jaune

It is the smell of summer rain
that lingers even in winters’ darkest days
warm and cool and laced with summers fragrant blooms
of honeysuckle and lilac and sandy days
steeped in the warming rays of late afternoon sun

It is the setting sun and lightening bugs
the chill of lemonade on a hot summer day
bees and butterflies dancing on the breeze

It is carefree days and the smell of shade
the moment just before a thunderstorm
crisp and clear and filled with promise

It is the color of dusk expanding across the sky
painting the end of another perfect day

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Walking

I saw a man today. He was walking in tandem with the bus I was on.  His collar was pulled against the onslaught of the rain. He leaned slightly into the wind trying to find the sweet spot between being blown over and falling down.

He reminded me of my cousin, Stevie. But it wasn’t because Steven is dead. Sacrificed to the gods of poverty and poor decisions. The drugs and drink of his youth replaced by the health problems that would take him far too young. 

This man — this random stranger — huddled against the cold spring rain made me miss the man Stevie could have been had he made different choices.

So many people I have known are gone. Irretrievably gone and I ache so much for their might-have-beens. For the futures they never had. The love they never shared. The tears they never wept. 

Mostly I weep for the people they should have been. 

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Razor’s Edge

Dancing on the razor’s edge I lost my balance
and hit my head
I slit my throat on the way back up
and choked on the blood of not good enough

Jack and Jill went up the hill
and now the baby’s hungry
Jack mumbled something about loving and forever
Before he stumbled and took a tumble
Jill got stuck with the bill

Like a knick-knack paddy whack, Jack’s a fucking bitch
and the next generation gets born into the void
Crying and lying and wondering why
Not enough love and too little hate
Indifference is the cruelest fate

You don’t cast a shadow if you don’t exist
No one missed what they’ve never known
Mary had a little lamb
It’s fleece the color of the finest ho
She learned fast and she learned early
Hey, diddle diddle ain’t a nursery rhyme

Running away from her step-dad’s folly
she found a friend that she calls Molly
It turned her out and didn’t look back

Life comes hard and life comes fast
Living on the razor’s edge
A thousand tiny cuts bleed you dry
and you don’t have the strength to cry
Before you live, you’ve already died

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Days of my life

Some days I want to firebomb the world

Some days I want us all to just get along

Most days I just want Starbucks and solitude. 

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Seasons

Patches of snow linger
In the shadow of the day
Facing courageous, their impending demise
Spring’s patience tempering winter’s cruelest rage
Reminds us while life’s energy fades, it also renews

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Personal Demon

Sitting in the twilight of an impending storm
I met the demon that launched my fall
from grace and beauty and all things good
there I sat in the bloom of youth
tempting the demon I sought to seduce

We danced together in the moonless night
pulling me close, he whispered in my ear
all the things young girls long to hear

Pretty child, he intoned, stay with me and never be alone
I surrendered willingly to his warm embrace
and all he asked for was my dignity and grace

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Contest Submittal

I’m submitting 3 columns from 2014 to the “National Society of Newspaper Columnists” 2015 Column Contest.

Between Pat, the kids, and I we have narrowed it down to six with two definite entries. I need help picking the third.

The two definitive choices can be found here (these are pdf files):

ARE YOU KIDDING ME_ Have it your way – Gate House

ARE YOU KIDDING ME_ One last gift – Gate House

The last selection will be from the column that gets the most votes:

1. ARE YOU KIDDING ME_ Been here, done this – Gate House

2. ARE YOU KIDDING ME_ Fact check – Gate House

3. ARE YOU KIDDING ME_ Future tense – Gate House

4. ARE YOU KIDDING ME_ New beginnings – Gate House

In the comments please let me know which you think is the best!

Thanks!!

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