My favorite me

I was six.

Two long braids.

Beaded head band,

arcing over black hair.

Sun darkened skin,

kissed with light.

And the prettiest dress.

Not too big to be carried.

Small enough to avoid responsibility.

But just big enough to feel free.

My favorite me.

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Queen’s Daughter

Your mother once saved me

from a fearsome beast.

We traveled to new lands,

and laughed in the face of danger.

We marched into battle

on fields of green grass.

She bested champions

with the pounding of her mighty hands.

And when it was time

to celebrate season’s end,

she wore a flowing gown of sky blue

Remember this always

you are the queen’s daughter

Walk tall, ride free, be Queen.

soft, and light, and filled with dreams.

He sings

Little brother can’t get a word in edgewise.
Big sister is a talker, a performer, a deep thinker, a sly joker, a tantrum thrower.
His words are still mumbled, all jumbled, and soft.
When he wants something he whispers, “I wan dat one. Please.”

But if you ask him to, he sings.
He sings about pumpkins and apples and sheep.
He sings abcd (but gets lost in lmnop).
He sings happy birthday, he sings little star.
He sings if you let him, if there’s space,
if there’s silence to fill.
He sings words he can’t say yet.

He sings
and the words matter less
than the feeling inside them,
than the message they send,
than the stories they tell.
He sings.

A bitter light

A bitter light

sings  in the darkness.

It thinks itself a dying ember,

taking its last breaths.

Its sighs and susurrations

pulsate unevenly.

 

Who will remind

this fallen flame

the dark dwellers

rely on this beacon

to tell stories

of the dawning day?

 

 

Rest. Rant.

Riding through Italian Market on my bike, watching vendors lay out winter squash and imported lychees,  a red-lettered sign catches my eye.

REST   RANT

Early morning brain prevents me from getting the joke for a solid minute and in that time I try to follow this new rule set forth by this unknown guru.

REST.

I begin to breathe deeply,  clear my mind.  Relax my muscles, feel the damp fall air lick my skin.

RANT.

Whatwillhappenifwedon’tgetclimatechangeundercontrol?!!!!!!!!

REST.

A wrinkled, crisp leaf circles in a wind swirl and my mind follows its delicate dance.

RANT.

Incomeinequalityisnotsustainableandwillleadinevitablytobloodyrevolution!!!

REST

I imagine my son’s third birthday candles glowing in front of his face. Maybe we should decorate it with the left over Halloween candy.

Forests of lollipops on fields of kit-kat crumbs, a three-year olds heaven.

RANT

Thiscountryissoracistanditsthechildrenwhosufferwhatcouldpossiblybewrong

withfundingfgoodpubliceducationforall?!?!

REST (AU) RANT!

Now I get it.

Free Love

Free love.

 

Free it from

the prison our hearts build.

Free it from

the laws and the  lawmakers

Free it from

the priests and the pulpits.

Free it from

the teen angst.

 

Free it from

the normalcy police

and our nightmare beliefs

and the powerful chiefs

who would see it die.

 

Free love.

Free. Love.

Free.

One hundred years

In one hundred years, what will we know to be true?

Gender is fluid.

Human bodies are not machines.

Pluto is a planet after all.

Borders have no place

in a world where humans are free.

Animals have consciousness.

Flying cars still cause traffic jams.

But we know all these things already. Don’t we?

Two birds

There were two birds on the Broad Street subway this morning. Sparrows swooping from handhold to seat back. I did not know how to help them. How did they get there? Flew in when the train was above ground maybe. Swallowed by the tunnel to the underground.

Without the sky to guide no sense of what “out” looks like. Opening doors set them darting away in fear. The way out as perilous to them as the way forward. Two birds on the train on this cold Monday in November. I leave them behind, walking through the opening door I know will take me to the sky.

Haiku on aging

Body sags to earth.

Mind reaches up to heaven.

Soul chooses them both.

 

 

We went to the temple today

This place did not exist when I was a kid. The White stone crown crusted with statuettes juts out from the golden tinged fire of the midatlantic fall foliage. Heart skips. This. Is. Here.

We walk up to the entrance- four in splendid festival finery. My mom and I both have been eager to take the kids for their first visit. Diwali seemed the perfect time.

Shoes come off. Bare feet touch cool marble. Amplified sounds of temple chanting cause three- year old boy hands to clap over three-year old boy ears.
Daughter five clasps Patti’s hands. Time to meet stone deities in fine silks.

Time to press foreheads to earth in obeisance. Time to tell priests of lineage and stars. Time to eat temple fare, simple and hot and abundant.

Time to run giggling through grownups legs breathing in incense soaked air. Time for flame-warmed hand to hairline and holy water in hand.

Time to remember that stone and fruit and water and words and food and family all hold the divine.

This is what I wished I’d had. This is what I hope they feel. This is why we went. This is why, to the temple.

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