Tuesday, March 22, 2011


A long time ago I wrote about how much I wanted a mockingbird family to make its home in our front yard tree. It would make me happy if even just one mockingbird would move in and sing. But, mockingbirds come and mockingbirds go. They sit on the branches and sometimes they even sing a song or two, but as long as we and that tree have been here, five years…make it six come May…no nesting mocker family has taken our offer of free rent.
It just must be the wrong kind of tree. What is the problem with it? Is it too close to the street, too near the front walkway? That doesn’t seem to make sense. We see signs placed in prominent places such as by the main hospital entry warning of mockingbird nests in the surrounding shrubbery! Not enough leaf cover for privacy? Is the bark too rough for little feet? Maybe it’s too smooth? Are the branches too narrow for holding a nest secure? Since no other bird family has built a nest there either, it seems it is simply not a nesting tree.
It has grown straight and tall and provides shade, so it is useful for humans.
It adds an aesthetic quality to our front yard, so is good for the neighborhood.
But, I asked for a mockingbird. It’s obvious: that tree is not good for a mockingbird’s abode.
However, as I sat at my desk a couple of days ago, I looked out the front window, and on that tree, tap-tap-tapping away was a handsome, crisp, black and white Ladder-Backed Woodpecker. I sat spellbound, knowing all I could do was watch. To try to get my camera and be there in time to take a picture, would ruin the scene. This photo would have to be committed to memory. He worked less than a minute, then he was gone, only to return for dessert a couple of minutes later. This image too is captured only in my mind, but in beautiful black and white. After that he was gone, never to return.
After he left, the thought for this article came to mind:
“But God, “I Asked For A Mockingbird.”
How many times do we miss the beauty our Father sets right in front of us because we asked for something else? Think about it. Have you asked for any mockingbirds lately?

© Marilyn Sue (Libby) Moore 3-22-2011

Sunday, March 20, 2011


The question was asked today: What is your relationship to God?

My response:

The image that comes to mind is me as a little child running and reaching my arms up to my Heavenly Father as He walks towards me, holding His arms down, with His hands palms out in a motion that suggests He is eager to scoop me into His arms. After He has lifted me, He presses me against His chest as He walks along carrying me close. We’re both laughing, but no noise is coming forth…just pure joy shine forth from our faces.

© Marilyn Sue (Libby) Moore 3-20-2011

Thursday, March 10, 2011


I am often reminded of a prayer I came across when I most needed it: “Lord, help me to do what I can, where I am, with what I have.” Tucked in, too, are memories of a woman dear to my heart, which showed me that life’s changes could be weathered.
A number of years ago, fifteen to be exact, I was quite new in this city. My mother had recently died. Russ, the man at church who has a love for the elderly, seeing that love in me as well, asked that I spend some time visiting a particular shut-in. Not wanting to go by myself, I asked another new-to-the area friend from church to go with me. Little did we know that in trying to be givers, what we were about to be given!
Leona Howard was a lady of slight build and when Sallie and I entered her retirement center room, an instant camaraderie flowed. Showing great interest in our lives, she took both of us in as though she had known us for years. She was attached to an oxygen canula almost constantly, but that just helped bring attention to the sparkle of welcome in her eyes as she sat in her recliner.
Sallie and I frequently visited together but there came a day when I went in alone. As I approached Leona’s room, I saw another resident sitting back-to. Her general presentation was so reminiscent of my recently deceased mother that it brought tears to my eyes. I dismissed them prior to going into Leona’s room, but after we’d visited a bit, I started to tell her about it and the tears returned. Though she wasn’t that much older than I, she just reached out with a mother’s hug. As I write about this today, the tears wash my eyes in remembrance of that sweet gesture. She did what she could, with what she had, where she was.
Often when Sallie and I would go in, Leona had been busy using what she had in her hands…the hands of an amazing artist. Though they were proof of what she was no longer able to do, she enjoyed having her beautiful original works of art on the walls of her room. We took great pleasure in not only seeing, but also discussing the origins of them with her as well. Her daughter Betty kept her well supplied with blank greeting card-and-envelope-sets, as well as the colored pencils that Leona now enjoyed using in place of the earlier canvases, brushes, and paint supplies. She used those greeting cards to bring cheer and encouragement to shut-ins. She even shared some with Sallie and me just because she loved us. She had well learned to do what she could, where she was, with what she had.
Because we knew she enjoyed beauty, there came a day when thanks to the thoughtfulness of the prior owner of our house, I was able to gather a bouquet of colorful flowers to take to Leona. As she thanked me, her eyes danced with pleasure but I later learned there was more behind the words than the twinkle in her eyes. The next time I went in, Leona presented me with a signed, hand-drawn greeting card, and said, “I called this, “Sue’s Bouquet.” She had used the flowers and vase for a model, and her drawing was lovelier than anything I had designed and presented to her. As you can see from the photo, it has lasted longer, too! It has been on the bulletin board beside my desk since I created that bulletin board. Other things have come and gone, but that card holds a primary, premier position, not unlike the place Leona holds in my heart.
May we, like she, learn well the lesson of doing what we can, where we are, with what we have.

© Marilyn Sue (Libby) Moore 3-10-2011