Wednesday, November 2, 2016

The Road

by Cheryl Merrick

Those on the road
rush home each evening
to waste their time,
either sitting mesmerized in front of their TV,
 or flitting from post to post,
caught like moths in their computer's glow.

Each morning they arise and begin another day
stuffed with fast food, rush hours, throbbing music,
appointments, lessons,  work, and shopping
till their closets bulge with unneeded things,
their heads spin and their eyes glaze.

The Island

by Cheryl Merrick

The couple stands on an ever dwindling island,
having removed their protecting wall of love and service,
they allow the constant waves of
selfishness, greed, and superficiality
to slowly erode their marriage.

Giving Up Mirrors

by Cheryl Merrick

Caught by the world's
distorted mirror,
I despaired
over my aging body
and quiet, intellectual ways.

Like the morning light
the darkness fled
as I turned away from
my self-absorbed comparing,
finally remembering that
I am a daughter of God.

So giving up mirrors,
I now open windows instead.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

My Lamp

by Cheryl Merrick

Enjoying being me,
I soar into the world of ideas.
Gathering truths,
I happily fill my lamp,
then returning to earth,
I set my lamp in the window
sharing its glowing rays
of hope and love

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Cutting Apron Strings

by Cheryl Merrick

Oh! The pain!
Doesn't she love me anymore?
How can he just ignore me?
Why doesn't she even call?

We were so close.
Have I done something wrong?
He passes by me as if I wasn't even there,
and spends his time with others.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Of Ants and Grasshoppers

by Cheryl Merrick

I am an Ant.
I work

I am a Grasshopper.
I play

I am an Ant.
I am responsible.
I make things.

Friday, October 14, 2016

For Us

by Cheryl Merrick

He shops, cleans, does laundry,
and pays bills "for us".
Allowing me the quiet time
I need to study and think,
 so I can write "for us".

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

A Writer's Life

by Cheryl Merrick

I thought I'd write in my spare time,
perhaps late at night
when everyone is in bed
and all my "work" is done.

So dutifully I pushed though the day,
doing all the little things which "must be done",
until I found myself too exhausted to write
when evening finally came.

Life Fulfilled

by Cheryl Merrick

Simple food
Simple home
Few things, much time
Few commitments, much love
Quiet and peace
Sunshine and beauty
My spirit nourished
A thought shared
A person inspired
My daily work done
I rest calm and still
My life Fulfilled

Monday, September 19, 2016

The Perfectionist Wife

by Cheryl Merrick

Filled with anxious concerns
each day I queried,
"Have you read the scriptures?
"Did you pray today?"
My husband's terse, annoyed reply of, "No",
Escalated my fears.
"Would we be a forever family?"
My attempts at subtle encouragement
failing miserably,
I anguished over my husbands "failings".
Sure that our children would be corrupted
by their father's deficient example,
I despaired.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Granddaughter at 6 Months

by Cheryl Merrick

Smiles of recognition
Thoughtful glances
Shared giggles

Proudly sitting up by herself
Rolling over is mastered
Holding on tightly, she stands
Her few steps hinting of future independence

Fascinated by life
She explores her world
Carefully considering sounds and tastes
Watching children play
Grabbing and shaking all within her reach
Chewing and sampling all that will go into her mouth

Till finally, snuggling into the arms of those who love her,
Her excitement gives way
To exhausted sleep

Monday, April 11, 2016

Serving Differently

by Cheryl Merrick

Church leaders suggested we ask the Lord,
“Who should I help?”

Thoughts filled my mind of writing on my
And of making a new blog to help people
use the website.

Then shaking my head sadly, I thought,
“ But that’s not service.”

Suddenly, these new words were
Impressed in my consciousness,

“I have given you different gifts.
 You will serve differently."

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Comment on recent Posts

I have just put in all of my old poems. Many I wrote twenty or thirty years ago. I smile now as I see how I struggled with accepting who I am, with being me. It has been challenging having been given a different personality and gifts, but now I stand happily with my head firmly in the clouds - writing, pondering the meaning of life, doing research, and teaching. Finally, I no longer feel I must be a busy homemaker, or bustling professional woman. I appreciate others gifts and no longer expect them to understand or appreciate mine. I am now content watching the clouds moving across the sky, and being who I am. 

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Fable of the Chickens

a fable by Cheryl Anne Merrick  written about 1978

Once there was a small chicken. This chicken had lived alone in the field all her life.  One day she saw a whole flock of chickens near a building. Though she was scared, she flew over near them. She was so happy! Now she wouldn’t be lonely ever again! All the other chickens would be her friends, and they would have so much fun together, or so she thought.
But by evening the small hen was not a joyful bird. In a lone corner of the barnyard she sat, a small huddle of dejected feathers. “What went wrong?” she asked herself over and over again. She remembered how she had raced down among the other chickens. How excited she had been about all the seeds to eat. Oh! how she had raced around dashing and grabbing seeds. What fun it had been to beat the big older chickens, and baby chicks to each grain of wheat! When the pan was filled with water, she pushed and shoved and was the first to drink. How proud she was of herself! All the chickens must be impressed with her. She was so strong and fast! Much, much faster than all those older hens and little chicks.

