1337. Of winter’s lifeless world each tree now seems a perfect part; yet each one holds spring’s secret deep down within its heart. ~Edited quote by Charles G. Stater

Now winter nights enlarge
The number of their hours;
And clouds their storms discharge
Upon the airy towers…
~Thomas Campion

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Gray, foggy dreariness
ushered in the day;
A mist, a cold, frigid drizzle,
fell from on high;
Bare, starkly austere, lay everything
I could see; and
Silence, a stilled quietude, blanketed
my wintry garden.
Bleakly naked, towered tall trees that
stood above all else,
But underneath them from the secret place
murmured a voice,
The sacred, almost indistinguishable, faint
whisper emerged amid
The fog and fine rain to go forward undetected
past the woody sentinels
To allow its utterances to break into morn’s reverie
to tell of signs, longed for signs
Of tiny sparks of life that are preparing to push up
despite the gloominess
And ‘twas this message that stirred embers in my spirit
to keep their glimmer from
Becoming far too dim to continue sustaining my hope,
expectations, and “joie de vie.”

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Don’t think the garden loses its ecstasy in winter.
It’s quiet, but the roots are down there riotous.
~Rumi

The tempest comes out from its chamber, the cold from the driving winds. ~Job 37:9 ✝

**Both photos taken by Natalie

1204. Most of us have two lives, the life we live, and an unlived life within us. ~Steven Pressfield

Gypsy
If I were not trapped
by my own making in a well
where light filtered in just enough
for shadows to press against me
in their shaded hush
reminding me perpetually
with their low rhythmic song
of a life I could have lived
if I’d just been strong

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your life by comparison
is in every way as wild
as the silver on the horizon
when the moon slips beneath
violet clouds and cusps
in slow formation and bows
to white flowers beneath ivy
where only moonlight finds
magic in the way you live
every moment to the end
~Poem by Candice Louisa Daquin
from her just released 4th book,
A JAR FOR THE JARRING

You can read more of Candice’s distinctively, unique poetry
at: https://albinophoenix.wordpress.com

One must lament not the prospect of an unlived life, for whilst there is yet breath in the lungs and the beat in a heart Scripture tell us:

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” ~Jeremiah 29:11  ✝

**Image found on Pinterest

1197. Let me, O let me bathe my soul in colours; let me swallow the sunset and drink the rainbow. ~Kahlil Gibran

People observe the colors of a day
only at its beginnings and its ends,
but to me it’s quite clear that a day 
merges
through a multitude 
of shades and intonations,
with each passing moment.
A single hour can consist of 
thousands of different colors.
Waxy yellows, cloud-spat blues. 
Murky darknesses.
~Markus Zusak

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Life is a celebration of passionate colors.

Some days are red. Those are the ones when our spirits are flying high.
Some are green. Those are the ones when we feel most productive and fruitful.
Some days are pink ones. They are full of moments when we feel young at heart. Others are blue. Those are the days we feel down in the dumps.
Then there are the orange ones. Those are peaceful and ones in which we sometimes feel a sense of satisfaction.
At last there are yellow ones. ‘Tis these that are bright and full of cheer.
~Edited passage I found on Pinterest

I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth. ~Genesis 9:13  ✝

**Images via Pinterest; collage created by Natalie

1185. We can only be said to be alive in those moments when our hearts are conscious of our treasures. ~Thornton Wilder

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Today is not just another day, it is the one day that is given to you today. It is a gift, the only gift of a day that you have right now. And so the only appropriate response is gratefulness. If you do nothing else but to cultivate that response, to the great gift that this unique day is, and if you learn to respond as if it were the first day of your life and the very last day, then you will have spent this day very well.

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Begin by opening your eyes and be surprised that you have eyes you can open, the incredible array of colors that is constantly offered to us for pure enjoyment. Look at the sky; we so rarely look at the sky, so rarely note how different it is from moment to moment with clouds coming and going. We just think of the weather, but we don’t think of all the different nuances of weather. We just think of good weather and bad weather. This day, right now, this unique weather, maybe a kind that may never come in that form again. The formation of clouds in the sky may never be the same than it is right now, open your eyes and look at that.

