Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Traveling in Winter

Traveling deeply into winter.
Finding light amid the 
snow and ice. 

A tree lined creek,
bubbling, rolling.
Finding sunshine and 
angels as the steam 
from the water
meeting the frigid air.

The weight lifted
into the rising sun.

Becoming one.

Patricia Mulroy

Monday, January 2, 2017


It doesn’t have to be this way,
No really,
We have followed in the pits and holes
Of those before us,
Again and Again.
Not just today,

It doesn’t have to be this way,
climbing on each others backs,
Knowing better than YOU.
Who are you?

Hey You,
It doesn’t have to be this way,
ME, pointing at YOU.
Because I know,
Because I said so.

And now you weep,
and cry
Because, now,
I hurt YOU -
And a little bit of

it doesn’t have to be this way,
It is not in our DNA -

All it takes
is spending a day
with a tiny

It was once
You and
Pure heart, babbling,
Just wanting
to be safe,
and fed
and warm
and loved
and clean.

It doesn’t have to be that way,
It can be this way,

The soul is still there
Despite the muck and the yuk
Of the finger pointing
and screaming
and blustering.

It doesn’t have to be,


Pat Mulroy 12/10/16

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Holidays and New Years

Holidays and New Years

We gather in your memory!
The memory of those we love and miss.
We long for the big gestures
and way you made us all laugh.
We see you - but only bits of you.
And all differently.

The missing pieces are right here.
Wrapped in smiles and words.
Tears and goodbyes - I think.
Days gone by and days ahead.
New memories - new days.
Life tumbling and tossing us

All of us together in your name.
Are you the light of the world?
Am I? Is my brother, sister or neighbor?
Then how shall I live this new year?

As a beacon, I think.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016


Hello, good morning, I say!
I love you, I love you, today
and tomorrow.
Sleepily, she says hello.
We meet and greet the day.
Writing our morning story,
sipping coffee,
wondering what this new day will bring,
and if it will rain.

Hello, she said.
Greetings and good day, I reply.
I see the shadows of her home.
She lives in a far away land.
Her head covered in with a white scarf.
The pillars of ancient Egypt.
I hear her grandson, playing.
We are more alike than different.
She smiles,
we chat about school
and the weather.

Hello! Can you hear me?
Echos across the miles.
The signal fading and dropping,
standing still so I can hear.
Exploring a new landscape alone,
we are connected.
She says, hello.
I can hear you.
We talk about poetry,
and the weather.

Hello, how are you?
We talk about health insurance,
the memories we share.
Life tumbles in.
We talk about the weather,
and wonder when the sun will shine.

Hello, how was your day?
We speak of the brilliant colors,
of Fall.
Autumn has arrived.
Yellow, gold, red
and Orange
against the evergreen,
across a fading sky.
Hello, I say,
it has been a fine day.

October 19 2016

Thursday, June 30, 2016

Through Whose Eyes?

We were invited to imagine what a restaurant could be.

Then we designed and created our restaurants and imagined the people who would work in our restaurants.


We imagined what our menu's would look like and envisioned our patrons. We then advertised to the public inviting them to our restaurants.


We prepared for problems and visioned what our grand opening might look like by creating skits.

Now we are reflecting on our learning. What story did we tell?

Tuesday, June 28, 2016


Some people say hope is a waste of energy,
hope kills the present moment.
I do not.
Hope brings people together.
Hope lends a light when the world seems dark.
Hope is the moments when you know that what you are doing is worthwhile,
even when the chips are down.
When you turn to the new friend and say, “we can do this”.
I don’t know why I listen to some people - because I am hopeful!

We started Storyline training last night. Sitting with new friends constructing our learning by, creating a restaurant, figuring things out. I never met some of them, but they are like me. Searching to find a place in education where the child is in the center. Wondering how things got so far away from the joy of learning. I am hopeful, because there are so many people trying to make a difference!

The intensity of the learning, not about square root or parabola, was present last night. We learned about how things fit in our tiny little box of a world. Our hands were crafting tables and chairs, bathrooms, kitchens. Our wall were multi-colored. Our hearts, filled with possibility and hope, searching for a way that we can teach children. Creating conversation, negotiating differences, measuring, counting, drafting and re-drafting. When we were finished last night, we weren’t really finished either, we had actually just begun.

And I am eternally optimistic as I get ready to walk down the hill today, to the Farmhouse, to greet my friends, new and old as we continue to explore Storyline. I am hopeful that we have pre-service teachers and retired teachers, non-profit pre-schools for homeless children and virtual learning, classroom teachers and museum docents; all curious, all hopeful that we can create a better way, that we can be better teachers, that we can provide the joy and wonder of learning in spaces that are sometimes dull, in a world that sometimes forgets that kids are kids!

I am hopeful that I crossed the threshold to a world that does not allow the heaviness to darken the door of possibility. I am hopeful because in crossing the threshold I have met amazing people who take the chance. And I am thankful for all the people I know who show up every day - taking the chance to have their hearts broken when they show up at schools - and they show up every day - for the kids!

Wandering through something new last night, at Storyline, I forgot about the people who said, “maybe next year when you are more established”, or “the price was better somewhere else”. Last night as I worked with strangers, and I knew that regardless of what happens today, my life is full, blessed, filled with love and inspiration. Simple things, like learning to build an environment where children can explore, just like we do, to learn set me free.

So, I am hopeful.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Precious Moments

I was thinking about school and schools when once again, the unthinkable, another mass shooting happened. Sadness shifted to anger, back to sadness and to wonder.

"Only for a few brief moments… " a line from Music at Night, an essay, by Aldous Huxley, in his Biography by Sybille Bedford, and I paused. Only for a few brief moments! I think about the ordinariness – the moments we wait for, dream about. The ones we create in our heads. I am not sure, at this moment, that waiting is the right thing to do. I think of the temporariness of it all; the sadness, the joy, the stale afternoon haze. The car crash, the shootings, a trip and fall. Get up, get moving, stop. Look around. Living in fear is not the answer either, really!

The ability stop, to see the beauty and wonder in the ordinary, holding the moments we are given like treasures. Sometimes hurrying to the next thing, or the thing I believe will be the moment, is a waste of the present. Really, all the longing for ‘that moment’, in its haste, I may miss the magical moment of the here and now. I think of school, our school, what we are teaching in schools, all the time?

In this present moment I am painfully aware of all the tension I hold as I watch the light play with the leaves – the shadow dancing on the table and at the edges of this page. The constant ticking in my head, and I stop and listen to the birds and the breeze and the chimes. The noise in my head sometimes no match for reason or what I know to be true. What are we teaching children in our words and actions - moving so fast toward what?

And, I am blessed that you call my name. Blessed to know patience and beauty; the unending love reflected back in knock-knock jokes and spilled wine. The moments that come without a plan or prompting, born in a car ride filled with innocence and grace. God, hope, light - however you name it, in these moments when souls connect over chopping vegetables and preparing pizza dough. The sacred and the holy here – each day in each of us.

The leaves are still dancing across my page in the sparkling morning light and soft breeze, light on my face, calls me home, to myself - to the larger spirit of life. The coffee, the words and the unspoken truth. We all have a chance to shine our light with small acts of kindness each day. It is enough! The light is everywhere – I wonder where will mine shine today?