WESTFALL GENEALOGY

My Poetry And Prose-Page 6

Here is a collection of my poetry and prose writings that I have written over the years. Most of my writings were created and composed in my youth.

(269) Be My Valentine

Won't you be my Valentine?
And like children, your hand in mine,
We will run and play,
And pass the day away.

Won't you be my Valentine?
And just for today be mine?
Together to walk, laugh, and sing,
And enjoy each and everything.

Won't you be my Valentine?
Then everything would be so fine,
As in quiet communion you and I.
Would watch the clouds go by.

(270) Two Hearts

Two hearts, who in love abide,
Become as one for eternity,
Forever in a heaven reside,
That only those in love can be.

Two hearts, who alone will sigh,
And pine, with sad tears in the night,
But together, their love will never die,
As long as true love is their delight.

Two hearts, who found each other,
Out of all the vast darkness around,
And in their love for one another,
Life's joy and happiness have found.

(271) True Love

True love is sometimes granted,
To mere mortals here below,
If true love to you is bestowed,
Then true happiness you will know.

Some people think it is a myth,
That true love does not exist,
But others true love really do find,
And enjoy the wondrous state of bliss.

There is much I do not understand,
But I do believe in true love,
And that it is a true miracle in life,
Given to people only from above.

(272) In Your Eyes

In your eyes I see,
The depths of eternity,
The beauty of being,
The darkness fleeing;

The wonder of it all,
The teardrops that fall,
The reason to be alive,
The hope on which I thrive;

The light in your eyes,
The joy love implies,
The glory from above,
The essence of all I love.

(273) Soul Mates

In this world of woe and death,
Where no one knows their last breath,
Where pain and sorrow reign,
Can two souls true love attain?

Out of all the multitudes on earth,
Are true soul mates destined at birth?
The chances it seems are quite remote,
And yet soul mates we do often note.

Maybe in the scheme of things it is writ,
That kindred souls should together be knit.
Perhaps there is some divine power ever,
That brings the hearts of soul mates together.

(274) The Staff Of Perfection

An artist of long ago
Lived in the city of Kouroo.
A perfect work he sought to make
Being free of flaw or mistake.

For years no wood could he find
To make the staff of just the right kind.
In time his friends grew old and died,
But he in youth did abide.

For time kept out of his way
In his search for the wood each day.
Before he found a stock to do
In ruin was the city Kouroo.

He shaped it on and on
While dynasties had come and gone.
Kalpa no longer the polestar
When he smoothed the staff of mar.

On the ferrule and the head
The most precious jewels he did imbed.
When the finishing stroke was done
His creation was the fairest one.

The material and his art
Were both pure in every part.
Wonderful was the staff to see.
How else could the result be?

(275) The Gold Winged Bird

From out of the sky he flew
Flying alone in the sky so blue
This gold winged bird so fair
Did sparkle flying through the air.

There dwelt a little child near,
Each morning at the bird did peer
From his bedroom window he
The gold winged bird ever see.

The child at the crack of dawn
watched the bird until he was gone.
His heart would fill up with song,
And he was happy all day long.

No one knew what made him glad.
Why they had never seen him sad.
His mind on the bird did stay,
And his joy could not pass away.

One day he looked in vain,
No bird did pass his window pane.
In sorrow that day he went.
A day filled with tears he spent.

Next morning it was the same,
No gold winged bird by him came.
This boy though a man now grown,
Yet looks for the bird once known.

(276) The Heavy Laden Burro

Along a steep mountain way
Came a heavy laden burro one day.
Walking under a load so great
He nearly buckled under the weight.

Up and up the mountainside
Where a weaker burro would have died,
Bearing a burden few could bear,
And still he plodded under it there.

He heaved with all his might
Until all he had left was fight.
He kept trudging on up the road
Sweating and straining under his load.

Under the noon sun he went,
Ever upon his weary task was bent
Toward the high peak before
This most faithful beast of burden bore.

Worthy creature that he came
Unto the top though battered and lame,
And there his burden he lay down,
But gained not praise nor a crown.

(277) The Flower And The Honey Bee

The flower was the fairest blue,
And dwelt in the morning dew
In a valley filled with peace
Where beauty did never cease;

And here there came a honey bee,
He this fair flower did see,
From the sky above this bee did dart
Piercing the flower in the heart;

But not pain did the flower feel,
Though the bee did sweetness steal,
And gather in his mouth and fly,
Away unto his home on high.

Alone the flower in the wind
Did wait for the bee again,
And when seeing the bee from afar,
Did wave to him the fair blue flower.

