Start Small


Start small

With steps towards

Good and beauty

Towards life and healing


You may find

Discouragement and


Tagging, unwanted


You may find

You don’t have

All you need

Lose hope

And not finish


Start small

You will add

Piece by piece

To what you have

Wondering where did

It all come from

Whether it be word

Or color or brick or paint

It won’t matter because

It will be there

To fit into the place it goes

And you will see

Unfolding before your eyes

(Maybe not exactly as you thought!)

The dream, the plan,

The drawing, the house

The life

finishing in all it’s glory


© 2016 Julie Clark

Categories: beauty, Faith, growth, Hope, Life, Poetry, Seasons, Trees, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Raw Material



We are given the raw materials

Of our lives

As on the First Day

Out of the chaos and void

Life began


What will we do with

The darkness and light

Will we separate it into a

Smooth transition of colors

As in a rainbow?


It will be anything

But smooth

Full of fits and starts

Smudges and blackouts

As if we can erase

The messes we have made


Yet stepping back

With the whole of life

In view

Of the one who falls

And is trampled under foot

Yet rises again

Painfully struggling


Into the light

Into the Love

That calls each by name

We see

The darkness is part of the canvas

Entwined with the light

Creating patterns and contrasts

Always erupting in colors at the end

The struggle of life emerging


If we only focused on

The fire scarred trunk

And did not step back

We would miss

The strength and substance

Of the ancient tree

Still green in all seasons



The artist

The gardener

The teacher

The builder

The writer

The dancer

The musician

All participating in

Taking the chaos

And creating something

Useful or

Something just


Adding to the

life that began

When the light

Was separated from the darkness

© 2016 Julie Clark


Categories: beauty, Birds, Faith, Life, Love, Poetry, Trees | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Will I?



If I listen

I will hear a variety of

Chirps, tweets and caws

Outside my window

The motors become background

To the symphony

If I listen


If I look

I will see the flowers

In the trees

The vibrant colors

In the garments swishing by

The mouths turning into smiles

If I look


If I smell

I will catch the aroma

Of spices in the air

The curries being prepared

The jasmine and frangipani

Dominating the fragrance of the path

If I smell


If I taste

I will savor the fruit and yogurt

In the lassie

The spices in the biryani

The ginger in the strong

Milky tea

If I taste


If I touch

I will feel the texture

Of the rich colorful fabrics

The weight of the children

In my lap

The cool tiles on bare feet

If I touch

© 2016 Julie Clark

follow the leader



Categories: beauty, borderlands, Life, Paths, Poetry, Travel, Trees | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Peace Longings



If only we could laugh together

With pure joy

If only we could play together

Running free

If only we could trust

and let go

If only kindness

Was at the top of our list

Instead of the unmentionables

Which I will not mention

Because you know,

They are blasted over us

Over and over until

We are numb

If only we were as

The little child stood in our midst

Clapping his hands

In glee

A smile that is wide and open

As the ocean-free

Forgiveness will bring us back

Home again

Given and received

And wipe away every tear

Root out all the bitterness

So the tender root of joy

Can push up it’s head




Longing for Peace

Reconciliation, forgiveness

Starting fresh again

Prince of Peace – Come

Show us your ways

Teach us your paths

Help us to walk in the way

Of peace

A humble road

Admitting we have

Done wrong

Asking for forgiveness

Giving it

How we bungle these things

With pride, fear

Protecting ourselves

Our interests

Lay down these weapons

Lay them down




How many tears

Can the oceans hold?

When will this violence


What will stop the cycle?

More violence is not the answer!

Have we not learned that, yet?

It only prolongs and increases

The destruction and death.

We must wake up!

All must do the work

Of the farmer

Go back to the basics

Sow the seeds of peace

Tears of repentance

And forgiveness

The courageous ones

Will walk towards their enemies

With hands empty

Save for peace

This earth does not belong

To those who devour it

But to the Meek

The gentle of heart

The tide will turn

Wait for it


© 2016 Julie Clark


Categories: Faith, God, Hope, Life, Paths, Peace and Reconciliation, Poetry | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Independence Day


Can a people be free without enslaving and exploiting others?  I believe they can.  I believe there is a path.  Many wise teachers have gone before us and exhorted us.  Let us listen to their voices, their pleas.  How do we live the words, “Treat others the way that you would like to be treated.”? It is not impossible. It is something we can do step by step, person by person, until whole communities and perhaps nations can live with this ethos.  


I remember when I was still quite young, 20, a teacher who was an expert on revival came to teach a class I was taking.  I asked, “How do we get a revival started?”  His answer: “First draw a circle around your two feet and pray that God would revive everything within this circle.”  Wow, I was not expecting that answer! So simple, so profound. Start with me.


As I celebrate the 4th of July,  I want to consider how I can promote freedom and justice for all people, starting with those around me who I can treat well, neighborly, kindly and with compassion. May we all join our circles together and bring the changes needed within and without our borders for this kind of freedom without exploiting others.

