Category Archives: Poetry

Celebrating the gift of trees…

with many thanks to the people of Japan for their gift of friendship in 1912 of 3,020 cherry trees to the people of the United States

Tidal Basin Washington Monument

it is not difficult to understand why flowering cherry trees called “Sakura” in Japan are highly exalted and cherished…

Floating reflected blossoms

thanks also to all those that have worked over the years to preserve and protect the cherry blossom trees here Washington, D C…

Sunrise silhouettes tidal basin

the delicate blossoms are a good reminder for us to appreciate what is…

BLUE sky blossom closeup

the blooms are fleeting and last only about two weeks at the very most and that is if no harsh rain or wind storms hasten their demise…

Parasol Patty

for many years now people have flocked to the United States capital to enjoy the beauty of the blossoms along with the magical fairyland that they create…

12 April 2014 JJJ Cherry Blossoms

our strategy this year was arriving at 6:30 am just before sunrise when the crowds are a little lighter than in the middle of the day…

Cherry Blossom Shade Quote

before we knew it three hours had passed and we had walked all around the Tidal Basin enjoying some monuments along the way…

Tidal Basin Jim and Patty 2014

this rite of spring has coincided with the blooming bluebells usually on time for our 11 April wedding anniversary for some years now…

Sakura Traveling Tea Cup

this is the fourth year that our traveling tea cup has made the trip to visit the Tidal Basin in Washington…

Washington DC Cherry Blossoms

March 2011 was when I first had the idea for a traveling tea cup (more on that another time)…

Cherry Blossom Beauty 2014

I will be a bit scarce in blogland but did want to join in with Bleubeard and Elizabeth to wish you a Happy T Day

Martin Luther King Jr Memorial

The light filling the air

is so mild this spring day

only the cherry blossoms

keep falling in hast—

why is that so?

 Ki no Tomonori (c.850-c.904)

an early Valentine…

part of a class assignment in Misty Mawn’s FULL CIRCLE Workshop was to create a “day in the life” photo collage and poem…

Pin cushion I made for my Mom

photos are something I enjoy taking each and every day but releasing words and emotions can be a bit more challenging…


on an icy day recently I snapped lots of photos using my favorite Pixlr along with Misty’s generous class instructions to make a collage/mosaic…

Lady Love

the heart in the center below was created out on our back porch in January when our weather went from very cold to much much warmer in an instant steaming up a mirror…

Happy Birthday in Heaven Sweet Alexander

 I lit a candle and wrote a little Love note to our son Alex

Heart for U

wishing you and yours a lovely Valentine’s Day and may each and every day be filled with L♥ve Sweet L♥ve…

“chipped and broken 
this heart anchors me in ice

warmed by L♥ve
my frozen fears turn into dust

to shine and glow 

~Patty Szymkowicz

*please send healing prayers and get well wishes to a most beloved artist and blog friend Dorthe Hansen*


thought I’d take you traveling for tea today since my thoughts seem to keep going back to our recent getaway…

SLO stands for San Luis Obispo

I did a Silent Sunday post that showed a few photos of this neat town here

we had a lay over in San Francisco and boarded a small 30 seat propeller plane to continue our journey a little further down the California coast…

there was plenty of time on our stopover to get a loaf of our favorite Boudin’s sour dough bread…

landing at San Luis Obispo airport helped trim about four hours of driving time which was most welcome after traveling the skies all day from Virginia…

we found their one baggage claim carousel a pleasant surprise…

SLO was cited as one of this country’s happiest places by the Oprah Winfrey Show…

home of Cal Poly

we began and ended our California getaway there…

a fun little college town with nice shops and a creek running through it…

we stumbled quite by chance on gum alley…

very interesting…

we did a walk by and kept our distance with no urge to actually walk down the alley…

if I haven’t grossed you out too much let’s keep walking and visit Kreuzberg’s Coffeehouse and Books

I had a nice refreshing Kombucha and Mr Magpie had a cappucino

Loved the lamps hung upside down from the ceiling and the perfect coffee house atmosphere…

