Friday, December 31, 2004

Haiku Moment
By Don

..spirits walking with us
....bringing balance to life
Haiku Moment
By Don

year end
..time is meaningless
....only love is endless
In tribute to...

I want to give thanks to all those who have
touched my life in some special way during
2004. There are too many to name here, but
I'd like to mention a few who deserve special

1. My dear wife, Mary, for all her ongoing love,
patience, and faith in me--even at times when
I doubted myself. Mary has always been there
to give me the special nudge or encouragement
just when I've needed it. I thank her for all
we have shared together in the past year.

2. Dan Shimp, my childhood friend, who
re-appeared in my life this past February,
after 43 years of not seeing each other. To
Dan, a owe a special thanks for his inspiration
and help along the spiritual path I've traveled
in the last year. Dan has helped me to strengthen
my belief in everyday miracles.

3. Derk Janssen, my Arizona college roommate
and longstanding friend who has helped me along
the spiritual path and has encouraged me to live
a creative life. A special thanks to Derk for being

4. To all my family members, I give a special thanks
for being such an important part of my life in the past
year on a daily basis and from a distance. My thanks to
Dad, my sister Diana, my brother Doug, my sons Jeff
and Jason, my grandson Evan, and my mother-in-law

Love and Sacred Blessings to All!

Friday Thought: Making Friends

"You will make more friends in a week
by getting yourself interested in other
people than you can in a year by trying
to get other people interested in you."

--Arnold Bennett

Thursday, December 30, 2004

Haiku Moment
By Don

..fear rising
....overtaking us in a wave
Haiku Moment
By Don

grasp truth
..within a breath
....then release it
Haiku Moment
By Don

cease suffering
..over clinging will still be
On second thought...

"If a friend is in trouble, don't annoy him
by asking if there is anything you can do.
Think up something appropriate and do it."

--Edgar Watson Howe

Thursday Thought: The Heart Needs
Hold Onto Nothing

The master shines.

He never says "mine."
Gold, stone, earth—
They are all the same to him.

He is not bound by sloth,
Nor consumed by his own activity.

He has severed the knots which bind his heart.

--Source: From "The Heart of Awareness:
A Translation of the Ashtavakra Gita,"
by Thomas Byrom, 1990. Shambhala
Publications, Inc., Boston.

Wednesday, December 29, 2004

Haiku Moment
By Don

fleeting moments dripping sand
....through the hourglass we fall

Haiku Moment
By Don

..on the razor's edge
....beyond myself

Wednesday Thought: Looking to the New Year

Like most people, I have set some goals for
2005. At the same time, I plan to allow some
"open space" for life to just happen. I plan to
spend more time listening to what my soul has
in store for me.

I anticipate that my poetry will continue to help
communicate what the spiritual path teaches
me. If things go as planned, my first book of poetry
will be published in 2005. This is very exciting.

To all those who stop by Conscious Living
and warm themselves at its campfire, I wish
you a very Happy New Year.

Tuesday, December 28, 2004

By Don

Rising from the depths
--Mother Earth's voice speaks
with earth-shattering fury.
She trembles in fear
and proclaims the Medicine Wheel
must regain balance.
Thirty thousand souls return

to their Heavenly womb.
To all lives touched
--we must give our compassion.
To Mother Earth
--we must give our respect
and heed Her warning.

Haiku Moment
By Don

Tiny song bird
--high in the tree
----music plays in my heart

On second thought...

"Those who dance are considered insane
by those who can't hear the music."

--George Carlin
Tuesday Thought: Laugh

"No one gets too old to learn a new way
of being stupid."

Source: Unknown

Monday, December 27, 2004

Child's Prayer
By Don

Three cheers for you, three cheers for me,
May we ever humble be,
By heart we find our way each day,
At times luck has the final say,
Reach out, reach all you know,
Bless us God from head to toe.

One more for the road...

"For long you live and high you fly
and smiles you'll give and tears you'll cry
and all that you touch and all that you see
is all your life will ever be."

