Tuesday, December 17, 2013


Lie two strangers
In a bed together
What led them to this chamber?
She who made the bed for he
Who bought her dinner
Deep down under
Left alone to wonder
When will the winter end?
When will a break of sunlight bend me back to new beginnings and will you join me?
When will you seem familiar?
When will you be my supportive pillar?
I know you ask of me the same,
Left alone to wonder
When will this winter end?
When will the harsh, cold wind blow favor on us both?
Stranger things have happened dear friend, old lover
Two lonesome broken faces, freshly fallen snow falls upon
Risen sun looks upon, the frozen heat between us earthly friction
I will wish upon our star, the one WE share
Still not understanding, but knowing you care, as I
To keep intact this special connection between us, silent is the music of our two souls together
Separate, from these noisy worlds of difference we both have fed
I will wish upon our star and let the trivial starve
I choose to live here with you
I choose to grow old with you
In this current state, we find ourselves
I trust that it is fate
I trust we are not too late.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

A Thanksgiving Poem

Thank you Brother Wind,
Blowing sins, far away
Thank you Mother Earth,
Giving shelter, to everyone
Thank you Sunshine,
Keeping daughters warm long after summer's gone
Thank you Nightfall,
Boys come home, the war is over
Every year,
Every year, you reappear
Run through the forest
Barefoot, bleeding hearts out into open arms
The flag firmly in the ground, waives nicely
Welcoming everyone that gathers round-
It comes with the territory
This place still a mystery
Still full of surprises, disguises,
Jesters and wises,
A place where cries out loud of all kinds are allowed
A place where soft, little lullabies can soothe a crowd
And erase fakeness
Saying bye bye to the fraud in us all
Returning us all to grace after the fall
For the higher stuff we ought to laud
We rally, applaud
"Twenty four seven
Earthen is heaven
Authentically picking up the pieces
Giving lives longer leases
We live more,"
Delivering us from the yearlong need to deceive
Interweaving and succeeding at new, truer hellos
The tone, a modest bellow
We, the proud are mellow
And "We eat together, today
Move together, in the same way
The message is clearly on display,"
Gratitude and romance
In the good times we share,
In the bad times we will care for one another,
God made us this way today, amen.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Nature Observes

He walks along the pathway

In a thoughtful way

As if to say

So what it’s only rain—

The buds of bare tree tips

Refrain from growth and coolly quip

How light the

Moisture drip—

Hardened ground

Absorbs the pound

Without so much as a peep,

Noting consistency in sound

All around

Coming from the streets,

Peppered with ice, snow and sleet

Soft and weathered by the wayward sheets—

Rain sleekly freezes over

Begins to cover

In a second’s time, an earlier sentiment

Rebirthing trust in the name

We give to the end of every year

Elemental observance erasing fear

Believing in the old familiar signs

As they appear.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

The Beating Heart of Here

This is a story
In no hurry
See like allegory
World making meaning
Keep believing
In the feelings as they scurry
To the bee bop skit scattering
Life all around
Running rain drops through
Of light

Still frames' bright
Smiles, not in a whiles
Layaway, for the dreary days
Time how it flies
Sights, these snippets
Delight, in every tidbit
Soft, in every sense of singing
Each and every
Happy, sad
Somber, glad song
As each and every one comes along
As each and every one does belong
As all are allowed to flow
Without defining the knowing inside
Of something deeper within resting
Still, that cannot be described
Where truth cannot hide, forever
Within the peaks and valleys of different frequencies
Embedded in the core, always something more
Bringing back stranded versions to shore
Without fail,
Right way breath set sail for the next
Inhale, there are things we do control
The evolution of our souls
Exhale, the world is a tossup
That never lets up
Don't let the teardrops, sneer stopping jeers, reappearing fears
Here, hold you hostage
Clap to the energy
Allow for synergy
Open the cage up
Each and every one
Feel Her light rays
Of energy
Lift you up in levity
So that you are free, do not become what you see
For yours is a story
In no hurry
Reads like allegory
Grounded by the sights and sounds of all around
Bound to nothing
It is glory,
The beating heart of here.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Closer to the Truth

His pride is gone
His eyes are dry,
Who is this guy
And does he come or go along
Unconscious of his leaving?
What tricks are up his sleeve?
Does he believe or self deceive?
The sentiment of bereavement
Brought his heart into the present
For all along his mind hath been repentant
For the past part of him slithering off a serpent, never enough
Backdrop to a third eye now fully open-
All the while
Not until now, without guile
Recoiling in horror
Taking cover
In the unapologetic truth
Of ruthless, couth emerging energy
Of this manly stand
That decides
And weighs decisions
Without fearing the future patchwork incisions
Without needling with suspicion his own indecision-
Rather, nurtures with patience
Taking down the gates that fence in the self pressuring with self prophesizing demands
No longer holding onto former plans
And pipe dreams
That like jail bait weights have shackled
Not allowing for new free form to pick up steam,
A side narrative slowly molding into
Once upon a time a charming lad
A bad caricature for the outside world
To see
And make a mockery of
Someone less than a man sitting behind bars
He himself locked up by the self deceit of scars
Running through error with an empty heart,
With an unfastened, frenzied mind, no longer
For here stands a man
That does not fabricate hope
Nor falsify
That does not laugh at life's greatest treasure
From the loitered dust sparsely glittered with childish notion
That has kept him holding onto
Historically repetitive antics
Desperately frantic
Follow up
Self deprecation
Out of fashion,
Here stands a man, now in season
Picking up the pieces, seeing
Glittering his life
Feeling the
Magic in his soul.

