Thursday, August 29, 2013

A poem written in Washington

Rarely do I share poems I haven't spent time working on. But this one is different. I wrote it for my wife, on her birthday, while traveling across the Pacific Northwest. It was conceived in a bundle of moments filled with introspection and appreciation, and for this reason will always hold more value than much of my "polished" work. Note: a dipper is a small gray bird of fast-moving, rocky streams.

Together
in the Pacific Northwest—
Swept up by scenery
and plucked
from stress & sadness;
fishbone clouds swimming,
swimming…

We’re cruising,
crossing hemlock rivers—
Dippers diving between the rocks,
a current stretching into forever.

Tonight, as we lie in bed beneath stars,
my eyes will end at you—
The landscape of home;
a full circle
of wilderness & love.






(From the book Wilderness & Love)

Monday, August 12, 2013

An observation

Once, at a Waffle House, I noticed a man and his two children sitting in a booth near the window. The kids were probably eight to ten years old. No one talked; they just sat and ate their breakfast in silence. They were black. All three wore glasses. The little girl had pigtails, and the little boy bounced in his seat. The father often smiled at them, even when they weren't looking.

Never judge a book by its cover

A few years ago, while visiting St. Louis, I was waiting to get my ticket for the ride up the Gateway Arch when I noticed a very handsome man with a baby stroller. A few moments later his attractive wife peeked through the crowd and called for him to follow. I became angry at this man for no apparent reason other than his good fortune. When the handsome man began to walk, it was apparent that he had a disease which made his legs almost useless. Nonetheless, he pushed the stroller forward and kept his wobbly legs from failing.