Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Too Early

It’s getting hot
It must be summer-
Though the calendar says it’s not.
The skies are blue,
And grey, and raining.
The flowers are blooming
In my pots.

The birds start singing
Much too early.
The cat says she too
Wants to play.
Stretching, yawning,
Lets get going
It’s a lovely summer day.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Pratt's Story

Snug as a bug in a rug huh! I’m not feeling so snug right now! My people went out and got a bird! A Bird!! What do they go and want a bird for? Nasty smelly things. “Oh he’s so cute! We can name him Timothy!”
Come here Timothy—Have some corn!” “Come over here Timothy, I made a cute little nest for you!” Just look at both of them trying to win his favor. It’s disgusting! They never did that for me. Little do they know the terror they’re in for. Ducks grow up.
Maybe!, Maybe I can talk the cat into doing a fowl deed.
My name is Pratt and this is my home. My family has lived here for generations. We used to hold concerts on warm summer evenings, the breeze blowing over the prairie brought the scent of ripening barley grown for market. A horse whinnying in the next block sang along. Neighborhood dogs took up the melody—and Grayson the hound yodeled the base notes. It’s amazing how noisy a quiet neighborhood can be.
But that was then and now is now and I’m stuck with a duck named Tim.

I liked having the old folks around. Beanie was quiet and hardly noticed me. Gramps just smiled and enjoyed the concert. Mousy used to come out of hiding to watch TV with him. Her favorite was  “The Mickey Mouse Club.” I preferred Pinocchio. But we were definitely three cartoon-loving guys. I miss them. They’re gone now and I have to be careful where I show up. The new folks, the kids ,watch the food channel. Humm! Timothy FlambĂ© has a nice sound.  Maybe I can hold off for a while. If I live that long, I thought. Timothy has been stalking me. This is nothing new. Maya use to do that but now she’s decided to stalk Tim. I’m grateful. Maya was too quiet and almost got me a few times. Lucky for me I know a few hiding places. My cousins and I found them between the hearth bricks before their untimely end. I told them the flames were too high but Shadrack and Meshach were afraid of the cat.

I crawled from under the black and blue quilt where I had been hiding. It’s my favorite place on the couch. It blends so nicely with my natural coloring.  I’m warm, and safely hidden unless someone decides to sit on me. I’ve been nearly squished several times by all the animals’ wandering around this old house. But usually, they rush around blindly and noisily without caring in the least that I was sleeping. They seem only to care about themselves.
I remember the first day the kids brought that ugly bird home. He stood there on the carpet, his beady black eyes glaring down at me, a nasty smirk on his crooked little bill. I could hear him thinking, “Just wait. I rule this roost now, and you are going to go. Heh Heh Heh! I coward in fear and shame.

But I was there to watch his downfall. They tossed him in a tub of water. SQUAK!” he screamed. I could hear the fear in his voice. They were trying to drown him. I perched on my seat ready and waiting. Then he found out he could float. Dang. Foiled again. Now he just looks cute.

This morning I had a new idea. I knew how to take care of Timothy for good. I will drive him insane. I whispered in the boys ear while he was sleeping. “You should call him Henry. Henry is a kingly name for a prince of a duck. He can sit on your shoulder and rule the castle from on high.”
Tonight I will send little messages to the girl. “Timothy, so cute! So sweet! Timothy belongs to you. He’s a girl’s best friend.” 

 I will create discord and confusion. Imagine the duck. Wandering around, Timothy! Henry! Who am I? We can watch him on Dr. Phil, a sad confused duck who doesn’t know where he belongs, who or what he is, the perfect paranoid.

The sun is going down and the stars beginning to twinkle in the dusk. A wild feeling of compulsion is coming over me threatening, overwhelming. I can’t help it I must go  to the rain dampened porch and play.  I raise my leg to the instrument and sing. In the distance I can hear the neighborhood come to life. Just like old times, the music fills the neighborhood. I am lost in the joy and the memories. I don’t notice the stealthy opening of the screen, the quiet clumping of webbed feet.  The horror of the ugly flat bill stretched in his wicked smile descending over my head……..

