Beauty of Remembrance

Oh poppy, you rise to bloom
With petals of royal red
And the deepest dark core

Giving unambiguous symbolism
Signature of reverence
For those never to be forgotten

You embody a pained dignity
In the midst
Of life’s most difficult times

You show me strength
With your inherent form
As you adorn my lapel

You drive me to confront
My challenges
And learn from your qualities

Remembrance:
Painful to embrace
But laced, she is, with deep love

Dignity:
Humanity’s stature
Measured by compassion

Clarity:
The fruit of growth
Despite the desire to revert

Poppy dear,
You’re nature’s gift
As you grace my garden
And bring gratitude to my heart.

April’s Resurrection

With the unexpected
Mandatory isolations,
Arrives a resurrection
Of lifestyles of old.

Families gather
Breakfast, lunch and dinner.
The elderly are watched over
With keenness and compassion.

The poor and homeless
Fed and sheltered.
Communities work
With united forces.

With efforts big and small
True mindfulness and consciousness
Regain strength and center stage.

Within the self
Something deep is touched,
Stirred and begs to rise
As another resurrection.

Stripped of the usual noise
Busy-ness and distractions,
There is an exposure
Of the decluttered self.

The self that knows consciousness
That feels the depth of gratitude
That recognizes the greatest love
Of the One who always cares.

With no concepts to cloud
And only a few and basic
Needs to be addressed,
The obvious is made clear.

The preciousness
Of the ultimate gift
Yet non-permanence
And fragility of life.

The question begged to be asked.
What is it that you resurrect?
Your goals and ambitions?
Your achievements and certificates?

Neither past nor future matter.
The unexpendable commodity
Is this moment now.
The frame of existence.

Resurrect your being
The qualities that enliven you
Not by what surrounds
But by what lays within.

Allow in this quiet time
Listening to the voice
Lost in the usual noise.
And resurrect what you know
You’ve always been.

Madness of March


From the maddening crowds
Masked with mayhem,
To voluntary quarantine
And prohibited movement

The making of mass hysteria.
Heads rise above the cellphone
Our seeming invincibility
Suddenly cracked open

Finally we see each other.
Is it with empathy or fear?
Is it with comradeship or disdain?

With opposing forces
Hand in hand
How are we to survive?
How are we to accept them all?

Looking to Mother Nature
She shows constant dichotomies
Where the unlikely
Co-habit and even thrive.

On the hardened brittle bark
Beauty resides
As blooms spring forth
Soft and sumptuous.

From murky stagnant pools
Emerge the pristine lotus flowers,
No looking back or down
Just rising with a divine grace.

So this March
Is like no other,
Tests and trials
All yet to come.

Let not madness reign
As the confusion may prevail,
Rather rise with fortitude
And generosity of heart.

What comes, must pass
So lose not sight,
And ask of yourself
What are my powers
Which are constant,
Restoring and sustaining.

Departing January

January you arrived 12.01
With sparkles and sizzle
Must you fizzle
As you depart?

Taking with you
The glimmer of hope
Planted in the dark

No! you bring beginnings
Opportunity to start afresh

Yet each year brings too
My detectable age
With my luster
Working harder to push through

Searching and embracing
Ways new and old
For truer gratification
I survive the winter

The winter where the sun
Barricaded by thick sheets of cloud
Leaves brittle and dry

The winter of separated lovers
Conforming to conventional expectations
Hearts ache and cold

The winter of lost souls
Deafened by laws and rites of religions, traditions
Confused and wandering

Whether the season
The heart
The soul

January
Thank you for your lesson
Your message of hope
To seize each moment

As this gift of time
Despite the seeming ease of renewal
Is the keeper of all things

Depart now
Leave with me my resolutions
My aspirations
As I pray to circle once more
Around the great one
So as we may meet again

Night Beauty

Bright beauty
Of the night sky
Waxing and waning
Sickle like or full
Applauded and acclaimed
Yet you remain
Most egolessly
Humble and servant
To your Sun
You teach me
To see
You and I
Are the same
Reflections of the Almighty
Vessels of the Great
You accept
Your position
Your role
Your rotation
Yet I struggle
In my place
In myself
And my time
Watching your grandeur
On nights of your fullness
You leave me with patience
For dreams of fruition
When through me
There’ll be shine
Perhaps just as much
As to light
A few dark corners
In a mind or a heart
But even more so
To give myself
The chance to acknowledge
The One that chooses me
And bestows the life light force
One breath at a time

Coming Home

2796CA24-7B32-45CB-93C3-73817068FC89

Sitting on a bench
Sharing our stories of
George Eliot
The pen named writer
The high school we all attended
The hospital where you were born
Once in the forefront
Then the backdrop
Of our lives

Sitting on a bench
Sharing our stories of
Riversley Road park
With the parading peacock
The pristine bowling green
The wading pool and bandstand
And of course the Museum
Once in the forefront
Then the backdrop
Of our lives

Sitting on bench

Sharing our stories

Outside
Abbey Theater
With new friends in times of need
Old ones re-acquainted
Once in the forefront
Then the backdrop
Of our lives

All these memories were fortunately made
So stories now can be re-told
And I can still cherish you
No matter how quickly
The two years have flown by

Staples of Life


Photo by Max Malloy, curtesy of Pinterest.