Thursday, November 14, 2013


I lead with my heart,
The writer inside of me
No longer asks, “Is this art?”
I lead with my heart,
The lover inside of me
No longer looks for the start,
Passion is the blood flow
That does not question—
I lead with my heart,
Submit to the transmission of truth, the only judge
I welcome this guidance,
Like those that lead with their hearts!
My heroes
Inspiration from within comes on as
The secretion of inessential urges
My heart to swell, beating louder
Slowly overcoming a heavy head used to speaking first—
My mind listens, all ears and no fear
Chambered muscle unshackling from the wear and tear of weighty overthought,
Together strengthening aura, softening
Surrounding the resounding sound of clear being inside of me now,
A truthful coo,
“This is me and
I Iove you for you.”

Journal Article for School: How Do We Learn?

The general movement of a learning community is upward. Otherwise, it is not a learning community. An individual can only learn so much on his or her own, in the absence of community. I like to think of all learners, myself included, as gradual ascenders up an imagined, “knowledge mountain”, open space for exploration on either side. Along the mountain’s path there are checkpoints, that to us signify successful completion of something tangible; in this example, all coursework specific to the content of a single class, 11th Grade ELA, for a given year. Along the way, learners may have to backtrack, if unable to demonstrate understanding of one or more crucial competencies; for upward trek, is, in these instances, contingent upon mastery. Occasionally, learners should be encouraged to reflect on ground already covered. This too, serves a purpose, easing the process of instructional scaffolding. Every step of the way, learners should have an open window opportunity for looking out over the horizon; scanning, touching, breathing, hearing, speaking the “space” communities “create,” with all five of their senses; allowing for the unbridled exchange of alternate perspectives regarding how we make sense of information as it is gathered and presented; some perspectives, of which, may drastically impact early learners’ growing, shifting, shaping voices the world will eventually come to know. The ELA instructor should select longer texts that ALL students can connect to, regardless of cultural, economic and social background. There are texts that fit the criterion: texts with clear cut universal themes anyone can relate to. Longer texts are not the end all be all for in-class instruction. Novels, rather, are “foundation layers”. The ideal classroom novel becomes a medium, allowing different minds, eyes, ears, and voices to come together in likeness, and discuss amongst themselves what brought them here, to this point in time. Commonality is a threadwork for unity, paving the way for open dialogue with respect to inherent differences; that allows for true growth and upward mobility in both traditional and nontraditional ways. To grow as learners in a communal setting, students must first come together. Supplemental texts and visual materials can be anything and everything on either side of the mountain, connecting back to the foundational text of the novel itself. This type of thought processes empowers students. By validating all students’ current knowledge, teachers encourage their students to go out and search for more. Students bring up other books and articles they have read that make them think of a particular part of the novel, maybe a side narrative, one of the major themes, or turning points. Students draw upon their extensive knowledge of movies, television shows and music lyrics, making connections. The learning community welcomes all of these artifacts as worthy supplements to the unit. Teachers also come forward and share (articles, videos, paintings, poems) supplemental resources, that perhaps, open students’ eyes to historically marginalized alternate viewpoints, with respect to the given theme, idea, or movement under examination. The hope, to open students’ hearts and minds up to the endless possibilities out in the world, and to inspire in them, the drive to look, is what keeps teachers going.

Monday, November 11, 2013

The Seasons and We Change

I'm no better than anyone else,
I just want to better myself,
Save the judgments for some higher power,
Create or die trying
Breathe authenticity in
Every breath
Stand up right where I stand
When I'm someplace true and have to,
Sit and listen like the wind, quietly moving with the elements of conversation,
Attuned to the stations of others' hopes and dreams
Needs and good deeds
With the ease and speed
Of steady patience,
Like a quarter turn
Maintaining equilibrium inside
Between life here on Earth lived
And past life otherworld experience
Up to this very point in time,
Resting, as the autumn leaves of every color do,
Each their own emotion
Every one so beautiful and true
And full of everything that there is,
Fill the streets
Come to meet other streets
These leaves
Pile up in front yards
Where children leap for joy,
Adults rake until their backs grow sore
Just as our forefathers bent over backwards
To give us the gift of a new world
As we watched theirs grow old, as all worlds do
But never these quarter changes,
Always fresh in their every time of year,
All of us enlivened by the kickoff spirit of new season
No one passing judgment
Everyone passing time
As time gives us a pass, for now
To live in harmony
To be humble in our own authenticity
To see clearly others as they are
Near or from afar
Our difference is our similitude
And we are all together
In these divergences.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

A Deeper Love

A Deeper Love


It happens so fast. The labyrinth with twists and turns, doorways, some half open, others blocked off entirely, some frozen over after years of neglect, tingles with life. We step outside and look through the ice. We are the captain of our ship, not unlike any other captain in this way. What we see is as follows: natural light, to the point where it begins to hurt our head.  It flashes like artificial lights hanging from the sides and ceiling of an old battle ship might if there was an announcement to be made. We take it as a warning. We have forgotten that we have but one pulse. We start to remember past parts of our heart, grown cold. The sensations overwhelm us all at once. We think, this is it. But where to begin? We do not immediately find an answer. We are innately aware on some level of the fact that we might not ever. Is there a starting point inside the mind to hide the things we cannot let go of from the person that we love?

Giving love is not receiving love and how do we do it? The snow inside the labyrinth begins to melt on its own. We do not pay this very much mind. We just smile and walk through these old, familiar entrance points once more accessible. We re-familiarize ourselves with the maze. We think that it is love at our doorsteps. Those of us that have known love before find it easier to know when it comes knocking again. No two loves are ever the same; a strange, exciting, threatening phenomena. We praise the immense strength of this power in our presence and cherish the person we have fallen in love with as much as our heart and theirs will allow, for the time we are in love.  