We write our epitaphs on walls with gum,
And though it may be meaningless to some,
We have a symbol of our gummy youth,
Whose walls may not tell some glorious truth,
But eloquently speak of better times,
Of cruising, shopping sprees, and nursery rhymes.
If gum is all you see upon our wall,
Your mind is closed, your spirit shrunk and small,
Though memories of youth may never last,
Gum Alley is our present to our past.” ~”M”, Arroyo Grande

well alrighty then…

wishing you all a very Happy T Tuesday

I am still finding reentry back into “real” life pretty challenging on several fronts…sigh 🙂

local “what do U see” swap: cheery mariners

Lisa Murphy really charmed me this month by her use of lots of the ingredients I provided below…

each package came with a different boy image…

Lisa made the little sailor a sailboat using the teabag as a sail…her use of the swirls in the lace for waves is really inspired too…

the tiny words at the top of the tin are cut from a Yogi tea tag…a different one provided for each package:

“We can keep peace of mind from the steady shining sun”…

her perfect poem by Park Benjamin helped set the scene for my kipper tin so sweetly…

my local artsy friends in this swap like to wait for the boys in the images I provided to speak to them

I certainly am enjoying what they have to say!

Pick a Letter

the challenge over at Wednesday Stamper this week is to use a letter of the alphabet as inspiration in what you create …

my creativity is a bit flat just now …

another part of my challenge was to get a true photo of my postcard…

the closeup above is a photograph…

below is a scanned photo that you can click for a closer look at the layers…

I did have this postcard in the works on my work table and was able to add the She along with some additional color/shading/stamping and more …

all are welcome to join in the Wednesday Stamper challenges…the only “rule” is that you use at least one rubber stamp in what you make…

S is for …she …sacred …silence …simple …strong… swan… silver… soft… sad… sea… shabby… soothing… spirit… sun… surreal… sparrow… San Francisco… Switzerland… spin… sparkle… sentimental… shadows… seasons… surrender… Spring…

“A letter is an indivisible sound
That is fit for writing;
A letter, to define it better,
Is the smallest part of a composite sound.”~Gulheim Molinier

Leave Your Sleep

Leave Your Sleep is the name of  Natalie Merchant’s newest studio album … some may remember her from 10,000 Maniacs (1981-1993)

CD Cover

Ophelia (1998-1999) is a favorite CD of mine

special friends, Debbie and Dave, treated us to a magical evening … we had a lovely meal before the show and then the entertainment which was sponsored by the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington DC

interesting to note Natalie Merchant had been touring since she was seventeen … around age forty she was ready to settle down and she became a mother ….

that is when she began to set poetry, nursery rhymes and lullabies to music … five years later … with over 130 musicians involved in creating the two disk album … chamber orchestras and bands including jazz, Celtic, Cajun, Balkan Folk and more spanned the Victorian age through the 1950’s

authors include Ogden Nash, e.e. cummings, Mother Goose, Robert Louis Stevenson, Christina Rossetti … to name just a few

this performance was a sampling from the 26 song CD set … with Natalie Merchant … two guitarists and a cello player

no photographs allowed (drat)

she shared interesting facts about each author showing photos on a screen behind her on stage … creating a unique connection between the poet’s lives … their work … and her music

definitely an evening we will always remember!

if you would like to learn more about this  brilliant collaboration here is a nice interview to get you started

“Be true to yourself, and, um, don’t worry about some large companies’ quarterly profit index.” ~Natalie Merchant

footnote: feeling so inspired I created a quick collage

using fabric from a vintage dress … some of Michelle’s precious lace bits and torn peeled napkin

my collage fits nicely in this weeks’ Three Muses “Music Music Music”  challenge

hard to get enough of Ms. Natalie Merchant

* Heart U *

“A hopeful heart

– handing out illusions –

Worn atop a satin sleeve;

Naivety was dripping out delusions – …” ~Mark R Slaughter

much “L”ove to you and you and you and a song for you!