(278) The Snow White Dove And The Sleeping Fawn

Over and over the snow white dove
Flew over the fawn filled with love.
The fawn asleep upon the forest green,
The snow white dove by the fawn unseen

The dove 'til the daylight hours were gone
With eyes full of love watched the fawn.
Then when night covered oer the land,
The snow white dove by the fawn did stand

Never leaving the fawn for her own nest,
The dove did stand while the fawn did rest.
With the night all around the dove stood there
The snow white dove and the fawn so fair.

Quite gentle scene those two in the night,
The sleeping fawn and the dove snow white.
Beneath the bright stars shining above,
There sleeps the fawn and there stands the dove.

(279) A Few Thoughts

Finally we come down to just a few thoughts. Pride, contempt, honor, and pleasure all evaporate away, and what is left is a butterfly fluttering over green fields. Fear, hatred, anger all condense into nothingness, but dewdrops on a rose's petal last. Wanting, longing, needing pass from sight, while bluebirds sing and pass eternally before the mind's eye.

On a twig in May are the happiest thoughts of life. Ill has no power to harm a heart where crickets and frogs serenade in recollections each night. Woe and grief lose their power when the wind and rain of a thousand blessed showers returns to sedate the mind.

I have loved some things, and that cannot be taken from me. The past has had some precious moments for me. I remember mornings in spring when fragrance, warmth, and beauty was everywhere. Then I cared, felt, and I most surely loved. I remember summer evenings just before dark, and the quiet settling over me. These memories can never be lost regardless of what happens in the future. Surely nothing can block out those good thoughts. That is all I have, a few dear memories, that is all I really own, all I really am.

(280) Special Days

Our heart yearns to explore, to reach out and communicate, and to find something to love and believe. We need something to reach out for even if only a straw. There are days we seem to have the whole world right there in our hand, and our thoughts go wild with hope ringing from every word, and happiness is in every smile. Then on the other hand there are days that are just plain empty.

There are days of sunshine when faith breathes in our heart. There are days that sweep us right off our feet into those billowy white clouds, and we forget the objectors until our feet touch terra firma again. There are days that come with a sweetness we cannot define, and whisper music in our ears. Life is all a sham except for on some special days when we remember to believe.

(281) The Moonlight

Otherworldly images in the night
Beneath the moon shining bright
Forming in the mind
Apparitions of every kind;

Clouds across the moon flow,
Unearthly images in the moonlight glow,
Darkness in the trees,
And voices calling in the breeze;

Shadows fall all around
Forming images on the ground
Moving seems to me
In some eerie hidden mystery.

(282) Divine Regret

Often there comes to one
A regret almost divine
Of some thought not quite won,
But which lingers in the mind.

Bordering near the heart
Lies the regret without name,
Itself does not impart,
But regret just the same.

Is it past memory
Of something beautiful lost,
Something one cannot see
In the mind tossed?

If regret it seems sweet,
though it does give some sorrow.
The thought is not complete,
Perhaps I'll know tomorrow.

(283) The Goldfinch

The goldfinch bathed in a cool stream, a being too fair for reality, and more appropriate for dreams and music. Vivid yellow and black, the goldfinch seemed to glow in that water. Then it flew to a nearby limb scattering water droplets as it went.

The goldfinch burst into sweet song from that perch; song that one expects to come from a creature so brightly marked. It was no larger than the elm leaves at its side, a tiny bundle of cheer.

Hastily I turned from that too lovely being, for here was beauty beyond anything I had ever experienced in my own life, and it made me feel sad and alone. Here was proof of how wondrous life can be, and I was reminded of my lack of faith.

(284) From The Way That I Think

I realize the power of my thought
To myself and others also.
Happiness may be brought,
Or sadness may grow
From the way that I think.

I can create heaven before me,
A paradise Before my eyes,
Or Hell and misery
Where all the good dies
From the way that I think.

I make myself happy or sad,
To laugh or to cry with sorrow,
Either peaceful or mad.
I make tomorrow
From the way that I think.

I cannot blame anyone at all
If somehow my life is not right.
The blame on me does fall,
Life is dark or bright
From the way that I think.

(285) Springtime

Springtime is a movement. It is a thing that must be, like the sun must shine and the rain must fall. Indeed, it comes in spite of all. Spring comes in spite of wars and deaths, in spite of earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, and in spite of social unrest and upheavals.

