Poem: Who Cares?


Look around

among the desks and papers

where crayons fall upon the floor

to see our little babies

asking for so much more

Look up at that building

where laws and  freedom rings

and see the crumbling institution

where instead ego blindness sings

Turn towards the forests

so rich with birds and trees

and hear the sounds of engines

while watching animals flee

Stand by the ocean

so vast and so blue

instead it’s filled with garbage

and the whales now say adieu

Stand across from a stranger

whose color is not yours

no longer love thy neighbor

instead we abhor

Watch those who love the same

in happiness and joy

and remember not equality

rather marriages to destroy

So in the end

who really cares?

because a critical time is coming

where witnesses must bare

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Poem: Speck And Observation


The rain it falls

and forests burn

Pink sun she rises

constellations turn

 

Insects forever crawl

dull rivers flow

Hot deserts whither

Nor’easters blow

 

Dirt and bone

we come and go

The earth moves on

and does not owe

 

 

Just Right


“In the right place, under the right conditions, you can finally stretch out into what you are supposed to be. ” — Lab Girl by Hope Jahren

 

How long do we wait for the right place and the right conditions? It may seem to some of us that we take a long time to stretch out; that we spend much of our lives contorted and bursting apart just to come together again. I have.

The right conditions seem to involve some sort of special magic; a particular brew that mixes together to concoct the spell where the microcosm in which we move feels easy and the skin that we wear no longer needs tailoring.

Some folks that we meet seem to have been born with this magic as they whirl around with the twinkling Universe hovering nearby. But most of us aren’t so lucky. Some of us seek it, but I see now this maybe isn’t how it works. It may be more like how a seed turns into a tree. It’s just dumb luck. It just waits encased in its shell until all the conditions are perfect and then bursts forth into the world.

But most don’t get this far.

Maybe I’ve just tried too hard to make everything happen. Can I be more like that seed? Just quietly sitting on the forest floor gathering the magic conditions to crack me open. Will I be one of the lucky ones?

And once I am that wonderful entity, crawling with life and fluttering with each breath of wind, my roots firmly reaching in all directions: then I will know I am who I am supposed to be.

Monkey On Our Back 


There are times we all feel the monkey on our back. Maybe we put it there, flipping it up as we were too busy with life. It became more and more burdensome, weighing us down as we carried it around. Tried as we might, we couldn’t pry it off because it clung with a mighty grip and our back became the perfect ride.

There were days we knew it was there even though looking over our shoulder it was impossible to see. But we could feel it’s little fingers scratching at our skin making it crawl. It would make weird monkey noises close to our ear so only we could hear and we would think: I must be crazy.

For years it rode like this, perched on top of us, hitching this endless ride. Until one day we realize it’s a burden to drag along this nuisance, this unwanted tag along. We think maybe we can ditch it, throw it off somewhere and let it find its own way. 

Reaching around isn’t easy, and getting it to let go is no simple task. The monkey hangs on for dear life. But finally we can grab it by the tail and rip it off. It’s easy to fling it into the forest somewhere, hoping it will find a monkey family. 

And now, for the first time in a long time we can stand up. Our back feels light. We walk down the road now, unencumbered and free. But we are ever diligent for primate hitch hikers. 

Poem: Magic Kingdom 


Sometimes I live in a bubble 

a magic kingdom of 

castles and of Kings–

Above me float the dragons

with shimmering 

lizard wings– 

I walk among the forests 

of twisted trees 

so old–

Where endless paths 

hold secrets 

by Druids once were told–

One day while I am

walking 

a stranger do I meet– 

with withered skin 

and tattered clothes 

and long knarly feet–

“Good day,” I hail

as he strolls by

and curtsy very low– 

But as I peek upon his pass

there are three goblins 

following all in tow–

I take this as my exit

I’ve had enough of here–

Time to head back home 

though even there 

people are not as they 

appear–

Lost In The Forest


There are times when it feels like it takes all my effort to keep the beast at bay. We each have our own beasts: financial burdens, relationship woes, weight issues, an illness, family problems, an addiction–the list is endless. My beast has been hiding in the bushes probably my whole life, blending in and camouflaged by the surrounding landscape. That landscape has been partly the creation of my own mind and parts of my life that simply lay hidden beneath the surface, like a creature that lives below the surface of the earth.

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For many years I have lived my life with this beast only in my peripheral vision; it was often a silent marauder coming to me, slipping in and out of dreams and reality. But I was young, strong and mostly unaware. Life was a whirlwind of distractions: that carousel spinning, making me dizzy so I mostly didn’t notice this strange visitor who crossed my path.

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When it did happen though, my heart became larger in my chest and I could feel it thudding in the front of my chest. My head felt heavy and my temples hurt…the room might tilt, if only for a moment, and reality would feel different. I knew something was closing in. It felt the air getting less and it was hard to breathe.

But the moment would pass. The world would return to normal (as normal is it can be) and I would forget, tuck it back into the recesses– the folds of my memory.

