The older I get, the earlier I get up, the less I worry about fashion, the fresher I feel when I observe kindness, the more I take time to pursue earthly and heavenly gazes and stand tall on one foot (providing it's not a day of wobble) to see it all better.


Each day we should listen to a little music, read a bit, admire artistic endeavor, appreciate nature, be reverent, and say a few kind words. 


To improve your Country, live kindly-- as one leaf on a great tree, one drop In a vast sea, one blossom in an endless field-- equal in responsibility, equal by effort, equally worthy of rights and rewards.


Only little people belittle.


We can often learn through "opposites." We can learn silence from those who talk too much, patience from those lacking tolerance, and kindness from observing cruelty.


Even if fondness is missing, there is no excuse for being unkind.


When you realize that kindness is bigger than intelligence, your intelligence is already getting bigger.


I say, "Get even! Get even! Get even with everyone who has ever been kind to you!"


Do not mistake silence for ignorance, reserve for acceptance, kindness for weakness.


Kindness observed in unlikely places gives me hope for the world.


Kindness is often the result of suffering.


The kindest people are those who can give away what they need themselves.


Rather than being born with abilities, we are born with potential. When mixed with consistency, blended with virtue, the result is kindness.


Healing the world should begin with curing yourself.


Conform with expectation of others, take the same direction, and it is possible everyone will like you, but likely you will no longer like yourself.


If you offer someone else a hand up, you will also be lifted.


In a bad situation, I found myself reaching for a revenge of words, thought about it carefully, merged into indifference, then settled on the kindness of silence.


Although it is difficult, if not impossible to love everyone, kindness is a good route toward achieving that intent.


Short-Shorts dealing with kindness.



Yesterday, the day before that, and today, Marvin stands across the street and pretends activity with cats.

Marvin is quiet and shy, but longing builds his confidence.  Perhaps today he'll knock, and not run away.

His pain is first love and great for Beth's daughter Amy.  His growth is rapid and lonely, and love is new, and useless. 

Amy's interest is occupied elsewhere, on a ten-speed. She shows his poetry and his heart around, and they giggle.

Just as Kent Bentley laughed over twenty-five years ago when Beth offered her heart like a gift of glass, and he crushed it. 

Beth recovered slowly, incompletely. She could not look at Kent Bentley again without embarrassment.

A part of Beth would spare Marvin, but she is just a mother, and not his.  She must not touch what she can not fix, nor hope to soothe.

There is a knock at the door, an apologetic tapping. 

Beth sighs.  She must leave Marvin the complications of normal growth and pretend she doesn't know the pain of it as she answers the door to his goofy grin, or again his back as he darts away.


Abby watches.

The dog is crippled.  He can no longer jump onto the bed, and it cripples the child more and more often found in blankets on the floor.

Abby doesn't know what to do. She adds blankets, medicates the dog's pain of old age, a condition without cure. Nothing is left except... 

No, not yet. Destroying him is still out of the question.

And yet, the child doesn't want to go away to college, but it is arranged.

Abby stands at the window.  She rubs her eyes and watches the young woman her daughter already has become coax a black dog too tired for obedience, but not affection. They lay side by side in sunlight,

Abby wipes a tear. "Dammit," she says.  It is inevitable. A friendship that started when a child was five must end. There is no other recourse.  Still, day after day, Abby puts it off, knowing full well she must soon choose a place to dig  where her daughter will be the most comfortable sitting.


Good Morning, Opie. Opossum, shed custodian.  I forgive your shocking morning appearance, just as you forgive me mine, and stall to give you right-of-way, as do you, in this lovely magic of harmony and mutual respect.














A Little Religion Wouldn't Hurt

(From the Cocklebur Chronicles on


Where sunrise ravels timberline into a metal sky

and puffs across the mouthpiece of horizon,

black woods ooze from darkness.

Feathered woodwinds perk and rustle sheet music.

Incisive voices in three octaves of announcement

set center stage for sun.

Water finds seeds or seeds find water, soil and sunshine,

however partnership begins to build an all-faiths chapel.

Something honest shakes a seed sack.

Something holy splashes water from a pan.

Woods from one seed unshackled, spinning,

bursting with good intention,

Then more;

From one cone, then two that hit the ground with inner promise,

a home, and woods begin.

Here lie the rudiments of life---

Opportunity for broadleaf, needle leaf, evergreen,

hardwood and soft,

For mosses, shrubs, herbs, and wildflowers.

Ground bids some come, and others go,

insects, birds, mice, turtles, snakes,

the raccoon, deer and man,

To where water places hope within the saplings,

Saplings hope with wood to make a stand,

And each new seed sets a new example

and falls, rises, drifts, falls rolling as it learns

to believe the dream of peace

And trust an aching heart to land.