It comes beautifully, serenely, and simply like it always has and it always will. Regardless of what happens in our personal lives, the ups and downs, the disappointments, the fears, the doubts, the loss of loved ones, our illnesses, our heartaches, and the changes in our lives, spring always comes again, and not one whit changed. Spring is always youthful, jovial, and fresh each time around.

The chief contention of spring is that there is something better. In springtime we look over our condition and perceive there is room for improvement, and because everything is so bright and cheerful we really believe we can accomplish it. As the twigs put on new buds, we too reach out in new directions with new life.

It is a time of awakening and quickening, when life is prodded into action once again. All those hopes and dreams we had put to rest are revived. Pleasant thoughts flit across our mind more often, making inroads through the bramble and tangle of last winter's despondency and desperation. In spite of ourself we take on the season's face, and our heart stirs with happiness. The ice is melted in the pond, and the dormant fields bloom once more.

I can never seem to get over my fascination at the effect the spring warmth has upon living things. Suddenly the sap rises in the trees and the insect becomes animate. Remarkable changes occur, as myriads of colors meet the eye, and multifarious sounds serenade the ear.

The bare forms and outlines are decorated in an infinite variety of ways. The shapes of bushes, trees, and vines take on such rich modifications as to overwhelm the senses and try the imagination. Before our very eyes the transformation accrues as accretion upon accretion of green luxuriously entwines the world in the springtime.

(286) Easter Egg Hunting

An Easter Egg hunting we will go,
The eggs are red, green, and blue,
And lots of other colors too.
Take an Easter basket you and me,
And fill it with every egg we see,
A wonderful Easter Egg Hunt it will be.

There's an egg hidden over there.
Oh boy, I just found another pair!
I've already found more than my share.
My basket's full up to the brim,
And my pockets are all full of them,
I'll thank the Easter Bunny if I see him.

(287) The Easter Flowers

The tulips, crocuses, and daffodils,
Are blooming in the valleys and hills,
On this beautiful Easter Day,
And have chased all my gloom away.

It's Easter, and the spring is here,
And time for unhappiness to disappear,
Now that the winter chill has gone,
Hope and love for life live on.

The bright, cheerful Easter flowers,
That I fondly gaze upon for hours,
Make me feel so happy and glad,
No more do I feel forlorn and sad.

(288) Easter Sunrise

Easter sunrise is so bright,
The glorious end of night,
For our Saviour has arisen,
And freed our souls from prison;

Freed from the prison of sin,
Our souls are reborn again,
Freed from the prison of death,
And given new hope and breath;

As the Resurrection we celebrate,
We feel the love of Christ so great,
For His Crucifixion was for us all,
And He will hear us when we call.

(289) Jesus Died For Me

Jesus died for me at Calvary,
Upon the cruel cross,
Unworthy though I be.
For me He suffered the pain,
For me He shed his blood,
That eternal life I might gain.

Jesus also died for you,
That you might have life eternal,
And all others who believe too.
Such love Jesus had for us all,
That He suffered the Crucifixion,
So we in prayer may upon Him call.

Jesus died and on the third day,
From death and the sepulchre arose,
That to Salvation we might have a way.
Therefore no condemnation awaits,
Those who in a risen Christ trust,
As they enter the heavenly gates.

(290) Wild Geese Flying

I hear the far off sound,
Of wild geese flying,
Wonder where they are bound,
In the night crying.

Oh, to be with them and soar,
Beyond my mortal home,
To fly along evermore,
Up in the sky to roam.

But I must stay and dream
Of flying far away,
Could be within the scheme,
My flying there someday.

(291) Strolling

In the dimming light of evening, the grass already slightly moist with dew, it is my pleasure to stroll. I say stroll, because I'm not going anywhere in particularat such times, but just strolling along enjoying the coolness and the quietness of the evening.

It is difficult to imagine anything wrong with the world at eveningtime. Turmoil and strife seem as far away then as those first tiny specks of light, the stars, which begin to dot the evening sky.

We are granted a brief respite in the evening from those cares and worries which weigh us down by day, and sometimes plague us in the night.

(292) Coming To The Light

We only come to the light,
When love comes inside,
We only depart from night,
When love does abide.

With love as our guide,
We shall someday heaven see,
For love will provide,
All that's good for you and me.

Love is blessed charity,
That puts self behind,
The true way to be free,
And peace and joy to find.

If we love God's only son,
Then we come to love everyone.

(293) Positive Thoughts

I'll not pretend I know the key to happiness, but I think one can go a long way toward finding that key by thinking positive thoughts. It's not so easy to do. Negative thoughts seem more persistent and pervasive. Positive thoughts demand a lot of faith, and more will power.

