Follow Your Dreams

I believe that we should all follow our dreams and just because one dream comes true does not mean that there are no more dreams. I have always dreamed and always tried to work towards my dream. Sometimes I succeed and sometimes I do not but working on the dream to me is exciting and exhilarating.

Our dream when son and I moved out here was to live in the country with a bit of land. A place where we could grow our own food and live peacefully considering all the turmoil in the world now. And that dream came partially true. We bought a small house in a very small town on a big lot And now that dream is over because the doctors say I need to go to a lower elevation so we have a new dream.

As we traveled over the mountain to get here, we felt like pioneers heading to a new land. I even had all my heirloom seeds in a bucket with a lid and they were more valuable to me than most of the stuff we owned. And now we have a new dream which is to move back east, get a house with a bit of land and grow our own food. Out here in the Rocky Mountains it is almost impossible to grow for the growing season is so short.

This is a poem I wrote about coming to this little town and it is written as if we were pioneers on a wooden wagon heading into the wilderness. I hope you enjoy and please do not give up on your dreams. Sometimes we have to alter them like we did here and sometimes they work out just like we dreamed. Keep dreaming and working for dream after dream after dream.

Follow Your Dreams, The Siren Called Out To Me

As I closed my eyes and fell deep into lovely sleep.
The dream siren called me with a promise to keep

I closed my eyes and looked deep in my soul
I could feel the wind blowing…it was so very cold

My dreams I had carried through year after year
They will never come true was my biggest fear

Wandering up one lane and down another
Remembering my dream since I became a mother

Land, open land and a place to be free
A small house to live in with a big evergreen tree

We mounted the buckboard with all we owned inside
And started over the mountain on this crazy dream ride

We felt like pioneers racing to the finish line for land
And the whole time we knew -The Lord had our hand

So don’t be afraid to dream your dreams and try
Life is too short…open your wings up and fly

Dream I say and work the dream hard as you can
For it will be the best race that you ever ran.

danLrene 2011

Behind The Scenes

Dedicated to all those who suffer daily from various kinds of pain but hide it even from their closest family or friends.  So many fear letting others know they are suffering because the reactions vary so. Some will believe them, some will act like they are faking, some will give casual response to if but few care enough to really look into a person’s eyes and see. I think this is because they do not want someone else’s pain to enter their world.  I pray for all of them. Life is hard but it need not be harder because there is no one that cares enough to sit down and say I know you are hurting. Let me help.


Behind The Scenes

Liquid pools of pain flowing

behind different colored eyes

With muted sounds so that

no one hears the painful cries

Smiles and calm assurances

that everything is alright

Faint flickers of eyes hiding what

hearts are working hard  to fight

Traces of smiles that can hide

a thousand different tears

Smiles that can build walls

to hide all the hidden fears

No one sees the pain

behind all the many smiles

Nor even tries to see

All the difficult trials

Perception I have heard

is the rule of the day

For then pain and sorrow

do not get in anyone’s way

Oh yes, perception is right

we see what we want to see

Like snow on the ground

all the ugliness looks full of glee

And so liquid pools of pain

continue to flow behind eyes

So that  people can ignore

all the hurts and pitiful cries.

danlrene 2011


Sometimes All We Can Do Is Just Pray

As I sat here this morning glancing down the news page and seeing all the hate and anger and just plain misleading news reports, I thought…what can I do. I see family turning against family, friends against friends, politicians against politicians, brother against brother, children against parents, sister against sister and my heart breaks but I know God is still in charge.

And yet it is Biblical:

Luke 12:53
They will be divided, father against son and son against father, mother against daughter and daughter against mother, mother-in-law against daughter-in-law and daughter-in-law against mother-in-law.”

And so I ask myself, what can I do to help. And my thought is sometimes all we can do is just pray. Try to bring peace and love to our corner of the world and just pray. God tells us over and over to not worry and so I am not going to worry. I am not going to fear. I am just going to continue loving the Lord and following him and being kind to others and hope they see it in their hearts.

