Haiku Series #66 (Life)

Daily Changes

Coronavirus

Learning to adapt each day—

World paradigm shift

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Experience Counts

Cleaning and cooking

Being a baby boomer—

Fatherhood training

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Not Now

Muddy, rain-soaked road

Destination now delayed—

Changing a flat tire

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From My Journal

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From Big Sky Buckeye

We are thankful for a God who knows everything.  He offers peace when darkness covers us.  His light shows us His way.

Do you write a daily journal?  This inspiring thought comes from my journal, and much of what is written in my journal comes from reading and commenting on other bloggers’ posts.  Thanks to many of you for adding so much to my journal.

(Updated March 28)

Quietness Speaks

I took a recent neighborhood walk, and the surroundings were definitely not the norm.  Quiet streets and hardly anyone outside on a gloomy, spring afternoon.  I crossed a busy road, without the usual volume of traffic.  The entire experience brought many thoughts to mind, some of which found their way into this poem.

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Morning rush traffic, missing in action

Downtown streets resemble empty ghost towns

All of this, most unusual for many

Life experiencing major breakdowns

 

Atmosphere of dark, winter gloom arrives

Quiet neighborhood lanes, filled with stillness

Sheltered-in-place covers the entire land

Fear and panic, with visions of illness

 

Households, overflowing with family

Quite unique for a midweek afternoon

Only essential employees at work

Life differs from a “Charlie Brown” cartoon

 

Spring’s portraits and sounds, arriving on schedule

Trees bud out, grass turning green, robins sing

God’s creation reminds us, He is near

His steadfast, faithful hope shall always ring

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From Lamentations 3:21-23:  “But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope:  The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, His mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness.”

Life Looks Back

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Dusty top of the kitchen fridge

No worries about cleaning

Unless . . .

Taller guests come to play bridge

 

Windshield wipers, broken and worn

Needing to be replaced

But never . . .

Attempt when rain becomes airborne

 

Congested and overmatched table

Keeping life healthy and in order

Looking like . . .

Walgreens, filled with pill labels

 

Remembering school days past

Time to take another test

Pausing . . .

Hoping the “ditto” smell will last

 

Self-driving cars, soon to be the craze

Sitting in one, with perplexed look

Pondering . . .

Will the back seat driver be unfazed?

 

Raiding the freezer for a midnight snack

Hunger disrupts blissful sleep

What’s this . . .

Cookie Dough ice cream has been hijacked

 

Installing a terrific app on her “hip” phone

Grandson helps his Grandma out

Meanwhile . . .

With his flip phone, Grandpa feels quite alone

 

Finding a parking spot is tonight’s mission

Free valet parking

Guaranteed . . .

When you drive a manual transmission

 

So many toilet paper choices and sizes

What ever happened to having just one?

Confusing . . .

Mega and Super Mega waiting in disguise

 

Enjoying a late night film on television

Fearful of falling asleep

Always prepared . . .

Setting an alarm, allows for night vision

 

Reading and proofreading, reading once more

Retired English teacher

Never satisfied . . .

Writing a “perfect” text with words to adore

 

If you have enjoyed this bit of fun

Wait for the next round

When . . .

Doughnuts and coffee for everyone

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Monday Memories: Poet’s Last Wish

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Sitting alone at my trusty writing table once again

Wondering where the creative images have been

 

Touching the early morning peace and stillness

Writing with inspiring words, filled with richness

 

Crafting poetry, a pleasing journey to thrill

Seeking new ideas for a blank sheet to fill

 

Smiling as my loyal pen walks with haste

Hoping these words provide a rich taste

 

Dreaming of writing a poem that’s a big hit

Understanding that many will be left adrift

 

Pausing to think of outstanding poetry awards

Knowing that finishing may be my only reward

 

Finding more ambition from the morning light

Feeling my mind beginning to take long flight

 

Adding to a poem line by thoughtful line

Relishing the energy my words will find

 

Nearing the end of my writing journey, years from now

Looking back at my poetry, and taking a last, final bow

 

Realizing that long after I have left and been gone

Appreciating others reading my words, like a song

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Welcome to the Gallery

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The village of Oxford offers a unique bed and breakfast experience on Maryland’s Eastern Shore.  The Oxford Inn combines warm hospitality, charming and simple rooms, and a delicious breakfast menu.  A limited dinner menu is usually available on certain nights of the week.

