Archives for the month of: November, 2006

ponder this:
“The life of every man is a diary in which he means to write one story, and writes another; and his humblest hour is when he compares the volume as it is with what he vowed to make it.” – James M. Barrie

may have put this in before; came across it in “37 days” which you can Google i think

Portsmouth Herald

By Phillis Edgerly Ring

I think a lot about gratitude each November, of course. Back when I was making turkeys by tracing my preschooler-sized hand on construction paper and decorating the cut-out shape with feathers, I understood that that’s what Thanksgiving is for.

In more recent years, I’ve tended to reflect more on the relationship between gratitude and generosity. The good examples of these that I’ve witnessed in many lives seem to indicate that the more that you consciously cultivate one of these attributes in your life, the more you automatically intensify the other.

Nowhere has this been personified for me more thoroughly — and inspiringly — than in the life of someone who also comes to mind around the end of November, at least if you’re a member of the Baha’i Faith, as I am. November 26 and 28 each mark dates associated with events in the life of Abdu’l-Baha, whose father, Baha’u’llah, was the prophet founder of the Baha’i Faith.

Picture someone who essentially put others before himself every time and exuded remarkable happiness while doing so and you have a rough idea of why so many loved Abdu’l-Baha so much. From the age of 9 until his early 60s, he was more or less a prisoner, along with the rest of his family. That’s because the things his father suggested about what would remedy mankind’s ills never found much favor among those who held positions of power and authority. As one source put it, “They didn’t find their personal interests advanced by his teachings.”

Stories about Abdu’l-Baha play a key part in the life of Baha’i families because he exemplified precisely what a life would look like when guided entirely by spiritually motivated choices. His actions illustrate in a concrete way the very qualities that his father urged humanity to explore, develop and, perhaps most important of all, apply.

In raising our children, we found no better example to turn to when looking at questions of spiritual integrity. This was so much the case that the question we typically found ourselves asking in the face of many challenges was, “What would Abdu’l-Baha do?”

Once he was finally free, although quite an elderly man, he struck out for Europe and the United States (including a week in the Portsmouth area) to share what his father had taught, the light that had illumined his own path in such a way that even those who declared themselves his enemies and rose to attack him eventually came to love and protect him.

One story about him remains my favorite because it illustrates both literally and symbolically just what sort of person he was. It occurred when he was probably about 6, at a time when his family, who had descended from nobility, still had wealth. (A few years later, it would be seized by the government and they would all become exiles.)

On the day in question, Abdu’l-Baha was sent out with an adult companion to inspect the work of the shepherds tending his father’s sheep. When the inspection was finished and he turned to leave, the man who had accompanied him said, “It is your father’s custom to leave a gift for each shepherd.”

Abdu’l-Baha grew quiet for a while. He hadn’t known or expected this — and what would he give them?

Then an idea came to him that made him very happy. He would give them the sheep!

When his father heard about this he was, rather than angry or displeased, absolutely delighted with this early evidence of truly spontaneous generosity. He humorously remarked that everyone had better take good care of “Abdu’l-Baha, because someday, he would give himself away.

And that is exactly what history shows that he did, over and over, all while bringing joy everywhere he went.

Although I’m a long way from emulating that myself, I do know that gratitude and generosity are two prime factors in the equation. I hope that’s at least some progress from the simple, glad-for-my-own-happiness sort of gratitude I felt back when I was tracing those turkey shapes. That was about personal deliverance. Abdu’l-Baha’s more encompassing kind of example can help heal a whole world.

Phyllis Edgerly Ring, mother of two, is a parenting columnist for several publications and writes on issues of family and culture from her Exeter home. She may be reached by e-mail at
New Hampshire, USA

© 2006 Portsmouth Herald

The Quotation Of The Day Mailing List
Quotation of the Day for November 25, 2006

“We can’t have it all, and worse yet the desire to have it all and the illusion that we can is one of the principal sources of torture of modern affluent free and autonomous thinkers.”

– Barry Schwartz, professor at Swarthmore College, and the author of “The Paradox of Choice: Why More Is Less”.

