Thursday, October 31, 2013

Marry Durham

Sometimes I
want to marry Durham 
and divorce this place.
Durham is where I 
feel most at home.
Where I'm not alone.
Where everyone smiles.
You can walk for miles.
Yes, miles.

The Nasher and Duke,
Whole Foods soup,
These things make me smile.

Durham, please,
won't you marry me?
I promise to love, honor, and cherish you,
and promote your beauty,
your culture and art.
I will do my part.
Marry me.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Don't Go (c)

Don't go,

Please stay.

Think of what

You could write today.

Or think.

Or do.

Perhaps you could also

help someone too.

Fight, not flight,

that is the thing.

We gain something strong,

an everlasting song,

when we stay grounded.

Grounded in the moment.

Grounded in our beliefs.


Like Boston.


Strong like the

100 year old oak

outside my window. 

Springs That Never Run Dry (c)

Pearl Buck once said:

"Inside myself is a place

where I live all alone.

And that's where I renew my springs

that never run dry."

We discover our inner resources

of strength and courage

when we look within ourselves.

Courage in place of fear.

Action instead of inertia.

Ideas that are challenging.

 Look within for


Pearl Buck,

the great writer

(Nobel Laureate)

and humanitarian,

knew about these things.

She captured the soul of

the Chinese peasant,

merging cultures,

and enriching minds.

Pearl S. Buck -- writer, teacher, humanitarian.

You Don't Know Jack (c)

He looks at you

with his big brown eyes,

Almost as if,

He could read your mind.

Sure, he’s a pain,

When he pulls on a leash,

But you can’t deny

That he aims to please!

And that’s when he poses

On his two back feet

And sits real still

And begs for a treat,

He chases squirrels,

And has caught quite a few,

The birds he lets be,

But the rugs can he chew!

Not a sweeter hound

Will you find in these parts.

Jack is THE dog,

In my heart of hearts.

My pal, Jack

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Homage to Johnny Cash (c)

"I hurt myself today,
to see if I still feel."
Cash's last song,
Simply caused me to reel.
Johnny Cash,
the great icon,
recorded perhaps his 
greatest hit
at the age of 71.

No longer the slick young writer,
Wracked by pain and scars,
He delivered his heart on a platter:
a song that will always matter.

"I expect to die soon,"
he said to his interviewer that day.
 What courage,
What gifts, allowed him to give
in such a strong and poignant way.

Seventy one and almost gone,
he recorded the song
that touched all souls and hearts.
No surprise that it rose
To number one on the charts.

The numbers are mounting,
60 million and counting.
The You Tube hits attest
to the enduring beauty of "Hurt."

He's so alone--
June now gone,
this shortened his life.
But his legacy lives on.

Lives on in time,
He walked the line,
of failure and fame.
 Music was never the same.
"A Boy Named Sue,"
"House of Blues," 
"Ring of Fire,"
"I've Been Everywhere."

Man, what a legacy! 

"Inside Myself"

"Inside myself is a place where I live alone,
and that's where I renew
 the springs that never dry up."

So said Pearl Buck.  The message
here is about inspiration.
New attitudes, new energy.
New life.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Gratitude on October 24, 2013

Oh to have a full and grateful heart.

Tonight I'm grateful for --

being nuzzled by my cat

having a safe trip to Charlottesville and back

spending an afternoon on the lawn at U.Va.

A chance to play.

To reflect.


Monday, October 14, 2013

Knees     The knees have it.  They get the brunt of the impact from exercise.  As Dr. Kelley put it, after looking at the load on the knees from simply going upstairs, it's a wonder that everyone's knees don't hurt.
     I kept my appoint with Dr. Kelley's office on Oct. 2 and was seen by Jamie Messersmith, his PA.  I still did not schedule surgery, but something Jamie said really got my attention:  "When you are tired of putting on knee braces and all the other things you do, it may be time."
     Yes, I am tired of knee braces, the creams, oils shots, you name it.   Jamie said that all I need to do to schedule surgery is call.
     I have a knock knee.  It's my right one.  It's become unbearable and I wouldn't dare go camping like I used to do last year.  I'm self conscious of it.  It makes my leg look somewhat deformed.  I am depressed about this.
     And I'm still kind of freaked out by the surgery, the rehab, the recuperation.  If I could recoup in the Bahamas, it would be great.  I doubt if that could happen.  Deep breath.  All will be fine.

