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Garden Ladies

    Garden Ladies


That I notice this woman

In the salon

As if my eye catches one particular

Flower in a too filled garden I must stoop

To take in the perfume


She has it going on.

She knows herself and shines it.

Like someone who is well read and well loved, she emits

A quiet light of graciousness

And weathered beauty that makes her stand out

from inside the designs of her own garden.

She is having some fun today and owns the room.

When layered rows of lilacs in massive purple blooms demand

I bend to breathe in the scent of one who represents all, I obey.

So I will overcome the social imperative to isolate and

Keep my own counsel and go speak to her.


That I notice this woman

In the salon

As if my eye catches one particular

Flower in a too filled garden I must stoop

To take in the perfume

Feeling my own withering spirit, I remember that all flowers bloom grace

Whether anyone stoops to breathe them in or not.

We are garden ladies and there is no need to prune our spirits.



Think of a desert. It has been cold. It has been hot. Things scurry about on the sand. Other things crawl into the shade of rocks or below. Some predators. Some prey. All trying to survive the extremes of moment to moment. The rain comes and the smell is unique. A few green things try to sprout in their short lifespan. A small critter drowns in a wash. Something is born and scuttles away. A branch cracks half off a limb and hangs in the arid breeze like a signpost in a ghost town. Within a few hours the dry is once again Lord of all. The blue sky offers no relief. A cloud is a joke. The silence is deeper than the ocean. Climbing the hill gives way to openness that suggests there are no more hills to climb. But there always are. And the color, oh, the color is the thing. Stop moving. Listen to the color. See the soundlessness. Taste the dust. Breathe in the nothingness. Be the desert. Raw. Crisp. Paper-thin. Gone.

A sudden mirage floats toward me carrying a cup of sweet water. Who is she that dares walk at noon with a chalice? Who is this who is the turquoise river and the sparkle sea in the middle of the blazing day? Who is it that anoints me with the baptism mission of soul and entices me with an artesian holy grail? Did I fall asleep?

O parched lips open and take sweet drinks of hope one more time. One more time rise and say Yes. Shake the dust from your feet of clay and bathe in the life-giving presence of the still waters and drink deep from the communion of saints.

And Know this: it is the desert that is the mirage.

The Diagnosis

The Diagnosis

Projection is
The Reflection
Of your Imperfection
And self Protection
By using Rejection
Instead of Introspection
Thus avoiding Correction

Vali Hawkins Mitchell©2012

The Little Wars


It’s not just the nuclear holocausts that we worry about!
It’s the Little Wars that wear us down,
The fights and feuds,
The conflicts and sorrows,
Today’s and tomorrow’s
Of never-ending non-resolves
That fatigue and tire,
Bog and mire
Us down in emotions
Too frequent to bear
That lead to despair.

Our battlefields are:

And the Weapons of Mass Destruction are:
Giving up

Finding Peace is all we ask.
Making Peace is a daily task.

© From Dr. Vali’s Book: Emotional Terrors in the Workplace: Protecting your Business’ Bottom Line (Rothstein.com)

Th’ Lettin’ Gang Ay Ye Sang*
The Letting Go of You Song*
(a wee Piobaireachd jig)

Bridges ur meant tae be crossed Ah ken,
Send a postcard, will ye hen?
I’m singin’ a travelin’ sang fur ye,
There’s naethin’ left fur ye haur.

Shared moments ur jist ‘at ye see
Ain naethin’ mair they brin’,
Ain travelin’ angels ken th’ truth
As they donner wi’ us they sin’,

Fiddley Oh, fiddley oh, fiddley dee I oh
Peace be untae ye they sin’
Fiddley day I oh
Fiddley Oh, fiddley oh, fiddley dee I oh
Peace be untae ye I sin’
Fiddley day I oh

Remember Lilacs

He scowled as he waited for guidance.

“Why bother to explain yourself to a breeze, when it is the ocean that listens?
Why elaborate on the flame when it burns away all evidence of itself?
If the winter designs the spring without discussion, and
The summer designs the fall in silent gratitude, why keep notes?
If tomorrow doesn’t ask how many bare feet are waiting to feel the warm earth, and
The mountain doesn’t question the snow, is there a point to your query?

The mystic remembered lilacs and smiled at his folly.



We climbed up a crumbling mountain path
to stand by a glacier today.
The blue ice had the colors of
A Hawaiian sea and the rushing
melt-off sounded like the ocean.
Although the Artic cold pinched my cheeks red,
And the rock shards cut at my new boots,
I stood in the bigger silence and
felt the familiar foreverness that instantly heals me whole.

Vali Hawkins Mitchell 9/19/11

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