A son’s photo of his father’s Sodoku. I see divine calibration, numbers metaphor for a soul of an intricate mind. I see numbers bold and shaky, like the psyche’s bookends, fading upwards into a white haze, the haze of the abstract soul, too dimensioned to put lines and borders, and yet a soul who uses numbers as in a love affair with the abstract, the chaotic order of one’s life. I see whimsy, fascination and wonder in the photographer’s view, the unexpected, unexplained, but definitely, do not lose this image in history’s sloughing off of past moments. I see image and moment and Basquat’s suggestive art, and above all I see love of the man for the son, and the son’s Golden Braille Images touching upon a small piece of our world in wonder.

Donna’s, aka South Lake Italian Kitchen, Lake Avenue, East Side, between California and Pasqual, gathering place of the diverse who love to laugh and share. Donna, whose love encloses us all. How lucky can we be?
Be still my heart – Happy Thanksgiving everyone!
Sent: Thursday, November 16, 2006 11:25 PM
Subject: SLIK Updates December 19th and January 3rd, 2007

HI Friends Of SLIK,

Thanksgiving is my most favorite holiday. I love it because it’s a holiday we all can all share together. You can be Jewish or Catholic or Bahai or Pentacostal or even Athiest. You can be from any ethnic group or any social class….from uptown to downtown ………old as dirt or a babe in the woods……You can even be a Republican…..but the best part of it is that none of that matters…not important….insignificant…… It’s just a holiday that asks you to give “thanks” with people you love while fighting over a drumstick. That is a beautiful holiday and I wish I could be fighting over that turkey leg with each and everyone of you. Grrrrrrr.

I also want to give you our updated SLIK Legal News. The arbitration has been set for Jan.3, 2007. All I have to say about that is …..and Happy New Year to you too!

And finally, some good SLIK news to share. Blossom (our basset hound) will be celebrating her 12th birthday on December 19th again. But this year she’ll be sharing the red carpet with Jeanette and Steve Lamb who will be celebrating their 25th wedding anniversary. Needless to say this year’s theme is silver. I am very much looking forward to this fun party. I hope you all can come over. You know we’ll have ton’s of dessert out front to share with everyone in the neighborhood….and champagne on the inside for the many toasts I plan to make.

Until then, I wish you all a very happy Thanksgiving day.

Paws For peace,

From Powells’ website; i just read it; quite compelling.

November 11th Hungry for the World: A Memoir by Kim Barnes Tammie’s comments:”I was first introduced to this book from an English professor in college. I had never heard of the book or Kim Barnes and as a typical college student was not in the mood for more than the required reading, but I gave this book a chance. I wasn’t more than 3 pages into it when I fell in love. Not only with the story but also Ms. Barne’s writing style….This is a great read for anyone who has ever felt lost or not apart of their world.” (read more) check for other copies

A Joyous Holy Day To All Yes! This is the day of Bahá’u’lláh, the age of theBlessed Perfection, the cycle of the Greatest Name.If you do not smile now, for what time will you awaitand what greater happiness could you expect? Thisis the springtime of manifestation. The vernal showerhas descended from the cloud of divine mercy; thelife-giving breeze of the Holy Spirit is wafting theperfume of blossoms. From field and meadow risesa fragrant breath of thanksgiving like pure incenseascending to the throne of God. The world has becomea new world; souls are quickened, spirits renewed,refreshed. Truly it is a time for happiness. Abdu’l-Baha The Promulgation of Universal Peace p. 210… Find here a beautiful presentation for the Holy Day!

Esther Bradley-DeTally

Why do I Write

Like now when the dishes sit orphaned in the kitchen sink because its washer is out here typing, sharing, breathing, living, putting off the inevitable, because once a long time ago, I was so hurt, I couldn’t breathe, and I carried that intake of hurt with me forever, until I found out that sensitivity is the price and the prize for being able to write, for being able to read people, to Braille the unsaid about them, to correspond with a prisoner, falsely imprisoned for defending herself against her stepfather rapist, and have her say, she liked a phrase I wrote, “The language of God is a tear running down someone’s cheek.”

