She Sings (An Elderly Woman’s Tale)

Aged and aging, sitting on the porch,

reminiscing about her life, she rocks. She sings.


She’s given birth seven times, two died and five thrived,

grew to be parents themselves.

Hard times have come and gone and with each she learned, she grew.

Now she waits for the kids and grandkids to come and visit

and at times the waiting seems like an eternity, so she waits, she rocks, and she sings.


She remembers a time when her oldest son wouldn’t let her out of his sight

and she chuckles at the memory. She thought he’d never learn to be apart

from her and now all these years later, he’s learned the lesson all too well.

Busy with his own life, conquering industry and the world,

raising his own little ones, and doing an admirable job of it.

A tear slides down her cheek, a tear of pride and pain at the same time.


The second son is in prison, twenty years or more yet to go

and she knows she likely will never lay eyes on him again.

He was the sensitive child, always unhappy,

always in the midst of storms, almost always made by himself.

Troubled, that’s what they called him. A troubled child.

Not strong enough for taking the high roads in life,

but more comfortable on the low roads amongst the

crooks and druggies. Made him feel superior maybe,

or maybe just accepted. He wanted to fit in somewhere,

and now he does.


Another tear escapes.


The only daughter comes to mind,

now on her third marriage,

a child that lives with her father.

She was the little princess.

Tried to protect her, to show her the way,

and in the end, she just wanted love

and looked for it in all the wrong places.

But a good woman, just the same,

has a good heart.

Works at the diner in town, sixty plus hours a week

and wouldn’t have it any other way.

Maybe works herself into exhaustion so she doesn’t have to think

about the mistakes she’s made in her life,

doesn’t have to think about the days

when she drank heavily and lost custody of her only child.

Such a sad life, yet, she’s trying.

She’s pressing on and there’s something to that.

No matter what, there’s something to that.


The two youngest boys are living outside of town,

sharing a rental house together,

going to school and working, carving out lives for themselves.

Only a year apart, they are the tightest of the siblings

and genuinely seem to look out for each other,

and that makes the old lady happy, truly warms her heart.


She muses, she remembers, she rocks, she sings.


As her heart fills with love and gratitude,

she grows tired. Soon the chair stills as the sun goes down.

The creaking of the chair stops, her head falls forward.


In heaven, she appears on a white rocking chair,

she jerks awake. Lifts her head, opens her eyes.

Tears flow down,


and she rocks and she sings.

Or Else

Sometimes I think we are here simply for someone’s amusement.

Ants under the glass, birds in a cage, mice in a maze.

It feels like we’re being tested, constantly tested.

How will I respond to this pressure or that problem?

Will I throw in the towel, give in to depression?

Will I grow bitter and bent like a dying tree?

Or rise from the ashes to conquer life again?


When we zoom out and see our world as the blue marble it is

It offers a different perspective.

We’re small, so very tiny and unimportant, or so it seems.

Life, grass, fish, animals, sky, oceans, all connected

Yet we are the species that kills and not for food or survival

But out of some twisted brokenness, some irreparable damage?

Who are we and why are we here?


Religions, churches, built to house the seeking and the faithful

And yes, the broken, for we are all this… broken;

Part of a species striving for survival, trying to comprehend human-ness,

Unknowable, unlivable life

Just too difficult for many to live.

Yet hope remains, enough to keep at least most of us from

Taking our own life, taking matters into our own hands.


Nations and rulers continue to threaten and boast

Attempting to force the other to conform or else.

Be our religion, worship our god, or else.

Leave us alone or else,

Stop enslaving and destroying the innocent or else,

Do what I say or else.

Someone always waiting to bring the hammer down.


We watch way too much, know way too much in the information age.

I now know more than I ever truly wanted to know about the nature of man,

The all-consuming self-destructive nature of man;

Always judging, fault-finding, accusing, trying to change the other guy

In our homes as well as in our world.

Whoever you are, you’re wrong; be more like me, like us,

Or Else.


What if we stopped doing that and evolved?

What if we started every conversation from a stand point

Of wonder and awe and love and acceptance?

What if we saw ourselves as the blue marble miraculously

Balanced in the skies?

What if we acknowledged the miracle of our existence;

The wonder and beauty of existing at all?


I’m the first to say I don’t understand.

I don’t know what God is up to,

Why all this happened, what it’s all about.

And yes, I’ve heard hundreds of people tell me

Their version of belief, their reality, their belief system.

The scriptures as explained by many millions and no two

Even agree on what they say and why, not really,

Not in the end.


So, it’s up to me to figure it out, for me.

What do I believe? What’s it all about?

I’ve got to learn to live with unanswered questions,

Because I believe nobody here can truly tell me, not really,

And I’ve got to figure out how to live on this rock

Not knowing, not fully understanding, I’ve got to be okay with that;

I’ve got to, or else.


Or else all hope is gone and I won’t live like that.

I won’t live a hopeless life.

Hope in my Creator not to abandon us entirely,

Hope for change, for life, for love.

I have to hope that things can get better

Because why else would we be here

If not to try to bring about positive change?


