Call and Response: “Not What” by Mary Jo Malo

As soon I read “Not What” by Mary Jo Malo, it reminded me so much of my dad, I knew I had to record it to commemorate his birthday on April 27. The photograph is my favorite of him in his vestments. It captures all the best of who he was.


As this is a call-and-response post, in which a fellow blogger’s post has inspired my own, I hope you will spend some time on Mary Jo’s site exploring her insightful and beautifully-written poetry.

Mine is not the only post inspired by “Not What.” Rebecca Budd was also inspired to read the poem aloud and share it on Rebecca’s Reading Room, her blog for sharing spoken word versions of poems that have moved her. I hope you can spend some time with Rebecca as well

120 thoughts on “Call and Response: “Not What” by Mary Jo Malo

  1. One of the most beautiful parts of writing is the connections we make in our lives through someone else’s words. It’s one of the most underappreciated parts of reading.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Thank you, Luanne. My dad was in his early thirties when that picture was taken. I’m using call-and-response to mean being inspired by someone’s post and writing one of my own to respond to it. Usually, the phrase refers to music or a church service.


      1. I’m sure I will. I do follow her, but don’t get there often. LOL… listening to the poetry read right now. About 1/2 way, and have to stop to make dinner. I’ll be back to finish listening!

        Liked by 3 people

      1. I can imagine. Being a Priest means you are full of Hope, but then the world slams back at times…
        As we try to do with all those who left us, let’s remember the shining moments…

        Liked by 2 people

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