Book Summary

I have always loved poetry, a gift from my mother and my sixth grade teacher, who had her class memorize many poems during the last few minutes of each school day. What a joy that was, especially for those of us who loved the word pictures these poems created.

In my mother’s day, poems were still published in the daily newspaper we subscribed to, and she would carefully cut them out and paste them in a scrapbook. If I was careful, she would let me read her “scrapbook,” and I was fascinated by the stories told in poetry form. I still have this book, although the pages are rather worn with time.

I have wondered why poetry is important to me, and I believe it is the “word pictures” they create in my heart and mind as I read them. Or, perhaps it is the unusual twist of language the poet uses to express what is often an ordinary idea in extraordinary terms.

I was not able to begin college until I was forty-nine years old, and immediately knew that I would be an English major since words, stories and poetry were the voices that were calling me. I remember my Shakespeare classes where both tragedies and humor were presented in poetic form to tantalize the senses. Shakespeare’s stories were long and complex, using words likely common in his day but challenging in ours. However, I have a much simpler taste, and that is to tell everyday stories of nature, 
family and events that intrigue me.

Also, long ago I began the tradition of writing an annual Christmas poem, which I include in the letter I send out every year as December approaches. I love Christmas, and as the parents of six children, along with our extended family, we always celebrated with enthusiasm.

I also enjoy the many parables recorded in the New Testament which make a point about some issue of life. Many of these stories have been set to music and are the hymns we’ve sung for years. A few of the poems in this book also have a melody, although that is not included. After all, hymns are simply poems set to music!

I hope the contents of this book will speak to your heart and remind you of events in your own life.

Perhaps they will share a word of love and encouragement to make you smile.


A Word of Thanks

To give thanks to the many people who have impacted our lives in a positive way would be impossible.  However, certain individuals stand out as having been especially encouraging.  These I would like to mention by name. First of all, my husband, Willis, with whom I have shared this journey, and whose insight and kindness have always been a blessing, especially during the most difficult times. To my three daughters, Micki, Bethany, and Darlisa, all of whom have prayed and encouraged, and whose personal commitment to Jesus is always an inspiration to me.
  • To my three sons, Bruce, Danny, and Jon, whose love for their mom has given me joy and has encircled me with their tender caring. And for the many friends who listened, prayed, and encouraged during the hard times. I especially thank friends, Ray and Glenda Eck, who walked through much of this journey with us, and whose prayerful support and knowledge of the Word was fittingly given at just the right time. And to our pastor, Pastor Dave Larson, whose gift of encouragement extends to the many and diverse members of his flock who depend on the Holy Spirit teaching them through his ministry, week after week. All of these dear ones have impacted my husband’s and my walk with the Lord. I owe a debt of gratitude for the hours my daughter Micki spent in editing and re-editing, catching many of the mistakes I made in this manuscript. Her skill brought clarity in how events and thoughts were expressed. And for Darlisa and husband Tim, who understood the directions and prepared the photo section that gives a glimpse into our family. Finally, and most of all, to my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, who loved me enough to walk with me though the Valley of Misunderstanding that was so much a part of our story. May His name be lifted up and may all men be drawn to Him. Amen.