Ascend

ASCEND
I thought that I was strong

and focused
and wise
Then pain came along
and clouded my eyes
Feb. 3rd.
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Physical pain
with its fists
with its knife
The singular beat downs
and the double life

Bravely buried face
belying its agony
denying its control
Digging myself deeper
into a cavernous hole

Psychological pain
with its depression
with its doubt
The sinking in
and the lashing out

Dirty dark delusion
outside of my head
inside of my gut
The filthy depths
of my rotted rut

Emotional pain
with its superiority
with its second face
The nightly bring downs
putting me in my place

Soiled sullen eyes
unable to sleep
unwilling to see
The smudge of support
lying with me


I thought that I was alone

with my pain
and my compromise

Then healing arrived
to lift up my eyes
Sun for Every

Holistic healing
with healthier habits

without the medication
A stairway between me
and my situation

Patience plus purpose
in a manner of time
and a matter of space
An unobstructed view
from a loftier place

Professional healing
with nothing to lose
with everything to gain
A lucid escape
from my pit of pain

Calm cleansing clarity
sure answers
assured absolution
A clean break
from all of the pollution

My healing family
all of the conversations
none of the demanding

A tower of compassion
and understanding

Brightened blue eyes
able to dream
ascending to see
A horizon of hope
in front of me

 

Fortitude

Fortitude
From father to father,
and friend to friend,
I send you thoughts
I can barely comprehend.

I have been reticent
and respectfully hesitant
to send my thoughts,
any thoughts, your way.
Because, for the first time,
perhaps first time ever,
I simply could not find
any words to say.

After laboured rumination,
days spent distracted,
with all of your family
weighing on my mind,
feeling extremely selfish
and somewhat irresponsible,
I will attempt to express
thoughts I’ve managed to find.

As a distant friend
it would be remiss,
and inadequate,
to send you my love.
If I was a believer
I could send a prayer,
deferring my sentiments
to someone up above.

I have no wisdom
to pass on to you,
no innate answers
that I can honestly give.
It’s an experience
that I have never had,
and one, that no one
should ever have to live.

You already know 
we send our condolences,
and we know you have family
for a comforting hug or a soothing kiss.
So, as my tear touched sentences
gain their momentum,
the least that I can do
is to let you know this.

We have read the resilient words
that you have shared,
have great respect for your fortitude
in the face of such pain.
We’ve seen the positive approach
that you have displayed,
the cascade of beautiful memories
and there affirming refrain.

Pictures of a young life
well-lived, always to the fullest,
by a vibrant young man
who seems exceedingly wise.
Smiles and great experiences,
friends and family, and life,
images of dedication, and pride,
seen through his father’s eyes.

We admire, from our distance,
your immense courage, and resolve,
as you lead by example,
for those also exceedingly sad.

The best representation of a parent
and a dedicated husband,
the brave face of a grieving family,
the embodiment of a caring Dad.

Seeing this fortitude in you
provides us all with inspiration,
with the stark realization
that we must cherish every day.
And, what I realize now is,
that the most important thing,
is not what we have to offer you,
but rather, what we can take away.

Thinking of your love, and loss
makes me want to give my all,
recognizing a perspective
that I should have embraced before.
When I see your stance,
representing such strength,
I am inspired to be stronger
and to love life just that much more.

Whenever I get down
I will climb right back up,
look at my little problems
with the appropriate perspective.
Will take the time to notice
the warmth that surrounds me,
to understand how lucky I am,
whenever I feel reflective.

Every time I feel the impulse
I will give my daughters a hug,
holding on to it, and them,
just a little longer.
I will tell them, far more often,
just how much I love them,
with a renewed certainty,
which is just that much stronger.

And, I will never use distance
as a lazy, convenient excuse,
because when time is so tenuous,
it should never be a bother.
This is a promise I intend to keep,
in honour, of both you and your son,
as I draw upon your fortitude
to be a better friend, and father.

Father to father,
and friend to friend,
my words barely touch
the respect that I send.


Fortitude
– 
courage in pain or adversity:

synonyms: courage · bravery · endurance · resilience · mettle
In memory of Ricky Davies
(1993-2016)

 

 

Limbo

“As much as I’ve always been driven creatively to move forward toward something bigger, brighter, and unknown, I’m also a deeply-rooted nostalgic. I adore photos, mementos, all bits of ephemera that represent each and every time and space I traverse. I’m a hoarder when it comes to these things…
A flood of memories wash over me when I find these treasures, all of them new again, focused by the perspective I’ve gained in the years since. It’s a beautiful kind of limbo, seeing yourself, your past alongside your present…”
-Mick Fleetwood from Play On…Now, Then, And Fleetwood Mac The Autobiography-

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Limbo
There I am, sitting on the couch

Looking as content as I can be
But what makes me smile now
Are the faces of the other three
Friendships, made in a flash
Cultivated with laughter, and cold beers
The time of my life, so many times
Great nights, that turned into years