--Pink Floyd
Did you know?

"Ring around the rosey
a pocket full of poseies
Ashes, Ashes
We all fall down"

Source: Childrens song about the
Black Plague during the Middle Ages

Monday Thought: Regrets

"If of all words of tongue and pen,
The saddest are, It might have been,
More sad are these we daily see:
It is, but hadn't ought to be."

--John Greenleafe Whittier, "Maud Muller"

Sunday, December 26, 2004

Follow the Sun
By Don

Your life
--like the sun,
begins in the East.
Follow sunshine
throughout our life
--and life's darkness
will fade away.
On second thought...

"We shall find peace. We shall hear angels.
We shall see the sky sparkling with diamonds."

--Anton Pavlovich Chekhov
Sunday Thought: Christmas Real Meaning

"When a group of professional people asked
a group of 4-to-8-year olds, ‘What does love
mean?’ one replied, ‘Love is what’s in the
room with you at Christmas if you stop
opening presents and just listen."

--Warren McLaren

Saturday, December 25, 2004

Christmas Peace
By Don

Early Christmas morning,
the stilling light of the moon beams softly
through shimmering crystal icicles.
They remind us: let our hearts melt on this special day.
Under the tree
--a napping cat, purring with content.
She reminds us: enjoy the moment,
Christmas peace is here.

Merry Christmas

May you be filled with the special
Peace of this blessed day.

Friday, December 24, 2004

Christmas Eve
By Don

Deep in the forest's soul
--Mother Earth gives birth
to fearless love
--melting snow-capped hearts
--ushering forth awakened spirits,
who walk through the night,
till morning breaks in silent jubilation
--and a new day is born

On second thought...

"Christmas, children, is not a date.
It is a state of mind."

--Mary Ellen Chase
Friday Thought: Christmas

"Blessed is the season which engages the
whole world in a conspiracy of love."

--Hamilton Wright Mabi

Thursday, December 23, 2004

Sagely Heartspeak
By Don

I met a sage the other day
--not a single word had he to say,
No need for words
--when the heart is pure,
Love speaks volumes
--when it is sincere.
Thursday Thought: Let It Snow!

Plenty of it in the Cleveland area. Maybe
18 inches or so. As I look out on this fine
whiteness, I declare "Let it snow!"
A Crystal of Snow
By M. Lucille Ford

A crystal of snow is a wonderful thing
With texture as fine as a butterfly's wing;
With network of atoms like filmy spun lace,
Or petal arrangement of fair flower face.
A crystal of snow is a beautiful thing

With the sparkle of drops what to spicers' webs cling
On a bright dewy morn; and the luster of pearl;
Or a diamond gleam on a glistening curl.
A crystal of snow is a curious thing -

With dew of summer - or rain of spring -
And frost of autumn mixed into it all
The flowers of cloudland that earthward do fall.
Snow Stars
By Regina Sauro

And feathery,
Crystal clear
And white,
Six-point stars
Come tumbling,
Softly In the night.

Wednesday, December 22, 2004

Truimph of the Heart
By Don

Our fear is very often worse
--than the reality,
or unreality,
that we fear.
Look into your heart,
examine the reality
of what troubles you.
Your heart's true reality
will always truimph over fear.

On second thought...

"We are not human beings on a
spiritual journey. We are spiritual
beings on a human journey.

--Stephen Covey
Wednesday Thought: Personal Wealth

"A person's true wealth is the good he
or she does in the world."


Tuesday, December 21, 2004

Haiku Moment
By Don

--high atop
the slumbering bluff
Haiku Moment
By Don

Wind chime
--the present returns
with greater clarity
On second thought...

"Mitakuye Oyasin... We are all related."

--Shawnee saying

Tuesday Thought: Love

"Never pretend to a love which
you do not actually feel, for love
is not ours to command.

--Alan Watts

Monday, December 20, 2004

Haiku Moment
By Don

High up
the cougar climbs
the Universe comes into focus

How grateful are you?