Who Am I?

by Cheryl Merrick

Am I only this weak wimp
standing with refrigerator door open,
feet growing cold,
as the questions
Who am I?
Why am I here?
Where am I going?
take on new meaning?

Am I the dull witted soul
who can’t think, plan, or remember?

Am I really a submissive sweetly
who can’t make decisions
and therefore docilely follows others.

Am I more than a blob
who sits and stares unblinkingly,
occasionally shuffling into another room
only to sit and stare again?

Am I so incompetent
that I must be taken care of
as you would a young child?

Who Am I Really?

(later I found out I was suffering from adrenal exhaustion)

What Do I Really Need?

by Cheryl Merrick

How can I maintain my quiet life
when I am out in the world again?
Will I be able to say “No”
to the many pleas for help?
Can I meet everyone’s needs?
Can I nurture them
without hurting me?
Am I trying to do for others
what they should be doing for themselves?
Am I hindering their growth
by solving their problems for them?
What limits must I set?


by Cheryl Merrick

From a well filled
     by hours of thought and study,
     inspiration and prayer,
I draw creative solutions.

Some think a spring of wisdom
     bubbles effortlessly within,
Endlessly nourishing others.

Unseen are the countless hours
     spent in quiet reflection,
as drop by drop,
     each day,
the well must be refilled.


by Cheryl Merrick
Like aggressive weeds,
burly and pushy,
details invade my garden
greedily crowding out
my more delicate
introspective plants


by Cheryl Merrick

Appearing a sanctioned warden,
      holding his legitimate credential,
he enters the aviary
not to tame, as expected,
but to allow a few moments of freedom-
the freedom to strengthen
     unused wings
     and build their confidence
     that they are truly beings
of the sky.

Walking Through a Crowd

by Cheryl Merrick

Feeling your distress
     I cringe in pain.
You are hurting
     and I can not help.

You try to hide it
     behind a strained smile,
     benumb it with activity,
     or an insulate it with fat,
but you do not feel loved.

You dress to please & impress;
     slinking in your high heals & short shorts,
     or strutting in you bodacious beard & chains,
but love will not be bought.

As I see you trying to grasp happiness
     in a multitude of ineffectual ways,
my heart aches.


by Cheryl Merrick

Waiting in faith,
at last I see my dreams
becoming possible.

Will they be?
Am I to be accepted?
Are my talents to be shared?

Confronting fears,
I try my best and wait.

Turning Around

by Cheryl Merrick

Filling my time with
study, writing, and contemplation,
I happily enjoy my day,

Occasionally taking a break
from the world of thought,
to accomplish some task,
then returning again
to my element.

But the question remains;
Is my life upside down
or finally
Right side up!

Trying on Hats

by Cheryl Merrick

My first was a princess crown,
glittering in the glow of indulgent parents,
shining new as I was the first child and grandchild.

I felt I could have been happy with my crown forever,
but one day my crown disappeared.
In its place was a modest dutiful daughter bonnet,
complete with two lists of detailed expectations;
  one from mom and the other from dad.
This hat became increasingly tight and restrictive,
and eventually fell apart due to stress.

Too Many and Not Enough

by Cheryl Merrick

Too many changes
Too many questions
Too many new ideas
Too many problems to solve
and not enough time for him
to recharge

Not enough time to study
Not enough time to write
Not enough time to ponder
Not enough time to relax
Too many details consuming her
time and energy

Crossing the Threshold

by Cheryl Merrick

Here I stand,
hesitating on the threshold,
Wanting to enter,
but afraid to leave
the security I have found.

Can I hold my boundaries?
Can I say, “No”.
Do I really need to do everything
everyone would like?
Can I stick to my principles?
Can I maintain reasonable limits
on all the going and doing?

The Phoenix

by Cheryl Merrick

Like a Phoenix rising
     from the ashes,
My dreams, returning,
     soar into a brilliant sky.

The Idealist

by Cheryl Merrick

When will I ever learn?
Ever  assuming
that everyone is as I am,
driven by a longing for perfection,
I try to improve a world
that contentedly insists
on remaining unchanged,
til disillusioned,
I collapse in exhaustion;

The Carousel

by Cheryl Merrick

The Carousel whirls around
ever faster and faster
to a mad hatter refrain of,
“You’re late! You’re Late!
There is so much to do!
Hurry! Hurry!
You’ll never get it all done!”

Endlessly spinning
Endless details
Up and down
Endless routine


by Cheryl Merrick

Some can decorate a wedding cake,
grow a beautiful garden,
give an exciting party,
fix gourmet dinners,
build a cabinet,
program a computer,
reconcile an account,
or do back flips,
while I,
packaging them in poems,
create ideas.

