Ten Things Made.

  1. I make marks on cloth with needle and thread
    little trails, small tracks
    that lead to somewhere.
  2. We make our bed on a borrowed floor
    taped together vinyl mats and bamboo sheets
    blankets stolen from the skies between hemispheres.
  3. He makes music with builder’s hands on worn wood
    a body and neck as old as his father’s
    fingers picking strings like beauty fresh born.
  4. They make house from found things
    salvaged floors, windows, doors
    building walls of second-hand stories.
  5. She makes slow stabs at sentence forming
    stringing words through ideas
    hoping truth will bind.
  6. You make sounds that vibrate
    on skin, through bone, touching spines
    healing, resounding.
  7. We make lamplight from moonlight
    trace the constellations with our fingertips
    follow the path of the sun.
  8. He makes the world into metaphor
    drawing curtains over private spaces
    keeping some truths filtered, unseen.
  9. I make movements and motions
    pushing rhythms through hip bones
    teaching lead feet to take flight, soar.
  10. They make bounty from remnants
    living both fragmented and fully whole
    migratory contradictions, thriving



Ten Things Made, by Raechelle Kennedy

Published in Topology Magazine, December 2015


each mad heart silent, a brilliant music stilled.

making a list is all about not knowing where to start with the words in your brain and the rumbles in your bones. so you get to stop thinking about it and just start at number

  1. a blue jay and a woodpecker. my morning raucous serenade.
  2. a hummingbird, one of the last of the hanger-on-ers of the season, shared a spot at the breakfast booth with me the other day.  sometimes, when the juice is running low, i wake up to the sound of one hovering beside my face while i’m still in bed, staring at me through the thin pane of glass. those tiny wings beat so fast that they make enough noise to wake me from sleep. the awesomeness of this is never lost on me.
  3. a butterfly hunt with Mr. Jones. we returned with a wooden basket bounty of a couple pinecones + a topless acorn + too many dead bumblebees ( what happened to the bees?) + a grey feather + roadside pebbles + some dismembered Red Admiral wings + a lot of Yellow Sulphurs + one recently injured but still very alive Monarch.
  4. buying nectarines + orange currant bread outside in the rain.
  5. the rain.
  6. i keep thinking about coyotes. all summer long they howl and yip such an eerie lullaby all around our caravan home. they stop us in our tracks. they’ve kept us from our sleep. but i never actually see them. part of me is cool with that. the other part of me begs for a glimpse. they’re so full of mystery and i’m so full of curiosity. the world is so full of amazing.
  7. while you and me were busy doing other things this morning – making lists, buying groceries, going to work, complaining about the weather – there were incredible things happening all around us. like babies being born. like one baby in particular…who was born probably right around the time i was picking out the nicest cauliflower from the Italian farmer guy at the market for only $2. amazing. i haven’t even met this babe yet but already i know i love him to the moon and back. the heart is tremendous like that. so are our days…there’s always more to them than just the cauliflower and the rain…
  8. …speaking of cauliflower…i can’t seem to eat my fill. i’m crushin’ on the cruciferous big time.
  9. there are three windows open on my computer screen tonight. one is this blog post page, words mid-composition. one is my partially filled out Visa application for Australia. the third is a stream of CBC news stories about refugees. there is an irony, a tragedy, an injustice, and a mash up of a million other feelings, that sit firmly between windows two and three. my privilege makes my heart ache. which leads me back to window one. right here. making a list because there’s nowhere else to begin.
  10. my sweetheart and i had a crazy idea. and we acted on it. and it worked. and that is one of the best feelings in the world. here’s to living out more crazy creative brilliance!
  11. more rain + this cozy sweater + a finished cup of hot chocolate + the close of a full day + the end of a list. oh, and this picture, because it brings me joy in every way.
  12. old brown guitar case


more of this

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some days are about other things:
work + sweat + lists + labour + questions + duties + fear + striving + worry + recovering + appeasing + pleasing + pushing + pretending + getting it done.

but other days are about these things:
play + rest + pleasure + remembering + trust + delight + imagining + adventure + savouring + appreciating + deep breaths + indulgence + making the most of it all.

i just marked the milestone of one more journey around the sun.

from when i was a little girl i was always told i had an old soul.
with every year that i’m alive i keep trying to re-learn how to be a child.

i’m not afraid of getting old. i’m only scared of waking up to the end and realizing that i never really gave this trip an honest go.

at the close of the day, on the occasion of another year, i held a melting ice cream cone in one hand, and a cupcake in the other and i looked around the kitchen full of love, and my memory raced through the faces and moments of my days, and the only thing in the whole world that i could think to wish for was more of this.

more of this.

you can keep all of those other things.

but please, bless, give me more of this.

a list.

autumn days + late afternoon light + soups made by lanterns glow + hot water bottles in the bed sheets + early morning sun + backyard apple trees + beautiful spotty gums + dusted off guitar strings + pushing pen to paper + needles and thread + setting goals + getting the old bicycle on the road + bottomless cups of tea with ramble by neighbours + having a wild beach all to ourselves + following roo tracks + song of the bell bird + getting letters in the mail + hanging the laundry on the line + stack of wool blankets + dancing in the dark + handmade soda pop + good bones and good souls + another day to enjoy it all…

snow day

1. mint hot chocolate.
2. parka and track pants and a shovel.
3. Lisa Congdon’s colourful illustrations and good words.