The best side of life is the brighter side, but getting there can be an arduous task. The rewards however are worth it. Dark thoughts, thinking the worst, usually makes things worse than they really are.

A turn of our mind is all it takes to make the world seem a more cheerful place. Right in our mind is the key to happiness. All we need are positive thoughts. There is always a silver lining somewhere in everything that happens to us. We just have to find it.

We get into this bad habit of thinking negatively, of expecting the worst, and it's hard to change. Negative thoughts are the rust that destroys us. They secrete the acids and cause the ulcers, the hypertension, the jittery nerves, and gray hairs.

Positive thoughts are the healing balm, the salve that saves us from ourselves. They are the health of the body and soul. It really is a simple matter to think positively, and so much better for us and everyone around us. Just think how wonderful our life and the whole world would be if everyone thought positive thoughts.

(294) The Spark of Creativity

Each of us has within himself or herself this spark of creativity. It may take many forms. Sometimes the spark lies dormant, and may never be fanned to flame. The inspiration to create is as mysterious and unfathomable as the creativity itself.

For some creativity may be a continuous, passionate, burning flame, while for others it may be only a barely glowing ember occasionally flaring into flame. For some creativity is an enjoyable pastime and adjunct to life, while for others creativity is their life.

The creation of a plan or idea of benefit at work or home, the creation of a building or a city, a garden or crop, a cradle or chair, a shoe or sock, a quilt or sweater, a machine or other invention, an organization or a business, a family, a church, a society, or a government, is just as much a part of the creative process as the creation of a novel or painting or other work of art. All come about as the result of the spark of creativity, and are fanned to flame by inspiration, and to fruition by dedication, hard work, and desire.

(295) The Amazing Stars

The stars, the amazing stars,
Who light the night with mystery,
Those glittering worlds afar,
From the distant reaches of space,
From their orbits in the unknown,
Transmit light through eons of time,
To catch our eye at this moment,
To pierce our thoughts at last.

Thus the awe they emit,
The great wonder they evoke,
With ages old messages,
In their bright twinkling rays,
In those tiny distant lights,
Which grace our sky every night,
And like old friends return again,
To speak of beauty and infinity.

(296) A Melody

There's a melody,
In the heart of me,
In the air today,
A melody does play;

Happy birds in the trees,
Singing sweet melodies,
Happy breeze a blowing,
Happy stream a flowing;

Happy clouds flying by,
High up in the sky,
Blue sky above,
Everything's in love;

Happiness all around,
In every gentle sound,
A joy just to live,
As life peace does give;

The leaves all a twirling,
The world all a whirling,
The sun shining warm,
A heavenly place does form;

There's something in the air,
Something more than fair,
That envelopes everything,
And makes me want to sing.

(297) May Flies

All of us are little May Flies living our fleeting day. May Flies are lttle insects that emerge on a warm day in May and live and fly about only one brief day and then they die. They only have that one day in spring, that one exquisite day, and then they are gone.

They experience the wonder of it all, fly about in the noonday sun, happy no doubt, and perhaps secure in the illusion that their glorious life will go on. They go dancing in the wind, a day, their whole lifetime dancing in the wind, and then comes the night.

Undaunted and unaware of the brevity of their existence the May Flies remain vivacious until the end. For all creatures there comes an end, and for some like the May Flies life is but a day. May Flies have their day as surely as all who live have their day.

(298) And When No Rain Does Fall

And when no rain does fall,
And when no sun does shine,
Well then is no joy at all,
Well then is nothing more fine.

And when no smile does beam,
And when no love does dwell,
Well then is no good does seem,
Well then does little seem well.

And when no peace is near,
And when no hope is there,
Well then is not good I fear,
Well then is nothing more fair.

And when no song does ring,
And when no wind does blow,
Well then is not good anything,
Well then little good does grow,

And when no more we see,
And when no more we say,
Well then in bad shape are we,
Well then we have gone away.

(299) The Search For Truth

What we all search for, even though many do not know they are doing so, is truth. Whether in religion, books, conversation, words, relationships, our work, the countryside, or within our individual soul, we seine for truth as long as we have any semblance of consciousness.

While it may seem we are seeking pleasure or happiness, actually the primal desire to realize the truth is the subtile motivation behind all our actions. In every life situation we hope subconsciously to break through the facade and the seeming, to tear away the cobwebs from our eyes, to pierce the veil and see the visage of pure, unadulterated truth.

We think that perhaps today we will finally discover that certain something. But today passes, and a whole flock of days, and we grow more and more disappointed. Nothing quite measures up. We expect so much, but we reap so little. In the morning we throb with hope, however evening often finds us drained of hope and once again disenchanted with life.