Categories: borderlands, Faith, Life, Paths, Peace and Reconciliation, Prayer | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

The Wind is Calling



The waves are breaking

Foaming on the shore

The sun is sparkling

White on the water

The tide is singing

As it reaches for more


You could sit here

And let the constant wind

Teach you

Or a protective little dog

Who hates to see

his pack separated

Unity, perhaps –

No one should be left behind

Stick together

It’s better,

Safer for all


The waves might be saying

I’m coming back for you

Are you open?

Are you ready?


The wind relentlessly blowing

Louder than a whisper

More of a roar

I’m taking in deep breaths

Of sea air

I’m hearing the call:

Come with me

I am ever present, ever moving

Though you do not see me

But you can fly on this current

If you let go

See the kites?


© 2016 Julie Clark


Categories: Dogs, Faith, Life, Poetry, Seasons | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Enemy Within

Again hate and fear are splashed across the pages of our newspapers, our screens, and our hearts. How is our world continuing to spiral further and further out of control? What will stop this craziness?  It’s not just the terrible violent acts, but also the hateful and fearful aftermath. Fingers are being pointed in all directions.  We really want answers and we want to blame someone other than ourselves and our own communities for these horrific acts of violence.

Here’s how Eugene Peterson translates the words of Jesus in The Message, regarding the final days. Matthew 24:11:  “In the confusion, lying preachers will come forward and deceive a lot of people. For many others, the overwhelming spread of evil will do them in—nothing left of their love but a mound of ashes.”

There is a lot of confusion, a lot of voices, deception and spreading of evil. What has happened to the love in our hearts?   Do you know that fear kills love?  More words from The Message this time from 1 John 4:17-18  God is love. When we take up permanent residence in a life of love, we live in God and God lives in us. This way, love has the run of the house, becomes at home and mature in us, ….There is no room in love for fear. Well-formed love banishes fear…

For those who want to blame Islam – I want to say this is not Islam, read these words translated from the Qur’an: “Whoever kills a person [unjustly]…it is as though he has killed all mankind. And whoever saves a life, it is as though he had saved all mankind.”(Qur’an, 5:32)

And for those who are asking the question (I have heard it too many times): “Why is the Muslim community not speaking out?”  They are! I hear them! Maybe their voices are not being listened to, or the wrong people are being heard.

For those who fear (as in fear the slippery slope) the LGBTQ community.  These ones are beloved of God! Who does the right to judge and condemn belong to? I remember there is only One Judge and it is not me. This judge is full of mercy – he even loves me, in all my messy brokenness.

The only remedy I understand from the words of my Saviour are “Love one another, this is my command.”  Not just love those who love you, remember? Love your neighbor, love your enemy.  Those following him are supposed to be known by their love, not by their condemnation.

So if the case is that the enemy is not out there but within our own hearts, if truly our love is growing cold, we better hurry and learn how to love again before all that is left is a pile of ashes.


Categories: Faith, God, Love, pain | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments



This world is breaking

My heart

I can hardly breathe

Let alone write a poem

Something with a message

Pointing toward hope


This world is breaking

My heart

Not the first time,

Not the last

I am not the only one

Most are in anguish


This world is breaking

My heart

Who can we turn to

Who has words of life

Who has love

Stronger than death


© 2016 Julie Clark

Categories: Faith, Hope, Life, Love, pain, Poetry, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Lifting our eyes

Welcoming the Blues

Lifting our eyes, just in time to see the eagle soaring towards us and then turning away.

Silently above us, searching for fish.

It caught one down the beach and began to break it’s fast.

How many times have I only caught a glimpse?

How many times have I missed it all, head down, worrying some problem in my mind, not present to the moment?

Yet, the eagle is there, as are all the other messengers, whether I see them or not.

But, what joy, when I am expectantly scanning and searching for those messages sent my way.

Today it was an eagle and a seal and an extremely low tide.

It was meeting Michael from DC with his two young boys who reminded me of my grandsons.

It was Debra with her hairless dog making us laugh.

It was Munira, fighting cancer, out for some fresh sea air. We blessed her and prayed for her healing. She said God sent you to me today – the first day of Ramadan.

It was connecting with strangers who become friends, building community in our neighborhood.

Categories: beauty, Birds, Dogs, Faith, God, Life, Poetry, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

A Celtic Blessing, by Paul Field

Favorite Trees

I came across this Poem/Blessing in my morning meditations today. He is saying, in a lovely way what we need to hear today. I sometimes use this website to awaken my soul in the morning.

Go peaceful

In gentleness

Through the violence of these


Give freely.

Show tenderness

In all your ways.


Through darkness,

In troubled time

Let holiness be your aim.

Seek wisdom.

Let faithfulness

Burn like a flame.


God speed you!

God lead you,

And keep you wrapped around His


May you be known by love.


Be righteous.

Speak truthfully

In a world of greed and lies.

Show kindness.

See everyone

Through heaven’s eyes.


God hold you,

Enfold you,

And keep you wrapped around His


May you be known by love.

 by Paul Field

Categories: Faith, God, Hope, Life, Love, Paths, Peace and Reconciliation, Poetry, Prayer | Tags: , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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