Welcome 2015!

There is no time like the end of one year and the beginning of another to experience the reality of past, present, and future all becoming one.

We look back, reflect, count both our blessings and our sorrows.

We live in the moment, watching a ball drop in a cold and windy city where millions of people stand, even as we do also, jumping up, hugging and kissing one another, sipping champagne, welcoming the New Year.

We look ahead, daring to hope that maybe we can make the changes we see in our hearts a reality in the future. Those dreams, which before seemed only elusive, like a carrot dangled at a considerable distance in front of our noses, appear closer.

We can smell the carrot. We believe we can grab it… even for a few minutes.

That carrot, for me, has always been about following my heart.

So when my intuition leads me forward, I listen.

This blog has meant so many things to me. It has enabled me to get through a difficult period of transition in my life- weather a divorce, get a job, and most importantly… find my voice.

And although it may seem odd that once finding it, I am now choosing not to use it here, I suspect there are greater purposes for letting this go as I walk ahead in my creative journey, letting one open passage lead to another.

Thank you to my faithful followers. Without your support and encouragement I would not have made it through to this new and delightful place.

What I have shared here, and on my first blog, remains a testimony to my personal story, one that will continue to be an open passage for readers who happen here, either by chance or choice.

I have spoken in recent months about wings- the ones I now see I have, the ones I now intend to spread.

These wings, recently found in between some blankets in a bin in my basement, are my sign.

There are seasons when we tell stories and dream and write about living.

Then comes the season of doing just that- living with abandon the love we have discovered within ourselves.

That is the open passage I see ahead, a beautifully broad place with an incredible view.

Come with me. Believe. Savor the taste of the carrot.

Pull that rabbit out of a hat.


Happy, Happy New Year!
With love, Always,

Danese XOXO






I discovered this painting in the small chapel of my church back in June.

Last Sunday I invited my son-in-law, Brad, in to see it with me. He and Dale, my son, are making an unexpected move from where they thought they would be for the next couple years -New York City- to Sewanee, Tennesee in January.

And I, having dreams of moving, know that 2015 holds more substantial change, most likely a physical move from the dwelling I have called home for 13 years.

Both of us stood looking at the picture.

Brad mentioned Mary, bending over her newborn son.

I mentioned the star- pointing to it, emphasizing the long tail, the position of it over the baby.

In our common places of uncertainty, we both continued to look at the stable.

A shelter for animals.

The birthplace for God’s son.

And a word that also means “firmly established.”


You knelt
beside me.

I felt your

I am just
a babe.

And you,
are my

Only One Way

I went into the kitchen at work to make some tea. A warm cup of spiced chai tea sounded good on a chilly November morning. To get to the kitchen I passed the basement steps.

Those steps leading down to the basement are wooden and narrow. As I glanced down I saw the sign, one I’d passed by many times and never noticed.

Funny how that happens.

It reminded me of a comment from a close friend a year ago.

“You only have one way to go- up!”

She was right. And since then I have learned I have wings, fledgling ones, that have grown stronger each time I try them out. Leaving the nest of my past was (is) hard and scary. I confess to being a tad bit afraid of heights.

But flight is not overrated.

Flight is amazing.

Dare to discover, right there in the darkness, that you have wings. When you are ready, use them to fly only one way-




A Blank Page

My boss, Vince, saw it first.

“Hey! There goes a piece of paper blowing around! Wonder if it belongs to somebody?”

I turned to look, the white catching my eye, a full 8 1/2 x 11 sheet of paper that came to rest on the pavement outside the office.

“I’ll go grab it!”

My curiosity was piqued. Was it anything important?

I got to it before another autumn sweep of wind picked it up again. It was blank. Not one word written upon it.

I reached down and carefully picked it up, nodded, smiled, and brought it into the office, where I placed it on my desk. Took a quick photo with my phone.

Turns out that blank sheet of paper belongs to me. A gift with amazing possibilities-  to boldly take me to places no woman has gone before…

The countdown begins…3…2…1

I hope you find your own blank sheet of paper today.


Lyrics from the song “Unwritten”

“I am unwritten, can’t read my mind, I’m undefined
I’m just beginning, the pen’s in my hand, ending unplanned

Staring at the blank page before you
Open up the dirty window
Let the sun illuminate the words that you could not find

Reaching for something in the distance
So close you can almost taste it
Release your inhibitions
Feel the rain on your skin
No one else can feel it for you
Only you can let it in
No one else, no one else
Can speak the words on your lips
Drench yourself in words unspoken
Live your life with arms wide open
Today is where your book begins
The rest is still unwritten”


No stars existed
not one pinhole of light
in the black
expanse of time and
space, a galaxy removed
from planets and people
feelings and truth
an unlikely cocoon
where a latent image
appeared, flimsy and
a haze on the
negative I dared to
hold up to the light

I reached for the
magnifying glass,
hoping to define it
and words spilled out-
breaking the silent
void of my womb
letters floating and
now captured
with each click of
my pen to paper
the image clear,
my own reflection
with wings

I flew up
and out.







The Field

The parable, in its original telling, goes like this:

“The kingdom of heaven is like a treasure hidden in a field. When a man found it, he hid it again, and then in joy went and sold all he had and bought that field.”  – Matthew 13:44

Here is my version of that parable:

I saw the field.
I thought, at first, it was only a dream…



There I ran through the long grass and wildflowers with abandon.
There I laid my head down in confident safety.
There I believed I could do anything.

One day I woke up and knew the field was real, and the price to buy it would be great, all that I had.

I took the risk.

I bought the field, with great joy.





What could be better than a bear and a balloon?

I knew my red balloon photos would not be complete without this bear being part. Adrian represents so many good things in my life.

When I carry him under my arm to have our photo adventures, I feel childlike, expectant, ready to see any and all the possibilities of life surrounding us.

What has been lost can be found. Reclaimed.

Adrian is proof. And so is the red balloon.






As I near the end of my series of photos and words with the red balloon, I invite you to check out my previous posts.

In many ways, these posts, collectively, are my emancipation proclamation.


When i ascended the stairs to
the attic their creaking announced
my impending arrival.

i stooped to enter.

sunlight slanted through
a small closed window
illuminating the cardboard boxes,
the rocking chair, the shoebox filled
with crayon drawings, the dust descending
in stale, hard to breathe air
like miniscule snowflakes swirling
on a cold winter day
but it was spring and warm and
cleaning out was in the air of my head
(the dust had settled)

it grew dark
rain descended upon the roof
so close to my head
each raindrop a mighty pellet
pummeling, producing sound in waves
echoing and loosening the dust
a memory, the bathtub
two inches of water my childish
body partially submerged
a plastic sailboat placed between
the space of two recently scrubbed
legs, lips puckering, producing
wind against stiff sails
it gliding towards my shriveled pink
toes before i stood up, clean.

the window, yes

opening it, wide, the storm
answering with water falling
harder and faster
the attic filling, my tears of joy
mingling no fear the water rising
a deluge welcoming its currents
pushing me out the open window
floating my nose just above the
surface able to breathe watching
the boxes
the rocking chair
the shoebox come
sailing along too

my tiny bird, dead
cradled in cupped
dirty hands a hole dug
prepared for burial
one last wish looking up
at the heavens blowing
wind my own storm into its
beak, many teardrops falling
seeing slight movement
blowing harder
it moves, flutters its eyes
spreads its small wings
takes off, sails
with ease up into the trees
perches on the highest branch

the water subsides
my naked body
finds rest
a table
stone, warm
arms outstretched
overhead in praise
an offering- holy
innocent, beautiful
acceptable, pleasing

Just for Me