About Oona Hays

Oona Hays is an educator, designer and artist. She is a Waldorf teacher at Wild Spruce Homeschool and also gives art and language arts lessons to children. Oona worked as an architect for ten years and recently, together with her husband, Josh, designed and built a house in Seattle, where they live.

Your little hand in mine

Your little hand

warm and wrapped into mine.

We walk down the street.

Up and over the hill,

stopping at flowers,

mailboxes, clouds

squirrels, planes in the sky.


Our pace is neither fast nor slow.

At times you trot ahead

with that funny toddler run.

Then you come back.

Searching for me.

Your wrist bones alive,

your little hand in mine.

I open my heart to the wind

To the clouds and drifts of grey.

There are tears in those places.

They reach for the moon.

They come like unexpected petals

of a blossom so new.

A finger on my cheek.

My eyes are closed.

I listen.

The pebbles on the shore

sing a song to the waves.

The salt and the brine

mix in my mind.

I turn to the passing.

The leaves.

The dear ones.

The questions you ask

at three years of age.

Sun rays timid

dance on your forehead.

I long for the touch

the warmth

the caress

that reminds me of a love

from long ago.


(…And it was at that age
that poetry came in search of me (1))
the words on the page
the words in the music
I was 13 and then 16
caught in a body that was
as young as it was old.
I saw the sidewalks
the people
the grime
the suffering and the beauty
I wanted it all:
to contain the world in a kiss
in a word…
the fire and the wind
the sand and the shore
the sea and the waves.

Inside my mind I began
to sing songs.
They were words
stitched together
weaving the fabric
of starry nights
of love and loss
ambition and wanderlust,
of a young woman.
There were trains and trams.
The morning bustle,
the glow of the sun on the windowpanes.
Countless experiences of love.
there was fear to be held.
A deep desire to trust.

The words became loose.
The punctuation was dropped.
It was a flowing wave of synesthesia.
It was jazz on the page.
No editing allowed.
No pauses.
Capture the moment:
carpe diem.

Note 1: Poem by Neruda

Suddenly the summer sun

is gone. Leaves turn from green

to gold, the reddest scarlet, and mauve.

They dance their final fiery

love song before the fall.


My heart, this year preoccupied

by illness and death, almost didn’t notice

all the beauty.


Yet on a pensive walk

it received a tugging jolt.


My eyes, who could not resist,

as Imminent curiosity is

their game

beckon the compassionate

one to attention.



Mother is there at the beginning

Mother is who you came out of

Mother is food

Mother is sleep

Mother is love

Mother is the first teacher

Mother is nature

Mother is nurture

Mother Nature is Mother

Mother is who I need to separate from to become me

Mother has a wound

Mother is who’s wound I must heal

Mother is who I trust

Mother is who I roll my eyes to

Mother is almost always woman

Mother is taken for granted

Mother is who rejects me and I reject

Mother is who I feel smothered by

Mother is who I am

Mother and daughter

Daughter to my mother

Mother to my daughter


May I feel all the wounds

May I speak them

May I heal all the wounds

May I heal my mother wound

May we give back to all mothers

All women

May we give back to Mother Nature

May I give back to my mother

May I give a new future to my daughter

Mother is the beginning

The rhythm of breath

The strum of the heart

Of all that is me and isn’t me

Of unity and division

Mother is the beginning of love

I Open


My heart is a sunflower.
I open to the light.
I take it in, turning to face my gift.
I stare at it in the face,
bouncing like a puppy
with sloppy big feet.
I breathe in and out.
I focus on the good,
leaving what doesn’t serve behind.
I watch. It goes through me
Like a wave. Colors changing
like the season. Some call it energy.
Breath. Life. Sunshine.
The golden thread of the victorious.
I know I am made in tiny bits
of all those things.
I see my shadow behind me
I salute it. (Although secretly sometimes
I’d rather it went away.)
I bend in the wind swaying.
Thankful I have roots.
My mind alights and soars.
I bring it back in
like a kite to center.
I hold it most lovingly.
I tell that little voice to shush.
Knowing it won’t be the last cry.
I want to hear the deep voice beyond.
It is the wind playing in the grasses.
The waves washing on the shore
The thunder beating in the skies.
It is the opening of a flower
The gaze of a child,
unquestioning, always there,
always changing.
It is time to go.
I fold myself into the night.
Bobbing to the pulse of the great beyond.

Today is the Day

Today is the day I get to vote for a woman to be president of the United States.

Today is the day I can say enough is enough.

Today is the day I know I will need to roll up my sleeves tomorrow.

Today is the day I know I will cry if she wins.

Today is the day I look at this impossibly blue sky and dream something my grandmother never would have dared to.

Today I can look at my daughter and know the future would have her back.

Today I am proud of her and every other woman.

Today I shout out my voice.

I hail it to the ceiling.

I sing my essence to the stars.

I rejoice in my strength within my heart, my veins, my womb, my mind.

That strength allowed me to deliver a child.

It has rendered me compassionate toward others, even when they differ.

It allows me to bow my head yet not break, when needed.

I want to say it now.

And this may be trite.

But this is a historic moment.

Let’s do it right.

Let’s follow our conscience.

For us, the people, the women.

The children.

The bridges, not the walls.

The healthcare.

The schools.

The jobs.

The immigrants.

The possibilities.

Today is the day I get to vote for a woman to e president of the united States,

And I want to say, thank you, Hillary Clinton

For all the hard work you have done to get here.