Archive for Love Letters from Lala Land – Page 2

The Secret Language of Birds?

We have a barred owl. Every night, as we settle in for sleep, it greets us with the unmistakable call, “Who cooks for you?” You can hear and see it here. It’s quite delightful to experience. I’m even smiling as I write this. I’m so grateful it’s chosen to light for awhile in our wooded yard and serenade us most evenings.

Lots of birds visit our yard, actually. During one of the warmer afternoons last week, I went outside to get some Vitamin D, and was overwhelmed by the decibel level of their multiple conversations. So much was being said!

This got me thinking: “What are they really saying?” So I did some research, and found that they really do have a lot to say! Check out all of the possibilities here.

It also lead me to write a little poem. It’s a series of haikus, and I hope you enjoy it.

You Talkin’ To Me?

The featherweights fly
High in the intricate lace
Of the wintertime.

They chase and land and
Sometimes they peck, until they
Chase and land again.

What is their message
For those of us who are bound
To earth for life and

Death that surely comes?
What have they to say about
How we spend our time,

Mostly chasing and
Sometimes pecking but hardly
Landing? Rest, maybe?

 

©2014 Laura Overstreet Biering

Love Your Pet Day

 

It’s Love Your Pet Day!

While I need no special day to remind me to love my pets, I’ll always welcome a day to share pictures of them with you. Below are a few favorites some of the pups I’ve loved (we’ll wait for another day to post the kitties):

Here’s my Papa, teaching Max to “Speak!”

Here’s my Papa, teaching Max to “Speak!”

Here I am (at about 9 y. o.), playing cards, with my longhaired Chihuahua Carlos is"helping.”

Here I am (at about 9 y. o.), playing cards, with my longhaired Chihuahua Carlos is”helping.”

My “scribbled” rendering of Dogberry.

My “scribbled” rendering of Dogberry.

My “scribbled” rendering of Little Bit.

My “scribbled” rendering of Little Bit.

Sure, they have their sibling rivalry..,

Sure, they have their sibling rivalry…

 

... but, of course, they love each other, too... but, of course, they love each other, too. 

And although it hardly ever happens…

And although it hardly ever happens…

 

... sometimes they'll even be cute on cue!

… sometimes they’ll even be cute on cue!

 

I hope you’ve enjoyed these pictures. Don’t forget to love your pet(s) today – and every day!

Mother’s Day in March

Yes, I know the official Mother’s Day comes in May, but my mother’s day – my mother’s birthday – comes in March.  Today, in fact: March 18th.

So, I want to take this opportunity to publicly thank my mother, Mary Annette Luck Overstreet Taylor, for being the best mother a girl could ever want and/or need.  Here goes…

Dear Mom,

You have loved me when I wasn’t lovable, helped me when I truly needed it, laughed with me to the disbelief (and sometimes disdain) of others, taught me innumerable invaluable lessons, and cried with me when crying was all we could do.  

No matter what I say here, I will not be able to capture into words the love I have for you, the gratitude I feel for you, and the honor it is to be your daughter.

So instead I will simply say I love you, and hope that you can take it all the way in, believe it, and never forget it. And, in your words, I’ll say, “You hear me?  I mean it!”

I love you.
Laura

Thank you, loyal blog readers, for indulging me.  🙂

Valentine’s Day – The Bad News and the Good

The bad news: For many, Valentine’s Day is among the year’s most unhappy days, whether or not they are in relationships.

The good news: There is a foolproof way to eliminate this unhappiness due to an unfulfilled desire for love, and not just on February 14th!

So, what is this foolproof way of having fulfilling, lifelong love?

Loving yourself.

Granted, this can be difficult. Fear not, though, there’s more good news. Louise Hay has offered us clear directions for getting started, with her 12 Commandments to Help You Learn How to Love Yourself.

They are:

  1. Stop All Criticism;
  2. Forgive Yourself;
  3. Don’t Scare Yourself;
  4. Be Gentle and Kind and Patient;
  5. Be Kind to Your Mind;
  6. Praise Yourself;
  7. Support Yourself;
  8. Be Loving to Your Negatives;
  9. Take Care of Your Body;
  10. Do Mirror Work;
  11. Love Yourself… Now; and
  12. Have Fun!

It would be easy to let this list overwhelm us. That’s why we need to just pick one and start there. In honor of Valentine’s Day, I’m going to start with #6. Which one will you choose?

Regardless of which, do choose one, and make yourself your own, lifelong Valentine.

Choose you. You’re worth it.

Love,
Laura

P.S. For more about the 12 Commandments, go to this page of Louise Hay’s You Can Heal Your Life site.

P.P.S.  This post is based on an article from the February, 2013 Edition of my newsletter, True Voices Express.  If you’d like to subscribe, please do!  Just go here and fill out the form in the top, right corner.  Thanks!

