Last man standing

We became those,

the last standing remnant of yesterday,

dinosaurs of our existence,

caught between a song and today

for there was nothing else

we could fathom.

We were born this way

so the beauty of each song had to say,

voices without faces

it just was the way it was

and we accepted it that way,

For there was no depth,

no stress,

nothing that got caught up in the way,

and we could sleep at night knowing

we were young

unique,

the last man standing

like the birches in the meadows,

peeling from the outside in,

the scent deep on the air,

we were just that

simplistic like a memory,

got caught in the way.

I sit here today,

the jasmine heavy on the air

like thoughts on the mind,

and tomorrow is yet another day

and it will be what it will be,

and somewhere within,

beneath the cuticle that’s torn,

through each bit of ache

we know it will regain

its strength again.

I know not always the right things to say,

I only can feel what flows like a stream-

slipping past the silent trees that watch

like the nightman waiting for drama,

nothing wicked this way comes

except that which we invite with open doors,

and closed minds,

time drifts down as the night has descended

and a sad country song plays on the disc,

why not me?

and I wonder,

why not?

What we know

John told me ages ago,

like an old time story a memory,

you’ve got to hear this,

means so much,

and I hear the voices now in my ears,

thinking back to that moment

years ago,

bringing it all back on this night

as the wind blows from a different vantage point

a bad world, a mad world

and the wind keeps blowing

the jasmine scent

so unlike bombs in the air

eons away

from what I am surrounded by

and so many changes I cannot quite comprehend.

As he falls, I can only sense

the repeat performance

from so very long ago,

the story of the loss of a man

just like us but not just like us

and I watched his face as he watched mine

above the table each night as he dined

amongst the family that fell

apart one by one

year by year

becoming a story in of itself

of no revelevance

except for those who lived

beneath his stoic gaze.

Did you know I hated him?

For what he couldn’t hold together

and did you know

some days

I hate him still,

although not such a strong hate,

just a mere disinterest at times,

because he represents

something beyond my circle of thought,

like a passing gaze at an accident

that couldn’t help but to happen

but I know he doesn’t condemn,

so not his style,

cause I can listen to my voices,

my Elouise and my Sheldons

who are mired at times where I reside,

and I know we keep company

with this kind soul who could never judge,

after all,

we do enough of that ourselves.

When I ask,

those questions that swirl when I anger,

when patience just doesn’t find me

in it’s eager way,

and the swearing mind has it’s way,

although never leaving the lips,

just the mind, mind you,

it lends itself to its own stories,

tells its own tales…

quite good at that by the way,

but I can still see in my little girl mind,

a man on an ass,

a donkey if one would expect correctness,

who plodded on,

knowing,

expecting,

enduring,

and I wonder why I can’t be

as strong

as humble

as loving

as gentle

and I know because he tells me,

with time it comes,

the acceptance of what is to come

to one

to all

and I’m okay then,

and I can close my mind off

and shut off the noise

and just cry in my silence

for a man who died

like a hundred thousand others

before I became a heartbeat

and I know I am blessed

for he tells me

as no one else

could ever do.

This is his image I knew

and know to this day,

while ghosts haunt me

I still can’t help but to remember

for it was drilled like an endless test,

what we try to escape

will always circle round

to find us in our weakness

and sometimes playing possum

is better than answering the questions

told with angry eyes,

why can’t you be?

why can’t you just tow the line.

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the image that watched me eat, sleep, live….tucked away for years after the fact….I needed no reminders for he dwelled deep within….I still need no reminders, better to leave me to worship in my own way as I chose. One chokes when force fed….I know a few will understand. ❤

Peace floating

Thoughts lay in tiny bubbles

color of worlds imagined deep within

meditate the way into the dreams

set free the dark in the silence of a fast beating heart.

Latent ideas waiting to be tapped

with a gentle push they fly higher

catching the wind and disappearing into the thinness,

she softly whispers her wish into the night.

Hours pass in a solitude

not quite confined yet trapped momentarily by images

yesterday and the fast paced beat of the fear

to consume or expel into the light

there is only one way to go.

She wears the scars of a thousand battles

invisible to the eye of those who peer within

the balm of time is the salve to heal

and the holes will close

leaving only a faint remnant behind,

of a day in the life better left forgotten

like dust motes scattered

and soundless they blow

into the eternity of space and energy,

watching the specks disappear

and tucking away the memory

of release.

Somewhere between here and nowhere

I made it as far as Topeka before my cash ran out. Jumping off the bus in the darkness of this place wasn’t my idea of a life lived free but for now it would do. I glanced at the map beneath a street light, tattered and greasy from use, suddenly feeling like Columbus on a flat world, the crease and drop off a bit farther from where I currently stood.

