Begin as you intend to go on


(Bautista, Personal Photograph of Sunset, Siquijor Island, Philippines, 2005)

Because it engaged both the affective and cognitive domains, poetry seemed to expand my understanding, giving it more than an intellectual dimension as I attempted to make sense of the realities that others (and myself) constructed. (Feldman, 2004, p.11)

The poem, with its many elements operating simultaneously, seemed able to carry more complexity and to add dimension to the research text, illuminating aspects of experience that otherwise might have been lost. (Feldman, 2004, p.12)

Poems are not about explaining in the ways we usually think of as explaining—though they often have explanatory power. (Sullivan, 2004, p.35)

With the end of this year, I am upon the doorstep of yet another one, 2014. It’s been 10 years since my doctoral dissertation was written, and part of that process was integrating my poetry into its pages. I will end this year’s thoughts by offering you a poem I wrote, the last one for the thesis, as way of welcoming the unexpected.

Broken Spindles

I change.
Change is chance.
I—understand this, understand self.
Change sometimes causes pain.
At these times, I am reluctant to seize it
I grimace, I embrace.
I change.
Change is also renewal.
I uncover covered paths
And this I must do alone
And being without means change
And change causes pain.
Change can tear the fabric of self
So sew.
And change cycles.
Familiarity proffers safety,
Life patterns provide comfort.
What is the same stays the same.
But, I change
I—understand this, understand self
Unless I change

(Bautista January 2003)


Feldman, R. (2004). Poetic Representation of Data in Qualitative Research. Journal of Critical Inquiry Into Curriculum and Instructions. 5(2), 10-4.

Sullivan, A. M. (2004). Afterthought…Poetry As Research: Development of Poetic Craft & The Relations of Craft and Utility. Journal of Critical Inquiry Into Curriculum and Instructions. 5(2), 34-6.