“Only do what your heart tells you” ~Princess Diana (1961-1997)

your Birth Day

 well meaning and lovely people have often said  ” celebrate his life … bake a cake … he would want you to be happy …”


I am still here … doing the best I can … just not feeling ready to bake that cake … quite yet

*thanks once again to ACF for the lovely lady image and to Michelle for the gorgeous lace*

Your Birth Day by Sandy Goodman

there were tears
sad thoughts
long sighs
and a bleakness
i had not visited in a while
your grave was cold
the rose beside your rock dead and brittle
bubbles meant to send love your way
and useless
But today,
one day closer
the sun shines timidly
and I pull my thoughts
out of myself
and share them with those who know
i light candles
say your name
touch your picture
your silly grin warms the chill
i will find my way
around the fear
and come to the place
where I can celebrate your first breath
rather than mourn
your last.
Written by  ~ Sandy Goodman

remembering our Dear Alex today and every day

a happy boy on a Thanksgiving day many years ago on Skyline Drive

this priceless canvas from Bags of Love is the first thing I see each morning … sweet memories … it is no wonder I Love snow and the color blue…

Happy Birthday Precious  One … Ich Liebe Dich fur immer und immer   OXOXOXOO

Winter Morning

By Mother Nature and Ogden Nash

“Winter is the king of showmen

Turning tree stumps into snow men

And houses into birthday cakes

And spreading sugar over lakes

Smooth and clean and frosty white

The world looks good enough to bite

That’s the season to be young

Catching snowflakes on your tongue

Snow is snowy when it’s snowing

I’m sorry it’s slushy when it’s going”

Winter Morning Poem by Ogden Nash

we’ve been hit with snow again here in the Washington DC area  … snow on snow … with more on the way this weekend … the photos with the yellow glow are ones I took at midnight last night … I like the way they are not quite in focus … it certainly is a winter wonderland … a winter to remember … we never have this many snow events all in a row (more than 24 inches already this winter) … never say never … Enjoy * Enjoy

just Tea

I cannot sit and chat with you,
the way I’d like to do.
So brew yourself a cup of tea,
I’ll think of you, you think of me.
source unknown

Happy Tea Tuesday!

Ring out the old, ring in the new

“Ring out, wild bells, to the wild sky,
The flying cloud, the frosty light;
The year is dying in the night;
Ring out, wild bells, and let him die.

Ring out the old, ring in the new,
Ring, happy bells, across the snow:
The year is going, let him go;
Ring out the false, ring in the true.”
–   Alfred Lord Tennyson, Ring Out, Wild Bells

here is a little New Years Gift for you …a FREE DOWNLOAD for your personal use

this postcard was originally mailed in Columbus, Ohio by Phyllis on 30 December 1909 to Miss Elinor Reynolds in Gainesville, Ohio and it says: “How are you Elinor?             Phyllis”

heartfelt thanks to each of you for visiting my Magpie’s Nest in 2009!

for each ending there is a new beginning … here’s to a wonderful 2010

May this New Year hold all that you hope for and more!

Brightest of Blessings All Ways


Worldwide Candle Lighting*7pm*13 December

Light a candle at 7pm in your time zone to remember the children … details here

Wounded Holidays

by Alan Harris

Dedicated to the Compassionate Friends
and all who are grieving the loss of a child

Young, they left our homes.
In a moment, long or quick,
they were gone.

Dewdrops turned into teardrops,
the shining sea too small
to hold our grief.

“Give us our children back,” we pled
as we noticed their plateless places
at the table.

Regret made a river through our days,
tempering laughter,
pervading sudden silences.

Bodies they had through us, with us–
bodies housing minds and souls–
no longer.

The holiday season’s return
makes throb now the wounds
we felt at their parting,

wounds which may heal
in time, we hope,
into strength–

but not yet, in this season
of snowflakes that sting and cookies
that somehow taste of vinegar.

“If only,” goes our carol.
If only they could return to us–
but no.

If only
we could speak with them–
but no.

If only we could love them
so intensely that they could
feel our presence right now–

but yes, yes to this one,
a thousand yesses–
they can.

How can they not feel our love,
being core in core with us,
heart in heart?

We give love this season to them and
to each other as plundered parents
and wounded healers.

With love flowing, something in our lives–
a magnificent, mysterious Something–
guides us like a star.

Moss by Hilda Conkling

1-march-poetry-collage1Here is my collage for the Paper Whimsy Poetry challenge, the lovely poem by Hilda Conkling was the inspiration, along with a special collage sheet provided by Gale


Imagine a young girl (between the ages of 4 and 10) spouting forth lovely poetry like this

Hilda’s mother recorded her words for her