desert color

Flowers in a desert are not seen for years-
their exaggerated colors a faded memory.

In the wake of a raging storm-
flowers burst forth to fill a void
forgotten until it was full again.

choking

words sit in my mouth-
too many pieces of gum chewed til the flavor is nearly gone.
I can’t swallow the spit or blow a bubble- there has become too much to say.
the gum just sits.
words choking me- demanding to be set free.
in my mouth I feel I can not take anything back in, but will puke the emotion.
a geyser of bile that will no longer and never more be contained.

so so so many years that I could not speak my mind for every reason that was not mine but to keep another happy.
what would people think?
who would I make mad?
what if my words led to me losing my job?
don’t embarrass your child with so much emotion.
don’t make me look bad by telling your story.

and so the words and the stories and the song lust of my survival stayed in my brain-
my heart became heavy with confusion-
why would I no longer release its song?

but now, now the words are allowed to be free and the song bird’s cage is not just opened, but redefined as a home with windows swung wide and doors freed of their hinges.

1/13/2020

travel

I write a lengthy list of locations I want to travel to, but know they are only ports of call for purpose of identifying starting points of adventure and introspection. The particular places I truly want to see are the trails and coasts and perfect gems hidden below the sea-

The parrot fish nursery stumbled across when you decide to investigate coral columns on the edge of a hidden cove under the broad sky of a falling afternoon.

Moments never to be found in guidebooks, but that happen by reaching past your comfort and opening yourself to experience. The places people don’t go because it’s an extra day of travel or the campgrounds don’t have a website. Even with IGTV and YouTube tourist celebrities cracking the world open for all who are too timid to leap without someone else’s lead, I believe there are still places left untouched and those are the places for me.

I don’t want to share the names, but will tell the stories that require people of proper mind- should they want to find where I have been- to follow clues I leave. Roads less traveled do not always start from a divergence in a wood, but they do often lead to a quiet place and time to simply be. That experience- to simply be- is what truly makes the difference.

The world no longer feels still underfoot, but an ever undulating place of space and time with limits leveled only by our insecurities and fears. Reach out and find the places the quiet people know.

yesterday was easter

yesterday was easter
I have confetti in my hair

we visited my family cemetery

against the swift breeze
mother put laundry out to air

stories of sisters arguing over land
they may one day reside inside

two uncles laid at my feet
I poured beer on the blanket
of their decomposed toes

why did you pour out your beer,
my child asked

It’s easter and they are thirsty

nature wins

I’ve seen some great videos of penguins being allowed to roam an aquarium that is shuttered because of COVID-19. Those penguins have gotten a taste of freedom. They won’t forget.

Elephants who broke free during China’s lockdown, found napping in a tea garden drunk on corn wine.

Dolphins visiting people on a dock in southern Italy and swans return to the canals of Venice.

Orangoutangs seen washing their hands, as it goes, they are outrageously good at washing their hands.

People have been forced to slow down and the natural world can breathe free in our pause. With that, we are witnessing the world that sits in the shadow of our world.

the time you don’t have

What can you do in the time that you say you don’t have?
What can you write?
What can you draw?
Where can you walk?
Who can you reach out to?
With all the time we spend scrolling our thumbs …
What could we be learning?
What could we be making?

What, simply, could we be asking of ourselves that instead we do not
even know we are seeking through all the places we won’t
remember each time we draw our finger across the screen?

Next time, next time you think, “I should go for a walk …” or “I should write something” or “I should ask invite so and so tho dinner,” don’t say, “But …” Don’t make an excuse, instead, open the door and move … pick up a pen and write … reach out to your friend and plan. Maybe it’s only 10 minutes or a wisp of the need to see someone, but it’s the onlies and just a bits that add up to the all.

This is your life, don’t stash yourself waiting for something better to show up because you are what you got.

to be loved

to be loved and to love,
simply as you are.

honored
for the inherent validity
of your humanity.

to be desired,
admired,
supported and safe.

to dare a bigger life.

to share a love
modeled on God’s
love for us,
is all that should be asked,
it is really quite simple.

the things you learn

During elementary school drop off, you always know when a kindergarten class has passed through. Parents are hovering and the proud children, who have begun to wipe their own bottoms, with minimal efficiency, have left a waft of odor in their wake. 

wealthy

Mama, what is wealthy?
Wealthy is having shelter, said the mother with no roof

Mama, what is wealthy?
Wealthy is not being hungry at night, said the mother who gave the last piece of bread to her child.

Mama, what is wealthy?
Wealthy is hot water on a cold night, said the mother heated water on the stove.