Tuesday, July 27, 2010


To all who have been so kind to stop and leave their footprints and take the time to read these musings, I am truly grateful.

Until we meet again, soon,

Thank you

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Lightened Load

As the journey continues, maybe I’ve come to realize that I can now drop my Arthurian sword I’ve often used as a symbol, to strike the ground symbolizing peace and victory. Maybe I no longer need something so flashy. Maybe I no longer need a sword of power that can easily become violent, used to conquer or even defend, to represent simple surrender, the dropping of shields and the willingness to both be led and walk together? Maybe it is as simple as the symbol of silence or at most, a whispered ‘yes.’

Saturday, July 24, 2010


She would sit for hours in her beach chair facing the horizon. Every now and then she would lean forward thinking maybe, perchance she saw them. My mother’s eyes never stopped scanning the horizon in hopes to see the dolphins jumping and moving through the Gulf like a serpentine ribbon. Many a night, at the Gulf and at home, she would sit on the patio and watch the stars. She was always amazed at the thought of satellites floating above us. But, mostly, she was watching for a falling star. For the seventeen years I was at home, I can think of three schools of dolphins and not a single falling star.

And yet I can tell you her search was not in vain. She saw soaring pelicans tuck their wings and like missiles dive beneath the water’s surface only to pop up, bobbing on the waves, with a fish still flipping in their mouth. She saw sunsets and sunrises that many never saw. She saw flocks of birds in the air and along the shore. I do believe one Heron knew her by name. She saw the colorful windsurfers gliding along the waves and she was never ever without the sound of the waves.

At night she saw satellites moving across the sky. She saw an eclipse and she always found the constellations she knew. She watched planes with their lights blinking fly above and wondered about their travels. And she never ever was without the face of the moon.

Sometimes, I guess, it’s a matter of perspective, how you look, and your openness and wonder. And so, at the end of a very difficult week, I remind myself it’s ok to search. Yes Beth, always be faithful to your search. But little one, never ever forget to see.

Friday, July 23, 2010

The Emptied Heart

The candle’s heart, the wick, burns brightly when first lit. It melts itself in the giving of its offering of light. It knows only that is its calling. The giving of light is its purpose. But in its giving it must consume itself and burn deeper and deeper into itself. If somehow the outer core of its casing, its heart, is not also melted or broken, the candle will drown in its own offering, its gift.

The human heart gives forth its light of love, compassion, and service. Like the candle if left to burn only within its core it too will be doused in its offering. To give light the heart itself must be broken, burned and melted, not just the core. One’s light cannot burn for long clinging only to the wick. If allowed to melt and break away the outer shields of the heart, then the light, the melting and the casing, the heart, become one and burn brightly. And their brightness will continue, until at last, both the wick, its light and its heart are melted as one at the season’s end.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Ask One Who Knows

Do you think the moon and other planets grow weary with our question of whether they have life?

Think of the money and time we'd save if we just asked a poet, lovers, one who paints with either a brush or camera, or one who dares to dance with each one at night in their dreams.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

There is None

How is it, that when a heart empties itself for another, you never see or hear the last drop?
There is none.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

The Rocker

The birds must be beginning to migrate. When I write, I sit facing a picture window that is filled with tall evergreen trees, domestic Christmas trees if you will. Different kinds of sparrows and finches are covering the trees like Christmas ornaments. Not only their numbers but their size tells me they are migrating birds. My “home birds” are much plumper (smile) and well fed I must admit. No these are leaner, and their feathers a bit tattered. They do not linger at the feeder like the home birds.  They grab the seed and rush back to the safety of the evergreens’ arms. I would think this is a bit early, but these are definitely migrating birds. I have to wonder how they found my little bird feeder. Have they been here before? What in their journey has allowed them to find rest, water, safety and nourishment in my little back yard?

Instead of looking dead center into the window, two festive birds catch my eye in the lower corner of the window. Watching them, my eyes roost upon an old rocking chair. It was my grandmother’s rocking chair. I do not know how long she owned it, but I know she rocked my mother in that chair and years later my mother rocked my brother and I. The rocker has journeyed many miles and seasons. It is still sturdy, comfortable and, with only a slight squeak, it does what it does best –it rocks. The arm rests are natural to your body. The back fits your back like a hand scooping water. And most importantly, its height is perfect for my legs. A natural push back and forth against the floor and I rock.

