Help by Naomi Shihab Nye

Lately I have been at odds with the notion of reverie, of being “lost in thought.” I don’t ever want to be lost! But perhaps mindfulness and reverie don’t need to oppose each other.

In this poem by Naomi Shihab Nye one state leads to the other, and each is equally important. Both connect her to herself, to her family, to perseverance.

Wherever you are, friend, persevere. In these trying times, persevere.

Photo courtesy Brian Landis


I had not noticed
the many-petalled yellow flower
   strikingly thin petals
like a man with many hopes
or a woman with many dreams
and the center almost a tiny hive
ants could crawl in and out of
   if they wanted to

Had not noticed the profusion
   on the path to the coffee pot

Had not stopped, stooped
   to absorb the glory of
      many-petalled yellow

or remembered the freshness
of my father’s collar
   for some years now
rush of anticipation
   circling his morning self
despite so much ruined history
      and searing news

Who can help us?
   yellow beam
      spiral sunshine

Toast was a weekly email newsletter that ran from July 2018 to March 2019. All of the pieces from Toast’s run and more can be read in Solo Novo 5/6.

  • Glenna Luschei, Abiding Publisher and Editor Emeritus
  • Benjamin Daniel Lawless, Editor in Chief
  • Tom Harrington, Contributing Editor
  • Rena Ferro, Managing Editor
  • Brian Landis, Photographer and Advisor