Sometimes I sit with a lost friend
If only for a brief while
I gaze into her playful green eyes
I remember his reluctant smile
Realize just how alive they really were
And how precious that our time is
That contagious spirit, so uniquely hers
The distinctive laugh, that could only be his

A note, a post card, a poem

Feelings that are, and/or used to be
A letter filled with distant love
Words, meant only for me
Wee hour messages that I have written
Hastefully penned, but never sent
A shoebox, filled with emotions
Papers lined with what we meant

Flipping through the pages and photos
Snapshots of my life until now
People and places, that shaped who I am
Images of who, of where, when and how
Framed pictures of significant moments
Rectangular reminders of family and friends
Travels together on this wondrous journey
An evolving road, that curves and bends

It’s a beautiful kind of limbo
Spent with people that I know
A transcendent state of mind
And I can choose where to go
The full gambit of my experiences
The love, the pain, the pleasure
Memories, that take me away and back

Moments, I will always treasure

Camping, Christmas, the dinner table
My whole family, together in one place
The truest essence of who I am today
So much influence, etched in each face
My Mom, my Dad, right there for me
Whenever when my heart yearns 

I am able to go home, again and again
With happy, and melancholy returns

Time-lapse capsules of my two daughters
Wide-eyed infants, in the back seat of the car
From half-day kindergarten to incredible teens
Ever-emerging lives, chronicled so far
First steps, dance recitals, and graduation
Lovingly preserved, in albums or on DVD
Even when they seem too far to reach
I can find them here, in front of me

Awards, team photos, newspaper clippings
Memories of play that are always fond
Reminders of an enduring love of sports
Teammates, championships, a life-long bond
Wondering what became of those I coached
Peewee signatures on a thank-you card
Events and people that helped me to grow
Character built, through practicing hard

These boxes that I’ve moved many times
To different homes, to cities and towns
Different cabinets containing my life
All of us sharing the ups and downs
I can open up whenever I want to
These memories, of importance to me
Their significance, personally priceless
Sentimental value, I can always see

It’s a beautiful kind of limbo
Sitting there, beside myself
A transcendent state of mind
Brought down from a shelf
My life, captured in moments
The past, seen through today’s eyes 
Images, taking me away and back
Suspended, for now, while time flies

 

Butterfly?

Butterfly?

Epihany

The same stubborn scenario
The same view every night
A silhouette, close to the edge
A moth under the light
The echo of my thoughts
On infinite repeat
A schizophrenic mind field
Of two and a half feet

Turned one hundred and eighty
In a blanketed cocoon
A butterfly to a moth
Under the light of the moon
A stark and palpable silence
An insurmountable rut
Urges, kept at arm’s length
Until my eyes flutter shut

Take me back to my muse
Release me from this storm
From the cold of my creation
The bitter back to the warm
From this tempest in a teapot
 These chilling winds of blame
 The frigid reality each night
The moth back to the flame

An exasperating tug of war
Across a span of diminished hope
There has to be some solace
Near the end of my rope
Nothing that I can do or say
Changes, impervious to gain
The collateral damage is done
A consequence to the pain

So many months, eaten away
The thin fabric of a ruse
Resentful of my own creation
 A moth disguised as a muse
Rose-coloured tunnel vision?
Wishful thinking all along?

For the sanity of lost time
It would help if I was wrong

Take me back to my muse
Release me from this regret
From the pall of uncertainty
That hangs over me yet
From the now back to the then
The difference of day to night
To open arms and an open mind
To a butterfly, in a better light

UP (computer-friendly view)

There have been some ups and downs over the past year. Never, however, have I been as low as one lost week in May of last year, just after wrist surgery #2.
But then as you see…I was UP again.

I am even more uppity a year later.
May 21, 2016
Have a great long weekend everyone!

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IMG_20150513_083033[1]


Glut                                                                                    Clear                                                                                                                                                                                        
Mostly cloudy
IMG_20150513_083033[1]                                                              Mostly sunny

with a chance of rain.                                               with no chance of rain.
Same as yesterday.                                                   A brand new day.
Here I am again.                                                        Far less pain.

Walking around                                                         Able to focus
in a foggy haze                                                           with a clear mind
Little or no memory                                                  No fog and no haze
of the last three days                                                and no urge to rewind 
A dirty blur                                                                   Dirty blur, gone
A nauseating glut                                                      Nausea, no more
The dizzying effects                                                  Opening all my windows
of you know what                                                      and closing all those doors

Morphine.                                                                      So long morphine.
Morphine and pain.                                                  Hello healing pain.
Mostly cloudy                                                              Mostly sunny
with a chance of rain.                                               with zero chance of rain.

