Sunday, July 23, 2017

Slender Lemon

American Goldfinch:
a summer male,
a slender lemon,

sliding through slopes of air
in undulating arches
toward the settling sun.

Singing while flying,
calling attention
to his passing.

After his passing,
the evening quiet
settles back into place.
© 2017 Richard Havenga

Play the call of the American Goldfinch @ Cornell Lab of Ornithology

Photo Locations:

2. Home Garden - Cannonsburg, Michigan

Thursday, July 20, 2017


rising through the dawn
a monument of mountains
collecting color
© 2017 Richard Havenga

Photo Location

Sunday, July 16, 2017

The Ripening

The wind rattles long rows of corn.
Deep green flags flailing in the fields. 

Bobolinks appear,
disappear in deep grass.

Roadside wildflowers stretch for the sun;
measure the ripening of summer. 

Great mounds of cumulus
shifting shape and size.

Wind leaves its tracks
on the surface of the lake.

My schedule is based on
what's going on outside;

and my creativity has the
entire sky to fly through,

whether blue or gray,
sunshine or rain, 

combing the fields and woods,
scanning the lakes and streams.

I am out here.
Please join me.
© 2017 Richard Havenga

Photo Locations

1. Grattan Township - Kent County, Michigan 

2. Luton Park - Kent County, Michigan

3. Fred Meijer Nature Preserve - Kent County, Michigan

4. Reeds Lake - East Grand Rapids, Michigan

5. Grand River - Knapp Street bridge - Ada, Michigan 

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Silver Arms

The Arkansas River
wraps its silver arms
around cold boulders;
rushing, racing
for the foothills,
for the plains;
to meander for miles,
to settle its sediment,
to assimilate 
in the Atlantic.
© 2017 Richard Havenga

Photo Locations:

1. & 2. Buena VistaColorado 

3. Coaldale, Colorado

4. Atlantic Ocean

Monday, July 10, 2017

Earth's Blood

Vermilion cliffs of sandstone
varnished with streaks
of earth's blood.

Ancient minerals
streaming down
at a rate of
inches per year.
© 2017 Richard Havenga

Photo LocationEcho Ampitheater - Tierra Abiquiu, New Mexico 

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Echoes of Creation

The next time
you find some
alone time
to be outdoors,

listen to
the deep silence
within your solitude.

You may hear
the echoes of creation
colliding with
the dome of the sky.
© 2017 Richard Havenga

Photo LocationWhite Sands National Monument - Alamogordo, New Mexico 

Monday, July 3, 2017

December's Dream

In the morning,
I may go to photograph
the white water lilies
as they display their purity
upon the calm water
of a peaceful pond.

In the afternoon,
I may read some poetry,
or write some poetry
sitting on the deck,
while watching hummingbirds
hovering at the feeders.

In the evening,
I may watch the clouds
diminish with the light
as the ripples on the lake
carry a liquid reflection
for my admiration.

I may observe
a splinter of moon,
a splatter of stars,
and fireflies pulsing along
the dark edge of the woods.

This warm night in July
is what we dreamed of
last December.
© 2017 Richard Havenga

Photo Locations:

1. Wabasis Lake - Michigan

2. Home - Cannonsburg, Michigan

3. Pickerel Lake Park - Kent County - Michigan

4. Home - Cannonsburg, Michigan

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Starting the Day

A few miles west of here, I hear
the bells of St. Patrick's Church
announce the start of 9 o'clock mass.

Here, at Murray Lake,
I'm sitting in the grass,
my backrest is a boulder.

Small bass patrol the shallows
while shallower still, minnows
swim in schools of protection.

A Yellow Warbler is singing
"sweet-sweet-sweet, sweeter-than-sweet,"
from an arching twig of willow.

Spring has ripened into summer.
Swallows sweep low to the lake.
The morning breeze strokes the surface.

I am writing into words
what I see, hear, and feel;
bliss for my senses, 

but thinking and praying
for the home bound, the handicapped 
from St. Patrick's parish.

Offering thanks for my blessings,
as I contemplate the comfortable 
start of this new day outdoors.

