This Day

I wrote a day in the book of life.

Each step is planned.

The chorus is scored upon each page.

Hear the cymbals crash.

Each phase sequenced into the next as though I’ve scripted a play.

I told stories to myself perfecting each minute.

I skated on thin ice.

Ideas became goals of drafted love letters in my mind.

Achieving was conceivable and the instant I began to forget I remembered writing each moment into the next.

Forging a passport into the whole of what is unknowns the day began dawning.

This day written, a story to live light as the sun burning a scar into core of life.

Forever began where butterflies chase rainbows and all the inequities inside breathed free of any unforeseen tomorrows.

This was supposed to be my day.

Weightlessness became a safe place in the dark.

I saved this day in my mind where the providence of eternity unravels the hopes and dreams we’ve hidden.

Simple became a sunset where the weight of the world took flight and every thought saved the earth.

I am the journalist of humanity where change is the air in the lungs of heaven.

We are only here today and I have written it in the book of life.

Don’t worry and don’t be sad.

We reassure ourselves as we run forward to the future this day will be okay.

Change is what happened yesterday and tomorrow is a fear we grasp looking into the eyes of children who don’t care any more.

My regard for this day is written.

The earth is spinning with hearts that fall out into the vortex of lost souls playing video games and taking needlessly without giving as they text on cell phones.

Youth is no longer young.

Forever is aimless and we are all missing the mark of hope and the hesitation of compassion where one hand holds another.

We are this day.

 

Promises to a Broken Heart

I don’t believe in promises, shooting stars, or rainbow dreams.

I did when I was a kid, maybe because I knew my parents thought it was cute.

Maybe I didn’t know better.

Back then love wore tight jeans and roller-skated on Saturday nights.

Love didn’t hurt back then when winter days were cold and ice cream was a treat.

Pride was a a new pair of shoes and a ride to school in dads new car.

When the front door of life opened I was standing there and I took two steps.

Alone where they promised I would rule the world and the wind held my dreams.

Dreams lie and promises are just nice things people say to each other when there is nothing to say at all.

I promise everyday it will get better.

So I will walk through this journey they call life looking back from time to time to that place

where band aides made the hurt feel better and spring followed the cold winter of a broken heart.

Home

Walk sweetly child, careful where you feet.

In the darkness lurk the torrid current where fate and destiny meet .

In the sunlight a ray of warm will touch your face.

Linger longer and suffer the burning kiss of a contemplative pace.

Step wisely regarding all you call your own.

Time amid the shaded tree is the only place you’ll call home.

Rainbows

Rainbows aren’t real.

Reflections can’t be touched.

I can’t reach the stars and I try so hard to touch the sky.

Where the rainbows shine, I know I’ll miss it when it’s gone from sight.

Where I hold it in my soul.

Because rainbows aren’t real.

So when we dance I’ll sing you the song.

Where rainbows fly and dreams are born.

Wishing wishes on dancing stars.

Where the dark stores the sun.

In the sky that makes the rainbows seem so real in the break of day.

The sun and the skies lie.

Going Home

We’ll roll down a winding road just to feel the wind upon our skin. When laughter dies, well hold each other as you cry. When we’re lonely enough well go home.

Take a breath and take it slow. Going home. Going home.

We’re all looking for someone to share our souls and someone to walk awhile through the echoes of our long agos. We’ll go home.

Don’t blink an eye, take the time to cry. Going home. Going home.

For a time I’ll curse myself for things we’d never done. Everyone holds a dream and dreams don’t last. For you dear I’ll whisper your name as you go home. Going home.

Don’t write a poem, not for me, I’m going home. Going home.

And when the night skies twinkle with stars and fire flies there’ll be no more time, but time it doesn’t last. So my dear, build a bridge to the past and make it last cause I’m going home. Going home.

Take one more breath and take it slow. Going home. Going home.

Tomorrow, no tomorrow’s already gone. The presence of time rages on. I can’t, no I can’t say goodbye not this time. I’m going home. Going home.

Going home one last time.

It’s a Lie – Words Can Hurt Me

Sticks and stones are weapons and words…words can hurt me.

Sticks that break bones cause pain and though I fear the rumors that cause waves in the tide of human nature.

The ocean of forgiveness is deep, yet the failing courage to brave the unknown in shark infested waters I hang my head and stand alone.

I protest the wrong silently in a vein attempt to buy time in a place I chose to be, want to be, need to be.

Effort is the scarlet letter of vengeance pinned to my chest by one born of hatred and bread in the beating womb of evil.