I found a bench in front of a window with one of those cheap closed signs hanging off kilter, no hours posted but the place was dark. The smell of grease seemed to ooze from somewhere within the dingy windows and assaulted my nostrils in the night cooled air. A breeze picked up, the sound of metal coming towards me as a crunched can tumbled down the street. I sat my bag down and stood up to retrieve the can, my good girl sense of not littering never far. Lifting it with two fingers, stale beer dripped onto the still warm pavement,  I lifted the lid to a nearby trash can to throw the offending article away. In the light I could see the white rice on the lid moving slowly, realizing they were maggots and were everywhere, unhinging my gag reflex as I slipped the can into the darkness of the plastic tub, the smell of death and decay slammed me full value in the nose and I felt my granola bar I had eaten on the bus, rise to the surface of my throat. “Good God, what the hell is in there?” I retched next to the can and as I stood up, saw a hand laying next to the beer can I had tossed in. I leaned over and threw up anything else that had been left in my stomach, wiping my face with my arm, reached for my cell phone. I dialed as my hand shook and finally took a breath when a pleasant voice greeted my ears. “Topeka emergency services, what can I help you with today” and as I looked back to the trash can, frantically trying to compose my thoughts, a shadow moved from the side of the diner and it was then I found my lost voice and screamed.

To be continued…….

When we were small

Through jungles of thick dense mirages

we quietly slip through the darkness seeking

the light of a thousand daydreams

we know lay beyond the realm of youth.

When we were small we longed for age,

to be like those we saw around us like tall trees

and beautiful willowy women who entered rooms

and silence greeted their demure smiles,

jewels dripping from arms and necks

as the music played and the dances began

we watched from behind potted plants

meager in our pajama clad selves,

uninvited to the ball.

We pretended in front of mirrors,

decorating faces with left-over hand me downs

crumbling blue shadows and dried tubes and pots-

and broken glittering necklaces with missing pearls,

we bowed and curtsied and spun with joy

yet somewhere inside we knew it was just play

the tattered gowns and the laughter we endured

on playground fields from the older girls,

we stood with our faces outstretched to the sun,

yearning to be seen

in the overgrown garden of this make believe.

When we were young we longed for more

and as we became the trees so tall

we looked with love at those still small,

remembering the good

and casting out the sad,

now we long for those softer times of quiet,

the moments of innocence before the dark clouds

of want and need and anger became

a fabric of our lives we had not asked for,

we long for that peace

of yesterday once more.

I saw this image and this is what came to mind, no fears my friends, I’m in a good place, sitting in the shade of a beautiful Florida winter? day, listening to the world move in its own special way and just being.

Into the rabbit hole

I felt the sun bearing down on my body, moving the brush back and forth against blue tile as cold water splashes like diamonds upon my skin, I stared into the depths of the azure water, feeling the coolness upon me, spreading peace through me like a gentle storm.

My mind keeps drifting into places I had not thought about for many years, memories of a childhood, of the scent of the sneaker smudged yet shining gym floors as light flooded in from windows two stories above my head, the image of the silken material draped in a perfect circle, its color a drab army green, the parachute that lay waiting for the games to begin.

Children stood around this circle. Talking amongst themselves and laughing and I remember just gazing at the color, how it seemed so foreign there against the brightly colored painted stripes and circles of the basketball court. I did not know what was to happen, standing as a mere spectator around the cloth I watched, waiting patiently. The whistle blew and I felt a hand upon my shoulder, was told to go lay in the middle, the next sacrificial lamb I remember after the fact, but the smiles of friends and the nudges from those beside me sent me forward to become a part of this challenge. The other girl, I do not recall her name, lay beside me in the middle of this silken circle and the children on the edges grabbed hold of the material and lifted. They began to moving around the cloth in a circle, as the material gathered up tighter and tighter, closing off the light from sight and at one point separating me from the other child within this cocoon. The outer children kept moving until they could move no more, the material all tied tight and we lay within, not knowing up from down, locked in tight.

The whistle blew and the command was shouted to work our way out. I remember the kicking and screaming of the girl somewhere beside me beyond a curtain of silk and how I kept flailing and ripping at the fabric, trying to break free. I think I was crying, I think I panicked and in the end, I believe we failed to emerge as expected. I do not remember anything else after that.