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A view up one of the peaks at Big Sky Resort in Montana.  Big Sky offers impressive skiing conditions, and it rates as one of top skiing destinations in the U.S.

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A restored car from yesteryear proudly shows off in the annual Labor Day Parade in Pickerington, Ohio.

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Welcome to a Bozeman tradition, and one of Montana’s treasures.  The small sandwich shop on the right is the Pickle Barrel, famous for its delicious sub sandwiches.  This building used to be a barber shop before being renovated into a sandwich shop in 1974.  The shop is located on West College Street across from Montana State University.  If you visit, remember to retrieve a fresh pickle from the pickle barrel.  Your sandwich will thank you.

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An early morning sunrise awakens around a farm in central Ohio.

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From an overlook along Interstate 68, one finds an impressive view of the Youghiogheny River, which creates a natural border between West Virginia and Maryland.

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A picturesque Montana scene as the Yellowstone River flows eastward with a background of trees, hillsides, and mountains.

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Near Westerville, the Hoover Dam provides the city of Columbus, Ohio and surrounding communities with much of their water supply.  Completed in 1955, the Hoover Reservoir uses the water from Big Walnut Creek for a multitude of recreational opportunities as well.

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The Madison River canyon is the site of a major earthquake which occurred  in the Hebgen Lake area on a quiet summer evening in August, 1959.  Pictured on the other side of the highway, one can still see the scar left on the mountainside when a quake-induced landslide tore away the face of the mountain.

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Foggy conditions surround the giant sycamore tree at Walnut Woods Metro Park in central Ohio.  This is one of my favorite places to walk, and adding fog to the mystery of the park is a welcome opportunity for my camera to capture.

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A unique summer moment is captured with a praying mantis who is enjoying the sun while resting on the door of my automobile.

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Long Wharf along the Choptank River at Cambridge, Maryland offers a fascinating bit of history.  Pictured is the FDR Smokestack Memorial, and it is the honored resting place for one of the actual smokestacks from President Franklin Roosevelt’s Presidential yacht, the USS Potomac.  The ship was equipped with two smokestacks, but one was covertly converted into a simple elevator to allow FDR (stricken with polio) to move his wheelchair between decks.

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What do you think?  Does this rebuilt cabin look ready for use?  At least, there is a small pile of firewood  and useful work table outside.  The roof may need some work before the next rain.  This scene was captured in Nevada City, Montana  (located a “gold nuggets” throw away from its larger sister community of Virginia City in history-rich Madison County).

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An early fall setting is captured at central Ohio’s Chestnut Ridge Metro Park.  The landscape colors are beginning to change as images of the sky’s clouds reflect in the pond.

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A peaceful and tranquil Hebgen Lake is captured in the late afternoon.  The lake is created by a dam on the Madison River (dam is pictured in the background).  Hebgen Lake is located in southwestern Montana, not far from Yellowstone National Park.

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Walking along the beach at Ocean City, Maryland and finding an amazing and inspiring sand sculpture.

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Chestnut Ridge Metro Park is one of gems in the park system surrounding Columbus, Ohio.  The distinctive fall colors illustrate a dynamic presentation of God’s creative spirit.

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Viewed from its western face, Sphinx Mountain is a well-known landmark in southwestern Montana’s Madison Range.  With its elevation of 10,840 feet, the mountain brings an imposing presence above the valley below.

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Autumn’s colorful scenery arrives at Walnut Woods Metro Park in central Ohio.

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Southwestern Montana’s landscape offers the diversity of grassy valleys, wandering rivers, tree-lined foothills, and majestic mountains (still with a splash of snow in July).

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An abandoned corn silo stands watch over a corn field which is ready for harvest in central Ohio, just minutes outside of Canal Winchester.

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Following the highway between Ennis, Montana and Hebgen Lake, offers many venues for a photographer’s camera lens to capture.  The entrance to the Mill Creek Ranch offers plenty of contrast with blooming sweet clover along the road along with the Madison Range of mountains in the background.  Notice the snow still clinging to a few of the north-facing slopes (picture was taken in July).

