Ekphrastic Poetry · Poem · Poetry

Summer’s End

From seedlings in spring to tall grasses in summer sun, we stand, scanning the lapping currents from our spot.

Clinging to trees, cicadas call out an endless shrill.

Water bugs mate and die while widow skimmers dance on the waves in bright light.

A turtle basks on a dead limb that’s caught in a root wad along the bank.

Your kayak floats downstream in our shadows.

As an eagle keeps watch from a lofty sycamore perch, a warm gust lifts and sways us on the shore, and we seem to wave as you pass by.

Your evening ride succumbs to rain.

The wind stirs up wakes for you to command as an Asian carp pounds into your boat.

The beaver makes it to shore before you in the storm.

The river bank is summer’s bed of sand, where you seek refuge.

In the bluster, we bear our seeds at water’s edge. They scatter like tiny, startled bees.

Our ravaged arms reach for the falling light at dusk.

The glassy river reflects our age as our colors fade.

Our stems bend as though thirsty for noon.

I revised this poem. The new version is ‘River Grass at Summer’s End’, which I put up in November 2019.

 

©Barbara Harris Leonhard, extraordinarysunshineweaver.blog

Image “Sunset on the Missouri River” ©Dierik Leonhard

 

 

 

Ekphrastic Poetry · Original Digital Art · Poem · Poetry

Woman

Woman, how you portray
your complex essence and ambiguity.

You are a study of light
cast on the walls of your Self.

Shadows border your brilliance.

Your portrait is askew with flavors
that you offer to guests
enamored by your mystery
as you gaze into obscurity.

**Won third place in a local writing competition for this poem. My sister made a special image for it for this post.**

©Barbara Harris Leonhard, extraordinarysunshineweaver.blog

Image: “The Charmer” digital art © Martha Harris. See Martha’s Artistic Flarings @artisticflarings.blog

Ekphrastic Poetry · Poetry · Prose · Tai Chi

The Death of a Farm

I submitted this poem to the July 2019 Ekphrastic Challenge, but it wasn’t chosen. I don’t have permission to use the image here, but you can check out Ekphrastic Challenge on Rattle.com for the exact scene. For this post, I chose some free images on pixabay to illustrate the poem.

The image in the July 2019 Rattle challenge shows a small farm with a house and trailer on the right, positioned behind a pen. In the muddy field, there are two cows. In the background to the left, you see an old silo and in the center in the background, a barn. Above the silo is a jet making a descent. The image is named: Restricted/U.S. Air Force by B.A. Van Sise from the artist’s “Elsewhere” series.

For me, the image on Rattle elicited memories of my time on a farm in Missouri. Our large family rented an old farm house for a couple of years in the early 60s.

My impression was of the passing of an era for the house, the farm, me, and even the nation.

THE DEATH OF A FARM

The house was a woman of years

refusing to sell to developers.

She still had her wringer washer

and coal-burning stoves waiting to be fed.

How she quaked with the roar of the coal filling her bins.

She ate that coal like candy.

And the ubiquitous black dust fought me each winter

as I scrubbed and scrubbed the cracked vinyl flooring

and the sills and woodwork that trimmed her bodice.

Each summer, the dust blown in from the fields

would blanket the old woman.

Her ivory dress, tattered and stained,

spoke of bygone trials and triumphs on her American soil,

where she stood her ground.

I was her caretaker in our sojourn there

as she indulged this family of nine,

who needed a roof with substantial lodging.

She complied with the courtesy of a elderly southern belle

eager for companionship as she had been lonely too long.

Her barn became a nursery for newborn kittens

and a playground for boisterous boys.

They climbed the rickety ladders to view her farm

from the highest loft overlooking the pasture

and her crop of tobacco and such.

barn-101273__340

The crops were farmed by hired teens

who tried to scare this young girl

with gross beetle larvae from across the fence.

Wanna smoke?  They would ask me.

I was too young for them  – and busy.

I worked for the sake of the house.

I would wring out the sheets and hang them in the sun.

The laundry on the lines would whip in the wind

to the songs on American Bandstand and the current top ten.

When free from the chores,

I took to the pasture to sing and dance to my own tunes

in the fescue that nourished the livestock.

woman-792818__340

My heart wandered in the farmland hills and the trickling creek

as I imagined my possibilities.

But one autumn day, the pasture became my refuge of tears

when I heard that President Kennedy had been shot and killed.

I ran from the kitchen to the pasture and

slumped down. My cries resounded as a death toll

in the shadow of an abandoned silo.

 

My old friend stared with wide, hollow eyes,

As her light dimmed to still night.

The cows scattered to the sound of a jet

descending to torn earth.

 

 

©Barbara Harris Leonhard, extraordinarysunshineweaver.blog

Images: Pixabay

 

 

 

Ekphrastic Poetry · Healing · Poem · Poetry

Searching

I am crying for the Amazon because the loss of animal life and the trees is devastating. This poem honors our forests, the arms of the Goddess, still reaching out to us though we forget who she is, our dear Mother Earth.

The way goes deep

into these dark woods.

Your Mag-lit blinks

as shadows splice the light.

You hold your world

bound tight on your back

with ropes strung as questions.

The burden pulls down your smile.

You are not alone.

