Some people say that where they are
Is where they’re meant to be;
For years, I never understood –
Those comments puzzled me

Sometimes, you’re down and desperate,
As I was, long ago:
I saw no reason at the time
Why it needs must be so

For almost thirty years ago
I tried to end my life;
I never would have known my kids
My grandchildren, my wife –

I never would have typed these words
That you are reading now;
I would have been a nobody,
A nothing. A no how —

I couldn’t find a reason,
Couldn’t generate a spark
To see me through the nightscape;
Through the hopeless, whirling dark

But somehow, day led on to day;
And I regained my voice.
Then I decided living
Was my only living choice

I do not know where you might be,
How your life’s filled with pain;
I do not know the grief you’ve felt,
And that, I will not feign —

But this I tell you, reading friend:
There is, most times, a light:
So you can climb the hill ahead,
And fear
No more
The night

(“Nightscape” – 7-1-2015)


he wandered off to providence
to see if he could hear
the sound of his own breathing
as the sole one in his ear

a backpack and a walking stick
his phone left in the truck
he hiked on with a purpose
and to get himself unstuck

and yes that place was beautiful
and true he did explore it
but providence was always there
if he'd just

reached out for it

Three Hours – 8 AM

FEEL it now, feel it,
 breathe in, breathe out;
The world knows your name, but
 not how to pronounce --
There was a day coming,
 it's here, it's here;
And maybe there's more, now, than
 doubt and fear

YOU gave up your heart, and
 you gave in to those
 who said, "all you will be is
 the path that you chose" --
But yesterday isn't
 in charge of today,
 and the popular roads aren't
 the last only way --

SO find yourself driving
 towards where you would be;
Come out of the alleys of
 shorn misery,
Go out to the country,
 fill up, and reach high:
 the meaning is yours,
 because you


For Love of Dancing

For as long as she could, she danced: wherever, whenever. Every day.

She didn’t dance because she was the best at it. She didn’t dance for the attention. She danced for love of dancing, for the pure joy of it.

Long before I met, and fell in love with, and married her, she had this other love. Through the ups and downs of childhood, and adolescence, and a turbulent young adulthood, and a failed first marriage, she had this.

Music made her want to dance. Dance made her free. For real joy always comes both from the outside in, and from the inside out.

She was very good at it, and it did garner her a lot of attention. In addition, she got to the point where she could be paid to do it, and to teach it, so she did both.

While she was still a teen, she had been told she had structural deficiencies in her knees – parts weren’t there that should be – and that she probably ought to give up her more athletic pursuits, as one or the other of her knees could give out at any point.

But given the cause, she reasoned, that was ultimately going to happen anyway. So she danced: wherever, whenever.

When I showed up in her life, she had three daughters, and all of them danced as well. The eldest was slim, graceful, and her body expressed itself naturally in dance: but she loved dancing for the attention more than the feeling, and so ultimately fell away. The middle girl loved the creative aspect of dancing, and dreamed of maybe being a choreographer; but other disciplines offered her the same chance for creativity, and so she too fell away.  The youngest danced only because she wanted her mother to be proud of her, so she fell away the soonest.

We have a niece, though, who has continued to dance and to teach dance for love of dancing. Even with a young family, and a busy career: because not to do so is unthinkable for her.

My wife’s knees eventually got to the point where the kind of dancing she loved was not possible anymore. But we can, and do, dance some at wedding receptions; I also often catch her dancing with one or more of our grandchildren in the living room, as the familiar signs joy on her face have me falling in love with her all over again.

“Dancing”, for you, may be some other thing. It may be riding a bicycle, or running, or playing basketball; it may be writing, or going to the movies, or participating in poetry readings; it may be music, or painting, or drawing, or cooking, or surfing, or blogging — but, whatever it is, cherish your joy. Nourish it. Love it while you have it.

For the lessons of love and joy are the same: they’re born, they grow, they will change, and they will ultimately pass away. Part of life is about wringing every bit out of these experiences while we can, then letting them go when we must.

So dance for as long as you can: whenever, wherever.

Every day.


We wish to give our mind its wings,
A type of mental Pegasus;
But mind's a fragile thing, at best -
An organ slight and tenuous

The arrows coming from the world,
They wound us places we don't know;
We hide our wings so timidly
And so don't fly where we would go

But courage is thing we need
To overcome our troubles here:
To fly to where we need to be
We must be free

And persevere

Photo credit : © Coreyford | – Pegasus 03 Photo

Be Free

What was no longer has to be –
Be free, my friend, be free
You are not trapped in history –
Be free my friend be free

The world is wide and full of joy,
For man and woman, girl and boy,
And with the powers you employ
You’ll find your destination —
The magic’s here, it’s not a trick,
For buildings come up brick-by-brick,
And slowest times are over quick,
Within your reclamation —

What might be there for you to see?
Be free, my friend, be free
What can you make of destiny?
Be free my friend be free

For life’s a thing that must be made,
If not champagne, then lemonade,
And what’s not owed need not be paid,
So feel no consternation —
Whatever order’s there, we placed,
It’s new horizons should be faced,
And though the past can’t be erased,
It’s now just information

So run, if you would run or flee —
Be free, my friend, be free
It’s life, it has no guarantee —
Be free, my friend, be free

Don’t set up shop in misery;
Your heart belongs to you – not me –
You can shape your reality:
Be free, my friend,
Be free