Welcome to Mary Anne Radmacher's blog.

One way to get to know a person you've just met is to ask them to tell you about their favorite friends. It's said that a person essentially becomes an aggregate of the five people with whom they spend the most time.

There's another telling question to ask a stranger. It's all about a book.

1) Is there one book that you have re-read and will read again (and again)?
2) What is the most recent book that you've read and what stands out to you most?
3) What is the title of a book you recommend most often to friends?
4) What was the last book you read that made you so sad when it came to the end? (Because you wanted to keep on reading, not because the ending was sad!).

If the person you are just getting to know has never re-read a book, can't remember what stood out from the last book they read, doesn't recommend books to friends and has never felt sad to stop reading an excellent book...

I suggest that you stop conversing with them. And, perhaps, run. Kidding (not kidding). Perhaps you might consider striking up a conversation with someone else that you might want to get to know. AND start THAT conversation off by recommending a book you've recently read...

Wednesday, July 1, 2009



(lyrics used from an internet lyric site – not for commercial purposes and printed here without permission from anybody)

"Heal The World"

There's A Place In

Your Heart

And I Know That It Is Love

And This Place Could

Be Much

Brighter Than Tomorrow

And If You Really Try

You'll Find There's No Need

To Cry

In This Place You'll Feel

There's No Hurt Or Sorrow

There Are Ways

To Get There

If You Care Enough

For The Living

Make A Little Space

Make A Better Place...

Heal The World

Make It A Better Place

For You And For Me

And The Entire Human Race

There Are People Dying

If You Care Enough

For The Living

Make A Better Place

For You And For Me

If You Want To Know Why

There's A Love That

Cannot Lie

Love Is Strong

It Only Cares For

Joyful Giving

If We Try

We Shall See

In This Bliss

We Cannot Feel

Fear Or Dread

We Stop Existing And

Start Living

Then It Feels That Always

Love's Enough For

Us Growing

So Make A Better World

Make A Better World...

Heal The World

Make It A Better Place

For You And For Me

And The Entire Human Race

There Are People Dying

If You Care Enough

For The Living

Make A Better Place

For You And For Me

And The Dream We Were

Conceived In

Will Reveal A Joyful Face

And The World We

Once Believed In

Will Shine Again In Grace

Then Why Do We Keep

Strangling Life

Wound This Earth

Crucify Its Soul

Though It's Plain To See

This World Is Heavenly

Be God's Glow

We Could Fly So High

Let Our Spirits Never Die

In My Heart

I Feel You Are All

My Brothers

Create A World With

No Fear

Together We'll Cry

Happy Tears

See The Nations Turn

Their Swords

Into Plowshares

We Could Really Get There

If You Cared Enough

For The Living

Make A Little Space

To Make A Better Place...

Heal The World

Make It A Better Place

For You And For Me

And The Entire Human Race

There Are People Dying

If You Care Enough

For The Living

Make A Better Place

For You And For Me

These lyrics found their perfect way through my iPod this morning while I was working on my elliptical trainer. I was taking every circle step in honor of healing for my friend, Donna, who is fighting for her life. She’s in a serious argument with cancer and she’s saying, very diligently, “I CAN. I CAN be healed. I CAN win against cancer. CANcer will not take me from this planet before I am ready to walk away.” Essentially, Donna is working to make this world a better place for herself.

Michael’s lyrics reached to me across the decades in which I grew older with him. In so many ways, we grew up together. Over the decades I felt so poorly for Michael’s struggles in his life. I knew I couldn’t reach to his shoulder…but I did to others in place of reaching to him. I reached to people who looked like they were living according to other peoples dreams, people who measured their performance by standards other than their own, folks who seemed to have a hard time simply loving themselves for WHO they are and AS they are. Every time the media introduced some new struggle from Michael’s life – I consciously reached out in my world.

As I continued my circle step exercise, I heard the child at the introduction of his song tentatively saying of all people who care, “We want to make a better place for our children and their children’s children…I think they can make it a better place.”

And then, tenderly, sincerely, his heart sings these legacy lyrics…

“There’s a place in your heart and I know this place is love.”

I kept moving for Donna …and he reminded me,

“There are ways to get there, if you care enough for the living.”

Michael Jackson’s breath is gone from this world now. So is the breath of many other caring and troubled souls. There are many who remain with us. They populate the lines at the grocery store, sit in the middle of crowded classrooms and shuffle to their place in the lunch line in prisons and institutions. You may work with someone who shares Michael Jackson’s struggles.

(There are people dying…if you care enough for the living you can make a little space…)

How can I love on people who are within my circle of influence and within the reach of my hope and help? I know there are many ways I can make a little space to make the world a better place. And as this loss of a cultural icon draws the attention of the world to him…I draw your attention to all the “Michael’s” who live in your immediate world. People who need you. Perhaps they are not a celebrity but they are significant and you can honor the work of the life of Michael Jackson’s creative soul by listening to his lyrics and letting them have a place in your every day experience.

As he suggested, “Stop existing and start living…”

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