Sunday, March 23, 2014

He Wasn't Dead

Word in the gossip pool:
he lost it, 

couldn’t be trusted, 
barely hanging on, 
wishing he was dead,

but when I called

he sounded great,
clear headed, compassionate,
and completely involved.

Better to stay in touch one-on-one
then to rely on family gossip
to fill the gaps

and all it took 
was one 
phone call.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Life After Birth

In a mother's womb were two babies. 
One asked the other: 

"Do you believe in life after delivery?" 
The other replies, 

"Why, of course, 
there has to be something after delivery. 
Maybe we are here to prepare ourselves 
for what we will be later. 

"Nonsense," says the other. 
"There is no life after delivery. 
What would that life be?" 

"I don't know, but there will be more
 light than here. Maybe we will walk 
with our legs and eat from our mouths." 
The other said.

"This is absurd! Walking is impossible. 
and eat with our mouths? Ridiculous. 
The umbilical cord supplies nutrition. 
Life after delivery is to be excluded. 
The umbilical cord is too short." 

"I think there is something 
and maybe it's different 
than it is here." the other replies, 

"No one has ever come back from there. 
Delivery is the end of life, and in the after-delivery 
it is nothing but darkness and anxiety 
and it takes us nowhere." 

"Well, I don't know," says the other, 
"but certainly we will see mother 
and she will take care of us." 

"Mother??" You believe in mother? 
Where is she now? "

She is all around us. 
It is in her that we live. 
Without her there would not be this world." 

"I don't see her, so it's only logical 
that she doesn't exist." 

To which the other replied, 
"Sometimes when you're in silence 
you can hear her, you can perceive her.

I believe there is a reality after delivery
and we are here to prepare 
ourselves for that reality...."

An e-mail sent from a 78 year old nun. 


Thursday, March 20, 2014


I don’t know her music
but she also seems popular
for her outrageous costumes
making artistic statements

seeking unabashed creativity
encouraging others to think
or at least be willing
to stretch boundaries.

Teaching self acceptance
to wonder at one’s self
however pretentious
to irritate or amuse

but as long as the cameras
flash and the public
wants to know what she’s doing

she will continue
without mercy
extolling her virtue

marking her place in history
and with that
there is nothing
more to say.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Accidents Happen

He had been a champion
catering to every little need
making sure I was comfortable

then he moved the ottoman
with a single shift
and tore the nail from his big toe.

It looked like he had opened the hood
of a 1956 Chevy
he screamed, I cried

then he pushed the nail back in place
wiping off the few droplets of blood

and all the pain I had been suffering
seem to pale in comparison
and I stopped complaining.

I guess the mystery of the cross
is to bear witness to the crucifixion
making life sufferings manageable

compared to real pain. 

Monday, March 17, 2014

A Cloak Woven in Pain

He smiled, said everything was alright
but the magnitude of loss 

permeated the air around him
his shoulders bent under 
the weight of the heavy coat

whose threads of pain 
crossed stitched and knotted

were dripping from open wounds 
scabs never healing the injury 

and in his smile the shortfall of hope
his eyes seeking the promise of a loving god
but each step crushed by this mantel of pain. 

Saturday, March 15, 2014

The Gambler’s Cadillac

He drove a shiny new Cadillac
sporting leather seats 

and luxurious upholstery

the car smelled rich but in a month it was gone
so was his wife’s diamond ring
and the living room furniture

but his persistence paid off 

and in a little while she was 
wearing furs and jewels again.

He settled for a Studebaker to transport
his family but like the seasons 

in a little while that too was gone.

He took up boxing to make a buck
used his winnings to gamble as he was inclined
sometimes living flush, other times lean

then his health started to suffer
at his lowest point, so did his marriage 
but yesterday he drove up once again 

in a brand new Cadillac 
...a convertible this time. 

Thursday, March 13, 2014

The Road To Peace

Sometimes the only way to someplace
is through uncharted land
cutting through the tangled thorns

before stepping on the new terrain
where flowers bloom and streams run clear
where wild life thrives in harmony.

Yet, even in this utopia
the give and take of life
is designed to create a balance. 

Learn to trust in the most violent storms
and know god is present and life

will go on... with or without you. 

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Saving Water

Grew up in a desert land
don’t need much water to survive
if I drink too much I pee often
providing moisture for other living things.

I adapted to dryness like the cacti
a little prickly and comfortable alone
better able to cope with the coming drought
than the people who live near the sea.

Their cells demand lots of fluids
need to immerse themselves in water,
they seek green environments 

while I thrive in the barren landscapes
among the mesas and Joshua trees.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Shrinking World

There was a time when
clothes seemed to shrink
but now it's the world growing smaller

steps that lead to the sidewalk
are too high, the distance 

to the curb too far

the weight of a bag 

of groceries, cumbersome
and heavy, 

the height of a cabinet too far
to reach for the slow 
cooker on the top shelf

the mind still expanding, 
still wonder and search
for ideas and conversations,

many of them recollections
of how things used to be
try not to focus on how 

the world is shrinking
and simple things 

have gotten too hard 
to complete.

Monday, March 3, 2014

One Too Many

The evening started badly
couldn’t find anything to wear
finally settled on the red dress
with the flirty skit that moved when I twirled 

my three inch heels, 

a diamond bracelet,
a small clutch, 
and I was ready to party.

My date didn’t show,
my girlfriends tried to console me
offered one drink, then two,
by closing I had too many.

I was loud and wanted to fight
but they held me back from wrestling
with a girl who was wearing
a dress like mine.

I screamed out loud, “Let me at her!”
they held me, didn't let me go
I broke away and stood next to the tramp
but realized she was only my reflection
in the bar room mirror. 

Time to go home
wipe my tears, sleep a few hours
and maybe tomorrow figure out
what to do.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Ice Carving

A block of ice, some saws, a torch
and a plan to unlock the sculpture inside.

A faithful team, like a surgical crew,
handing the tools and keeping things clean

change of clothes, a cup of Joe
after the project is completed.

Photos are all that remain when the art
melts and the masterpiece disappears.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Crackle Paint

Spread the canvas in acrylic
smoothing the surface to create a seal

let it dry then paint a landscape 

or still life with oils

after a while the oil will crack 

giving the painting an ancient look
like from a master of another time

your eyes will go back to the texture
noting the patterns and getting pleasure

from crackle paint on your artistic design.