And change never comes unless one person says;

It starts with me, right here, right now.

I’ll change me with divine help, I’ll determine to love more,

Hate less, judge less, reach people more…


Love More.

We have to, we really do, or else.

This Is Love (Gold & Blue)



An aura of gold and blue

Surrounds them

For they have been one with the other

His and hers

Hers and his

And the light, the aura



Occupying the same narrow space

For hours at a time

His ocean to her shore

Ever wanting more

Never needing to flow back outward

And it’s blue and it’s gold

And it’s nameless thousands of other colors



His hand upon her is electric

Tracing the lights and color

Creating the aura

And she is his


Until at last they, with slower breath, sleep

Wrapped up together

His arms like mist

Lost in her hair

And everywhere

And they know nothing

Except each other


And it lasts as long as it lasts

For love knows no timetable

No schedule to meet

No clock to watch


And the seasons follow

Glide and slide

Over the tunnel of time

And it changes

They change

But insist on flowing still

Into one another

And creating the blue and the gold


The aura

His ocean to her shore

They meet again

And again


This is love





Once I needed you

Because I needed someone, anyone

But now I need you

Because of you, who you are

You’ve proved yourself to me

Time and time again

I thought I loved you for you

But I loved you for me

I was that shallow

Not fully understanding self or even need

And over the years

You showed me


And I finally understood

That you are more than I ever knew

Not just that you love me, too

But that you get me

And you’re honest

And true

And such a good soul

And then the changes came

Life happened

And here we still are

Still together

Still you and me

Still us

And you’ve always been the steady one

The straight line to my squiggles

Always there

A rock

A mountain

And I, the child, learning to walk and run

Learning who I’d become

A storm next to a sunny day

And the storm still rages

Though calmer now

With focus as well as intensity

And you’re still there with me

You’re there

You’re here

We’re here

We’re us

To stay

To this day



In Head and Heart

When my mind won’t keep still

I get lost in daydreams and nightmares

Of demons both real and imagined

The monkey mind off its leash

Causing chaos

The mind revisiting things best left alone

In the darkness of the past

But there I go, digging them up again, turning them ‘round

Thinking that this time, this time

I’ll figure them out and release them finally

Never to be haunted again

But they stay, lodged quite firmly, comfy in their home

In my head

And in my heart


The Panic in My Mind

My best days are spent not thinking of you
My worst days are spent thinking only of myself
On the bad days, I fall into the well of guessing
Your thoughts
Your feelings
Your motivations
But it isn’t about you at all
After all
It’s only my own personal madness
Descending full blast
Ready to melt my brains and fry my heart
The what-ifs that drive a person
Full-on crazy
The other shoe won’t drop
But it teases you into thinking
It will
When you least expect it
And there’s the rub

The Human Condition

Muscles, sinew, bone, marrow

Blood runs through it all

Brain and mind, meant to work higher

Function better than animals

But often just the same

Animalistic behavior

Devolving, we’re devolving

Into what we were never meant to be

Where and when did it go wrong?

When was the hairpin turn?

Are we being punished?

Left to become

The consequences of

All our sins?



When I tune out all the noise

and set my focus

When I think of no-one’s opinions but heaven’s

When I dig deepest into who I am

I am supremely peaceful

Uniquely blossomed

Divinely divine



Blame it on the Moon and Sun

Blame the tricky moon for refusing to shine long enough
For your romantic encounters to fulfill

Blame the sun for not staying up late just for you
So that you could do all the things that YOU want to do

Blame it on your parents for not raising you right
Because they taught you too much peace, or maybe taught you how to fight

Or on your school for harboring bullies and thugs
Miscreants, losers, weirdos and drugs

Blame it on everyone in your life neglecting you
For never being enough, not being there for you

Blame it on the rising temperatures in the world
both literal and metaphorical

Their heat is making you crazy
Making you completely hysterical

Blame it on your husband or wife
Or on your kids for taking over your life

Blame it on midnight or noonday for all their faults
Look everywhere else for the blame

Look past the mirror and all your own flaws
Yourself you will never name

Blame it on sad music, bad food, bad service, bad news on the news
Or how about blaming all the people you work with, who haven’t any clues

Nobody cares anymore and hard workers are hard to find
Stamina is a thing of the past, long since left behind

Blame it on this group or that, this race or that, this view or that
Your perspective is always the right one and you’ll stand by it

You’re right and they’re wrong, period, but whatever the cost,
You’re the only one found and all others are lost


Used to wound or heal

Build or destroy

In partnership with tongue and mind

The wish to rewind

Take them back

But that we cannot do

What’s done is done

Once begun

So hard to change.

Let’s rearrange

And put thought first

Before we do damage

They cannot manage

Love first, listen first,

Talk second

Or not at all.


On Growing


You wake up one day and realize it’s your first day of first grade and everything is new and exciting and you feel so big and bright and cute and special, because your mom told you so.

Next thing you know you’re in the third grade crying in the cloak room because somebody made fun of you. You don’t feel special, not at all.

