Monday, June 30, 2014

Headline Poem 6/30/14 -- I am a better

(Photo credit Google Image)
I read this powerful post tonight about the life and death of poet Rachel Sherwood. It inspired today's poem about a younger self, and the simplicity of things. 

I am a better 

I am a better
lover now
than in my youth.
My hands coil and curve,
respecting gathering

(this matters as much as
stars that shoot
and dreams that exude
colors they are
not supposed to). 

I caress the absence of fear,
A lover on its own
a floating, flowering,
furnace of heat. 

  The kind that 
  not afraid
     ask for more.

Warm lasts where
hot does not,

like a pile of
   green, then yellow,
then brown,

I am a heart that beats,
and vow to speak
(to you)
in the same language
     in our light
as I will tonight    
        in our dark. 

I am
unable to move 
unless the mild sky
smiles wildly
and covers me in a
transparent blanket
of water,
a clearer (oddly) version of myself.

I am a better
today, than yesterday. 

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Headline Poem 6/29/14 -- Reminiscing

I read a post today about reminiscing about the past. That inspired today's poem. 


Of the days gone South 
remind you only of what you are without. 

There is nothing like living and learning, that's for certain,
but if you stay back in the seat of lies and dreadful stories and lacks of compromise,
You will lose your current self and give up any hope 
of rebuilding the shelf 
that is willing to store 
     the books,
     and carry 
     the weight. 

Walk forward and stand up straight. 
It's okay to stop to catch your breath, 

if the motion contorts and forces your neck 
to stretch 
to the side that hurts the most, 
     Talk to it, listen to it, and then      respectfully ignore it (Or ask it to kindly F itself). 

Your current self deserves your time. 
Your self today did no crime. 
Live without exception 
and worrying about dots unconnected. 

The truth is, no one's (dots) are. 
Connected perfectly. 
They want what you want and you want what they want 
And if you talked about it, you'd see, 
Everyone's giving and everyone needs 
to feel 
and laugh 
and run 
and play 
Drink milk and eat Oreos and sing in the rain. We all deserve today. 
We deserve us. We deserve dried fruit and neon stuff. We deserve to listen to music about me and you 
where the lyrics remind us of the ones we are and were. 

Reminisce to the words you write yourself. It sucks ass to know you have the power sometimes,
But you do. And just as your mother (or third grade teacher) would say -- finish one thing before you start another. 

So fly your alien invaded spaceship up into the sky, sit down and smile and stop asking why. 
You're here now 
     and      alive. 
You lucky bitch. You deserve it. 
It's awesome. 
Embrace all good shit! 

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Headline Poem 6/28/14 -- Like a Girl

The Always maxi pad campaign is really taking off by aiming to make doing anything #likeagirl a positive, especially during puberty when young girls are susceptible to not being proud of being themselves. Here is the headline and tonight's poem.

Like a Girl

When you ask me to run like a girl and then watch me toss my fluffy hands in the dramatic air
without purpose, and 
without poise,
you are asking me to deny my strength and to superficially take up space. 

I know I am strong and can fight and jump and hit like a girl, and that what that looks like is beauty, not fake. 
It means 
arms sturdy, 
accomplishment in my eyes, 
it means the ability to not deny the intensity and determination that lives inside.  

I've been 
Doing these 
Incredibly and with agility since I first learned to stretch out my body 
and move. 

Do not mock or mimic or minimize my truth by making doing anything #likeagirl a joke or spoof. 
I roar. I shine. I am me, and I will continue to be proud to live and love
Like a Girl!  

Friday, June 27, 2014

Headline Poem 6/27/14 -- Tomato Soup

There isn't much better than a fresh, ripe summer tomato. I read this headline tonight about the worst thing to do with one -- put it in the refrigerator! Here is today's poem. 

Tomato Soup 

Rich and creamy, it satisfies the soul. 
On summer evenings it's all you'll want in your bowls. 
One night 
you may feel like switching things up,
aiming to 
try less salt to fill you up. 
Let me warn you 
fair and plain,
low sodium tomato soup just
doesn't taste the same,

for once you're used to something 
the way you like it, 
you won't want it to change.  

