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Leadership Musings

I enter as a learner

Eager to begin the journey

I wonder who my learning community is?


How will I measure up?

Who am I to be here?

What if?


Will they understand me?

Am I really a leader or am I a follower?

Does it matter- I am here to learn.


Will my leadership be enough

Can I help others understand

how hard it is and how simple it is?


Where will it all lead?

I will remember to be the leader I am.

I will remember we all know and don’t know.

I will remember that what happens is right.


The class began, it ended and I was ok.

Many classes began and ended, and we were ok.

We seemed to learn, people seemed to be leading.

It seemed to work. I learned much.


I learned that my presence made a difference.

I learned that my leadership is who I am.

I learned that I love to help others learn.

I learned that planning prepares me to make spontaneous adjustments.

I learned leadership continues to be my passion.

I learned that I like being with others learning about leadership.


I mostly learned that my first time facilitating a leadership course leaves me with great wonder, with continued curiosity, and with the utmost respect for leadership learners.

Lover of Life

Reaching out to the world with breath

Tentacles waving to connect

With humanity.


You glisten and glow with vivid excitement

Challenging, humble, radiant with

Your amazing smile.


Your words inspire

Leading us to think and act

With compassion.


Youthfulness emerging into a woman

Emotions on your sleeve yet

Deep inside they reside.


The giggly young girl

Delighting in all that she sees

Is a lover of life. 


Inspiration and joy

Stems from our journey

Both inside and out.


Born years ago

Lifted to the heights of where you live today

Circles roll you forward.


May your journeys continue

Guiding you

Challenging you

Loving you in family.

Life Lessons

Love, true pure love

is the giver of life

believe in the power of love

to heal, to guide, to be life’s purpose.


Learn from the deep woods of nature

tiny seedlings sprouting to majesty

awe in the natural cycle

of living life.


Keep wisdom of thoughtful words

spoken gently in the wind

shared between souls

close to your heart.


Rejoice in life,

Hardships teach us appreciation

Pain teaches us courage

Love teaches us giving. 


Tell the stories

over and over again.

Stories remind us and teach us

To live, to laugh, and to love.


Walk up a hill with hands behind your back,

nurture gifts in babies and let them grow to be,

hope always for a better world,

seek love and love unconditionally.

Living Alive

I sit, I lie, I stand, I move

I am alive.


I think, I do, I speak, I listen

I am alive.


I question, I ponder, I wonder, I unlearn

I am alive.


I create, I organize, I plan, I innovate

I am alive.


I grow, I learn, I drink, I eat

I am alive.


I shout, I sing, I climb, I kneel

I am alive.


I hug, I smile, I pray, I laugh

I am alive.


I sleep, I garden, I bathe, I write

I am alive.


I travel, I play, I dance, I cry

I am alive.


What do you do to live alive?


Just in time

We heart-see within

Gentle breezes waft musical notes

Deeply inhaled.


Flames lighten the shadows

That play upon our hearts

Creating beacons of joy

Hope for beginning newness.


Each tiny flicker swells peace

One heartbeat at a time

Majestically conducted

Binding me and you as we.

Longing for Single-Tasking

Butter the toast, answer the phone

Pick up the socks, talk to me!

Bring me the paper, stir the soup

Read the newspaper, answer a question.


Do things, breathe, remember

Think, listen, notice

Understand, learn and create,

Exercise; all at the same time.


Email, junk mail, snail mail

Blackberry, cell phone, pager

Wireless, digital, ADSL, HDTV

Internet, intranet, input information.


The world celebrates our ability

To multi-task.

Completing many things at once

Accomplishments faster, more

Produce everything


To focus on the beauty of a rosebud

Glistening in the dew.

To focus on a child splashing in a puddle.

To breathe air deeply

To notice your breath.


To listen to your single thought

To hear another’s heartbeat

To see the smile on a gentle woman’s face

To hear the rain upon the roof.


We treasure rare moments

Where we notice the tiny beauty

When time seems to stand still

When we hold a single focus.


Longing for single-tasking

When our energy is raised on one

Longing for rare moments

When our love extends to all.

Aging with Grace

A quick glance

hair smooth

lips moist

and off we go.



Bringing the outside in and the inside out

Bouncing light into the darkness.


Our eyes gaze back at us

Slowly, intensely we pause

The lines expand around the lids

Laughing lines

Crinkles, not wrinkles.


We see our souls stare back through the windows

Challenging us to reflect

On our lives

To stir the memories.


We ponder the moment in the mirror

When we see more of who we are

When we notice our wisdom

When we see beyond.


We see the child within

The young innocent girl

The cute teen

The lover

The mother.


We smile deeply into the mirror

Rejoicing that we love life

With its ups, downs and sideways

We age with grace.

Organizational Leadership

Reflection provides us eyes

To see the whole

To see the patterns

To see us.


Go forward we say


Be bold

Be new

Be different.


Seeking success

Yet seeking relationship

with our world.