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The rising sun illuminates a small boat checking crab pots (traps) on the Choptank River near Cambridge, Maryland.  (Note:  Maryland is my third home in addition to Montana and Ohio; my wife grew up on Maryland’s beautiful Eastern Shore.)

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Late summer brings bright colors to the wooded areas of nearby parks in central Ohio.

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A walk down the main street of Ennis, in southwestern Montana, offers views of some of the most unique storefronts anywhere.   One can see and feel the passion of the community’s proud heritage and way of life.  

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A peaceful and tranquil garden is found late in the summer in the village of Lithopolis, which is located south of the Columbus, Ohio metro area.

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A drive through the Hysham Hills along Montana’s I-94 offers contrast between the grasslands and ponderosa pines dotting the hillsides.  The ponderosa pine is the state tree of Montana.  This photo was taken about an hour’s drive east of Billings.

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An April view of tranquil surroundings along Walnut Creek in central Ohio.

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Pausing for a moment along Montana’s Madison River (between Ennis and Hebgen Lake), offers a scene of tranquility and beauty.

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A massive American Sycamore tree is framed by surrounding trees at Walnut Woods Metro Park in central Ohio.  The tree may be over a hundred years old, and it is a well-known landmark at the park.

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The massive, concrete spillway of the Fort Peck Dam is pictured, and it is located about three miles from the dam itself.  The dam was constructed between 1933 and 1940, and it is located in northeastern Montana, near the communities of Glasgow and Nashua.  The dam is the largest hydraulically-filled dam in the United States, and the reservoir is the fifth largest man-made lake in the country.

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Growing in Chestnut Ridge Metro Park in central Ohio, many hikers stop and admire this unusually shaped fruit growing above their heads.  The pawpaw tree is a native tree to Ohio, and its fruit is a vital part of the food chain for many types of wildlife.  The fruit offers a unique taste that is somewhere between a mango and a banana.

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Just down the road from Ennis, Montana, visitors will find Virginia City as well as Nevada City.  Both communities contain rich artifacts of history from the gold rush days of the 1860s and 1870s.  This small cabin was probably moved into Nevada City, but it represents some of the housing found during the time period.

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Blooming flowers announce the arrival of spring at Ohio’s Chestnut Ridge Metro Park.

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In downtown Billings,  the unique architecture of the Western Heritage Center stands as witness of the city’s rich and diverse history in the Big Sky Country.  Built in 1901, the structure originally provided a home for the Parmly Billings Memorial Library.

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Nature shows off her green splendor and sends peaceful vibes outward on an early June morning at central Ohio’s Walnut Woods Metro Park.

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The Beartooth Mountains frame the background above a Montana valley.  If one looks closely, snow is still hiding in the upper ridges of the peaks on a mid-summer afternoon.  

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The green, lush vegetation welcomes all to central Ohio’s Chestnut Ridge Metro Park where anyone feels in harmony with God’s creation.

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Visiting a shop in Montana’s historic Virginia City, a person just might happen to find this fine gentleman offering greetings to all who drop in.

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A foggy, misty morning outlines a beautiful framed image of a spider’s web between the posts on the Big Run bridge at central Ohio’s Walnut Woods Metro Park.

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A roadside stop allows a moment to capture the scenic view along Interstate 15 in Montana between Great Falls and Helena.  A highway bridge that was constructed in the 1930s is visible at the bottom of the narrow valley.

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Arrival of flowers marks the return of spring to Ohio’s Chestnut Ridge Metro Park.

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Montana’s Holter Lake offers many types of recreation for anyone with a boat.  A small marina is shown (from the summer of 2018), and the lake is located near the small community of Wolf Creek. 

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The Columbus Zoo and Aquarium is well-known for its outstanding array of wildlife from around the world as well as its animal conservation efforts.  The “Heart of Africa” exhibit displays the African savanna as one might find it . . . filled with village life, giraffes, zebras, and so much more.