The magic of in love is a fade out fact of all romantic relationships. Some end upon the emergence of this very truth. Others soar to new heights, because they first are willing to dive into great depths, trusting, entirely, in the love of another person and their love for that person. Two people in love that trust in the phenomena that is love give one another a chance to experience love in its deepest sense. Love between two people that began as strangers and have come to know one another and accept one another in full is the only true love.

Often, one person might see something in the other that the person didn’t ever know or dare to look at prior to their union. Love is without trial. When we put either ourselves or our lover on trial for something that cannot be changed we break the covenant. If we have an opportunity to touch the bottom of an ocean, do we take the chance? Do we really take a chance? Or are we already looking for the next beach after the shoreline shifts and we see things for what they really are? There are rocks in every person’s ocean. Not one person is above or below any other in this way. Can we sit with the rocks? If we cannot, they will sink us. When we look to the sky it should be with wings to fly. When we accept everything that cannot be changed inside of ourselves and inside of our lover everything is within reach.

Two souls that start with the magic of in love idealism can keep the candle lit, and let it shine brighter than ever before, with simple, compassionate, open, unapologetic honesty, after the wizardry has worn off. Real love needs only two willing, willful souls that are in love. No one needs to fix anything. Once the natural light inside the labyrinth has steadied and the mind has grown used to the added warmth from a loved and loving heart there are still certain doors that remain closed. What is inside is who we are, on a subconscious level. It should stay there where it belongs. For true love is always conscious; nothing more, and nothing less.  

Friday, November 8, 2013

A Song for Those of Us Loyal to the Starving Artist In Us All

Every winter we return,
Your wisdom setting in
A sun, that burns
A little less bright
For a little less time—
We reminisce, the
Crowds get smaller,
Outdoors a bigger
Other number
In crooked neon lights—
Spite-filled eyes tonight—
Light up this city,
Light up this city,
Backs’ turned to you,
A moon howls back,
Specters entering,
A new day dawns,
A sacrificial fawn,
You always did it the same
Until your heart fades out
You always did it the same
Until your heart fades out
The band played on
You went ahead
We all moved on—
Let’s pick up the pieces,
Let’s pick up the pieces, on your birthday
Together we’ll say that
We’ll stay a while
For old times sake,
Talk about the big break
That’s coming,
The next gig,
Sometime, maybe

Monday, October 21, 2013

Without Shame

We do not say we are sorry
For size and stature,
We do not fracture a single limb
So that we can climb up higher,
Heaven is a beatitude of Nature’s daily grace,
We rise up tall and proud, stand still
As trees
Do not compete
Or feel the need to defeat
Any kind, as we all are kin—
If we sin
We say that we are sorry, for we are mortal
And it is the eternal Wind that blows these seeds in every which way—
Who are we to question
These gifts bestowed to us and those that aren’t ours given to others in our likeness?
Let that be the lesson,
Let us learn
To foster firmness of inner grounding
For it is the founding
On which we can finally rest
Our stretched out limbs and display these vibrant leaves of true beauty—
Let us come to know, with certainty
That it is this
And only this
That leads
To the sprout up of more tiny, little seeds of magic
That need only reach out and touch the source of all enchantment, before realizing their own—
An innate oath
Trees nurturing growth
Take seriously:
Feeling the upward pull of downward root
Between the soot of lineal ghosts
Coursing through the hardened hosts of communal soul that comes with age,
We feed the strength of perpetual, collective being that sits in meditation underground,
Pumping life into every vein,
Easing stirs in the windy misdirect of inner whispers inside of saplings not yet fully themselves,
When we are still and standup tall and proud
And do not say that we are sorry, for truth
We represent ourselves in full, individually and collectively
Providing shade where it is needed,
Allowing for the sitting seeds to come unseated,
Standup, tall and proud,
Defeat fear all by themselves and proclaim, with all their might
Their rights
To birth
Self worth
And let in light.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Preemptive Education Lecture Reflection


Maxine Greene, Megan McDermott Lecture


What a pleasure to attend such an inspiring event! A lot was discussed by the panelists in a short while. In addition, there were young poets displaying their unique talents to the room. In freely expressing themselves, by creating their own verse, having their own rhythm, and meter, these poets embodied the kickoff’s clear message: students that tune in to their own unique frequencies and inner feelings, and then share these perceptions, allow for others to build on and or find their own set of beliefs, and enable them to make sense of their world (paraphrasing Dr. Greene).

The lecture had a magnificent impact on my thought processes in the days to follow. I found myself writing poetry the next day while on my lunch break: a freeing and cleansing exercise, in and of itself. However, while I have always felt that way about creative writing in general, I will admit, in my many conversations with friends, family, students and colleagues, I seem to be in the minority. Perhaps I could never adequately articulate why the arts are so important, most notably in the mental and spiritual sense. This is where Dr. Greene comes in, and why I feel so blessed to have been in attendance. She helps put into words what all poets feel. That there is no such thing as good or bad poetry (that all of it is good) as long as it comes from the heart. That poetry is a medium with the capacity to hold feeling and emphasis. That poetic words go beyond didactic meaning. That poetry is an aesthetic response to the outside world that can overcome aloofness and pacificity and allow for tangible change through the communal voice of individuals seeking to better and improve the externality of our existence.

