Thursday, December 30, 2021

December 31, 2021

Happy New Year!

Thank you, Carol, for hosting a poetry round-up as 2021 crosses the finish line. Fingers crossed that all of us and the whole world are much healthier in 2022. 

Poetry Friday friends introduced me to one little word. I think 2021 might have been the fifth year I select a word to think about throughout the year. I couldn't tell you what my first four words were. They were adjectives I wanted to describe myself or verbs that I wanted to do... play was one.  

As I've mentioned, I've been inspired by Irene Latham's Artspeak. I love her weekly publications--that she somehow makes look easy. I made my o-l-w for 2021 more of a challenge along the lines of  Artspeak. 2021 was the year of the ox on the Chinese calendar. I took ox as my o-l-w with no idea how it would unfold or if I would have the persistence to write 52 ox poems.

As of today, I know that I could because I have!

Some learning took place along the way that I'm astonished at and grateful for.

First, the ox became an ally by the name of Hamish when I saw a funny picture of an ox named Hamish last January after a google search. And then we were off on our journey.

Lessons from Hamish
one-little-word ‘21 

 Life is trust -- increased over time. 

Alertness doesn’t wreck a surprise—
only richens the day. 

Sometimes walk, sometimes ride
friends help when I can’t decide. 

Patience, like trust, cannot be purchased
or forged. It’s a hard-won character trait. 

Simple is good, better, and best
a fresh air walk heals spirits fast. 

Words are intention, meaning, and tone.
giddyap mornings, evenings -- whoa

Fear is a predatory enemy
use one's bulk to face this foe. 

I am enough. You are too.
Living each day is the work we do.

Linda Mitchell. 12/31. All rights reserved.

There is a final haibun and haiku from Hamish and me over on his padlet. 
We both thank you for your friendly support in 2021 and hope that 2022 is a year that you grow and thrive.

I hope you'll join me on my new journey with my o-l-w, star. I've started a secret pinterest board of images, poems and ideas (many from you) that I will reveal at the end of 2022. It's just another fun way to enjoy the ride. Happy New '22. 


  1. Dear Linda, I have loved following your adventure with Hamish! I know the stars will bring you much joy and new astonishments as well...I needed to read your "Lessons" today, so THANK YOU for that and all you give the world. xo

  2. Hamish has learned so much this year, Linda ;>) I'm amazed, truly, that you wrote 52 ox poems. That's astonishing! Thanks for your perseverance and for reminding me of OLW. I can't even remember last year's. Geez. I'm going to give this some thought today, as well as think about how I can actually keep the word close at hand in 2022. Happy New Year!

  3. You have inspired me to think of one little word for this year. Hamish has been great fun and you've developed such a friendship. Yes, alertness, patience, and not letting fear take over are some of the things in your poem that help us all move forward. Happy New Year!

  4. Congratulations on 52 poems! Wow!!! I haven't been good about keeping up with my OLW. I hope to do better in 2022. Happy, healthy 2022!

  5. My 2022 OLW is hiding in your lessons from Hamish, so I suppose they are my lessons, too. I love how you embraced this challenge and did it with gusto! Congratulations!

  6. I love Hamish and all the poems and the lessons that you have learned from him!!! Can't wait to see where "star" will lead you!

  7. Linda, I continue to be impressed and thrilled with how Hamish and "ox" worked for you, and your sticktoitiveness about it. It's good to consider lessons--I'm working on patience and low expectations, myself. ; ) See you later!

  8. Wow! Hamish had quite a year of writing. I was looking at my manger scene given to me by my mother and in the manger scene is a strong bull watching over the newborn child.I immediately thought of Hamish and now stop to stare at manger scenes not as just a bystander but a believer. Next year will once gain think of your OLW, star, because I have placed a star on top of the manger. May star lead you on a beautiful journey this year. Happy New Year, Linda.

  9. Wow, 52 ox poems. I'm impressed! I learned about Hamish only recently, but have enjoyed his poems.
    Thanks for sharing your Lessons. The last stanza is perhaps the most difficult for me to assimilate. I'm still working on it!
    Your star challenge sounds intriguing. I look forward to seeing where it takes you. Happy New Year!

  10. I have SO enjoyed following your (and Hamish's) journey this year. I hope you'll give us peeks of your star project throughout the year. Not sure I can wait all the way to the end of 22!

    LOVE your poem for today. So much wisdom written with such beautiful language.

  11. So many wise thoughts and words from Hamish, I like the proverbial feeling it has too! Congrats on all the poems you and Hamish accomplished this past year–wonderful!!! Looking forward to your star shining its light, thanks Linda!


Friendly, positive comments and feedback are always welcome here. Please let me know I'm not just whistling in the dark!