Born Lucky


I was born lucky.  I would have chosen my parents right from the start.  I was loved and I felt loved. Maybe they chose me and maybe I chose them.  They were a perfect fit.  I would never claim I was better than others or worse than others.  I know that I saw the world around me with a different view than others had.  When my friends and neighbors complained about their siblings or parents, I  remained silent or said I would choose the same two brothers and the  same four sisters and the same parents.

We didn’t always agree on some subjects but I  knew that our parents were special.  It wasn’t about money.  Money didn’t buy happiness. It wasn’t about material things at all.  We learned to enjoy the foods we had, mostly beans and potatoes and corn bread, and occasionally biscuits and gravy.  It wasn’t about the things we didn’t have.  We learned to use what we had and do without the things we didn’t have. Flour sacks became clothes. Hand-me-downs were common.  Time spent with family was valuable time.  Respect and truth and love were important.  Each day was part of a life-long learning experience.

Even though I didn’t have much I learned how to work, how to play, how to enjoy the world every day.  I was not perfect but I didn’t feel mean or rotten.  I wanted to help people who were hurting, sad, or lonely.  I was usually considered “nice”.  I was a good person, willing to help neighbors and friends.  I could change a tire, carry buckets of water, travel across countries, and participate in games without getting angry as long as there were rules to follow.  I believed in rules and fairness.

Lucky? Maybe I should say I was treated fairly in life. When I saw what others had, what they needed, and the conditions surrounding them, I knew I was blessed.  The world around us did not appear fair in its treatment to others.  Perhaps I was so naïve or oblivious to problems that I escaped what could have been painful experiences.

When I compared my circumstances with others, I began to wake up and observe.  When I visited a friend who  made great claims regarding things he owned, I discovered the truth.  His imagination gave him all the things he didn’t have.  He didn’t live in a mansion. He didn’t drive a fancy car.  He was surrounded by problems that he chose not to see.  He was ashamed to invite me inside his house. The house was tiny and crowded. The windows were broken and needed replacements. The floor had holes.  The house was cold and damp.

The worst of it was the human factor.  How could they survive with conditions like this? It got worse.  In another room his brother sat on a bed in dirty clothes. His eyes were glazed over, flies were clustered all over his face, and yet he was smiling.   I could not imagine living in that home.  His parents were sitting at the kitchen table, discussing the weather, waiting for some super cells to hit the area, and wondering where to go.

Maybe that is why I began volunteering, helping out when I could.  I came into this world looking to do something for others and this was my opportunity to quit talking and begin acting.  I am lucky because I got a good start in life. My life has been blessed even though I have physical problems. Physical problems will not hold me back. I am a poet and a writer.  I must encourage others to help make the world a better place. I must act quickly because death is always waiting and I don’t have time to die.

July 23, 2017

 

 

 

 

You Took My Breath Away


Lover I Don't Have to Love

Lover I Don’t Have to Love (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

You Took My Breath Away

 

You were not the most beautiful girl there,

 

But your eyes were expressive and deep.

 

I did not hang on every word you spoke,

 

But inside I made promises to keep.

 

Somehow in those first magic moments

 

My world stopped and you took my breath away.

 

Your eyes, your hair, your sparkling smile,

 

Each silently dared me to dance and stay.

 

In your presence the crowd no longer existed.

 

You had changed my point of view.

 

I turned around and blinked my eyes

 

But all I could see was you.

 

No longer alone even in my dreams

 

You were always by my side.

 

Together we shared our new world

 

Your love filled me with pride.

 

Your mind was on something else,

 

But not on our love each day.

 

I thought we’d love forever,

 

Long after we turned old and gray.

 

You smiled and said you felt great,

 

And you insisted you always will,

 

You looked so serene and so sure,

 

It’s strange your heart stopped still.

 

Each day you took my breath away,

 

But you never shared your pain.

 

And I still love you with all I have,

 

But I may never breathe again.

 

 

A Special Man


A Letter to Three Wives

A Letter to Three Wives (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

A Special Man

 

 

 

None of his wives

 

Could live with him

 

But they couldn’t live without.

 

After work he would

 

Sit in his chair

 

Like a king on his throne

 

And his current wife would scurry about

 

Taking care of his needs.

 

Each claimed he was a special man,

 

But they weren’t slaves.

 

At his funeral his four ex-wives

 

(And his widow)

 

Showed up broken-hearted.

 

All loved and spoke highly of him.

 

But, if their words were true,

 

Which one poisoned him?

 

Which one loved him so much

 

She couldn’t share?

 

Who felt pain enough to break free?

 

One of them broke the spell

 

Because none of them

 

Could live with him

 

But they couldn’t live without.

 

 

 

 

 

The Visit


Remember Me, My Love

Remember Me, My Love (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

The Visit

 

Let’s talk about how we feel

 

Because life is very real.