In the pedagogical sense, the lecture opened my senses up to, yet again (pfffff), the question we, as educators ask ourselves over and over again: How do we bring out the voices of our students? Leave it to a room of poets to sweep everyone up off their feet feeling elated, everyone exiting the lecture on cloud nine, but no one with any clear direction as a means to sustaining that high. This was the one thing I found the lecture to be lacking in: specificity. However, in thinking about it more, that is kind of the message, and also where preemptive education enters the classroom. Maxine Greene says she “welcomes ambiguity,” and that she “hates fixed anwers.” One of the questions asked in response was, “How do we teach that to students, when the school system only wants to test us?” There is no clear distinct answer to this question in my opinion. If we are asking our students to find themselves, we as teachers need to do the same, and do it quick, before students get used to responding in a way that is strictly what they think we want to hear.

I go back to the original message of the lecture: that by tuning in to our unique frequencies we allow for others to do the same. In the practical sense, we as teachers can be ourselves, first and foremost. Also, we can design lessons that focus more on upfront individual, student interpretation of the coursework and text, before honing in on conventional or accepted beliefs surrounding an idea or theme. This paves the way for assessment, more in terms of reflection and analysis, rather than relying strictly on rote and recall. There is a critical connection for students and teachers at every turn, readily accessible, assessment checkpoints for teachers, built-in to this formulaic approach, as students are allowed to first develop their sense of perception, and then hold that up to the canonical interpretation and either challenge, agree, or meet somewhere in between. You truly can allow students to learn on their own; as Megan McDermott said, it is our primary duty as educators “to create space for children with a vision to do THEIR best work,” and also believe they will arrive where they need to be in the end, to pass our tests, but also end up at a place of individual understanding, and come to make sense of what these exams and rubrics really signify, rather than having their entire scholastic existence revolve around what they have been told by teachers that come to fear the test. That is preemptive education: doing something to make a change for the better, before it is too late.


Saturday, September 28, 2013


Poetry to me is
The best things in life are
Free as the wind,
To run-on like the
Ins and outs of the inside shouts
Do spread—
Innocent and free
Like four month old foals’ guiltless folly,
Beyond the breakers that turn to plains inside the brains
Of little, Plain Janes and Average Joe beaus and other young women of land and sea
Who splay out dreams
With their net eyes’
Vision of catch and release,
Transpose and disguise
Fishes and wishes of fishermen dishing out fresh,
With every cast
Of shadow and light—
Doling out life,
In overture
As the wind
Freely forms illusion,
The entire scene
Beneath the breakers, below the barge
Beyond the naked eye, more stretches of land,
A most, masterful confusion—
Running after foals,
Swimming with the shoals,
Soaring through the open sky,
Beyond the Heavens, below the Earth
Where between the lines
There is only

Friday, September 20, 2013


It’s all on you,

You know what you must do,

Tiny cues, collectively, like inner ear whispers from the brain growing you up

Telling you to get going,

Throwing you into the toss around

Every man for himself

Churning the engine

Screeching out in sound

Riding along on this merry go round

Screaming at the body collecting signals

Heart, the home

Boarded up with shingles

Melding, hardening with

Every little pang to the gut

Shock to the skin

Sledgehammer to the head,

Back spasm—

Spastic inelastic ideas of soldiers at war

Attacking your core

Matching the physical, aging stubborn mind

Toughen up at any cost thoughts serve to remind

Until the sound of spirit becomes muffled

And everything you are gets lost in the shuffle,

Forgetting family

Forgetting friends

Losing touch with love

And the helping hands

The bonds you have and hold dear to your hear

Not knowing where to turn

Not knowing how to start

All over again,

Feeling alone and hopeless,

The needle and the yarn back to recovery in the weak, shivering hands

That seamless threads of illogic govern

Like a dream gone bad in

Standstill, the self stranded

Troops disbanded

Overrun with fear

A deer in headlights

You appear to the bright white

Stepping outside for a moment,

Walking in the footsteps frozen over from just before that were forgotten,

Seeing the others’ imprints,

Feeling the cold win blow

Smelling a bonfire burn

Somewhere off in the distance, coyote howls

Savoring the berries of winter,

Coming to know again

Truth and sense

By virtue of the sensory,

The door always open,

To portal you back.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013


In response to the suspicion of these seven deadly,
Lyrical sweet medley,
In every color
Balance beam walking dream visions
Above the debauchery and derisions,
Be you part undercurrent flail about nightmare
Fattened by the many stares
That scoff at your share?
By rejecting the flares and self indulgent fares
Of those that inhabit your Earth, this dirtied receptacle
That pays dearly for their spectacles
In many ways
As you count down the days
Tightrope tippy toe slow
Wide open plain stroll without care
To climb up the ladder,
Chew on your fodder,
“But hey, you idiots, this is America!”
Have ye no shame ,
Have ye no inner honorable flame
Be it famine or fame,
Squeaky clean surface or stain,
“How can you just stand there,
We’re all going to die!”
They wrote it on their hands as kids,
Let it roll around,
And when that day finally came,
Grace in the face of endless fire, reborn.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Education Journal Entry