Then you’re starting the tenth grade and you just know it will all be different this year, you’re coming into your own, you have friends, everything will be okay. And then of course it isn’t, it really isn’t. Your best friend betrays you. Boys tease you. Your body has changed so much you don’t recognize yourself anymore and all you feel is… awkward.

Then comes graduation day, that best day of all days when your whole life truly begins and everything will be great because you’re all grown up and make your own decisions. The world is your oyster.

But there is no pearl.

Living somewhere costs money and you don’t have any, and believe it or not, people don’t really love you coming over to visit and then just moving in. Things are expected of you. Responsibilities. You have to get a job. You have to eat.

So you meet someone and you marry because then, oh boy, then you will really have it all. Someone is going to take care of you and make you happy now.

And they do, until… until they don’t. And then it’s all just too much, you can’t take the fighting, and you finally leave, you get out, because then you’ll be free and happy at long last.

Except you aren’t.

And on and on it goes until one day you awake and look in the mirror and there you are, that little girl—eyes and heart all full of hope now gone—and in her place is an old person, staring back at you.

Your kids, they’re brilliant diamonds but they grew up.

They left.
You’re alone.

And then one morning as you look into the mirror searching for the little girl inside, you see a spark. “There you are, you stupid girl. Why did you always expect so much of everyone and everything? And all along you were right there.”

“I just wanted love. I just wanted acceptance. I just wanted happy,” the little girl says.

And you say back to her, “The capacity for all of those things was right there inside of you the whole time.”

And you smile.
And you laugh.
And you find that you can choose it all for yourself.

So simple, yet not so easy.


Breathless we lay, sweat upon our skin

Reckless we played, caring not for sin

Love was a living, tactile thing

Poems written and read

Songs we’d sing.


Days melted into night

So quickly our heads would spin.

Time was but a construct

We ignored with all our might

Never giving in.


Then, as life goes, we moved into

Another place, another state

Of mind and of being

Feeling something’s lost

Not understanding.


As he walked away I found my cheeks

Wet with the tears of regret

And neither speaks

But the silence spoke volumes

As he left my life.


I remember that day

The first time we were breathless

Two as one, as they say

And way too reckless

We lost the magic .


Like sand it slipped through our fingers

And we knew not how to grab

A chalice in which to hold

The glory, lest it escape

And escape it did.


Looking back I wonder

What would’ve, could’ve happened

If we’d been stronger, wiser,

Knew better, held on longer

Would it have lasted?


Or were we destined to move on

And away to other lovers

To love others, and feel

Again, what it’s like to be





On the Way Down

When you know that you must make a change

It’s inevitable, nothing stays static

Yet you’re hanging on to the edge of the cliff, hanging on for dear life

And your fear keeps you from letting go and moving on


When you see the future laid out at the end of the drop

And you know that once you start down the path, you’ll feel better

And you know that it absolutely must happen

And should

But you don’t let go


You don’t because it feels like a death.

You don’t because it feels like giving up or giving in.

It feels like a loss of control.

Like a loss of yourself.


Until the pain becomes unbearable.


So, when you let go, know that the journey

Is just beginning

And don’t forget to laugh

On the way down.




Pharisees Fall

Your labels are for you only because you dare not remove your filter glasses.

You must place people where they go in your waffle mind or leave them all behind,

Each one has a box and in it they go, one by one, or you come undone.

As you sit sipping your religious tea, watching people as they stroll by the window of your life

You sum them up, good enough, or not, based on your criteria, you check off that list

With a crimson pen stained with the sin of judgment and hubris.

Compassion packed its bags long ago and headed East. Love is a word on a cutesy card

But as a sentiment you have no use for it. As long as your little protected world is safe

You care not for real love or real truth or enlightenment, only that the status quo is held.

Your position in the world is secure, so you believe, so behind closed doors your heart grows hard.

Different is as different does, you laugh as you dismiss them utterly from your mind

When deep inside your shriveled heart, you’d know if you looked for the tiniest shard


Of care or concern, it isn’t there and you can no longer manufacture it. Your heart has quit,

Though it keeps its beat in rhythm with your fetid breaths. Your mask secure and held in place

Sits ever so securely on your face

And only heaven sees your truest form, dried and twisted as a prune

And all weep for you, for as you rejoice in your own righteousness,

The truth someday will out, and the mask will fall, and all will know all, and you will fall.



Love and Pain

I feel it already, the first dew drops of pain and grief that will come

When you cease to exist

Or just cease to exist for me.

It’s as if there’s a lever on a board and I move it back and forth,

Present to future to present again

And I can nearly feel it, the crashing, tearing pain that will befall me

As it does all that love completely.

This being the reason people don’t love completely,

The knowledge that with life and love comes

Ultimate death.

Ultimate pain.

It’s inescapable except for those who know no love at all,

Nothing deep or real,

Those who come to the conclusion early in their life

That it just isn’t worth it, love.

So, I did the deal, I took the plunge, I released it all to you,

I signed the bloody contract with my heart’s blood

Which ensures that I will know, eventually, inevitably

Greater pain than I ever have felt or could imagine.