I wear these wounds like decorations.

I will not keep score, for I hold more value in  integrity, more conscience than tears.

Amplifying silent screams of loneliness in a cave of dark lies and intwined disgrace for the words spoken like shells from a 12 gauge thrusting the normal we knew into the cavernous hole of where we never wanted to be,

The failing heart beats slowly now, thoughts clouded in sympathies few dare to offer, so they stare.

Capitalism and Socialism threaten to take over a nation of the brave, yet few care in silence and spread noise on their own porch echoing vibrations in their own hallways.

They won’t come too close.

So I stand so I can be seen and through the changing of the tide rise, rise high and grab the sun by reverberating rays.

I leap over than the words swung low and cowardly.

Know it or not the words, those every words that defeat me impeach me to reach beyond the diligence compacted in their untruths.

Like a carnivorous animal I digest and regress to a place where fairytales and God coexist in a reality conceived by man.

There in the sacredness of what we only hope to know I am sure those words which cut like the thief’s dull knife will slowly retreat with the ebbing of the tide.

There in that place I am free from the words you cast at me.

Taste of Love

Show me how to love deeper like a slow walk in the rain storm long after the sun’s gone down.

Believing the sun can move and forever stands still for just another day.

Revolving around you, music in the clouds little birds dancing to our words.

If only there was more time to taste the excitement under clouds at night.

My nakedness a revealing cold as the emotion in your heart brings us together.

We lock eyes without meaning.

The edge we’re sitting on is a narrow lonely place.

We clamber thoughts of who we are without realizing we are already here in this moment a second becomes a forever we can’t erase.

Where we wish for rainbows we’ve never seen and taste their cotton candy colors like cherry drops.

Our tastes do deceive.

My heart stops grabbing ahold of your despondent soul.

We laugh for a while as I cry silent hoping for a sign.

Maybe tonight I’ll take your hand if you let me.

Love shouldn’t be so hard in a place where there is no second chance at today and love can be ripped away.

Take a walk with me dear one more time in the rain and replay the movement of that still sun as it falls to the ground before I walk away.

Forever goes down as the world moves round and round.

Forever a somewhere only we know because we danced there in our dreams.

Simple life where have your gone.

This taste I’m tasting such salty tears not  candy only bitterness and fear.

Fear illusive and all knowing in the darkness where I silently feel for your hand one last time.

Maybe someday I’ll see you again and we won’t focus on the end.

Remember Being Alone

Remember how we used to be, feet dangling swinging back and forth.

Remember how school days were stress free times of meet me at the slide at recess and did you pass the spelling test.

Remember how our parents told us to look both ways before we cross and when we fell in love we looked both ways, but fell anyway.

We seem to have forgot.

How the summer air was not hot like it is now and riding bikes on unpaved roads exhilarated us like an ocean cruise to a foreign island where only you and I existed.

There on the shore hidden by fronds eating saltine crackers awhile sipping koolaide from a Happy Days thermos saved from last years lunch box we talked about forever and moving far away.

we promise we’d always be together even though it was a lie.

Remember when Saturday mornings consisted of Scooby-Do and running outside to play barefoot at the park.

Swinging until her mother let her come out to play too.

Now, time is not enough and being is less than being seen and heard.

Our lifelines are articulated in grave detail with a presence of disjointed acronyms and verbs out of place.

I want to be not be known. I want to rise up in a world that says because I am not like you I do not belong.

I want to make mountains bow to the majesty of my word, the word I know, that carnal collaboration I have with me.

Remember the esoteric risk of a lie meant she wouldn’t come back.

Second chances were for bingo and kickball not you and me.

Those ostentatious  moments before he picked  you up for prom  and she tucked a stray curl as you looked hopeful into the eyes of a mother who could not believe the beauty she had held safe at her breast short years before was now embarking on independence.

I remember when we stood for a body of people like you, and me, and her, and he. Now we stands for me amid the onlookers and score keepers of a society wrapped up in the angst world of me first, and mine is best and no matter what I matter more.

Remember when there was a simpler time.

Sunday mornings laying across the bed talking on a phone that only reached from here to there.

Remember when hope was hope and not accessible by credit cards, and loans, pay it tomorrow.

Like broken hearts we string on a line in a gray area of what was yours is now mine.

I hope we can remember when for a while longer and spread it like melting butter over a generation of children oblivious to the we in a sweet and savory tomorrow.

I want to remember when voices of hatred were heard by few and laughter resonated in spaces between you and me.

