Poem of the Week, by Martha Postlethwaite

Shack hammockWho am I? What is my place in this world? How do I stay steady and strong and never stop trying to help the world? Our burning planet. The onrush of artificial intelligence. This heedless erosion of democracy. These are my three biggest panics.

Panic is the right word but not the right reaction, because in me it leads to resignation that leads to paralysis. So I’ve been quiet the last few months, thinking. Reflecting. Insighting, which wasn’t a word but is now. Smiling at everyone I encounter, saying hello, giving a compliment. Trying to forge that human connection, person by person, moment by moment. Trying to create a clearing. 


Clearing, by Martha Postlethwaite

Do not try to save
the whole world
or do anything grandiose.
Instead, create
a clearing
in the dense forest
of your life
and wait there
until the song
that is your life
falls into your own cupped hands
and you recognize and greet it.
Only then will you know
how to give yourself
to this world
so worth of rescue.



​For more information about Martha Postlethwaite, please click here​.

My websiteMy blogMy Facebook page. Twitter and Instagram: @alisonmcgheewriter 



  1. Carolyn Halliday · December 28, 2019

    Just gorgeous. Thank you

    Sent from my iPhone



  2. Melissa · December 29, 2019

    So beautiful. Thank you for always sharing such meaningful stories and poems with us. This week’s post reminds me of a quote by Danusha Goska, “And yet when we study the biographies of our heroes, we learn that they spent years in preparation doing tiny, decent things before one historical moment propelled them to center stage.” Just like you, I try to focus on those “tiny, decent things” — smiling at someone or giving a compliment — with the hope they are providing me with that clearing.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. alisonmcghee · December 29, 2019

    Melissa, I never read that quote before – how beautiful. And yes, we are alike in the tiny decencies. They are always manageable. XO


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