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Headline Poem 6/26/14 -- Girls with Sisters

Today, there is a New Moon in Cancer, a water sign. This inspired tonight's poem. 

Girls with Sisters

Water is a beautiful mystery to me,
like girls with sisters, 
I can't relate 
to the 
secretive language 
refreshing storms, 
ravishing and manipulative, 
I stare more, 
in awe 
of all that goes on 
in front of and behind 
the cloudy scenes,
I am intrigued 
by the power and magic
of even the smallest stream 
Water and girls with sisters lure me in only to spit me out, 
a private club I know nothing about. 
Like a seaside manor with electric gate, and catching dragonflies and staying up late, 
I watch from afar as the trickles turn to pools, 
fascinated and envious of 
starry night rules. 

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Headline Poem 6/25/14 -- The Canvas

I read this tonight about an Australian artist who used his paintings to retake the land taken from him in the bush of Australia. 
Here is today's poem. 

The Canvas 

I can take colors and make them 
change like melted butter on my skin. 
I'm a dreamer. 
Do not leave me and let me pass. 
I have something to offer if you stop and ask.
I can take the splatter and the mess ups, the blended concoctions that go all wrong. 
I can look the other way while you hurry things along. 
I'll sing to keep myself busy, or whisper our private call. 
I'll wait patiently while you rearrange me on the wall. 
When you're satisfied, I'll let you look at me,
and when I'm ready, 
I'll curtsy neatly on the floor. 

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Headline Poem 6/24/14 -- Life

Elizabeth Gilbert's new book The Signature of All Things was released in paperback today. She is promoting it all around the world, and once I finish the eight books I have lined up ahead of this one, I will read it. In the meantime, I reflect on life. 


I want to grow old
with sagging body and forgetful mind. 
I want the dirt of the earth to 
welcome me home. 
I still have tens of thousands of words to read,
signatures to write, 
And miles to explore). 

I know I'm needed. Here. 
In the flesh. 
Where yellow is still yellow, bright and new. Where rainbows appear after a darkened time -- 
colors so bright 
you almost beg again for the storm. 
But. That's not how it works, thank goodness! 

I want to rock wrinkled (one day) on the porch
With a cool drink and mountain view and recall the days of sunburns and stingrays. 

I want to do that with you. 

I want to smile down at my feet, crooked and curved in all kinds of strange ways because 
Ripples are my favorite things. Always have been. 
Ever since I was a kid and 
Way leads on to way... & that today connects to yesterday. Toes are like that in the end. 
Familiar like old friends. 

I want to complete this life with no hunger inside, 
Not starved or lacking of 

I want to see me through a looking glass decorated with beads 
and see
A woman who 
in the best and worst of times hung her head so high
People thought she'd fly 
With airplanes and their wings,
led by a pilot trained in loving rhymes, master balancer of speed and time. 

I sleep knowing 
you know me so well. I wake 
feeling content because I believe 
In eagles and wildflowers and paradises on earth. 

I am lucky because I've been alive since birth. 

Monday, June 23, 2014

Headline Poem 6/23/14 -- I said yes

Tsunami warning all along the U.S. Pacific Coast -- here is today's poem. 

I said yes

Your love came to me like a tsunami.
Without a warning. I knew you'd been hit before but figured that was enough,
and I wasn't keeping score. 
I didn't even know how to keep score. This game was so new, and I didn't realize there were so many rules. 

I wasn't worried, and didn't think I should have been. I had no clue I was unprepared. 
I fell deep, but not dangerously. I trusted you. I trusted myself. 
If it had been hard in the beginning, I would not have stayed. I was used to running away, 
but I was meant to stay and so were you. 

Someone pulled us together and tied the knot. Triple tied like at recess so you don't have to stop 
once you've gotten started. 
Tied to last, like forest vines and faces unmasked. 
Three C-Sections later, I'm still tied and so are you. 

