24 Jan 2014

Five Minute Friday: Visit

Writing is like the old friend you can always count on to tell you the truth. ->click to tweet.




It’s always there.

You don’t need a computer or a fancy moleskin. You can just tear a corner off that old grocery list and write down a legacy of what you loved today. You can count gifts. You can leave notes to yourself. You can weep quietly in ink and then ball it up and throw it out like so much letting go.

Writing waits.

Writing listens.

Writing teaches.

On Fridays we write together. On one shared prompt.

And we take comfort in each others’ words. Familiar and different at the same time.

If this is your first time – click here for how to join us. You’re so very welcome.

And tonight, tonight I ran out of words like all writers and mothers are apt to do after long days. And it’s then we need our friends.

Seth and Amber Haines sat across the table at dinner tonight. Their words, this broken bread and shared feast.

Tonight Seth offers his as a Five Minute Friday guest post. As we all write together on the word VISIT.


My grandparents lived in Monroe, Louisiana, and their back porch overlooked Bayou Desiard. As a child, I remember how we gathered there, shelled pecans and crawfish and engaged in what the adults called a “visit.” The term was reserved for this particular family time, the time where we’d sit around and swap Louisiana-sized stories under the slogging humidity. We talked faith, and family, and swapped stories about old timey things like hymns, and horses, and guns. It was good time. It was family time.

Last night, some of us gathered at Copeland’s New Orleans restaurant, just a small group. It reminded me of those back porch moments. We were only friends, yes. But we shared right-sized stories about faith, and family, and old timey hymns. There were crawfish and pecans. There was laughter.

Yes, the visit–it’s the special family time. And last night, it was nice to be with a broader family.


SethI am a working stiff who is lucky enough to call the Ozark Mountains home. I am blessed to be the husband of Amber Haines and the father of four boys. I enjoy good sentences, good music, good food, and good fly fishing.

Here, I pen my notions regarding faith, creativity, marriage, culture, and whatever else strikes me at word-worthy. I hope you’ll follow along.

In addition to the thoughts I jot here, you can also find me at A Deeper Church, where I serve as the channel editor. I am also a regular contributor at Tweetspeak Poetry, my favorite poetic place on the web. I’m currently working on a novel, and will count myself lucky if it sees the light of day. Question or comment? You can connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, or shoot me an email. I’d love to hear from you.



{ Leave a Comment }
  1. 1

    I love the idea of gathering with food and friends and most definitely stories about right-sized faith, and family, and old timey hymns. I love everything about that with the small exception of slogging humidity.

  2. 3

    I am kinda new to this linking thing… I hope I did it correctly. {grin} I am not sure how to get an image to show though… any insights? (I am #25)

  3. 4

    I remember those “visits” on my grandmother’s breezeway. Sated and sleepy after a big meal, we rocked and shelled beans or peas, fanned away the flies, and listened and laughed at the stories again. How I miss those days and that grandmother!

    • 5

      I’d love to hear more about the breezeway. Sounds wonderful.

      • 6

        It was wonderful. It was between the house and the garage…brick walls and tile floor. Each end was a wall of crank out windows. She had a glider sofa and rocking chairs on the breezeway. We would sit there every evening, talking. During the talking, we were making ice cream, or shelling peas, snapping beans, or shucking corn from the garden. Us kids either sat quietly and listened to the stories, or we ran around in the front yard, under the big oak trees, trying to catch fireflies. It was a simpler time and one I cherish deeply.

  4. 7

    love your five minute Friday :) can I ask if everybody posts at midnight EST – would love to join in but very unlikely to be up at 5am on a Friday morning x

  5. 8

    My husband’s from Monroe, too, and we were just there for a wedding in October. The reception was in a house that overlooked the bayou. It was beautiful!

  6. 10

    I remember my family visits too. My dad was big on visiting family and took us to see our great aunts and grandmothers frequently. Thanks for sharing.

  7. 11

    Seth, so glad to see you here. I do love how you write, how you see. Man, you and your wife both — you really know how to capture some home. Enjoy your visit.