Remember when being broken hearted meant words jotted on loose leaf paper.

Do you remember? Circle yes or no.

That was a time when brokenhearted meant being alone and not traded in like some overpriced car for a newer model.

Remember when love was love and commitment was a word we didn’t have to speak.

When being with you was better than being alone.

 

Grace

Nobel grace I have not as I enter in the room.

Quiet pain is harnessed by the weavers of the twisted loom.

A sunset I may not folly as I reach to take a stand.

Amid the timid laughter my time will arrive as I hold vigilance on dry land.

When love will exhaust me, my presence will known, as a vestige of nerviness and pride in my physical state.

Where did you capture such thunder in a womb of bitter hate.

There resides a meager relic of a sweeter human race.

So forgo the carnal escapade we dissimulate with words shared a like threads of the seamstresses lace.

To craft a vessel unto my pride.

I shall sale be throttled away from glares of those who lied.

I walk in footprints reversed by grace.

No more embittered relics of a time already erased.

Pretty Dinosaur

I told the kids I was a dinosaur today when asked, “Teacher how old are you?”. This self defeating pinnacle of a silent fixation with aging emerged from the depths of my core with a need to accept that which I cannot change. Though I am not a Barbie doll or a famed movie actress, I am alive in my skin. I have needs as do most mortals walking this earth. A need to be admired and loved. A need to accept myself transfixed itself in my awareness with such a force I likened myself to T-rex. The children giggled and laughed at me unaware of my saddened heart. For it it was not for mirrors and the begiling looks of a younger generation as I casually walk the modern shopping mall I would believe myself to be fancy free in a charismatic reality such as the winged butterfly. Maybe I am a yellow daffodil in a meadow of millions unique only to itself as it sways in the early dawn breezes.

Life is not fair to the aging. With time life transforms to a knowing that protects the heart as though shielded against the daggers of junctions, explorations, and love. In love I have learned being alone and the reality of aloneness are both tempered and tempting. Yet. like so many human beings I flounder to the embrace of acceptance from the companion who knows me as well as I know myself. Yet, we barely say hello or goodbye day to day. I wonder if he realizes I am a dinosaur.

Today as the children giggled I chided with a roar and a fierce growl. A small voice beside me looked hard into my face as I set the tone for learning with a cowards repartee of turn to page 7 and show you are ready to read. He did not giggle. He simply stated, “Teacher you are too pretty to be an ugly dinosaur.” It was in that moment my reality collided with the presences of little eyes, and faces hopeful, sleepy, eager, bored all gazing upon me as if I might cry. I simply said, “I am a pretty dinosaur.”

Indeed!

Who knows the virtue of a dinosaur, but the loving teacher interacting with the innocense of childhood in a environment of learning. I will stay there awhile longer amid children who laugh at play and admire the teacher as though she might have a magical force to empower the world even if only temporary.

Today I became a dinosaur and I was pretty. Today reality transformed to a place where I can reside for a while longer in satisfaction I am doing the best I can.

We Are One

Please don’t reinvent me.

Pass by me and admire the handiwork of a God who saw something different for me than you.

Reverse those thoughts of need and want replacing them by strings of butterflies opening fresh from the cocoon of darkened nights.

Like the trail of a shooting star I will shine in the lingering whisper of a wish made in silence in a head full of dreams and fairytales.

I want to be courage in a world where there is fear in those things we cannot see.

I live light in a life where mediocre is the average best and the next chapter of enlightenment is skipped.

Like the opening of circus I arrive five minutes late to catch the attention of the fat man who smiles at me, so afraid of the crowd.

Don’t look down on me if I do not fit the mold of who is best and who is next in your repritoire of runners up and second bests.

Dancing like a whirl wind I will offer little resistance to the minuscule existence of one who dared to subsume long enough to steal a breath.

Pass by me as I walk alone, merging with the expectations of stronger voices and more harmonious choruses.

Leave me there amidst chiding laughter and endless ever afters.

I will define bravery in your moment of contemplated absurdity.

I will get by in this world of birds of a feather pluck each other and if I rise less bald than you I will know I have not resorted to the empirical fortitude of making noise that blends.

In this place as a mime I will dance in a way that masks the love and loneliness of my kind, a kind who beg from the corner, and walk slower, braving the courage to forego wickedness and embrace a rhythm of stillness.

Know it or not we are one in kind you and I with veins full of blood and potential pain.

We are time you and I. One day when you walk alone you will become me and I you.

Stand and make voices jealous of the off key brilliance in a sound no one has heard, yet all stop and listen in privacy so not to be observed aware of me.

