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astonished…or, thank you, Mary Oliver*

Life is full of many phenomena which we should pay attention to. When we do, poetry is written and others are astonished in our astonishment.

Sirena Tales

I perch on this threshold


by my front lawn’s miracle

of birdsong

scenting the carefree breeze,

how each plant dances


in nature’s inimitable choreography:

swaying ferns partner

emerald leaves aflutter

branches of blossoms bow grandly

then billow

to sunlit radiance

as the butterfly floats and the dragonfly whirs

resplendently entering

our enchanting soloists

remind that life’s magic

can appear at any moment

for those who will see,

yes, astonished

by my front lawn’s miracle

let me savor the succulence

June’s abundance

and add my grateful heart

to her lovely tune


*When I saw the following quotation of Mary Oliver’s sublime poetry, I was immediately inspired to write my humble offering above.  Yes, let’s be astonished!  And then share…

“Instructions for

living a life:

Pay attention.

Be astonished.

Tell about it.” ~Mary Oliver, “Sometimes”

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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.

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