Hello – this is Kristie. I get to hijack the blog again!
I think one of the reasons I’m so excited to initiate the upcoming beginner’s course with Bill is to have another mode of expression for God’s beauty all around me. I try to go on walks everyday, and at times my mind wants so badly to capture what I see, but since I don’t know how to express it with paint yet I write and read poetry instead.
And then it occurred to me how beautiful the combination of art and poetry is and I wanted to share it with you.
I hope you can grab some herbal tea with a tasty scone and sit by a window to enjoy!
Inspiring Poems and Stirring Works of Art
by Peter Ashton
Every outlaw needs a wounded heart
to help him breathe the bitter wind
and roll the passing days
tucked up inside the bosom of the treeline.
Alone with the white water crashing between the boulders,
and deer, licking the dew, at dawn.
Mountains, reclining like empurpled knees against the blue.
Clouds, like sweat-stained, pushed-back hat.
Every outlaw needs a wounded heart
to spin the cylinder of fate around the campfire,
embers from the fire dancing
like the falling sparks of stars.
Alone with a roaring like the furnace of the sun
searing black and dun, scourging the faces, set for a thousand years.
by Kristen Inman
It took an hour or so to reach
The path that wound through the forest
Like a trail of water running through the dry dirt of the corral –
when I accidentally let the trough overflow.
The twists and turns into seemingly unknown encounters
(although I had ridden there hundreds of times)
Carried a danger and a thrill!
Perhaps, like in a movie I’d seen,
I was running for my life from …
…I don’t know if I put a face to them, safer that way.
My champion pole-bending mare would
Take each curve with speed and dexterity, ears flat against her head.
The wind whipped my face causing my eyes to water
Causing my pulse to race
Causing my heart to soar!
Have You Earned Your Tomorrow
by Edgar Guest
Is anybody happier because you passed his way?
Does anyone remember that you spoke to him today?
This day is almost over, and its toiling time is through;
Is there anyone to utter now a kindly word of you?
Did you give a cheerful greeting to the friend who came along?
Or a churlish sort of “Howdy” and then vanish in the throng?
Were you selfish pure and simple as you rushed along the way,
Or is someone mighty grateful for a deed you did today?
Can you say tonight, in parting with the day that’s slipping fast,
That you helped a single brother of the many that you passed?
Is a single heart rejoicing over what you did or said;
Does a man whose hopes were fading now with courage look ahead?
Did you waste the day, or lose it, was it well or sorely spent?
Did you leave a trail of kindness or a scar of discontent?
As you close your eyes in slumber do you think that God would say,
You have earned one more tomorrow by the work you did today?
by Kristen Inman
We’ve strolled hand in hand
Child-like wonder at God’s creations
Inscribed across our faces.
We stop, you study, I smell,
you photograph, I wonder,
You touch, I sit and wait.
I sit and wait and allow
you to assimilate
what you are seeing.
I know it takes more than just looking, you need to
Imprint the scene, the feelings,
Because it’s more than simple colors and shadows
You will replicate later,
It’s the entireness of it all.
Can You Sing a Song?
Can you sing a song to greet the sun,
Can you cheerily tackle the work to be done,
Can you vision it finished when only begun,
Can you sing a song?
Can you sing a song when the day’s half through,
When even the thought of the rest wearies you,
With so little done and so much to do,
Can you sing a song?
Can you sing a song at the close of the day,
When weary and tired, the work’s put away,
With the joy that it’s done the best of the pay,
Can you sing a song?
If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too:
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or, being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise;
If you can dream – and not make dreams your master;
If you can think – and not make thoughts your aim,
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same:.
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build’em up with worn-out tools;
If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings,
And never breathe a word about your loss:
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: “Hold on!”
If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with Kings – nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much:
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And – which is more – you’ll be a Man, my son!
There is a pleasure in the pathless woods
from Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage, Canto the Fourth, Verse 178
by George Gordon (Lord Byron)
There is a pleasure in the pathless woods,
There is a rapture on the lonely shore,
There is society where none intrudes,
By the deep Sea, and music in its roar:
I love not Man the less, but Nature more,
From these our interviews, in which I steal
From all I may be, or have been before,
To mingle with the Universe, and feel
What I can ne’er express, yet cannot all conceal.
by Kristen Inman
Old San Isabel road – you gave me so much.
I’ve walked you with friends as we prepared for a half marathon
Stopping at the café on the lake for pie as a reward for making it.