Balls and chains look good on me and you. I could have snapped those off a long time ago if my heart was not being guided and my head was not being ignored. 

To leave or not to leave? 
He loves me, he loves me not. 
I hate him, 
yet I stayed. 

For years like a geometrical entity taking shape. It bends. It doesn't break. How the hell did it not break?! 
How the hell 
did we 
not break?!

A woman shared our vows with an audience of abundant numbers almost thirteen years ago. 
We laughed and danced and drank Bud Light and White Zinfandel -- kinda funny looking back. 
I chatted it up with friends and family (many who have since said goodbye). 

We promised 
to love only 
each other,

To be only with one another. 

Then, we hopped in his Blazer and got Del Taco drive through in white dress and tux. 
It's exhausting marrying the man of your dreams. 

There is nothing I regret 
(though I do wish our childhood pranks were not revealed! It must have been the Faith & Tim song and sweet, all you can drink, wine).

Today I'm much older and wiser, I believe. Before I fell, now I catch. 
You and me made promises to keep. 
I said yes. 
I still do. 

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Headline Poem 6/22/14 -- Serendipity

I read a headline today about a new Smartphone watch being released in Tokyo calked 'Veldt Serendipity.' Here is today's poem. 


Waffles but no syrup, I tighten my pj bottoms 
And head out the door only to
Run into the boy I've longed to 
since he broke up with me
In grade three 
I reach for the bottle, only to find
A note and a number placed neatly behind. Do I call or ignore these digits I see?
It could be a trick, or a thing meant for me. If I call hoping maybe by mistake this will lead 
me to discover something great
Like penicillin, or the microwave or 
Perhaps a word hard to translate. 
Let's see!
I decide not to call,
feeling quite strange. Just then 
I realize the card has a name. It's the name of my first dog, but with a silent E. Seems she's still smiling down on me. 
No-syrup serendipity! 

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Headline Poem 6/21/14 -- Tonight at dinner

Today is the Summer Solstice -- the longest day of the year. We celebrated with a great meal at a small mom n pop restaurant in the desert. Here is today's poem. 

Tonight at dinner 

I watched
aging couples, nimble, once vigorous 
sip what used to be swallowed. 
I felt      young  and      full of teeth
surrounded by sagging hands 
covered in jewels and spots of age. 

     Sorrento and Capri, the Taj Mahal (remember Phyllis and Fred whom we met in the summer of 64'? We kept in touch until the twins were born and then they lost the farm and moved away. Last I heard, Tom was in a home and Phyllis's girls were all doing fine), and 
     The Great Wall. 

The couple sitting intimately close to us chatted respectfully, listening as the other spoke, patient as the orders took on a life of their own -- low voiced inquiries of dressing type, and a delicate request for a few extra napkins beforehand. 

They were the only couple in the restaurant talking to each other. I wondered if they were married since it appeared to be an exception. So rare. 
But then I eavesdropped on their conversation about funerals and portion sizes, and determined that yes they were. 

As my husband and I dished up five plates, refilled waters, and laughed at each other in the middle of our kind of crazy, her eyes met mine. We smiled. I looked away. And then I heard her whisper to him, "I can tell they're a good family," 
and I felt full. 

Friday, June 20, 2014

Headline Poem 6/20/14 -- A warmth like no other

Enjoying a day in the desert. It is 104 degrees. Headline-worthy as far as I'm concerned, but normal for late June. 

A warmth like no other 

As a child, I longed for something other than what I was given. 
Unintentionally, I craved water when I was handed dry soil. 

I hated 
the miserable heat and dead 
of the desert.  
I detested their strength. The roots 
and stems mocked me. 
You are ugly, I'd scream. 

I've learned that the stumps and faces
Unique, sun kissed, groomed by 
Her, our Mother Earth,
are beautiful. 
Like me. I seek. 
Solace in her sleeves. 

I look at them 
through eyes of light. 
Now. Gosh why did it take so long?!

It's me that didn't know how to see 
what the desert sun 
and stillness had to offer. 
Melodies of cactus fruit, sweet, and sticky. She teaches us. 

