Gonna bounce with my crew today
make our own sunshine
music dance sing drum play
create a world that’s fine
escape the plutocratic drone
of fear, insanity, despair
we’re bopping in a rhyme zone
and fun our only prayer.
The Tide Is Now Turning
“To follow the way of water is to return to one’s spiritual essence.” — Hua-Ching Ni, The Book of Changes and the Unchanging Truth
“Be!” My grandson commands, so
I look closely with him at a puddle.
Present in this very moment
that stretches beyond time and space,
our hearts connect, pulsating
with this vibrant aliveness.
An insect is floating, and I conclude
it is dead, but he says,
“Bee!” again, and gingerly
fishes it out to rest in his palm.
The water drops off and the bug
stirs, drying its wings from the newfound
land of a toddler’s finger.
We have been talking about gentleness
with living beings, hugging trees.
And now his inquisitive focus
feels the creature step daintily
over his skin, as if showing
gratitude for salvation. I am watching
that wasp-like abdomen as it quivers,
worried that this love-fest
will turn ugly. I teach respect
and yet I vibrate with memories
of wicked inexplicable stings.
He turns his finger and the exploration
continues but when he looks to me
in doubt, I say, “Fly, bee, fly!”
and whisk it off into the air.
We stand here like herons,
our feet in the water, yet rooted
in the earth, our faces lifted to the sky,
celebrating a tiny flight
with exquisite concentration,
and he says again, “Be!”
Soundcloud recording here.
Dedicated to the magical Eva
We practice the great art: embrace
what arises in our widest place.
In wordless zest we see
who takes the reins and drives
me through each shadowed face.
We relegate gregarious
inclinations to conflate
Whether she is eight or some past life,
ancestress or an archetype,
are these chains she holds.
We see her vigilance wary
yet her power to subsume–
all my personal space set
Our container holds
witness on the beach
building multidimensional sand
castles in our reach.
We are here
as the light reveals the shackled,
shackler and more,
the very chains, the dungeon floor.
We peer through
the acrid smoke, the gasp
of rattled lungs. We find the one
who traces spirals on her
palms, while seeming bound.
The treasures found! As if
a stage, the script blocking
the exits and the entrances in time
locking it all
and still I’m circling
to meet myself at last.
The past survival story
of the wise witch in her
The residues of pain
I count as gain.
Healing dances through the sleep-
less night, energy released
from places deep must find
the way. Obstructions melting.
I’ll be okay.
Soundcloud recording here.
To all the disappearing and the disappeared.
In these days right before he
becomes unhinged, medicated
beyond distractions, now the side
effects come crashing in
the decrepit hovel he drags along
sheer weight of dread and
fear and curdled anger
leaking in places long
forgotten, out of sight,
all of the life juice
that longs to sparkle
the doctors up the dosage
Would an electrician say
the only way to brighten
this dim room is rip it
from its foundations?
The ancestors call, childhood
trauma drumbeats. Agony.
All of this not hearing
deliberate and focused:
don’t look here
In Star Wars films he watches
the Deathstar destroy a planet
and only those who know The Force
pause and grieve
just a momentary stumble, gasp,
hold the heart before the fight
resumes. Resistance the imperative.
While rooted in our only earth,
drinking the poisoned air,
breathing the toxic water
right before he becomes unhinged,
madness descends and we swear
we are here, watching the unnourished
Listen on soundcloud.
As an instrument, multidimensional,
incomprehensible, even insensible,
I play on your senses, dissonant.
I’m gregarious, wannabe hilarious.
It behooves me now to be a bit
fastidious, clearing the space
web stretching between us.
I’ve found it’s wiser to decipher
yeah, I sometimes speak in code,
don’t mean to goad
but as a child I had to layer
my dissent, to sound mysterious
to hide my serious task
I chose harmonious masks
(a fight was lethal
I needed peaceful.)
Learning how to be nicer
while simmering like lava
a volcano, gonna explode
the mother lode for a poet
pluggin’ in, my word guns loaded
spittin’ fire and complainin’
’cause what’s normal is weird
unnatural. Fragmented cultural
we hover, vultures staring hopefully
the food we see
poison seems to be
the only thing that we can eat.
And all the while you are happening
inside of me, pure energy.
What I most need to say is
I serve you.
You are the truth
coming into my face, fully embraced.
What life needs to heal
open and real. I finally feel
that myth of separation
We are whole.
We are aglow.
Out of control.
Soundcloud link: here.
“I do not like that man. I must get to know him better.”~Abraham Lincoln
Their brand burns deep into my brain,
a forced filter to inform my knowing.
My life inscribed by words to the wise,
imbibing heady spirits they’ve poured
bypassing my heart. Seeing through glass
darkly with these prescripted eyes.
The lakeshore is vivid today only.
Golden-yellow gleams sun’s tribute.
Scarlet-orange carpets green.
Purple-mahogany deep drama.
Every tree a poem
deserving 1,000 new words.
No need to crowd
the lines of gawkers missing
by an hour because some bone-
head saving daylight sends
them into cubicle-cages
through the darkness
wealth-seekers know. Sliding
over my rough spots like butter
while I’m too tender to resist.
I absorb it, changed, make lists
of ways I can succeed. Until a friend
requests, tune in,
and suddenly I’m walking the devil’s
backbone and this is no place
for sleep. Every word I know a white
man’s barb into my flesh,
it only hurts when I begin
to pull away
and then, oh damn,
there is no easy way out.
Tree praise blazing
in the center of my
It doesn’t fit.
Just like me
so glorious we stay.
Inspired by: List, Heady, Glass and Butter. and the Devil’s Backbone in Pine Hills Nature Preserve, a 100-foot-high stone ridge barely wide enough for the trail to cross. (Photo courtesy of https://visitindiana.com/blog/index.php/2019/07/10/pine-hills-nature-preserve/)
Continue reading White Men Keep Telling Me What To Do
Four ducks swim past the point,
hens intent exploring
newly exposed land. Teals guard
both entrances to the bay, dismiss
me in this perfect calm, the tranquil
sky filled to capacity–what will be
the tipping point to start the storm?
My friends and I discuss hunger and
how we misread our bodies’ cues after
so many decades of television programming
addiction to sugar. Wistful for a child-
hood we never experienced. What if
our mothers hadn’t been sold a magical
formula superior to her milk? We long
for sweetness in the corrupt society
fed by distorted lies. We doubt our
super powers; everyone else seems so
much more qualified, selling their
patented knowledge. In his perfect camo
feathered along the fall grasses, one
mallard watches, capturing my attention
while the others dive hidden from view.
Just so I sit, my old
woman façade obscuring our descent
into the true depths of being
where we find each other, sweet-
hearts bursting essence strong
beyond the flimsy stories of separation.