There is a lot to think about in and around the world of teaching today. Diverse contexts have always existed. However, in recent years there has been more public awareness than ever before on the nature of these contexts and the implications therein. Administrative bodies and teachers are now turning their attention to the full scope of diversity and the widely-varied, stratified representations of the student populace, in which many grey areas do exist. As such, there is an increased need for a constructivist approach to teaching; the learning is hands-on, discovery, experiential and task-based, and is employed to bolster the acquisition of knowledge and to encourage the emergence of student identity. What exactly is knowledge? It is hard to put your finger on it. It comes in many forms. We KNOW that standardized tests, state and national education boards will never recognize or emphasize the importance of each and every variant. We SUSPECT that administrative bodies are primarily concerned with measurable data as a means for sectionalizing the masses and fitting students into neat, little sub-categories to feed our American need to measure, compare and contrast. It is certainly true that test scores and conventional methods of assessment are relevant data teachers can use. However, before data, there comes the students themselves. Teachers and parents see students as comprising our youth: bright-eyed and hopeful, exhibiting qualities and talents from time to time that are unique and special, difficult to quantify by any set of standards. And yet, teachers are told to assess in a very specific way, most of the time. It is part of their job. So the question becomes, how do we encourage the development of student talent(s) that fall outside the range of the conventionally assessable? There is an entwining of ideas here. As we come to realize the plethora of grey areas of diversity and the vastness and openness of the “contextual field,” in which anything tangible today is plotted, we better understand knowledge, as the elusive immeasurable. Essentially, it is the field. Some of it is visible, though much of it is hidden away in the brush, underground, etc. Teachers need to do their best to bring this knowledge out into the open so that it can grow and manifest into something tangible. The only way for teachers to do that is to better understand the students themselves. A constructivist approach allows for this, if teacher participation is dual, in that they both facilitate and engage in the way a student would, as a learner.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

A Writer's Response

Writers see everything. There is always much to discuss, too much, in fact, after something has just happened. And yet, the writer is quiet, as everywhere else, all around, there is outcry. He or she is in need of time; to ingest and process. Writers tell their stories to themselves inside of their heads over and over again as they reflect and revise, reviewing past occurrences, conjuring up fantastical forward thinking possibilities that are endless, forming loose associations with their own present perspective, that can be all encompassing, though not necessarily reactive or related to any facts that have been presented that are relevant to the story at hand. Their minds are simultaneously keen and hazy, as thought after thought after thought passes through. Mature writers tells their stories only to themselves at first, for they have failed too many times before, in speaking them; a waste of good energy. Often, embarrassing, too. It is a writer’s hope that he or she will hold onto the vigor of occurrence, harness, redirect and infuse life into a work of art, that you might read and enjoy. Something has just happened. In those first moments to follow, writers will not know what form their story will take, only that there is a story there, one worth being told. That is why the immediate, responsive, verbal conveyance of subject matter at hand for writers first, speakers second, is rarely eloquent, and often disjointed. The story is not yet eloquent to the writer; the mind, laden with imagery; snippets of occurrence and light speed possibility, flashing. The subject matter is not yet clear. Readers, please standby for abridged version.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Complexly Simple

You respond
I respond
In kind we are
To react
To counteract
Emotional misunderstandings
Crash course landings
Lacking in comprehension
Like a pilot without his guide
Allied with
 Blameless and bedeviled
Shivering out sadness
Sweating out anger
Dragging out the dreary, somber thoughts
Built up out of nothing
For longer than it needs to be
Just now beginning to see
We are different,
Each of us, unique
There is never bleakness
Only blurred lines that led us in fear to feel the steepness
Of that plateau we each climbed all by ourselves to get to this very point in time,
You up one side,
Me from the other,
And here we are together, overlooking
Ocean down below
As equals, hand in hand
As partners, in flight
The coastline in our sights
A place where dreams really do come true,
Who knew all we really had to do was put this all behind us,
Easier said than done, but we're doing it
That intention is not understanding
The latter comes in time if we are not too demanding
Landing peacefully,
Settling back into ourselves,
Fully into us,
The best time of our lives.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Thought for the Day

As responsible, moral adults, we often have difficulty doing things for ourselves, as the responsibilities continue to pile up. We feel the need to surmount via the uphill ascension; hour of the day and items crossed off the list forming a positive correlative inside of our minds, an internally constructed gauge formulated for the explicit purpose of tracking and entwining self-perceived successes and feelings of adequacy, or self-perceived failures and feelings of inadequacy in the short-term. In my experiences, this makes it harder to accurately visualize the bigger picture, which of course is all encompassing, never dismissive, though never based solely on one perception, idea or thought surrounding any one thing we did, do or did not or do not do. There is life in this moment beyond our comprehension. What we are doing does matter. It can be more or less important than we make it out to be. Yes, it is meant to feel spacey at times. When I fail to embody this train of thought in my meditation sessions, if I am feeling tired or restless in any way, my mind wanders and searches for justifications for or makes excuses against my practice, in the moment. Well, I haven’t been as compassionate to my loved ones in recent days as I would like and this will restore the light in me, my loved ones will benefit from my experience. Or, I need to make dinner for my loved ones, it’s getting late. These are the types of thoughts that pass through the unsettled, imbalanced mind askew. And it is to be expected, and very okay. As I step out of myself and look at things from the outside in, I see the cycle of life as mirroring meditation practice. Both require consideration and thought. Neither asks for justification, if the former holds true. Putting things in perspective is in and of itself renewal, and enables us to start anew, with each and every new breath we experience. Meditation is a worthy practice as it opens us up to the endless offerings of life. So too, does life, if we take our practice and infuse it into our every existence.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Thought for the Day

