*A Certain Bearing*
*The Mix*
*So What?*
*Give A Damn*
*If Ever*
*A Comfortable Mix*
*The Day After*
*The Gift #1*
*The Gift #2*
*One of the Many*
*It's What I Do*
*Ho Hum*

   A Certain Bearing

Definition starts at home.
If not there, then where?
Without it 
all hell would break loose, 
or at least seem to. 

What really happens tho,
is like a cool breeze taking heat away 
from the city.
Its hardened edges soften
into almost manageable curves.

(Laugh, go ahead laugh -
The heat of it went to my head :)

Even those softened edges of the city 
(the comfort, the familiarity, the nonchalance),
all of that, that dwells there,
has a certain definition,
a certain bearing
requiring heat.

Cooling off sometimes gives off 
clouds of smoke
clouds of steam 
clouds of air,
(and we all know what happens when
"Hot Air Rises" )
Balloons!, Celebrations!, Distractions!

So when those hardened edges
all heaven or hell breaks loose.


          The Mix

The little of my life that resembles
     a storybook life,
paves the way 
for either a smooth ride 
a bumpy one.

It all depends on you.

Smooth, if the mix is right,
bumpy, if wrong.
Either way,
the way is paved,
for interpretations -

yours or mine.
It's all in the mix.


Everything I do,
gets colored according to 
the crayon I'm holding.

when anybody creates anything at all,
it's considered Art.
As long as there's a reason 
to look at it and 
the reason's well articulated -
viola! - it's Art!

Being thought Art isn't good or bad,
it just Is. 
It's just a matter of taste.
When enough people notice something   
Art's created.

    So What!?

What's the big deal?
I am a child of the universe.
So are you.
We're all children of God.
So what?

All of that painstaking glory
   of sunsets,
is wasted on me.

Those big,
logs of cloud,
aren't as dark as the sky holding   
And that cool ocean breeze
ruffling my shirt,
would be better spent 
on the legs of some lovers.

On me it's wasted.


So What!
People shed them all the time!
Let's anal-ize them.  Let's trivial-ize 
Yes! That's It!
We'll con-str-uct a  poem about them.
It'll be far better than our best.

I'm so sorry,
don't mean to be so mean, but really!
Let me tell you a story...

There was a time when I believed 
that what you believed
was all 
that really mattered.

Needless to say,
I ran into some problems.

1) was in my refusal to hold fast to 
the reigns of my own life
you know -
the day-to-day stuff,
the stuff I didn't want to think   
stuff like calendars,
bathrooms, drawers,
closets, doors,
cabinets, locks, 
keys and dust.

2) was in my refusal to hold fast to my own direction.
I let the tempest steer me.

3) was in not claiming the power
that choice gave me.

I let people choose other stuff:
other things,
other directions,
instead of allowing myself to be   
directed by who knew what was best for me.


     Give A Damn

The thin skin of my identity
went and got itself stretched some 
and tore.

And when it did, 
it did the usual thing -
it bled.
What can I say - I'm human,
so what else is new?

I'm sorry to hear tho,
that the life you're leading 
isn't turning out
the way you wanted it to.
those "i"s that you dotted,
and those "t"s that you crossed,
weren't enough.

It's a big problem, I know,
but how are you gonna handle it?
If you could only Return It, 
you know 
Trade Up.  :)

But where would the learning be in 
Isn't this 3D, re-incarnating thing, 
all about that?
All about learning?
All about dealing with Loss? 

Don't you loose something every time you do this living thing?

I do.
Every time! 
I continue to loose something!
Everyday, I loose something!

It's as if I'm on a sailboat, 
riding a windless sea,
with the sun beating down 
on my already leathered skin
baked and stretched,
to fearlessly glisten,
in the sun
the way it does now.

I don't own the water 
and it sure as hell don't own me.
I don't own the sun and
it sure as hell don't own me.

So much for ownership.
So much for "Trading Up".

Well, my identity went and got itself 
It got stretched so much
it bled, 
but now I don't care.

What I do care about is my crew.
To see them smile,
to see teeth 
under those baked and stretched 
puts wind in my sail.

The destination is just the 
the journey's the real thing
to give a damn about.

   If Ever

If ever there was a time,
when watches where just fads,
when whiter whites were the norm,
when very, very soft pillows existed,
when there was a black so black
that it made India ink look down,
when a sound was so loud, 
it drowned out Niagara,
when lines were so well known 
there'd be no question 'bout where 
the city began 
where it ended,
when a guess was so simple,
it became a certainty,
when time itself traveled so fast,
it stopped,
when a color could be made 
from all the other colors...
ah we do, we have that,
(back to that whiter white).

Well, if you'd put all that together, 
then you'd have a limited but  
    adequate knowledge of God.  

A Comfortable Mix

All of these well-scrubbed, old folk
gathered 'round this lazy, smoking, 
   barbecue pit,
holdin' on to their splashing, 
   trembling, drinks,
got to this picnic thru all kinds of 

Eventho that sun burns brightly now,
and as friendly as it seems now,
it still makes shadows.
And it's in those shadows 
that those fine lines of distinction get 
into something other,
something old ,
something mysterious.