Click here to take the quizz.
Haiku Moment
By Don

where eagles fly
truth takes wing

Monday Thought: Gratitude

We can never give thanks often
enough. As I gaze out upon the
beautiful Winter Wonderland in
our front yard, I feel gratitude
in my heart for the seasons, and
for the special cleansing power

of a fresh snowfall.

Sunday, December 19, 2004

Sunday Thought: Prayer

Regardless of our spiritual
tradition, we pray in one form
or another. We might think of
three types of prayers: 1) those
to ask and receive; 2) those to give,
especially thanks; and 3) those
to listen for what God or the
Great Spirit has to tell us.

Over the years, I have found that I
given greatest attention to the
first type, or what some theologians
call 'gimme' prayers. I have been
working on creating a balance among
the three types of prayers in my own
life. Meditation is especially helpful to
me in listening to what God has to say
to me personally.
Winter Spirits Return
By Don

Blustering winds cry
--throughout the night,
their frozen tears form
--mountains of whiteness,
the sky spirits of the North return
--singing high notes till morning,
The Great Spirit paints magnificence
--with just a single color.

Saturday, December 18, 2004

Soulful Obliqueness
By Don


straight lines,
linear thoughts,
all easy answers

--to complex questions,
the soul delights

--in her own unqiueness, and
walks the oblique path to truth,
Flow with your soulful obliqueness.

Saturday Thought: Trust Yourself

"As soon as you trust yourself,
you will know how to live.”

--Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
By Arthur Nguyen

Snow melts childishly
sticks like sugar
numbs my
naked bloodless fingers
was a part of me before
I saw it
throw down my
short days
frightened of this
place which is not mine
Arms are never
long enough to
reach as far back
as we want
But turn your back
and cracked earth grips
with no intention of

Friday, December 17, 2004

On second thought...

Seek authentic power in
your life. What is authentic
power? It is being really who
you are. When we do this, the
authentic power of our being
is allowed to prevail in all we
Friday Thought: The Buffalo

Many American Indian tribes
worshipped the buffalo because
of all it provided to them. For
this reason, the buffalo has become
a well-recognized symbol of
giving, and has been called by many
tribes the "Giver." Let the spirit of
the buffalo fill all of our hearts during
this Christmas Season.
“To Believe...”
Author Unknown

To believe is to know that every day is a new beginning.

It is to trust that miracles happen, and dreams really do come true.
To believe is to see angels dancing among the clouds,
To know the wonder of a stardust sky and the wisdom of the man in the moon.
To believe is to know the value of a nurturing heart,
The innocence of a child's eyes and the beauty of an aging hand,
for it is through their teachings we learn to love.
To believe is to find the strength and courage that lies within us.
When it is time to pick up the pieces and begin again.
To believe is to know we are not alone,
That life is a gift and this is our time to cherish it.
To believe is to know that wonderful surprises are just waiting to happen,
And all our hopes and dreams are within reach.
If only we believe.

Thursday, December 16, 2004

Haiku Moment
By Don

Christmas tree
set me free
I find the divine in thee
On second thought...

Somehow, not only for Christmas,
But all the long year through,
The joy that you give to others,
Is the joy that comes back to you.
And the more you spend in blessing,
The poor and lonely and sad,
The more of your heart's possessing,
Returns to you glad.

--John Greenleaf Whittier
Thursday Thought: Christmas

"Christmas waves a magic wand over
this world, and behold, everything is softer
and more beautiful."

--Norman Vincent Peale

Wednesday, December 15, 2004

Winter Images
By Don

wide awake,
tumbling down
white satin gown,
downhill skiing
very freeing,
sled riding
come out of hiding,
ice skating
no more waiting,
winter is here
sound a cheer.
On second thought ...

Find humor in life. Sometimes the
only response to what you encounter
is a good laugh. That too is sacred
when it comes from the soul.