     On the matter of knock knees, I found this article.

First Poet

Blanco came to Durham last 
Richard Blanco--
first Latino,
first openly gay individual,
first immigrant--
(so many firsts)
to read at a Presidential inauguration.

We came by the hundreds to hear:
from Durham,
We listened...
impressed by the sweet beauty of
"Boston Strong."
The breathtaking scope of
"One Today."

Poems that capture so many feelings,
even his dispair over hearing
his grandmother's advice to
"not pee sitting down."

First poet, he,
The first to be a star,
to pack a hall in Durham for poetry.
To proclaim the joys of his hometown library.
A library where his dreams took flight,
among books on opera and Picasso.

Five hundred of us were
mesmerized by Blanco.
In Durham, North Carolina,
at the Carolina Theatre.
On October 13, 2013.

What a night.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

The Good Neighbor Fence(c)

My new fence went up yesterday,
We call it the "good neighbor fence."
When I moved to my house,
the survey was finished.
Stakes up.
My things were moved in.
Next day,
the stakes were down.
Without an explanation.
Or word of apology.
My neighbor said
that they were on his land.
His land.
Why did he wait...
to say something, until
they were up?
My neighbor once
followed me on my walk.
Came over to talk with me
while I was sunbathing.
A fence, I mused.
I need a good fence.
So a fence went up.
A charming picket fence.
All was fine for a while.
Until he started staring.
He could see over the fence.
Train his eyes on me while I was gardening.
Stared at my visitors.
Made comments.
Insulted me
a time or two.
He enjoyed my views
more than I did his.
So yesterday a good fence
went up.
He came out to watch,
and stare,
make comments.
I said something.
"I feel uncomfortable with
your staring,"
I said.
He shouted:  "Now, I'm on MY property!"
he shouted.
He ranted.
I said, "I'm just saying
how I feel, and that's ok."
I created a boundary.
Long time coming.
There is peace now.
The peace fence.
I won.
And that's a good thing.


how different the world would 
have been if there
had been no John Lennon.
His creative genius still endures
in his music, his art,
his words, his films.
Creative genius.
That was John Lennon.

Here is a link to his interviews with Dick Cavette in 1970 and 1971.

Friday, October 11, 2013

John Lennon and Yoko Ono's Interviews with Dick Cavett

    Open Culture has two John Lennon interviews in their entirety.  These took place on the Dick Cavette Show in 1970 and 1971.  You can see John sing Imagine in a video recorded at his home in Ascott in 1970.

Saturday, October 5, 2013


like the roots of
this giant oak,
hanging on
until my neighbor
brings it down,

pulverising it into
leaving only the 
stump perhaps
as a testimony
to its magnificance.

Friday, October 4, 2013

Where the Clouds Kiss the Sky (c)

At the cloud's edge,
wispy arrows
pierce the sky,
then wander around
like cattle,
seeking a place to rest.
Edgecombe skies
fill me with wonder,
leave me breathless for more,
more inspiration for
my imaginings.
I escape into their beauty,
thinking of the fields of cotton
and tobacco
that once lay beneath them.
Fields where now,
old hands,  
worn down by labor,
can rest a bit.
Field hands remember 
and share family stories
of tying the tobacco 
on strings
to dry.
We lie
in the sun and remember,
  our childhood
on the family farm.
 We smile,
for all we learned there.
 The cloud's edge
turns up,
as if to agree,
to soothe me.
Edgecombe clouds
fill me with wonder.

Reassure me
that all is well.