Often in our life people never quite react to us as we wish, our work never quite satisfies us, our life never quite suits us, and our moments do not yield us the enjoyment we desire and expect.

We attempt to snare and scrutinize the truth that we want to gather from life. We try to hold it securely for one good look in the ever rushing stream of life.

In the Bible Jesus says in John 8:32 "And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free."

(300) Peace

Give me a place free of fear,
Where only peace is near,
Where conflict is unfound,
As gentle rings each sound;

Where the eye beholds beauty,
Completely simple and free,
Untouched by evil or hate,
But in a tranquil state;

Quietly dwelling day by day,
Ever that way to stay.

(301) The Mysterious Wind

The wind is an old friend I hear calling to me. From out of the night the wind beckons me, and breathes wondrous notions into my head. I never feel so alone as when there is no wind. The wind calms my fears, allays my sense of despair, and pleads with me to continue my quest and not to lose the precious hope so easily lost.

The wind comforts me, cools and soothes my brow, and stirs my soul. The wind rises and falls like magic, comes from who knows where, and goes to who knows where. The wind has long been my inspiration.

The wind carries the breath of the living, the very essence of life borne through the air, as it glides over the hilltops and into the valleys, refreshing and reviving all it touches. There is no song as beautiful as the song the wind makes. The wail of the wind is an ancient melody.

The wind is a powerful force, and when unleashed in a storm can reach an extraordinary magnitude. Usually the wind just whispers, but occasionally it roars with a fury revealing a devastating power.

The wind suggests the spiritual, seeming to flow from an omnipotent source, and to come and go in league with some eerie mystery. There is nothing more uncanny than a sudden gust of wind, seemingly coming from nowhere, and picking up leaves and tossing them about like an invisible spirit.

On a dark stormy night the howling wind epitomizes a being in agony, moaning its sadness to the world. The wind like the hand of a giant bends the trees, flings the leaves and dust high into the air, and speeds the clouds across the sky. In the fury of a blizzard the wind seems a reckless monster flinging the snow in all directions without ceasing. However on a hot summer day the wind seems like an angel bathing our face with coolness.

(302) Death Of A little Calf

One day along a pasture path,
I moved lightly along,
A mother and her calf I herded,
Singing a happy song.

The sky was blue and spring was nigh,
And life appeared so fair,
The calf followed mother gently,
Seeming without a care.

When up a small rise we three walked,
The small calf did stagger some,
The mother turned and beckoned,
The calf to onward come.

The little one was breathing hard,
From there it could not go on,
Suddenly it fell upon the ground,
Its strength was all gone.

Upon the ground it fought for breath,
And kicked with all its might,
Mother cow looked in desperation,
It was a sad sight.

At last the calf could heave no more,
And did quiver with a sigh,
Did kick and roll on down the hill,
And before me there did die.

Now, many years have past,
Since that sad day in May,
When I walked that pasture path,
And the little calf died that day.

(303) Caring For Others

We must be aware and care about the needs and the suffering of others. I mean if we are not aware and do not care then there is something wrong. Humane beings must help bear the burdens of others. Imagine how wonderful the world could be if each person looked upon another person's troubles as their own, and sought with all their strength and ability to help another.

If we are fortunate enough to have food, shelter, health, friends, and family then we should be very thankful and thank our blessings. Perhaps if we are so blessed we donot see the need to help those who are destitute and bereft of those blessings we enjoy. But I grant you if we were on the other side of the fence and were destitute and without food, shelter, health, friends, family, or anyone who cared about us, then we would understand the need to help those less fortunate.

Great love is needed in this world of ours to avert the many tragedies certain to occur without it. People must care for other people.

(304) A Valley

In a valley I should choose to live,
A valley green and low,
Where all gentle things might live,
And there in peace with me grow;

A valley far from noise and hurry,
Filled with pleasant sound,
So completely free from worry,
That all the animals flock around;

And time would be a thing of the past,
In this paradise of mine,
As peace would come at last,
In my valley so fine.

(305) The Muskrat

It's fairly obvious the muskrat is happy. Diving in the water, swimming effortlessly here and there, he seems a carefree soul. One moment he's nibbling on a blade of grass, then plunging into the water his mouth filled with a bouquet of grass, as he dives headfirst into his home in the bank.

