The meaning unfolds and ebbs downriver
to the banks of a town that I faintly remember.
I’m not in a woven basket or nothing,
it’s not so biblical and serious,
but I am more buoyant than I would have imagined.
Every thought in my life is swirling underneath me,
the bad ones and the good ones.
I’m glad they kinda even out for the most part;
and the water is a pleasant temperature for the day.
I’m sorta suspended there, hanging, by the banks
of that town, so I decide to get up outta the water;
inspect the downtown and ya know … people watch.
There’s a lot of people I remember and some I don’t,
They’ve got other things on their mind so they pass me by.
The metaphor for life and death is a river, I always thought it’d be a train station.
(On returning back to Cincinnati after a road trip to see a best friend from college)
There was a time when my feeling of home was neat.
Neat like a young boy dressed up in polished, brown
leather shoes, creased slacks and a multicolored,
polo shirt from Kohl’s that cost $12.50.
I was not a troubled boy from a troubled home,
nor was I an Airforce brat tucking my teddy goodnight
in twelve different coastal cities before the age of 10.
My feeling of home, as I said, was neat.
The postman delivered my mail, mostly from relatives
at the time, for well over fifteen years … until he retired and
we got a postwoman (how progressive). We stayed in
one place so long we saw the rise and fall of a man’s entire career.
All I was really certain of was the feeling of home I felt.
There were tears for missed kisses and for scraped knees,
but there was always a bedroom to retreat to. And there
was always a stocking with my name on the Christmas mantle.
I haven’t had a feeling of home like that in twelve years.
The ‘something solid’ has been missing from my heart
and I’ve been balancing my emotions as well as
sub-prime mortgage spending at the millennium’s turn.
I’ve lived in houses since, yes, not homes. Not my home anyway.
Maybe we are all just strangers missing the same made-up
feeling of home. If we have no place to rise from, to retreat to,
to protect and keep, will we ever feel complete?
My name is carved into the wood under the marble countertop
in the kitchen at the address of 185 Nod Road Ridgefield,
Connecticut, where once stood my home.
It has since been painted over.
Give me a warm bed to rise from,
A guitar to write songs with,
A pad of paper for my poems,
A ham and cheese sandwich for lunch,
A mid-day walk around my neighborhood,
A friend to talk to on the phone,
A something sweet to eat,
A clean and tidy room,
A midnight walk up to the deserted campus,
And I will be content.
What if we gave out love
like bags of candy at halloween.
What if we went door to door
and told people we love them
without ever having to say the words.
What if the whole world loved
their neighbor. And I mean just
their next door neighbor.
I see a new future for us,
A new trajectory, where we give
out our love like bags of candy
I am a little late, but no matter
Down the lane, past the snow
brushed street, through the hush
of thicket, over the icy brook and
up; there is a sparking light in
the night sky glad to be nestled
Northmost against the heavens.
The light waves like a fire’s dance,
glinting a multi-facet in the seeker’s
eyes; beautiful in its radiance.
This star reminds us most of a
Bethlehem’s birth, carrying a
Messenger into the world with a
letter in his pocket of love and
I have, at times, forgotten the tone
of the letter, but will do my best
to remember it this season.
Let’s help the lost find their
way again. Let’s see our homes
restored. Let’s be a symbol of grace
incarnate, filled with light and love.
Please, let us be kind to every,
single, living thing.
Maybe you are like me and get lost
in the unanswerable questions. There
is a line I often repeat when I have
come to a breaking point, ‘If Jesus is
for the poor, then I am for Jesus.’
Merry Christmas to you.
Maybe it is because we know
even the atheist cries out, “Why God!”
on his most broken day.
I am gone away, in part, since your passing.
I have no beginning without your home,
and in your end, I am gone away.
When you would sing, I would listen and look
up into your eyes before I had the word
‘beauty’ to shine up at your face.
All my words came from your first
“I love you.” The foundation of my language
is your embrace.
I know the meaning of the word, not just
in the breakdown of sounds, but by your
relentless pursuit of my heart.
You were a force, and the wind has not died
since you’ve gone. The trees are permanently
bent from your crushing blows.
You dared me to love greatly; you lavished me
with praise. Everything I am is you and you are
everything to me. A home is not a building,
made of wood and nails. A home is not this place
or that place where we lived. A home is you,
my mother. You are my home.
A submarine sinks down to the bottom of the darkest depth, but it is not sunk.
It will overcome the trench, bringing with it, articles from the bottom that we would like to examine further.
Articles from the darkest place, a place that no light has ever touched.
Be like the submarine.
Go to the dark place, all the while protected from the intense pressure.
But also, be like the submarine, do not be overcome by the dark and return to the surface with perspective.
Whatever is bad in your life,
Whatever is hurtful,
I hope goodness will come
and replace the bad things
with their counterpart in hope;
gathering up all those wrong entities
and releasing them into the ether.
The bad things will try
and make their way back
into your life. Unfortunately,
you will let them at times.
But try and remember how
light hope is to hold; like a
sweater over your shoulders
and not much more.
Hope has this soft quality too
and it helps you see clearly for
what feels like the first time.
It is like a gentle reset; a
calibration that is neither painful nor
harsh. More like fine tuning the
gears of an elaborate wrist watch.
When the wrong things cover
your field of vision, all you can see
is straight ahead. Everything is clouded;
When hope fills your eyes, things are
crisp and precise; you can see the
I want you to see into the infinite
with me. If you feel you are ready
and that you are safe, I can show you.
Go to sleep
Go to sleep
Little trazodone kids
Your dreams are calling
Whispering soft stuff
About a nice, quiet end
To self harm scars –
Replacing that bad
With cloudlike good
Go to sleep
Go to sleep
Little medicated ones
There is a day coming
When monsters like depression
Are slayed by a great warrior
One who is cloaked in light
And brings the sun
Into each new dawn
Go to sleep