It's there, in that "other" place,
that the weather that got them here, 
helped make those:
humored smiles, 
those mildly surprised, tilted, listening faces,
that nonchalant, brushing away
of a pesky fly,
or that tolerant shifting of weight
around a cane.
All of that came too.

That weather also made wrinkles
on those otherwise smooth faces.

What they do,
(these special gatherings),
is that they help us to organize, 
in their own quiet way, 
our own day-to-day weather.
the nonchalance, the patience, 
   the good humor,
the weather-worn gestures,
will rub off onto us
or etch smiles onto 
our own rock-hard faces.


The nooks and crannies of any 
   textured surface,
(like this wooden desk),
can become like any other 
textured surface.

Take this clutter for instance - 
it could be clutter anywhere, 
any debris.

(I Know! I know! I used the word 
"any" 4 times.)

If you were more critical 
you'd say something like
 is good writing?"

But you're not.
One of the "textures" of this poem 
is the fact
that I used repetition of the word 
to evoke an emotional response from 

No two people feel the same 
for the same word (like "any" or 
or dispose of it the same way.

     The Day After

Rubble.  Everywhere!
Rubble.  Everywhere!
Airless balloons!  Wet confetti! 
Broken bottles!

All celebrations must come to an end,
and when they do,
the place has to be swept.

Quite often,
the hilarity that bubbles-up at parties
gets itself airborne, 
and when it does, it lands
someplace else.


There are plenty of categories
that we've used
to organize the details 
of our lives, concerning loss.
Some of them are even helpful!

For every dad that's watched, 
while his son did it "his way"
   and got hurt;
or every mom who knows the pain 
of childbirth,
they both have 
the gift of Resolve.

The Gift #1

We all know that 
when we get anything at all,
the thing that we get the most of
is the Gestalt of the giver.


Say that we're loved somehow
and that that "somehow" 
is a veritable litany 
of "blue sky" days.

That litany itself 
belongs on a shelf somewhere
in the land of flights of fancy.

But there, it's - gathering dust.

Whenever we get anything at all
the thing we get the most of  
is the Gestalt of the giver.

Plain and simple.
The examples of that 
are far too many to list here.

Suffice it to say that, 
if you want to start anything at all, 
start a club,
the sole purpose of which would be 
the shedding of light on 
the many and the various ways 
we've devised 
for the giving and receiving of gifts.

Otherwise...listen up,

We've ALL got something to give,
but like rain,
it puddles in places of high traffic.

That doesn't mean that 
it's a nuisance,
it just means that it's been put in the 
    wrong place
at the wrong time.

Get better at it.

The Gift #2

Just because we get it,
doesn't mean we GET it.

One of the ways we've devised 
for the giving and receiving of gifts 
is called The Holiday.

Preparation for "The Holiday" 
is often as telling and as complex
as the gift itself
and often taken as poorly.

"You did this today." 
or "This meant absolutely nothing 
   to you." 
are some of the phrases used 
when gifts are taken poorly,
and a sure sign 
that they haven't been GOTTEN.

One of the Many

That curly head sunken into    
   those shoulders,
or that slouch,
or that shuffle,
or that averted gaze,
or that furtive look,
or that fake smile,
or that forgetfulness,
or that ease of distraction,
or that preoccupation,
or that phony laugh -

All of them 
are opportunities
to better define
just who the hell we are.

In a very real way
they're gifts.

So maybe we should just shut up 
   and say 


With all the hoop-de-da these days
   about parenting, 
the thing that gets overlooked the 
is called...

Being A Good Example. 

Of course!
No parent wants their kid 
to carry around unnecessary baggage, 
and of course 
they don't want to carry it around 

But they don't have a clue
as to what it is or 
what to do about not carrying it 

It's got something to do 
how they dealt with loss.

How they dealt with it 
gets mimicked and mimicked
until finally 
it became Behavior

Be a good example. 


   It's What I Do 

A window needed to be opened    
Everything freewheeling and bright
was out there.

Each tree had its own bark.
each flower - its own scent.
The tangle of undergrowth 
was made up of hundreds 
of individual plants.

It stretched out and relaxed
in the sun, dozing 
like a cat.

In here however, 
it's a different story. 
Shrapnel whistles by,
targets abound! 
Ducking is considered natural. 

To be trusted,
be shot.
Being wounded is good and heroic.
but being killed is even better.
Being killed means that you no longer have to suffer 
someone else's idea 
of what's right or wrong.

Dead, you're just a tangle 
of undergrowth.


Men walk.
Women talk.
Children play,

Men walk.
Women talk, and
Children play,

Winds blow,
seasons change,
rains come, 
rains go.

Winds blow,
seasons change,
rains come, and
rains go.

Ho Hum


Well... my arms go out pretty damn 
And my legs do too.
Ah choo!
Scratch. Scratch.

I'll hide under the covers some more.
It sure is dark in here.


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                                      Each piece of art is inspired by the incredible normalcy that runs rampant thru my life.