952 Days

It has been 952 days or “roughly” 82,252,800 seconds since I posted on this blog. I’d like to say I have a reason for this long hiatus from the blogosphere, but over the last 2 years, 7 months, and 9 days, I have just been…

(a) busy

(b) lazy

(c) uninspired

(d) all of the above

Yes, you should choose (d), but I am no longer (b) or (c) since I have been exceedingly (a) as I get ready to release my second book. So…that’s why I’m back on the blog: I’m starting to promote The Secrets We Keep



By the way, if you are interested in finding the duration between two dates, use this Date to Date Calculator. It’s much faster than using your brain. Sadly, I had that eureka moment after I used mental math to figure out the answer. 

A Christmas Story

[This article first appeared here.]

I placed the gifts in the trunk, strapped two wiggly children into their car seats, and set the egg nog and muffins on the front seat, and as I rolled down the driveway, I hit play on the CD player. Bing Crosby’s low voice crooned:

When I’m feeling blue, when I’m feeling low,
I start to think about the happiest man I know.
Now he doesn’t mind the snow, he doesn’t mind the rain,
But all December you will hear him at your window pane,
Singing again and again and again and again and again:

The music filled the cabin as we weaved through the empty streets of our subdivision and out onto the abandoned roads.  The Kentucky sky, hovering low, threatened rain.  As we joined the light highway traffic, the clouds spat the first drops. Split, splat. The intermittent raindrops reached a crescendo, drumming louder as we exited the highway and veered toward the airport. Ker-plunk, ker-plunk.  Then the car pulled under an overhang of the terminal, and the music boomed from the speakers again:

I’ll be home for Christmas
You can plan on me
Please have snow and mistletoe
And presents on the tree

The kids and I scanned the crowd, eager to spot our favorite pilot. “There he is!” one yelled. “Daddy! Daddy! Daddy!” screeched the other.

Daddy strolled toward us, without any bags, and opened the door. He moved breakfast to his lap and smiled into the backseat. “Merry Christmas.” Then, with a softer, sadder voice, he looked at me. “I only have an hour.”

The car entered the rain again and circled the airport. My husband reached over and found his favorite Christmas song:

Let me tell you a tale that is often told
In the great Celestial Hall
All about an angel only four years old
The littlest angel of all.

Then we found shelter from the rain in a multi-leveled parking garage. There, on Christmas morning in 2006, our family shared Christmas together.

In my 39 years, I have forgotten many Christmases, like the ones by a tree in a warm cozy home, but as for my family, we will never forget the one we shared in the parking garage of the Cincinnati airport.

Merry Christmas—wherever you are, I hope it’s happy!

Poet: Grace Miller

I have one more poetry post…

Grace Miller lives in Kentucky and is in the 8th grade. She enjoys writing and has her own blog: http://www.ifellinlovewithagoddess.blogspot.com/


He intended love forever,
that it never hinder,
many people have changed these days,
and that love now seems to fade,
hiding in the souls of those,
who may never know what love really holds,
the beauty, the grace, the happiness, the laughs,
what many people seem to lack,
they run around with sorrow in their heads,
like little puppets strung to a thread,
for what love truly holds,
I can not explain,
you’ll have to get into it
to know what you’ve gained.

My thanks to everyone who commented on the blog this month. Darlene and Marianne won autographed copies of Nothing but Trouble after Midnight. Congratulations to both of you! 🙂

Poet: Tyler Frost

Tyler Frost is a theater arts and English literature major at Marquette University. He enjoys old things, movies, and good conversation and hopes to be a professional actor someday. Tyler doesn’t write very often, but he likes to let feelings out through it and enjoys being creative. He hopes you enjoy the rough draft of his poem.


“To Mom”

I do not understand why you are lost
In this world of fruits and much abundance
Your soul and body are bitten with frost
You should complete your circle’s circumference
You were not there during most of my time
Which is somewhat understandable though
Sometimes you look like you are full of grime
One of your mistakes, I was loved and grew
It is hard to get out of the bad ways
Once we know it, it’s our way of being
You should think about it by the ocean bay
Look out and compare space you are seeing
You’ll see much room which means you can still be
Anything that’s good, just climb up the tree.