 

One day things will change,

 

And I’ll visit no more.

 

 

 

Remember the early years

 

When you came home and

 

Wanted to talk about your day?

 

I just wanted to sit and be quiet.

 

We compromised and I listened.

 

You cooked and I washed dishes.

 

I worked on the house and built a barn.

 

You took care of our household needs.

 

We were early to bed and early to rise.

 

 

 

Remember the years we shared,

 

The children we raised,

 

As  time flashed by

 

And the home that was blessed?

 

 

 

Remember how  we cherished each day

 

As we fought our diseases alone and together,

 

Sharing our pain and our love?

 

Do you remember all that, love?

 

I really miss you.

 

 

 

I’ve learned to talk while you listen.

 

Time passes slowly

 

And I wait patiently

 

For the moment

 

When we’re together again.

 

 

 

 

 

Poor Charlee


English: Solid black, 1-year-old German Shephe...

English: Solid black, 1-year-old German Shepherd Dog. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

Poor Charlee

 

Where is the dog that played all day?

 

She’s lying stiff and silent in my doorway.

 

Just a few weeks ago she had life and fire,

 

A special kind of spirit that was hard to acquire.

 

Who poisoned this dog I want to know?

 

She was a puppy and starting to grow.

 

Friendly and inquisitive, everyone was a friend.

 

Did someone really want her life to end?

 

What percentage of lives lost is considered okay?

 

How many pets have to suffer and pass away?

 

I thought I would love her until her dying breath.

 

What could I have done to prevent her death?

 

 

 

 

 

Since 2007 the AVMA has issued alerts regarding Fanconi syndrome-like disease in dogs.  The problem appeared to be connected to the consumption of chicken jerky treats made in China.  Only occasional reports have been received since that time.  The FDA was alerted but the levels of toxins and contaminants was not considered high enough to take action.

 

Over the last 8 years I’ve given chicken jerky treats to 6 dogs as rewards.  The dogs responded well and I thought the quality of the chicken treats was exceptional.  However, over the past six months I was beginning to see differences in packages. Some of the treats were dry and others seemed to be slightly moist.  But I continued to purchase the treats simply because the dogs liked them.

 

In late November, Charlee, an 8 month old German Shepherd, began showing strange symptoms.  After eating she would throw up.  Then came excessive drooling, lethargy, and a refusal to eat.  In my own ignorance I gave her more chicken strips to keep her from starving.  She would eat those but little else.   Finally she was taken to the veterinarian.  On December 6, 2012, only problems concerning her digestive system were noted and her general condition was considered good.  Charlee continued to suffer and on December 8, 2012,  she was dead.

 

On January 8, 2013, I was in a store looking for dog food and dog treats. I noticed an employee busily taking packages of chicken strips off the shelves.  A recall was in progress.  Poor Charlee.  The recall came too late to save her life.

 

 

 

 

 

The River’s Heart Is Cold


River Seridó

River Seridó (Photo credit: grungepunk2010)

 

The River’s Heart Is Cold

 

The river whispers to me as I walk along her banks,

 

She welcomes me into her depths but I stop and say, “No, thanks.”

 

She tells me she loves me and I almost believe it’s true,

 

Yet I know she’ll be fickle always and someday we’ll be through.

 

She shares the latest gossip she heard in meadows upstream,

 

I say the rumors aren’t the truth and they’re not as they seem.

 

She runs along beside me and her excitement she can’t conceal,

 

And she makes me vow secrecy for reasons she doesn’t reveal.

 

Her playful moods change rapidly especially after a pouring rain,

 

Angrily she gouges out channels when her banks don’t contain.

 

I would claim her as my own but her spirit runs wild and free,

 

She murmurs she loves me too but she’ll never belong to me.

 

I’ll be there to clean up her debris when clearly she’s to blame,

 

The river‘s heart is too cold to trust but I love her just the same.

 

 

 

Lucky Indeed


Is it Your Lucky Day

Is it Your Lucky Day (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

Lucky Indeed

 

I thought I was a hammer made of steel,

 

But she softened my heart and made me feel,

 

I was a restless knight riding a spirited steed,

 

But she quenched my fires and fulfilled my needs.

 

 

 

Gentle as the mist drifting in from the sea,

 

Uncontrollable as a flooding river, she’s wild and free,

 

Cleansing as the rain, freefalling from the sky,

 

She’s constantly changing; I’m a lucky guy.

 

 

 

Warm as the sunshine splashing across the land,

 

Teasing with kisses, the kind I understand,

 

Calm even in a storm, helping those in need,

 

She’s right there beside me; I’m lucky indeed.

 

 

 

Straight as a road that guides me on my way,

 

She is the love I’ve been seeking until today,

 

Bringing a fire that rages deep inside,

 

I am a lucky man and very satisfied.