The muskrat appears oblivious of all around him, and goes about his business as if the world were his and he had as much right in it as anyone else. A calmness seems to prevail with the muskrat, as he never seems to worry, but acts as if he always has things well in hand. At swimming he is an expert. His hind legs propel him along with their long easy strokes, while his chin sets on the surface of the water, gently breaking the water like a bow.

His ancestors where here before mine, and staked their claim long before mine ever set foot on this continent. Therefore I suppose he has as much right, if not more right to that water hole than I have.

(306) Water

Water, our life you are,
You have life giving power,
All living things you feed,
For you all life has a need;

Be it a flower or the grass,
Or a man drinking from a glass,
Be it a dog or hare,
Or a bird flying in the air;

Or the fish that do swim,
Or the tree's living limb,
For water each and all,
Need the drops that fall;

Farmers with their crops of grain,
That soak up all the rain,
Need the water from the sky,
Without which we all would die.

(307) In Loving Memory

It has been a year,
Since you from us did part,
But you will always be dear,
Within our memory and our heart.

The days without you are long,
And we are sad you are gone,
But you would want us to be strong,
And with our lives to go on.

Now you are at rest,
Free from all pain and woe,
In the realm of the blest,
Where love and peace doth flow.

We look forward to seeing you again,
Upon the other shore,
There will be no sadness then,
But peace and happiness evermore.

(308) Let The Sunshine In

One has only to open a window and pull up the shade to brighten up their world by letting the sunlight and fresh air into a room. What a wonderful thing the sunshine is. How it brightens our world. The sunlight makes everything glow in its heavenly light. It lights up the darkest corners of a room, and takes away the musty odors and dankness in the air. The sunlight makes everything fresh and bright.

What a pity all the free sunlight going to waste while people are wont to spend their days in their dark rooms. It is like refusing love when it is given. There are rooms that have not had sunlight in them for many years. There are dark rooms locked away in our hearts as well. They need to be opened up and bathed in heavenly sunlight also.

Sometimes our homes and our hearts become to moldy and stuffy. There are too many closed doors and dark rooms in our world. It is time to let the warm sunlight and fresh air in. It is time brighten the dark rooms, and bathe in God's heavenly sunlight.

(309) A Magic Word

There is a word, a magic word,
Upon the wind it may be heard,
Ringing again and again,
Upon the blowing wind.

In every land it may be heard,
This one eternal word,
Hear the wind blow, hear the wind blow,
Upon the wind this word does flow;

Listen if you will now my friend,
Unto the blowing wind,
And you will hear, yes, you will hear,
A word whispering in your ear.

There is a word, a magic word,
Upon the wind it may be heard,
Listen nowwith your ear,
And you will this word hear.

(310) Sleep

A good night's sleep brightens the world considerably. Sleep is a great healer of a troubled mind. What we were unable to solve or overcome the night before, we wake up with the confidence to handle with ease.

Sleep renews our faculties, and restores the vital rhythm of our body and mind. Sleep removes gently and imperceptively the cobwebs of worry and fear which attach to our thoughts after a long and tiring day. Sleep relaxs the tense nerves, calms the turmoil of living, and inspires us for one more day.

Sleep cleanses us of our sins, and we wake up in the morning oblivious of the cares of yesterday, our woes and foolish errors all but forgotten. To be honest sleep does not always erase all those distresses of yesterday, but it does usually lessen their intensity.

How prone are we to despair when we lack a little sleep, and how irritable and unreasonable we become when we are tired. Fatigue tends to bring out our worst side, and causes us to be less able to meet and resolve life's situations. But one good night's sleep prepares us to face the world again.

Our aspirations, our hopes, and our dreams are restored by the magic of sleep, and peace, that wonderful gift once again rests above our brow. Strength of purpose is enhanced by sleep, and he who wavered yesterday from weariness is steadfast today as a result of the miracle of sleep.

There is no describing the change wrought by a restful night's sleep. It causes one who despaired of life the night before to awaken in love with life, the sorrowful one to awaken with peace, and with faith in the future, to breathe the air with delight once again, and for a short time at least before the cares of the new day shackle one, to find a certain happiness and glory in life.

Truly sleep is one of the greatest blessings of life. If every moment could be a waking moment life would be a beautiful and happy experience.

(311) What Do I Know?

I know very little,
I know the wind blows,
I know the sun shines,
I know that the flower grows.

I know that I breathe,
I know the sky is blue,
I know sometimes there are clouds,
I know that birds fly too.

I know there are rivers and seas,
I know the streams flow,
I know there are trees and hills,
That's about all that I know.

(312) Once Upon A Time

Once upon a time,
I chased fireflies,
And played childhood games,
Beneath the blue skies.