As a child I could never wear slippers or night-clothes that covered my feet. My mother would have to cut them off as I would wake drenched in sweat from fighting to free myself, to breathe. This was that feeling again, except it was all of me, in this maddening rabbit hole, no escape, no light. I do not know why this memory keeps lingering today, as I am feeling so very peaceful, under a vast blue sky, working beside a neon bright blue pool. Perhaps it is just in need of escaping onto the paper, to become words so that it can be set free once and for all, to know that I am not a small helpless child and that I can make choices of what I wish to do. To have the conviction and strength I lacked then, to plunge down the rabbit hole and face the darkness I had feared or to remain on the edge and just opt out. Universal reminders taught to self through time and space, and to take one last plunge into the darkness, to turn on the light and know that it will all be all right. I am learning to let go, to dive in and to breathe.

Thoughts drifting

Were stood at a standstill in the harsh light of the sun,

waves of heat rising like a downtown oasis

blanketing life in the haze of a constructed cloud

built of sweat and labor

we slowly inch our way through

as I drift away.

In that space, not here but somewhere close within’

where the soothing wind finds me

like a small craft on an endless sea

or a child in a field of downy tufts

waiting to blow her wish into the skies.

So still yet all around the commotion

of mouths in animation moving fast, devices in hand,

lights that change much too soon

as we try to slip through into the wide open

I hear a melody in my mind

soft and sweet like a lullaby

and I gaze around at the nameless faces

smiling within for I am sitting here in this peace,

while the world rushes all around

I sit here grounded in gentle thoughts

enjoying the moment of the here and now.

I’ve no need to race to the ends of this road,

to play beat the clock and feel the rush

but to just breathe in and breathe out,

escaping into these thoughts that will wait

for the open door and smiling faces

on the quiet street where the spring flowers bloom

and there is room

to move and grow

in an idyllic pace of time passing unnoticed.

It’s always an adventure driving to the closest “big” city, being stuck in gridlocked traffic as the endless construction moves forward, but today I just took the time to be lost in thought, watching the people around me looking stressed and rushed, and felt such a peace to know, we will get where we’re going in good time, there’s nowhere else we need be, and to just enjoy the moment.

Shades of gray

Paper mache thoughts
staircase of memory moving in skies of the mind,
he cuts out the stars they say
building his universe piece by piece,
and hanging the brightest
slightly shrouded in mystery
behind a veil of emotion.
Water winds its way through to find
his toes cautiously testing to find
hot or cold
as he leaves the ripples behind
he watches them undulate into
the common answering wave,
as they slip together along the seam
becoming one they move
in and out from source.
He paints to live
in this world of pain,
wracked by unanswered questions,
he knows where his sail is moving
as he coasts along in the playground of mind,
cutting shapes
he puts them together like his worries on a shelf,
one at a time he stares at them all,
knowing it feels like never enough-
he looks for the guiding star he had lost
to find it resting quietly waiting
where he had always left it,
tucked into the heart.

Cloaked in color

We are what we are

cloaked in the colors we choose to wear

hues to mark the emotion we feel

wrapped tight in the comfort of our choice.

We hold it about us, becoming all we desire-

manifesting the persona we long to be,

draped in the fabric of the lives we live.

Who do we become,

when we slip away for a while into the edges,

the places where there are no faces,

no reflections to mar-

no standard we are set up to be,

just the quiet solitude that comes

when we step aside and sit awhile-

contemplating our todays and the meaning

of each feeling that cascades like silk,

moving over us like a curtain shuts out the light.

We rest here in the crook of this place,

poised on the edge of darkness we peer in-

hoping to see just a little bit more

to feel a little bit more than this cavernous echoing place,

we remain until ready-

and we push aside the ties that bind,

unwrapping our hearts as we cautiously peer about-

knowing that the colors have become

just a small fragment of ourselves,

and our thoughts rush naked into the void

slipping through the cracks where the light still shines,

and emerging from the cocoon of life

decked in our finest selves,

eager to become a part of it all once more.

 

Like light

We weave our way into this season of light,

marigold days with sun gracefully settling

before we are ready

to let go the warmth of moments.

Cut-out thoughts like paper dolls dancing

upon dying leaves left underfoot,

the scent once broken spills into the mind

stirring remembrance like bread dough in a bowl,

rising higher with the warmth found.

Eyes closed against the glare of forward motion,

we turn round and spin in the element of this second,

27 minutes past the hour and falling behind

yet unaware, somewhere within

life’s clock that drives us hard

like demons close behind

chasing us into the chaos,

if we but stop and stand strong in thought,

our conviction is thus,

relishing this everything

as another minute passes

and 32 left before we roam.

With a light step I shall move

not pressed onward, but lost in this very second,

inhaling the scent as the day unfolds around me

and grey skies block the mighty bulb above,

switch turned off for now

but knowing someone will come along

and turn it back on once more.

I will cast my silhouette against the morning sky,

giving praise for all in my grasp

and blessings for each day that shall come

I dance in the universe unbound.