Riffing on Living

205 words – free verse

life in the fast lane of concrete jungles weaving through cities and states seeking altered states and the key to paradise while cities burn from fires caused by climate change and a whole range of environmental disasters brought on by corporate behemoths that breath life into Wall Street’s secrets corridors of power looking down on the average citizen nearly powerless trying to fight Goliath with a cell phone tapped by the FBI and marketers vying for the masses money in cyberspace a dangerous place where saints and sinners trumpet their wares to the unwary visitors responding to special sales for limited times – but wait there’s more – in the pursuit of happiness religions and cults seek converts with promises of saving souls and access to elite Hollywood parties where the wealthy meet to greet one another and brag about big contracts and casting beds while women fight for equality and freedom from perverted movie execs soaked in their huge egos looking for the next star in an industry of dreams where viewers suspend reality to escape a world of lies that have formed like cobwebs in our society holding the average person victim with fake news and rhetoric straight from hell and premiering near you soon.

205 words – free verse

Feeling The Heat?

do you ever get criticized for what you eat?

or dressing sloppy and not being neat?

then you’re probably feeling the heat

from the critics in your life and on the street

our hopes and our desires are fragile things

that need nurturing, not a critics barbed stings

using words like weapons and their voices like slings

critics treat your ideals and habits like verbal playthings

but you can make sure the your critics don’t succeed

when they talk trash about you, pay them no heed

be the master of your own ship and don’t concede

to naysayers and enemies who only want to mislead

we’re all going to feel heat along our chosen way

how we stand up to our detractors determines our day

we’re all different and have a variety of games we play

in essence, life is too damn short not to have your say!

On Healing

50 words –

There are wounds that we can see and others invisible to the naked eye, but both can make us cry.

Physical wounds leave tell-tale scars on the body. Physic wounds hide in the head, leaving the victim with a constant state of dread.

Faith can cure both and raise the dead

The Writer

100 words –

He knows no boundaries.

His words are weapons and blessings. They start wars and form religions. The writer is only restrained by his imagination.

He creates other worlds and tears down fictional civilizations. With the power of the keyboard the writer surfs through subjects from ideology to philosophy effortlessly.

His words are building blocks for future generations. They excite. They cause fights. They bridge languages and customs carefully. They rhyme. They warn. They express love. They promise a better time.

The writer has a duty to entertain. To inform. To motivate. To teach. Nothing is ever out of his reach.

Hate

Hate is an acquired trait.

We’re not born hating the world around us. An infant has a clear conscience with the ability to love without reservation.

But so-called civilization infuses us with hate, as we struggle to survive in an unjust world. Blinded by hate, people lash out over ideologies and beliefs of others. Hate’s sidekick fear, leads the way and opens the doors to our eventual destruction.

Being cursed with the ability to hate, often for no good reason, is mankind’s bane. It’s an inverted cross to bear for all those who give in to hate without a fight.

So Now You’re A Senior

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You’ve done it!

You lived long enough to be called a senior citizen. Congratulations! It’s better than the alternative right?

Here’s your official cane. Now, I’ll walk you through what it means to be…a senior.

  1. You can accidentally (or intentionally) go to the supermarket with your house slippers on, and no one will even notice.
  2. You’ll get discounts at most restaurants, stores, and movie theatres.
  3. It’s your right to spoil you grandchildren.
  4. It’s your duty to spoil pets, especially little dogs that bark a lot.
  5. It’s easy to get someone to do your lifting.
  6. Clerks will offer to walk you to your car, and will put your purchases in the backseat, or trunk. You get to pick.
  7. Your children will realize you knew what you were talking about when your raised them. (Hopefully.)
  8. You’ll have more time to take about the good old days to anyone who’ll listen.
  9. The older you get, the better chance you’ll outlive your enemies.
  10. You have to retire your bikini.

Even with all the aforementioned perks, you have to realize that your body is falling apart, and you’re going to have mystery aches and pains. Old injuries will remind you of when you were young and active.

As for your memory. It may be slipping a bit, but that’s okay. There’s always lots of people younger than you with bad memories. It’s just part of “The Merry Game” as my grandfather use to tell me.

As It Stands, there’s no such thing as growing old gracefully. Grace has nothing to do with it.

 

 

A Private Conversation

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Have you ever accidentally snorted Kool aid?

I poured a package into my palm once and started licking it when, for reasons unknown, I inhaled deeply. Wow! What a rush! I didn’t see colors, like when I tried LSD years later, but there were lightning flashes popping behind my young eyeballs for a few moments.

I won’t attempt to count how many dumb things I’ve done in six decades. That’s not the purpose of this piece.

I’ll get right on track here, and take you down the line to enlightenment and sharing.

I talk to myself…a lot. You don’t have to reply. I’m just sharing a part of my life right now.

The thing is, I see nothing wrong with talking outloud, now and then, to stay focused on a subject. I admit I have to be careful or people will start looking at me. So I talk in a low voice. A compromise designed to keep me out of the looney bin.

Let’s skip the part where you think I’m crazy. You should know I’m not alone. Lot’s of people find some solace saying what’s on their minds out loud without directly talking to someone. To be sure, I’m not talking about constant conversations with yourself to the point where the real world is blocked out.

There’s a fine line, okay?

I can remember being in a position of extreme danger when I was only 16-years-old. I was alone and hanging on for dear life from the side of a mountain. Loose shale kept giving away causing me to slide a few inches. I sank my raw fingers into the dirt and slowed down enough to get ahold of a large Manzanita root. It held.

At that moment I didn’t pray (I wasn’t raised with religion), I started talking to myself. I asked myself if I was ready to die yet? The answer, of course, was no. I berated myself for getting into such a dangerous position, calling myself names like “moron” and “dummy.”

The one-sided conversation calmed me down, because after a while my heart rate slowed and I was breathing evenly. I don’t recall how long I hung there before attempting to climb back up the way I came.

The hot sun beat down on me, hardening the mixture of sweat and dirt caking my face and arms. Foot-by-foot, I worked my way upward, carefully seeking secure spots where bushes and roots protruded from the side of the mountain.

When I finally reached the top of the trail, I crawled a few feet and then sprawled out,  gasping for water. My whole body was shaking uncontrollably. I was so light-headed I couldn’t stand up for at least an hour. Time is a tricky thing when you look back in retrospect.

You may be wondering why I brought this incident up. It was my moment of enlightenment when I realized no one could help me but myself. I talked myself through a life-threatening experience.

Since then, I try to be discreet in public, and mumble when I’m carrying on a one-sided conversation. At home I can talk freely to myself, and get this; my wife understands!

As It Stands, this essay is all I have to say about that…right Dave?