Friday, April 12, 2019

They Will Never Write Songs About Me

Summer River, pastel painting

I call this poem below my signature poem. I wrote it back in 1994, and I still can't read or recite it without tears. I remember as a teenager being at a concert with friends and right up at the stage, and the lead singer dedicated a song to my friend. I knew then, I would never be the kind of person people wrote (or sang) songs about. 

Years later, this poem emerged after a three-month depression after an intense three-week teacher-training workshop. And while the poem has sadness and a bit of despair, it's also a freeing moment of accepting who I AM!

They Will Never Write Songs About Me

Sometimes I feel so insignificant
so useless, so unimportant.
I am certainly nobody’s hero,
never one to be looked up to
never to stand out in a crowd.
I will never BE somebody.
I am destined to stand in periphery
and they will never ever write songs about me.

Sometimes I get a glimpse beyond;
a glimpse, a fragile glimpse
of parted curtain, thinning veil.
What is it I see beyond the beyond?
clouded view of what could be,
cannot tell if it’s really me;
fear pulls the shade, no longer free,
and they will never ever write songs about me.

At times I am uncomfortable
when I look upon myself.
Who do I think I am
to dream I can be different?
So I continue to live in shadow
hovering between fear and wanna be.
I know that no one will ever see,
know too, they will never write songs about me.

But, to know I have a purpose
in the Greater Scheme of Life,
to dare to make my stand,
to know I have a choice.
I am One who lives in both worlds,
I guess it’s my destiny
Living in the periphery
is why they will never write songs about me.                       

Out of the well of darkness
of heartache and despair,
comes words to release the pain, the grief
and it’s these I wish to share:
Fame and Fortune care not for me.
Open heart, open hand for all to see.
Letting everyone know it’s okay with me
that they will never ever write songs about me.

Friday, March 29, 2019

Lightning Strike

Writing the morning pages was put on hold as I typed up the poem I’d written after meditating last night. “Lightning Strike.” I’m always amazed at how the words come through me and up out of me. It IS just like a lightning strike! There’s a kind of coming down or into me and also a coming up and out of me – just like lightning when the electrical charges in the earth rise up to meet the lightning strike coming down.

Lightning Strike

The air shimmers,
tension builds
It boils … It simmers …

It flashes down
before I can blink and
arcs through me
striking the ground
in a glorious array
of unseen color

I can’t breathe

Reverberations echo
through my body
trapping me
in mind-numbing shock

Glued to this spot
I can’t move
my body tingles wildly
in the exploding power
vibrating in silence
around me

I can’t breathe

In this microsecond
of time
I’m too paralyzed
to even think, and

as I struggle to comprehend
what just happened,
the earth erupts
with a soundless deafening roar
blasting through me
once again

I breathe in

I can do nothing
but wait for release
as the residual energy
rains down on me

wrapping its charged essence
over me as if draping me
in a new warm cloak
then dissipating
into the dust
at my feet

I breathe out

With the charred smell
lingering in the air
and fingers still tingling,
I slowly pick up my pen

A poem falls onto the page.

And so, my morning took a detour, as it does so often. It never ceases to amaze me that my first thoughts of what the day will bring seldom stays true to the original plans. At the end of the day, though, I am satisfied with what I accomplished, and I don’t regret what I didn’t get done. I guess my days are not about staying on a straight, paved sidewalk, but they meander wooded trails over rocky and bumpy terrain. It makes life interesting, that’s for sure!

I love that I don’t have an adrenaline-pumping need. I love that I find excitement in the seemingly simple things. I love that I see beauty everywhere.

“Interesting” is my favorite word and “journey” is another. Life is an interesting journey if we allow ourselves to see it as such. Even a simple life isn’t really so simple when you’re living it, and what we allow ourselves to experience and acknowledge open our eyes to the beauty of life. And practicing living wholeheartedly makes life special and soul-rewarding.

