Poem: Bang


Cement walking

running from thunderstorms

a parallel universe

where life is underneath

clouds with silver linings

The voice at the other end

is rapid fire rain drops

bringing it back alive

And while the dog may hide

afraid of the noise

I let it bang my insides

to help me

wake up

 

 

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Poem: Peaceful World 


It seems a peaceful world 

with rabbit clouds gazing

and mockingbirds singing

crisp hymnals

It seems a peaceful world 

as the lime green 

endorfin drenched runner

appears happy to be done 

And the leaves

blow harmony 

to the gentle fingers of wind

It seems a peaceful world 

as the golden melt

of the pouring sun

slips down on

waiting waters

glazing it with riches

Yes

It seems a peaceful world 

as it wakes

again 

ready to start 

anew

Poem: Safe


It seems I’ve spent years 

looking 

peering around my own 

mind

for the right one

chasing the disguised 

tucking in 

and out

of doorways 

I follow 

into cities of my own making 

burned out places

trying to grow free

the tap tap

of footsteps 

on stone cracked pavement 

lead me farther into

another chase 

It seems a matrix 

endless labyrinth of curling walls

wet with the salt of sweat 

as I run

away 

and to

exhausted 

the beginning 

Lone Wolf 


Lone wolf

used to running for miles 

Long steady lope

along worn down windy trails 

No-one is following 

The dusty footprints left in a whisp

A furtive glance back 

nothing but bramble brush 

How long have you run?

That moment in time 

no longer a part 

They sniffed the difference 

and howled your fate 

Then bit and snarled you solo

With tail tucked rightly 

the journey began 

Long lonely moon shrouded nights 

padding peacefully 

Ears to the wind

nostrils feeling the air

burning the brain with need

It has been long lone wolf 

The pack a flickering memory 

But the heart yet beats 

And it knows 

Yes it knows 

That if you run long enough 

If the howl you speak 

is brave and clear enough 

and you keep your senses ever sharp

Then someday 

Another lone wolf 

Will find you

So you can run

Together forever 

Mountain 


A friend sent me this post card a week or so ago. She’s from where I moved a year ago, although that’s not where I met her.

I think it must remind her, as it certainly does me, of an amazing and beautiful mountain there. Supposedly the most climbed mountain in the world I heard. It was right near my home, and within sight of my walks.

There are no mountains where I live now, and while I used to complain bitterly as I ran or biked up any hill, now I honestly miss them.

The monotony of flat terrain may be something I never get used to I’m afraid. Mountains just inspire. They fill one’s heart with strength and power.

I climbed that mountain a few times, as well as smaller versions, many more. I helped to rescue injured hikers off and even jogged a few trails back in the day. And one time I even got so lost on one of the local mountains that they were ready to rescue me with dogs when I made my way off a road after running miles and hours off course!

Now I only fear getting stuck in traffic or hit by another car. Or struck by lightning in a crazy tropical storm. If I’m really unlucky, a hurricane may hit.

But nothing will be like me and the mountain… My wits against hers. That raw, majestic solitude–just beckoning me: come closer.

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Mangoes From Heaven


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For the monkeys!

Way in the sky….

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Just babies….

Or up close and personal, these babies will someday turn into this:

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A WalMart Mango.

A lovely ripe mango! This one is from the grocery store, but the unripe babies are hanging, along with tons of others, from a tree that I walk by every day. This tree is right near the sidewalk but I suppose is technically on the property of the private Christian school that is right near my house.

I see the kids running loops around the same loop where I walk. Plus I hear them on the other side of a great fenced area of bushes playing various sports like soccer and baseball.

In fact three times now I have tossed a runaway soccer ball back over the hedge to delighted voices of things like : hey look Mary there’s your ball. Then in the general direction from whence the ball came they yell: thanks!

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The Hedge….You can see the soccer field….

So I’m kind of thinking when those mangoes ripen, that maybe I might just be entitled to one or two as payment? After all, soccer balls cost a lot!

Back In The Pool


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My new idea for toning and working out.  I guess I forgot this is right out my door. None of us in my place use it really, but I figured some kicking might help. It’s too short for much, but treading water is possible too. It’s got to do some warming up because it’s not heated, but then I plan to give it a go in between jogging. The jogs are so tough on me and my poor old bones, so maybe this will help!

Time Warp


Do you ever feel like you’re back in time? Like some situation, smell, place or song brings you back to a place you once were long ago… This weekend has been like that for me on a couple of occasions.

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The Time Warp Man

Yesterday, my Mom and I decided to go clothing shopping together–in a consignment shop, which I have to say we’ve never done. But once there, I was immediately transported back to childhood in NYC, Bloomingdale’s or Macy’s maybe–my hand in hers, picking out school outfits for the first day of class. I’ve not been clothing shopping with her for many, many years. And while yesterday, we were pretty much in our own bubbles, picking out clothing for ourselves, it still felt reminiscent of those days.

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No Tweeting here!

When I tried on a cute little red coat and asked her if she liked it, and she said no, I took it off and hung it back up on the rack. Because, she is after all, my Mom and knows best what I should be wearing on my first day of school.

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Looking cute.

And I’ve been trying to avoid looking in the mirror lately, as the passage of time has not always been good to me. My hard-body runner image no longer stares back at me these days. It’s a sad sight to see now. But recently, I’ve decided it’s time to take time back into my own hands.