Some days seem a bit more migratory than others. Days that are leaner and your wings feel a bit tattered. You don’t  have a map or GPS to tell you in 150 yards turn right, your spirit just knows. I pull the rocker into the center of the room and my migrating spirit crawls in. I lean my back against the rocker and nestle against its natural curves that wrap around me. My arms rest upon its arms and I can feel the texture of the wood and even scars from its past. A gentle push against the rocker, it pushes back and we rock together and migrate. I can feel the history in the rocker. I can feel the gentle curved rockers blending youth and age into one movement, one rhythm and one heart beat.

Some days are a little more migratory than others. You feel a bit leaner and perhaps tattered. The journey may have us well above the clouds without exit signs or "you are here" signs. If we look, we’ll see the welcoming arms of evergreen trees, a little green and a yellow John Deer bird feeder with special seed. The destiny of migratory souls are never unquenched or left hungry for long. And if we listen as the wind blows against the face of our migrating spirits, just listen, you may hear the sound of a rocker calling you home, to the journey’s end. If not the journey’s end, a place to rest your heart.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Who's To Say

It was a night made for Disney where colorful fairy dust fell from the sky filling the room. The moon had a huge grin and all the inanimate objects in the house came to life and danced. She sat alone in the house which was completely dark save for one light that burned softly, illuminating only the tiny area beneath its stand. Clapping her hands the living room drew in more dancers from the other rooms. Even the fireplace complete with burning logs joined in the dance. Her dangling feet joined the jig swaying back and forth.

Weary from their merriment the dancers fell to the floor. The room was transformed into a meadow. Birds now sang while bunnies, butterflies, squirrels and deer danced, leaped and hopped while the trees, grasses and flowers swayed. She clasped her hands in joy and tossed her head back squealing with laughter. Her feet were not wearing ruby slippers. She knew if she clicked her heels she could fly away. But who would want to be anywhere but here in this moment, now?

The music ebbed like waves upon the shoreline and all eyes turned to her. The lone lamp became a spotlight made brighter by the sparkles in her eyes and her smile. It took a moment for her to realize the dancing had stopped. Breathless from laughter, her hands fell into her lap. “I cannot,” she whispered as the smile faded and the sparkles dimmed. Another wave of music kissed the shoreline, softly but with a firmer touch. Her heart inhaled and held a deep breath. Her spirit exhaled her fear. “Yes.”

And on that night, that ever so magical night, a poet was born. On that night an artist was born. On that night a writer, a pianist, a sculptor, an architect, an athlete, a dancer, a painter, a photographer or a teacher was born. On that night the willingness to believe emerged alive into a most magical night.

It was a night made for Disney. It may not have happened exactly this way. But when the human spirit gives birth to belief in itself and its dreams, its calling, well, who are we to say…. Unless you were there?

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Odds Are

An asteroid named 2002 NT7 was discovered on July 9. Using science and physics, which is well beyond my little brain, scientists currently give it a 1 in 200,000 chance of striking the earth on Feb 1, 2019. The odds will grow larger as more data is gathered. The power of such an asteroid is estimated as the equivalent of three hydrogen bombs.

A young man stood in front of a tank and the world was awakened. A small boy saluted as his father’s casket, drawn by black horses and decorated in honor of a fallen president, and the world wept. A young prince left the walls of his castle to seek enlightenment not for himself but for all, and the world discovered unity and hope. A pilot pressed a button dropping the first nuclear bomb to end the bloodshed of thousands and the world knew fear. A man said freedom and justice can be achieved without violence and an empire was brought to its knees. A family without income is given food and clothing. When the tides of fortune turn, they start a chain of hope whose links are made of families who receive and then give. When you consider odds not one of these would have garnered any bets as to their impact. And yet, here they stand, immortalized and life changing on a global and individual scale. Their impact, then and throughout the ripples of time, had and have the potential to far exceed the devastation of three hydrogen bombs … without destruction.

Can we truly appreciate the consuming healing power of a simple hello to one unable to ask for help? Can we visualize the obliteration of emotional walls of hopelessness with a simple whisper of “you’re not alone”? Can the mind truly grasp the tsunami force, that pounds to nothing the heart’s despair of darkness, from the gentle brushing of one hand against another to say “I’m here” or “I love you”? History books and late breaking news will not carry these simple acts. What if one by one we repeat, link and move in these acts? What if we were to strike our individual Arthurian swords in the ground and say “from this day hence”? Maybe history would write of a far better Camelot that beat the odds.

When I ponder the time, effort and vigilant gathering of “data” that will surround 2002 NT7, versus the simple act of noticing these tiny acts of kindness and their repercussions, I am overwhelmed with the disparity. The attention given to something with the odds of 1 in 200,000 (and growing) versus the odds of an immediate response and impact is amazing. Should scientists study phenomenon like asteroids hitting the earth? I’ll offer a yes just because I have a simple mind. But I would also offer that the numbers of non scientists, us, far outnumber the scientists. What if we became as vigilant, vocal and attentive as them, in these simple collisions of human kindness upon another human being? What are the odds our ‘work’ would make a difference?

Frankly, I’m miffed, that on my sixty fifth birthday, there are odds of 1 in 200,000 that destruction “could” take place. And yet my heart melts in overflowing gratitude, that there are different odds, even better odds that exist. Odds that in acting upon, carrying forward and believing in the power of a simple hello or a gentle whisper, that on my sixty fifth birthday, the world around me, might be a better place. Odds are I will not be so strong every day. I’m still seeking, finding my own voice and learning. Odds are, if I try, I’ll eventually get there. I like those odds better.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Turning the Phone Around

I noticed on the weather page this morning that tomorrow, Saturday July 17th, 2010 will have one minute and thirty nine seconds less sunshine than today. One of those things you notice but doesn’t really register as important.

Driving to work, I turned the corner onto our property’s main street and reached for the sun visor. The sun always blinds me in this spot. This morning was different. Pulling over I pondered whether the sun realized it would have a minute less to shine tomorrow and the next day and the next. The clouds seemed to laugh at me as I realized that the sun still shines behind the clouds. The sun will be shining all day tomorrow. Only my visibility will be shortened not the sun. What I can see, or tell myself I can see will be shortened, the reality is much different.

Don’t get me wrong. In just a month or so it will be dark both when I go to work and when I come home. That is reality. Just ask my body and it will tell you the seasons ahead are far fewer than those behind. The work I do comes with no guarantee it will be there tomorrow. Our visibility, our ability our sustainability is not infinite or immeasurable like the sun’s. But these are realities we cannot control. They are the clouds that block the sun. They are the rotation of the earth that shortens our days.

Sitting on the side of the road watching the sun in the east, thinking of the sun in the west, I took in a deep breath and exhaled. It is a day when I would much rather be in my car driving off into the sun or on a plane. I reached for my work phone as it rang alerting me of an email from a not very happy executive. Closing the email, I turned the phone around in my hand and took a picture of the sun hidden behind the clouds but visible. “So There!” I chuckled. The sun must have approved and with a breath twirled the clouds and offered me a splash of blue.

The presence of life, the presence of awakening, the presence of love and hope are everywhere. They surround me. I just need to see. I just need to turn the reality around.

Thursday, July 15, 2010


It wasn’t pretty but it was my first ride without training wheels on my bike. My Dad ran beside me as I pedaled my way down the driveway. I was flying so free until I got too close to the side of the house and crashed my bare toes into a flower area edged in brick. No, despite my Dad’s best intentions I would not put shoes on. Yes, band-aids, several, were required. My first bike ride and I was free to roam the neighborhood.

I remember my first day at school. My mother stopped said, again and again, I had to get out. I finally did. I remember standing there, all by myself, watching her drive away up the hill and out of sight. I remember more tears at that moment than when I crashed on my first bike ride. It only took a couple of days of being exposed to learning and a big big world I never thought about, before that car door could not open fast enough. School and learning became like an addiction. Every day, for that first year, despite flying out of the car to get to class, I would always stop and watch my mother drive away. My first year in school and I was free to roam the world.

I remember my first piano lesson and the terror of my first recital – playing Old McDonald. I remember I was too short to touch the floor and my feet swung in the air. I remember my last recital, playing a Beethoven symphony on a Grand piano. My small hands were thundering up and down the keyboard. I was free and totally lost in the music. Before the last chord there was a pause and then you were to crush the keys with the final chord. I went to strike the chord and missed the keyboard. No seriously, all fifty two keys went untouched. My hands slapped my thighs. I lifted my hands, played the chord softly, stood, took my bow and exited the stage. Looking back, I bet that was a first for a piano recital. I remember my first piano note and the vibration of the keys against a heart set free with the music. I remember my last piano recital and the vibration of my hands slapping my thigh, the softness of the chord I did strike, and a heart that discovered the importance of soft.

So many “firsts” in our lives that go unmarked on a calendar. They have no special day of celebration. Time marches on and firsts become routine. Some firsts, yes, we would like to forget, but even those carry with them another first we treasure. Firsts that open the cocoons of our lives and we fly out into the sun a new creature, alive and awakened. Maybe we need a “First Holiday” where the world can get caught up in the anticipation and excitement of exchanging gifts of “firsts” with each other.

Maybe, if I string enough firsts in my memory, self confidence and belief would overcome the challenges and journeys that sometimes overwhelm a person. Every challenge, every journey always starts with a “first” something. Maybe if I see this long string of firsts, even if they have become routine, that “first” would be a whole lot easier. Maybe, everything is a first, so, I tell myself, ‘go for it!’ No more training wheels. Besides, there’s a box of band-aids in the cabinet. Ride little one. Let’s see the world for the first time.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

The Bread Crumb Debate

Part of my profile description refers to leaving bread crumbs along this path I travel. In the genuine spirit of my wandering heart, a trail of bread crumbs you may find:

You can close your eyes, snap your fingers and/or click your heels. You still won’t get to Kansas. But if that makes you pause and take a time out, then by all means go for it, you may find yourself in a better place than Kansas (no offense Kansas).

You can say “I think I can, I think I can, I think I can” over and over and sometimes, well, you can’t. Better to be honest and know what you can do than to keep beating your head against a wall. Remember Einstein’s definition of insanity.

It will rain on your parade. So, are you worried the float will melt?

You can save for a rainy day, but there is no guarantee that the rain will not wash away your savings. May we always remember this one and not judge or not see those who need help. The rain can just as easily fall on us.

Sometimes the best laid plans are best laid aside. That’s ok, just don’t become a hoarder. Recycle, it’s good for the soul and the earth.

Just because you “build it” doesn’t mean they will come. Did you remember to send the invitations? Sometimes you just can’t sit and wait for opportunity to not only knock but open the door and yell “Hey you! Over here!”

Only in the old western movies can you tell the good guys from the bad guys by the color of their hats. Maybe it is a good thing that we have to get to know people and not rely on first impressions.

A little off beat tonight, I admit. But some days you just can’t explain. It’s been an off beat kind of day and a good debate with yourself is sometimes healthy. And if that doesn't work, well, just grab your raft and ride the surf.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

One of Those Days

I needed to stretch. I had been entering meaningless numbers in a gigantic spreadsheet and my body was entering rigor mortis. Putting my hands behind my head I leaned back in my desk chair and stretched every vertebra that would move. I caught sight, I thought, of the window behind me. Huh, I thought, as I am apt to do, I wonder if I can stretch far enough to see outside the window. I almost flipped my desk chair leaning back to see the window upside down. Hurling my body forward, as fast as I could, I went into uproarious laughter all by myself. What in the world possessed me to even think of such a thing, much less attempt it is beyond me. A moment of total silliness for which I was rewarded with an ever so grand laugh.

Continuing with the spreadsheet, my feet were tapping to the music of the CD player. The song was quite perky. What do you do when you’re enjoying a perky song? You turn it up. No brainer. So I did. I do a lot of work at home and often bop around to music as I work. Key word – working. Suddenly my brain engaged and I realized I was working that is, at work not home. I almost broke my arm trying to turn the CD player down. I sat there, looking in the hallway wondering who either (a) heard the music – who couldn’t and (b) who saw me? I immediately got tickled and had another splendid laugh.

The spreadsheet I was working on is one of those sacred cows every job has. It must be done. It must be done this way and only this way. A hundred years will pass by and they’ll still be doing that spreadsheet in that font, color, style, format, calculations – nothing, nothing will change. Until ….. today. The last number was entered on row 15,000+. I looked at the sheets of paper that contained the same information I had keyed into the spreadsheet. Ever the rebel, I changed the color of the font to blue instead of black and made it bold. I saved the spreadsheet and sent it off to the gods who had created it and decreed its sacredness. I then turned my desk chair to the side and faced my phone. I was like a child on Christmas Eve waiting for Santa. I just knew it had to ring. It did not. My act of rebellion had gone unnoticed. But then, no one ever read that spreadsheet anyway.

Some days, life overpowers and overflows with such richness and texture that lives are changed, miracles occur and history is rewritten. Other days, well, you just have to lean back in your chair and see if you can see a window upside down without falling on your head. Or maybe, crank the music up a bit and let the music make work not work. One day, I have no clue how long it will take, but another little spreadsheet worker will be keying away on the sacred spreadsheet. She or he will go to enter the last number and the number they key will pop out blue and bold. I wonder if they will notice. If they do, I hope they have a magnificent laugh. Maybe, just maybe, they’ll change the blue to green. Ah, one can hope.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Saying "I Need"

Have you ever noticed a pedestrian crosswalk? Yellow or brightly colored lines painted between two corners where pedestrians can safely cross the street. Now, as you know, motorists are supposed to stop and allow a pedestrian to cross. Note, there are no barriers, no stop signs or anything to keep a motorist from zooming through the crosswalk. Just two brightly colored (assuming they are not too weathered) lines painted in the asphalt. That’s it. You are supposed to notice and yield. The pedestrian is supposed to feel safe.

This morning I saw one such pedestrian, an elderly gentleman, at the edge of the crosswalk waiting for cars to stop. I did. He waved quite the friendly wave and stepped into the crosswalk. To my horror, I saw an oncoming car that had a neon aura that screamed the driver was not paying attention. Those yellow lines were not going to protect the gentleman who was waving at me. I honked my horn. He looked at me startled and confused. It had been a most friendly wave. I honked again and he turned and saw the oncoming car and stepped back towards mine. No, the oncoming driver did not stop. Yes, the elderly gentleman was safe. He nodded his head and finished crossing the street. Me? I blocked traffic for a bit as I tried to find my wits.

So, what do crosswalks and the title of this posting “Saying I Need” have in common? When I say “I need” I step into the crosswalk with nothing to protect me but the symbolism of a human need made visible. I step out. I trust that I will not be blindsided by life’s oncoming traffic that does not notice I have made myself totally vulnerable. I trust the visible expression, simple lines, simple words will be enough. And if I must keep my head on a swivel, every time I say “I need” will I no longer let you know? Will it just be easier to remain silent than to take the risk or exert that much effort?

I have noticed that when groups are using a crosswalk the odds increase that oncoming traffic will stop. The old safety in numbers rule I guess. But could that be the lesson of the crosswalk? Could it be that the more we learn to say “I need” and gather in the crosswalk together, the better our odds that our needs, our humanity, our vulnerability will be safe?

Some crossings, yes, we will have to go alone, there are no crosswalks. But could it be that for the greater part of our journeys, the comfort and safety others can provide, as they share their own vulnerabilities and struggles, can foster a similar boldness in us? One could even take this image to the extreme. Perhaps, if we gather enough sojourners willing to share their stories and needs, maybe, all of us will walk and not have to worry about oncoming traffic and drivers too busy to notice another human being.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Blowing Bubbles and Water Balloon Fights

Last night’s midnight sky crackled with lightning, thunder and rain. Tiny calling cards were left this morning and almost went unnoticed. The sun moved around the evergreen trees, like a parade watcher shifting to get a better view of the floats, and pointed to them. Tiny glistening droplets on the grass were now obvious inside the sun’s pointer.

I chuckled to myself as I thought of them as storm bubbles. Perhaps after their festivities and fireworks the storm clouds gathered to blow bubbles and relax after a long night. Or, better yet, maybe the moon and stars, upstaged by the storms, had a water balloon fight and these were droplets of laughter. The blades of grass were beautifully adorned. I had to wonder if there were more. Scurrying around to the side of the house, to my delight I found more. Resting on blooms at the end of their seasons, were more storm bubbles, more droplets of laughter.

In an hour or so the droplets were gone. The sun’s pointer was too intense, though I think she meant no harm. Or, could that have been the day’s lesson? Tiny storm bubbles, droplets of laughter glistening in the sun are so easily unnoticed or crushed beneath our feet and wiped off on the door mat. But, if you notice, if you listen to the pauses and notice nature’s pointer, what stories you can create. Stories like storm bubbles and water balloon fights between storm clouds and the moon and stars. Simple delights. Simple touches. Simple hellos.