You can swim in and smile through,
and let them stew like strands of silk. 
In tune with a different, magical view. 
It is inescapable, but I like it.  
Piercing, but I crave it. 

Mountains touch the night sky like sturdy pillars -- 
They'll bend if you need them to. 
They'll crumble when they're ready to. 
     they prefer to protrude north,         reaching upward, 
     brown stalks of serenity, 
  exuding a silent sky.  

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Headline Poem 6/19/14 -- In a turbulent storm

A special called The Sixties aired tonight on CNN. Here is tonight's poem 

In a turbulent storm

You called my name
But I let the waves take the sound away 
With the seagulls above 
And the fish below
I wasn't ready
I said no 
The echos were distracting
Was that my voice or ours, or
a combination
Which somehow seems worse (it's better to choose)?
The mermaid multiples and seductive sand
Took a stand finally to reveal a plan. 
Out so 
that both of them can
Swim in the crescent 
Harvest and hidden
Under water land. There is space now for them to see the flesh of each other. 

The eel and the weed of sea 
Rescue thee. Please rescue me. 
She waits 
He waits
In a turbulent storm. For now it is over
Death skipped their door. 
It pours no more. Until it pours again. She's ready. He's sworn in. 
Begin again. Begin again. 

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Headline Poem 6/18/14 -- Cat

A house cat in St. Petersburg Russia snuck into a Lynx's cage at the zoo, and the two animals have become friends. The zoo is now adopting the cat. Here is today's poem based, very loosely on this headline. 


Some days are 
going to feel more 
like years 
your every glance,
your every move,
will make me want to jump 
on the hood 
of your car 
only because you have 
recently washed it 
and there's no rain in sight. 

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Headline Poem 6/17/14 -- Songs are for

Hozier (Photo credit Google Image)
Tonight I read this post about music, and for the last few days I've been singing, real deeply, the line, "take me to church" from Hozier's song with the same title. These inspired today's poem.

Songs are for

Songs are for lovin' 
and sharin' and unleashin' mild and
wild vibrations into the 
moist salty sea air
honey bee curves and swerves,
not fightin' the feelin' and smilin'
all while
lettin' moods linger
like invisible hands
rubbin' and twitchin'
like a rock and roll band --
     guitar fingers floatin' a million miles a minute
     all while he reaches, and she quivers
     and sees it.

Songs are for clappin'
for your favorite
team even when they're losin' and makin'
an embarrassing
you remember what was playin'
in the background when it rained
on the day
you decided to stay
behind while he moved
your life to the side. 
It's the music that floats and jiggles
that laughs and triggers, remindin'
us to 
the crazy, tunneled ride
the picture perfect nightstand and
lamp shade that hides
dark and light. 

Songs are for shakin' in your boots
after spending a frightened night
riding (too closely) beside a man
you swore you'd never be able to justify
to them (or him or you).
Stunned within,
the song plays on,
though by now the words
are unclear.
You attempt to make sense of
the noise, and the chords, but then gently
they change
into evening, like the sunset
warm with blood and beatin' and
regurgitatin'. On the camel, she rides.

Pretty soon you're unafraid of the
music that may fade
because no matter how low
and far away from home you go,
tunes for today
and from yesterday
never completely go away...

Monday, June 16, 2014

Headline Poem 6/16/14 -- City Hall Riverside, Ca

Tonight the USA beat Ghana in World Cup pool play. I happened to be downtown while the game was going on, so I missed it, but wrote this based on what I saw. 

City Hall Riverside, Ca 

I rode my bike downtown today,
passed the court house 
and a food truck
thick with smells of hot dogs and grilled onions. 

I watched as families circled and swirled
through jail and bail bond doors 
distracted but 
     Loyal patrons doing their time,
     obeying the electric blue sign 
     that screamed 
     OPEN, come in. 

A woman sat under city hall, 
reclined slightly 
against her bag and jacket, 
and invisible wall. 
Her belongings were stacked and dirty, but neatly placed. 
She was prepared for a disaster, 
an all nighter, or an easy escape. 

