Inspiration, poetry

#SundayShares: Photos, Prose, Poetry

Photo by Skyler Ewing on

During the week, I often come across poetry, a bit of writing, and/or a photo that gives me pause in a satisfying way where I reconnect with the present. I’d like to share these moments with you.

Last week I went on a cruise with my mother. Fun cruise (but I will post about that in the newsletter). Oddly, we had two butterflies greet us. Strange because one time we were in the middle of the ocean and the other when we disembarked in Cabo San Lucas.

Immediately, I had a sense of who had visited us. I say “who” because, in the Mexican tradition, many believe a butterfly represents the souls of their ancestors. All week, I came across items having to do with butterflies, so they are my #SundayShare.

The Monarch Butterfly Count:

Every November, the butterflies migrate from the chilly north along the West Coast to Baja California, over 2,000 miles.

The year 2020 was bad news for the Monarch population. The population had significantly declined.

In California, volunteers from the Monarch Joint Venture project get together to count the Monarch, and they’ve done this since 1997. If you’ve ever been to Pacific Grove, California (outside Monterrey), you may have visited the Monarch Butterfly Sanctuary. My daughter and I visited three years ago and promised to return.

Last year, the butterflies had a comeback, with over 250,000 Monarchs counted.

The counting started this year on Oct. 21st, and the population is on the upswing compared to 2021. So far, they’re rebounding. I find this inspiring and hopeful.

Balm in Gilead


“Is there no balm in Gilead?” So cries

dour Jeremiah in granite tones.

“There is a balm in Gilead,” replies

a Negro spiritual. The baritone

who chants it, leaning forward on the platform,

looks up, not knowing his voice is a rainstorm

that rinses air to reveal earth’s surprises.

Today, the summer gone, four monarch butterflies,

their breed’s survivors, sucked a flower’s last blooms,

opened their wings, orange-and-black stained glass,

and printed on the sky in zigzag lines,

watch bright things rise: winter moons, the white undersides

of a California condor, once thought doomed,

now flapping wide like the first bird from ashes.

Have a wonder-filled week. Sign up for the monthly newsletter, which arrives on the fourth Saturday.

Soon, I’ll receive advanced reader copies (ARC) of my debut novel, THE GARDEN OF SECOND CHANCES. Subscribers will have the first chance at a giveaway, using a random generator, for an ARC. I’ll mail this to the winner, if within the USA.

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