My trunk is your spine.

My roots reach out with food

and a protected path.

My limbs will hold you

and shield you.

I am the forest;

each sapling is nourished

by my grace.

I shelter and feed travelers

who rest in the moss at my feet.

I bring rain and make you a garden.

Lay down your burdens;

give to me all that you cannot carry.

 

©Barbara Harris Leonhard, extraordinarysunshineweaver.blog

Image: Pixabay

Healing · Intuitive Listening · Qigong · Reiki · Tai Chi

My Weebly Reiki, Tai Chi Chuan, Qigong, and Intuitive Listening Web Store

Friends,

If you need Tai Chi Chuan lessons, Qigong lessons, Reiki sessions, Reiki training, or Intuitive Listening, please check out my services on Weebly!

I am a Usui Reiki Master/ Teacher and a Karuna Reiki practitioner.  Reiki is a hands-on healing modality which originated in Japan. Much like acupuncture and massage, Reiki is a great complement to medical care. The universal life force energy that is channeled for healing is abundant, ancient, and omnipresent (available to everyone). It is unconditional love. Love is the best chemo!

My Reiki clients report stress reduction, relaxation, and a greater sense of wellness after each session. These sessions balance the flow of energy throughout the subtle energy system and organs, promoting healing.

You can receive Reiki in person or remotely. We are all connected, so distance healing is just as powerful as that received in person. Regardless of where Reiki is sent, I am always humbled by its gifts and miracles.

Intuitive Listening is a comforting service as I listen with compassion along with a card reading and/or Reiki treatment. These sessions have opened people up to new insights related to life issues and life purpose.

The Reiki training is thorough and provides practice and in some items I also provide tutorials. There are three levels of Reiki. Level 1 is an introduction with a focus on self-healing and treating loved ones, Level 2 is the practitioner level, and Level 3 is the Master level. Certificates of completion are presented after each level of training.

I was led to try a Reiki session when I had two cancer scares. The session was so profound that I felt it was a calling. Thus, I sought training.  My training and experience with Reiki has had a profound effect on me physically, mentally, spiritually, and emotionally. I even feel healthier on the cellular level.

I find that my healing from anxiety and depression has been an ongoing and steady process mainly because I have chosen to integrate the universal life force energies into my being. By allowing, relaxing, and trusting this flow of healing energy, you too can recover from illness and stress.

I’m at the point now where I feel my ancestral trauma is being released and transmuted to the light, and I am gaining clarity on my life purpose just as you can. Another effect for me was heightened psychic awareness. I think we are all psychic, but we repress those senses. Reiki helps to release stagnant energy, which can then enhance our senses. Most importantly, however, my experience with Reiki has opened my heart.

Reiki energy raises our vibrations, which in turn helps us to live in the light and ward off the dark forces that attach to us. Like attracts like, so if we intend to resonate with our higher self and spirit guides, we can repel negativity. Healing is a process of ascension as we embrace the healing and unconditional love of the Reiki energy.

The Reiki Principles in the featured image teach that wellness involves letting go of negative emotions, such as anger and worry, and embracing kindness, gratitude, and integrity. What a beautiful world we could have it we could heal from post traumatic stress, depression, and poor health. What a beautiful world we could have if we could forgive ourselves and others, and learn to love ourselves and others unconditionally. Healing is a deep study of the soul. It is holy work, not a quick fix.

Intuitive Listening is a comforting service as I listen with compassion along with a card reading and/or Reiki treatment. These sessions have opened people up to new insights related to life issues and life purpose.

For these reasons, Reiki and Intuitive Listening form an excellent complement to medical care. In fact, more hospitals are implementing Reiki sessions for patients and staff.

The beginning private Tai Chi Chuan and Qigong lessons will provide many health benefits, such as improved balance, bone density, and circulation. Tai Chi Chuan massages all the organs with gentle movements. Qigong means “breathing”. Improved breathing helps deliver oxygen to all parts of the body, improving health even at the cellular level.

I have been studying and practicing Tai Chi Chuan and Qigong since 2006. I want to focus on beginners by teaching proper posture, stance, and form. I learned the 8 Forms in China but mainly I have studied under various well qualified teachers in Columbia, Missouri. I know the Yang style 8 Forms, 16 Forms, and 24 Forms. I’ve studied done Chen forms, and I hope to someday teach the Sun Lu Tang Tai Chi Forms. I’ve also learned fan and sword forms. Currently I am also teaching Qigong to grade school children.

Some of my services offer intuitive and compassionate listening. I have had crisis resolution and hotline training with a local Rape Crisis Center, I have been trained as a Family to Family Teacher for the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill. In the class I taught, families of the mentally ill were trained on how to cope with their loved one’s mental illness. And I have had training as a hospice volunteer. However, I am neither a doctor nor a psychiatrist, so during sessions and classes, I do not make diagnoses or prescribe medications.

—————————-

You can order on line. Descriptions of the products are available with the items. Again, I am still adding products, so check back!

https://www.barbaraleonhardreikimasterteacher.com/

Be sure to email me to set up appointments. I have disabled the on-line calendar.

barbaraleonhardreiki@gmail.com

I am grateful to be able to grow my practice and serve others!

Love and Light!

Barbara