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Look at the faces of people that you meet. Each one has an incredible story behind their face, a story that you could never fully fathom not only their own story but the story of their ancestors. We all go back so far. And in this present moment, this day, all the people you meet, all that life from generations and so many all over the world, flows together and meets you here like life giving water if you only open your heart and drink. Open your heart to the incredible gifts that civilization gives to you. You flip a switch and there is electric light. You turn a faucet and there is warm water and cold water and drinkable water. It is a gift that millions and millions of people will never experience. ~Br. David Steindl-Rast, Benedictine Monk

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Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; His love endures forever. 1 Chronicles 16:34  ✝

**Images via Pinterest except for middle one that I took at the bottom; collages by Natalie

1173. Rain is grace; rain is the sky descending to the earth; without rain, there would be no life. ~John Updike

Let the rain kiss you.
Let the rain beat upon your head
with silver liquid drops.
Let the rain sing you a lullaby.
~Langston Hughes

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Let’s see which big bang or random
atom was it that created the rain???
And where are any scientists who can
relieve droughts by giving us
substantial and prolonged rainy days???
Or is it that the sun up above in the heavens heats up
the ground below to start a blessed, holy water cycle.

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Then when the soil under
heaven’s canopy is heated up,
the water on the ground evaporates
and turns into a gas.

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Next the vapor from the gas rises
and enters any available clouds where it
condenses and becomes liquid again.

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Finally, these new droplets that form
inside the clouds tumble down, down,
downward thus delivering rain upon the earth.

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So it is then that the sacred water cycle, woven
by God Almighty into the very fabric of Creation,
goes round and round until somewhere
it miraculously begins all over again.

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…then I will send rain on your land in its season, both autumn and spring rains… ~Excerpt from Deuteronomy 11:17 ✝

1164. Drip, drip, drip in cadenced rhythm fall the rain’s dotted silver threads from heaven above. ~Natalie Scarberry

I looked out the window at the falling rain
and gave myself over to the compelling urge to put
myself entirely in the keeping of this rainy day.
~Edited lines from a poem
by Raymond Carver

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Drip, drip, dripping from on high it falls
Not in torrents this time, but in a tender grayness.
Fall, fall, falling through space it comes
Traveling from who knows where and what source
Yet it brings familiar scents and thoughts of yore.
Would I, could I, unravel such things!

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Puddles, puddles, puddling everywhere
Making pools of water like bits of glassy mirrors.
Hang, hang, hanging are leaves and flowery faces
Weighed down by the heaviness of daylong showers
Born of lowering gray clouds leaden with water
Yet there is loveliness in their blurry, drooping poses.
Would I, could I, paint such things.

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Memories, memories, making their way through the rain
With smacks of this fragrance and that, places and people,
Joys and pain, good things and bad things all tied up
In “raindrops on roses” and more of my favorite things
That sparkle and forever accompany rainy days and quiet ways.
Yet there’s gladness in it all for it’s the sum and magic of a life.
Would I, could I, understand such things.
~Natalie Scarberry

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Last night the rain spoke to me
slowly, saying, what joy to come falling
out of the brisk cloud, to be happy again
in a new way on the earth!
~Excerpt from a poem
by Mary Oliver

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“Can you fathom the mysteries of God? Can you probe the limits of the Almighty?” ~Job 11:7  ✝

**All images taken by me in my yard today while holding an umbrella in one hand and trying to manage the camera with the other one.

1103. Springtime is the land awakening. The March winds are the morning yawn. ~Lewis Grizzard

March! March! March!
They are coming
In troops to the tune of the wind.
Redheaded woodpeckers drumming,
Gold-crested thrushes behind;

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Sparrows in brown jackets, hopping
Past every gateway and door;
Finches, with crimson caps, stopping
Just where they stopped before.
March! March! March!

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They are slipping
Into their places at last…
Literature white lily buds, dripping
Under the showers that fall fast;
Buttercups, violets, roses;

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Snowdrop and bluebell and pink,
Throng upon throng
Of sweet posies
Bending the dewdrops to drink.
March! March! March!

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They will hurry forth
At the wild bugle sound,
Blossoms and birds
In a lively flurry,
Fluttering all over the ground.

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Shake out your flags, birch and willow!
Shake out your red tassels, larch!
Grass blades, up from your earth-pillow.
Hear who is calling you…
March, March, March.
~Edited poem by Lucy Larcom

…He(God) makes the clouds his chariot and rides on the wings of the wind.He makes winds his messengers… ~Excerpts from Psalm 104:3-4 ✝

**Images via Pinterest