Category: Personal Growth

THE ALBATROSS OF THE PLAINS

Beavers’ teeth never stop growing so they chew on wood to keep them at a manageable length. If they didn’t maintain them their teeth would eventually grow into their brains.

THE ALBATROSS OF THE PLAINS

I shot a beaver in my youth
who cursed me with this curse

My teeth
will be your poems now

remembering our gift unused
grows fatal to the brain

WRITING THE AUSTRALIA TRIP

WRITING THE AUSTRALIA TRIP

We went to teach, we went to learn
we did a lot of both and more of some

We met amazing people – they met us
perhaps none will be the same again

Details I leave for further poems
which I hurry to hurry to write

before the ripples rippling out
are lost
clockwise and counter clock
down the toilet bowl of time

HE GOES ALONE TO COUPLES THERAPY

HE GOES ALONE TO COUPLES THERAPY

And finds that it is mostly
a matter of listening to the other

Honoring equals love, or trumps it,
or extends it, or replaces it nicely

Respect means never having
to say you’re sorry, when you’re not
and will kow you’re lying anyway

Hours are fifty minutes long
the other ten is a gift from God

He goes home, his feet lighter
for the shadows sown on

He is afraid people
will think that he can’t spell

and means sewn, like Peter Pan
not seeds, and seeds, and soil

SACRED DANCE

SACRED DANCE

The Bushmen of the Kalahari
dance all night in a circle
dance a calf-deep trench in the sand

In a circle around the circle
sit those in need of a healing

And because it is a sacred dance
any dancer at any time may step
out of the dance and do the healing
and then return to the dance again

Knowing without knowing
that everyone is a healer sometimes
everyone needs a healing sometimes

You just keep dancing

THE INNER CRITIC

THE INNER CRITIC

Poor little Keystone Cop
(although often not so funny)
Leaping from shoulder to shoulder
trying so hard to keep us safe
yelling or whispering in each ear
the old rules based on fear

Telling us what we should have done
and what we should never do
Enforcing rules learned long ago
that may no longer be true

The voice of your mother, still
nags when your room’s not neat
The voice of your father
still wants you up at dawn

Your teacher and your coach
Your country and your culture
Your parents and your younger selves
with messages to keep you safe

The cop only knows what he used to know
and still does what he was told to do
You don’t have to destroy him
or shove him out the door

Just put your arm around him
and tell him you’re no longer four