my birthday tributes

June 8, 2017. My 65th birthday. As humans reckon time, an important historical, social, and personal benchmark.

I am in a contemplative, and, in part, melancholy mood.

Yes, I am happy (not a word, given my intense early-in-life-and-unto-this-day-awareness of an inner shadowy specter of sadness, I oft employ) to be alive at this time in this world with, all things told, a preponderance of blessed memories, present contentment, and future hopes.

Yet, thinking of my immediate family, I ponder being an orphan and wonder why, beyond the reality of my being the youngest of the four, I am alive, whilst they are not.

WRA 1976

My brother Wayne. Between the two of us, the finer human being. Daily he abides with me in the harrowing (sorrowing) absence of his presence and the hallowing (sanctifying) presence of his absence. I love you, Wayne. Because of you, I have a resident, resonant sense of my better self.

Lolita & William c 1940My father, William, and my mother, Lolita. It took quite the while for me, well into my forties, to see through the veil of my childhood and adolescent disappointments, ever looming, actual and imagined, as haunting reminiscences of the deprivations of my want and need, to behold and honor how rich and real was your love for me. I love you, Dad. I love you, Momma. Because of you, I am.

my birthday – a personal reflection

Long ago (I can’t recall when) I began to see my birthday as another day

in my life; one, as all those before, rife

with the joys unbounded and sorrows abundant

that existence in this earthly sphere makes us all heir.

Sirin and Alkonost, The Birds of Joy and Sorrow (1896), Viktor Mikhaylovich Vasnetsov (1848-1926)

Some, these joys and sorrows, reside within me, verily, ineluctably.

And as I live with me, I’m daily privy, unavoidably,

to my every emotion of elation and lamentation,

every expression of commendation and malediction,

every thought of dignity and infamy,

every doubt about decency

in and of the world and in me…

confess - regret


And on those days when I most behold within me my shadow and not the Son’s lovelight, then it’s difficult for me to celebrate, even with enthusiasm slight, my birthday.


Now, your birthdays –

whoever you are (whether I know you best or least, for I honor all of you as God’s handiwork, thus, even on your worst day, creations gracious and glorious)  –

are special days for me, granting me annual opportunities to give thanks for you.



Hmmm, why is it so hard for me to give to me what I easily offer to you?



Detail - The Hands from the fresco, The Creation of Adam (1511-1512), Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni (1475-1564)

A fellow blogger (I read her religiously) writes candidly courageously of her insights into her struggles with her life and herself; arriving at a place and time where and when, even on her worst day, she can behold her very self as a gracious, glorious work of God. For her to deny the truth of which the psalmist sings that she is fearfully and wonderfully made would be to disown her faith in God and dishonor her hope in God. I’ve not shared with her how much, how often she, in her sincerely honorable and searingly honest self-acceptance, testifies to me of a fitting response to God’s love, as Isaac Watts penned, “so amazing, so divine (that) demands my soul, my life, my all.”

So, on this my natal day anniversary, forsaking not again my gratitude to God, I give to me what I easily give to you and wish myself the happiest birthday!

PRA 6-7-16



Sirin and Alkonost, The Birds of Joy and Sorrow (1896), Viktor Mikhaylovich Vasnetsov (1848-1926)

Detail – The Hands from the fresco, The Creation of Adam (1511-1512), Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni (1475-1564)


January 23, 2016



January 23rd

a splendid day for 2 joyous words:

Happy Birthday!

in celebration of my sugar dumpling’s



of life in this world!


Sugar dumpling?

I’ve never called her that!

No, never anything

like that!


“Honey”, “Hon”, “Baby”, “Babe”, yes,

even, in highest admiration, “The Best!”


Sometimes, too, in a play on “Mack”,

her maiden name,

I’ll call her “McGillicuddy” or “PMack”,

but it all means the same…


All are terms of endearment sincerest

expressing to the dearest,

Pontheolla in a contemplative moment, Maui at sunset, 8-24-11

smartest and wisest, keenest and kindest,

risk-taking steeliest and strongest,  304

853   spriteliest and funniest,  319

loving-est and patient-est,


and person

I know!


Happy Birthday, Pontheolla!


All my love,