Words to the Wise


A review of A Book of Spiritual Wisdom by MariJo Moore

By: H. Byron Ballard

MariJo Moore wears many hats, as anyone who knows her work can attest. She is sober (a feat of which she is justifiably proud), she is a poet, an artist, a psychic, a mom and grandmom, a woman whose blood is Cherokee and Dutch and Irish.
Moore is a spirit-blessed woman who works with clients near and far to help them settle the disturbances in their lives. She gentles them, admonishes them, instructs them.
That admonishment is also present in her book of wisdom.  At the end of each week’s essay is a brief couplet reflecting on the value lessons of that week.  Each one ends with “Be strong”—invitation, advice and warning, all rolled into one terse phrase.
The book is not quite pocket-sized, but still easily transportable. Which is a good thing, because you may want to have A Book of Spiritual Wisdom for All Days close by when the going gets tough.
The little book is divided neatly into months, with an essay for each of the four weeks. The facing page of each lesson is blank for the reader’s reflections on the writing and how it may have affected their outlook on the issue.
July. Week One.
Spirituality and creativity are deeply connected in children. This connection needs to be fed if children are to believe they have a place in this world… Inspiring them to produce creative works through that spiritual connection can become one of our greatest joys in life.
Here’s one from September—
Week Three.
Whatever you feel is dragging you down is simply trying to get your attention… Time to search your heart and find what it is you should be doing. Time to live instead of exist.
Simple. Direct. Personal.  This book is loaded with opportunities to retool and re-focus our thinking.
In her introduction, Moore gives us a little of the backstory on the creation of this book. She has taken quotes from her other work—you may be familiar with her tiny books, including “Crow Quotes” and “Tree Quotes”—to highlight the theme of each essay. She writes of her gift for working as a vessel for Spirit and speaks of the work she does when she is not writing or creating her collage-art.
I’ve lived with this little book since April of this year and I pick it up sometimes during my morning meditation time. It is very easy to use—the print is a good size and the book is user-friendly.  Starting with the beginning quote, I pause and think, meditate, pray. Then I move through the essay that follows. Not all of the entries resonate with me but even those are intriguing and give me a more thoughtful start to the day.
This book will also make a good gift for someone going through a challenging time—and who isn’t doing that these days? Too often, we find ourselves at a loss to bring comfort and cheer to those we love. Here is a handy tool for the sort of deep work that many of us find ourselves engaging.
And be sure to check out the author picture in the back of the book.  It’ll knock your socks off.

A Book of Spiritual Wisdom for All Days is published by rENEGADE pLANETS pUBLISHING and is available at local bookstores or through the author’s website at www.marijomoore.com

H. Byron Ballard is an Appalachian woman with deep, gnarly roots in western North Carolina. She holds a BA from UNC-Asheville and a MFA from Trinity University. Her writings have appeared in local and national print and electronic media. Byron is an organic gardener and a beekeeper.

Sandi Tomlin-Sutker
Written by Sandi Tomlin-Sutker