Can You See The Stars

Can you see the stars?
Will the twinkle of their message
penetrate the night?
For the wonder of their pattern
and the glory of their light
As you go about you business
Living  life from day to day.
As you  choose your daily  action
Letting time get in the way.
As your choices close the doorways
Of the things you could have done
And you see a window opening
When you thought that you had none?
As you look up towards the heavens
And feel the light shine down
I ask you one more question
Can you see the stars?

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Climbing our Mountains

I told my daughter that I was feeling Nimbuscollecti. That’s an odd phrasing for what I was feeling. Where did these words come from? I looked them up in my online dictionary. Nimbus –dark clouds,Collecti, the plural of the masculine colluctus, gathering. All right that was how I was feeling. The dark clouds are gathering. Outside the sky is leaden with black clouds, full of moisture, soon to turn to a flooding of the atmosphere. Inside I too feel the gathering of heavy dark clouds. Something is coming,happening. Will I be able to handle it? I don’t know. I’ll know more Tuesday.
In his conference talk Mountains to Climb this April Henry B. Eyring said,
“If we have faith in Jesus Christ, the hardest as well as the easiest times in life can be a blessing.
I heard President Spencer W.Kimball, in a session of conference; ask that God would give him mountains to climb. He said: “There are great challenges ahead of us, giant opportunities to be met. I welcome that exciting prospect and feel to say to the Lord, humbly,‘Give me this mountain,’ give me these challenges.”

I remember many long years ago when my two oldest children were babies, a woman I knew said she wished she had more trials. Everyone gasped. She continued, saying, During her trials came her greatest humility, the closest she felt to God. It’s true. As I faced my mountains, the deaths of my husband, and then my younger son, there was no one to rely on but my Father in Heaven.
Many people say when they face their trials in life,
“When I have tried all my life to be good, why has this happened to me?”
You know how the Lord answered that question for the Prophet Joseph Smith in his prison cell:
“And if thou shouldst be cast into the pit, or into the hands of murderers, and the sentence of death passed upon thee; if thou be cast into the deep; if the billowing surge conspire against thee; if fierce winds become thine enemy; if the heavens gather blackness, and all the elements combine to hedge up the way; and above all, if the very jaws of hell shall gape open the mouth wide after thee, know thou, my son, that all these things shall give thee experience, and shall be for thy good.”
“The Son of Man hath descended below them all. Art thou greater than he?
“Therefore, hold on thy way, and the priesthood shall remain with thee; for their bounds are set, they cannot pass.Thy days are known, and thy years shall not be numbered less; therefore, fear not what man can do, for God shall be with you forever and ever.”
President Eyring continues, “You and I have faith that the way to rise through and above trials is to believe that there is a “balm in Gilead” and that the Lord has promised,“I will not … forsake thee.” That is what President Thomas S. Monson has taught us to help us and those we serve in what seem lonely and overwhelming trials..”
When hard trials come, the faith to endure them well will be there, built as you may now notice but may have not at the time that you acted on the pure love of Christ, serving and forgiving others as the Savior would have done. You built a foundation of faith from loving as the Savior loved and serving for Him. Your faith in Him led to acts of charity that will bring you hope.
It is never too late to strengthen the foundation of faith. There is always time. With faith in the Savior, you can repent and plead for forgiveness.There is someone you can forgive. There is someone you can thank. There is someone you can serve and lift. You can do it wherever you are and however alone and deserted you may feel.
If we have faith in Jesus Christ, the hardest as well as the easiest times in life can be a blessing. In all conditions, we can choose the right with the guidance of the-spirit. We have the Gospel of Jesus Christ to shape and guide our lives if we choose it. And with prophets revealing to us our place in the plan of salvation, we can live with perfect hope and a feeling of peace. We never need to feel that we are alone or unloved in the Lord’s service because we never are. We can feel the love of God.The Savior has promised angels on our left and our right to bear us up. And He always keeps His word.”

As I was singing the closing Hymn last Sunday one particular verse hit me. I didn’t just sing it, I believed it and finished it in tears. Reverently and Meekly Now
At the throne I intercede; for thee ever  do I plead.
I have loved thee as thy friend, with a love that cannot end.
Be obedient, I implore, Prayerful watchful, ever more,
And be constant unto me, that thy Savior I may be.
Joseph L. Townsend
May you have the Savior's love and help climbing your mountains.