Glimmer of Longing

The month of January often invokes a reset of sorts and many people become aware of internal nudges signaling a deeper desire, a sense that something more exists in the way of fulfillment. Perhaps that nudge(s) at the deep-down core of a person is actually a calling right smack in the heavy shuffle of daily living. Or maybe that nudge arrives not in a heavy shuffle at all, but rather in the slightest shuffle of … Read more