Danes Hall, in Wisconsin


We wish to walk on the sand,   

to view tumbled treasures.

Take what you need, but leave the rest.

Share the trove of the commons.

We came to rest near your shore,    

cleanse away our haste.

Let my waves wash up to greet you,

dissolving the rush.

We are here to renew and refresh—      

to be caressed by lake breezes.

Resent no more—be still for my views.

They travel on the wind and through the waves.

We are mesmerized by the melting sunsets,

unable to look away.    

Allow the glowing orb to calm your intentions—

to reclaim your kindness.

We are humbled by the horizon        

and the presence of nature.

Look around at everything you have—

be free to let gratitude flow.

                                         —Deb Johnston

“Tiger King”

With black stripes that

announce “tiger king,”

a tiger swallowtail butterfly

lifts golden wings that drift and glide,

as he sips nectar and ferries pollen.

With a linger here, a perch there,

and swish of a barn-swallow tail,

he rises above with goodwill.

There is a time to scatter, 

and a time to gather.

A time to embrace,

and a time to be far from embraces.

                           (Ecclesiastes, 3:5) 

  —Deb. Johnston