I write because I read, insatiably, gobbling, inhaling, filling myself with the human condition, splat on the floor some days, like a big old squishy bug, flattened, dead, its body swept up by old straws on a broom; and then I write to show the magic of St. Theresa’s Snow Queen Altar when I was young, and how everything looked like a fairy cake or wedding cake, and then I write to tell how when I was younger, and so needy I could have impaled myself on a stake wide and big, sort of like a meta-letter holder, except the stake would run through my insatiably needy heart, and a note on my back would read “loves too much,” and that was before the book Women Who Love Too Much.

I write because I have gone beyond Medieval Posts puncturing my despair and loneliness and have decided Men Who Love too Much is here too; we all love too much, and I write because none of us love too much, but we are told by images in advertising, that we should be thin, jaded in the eyes, like the look of models for Vogue or whatever, who probably could shoot up heroin on their lunch hours, and because despair is trendy and nihilism and materialism and not giving a damn might be the language of the hour for some, but then there is the lonely, little, big, young, old, trembling, brassy, you-catch-my-drift writer who writes because he or she must, and words have a visceral effect upon her, him, the dog, the surrounding room, hopes for the world, and a good ham sandwich or description thereof on a sour dough roll, with slabs of mayo, and a bed of lettuce, and curled pink ham, ready to go into someone’s mouth which is opened to the size of half a ladder, is a good thing, a good description.

What this nation needs is a good ham sandwich and a Pepsi without the aspertame and some down to honest to goodness honesty that is the natural condition to communicate, to be real, to be afraid of bugs in knotty pine walls when the walls come alive at night; to watch an elderly blind woman, clutch the corners of her walker, take a breath and remain a sweet sweet spirit, knowing that her condition, her tests are of the divinely calibrated kind, even though trucks have run over her emotionally, and I write to tell of the anonymous amongst us, the bravery, the small acts of courage, kindness in this nation where the world is narcissistically checking its derriere in the mirror, and no one or precious few are listening to the “midnight sighing of the poor,” and where we must have immense courage and speak up; talk, yeah, walk the talk, be it; speak up; tell future generations who we were, wanted to be, became anyhow and our hopes for the future; because someday we will all be sensitive, spiritually inclined, aware of our oneness, and otherness will go on a back shelf like Twinkies, no longer approved of by the American Heart Association, and writing will be celebrated by hoots and hollers and a piping or two from a medieval horn or Siberian throat, and the arts will have a way of grabbing our soul’s innards and carrying us through the day. These are some of the reasons I write, but there are others, but today is Wednesday and those are my Wednesday’s writing reasons.

Bill is 80% better, and we went for an early dinner at Donna’s SLIK (South Lake Italian Kitchen). We are really a crowd there, like Cheers, without the alcohol. Donna is a basset hound devotee, and has fabulous photos of her dog Blossom whose birthday party is December 19th; we all go, she rents a red carpet, i tell you. The pictures of Blossom grace one wall: Blossom with big hat and pearls; Blossom with this, and that, what a beauty. Sort of like a Vogue gallery for bassets. I first met Blossom 5 years ago, as she sat outside of the restaurant, belly sagging to the ground, an unashamed woman, and I said to her, “You look like you’ve had a full life Blossom,” and she agreed. 5 years later, Donna with another Basset, Blanche, and a thousand stories and events in our memory bank, i thought, I have been selfish. Put up a pic of a basset for goodness sake, so in honor of Donna, a pure lover of humankind; here’s a picture. Now i am going to put it in; this is an art i just learned today!

“If you think you’re too small to have an impact try going to bed with a mosquito in the room.”
– Anita Koddick

God in his wisdom has created all things. Nothing has been created without a special destiny, for every creature has an innate station of attainment. This flower has been created to mirror forth a harmonious ensemble of color and perfume. Each kingdom of nature holds potentialities and each must be cultivated in order to reach its fulfillment. The divine teachers desire man to be educated that he may attain to the high rank of his own reality, the deprivation of which is the rank of perdition.

The flower needs light that it may achieve its fruitage; man needs the light of the Holy Spirit, and the measure of illumination throughout creation is proportionate to the different kingdoms.