Taking Charge

by Cheryl Merrick

Taking responsibility
for my own needs
I monitor my medication,
responding to stress levels,
providing frequent, balanced nutrition,
gentle activity, stretches, and rest.
I carefully nourish my spirit
with daily scripture study and prayer
And develop my talents
as I spend time in writing and study.

Strengthened and Prepared,
I reach out to serve:
Listening, Counseling, Sharing, Teaching
To Family, friends, school children,
visiting teaching sisters, and BYU students.

I seek to provide Temple opportunities
for my ancestors
and assistance to those who write
in on
I work daily to make a home for our family
and strengthen relationships.

Focusing on eternal goals,
Accepting responsibility for my life,
Reaching out to help others,
I take charge of my life.


by Cheryl Merrick

Clumsily pattering around the barnyard,
Never fitting in,
Different, but ever longing for acceptance,
time passes.

Til one glistening spring day
a strong, snow white swan
stretches out its wings,
and rises into the deep blue sky.

Suppressed Feelings

by Cheryl Merrick

I’m tired of stressful relationships
I’m tired of trying to please unpleaseable people
I’m tired of our talents and resources being used
 to achieve other people’s goals
I’m tired of seeing our retirement money being consumed by a business
which has never given us any return
I’m tired of my husband working to support other’s comfortable lifestyle
I’m tired of living frugally so others can enjoy luxuries we can’t
I’m tired of giving all our extra time, energies, and resources to people who just use us
I’m tired of exhausting myself to provide unappreciated
and unneeded help to others
I’m tired of supporting people who need to stand on their own feet
I want to step back and allow our grown children
to solve their own problems
I’m tired of waiting for a turn which never comes.

Sun and Candles

by Cheryl Merrick

I tried to fit
into the system,
or maybe I just
tried to fit it to me.

I wanted to help
children grow–
and I did.

I want to continue
helping children–
and I will.


by Cheryl Merrick

Tired of glazed-over looks
and being ignored,
I vowed
never again
to offer my ideas
to THEM.

Prompted by a loving Father
to again share my talents,
I applied my ability
to see the whole picture
to designing a plan
which would meet the women’s needs.


by Cheryl Merrick

Happily I live on my rock,
secure in a sea of thought.

From there I enthusiastically,
and lovingly,
share ideas,
applaud accomplishments,
empathize with disappointments,
and offer encouragement.

How can I explain
my need to leave errands
and projects to others?
How can I express
how tiring it is for me
to be out in the world?
How can they understand
that I must,
like a starfish,
soon return to be refreshed
in the sea?

Soaring Free

by Cheryl Merrick

Liberated from time and routine
I embrace the soft silence
and borne upon the wings of inspiration
soar into the
realm of possibilities.

So Small

by Cheryl Merrick

Concerned over a late
     spelling test,
She asks how I can
     remain so calm.

How can I explain
     how small it seems
when I am only a pill
     away from stepping
     through the veil.

Shut Out

by Cheryl Merrick

Threatened by my strengths–
they ignore them.

Uncomfortable with my accomplishments–
they discount them.

Challenged by my ideals–
they pretend I never expressed them.

Overwhelmed by their fear of change–
they reject me.

And so, striving to maintain
the security of their static world–
they shut me out.


by Cheryl Merrick

Mine to share are gifts
that cannot be touched or held,
the glimmering, ethereal gifts
of the mind and heart.

Through intense empathy,
I’m able to sense potential
mentoring it into fruit.

From hours spent
in study and thought,
I draw out solutions to problems

From prayer and meditation
I discover principles
to light our way.

And so, in loving concern,
I share my faith
and hope for the future.


by Cheryl Merrick

Chilled by the cool night air as we travel,
a lone car,
across the Nevada desert.

Surrounded by the comforting bulk
and lulled by the vibration
of our 1950 Pontiac,
we speed toward my grandparent’s home
in Pocatello, Idaho.

I awake, roused by the discomfort of sleeping
on hard, lumpy suitcases tucked in our foot space,
to see Dad driving and my mother and brother sleeping.

Peacefully secure,
I raise my five year old eyes heavenward,
and embraced by quietness,
gaze in wonder into a sky filled
with sparkling stars.


Rose in a Vegetable Garden

by Cheryl Merrick

I feel a little strange
     out here among
     the cabbages and squash,
then I remember
     that The Gardener
     who planted them
     also planted me.

Removing Rocks

by Cheryl Merrick

Like carrying rocks,
my back bends
beneath the heavy
load of details

Til, staggering,
I can barely move,
and my mind whirls
in a haze of exhaustion,

Unable to go on,
I empty out my bulging pack.
What must I return?


by Cheryl Merrick

Finding superficial
conversations tiring,
I minimize them.

Determining the running of errands
to be inefficient,
I shop from home.

Wounded by glazed looks
and uncomprehending stares
when sharing an idea,
I rarely present one.

Quiet Life

by Cheryl Merrick

More and more, I am content
to be in the company
of my thoughts.