Favorite Poem: “Love’s Philosophy”

“Love’s Philosophy”

by Percy Bysshe Shelley

The fountains mingle with the river,
And the rivers with the ocean;
The winds of heaven mix forever
With a sweet emotion;
Nothing in the world is single;
All things by a law divine
In another’s being mingle–
Why not I with thine?

See, the mountains kiss high heaven,
And the waves clasp one another;
No sister flower could be forgiven
If it disdained its brother;
And the sunlight clasps the earth,
And the moonbeams kiss the sea;–
What are all these kissings worth,
If thou kiss not me?

Thank you for following my posts for National Poetry Month. 🙂

Poet: Elle Veady

I’ll save you the trouble of the google search because you won’t find Elle Veady anywhere on the Internet. When asked to post her poem, she said, “This would be my pen name if I ever decide to be an author someday.”

“Free Fall Journey”

Stared down by the past
haunted with images
of what I used to be
The reflection of a cold heart
riddled by grief and pain
No more shall it taunt me
as the ledge draws near
If only I could shatter
the laughter
But still I stand
motionless with fear

Unbreakable it seems
this glass that’s holding me
back from falling free
and experiencing
a new journey, a new means
the mocking jeers and sneers
seem to say that I can’t do it
I won’t succeed
I must choose to move, to forget
or to stand alone
faced with regret

With a final glance back
I bow my head
Called to press on
I sprint towards the ledge
Breaking through
to find myself

And I’m free falling
Not looking back to where my feet
had been planted
I’ve taken flight,
falling towards the open arms
of my God
He will catch me
He will guide me
He will gently love me,
stand beside me
as I’ve come upon this free fall journey
we call life

Daily Response: Please leave a comment.

Song of Solomon 8:6-7

6 Place me like a seal over your heart,
   like a seal on your arm;
for love is as strong as death,
   its jealousy unyielding as the grave.
It burns like blazing fire,
   like a mighty flame.
7 Many waters cannot quench love;
   rivers cannot sweep it away.
If one were to give
   all the wealth of one’s house for love,
   it would be utterly scorned.

Daily Response: What is your favorite line or phrase from this passage?

Poetry for Easter


“Good Friday Kyrielle”

by Sheila Deeth


From dust to earth from earth to seed

From seed to leaf from leaf to tree

From tree to cross against the sky

The earth has borne my Savior high


The lamb will birth, the flower bloom

The canopy of sky make room

The page of history burn dry

For earth has borne my Savior high


The stalks of grain will manger make

And scattered crops for food he’ll take

Then palm to cross I’ll twist and tie

The earth has borne my Savior high


The one who made each living thing

Gave life, gave hope, gave seed, gave wing

The king we hailed, then crucified

The earth has borne my Savior high


One dawn these clouds will roll away

The sky will fall and end the day

Then we who live will never die

For earth has borne our Savior high


“The Cross”

by John Beck


For centuries upon this earth

I stood with pride and grew in girth

Until by man I was undone

To crucify the Holy One


Who could have known that from this tree

A cross would change eternity

Hewn from my trunk they had begun

To crucify the Holy One


Should I bear shame for I took part

In cross intended from the start

Now standing here under the sun

To crucify the Holy One


Or should I stand with humble pride

As symbol for all who abide

With Him? They know not what they’ve done

To crucify the Holy One


Don’t You Know He Cried For You

©2011 Robert C Burnham

Mindful Poetry Contest: Anapeat for Holy Week.


Were you there when Jesus died

Did you object when Peter lied

Did you mock Him when he looked your way

Where were you on that fateful day

Don’t you know He cried for you


Don’t you know He wanted your heart too

Were you there when Jesus died

Laughing at Mary as she cried

Did you know he saw you on that day

There was nowhere to run or hideaway


Don’t you know He cried for you

Made no difference Gentile or Jew

Were you there when Jesus died

Winced from the flesh that fell from His side

Were you afraid when the sky went gray


When lightning bolts flashed and thunder splayed

When the temple veil was torn in two

Did it seem that hell was following you

Were you there when Jesus died

Did you hear the words that Jesus cried


“Father forgive them on this day,

They do not know they’ve gone astray”

Don’t you know He cried for you

He gave so much to see you through

Were you there when Jesus died?