© 2017 Richard Havenga

You may also enjoy: The Bells of St. Patrick's ~ May 14, 2015

Photo Locations:

1. St. Patrick Church - Parnell, Michigan

2. Murray Lake - Parnell, Michigan

3. Yellow Warbler @ Wabasis Lake - Michigan

Monday, June 26, 2017

silk and dew

get down in the grass
to see these magic highways
silver silk and dew
© 2017 Richard Havenga

Thursday, June 22, 2017


gulls riding the wind
white as angels in the air
their cries pierce the sky

© 2017 Richard Havenga

Photo Locations:

Monday, June 19, 2017


How to translate
the chaos of the wind,
when it thrashes
these solid, old oaks.

Only yesterday
it stroked
the infant leaves
with a warm breeze
gentle as a mother's touch.

Now the tall trunks
are wavering, swaying,
the rigid limbs rocking.

The intensity of the wind

testing the architectural design
of these living pillars,
testing the integrity
of these solid old oaks.
© 2017 Richard Havenga

Photo Locations:

1. Home Woods - Cannonsburg, Michigan

2. Minooka, Illinois

Monday, June 12, 2017


washed by Great Lakes waves
these precious, persistent stones
jeweled by the sun
© 2017 Richard Havenga 

Photo Location

Thursday, June 8, 2017

National Treasure

The longer I linger
in this sandstone canyon,
the silence that surrounds me
grows wider and deeper.

I'm walking inside a treasure

that you would treasure.

More than a national park,

more than another colorful
geological feature in Utah.

I am wrapped within a blessing;

engaged, enthralled, entranced.

Wanting to hold on to this feeling.

Needing to share this blessing. 
© 2017 Richard Havenga

Photo Location:

Bryce Canyon National Park - Utah

Monday, June 5, 2017

Lifts with Wings

A life,
unlike our own,
lifts with wings
above the dusk.

Gray upon gray,
as evening yields
with a sigh from
diminishing winds.

Heron lifts with wings
above the dusk;
finds a firm branch
to spend the night.

A life,
high enough 
for dreams
to be lifted. 
© 2017 Richard Havenga

Photo Location:

Rogue River ~ RockfordMichigan 

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

dancing with boulders

breath from the river
visible as silver mist
dancing with boulders
© 2017 Richard Havenga

Photo Location

Arkansas River - Buena VistaColorado

Monday, May 22, 2017

Green Mansions

I walk into these woods;
green upon green,
shade upon shade,
under a summer canopy,
inside a living tapestry,
with Spirit voices singing:

"In my father's house
are many mansions." 
John 14:2
© 2017 Richard Havenga

Photo Location: Home Woods - Cannonsburg, Michigan 

Friday, May 19, 2017

changes in the light

In every season
he was always attuned to
changes in the light.

© 2017 Richard Havenga

Photo LocationGrand Teton National Park - Wyoming

Monday, May 15, 2017

Entering the Twilight

Entering the 
twilight of my life,
I'm walking through
mountains of memory,
searching for treasures
to be illuminated,

slowing down

for a longer look.

Following this path

I'm now on,
pursuing my passion
for the word;
spoken to me
and through me.

Pulling something

from the invisible;
making it visible.

Drawing something

from the silence
to let it be heard.

Accepting the invitation

to praise
his creation.

Using these gifts

to give the glory
back to God.

Pouring humble words

onto this page
from the vessel
of my soul.
© 2017 Richard Havenga

Photo Locations:

1. & 2. Grand Teton National Park - from: Moran, Wyoming

Monday, May 8, 2017

Heaven's Door

Purity unfolds;
is revealed
as a curved white cross,
a shallow chalice;
petals streaked
with a drop of blood.

From the understory,
dogwood blossoms
reach for blue sky,
for life-giving sun,
before dense leaves
crowd the canopy.

Before the petals
to the earth.

Before the knock
on Heaven's door
can be answered.
© 2017 Richard Havenga

Photo Locations

1. & 2. Ada Township - Kent County, Michigan

3. Vergennes Township - Kent County, Michigan