Feeling the serene stillness
of a quiescent forest,
I think, write, and study.

Occasionally venturing out
to share an idea, counsel, or teach,
then to return.

Will I?

by Cheryl Merrick

Will I go back to my old ways,
merely responding,
losing my balance once again
my priority center life
fading into a dim memory?

Or will I lovingly lead and help him to
soften his critical replies,
relating to people with support and love?


by Cheryl Merrick





Peaceful Days

by Cheryl Merrick

Peaceful days begin
with mornings
spent in studying scriptures
and writing meditative poems

Moving between nurturing notes,
household tasks,
family history,
and studying,
I gracefully glide
through my day.

Dancing to the music within,
My flowing steps lead,
over time,
to desired goals,
and peaceful days.

Painting a Day

by Cheryl Merrick

Applying a little paint
here and a little paint there,
my creation slowly takes shape

Against a soft blue sky
of quiet thoughts
I add the gentle rays
of sun filled days

Opening a Window

by Cheryl Merrick

Seeking my own answers
I quickly become frustrated.
There seems to be no way
it can be done.
I’ve hit a blank wall
and there is no way out.
Praying for the Lord’s guidance,
new options suddenly appear.
The solution was always there,
but I just hadn’t seen it.

Only a Volunteer

by Cheryl Merrick

I know myself to be a:
Certified Teacher
     with a current credential and
     who is School District Trained
Experienced Tutor
     who has helped children
     no other teacher could
Capable Educator
     who has managed large classes
     and ably planned lessons
Published Author & Editor
     with articles printed
     in the Ensign magazine and newspapers

Monday, April 4, 2016

Once Again

by Cheryl Merrick

A long ago moment–
and held carefully
like a jewel in a cupped hand.

Smiles and joys
once again shared
as we watch those no longer here,
as toddlers and boys
play on a beach long sense deserted,
and see women,
once again full of youth and beauty,
gaze embarrassingly
into the camera’s lens.

Nurturing Enviroment

by Cheryl Merrick

Not out in the bustling highway
among gregarious crowds
Do my talents grow,
instead they blossom
in the still reflection
of a quiet pond.

Nurturer of Spirits

by Cheryl Merrick

With inspiring thoughts
and encouraging words
I nourish spirits.

New Image

by Cheryl Merrick

Given approval for being
     “sweet and caring”
I filled my life with affectionate expressions,
     while closely hiding my
     “undesirable” traits.

As the years pass,
      I come to see myself as
     weak and incompetent,
til, finally,
     worn from repeated failures
     of trying to be this “loving person”,
I relinquish this dream.

My Turf

by Cheryl Merrick

Energized by hours
of studying
doing research
writing my life history
making plans
publishing poems
teaching children
counseling family & friends
and pondering principles
I thrive on
My Turf


My Pond

by Cheryl Merrick

Finding other ponds
     unsatisfying and stressful,
I return to my own pond,
   where I swim happily all day
   in a fluid world of thought.

My Own World

by Cheryl Merrick

In creating my own world
I find myself.
In this place
Where there is
Time to listen and inspire,
Time to study and ponder,
I find peace.
In this world of simplicity,
and principles
I find ideas.
Here as I nurture others
I find joy.

Moot Point

by Cheryl Merrick

Yes, it is a good thing to do.
If I did it,
someone’s life would be a little easier,
and it might encourage them,
but my life would be crushingly more difficult,
leaving me discouraged.

Yes, I could continue to do good.
Doing small good things
which have minor impact on other’s lives,
til I finally collapse unable to do anything at all,
or I could use my limited strength,
and abilities more wisely
living a joyful life of constant influence.

Should I continue trying to run faster
than I have strength.
pushing myself constantly to do
the things which exhaust me

Knowing I will soon collapse
unless I rest and relax,
the choice has become
A Moot Point

Melody and Refrain

by Cheryl Merrick

Like old forgotten refrains
Memories of a past life
Softly touch my mind

Memories of a young woman
Who laughed, danced, and played,
Who weekly invited people over for dinner,
And took two toddlers to the zoo
On a snowy New Years Day

This woman had become forgotten
In the ensewing years of pain and constant illness
Now I marvel at meeting her again
A bit older, more confident, and wiser
An old refrain with a new melody


by Cheryl Merrick

Masked by pain
    and long years of illness
I proceed through life,
    patronized, dismissed, ignored,
my talents hidden,
my capacities unused,
my strength underestimated.

Loved At Last

by Cheryl Merrick

You say you love me
as I am,
but you urge me to do
what I cannot.

Desiring to be loved,
I push beyond my endurance,
and failing to meet your expectations,
I despair.

Frustrated in my efforts to earn love,
I become resentful,
plummeting into depression.
as my strength fails.

Finally, healing comes,
both to my body,
and to my heart.
With acceptance of I who am,
I feel
Loved, at last.

