Sunday, February 27, 2011

सुंदर (Beautiful)

It is amazing how complete is the delusion that beauty is goodness. ~Leo Tolstoy

The Oscars are on tonight.

Tonight, hundreds of people are glued to their television sets.

Tonight, a parade of "beautiful people" march across the red carpet to be honored for their "contributions" to the world of visual entertainment.

And tonight, hundreds of women will stare into their mirrors and wish that they looked like Anne Hathaway or Natalie Portman.

They will wish to be beautiful.

Now, please don't get me wrong. I am not denying the beauty of those women who grace the silver screen.

However... is not defined by fame.

What do we know about these women...really?

We know their names. Their faces. Perhaps we can recite their filmography or even some of their famous lines.

But that's all we know.

Beauty is not found in a list of accomplishments or in how many people know your name.

It is found behind your eyes. Beneath your skin.

It is not dependent on how much you weigh, how soft your hair might be, or even how gracefully you walk.

It's found in the way you live... your treatment of others... the words you speak... your presence, your carriage, and your tone.

Beauty does not make the woman.

It is the woman herself that creates the beauty.

"Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised." ~Proverbs 31:30

Thursday, February 17, 2011


"You, sing me to sleep
Talk down my walls
Look through my windows as I wait
You could be the thief
I give the key to..." ~
The Thief, Brooke Fraser

There is something so romantic about a key.

I have held a certain love for them for quite some time.

I wear them about my neck and in my ears in many pieces of jewelry, holding them quite close to my heart.

Yes, it might be just a scrap or two of old bits of metal, melted down and molded into a device for opening a door.

But even still...

Perhaps it is only the silly, foolish romantic in me that find some sort of delicacy in something so humble and insignificant...

... but there is a power to this tiny object.

It is one of kind.

A small, delicate kind of object.

There is such a strength behind something so small...seemingly innocent and fragile.

A key has the power to reveal that which is hidden... find what has been lost... capture a moment forever behind a door, or to free something held captive for far too long.

Keys can do much as much damage as they can do good.

So guard your keys closely...

...or else a thief will come and steal your heart away.

He will unlock your secrets, and hold your treasures.
...but perhaps it wouldn't be so bad after all.

There is a romance to be found in keys...

...and it comes when your heart has been stolen away.

Saturday, February 12, 2011


You don't have a soul. You are a Soul. You have a body. ~C.S. Lewis

I haven't posted for two days.

Yes, I know this goes against my plan to post every day in the month of February.

Honestly, though, I couldn't bring myself to post.

I just wasn't inspired.

And I couldn't force myself to write meaningless posts that didn't come from my heart just to fulfill a "goal."

Because, you see, when I write, I don't just scribble down random, trivial things for no reason.

I just can't bring myself to write like that.

Everything I write has a purpose.

I pour part of myself into everything I write.

I never understood writers who used their writing as a cover...

...a disguise to hide themselves from the world and remain anonymous.

Maybe it's my personality, but I am unable to separate myself from my writing.

I want those who read my blog to be as observers gazing through a picture window, gazing up at the stars and moon set in the black fabric of the night sky.

I want them not to see mere words -- black marks upon a page.

I want them to see into my heart.

I want them to see my soul.

I want them to see Him through me.

So read with caution, gentle reader...

...for what you see here is my heart.

So please, handle my soul with care.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011


Fairy tales are more than true: not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten. ~G.K. Chesterton

Everything in life is a path.

Every book we read...

...every story that floods our minds from the time we are children, has an impact on us.

They shape us...

...transforming us into the adults we will one day become.

From the time I was four years old, I found my magic in the pages of a book.

Books were my road, my map, and my compass.

Tucked away in the corner of my bedroom, I received my letter and boarded the train to Hogwarts...

...I slipped through the wardrobe to Narnia and gazed into the eyes of the Lion that would change my life and capture my heart.

...I whispered "I am that is" in my sleep and ran my fingers of the sandstone walls of Redwall Abbey, battling rats and wildcats alongside the mice and badger warriors of Salamandastron.

...I walked the knolls of Middle-Earth and joined the Fellowship in their quest to Mt. Doom.

...I found my first love in the Misters Darcy, Knightly, Bingly, and Brandon, and discovered that Prince Charming dwelled in Darbyshire and Kent.

These lands became part of me.

They sparked the fires of knowledge, and encouraged me to chase my dreams of pen and ink.

It was here I found myself.

Among the pages of a book, I found my footing.

I found my home.

So point me down the nearest path... a book into my hands...

...and let me wander forever.