--By Don
Wednesday Thought: Everyday Sacredness

We're conditioned to look for the sacred on
Sundays, in a church, mosque, or temple, or
some other place with a religious or spiritual
identity. Everything in life is sacred. Every
moment we experience is a "spiritual" moment.
Revel in the magical sacredness of your life

--By Don

Tuesday, December 14, 2004

By Don

silence in my heart grows,
I feel it from my head to my toes,
it makes me happy and warm,
for a moment I lose all form,
like a thick blanket of snow,
the familiar silence I know,
at the onset of this winter day,
homage to life I do pay.
Haiku Moment
By Don

in my hand
a tiny snowflake melts
so does my heart
On second thought...

"The only test of leadership
is that somebody follows."

--Robert Greenleaf
Tuesday Thought: Define What You're For

"To work in the world lovingly means that we are
defining what we will be for, rather than reacting to
what we are against."

--Christina Baldwin

Monday, December 13, 2004

Haiku Moment
By Don

snowflakes falling
rivers grow inside
the flow connects us
On second thought...

"Only those who will risk going too
far can possibly find out how far one
can go."

--T. S. Eliot
Monday Thought: Let Yourself Bloom

"And the day came when the risk it took
to remain tight inside the bud was more
painful than the risk it took to blossom."

--Anais Nin

Sunday, December 12, 2004

Haiku Moment
By Don

Patient heart
--loving intentions
----true happiness
Haiku Moment
By Don

Silent night
--peaceful heart
----the essence of Christ
On second thought...

We reap what we sow.
So, use this Sunday to
sow seeds of love, kindness,
and compassion in yourself.
It's remarkable what you
will reap.

Sunday Thought: Real Fullness

"Being full in terms of physical sensations
- sounds, smells, tastes, and feelings -
is to be full of worldly food; but being
filled with the highest joy - which comes
from a peaceful mind free from the
disturbance of sense-object - is to be
full of the food of the Dhamma."

Saturday, December 11, 2004

Saturday Thought: In-tention

We are what we in-tend in our lives.
What does your heart in-tend for you
this day?

Haiku Moment
By Don

--by tall timbers
----their spirits touch me
On second thought...

Nature's sacred places surround us
everywhere. Tap their special healing
energy. Allow them to touch you and
open your heart.

I discovered just such a place in Pennsylvania:
Cook Forest, which is located about 20 miles
north of Clarion. When you cross the Clarion
River you will see exactly what I mean.


Friday, December 10, 2004

On second thought...

Look for the magical
circles in your life. They
exist everywhere. Each
seeks to connect you with
the powerful energy of
the Universe.
Haiku Moment
By Don

Magical river
----gracing all it touches
Friday Thought: Open Mind

Some times we fall prey to a
closed mind--our own and others.
We need to work constantly at
maintaining a truly open mind.
In that way, we are assured of
grasping the reality that presents
itself to us.


Thursday, December 09, 2004

Why Morning Poems
By Don

Poems set me free,
They help me clearly see,
Poetic words shed new light,
Adding much needed insight,
Thinking with the heart,
From the very start,
Is surely what we need,
Each poem is a fertile seed.
Thursday Thought: Foresight

"Someone's sitting in the shade today
because someone planted a tree a long
time ago."

--Warren Buffett
Haiku Moment
By Don

It's coming...
----seasons change and so do we

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

Wednesday Thought: Action

"An ounce of action is worth a ton of theory."

--Friedrich Engels
Haiku Moment
By Don

--on nothing
----learn to want less

Tuesday, December 07, 2004

Mysteries of the Heart
By Don

Mysteries of the heart...
and awake.
Seek the mystery
of your own spirit,
take it to heart.
Haiku Moment
By Don

--is not rubber
----it cannot be bent
On second thought...

"Winter is a reminder to each of us
to warm ourselves by our heart's fire."

--Don Iannone
Tuesday Thought: Believe in Yourself

"Buried somewhere deep inside of you
is something worth believing in with all
your heart. Guess what? When you truly
believe it, others will too."