By Marianne K.

Rejoice my friend
paint the sky blue
let darkness flee

Call forth the truth
of triumph on earth
of glory divine

The King of Kings
the Lord of Lords
with love descends

The sun bursts forth
upon the Son of God
who died and rose

Rejoice my friend
sing hymns of praise
hands to him raise



© Robert Burnham


Did you see the blackened sky

As they nailed Him to the cross

Did you see tears in Mary’s eyes

Did you contemplate her loss

Or were your eyes shut tight

Self-blinded to the cost


Did you listen when they mocked Him

Did you hear them curse His name

Did you hear the silence of His disciples

As they turned and ran in shame

Or were your ears waxed shut

To the lonely cries of His pain


Did you shout out in protest

At the cruel things that were done

Did you forget how to speak

As though the cat had your tongue

Were your lips glued tight together

While they crucified God’s Son.


I would like to thank these poets for their words and for letting me post their poems. 

I hope all of you have a very blessed Easter! 


Poet: Pamela Stockman Blackadar (My Mom)

Pamela Stockman Blackadar is my mom. She lives in Florida and is the world’s best mom and interior designer. In all that she does, she is a thoughtful, caring woman. I love her so much and am proud to share this with you. This poem was on a card that accompanied a birth stone ring for my grandmother:)


“Birthstone Ring”

by Pamela Stockman Blackadar


A symbol of us

The four you brought

Into this world

For which you sought

A life of happiness,

The most beneficial

Never without love

Never superficial


A life of struggle,

Hardship and strife

Makes you that much more

A wonderful wife


And as a mother,

you’re at the top of the list

We don’t feel

That Daddy missed!


March of 44′

Was a month to remember

For then came problem Number 1

In all her splendor

She was born as a symbol of aquamarine

Like the ocean in color

It’s strength in blue-green


And then time elapsed

And along came John–

Devil that he was

Always in the wrong

But green in envy is the emerald,

lustrous in color and never dulled.


Then along came two boys

Both in September

Davis and Harlan Jr.

Who we’ll always remember

Their blue-blue eyes

Show intimacy

And love for you.


And so as we near the end

We’d like to say

That with all our love

This Christmas Day

We’d like you to remember

The four you brought

Into this world

And so

As a symbol of us

We give you this gift.






Harlan Jr.


Daily Response: This poem accompanied a gift. Have you ever written a poem for a gift?

Poet: Susan Budig

Susan Budig (in her own words): “I am not a full-time writer, but I work freelance in writing as much as I want. I am a full-time primary care parent. I still have three kids at home and in school.My business card identifies me as writer, poet, teacher, coach, but I am working on so much more. I am transcribing interviews for Larry Long with a goal of a book or series of books.”

My website: http://www.mindfulpoetry.com
My blogs: http://susanbudig.blogspot.com
and http://susanbudigs-poetry.blogspot.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/MindfulPoet
Gather: http://slb2.gather.com


One Child

There was one child left
that day I walked by the playground,
sitting on a see-saw, watching.
I looked in the same direction,
but nothing else caught my eye.

I remembered a game as a youth.
There was one child left
standing, proclaimed the winner!
It was never me.
Like a sentinel, I said nothing.

I continued down the block,
but cast a glance over my shoulder.
There was one child left
on the teeter-totter, but looking lost.
This stops me.

I finger my still-warm pretzel, shoved
in my pocket for when I reach the office.
The child keeps staring at nothing.
There was one child left
on the bench while all the other children

jumped like bunnies around the man
with a generous clutch of balloons
at my son’s birthday party in the park.
That was years ago and we all went home, but no…
there was one child left.



Please leave a response in the comment section. Thanks!