Category Archives: Spirituality

Peru Pilgrimage

How can I leave town without mentioning Machu Picchu? It’s such a major milepost in my life… a destiny and destination I’ve held in my heart for almost 50 years.

View of Machu Picchu

I leave in an hour and, for once in my life, I’m not scrambling with last-minute details like packing bags, scouting information, or reviewing plans. It’s all been done. My route goes from Northwest Arkansas to Dallas to Lima to Cusco. I leave about 8:00 tonight and arrive about 8:00 tomorrow. Cusco and Lowell are in the same time zone, so that’s twelve hours enroute.

This adventure is part of a larger one: a combined eye care clinic mission co-sponsored by the Cusco, Peru and Rogers, Arkansas Lions Clubs and produced by Legend Treks. For me, it’s a spiritual adventure, like all of life. This one just seems more intense.



My mountain.
My fountain of dreams.    

Of all earth’s places,
my epitome.  

My secret wish,
long since divulged,
that still holds
secret claims on me.

My open-air cathedral.

My anyplace and everyplace
where every soul soars free.

My Ganga Ma, my Shangri La,
my sacred Bodi Tree.

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Love to you and blessings on your own life adventures. ♥ ~Jo

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Photo Credit: kconnors at Morguefile

The Evening Tree

Sunset through trees

Winter, evening—same thing, that late phase of life. It’s a good time and I’m in it.  I walk outdoors often, listening outward and inward. Sometimes a poem comes.


I’d stopped by the evening tree
(or else was stopped below it)
when there arose in me
this deep-felt certainty:
It’s one thing to be free,
but a better thing to know it.

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Writing, Spirituality, and Marketing

Starting to Get Ready to Begin.

Last night I listened to a webinar about ebook writing and promotion. Is it intimidation, sour grapes, or what that I feel so alien toward speedwriting, keyword orienting, list building, joint venture partnering, upselling, and similar concepts? The overarching concept of the presentation was marketing … with emphasis on ecommerce.

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As I search for my own resonance in this arena, it helps to recall this favorite analysis:

Selling is getting rid of what you have.
Marketing is having what you can get rid of.


As for poetry and spiritual musings … are there people who want that? And is it counter-productive (for lack of a better word) to combine those two things with marketing?

I’m grateful to authors who did that combining. I also sometimes wonder if their books, articles, videos, workshops, and counselling are—”bottom line”—spiritually positive, negative, or neutral. If the real orientation of spirituality is to go within, do these methods spur or stall?

My assumption is that it ultimately doesn’t matter … and that Life is operating through me to do what it wants. Yesterday’s poem seems apropos:


I see that you’re in trouble,
mostly because you think
you’re a special case.

I have remedies.

But even I hope
you can pull this off.

—Your  Inner Guide

I also pondered yesterday about a God who pondered creating the universe. Why? What would be the enticement? I decided it wouldn’t be for worshippers or passive companions. It would be for playmates, as in a great cosmic game of hide-and-seek.

Go! ...You’re IT!  ♥ ~Jo

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[Photo by Wallyir of morgueFile]

Joint Explorations

Why this Website? Why Poetry?

They both have the same prompt: Oprah.
Poetry is a response to a life-mission remark she made. The website is a response to her recently-issued “Grow Your Life” challenge. In 150 words or less, entrants told which of their dream(s) they most wanted to advance. From the submissions, a winner will be chosen to have lunch with Oprah in Hawaii.

Machu PicchuI resonated with the challenge and entered, via a poem. (Creativity will figure strongly in the judging.) The dream I described has two parts: to fulfill a long-cherished wish to visit Machu Picchu, the ancient sacred city in Peru, and to combine that wish with my everyday poetry. I envision approaching the Inca site from a spiritual perspective, recording the experience in an art-and-poetry journal.

The website is a further outcome of my spirituality and writing liaison.

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Part of my yearning and resonance is to keep very private with these joint explorations. That is counterbalanced by another part encouraging me to become more open and visible. I wonder which part invites more vulnerability, growth, and/or learning? We shall see. I already enjoy the creativity.

♥  Jo

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Spiritual Trajectories

Puzzlement and Exploration

Years ago, I was impressed by a New Yorker Magazine cartoon. In a series of panels, a person in a fog and standing on a small jigsaw-puzzle-piece ice flow makes a larger place to stand by assembling similar pieces in the water nearby. Then, as the fog lifts, he notices that other people have been doing the same thing all along. Each stranded soul has created a larger puzzle piece that can now be assembled into an even larger platform. Presumably, the people will now mingle and collaborate even more.

I think that’s how spirituality goes. So much begins as puzzlement. And subsequent  exploration seems to be done in isolation, but that isn’t so …


Each of us is at odds
with our culture in some way,
each an outsider;
that’s how we
 are alike,
how we are united,
how we are one.

As for myself, I can’t really say I’ve been exploring on my own. Because, for so long, I’ve had books. And here I am writing, myself. Why?

It’s probably part of a trajectory I’m not even aware of. Somehow life suggested to me, a decade ago, that I write poetry. And I said yes, not suspecting that poetry would become more than a hobby or daily journal. It became a spiritual practice.(I was musing on that term earlier today: “spiritual practice.” I used to think it meant learning how to be spiritual; now I think it means actually and consciously being spiritual.)

Anyway, I now feel prompted to write here, at least for now. Not that I have “arrived” with any kind of message to share. But that I’ve begun to benefit from, rejoice in, and understudy other people who are making similar spiritual explorations. I’m glad they began to share their musings and experiences early enough that I can witness their trajectories. Most recently, I’ve resonated with the sharing that Wayne (Wirs) does through his writing, photography, and videos. THANK YOU to all my spiritual teachers, mentors, and friends.  ♥ Jo