In memorium of Sir Brian Jacques, who left this world and journeyed to the gates of Dark Forest on February 5th, 2011. May you rest in peace, oh weaver of dreams and changer of souls.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011


Down she came and found a boat
Beneath a willow left afloat,
And around about the prow she wrote
The Lady of Shalott...
...and as the boat-head wound along
The willowy hills and fields among,
They heard her singing her last song,
The Lady of Shalott.
~Lord Tennyson

I wish I could lie down in a boat and drift away.

Perhaps not to the tragic end that Tennyson's Camelot-based heroine found, but still.

The idea of lying back in a small wooden boat and floating down the river, as if in preparation for a funeral pyre being set adrift upon the shimmering surface of the water... has always appealed to me.

Perhaps it is the romantic in me.

Maybe I am more like Anne of Greene Gables than I would like to admit.

Perhaps it is the tranquility of the journey itself.

Being surrounded by nothing but the whispers of the flowing water and the soft trills of songbirds in the trees, the gentle swaying of the boat lulling me into a state of peaceful sleep...

...what writer would not wish for such an adventure?

What poet would not be drawn to such a picture?

Oh, what dreams linger in such magical ideas.

So now I will lie down in my bed, close my eyes...

...and allow my mind to carry me away on the rippling waters of dreams and imagined wishes.


...I drift away.

Monday, February 7, 2011


When restraint and courtesy are added to strength, the latter becomes irresistible. ~Mohandas Ghandi

I am the last leaf,
Clinging to the end of the thin branch,
The last scrap of green in a cold dying world.

I am the daisy petal,
The last of two clinging to the sunny center,
Wishing beyond all wishes to be
"He loves me"
And not
"He loves me not."

I am the oyster, weeping
Aching, overcome by the pain deep within
Knowing that if I simply wait...
...simply hold on...
A pearl of beauty will be evident.

I am the winding arms and connected lips,
Clinging to those of a lover from whom I shall soon be separated.
Never wanting to be free,
Never wanting to be alone again.

I am the stone, rough and jagged
Tossed about in the foam of the sea.
Drowning, overwhelmed in salt and surf...
...but soon, I shall be smooth.

I am waiting.

I am whispers.

I am love.

I am strength.

And I will cling to what I am

In Him.

Sunday, February 6, 2011


There they stand, the innumerable stars, shining in order like a living hymn, written in light. ~N.P. Willis

I have a fascination with the stars.

There is something so intimately distant about these twinkling points of light... close that my fingertips ache to reach out and brush against the velvet night in which they reside...

...and distant enough to make me tremble with a whisper of things far greater and more majestic than I.

I think the stars are God's secret way to keep me humble.

How can think of myself as any great thing when I gaze up into the night...

...realizing that the mighty hand of the King placed each one of those brilliant diamonds upon the cloak of midnight...

...and calls them each by an individual name?

...maybe this is why I love the night.

I find myself most content...most complete...when I am wandering out among the stars late at night...

...for there is something so sacred about those moments under the black sky, lit only by a flickering point of celestial brilliance.

"There are millions of stars, and I love them. But oh, My beloved, I love You so much more. You are not just one in a waving mass of faces... are special... are loved.

You are Mine."

"But all night, Aslan and the Moon gazed upon each other with joyful and unblinking eyes." C.S. Lewis, Prince Caspian

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Nouveaux (Novel)

Books can be dangerous. The best ones should be labeled "This could change your life." ~Helen Exley

I spent a portion of my morning at the library.

This might be one of my favorite locations in the entire world.

Granted, I am a huge fan of expansive fields under perfect blue skies, the whisper of a breeze in my hair as I tuck myself under a tree with a brand-new paperback and a soft blanket.

However, if I had to remain indoors for any extensive period of time, I would rather it be lost among the melodious stacks of our anciently elegant library.

There is something hypnotic about this place.

Almost as if a portal to Narnia exists somewhere among the aromatic books, aching to be discovered by an attentive and observant seeker of knowledge and fantasy.

Today, my fingers reached out and darted from one spine to another... if begging my sensitive fingertips to ascertain if the information to be found inside was worth the moments of my time to read.

And indeed, I found several such volumes...

... exquisite volumes flooded with such words as to intoxicate and overpower me with their beauty and worth.

I have met my match.

I have found my weakness.

Who would have imagined that the feeble scratchings of ink upon a bit of parchment would cause tears to spring to my eyes and my world to be changed forever?

The written word is my weakness.

Be gentle with me, oh poet.

Be cautious with my heart, oh composer...

...for you have woven a spell over me

from which I pray

to never


Friday, February 4, 2011


Now a soft kiss -
Aye, by that kiss,
I vow an endless bliss.
~John Keats

My bliss is vast.

My bliss is leather-bound books...

Volumes of elegant poetry and dramatic prose, rich with the scent of age and wisdom.

