I enter my magical meditation garden the same way I enter into self-hypnosis, starting with deep breathing and relaxation. I like to go there right before a nap or bedtime, often falling asleep in the midst of one of my visits there. Once inside, I walk down a long imaginary staircase—or if I am especially tired or if it’s a day when my back is giving me an argument – I use an escalator to transport me at least four flights down.  That would be my conscious mind reminding me that I’m not as young as I once was.

When I feel I’ve reached my destination, I stop at a landing, which is a foyer of sorts with large sliding glass doors leading out to a beautiful countryside.  There are times when the garden will not open to me and when that happens, I just try again another day.

My garden is an Eden-like area of grass, flowers, trees and a small stream.  The sky is azure with puffy white clouds. A gentle breeze wafts about, the temperature just right. It’s quiet as I walk over to a large oak tree, sit down and lean against its smooth bark. Slowly animals appear and the air rings out with birdsong.  A white snow owl perches on a branch above me. She’s lovely, but quite sarcastic. She has no patience for my complaints or excuses and accuses me of knowing the answers to my problems, but refusing to act on them. She seems to be a part of me-my subconscious, perhaps. A large blue-gray Alpha wolf comes up and nuzzles me, his deep blue eyes full of compassion, assuring me that I am loved. His mate, shy and cautious, stands behind him. The wolf offers me strength and courage. Sometimes, a roly-poly black bear cub tumbles out and plops on top of me, insisting on having some fun and cuddling. There is always a sweet doe next to me who does not judge me, but offers unconditional love. Rabbits, raccoons and a red fox often join the group, but usually only the owl, wolf and doe speak to me.

Song of the Whippoorwill inspired artist Lori Kennedy to sketch this beautiful drawing.

In late summer when we lost Noelle . . . 


TALES2INSPIRE™          The Topaz Collection


Micki began writing after a personal tragedy, as a catharsis for her grief, leading to publication in Victimology: An International Magazine and a 25 year career in Journalism. She has freelanced, been staff writer for one major newspaper and written for two more. She has published short fiction, non-fiction, and slice of life stories in magazines and e-zines. Her first book was published in 2008; a funny family memoir, . . .AND THE WHIPPOORWILL SANG.


                   Get more info, ‘how to’s’ and ‘what if’s’ about Lois’ Tales2Inspire project



About loiswstern

I was in education for just over 20 years when I unexpectedly pursued another passion and entered the world of authors and journalists. I have since published two non-fiction, full length books on different aspects of beauty, but also avidly endorse the confluence of Inner and Outer beauty. I have written feature articles for Long Island Beauty Guide and LI Woman, and have served as Editor-at-large for MakeMeHeal.com, the largest Internet site for plastic surgery and beauty needs. I enjoy researching what's new in the world of aesthetics & anti-aging and devote one of my blogs: www.FabulousBeautyBlog.wordpress.com to sharing cutting edge, hype-free information. I devote my second blog to my other passion: writing, collecting and sharing stories to warm the spirit and inspire the soul. To this end, I have created an 'Authors Helping Authors' project/contest, to create books for inspiration, the first of which is titled: Tales 2 Inspire ~ Beyond Coincidence. It is a jewel of a book, filled with inspiring stories and full color original photos and/or drawings. If you're a talented writer with one inspiring story to share, visit www.tales2inspire.com to learn how to participate. FREE to enter. All you need is the talent and perseverance to do so. Lots of positive platform building opportunities for the winners. Learn more at: www.tales2inspire.com.

Posted on January 22, 2013, in Authors helping authors project, Peaceful Reflections, Tales2Inspire, Tales2Inspire Contest, TALES2INSPIRE WRTERS CONTEST, Words to Inspire, Writers contest and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 40 Comments.

  1. I hope you stay with our group for a long period of time , during which your touching writing will be a balm.

  2. I left a comment on Micki’s blog a while back regarding her story. I loved it then and I still love it! Absolutely beautiful!

  3. Sandra, I’m sure Micki will be thrilled to read your comments – even if she read it once before. People never tire of hearing a good thing about their labors!

    Thank you,
    Lois W. Stern


  4. Amelia (Aurelia Druid)

    What Micki describes in her meditations is taking a trip to the Other Side. We construct our paradises on the Other Side, called thought forms, contained wIthin the universal forms we all recognize as the Oneness we belong to there. I have been to many places there, including a schoolroom, a garden, a huge auditorium, a transport station, and my favorite, a big spacious library. The whippoorwill Micki describes was a Blessing sent from Heaven, and may well have been a manifestation of her daughter’s Spirit, who came to spend some time with her–love being a strong connection. If it is any comfort, Micki should know that she will see her daughter again–not in this lifetime–but on the Other Side when she herself passes back over. And to also know that Heaven is a lot closer than we think. I am a Psychic with a book titled: APOCALYPSE–THE ERA WE LIVE IN (Spirit Twins and Other Cosmic Mysteries Revealed). I love this tale. I hope Micki gets in the habit of writing more like it, she will surprise herself by what she discovers.