Once upon a time,
I played and ran free,
And climbed the hills,
With a childlike glee.

Once upon a time,
In my youth's spring,
I thought the world was mine,
And I loved everything.

(313) Childhood Memories

When I was a small boy on the farm I used to enjoy climbing the hill above our farmhouse and sitting and looking out over the valley below. I could see the distant hills on all sides. I would look up in the sky and watch the white clouds drift by. I sometimes imagined I could see shapes in the clouds. I saw faces, animals, ships, and all kinds of shapes form there in the clouds. I also liked to watch approaching thunderstorms from my hillside vantage point. I could see the lightening flashing in the distance and hear the rumbling sounds of distant thunder.

From my hillside I loved to listen to the sounds in my little corner of the world. My youthful ears listened with delight to the wind blowing through the trees and rustling the leaves and the stirring of the grass as the wind passed over, and delighted in the sound of birds singing in the distance and the low hum of the insects. I can remember the pleasant sounds of our farm animals, the chickens clucking contentedly, the cows lowing in the pasture, the grunting and occasional squealing of the pigs. Sometimes my little cat or dog would follow me and sit beside me there on the hillside. The purring of my cat was a comforting sound, and my little dog would wag his tail and whine for me to pet him.

It was also my fondest enjoyment to go play in the little stream that flowed near our farmhouse. The little stream always held a world of fascination for a small child such as myself. There were many wonderful things to do there and many fascinating creatures who inhabited the little stream awaiting my investigation. Foremost among the remarkable and fascinating creatures who called the little stream home were frogs, and little crawfish, minnows, strange looking little bugs and critters that never ceased to absorb and engross my childhood interest. I would spend countless hours in rapt fascination observing them.

I used to be enchanted in watching all the wonderful little inhabitants of the stream. In particular I recall one species of water creature, a spidery little critter which I believe is called a water strider. They race across the top of the water with long skinny spidery legs that act as oars. Sometimes they would climb on one another's back and ride piggy-back. I was entranced by them. I suppose most people wouldn't even notice them, but a small child notices little things older people often overlook. Especially if that child is a lonely little child who has no other children to play with and must find playmates among the animals and creatures and invent little games to play. Sometimes I also took my mother's clothespins and raced them in the stream, and other times I built little dams.

When I think back over the years I can almost hear the little stream gurgling over the rocks, and smell the freshness of the water, and feel the tingling coldness of it. Sometimes I wish I could go back there just for a day and be that little boy again.

(314) Sadness

People pass by us throughout our life, but do we ever stop to consider that they have heartaches? Yes, life can be hard for people. That one you see with downcast eyes and forlorn look, who knows what mournful story might be his part? Perhaps if the book from each mortal heart could be opened and read, it would be filled with sorrow too great for mortal eyes.

Life is an endless succession of heartaches, of sadness and sorrow. There is the sadness at the loss of loved ones. There is the sadness of illness and disease, of disability and weakness. There is the sorrow of missed opportunities and failures. There is the sadness of lost friendships and misunderstandings. There are the sad memories of being hurt by the cruelty and insults of thoughtless and uncaring people.

Each person is subjected at some time in their life to the horrible and dreadful. There is sadness enough in just one human heart to fill the urn of sorrow for us all. That person you see smiling and laughing cheerfully and happily may be the most sad of all. Many people hide behind a cheerful contenance heartbreaking sadness. Sorrow fills the heart of many whom we pass in life and often we are not aware of it.

(315) Friends and Friendship

The heart quite naturally reaches out to other people. Try as one will to suppress this need, this instinctive groping for companionship, the longing to be a friend and to have friends cannot be suppressed. An emptiness, a feeling of not fulfilling a fundamental purpose of life comes over the person who fails to find a certain affinity with other people.

Happiness never seems complete unless there is someone to share it. Accomplishment, honor, victory become meaningless without someone to praise and share in one's triumph. Indeed life itself would become a toil, a burden, if there were no one to share its joys as well as its heartaches.

It is friendship which so thrills a human being, and gives meaning to life and purpose to our labor. A friend makes glorious the inglorious, and makes enchanting the dull and commonplace. A friend makes joy more joyful and lasting, and makes sorrow bearable. A friend turns darkness into sunshine, and gives even the eyes of the aged a glow. Just by being present a friend brings warmth, a newness of life, the freshness of spring.

Who could sweat and toil under a weary life without someone dear to spur him on? To find friendship is to climb the pinnacle of human existence, to reach the ultimate in understanding and fulfillment, and to discover that wonderland in which all agree that friendship is the one of the greatest blessings of life.

