Yet


Gary's screen shot
Yet

We float our true feelings
around and around and around
We can easily grab onto many,
while some are not easily found
Some seem impossible to conceal,
while others are still tightly bound
Still wrapped up in the past,
they are waiting to be unwound
Yet…
It’s these unwound words, even inadvertently pointed,
that can feel as sharp as they sound

A comment sneaks in and stings you
There, like a wasp without a buzz
A statement that’s not meant to harm,
yet, quite often, it still does
Jabs of memory, cuts of comparison
The flings and arrows of a once was
It takes so very little to belittle
in the context of just because 

Inattentive and thoughtless behavior
when your partner’s life is its most unstable
Checking your phone or checking the scores
Refusing to apologize, when willing and able
The impact of images left open on a computer
The reaction to gloves left behind on a table
Inadvertent, yet thoughtless reminders
we’d like to forget, but are unable

It’s difficult to contain our emotions
from within the confines of fact
To not blurt out our instincts
at the expense of our tact
We burst selfishly out of a shell
that had previously been cracked
A sad excuse, and a symptom,
for a respect so sorely lacked
Yet…
We are ultimately accountable for our words
and the respect that they impact


A relationship is a work in progress

that always starts from behind
That’s why it is far easier said than done
to be always thoughtful and kind
There is the inevitability of the past,
mixed with the today of the daily grind
The challenges of patience and personality
that can flood an open mind
Yet…
We need to keep floating our feelings
and be open to all we may find

You are still adjusting to a calendar of flux,
dotted with those difficult days
I still retract, detract, and then overreact
with the wrong turn of phrase
Some conflict will come, and conflict will go
as we share our common come what mays
Yet, in the reality of our commonalities
the mutual respect must go both ways

 Never do I want be taken for granted,
or to be treated as an afterthought
You absolutely deserve only my best intention
and the best attention I’ve got
This give and take is a delicate balance
that often puts couples on the spot
Fortunately, we have this love on our side
It may not be everything, but it’s quite a lot
Yet…
We struggle sometimes, as we continue to make strides,
trying to give to one other as much as we’d like to get

We are trying our best, for all the best reasons,
Yet, we’re not all the way there,  just yet

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Grey


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Grey

Certainly not what I expected
when I looked anxiously to today
Distractions and detours
Delay after delay
Nothing like I had envisioned
No how.  No way.
A reluctant change of course
Navigating the grey

A wall of grey uncertainty
between you and your goal
A hard place, and a rock
w
hen you’re ready to roll
An unexpected wait
A mirage of elusive control
Asking such a small price
Just patience for your toll

Inside the grey uncertainty
t
ime stands painfully still
Between situation and explanation
Just be calm.  Just remain chill.
Between exasperation and exhaustion
Exhale, slowly, and swallow the pill
In the grey of the uncertainty
c
ome what may, inevitably will


Definitely not what I wanted
when I looked forward to tonight
Dissention and distance
Wrong versus right
Nothing like I had envisioned
On my mind. Out of sight.
The tone of grey reaction
Neither black nor white

Toiling in the grey unknown
of a lost night out
In the variable and the vague
is the unseen and the doubt
A question is the answer
When silence is a shout
Look to the big picture
Just relax, and wait it out

Inside the grey unknown
b
eing oblivious can be a roll of the dice
Between interpretation and explanation

Just be understanding. Just be nice.
Between selfish and self-preservation
Do not make the same mistake twice

In the grey of the unknown
u
npaid attention has no actual price


Trapped, within the nowhere near

of where I want my thoughts to be
Distracted and dismayed
My time feels far from free
Nothing like I had envisioned
Awaiting words. A wait and see.
The quiet of the gray
Speaks volumes to me

Staring into the grey silence
of a blank refreshed screen
Checking in after every chapter
like a procrastinating teen
Those certain expectations
The how it’s always been
Confined inside your cellular
Just swipe the slate clean

Inside that grey silence
unrealistic standards are the cage
So make the necessary adjustments
Just turn it off.  Just act your age.
Leave the drama for the characters
Leave the scenes for some stage
In the grey of the silence
you can always
turn the page


Convinced that I am ever-evolving,
I look optimistically ahead
Detraction and reaction
Saying the unsaid
As far, and as much, as I can envision
Also, and more so.  Instead of instead
Negotiating the grey
Whenever I am seeing red

Coping within the grey areas
of our everyday race
With road blocks personified
An invasion of personal space
A barrage of harsh mentality
The reality of commonplace
The simplest of solutions
Just choose dignity, and grace

In the grey of the grey areas
doom and gloom are never much fun
Between frustration and explanation
Just be positive. Be the stronger one.
Between excuses and excusing
You know what needs to be done
Even in the greyest of the grey
rose-coloured glasses will let in the sun

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Staycation

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Staycation
There is something to be said
about just staying in
About seventy-two hours, of just us,
a
way from the traffic, the lights, the din
Us, together, happily losing track of time,
while everything we do is win/win
So many great choices when it’s you and me
that we seldom know
exactly where to begin
And it never returns to where we didn’t go
when we realize where we’ve just been