It is wide open fields, bedecked with wildflowers of every hue and every type.
It is silver necklaces and delicately crafted earrings.

It's soft rose petals caressing my nose and acoustic guitars.

The scritch-ing of a pen against paper.

The Princess Bride and Chocolat.

A Jane Austen novel and a large leafy tree.

Red velvet curtains and the smell of a theater in those final moments right before a show is set to open.

Fluttering silk scarves and bare toes in the grass.

The feel of a new pair of heels and the whisper of a friendly word.

The tenderness of a lover's kiss and the lilting encouragement of the prophet Isaiah...

...the list goes on.

My toes in the sand as soft waves overtake them, and the twittering of birds along a soft forest path

An arm around me and a shoulder to weep upon, or words spoken in unison and the subsequent laughter.

Windows rolled down and music blasting.

Clear nights with stars that blaze and speak to my soul.

A pile of blankets and pillows in the middle of the floor, and someone with whom to share the snuggles.

A kiss on my cheek and fingers run through my hair.

Flickering candles and painted toenails in ten different colors.

Hot cups of coffee and fairy tales.

Late night conversations with my best friend, laughter that carries across the country.

A text message reminding me that I'm beautiful and that I am loved.

Whispers of Narnia and Hogwarts and secret lands yet undiscovered.

Memories of late nights in Peru and the smiles of brown-skinned children as they cling endlessly to my legs and hands.

On these cold February days, when all seems dead and empty under blankets of snow...

...I cling to my bliss

For warmth.

For light.

For color.

For hope.

For love.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

開始 (Beginnings)

Now this is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning. ~Winston Churchill

Today began the Chinese New Year.


Year of the Rabbit.

As I said in regards to Groundhog Day, normally this would be just another day for me...

...just one more in a gradually lengthening line of cold, barren February days.

But not this year.

This year, I ache for color.

There is something sensational about the brilliance of the lanterns...

...the flash of the fireworks...

...the dramatic writhing of the dragons.

Amid all this white, the new year brings color.

This year, I ache for a new beginning...

...even though my own new year was a month and three days ago, there is something so refreshing about whispers of fresh starts.

Even so close to the beginning of 2011, this new year brings renewal.

It's exotic.




It's what we need in the midst of February's bleakness.

We need a pop of color.

We need a touch of zen.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011


Beauty deprived of its proper foils and adjuncts ceases to be enjoyed as beauty, just as light deprived of all shadows ceases to be enjoyed as light. ~John Ruskin

Groundhog Day.

The one day of the year that thousands of people base their futures upon the simple shadow of a fluffy little animal.

Normally, I ignore this day, passing it over as silly superstition or a nonsensical dose of wishful thinking.

Not today.

Today, the groundhog did not see his shadow.

Spring is soon.

With all this snow covering the ground and seeming to crush away even the faintest traces of life, I'm willing to turn a blind eye to the foolishness.

Maybe it's spring fever. Snow sickness. Whatever name you wish to give it, whatever title it has inherited...'s real. And I have it.

I ache for the whisper of warm breezes over my face.

My heart yearns for the scent of cherry blossoms, and for the ability to drive down green lanes with the car windows rolled down, singing aloud to the lilting melody of Ingrid Michaelson or Imogen Heap.

My nose twitches for the scent of fresh-mowed grass and dark fresh potting soil.

I want to snow to melt. I want the white to disappear.

I want the green to appear.

I want the curious heads of tulips to peep through the moist earth.

It's coming soon.

I believe in springtime shadows.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011


In the coldest February, as in every other month in every other year, the best thing to hold on to in this world is each other. ~Linda Ellerbee

There's something oddly magical about this month.

Maybe it's something about the length...

...the magic of how all the other months are held in a strict requirement of days, while in this month, time rebels and the month makes up it's own mind as to how long it will be this time around.

Maybe it's the cold...

...the point in the winter season that the winter seems to grip the hardest, sending the world into a shimmer of whirling white, as though trapping it in a icy snow-globe.

Maybe it's the romance...

...something about the impending whisper of Valentine's Day that transforms every lover's heart, weaving some sort of delicate spell and slipping stars into their eyes.

Maybe it's the magic of the second month. The point where we all begin to breathe...begin to believe that maybe...just maybe...this year won't hurt as much.

...won't be as hard....

...does February give us hope?

Or is this just wishful thinking in the heart of a dreamy poet with her head in the clouds and her heart sewn to her sleeve?

I guess we'll see.

Over the next twenty-eight days, I will seek to write on this blog every day. Again, it must be the magic of the month. Who knows what I'll discover...what treasures I'll uncover or what secrets will unveil themselves...

...February, spin your spell over me.
Ignite the poet in me.

Cast your shadow, long or short.

I'm curious now...