Walk by me just once and learn the light over the horizon never really disappears waiting still, following as it comes back around, taking my hand.

We go on and on despite your endeavor to pummel my efforts to breath freely.

Don’t be afraid to call me friend and open your conscience to an recognition that God is in everyone and time supersedes those melancholy moments of poking fun and laughing at me as we pass by.

Take a chance and remember when this day is done we are one.

Because God has eyes and despite the flagrance and turpitude hie love will prevail when to no avail I ask you to whisper softly as I sing out of key.

Tread delicately upon my leaves in the labyrinth where you rein superior for a time unknowing the immenseness of a world that does not know you.

A world where magic can make me a little more beautiful escalating my voice to a sound heard by all nations under the sun and moon.

Then you will realize we are unambiguously one.

Break Stride Son

The eloquence of life is that it is only lived once.

We can return to a place first traveled, never to be new again.

As delicate as a first kiss; although bitterly lingering then forever gone, it can never be new again.

I struggled to say my bolstered son, be one with this life of yours, for it is your only journey through this unrevealed place.

The burdening unknownness will be riddled with firsts and lasts, but as you journey child experience will guide your weakness, your temptations, your life.

I say to you son embrace your insatiable need to quench the thirst of knowing, the desire to hold what cannot be held and admire it from afar.

Linger in the lust of wanting to satisfy human curiosity and grapple with a colloquial substandard renaissance of being present and vastly engaged.

Bridle your stallion son, imagine the path over the majestic mountains and reach for the dawn of mirrored images and scattered reminders resembling, but never becoming what was first and is now last.

Describe and never classify.

Clarity is a void empty of imagination and creative flow. An energy more powerful than words, yet limited by need and pride, hope and misfortune.

Be known my son and believe. You are the forth coming and the last. Your path though it diverge at the bypass of road proverbially less traveled, will be traveled by you like no other.

Perception will deepen what preconception scarcely allows.

Be wise my son and on your journey occasionally break stride and run.

I Still Sing

From the time I could remember having a thought I wanted to be a singer. I was a shy kid. I sang in my bedroom or with the radio in our Barracuda. Man that was a cool car.

A pink bristly hair brush was my first microphone. Mostly I sang in the car. Sometimes daddy would say, “Wow, she has a good voice.” He turned the dial on the radio down mid chorus and everyone would hear a split second of my solo. I got my first transistor radio and I carried it everywhere with me. I was 8 then. That was a great summer waiting for Seasons in the Sun to come on while we sang with the radio on the swings. Eventually we memorized it and the playground was subjected to our repeated duet and sometimes trio when the one or two friends I had shyly made would sing along.

I liked my voice until 4th grade.

I can’t remember the choir director’s name, but I will never forget her face. She was a pretty lady, blonde like me. I had taken home the flyer from school and told my mom and dad. I don’t think they knew how important choir was to me.

I tried out on the prescribed day standing alone at a piano. She said, “Sing the Star Spangled Banner.” A flush of fear washed through me like a giant tidal wave I hoped would pick me up and sweep me out of the room.  I think I sang one word, maybe two. “I stood there as she told the other teacher she would never be a singer.”

Dear God, NEVER BE A SINGER?

I made the “other” choir eloquently called number 2.

It was then I stopped believing in teachers. Broken hearted no one knew I felt anything.

In fact I was a good student, math made no sense and I didn’t belong to a group or clique. My friends were the ones who like me were never chosen for kickball and picked for the team.

I could think in my head and read stories of kids who had magical powers. The balancing act of who we want to be and who we are festering like a boil ready to burst, then quietly subsiding somewhere in the night.

When I was a kid there were no cell phones and iPads. We rode the bus to school and endured the wrath of the “popular kids” who always sat in the back. Things were said face to face and that was a sweet thing, less of the world to see how others perceive.

Kids like me, the quiet ones, kids who only talked one on one with someone who was as quiet as we were. It was a time when kids could be cruel and prank phone calls calling names and heavy breathing left lying awake all night contemplating the bus ride to that prison of learning where the focus wasn’t molecular compound and geometry.

It was a time when algebraic equations like A + B = you can’t sing. I sang still in silent to 45’s and albums until they skipped scratched like the soul developing within me. I still wanted to be famous inside my quiet shyness. Even  when the spark of confidence dies the dream continues to grow.

I didn’t want to become a teacher. It was never a plan. It began as a journey to take me to what I thought I wanted in a place where few careers abound. A teacher of children with wounded hearts like me. Everyday dawned a new day and twenty years from yesterday I am still here standing amid the smoke screen.