Together, inside of each other’s heart
Sharing time, within each other’s mind
Where the very best of both of us
is remarkably easy to find
Where every word we consider
is purposeful, caring and kind
Where our substantial substance
can relax, and breathe, and slowly unwind
A safe and serene distance
f
rom the lives we’ve left behind

Right at home with all that makes us laugh
Where nothing is too wacky, nothing too bizarre
For our own choice of music, and great conversation,
for our own ideal company, we needn’t go far
A healthy, necessary break for the wallet
A welcome, fuel-efficient rest for the car
Beer and wine, or whatever else we choose,
at less than a quarter the price of a bar
And when we buy it locally, ourselves,
it’s always Canadian money at par

A stay-cation, much like we wanted
A stay-in solution, much like we said
Staying in, and saving for our next adventure
Staying in together, and staying out of the red
Holding hands, while sitting on the couch
Holding each other, while staying in bed
Making love, and making our own meals
With both of our appetites, extremely well fed
Instead of 
spending a pile of money, frivolously,
we spend some quality time staying home instead

There is so much to enjoy about these weekends
It makes little difference what we choose to do
All that matters is that it’s our time, together
And every memory matters, when it’s me with you

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Resolute

“But now each day I’m given
Is one more day I know
A love that’s so unselfish
It’s a pleasure just to show”…
        Carole King – You’re Something New
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Resolute

Most people would get stuck inside themselves,
or struggle to find just the right words to say.
Yet, you recognize that there must be a better way.
And then you ask yourself, “what can I do today?”

Sharing a personal message of positive determination.
Delivering a warm meal, along with a warm embrace.
I see the selfless love, behind the smile on your face,
as you put your own perspective in exactly the right place.

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You are the embodiment of strength in numbers.
Running, together as one, directly into the fray.
All of you recognized that there was yet another way.
And then you said to each other, “we will all do this today”.

It warms my heart just to know all of you.
It stimulates my thoughts to witness so much caring.
I see the selfless love, that all of you are sharing,
emblazoned, very clearly, on the shirts that you are wearing.

I could not be more impressed
with just how strong and just how thoughtful that you are.
I could not be more humbled
to know you, all of you, even just this much, so far.

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Triathlon

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 Triathlon
I am not completely sure
if I am entitled to be,
or, really, if I’m even allowed
But, I am thoroughly impressed by you
And, dare I say,
I am extremely proud…

I watched you, in your controlled haste,
steadying, readying, and taking your place at the start
And then I noticed the cool and calm ease
with which you settled into the race
Then, somehow, you found the presence of mind
to look up, to find me, and even to wave
Before swimming, strong and steadily away,
from the huge smile you left on my face

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It seems that I’d completely underestimated
the strength and power of your stroke

as I arrived, too late to support you,
through your swim to bike transition
My own personal pride thoroughly jolted
by the sick emptiness in my stomach

My eagerness to video, thwarted,
by your speed, and your top five position

Yet, my whole heart went out there with you
as you spun your way through the winding course
I went up the hills with you, and then down,
my mind, racing along, despite what I couldn’t see
It was impossible for me to relax, or even to sit,
with all of the unknown, and all the anticipation
So I paced, anxiously, awaiting your arrival
as you pedaled your way back to me

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A contented relief flushed over me
as you braked, and then you touched ground
As you pushed your bicycle to your chosen spot,
I felt as much like your fan, as I was your friend
Despite my pent up angst, and energetic love,
I knew I had a very small window to speak
Time enough to cheer you, and to reassure you,
and to tell you, that I’d find you near the end

As you switched your shoes, and turned to go
I noticed the game-face return to your glance
I’ve seen that will and determination before
It’s who you are, and in much that you do
As you ran out of sight, on your last leg,
I yelled more encouragement, in due haste
Wishing that my words could push you along
Hoping my spirit would run with you

As you emerged from the tunnel, weary legged,
nearing the last of your well of endurance,
your eyes seemed focused, intently on the task
Looking for anything that you had left inside
While you bravely ascended the final climb,
you amazingly found one final burst,
crossing the finish, alone with your fatigue
Soon to be joined by my burgeoning pride

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I stayed back, for a minute or two, purposely,
to simply observe, and to give you some space
And as I watched you, catching up to your breath,
I saw right then, what separates you from the crowd
It’s your personal investment, in all that you attempt
In my eyes, you’re resplendent, with all that you are
And in that moment, as you looked especially beautiful,
I could not have been more impressed or proud

Invariably

                     Invariably

“You need to pave your own path,”
she would always say.
“Do not let fear, or doubt,
ever stand in your way”.you are enough text
“Just take the bull by the horns.”
“Jump right into the fray.”

“Carpe diem, Gary James.
Seize every day.”…

I would see the familiar postmark,
and I would always smile
A thoughtful note, a card, a poem,
certainty, every once in a while
That perfect hand writing
Her unique, unmistakeable style
My consistent, truest inspiration
Spanning many a mile

“Carpe diem, Gary James
Seize every day.”

Invariably, my phone would ring
after a few sunken days in a row
When I needed her buoyant words,
she would lift me from my low
Her soothing and assuring voice
A motivational “get up and go”
Not sure just how she knew
She just always seemed to know

“Carpe diem, Gary James
Seize every day.”

Even as the cruelty of life
slowly seized the best of her20180803_204117.jpg
Even as her struggling breaths
slowly faded away…

Even in the face of the inevitable,
in the last squeeze of her hand,
her message seeped into my heart
And it’s forever here to stay…

“Carpe diem, son.
I am with you always.
Now go and seize the day.”

Mine

MINE
I was inching away from everything
that I had tried so hard to preserve
Taking the smallest of careful steps,
as I negotiated the next curve
Having spent far too much energy
accepting less than I deserve
Gradually reaching the realization
that I have more than enough nerve
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So, I am making changes

For me
Found someone who sees the very best
in me
Nearer to the fun and confident essence
of who I used to be
Experiencing life, one day at a time
For me

I had the best of all of the intentions

but my will seldom found the way
I just needed some selfish motivation,
and to heed the words I would say
When it’s broken, you must fix it,
rather than put it off, for yet another day
And that meant doing it myself,
believing, this is the price I’ll pay

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So, I am making changes

For me
Bought a nice new, reliable vehicle
just for me
I am getting ever closer
to the way things should be
Closer to the life that I choose
For me

The constant of the truly good people

who are always always there
Family, colleagues, closest friends,
listening, simply because they care
Honesty, in the face of my best interest,
with only good intentions to share
Helping to get me to a better place
and then joining me, no matter where

apartment architecture contemporary design

I am making these changes
For me
A newish job, and a great new house
For me
I am now looking only forward,
to the place I want to be
Where life and love and happiness meet
With me

Soaking


Soaking

Her absence 
seeps into my being 
My closed eyes 
still seeing 
Staying with me 
after she has gone 
Her presence 
lingering on 
My bursting mind  
filled with her 
Pouring thoughts 
that easily concur 
Spilling into
my every word 
Soaked in moments 
In all that I heard

Shared emotions
in morning’s light
Drenched in the wake
of a satisfying night
Dark hair flowing
over a bare back
Laughs of knowing
The resistance we lack
Floating ideas
for the next first
Ways to satiate
our constant thirst
The mist of her eyes
before one last kiss
Her buoyant wish
for more of this

 

Captivated

          Captivated

Shoulder, breast, hip
Exquisite curves and linespexels-photo-57686.jpeg
In soft subtle beams

Smooth silk flesh
Caressing my eyes
As perfect as it seems


If I was a sculptor

I could create my masterpiece
inspired by this sight

If I was a photographer
I would capture this image
in classic black and white

If I was an artist
I would interpret this vision
framed with last night

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 I am a writer,
captivated by your beauty

in this perfect morning light

A poet,
preserving this moment
in the words that I write.

 

Applause

Applause

I’ve been here many times,
as their childhood has flown past

Sitting alone in the crowd
smiling, and having a blast
A proud, dedicated single parent
gathering memories that will last

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She weaves her way through a defense

that had previously refused to yield
Deft footwork and bursts of speed
guide her down the field
I spring from the edge of my seat
as a late victory is sealed

My legs, energized by her exploit
My lungs, filled with a rush of air
An abrupt acknowledgment of her endeavor
as I quickly rise up from my chair
Emphatic words in a father’s approval
ecstatic to be right there

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I see my teenage powerhouse
as she tumbles across the floor
A round-off and a back handspring
My gasp, and then a perfect two more
An exalted, frightening, wonderful feeling
that resonates to my core

My stomach, churning when she jumps
My heart, leaping when she lands
The uniquely exhilarating anguish
that any parent understands
Proud, as I put down the camera
to free up my hands

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The impetus for my applause
Feats that constantly astound
No urge to look beside me
No need to look around
My two hands, together in the crowd
making their own sound


It seems to me that it’s a graceful gazelle
that suddenly emerges from the pack
Anticipating the exact moment
from my spot along the track
As she glides around the final curve
the others get further and further back

My mind, racing with her to the finish
My senses, tingling from the start
The extent of her accomplishments
matching the size of her heart
Knowing the work ethic and the effort
that always set her apart

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Being early gets me a good seat
Dead center, given the chance
Oblivious of my surroundings
I listen to her play, I watch her dance
Happily lost, inside of myself
My own choice, my soul circumstance

My eyes, no matter what her stage
My ears, for any of the bands
The selfish, singular focus
that any parent understands
Proud, as I put the program down
to free up my hands

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The inspiration for my applause
Daughters who constantly astound
No urge to look beside me
No need to look around
My t
wo hands, together in the crowd
making their own sound


Sitting alone, in the crowd

as each new season has passed
Thankful for each new memory
as time ticks by so fast
Never wondering, or worrying,
if this one will be the last

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