March is Women’s History Month so I thought I’d share this bit with you.
Every year, March is designated Women’s History Month by presidential proclamation. The month is set aside to honor women’s contributions in American history.
The poem below was inspired by the sage advice I received years ago from an elderly lady who truly fought to make a difference in the role (and treatment) of women in society. I feel she made a historical impact by influencing the small groups around her. She certainly left an impression with me.
I won’t name her because her M.O was to act subtly and not bring attention to herself. Surprisingly she got a lot accomplished with her (ur-um) antics. RIP A
We did not burn our bras but wore them proudly; Holding–supporting–glorifying the mammary glands that would feed the next generation;
For the hand that rocks the cradle rules the world.
We did not give animated voices to our vaginas for the world to hear but let them speak in secret whispers that moved mountains.
We did not make a spectacle in the streets to prove our equality For we knew in our hearts [already] that we were superior.
Another Thursday, another November and another Thanksgiving holiday in the USA. Which means the earth has not quite spun off her axis; some of her inhabitants may have but we are here today so let’s make the most of it.
I have shared the following bit of prose in one form or another for … I don’t know… decades maybe?
Occasionally I vary the wording but the sentiment is always the same, so without further ado, here we go…
A Pilgrim’s Prayer
Once upon a time – a long, long time ago (before Black Friday) Thanksgiving was a celebration of harvest and a time to give thanks. Hence the name thanksgiving.
I don’t think the early pilgrims had a Super Walmart, a Sears or a Best Buy. They had never heard of an indie distributor called Smashwords (yikes, imagine how scary that might have sounded)
I’m sure they didn’t have the www to answer all of you questions or a beastly giant named Amazon— yet somehow they managed.
Can you imagine having to grow your own food and prepare it without the help of of a search engine like google?
When did they have time? Where did they get their Stove Top stuffing and who canned the yams and plucked the turkeys? How did those crazy pilgrims do it?
I didn’t really know any of those pilgrims but I did see a John Wayne movie once. John knew a pilgrim when he saw one. He seemed to know a lot of pilgrims but that was a long time ago too.
I propose we are all pilgrims, each one of us on a journey of sorts. Our own personal pilgrimage…
Aren’t we are all looking for something? Be it a quest for self-confirmation, truth, a cure, enrichment, comfort, a friend, a lover, a job, a meal or a place to lay our weary head at the end of another day.
I believe life is a journey, or at least it should be. It would be terrible to think we were just flailing through this experience; killing time on this giant floating gumball while waiting for the next Black Friday specials.
I believe we all have one destination though we travel different roads and I trust that we have choices.
Hopefully we will choose well. On the occasion we do take a wrong turn [and we will from time to time] I pray we have enough sense and humility to stop and seek direction… to reassess our route and to be considerate in our voyage.
So here’s wishing all of you pilgrims a Happy, Happy Thanksgiving from the Hill house and may we all, whatever road we’re on, take time to look ahead, pause and bow our head in thanks.
My personal prayer:
I pray our good seeds of hope, humility, toil and courage produce abundantly; that love and kindness grow wild like the weeds of early spring – fruitful and undeterred. And may our harvest be rich with wisdom and discernment.
Thank you Father, The Creator of all things, for this day and all it holds. Thank you for the days past, and Father forgive me for my wrong turns. Thank you for the day to come and guide me to make better choices. Thank you for all the pilgrims in my life – for those who’ve gone ahead and the ones that come behind and for those who read this prayer. And Thank You Father for the beacon that lights my way.
IT’S JUST A SMALL BROWN wicker basket, not built to hold much –
and a bit tattered from over handling. It’s beautiful warm browns have dulled and faded with age on the outside –
but inside the natural luster still shines.
It’s top is held in place by make-do leather ties because the first woody hasps were worn in two –
and now dangle loosely, without purpose.
What hands made the airy coffer? I wonder as I stroke the thin smooth fibers. Was it one as handsome as the tight weaves frayed by time?
Though dust has long since claimed his finger prints – I know that he was a weaver; I imagine that he was a dream weaver… Diligently intertwining each cane thread with my hopes in mind…
A place to store my breathing dreams so that they could be kept safe and close at hand, amassed in a beautiful fibrous reminder. A quaint little chest of hope I will one day hand down to a child, a grandchild or perhaps even a great grandchild – when I have used up its contents.
When I have taken the dusty lid off one last time and felt deep into the corners to make certain I haven’t left any ideas untouched… I imagine when I offer it up to him (or her) they will look at me like I’m crazy (and I may well be) then they’ll tear the lid off, expecting to find a treasure of sorts before saying with disappointment,
“It’s just an empty old basket.”
It is then I will share with them the wishes and ideas that were stored and later born of that basket.
How they were kept safe till I could see them come to fruition. And one more time I will imagine the handsome dark skinned man who meticulously weaved the wonderful piece… a place to store my dreams because dreams need room to breathe.
Then I will show them how to place their own aspirations into the old auburn chest with caution to keep them safe, to nurture their hopes and give them time to mature. And if my last wish were to come true I will see them realize the birth of their visions.
*I adore woven baskets and this bit of prose was inspired by one of my favorites.
Ah, Christmas is not over and already I am basking in the afterglow.
I am so grateful (that warm, fuzzy, misty-eyed kind of grateful) for family and friends, the kindness of strangers, God’s mercy and the gift of Christ.
Our gathering was not as large as we would have liked; a few came down sick at the last minute, more than a few are heeding the “Rona law” and a couple or so are recovering (without complications) from Covid. Heck, half of us have had the dreaded Covid and (thankfully) recovered.
I do have a very dear cousin in hospital with a respiratory issue; he’s confident he will recover (from whatever it is) but if y’all have a few seconds, send up a good vibe or a prayer for David. We would appreciate it.
These are peculiar and trying times indeed, how about we all pray for one another. 🙏🏼
Ok – back to the basking…
I would like to share a little of my Christmas glow with all of you.