lisa congdon

lisa congdon

4. loving my wintery treetop attic view
5. empty suitcase and a pile of clothes.
6. Grace Potter and the Nocturnals. it just works for me. you know?
7. finally got around to reading and finishing Blankets. not sure what i’d expected but i don’t think that was it.
blankets by Craig Thompson

blankets by Craig Thompson

8. “the scared is scared of the things we like”
9. the gift of unexpected hours.
10. a favorite by one of my favorites:

a list for curing what ails you

Golden Sails by Elly MacKay

Golden Sails by Elly MacKay

1. a bus ride in a snow storm
2. hot water with fresh squeezed orange juice and honey
3. noodles. always noodles.
4. pocket size hand-bound books
5. neighbourhood farmers markets
6. pear and ginger jam spread on homemade bread topped with thin slices of goat gouda
7. waking up to scones
8. 2 year old dance parties
9. foot rubs
10. the way he wonders about everything
11. beautiful music in bakery forts
12. laughter
13. the company of friends who just let you be
14. sleeping in
15. drawing pictures
16. listening to this. on repeat.
17. spending hard earned money on things that people’s hands have worked hard to make.
18. a long walk on rainy streets in another town
19. chocolate + mint
20. getting back up again, even when it feels like the world keeps knocking you down.
21. losing yourself in a story
22. leaving.
23. returning.
24. the tenderness of sleep.

victory speech.

a chilly loft and leg warmers, limbs that stretch and move.
the way dancing breathes life into hips, spine, and knees.

a to do list that cleans out the nooks and the crannies,
trying to face those things so they quit following me.

a president re-elected to the sounds of marvin gaye,
and i for one am reveling
in lighter loads,
satisfied bones,
good luck

in no particular order

1. turning on the heat for the first time this fall. shivering limbs finally wore through my frugal resolve.
2. a dead black cat, stretched out as though sleeping, in the middle of a neighbours yard this morning.
3. getting lost on a route i know so well. laughing out loud by myself in the car as the road signs made it certain that i had landed myself in a place i’d never been before. perfect.
4. rolling hills and the last hints of autumn.
5. a room full of things and not one that i wanted. the art of slowly learning to live lighter.
6. carving new space in this small space to create.
7. the sleeping sounds of the hairy four-legged.
8. putting the garden to bed for the winter.
9. living on forgotten lane.
10. patsy cline on late night radio.
11. re-learning the tricks of time zone travel.
12. tambourine man, green room cheese, and gin and ginger ale on the living room couch.
13. “get on with the good work of living”.
14. amen.

which is natural, which is infinite, which is yes

image by lisa congdon

a list of gratitudes.

for a napping dog on an afternoon bed.
for the sound of crows.
for guitar builders and the hands that bring out their beauty.
for warm almond milk with honey.
for being in the right place at the right time.
for old friends who i never tire of.
for family feasts.
for eggs and potatoes and salad and earl grey tea.
for friendships that get better with time.
for the risk of love.
for big sweaters and warm socks.
for flowers that bloom in october gardens.
for sorrel and spinach and swiss chard and green things that don’t fade with summers passing.
for letting go.
for smiles with tears.
for neighbours who build things.
for strangers who still practice hospitality.
for markets and farmers and the friends that grow my food that fills my fridge.
for music and the way it says things that words can’t.
for maple trees in fall.
for color that leaves me with nothing left to say.
for wood stoves and wood piles and wood smoke.
for poems and the people who bother to write them.
for morning walks. and afternoon and night ones too.
for honey crisp apples and herb de provence goat cheese.
for my family and the way they love me and make me laugh.
for my heart and the way it has learned to heal.
for a town that has always felt like home.
for art and the people who bother to make it, and show it, and buy it…no matter what.
for fear and the things it has taught me.
for courage and the places it has brought me.
for glaciers and fjords and volcanoes and oceans.
for pastures and farmland and forests and rivers.
for dad and his fishing boat.
for mom and her hugs.
for a little sister who became a mother.
for more sisters and the best brothers
and the pure delight and wonder of george, our little monkey.
for the smell of fall.
for what waits around the bend.
for my sweetheart.
for the road that lays ahead.
for the darkness that brought me to the light.
for the shadows.
for the willingness to fight.
for mistakes.
for second chances.
for resilience and resolve.
for living quietly and living loud.
for the lessons learned, even the hard way.
for hands that can hold.
for bones that are not alone.
for the questions
for the mystery.
for this most amazing day, and all the ones to come.
for the blue dream of sky
for the chance to be alive
for all of it
for everything,

mental list.

roasted tomatoes.
so many peaches.
putting blankets back on the bed.
change in the air.
rhythm of the printing press.
twang of mandolin strings.
swimming head.
small casket.
hundreds of butter tarts.
crickets creaking.
beach glass.
so far from finished.
unexpected release.
wild blueberries.
sweet sweet corn.
late nights.
early mornings.
never enough.
time move slower.
dinner table mortality.
so much we don’t understand.
rusty tin.
water pumps.
patchwork houses.
the familiar fears.

pull the sheets tighter.
hold the hand closer.
make time.
breathe it all in.
don’t exhale.

Next Posts

Words + Photos + Credit

Unless otherwise noted, all original photography and text are property of Raechelle Kennedy. If you see or read something here and feel inspired to share it somehow, please be considerate and give the artist (me!) credit, or even better, drop me a note and make sure I don’t mind.
Thank you!

Here + There

Secondhand Sainthood and the gift of losing it all – Topology Magazine, December 2015

Ten Things Made – Topology Magazine, December 2015