Abdu’l-Baha Divine Philosophy p. 110

Busy days; good walk with friend at Rose Bowl today; Baha’i Holy Day, Birth of Baha’u’llah observed Saturday night

Bill getting better – liver count was in 400s, supposed to be 50, last blood test said 79, and we are greatly encouraged. Am putting a few things on the blog. the New York site re Baha’u’llah is wonderful! I am also quickly reading a book called Pug Hill, and will display the cover; snort, snuff. Have a few Thanksgiving Cards I am sending to people, of guess what, Pug, so will put one or two of them on also. Just very grateful for rich circle of friends, spiritual supporters, community, family. We fuse together at times over difficulties and joy, part of the package. Love to all, esther

Wanted to share as it all looks interesting!


For Writers and Teachers

Compiled by
JoEllen Moldoff
(updated: 10-07-06)

”your unconscious is laying plans that you know nothing of. That’s part of what it’s like to be a writer.” Susan Shaughnessy

“Poetry is the journal of a sea animal living on land, wanting to fly in the air.”
Carl Sandburg

language arts & Writing Resources
A Celebration of Women Writers
Bard’s Ink : Writing Prompts
Bartletts Quotations & Resources
Blue and Ude Editing and Writing Services
English 88, Modern & Contemporary American Poetry
New York Times Writers on Writing
Merriam Webster Online
Modern American Poetry
Online language translator
Poetry Foundation
Poetry Power Links
Poetry Express
Sheila Bender’s Site- tips, links and resources on writing
The Alpha Dictionary Site (
The Library of America
The Poetry Archive
The Online Books Page (includes link to Anagram Server)
Writers Write http://www.Writing.Com/
Writing It Real, Sheila Bender’s online writing magazine,

Association of Writers and Writing Programs
Council of Literary Magazines and Presses
Dialogue Through Poetry
Faulkner House
Field’s End, A Writers Organization on Bainbridge Island
Favorite Poem Project
Fishtrap (Writers Workshops & Activities)
International Women’s Writing Guild
Lannan Foundation
Literary Arts, Portland, Oregon
Lopez Writers’ Guild
Modern Language Association
Montalvo Arts Center
National Endowment for the Arts
New York Foundation for the Arts
Northwest Writing Institute
Poets and Writers
Pacific Northwest Writers Association
Richard Hugo House
Seattle Arts and Lectures
Skagit River Poetry Festival
Squaw Valley Community of Writers
Story Circle Network
The Academy of American Poets
The Poetry Center and American Poetry Archives
The Poetry Society of America
The National Association for Poetry Therapy
Washington Poets Association (WPA)
WESTAF: Western States Arts Federation
Whidbey Island Writers Association
Wisdom Circles

Publishers & Publications: online & print
Alaska Quarterly Review
Arts and Letters Daily
Arts Journal: Daily Arts News
Bellingham Review
Copper Canyon Press
Council of Literary Magazines and Presses
Electronic Poetry Center
Harper Collins
Milkweed Editions
Norton Poets Online
Oberlin College Press
Poetry 180
Poetry Daily
Poetry Magazine
Random House
The American Poetry Review
The Atlantic Monthly Online
The Borzoi Reader – poetry
The Borzoi Reader – fiction
The Internet Poetry Archive
The Threepenny Review
The Writers’ Almanac
University of Chicago Press online
Verse Daily
Words Without Borders, the online magazine for international literature
Writers’ Digest
Writers’ Net
Writers’ Write- The Internet Writers’ Journal

Educational resources
Academic Information
Access Washington-Education and Learning
American Library Association: Great Web Sites for Kids
Great Educational Sites (hundreds of links for teachers, writers, parents)
Kalliope Poetry Writers Exercise Workshop and Resources
Library of Congress
How To Teach Poetry, a program of the Academy of American Poets
Librarians Index to the Internet
Library in the Sky
Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary
National Public Radio
Norton Anthology of English Literature, Norton Topics Online
Orcas Island Library
Poetry Class
Poetry for Kids
Teachers and Writers Collaborative
The NY Times Learning Network
University of Richmond Writing Center & Writing Across the Curriculum

