Poem: Out


Fire burns within

and can barely be contained

crackling heat howls in the belly

where it can no longer be sustained

 

The snapping tips of this inferno

have stayed inside too long

now it must taste freedom

or its host will be charred up gone

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Cosmic Birth


She walked into the crystalline night below an inky sky her thoughts following her like giant insects who come out only when old furniture is moved. The apparitions that stalked her, breathing their hot voices close to her ears, were ever present. It was like the dead air sound inside her head when the pressure gets too much; or maybe someone just over the other side was reaching out, trying to say something, but she couldn’t make out the words. A rushing, like the blood in her veins, pushing and pulsing. They follow her, so very near.

Where was she going? And where had she just been? The night air felt like a slap, but it was a sting of stars blasting her awake.  Had she been asleep? Walking through her life, but not conscious. Faces, distorted with mouths that spoke at her, trying to swallow her and eat what she was, would swim out of the darkness, grinning. Often, she would find herself in a place she wouldn’t recognize, naked and unaware how she had gotten there. Just like on this stark night.

The mirrored hall of reality was a twisted place. It’s maze of unending pathways looking back upon itself reflected nothing and everything. Where did she start or end? The mystery of the beginning was unknown. So, she would keep moving because stopping would mean pain. The grace of fluidity kept her whole, in one piece, so she wouldn’t shatter into a million shards and fly off into the universe.

It was understood that this was a lonely place. The voices may speak, but they would never hear.  She would always walk alone on roadways unfamiliar and distant from where she knew she belonged. There would be a mist that would drift in around her and hold her like a baby, clouding the world around her and making the edges soft. But this made others wary of her, because when she stepped out of the fog, she saw with great clarity and knew when the others weren’t true. And this made her different.

So, it kept her walking; away from it all. It kept her separate, even though the voices followed. She kept going forward, step by step. The ghosts floated close by, but the cool, authentic air as she walked kept her present.

And as she walked, her head tilted toward the dotted evening sky. She thought about the stars, planets and the universes. Mostly about eternity. How it all stretches out on and on. It started before her and will go on after she is long gone. And how she is following its call back home.

Poem: The Egg


I found myself a purple egg

under clustered chatting trees

Filled with birds

taking flight

for lands I’d like to be

They fly a thousand miles

through heights of dizzy air

And down below

I wander lost

on roads of dusty gravel

The dirt is kicked

and shoes are soiled

dry heart cracked and broken

But then one day

when hope was lost

and trees were silent cold

Upon the ground

below a nest

a gift rolled oddly near

The shape so smooth

its oval walls

and color lilac paint

What lives within this object

why did it choose to fall

A purple egg

left behind

when flock has flown so far

It gently seemed to come

to me

walking down this sandy trail

Left behind apparently

this treasure sits so still

Fragile castle what do you hold

inside your bony shell

Gently then I pick it up

knowing we are meant to be

Holding it in my tender hands

this purple globe

is life

and when it cracks and looks about

then we will both be

set free

 

Movement


For as long as I can remember I have loved to move. When I was in third grade my teacher hit me over the head with a book because I couldn’t sit still. Today, she would be arrested and I would be on Ritalin for ADD/ADHD. But back then, I was just a kid that couldn’t sit in my assigned seat in the row and couldn’t stop talking. This was the way all through high school, although going through HS in the 70’s, they were experimental enough to let us sit in a circle.

Today I am still very kinetic. When all my friends were trying mediation, I couldn’t sit still enough to manage it. I would squirm and there was no way I could clear my mind of all thoughts, not even while I was saying Ohm. I was way too busy planning my day of running, biking, swimming or whatever active thing I would be doing. My meditation came while I was doing those types of activities. Never sitting on a mat breathing slowly. Rather I would be huffing and puffing my way through my thoughts of the day during my daily run. It was the same for any new-age type journey like that which involved sitting peacefully and quietly…um, no! It never worked for me. On the other hand, if there was lots of drumming, dancing, percussion and running around fire pits, well then, I was in!

Becoming an avid athlete in my early twenties seemed to fill this crazy niche in my life that I had no idea I needed filling. If I was born today, they would be filling me up with pills and then turning me loose in front of my computer instead. But by luck, they didn’t know about ADD/ADHD back then and just yelled at us, or sent us to the principal’s office. So happily I’m not hooked on some drug now and, as fate had it, found my way to the natural drug called endorphin.

At 21 I was living in a house where my neighbor started running. It was the late 70’s and the boom was in full swing. I couldn’t run 3 blocks to start, but I was a natural, with my old soccer days coming back (and all the pent up energy waiting to burst forth). Before long I was running 3 miles, then 40 minute 10k’s and on into my career of marathons, first place finishes and so forth. This running career ran right into a triathloning career, because if a little movement is good, then more is better! Miles and miles I have run, biked and swam in my career! And saved myself thousands of dollars in pharmacy bills with all the good endorphins flowing through my veins. People think I’m ADD and high energy now, but imagine if I didn’t work out? I shudder to think!

To this day I still can’t sit still. I’m a paramedic now and work off of adrenaline. I could never have a desk job. Thinking back to those days where they tried to make me sit at my desk makes me laugh! Even now, I’m good at what I do because I can think of multiple things at once, because I’m kinetic and lift patients, climb stairs, get in and out of an ambulance…well you get the picture. I love the movement in the back of the rig when we’re flying down the road to the hospital, sirens screaming. Yup, that’s me. The first time I stood on the side of stretcher doing compressions for CPR, I realized I was home in my job. Movement.

But the really coolest part is that my youngest daughter shares my love of movement. I so wanted to be a dancer when I was young, but at twelve was told by my dance teacher I would be too short. My daughter became an amazing dancer and performer. She is an athlete: runner, skier, rock climber, swimmer, biker and wants to try things I wouldn’t dare. We share that love of kinetics. I see me in her, but better. She has better grace, better tools, better understanding and better support. Because I will always be there either to participate with her in an event, cheer her on or simply sit and watch with joy as moves through her life.

Movement takes me literally and figuratively through my life. I have been blessed to have been mostly healthy enough to always been able to move (except the times when I over trained and was way too addicted to what I did). I’ve been grateful for my ability, my devotion, my body and my drive. I know it takes a strong mind and determination and willingness to make the time to move and keep active. But for me it is me. Movement defines who I am. Maybe I was a bird in my last life. One of my power animals is hummingbird, ever in motion. All I know is that to stop is to wither. There are quiet slow times for sure, but I keep pressing on. Through the hard times, through the operations, through the pain, through joy…keep moving, and I will get to the next moment or feeling. When it all stops is the time to say goodbye and maybe then I move to the next phase of this journey. And  maybe I will be moving in a different form.