Finished my manuscript!!!

Just turned in the manuscript I’ve been writing about the Poletown neighborhood in Detroit for The History Press!! Can’t wait to see it on the shelves!! Time to catch up on my reading and quietly celebrate—alone. .

Tears Today

For months I did my own personal study on tears, because I was crying everyday for various reasons, mostly for other people. Not really knowing what would come of it, I began journaling my experience and realized that my tears for others and tears for my family were a form of contemplative prayer for them. I confided in a priest, telling her that I was crying a lot and, for example, I wept over the story of Jesus learning that his beloved friend, John the Baptist, was beheaded. I wept for John and I wept for Jesus. The priest just blinked at me and she said, “but weeping for someone is not doing anything to help them.” I said “surely my weeping is felt in heaven and my tears are cast upwards as a prayer and shed back down to earth as a blessing of love for whom I am weeping.” I said this in so many words, and as I spoke I realized for the first time that my weeping was prayer. These days when all we CAN do is pray and weep, surely our tears are blessed. It is OK to cry. Tears heal us in so many ways. They are a prayer for your people and a blessing for you. .

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Irish Poem…

A SONG OF FREEDOM

by Alice Mulligan .

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In Cavan of little lakes / As I was walking with the wind / And no one seen beside me there / There came a song into my mind / It came as if the whispered voice / of one, but none of human kind / Who walked with me in Cavan then / And he invisible as wind. .

Lorna Byrne: The woman who sees angels.

Maybe this will be white noise today, but maybe it will be some relief.

I recently watched a documentary about Lorna Byrne, the woman who sees angels. She has seen them her whole life. They speak to her, they tell her things. They are with everyone, she says. Everyone is born with a guardian angel that stays with them their whole life. Despite all the detailed stories about what they say and what they look like, I think her most valid point or lesson is that it doesn’t matter if you’re an atheist or if you practice a different religion, you have a guardian angel. We all do, because we are all a piece of God’s light. We are all very special this way. The angels are here to protect us, we are their treasure. And if we think about this for a moment, one can really understand that every single person deserves dignity and mercy, because every single person is

an extension of God, no matter what. While the whole world is battling against a sickness that is trying to kill our sense of peace

if not our elderly loved ones, perhaps it has instead unified us? It

has proved that we are all in this together. It seems every person is

scared or concerned. And even though we have laid oceans of distance between us, making ourselves islands, it is only to save each other and in this we are closer than ever.

I have posted the documentary on Lorna Byrne to my bio. Enjoy!

Lost Story about the Iron Priest of Poletown

More on my journey back to the neighborhood of Poletown razed for the GM plant in 1981. Found Father Joseph Karasiewicz’s grave today against terrible wind and bone-numbing chill in a deserted graveyard. Father Joe was known as the “iron priest of Poletown”, he fought to save the Immaculate Conception church with his life. He died from a broken heart 6 months after GM bulldozed his church.

After searching for an hour, I finally found his grave almost completely absorbed by the earth and forgotten. I tried my best to dig it out with my doc martins (always doc martins). I then drove home blasting Philip Glass, because I’m strange, and also, because there is no other way to listen to Philip Glass! What a dreary & cold, yet blessed day! Right!? 🙃

First Corinthians…

These are only my own contemplative thoughts. You may disagree and that’s OK!!

“When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I

reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of

childhood behind me.”

—1 Corinthians 13:11

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To doubt His mercy is like being a child when they sob and carry on

because they do not get what they want, and you, their guardian, are

appalled at the greed and neglect they display when they say they hate you, or when they storm off and say “you don’t love me!”. When my kids do this I just want to hit my head against the wall! Do they not

remember all the previous love and tender care I gave them in the

past? But they are children. They cannot see the bigger picture or the

life lessons I’m trying to teach them. Nor can they fathom all that

previous love I gave them, they are greedy for the ‘right now’. If you’re not giving them what they want ‘now’ you must hate them, you

must not want them, you must have forgotten them. Sometimes we can be the same way to God—if our prayers are not answered swiftly we feel He is not there, He has forgotten us, He doesn’t want us. But He is merely looking out for our best interest—maybe that job you wanted wasn’t for you? Maybe you would have gotten into an accident had you left for work on time today? We have to trust His guidance and keep our faith. We must not be like spoiled children, but humbled always and patient to put those childish ways behind us. I must remember this next time my kids are throwing a fit. I’m sure God rolls his eyes and shakes his head up there a lot, but always with a loving, tender

smile—for His love for us is great.

Of Whales and Men by R. B. Robertson

Of Whales and Men by Dr. R. B. Robertson is a creative nonfiction piece written in the 1950s about the whaling industry and the “psychopaths” that work on the factory ship for 8 months out of the year–every year. Dr. Robertson dubbed all the whalers psychopaths because they chose a life away from civilization, to the furthest ends of the southern seas, to the Antarctic and the South Georgia Islands to catch whales—a very smelly occupation. “You won’t get to know us, doctor, in the short time you’ll be with us,” he cautioned me, “and, when you come to write about us, it will be very easy to make us out to be a mob of half-crazy malcontents whose only aim in life is to see the bottom of every whisky bottle. But try to give a fair report on us, even when you come to tell about our boozing. After all, though the kirk and the owners and the folks at home say we drink too much, we bring the wales back to them.” –Old Burnett: Whaler (Of Whales and Men by R. B. Robertson; 1954)

I really enjoyed this, apart from the killing of whales—that was hard to stomach—but the men on the ship were an interesting lot. Thanks Dr. Robertson for giving us such rare glimpse of a (thankfully) deceased era. Below is my review on #goodreads … I don’t understand why the other reviews are just so-so?! Maybe I’m strange? I absolutely loved this creative nonfiction piece! …To the point that I didn’t want to put it down, especially toward the end. I found myself excited to get back to the sea with these whalers as they all became like beloved characters in a classic fiction novel. I would highly recommend. The content is interesting and mysterious since so man on earth, hopefully, will ever experience adventures in legal whaling again.

I found this copy tucked away in a damp, moldy basement during a local estate sale. I love seafaring stories and since this was TRUE, I had to read it. I’m so glad I did!!

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