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Hello and Welcome:

Over the summer of 2010 I began to ask myself, "what do you do if two of our Rights, as citizens of these United States, are diametrically opposed?" I came to the only viable conclusion: you compromise. Our great Nation works when there is compromise.

Right now most of you will agree with me that our political system is broken. What we currently have is: the politics of destruction; special interest groups who have the power and money to dictate policy; politicians who must spend their time raising money for the next election instead of doing the People's business; and, there are those who are so concerned about getting re-elected they cede their responsibilities to the citizenry to those groups making the loudest noises and the greatest threats.

The attacks that we were inundated with during the this election cycle belittled the democratic process. Shame on everyone involved. And, shame on the political obstructionists who are more interested in gaining and maintaining power than doing the people’s business. During these very difficult times all of us should be supporting our President. The challenge for all of us is, how do we improve upon this imperfect union that we call the United States of America? One thing I know for is not by dividing us.

I can remember when I was sixteen years old there was a day when my father called out to me, "Jackie, come quickly. You have to hear this. It's Winston Churchill. Come listen." I raced to the radio and for the first time heard a recording of Churchill's speech to a Nation standing alone against the greatest evil the world has ever known: "...we shall defend our island no matter what the cost may be, we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; and we shall not surrender, and even if, which I do not for a moment believe, this island or a large part of it were subjugated and starving, then our Empire beyond the seas, armed and guarded by the British Fleet, would carry on the struggle, until in God's good time, the New World, with all it's power and might, steps forth to the rescue and liberation of The Old."

That day my hero was born. Where are our heroes today? jkt

Dream Weaver

                                   I have always been a dreamer.

["Dream Weaver", by Gary Wright is a song inspired by a Paramhansa Yogananda poem, God! God! God! that made reference to "the idea of the mind weaving dreams". John Lennon, in his song "God", depicts Lennon's declaration that he was the dream weaver of the sixties, breaking away from the influences and dogmas that influenced his]  

(to be continued)

Down on the Farm

(to be continued)
Me and My Horse Named Silver

Years ago, I traveled to California. I discovered a riding stable north of Santa Barbara and was afforded the opportunity to ride out by myself along ocean beaches and up into the mountains (It was the seventies, after all). One day I was riding along the beach at low tide when I came upon a dirt trail that led up a small hill. When I and my horse named Silver got to the top we were overlooking a stand of dead avacado trees. Storm clouds hung low and the trees were shrouded in mist. Perched on the twisted limbs were dozens of vultures. Every once in awhile one would flap its wings and slowly take off. It was as if the world had stopped turning and I had ridden back in time, before man had put his footprint in the sand. I returned the next day, but they were all gone. Every time I read about the condors I am back again on Silver, mesmerized by the sight of those birds in that far off place.

Perfect Timing

                                    Sometimes we are handed
                             the gift of perfect timing,
                             or perhaps it's a gift from God.          
                             Today at Pickerington Ponds
                             was one of those moments
                             that takes my breath away.
                             It began with five white egrets
                             sunning on dead limbs of a tree...
                             half-submerged, a lonely sentinel
                             in the middle of a sea of water,
                             well in a pond at least.
                             Two flew off with long wings flapping,
                             no wind to hinder their way.
                             In time I turned to see two cormorants,
                             land in that same dead tree
                             standing vigil on undulating branches,
                             lording over their water world.

                             At last I espied that elusive heron,
                             camouflaged in the dead of the tree.
                             You can never give up searching,
                             thinking none you will ever find.
                             Because there's always one out there...
                             grey upon grey, a puzzle within a puzzle.
                             Hm, it's not the day to wax philosophical,
                             instead a memory of my making.
                             May you have even a better day.

Pickerington Ponds

OMG, I saw my first Kingfisher today!!! It all started when I awoke to a rainy morning.  I figured it would be a good time to go back to Pickerington Ponds. Rain always calls to water creatures, come out and play. This time I remembered to grab my binoculars.  I know it sounds corny, but, honest to goodness,  the fish were even jumpin’.  After the thrill of the Kingfisher sighting, I walked over to see my friend the white egret. Suddenly I heard this loud, angry squawk and a great blue heron went flying by me and on down the estuary to Ellis Pond. My footsteps in the gravel must have startled him.  I tried to find him out on the water, but sadly he was gone.

After my egret friend and I studied each other for awhile, I drove over to a duck blind and watched six more white beauties sunning themselves at water’s edge, while a Canadian goose frolicked about. From there I went exploring and found the road that led to the opposite side of Ellis Pond. I took off on what was advertised as a circular half-mile trail. I walked along with a spring in my step admiring the meadow as it stretched out before me. Hm. It’s starting to feel like more than a half mile. But, as the path finally curved around to the left I felt reassured that I was on the right track. At the next intersection a sign announced that the trail veering left was closed. I could clearly see this would have taken me back to where I started from. Since it was closed, I convinced myself that if I kept walking on the open trail it would eventually circle back to my car. I walked and walked. I came to a small creek and crossed over.

On I trudged, wishing I had brought a bottle of water from home. Finally I came to another fork in the road. No signs were posted so I kept to the left, hoping for the best. Sometime later storm clouds began forming. When two turkey buzzards started circling over my head, I decided it was time to throw in the towel and turn back. Someone was sending me a message. As I retraced my steps I found myself humming a song from my childhood….”all day I faced the barren waste, without the taste of water. Cool, clear, water. Water.” Do you know it? The cool clear sound of water. Water, water everywhere and not a drop to drink.

I finally stumbled back to my car. And what was my reward? Yes, at the end of the road there was a reward. There he was, in all his glory…that great big, beautiful, blue heron standing in the water right in front of me, awaiting my return. I stood there in awe and knew it was meant to be. If I had not taken off on “The Sunshine Trail to Nowhere”, the wrong trail I might add, I would have hopped in my car and driven away, missing a very special moment in time.

Ashton Pond at Blacklick Woods

                                          Jacquelyn K. Thompson