Many times my grandmother Rosa Lee Foster referred to poems that she had written. One that she quoted often—I only know snippets of my own poems—was one that she had written during the Great Depression. It was inspired by a man who regularly stood outside her back yard waiting for food. He would never ask directly, but she would ask him if he was hungry. He would nod, never looking her in the eyes, and she would bring something out to him. Even though my grandfather Walter Alva Foster was a butcher—in addition to being a Nazarene preacher—the family only had meat once a month during the Depression, so my grandmother was not giving much away. However, the man outside her back yard was always appreciative. She would watch him walk away and see his loneliness, which inspired her poem. I did not find out till many years later that she actually had written many of her poems down. I also found out that Aunt Violet wrote poetry, too. My mother, while not a poet, was creative as a semi-professional singer in Southeast Missouri, which is where my dad Roy DePung met her on one of his painting jobs that took him to that part of the state. All this to say that those times in that little red-shuttered, white house at the end of the road was where my very spirit for writing was born, was where I know, looking back, that my heart spoke to me. Yes, at the end of the road, my journey of writing began.
Whoever you are today, whatever you do, and how you do it—can you look back in deep reflection and know that your heart spoke to you? Do you know that you are doing what your deepest, inner guide has urged you to do in order to be significant, fulfilled, and content? Does who you are, what you do, and how you do it matter? If not, have you tried isolating yourself from all distractions and speaking to your heart? Maybe such memories as I have experienced will come flooding back to you, and you will know. My mother used to tell me to live to the dictates of my heart—not variable emotions but no nonsense, direct messages from my heart. Looking back, I understand that much better now than I did as a young man. My sincerest hope for you is that you will experience this: listen to your heart and act.
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Questions to consider:
How many times have you asked yourself or simply thought about the following questions?
Who am I, really?
What is my truth?
How do my actions reveal what I really feel and believe?
What would I do with my life if I could do anything?
What is my passion?
Why am I here?
How can I discover answers to any of these questions?
If you have considered any of these questions, I hope that my experiences and writing will give you some guidance. Please read my blog and comment and share your thoughts. I would love to hear from you!