Friday, March 8, 2019

The Muse Demands Attention

The Muse comes in
fills my senses
takes over
my entire being
‘til I can’t think
of anything else
but doing my art

Paintings call me
words tumble
out of me
I’m torn between
following the demands
or doing mundane chores
which need to be done

"Rose of Sharon" work in progress

A quick trip
to the studio
has me on my feet
over an hour

Every time I try to walk away
She pulls me back
more … more
fix this … touch that up

Even after I return
to the table
She’s still there
poking, prodding
pushing to keep
the creative fire
burning brightly

It’s hard to ignore
but I have other work to do.

Wednesday, March 6, 2019


Little brain chitter
like bird twitter
taps on the edges
of my mind

But the words
roll off my skull
and fall into the ethers
before I can hear them

Nothing feels important
I’m in limbo
until I can get home
where the muse

Patiently, or maybe
impatiently, waits.
She wasn’t done with me
when I left.

Friday, February 8, 2019

Creative Muses

The Poetry Muse
strikes with no notice
words pouring out
like beer from an open tap

The words
in its frothy head
slowly sink
into the dark brew

With each sip
of the creamy, bitter stout
they slide down my throat
then slip out onto the page

The Painting Muse
hovers on the sideline
silently prodding
my consciousness

“Paint,” she pleads, “Paint!”
as she fills my mind
with visions of beautiful
landscapes and flowers

Pink Phlox Purple Post

She pulls me
to the easel
shows me scenes
full of pastel brightness

Soft colors over dark
blended edges of vibrant shades
I feel my hand lift to the paper
give over to the passion

Until the Writing Muse
demands attention
and words vie with color
overflowing my mind

Write, paint, write, paint
becomes the daily struggle
with both muses screaming
to be heard

Wisps of color
swirl in a sea of words
and I give in
to whatever is strongest

leaving the other
to pace the misty shorelines
awaiting her chance
to jump in.

Saturday, December 1, 2018

Hard Rain

Words start in a trickle
a gentle drizzle
tickling my senses
teasing me to pick up a pen

After a couple of lines
the wind gusts
and the heavens open
A deluge of hard rain
pummels me with words
too numerous to catch

This rain hurts!
In moments I’m drenched
falling so fast, so hard
the words bruise my mind
bounce off my body leaving welts
then puddle at my feet like spilled ink

Phrases drip from my hair
run into my eyes making vision difficult
then streak down my face and neck
I’m soaked to the skin
drops coursing down my arms
to fall from fingertip to pen
onto a page too wet to hold ink

I fight to save the words
being washed away
 “Me! Me!” they yell
demanding to be written
But I’m drowning
I can’t write fast enough

Suddenly it stops
the overcast opens to blue
and the sun peeks through
The words dry on my arms,
ink on the page becomes readable
I begin moving the pieces around
assembling the jigsaw puzzle
of a poem.

Monday, November 26, 2018

Storm Surge

Once more a poem about writing poetry surged through. I wrote it last night after meditating, then "fixed" it up this morning. Enjoy!

In a half dream
I calmly watch the tide pull back
totally oblivious to what’s about to happen
the quiet deceiving before all hell breaks loose

Mesmerized, I watch it build. It’s huge!
and realize there’s no time to run
with frightening speed
it descends in a deafening rumble
devouring everything in its path

It smashes into me
sweeps me high off my feet
spins me around
then slams me to the ground
its force rolling me
over and over and over

I try to grab onto words
but the surge steals my breath

I try to grab onto explanation
but the ferocity leaves me mindless

I write furiously
but the raging torrents rip away the words
before I can get them all on the page

I try to make sense of it all
but the turbulent forces tumble me along
at speeds too outrageous to describe
leaving no room for cohesive thought

Then, as suddenly as it began, it stops.
I collapse into the wet, slimy mud
stunned, bruised, exhausted
numb and in shock
I watch the water recede, disappear

I breathe in … breathe out
I’m alive!

I begin moving aching limbs
shifting through the debris
of words I wrote down
trying to find what I missed;
searching for the ending

But there’s nothing else here.
After all that intensity
I expected more --
There is no more

Surprised, I realize
the ending already happened
just not the way I expected
what started with such violence
ended quickly, softly.

It’s done.