Monthly Archives: January 2022

“Sheltering Arms”


by James Crews

Some days it feels like a foreign language
I’m asked to practice, with new words
for happiness, work, and love. I’m still learning
how to say: a cup of tea for no reason,
what to call the extra honey I drizzle in,
how to label the relentless urge to do more
and more as poison. And how to translate
the heart’s pounding message when it comes:
enough, enough. This morning, I search for words
to capture the glimmering sun as it lifts
above the mountains, clouds already closing in
as fat droplets of rain darken the deck.
I’m learning to call this stillness self-care too,
just standing here, watching goldfinches
scatter up from around the feeder like pieces
of bright yellow stained-glass, reassembling
in the sheltering arms of a maple.

From The Path to Kindness: Poems of Connection & Joy.
Storey Publishing, 2022. 
Buy the book here

Invitation for Writing & Reflection: Write about an instance when you were especially kind to yourself, perhaps taking the time and making space for more gratitude in your life.