So, I pulled out my old running shoes and dusted off the New England road dirt, slipped them on and well, off I trotted. I wouldn’t exactly call it a run–more like a slow lope. My intentions were to do the loop as best I could and stop and walk when I needed. But to my surprise, while my legs may look flabby, my lungs are still young and carried me the whole way without stopping!

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They did me proud! 

While I jogged along, I warped to so many running days–gosh, years and years of them: the smells, the sounds, the wonderful deep breaths. I truly love running and was so sad when my body failed me and I had to give it up. But maybe, just maybe–if I’m careful, and now that I live where it’s flat and warm, I can slowly bring it back into my life.

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Just look around!

Time warps come with a whiff–our olfactory system is one of the oldest and most powerful. It will trigger a memory in our brain’s limbic system. It’s a beautiful thing that nature created. So we could find where food once was maybe, or who was an enemy, or family. Like a flash, we are carried to a place, just by a smell.

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Enter the gate to the time warp.

How many times have we had to sit in our cars because a song came on–and we were back in high school–dancing with our sweet heart, or feeling broken-hearted because it had been ‘your’ song, the one where they dumped you.

Until we can beam up and be transported like in Star Trek, I suppose we’ll have to make do with our time warp memories. The trick is to be tuned into our triggers: so breath deep, listen carefully, look with eyes wide open and have a nice trip!

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Let’s do the time warp! 🙂

Waiting


How many times in life do we wait? If we think about it, we probably spend most of our lives waiting for something! Sometimes good things, sometimes bad things–but it seems like minutes, days, weeks are spent simply waiting….

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  • For the bus or a friend to take us to work; or our car to warm up.
  • The divorce papers to go through or the wedding date to arrive.
  • Nine months of wondering what sex the baby will be or wading through the adoption proceedings, or if the in-vitro took.
  • Wondering if the kid will ever be potty trained and then if they will ever grow up to be respectful, loving adults.
  • For vacation to come–or even the weekend.
  • The doctor’s call with results of the tests.
  • Months of treatments and sickness to be over.
  • One more minute of sobriety turning into years.
  • Enough money.
  • Your birth family to show up one day.
  • Morning to arrive and a glorious sunrise/bedtime after a grueling day.
  • The kids to all get along.
  • Forgiveness.
  • Waking up every day with joy and no worries.
  • Never looking back.
  • For your dog to actually talk.
  • The end of that triathlon, marathon, 5K.
  • Life to really begin.
  • The perfect blog piece.
  • The yelling to stop or the bruises to heal.
  • Summer to come or maybe winter if you like snow.
  • A miracle.

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How many more? What are you waiting for…? We wait for so much!

It feels like we’re often standing on the edge of a cliff and we don’t know what’s down below. But as we get closer, our heart thumps in our chests and peering over can be the death of us. So, we must just stand back and be patient–something that is not a virtue of mine!

Today I wait to hear the final word on the new job. Nothing huge really in the grand scheme of the list, but for some reason I feel nervous. Sleeping will be hard tonight–I’ll be up tossing and turning and, well, waiting. Why couldn’t they have emailed today?

But such is life: dots of doing little things connected by endless moments of waiting. So that, my blogging friends, is what I will continue to do…..

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Defining Ourselves


As often happens, while I’m laying in bed, I have many thoughts about my life. Last night I was thinking about the whole paramedic fiasco and how over the last years my desire in staying in this career has dimmed. It surely did not happen overnight and there was no one thing that made it happen.

I had always told myself when I felt that way I would get out and now, over the next certification time frame, I must make a decision.
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But my thoughts went beyond my career in EMS. I thought about how hard it is to let go of something like being a paramedic not because it was a career and it was hard to get the certification, but mostly because it defined me as a person.

In a small community so many people knew me and I would bump into patients all the time; that or ex-coworkers, nurses or Doctors I had known from hospitals. I was always proud to say I was a paramedic. It was an honorable career, so to say goodbye to it is not easy.

It made me think of other parts of my life that made me me — parts that I had to also give up over the years. One huge part was my running. I started running when I was 21  to lose weight but immediately knew it filled some deep hole in my life. That addictive, busy, compulsive me had found an outlet. I became a very competitive runner quite late in my career and this was like a drug. I ran for many, many years.

But sadly my body couldn’t withstand what I put it through and it slowly began to deteriorate. At first I couldn’t believe it or admit it either. I ran on through debilitating and embarrassing neurological deficits. Finally after years of failure and downhill defeats, I had to finally admit I was a runner no more. It was crushing to me and my ego.

And the last thing in my life I had to learn to let go of was my picture of a life with a man. It was what I had always believed, thought, knew I would have for myself. It was, after all, what I wanted. Years went by, so did the husbands, then the boyfriends–and all failed. I tried everything I knew how: all the websites, changing myself, begging my friends, soul-searching, reading… Until finally years had gone by here too and I looked deep inside myself and saw something else. There was another picture hiding in me. I stood alone, happy, whole and complete. But it took years to accept this picture and to get others to believe me and let me be.
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Through the years we evolve. Do the things that happen to us that make us change who we are because we really  want them to or are they accidents? It’s hard to know if we can really control some or any of these things. As young people we seem to blunder head long into life with utter disregard with what effect it may have in the long run. But maybe it doesn’t really matter?

It can be very hard when something that made us who we were suddenly isn’t there anymore. We may feel we are not the same person anymore, but really we are I think. Because those parts of us are still there inside flowing within us.

The difference is that now they are waiting to be mixed with something new so we can become a brighter, bigger and better us.