She wrote diligently on a piece of paper
decoding her 
most prized possessions. 
Her thoughts. 
I looked over her shoulder, quickly, and intrusively as I rode by. 
Her letters ran together -- 
blue trees and half moons 
without space. 
Jumbled, cramped, and
running out of room. 
Single file, 
like her bottles,
but worth something that

I wanted to read her words. 
I wanted to know if they were words. 
I wanted to sit next to her and ask if she wanted to be heard, 
instead I rode on. 

A couple walked by wearing matching soccer jerseys, 
and I wondered what 
writing woman knew 
Their Game. 


Sunday, June 15, 2014

Headline Poem 6/15/14 -- Father's Day Part 2

My husband Scott and our daughter Skye
Yesterday, in honor of Father's Day, I wrote this Part 1 poem about my daddy and me at age six when he died. And, today... Part 2 dedicated to my husband. As I fell in love with the next most important man in my life, made beautiful babies, this age of six began to leave its mark in ways I'm still trying to understand. Even as I write this, I am learning more about me, and my favorite man.

Father's Day Part 2

When my daughter was born, I started to push
harder than I ever had before,
because I was afraid of loving you
and having what happened to me, happen to her.
The man I chose to worship and adore,
I feared would be no more...
so instead of holding you tighter and
bringing you in,
I built a wall of dried clay and mud,
and struggled to let you in.
We still loved,
but we spun and swirled in different directions.
We struggled to stay connected.
We didn't deserve it, but I thought we did.
So you ran away,
to the dog house of your youth,
you excused yourself,
and withdrew.
You who I chose above all others,
who loved me as a mother
and more than any other.

You will explain this all one day,
but in the meantime, I have a few things to say
about the man you are today.

My husband Scott,
father, lover, friend, and son --
you are a man of integrity and heart.
You read books about believers and mountains and art.
You lay down a blanket if our babies are cold,
you love to hold us, and cook, and laugh, and run.
I look into your eyes and I see a future so bright.
You are the man I need morning, noon, and night.
You are a part of me and I a part of you.
Our skin and souls and intuitions are connected to the wind.
I honor and respect you.
I love you, and will never shorten that phrase again.
Because once you find what we've found,
you never let it go.
Happy Father's Day to you, who I adore.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Headline Poem 6/14/14 -- Father's Day Part 1

My daddy Will and I, 1980
Tomorrow is Father's Day. It is not a hard day. It is not an easy day. It is a changing day for me, as I learn and grow. Tonight's poem is inspired by this holiday, and a few of my own memories. I decided it belongs to be put into two parts. Here is Part 1.

Father's Day Part 1

When I was four my childhood consisted of
travel and adventure and two parents in love.
There were no wheelchairs, or diseases,
my daddy had all of his hair,
and floated around his veterinary hospital
on his magic, spinning chairs.

When I was five I started to learn new words
like cancer and Scripps and chemotherapy,
began to recognize that something was happening,
to my family,
though I didn't know what.

I was a baby then, as my daughter is now.
Wise beyond life years, but fragile and unclear.
A juniper tree with roots deep,
Strong and courageous,
but unable to see
beyond me.

When the hospital bed came home with my daddy, I was confused.
He was so strong. That is not something he needs to use.
Why was his own bed, that he shared with my mom,
no longer enough?
Why couldn't we run and jump under the covers to play rough?
He was a doctor. He fixed animals. He could lift up
our entire house.
I acted out,
and threatened to run away. I wanted to make him get up out of bed,
and begged for him to brush my hair (even if it would look bad).
I felt him slipping away.

I watched her cry, and wondered if it was because she knew
he'd never be able to be a daddy to me and you,
and that our days of wrestling on the floor
would come no more,
that our time together was ending, and that was going to be it.
I'd have a daddy until the age of six.
There was nothing I could do.