--Don Iannone

Monday, December 06, 2004

On second thought...

"All of us need a snow day
in our busy lives...a day when
our usual schedule is halted, and
we allow Mother Nature to cover
us in her beauty and smother
us in her love."

--Don Iannone
Monday Thought: Love

"Trust the power of your love.
It will set you free of the fear
that binds your soul."

--Don Iannone
Haiku Moment
By Don

--uniqueness takes form
----finding happiness in our crystalline structure

Christmas Tree Magic
By Don

Behold the beauty of the Christmas tree,
A perfect evergreen triangle for you and me,
Painted with bright bows, tinsel, and lights,
Surrounded by presents and other delights,
In the corner of room she does stand,
Glowing cheerfully for all on hand,
With the fireplace crackling all orange and yellow,
Inside us we feel all warm and mellow,
Even the birds, the squirrels, and the deer,
Stop by the window with good cheer,
The stage is complete as a light snow begins to fall,
And Santa says Merry Christmas to one and all.

Sunday, December 05, 2004

Winter's Night
By Don

Cold winter's night,
logs of passion burn on,
slumbering cat before the crackling fireplace,
snow-covered deer sleep in the forest,
blankets of fresh fallen snow bring silence...
to an overworked world,
excited heart beats...
thump like drums off in the frozen distance,
we relish a long winter's night with nowhere to go.
Haiku Moment
By Don

Christmas tree
--color extravaganza
----always evergreen beauty
On second thought...

"Dreams are renewable. No matter
what our age or condition, there are
still untapped possibilities within us
and new beauty waiting to be born."

-- Dale E. Turner
Sunday Thought: Material Possessions

"One thing you’re never going to see is a
hearse with luggage racks.”

--Eric Atchison

Saturday, December 04, 2004

Native Spirit Within
By Don

Before I was me,
I was much more free,
Off the land I did live,
Daily thanks I would give,
New trails I did blaze,
At the stars I did gaze,
Before each day I would start,
Direction I took from my heart,
Everything was alive back then,
But I don't recall just when,
Ancient echoes call out to me,
Now I truly can see,
Somewhere deep inside,
A native spirit does abide.
Haiku Moment
By Don

Breathlessly still
--freezing the candle's flame
----glimpsing peace

On second thought...

"We need people in our lives with
whom we can be as open as possible.
To have real conversation with people
may seem like such a simple, obvious
suggestion, but it involves courage
and risk."

--Thomas Moore (From: Embracing the
Everyday Life)
Saturday Thought: What You Get in Life

"Life's strict rule is this: You get more of
what you focus on. Ignoring this, we abandon
our healthiest, concentrative energies and
court emotional upheaval."

--Marsha Sinetar

Friday, December 03, 2004

Haiku Moment
By Don

Winter voices
--speaking through the wind
----snowflakes to the ears
Haiku Moment
By Don

--deep into yourself
----pay tribute to your dreams
On second thought...

"No man knows he is young while he is young."

--G.K. Chesterton
Friday Thought: Use Your All

"You must not only aim aright,
but draw the bow with all your might."

--Henry David Thoreau

Thursday, December 02, 2004

Haiku Moment
By Don

Time traveler
--hitchhiking between nows
----discovering what lies beyond time
Haiku Moment
By Don

--pleasures of the mind
----distractions from reality
On second thought...

"For everything that lives is holy,
life delights in life."

--William Blake
Thursday Thought: Your Sacred Space

"Your sacred space is where you can find
yourself again and again."

--Joseph Campbell

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

Haiku Moment
By Don

High winds
--freezing temperatures
----winter perches outside my window
On second thought...

"These days people seek knowledge,
not wisdom. Knowledge is of the past,
wisdom is of the future."

--Vernon Cooper
Wednesday Thought: Learning

"In times of change, learners
inherit the Earth, while the
learned find themselves
beautifully equipped to
deal with a world that
no longer exists."

--Eric Hoffer

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