Best – Theme Friday

The best laid plans…I have many. All the time. Every day. Every week. But I keep breaking those promises to myself. Funny because I always keep my word to everyone else, I follow through, I do the do I said I would do. But the promises made to self seem to matter less. As though what others think of me trumps what I think of myself.

You know best…I am beginning to see what you meant in that not so long ago. For as crazy as you are you did know best when it came to the words. Not everyone writes the real but rather an altered reality designed to bring praise and sunshine but without revelation. Yes, the words matter because they are all we have to give. What we leave behind. Slivers of our souls that we part with before we stand naked before God and await judgment.

Hope for the best…I do, really, I do. I lean in close to seek the truth. My nose pressed up against the words that paint the images. Mine and theirs. I look hard but often fail to see. I listen but sometimes miss the notes. And my hope is the gauze that filters the view. Yes, I can see the ugly and the mean – the raw and the hopeless. And yet I hope for the best, hope that gleam on the edges will grow brighter and warmer. And that our glasses are always full.

copyright 2011

Christine’s best and Clancy’s best

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Grey Rain – Theme Friday

Grey.
Rain.
Wipers count out a one-two beat.
And the mist rises off the road like
some long-ago ghost that haunted my childhood dreams.

Brake lights—eerie red eyes flying
in wide shriek against gauzy air and formless shapes.

Caution.
Slow egress to the safety of home.

copyright 2011

Christine’s rainy day and Clancy’s puddles

What is America?

America is my dad’s blue collar
Grandpap’s regal roses and
humble tomatoes
The mountains outside my window
And the 4th of July fireworks I watch
from my roof.

America is picnics, just because
Mom’s potato salad and
the home-made gnocchi
at Stephano’s on the corner

It’s school girls in blue plaid skirts
and Monday Night Football
Warm beer and bad hot dogs
at home games in the bleachers.

It’s the night sky
sparkling a thousand stars
and exhaling the scent of jasmine
and orange blossoms.

It’s young men and women in uniform
who say ma’am and sir
and go wherever they are called to
stand the watch.

It’s firefighters riding to the rescue
on long red trucks
facing the flames
despite the threat of becoming captive

The trucker who helps you
change a flat on the empty road
Endless highways and
open footpaths

It’s tap dancing and
baton twirling
band music
Jazz, blues and rock ‘n’ roll

It’s cowboys and cops
down home and up town
Wall street and main street
It’s vineyards and cattle ranches
Skyscrapers and the flat lands
The liberty bell
and the empty space in Manhattan

It’s Detroit city and L.A.
New York and San Francisco
Boise, Phoenix, Glendale, Sun City, Casper,
small towns, big towns
and wide open spaces

It’s barbecue ribs and pecan pie
It’s pot roast and pigs in a blanket
Iced tea and hot coffee

It’s innovation and tradition
History and unchartered territory

It’s helping hands
and open hearts
It’s rushing in when others
hesitate

My hand over my heart
when I sing…
Oh, say can you see…

It’s moms and dads
and the corner store
Lazy rivers and
roaring oceans

But mostly it’s the people
who carry inside
the certainty of personal liberties
whose pioneer spirit fosters
a can-do attitude
who never say, die
but try again
Who build their dreams
one brick at a time
who know that anything is
possible if you believe

copyright 2010

Everything – Theme Friday

I don’t want to give up everything for love
And I did…
my books and music
my home and friends

And I don’t want anyone to be my everything
because I lost myself that way
and I’m still missing pieces
I’m different now
and different isn’t always good

And I don’t want a life where everything is on the line
Winning big, always the promise
Losing all, always the outcome

I want my everything to be
EveryThing.
Every word
Every smile
Every person
Every friend
to be its own separate, glorious thing
radiating its own energy
sparkling its own ideas and adventures

No more everything that becomes a nothing
no more surrender to have what isn’t mine
no more relinquish to be who I am not
No more gambles on promises that cannot be kept
are never meant
that lets you off on the dark corner of confusion
Fending once again for yourself
whom you’ve lost
because you gave up
Everything.

Copyright 2010

Is everything copacetic with Christine?

How’s everything with Clancy?

Detour – Theme Friday

The sign up ahead on the road heading south cautions, detour.

From three scattered lanes our vehicular alter egos squeeze into one obedient column. We crawl up the single mountain lane – second-gearing behind behemoth 18-wheelers, cursing in hydraulic hisses.

Skimming sheer rock-face of crude red design while shunning the100 foot drop into endless canyon just to the left.

Swallowing the adrenaline that churns fear and impatience, we wind with the curves that forecast unknown treachery.

And the vastness of nature reveals our insignificance – humbles our arrogance in the mumble of prayers that implore God’s hands to nudge us toward safety.

The sharp autumn sun becomes slate shadow, forbidding illumination in our progression and artificial light is a ghostly guide.

When the mountain relents and the road opens again, a communal breath at last escapes. And we break apart like dominoes poorly placed. Now strangers in singular journey, on the same road, but heading in different directions.

copyright 2010

Where has the detour led Christine?
What detour has Clancy encountered?