Age six buried itself under my skin.
I've kept in there for safe keepings,
like a treasure, like a bone -- sweet and savory, and all mine.
A place for me to go
when I want to sit and chew and think and be alone
and then re-bury it in soft dirt.
Thirty-one years later,
I am digging it up in remarkable ways. I am moving it, and licking it,
and throwing it around.
But I refuse to ever put it back in the ground.
It's on the surface now for me to share and display.
It's not a bad thing.
For this age of six,
is beautiful and free,
and I'm learning to embrace this
little piece of me.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Headline Poem 6/13/14 -- Tonight While You Watched

Tonight, the LA Kings won the Stanley Cup. Here is today's poem. 

Tonight While You Watched

Tonight while you watched 
men race across 
ancient glaciers, 
unfolding through frozen centuries,
like museum ants
marching in place 
genuine and on display
(waiting, waiting),
I took in the warm breeze 
watched a beautiful baby sleep. 

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Headline Poem 6/12/14 -- Tattoos & Rosaries

Tonight's poem is based in this BBC story about tattoos --

Tattoos & Rosaries

You have both though
It's clear they are all you've had 
at times 
In your life. Still you climb 
through the rain and vines and salt and limes. 

to the highest degree that 
is right for you 
and me. I see. 
You be you and I'll be me and in the end, we will both win because
Dragons and Shakespeare and Mickey and friends last 
For what could be forever. 

We call each other out and up and 
Fling mud and then sup 
And after all that's said and done, 
in the end,
We have tattoos and rosaries 
to share and didcuss. I like them. 
He smiles 
As we walk. They suit us. 
They suit us just fine. 

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Headline Poem 6/11/14 -- The Thirty-Seventh Tuesday

A couple of things inspired today's poem: there are plenty of graduation headlines, and as the school year ends for me, I reflect on my teaching and learning journey. It's time for new beginnings and new paths. It's also time to say thank you for those who have traveled the same road as me, directly and indirectly, even if temporarily.  

The Thirty-Seventh Tuesday

A year of lessons and discussions 
led to the final exam,
though the tests are never done. 
It's time for graduation 
And for me to go 
in a different direction, changed 
yet the same. 

I appreciate the growth,
and the time it took
To influence me with
piles of notes and books

     knowledge has a way of seeping in
     to the skin
     of those who let it

It is impossible to learn and not teach
And to teach and not learn
This I know -- 
none of it makes much sense
unless we can live it. 

So I do
And see
it's possible 
To be 
compassionate and alive 
at the same time 

For that
I tip my hat,
say thank you, 
and whisper, okay, then... 


Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Headline Poem 6/10/14 -- How many dead?

There was another deadly school shooting today in Oregon. Today's poem is based on the tragedy. 

How many dead?

How many dead 
Before we assemble the
Courage to put 
Life ahead of sin
Fullfillment in front of profit
And kindness before revenge

Before we admit defeat and 
     execute   a   plan

To open 
the sack 
of demented rings 
of fire
And stop laughing 
at the sink
And ignoring 
the swim?

The boat. The plane. The windmill. 
All are flying and swirling 
Creating constant commotion and emotion
And devastation and relapse. 
     It must end. 

We must demand things change. 
Because there are
     Too many headlines. 
Of the same. Dead 
at the hand 
of another. 
Get outraged and 
     call on the bluffs. 
It's enough! 

Grass wants to be green, not red. 
We are all tired of red. 

Monday, June 9, 2014

Headline Poem 6/9/14 -- Recognize

It's graduation season. Cheers! :) 


Socrates said,
It is the wise who recognize 
they are unwise. 
of course,
I have no advice. 

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Headline Poem 6/8/14 -- Dear Hillary

Hillary Clinton is in the news a lot lately. She has a new book out, is discussing her husband's former affairs, her possible run for president, and an interview with Diane Sawyer airing tomorrow night where "nothing is off limits." Here is today's poem/letter. 

Dear Hillary,

You are on my mind. I judged you hard and unrelentingly. Unecessarily. Unfairly. 
Today, I am writing, woman to woman, to say I'm sorry. 

Although you will never meet me, and I could die a proud woman never having shared this with you, I want you to know that I apologize. 