Is it Winter in Your Heart?

Regardless of what or how we celebrate this time of year, there is an unspoken expectation to be joyful, grateful, giving, and loving.  And for some of us this is simply not how we feel, not what we are experiencing.  Whether it’s due to the loss of a loved one, or the loss of a connection to the spark within us, the holiday cheer can be a painful reminder, if not downright heartbreaking.

To put it more beautifully, I’d like to share with you a poem, written by my dear friend, Janie Cook, on her blog, Living with the Loss of a Child.

 

in the shadow of blinking Christmas lights

of holiday parties and celebrations

surrounded by gift shoppers

and promises of peace, hope and joy

it is winter in my heart

i am the cold, cloudy days

the damp leafless trees

the stark stillness of the night sky

filled with longing

so . . . Holy One who knows the seasons of our hearts

be the sunrise that warms

be the breeze that freshens

be the light that illuminates

and help me give birth to The Love that is ever deeper and more sustaining

(To read Janie’s post in its entirety, click here.

Regardless of what it is you are feeling during this holiday season, please consider this note a kind of permission slip to feel whatever that is – whether it’s joy, sadness, grief, gratitude, indifference, anger, etc.  You may even want to share with someone close what is true for you so that you don’t feel so alone in your seemingly unique situation.

Remember, we can’t put our feelings on a timer, and only feel them when they are welcome.  We must welcome them when they are present so that they don’t overtake and cripple us for even longer a time…

May you find some peace with your feelings this holiday season, and know that I’ll be joining you in doing my best to honor my feelings.  May we all find peace, all over the whole wide world.  Amen.

Love,
Laura

PS  This post is directly lifted from my December, 2012 newsletter, True Voices Express.  To make sure you don’t miss another offering like this, please go to the the top right of this page, and sign up to receive future issues.  I’d love to be in contact with you more often – but not too often, I promise.  Thanks!

 

Poetry and the Olympics: Remembering Papa

I missed writing yesterday – it just slipped my mind – does that ever happen to you?

So today, there’ll be two posts!  The first of which is in memory of my father.  Papa was never an athlete.  He was, nevertheless, a big fan.  And he loved the Olympics.  He was especially proud of the athletes from Auburn University where he taught, and most especially proud of those who had been his students, including Rowdy Gaines.  So naturally, I am remembering Papa, his last months, in particular…

I Remain

Six years since we heard the word,
Over five since you’ve been gone.
It took you fast,
It took you slow-
Ly. There was no pain
And then only
Pain.
I remain
Thankful

For the unpronouncably-named medications,
The couch in your bedroom
On three legs and a brick,
The place I supposedly slept,
And from which I listened to each gurgling breath,
Wondering, worrying, hoping, feeling
Guilty as hell.
I remain
Thankful

That there were cousins,
Some of them not-even-really
Cousins, bringing bread pudding,
Sharing in your care,
Nursing you in ways I could not, would not.
Thankful that you’d splurged
On the electronically-bending bed,
Purchased for pleasure, not knowing at the time
The need around the bend.
I remain
Not thankful

At all
For hospice
Not helpful
At all
In the end.

Damn them.

 

Laura Overstreet Biering, Copyright March, 2011

 

Poetry and the Olympics: Michael Phelps and Me

As of now, Michael Phelps is the most decorated Olympian of all time.  Wow – that is so exciting!  And, as much of a star as he is, he’s also been known to make mistake or two. I, too, have been know to make a mistake now and again.  🙂  And I’d like to apologize for at least one of them here.  My apologies to Jane Yolen, Mary Oliver, Jack Gilbert, Gwendolyn Brooks, and Tony Hoagland. In my enthusiasm for your amazing work, I posted your poems without asking for your permission or for the permission of your estates.  I hope you can forgive me.  Please know that l’ll be removing your poems from my previous posts, and replacing them with links…  And, starting right now, I’ll be posting only links or original poems, such as the one I posted yesterday by my friend Ken Carlson, and the one I am posting right now, by me!

The Call to Connect

There is a need I have
To connect
From waaaay down deep inside me
To waaaay down deep inside you.

You can take that to mean something
Sexual, and sometimes it does,
But mostly it doesn’t.
Mostly, it means

I have a need to see you, know you, feel you and
To be seen, known, felt by you.
And then there comes the time when I am done
Connecting with you.

This is when the call comes
To connect with me
Only. Sometimes
I answer.

Laura Overstreet Biering (Copyright 2008)

 

Who Do You Think You Are – God’s Gift to the World?

Hello, my lovely,

Have you ever thought, “God’s Gift to the World? Who? Me?”

Well, I am here to tell you that the answer to that question is “Yes!”

I am the only me that’s ever been and the only me that will ever be.  I have a unique combination of beliefs, talents, quirks and qualities that no one else has ever had or will ever have.  So again, I say, yes – I am God’s Gift to the World!

