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Of High Solitude

When surrounded by the busyness of life, this poem is a call to other things where I find solitude. Wilfrid Wilson Gibson suggested the way the soul can find solitude in even the busiest of moments. I can look in and find those spaces even when they are not physically available. In those moments, I am present to those things and people who are most important in life. They are framed like a flower against the backdrop of majestic mountains.

Eagles and isles and uncompanioned peaks,

The self-reliant isolated things

Release my soul, embrangled in the stress

Of all days’ crass and cluttered business:

Release my soul in song, and give it wings;

And even when the traffic roars and rings,

With senses stunned and beaten deaf and blind,

My soul withdraws into itself, and seeks

The peaks and isles and eagles of the mind.


About ivonprefontaine

In keeping with bell hooks and Noam Chomsky, I consider myself a public and dissident intellectual. Part of my work is to move beyond (transcend) institutional dogmas that bind me to defend freedom, raising my voice to be heard on behalf of those who seek equity and justice in all their forms. I completed my PhD in Philosophy of Leadership Studies at Gonzaga University, Spokane, WA. My dissertation and research was how teachers experience becoming teachers and their role as leaders. I focus on leading, communicating, and innovating in organizations. This includes mindfuful servant-leadership, World Cafe events, Appreciative Inquiry, and expressing one's self through creativity. I offer retreats, workshops, and presentations that can be tailored to your organzations specific needs. I published peer reviewed articles about schools as learning organizations, currere as an ethical pursuit, and hope as an essential element of adult eductaion. I published three poems and am currently preparing my poetry to publish as an anthology of poetry. I present on mindful leadership, servant leadership, schools as learning organizations, how teachers experience becoming teachers, assessement, and critical thinking. I facilitate mindfulness, hospitality retreats. and World Cafe Events using Appreciative Inquiry. I am writing and researching about various forms of leadership, how teachers inform and form their identity as a particular teacher, schools as learning organizations, hope and its anticipatory relationship with the future, and hope as an essential element in learning.

30 responses »

  1. Beautiful. I suspect that is why I love these Colorado mountains…the calm and the peace as well as the beauty.

  2. This is a beautiful poem. The words do promote calm.

  3. I love the rhythm of these words, especially the last line. “Embrangled” is a new word for me!

  4. Very many thanks for this Ivon – and Happy New Year. This year I’ve resolved to handwrite a poem-a-day into a specially purchased journal – something I imagine may prove to be a useful resource in the hand of a preacher. This poem was my first entry on January 1st. It’s wonderful – and very apposite for me, as, I sense, for you. Today’s entry has been from a mutual mentor of ours: Winter Woods by Parker J Palmer. Thanks, always, for your encouragement and friendship across the ocean. I value it greatly.

    • You are welcome and thank you on many levels Simon. Parker has no shortage of great words to share with us.

      Good luck and enjoy the poetry throughout 2014. My guess is it will find its way into occasional sermons.

  5. As always, you bring life to things I too often tend to forget. Thanks for sharing. And for liking my recent postings, you continued support is appreciated, if not always conveyed. Take care and I hope 2014 is all you hope it to be.

  6. Wonderful. Thanks so much.

  7. “Eagles of the mind.” I like that!

  8. simply magnifique… we all need some solitude now and then… my very best & amitiés ensoleillées, Mélanie

  9. Catherine Johnson

    That is truly beautiful, Ivon. I cannot imagine being stressed after reading that poem.

  10. That is a great picture! The foreground, (ground) ground, and background are like decoupage differentiated.

    also: embrangled. What a word.

    sound and beautifully written “DIY” 🙂

  11. Solitude, high in the sky, up on the mountains and other grand places is such a great way to begin our year! You chose a lovely and meaningful poem, Ivan! Thanks for sharing this! Robin

  12. Jackie Saulmon Ramirez

    That was beautiful – and relaxing!

  13. Lovely and peaceful… poem & photo! 🙂

  14. Jackie Saulmon Ramirez

    I can almost see the eagles soaring in those mountains. 🙂 Thank you.


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