Once Upon a Time – Theme Friday

Once upon a time a thousand hurts clung to me.
My cloak of pain stooped low my shoulders and endured the weight of velvet yards

In a dream of deep-filled space I floated

And the moonlight sparkled my hurts in magnificent refraction
Revealing the beauty of jealousy, confusion, fear, and sorrow.

Exquisite the dream that showed me the breadth and depth of each with such clarity.

So I could know the five senses of each and watch them shimmer to dissipation of particulate light. Scattering to the stars to find a home.

One by one I set them free until the cape was no more and iridescent wings fluttered in emergence. And the stars grew nearer and fluttering wings sounded around me…

I knew again my own heartbeat and heard the silence of my own thoughts.

And.

I was free.

Copyright 2010

Christine’s and Clancy’s once upon a time…

People – Theme Friday

People without words
don’t hesitate to speak
Sounding vanilla –
sweet and unoffensive (but not satisfying and reminiscent of a spinster aunt)

Always doing the right thing
conveniently written out in the
right magazines and periodicals
(Good grades and good genes put them at the front of the class)
And believing their professors –
never once questioning a
word
comma
or exclamation mark

They drink up the kindness
of others (so very thirsty)
but are last
to pass it on…
And when they do, the act
lacks a fundamental ingredient (like potato salad without onions)

Perfect smiles made of
straight white teeth
And nails buffed into proper manicure
But (their) children make them
Anxious
and raise them fearful of consequence (please play nice, Johnny!)

People without words
say a lot of nothing (the kind of nothing that sounds so good unless you listen)
knowing deep-down they
have
nothing to say.

copyright 2010

Where are Christine’s people?

Clancy’s people abound…

Dented Can – Theme Friday

I used to laugh at the losers hovering outside the dollar store begging for change. “Get a job,” I muttered and never saw the person.

I used to complain when the shopping cart bridgade made early morning raids on the recyle bins—rummaging for dented cans and plastic bottles.

I used to think it could never happen to me – I was too smart, too talented and too connected.

I used to blow money on things I didn’t need or even want. But because I could – I deserved them – I could always get more money next week…

I used to throw away food because it didn’t look good, wasn’t the right color or cooked the way I liked it.

I used to go out with friends for drinks, cover charges and food we didn’t eat so some guy might ask for my phone number.

I used to be rude because I didn’t need help – I could take care of myself and I wasn’t a slacker or a moocher.

And then
it all fell to shit
I had nothing and no one
Pride stopped deciding
what work I would do
what food I would eat
who mattered…

It was the worst thing that ever happened to me and and yet somehow the best.

copyright 2010

Christine is kicking her can

Clancy’s can is rolling

Walking – Theme Friday

I’m walking. Pushing past protesting muscles that beg me to stop. Breathing labored and proving my sedentary tendencies.

But the sky is blue and the sun sinks into the cold place that lives inside me.

Walking hurts. Blisters form. Hamstrings shriek like sad violins out of tune. The dog drags me along—a little ox of industry, anxious to see the world as the ever exciting place it is. The hill rises slowly but challenges me still.

But walking keeps me alive. And proves that there is life beyond my four walls. And that the world is filled with freedom-seeking creatures. Birds streak across the horizon. Butterflies and bees dart in a nectar-crazed dance. Black-eyed Susans sway and nod with the breeze and smile good morning.

There is space. Life does go on despite hurt or pain. Joy is fleeting but can be known. Happiness sows its seeds and when tended can grow. I could make it grow and live. I could. I have the will…. Only a promise and not a certainty.

The calm spreads slowly and warmly like good cognac in quiet moments. So I walk…and keep walking. Eschewing thought. Worry. Sadness.

It is hard to be bitter in the sunshine. Hard to hate the world when you see it through unjudging eyes. Hard to surrender hope when your body is moving. So…I walk and keep moving. And follow the peace that lives out there.

copyright 2010

Where is Christine walking?

Anywhere But Here – Theme Friday

copyright anita rodgers 2009, writer chick talks, theme friday

Take me home – take me to meeting, take me out to the ballgame. Take me anywhere but here. This place called memory. This street called misery. This town called lonely.

Slap me, snub me, say bad things but don’t say you love me. Don’t tell the lie of all lies. Don’t pretend remorse, regret or reconsideration. Contempt, in the end, is more palitable and more honest.

Blame me for my words, my actions, my failures but not for your inadequacies. Hold me accountable for anything I have done to you and not what you have done to me.

Hate me, despise me, avoid me, cut me out of your life because I deserve it not because you can’t face my presence. Because you can’t deal with truth. Because I see you in all your glorious flaws but still choose to stay.

Turn your back, turn around, turn your words into any shape you like but leave mine intact and unaltered.

Take me fishing, take me bowling, take me on a moonlight cruise – hell take me to Starbuck’s. Take me anywhere but here.

copyright words and photo 2009
Where is Christine’s anywhere?