Shine on Me

Sun, mischievous child

plays hide and seek beneath clouds;

on slanted slate sky,

wintertide weather’s barrage

upsets one’s visage… come shine!

“The tanka is a thirty-one-syllable poem, traditionally written in a single unbroken line. A form of waka, Japanese song or verse, tanka translates as “short song,” and is better known in its five-line, 5/7/5/7/7 syllable count form.”

Poets.org

“Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is a type of depression that’s related to changes in seasons — SAD begins and ends at about the same times every year. If you’re like most people with SAD, your symptoms start in the fall and continue into the winter months, sapping your energy and making you feel moody. Less often, SAD causes depression in the spring or early summer.”

Mayo Clinic

“A quick look at the medical literature reveals that it is still unclear what causes SAD, but most experts believe it might be caused by a drop in serotonin, a brain chemical affecting mood. Reduced sun exposure can cause a drop in serotonin that might trigger depression. The change in seasons can also disrupt the balance of the natural hormone, melatonin, which hormone plays a role in sleep patterns and mood.”

Pharmacy Times


SAD = Smile And Dance

I first encountered SAD four decades ago. The first twenty years I changed light bulbs and dealt with the condition. As time has passed, there has become more of an awareness of the “lack of sun” syndrome. Along with the awareness, there are countless ways to handle the challenge.

I would assume it can be different for everyone, the effects of SAD or how to handle the situation.

About a decade ago, I started spending more time outside during our limited winter, sunny days in Wisconsin. Next, I added supplements to my diet to help increase a balance in hormones. I also purchased a dry sauna. This added light therapy and warmth. Like 130 degrees of heat on subzero days. All of this has been helpful.

Is SAD real? It’s as real as PMS, which in my early years I was told was none existent, and now it has been accepted. What else can one do in dealing with SAD? Smile and dance (SAD) knowing spring will come again!

“From the rising of the sun unto the going down of the same the LORD’S name is to be praised.”

Psalm113:3

Junes’ Song

Before slice of dawn…
after throaty bullfrogs croak
and birds begin their shrill;

there is a parcel of time
in which no sounds emerge
out in the inky darkness of night.

Over shadowy country landscapes,
under the veil of bright spring morn
there settles an empty, hollow stillness.

And some doze, as other stir:
‘bove bright blue buntings breed
below badger burrows down deep.

Arise with break of new dawn…
Lower your daily plans, read the Word!
There one will find stillness of heart.

I rise before the dawning of the morning,
And cry for help; I hope in Your word.

My eyes are awake through the night watches,
That I may meditate on Your word.

Psalm 119:147-148

Wintry Lane

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It is often I scamper to the woods to wash my thoughts of day. Beneath the forest crown, upon the threshing floor, and within the arms of watchful limbs I plunge sure-footed down wooded lane. Breathe in the mollify melody of birds among the trees. Feel the ease of earth between my toes. Inhale the woodsy scents of bud and rot. All enhance my taste of what lies beyond each winding bend.

It need not be swells of spring where sticky cobweb clings to hair. Nor sultry summer day as broad leaves waltz in wind. I anticipate the warmth of autumn’s glow, its blush bittersweet hues. Winter is when true forest cleansing scrubs from head to toe. Like icing on a cake, the trees are dressed in white. I sense a deeper purging… a pouring out of now and then.

cling to crusty bark
woes settled on thin shoulders
Refreshing forest

I had no idea all these years I’ve been ‘forest bathing’. Stop over at dVerse to see what it’s all about. “Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.” Psalm 51:7.

The Cat

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Photo by Emma, age 5

Cat died today, faithful felon of old: my foot warmer, security blanket, and endless friend. I’m unprepared for grief. Let the cat in, let the cat out is no longer a routine in my day. As day breaks with morning’s new sunrise I will ponder how to fill the empty corners of life.

“O death, where is your sting? O Hades, where is your victory.” With cat’s passing I ponder death and loss: the unborn, the war orphan and the unexpected loss. I’m told we shall not all sleep, instead be changed. This soul will be given a new body. I will weigh the balances of life and death.

As days and weeks melt this grief I choose to move forward. Embrace someone who suffers more than I. Grasp the hope of each new day. Yet in the crook of some days I’ll page through the memories of cat and I… cat died today.

Over at dVerse we’re investigating prose poetry. Dedicated to Rachael who lost her cat today and being encouraged by I Corinthians 15:55 I attempts the intangible… prose poetry.