I am super excited about this book! I rarely read a book twice – this is one that I will keep in my living room to pick up again and again and again … the photographs are priceless and the poems are meaningful treasures.
Enter to win an autographed hardcover copy of –
by Janelle Shantz Hertzler
Janelle lives in my area and I’ve had the honor of connecting with her a couple times over the past few years. This is a woman with depth and authenticity!
In shock after her husband was killed by a drunk driver while living in Thailand, Janelle began searching for a way through the pain. Her struggle to make sense of her loss and find peace resulted in this moving collection. Told through heartfelt poetry and inspiring photography, Seasons of Solace expresses the spiritual journey of a grieving woman moving toward acceptance. – Amazon
Though I’ve had other losses, I haven’t lost a spouse, but I connected with Janelle’s honesty and clarity about the questions she asked and the emotions she experienced during her journey of grief. And I’m convinced most people on planet earth will connect with it because we all ask questions (and if you don’t, you should!) and experience loss at one time or another.
Here’s a few lines from her writing:
My body feels like a time bomb;
at any moment pieces could
fly off in every direction.
would be a release.
I’m not that type.
I sink deeper
into the blackness
bottling it all.
Questions have been a big part of Janelle’s journey and her autograph in this book says – Honor the Questions. Here are some lines from her poem called Questions.
Questions cause revolutions,
They challenge us to go deeper
into the soil of our lives.
I’m growing to see that authenticity
is worth the risk of inquiry.
She doesn’t offer answers and reasons – because life (and death) generally doesn’t offer them. As the book records her journey, you learn with her as she searches.
I know well the me I’m told to be,
but I don’t know the me
that was given me to be.
The true me, the inner me,
the deepest me remains unknown.
The Mundane and the Miracle
To live in the beauty of the ordinary,
to live in the holiness of simplicity,
there is the miracle,
the treasure to be found
within the mundane.
Before this book, I rarely read poetry, but Janelle’s writing has changed that. These poems are wonderful – the style and words she chooses makes them a pleasure to read or hear. Last year, Janelle began doing public readings and I had the honor of being a part of the first one. The event was part of ongoing monthly series where someone shares their life story – always in story form. So doing an evening of poetry reading was new. Of the seventy or so people there, most were not sure if they’ll enjoy it. They were all pleasantly blown away by the evening – seeing Janelle’s photos on a large screen as she read her poems. Her reading voice is very moving -her website contains information about Seasons of Solace Poetry Readings for you and/or your organization.
Janelle is now a consultant, retreat leader and spiritual director. You can learn more about her and her work at Journey Through Grief. You can read more about Seasons on Solace on Amazon and if you aren’t the winner of this one – you will want to buy yourself a copy. Or if you are local – Janelle will be at iHope on Friday evening to autograph and sell copies of Seasons of Solace.
I am so happy Janelle recorded her journey in this way and is sharing it with the world! I will be giving copies to others that have questions and/or are dealing with loss.
Leave your name before Thursday 25th at 9PM and you could be the lucky winner! Winner will be posted on Friday morning.
UPDATE: I’ve posted the winner: