Rules to observe for a good birthday

rules for a good birthday
Rules to observe for a good birthday
My 47th birthday

Never, never go to work.
Open your eyes to see the sunrise
but sleep-in to a luxurious time.

Be selfish
Spend time only with those you love
including some time with yourself.

Plan ahead.
Birthdays are not just one day
so many mini celebrations are in order.

There must always be cake
or lemon meringue pie
and a glass of something with bubbles.

Fashion rules do not apply
so wear your most comfy,
tacky, worn out jammie pants,
a soft fleece, and big scrunchie socks.

Listen to happy music,
wind chimes,
song birds,
the breeze in the trees
or the soft, tapping rain.

Remember today is a tribute.
Be grateful for the people your life touches
and the gifts you bring to the world,
gifts of love, art, engineering,
healing, laughter, industriousness,
and compassion.

Happy birthday to you
and many more!!

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Milkweed fluff

milkweed fluff
Milkweed fluff

Perfect seeds
ordered and sleeping
waiting in a pod
a pod like two hands cupped together
made of weathered barn wood
facing the wind.

Wind teases out the lightly knitted fluff
unravelling as they lift and float
like woodland pixies
carrying their flame seed
spreading the kernel of life.

I pick one up like a daddy long legs
and settle it in the palm of my hand.
The fluff is soft as wisps on a newborn’s crown
and the seed is marked intricately as a spider’s back.

I set it free with my breath.
As it lofts and drifts across the creek,
I set to dreaming
dreaming of this country life
with time for an herb garden, apple trees, and pumpkin pies.
Time to watch fox pups and spotted fawns and bright full moons
and time to walk along the creek picking cattails and milkweed.

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Dreary Day

Dreary day
Dreary day

I love a dreary day,
the muted trees
sketched in charcoal
against the blank canvas sky
Nearer our window
than those hoppy blue skies.
Today’s sky is soft,
watered-down white,
shrink wrapped around our country house
like a boat ready for winter storage.

It’s like Mother Nature
stayed in bed today
rocking gently
to the ticking drip off the eves
Her breath is slight
her rhythm slow,
Her arms are folded together
under fresh washed sheets…

I think I’ll linger as well
listening to the sleeping
breath of my Love,
letting lazy thoughts
wander through my
blank canvas mind
and sketching a rough poem

in a little black notebook.

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Night lightning

Night lightning

The lightning had to tap three times
to crack the sky.
It whipped again
lighting the windows
like a popping light bulb.
Then the rain made a push,
bearing down on the house
tossing a bucket of water.
The torrent was thrilling.
Mother Nature giving us a show of muscle,
not threatening
but more braggadocios.
Then she’d laugh a throaty, rumbling laugh.

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Heat and humidity

Heat and humidity

Heat and humidity
go together nicely with the flies
like flying raisins
in the oatmeal thick air,
the thick rotting apple-sweet air
like an all-day facial
and exercise for the veins
as they rise to the skin
trying to escape the hot bod.
Defcon red cheeks
and sandbag arms
flushed and slow moving
like wearing mud slippers
to saunter from place to place
only when it is necessary to move.
Time slows
and the mind slows
in the heat and humidity
to a drawn out tick, tick, tick.

Salvation is a breeze
and a beer so cold it drips sweat
like a rainy day.
Ah, the dream of rain,
cool and soothing,
listening to the pitter patter
on the porch roof
like squirrel feet chasing
a rolling nut.

Rain will eventually come
and scrub the dirty air.
Until then,
there is a restless nap ticking
in grandma’s rocking chair
in the shade of the porch.

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At the lake

At the lake
At the lake

The scene:
nature swarmed by the pontoon parade.
A steady show of passers
baring their chests to the sun
and their toes to the clear water.
The band plays and the beers crack,
everyone is here to float and paddle and enjoy doing nothing
but laugh and look and be with the ones you brought along.

The lake is a hullabaloo
that harkens back to the ‘50s
when families spent time together
and escaped the burbs for a simpler weekend life
replacing work and school
with floaties and cocktails.
That was a time of new affluence
and so is now
when everyone has a square of lake front
and a dock full of choices.

Still, amidst the motors, squealing kids, thumping tunes,
and not too distant highway racket,
Nature is quietly present,
almost forgotten
but holding the gathering place,
the arms around us all stumbling over each other,
the common draw that is our primal need
to be outside in the air and sun and water.

to be outside in the air and sun and water.

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Dog days of summer

Dog days of summer
Dog days of summer

When the dust billows and lingers above the gravel road,
when the lawn goes brown and the pond goes green,
when the heavy apples fall and the combines slowly chew through the fields,
it’s the dog days of summer.
Days of thick wet heat
waiting for the cool that doesn’t come
even when the still darkness creeps over the corn tassels.
The moon is big and blurry eyed
and sleep comes slowly in damp sheets.

It’s the days of rocking in a shady spot on the porch
telling childhood stories
and drinking lemonade from a sweating glass.
There a different kind of tired in the deep of August,
a swooning fog of heavy lungs and slow breath,
a tired to the bone
that even a long nap won’t cure.
The dogs days call for a slowdown,
a sit back, eat ice cream, and be together.
Be together and appreciate the richness of go nowhere
and the simple wealth of home and family.

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