Katie Hart Smith

Last week, my husband, Jeff, and I attended the funeral of a dear friend who died unexpectedly. During her Celebration of Life ceremony and the montage of photographs that illustrated a life well-lived, service to others, treasured friendships, and family memories, it reminded me of a recent conversation with a colleague who prefaced their life’s ambitions with, “only if.”

Katie Hart Smith

Don’t you hate it when you misplace your car keys? Reading glasses? Wallet? Or, have lost the joy in your life? Joy, not easily found in your right coat pocket, on top of your head, or on a store sales counter, can be found where you least expect it. It’s in the tiniest grin from a baby; it’s the spark of your loved one’s eyes in their sideways glance; it’s in your work; it’s down in your heart.

Katie Hart Smith

Love is inexplicable. How do you put into words how you feel about the love of your life? How do you describe how a person can affect your heart? How do you measure and equate the depth and breadth of such feelings? How do we teach our children about love?

As I glanced outside the office window that overlooks the garden in the backyard, I watched the tropical storm rains pelt the panes of glass while the winds ripped through the trees, tearing leaves from the branches. The trees swayed and swirled in circles, clock-wise then counter-clock-wise, as the winds quickly changed direction. Overhead, loud thuds and thumps made me step backward; realizing branches were breaking and striking the roof.

Katie Hart Smith

(Swept is a reverse poem. What is a reverse poem? These poems mean one thing when read from top to bottom, but the meaning or sentiment changes when you read each line in reverse order, last line to first.)

Katie Hart Smith

As a whippoorwill calls out from one of the nearly century-old pine trees in the backyard, I smile, take pause, sip my tall cup of coffee – strong and black, no sugar – and continue my walk in the garden and a talk with God.