Now, lest you think I am some sort of ego maniac, let me also say that I believe that you, too, are God’s Gift to the this glorious planet of ours!  We are each one-of-a-kind masterpieces.  And regardless of whether or not I agree with what you believe, or what you do and say, I am still glad you’re here, because it’s only when each of us is being who we’re here to be that our world can function at its best.

I look at our globe as one big puzzle, one in which each of us has our own unique space to fill.  And I know that if you will allow yourself to learn about what truly makes you tick, and love yourself enough to live in integrity with what’s at the core of you, then we’ll all be better off.  Not only will you be living and enjoying life to the fullest, but in the meantime, by example, you’ll be leading others to do the same.  And what might be the result of that?  World Peace, of course!

As outrageous as it sounds, I am actually quite serious about this, and believe in it wholeheartedly.  So I do hope you’ll join me on my crusade.  Take some time to learn about yourself – who you are, deep down inside.  Then love that person you discover yourself to be. Allow yourself to live that unique person’s life, yours, and in that way, truly lead to the world.

Won’t you please, help me “peace” our world together and make it whole?

Gratitude and Want – One Paradox of Being Human and Divine

Hello, my dear lovely,

I am writing to say – out loud – that I want to write for 15 minutes a day.  I would love to write for an even longer time, but setting that bar hasn’t served me lately.  So, inspired by Dawn Goldberg of Write Well U, I’m going to write at least 15 minutes a day, for at least 15 days in a row.

This shouldn’t be difficult, as there’s a lot I want to say.  It’s true, I want people to be moved and educated and inspired and empowered by what I write.  But mostly, I want to do it because I want to do it.  And I believe that because I’ve wanted to write regularly for so long that I am meant to do it.  So there.

There is a lot I want.  Off the top of my head, I’ll say I want to sleep well and eat well and get (and stay) fit.  I want to (want to) exercise.  I want to be in nature more of the time, and be with the people I love even more than that.  I want to create and connect and learn and teach and grow and be me out loud.  And I want to help others do the same – if that’s what they want.

I want to make so much money that I am not only able to have the things and experiences that I want for myself, but I also want to be able to share it with others.   I want to share my things and experiences with those I love, and I want to give money to complete strangers, supporting people and causes I believe in.

I want, I want, I want. Sure, I want a lot.  And there’s a lot more than what I’ve mentioned here.  The paradox is that I am also very grateful for all I have  and am and all I am able to do.

One thing I am grateful right now is the fact that I just wrote for more than 15 minutes!  Thanks for being here for that.

I wish for you all that you want.  And I wish for you wanting what you want without judging or shaming yourself in any way.   By our very nature, we are human and divine, and inherent in that is paradox.  Embrace this paradox, and all others, if you can.  Life is far more enjoyable this way, for me at least.  And as a result, I feel so much more free to be me out loud.

Isn’t that a nice way to feel – free – here on the 5th of July?

Won’t you join me?

love,
Laura

PS On another note completely, there is a fabulous play by Lanford Wilson called Fifth of July.  He wrote lots of powerful plays worth looking into, if you’re so inclined…

 

 

Here. Now. You. This is it.

Hello, my dear – A poem for you…

Always We Hope
~ Lao Tzu

Always we hope
someone else has the answer,
some other place will be better,
some other time,
it will turn out.

This is it.

No one else has the answer,
no other place will be better,
and it has already turned out.

At the center of your being,
you have the answer:
you know who you are and
you know what you want.

There is no need to run outside
for better seeing,
nor to peer from a window.
Rather abide at the center of your being:
for the more you leave it,
the less you learn.

Search your heart and see
the way to do is to be.

Abide at the center of your being.

It’s so easy to wander outside of our center and get bogged down by what we think we should do…can’t say…need to worry about. But through all of the messages we take in every day, the regret over things done and not done, the anxiety about what lies ahead of us, the one thing we really must do is be our full, true selves – the magnificent, human, spiritual, multi-faceted, creative, authentic beings that we are created to be.  It is only by being ourselves – abiding at the center of our being – that we have an opportunity to live full, rich, purposeful, joyful lives.

And it’s not just about us. We can fall into the trap of thinking that in being ourselves – honoring our dreams and desires and authenticity – that we are being selfish or self-centered. But I believe there’s a space in our world that is created just for us, a space in it that is ours and ours alone. It’s not only our right to be who we are, but it’s also our responsibility. It is only through being ourselves and filling our space that that our world has a chance to function the way it’s supposed to function. Think about that:  If we don’t fill “our space,” who else possibly can? Being ourselves – saying what we think, listening to and acting upon our voices within, honoring our dreams – is the only way that we can fill our unique space and fulfill our responsibility in our world.

The way to do is to be. Read More→