  8. 13

    Ah! That sounds like an awesome time! How very blessed you are to have a family like that and memories like those.

  9. 15

    Confession: I had to read this three times to get my brain past “Copeland’s” – I’ve been there a time or two, and WOW! :)

  10. 18

    This was fun – thanks for the opportunity. I didn’t know anything about FMF until today!

  11. 19

    Hey there! Great post Seth, I loved it! Also, Lisa-Jo, I am starting to look forward to these 5 Min Fridays so much every week. It’s funny, Thursday rolls around and I find myself thinking, “Oh, cool, tomorrow is 5 min Fri :)” What a great community!

  12. 20

    I love the thought of visiting one with another. It keeps me from withdrawing and creates an atmosphere of interdependence as opposed to independence. Our time together can be in person, text, phone. It can be with one or more people. Sometimes we just gather and share stories which can unite us. Other times visiting is an act of listening and simply being present as we reveal what’s happening in our lives. A good visit leaves me energized and refreshed.

  13. 21

    Hello Seth – love the name Tweetspeak Poetry. Can’t wait to visit it soon. I am new to Five Minute Friday and a bit timid to post (especially with no linky stuff or even a website/blog) but sooo want to be stretched and sharpened in my writing. This is a small step toward a more disciplined pen (OK – keyboard).
    Five Minute Friday – VISIT

    Once upon a time there was a dear old saint named Kate. She wasn’t much tall and she wasn’t much but smiles wide and laughs long. She knew how to grin and she knew how to sigh, and she knew how to fold her hands and quietly cry. But you might never catch even one of her tears. No, probably never. Because, see, she is one of those dear, precious souls who knows what’s really rocking in this world. She may have whisper white hair and it may be whispering away a little more each day, but she wasn’t born yesterday and she knows what makes this old world tick. She knows Who makes it tick.

    I’m visiting.

    She knows it will only be a blip on the clock that we sit and talk. She sees the normalcy in my stance and hears it in my voice and it makes her insides rejoice – and mourn. But she smiles on.

    I’m visiting.

    It comes and goes – this awful pain here and there. Her head’s hanging low and to the left and yet – she listens with baited breath to my stories of the world she no longer can walk in. She is painfully aware that her breath may not bring her into tomorrow. And yet, she knows where her home is. And it is not here.

    I’m visiting.

    She had a lovely 3-story row house with a front porch and a backyard on a cobblestone street. Looked like it was home. But she always knew it wasn’t. She wanted to dress it up with more and with better, but she couldn’t, and in the end – in the here and now – she knows it’s OK to leave as is because, after all, she was just visiting.

    Am I?

    Am I visiting? Am I living like I am visiting or have I set up shop, taken the bait with breath borrowed from heaven, and made a mountain out of what should have just been a molehill? All this effort, all this energy, all this towering mountain of a place. Is my home here my castle? Wasn’t it Jesus who said foxes have holes and birds have nests, but did He ever mention disciples having castles? If Christ didn’t even have a molehill to claim as His own, what on heavens earth am I doing owning so much – when I really owe everything to Him?

    I’m visiting. I must keep being reminded – sometimes by those who are ready to go.

    I’m visiting.

  14. 23

    Sorry Lisa, my post really sucked this week. :(

  15. 24

    Visitors brings up a formal, proper, people coming to a nice neat, clean house. 
    My life with my boys does not really have room for visitors. We do however welcome friends. It’s a come as you are, take what you get, kind of home. We live in a tiny basement suite, furnished with hand-me-downs, mismatched, but comfortable.
    We welcome all, but you better be here to see us and not the house. 
    There will be lots of laughs, and deep conversations. 
    Strangers at always welcome to walk in the door and become friends.

  16. 25

    Hey! I could have sworn I’ve been to this website before
    but after reading through some of the post I realized it’s new to me.
    Nonetheless, I’m definitely delighted I found it and I’ll be bookmarking and checking back often!

  17. 26

    I loved this visit prompt of yours. I enjoyed seeing you in a different light. Here is mine: http://bellesbazaar-heather.blogspot.com/2014/02/visit-5-minute-prompt.html

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