I am aware in the now, a child like me apprehensive and scared may enter a door and sit at my table. I am lucid in learning their names, encouraging a smile, declaring learning will be coupled with good and bad days, but learning is loving and patience is the beginning. I ignore what others say about this child in my embrace and in context I uncover the path and pave the way for a child to emerge brilliant with poise. There is no impossibility in being human and in those minutes and days we will forgo the challenge of being in a world that is listening and watching aware more then ever of who we are. We can still sing and despite what they say we cannot do we can show them we will. Today I take a seat in the back. Today I will teach a child to love himself and learn.

Sometimes

Sometimes I get a little eager like when the kids are outside playing and I feel the urge to sing loud and dance.

The words flow off my tongue like Britney Spears, and in that moment I feel the flow of glistening blonde tresses dancing around my cheek.

Pretending as they walk in with their, “What’s for dinner mom?” that nothing insane had compelled me, spatula microphone still in hand tossing fried potatoes.

Then I say, “I’m sorry,” kind of silent under breath still resonating the last chorus of Opp’s I did again.

Once in a while I get lost in a daydream. One of those fantastical moments where mesmerizing and sunset meet for the first time embracing one another like forlorn lovers lost at sea.

The sea luring and vast, calming and eternal. The sea, sometimes calls me.

When I was young the future was a sea and each day a sunset mesmerizing me with possibility.

Sometimes I wonder where possibility has gone.  I never permitted it to leave.

The empty playground haunts the reality of age as I walk past.

Were were friends once time, possibility, and I.

Sometimes I wish for those things I forgot to wish for when I took forever for granted.

Sometimes I cry.

Exhale

I had a dream last night. Even though we are not related I know you.

Like a blueprint of a building we wished to build, but didn’t need to because we can already see the rooms, purple curtains, clothes scattered about the floor.

I dreamt that I had you here beside me even though you are nowhere I can be.

I felt you, the hair on your knee nudging mine as we giggled together, staring at the ground like school kids flirting with forever.

I didn’t want to wake up today when my eyes opened. I closed them tight and tried to go back, reaching for you, trying to feel your warmth.

You weren’t there.

I lay still silent afraid the very breath sustaining me would exhale you further away.

I was safe there in my dream reliving the walk downtown passing people as though we could only see each other. The brevity of the moment drew us closer almost holding hands, gingerly cascading past s=a couple dining, babies crying, we didn’t care.

I am awake now, with the memory of you and a dream like a carbon copy of the most precious moments in a life still moving forward. I take you with me there though we no longer speak. I hear you like an echo from the rolling ocean or the call of the morning dove on the furthest branch. There, out of reach, but alive with me.

I don’t speak your name, but I know you still.

The color of your hair, the way you moved away and then came back like we were dancing a fierce tango when I touched you.

Tonight, for the 365th time I will close my eyes and wait for you illusive and yearning, I will hope for you.

I forgot to tell you I loved you last night, please be there.

Create Your Happiness

The Dali Lama said, Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.

This may be a discouraging thought to those of you who reply on hope of winning the lottery to fulfill your happiness. Trust me, I am not poking fun. I too have been there.

Happiness is a creed we choose to live by deep in the soul of who we are. Pretty philosophical there I know. But, think about it for a minute.

Your child drops his milk, breaks the glass and makes a huge mess. First instinct scream and tell them to get out. You clean it alone in frustrations. Or, you can take the child by the hand and teach them life is about cleaning up the messes we make. Inevitably we are all going to make the messes. Now, don’t get me wrong, I have in the past been the screaming frustrated mom. What I have learned is we are raising little human beings. They learn through us how to cope with and get through life. Our goal is to help them become successful. Success is not something that comes from perfection, hoping, wishing, or playing with luck. Success is derived from determination, hard work, and dedication.

So the next time you are faced with an obstacle. Look at it, study it, patiently walk around and through it. Learn something and apply it to life. Keep going. Do not let a fall, a broken glass, a burden stand in your way of being happy and successful today.

 

The Stage

Long days are now cloud cast days.

Evening sprinkles, hesitation to come inside from the rain.

Laughter dwindling, less lightening bugs to capture.

Dusk brings color in rapture.

A forte of diminutive chimes resonate in the air.

No longer  ice cream truck and children squealing.

Time reeling .

Dusting books, setting desks, preparing for the BIG test.

Reality is a new, yet an old song of anticipation and fear.

