Gems and Beads
A wise and important book that explores a subject we talk very rarely aboutâ€”death and lossâ€”through touching stories and meaningful personal journeys. Stumbling Over Stones is a collection of poignant stories, personal anecdotes, and inspiring wisdom that guides readers in traversing the emotional landscape of loss and grief.
"Twelve Stones" is the story of Barbara Ilaynia, a secular Jew who worships Art and Romance, who tries to unravel the meaning of existence and make every moment a masterpiece. She lives and loves with passion, though not always with wisdom, in Parisian garrets and in Moroccan villages, in the light of Southern France and in sunny California. While embracing the drama of life and inhaling the fragrance of flowers along her path, her search is sometimes misguided by intensity and misled by intellectualism. At the zenith of her quest, Barbara discovers something even more meaningful than truth: She encounters the Source of love. Her life changing confrontation with God transforms a strong willed, sensual, tough minded individualist . . . and then her real journey begins. This book is Barbara's altar of remembrance, built from the stones she has pocketed along her winding path. She builds this altar to honor the God of miracles.
"When one reads almost any poem by Joanne Uppendahl, it is with the strong sense that here are the words of an old and patient soul, returned to share her wisdom through the wondrous gift of language. She offers us sorrows remembered, anguish revealed, atonement sought and-sometimes-granted. Yet, this is far from a bleak collection! The poet affords us a bright awareness that illumines both her work and our responses to it. We cannot come away from even the most poignant pieces without feeling inspired and uplifted. "Joanne well knows that in order to sip sweetly from the human chalice, we must also drink a certain darker residue. If we cannot welcome pain, she believes, we can at least agree to taste it. She has drunk from this cup in full measure and holds it out for our acceptance. Her poetry translates this very personal journey into a universal exploration in which we are invited to participate. Its rewards are self-discovery and spiritual renewal for both writer and reader. Its culmination is joy." Brenda Levy Tate Author of "Cleansing" and "Beeline"
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