I thought you were weak. 
I thought you were desperate. 
I thought women who stayed with men who betrayed were broken. 
I know now
that it takes a strong woman 
with an incredible heart 
open wide 
with the ability to forgive, 
to live wholly, willing to 
Tirelessly and Constantly
put the pieces back together, 
rearranged by mistakes,
to create 
a beautiful picture that makes 

It takes an angel. 
It takes a goddess. 
It takes a soul wise to decide 
To support a man who strays. 

You have my respect, which long ago you lost. Today, I send you a little of mine, along with courage, because although right now, I need my own, I imagine, even after time, you can use some. 

Yours Truly,

Saturday, June 7, 2014

Headline Poem 6/7/14 -- In my dreams

Tonight James Taylor is playing in LA. This inspired today's poem. 

In my dreams

You are with me and me alone
You do not split your time
In my dreams we are 
Whole and complete
I do not take a back seat. 

We are in love, 
real, genuine, deep, lovely love. 
Not just 
physical madness. That's easy to have -- anyone can be anything you want them to be in emails and on the surface 

Get off the phone, go to a concert, 
share the load (and a home) 
All while getting along and 
being kind and calm. 

That is the love I want 
when I dream and when I'm awake. 
I don't want fake. 

Friday, June 6, 2014

Headline Poem 6/6/14 -- Son, that's a lie

Today's poem is inspired by this story about a life lesson passed down from fathers to sons. 

Son, that's a lie

There are some from the
promised land who will tell a man
Not to dream while awake,

to be a snake 
who coils 
and breaks 
those who hesitate. 

lie to you. 

They say you're supposed to be dangerous, and that you should ignore your broken wings, and continue to fly. 
They say to close your eyes 
to make room
for anger and revenge 
and tough ass things. 

Son, that's a lie. 

Men cry. They must 
weep tears of truth which
Drip of wholeness and honesty
And integrity and continuity. 
Men do not deny their own eyes. 
And while their sons watch, they embrace
The salt that is released. 

Our tears feed the earth, mixing with the dirt. We need them. We must feed them. 

Forgiveness looks good on you;
it makes your skin softer. It makes your mind clearer. It makes your red lights turn blue. 

I adore this side of you. 
Don't be a fool who 
let's the rake hit you in the face 
with deception and masked masculinity like a slime's revenge. 
Green men who banish tears are not free. Women who condone those tears 
live in fear of 
Being weak. 

Climb to the mountain top with eyes that shine and lungs that knot 
And cry -- 
There is NOTHING more beautiful 
than a heart sculpted
like a canyon by water and ice
Unafraid of the flight,
Surrounded by kindness and sensitive matter!

Eagles will crave your presence. Hummingbirds will crave your light. 
And if you stand next to a man who ignores you in the night, and chooses to fight -- 
take the flight
To a place of solitude 
and fresh brewed mistakes and lay
On leaves and grass and think. 

Go where people welcome you. 
Go where you'll feel awake. 

And then, son, once you've had a taste... 
Share this lesson with delicate haste. 

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Headline Poem 6/5/14 -- A Calf on Hollow Road

Tonight, I came across a story about a little brown calf on an educational website in Scotland. It inspired today's poem. 

A Calf on Hollow Road

know he is a new calf 
too weak to walk alone
Who only wants a teat to suck
To be nurtured and loved,
But it's growing cold 
and I've got places to go
And I'm afraid if I stay to love him,
He'll die anyway,
and then what? 

I have a farm and a lodge 
and a hay stack ten feet high 
with one less mouth to feed. 
And then there's mine. 
And I'm afraid I won't want to eat. 

So I starve in preparation 
for the day 
he leaves,
knowing  it's a long trek and
he needs me. The earth needs me. 
I'm afraid I'll be unworthy 
by being 
miserable and aggressive 
Hollow and Mean. 

Because I know all he wants is me. 
And content. 
   even if he  
      stays today
And tomorrow, 
  and   the   next,
I'm not sure that's 

The truth is, 
love   is   the 
  that    surrounds   

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Headline Poem 6/4/14 -- Tossed

Today's story about 800 baby bodies, long dead, found in an Ireland home for unwed mothers, is extremely heart-breaking. 