The jester has set the stage.

Racing to take the seat in the rear.

Happy New Year

As summer draws to a close the sidewalks leading to public school buildings will once again be swept in preparation for children. Parents contemplate which teacher their child’s name will be given to and hopes for that small, personal learning environment that will feed and nurture the development of their precious child. The newness a brand new school year has to offer is a cleansing and refreshing as the New Year, you know the proverbial resolution time.

Yes, friends, it is resolution time. As our children walk through the school doors to embrace their fate and fortune for the next school year, it is time we begin thinking about relationships. I am not talking about that lucky someone you are in love with, but adult relationships. During the school year we as adults find ourselves in a multitude of adult relationships. Some of these important interactions are parent to parent, teacher to teacher, parent to teacher, and community member to community member. Adult relationships are the mentor or role-model to children as they learn and develop their student to teacher relationships. Sadly we often heft the burden of communication on the child. Notes from parents to teacher and teacher to parent are sent to and from home to the public school building. The break down in effective communication often takes place right there with the child’s unintentional lack of responsibility.

We must not relegate our children to the role of messenger. I am asking parents, teachers, and administrators to begin building strong open, effective, and honest relationships with one another. If we communicate in positive manners even when the interactions are frustrating we will model to our children the importance and effectiveness of strong communication. We can truly make this new year for our children and ourselves a year of positive interactions and ultimate growth for our children.

Remember

Today I found a pebble in a rocky trickling stream and it reminded me of the voice of my grandfather. I rolled it around in my hand looking at the color and texture and it took me back to a time so many years before. The pebble with red and gray made me so sad wishing time could be reversed and days could be relived.

Simple times when cool days resembled the love we felt for family.

Today I stepped in a cold mountain stream. As the clear cool water rushed around my feet I returned to a similar place of youth. TIme then was so worry free. Wishes for longer days filled my mind. Time has found me now, here in this cold stream, alone.

Memories so bitter sweet come calling when least expected. I fear the embracing and cherish the warmth of their nearness. Such an irony in metaphoric illusion.

For a moment I saw the face of my mother beside me, felt the enormity of my grandfathers hand guiding me, saw the smile of my father upon me, and even knew the presence of a grandmother I have never known.

Today I found a pebble and as I slipped it in my pocket. The weight of a childhood well lived and cherished settled permanent in my being. I will keep the pebble and each time I hold it I will remember and smile.

Purple Pie Place

Hidden in a small corner of the world is a beautiful little diner called the Purple Pie Place. Everything is fun and bright including the sculpture of the pig outside.

If ever you venture to a hidden place seek first the color, the eclectic, and different.

Within the journey one should always include a little magic.

Please pass the pie.

Alienated

Taken for all you think I am and not who I am.
Assuming
Making your own destination for my soul; a soul you do not know.
Hope
That promise we make to ourselves to believe that which we won’t believe, but cannot afford to let go.
Forgiveness
An excuse we force others to portend always letting another suffer the grief of the mean spirit within wanting to control.
Life takes a toll.
The End
A destination of resignation and application for all that was and could have been. Fingers locking and then letting go.

Giants Fall off the Edge

When I was little I laid awake at night waiting for that hand of death to reach over the edge of my bed and strangle my throat. Even now I swallow slow and quiet. Tickling wasn’t the nature of that beast.

When I was growing I learned that forever was a fairy tale told by the broken hearted and paintings like Starry Night were hopeless soliloquies to a life fulfilled, but not lived.

I remember sitting on a school bus with like volcanic tendrils of curiosity as the lingering voice of my mother saying I love you have a nice day, reminds me I am not alone.

Sixth grade a cruel grade of children treading water in hormones of popularity and missed opportunity to play kickball, being chosen last, too shy to make eye contact as a heart races to the rhythm of pick me pick me.

I remember those days when play was luring and boys no longer thick with cooties emerged like butterflies or moths. When notes hand written no longer said will you be my friend and scribed do you like me yes or no.

I go there from time to time, that place where fairy tales danced and the future was possible. Where the essence of pork chops frying and mother wiping her hands on a towel take me away from who I am now.

I go back when I can to a place I live no more. Underscore the changes life brings whether we are ready or sleeping. Life creeps through the back door like a thief armed, but cowardly ready to steal that which we have not preserved, protected, contemplated, but neglected.

I walk tiptoeing, not wanting to disturb a recollection of past connection in a place I can no longer run home to yell, hey mom guess what happened today.

Vivid and reticent, where giant dreams gauged the day and every moment was caught in play.