I’ve ridden my horses through your lush fields
And runners of grass and wild flower
snaking between the groves of Aspens.
I don’t think there’s a foot of you we haven’t stopped on for some reason:
Collecting slate rock for home improvements,
Photos – oh so many photos!
Searching for that turnoff that seems to move and hide
Like platform 9 & ¾
We never see it until we’re on it.
Waiting for the fat deer to strut across
Showing off their sleek summer coats and furry racks.
Or spotting bear lumbering in and out of view.
You may have loosened my fillings with your washboards
And you may have left a coat of dust on my van,
But I feel like you’re my secret
And I visit you in my dreams.
The Road Not Taken
by Robert Frost
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
Lines Composed a Few Miles above Tintern Abbey, On Revisiting the Banks of the Wye during a Tour. July 13, 1798
Five years have past; five summers, with the length
Of five long winters! and again I hear
These waters, rolling from their mountain-springs
With a soft inland murmur.—Once again
Do I behold these steep and lofty cliffs,
That on a wild secluded scene impress
Thoughts of more deep seclusion; and connect
The landscape with the quiet of the sky.
The day is come when I again repose
Here, under this dark sycamore, and view
These plots of cottage-ground, these orchard-tufts,
Which at this season, with their unripe fruits,
Are clad in one green hue, and lose themselves
‘Mid groves and copses. Once again I see
These hedge-rows, hardly hedge-rows, little lines
Of sportive wood run wild: these pastoral farms,
Green to the very door; and wreaths of smoke
Sent up, in silence, from among the trees!
With some uncertain notice, as might seem
Of vagrant dwellers in the houseless woods,
Or of some Hermit’s cave, where by his fire
The Hermit sits alone.
These beauteous forms,
Through a long absence, have not been to me
As is a landscape to a blind man’s eye:
But oft, in lonely rooms, and ‘mid the din
Of towns and cities, I have owed to them,
In hours of weariness, sensations sweet,
Felt in the blood, and felt along the heart;
And passing even into my purer mind
With tranquil restoration:—feelings too
Of unremembered pleasure: such, perhaps,
As have no slight or trivial influence
On that best portion of a good man’s life,
His little, nameless, unremembered, acts
Of kindness and of love. Nor less, I trust,
To them I may have owed another gift,
Of aspect more sublime; that blessed mood,
In which the burthen of the mystery,
In which the heavy and the weary weight
Of all this unintelligible world,
Is lightened:—that serene and blessed mood,
In which the affections gently lead us on,—
Until, the breath of this corporeal frame
And even the motion of our human blood
Almost suspended, we are laid asleep
In body, and become a living soul:
While with an eye made quiet by the power
Of harmony, and the deep power of joy,
We see into the life of things.
Be but a vain belief, yet, oh! how oft—
In darkness and amid the many shapes
Of joyless daylight; when the fretful stir
Unprofitable, and the fever of the world,
Have hung upon the beatings of my heart—
How oft, in spirit, have I turned to thee,
O sylvan Wye! thou wanderer thro’ the woods,
How often has my spirit turned to thee!
And now, with gleams of half-extinguished thought,
With many recognitions dim and faint,
And somewhat of a sad perplexity,
The picture of the mind revives again:
While here I stand, not only with the sense
Of present pleasure, but with pleasing thoughts
That in this moment there is life and food
For future years. And so I dare to hope,
Though changed, no doubt, from what I was when first
I came among these hills; when like a roe
I bounded o’er the mountains, by the sides
Of the deep rivers, and the lonely streams,
Wherever nature led: more like a man
Flying from something that he dreads, than one
Who sought the thing he loved. For nature then
(The coarser pleasures of my boyish days
And their glad animal movements all gone by)
To me was all in all.—I cannot paint
What then I was. The sounding cataract
Haunted me like a passion: the tall rock,
The mountain, and the deep and gloomy wood,
Their colours and their forms, were then to me
An appetite; a feeling and a love,
That had no need of a remoter charm,
By thought supplied, not any interest
Unborrowed from the eye.
