the roots clung tightly, yet stretched at the same time

old birch wrapped its limbs around brick and mortar; hugging the air with it’s wrinkled wood

she danced beneath it, singing a song older than the wind that swept her curls as she moved

when she got very still, she could feel the whole world circling around her

time lept on, as it seems to do

the girl grew and she grew, she reached and stretched and soon she could reach the tallest of smallest limbs on the birch

she perched where the tree met the limb, at a crossroads of sorts

sharpening her hunting knife and carving letters of loves, peeling apples and bowing down to the clouded sky, the jets, the stars, and the moon as it rose above the mountain to the east

seasons passed, as they tend to do

the girl lay on the bed of earth ‘neath the tree as the leaves became yellow and orange then brown before joining her to rest

she wondered and kissed and loved, and soon she couldn’t be still anymore

snow tucked the tree in, and the girl marched away, far away from the tree; determined to never set eyes on it again

she followed the tracks, the flowers, the roads, and the people

she looked everywhere for this freedom she felt in her belly

she backflipped and front flipped, she swam, and she drowned

she found herself beneath a pile of rubble, just to lose herself in the mist yet again

she found herself in other’s arms, only to find they weren’t her after all

she scavenged, cried, worked and worked and worked some more

one day on her lunch break, the woman found herself eating under a birch tree…

this tree was smaller than the one she used to swing from

she touched the tree, grasping for the comfort it once gave her, but expecting nothing

time to stop fighting… said the tree to the girl

the woman rolled up her lunch, and walked back into her adult life

that evening, the woman picked up her own little girl

she held the little girl tightly, just as the tree used to do to her

in which she saw her roots, her limbs, her scars, and leaves

and she regretted not one of them

Something That You Lost

holding onto something that you lost
i lost it too; i help you look
skimming above and beneath
above and beneath

we are just professional bicyclists
and the wheels blew off

riding on the pegs
time lapse
time lapses
time warps

holding onto something that you lost
i lost it too; i help you look
skimming above and beneath
above and beneath

stomping out every blacktop dream
all the toys are still in the box
all your toys are still in the box
why the fuck are you trapped in a box

domed skies; fireflies
so we climb to the tallest point in town
it overlooks the same town that it’s always been
i look to you and you to me, but we see different things

different things

Photo Credit

Marshmallow Cities

we will descend to the Earth’s core

but when you lean on a rock wall to catch your breath, it will crumble right before your eyes into pebbles in your hands

you will look down at me, weary, and not regret a thing

Marshmallow Cities

that evening, my silken blue pillow case was still coated in your scent
maybe it always will be; how could i forget?

before you, there was only i
an eye contracted by other’s curbs
a heart on the verge of starvation

then came you in your celestial glory
you carried a boundless book in your hands

you told me it was going to be a tale of an insurmountable devotedness
a story of abounding truths
a source with inexhaustible amounts

my intoxication with your wildness thickened as you turned the tattered pages; for this was an apologue etched deep within my code
it was an ancient root uncovered, waiting patiently to drink tomorrow’s rain water

you whispered to me, this will change you
maybe break you
it will illuminate every edge; soften your harshest ridges, congeal your greatest gorges

then you leaned in with a calculating accuracy, of the dignified spirit you possess
you think you know love? my dear, you know nothing yet; i will show you

we will tirelessly explore big, marshmallow cities and sparkling towns of tinsel
places you had faintly dreamt of, but
the real thing will satisfy your delights further than your mind could have imagined

we will descend to the Earth’s core
but when you lean on a rock wall to catch your breath, it will crumble right before your eyes into pebbles in your hands
you will look down at me, weary, and not regret a thing

my expansiveness will take up so much room in your home, that sometimes you won’t be able to breathe
your dusty objects will wither away as you turn your back to them and lush succulents will grow in their places

your attachment to me will frighten you as your eyes blink over me in awe
my spunk will scare you as the buoyant brunches of yesterday float off into space

my durability may intimidate you
my moxie will crush you
but your adoration will be transcendent
it will inspire us both

and when i forget the words of this book in the pains of my legs,
you will know it by heart and lead me with a gutsiness so absolute, i’ll wonder why it fell out of my hands

your shoulders will ache with a new sorrow
your heart will pound with a heavy allegiance

but you will never go hungry again

Written by: Mary Ehlers

The Seasons

stretched thin in the undertow
caught between a fisherman’s reel and cast
feet wrapped in the anchor
drifting; drowning

