Where is Happiness? Monday Meanderings

 This morning as I sat down to reflect and meditate, this thought came to me out of nowhere: What has made you happy? What have been the happiest moments of your life?

Photo: David Slotto

Photo: David Slotto

My first thoughts turned to special occasions—those monumental moments in life. (I’ll allow you to list your own), but I couldn’t stay there. Think about it. I bet for many of us a wedding day or the birth of a child came to mind right away. I can’t argue with those. But aren’t those kind of events just a bit tainted with anxiety, even fear. Consider the pain and risks of childbirth. Perhaps more significant would be those private moments leading up to the big ones—when you realized you were in love with someone you were willing to spend a lifetime caring for, the day you knew you were pregnant, or the first time your baby smiled at you.

Photo: Jennifer Wilcox

Photo: Jennifer Wilcox

I believe happiness is found in those little things—the ones known only to you or shared with a loved one. The happiest moments in my life have been ones that awakened a spiritual awareness, those in which I’ve realized I love and am loved. Perhaps to a lesser degree, times when I’ve been immersed in nature and those in which I’m rapt/wrapped in the creative process—writing or painting.

Happiness, I suspect, is about the present moment, is embedded in the Now. This is the only place it can happen. To be sure, I revel in happy memories and anticipate things I’m looking forward to. But memories can be embellished by imagination and the future is elusive.

Photo: guidebookfordysfunctional.blogspot.com

Photo: guidebookfordysfunctional.blogspot.com

I don’t think any of us will say that life has been easy. Mine hasn’t. But my life, such as it has been, is what brings me to today where I can choose to live well, to find happiness.

Please share a happy thought. That will help us remember more of our own


Today at dVerse Poet’s Pub, Meeting the Bar, I’m happy to introduce Pamela Sayers, who makes her home in Puebla, Mexico. I’ve always been impressed with Pamela’s ability to capture a sense of place in her poetry. Today she shares with us a bit about her own process of bringing us into the heart of Mexico, and invites us to join her by sharing something of our own, about the place we call home.

Photo: David SlottoChaparral CC

Photo: David Slotto
Chaparral CC

While I make my home in the high desert of Reno, Nevada–a short 40 minute drive to Lake Tahoe, when those cold winter winds and snows start getting to our old bones, my husband and I pack up the dogs and head south with the birds to Palm Desert, California. The desert is in my blood from my childhood, when we would head east from the LA area each April to soak in the sun and get our first sunburns of the year (big mistake).This poem is more of a reflection on what the desert means to me, than a travelogue. If you have a sense of deja-vu, I have posted it before!

I look forward to reading as many of your poems as I can and Pamela will support me since my husband and I are currently in the midst of a small renovation project.

Photo Credit: All Posters

Photo Credit: Tim Laman

Sometimes something
we judge to be barren
throbs with life.

Wind scatters sand
like gossips spread destruction.

If you go to the desert,
you will see the stars.
Perhaps one of them
holds your life purpose.
Then you are no longer
afraid of the viper’s kiss.

The power of thirst
consumes all other desires.

Shifting sands
are like people
who vacillate—
you don’t know
where you stand.

The desert is a canvas—
open to splashes
of vibrant color.

The desert is
a state of mind.
Are you alone?
Or lonely?

The desert is
a place of temptation.
There the devil tempted
Nothing has changed.

If you try
to leave your mark
upon the desert,
Nature will erase it.
We don’t really matter.

The hotter it gets,
the fewer people hang around.

Many people
do not understand
the beauty of the desert
or of wrinkled faces.

At some point
you will visit a desert
and discover

When the desert blooms,
you will find grace.