Today, in the morning when you rise, say to yourself, “I will meet each and every thing I do today with enthusiasm, being in the moment.” If thoughts come to mind regarding how your day or week should unfold, if unpleasantness or worry surfaces, let it. Make the connection between emotion and thoughts or ideas surrounding a premeditated event or action of doing. It will come naturally if you do not put up a fight. Then, breathe, feeling the full uplift of your abdomen, ribcage and chest. The soul and the spirit will rise too, when you meet each inhale with full openness. As breath is life, take this truism with you forward into the day, exhaling and elevating, maintaining and stabilizing improved mood with focused, open breathing. Embrace the now. Acknowledge the idea of every premeditated event or action of doing you have set in stone in the same light as they come to mind, as futuristic happenings of rational, thoughtful intent. If you find there to be absent-mindedness behind any premeditated event or action of doing, reconsider, make alterations if need be before proceeding. This is your life, after all, you do have a choice. Before you embark on these many journeys of doing throughout the course of your day, acknowledge, consider and accept. There might be things on your plate you do not look forward to. This is true of every day. If they are things you must do, do them. Take solace in knowing you have done well to stick to the schedule. Do not let the negative thoughts or ideas surrounding any one premeditated event or action of doing stand in your way, repeating the mantra if need be, “I will meet each and every thing I do today with enthusiasm, being in the moment.” As you experience the day, perhaps you will find newness to your routine. Perhaps you will learn something new about yourself, or learn how to become more efficient. Perhaps these things will bring you great joy or offer new, invaluable insights. Staying in the moment can only benefit you. Try it, even if it is just for one day.

Friday, August 16, 2013

The Ugly Side of Innocence

Gee wiz, please pass the salt,
It’s an asphalt party out there,
Workmen on their knees pumping alt rock,
Seventies and balmy, daily
Blue collar slide shows from these little windows of unemployment
Undercooked and overpriced goods
Outsourced Labor disputes
New roads to nowhere
Leading the innocent
Pass the buck
Pass the salt, please
This food without thought
Is all processed and dried up,
Like America,
Plain Jane In the cold, hard rain
Without a clue.

Friday, August 9, 2013

Good Pillars

It ain’t nostalgia
Beat Beat
In this morning heat
Cool, heavy air rises off the empty streets
Unveiling truth and loss like a sheet ripped from
The bed in which you neatly coddled up to him
Laid down for love
The last standing beacon of our blood—
I could have wept more then, but I could not,
There were so many others
My druthers, not wanting to be part of such a sad state of affairs and the crowd
Always wanting to scream at the tops of my lungs out loud
For you and the injustices of disease
Like the withering of bright leaves and the changing of seasons,
My treasonous pride—
This morning it drifts off
Up into the heavens
As the faintness of a grandmother’s outline, lightly vanishing
In goodbye, the spread out of gulls flown south for the winter
Bitterness dissipating, a cleaner farewell and a cold, hard lesson well learned,
Never hate the cruelty of fate or get burned—
Glaciers melting with the purifying cries of a boy,
His emotion an inferno,
Missing one of his beacons
Memories flood in,
Crystallized thoughts,
Rafts aplenty, so much wisdom to hold onto—
Drinks in this sing song sound of fight
From the heart
You light
Up his soul grown
From some netherworld
I am told
Wise spirit,
If I must part with you,
I will not part with your parting message
As it is one of steadfastness and hope,
Not the rope of inevitable uncertainty others make it out to be
Dangling, threadbare
A fatalist viewpoint
The tip of a needle
Used as an excuse,
No, I will not lose sight of what is right here in front of me,
I will not lose sight of what I must do,
I will not lose sight of the fullness in hue
That is life
I will go on seeing, being and doing
Living and loving
Beautiful beacon
That shines on in me still.

Friday, August 2, 2013

Your Light

Did you see the flowers bloom?
Did you see them,
Did you
Did you?
TIme flew by in those earlier years,
Little birdies zooming passed, unnoticing
Coming and going as they pleased,
New ones appearing easing the sun
Set in her way,
Always shining light down on little, green ones budding with life,
A mainstay in this way,
Watching too,
As others that knew them began to take notice
Little by
More and more as they grew
Up, stepping stones stemming from a well kempt garden
Shimmer (put down and secured the very first day
Seeds became life),
Lead the way to
Swirling colors
Of unequivocal, vibrant depth,
The quintessential optical cocktail,
Close a book of Fairy Tales, our truths
Start their own,
The sun shines
Just a little bit brighter today.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Forward is the March

All around us moving parts
Alert me to the feel of crunchy,
Manufactured, newfound ground when we part ways, for now
My guiding heart cannot pump
Fast enough up to brain cells overworked this purest blood
Of joyful push
That keeps the line moving
The sound of drilling,
The wear of cutting corners close in this tiny, little, reworked frame on the fly forming
Conforming only to what is best for all those we care about,
For now it works—
I’ll settle, willingly
Because it is forward on to the march
Of a beat too long subdued,
You renew something true in me,
Scores gone missing
From a higher song that when played was always in key
Return home,
Notes lost in the tossup of experience,
What comes out on the other end can never be predicted,
But I’ll take my chance with you,
Every chance I get, over and over again, every single day, for the rest of my life.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Gods of Men and Women

When I’m out of hope
And the keys to my heart in hand
Loosen from their grip
Slipping through quivering fingers,
As I stare You down, feel the full surge of Your blood coursing through my veins, see You all around me,
Hundreds of billions of years that is life,
I know that I am no match,
For if a red storm should cometh it will come
And if You only think it I would come undone
Though through no fault of my own, rest assured
I will not fight You
No I will not fight You but I will see this through,
Few can say that they have fought You and that they have won,
Those that do are either liars or Gods,
I am neither
Even the stars expire,
A mortal man, deep in the cavernous ravine that is life
With a mortal woman by my side, surely a gift from up above, my future wife
I have given over my keys to her because I want for her to have them,
She has given me hers too, they are beautiful
We hold onto one another as if it is all that we have,
Human life preserves in a sea of red, our best bet
Wait, dream, cherish, love
Work for what we want
Be humble and never flaunt if we should ever succeed,
Do good deeds for one another in this red sea journey ride
Give it our best shot
Take with gratitude this gift we were given
Go on living
As it is what You intend, for now,
To be.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Strength from Within and the Power of Love

