Embrace the Good Side

The Ragtag Daily Prompt this morning is MAGNIFY. And here’s an old-fashioned poem as my response:

The Magnifying Sprite

There’s an evil little spirit
and his chiefest job, it seems
is to magnify the faults of friends,
the folly of their dreams.

He likes to sow suspicion
and amplify each doubt.
If ever some good deed is done
he points each fault line out

It thrills him to sow discord
and woe among mankind,
to tinge all praise with shadow,
each nasty nuance find.

To shun this spiteful spirit,
let his allusions slide,
and focus on the good in folks,
the magnifier’s other side.

Success, Simply Put

Image: Mohamed Hassan — Pixabay

Today’s Bloganuary challenge asks How do you define success?

As far as this life goes, in short or long term objectives, a successful person sets realistic goals and perseveres. They achieve their goals fairly, without compromising their honesty or integrity, not crushing other people to have their own way.

In my opinion, success isn’t measured so much in status or wealth or ownership. Even an average Joe, a scrub woman or a waitress, toiling every day can be a success. Take this little plant. It has overcome severe conditions and is a success in its own little way. It’s made use of what it had to work with, and done what life asked of it.

Image: klimkin — Pixabay

When the goal is reached, and/or age has settled in, the successful person can look back without major regrets. Of course everyone makes some mistakes and regrets them, but, in my mind, success brings the satisfaction of having done what you should in the grand scheme of life. You don’t look back over the years and say, “What a mess I’ve made of it all!”

And beyond this life? Success means to walk with God through this life and right through those pearly gates. The apostle Paul writes in 2 Timothy 4:8:

“I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.”

Why Write?

The Bloganuary question today: Why do You Write?

Why do I write? God only knows.

You know, that may be as good an answer as any other.

Oh, I could give some down-to-earth reasons: I write to inform, to share images and concepts, to communicate, to give others a smile. I hope to entertain through the stories I write.

I may have altruistic reasons: a desire to improve the lot of my fellow human beings. Think of Charles Dickens. His stories had a huge impact on the attitudes of his readers. Through his writing, this one man effected a great change in the society he wrote for.

I write because I’ve met our Father, and hope to share with other children what I’ve learned about him. Tell them He’s not an amorphous, indifferent force somewhere in the universe, but a divine Parent who can, and wants to, speak with us and guide us.

I could give some self-centered thoughts: I have opinions and want to share them. Because, like most other folks on this planet, I think I see issues clearly. Or I may dream of gaining a name, respect, some dough. Alas, fat chance!

All the above may factor into why I write but if I were all alone on a desert island with a scribbler and a pencil, I’d still write. I’m an observer, a recorder, an enthusiast of interesting words.

I write because I’m hard-wired to write and to share my thoughts, just as some people are hard-wired to act. Some others on this desert island would be swinging an axe, felling trees, building a decent shelter. I’d be describing the trees, the flora & fauna, the moods of sea and sky.

Lastly…and this old autograph-book verse puts it so well:

Some people write for fortune,
some people write for fame.
I write to be remembered
so here I’ll sign my name.

Here’s To Friends!

New Year’s Eve seems to be a time for paying tribute to our dear old friends, maybe because of Bobby Burns’ poem that’s come to be a standard New Year’s Eve song:

Should auld acquaintance be forgot
And the days of auld lang syne?
... We'll drink a cup of kindness yet
For the sake of auld lang syne.

I came across an enjoyable poem by Edgar Guest where he pays tribute to a dear friend. Here’s part of it:

To An Old Friend

When we have lived our little lives
and wandered all their byways through,
when we’ve seen all that we shall see
and finished all that we must do,
when we shall take one backward look
off yonder where our journey ends,
I pray that you shall be as glad
as I shall be that we were friends.

When we have met all we shall meet
and know what destiny has planned,
I shall rejoice in that last hour
that I have known your friendly hand;
I shall go singing down the way
off yonder as my sun descends
as one who’s had a happy life,
made glorious by the best of friends.

From his book,  Collected Verse of Edgar A Guest
© 1934 by The Reilly & Lee Company