Kindred Spirits

by Cheryl Merrick

I thought I was alone
in my beliefs,
a creative, inquiring spirit,
lost in a troop of practical souls,
then I met you,
my ancestors.

You fled to this new land
to live your principles.

You knew the old ways
needed changing
and looked to the Lord
to restore His truths.

When He did,
you embraced them.

Warmed by the strength of your convictions,
I feel a new sense of family support
from you,
my kindred spirits.


Just Being Me

by Cheryl Merrick

With a heart softened and prepared,
I lead by sharing my experiences
and encouraging others.

No longer dependant
on other people to
define who I am,
or give me a chance,
I simply share my talents.

Following the still quiet voice,
opportunities appear.
Finally, I am filled with joy in
Just Being Me.

It Worked!

by Cheryl Merrick

Details in order
by the time my husband left,
I began my day with
prayer, writing a poem, & thinking,
followed by half an hour
of scripture study
as I exercised on the treadmill.

Next, I sent some special notes to friends,
spent time studying personality type,
checked my adrenal blog and found
        over 500 people have visited it since February!
set up a more personal journal type blog
typed up (in beautiful colors, of course!)
 my ideas on introversion and extroversion of personality traits
and spent forty minutes on family history

Inner Balance

by Cheryl Merrick

Making sure I never become tired,
while maintaining circulation and strength,
I carefully move between activity and rest.

Preserving a fine balance
between necessary care and spiritual nurturing,
I swing between housekeep tasks and scripture study,
between serving others and replenishing my stores,
between creativity and implementation .

Finally, with confidence and assurance
I have learned to follow
My Inner Balance.


by Cheryl Merrick

Who am I trying to impress
when I recklessly declare
“I can do it!”,
or proudly tout my accomplishes
at the end of the day.

Just wanting me to be happy,
My husband isn’t impressed.
In fact he is disappointed
to once again come home to
a wife who is tired, stressed, and grouchy
after a day of pushing herself.

Ideal Life

by Cheryl Merrick

Time to enjoy swinging
under my pecan tree

Time to listen to the birds sing
and enjoy the sunlight

Time to spend unrushed
moments with husband,
family and friends

I Choose

by Cheryl Merrick

To come to the earth
To listen to intuitive thoughts
To relate personally, in depth
To be a member of the Church
To have faith in the purpose of life

To be married
To be a mother
To be a homemaker
To have a clean, orderly home
To manage and decorate our home
To live in Utah


by Cheryl Merrick

Seeking acceptance and
Needing assurance of my worth,
I wanted others to acknowledge my wisdom
and allow me to teach them.

Finally, as I began to listen
to His promptings,
I found myself lead instead
to share my struggles and
reach out to others in need.

Now, feeling no assurance of acceptance,
I pray for the courage
to offer my love.

As I move forward in faith,
my prideful pressurings
are being softened into
tender humility.


by Cheryl Merrick

Accepting their
of requisites
to my future happiness,
I reluctantly jumped
their hoops.

Now aware of
who I am,
my talents,
and what I want
to accomplish,
I confidently walk
my own path
and simply
step around
the hoops.

Good Day

by Cheryl Merrick
A few notes to family and friends
A visit with someone I’m close to
Hours spent in research
and Gospel study
Watching over visiting teaching
A meditative poem
Moments spent in prayer
A little cleaning
Some cooking and laundry
Dancing and music
Managing my home
A touch of simplifying
and a dash of decorating
Time spent writing and
Enjoying the birds and sunshine
Monitoring my health
Spending time with Garrett
Savoring a soak in a hot tub
with a good book
Add these make a good day.

Good and Better Questions

by Cheryl Merrick

The question isn’t whether it is good --
It is,
but is it the best use of my time, energies, and abilities?

How can I feel a sense of purpose in my life
while not becoming stressed with excessive details?
Though I sincerely want to help others,
is all this help of equal value?

Am I seeking approval and acceptance
by trying to do more than I’m able?

How do I set bounds so that I  keep to my goals
and not get pulled off course by others wishes?

What must I do and not do
to lessen the stress I feel each day
and improve my health?

I pray for answers
for these
Good and Better Questions


by Cheryl Merrick

Blessed with the ability
to focus clearly on eternal goals
to feel with others
to blaze new paths
to create solutions to problems
to see and hear beauty
to teach and counsel
     and to perceive,
    through obscuring details,
the true principles,
I rejoice in my gifts,
desiring the wisdom
to use them well.

Gifts from the Mind and Heart

by Cheryl Merrick

The ability to understand hearts
     perceiving needs and potential
To give counsel and encouragement
To share insights and solve problems
To see the path and show the way ahead
Gifts from the mind and heart
To share


by Cheryl Merrick

Drop by drop,
my bucket fills
with scripture study and prayer,
meditation and study,
writing and reading,
dance and decorating,
caring for us,
and nurturing others.


by Cheryl Merrick

They express their admiration and amazement
at my “positive attitude”.
They try and console me
and sympathize with how difficult it must be to be
to spend all day alone in my home.
Concerned that I am lonely, unhappy, and at risk of losing my testimony,
they try and involve me.