May 13, 2015                                                                              May 21, 2015

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Confined

“People try to hide their pain. But they’re wrong. Pain is something to carry, like a radio. You feel your strength in the experience of pain. It’s all in how you carry it.”
– Jim Morrison20150930_213223[1]

 Confined

He goes to bed each night
alone with the ache
 His internal conflict
keeping them both awake
Wakes up weary every morning
lying beside his vanity
With a smile for his children
and a check mark for his sanity

Physical versus mental
in a battle of his pain
Sensory and substantial
is the signal from his brain
From necessity and habit
you conceal what you feel
It’s mind against matter
with wounds that won’t heal

Scar tissue and time
The confines of the mind
Self-motivation
Self-preservation
Selfishly suppressing the pain
Scar tissue and time
A safe place to hide
He
fights the pain

His wounds remain
Sustaining himself from inside

An actor playing himself
in the true story of he
Absorbed in the role of everyman
and that’s who he has to be

Scripted by circumstance
he has lines on every page
Penned for his own purposes
he is resplendent on his stage

 
A song written in his head
but needed by his heart

Lyrics intended for healing
they’re upbeat from the start
Motivation for mind and body
 Affected, but indeed sincere
He gives a selfless performance
for everyone to hear

Scar tissue and time
The complexities of the mind
Self-medication
Self-preservation
Selfishly deflecting the pain
Scar tissue and time
Enduring another day
Different roots of pain

No Ledger or Cobain
Determined to go another way

Scar tissue and time
You conceal what you feel
It’s mind against matter
When wounds never heal

Scar tissue and time
In the confines of your mind
You ascend another day
Starting from behind

 

Diversion

Diversion

Fifteen minutes…
Getting away

Dulling the edge
s
Finding my ease
Slowing the pace

 Feeling the breeze

Life swirls all around me
Twisting, and rubbing
against my grain
Spinning, and brushing
against my brain
A whirlwind of emotions
Contorting, and slamming
against my pain
images.jpg

Fifteen minutes…
Composing alone

Gathering my thoughts
Diverting my mind
Focusing my attention
Loosening my bind

Soothed by my distractions
Standing at the window
watching the rain
Listening to the birds’
cheerful refrain
Getting outside of myself

 Searching for anything
to divert the pain
IMG_20140921_105649[1]

Seeing the bottles
trying to abstain
Seeking to exist
beyond my bane

Fifteen minutes…
Diversion

Away
Alone
A selfish burden
I make my own

Fleeting

           Fleeting

It comes more with age20150827_184053[1]
Becomes more of a reality
You examine your life
Struck by your mortality

With every death
With every wake
There is another punch
You have to take

It beats me down
One reminder at a time
One more reason
For every rhyme
Again and again
It tortures my heart
If I’m going to live
I’d better start

Responsibility and life
Work and play
Flying through the motions
Of another day

It’s Monday to Sunday
In the blink of an eye
Barely getting on
As time whips by


It’s all an illusionimagesM5E0G21W
It’s a ruse, a sham
All just an act
It’s not who I am

It wears me down
One day at a time
One more reason
For every rhyme
Again and again
It tortures my heart…

Fulfillment is fleeting
You must
maintain your drive
Keep your foot on the gas
Accelerate, to feel alive

Too much pain
Too many pills
So much coffee
So many hills

The climb up 20150827_184220[1]
The slide back
The self-regulation
Is what I lack

It brings me down
One vice at a time
One more reason
For every rhyme
Again and again
It tortures my heart…

They say that a mind
Is a terrible thing to waste
And that life is bland
Unless you dare to taste

That the key to success
Is hard to locate
When opportunity knocks
Rush to the gate

But what I want
What I actually need20150827_184348[1]
Is a little more time
Is a lot less speed

Control of the pace
A slowly opened door
Because more or less
Less is more

One good reason
For every rhyme
To ease me down

One moment at a time
Again and again
To soothe my heart
If I’m going to live
I’d better start

Inevitable


Inevitability

is a crutch.
Bracing us
for a life event 
that will hurt
so much.

Parents will pass.
This is known.

Inevitably,
at that moment,
we will feel alone.


An unavoidable test.

Right nor wrong.
Facing
a harsh reality
that will
come along.

Parents will pass.
This is known.

Inevitably,
and eventually
we lose our own.

tears bench


Inevitability
is a balm.
Easing

our sorrow.
Palliative
and calm.

Parents will pass.
This is known.

Inevitability,
comfort in knowing
that we are not alone.


Certainty arrives.

 It always does.
Focus
on
the memories.
The reassurance
of what was.

Parents will pass.
This is known.

Inevitability,
a life, a legacy…
inevitably
etched in stone.

Clear

          Clear

Mostly sunnyIMG_20150520_091650[1]
with no chance of rain.
A brand new day.
Far less pain.

Able to focus
with a clear mind
No fog and no haze
and no urge to rewind
Dirty blur, gone
Nausea, no more
Opening all my windows
and closing those doors

So long morphine.
Hello healing pain.
Mostly sunny
with no chance of rain.

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