  5. During my needed year of attending a caregivers’ group, I had learned about Imagery and going down a long flight of stairs into a beautiful garden near a lake (or to another place of one’s choice in your mind, such as a beach at sunset). Yet Micki’s description here is so beautiful and lyrical and I relate to the spirituality coming out of such tragedy. The writing is wonderful.

  6. I love all your comments. It’s said writers write because they are compelled to and while that is true to an extent, we need support and helpful comments to keep us going.

    Micki Peluso

  7. What a wonderful piece. I know Micki from a prayerful place and reading this essay gives me yet more insight in to the depth of talent of this soul-filled being.

    I need a mediation garden to visit in my mind also to keep me focused and help me sort thru the important and vital and discard the excess and trash.

    Micki have you ever done a stream of conscious writing?? I have done that several times in writing classes and found it helpful in that my mind opened more.

  8. Patricia A. Guthrie

    The Meditation Garden is lovely.

    I love the white sarcastic owl and “Mr. Aflac.” I’m assuming the swooping bird is the whippoorwill.

    Patricia A. Guthrie, author

  9. Micki, thank you for taking me along to your Meditation Garden. I have always been a fam of you and your writing.:) I sat down after doing too much due to feeling the fibro having fun with my body. I felt a weight lifted from me and knew through your writing your love was shared as it always has been. Yes, I will use your habit and I hope the Aflac Duck appers. I loved this duck when it first came out on tv commercial. Now it has a deeper meaning for me. Please keep writing and sharing as you have for I am sure you have helped many more people thann just me. God blessed me when we met many, many years ago. Your sincere love comes through in your wiritings. I love you Mickinot as a friend, but as my sister. Meitation Garden is a blessing.

    LOve & healing light,
    Cathy Geddes

  10. Micki is a wonderful writer and, with her vivid descriptions, one can actually feel one’s presence, in this instance, in paradise….in a meditational zone, where one is surrounded by peace and calm, tranquility and extreme beauty. It is a means of “escape” from the hum-drum routine of daily living; a means of reviving the spirit and strenghtening the soul. This is what I feel reading Micki’s passage. Thank you for sharing your “uniqueness” with me, Micki. You are very, very talented and a motivation and inspiration to all who read your works of art.

    • Thanks Karen,

      I’m glad you enjoyed my garden, and I appreciate your kind comments on it. I’ve never been able to sit still for the regular meditations so finding that garden was a lifesaver in so many ways. I really don’t have a vivid imagination, but in the garden I never know what is going to happen at any given time.

      Thanks agains for your comments.

      Love and prayers,


      • Your vivid imagination, Micki, lives within your inner spirit and, clearly, you displayed this quality in sharing your Meditation Garden with us. I recognize it and acknowledge it. Thanks for being such a dear friend and a superb soul.

      • THanks again, Karen,

        Your comments and faith in my work helps to keep me going.

        Love, Micki

  11. Hi Lit Chick,

    Yes I have tried steam of consciousness writing if that means just letting the words flow with no plot in mind. Years ago, I was complaining to my oldest daughter that I coudn’t write fiction. She said to write a story about her father and his complaints over my houseplants, “using all his water, taking all his oxygen.” I set out to prove her wrong and wrote, “For the Love of Houseplants,” a fictional spoof on a horror story that has been published several times and it’s my personal favorite. It’s on my blog if you ever want to read a really wacky story. Thanks for your comments and suggestion.

    All the best, Micki

  12. Ahh Cathy,

    You are too good to me and will always be one of my close friends. I hope this story cheered you as I know you are having sad times.

    Love, Micki

  13. Yes, Pat,

    That’s the whipporwill which an artistic friend was kind enough to draw with a one day deadline.:) It amazes me that she caught the very essence of the story and animals so beautifully. That is really how they all look.

    Talk to you soon.

    Love n’ stuff,


  14. Amelia,

    I love your thoughts on the garden story. I hope we can meet some time and further share our thoughts, which relect mine as well.

    All the best,


  15. Micki has been a dear friend of mine for about 15 yrs and she has brought much joy laughter and compassion into my life. We have not met in person but i hope one day we could be that fortunate. Her book , which i have read probably 10 times made me cry and laugh and sometimes at the same time. She has taught me appreciation for life……for our children and how to find humor in even the toughest situations. Her spirit is strong no matter what is happening in her life and she gives everyone inspiration to believe there is a greater power in spirit, love and heart. I count her as one of my blessings everyday when i write my gratitude lists. The world is a better place because of people like her that remind us spirit never dies .. it just changes, grows and gets stronger. God bless you Micki !! May we have many many more years of sweet friendship. I consider you a sister I never was fortunate to have. Keep up the good work…….your truly blessed !