How can I explain my life to them?
How can I express the joy I feel in having the solitude
to think and write.
Though being alone is draining and depressing to them,
it is replenishing to me and an opportunity to create.


by Cheryl Merrick

Their activity is “work”
while mine is merely “play”

They accomplish much,
but I “do nothing” all day

Their work has value
Mine has none

Defining “work” as mere movement
they see themselves as “busy”
while I am “lazy”


by Cheryl Merrick

Fearfully, I take my position
    with both hands gripping the wheel
   and both feet hovering over the pedals.
Hesitantly I turn the key.

Jerkily, I proceed
    constantly gazing into my mirrors,
    ever anxious to please,
    ever seeking conformation from others
that I’m heading the right direction.


by Cheryl Merrick

Losing sight of my goal,
Slowly I begin to drift
off course.

Becoming mired
in to do lists,
I struggle to make headway
only to find
my destination
waning more distant

Tired, but determined
not to rest
til each detail
is crossed off,
I continue


by Cheryl Merrick

I’m not to go the BYU ward,
     but to our home ward.
I’m to build relationships with
     family, friends, and ward sisters.
I’m only to go to school
     one afternoon a week.
I am to do the Visiting Teaching report
My exercise is to be moderate
     and my medication sufficient.

Details and I

by Cheryl Merrick

After a week of going through my wardrobe
and rearranging my home,
I had more energy and was even laughing!
Why did I feel so much better?
I couldn’t just keep redoing my home.
I prayed for understanding
and realized that it wasn’t the activity,
but what I wasn’t doing –Details!
I had hardly touched the computer or stove all week.
Instead I’d spent the week in a world of color, space,
ideas, and with my grandson.


by Cheryl Merrick

I really tried to march,
     Though some claim
     I should have tried harder,
but my feet,
quickly boring of the monotonous cadence,
kept adding skips and hops,
and I kept leaping out of ranks
     to see an ant hill with a child,
     study some book,
     or comfort a friend.

Finally, as a flunked recruit,
I decided to get rid of all
the “required” guides and paraphernalia.
At last, in a world of simplicity,
I found room to dance.


by Cheryl Merrick

I see confusion and fear in their eyes,
but knowing the way,
I issue the challenge
to follow principles and resolve problems.

Holding the banner high
I lead the way
shouting encouragement.

Soon I look behind,
only to see the rallied ranks
quietly slipping away
with their excuses, like cloaks,
wrapped protectively around them.

Course Correction

by Cheryl Merrick

Pressured, just responding
to others demands,
I struggled through each day
trying to carve out a place
 for myself in society
as a respected teacher and
responsible church leader

 Living a half life,
     foggy, tired, and confused,
I finally collapsed.

Counting Starfish

by Cheryl Merrick

Like the man
picking starfish up
from the beach
and throwing them back
into the ocean,
I must not focus
at all that yet needs
to be done,
but instead at
all that has been done,
content in counting
those I have helped,


by Cheryl Merrick

Following the expected norm,
I ineptly attempt to juggle a few balls.
Lowering my head in shame,
I begrudgingly accept their sympathy.
Their assurances that I can do it
if I just keep trying,
ring hollowly in our ears.

Though tired and discouraged,
one day I look up
into the high reaches of the tent.
Fascinated by the lone figure
serenely walking the wire,
my balls slip from my hands
as I gracefully follow
His lead.

Choosing My Day

by Cheryl Merrick

When I choose to do the “normal” things,
the leaden hours crawl
filled with accomplishing endless details,
Til stumbling through the gray fog,
head and body aching,
I at last welcome the oblivion of sleep.

Choosing instead to listen to inspiration,
I eagerly begin my day with writing and study.
Later, I help people who write into ,
send email support to others,
and do family history work.
A little exercise, house work,
and visiting round out the day.
Having accomplished what matters most to me,
when the day comes to a close,
I contentedly slip into the world of dreams.


by Cheryl Merrick

Accepting both my talents and my needs,
I turn from the dizzying rushing blur,
and retreat back into my quiet world;
A world where there is time to watch
snowflakes fall, leaves turn, and sunsets.

Depleted by schedules and rules,
my energy is refreshed in waterfalls of ideas.
Numbed by the cacophony of strangers’ demands,
I recover in the warmth of friends’ love.

Healing, I choose to remain
in my world of beauty and thought.
Nourished, I reach out
to share, teach, and love.


by Cheryl Merrick

Far from the blaring brass band,
I hear,
Like the tinkling of soft chimes
     on a quiet summer evening,
the whisperings
of an individual soul,
and resonating to its tones,

Changing Rules

by Cheryl Merrick

I never thought
I changed rules;
I just solved problems.

Armed with principles,
I design solutions
and simply don’t allow
“shoulds” to stop me.