If it is a war you want

You cannot win,

If it is a wick you have lit

You will flicker at fault and fade out like a sin—

In her there is fire that still burns

Though you may secretively yearn for it not to,

You could not put it out,

You could not put her down,

For hers is a strong fire,

Endothermic, ice melting, plants in bloom, breath in the air and in her lungs she gasps now for only the right reasons,

Seeing the seasons through with vibrant gloss renewed and earthly vigor in her every step

The tundra comes unfrozen,

There is room again for life to grow,

For love to flow freely,

You will see how easily two outstretched trees

Can bring the wilderness to its knees

Can tame the beast

Can feast in famine in the absence of sin

Can extinguish exothermically summoning up from within

Reserves of strength,

Borrowing if need be from the other tree

That each fell so easily in heart and mind and soul for the other,

As two leaves of the same twig still intact fall swiftly at the urging of heavenly hail,

Then melt in to the Earth,

Their imprints

Their love

Their beginning,

 Eternally bound,

Emblazoned forever in the ground.


Thursday, July 18, 2013

A Creak in the Room (Jamesian story for Grad School)

            The table they were situated at was stained with the residue of earlier experience, and served to reaffirm their current state of mind—by all means a recognizable and normative state given the company, and the place, date, and time of present setting. What remained, at the culmination of an evening of sin and consumption, were the production line bottles, most nearly empty, the embedded ashen lineage of the leaves of the Nicotania, and the corpse-like figures of four friends, presumably in their prime.

            Pulling out the money owed, to the leisurely pot built in good faith and in part represented by the plastic poker chips neatly stacked in front of each player, he was seemingly struck by a chord of remembrance, propagated by something found inside of his overly stuffed wallet; he hesitated before handing over the cash, holding for a moment longer than was typically usual in his hand, a folded up piece of paper.

            “Ehhh, like pay up or something.” The combination of downers and psychotropic drugs, that would for any normal person act to subdue those impatient moments akin to race, as the potency of such an indelible elixir could never come into question by those having partaken, and in choosing to partake had felt for themselves the reverberations entwined with consumption, had somehow done little to ease  his friend’s general state, and this could be noted in the tone by which his friend chose to respond to so seemingly an inconsequential delay, even at so fine an hour, even after the innumerable hours of exploitation and abuse were in the rear view and the sobering up process had begun to take form.

            “I had meant to say something earlier,” he said. “But it seems so now, that it should very well work out to my advantage, me having forgotten and you as my audience. I have something wild to share—a little terrifying, but more wild and bizarre and eerie than scary for sure.”

            “Ehhh, like shutup or something.”

            “Seriously, what does it all mean? If I dare to ask, please elaborate on what it is you’re saying—I’m somewhat intrigued.”

            Clutching the paper still folded in hand, he continued. “I found this in the library the other day. From what I can make out, it seems as if it’s from some person’s daily journal log. The writing is in script and very faint so it took some inferring and considerable review on my part, but I was at the time doing all I could do to avoid doing what it was I should have been doing, and so this person’s journal served to fill my immediate need and then take me away from my schoolwork, for better or worse.”

            “Seriously, shut up already. The way you talk makes my brain hurt.”

            “Hahaha, dammit Gerard, let him speak. C’mon man, as you were.”

            Unfolding, rearranging and scraping off some of the table’s grime, he de-creased, ironed with diligent hands, and laid the sheet of paper out off to the side, in front of one of his friends, barely long enough for this friend to take note of the writer’s penmanship, though this friend would not begin to mentally map the uncanny significance of the cursive word till much later.

            He pulled the sheet back and continued. “The paper was like so, unfolded at the time and to the left of my work station. Note the thick, professional looking paper. It’s different. It’s what initially caught my attention. I picked it up and examined it. I aimed to decode what had earlier been written by someone either dreadfully weak or without sustainable ink.”

            “Any luck?”

            “Yea. As it turns out most of the words were legible, and those that were not, I was able to infer their meaning as a result of good sentence structure on the part of our ghost writer.”

            “This sucks. I feel like I’m in grammar class or something. Please shut up. Let’s play video games or put on a movie. Something, anything but this.”

            “DAMMIT GERARD!!!”

            “Yea seriously, shut up already dumb. Anyways, I typed up the letter so that I could at some point read it to you and see what you all were to make of it.”

            “Dammit, okay. Let’s get this over with already. Can we at least speed things up?”

            “I dig, giddy up man. Read away.”

            He slowly and methodically folded the original, much to the dismay of his one impatient friend, eventually reinserting into wallet before reaching into back jean pocket to pull out the printed version. He then read aloud, uninterrupted, that which he had before typed.  

Oh my, what a lovely day today had indeed proven itself to be! I awoke to the light and the sun was so bright and the sky so very blue coming through my bedroom window I couldn’t wait to get outside! I thought about what my friends would tell me whenever we’d go to the movies or when, on the rare occasion, we’d venture into the city to take in a show, they’d say: Grannies didn’t have to brush their teeth or wash their face! At least that is what their response would be whenever I’d question one of their appearances or make a face at one of their scents. They’d tell me to blow off and that no one bothered to look at or care about them so why should I? Maybe they had a point. Today I gave it a go, as not a moment’s time was to be wasted. Not on such a beautiful morning!