They are moments to be noticed and remembered as the day and seasons march onward. They lasted on the grass and blooms but an hour. In my mind, throughout the day, I still see storm clouds with their plastic bottles and dippers blowing bubbles and droplets of laughter during a water balloon fight. I notice my feet as they walk. And I cast a wary eye to the sky, just in case there is water balloon still lurking. Nature does love to laugh.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Strike the Chord

I’ve attached a link to a YouTube video of a young man playing a popular song on the piano. The song is quite beautiful in its own right. If you read about the young man, he has not had piano lessons, he plays, as they say, “by ear.” My mother played piano by ear as well. She could not read sheet music. If I struggled with a piece of music and gave up with a serious pout, I could be in my room or outside and hear her play the piece perfectly. All she needed was the melody in her head and she heard the piano and her hands went where they were supposed to. I would stand in absolute awe, as I do with this young man. All they need is to hear in their ears and their hands know where to go, they feel the song. If you choose to watch the video watch his right hand, you can see it thinking, changing and in a couple of spots hesitate and then with conviction strike the chord. He hears the melody and his brain, body and heart respond.

So many melodies out there that we hear. Some of us need sheet music to get by. We need it all scripted out with the peaks and softness defined for us. Others just hear the melody and move through life responding naturally. I could write for hours on this image in my mind. I think, maybe, just maybe, if you watch the young man’s right hand as he plays, you’ll hear what I’m trying to say. No sheet music required.

May we all feel the melody of life both scripted and played by ear. Whether we need sheet music or not, simply play, just play and strike the chords with conviction.



Friday, July 9, 2010


This morning, driving to work, my hand rested on an object I touch every day and for some reason its texture created sensations and images unrelated to the object. Right now, a cat lies partially on top of the sofa and partially around my neck like one of those u-shaped air plane pillows. Her arm is stretched out. I feel her soft fur against the bottom of my cheek. One claw is exposed and rests ever so gingerly against my neck. It is a gentle reminder that I am her human and exist to serve her needs. It matters not my coffee cup is empty. I look outside and see the evergreen trees with their soft green fingers and squishy pine cones. Both needles and cones become quite prickly when they have dried and fallen to the ground.

I risk my jugular and retrieve a cup of coffee. Holding the cup in my hand, its warmth soothes the arthritis and I feel the image that is fired into the mug. The music’s speed and melody taps against my ear drums. The clouds look like giant cotton balls you could squeeze between your fingers and watch them pop back to their original shape. I can feel the laptop’s keyboard. I notice the little ridges on the “J” and “F” keys to let you know your hands are in the correct typing position. Textures. Today my mind has been keenly aware of the textures around me.

For the past two weeks a woman passes by my door every morning, sticks her head in and says hello. She hurt herself at work and is working in the office until her injury is healed. This morning, as she does, her head popped in and she said good morning. I turned and greeted her with a happy Friday and noticed the texture on her face. I pushed my chair back from the desk and asked if she was ok. Her texture changed. “I was just feeling sorry for myself but I’m ok now.” The softness of her smile made me remember the texture of a simple hello.

The texture of cold can heal a fevered body or be the cause of death. The texture of colors can lift one’s spirits. The texture of dark can drive to ground the last ounce of hope. The texture of one hand brushing against another’s can stir a night of passion or break the hand’s heart if meant as a good-bye. The sweetness of some foods cannot overcome their texture. We do or don’t like images because of how they make us feel.

Textures are both primal and ethereal. Perhaps, in my busy world, they are also often unnoticed. And so, for you, for me, and for the world, with the texture of a whisper, I say go
soft into the evening; feel the touch of your head upon your pillow and the texture of your eyelids opening to feel the fabric of a new day, the texture of hope.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

No, by no means, Yes

Before the sun’s alarm went off, I was listening to a homemade video on YouTube of a woman playing a popular song on the piano. Her hands and the piano key board were all you saw. I allowed myself to close my eyes and see my hands when I played the piano. I felt the chords vibrate against me. For those two or three minutes I was the pianist, the melody and the lyrics which were only in my head.

I ironed a white t-shirt to wear with my slacks instead of the usual “business casual” dress shirt. It made me giggle and feel impish. I’ve never worn a t-shirt to work except on Fridays when jeans are allowed. This morning simply called for a t-shirt. An old codger in the plant, who has a grand toothless smile, drove his forklift next to me. He leaned over and with that grand smile, said “Look’n good missy” and drove off. Taken aback, all I could do was roar with laughter. Those around looked concerned until they realized I was laughing.