Carrots and Daisies

by Cheryl Merrick

Desiring peace and beauty,
I plant a garden of daisies.

Why then am I surprised
to find no carrots?


by Cheryl Merrick

A  little unconventional
but tailored to my talents and needs
I’ve had my careers

My life has been filled
with teaching experiences,
I began teaching as a child
when I gathered neighbor children
to “play school”,
At ten I taught five-year-olds
in Sunday School,
In high school I took children with hearing problems on field trips,
In college I student taught in
a 2nd and 4th grade classroom for five months.

Best Help

by Cheryl Merrick

I thought I could help best
by doing the things he valued,
So I weeded and shopped
until I dropped.

Soon it became evident
that my small accomplishments
were requiring all my energy
leaving me in a fog of exhaustion
for the remainder of the day.

Being Me

by Cheryl Merrick

I really have no choice.
Who else could I be?
I could try to be different,
but why?

All people suffer stress
when they function
in ways unnatural to them,
and so do I.

Each of us has been given
different gifts to share,
not to hide,
and so have I.

Individuals find fulfillment
as they discern how the Lord
wants them to use their gifts,
and so will I.

Balancing Opposites

by Cheryl Merrick

Relaxing in the sun,
but getting something done

Nurturing my spirit,
but exercising my body

Starting many projects,
but completing them

Focusing on eternal goals,
while not neglecting daily necessities

Providing rest for my body,
but also my mind

Appreciating Gifts

by Cheryl Merrick

To me I seem
to merely state the obvious.

I simply remind people
of the goal or principle,
or I might share some idea
on how to solve a problem.

Surely, these are things everyone
already knows.

At first I am surprised
at their appreciation,
then humbled
as I am reminded that
my clarity of vision
is a gift from God.

Appreciating Differences

by Cheryl Merrick

Young, still focused
on myself
I naively, yearned for
reassurance of my worth
in sameness
by trying to remake
my husband, mother, children,
friends and neighbors
in my image

Now, many years later,
as I see my children
wanting to “improve” me.
I just smile and remember.

At last, accepting my own uniqueness,
I can finally truly appreciate
other’s differences
and thoroughly enjoy
just being me.


by Cheryl Merrick

Anticipating a relaxing hour
sitting in the sun writing,
I quickly complete a few housekeeping details,
snuggling into my rocker,
I pick up my purple pen to write —Phone!
Enjoying a good talk with a friend,
I now realize that the time for writing is over
and try to console myself with a promise
to study after school is over.


by Cheryl Merrick

Before I get far into my day,
I sit and ponder
Who I am and why I’m here.

I consider what is important
for me to do that day,
and gather my thoughts together
straightening them out in a poem.

Seeking Heavenly Father’s
guidance through
scripture study and prayer,
I am now firmly anchored
and ready to begin a new day

Advantages of Limiting Details

by Cheryl Merrick

Better Companion, Mother, & Friend
Happier All Day
More Loving and Receptive to Spirit
Manage Home Better
Think, Understand, & Remember  better
Handle few details better; more efficient
Plan Better
Feel Better - more energy

A New World

by Cheryl Merrick

Blessed to have my forward momentum
I’m shown a new way,
where my energies will no longer be scattered
in mere responding to others.
With a new sense of purposeful leadership,
I enter a new world.
In this place filled with thoughts,
my keen mind roams solving problems
and my spirit soars to inspire.
Here I can effectively help others progress,
At last,  I’ve found a world
where I feel welcome.

Saturday, April 2, 2016


by Cheryl Merrick

Sharing my feelings
Expressing our thoughts
Recording my experiences
Supporting friends and family

Clarify thought
Providing closure
Revealing beauty
Conveying whimsy


Writing Options

by Cheryl Merrick

To express ideas
 Lists, Plans
To Share Experiences
my history Blog
To Encourage Others
Articles, Cards & Notes
To Inspire
To Convey Information
Adrenal and Teaching Blogs

Writers and Writing

by Cheryl Merrick

Writers Are Artists With Words

Writing is a Window to the Soul

Why I Need to Write

by Cheryl Merrick

I need to write because it is my element
It is how I relax
It keeps me from becoming over-tired
Writing helps clarify my thoughts
It strengthens my spirit
and helps me come closer to the Lord
It helps me to have the Holy Ghost with me
It is my responsibility to magnify the talent I have been given
Writing is a gift to be shared
It is how I inspire others and share the Gospel
It brings my husband and me closer
Writing is my journal
It is how I express my thoughts
I use it to work out problems,
which brings peace to my soul
Writing is how I express feelings and love.
It is how I be me.

Where Do Poems Come From?

by Cheryl Merrick

They come from
sun filled summer mornings,
glowing autumn afternoons,
silent snowy twilight,
and sparkling spring days.

They come from
unhurried moments
where thoughts deep within
have time to rise
to the surface of still waters.

Value of a Poem

by Cheryl Merrick

Is a poem’s value
only determined by
the number of people
who read it?

Is there value in
the  process of writing?