I rolled out of bed and set out to walk around the community. Oh, but how wonderful I had felt, and how wonderful I still do feel! Adventure and uncertainty were in the air today! I went for a spin, not bothering to tell the children I had gone out.

I parked at a dead end I had many moons ago frequented daily on my walks to and from school. Oh the familiar sights and smells! The dead end opened into a field now a state park and the creek; oh the creek! It was the same cutesy little creek babbling just as I had remembered it had. They had put a fence up to serve as a divide between creek and path. There was some garbage in the brush in and around the water: beer and soda bottles mostly. Maybe the kids were hanging out. Maybe they were trying to clean up the place. Oh, but it was still my creek!

Oh, to walk along the same path with such vigor as I had some sixty some odd years before! To know that not so much had changed, that I hadn’t so much changed, that walking in this same place as I had, way back when, still offered to me nearly identical surroundings, and thus gave me comparable joy to that which I so vividly remember feeling long ago. My word, what a deliciously uncanny feeling!

Oh, and there was Robert! Sweet, handsome Robert. To see him riding his bike without a care, wearing his debonair grey flannel suit and looking as young and as handsome as ever. Oh, what a marvelous sight to behold! To cross eyes as we passed one another, again—he looking so innocent, me feeling anew—so very alive and reborn. Oh, what a feeling!

Why he had chosen not to speak to me on this day, though I do recall him giving me a look of distinct recognition, neither mattered to nor concerned me. Just to have the opportunity to live out again the little joys of my yesterday, those taken for granted, experiences never fully realized until years afterward—oh what a treat!

Had Robert ever really been one to act shyly though? He was never one to not say hello. He loved me from the moment he set those big beautiful blue eyes of his on me, and had said on several occasions to me that he would sell his soul to the devil, but if for only to have a word or two with me.

But of course! Robert couldn’t have been the boy I saw today down by the creek. He had been dead now for ten years.  

            “That’s it?”

            “Ehhh, what?”

            “I know. I thought the same thing.”

            “Oh yea, so like, what’s the same thing?”

            “Why does the journal suddenly stop?”

            “Oh yea, right.”

            “I couldn’t figure it out either. I’ve reread this thing a hundred times. Why end a journal entry one could already dub as beyond peculiar, in such an abrupt, unusual manner?”

            “We are certain this is from some old woman’s personal journal right? That it’s not some form of abstract fiction?”


            “Perish Gerard. Let’s put it this way—if it is some new form of modernist fiction, I’m neither hip nor privy to the types of literary devices our ghost writer is using.”

            “Like, what is a ghostwriter anyway? I thought it was someone who took someone else’s ideas and worded them well and got paid for it or something.”

            “Dammit Gerard! He means ghost writer—two words. He means he has no idea who wrote this thing, and neither do I for that matter. I also haven’t a clue as to why he or she chose to end his or her journal this way, and I have no idea what to make of all the other whacked out shit going on. Feeling young? Seeing kids on bikes in vintage suits? I mean seriously, what the fuck!?”

            I had managed to go unnoticed for some time, my silence unquestioned by friends, which was good for me, as I was incapacitated, the mind soaked in booze, my speech bound to sound drawl. I must say though, the journal did captivate me, was to me uncanny, and did lead me to places here on earth and to those imaginative parts of the brain I had prior to this night regarded as long since deactivated. I felt the handwriting of the original journal entry come back into focus, however my wet brain, unable to mentally zoom in on the date before noticed at the upper right hand corner of the original’s body, instead searched for and strung together words in the phrase of a question.

            “May I see the original?”

            My friend went into his pocket, pulling out the document and forking it over, it now becoming my job to unfold and decode the nature and message of our mystery ghost writer.

            “I know this handwriting. I can feel it in my blood, this knowing. It’s dated Thursday, March 8, 2012. You were at the library yesterday?”


            “So the journal was presumably written on the same day you were there, which was in fact the same day you found this sheet of paper—yesterday, correct?”


            The words that came to mind thereafter were to the brain shuffled and presented in question form, and yet, upon the mouth choosing to open for communicative purpose, the quivering vocal chords, much to my bewilderment, now presented those very same words as an undeniable statement of truth. 

            “My grandma wrote this journal.”—brows furrowing, expressions of the room changing, as I continued.  “We recently discovered she kept one for the better part of her life, all the while without us knowing it. She passed away last Friday and was laid down to rest on Monday, god rest her beautiful soul. You were all at the wake last Saturday, remember?”

            “Ohhhh yea.”

            “But if she had already passed prior to the letter having been written…”

            “I know.”

            “And the library—who brought the letter over to the library?”

            “No one, I mean well, she—my grandma did. She was writing it there. She always went to the library—we thought, to read—but clearly it was also a place that she went to do her daily journal writing.”

            “No one was in the room with me when I was there.”

            “Okay, assuming all of this were possible—your sweet, little Grandma having written a journal postmortem—what about the ending? Why does it suddenly end like that?”

             “Ehhh, well maybe she didn’t know she was dead yet.”

            My brain to this day still has trouble with the full scope of implication necessitating from Gerard’s statement of profundity.

            If the story here ends once the author knows she is no longer living, once she understands she can no longer be, here—I’m left to consider the ones like Robert, those that never got it—and wonder, will they ever?

            As I reflect, I choose now to think of my grandma in this way, as young and innocent and happy and free from all the pains and loneliness that come with old age; in a world not found here on earth, in a place that offers to her the familiarity and joys of her youth, in a sphere that soothes the soul, in a land where the uncanny are wholly pleasant.