Creativity mindfulness Nature Writing

The Healing Process

The storm took so much it’s difficult to consider — gone the familiar, the known path. Feet so sure there was no need to gauge progress. It was how I became present again, how I stepped back in the moment.

It was where I could breathe, let go, release my rooted stride. Slough off thoughts. Embrace the solitude with just a heartbeat and birdsong for company.

But her wide canopy of solace is gone now, and I have been hobbled.

Those sacred spaces of breath and respite are changed.

And so am I.

So I take a different path this morning and it comforts me.

It whispers…

This rabbit will caretake the old path.

This turtle, hopeful, lays its eggs. As does the robin.

Part of this snake is here but its heart has moved forward,

and this spider writes her poems in the spaces left behind.

Essay ©2021, Jen Payne. If you like this essay, be sure to purchase a copy of my book LOOK UP! Musings on the Nature of Mindfulness, available here.

Ever Effervescent

For Mary Anne Siok


Is it the stylish air that draws you?

The sexy, bold sashay?

Perhaps her warm, broad smile

and the laugh that is her way?


Do you wonder what beguiles you?

Enchants you to draw near?

As if gifted by the Graces.

Sweet Splendor, Mirth and Cheer.


But we know what draws us close to her.

What sets her far above.

A spirit filled with joy and

a heart that brims with love.


She asked me once to write her a poem. Probably not my best, but Mary Anne Siok in every word. The world is not the same, my friend. I miss you…daily.

©2020, Jen Payne. Photo: Mary Anne circa 1990.