Outdoor Voices Speak…

Outdoor Voices Speak:

Here’s an excerpt from writing that was done during the day-long retreat on Mt Holyoke – it’s by me, and I hope you enjoy it. – Kathy

Untitled – Draft

“Hi, Mr. Peter.”  It’s funny – the whole time I was standing in line, I didn’t listen to what people were calling him.  I know he’s a “Peter,” and I know he’s a saint, but what you say to a saint when you finally meet one… well, I wasn’t taught that yet.

And here he is, saying, “Good job,” to the person whose back I’ve been looking at for what seems like forever now, he’s saying, “Good job,” and patting her back as she goes on in – patting the very spot I’ve been watching all this time in line, and now he’s looking my way, right at my face and his hair kind of glows white and his face is sort of round and soft and he’s smiling slowly, like he’s not quite sure why I’m here and so I say, “Hi Mr. Peter,” and now he smiles.

I know there’s a Big Question when you get to the pearly gates.  And I know “pearly gates” is jut a name for where the big giant clouds all pink and blue with sunset open up, and in you go to meet God and Jesus and people like Beethoven, and maybe if you’re lucky, your favorite dog – which I hope in my case will be Eli the big black wonder dog.

So with Mr. Peter smiling at me, I stand up really tall and I hope he’ll ask me an easy question.  Like, “What’s the world’s longest river?” I know that one.  Or, “How do you spell Massachusetts.”  Or maybe even, “What do you call it when a river flows around a curve so tight it bends back the other way for a while?”  That’s an oxbow.  I know my times tables and all the presidents and who won the world series in 2006, that’s easy.

So after he smiles, he says, “You know my name!” And so I smile back.  And then he says, “…And what’s your name?”  Well, that throws me right off a cliff.  If he doesn’t know me, who will? And before I can say, “JosiahWilliamHonestyJones,” I look back over my shoulder, to see if Mr. Peter is really talking to the person behind me and not me after all…

If you’d like to read more of this story – or share some of your own writing – email me at:




…And thanks for reading my work!



  1. […] If you’d’ like to see a sample of writing from the Outdoor Voice retreats, you can find a story I started in the July retreat, here. […]

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