Blog,  Coming Alive Memoir

The Tortoise & the Hare

The Tortoise and the Hare 









I must have had some ministerial blood inside even as a child. I loved tales and fables with a moral message: Hans Christian Anderson, the Brothers Grimm, Aesop’s Fables and especially stories about animals. In French class in high school we translated the fables of La Fontaine. My teacher who resembled Jiminy Cricket was named Napoleon Alphonse Fontaine.

My first paper in seminary was on the book of Ecclesiastes. As a young adult I related to the  unknown author called “Qoheleth” meaning preacher in Hebrew.  I shared his philosophical turn of mind, beginning with skepticism and ending in Divine mystery.

The race is not to the swift
or the battle to the strong,
nor does food come to the wise
or wealth to the brilliant
or favor to the learned;
but time and chance happen to them all.   Ecclesiastes 9:11

Ella & the Animals

Two of my favorite stories were the Bremen Town Musicians and The Tortoise and the Hare. I identified more with the slow deliberate turtle – I grew UP to be more of a Hare. I knew I could win the race. Now I am not so sure!

Revisit: Time for Turtle

Simplicity is not easily attainable in my home life. If my art studio is cleaned up and ready for the next canvas my writing papers and books are piling up elsewhere, or I can’t find my sheet music or which guitar to play ….pots and pans are not where I last put them nor refrigerator shelves as there are two of us. Staying organized is like playing whack-a-mole in the arcade over and over again.

Still I spend winters and sometimes summers going through things and I admit I find a certain kind of satisfaction in the process. On the other hand maybe I could instead be on a gondola in Venice, looking at Spanish guitars in Andalusia, or feasting on the freshest of food in Sicily.


To everything there is a season

Boxing at Quench Training for Women in Hyannis

Last week I hung up my boxing gloves

and Zumba shoes to make way

for Chinese brush painting,

classical guitar,

chi kong,

 family vacation time.

Mercury Retrograde 

Mercury is retrograde now until mid May. When Mercury is in retrograde motion things can suddenly go awry like missed communications, computer, appliance and auto breakdowns. It is a good time to double-check dates and other forms of communication.

What I most like is moving my energy inward for creative and spiritual pursuits. It helps my mind/body health to turn from my Martian tendencies to express my Venusian ones.

Life is endlessly fascinating and paradoxical. To be able to make shifts in your life, to mix up the mind/body recipes is good for the spirit especially for us New Englanders. Yes we are survivors and yes we are flexible. “If you don’t like the weather, just wait.”

So let’s make hay while the sun shines ….as Qoholeth surmissed: “Go, eat your bread with enjoyment and drink your wine with a merry heart; for God has long ago approved what you do.” – Ecclesiastes 9:7

Retreat at St. Margaret’s in Duxbury

Two weeks ago, at our annual women’s retreat I shared  an “astrological forecast”  to illustrate how one can be more in sync with timing whether it is planting by the moon or starting new projects. Donna Dia Colletti Lowre shared her “Soul Song” and led us in joyful dance. Barbara Smith-Moran’s wood carvings graced our altar. 

Looking forward to next June’s retreat!

Retreat at St. Marina’s

We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.  -T. S. Eliot

Coming in June – Astrology & Taize 

I plan to offer astrology classes in June and July.  Beginners with no prior experience on Zoom.  Advanced beginners who have studied on their own/or with me at my Yarmouth Port home. Intermediate study group will be on Zoom.  Happy to explore your interests.

Discussions are under way to bring back Taize!

Email me :

Contemplation A. Ierardi
Wood carvings by Barbara Smith-Moran


  • Elizabeth Beckel

    Thank you Anne for your inspiration and encouragement!

    I have a new bunny in my back patio this spring. He lives underneath my deck and must hear the sounds coming from my house, cooking utensils clang from my kitchen,
    intermittent voices, low and passionate, raised at times , a guitar chord strumming from the porch, piano notes playing in the living room, He is inquisitive and skittish at times. Tortoise and the hare, holding back and rushing forward.
    Best regards!

    • Ierardi

      How the animals teach us. We watch them and then are listening to us. I love your image of the bunny and the way life moves back and forward. Anne