Pen and Moon

musings, life lessons & poetry from Theresa Jarosz Alberti

April Brings a Poetry Challenge and … Snow

Welcome to April! It’s National Poetry Month, and I’ve decided to try another write-a-poem-a-day challenge like I did back in 2018. It really is a challenge for me but I could use a creative nudge these days. I aim to write a poem and post it here every day this month. I hope you’ll follow along, and please post any of your favorite poems in the comments.

It’s also the time when Minnesotans are yearning for signs of spring, especially after a long and extra-snowy winter like this one. Mother Nature decided to play an April Fool’s prank on us instead and add several more inches of snow to the crusty snow that was still on the ground. My social media feeds have been full of winter wonderland photos today. Beautiful, yes, but we are so over it now!

Today’s prompt from the London Writers’ Salon was based on the poem Having a Coke With You by Frank O’Hara: “use the wisdom of Frank O’Hara and write about how being in the presence of someone you love can turn an ordinary moment into a transcendent experience.”  I didn’t quite do the prompt but it did inspire this:

Both And

“I’d like to buy the world a Coke
and keep it company.”
–1971 ad campaign commercial

Sometimes it’s hard to remember
the good in the world
when the shouting is so loud
and the gray tidal waves
never stop beating the shore
with their force. Continue reading

Remodeling… My Life

I’m sitting here with an itchy nose from extra dust flying through the house as loud sawing, drilling, and other power-tool vibrations rattle through the house (really unsettling for Loki-the-cat who hovers around me needing more reassurances and soothing). The construction workers for this current project– a major remodel of the main floor bathroom– started two weeks ago.  We are in the Messy Middle: a few months of living with one upstairs bathroom, workers in and out of the house every weekday, noise, dust, and random inconveniences (like the water being turned off for most of a day). It’s a hassle, exciting to see dramatic changes, frustrating, hopeful, all of the above. On the other end will be something a lot better than what was there, so it’s worth it. Continue reading

The Bear Awakens

Greetings from the doorway of my cave of hibernation. That’s what it’s felt like for the last many months, hunkered down in my house, Okay, maybe I wasn’t really sequestered in some self-imposed solitary confinement or sleeping the winter away, but I was definitely going through some big shifts that kept me from poking out my head much on social media. I was still staying social by zooming with friends and seeing family, running some basic errands, but the winter was kinda brutal and I stayed home a lot, grateful for my youngest son living with me and being around to talk and hug.

Spring wasn’t helping much either. Instead of being a hopeful time of new greenness, we had so many cold gray days that it felt like a continuation of winter. It’s only been the last two weeks where we’ve gotten some sun and warmth (YAY!), and in that all-or-nothing climate-change way, of course it jumped right into the 80s and even 90 last week. Sheesh! But this post isn’t really about the weather. My own internal weather is more like it. Continue reading

Re-Post: The Best-Kept Secret About Meditation, or What I Learned That Finally Made It Work

I thought I’d revisit one of my more popular posts. I needed to re-read this myself, and get myself inspired to do some meditating again. It’s such a powerful tool that I often forget about! Enjoy.

I’ve had a lovehate relationship with meditation for most of my adult life. I’d hear about it from people who incorporated it into their life, or from books, stories of those who went on retreats to meditate in silence for days on end, or friends who woke up early to meditate every day.

Something about it appealed to me, the peacefulness of it, the idea of calming my anxiety, wanting to experience theIdon’tknowwhat, that keeps passionate meditators on their cushions every day. I didn’t really understand how to do it, though, so I looked for ways to learn.

I think my first experience meditating was in a college class, when I was going to school and working fulltime. At the end of a long day, we lay on the floor in a dark room, and I fell asleep every time to the teacher’s soothing voice.

Continue reading

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