(316) Forgiveness Is Divine

Our salvation lies in our ability to forgive. The pain of having hatred and animosity toward someone is much like a physical pain. It lasts and lasts, and will not let us sleep at night or think of anything else. Forgiveness lifts that weight from us. Forgiveness lifts that great burden from our heart.

Forgiveness is indeed divine. Forgiveness is a step forward, and no one makes that step without growing spiritually and gaining some stature as a human being. There are few things on this earth more wonderful than forgiveness. There are few acts a person may do which are more benevolent and unselfish, which are more divine and more Christlike than the act of forgiveness.

Jesus says in the Bible in Matthew 6: 14-15-"For if ye forgive men their trespasses your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses."

(317) We Are Thought

A human being is more than their physical body. We are the existence of thought which ascribes to our body living functions, thought which moves our limbs and speaks, thought which sees and hears and relates to our world, thought which understands ourself to be.

The thought is divine. The thought comes from God the source of our being. The thought is eternal. The thought is the original idea of being of which we all share. It is the thought that we are that moves us. This thought cannot be chemically instilled, but must be spiritually instilled.

This network of bones, veins, and nerves is no more who we are than the dust at our feet. We are thought and as such we cannot totally know ourself, cannot perceive our beginning or end. This flesh and blood is not the true us, for we cannot be seen or felt.

The real us cannot be understood, cannot be limited, cannot be enclosed in a body. We are thought, and thought knows no bounds. These hands and these feet are not really us, because in thought we live and move. We touch the stars and walk in dreams without the aid of hands and feet.

These eyes and these ears are not who we are. We are as formless as the ether, as expansive as the universe.

(318) The Cheerful Wren

The cheerful song of the wren
Cheered my sorrowful heart,
As I walked in the yard,
And my sadness did depart.

The sun seemed more bright,
As I listened to the wren,
And the sky a deeper blue,
Than it had ever been.

How could such a tiny bird,
Change my outlook so,
And make more bright my day,
And give me more hope as I go?

(319) Giving Up

I wrote the book on giving up. Take the easy way out. Give up! Only let me tell you it's not an easy way. Back down, pull away, and end up in oblivion. "I can't win", that's all you have to say, and I guarantee you that you won't win. You won't even be in the game.

If you make up your mind that you are going to lose, then you are well on your way to losing. No goal is ever reached by giving up. There is something about life that must constantly be affirmed. It will not stand for giving up. You have got a fight on your hands if you decide to give up, because that substance called life within you is going to battle for that life every inch of the way.

When you give up your not fighting anybody else, you are fighting yourself. If that giving up power wins the battle within you, then you destroy yourself. It begins slowly, almost unnoticed, you give up doing some little thing, then something else, and gradually you have no will power to stand firm on anything. We are given life, and this life imposes few obligations upon us beyond this one, which is not to give up.

(320) My New Year's Resolutions

I resolve to be kinder in the New Year,
And to be impolite and vexed less,
To not give in to my despair and fear,
But try to cultivate more hopefulness.

I resolve to help more those in need,
And lend more a helping hand,
To curb my own selfishness and greed,
And vow the needs of others understand.

I resolve to be less obstinate if I can,
And try to see the other person's side,
To be more positive about what I plan,
And in faith, hope, and love abide.

(321) New Year's Come And Go

New Year's come and go,
And I grow older each year,
And not much wiser I fear,
Wonder what I'm doing here,
Sometimes I don't know.

When I was a little child,
Each new year seemed bright,
Auspicious as the golden sunlight,
Or the stars gleaming at night,
But now in sadness I'm oft exiled.

So much has come and gone,
New Year's don't seem so new,
Old memories often make me blue,
And I miss departed loved ones too,
But I guess I will have to go on.

(322) Ring The New Year In

Ring the new year in,
Let us rejoice and sing,
And be happy once again,
Who knows what it may bring.

Thus as the old year passes away,
Ring the new year in with song,
For the old year could not stay,
The new year has come along.

So here's to the new year,
May it be happy and bright,
We welcome it with good cheer,
On the very stroke of midnight.

(323) New Year Hope

Hope for world peace without fail,
Hope for cruelty and poverty to end,
Hope for brotherly love to prevail,
Hope for differences to mend;

Hope for kindness to spread,
Hope for suffering to cease,
Hope all the hungry are fed,
Hope all nations will be at peace;

Hope goodness will evil overcome,
Hope universal love will succeed,
Hope prosperity is not just for some,
Hope for end to intolerance and greed.

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