The Pleasures of an Ordinary Life

7 11 2011

By Judith Viorst


It’s been awhile since I’ve posted.  Too busy enjoying my ordinary life, I guess!  I found this little poem in a book my mother gave me for my birthday earlier this year.

Some people have commented that striving for ordinary is a cop-out.  I disagree.  The Ordinary Life is full of adventure, great joy (and pain), and mystery.  But only to the one seeking to be truly present and to not miss the treasures (and pleasures) on an ordinary life.


I have had my share of necessary losses,

Of dreams I know no longer can come true.

I’m done now with the whys and becauses.

It’s time to make things good, not just make do.

It’s time to stop complaining and pursue

The pleasures of an ordinary life.


I used to rail against my compromises.

I yearned for the wild music, the swift race.

But happiness arrived in new disguises:

Sun lighting a child’s hair.  A friend’s embrace.

Slow dancing in a safe and quiet place.

The pleasures of an ordinary life.


I’ll have no trumpets, triumphs, trails of glory.

It seems the woman I’ve turend out to be

Is not the heroine of some grand story.

But I have learned to find the poetry

In what my hands can touch, my eyes can see.

The pleasures of an ordinary life.


Young fantasies of magic and of mystery

Are over.  But they really can’t compete

With all we’ve built together: A long history.

Connections that help render us complete.

Ties that hold and heal us.  And the sweet,

Sweet pleasures of an ordinary life.



19 07 2010


.   Speaking into being


.   Daily wonder seeing

.      Fresh beauty springing up



.   Word transforming


.   Begins morning

.      And evening every day



.   New day born from night


.   Sky above in light

.      Land rising washed in dew


Green growing

.   Trees, seed-bearing

Life flowing

.   Fruit-laden, sharing

.      Cherry, lemon, tangerine



.   Separating

Days and times

.   Delineating

.      Cycled order into years



.   Lavish beauty springing


.   Falling, goodness singing

.      Every rock and stone cries out


(The dots are my way of formatting the poem without having to know HTML.  If you know a better way to indent text and skip lines, let me know!)


29 03 2010
You are Creator and the Word
The One who spoke and the Speaking
Speaking life out of nothing
Giving chaos meaning
You said, and it was so
Morning and evening

You are the Voice and the Way
The Narrow Road and the Whisper
Whispering which way to go
Hearing cries to deliver
The Way and Only Truth
Small Gate and Life-Giver

You are the Cloud and the Fire
Shekinah Glory and the Burning
Burning up soaked wood and stone
Igniting, overturning
Behind and Before
Thirsting and soul-yearning

You are the First and the Last
The Final End and Beginning
Beginning all things new again
Glory never dimming
The Root and Branch of Jesse
Victorious and winning

You are the Lion and the Lamb
Perfect love and Agonizing
Agonizing cruel cross
Conquered death by sacrificing
Fully God and Fully Man
The Crucified and Hope-Rising

(c) 2010 Catherine Howie

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