A Writer's Life

Living Creatively

Tag Archives: life’s lessons

Conundrum

Perched on my fence drawn by food
City backyards provide, predator with wing span
So large, so unnecessary within urban sprawl,
It dares to navigate one hop at a time
Fearful sky roadblocks and free fall hazards
Only to question: belly full or solitary freedom?

What does it mean to be unfettered
If cages are built to hold inside
Wings unused, original flight plans
Unrealized when praise is the main course
Feeding body, not unformed spirit
Trying to fly higher, always higher.

A story unread but proudly written
Faces the trap of accessibility;
Write to publish or right to maintain
Dense, though unfathomable, style
Regardless of reader understanding.
If no one reads it, are you an author?

bird

JUST DO IT!

photographerI gave it all up:
my job, beloved home
and friends;
being without people
the greatest sacrifice
to spirit.
Alone in a foreign place,
self-talk to do what
I must do
without diversion,
I write down words
into stories –
a warning to avoid
detour activities the
inside voice,
loudspeaker cries to
leave me alone  –
JUST DO IT!

Senior Take Out

lillies2There is a circular drive, but no order window

Or neon sign pointing the way through

Double doors opened automatically

As you enter and the newest order leaves

Wrapped in black plastic, the cotton and silk

Condiment tastefully styled, not spread;

No added salt or MSG preserves this

Senior Discount, waiting, waiting

For black-suited driver and seat belt gurney.

The Calling Light

Ding, ding, dingdistortwheelchair
Heralds slow pace of
Yellow parchment skin
Pushing black rubber wheels
Down long red carpet

Ding, ding, ding

Tip-toing forward non-stop
Inside silver metal prison
Without a passing horn
Or attached turning signal

Ding, ding, ding

Too quick for heartbeat
Slowed by Maestro’s hand
So near, so close His
Breath cleans call lights’

Ding, ding, ding

Above each closed door
While helpers laugh and talk
Social blind-sided need to
Turn away from muffled

Ding, ding, ding

Push button calls for help
Ignored as hoped-for
Skeletal fingers mistake
Buttons for antique comb

Ding, ding, ding

Echoes long forgotten
Take me home, I want to go home.
Floats up newly painted ceiling
Minus glow-in-the-dark stars

Ding, ding, ding

Hallway traffic jam
As three abreast block
Lunch time interlude
In their need for table space

Ding, ding, ding

How are we today?
Cheerful serenade
To the tune of
Call light staccato

Ding, ding, ding.

Quaker Meeting

My joy spirals up the umbrella pole

Skipping from petal to petal –

Streams of yellow and pink blossoms –

A journey up, across, and down

Human umbrella ribs of

Flower curtain protection

Round good-hearted people;

A Friend’s quiet meeting in clean,

Open air spiritual mindfulness.

flowerCascade

Blood Fills White Spaces

Black SwanSwollen allergy eyes cannot see tropical blooms

As salt water falls cascade down and over

Attempted vacation smile until a single white dove’s

Broken wing scrapes by leaving feather prints

Centuries old sand cannot conceal and

Paradise should not hide because I do

Bring to this place all I know, all I

Love and have lost beneath palm frond

Gifts of shade and non stop bird song.

Boxes

We framed a moonlit box –

Pillars of sugar and water –

Making it ninety degree square

Transparent, see-through sides

Pierced through at night

By life’s moonbeam shards

Never empty, always full –

Air, dust, and silence

Inside a box without sides

Holding daylight dreams

Square box builders

Never, ever fulfill.

The Writer’s Tree

I am not famous. I am not widely read or lauded. Yet here sits an older, determined woman who has left behind security, stabilitydriftwood and Starbucks – the three s’s of a Baby Boomer’s life – to follow an unrealized dream. It hasn’t been easy. Though I am an indulgent boss – dark chocolate and potato chip lunches prevail – l am harder to work for than any chain gang master.  No professional fast track for me.  No financial security either. Social distractions? Rare. When people say, “You have to eat, call me then.” I don’t. My phone is off. I write – with computer, German-made fountain pen or in my head. And when the knock on the door wakes me from an afternoon nap, I do not answer, sunk deep in the before and after stories that occur when resting. Alone -unfettered to pursue my dream of becoming a full-time author – I write.

No, I am not famous and my blog is seldom read. My success is not measured by money, education or power. Instead, quality time is extended by imagination, unanswered phone calls and no opportunity knocks on the door. Will anyone read what I write? Unknown quantity. Is notoriety necessary? Hard to discern.  I like the novel I wrote this year.  Its completion may be enough to sustain this life, should no one else read it. But nagging at the outer limits of my “should do” mind is the thought – if a novel is written and completed, does the author truly exist if no one reads it?

 

Happy Birthday Dad

FlagandDadI was born at California’s Camp Pendleton Marine base. I imagine my newborn self surrounded by khaki, gray walls, lots of salutes and no shortage of guns and bombs. I saved a life being born – my father did not deploy to Korea because my mother miscarried twins the year before. Mine was a high risk gestation. Since 50% of my father’s group were killed, that means I saved 50% of my father – which is accurate since he contracted polio during that time. In fact, he had such a severe case that the military doctors gave up, telling my mother he would never walk again. But my mother was stubborn and with the help of a sympathetic orderly, she snuck my father into the officer’s swimming pool and Dad did walk – though his personality changed. Pain does that. The 50% I saved lost his Scotch-Irish jokes and carefree smile and suffered pain every day of his remaining life. In the end, he could not walk independently. Post polio hit him hard and, despite being radically opposite in political views, attitudes toward minorities, the environment and women’s rights, my respect for Dad became even greater. He was, until the end, fiercely independent and determined to be no one’s burden. He was the only person on this planet who loved me unconditionally and he did it with 100%. His birthday is this month and I miss him.

Walk The Path

The earth is packed down with tree root legs spread out along the path. This is well-worn: a hundred years of human feet between trees five times as old. Ancient interlaced finger limbs overhead filter sunlight during the day and reflected light at night – a mislabeled moonlight.  Recycled moisture drips down into upturned faces. No one brings water because silver-tipped waves rush alongside this path; the rocks separate silt from melted snow – its cold milky froth a forest latte’.

It is idealized wilderness. Too many human feet walk the path for it to be truly wild. Even the deer seem less startled and elk have long ago sought a detour. Once I came upon bear scratches, but knew the carnivore was here for the garbage left behind.  It is a caricature of virgin Earth. While squirrels do chatter a warning, the birds do not stop their song or they would never sing.

Eagles