Six Word Stories (22)

What is hope?

An intangible thing that all humanity grasps for.

Sometimes I imagine I can feel it’s edges like a feather soft thing, just out of reach.

But is it really out of reach? Is hope something to be grasped?

No.

Hope is experienced, not held. Hope is found but not possessed.

It lives in places where logic alone dares not live.

Perspective changes things. It doesn’t change truth, but can give us a wider view of what is true.

Toes can never me mountains, but they can show is a likened beauty, and defy the shoes they are so often crammed into, and hold up the weight of our lives, like the deepest roots of the earth.

As does every shoulder bent in strain, stooped in pain, and prostrate in prayer.

©2021 Mary Grace van der Kroef

Photos sourced from unsplash.com

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Patience

                             Patience isn't passive
                      but A power held in check,
       ready when Time comes
              to move Inexorably forward.
                PatiencE shows a passion
           for peace iN bite sized nuggets
unafraid of silenCe
                        wisE in gauging climates.

©2021 Mary Grace van der Kroef

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Delight

Do you delight
in me
like a piece of poetry,

understood by poet
differently
then reader?

Do you rejoice
to see
every part of me,

as I spill words across your page?

Free to be
pure alchemy
mixed by Creator’s quill.

Bubbling with will.

Rephrasing me,
EMBOLDENED be,

speaking full while hushed and still.

©2021 Mary Grace van der Kroef

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Six Word Stories (21)

I remember my Father’s back and legs, clad in gray overalls, being the only thing visible as he leaned into the open maw of his truck’s hood. If we came to close with our loud games, he would shoosh us. He was listening.

He knew the sound of a healthy engine. He could tell what was off… The sound wasn’t right.

In all the noise of the universe, I wonder if our planet sound off as it spins. Can God hear the clank of my heart and tell just what isn’t quite right?

I imagine he listens closely to our world.

A world made to work, move, revolve, expand, collide, and create in the middle of deceptive chaos.

The constant churning of ideas, peoples, matter, all looks like a blended mess from the middle. But what does it look like as we take a step back and view the whole? Is there a rhyme or a reason?

The marks of our history litter this world. Even the rusted rim of a wheel has a story to tell us. It’s a piece of the puzzle, the hand of God is laying out. Only he knows their planned order.

If the world sounds off, maybe it’s just because He isn’t finished yet.

Are we a continuation of creation?

©2021 Mary Grace van der Kroef

Photos sourced from Unsplash.com

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Peace

Present places,
present faces,
in the moment here with you.

Touching sunlight,
touching evening,
side by side in all I do.

In comings,
follow goings,
always knowing you have space.

Quiet moments
hectic motions,
anchored inside grace.

Such protection,
unseen deflection,
learning ever to remain.

In the sphere
of your promise,
knowing every tear of pain,

is treasured,
measured,
in the palm of your hand.

Ensuring
your enduring
present peace before me spanned.

©2021 Mary Grace van der Kroef

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Our Forest on an Artist’s Conk/Hencroft Hub

I am happy to announce the publication of my first short story. Our Forest on an Artist’s Conk has been accepted and published in Hencroft Hub‘s first Issue. The theme of ISSUE ONE is FUNGUS. I took inspiration from the large tree mushrooms my sister harvested from the forest around her home, to use in my artwork. This short story is my first acceptance from a themed publication. It was a lot of fun to work around their theme and stretch my writing experience. Thank you to the Editor’s for giving my story a home.

Our Forest on an Artist’s Conk can be read HERE and don’t forget to read all the other great contributions to ISSUE ONE.

Six Word Stories (20)

The presence of light has such power. It can illuminate or bind us.

Darkness shreds in the presence of even a single flame.

It sets a mood and tells a story.

It’s an element that shouts volumes, with just a whispered presence.

Light is energy. Without it, growth is impossible.

Nature has a way of reclaiming what man uses and then forgets.

It doesn’t see our castoffs as no longer needed, it knows that it’s all still a part of the matter making up this world.

We can’t separate it out.

As nature reclaims its own pieces from the aftermath of us, it has its own stories to tell us.

Will we take the time to read them?

Stones remember, even when understanding is lost and history is forgotten.

Stones remember.

©2021 Mary Grace van der Kroef

Photos sourced from unsplash.com

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The Purpose In Just Being You/Divine Purpose Magazine

My article, ‘The Purpose In Just Being You,’ has appeared in the Spring 2021 Issue of Divine Purpose Magazine.

It’s been exciting to see my first article published, and I thank the Editors are Divine Purpose for including my piece this quarter. You can find the magazine HERE at ISSUE.com. The article appears on page 22.

Also, a huge thank you to my friend Jackie for helping me with editing. I learned so much from our back and forth, and treasure the time you took to invest in me. THANK YOU!

Joy

Found in simple spaces
when lights have dimmed to ease
weariness of day from shoulders prone.

In the morning beams
where radiance sings
reserving stage for feathered accompaniment notes.

Shimmers in the shadows
like the fuzziness of heat,
but greats in bells that chime with chirping mirth.

Often hid amid
wide open space
blending with a magic you can not trace.

Given to the few
who look beyond circumstance
to find the lines God painted beneath.

Even when awash,
paying untold cost,
finding treasure hid and hold relief.

©2021 Mary Grace van der Kroef

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Keeping Creative in Isolation

We often overlook the power of quiet in our world. For many creatives, finding that quiet space can be difficult.

What do you do when the quiet finds you, and won’t leave?

We have been subjected to isolation few have known before. For some, this has created safe spaces to create, even given us a boost. We have taken stock and finish projects. It’s been thrilling!

But, It’s been over a year. How do you keep your creativity thriving when you can’t watch the hustle and bustle of everyday life from your favorite coffee shop window, when trips that feed your inspiration are discouraged? What do you do when it’s been weeks since your last conversation with another adult, and all you hear in your own brain is baby talk and cartoon theme songs? Or even just silence, and the silence is weighting on you, crushing your creativity.

Get basic.

It’s time to remember your ‘why’. What do I mean by that?

Every person engaging in their creativity has a why, an underlying reason they create. What’s yours?

For me, it’s not a choice. I must write or I get sick. It’s how my brain puts pieces together and manages stress. It’s how I entertain and am entertained. I dream, think, and live in a world of words. My why?

I write to understand myself and the word.

What is your why?

Whatever form your creativity takes, revisit your why. After you hold it in my mind and heart again, ask yourself, is it still enough? Has it changed this past year? Should it change?

I can’t answer those questions for you. I will trust you can find the answers. After you remember your why, it’s time to practice.

Practice? Yes, practice.

Sometimes creatives believe the lie that, “We always need to have a project going.” That is not true.

When you are tired, lonely, depressed, give your brain and heart a rest. Revisit things you know best like the beginning strokes of a painting, the simple forms of poetry you played with as a child.

Hop,
mop,
clop!

Let your brain wonder through small things.

What does your coffee smell like?

Is there a word to describe the wind chimes outside on the back porch?

If your art is more physical, return to the exercises your body knows. Muscle memory is powerful.

Pick up your guitar and play Mary Had A little lamb. Let your fingers roam over the strings, finding the notes your heart loves best, a favorite song. Just sing.

Then take a brake.

Put it down, walk away, play with the kids. Phone Mom! Send your girlfriend a hand-written letter.
Let creativity grow. Once you start something, it will call to you. Your heart and mind will tell you when to engage with creativity.

Do you hear her calling you?

When you do, it’s then that your heart is ready to learn from her again. This road of creativity in loneliness is difficult. But if you feed that flame inside, it won’t die. Be kind to yourself.

©2021 Mary Grace van der Kroef

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