Staples of Life

Food?
Water?
Light?

For the warrior of old
Chia was his sustenance
Now with innumerable grains
Some so old like amaranth, unknown

For the arid desert nomad
A palm on the horizon, a vision of hope
Now water, flat or sparkling
And in any flavor sought

The shepherd into his night
Lead by the galaxy of stars
Today with the neon lit skies
Some have lost the savoring of dawn

So what now remains
As the staples of life?
What is it, without which
We cannot survive!

Conditioned to strive
For fame and fortune
Placing prosperity before responsibility
Lost is man

In the battle
The mirage
The day’s toil
Leaders, soldiers, all men
Muddle in circles

The greatest of misfortunes
Has befallen mankind
For he has no answer
To what sustains his own life!

At times, man is forced to face
His dichotomous humanity
For some a choice
For most not

When stripped naked
Of the labels, the roles
The doing and undoings
The staples of life
Emerge from the core

Humility or pomposity
Vulnerability or defensiveness
Compassion or suppression
Gratitude or greed

Wait not for the unraveling of your life
Embrace your core
And claim
The grandest of staples
Fit for this life

Birds Eye Privilege

 

From Wright to Ron
Discoveries to adventures
The two legged man
Makes his way to flight

With science and courage
Precision to check marks
Buckles and headphones
We were set to go

Engines splutter to roll
Thrill engaged
Moving forward
Seamlessly to flight

Ascending the rise
City sights pass by
Then Central Valley food carpet
Spreads and sprawls wide

Ranges, aqueducts
Mineral pools and more
“Rita” gives life
To my very own birds eye

Sheets of cloud
Ominous at first
Like Bermuda Triangle
Stories and tales!

Control tower guides
Securing the passage
Skirting the dangers
The pilot’s my hero

If first flight
Was not thrill enough
On return, sunset to dusk
Entrance me again

Partnering the sky
Traveling side by side
The horizon waves good-bye
To the passing of my day

Hues of pink scattered in blue
Then creamed orange to zestful blaze
With last moments left
Golden yellow takes stage

Majestic rise to bow
From both the sun and my heart
For here heaven meets earth
With the breath and blessing of God

Thanks to Ron,
And Rita, his bird
And to Laurie,
For friendship, fun
And so much more!

March 7th 1998

D8290163-17D5-404B-B6FE-1A38EB744B25

As the ‘passage way’

Of parenthood,

We’ve strived to be.

From nurturing to

Nagging,

As cheerleaders to

Protectors.

 

But actually,

With our smiles

Our laughter

And even the cries,

It’s Companions

We have grown

To become.

 

We’ve won as parents!

We hope you did too!

As despite any time

Apart,

We always feel that need

To come on back.

Back to the place

Of our togetherness.

 

So as 21 years

Rolls on in,

We have only to give

More of what

We’ve been blessed to have,

More WE.

 

From dream

To reality

You have emerged,

Definitely

A gift of complete

God-liness.

 

As beauty radiates

From inside out,

May you leave

Little gems

Of a life well lived,

Where ever

Your story unfolds…

Happy Birthday, Honey.

 

 

 

Name that vase: Natronia

Produced and posted by The Alchemist’s Studio, http://rakupottery.ca/2019/01/08/name-that-vase/ with request for naming and writings.

The inspiration for naming your #44 comes from its immediate ability to draw me back to Tanzania where i experienced Lake Natron, a mineral-rich soda lake which sits below the ‘Mountain of God’, Ol Dionyo Lengai, an active volcano that spews a dark silvery carbonatite ‘cold’ lava at 500-550 celsius.
Your vase reminds me of the colors, textures and unlikely combination of life and death at this lake. The story is real but your vase is the mythical symbolization, Natronia, to me!

Natronia

Oh ‘Golden’ one
Think yourself so mighty,
Robbing me of my waters
Running me dry to the bed.

My visiting flamingoes may flee
And the fish eagle saved
As my alkaline petrifying
and volcanic waters vanish.

But perhaps you leave
Behind, my most renown
Beauty of all,
My crystaline core.

Varied hues of ruby
Azure and seagreen,
All mingle and run in and over
My contours, cracks and crevices.

See my form now!
Matched by none,
As I am the one and only
Lake, Lake Natron.

With me you will find
Life and death
On and in me,
Both like nowhere else.

When waters swell
My salts are savored,
My ruby red
Never feared.

Yet with pH high
I cannot help
To immortalize those poor creatures
Who know not what is wise.

I lay witness to mighty God,
Ol Dionya Lengai.
Beauty is my nature
Protect those that come to my shore.

Pictures curtesy of Nick Brandt and Depositphoto.com.