I Dream

I dream of a world

where there is no pain

I dream of a world

where love flows like rain

I dream of a world

where honesty is the norm

I dream of a world

where authenticity is the life form

I dream of a world

where you can live in peace

I dream of a world

where all wars can cease

I dream of a world

where you love only one

I dream of a world

where all hatred is gone

I dream of a world

where all people are well

I dream of a world

where there is no fear to tell

I dream of a world

where all people care

I dream of a world

where we linger right there.

danLrene 2013


Growing Old

So many people fear growing old. It is like a death sentence to them and many spend their time trying to deny the reality that age creeps up on all of us before we know it. I think the older we get, we find a calmness and peace and enjoy simple things in life more. But, if we remain bitter that we are getting older and try to use all the tricks to look younger than we are, we only fool ourselves Everyone else knows how old we are.

Things I used to think were the end of the world now just seem common place. I wear what is comfortable and feels good on me. I don’t do the fancy hairdo anymore or the whole makeup routine. I am just me enjoying things like the birds in our wild cherry tree this morning. So many kinds that I wanted to take pictures but they would fly off if I opened the door.

Life has taught me that the first person I better learn how to get along with and live with was myself. Once I achieved that, then I could get along with others. How we deal with life and the things that it throws on us is our choice. I have learned to laugh a lot even at my own mistakes. I have learned compassion for those who seem so angry and frustrated because they can not do anymore. But most of all, I have learned that my relationship with God/Jesus is the most important thing and I have learned to not fear and to trust completely.

Below is a poem I wrote during my time visiting nursing homes. They break my heart those places. So many are alone and lonely. But they are full of wisdom and love. I wish I had started talking to my grandparents, great aunts and uncles, etc a lot sooner for the stories they told me about my family just filled my heart. I think being told I was just like my Granny Bellamy was icing on the cake. She probably weighed 80 pounds sopping wet so it was not the looks that was like her for I am tall. It was her spunk who even at the tender age of five was brave enough to sing Dixie to the Northern soldiers as they marched through the towns. Can you just imagine. 🙂

What The Old Ones Know

Patinas, silvers and faded browns
Dimming lights and diminishing sounds

Creaking hinges and crooked doors
Gnarly feet on wooden floors

Robbers enter to steal our health
A possession far greater than any wealth

Strength wanes likes the ocean tides
Making life turn into bumpy rides

Minds can defeat us on crimson rose
Stopping the rise on warrior toes

Defeat looks like hedge roses so bright
Lovely to smell and looks so right

A warrior knows what lurks deep inside
All the thorns the lovely roses can hide

The thorns of weakness, self-pity and blame
Being a warrior is not playing a game

Being a warrior means choosing to fight
And choosing to see the happiness light

The elders know the pain and sorrow of life
They know it can slice like the blade of a knife

Must you become patina, silver and faded browns
Before you know where happiness can be found?

danLrene 2013

Just a side note, sorry for the absence. It was health issues and doctor visits. But I am back. 🙂


In today’s time, there is so much hate flowing around that it can be felt. I believe hate is a poison. It is like drinking poison expecting the other person to die.  With hate comes all sorts of problems. People lose the ability to be rational. They lose compassion and sometimes even love. Many become violent. And even worse, they become indifferent.

I wrote this poem in 1989 at the time, I felt like the world was becoming hateful and indifferent. Today it is a 100 times worse and sadly affecting our whole country. I try to avoid those filled with anger and even have my settings on my social media to not allow the hate filled posts. I think when we are around it too much, it rubs off on us and we can find ourselves becoming more like them instead of being the person our heart leads us to be.

One of the things that helps me so much in this world filled with hate is forgiveness. I hear people say “I will never forgive so and so for what they said or did!”  I do not forgive because what the person has said or done was ok. I forgive so that my heart is at peace and I can go on with my life and feel love, compassion and hope filled. Forgiving is very cathartic. When you find certain people in your life have become hate filled, try forgiveness and see if it helps. I forgive and give the person to God because I am a person of faith. I figure God can deal with them better than me.

I never want to be indifferent to the pain of others or to make fun of those who are struggling. I believe the only time we look down on someone is when we are reaching a hand out to help them back up.