The Seasons

set out on a midsummers sail
knee deep in the tumbling winds
belly up on the underbelly of a whale
coasting; free

stretched thin in the undertow
caught between a fisherman’s reel and cast
feet wrapped in the anchor
drifting; drowning

coexisting in the crusty waters of fall
eyes set to the shoreline
wavering gaze
cold; lost

it’s below freezing
in the depths of february’s afternoon
head smacked to the shore
where the tide came in and the crabs roam
with a fist full of blood and a heart full of sand
choking on the grains of yesteryear
tired; ashamed

booeys cast in shallow wave
thickly painted big wooden chairs set for tomorrow
seagulls scattered on a merciful may morning
searching; humble

pink rays drift and the sun sets on june
as you toss back a prayer and ride home
as you set your compass for home
as you gather your sand dollars and walk home
as you set free your shells and swim home

as you plunge the waves and sink home

Written by: Mary Ehlers

Mindfulness, Death, Birth & a Poem

Time ticks away Sometimes Pattering Sometimes humming Sometimes jackhammering Gnawing away at the bones of life

I Am My Own Muse

blush blood encrusted
encapsulated like the placenta i ground up like a burger
yet i never saw my own

thick like a french soup
round like a harvest moon on a winter dusk
hard like a rivers edge; jagged and moving
pulsing like the internal clock that beats in all of us

time ticks away
sometimes Pattering
sometimes humming
sometimes jackhammering
gnawing away at the bones of life

a pool beneath her feet
waiting to be untapped
juices dipped in the cream that dripped from her womb
soft like the angel skin; heated like that moment where time stalls ever so slightly into a gigantic hum so loud it will burn your ears
so painfully poignant you can’t help but to shield your heart

questioning every bit of bits before
knowing everything that comes after
a brown crowned queen flew in the air towards me…

then, they called me mom

Continue reading “Mindfulness, Death, Birth & a Poem”

5 Ways to Decorate Your Christmas Tree for FREE

“You don’t have to spend a ton just because it’s Christmas Season.”

[DIY; without the Pinterest level work]

Number One: Family Photos 

What you need is a cute family picture [preferably one that evokes all those good, happy holiday feels] and a kitchen clip or a clothespin… even a paper clip could be used. If you don’t have any of the above, good ol’ Scotch tape will do the trick. Do whatever you want to the photo to make it Christmas tree worthy…maybe cut it into a weird looking heart as I did and pin that little guy onto a branch. I think it looks like a cool retro kindergarten meets vintage grandparents ornament.


Number Two: Transform Your Kid’s Toys into Ornaments

Oh, you don’t have toys laying around that your kids don’t really use? I don’t believe you… For me, a simple choice was one of my daughter’s rubber teething toys. Hold up… Why would you want a rubber teething toy on your tree though?

Well my friends, because all you need is a sharpie to adjust it into a festive Christmas ornament that your grandkids will one day gawk over and say “WOAH! 2017! I didn’t know they had toys back then.” Scribe who it belongs to and the year. I love this because it can be done every year and you get to see the growth and change in your kids come alive on your tree. Now, if that doesn’t scream Christmas spirit… I don’t know what does.


Number 3: Keychains or Sentimental Tokens

This year I bought my daughter a unicorn keychain to play with to try to get her to play with that instead of my keys. Do you think that worked? No, it didn’t. So now I just have a random unicorn key chain. All I am saying is… make it into a scavenger hunt with your kiddos while jamming out to Christmas tunes.

I know you have some cute goodies around your house representative of this year or a special time that deserve to be displayed on that tree! Spot the gift bag of chocolate kisses from my baby shower in the background.


Number Four: Christmas Cookie Cutters

You know, those ones from grandma that sit in your drawer. Ok, maybe Christmas shaped cookies is a special tradition for you and you really do use them. But you can spare one cutter in the name of timeless decor, right?

Whip out that sharpie and write whatever you want evocative of your family and 2017.


Number 5: CD-Rom and Flowers

You probably don’t listen to CDs very much anymore… or maybe you’re like me and that is still one of your methods of musical entertainment in your vehicle. Either way, you probably have a CD that you don’t listen to anymore but reminds you of a special time. String a pretty ribbon through it and exhibit it each Christmas. This is one the grandkids will really be impressed by [or maybe your kids will be too…]


Maybe you were gifted or gifted yourself a bouquet at Thanksgiving… dry up the flowers and nestle them onto the tree. If you like this idea but have no flowers… I got some faux Christmas flowers at the dollar store. Might I add, my local dollar store has some really sweet non-tacky non-cheap looking Christmas decorations this year!


The point being, you don’t have to spend a ton just because it’s Christmas season. There is a collective consumerism in the air that is tangible and very real. Kids will not remember the prices… they will remember the feelings you created together during the holidays. Creating warm and happy holidays requires a bit of consciousness. I don’t mean you must be frugal… there’s just no need to get yourself into a stressed out mess over the material. We can enjoy the material, and there is nothing wrong with that. As long as we remember what these holidays really are about for us and our kids. That can be different person to person, or family to family. It may be worth pondering and setting a family intention for the holiday season.

Are you a REAL parent [/step parent/grandparent/family member]? I hope reading this got your Christmas juices flowing. Let me know what you think below. Did you think of or have any other ideas of making Christmas decorations/ornaments for free [or relatively free]! Do conscious parenting and Christmas go together?

May the Holiday Season nourish you in all ways. 

Written by: Mary Ehlers