Poems, Personal Stories, and Observations

Archive for December, 2019

Demolition

A creeping vine
Comes through a window.
Torn screens are seen
Through another.

The walls are marked,
Ready for the wrecking crew.
Beautiful French doors
Opening to a room, long unused.

It will all be gone soon.
The oak floors,
So meticulously crafted,
And an attic — did children play there?
What dusty memories dwell in the cobwebs?

Who lived inside these walls?
Were children born here?
Did someone die here?
Was there laughter; were there tears?

The stairs of redwood,
The old laundry and kitchen,
With built-in ironing board.
The back steps, all overgrown —
And the old bathroom.

It will soon be gone,
Too costly to repair;
The land’s so expensive —
Let’s build four new houses there!

Things always change;
Nothing stays the same.

Something More

How long is forever?
Begin now to prepare.
Make sure all your endeavors
Don’t holy goals impair.

Each day must draw you closer
To destiny’s writ scroll.
Another dawn may not be sure –
The funeral bells may toll.

No one knows the answer
To when life’s course will end.
Few or many moments –
How goes the time you spend?

Will all your riches bring you
True happiness and joy?
Or do you need to look within
And search for something more?

The Animal Chorus

We don’t live in the wilderness
But, nevertheless,
Plenty of creatures entertain us
‘Round ‘bout my house

Seagulls and crows –
Didn’t think they’d mix
But they’re up to tricks
Like picking our roof apart

They congregate in noisy flocks
They roost in the ash and redwood trees
They wheel and turn in the chill, clear sky

(Once when the wind was rising
In the California summer
And fires began to rage in the distance
The crows wheeled ominously above
With loud and raucous screeching)

Squirrels add their voice to the chorus
With angry squawking at my cat
Or spiraling up (or down) the trees,
Chasing each other

Butterflies bring silent rest notes
To the symphony

I hear a hum – nothing less
Than a hummingbird
Doing acrobatic dips and swirls

And in summer
The fence lizard skitters shyly away

The animal chorus –
Perhaps out of tune,
But welcome in the silence

The Best Christmas Gift

What’s the best gift to be given?
Not money, shoes, or clothes –
(Except for those with few of those.)

Not boats or cars, maybe a star?

Not gadgets, nor widgets,
Nor books, nor cosmetic looks,
Not TVs or DVDs –
Though they do entertain.

The gifts so needed
(Repeat as needed)
Are loving looks, and kind replies,
And holding tongues that want to curse
Or say the worst.

Not criticism, cynicism,
Ingratitude, nor attitude.
Just humbly listening
When you’ve heard that story 100 times.

Do I have to be first?
I must go to the end of the line.

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