It’s so good to be walking in the park after what seems like a long winter. With each walk, I notice the subtle springtime changes. Buds turn to leaves or flowers, birds are chirping happily, and the peepers are peeping loudly. Below are some of the wildflowers, blooming bulbs and weeds that I saw today. Each is beautiful.
Choosing a Path
Each time I drive the three miles to Pope Lick I realize how fortunate I am to live so close to the park. Every neighborhood should have such a place where young families, runners, bikers, and seniors can explore.
My biggest decision each trip is which path to take, just like in life itself.
“I see my path, but I don’t know where it leads. Not knowing where I’m going is what inspires me to travel it.” Rosalia de Castro
I’ve never been a poet in any sense of the word, but once in a while, I do write something that I call poetry. I’m sure that you do as well. It can be a few simple lines but it means something to you and you write it down to preserve and to perhaps share with others. I also like to read poetry blogs and there are a few that I follow. One is sentimental, another is harsh revealing pain and turmoil. Each is a glimpse into someone’s life and if you are interested, let me know and I’ll provide links.
Sometimes we make things harder than they need to be. Poems don’t have to rhyme for our purposes. Just write and don’t think about those terms you learned in school such as “couplet” or “stanza” that may keep us mute. If you insist on being a proper poet, i.e. being further intimidated, go ahead and check out this site with 37 poetry terms such as “hendecasyllable.” http://www.writersdigest.com/whats-new/common-poetry-terms.
Recently a friend gave me a book containing poems written by Matthew J.T. Stepanek, a big name for a small boy called “Mattie.” I vaguely remembered hearing of this child several years ago, but I had no idea of the extent of his talent and his insight. Perhaps you are familiar but if not you may learn about his amazing life here (or just Google his name). https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mattie_Stepanek
In the book given to me, Hope through Heartsongs written by Mattie, my favorite poem is entitled “Hope for Life’s Journey.”
I'd like to see what's down every road.
I'd like to travel across
Every highway and every byway.
I'd like to explore
Every mountain pass and every sandy trail.
I'd like to follow
Every straight route and every winding path.
I'd like to understand
From where all things come,
And to what all things are destined.
Even though I am sure of my lesson-
That we are all hoping to the same place-
I'd like to take the time
To travel and explore and follow,
So that I can really see and understand
What's down every road.
Hope for Life’s Journey written by Matthew J. T. Stepanek (1990-2004) in August 2001
Do you have Mattie’s curiosity for what is down every road, every path? If so please don’t wait. Plans are important, dreams are great . . . but without action, they remain just that. To make them reality we must exert an effort, we must act, we must step out. Who knows where those roads and paths will take us until we travel them? As Robert Frost said, “Two roads diverged in a wood, and I — I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference.” Frost had two choices. We live in a world with many more options. We have access to superhighways, shipping channels, airlines and global destinations. There are far more than we can ever choose, but would it not be a shame if we took the same ones day after day and then finally one day left behind feeble plans and faded dreams that went nowhere?
Some of the paths I’ve chosen to follow and explore recently.