Through daily wrestling
thoughts into order,
the mind becomes
clear and sharp.

As words are carefully chosen,
meanings pondered,
relationships establish,
and inspiration sought,
 a poet is perfected.

Thought Prints

by Cheryl Merrick

My history lies in the pages,
my thoughts in the words.
Moments of time gently held
to remind of stages past;
glimpses of a past self,
of long ago concerns.

Pondering this process of change,
I move forward
recording my journey
in thought prints.


by Cheryl Merrick

What am I Thinking?
Give me a moment to write
and I’ll see

The Poet

by Cheryl Merrick

Like water to a fish,
     The poet breathes in silence.
Like air to an eagle,
     The poet soars in seclusion.

Like sun to the flower,
     Ideas energize his soul.
Like soil to the tree,
     Principles anchor her life.

So, in an ethereal world of thought,
     where time has no meaning,
     and where the focus is on possibilities,
The poet flourishes.


by Cheryl Merrick

Some with exquisite eloquence
adorn their thoughts
in flowery verse

While I strip away the superfluous,
leaving only the plain white gown,
simple and pure.

Snapshot Poems

by Cheryl Merrick

Like a quick snapshot,
some poems
merely note
momentary thoughts.

Safely Held

by Cheryl Merrick

Inspiration recorded
Insights cherished
Light to illuminate the path
Lessons to remember
Action to implement
Changes to make
Gratitude expressed
Hope kindled

All safely held
in words.


Cold Oatmeal

by Cheryl Merrick

Returning to half done poems
is like coming back to cold oatmeal


by Cheryl Merrick

Excitedly, I gaze on my story.
There, printed in the Ensign,
is the story of my first experience
as a college student with
family prayer.

I wonder will it inspire someone?
Will sharing my experience
help their life to be better?

Having the privilege
to be a part of an intern project article
written by a BYU ward member
has made this fifth time to be published
something extra special.

Poem Writing

by Cheryl Merrick

Conduit for inspiration
Journal for thoughts
Closure for feelings

Voice of intuition
Expression of creativity
Anvil of ideas

Gift opened and shared


by Cheryl Merrick 

Like paint
    I apply the layers of words,
choosing just the right
    color and shade,
arranging them carefully
    to form my picture.

New Writing Options

by Cheryl Merrick

To express ideas
articles and reports
To share experiences
Sherry’s Stories blog
To encourage others
notes and letters
To inspire
poems and VT messages
To convey information
adrenal & teaching blogs,

New Song

by Cheryl Merrick

Though I say it,
they won’t hear it,
But put in rhyme
they listen every time

Use a metaphor
and like a new song
it won’t be long
Til they smile
at my style
and carefully consider
my philosophical  ponderings


Morning Writing

by Cheryl Merrick

Discerner of my feelings,
Expresser of my thoughts,
Establisher of priorities,
Securer of goals,
Compass of my spirit,
Bearer of peace to my soul,
You welcome my day.


by Cheryl Merrick

Each morning,
during those still and quiet moments
when I sit down to write a poem,
a door opens,
Allowing me to discover my thoughts,
and receive revelation
from my Heavenly Father.

As ideas and feelings
flow into my soul,
They fill me with light,
To guide me through my day.


by Cheryl Merrick

Invigorated by ideas,
I creatively meander
through my day

Like Stew

by Cheryl Merrick

Like Stew
a poem
needs to
aged for a
day or two


by Cheryl Merrick

Resource of information
Repository of solutions
Tools for teaching
Fountainhead of ideas
Cistern for refreshing
Conservatory of beauty
Abode of friends



by Cheryl Merrick

in poetic form

and acted upon


by Cheryl Merrick

Like horses
     who have run wild
     through winter fields,
my thoughts become
without their daily

Daily Exercise

by Cheryl Merrick

Sitting still
I exercise my mind
with paper and pencil

Sleepy thoughts
becoming trim and firm
as they struggle
with weights of words

Creating Butterflies

by Cheryl Merrick

When my skies stretch out
     endlessly gray,
I gently cup my hands
    around a thought
    and blow softly.
    I watch  as it begins to glow,
Then when it flutters
     with life,
I remove my protecting hands
Allowing it to fly,
Shimmering all the more
    brightly against
    a somber sky.


by Cheryl Merrick

Savoring sounds,
feeling rhythms,
perceiving patterns,
the poem is composed.


by Cheryl Merrick

Like bread
a poem
needs time
to rise


Coming Back

by Cheryl Merrick

Like coming back
to a dinner long cold,
is returning to old
unfinished poems


Catching Poems

by Cheryl Merrick

Write a book?
My head shook – No!

After the beautiful burst,
I no longer thirst
to express my thoughts.

Drudgery, drudgery, drudgery,
is all that remains.

No, a poem is my speed.
It far better fits my need.

In a moment the thought is caught
before its fragile glow can be lost.

My patience remains intact,
and soon I am back
from roaming the realms
of my mind.