The old man reached into the depths of his soul

Only to discover that it was black as coal

Hate and anger had taken up residence there

Turning a heart black that was once so fair

The old man cried out in hurt and pain

As he looked around for someone to blame

When no one appeared, he threw his shoulders back

Deciding it no longer mattered that his soul was black

Published 1989 © danLrene

Also published in
Sparrowgrass “Treasured Poems of America”


A Place Within

This poem I write after visiting the nursing home and seeing so many that just seemed to live within themselves, all alone, no one to care. I would take my boys to the local nursing home to visit, asking for the ones that had no visitors. My boys would go all over the room hugging them and talking to them and seeing the people’s faces light up with joy. Many thought their grandchildren had come to visit. I think this is why my boys who are grown men now are so compassionate and loving.

I took my kindergarten class to sing for them one year. It was lovely but what touched my heart was this one woman as I walked by her grabbed my arm and started calling me by another name from long ago. She thought I was her daughter and asked me why I did not wear the dress she sent me. I told her it was because it was at the cleaners. She seemed content with that. She held my hand and stroked my arm and talked to me the whole time and was so thrilled that I was there. I learned later that her daughter brought her, dropped her off and never returned to visit her again. I wanted to cry. She would tell everyone that walked by that I was her daughter and I would just smile. I hugged her and gave her a kiss on the cheek when we left and told her I loved her. She died shortly after that and it always touched my heart and this is when I wrote this poem.

A Place Within

With soles worn and body weak

traipsing along well-worn trails

Gnarled knees and a twisted back

And  a mind full of human tales

A path framed with rolling grass

Empty of human voice

Desolate to the ordinary man

But tis his only choice

Eyes that see only inner sights

Ears that hear the past

Lips devoid of any sound

And a body that can not last

The creaking rocker slows to a halt

Closed eyelids flicker in pain

A hand fluttering to his chest

As he returns to the rolling plain

© danLrene 1996

One of the things that taught me to always treat others how I wanted to be treated. That has never left me.


The Gilded Cage

The Gilded Cage is not just a poem, it is a story of life and struggles and how we can be our own enemy for happiness. I tell people that happiness is a choice. You can be happy with nothing but a small roof over your head or you can be miserable in a mansion. We have to choose and happiness is not an emotion, it is a state of being. Always choose happiness and see the joy in what you have whether it is little or big.

Have you ever seen the aftermath of a damaging storm and seen the families come to their destroyed homes to find what they can to save? I have and what I noticed is there were a family or two that seemed happy in spite of the loss of home for they knew that the most important was saved…each other. And then there were families crying and in despair because their homes were destroyed. It is all a choice and all about what we value most.


Little bird with broken wing
Captive in a world of haze
Frantically searching to escape
Lost in the corridors of a maze

Held by bonds invisible to the eye
The little bird flutters in vain
Though only hurt by a broken wing
The heart was becoming maimed

Caged in glass the world is elusive
Like strangers in the night
The little bird cries from fruitless attempts
And her spirit has lost its fight

Her home is adorned for all to see
Her cage is completely gilded in gold
“I give you everything you need
You should be happy” she is told

But all the glitter and all the shine
Can never fill the little bird’s need
Or stop this little bird’s pitiful cry
As she says “I only want to be freed”

Her cries are silent, her tears are dry
Her wings bruised from beating in vain
No one understands her cries at all
Or knows her deep and yearning pain

Sitting motionless on her little perch
Staring aimlessly through the glass
She is offered precious goodies
But the pleasure does not seem to last

Spring turns slowly into summer
And summer marches on to fall
But time does not lessen the pain
And her unhappiness she tells to all

They grow weary of hearing her cries
When her cage is adorned in gold
Never understanding her needs
Her cries are beginning to sound old

Deserted and alone she begins to molt
Her plumage is turning to crimson
Her songs sound loud and wild
A battle she thinks she has won

Where has the broken bird gone?
What kind of game is this?
With a strut and haughty laugh
She just blows them each a kiss

Everyone is overjoyed it seems
As they begin once again to come back
Never realizing it is a ruse
She is tricking them with this act.

Thinking the worst is finally over
She has become accustomed to her cage
The truth lies in the diary she writes
As the tears cover page after page

The cage is opened occasionally
But the presence is always nearby
So escape is still a distant dream
And she is too sheltered to even try

Company is what she needs, they say
She needs a tiny little child
But peace this does not bring
For she still hears the call of the wild

One day she decides to try to fly away
With the child securely under her arm
But the presence draws her back
With all his sweetness and charm

A taste of freedom lingers in her heart
Escape is planned once again
But, alas new company is coming
She wonders will she ever, ever win?