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A final look back at winter as shown near Lone Mountain in the Madison Range near Big Sky, Montana.  As one looks at the far peaks in the background, think of the snowmelt that will soon fill the raging whitewater in the Gallatin River.

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Summer shadows greet any walker at central Ohio’s Chestnut Ridge Metro Park.  This photo was taken from a trail through the trees into a grassy meadow.

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This summer garden comes from Billings, Montana at the Moss Mansion, which is an historic house now maintained as a museum.

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With winter fading away in favor of the spring season, thoughts will soon be thinking of beautiful wild flowers and rich green fields.  This photo was taken last summer at Chestnut Ridge Metro Park in central Ohio.

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My youngest daughter and her husband completed a winter hike into Hyalite Canyon south of Bozeman, Montana.  The popular recreation area is located between the Gallatin Canyon and the Paradise Valley.

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The Polar vortex and repeated snowstorms in central Ohio have made the winter of January-February, 2019 one to remember.

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The beauty of western Montana is captured at Holter Lake, near the small town of Wolf Creek.  The lake is a popular summer recreation destination as seen in this photo from late July of 2018.

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These Canadian geese seem immune to the polar vortex and snowfall in central Ohio.

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A February snowstorm moves over the summit of Lone Mountain in southwestern Montana.  The Big Sky Resort occupies the mountain, which is well known for its first-class skiing in the wintertime.  

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Ohio’s winter blankets the ground with a fresh coating of snow.  The Canadian geese on the pond don’t seem to mind winter’s arrival.

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Pioneer Falls in the Spanish Peaks of Montana’s Madison Range is expertly captured by my daughter and her husband on one of their wilderness hikes.

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An early autumn sunset dazzles and amazes as night arrives in central Ohio.

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Central Ohio’s Chestnut Ridge Metro Park in full summer foliage.

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My youngest daughter and her husband are avid skiers.   They took this picture of Blaze Mountain in the Spanish Peaks of the Madison Range of southwestern Montana.  They have skied the backcountry ski line a few times during the summer.  The beautiful and long snowfield fills a small gully that runs down the northwestern face of the mountain.  Skiers have to hike to the snowfield, but for an avid skier, it is well worth the effort.

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A view of downtown Billings, Montana from this past summer.  Notice the smoked-filled sky in the background; the smoke came from fires far from Billings.

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From Walnut Woods Metro Park, the landscape has changed from the bright colors of autumn to the gray and barrenness of the coming winter.

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Summer’s clouds create shadows that cover part of the vast countryside near the Little Bighorn Battlefield in southeastern Montana.

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A nesting pair of Canadian geese prepare to make a new home this past spring.

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Autumn’s leaves have fallen, and winter is on the way at central Ohio’s Chestnut Ridge Metro Park.

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Soon the mountains of the Big Sky Country will be filled with snow just as seen in this scene from last winter near Lone Mountain at Big Sky, Montana.

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An autumn sunrise illuminates the beauty of Ohio’s Walnut Woods Metro Park.

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Ohio’s Chestnut Ridge Metro Park during mid-summer.

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A late July view of the Gallatin Valley, just outside of Bozeman, Montana. 

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The images and traditions prior to the start of an Ohio State University football game.  This photo was taken by my daughter who attended the game with her husband.  

Through Another Lens

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Waking up early on a darkened, rainy morn

Unable to walk, disrupting my usual norm

 

Turning off the news, craving a necessary break

Immersing in other blogs, with their unique take

 

Sharing thoughtful comments, here and there

Always reminded, so many people truly care

 

This stubborn mind stores much, obsolete clutter

Causing my mature engine to cough and sputter

 

Life’s music sometimes offers a stimulating tune

Witnessing other perspectives, into an afternoon

 

Discovering positive discussions, comforting my mind

Challenging me to see, we’ll endure and be just fine

 

Life’s lens sometimes fails, entirely clouded over

Like searching for a four-leaf, in a field of clover

 

As a culture, broadcasting anew from many landscapes

Exchanging ideas, opening our lens to exciting escapes

 

Our Lord, fashioning in us a curious intellect to wear

Stepping out, witnessing life as others wish to share

 

Reading God’s Word, helping to clear the murky view

Seeing life through His lens, aligning honest and true

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