Paradoxes abound

Talent leaving

Talent arriving

Keeping the best.


Get it right

We try so hard.

Just get it done!


Shift happens,

Continuous cycles

Movement is.


Reflect on this.

Hold still and listen

Listen to yourself

Listen for the meaning

Listen in silence

Listen to each other

Listen for the answer.

Canoe Rhythm

Stretch, dip, drop, pull, lift and repeat.

Muscle cells know the gentle paddle rhythm

Gliding on the still mirror of the lake.


Reflections of mountains draw the eye

Down deep to the dashing fish

Crystal water sparkling as the sun rises to greet the day.


Hair senses the gusts as the water reacts

Swirling, rippling, alive

Our paddle rhythm responds.


White water, white water, rushing and gurgling

Focused, seeking the way, we trust

Paddle hard is the cry as we meet the eddies.


Warm sun dries our glistening faces

Aglow, we are the canoe rhythm

Alert and mesmerized, drinking in the fierce beauty.


Alone and together, the six journey

Knowing to belong we tread lightly

In this wildness, this place.

This is stunning.

We are in-spirit.

We are reconnected. 

Power, Choice, Beginnings

The power of our voice

Leads us to choice.


Power to be

Power in me

Choice to decide or not to decide.


We begin where we are, not where we were

We begin now with choice.


Our power comes from choice of beginning on a new path

Power to move, to dance, to choose

Choice in the moment suspended in time.


When we realize we have choice

When we know power of choice

We see the light of the new beginning

We lead ourselves.


Begin now, notice the moment of choice

Choose now to hold your power in your own personal leadership.

Learning How

Friends known and unknown

Linked with a click, no touch

Pics snapped shared beyond

A hug or smile.


We use. We play. We focus in.

Are we present with who we are?

Are we more connected to those we cannot touch and see?

Instant Message or I am?


Joy of learning to create

Paper airplanes and playdough

Marble games and kites

Tag around the tree.


Deep abiding conversation

Philosophical exploration

Learning stimulating innovation

Deep listening; dialogue engaged.


Engrossed and curled up by the fire

Rustling turning of a page

Or a flashing screen

Flickering past our eyes.


Gaining and losing

Our learning ability;

Craving human connection

Deep?  broad?

Close? far?

Present ? absent?


Learning changes us

Learning changes our world

Learning changes learning.

How do we learn?  

Little Tree

To once there was a tree planter

Lovingly placing her trees

Willing them to grow

In the sparsest rock and hole.


She made sure they were tucked in carefully

With just the right density

To capture the sun and nutrients

And reach high to the sky.


The tree planter girl

Was smiling all the while

As other friendly planters

Saw her nurturing spirit grow.

Strum a song for the wilderness

Laugh and sing each day

Oxygen to the universe

With every little tree. 

To Be Like a Fir

The wild fir expands in all directions

Reaching deep and wide to dig in its roots.

The fir stands in a stand of firs

The same but not the same as the others.


Born from a tiny seed, a baby sapling

Anchors to a rocky cliffside.

Adapting to its environment

Ever growing taller, wider, stronger.


Living, changing, reaching

Cycling through the seasons.

Never moving from its roots

Staying where it was born.


Branches sway in the wind

Trunk holds steady.

I stand in awe

Of the mighty fir.


So trusting of its neighbours

Mixing roots.

Branches touching

In support of one another.


Rooted to its place

On the land.

Just growing and growing.

Creating more fir.


To be so sure and steady

To be so confident.


To house birds and squirrels

And let them play.

To bask in the rain and sun

To weather the storm.

To just be. To share the nutrients.

To know there is enough for all.

To stretch and reach high and wide.

To be content in who you are.


To see change around you

And embrace that change.

To give of yourself

Providing for others.


One must wonder what it is like to be fir?

To be, like the fir.



Winter Harmony

Winter brings us closer to our roots

Cocooning and huddled

We hibernate and rejoice

In winter harmony.


There is a quietness about winter

As we slosh our way

Dashing outside between the drops

Or relishing the silence.


We seem to reflect more in winter

There is time to think

To notice our relationships

To bring warmth and caring

To strangers as we give.

April 1st

I thought that Spring was almost here

The air was warm the sky was clear

And then I looked out in the night

And saw the snowflakes swirling white 

The ground was soon covered

With blankets of snow


Oh touch of Springtime

Where did you go?

Written by Debbie Payne age 9

When Do You Know

When do you know?

Is it the light in her eyes or

The smile reflected in yours?

Perhaps the lilt in her voice?


Maybe a word hushed in love

Or a moist eye like yours

She presses a tiny travel

Pebble in your palm.


When do you know she is you?

What crosses from you to her in the time spent together

That crashes so deep in your heart

It can never escape.


Trodding on muddy earth we fly with wings our separate ways

Experiencing each other in the rhythm of life force

Carried in the wind, shivering in the snow 

Touched in the saplings.


When do we know?

We know, always we know

Nature reminds us,

We know.

© 2020 by Debbie Payne 

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