Now I am older and the habitat in which the beast dwells is thinning. Maybe climate change has effected that forest too, or maybe I am chopping the trees down myself? It seems I can sense this thing is coming closer; there is more clarity in which I feel its breath. I am familiar with the scent and know when it might be approaching at times. But there are still those unexpected moments when it creeps up on me and takes me by surprise, and I feel that weight again sitting on my chest. If I listen hard enough, then, I might hear the low growl of its voice telling me to beware…

It might be near, very near now, but what it wants, I still do not know. Why it hunts me is a mystery. And try as I may, ridding myself of it remains a secret lost within the darkness of the forest.

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Tiny Home


There comes a time in life where dreams, schemes and your belief system all come crashing together and it’s time to see if you can walk your talk. So it has come to pass for me.

For some time now I have been fascinated and, well, even more than that, committed, shall we say to the idea of tiny homes. The idea of minimalizing one’s space and one’s ‘stuff’ as George Carlin so wonderfully put it in a beautiful routine some years ago–and living in much less square footage.

Some do it in as little as 150 square feet! These folks amaze me. The homes I follow on Instagram are lovely, quaint, mobile (some of them), in trees, on water, in the mountains, in the city, in the desert, eco-friendly, made out of recycled material–you name it. But the one thing they have in common is that the living space is very small.

When I made my move last year, I went from a three/four bedroom farm house, to a one bedroom apartment. The square footage was maybe 400-500 feet less if you included the porches I had, which we used quite a bit. What I knew was that I gave up lots of ‘stuff’ and space…willingly. Gave my things to friends, the dump or anyone who would take it. And it felt freeing!

But I still had lots actually. This place I’m in now was advertised as 1000 square feet. It was hard to believe, but when I comfortably moved in the stuff I had, it appeared to be true.

Now will come to true test of my willingness and ability to carry out  my hope and dream to live more simply. Today I just put in an offer to own a condo that is less than 700 square feet of living space. No, it’s not an amazing and beautifully made tiny house in the middle of some lush forest. But is an adorable space that overlooks water. It was very peaceful.


The other part of it that was so attractive is that it is part of a community. This is another ideal that I feel is very important for me personally, and  for the healing of the world. Instead of many individual, separate houses–each with their own lawn mowers, weed eaters, tools etc. (all creating more garbage for the world)– more communal living I feel is what is needed. Plus creating community, where people care for and about one another; instead of neighborhoods where no-one knows their neighbor anymore which has been becoming the standard. It takes a village to raise our kids. Maybe this would help to stop some of the hatred?
This place has a pool (three actually), workout area, community room and I hear it’s very active. I’m looking forward to meeting everyone. I already know folks from work who live there and it’s very close to my job, so my co-workers and I can socialize more.

Of course, I am nowhere near the closing and anything can happen, but I feel hopeful. Things have been going well for me here recently . My Mom has been such a big help with this all and has encouraged me with this decision.

Now to make the tiny space into a tiny home with big contentment.

Too Close


Sometimes there are moments in life where if we stand too close to something they become distorted and ugly. The looking at them make them turn into something we do not recognize, maybe something that was once familiar to us. It’s like approaching a glittering thing and realizing it is the eye of the venomous spider lying in wait–that eye’s reflection meant to draw you in to its unexpected web.

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These moments can change us, make us too into something different from who we were or wanted to be. Maybe they frightened us or saddened us when we discovered that the treasure or beauty we saw from a distance was instead only a drab landscape when standing on the edge of its topography. Then the widening sink-holes appear or the quick sand to gobble you beneath hungry earth.

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From afar it’s hard to judge. But close up every blemish, hair follicle and true bit of ones convoluted character rears its ugly head when two circle one another like ritualistic beasts. It’s easy in the wide open prairie or dense forests to ‘know’ your fellow wanderer as they slip in and out behind branch and stone or up and down sandy dunes. It’s when caught in the close confines of a culvert and trapped unable to leave that one learns that friend may become foe.

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Blurring ones eyes and keeping the world as an impressionist painting may be the easy way out. Taking the risk and standing face to face with another or hiking far enough into the horizon to break down beauty into minutiae may hold no gifts in the end.

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Or, if by luck, the one looking back holds your soul–or the minutiae hides a gem, then maybe it was worth the risk.

Shadow

 

Poems : Managerie


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A ladder to earth
Or sky
Waiting for the descending drop
Or climbing to heavenly heights

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Clinging on
Last year’s life
Singular solo in a forest of summer

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Sweet friends so close
Upon dying debris you feed
Bulbous babes
Lying in wild wet wonder

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Gentile you sit
Lady like upon your raft
No gentleman to row you
Safely home

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A break among
Angry puffs
A crack to reckon
Light’s brilliant path

Poem: My Dream


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In the great beyond

Just out of reach in recesses of the mind

Looking out through veined windows

Into tomorrows that may never come

My life plays out inside a dream

Of endless love circling round my human form

And waking days

Where the paths are pristine and unhindered

Like an undiscovered trail deep within an ancient forest

The dream behind the conscious course

Is weightless, like a meteor floating in space

No gravitational pull

To drag it down

Nor obligations and regrets to break apart

Rather it’s made of light and color

Spinning from within the center

Gathering bits and pieces of time and universes

Drawing into the center of energy

Gaining force

Making the dream bigger

So that one day

I may wake

 

Note: In honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.