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When I was in my 20’s, I decided to get a Masters Degree and I did, and it was a good experience. It was not a traditional program, it was focused on human systems consulting and leadership, and it was both academic and experiential.The program was highly idealistic, born out of the minds of quite a few leaders themselves, and ones who had come of age in the late 50’s and 60’s and had a Human Potential mindset without the cult like feel. Strongly focused on group dynamic work, it also held Family of Origin Theory (Virginia Satir) as a…


It has been a year of living differently.

When I was young, my mother was a homemaker. When my dad died, she went back to work, sort of. Part time work was her jam, and she cobbled together a variety of ways she lived in the world while I was at school. My grandmother stayed with us during the winters into spring and often was there after school while my mother worked evenings.

I never knew what she did with herself during the day, but during Covid I have more of an idea. She cleaned, kept the yard up, shopped…


I hate mornings. Many people do, which is why I think it’s ok to just come right out and say it. Mornings, at least lately, have been wrapt up with poor sleep, headaches, and nightmares. And the dread of facing another long weird busy but empty day.

That’s what I’m inspired by today, some bad nights where I wake from bad dreams into headaches that are likely because I’m sleeping with stress. Covid Stress. Covid, at least for me, is not normal. I work at a station that allows me to do my job from home. I do it, and…


So there is this spider see, and she lives in the web,

all built up each night and it’s all linked and synced and has hubs and connectors made of

spit and netherjuice and string.

And honeybee lands on one far corner, the fuzzy fool.

He lands and shakes that far corner wakes her up as she sleeps in the sun on her web.

Legs getting messages through crisscrossy wires, legs on fire she scurries. She has to eat him. That’s how it works.

Back at the hive, see they don’t send out scout missions, air bombing raids or even spies to Save Flying Ryan from his fate.

Their condition indicates one will be born to take his place, knowledge replaceable through thousands of communal dancing feet.

They have to gather. That’s how it works.

(photo credit Sabine Groschl)

Originally published at https://www.juliegillispoetry.com .


“Do not mistake a goat’s beard for a fine stallion’s tail.”

This is apparently an Irish proverb from years past and I used it in (yet again providing daily writing prompts who knew) Facebook Memories as status in 2010. It popped up again today, naturally.

It means just because something SEEMS like what you want, it might not be. Don’t settle for something that you think might be enough. So then the next question for me is how do you know it’s not what you want or what you think it is?

Case in point, the most recent Facebook memory…


Written in 2016

Last night I slept and I dreamed about seemingly mundane things. Sitting in a theater, buying ballet flats, the parking lot of the Winn Dixie near my childhood home. Dreams are funny. Mostly I think that dreams are just some kind of garbage removal/processing system, clearing out the detritus of the day. Sometimes though there will be a narrative there that is likely messaging from some darker deeper level of consciousness. I don’t know if there were many messages last night, except that I sit in a lot of theaters? …


It’s foggy today, cold but beautiful. The cat (the kitten) is sitting at the window wishing for the life of him that he could get out and kill something, or at least that’s what I suspect he’s thinking. His nature is to prey upon prey, even if it looks awfully cute indoors with a feather toy. He’s present in the moment, cute or not. He’s endlessly creative in his faux murders. He’ll leap and bound and stalk and drag off the feather toy. We’ve gone through three at this point in his short life. …


“If paradise now arises in hell, it’s because in the suspension of the usual order and the failure of most systems, we are free to live and act another way.” -Rebecca Solnit, A Paradise Built In Hell

“Love and mutual support is how we pick up the pieces. Another world is possible, and we can help bring it into being, one cleaned up flooded home, one friendship forged, one act of #solidarity at a time.” — @MutualAidRelief (from Kit O’Connell)

I think that deep and personal change often comes out of uncomfortable situations plus time plus a reasonable “safe” space…


artist unknown

An only child who works best in groups. Extrovert who likes to be alone. Introvert who shines on stage. Performer who produces other’s work. Or a producer who enjoys the limelight. Comedian in real time. Serious writer online. Prophetic and poetic tendencies, rather than the leader of a church. An advocate and town crier, rather than someone who would sit on a dias dealing with Robert and his Rules.

I can tell you that each of those things describe me at various times, in various places, and at various points in the day. I Cassandra quite a bit, I observe…


The house, in her Spanish perfection
like a chapel aged and kept well over time.
I, welcome there for only a short hour.
In the bathroom, precise and clean,
I saw them.
Two small sugar ants traveling, uninvited guests.
Going where? Seeking water perhaps. Or a bath perhaps
with expensive soap.
A flaw, but flaws make me happy,
not out of gotcha glee, but the reminder that they
are always there.
They remind me to be gentle on myself,
which I am often not.
I waved at them, left them on their journey,
and went back to the salad course.

(photo credit patrickkavanaugh)

Originally published at https://www.juliegillispoetry.com on February 19, 2021.

Julie Gillis

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