That time is past,
And all its aching joys are now no more,
And all its dizzy raptures. Not for this
Faint I, nor mourn nor murmur; other gifts
Have followed; for such loss, I would believe,
Abundant recompense. For I have learned
To look on nature, not as in the hour
Of thoughtless youth; but hearing oftentimes
The still sad music of humanity,
Nor harsh nor grating, though of ample power
To chasten and subdue.—And I have felt
A presence that disturbs me with the joy
Of elevated thoughts; a sense sublime
Of something far more deeply interfused,
Whose dwelling is the light of setting suns,
And the round ocean and the living air,
And the blue sky, and in the mind of man:
A motion and a spirit, that impels
All thinking things, all objects of all thought,
And rolls through all things. Therefore am I still
A lover of the meadows and the woods
And mountains; and of all that we behold
From this green earth; of all the mighty world
Of eye, and ear,—both what they half create,
And what perceive; well pleased to recognise
In nature and the language of the sense
The anchor of my purest thoughts, the nurse,
The guide, the guardian of my heart, and soul
Of all my moral being.
If I were not thus taught, should I the more
Suffer my genial spirits to decay:
For thou art with me here upon the banks
Of this fair river; thou my dearest Friend,
My dear, dear Friend; and in thy voice I catch
The language of my former heart, and read
My former pleasures in the shooting lights
Of thy wild eyes. Oh! yet a little while
May I behold in thee what I was once,
My dear, dear Sister! and this prayer I make,
Knowing that Nature never did betray
The heart that loved her; ’tis her privilege,
Through all the years of this our life, to lead
From joy to joy: for she can so inform
The mind that is within us, so impress
With quietness and beauty, and so feed
With lofty thoughts, that neither evil tongues,
Rash judgments, nor the sneers of selfish men,
Nor greetings where no kindness is, nor all
The dreary intercourse of daily life,
Shall e’er prevail against us, or disturb
Our cheerful faith, that all which we behold
Is full of blessings. Therefore let the moon
Shine on thee in thy solitary walk;
And let the misty mountain-winds be free
To blow against thee: and, in after years,
When these wild ecstasies shall be matured
Into a sober pleasure; when thy mind
Shall be a mansion for all lovely forms,
Thy memory be as a dwelling-place
For all sweet sounds and harmonies; oh! then,
If solitude, or fear, or pain, or grief,
Should be thy portion, with what healing thoughts
Of tender joy wilt thou remember me,
And these my exhortations! Nor, perchance—
If I should be where I no more can hear
Thy voice, nor catch from thy wild eyes these gleams
Of past existence—wilt thou then forget
That on the banks of this delightful stream
We stood together; and that I, so long
A worshipper of Nature, hither came
Unwearied in that service: rather say
With warmer love—oh! with far deeper zeal
Of holier love. Nor wilt thou then forget,
That after many wanderings, many years
Of absence, these steep woods and lofty cliffs,
And this green pastoral landscape, were to me
More dear, both for themselves and for thy sake!
Early One Morning
by Kristen Inman
The youth of early autumn.
Trees are still decent – modest in their attire.
Colors not yet diminishing.
Summer heat still has partial hold, at least throughout the daylight hours.
Energy is created as the leaves applaud the season
and bold squirrels scamper about
playing tag with their shadows.
I can almost hear the forest say,
“I don’t feel like I’m in autumn.”
Still strong and colorful and not yet tasted the first bite of frost.
by Kristen Inman
I once stood center stage as Golde, singing the poignant words: “Sunrise, Sunset”
Of course, I feel the day is never too short
when my feet find their way out
from the soft duvet
to the carpet below.
But thoughts change around lunch time
When I realize the day is half gone
and I have not gotten much done
except for breakfast made.
The spring frosts and intermittent snows
Tell me I have time to start my garden
Then there’s always the farmer’s market.
Balancing in tree pose
Hands at heart center
Can be tricky
When the planet is whirling 1000 miles per hour.
A few memories suspend themselves –
hovering while we move along like ants,
When we kissed for the first time
When I knew I was going to die on the road.
Each offering a view
For anyone interested in taking the time
To look outside.
by Kristen Inman
You did so much for us!
You believed marrying an artist wasn’t throwing my life away.
You were so happy this country girl was involved in something with dignity and class.
You beamed with pride at gallery openings and mingled with the best of them.
You encouraged your friends and neighbors to buy a Bill Inman original,
work from an “Up and Coming Artist”!
We gave you paintings now and then, this was your favorite.
When I look on it I see the white brick wall that was its home,
I smell the savory kitchen smells mixed with fresh lilacs from your back yard.
I feel the bristling heat that made cactus so happy on your bluff, and your grass always dead by July.
I’m sure you look upon us from whatever views are allowed in the next realm
And exclaim to those around you, “You should see them now!”.