    • Loretta, as the creator of this Tales2Inspire project, I am just thrilled that I am able to have just a small part in bringing talented author and like minded readers together. You have had such beautiful things to share about Micki, her writing and the positive impact it has had on your life.Thank you o much for expressing your deepest thoughts so beautifully.

      Very best,
      Lois W. Stern

      • Ahh Loretta,

        What would I do without a friend like you who keeps me going in the worst of times? Without friends like you I would never be able to share my life and stories. You bring me confidence, insist upon making me laugh when I would rather cry and boost me up when life is pressing me down. I believe angels walk the earth in the form of humans and if I am right, you must surely be one of them.

        Love always,


      • Well thank you and God bless !! It ws my greatest pleasure to support and share my heartfelt feelngs for one of my earth sisters/angel …….my mom always said when u get in your 50s and u can count your dearest friends on one hand you are blessed …….well Micki helps me to remember my mommas words and just how blessed i am !! Thank u.

  16. What a beautiful story! You wrote this so well that I envisioned my own self in your garden with you – quiet and at peace.
    I am always so amazed at your feelings and the way the come across when written. I thank God for you in my life and you have made a difference in it.
    Thank you for sharing yourself with me… I love it!

  17. Micki: Absolutely beautiful. I just euthanized a cat this morning so it came at the best possible time. I can picture that wonderful drawing of animals hanging on the wall in my office. Thank you.

    • Diane, so sorry for your new and hurtful loss, but I am so happy Micki’s story and drawing gave you a touch of comfort. Yes both her story and drawing are both quite lovely and it was so good of you to express your feelings – especially at such a difficult time in your own life.
      Lois W. Stern
      Creator of the Tales2Inspire authors project
      Please join me on Facebook for more: http://www.facebook.com/pages/FabulousBeautyBlog/285288224823825

      • Hi Rose,

        I love your comment and you really do spoil me too much. I’ll always appreciate your constant nudging when I felt that I could not go on with my book. You manage to “nag” in such a loving way.:) You’ll always be a special part of my life.

        Love n’ stuff,


  18. Oh Diane, I’m so sorry for your loss. Animals just don’t live long enough and give so much unconditional love. My own Toby, a big, lazy tom cat is sixteen now, a little senile and feeling his age. Cats are amazing. Toby can always sense where I feel pain and insists upon laying in that spot only, while giving out healing purring. It’s a comfort to me except when I get gout and his 25 pounds is quite painful. I am asking my friend for a copy of that sketch to hang in a frame. You might feel a little solace by writing about your cat. It helped me when I lost my wonderful golden lab, Remington. Thank you for taking the time in your sorrow to comment upon my story.

    All my best,

  19. i enjoyed reading A Qrirky Meditation Garden. I loved the part in your story about the bird coming to you in your garden and that the bird was also with you as you wrote And The Whippoorwill Sang.. As before your story touched my heart. I couldn’t put it down.
    love always
    Judy Oedeer

  20. Thanks so much, Judy,

    Impacting upon readers is the main reason we write. It’s great to have such gtreat support from people like you-friend and critic-you spur me on.



  21. Dear Friends,
    When Diane mentioned she’d love to have this picture on her wall–as I have on mine, I asked the artist–a friend of mine if she was going to sell this since it’s so lovely. She thought about it a while and said she could set up paypal and send the picture to anyone wanting one for about ten dollars. So if any of you are interested, just let me know. I have mine up and I love it!

    Thanks, Micki

  22. Micki, I love it, when you write any thing you put your feelings into it and so when I read them I feel I’m right there to. You are a amazing true feeling writer, I’m so proud of you, YOU GO GIRL!!!! I have know you a long time on the Internet and I’m truely bless to have you in my life. You are an amazing writer, Mother, sister, daughter, and dear friend to me and many. Keep writing I love reading everything you write. Love you.

    • Linda, thanks for your kind words for Micki. That is the sign of a quality writer, don’t you think? One who can make you feel – almost to the point of entering that story. Wonderful how the Internet can make friends from total strangers, and it appears that’s what has happened between the two of you!
      Warm regards,
      Lois W. Stern
      Creator of the Tales2inspire Project

  23. Micki has written here an imagistic tale that subtly and powerfully circles around the death of her daughter. She has done this without sentimentality and with the briefest mention of the loss. The power here of in a sense “not speaking” rings like a bell. You exemplify here the words of John Donne (1572-1631), who so eloquently told us:

    No man is an island entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main. If a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as well as if a manor of thy friend’s or of thine own were. Any man’s death diminishes me because I am involved in mankind, and therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee. –from Meditation XVII

    • Dear Meditation,

      What a lovely comment you made–it really touched my heart. You are right in that I seem to always “show” my grief rather than tell it. I love the quote by John Donne. Years ago I wrote a commentaty called “For Whom the Bell Tolls,’ adding your quote to my article. Again, I am impressed and happy that you saw so much more in the story than many readers. You “got” things that some may have missed, although I didn’t do it deliberately–it’s just the only way I can deal with her memory.

      All the best,


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