The Merchant of Epiphanies




Hey buddy, he says, as he opens his trench coat,

you wanna buy an epiphany? And there,

in the satiny lining he reveals a flashy display.

Oooh, I say, those look lovely. I could use

an epiphany or three. What is the meaning of life,

of course. The secret of happiness. And how to not care

what others think. This one, he says, I can give you

half price. It is covered in diamonds and bling.

Something less showy? I suggest. Ah yes,

he says, Good taste. Perhaps this. It’s leather. He sees

I am interested. And I’ll throw in this other for free,

never mind where I got it. I stare at the third epiphany.

Big, I say. Yeah, he agrees, try carrying it around in your coat.

The epiphany looks vaguely familiar. In fact, I’m pretty sure

he stole it from me. And a storm breaks loose

in my mind. Um, no thanks, I say, and walk away.


The whole way home, the world offers itself

to me: A spruce tree does nothing but

be a spruce tree. A stone is a stone.

A crow flies above me. I marvel at its wings.

A bluebird sits on the fence and sings.

Perhaps Next Time



Vast and powerful,

the invitation

like a sea

with a surf

and unknowable tides—


I do not want to stay

on the shores

of my life.

I want to run headlong

into the waves,

to feel myself buoyed

and challenged,

to know myself

as one who risks,

who emerges




Today I wish I were a potato peeler,

able to remove the outer layers of myself,

able to shave off any toughness I’ve developed

to protect, to safeguard, to shield. I want to give

myself to you, the inner sweetness,

the tenderest parts. I want to unpeel

any husk, any rind, any barrier

that would keep you from the heart

of me. I want to meet you vulnerably.

Today I want to take the long thin blade

and make ribbons of my resistance,

make strips of my defenses and watch

them fall like burlap veils. And if I cannot

find the courage to be the one who peels,

let me put the tool in your hand. I’m afraid,

but I am ready. Be sure, love. Be quick.



And while I am at it, I should like to send you

a postcard from the shores of my body,

wish you were here, it is warm and there

are so many places for us to explore

together—but even as I write these words

the letters grow ink dark wings and fly

over the sea, a colony of cormorants,

silent as they soar, and I a beach with no footprints,

the waves lapping, everywhere the scent, the sting of salt.

First Night in Mexico


for Colette



Beside my bed, she left

a beautiful beaded hummingbird

and a story about how the Mayans

believe that these birds will transport

all of our good wishes and desires

to another. Tonight, there is no one

I wouldn’t send this bird to—

not just to my loved ones,

but to my unloved ones, the ones

I would rather forget, the ones

I would rather ignore. Oh little bird,

with your bright body and shining wings,

let’s get to work. Let’s send out

extraordinary beauty tonight,

extraordinary love.

Second Chance



Next time the boy

throws the snow

at my face,


please let me see

an invitation

to play,


though it’s cold,


his eyes bright requests.





Not tea, not pills,

not herbs, not tinctures,

not creams, not salts,

not drops, not injections—

what the heart needs

tonight is a song

so true that its cells rhyme

themselves with the beat.

Tonight, the only medicine

this tired heart needs

is to listen.

Loving the Broken Heart



Every year the red or pink envelopes would arrive,

three of them tucked into the post office box—

one for my daughter, one for my son, and one

for me. Sally always remembered. My children

were, perhaps, a bit cavalier about the cards—

they’d read the Valentines and smile and set them aside.

But I had an inkling of the longing to give love

inside them. How beautiful her heart.

How lucky I felt to be chosen by her.

How lucky to return her love.


This year, only bills in the post office box

and catalogs for sheets and seeds and clothes.

And the part of me who knows she is gone

shrugs as if I should just go on. But the part

of me who misses her longs today to find

her familiar script on a red envelope. I know

that it’s unreasonable. That doesn’t stop hope.


I tell the part that misses her that it’s okay

to grieve. That it’s okay to feel empty today.

That it’s okay to want to believe in miracles.

I love the part of me that misses her—I love

how it insists on remembering this gift:

Such a wonder to be loved by someone,

such a marvel to love them back.



Allium Sativum




When everything had died,

but before the ground was frozen,

I planted the garlic in four long rows—


dozens of cloves deep enough

in the earth so the frost

couldn’t push them up and out.


I think of them now as winter

continues to gather the world

in its white embrace.


I think of how, beneath the snow,

they’re preparing to flourish,

to root, to leaf, to grow.


It’s not so different, I think,

from the ways you love me—

how, sometimes, when everything


seems barren, you’ll plant seeds.

And though we see nothing for a long,

long time, there, like cloves beneath the surface,


each seed multiplies into many.

So much of love happens invisibly.

So much of love takes a stretch.


When the cloves ripen, some we will consume.

They will mark us with their strength.

Some, like love, we will plant again.


We’re baaaack, for a special one-day mission! Have you ever wanted to be a SECRET AGENT??

My friend Sherry Richert Belul and I invite you to participate in a very special Valentine’s Day Secret Mission as part of Operation Love!

We’ll be going live in our Secret Agents Facebook group tomorrow morning (February 14th!) at 7am PST/10amEST to reveal the day’s mission.

{We can’t  wait!}

Please join us live if you can; we’d love to see you and feel your stealthy, loving, ninja awesome agent energy while we are on live.

All you have to do is log into your Facebook account at the designated time and pop over to our Secret Agent group.

Here’s that page!

Keep refreshing the page if it is 7am PT and you don’t see us. (Sometimes that ole refresh makes everything right again. Just like in life.)

However, if you’re sleeping or working or walking the dog or out planting seeds of kindness, that’s okay. You can watch the video any time tomorrow, set forth on your spy mission, then report back at the end of the day.

You don’t wanna miss this mission because Sherry, our esteemed happiness coach and fearless mission writer, has a heart-opening, simple and surreptitious prompt to help send you out into the day with purpose and love. And I will be sharing a special poem that prompted the prompt! It will change your day! (This is Rosemerry revising Sherry’s letter. You know Sherry would never toot her own horn that loudly! But we all know how incredible she and her work are!)

Thank you for being a part of our world!

And — we thank you for being exactly who you are: phenomenal Secret Agents of Change with loving hearts.

What a difference you make.

We’re so excited to create mission of love with you tomorrow!

With big, happy hugs from your spymasters,
Rosemerry and Sherry

P.S. Don’t forget to pop over to the Secret Agent Facebook Group bright ‘n early tomorrow morning when Rosemerry and Sherry go live at 7m PST/10am EST.

P.P.S. If you have friends whom you think would enjoy these kinds of missions, please have them sign up here: https://simplycelebrate.net/secret-agents-of-change. The more the merrier! We will notify everyone via email when the next Operation launches! Also, make sure you send them to our Facebook group if they want to join in tomorrow’s LOVE!


P.P.P.S. Kindness is no small thing. Never underestimate how important your single act of kindness can be.


Stay Connected:


If you would like to know more about Sherry, her book Say It Now, and her coaching business, Simply Celebrate, please click here: https://simplycelebrate.net/

And if you would like to know more about Rosemerry, her books, her daily poems and her creative consulting practice, please click here: https://www.wordwoman.com/





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