Once again the haze returns
Despair fills her heart and mind
No matter what the presence offers
No matter how big or sweet or kind

Pain fills all of the minutes in her day
Tears seem to take over every night
The little bird has once again
Lost any of her will to fight

She wanders listlessly around by day
Tiny chirps never entering her haze
Her nights filled with tormented dreams
Of freedom from her beautiful gilded cage

To soar and fly through the air
Over mountains and valleys so low
This little bird is constantly haunted
By the desire to just get up and go

The little bird is haunted every day
The dreams have taken over her bed
Discontent permeates the air like fog
For the sad life that she has led

She calls on the older bird she knows
As she cries out to her all her woe
The older bird listens and tells her
”Baby, be brave and get up and go

See, the cage is no longer locked
The door is swinging to and fro
There is no reason little one
That you cannot pack up and go.”

From being caged so long, she is afraid
That she will no longer know how to fly
So, even when the door is open wide
The little bird is terrified and afraid to try

Hesitating, she cries out in despair for help
Her pitiful words show she does not know
She is uncertain whether to remain inside
Or just to pack and take off and go

She staggers back into the cage in fear
Indecision is clouding her heart
Even when she is given the chance
She does not know how to start

Everything looks brighter outside
The yearning is growing strong
Her melody floats through the air
She knows that is where she belongs

Day by day her courage mounts
As she gets ready to make a break
Dashing through the door, babes in hand
That is all she decides she needs to take

The older bird receives a call
I am on my way the message said
I finally got out of the cage today
Will you please fix the babies beds

Through the rain a distant sound
The frantic beating of their wings
Soon mother and babies are in sight
I’m free, Oh I’m free she sings

Though escaped from the gilded cage
The little bird is trembling in fear
I know he will come after me she cries
For I can feel his presence near

The presence never shows his face
He just makes a very simple call
Is she there with you he wants to know
And says he want her happy that is all

He is willing to let her try the taste
Of all the freedoms of the land
He does not even try to get her back
He never even raises his hand

The little bird settles into the house
Her new life she is ready to start
The excitement growing by bounds
With every beat of her tiny heart

She is fluttering here and there
Tasting and touching everything in sight
Thrilled with this new life she had
She was loving the evening lights

Never being out living on her own
The little bird just did not know
That the big, wide world out there
Was not one continuous show

The babies were left with the old bird
As she played and ran here and there
Living her life doing only as she pleased
As if she did not have a worry or a care

The old bird tried to teach her
Life is different out here she would say
But the little bird would not listen at all
Because she only wanted to be play

If the little bird ever had a need or want
If there was something she could not get
The little bird would beat her wings
In anger she would throw a temper fit.

Although she always wanted to be free
From the presence that was in her life
It was he that she called pleading
At the first signs of trouble or strife

And patient and loving that he was
He filled her every desire or need
But, the little bird was too caught up
To see or appreciate his loving deed

The little bird just wanted to taste life
And wanted to sample all the birds there in
She strutted her fine plumage and flirted
As another bird she worked hard to win

But, once she had this bird in her snare
And he was knocking often at her door
The little bird was not happy or content
Because she wanted so much more

The new bird gave her lots of great gifts
But the little bird was just not content
She badgered the new bird for presents
And was not happy with any he sent

Freedom was not bringing her joy
Her heart was filled with constant pain
She sat around for days and days
Crying tearful songs out in the rain

One night the little bird lost control
As she frantically banged into walls
She grabbed the babies and left the house
Stopping only to make a call

She left in flight, no one knew where
Everyone searched and called all around
Never knowing she flew straight through
Right back to her old home town

She had called the presence to her aid
She would come home; she had said
Please, I do not want to talk right now
Just fix us all some food and a bed

Again the little bird sits in her gilded cage
The door is open wide for everyone to see
Her wing is still broken inside her heart
Because she does not know how to be free

And company is coming once again
To the old gilded cage you see
And while she loves them all
She still yearns to just be free

She cannot see that her wing has healed
And the gate is swinging open wide
She has built her own gate called fear
And shuts it to stay inside