Tossed aside and

Like garbage 

rodents and earthworms, and dirt. 
Piled too high. 

dreams unfulfilled. Clerks and bankers and explorers and mothers and fathers not. 

Angels who 
will never be 
or lied 

in decay. 

The arrogant bastards who run 
a place 
may still walk this earth, 
but the world knows 
and we don't 
a face. 

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Headline Poem 6/3/14 -- Feelin' Good

Today's poem is inspired by a headline about music. I'll post the link later, but here is today's poem. 

Feelin' Good

I can tell I'm feelin' good because I'm smiling
Relaxed, soft smiles, smooth around the edges,
Not forced and fake like a pharaoh King or Queen,
But alive and wide like my four year old self wrestling on the floor till I can't take it anymore. 

I can tell I'm feelin' love because my heart 
Is warm and cozy, like a bright sunrise unafraid of the dark and noise. Shhhhh do you hear that? It's the sound of listening, 
not speaking. 
Not stiff and crisp like an apple tree (although it bears good fruit). 

can tell I'm feelin' alive because I 
Reality and sparrows in the trees and hummingbirds swirling by. 
They fly looking for the journey, not for the land. The pictures match the scene drawn in the lines of my hand. Finally. 
My home is a place where we look each other in the eyes, and wear each other's boots. Because it's silly and fun. 

I'm feelin' good because the music 
throughout the day, and when we dance and spin, we predict each other's moves. Mostly, I'm feelin' good because when I decide to dip, I know someone's arms will 
Catch me. 

And in the middle of it all, you write me love notes with stick figures and mountains and stars and fish and bridges and our initials in the sand, and I know it's all gonna be alright. It's all gonna be alright. 

Monday, June 2, 2014

Headline Poem 6/2/14 -- June Choices

(Photo credit Mystic mamma)
I read this today about how the theme for June 2014 is CHOICE. A few things resonated with me. Particularly: "Every challenge that is brought on by a choice that is not yours can turn into a choice that is yours."

June Choices

Songs fueled by sorrow will be waiting tomorrow,
and the day after that. 
They are patient. They don't mind.
They weren't written to be sung 
every day. Even they need a break, 
a change of scene, lyrics fresh and clean. 

In June I choose to sing along to a different tune. 
Their choices chose me. 
I understand that. Shockingly, 
I welcome it. Today, (It's fair to ask me in a week) and all the way through to thirty. 

Victims and martyrs stir in the hollow bottoms of gin and tonics, lined up in a row,
and in the chopped and graying hair swept off the barber shop floor.
Those songs count.
Those songs matter.
They make men and women gather, and rally, and weep.
For June, my choices I must keep. 

Compassion. I choose you. 
You alone can cure a broken heart, 
and there is nothing more promising than not 
aiming to break 
an already broken 
one (even his).

Maybe we do hurt the ones we love the most, a common melody. 
Running south down the interstate, afraid to turn around, knowing it will ease our load -- but June bellows, go!
June says yes.

Nothing hurts like nobody tryin'
Nothing hurts like nobody tryin'

The sixth month is for choice. 
Maybe it's all I can stand
to choose auspicious corridors 
And Kyanite bands. 

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Headline Poem 6/1/14 -- There are certain things

Today's poem is inspired by a headline, but I'm not sayin' which one. Not fair? That's okay... because there are certain things... 

There are certain things

we don't talk about,
but should. 
We scoff and turn up noses and cheeks instead of speak 
We slam the door of discussion
In hungry-for-deliberation faces,
ignoring the knocks of shame and blame,
and in the process lend no neighbors sugar, and deny
Them wine. 
Because they reek, sure, but if
we stopped keeping them 
a secret, silenced like the lamb, 
we'd have a chance to break 
cycles before they began
to knock 
the next 
off their feet, 
With the burden of 
Carrying the weight 
Of these 
certain things
   All  Alone!