No-Sew Friendship Dolls: Easy to Make “No-Sew” Dolls that Teach about “Unity in Diversity”. The dolls are made out of rolled strips of paper and can be dressed in all types of diverse costumes. Parents and teachers can make these dolls very detailed to give as gifts or to decorate a classroom in an international theme. Children ages 8-12 can make them with very little assistance, and younger children can make them with adult help.
Puffy Pictures: Children can transform their drawings into large pillows or small little gifts.
Prayer and Virtue Cards: A fun way for your child to learn memorization skills. They can be used at spiritual gatherings like Feast or everyday at bedtime. Make a few at a time and create a collection which can be passed along from child to child.
“World Traveling” Teddy: Send your Toy on a Global Adventure! An exciting project for one child to do, or for an entire classroom of children. A teddybear is suggested, but I don’t see why other types of stuffed animals couldn’t be substituted. The basic idea is that the bear is like a “message in a bottle” that is thrown into the ocean, but in this case will be carried from place to place by travelers to distant lands.

Martine is there now, John is working there. He bumped into her today at the Gardens, wrapped in a haze of beauty and peace! March 5th I will commence my 9 day Pilgrimage!

…the book remains the carrier of civilization, the voice of the individual.

Barbara Tuchman

Patience serves as a protection against wrongs as clothes do against cold. For if you put on more clothes as the cold increases, it will have no power to hurt you. So in like manner you must grow in patience when you meet with great wrongs, and they will then be powerless to vex your mind.”
– Leonardo da Vinci (1452 – 1519)

From Wikipedia:
“The Order of the Pug was a paraMasonic society founded by Roman Catholics. It is believed that it was founded in 1740 by Klemens August of Bavaria to bypass the papal bull Eminenti Apostolatus Specula of 1738.
The constitution of the Order of the Pug allowed women, as long as they were Catholics. The pug was a symbol of loyality, trustworthiness and steadiness.
Members called themselves Pugs and novices were initiated wearing a dog collar, and they had to scratch at the door to get in. The novices were blindfolded and led around a carpet with symbols on it nine times while the Pugs of the Order barked loudly to test the steadiness of the newcomers. During the initiation, the novices also had to kiss a Pug’s (porcelain) backside under its tail as an expression of total devotion.
The members of the Order carried a Pug medallion made of silver.
In 1745, in Amsterdam was a disclosure script was published with the title L’ordre des Franc-Maçons trahi et le Secret des Mopses révélé which included the ritual and two graphics.
The Order was forbidden in Göttingen in 1748.


Joachim Berger (publisher): Geheime Gesellschaft. Weimar und die deutsche Freimaurerei. Hanser, München 2002, ISBN 3-446-20255-2

Abbé Larudan: Die zerschmetterten Freymäurer, Oder Fortsetzung des verrathenen Ordens der Freymäurer. Edition Cagliostro, Rotterdam 1984 (reprduction Frankfurt/M. 1746)

Gabriel L. Pérau: Der verrathene Orden der Freymäurer und offenbarte Geheimnis der Mopsgesellschaft. George, Habichtswald 2000, ISBN 3-934752-00-4 (reproduction Leipzig, 1745)
Zirkel, Jahrgang 56, Nr. 4 concerning Wilhelmine von Bayreuth, sister of Frederick II of Prussia

Leave February 23, 2007 for Frankfurt; arrive Feb 2, wait for Vera and Dom (be still my heart). Stay with them in Manheim? maybe see Lena and Fema from Berlin? That would be a wow. go to Frankfurt House of Worship; meet maybe horticulturalist there; she’s in my computer writing group. Go to Haifa March 4, maybe i can track down Helen’s nephew – start Pilgrimage March 5; leave Haifa 14th, stay one night hotel in Frankfurt, and fly next morning to LAX; wow; a biggy!

“Never let the odds keep you from pursuing what you know in your heart you were meant to do.”

– Satchel Paige

From the Baha’i Writings …

“The herb is not without its fruit, althought it seemeth so, for in this garden of God every plant exerteth its own influence and hath its own properties, and every plant can even match the laughing, hundred-petalled rose in rejoicing the sense with its fragrance. Be thou assured of this. Although the pages of a book know nothing of the words and the meanings traced upon them, even so, because of their connection with these words, friends pass them reverently from hand to hand. this connection, furthermore, is purest bounty.”