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Poem: “Clearing,” by Martha Postlewaite

Do not try to save the whole world or do anything grandiose. Instead, create a clearing in the dense forest of your life and wait there patiently, until the song that is your life falls into your own cupped hands and you recognize and greet it. Only then will you know...

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Happy Birthday To . . . Mary Catherine & Bill

December 8, 1939 Mary Catherine Bateson "Sharing is sometimes more demanding than giving." December 8, 1960 Bill McKibben "Community is as endangered by surplus as it is by deficit. If there is too much money floating around it enables people to have no need of each...

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Poem: “The Art of Disappearing,” by Naomi Shihab Nye

When they say Don't I know you? say no. When they invite you to the party remember what parties are like before answering. Someone telling you in a loud voice they once wrote a poem. Greasy sausage balls on a paper plate. Then reply. If they say We should get together...

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Poem: “Home,” by Warsan Shire

No one leaves home unless home is the mouth of a shark. You only run for the border when you see the whole city running as well. Your neighbours running faster than you, the boy you went to school with who kissed you dizzy behind the old tin factory is holding a gun...

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Poem: “I Think It’s Brave,” by Lana Rafaela

i think it’s brave that you get up in the morning even if your soul is weary and your bones ache for a rest i think it’s brave that you keep on living even if you don’t know how to anymore i think it’s brave that you push away the waves rolling in every day and you...

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Happy Birthday To . . . Sojourner & Nicholas

December 1, 1797 Sojourner Truth "They are the same stars, and that is the same moon, that look down upon your brothers and sisters, and which they see as they look up to them, though they are ever so far away from us, and each other." December 1, 1948 N.T. Wright...

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The Monkey and the Apples

There once was a happy monkey. He wandered through the jungle, happy to be alive. He stopped to eat delicious fruit when he was hungry, and resting when he was tired. One day he came upon a house, where he saw a bowl of the most beautiful apples. He took one in each...

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Happy Birthday To . . . Jonathan & Sam

November 30, 1667 Jonathan Swift "We have enough religion to make us hate, but not enough to make us love one another." November 30, 1835 Mark Twain (Samuel Langhorne Clemens) "The very ink with which history is written is merely fluid...

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Poem: “The Empathy Party,” by Sarah Sadie

My son barred me from the empathy party his fifth grade classroom hosted. In our evolving dance there are so many events I’m not invited to, moments I’m too intimate to share. Later, he tells me the snacks sucked, crackers and carrot sticks, and there was too much...

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Happy Birthday To . . . Rita Mae & Jon

November 28, 1944 Rita Mae Brown "The only queer people are those who don't love anybody." November 28, 1962 Jon Stewart "If you don't stick to your values when they're being tested, they're not values: they're hobbies."

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Poem: “Enemies,” by Wendell Berry

If you are not to become a monster, you must care what they think. If you care what they think, how will you not hate them, and so become a monster of the opposite kind? From where then is love to come—love for your enemy that is the way of liberty? From forgiveness....

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Happy Birthday To . . . Charles & Adolpho

November 26, 1922 Charles Schulz “Don’t worry about the world coming to an end today. It’s already tomorrow in Australia.” November 26, 1931 Adolfo Perez Esquivel "We know we cannot plant seeds with closed fists. To sow, we must open our...

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Poem: “What Is Given,” by Ralph Murre

The likelihood of finding strawberries tiny and wild and sweet around your ankles on any given day in any given place is not great but sometimes people find strawberries right where they are standing just because it is their turn to be given a taste of something wild...

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Happy Birthday To . . . George & Andre

November 22, 1857 George Gissing "It is because nations tend towards stupidity and baseness that mankind moves so slowly; it is because individuals have a capacity for better things that it moves at all." November 22, 1869 Andre Gide "One does not discover new lands...

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Poem: “A Thanksgiving Fable,” by Oliver Herford

It was a hungry pussy cat, upon Thanksgiving morn, And she watched a thankful little mouse, that ate an ear of corn. "If I ate that thankful little mouse, how thankful he should be, When he had made a meal himself, to make a meal for me! Then with his Thanks for...

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Poem: “Magnifying Mirrors,” by Judi Brown

I am getting too old for this for peering into a magnifying mirror whose sole mission is to bring into sharp focus each imperfection as though with a little care and attention I can achieve what passes for beauty as if growing old gracefully doesn't include age spots...

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Happy Birthday To . . . Howard & Margaret

November 18, 1900 Howard Thurman "If a man knows precisely what he can do to you or what epithet he can hurl against you in order to make you lose your temper, your equilibrium, then he can always keep you under subjection." November 18, 1939 Margaret Atwood "Nothing...

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Happy Birthday To . . . Nye & Theodore

November 15, 1897 Aneurin Bevan "You can't have the crown of thorns and the thirty pieces of silver." November 15, 1933 Theodore Roszak "People try nonviolence for a week, and when it 'doesn't work' they go back to violence, which hasn't worked for...

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Happy Birthday To . . Kurt & Kim

November 11, 1922 Kurt Vonnegut "There is no reason why good cannot triumph as often as evil. The triumph of anything is a matter of organization. If there are such things as angels, I hope that they are organized along the lines of the Mafia." November 11, 1968 Kim...

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Poem: “Dulce et decorum est,” by Wilfred Owen

Bent double, like old beggars under sacks, Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge, Till on the haunting flares we turned our backs And towards our distant rest began to trudge. Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots But limped on, blood-shod....

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