I donned my French Revolution dapper beret and went underground today. I worked with the guys in the plant instead of working with finance. One by one they would turn their head right and left to make sure the coast was clear. They would ask “can you get this?” or “does this make sense?” and “can we prove this?” We would “happen” to meet in the hall or in the plant. We plotted our revolution with a wary eye on the “beautiful building’s” horizon where the people in suits and clean fingernails worked.

Day over, off to the store. I joined a woman and her older mother in a hearty laugh when the mother kept trying to put stuff in my cart. A small kid wanted something on a shelf just out of reach. I, not even five feet two, felt ever so tall when I retrieved the item for him. A man pushed his cart beside me. He would would have gone unnoticed, as he passed by, had he not looked me square in the face and said “good afternoon” with a smile. I almost missed it.

A perfect day? No, no, by no means, no. But, you know what? When I sit on the front porch, rocking in my rocking chair, my seasons almost done, these are the things I shall remember. The “by no means” will have long faded. And so I guess you could say, yes, it was … a perfect day.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010


 I like to think a new journey begins every day. Some days, the journey is short. Other days the journey feels like an eternity. And then, there are those days where the day is the journey.
You know how you make a list of things to do before you leave for a vacation or extended trip? Here is my "Don't Forget" list.

Safe travels for all of us.  .... Don't forget your list.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Physics 101 and a Story

Shutting the old suitcase she hears the clasps click and lock. One hand folds around the handle and the other cradles her coat. Silently she stands staring at nothing. Her eyes learned long ago to close and see nothing even when opened. The sigh goes unnoticed save for the movement of her blouse. Quickly, she turns and heads for the door.

The phone’s ringing grasps her heart with the same grip that her hand held the door knob. Neither one will let go. Neither one will cease their current state-ringing and unopened. Perhaps it was the pounding of her heart that kicked the door ajar and she stepped out on to the front porch. The answering machine begins to play through the curtains of the open window. She walks back along the worn path in the carpet to the bedroom. Opening the closet door she sets the suitcase on the floor. It was empty, nothing to unpack. She just thought when you go somewhere you should pack a suitcase. Closing the closet door it occurs to her that maybe, since she never packed, that was why she always went nowhere.

Physics argues that no two physical objects can be in exactly the same place at exactly the same time. One must be displaced. The argument does not hold true to light. Certain forms of light can exist at the exact same place and time. Where we may physically, through our own will power or efforts, displace despair, negativity and fear with hope, wonder and courage, is it possible, that their lights will still overlap? Is that why even at the peak of joy we feel a touch of sorrow?

Our journeys and encounters, like the Canterbury Tales, bring about collisions of different emotions, descriptions of the promised land and home. Our happy moments are suddenly displaced with sadness, our positive attitudes become negative or our fear becomes courageous and our daily deaths, like dry bones in the desert, are resurrected to live again. And, could it be that all of these emotions and attitudes are the same? Seeing only the displacement or collision feeds our belief that nothing good ever lasts or could happen to me.

Could these varied feelings be nothing more than overlapping lights? What would happen if we saw them as the sky when both the moon and sun are awake and the moon’s darker colder light overlaps with the sun’s warmer brighter light? We call that overlapping a sunrise or sunset and stand in awe. What would happen if we saw the lights of emotions as dancing parallel, touching, parting and overlapping rather than the displacement and collision we fear? Would our journey be bolder, more daring and perhaps a bit softer with this acceptance? And in the silence of light, not the collision of displacement, what other voices could we hear?

Her hand upon the door knob absorbs its cold metal touch. The phone rings again, and again, her heart pounds. Ever the faithful companion, her heart once again kicks the door open. She stops. When the answering machine comes on, a smile walks across her face. She whispers, Hello, as I used to be, as I am and as I will be are not here at the moment. Please leave a name and number and I’ll get back to you. I’m sorry you missed my calling. She steps into dawn’s light with nothing in her hands but what she chooses to grasp.

Monday, July 5, 2010

One Day Today

One day I will pour the water in my coffee pot without spilling water on the counter. One day I will only need to tie the laces on my work boots one time to get them right. One day I will remember the difference between boil and broil. One day I will be able to listen to directions to get somewhere and not feel like the person is speaking a foreign language. One day I will not have to get out of my car at a parking lot to see if I successfully parked between the lines. One day I will iron more wrinkles out of my clothes than I iron in. One day I will understand why there are so many lotions. One day I will smell coco butter. One day those things I don’t understand either will not matter or will have made me stronger.

