I still receive letters and e-mails, many times a week, asking if the writer may use And the People Stayed Home for this, that, the other thing or one more other thing. I deeply appreciate when people write to ask, and I try to be kind, even when the suggestions feel exploitative or as though my name may be used inappropriately–and I have to craft another polite, but firm refusal–but I’m me and human, and there are days I curse out loud because I really want to get on with where I am now and do not want to read about “the poem” one more time. I love the artistic collaborations I’ve been asked to partner with; I’m thrilled with the children’s book; I do not want to sell pharmaceuticals, or t-shirts.
Last night, a woman named Fiona wrote and asked if she could use it for a project that was not for profit…I wrote back, “Thank you; please share your plans and I will respond as soon as I’m able.” Dramatic sigh, and off to bed with a great fullness of self.
Early this morning, I scanned my mail and saw this:
“Thank you for your response! I live in a small close neighborhood in Minneapolis not far from the area where George Floyd was murdered. It is also an area with a lot of Healthcare workers at the University of Minnesota. The reason my parents came to this country in the first place was for my father to study medicine at the U. I have purchased a few hundred luminarias and blue LED candles to distribute to my neighbors to put out in front of their houses on Christmas Eve to honor the Healthcare workers and all those who have sacrificed during the pandemic and I wanted to include a note for my neighbors with the instructions. I thought your poem would be lovely to include with the note but didn’t want to do so without your permission, especially as I cannot control what happens to that note after I drop it off at their homes.
Thank you again for your consideration, it is really a lovely work. And if you do not say yes, I completely understand. Thanks again.”
Well. I cried. I shared it with Phillip, and we both had a moment or ten. Is this not perfect and amazing? What an incredible honor and perfect use of the words I wrote. How humbling.
The continual invitation to someone like myself, who can meet life cranky, ungrateful, and resistant, is that I am–over and over–gobsmacked/Godsmacked by people who meet life always looking for ways to soften its hard edges and love it back to health. They are my teachers and I am still learning.
The glow you see on my face today is the gift of a Godsmack/Lovesmack from Fiona’s huge heart.
I know the word God is weighty and, sadly, resisted by many who have been cruelly and ignorantly harmed by others’ misuse of its healing power. I prefer the word Love. If we can agree that whatever is sacred, holy, divine, transcendent, and our source might be called Love, then I hope we can also agree that it can only be translated into the world through us, and if that can happen, then we can see that we live and move and have our being on an Earth, in a universe, that loves us back, always.
And if we can wake up to that truth, we’ll work to change how we treat each other and the Earth. We are always in relationship with Love and either participating or refusing participation in the actions relationship demands; chiefly, the propagation and creation of more Love through the use of our gifts in the world for the benefit of all.
With gratitude for Fiona and all the Lovesmackers in our lives: Let us look for the Lovesmacks we may offer and receive; we’ve never needed them more. Go forth, and be Lovesmacked, and make it reciprocal.
(Fiona also offered this link, reminding me that our firefighters also need love: don’t used candles; use LED lights in the luminarias. https://quickcandles.com/products/eastland-white-luminary-bags-richland-led-tealight-candles-set-of-144)
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16 thoughts on “Go Forth and Be Lovesmacked”
Beautiful! Thank you!
Thank you so much, Elizabeth; how kind of you! Be safe and well, and gentle peace.
This brought a tear to my eye and joy to my heart. Thank you so much for sharing your honest feelings, Kitty. So lucky to know you. ❤️
Oh, Andrea, the year has come with so many blessings and you’re certainly a bright star among them. Thank you so much. Be well and safe, and gentle peace, my friend!
Yes – a big shoutout to all the Lovesmackers 💞may you not lose heart … and a big shoutout to the Humans who are courageous enough to share their stories so eloquently, that we all may learn to see ourselves a little clearer and maybe soften a few more of those hard edges.
Thanks Kitty, and much love 💞
Thank you, antsimon; you’re beautifully eloquent yourself! Have a merry new week! xoxoxo, Kitty
God is Love no matter what faith. I loved this. I have been trying hard to Lovesmack as much as I can. Fiona humbled me then energized me to do more. Thank you for the light you bring to this dark place we find ourselves in. And of course you are humanly cranky etc., your writing wouldn’t be so great if you weren’t. Give yourself a break and just lovesmack yourself.
Thank you! Your kindness is appreciated. I’m glad you found Fiona inspirational, too; what a force for Love she is! It sounds like you are, too, and I’m honored you took time to visit and comment. 🙂 Be safe and well, and gentle peace.
Thank you, Gina Sue! Joy and gentle gentle peace to you! Be safe and well.
Oh goodness, this made me cry. what a wonderful person she is, as are you. Just loved the photo’s too. Love and huge hugs to all.xxxxx
I agree: what a marvel and earth-shaker, in her kindness and choices on others’ behalf!
Love to you and all your beloveds. Hope all are well and safe. xxxx K
I’ve been in your shoes – so tired of what has taken on a life of its own when, really, we’d like to move on. But when you come in touch with a Fiona, it does all change, doesn’t it? How can you/we say not to a truly loving heart? Life is so complex, but Love is in every moment. I have been sorely tested as of late with some individuals in my life. Soon, thankfully, they will be moving on and I hope I am learning my lessons from this people being in my life … and knowing what they are. We are always called to focus on the good – what a challenge sometimes, eh?
Your kindness flows out like a ribbon of light in the dark. Happily, all the way to New Jersey. 🕯 I wish you peace and happiness. Jeanne
Thank you, Jeanne. Peace and happiness to you, too! I am so very grateful for people like Fiona, who teach me so much about being authentic. What a treasure: Humble, pure souls who go about quietly doing all the good in the world while I’m busy taking comfort in my noble impulses and plans for doing good. 😏
Peace in sifting through your lessons, turning them over and allowing them to re-surface when you need them! ♥️
Thank you, Kitty, I think we’re all out there doing what we can when we can. Maybe now many of us are stuck in one place, but it hasn’t always been that way, and it won’t always be in the future. To every time …
Oh, I’m sure of it, too, and we each have gifts for different seasons as well. 😊