Most every work day for more than 11 years, Dena wrote a love note, poem or other thought, on a napkin - and tucked it in Marshal's lunch - a ritual of the heart. At the beginning of 2009, Marshal started typing them up. It became our practice to share the Daily Napkin with you, OUR ritual of the heart. Then, in October 2015, Marshal retired, so the whole dynamic changed. Dena took several months to re-evaluate and decide what she was going to do. Since she is also simplifying, she is in the process of incorporating all 8 (including this one) websites into one. With that in mind, the poetry of the napkin is now joined with her art and/or photography images. May you enjoy them. May they feed your spirit.

Monday, August 8, 2016

The Journey

You may find exhilarating storms of hope
placid lakes of indifference
and rushing streams of joy
still throughout your intrepid journey
the constant thread stitches all
together in the heart

Friday, June 10, 2016

Cereus Joys of Caretaking

From the prickly situation
delicate bursts of gentle
beauty  like love’s sweet
whisper emerges
in night’s darkness

From the bristly service
everyday full of tasks
fraught with jabbing
thorns of duty and grief 
born of love’s responsibility

In the still hours gloom
past twilight’s settling
tired hands tremble
as the heart of the matter
calls forth beauty

Love blooms once more
aching comfort in 
a hushed moments rest


The delicate cereus cactus blooms burst forth in the night. Being the caretaker for a declining family member has it's moments. —Dena

Friday, May 6, 2016

Sequoia Dreamtime

Ancient massive trunks 
towering up to the sky
In your own dreamtime
of centuries passing

While temporal flashes 
of color and movement
from noisy two-leggeds 
and skittering chipmunks 
circulate around your roots
And ravens wing through the air overhead

I smell the subtle incense of your bark
as it glows reddish gold 
in the afternoon sunlight
And gaze up at all the unspoken mysteries
I will never know

May your roots be
ever wild and free, grandfathers,
as you reach for the stars of the cosmos...

Marshal McKitrick

Thursday, April 14, 2016


Congregation of golden finches
perched in treetops

Singing full throated praises
to all that is Life

Individually, yet together
no special ritual needed

- Marshal Mckitrick

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Garden Lady

Early Spring morning
Sunlight and fresh air
wafting through open window

Someone walking 
through the leaves
of last Fall

There stands Garden Lady
with two fists full
of bundled brown

Empowered joy
shining on her face
Barefoot on the Earth
and grounded

Hail, Spring!

–Marshal McKitrick