Today these one days are part of who I am and makes me, me, but do not define who I am. Today they are part of the little mysteries of life that tease and poke fun at me. Today I am all of these and yet much more. Today may be filled with imperfections and pot holes lying in wait. Today, whether sure footed or tentative, whether in joy, sadness or in between, today is the only ‘one day’ I have. May I not let ‘today’ become a ‘one day’ that slips by unattended.


Sunday, July 4, 2010

A Breather

A busy holiday weekend for most with family, friends, loved ones and just life in general. Today, a different type of post. Click on the link below and accept this humble gift of seven minutes and forty-eight seconds where you and your thoughts, not mine, can sit. 

Thank you for visiting. Thank you for taking the time to read my ramblings and musings. For your kindness, permit me to give you a moment to hear your own.


Shalom and Namastè

Saturday, July 3, 2010


While living in California, I was fortunate to live near a harbor. Every night I would walk down to the harbor and listen to the riggings on the sail boats blow against the masts and the billowing sails. The rhythms were the same but each sail boat had its own tone depending upon the size of the mast. Like wind chimes of varying sizes they hypnotized you as you stood there leaning against the weathered railings, salty breeze in your face, sea gulls squawking and the creaking sound of the dock as people walked by.

There, one evening, in the midst of all these “yachts” I saw a tiny little twenty two foot sail boat with only one mast, that had most definitely seen better years. Not in a proper slip, no this little outcast was tied to the dock all by itself, and it was for sale. To this day, I cannot explain the “why” but I, who had never sailed in my life, purchased that tiny old sailboat with the name “Hootie” painted on the back, just as the sign said, “As is.” Every evening after work, I would go and sit, no longer standing, and listen to the orchestra, rocked by the waves coming in against the pilings and docks. I could now add the lapping sound of water to the symphony. On the weekends, I would go sleep on the boat, rocked as I was when I was a baby and the dampness of the ocean my quilt.

One night, the rocking became quite violent and almost tossed me out of my little bed. I jumped up, popped the hatch and stuck my head out like a little gopher coming out of its hole. I was greeted by other gopher heads who were wondering, like me, what “idiot” was going to fast in the harbor and was tossing us in his wake. Like vigilant gophers, our heads turned on swivels to identify the rude boater, none was to be found. Suddenly, all the gopher heads disappeared as yet another round of violent waves crashed into our boats and sent us sprawling below. You could hear the yelling throughout the dock area – “earthquake.”

Throughout the night, into the dawn, the aftershocks continued to rock my little shell, which was much more susceptible than the yachts. At daybreak, I left my cocoon and went home to see if there was any damage. Another strong aftershock rumbled sending a different kind of shock throughout my body and brain. This was harsh. There was no softness or rocking. Standing in a hardened environment, the power carried more fear, no lullaby could be sung to that movement. Gathering my things I scurried back to the harbor.

Some days, I think of little Hootie and her gentle rocking. I remember the symphony of the harbor. I remember closing the hatch and being rocked to sleep. I remember popping the hatch and drinking coffee while the sun rose. I remember the softness in the midst of an earthquake. And the arms of the sea, the water, call me home. Some day.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Butterfly Bush

The soil was moist and cool against her bare knees as she knelt at the garden’s edge. Untended, forgotten and depleted, the garden could offer naught but weeds and the soil of hope. As long as there was soil surely there was hope. If weeds themselves could take root in the soil, blossom and grow, surely wild flowers could find a home for their roots, if they had room.

Without gloves she proceeded to pull the weeds. Carefully, she shook the soil from the weeds’ roots back into the garden. As each weed was pulled they were given names. They were weeds because of what they were not, but what they were should not be dismissed. At first only her hands did the work. As time went on, the garden thinned, the soil breathing now tried to help and freely released the weeds.

Over time the garden was healed. The weeds were gone. Wild flowers found their home there. Color blossomed in the garden and many drew comfort from the beauty they found.

The gardener walked with the garden through the seasons. Each day at dawn she said good morning through the kitchen window. An unobstructed view of the garden, save for one potted plant that stood in the window sill. It was a clay flower pot she had made. Growing in the pot was one of the weeds she had pulled. As she would lean into the window to say “good morning,” her fingers touched the word painted on the pot. The garden and weed returned the “good morning” and the sun would begin to warm her paths.