The Briefcase

Resting by the door,
Normally avoidable…
Ouch! I trip once more.

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Limericks

As I teach my 6th graders, I will sometimes create in the style that I am teaching.  When teaching limericks, write limericks!

Lorenzo he searched for a book.
“I wonder which one of you took
The book that I had
And made me feel sad.”
Saw Ian and called him a crook.

——-

Said Emma to Luke here’s a dare:
“When Erick sits down take his chair.”
But Erick was wise
To the not-nice surprise.
Said Luke, “It’s not fair you’re aware.”

——-

Miranda thought, “Class is a bore.
“I can’t stand to sit on floor.”
She talked and she sighed
And she shouted with pride.
So Finlay he showed her the door.

The First Sound is Never the Birds

The first sound is never the birds
Neither the coo of the pigeon in the palm
Nor the call of the scrub blackbird

Trash truck sounds first
Diesel motor idle roar
Breaking bottles
Pre-dawn-end-of-the-route whisper
Of tired haulers
Hoarse

Then
Cars racing
Motorcycles revving
(Car alarms activated)
House alarms
Dog alarms
Fresh bread morning whistles
Ice cream tricycle kazoos
Old Marta shouting, “Ta-ma-le-ta-ma-le-ta-ma-le!”
(The first time I listened late and heard ma-le-ta [suitcase] not tamale)
Emergency sirens
Pounding, drilling, sanding, scraping
Street-vibrating renovations
Eleven million vying

Pause

Coo
        Call
                  Chirp
                          Song
Relax and respond

Never the first, never the last
Yet always the soothe in the din-
Awareness revealing the bird-song

Listen

For the coo of the pigeon in the palm
And the call of the scrub blackbird

.                                        Lima, Peru 2019

I am, therefore I feel- Part 1

Eyes opened to the morning
The faint, pre-dawn glow
Colors of the quilt
Beige walls, wood floor, shock of art
The S curve of my side sleeping spouse

Bare feet on a cool floor
Elastic waistband presses less than the night before
Warm water soothes the aches
My daily baptism cleanse

Black, hot coffee
Tastes of valley slopes and worker’s hopes
Perhaps a hint of chocolate
Acidic blueberries tamed with cane sugar
Salty bacon, cured with honey
(I’ll exercise tonight- promise!)

Click of the door
Vrooom of the motor
Hurried honks drown the bird song
Sigh (audible)
Breathe (purposefully)
Mozart to motivate
Rundgren to ruminate

Inhale the baking bread roasting beans and the subtle (?) geraniums
Mix in downtown’s exhaust and the damp concrete

I am, therefore I feel

 

The Game’s Afoot!

On a recent trip to Minnesota, a friend and I met for coffee and conversation.  As part of the conversation we, as we often do, discussed our reading and writing.  We shared suggestions for awesome reads, quick reads, reads to avoid, … Then we discussed writing.

To make a longer story shorter, we came to an agreement: In one year we will return to the same coffee shop, each one with a manuscript for the other to read.  Yep, we’re gonna write some books!

Why am I telling you this?  It keeps me honest and helps me with accountability- if I tell the world I am going to write a book then I will, most likely, write a book.  Now, just so you know, there was no agreement as to length or quality; we did not discuss genre or publishing.  One could write a 700 page fantasy or a 30 page poetry chap book.  And, if for some reason we don’t write, we will still meet for coffee and conversation.

So, the game’s afoot!  Pen to paper!

Comfort Zone

Yesterday’s low temperature in Minneapolis, twenty eight degrees below zero (-28 °F), is outside my comfort zone.  I believe that most people would say the same.  At the same time, many people braved the frigid temps to get to work or help a neighbor while others lowered the thermostat in their house so that there will be enough natural gas for all.  Again, outside one’s comfort zone.

Today, a friend of mine continued the process of applying for his post secondary education as he set up an interview at an area college, rescheduled the interview because of the cold, and then attended the interview.  While I have been supporting him in the process, he is the one moving it all forward, stepping outside his comfort zone.

So, be brave.  Take a positive step outside your comfort zone. Try something new and see what happens.  Begin that dream journey with a single step, even if, especially if, it’s outside your comfort zone.

Remember though, dress warmly if it is -28 °F.