Sunday, July 24, 2016

A Winter Scene: My first poem ever approximately 1973

A Winter Scene

Pictures painted 
to capture live,
views of nature
artists strive
nothing captured quite as keen
enchanted oak and evergreen 
in a silent winter scene

Silent wonder
snow abound
casting shadows
all around
colors hidden, others seen
mood is captured quite surene
in this silent winter scene

Nature enters
in the scene
finch and kinglet
in evergreen
now the finish almost seen
paint the deer with senses keen
in this silent winter scene

Pictures painted
to convey
living nature of the day
mother nature seen pure and clean
to find what artists strive to mean
you must paint a winter scene
you must view a winter scene

SGL- 1973

Saturday, July 23, 2016

September 1976

Do you remember the fireflies
When the edge of the forest would come to life
And they’d rise to light the sky
The humid air above us,
The open fields before us
The sounds of cricket frogs from puddles
The last incessant buzz of cicadas
Everything was green
A warm safe green
when mosiquotoes
meant innocent stings
And a band-aid cured everything

Coke syrup for queezy stomachs
Mercurochrome to close all wounds
The simplicity of summer
when evening would come too soon
running the streets, the woods,
the trees
we had it all in our endless landscape
we were kings
monsters stayed safely under beds
there were heroes and fables and stories we read
the cold sweet breezes of autumn
that wonderful September day
watching with sadness, anxiety
as summer burned away

In the darkness of autumn
We grew a million years
As monsters showed their faces
And truth became our darkest fears
We grew up in one day
When dad that sailed his ship
To somewhere far away
Give me a few days
And I’ll make it all go away
Give me a few days
and we’ll be happy again

Do you remember the fireflies
The summer that followed
Or the spring
I don’t remember the sounds,
Or the colors

I don’t remember anything…

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Wander Lust: The journey begins

On the bottom rung,
This unknown architecture
Where climbing seems the same as coming down
Find yourself in the sky
Or digging in the ground
The apparatus is never the same
Couldn’t explain it if I tried
But it’s liquid
And it runs through me and borders us
On every side
This strange landscape
You’ll never recognize
Enthusiasm and excitement
Is the fuel you’ll need
Beware of the doubt and the negative thought
Fly across this great expanse
With the reckless abandon
Of a feather in the wind
Watch it rise and fall
I’m ready to begin
Across this parched earth
We’ve sought ideas
That kept us awake and alive
Disconnect the oxygen
The restraints of logic and time
We’ve charted an unknown landscape
I couldn’t explain if I tried

Don’t know how to maneuver
this awkward Apparatus,
a clumsy body

a wandering mind….

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Crying Wolf: Not Everything is an Assault on Our Liberties, Choose your Battles Wisely

A problem that distracts from the real problem; everyone is a victim. This post is about the TSAs, I saw several youtube videos on their abuse of power and although I was ready to be disgusted, I wasn’t.

One of the videos was about a young girl who was beaten and bloody and although I didn’t know the full story, I thought it would be hard to justify her being singled out.
The others were people looking for trouble and finding it, in my humble opinion.

First, in the world now, although our government seems to be uneasy with the term, there are terrorists that want to kill us. However this happened and whoever is to blame is irrelevant, we are in a dangerous global phase of American life and it’s an ugly place.

All of us need to realize there is a problem and we all need to work for some solution that doesn’t make us sheep at the mercy of power hungry TSAs nor victims looking to be victimized by government workers simply doing their jobs. Can we all just get along?

What I saw on the videos were government employees who were trying to make the best of a bad situation. It’s common sense, if I mess with a police officer, ask them inappropriate questions and verbally antagonize them, I will probably end up being roughed up or causing the officer to show his authority. If you look for trouble you can always find it.

I see a negative stigma to the whole herding of people into the airport, not that I know how to change it but if anyone goes through security checks, it can feel humiliating. I think this is what causes the attitude of some individuals to push back, their feeling of being herded like sheep makes them react back with resentment and hostility, the exact attitude the TSAs are watching out for, to protect all of us.

I have never had problems going through, I greet the TSAs, I make it easy for them much like I do when getting stopped by a police officer, I make it as painless as I can for both the TSAs and myself and I think most appreciate that and treat me with respect.

I am not a proponent of the government especially in its current state but I feel if you call foul when it is not appropriate you water down the times that it really is a problem. I believe we need less government interfering in every aspect of American life but the examples I saw did not justify the outrage.

Probably by watching videos that didn't merit my disgust wasted time I could have spent watching videos that do truly capture a real problem with a section of the TSAs that are perhaps abusive with their power. This is exactly what I mean by watering down the real problem.

What’s wrong with watching the news?

A beautiful day outside,
you sit in your chair,
muscles relaxed
Your back sags
Deep into the leather restraints
You remain
News cast warns, impending storm
They’ll show you every death and every bit of destruction
But don’t be alarmed
Close the blinds, protect yourself
Turn your chair away from the door
All you need to know is what they feed you
But there’s more!!

There’s violence in the streets
and they’ll deliver every bit
truths,  half truths and lies,
You sink in your chair
As you slowly go blind
The light in the room dims
You pull closer to the television
Turn up the sound
While beasts with great shadows
Stream across the wall,
Mosquitos, flies, criminals
Be afraid of them all
Zica, west nile, you keep your windows closed
Can’t go outside
For fear of the heat, or the bacterium
Sure to infect
Be assured the news is there
Be still as they protect
You sink, deeper into that shrinking chair
The front door is unsafe
You linger there
Shadows cover the walls, flooding the floors
But wait, there’s more

Don’t eat, don’t drink
Don’t do this, stay
And watch the app
Stream live
We’ll be right back
Stay tuned
Close to an image of the world
You’ll never see
Stay in your chair, shrink

There’s no place else you need to be

Saturday, July 9, 2016

A Little Faith: Can we talk politics and religion?

I think it's sad that in a country where we are supposed to be free to speak, two of the most passionate aspects of our lives we need to keep to ourselves or share only with like-minded people. I believe diverse thoughts and ideas are what make this country great.

The United States of America has become the divided states of the offended. This post is actually not about the thin skinned or the easily offended it's more of a comment on how we talk with each other and how politics and religion should not be a divisive conversation, instead we should be able to learn from each other.

I can speak with anyone about politics and religion and the only reason is because I don't need to change their opinion to share mine. I don't need to show the other person with a differing view how foolish they are or try to convince them how wrong and off base they are.

Even if you feel so strongly against the others' opinion, I perhaps naively, believe there is some common ground most of us can meet on.

It comes down to a basic mutual respect, share, converse and show different opinions and leave with a better understanding of how others you may totally disagree with feel. We need to be passionate, open and full of thoughts and ideas while still allowing respect for those that differ.

This is what makes our country great and I wish we could welcome instead of grimace ever time religion or politics is mentioned.

A Little More Faith: Prayer and Focus

I have been in an endless loop for weeks now. I'm beginning to think that depression and anxiety are an important process in the creative mind. Not the best thought to embrace but I'm embracing it. I think there are many processes happening in the brain when inspiration becomes something more kinetic, there is an intense feeling of everything, a screaming of all your senses at the same time which is not easily deciphered. This is just from my experience.

Now for the good news, I have no radio in my car, yes I have an iPhone, but I have a rule for myself, no music, phone calls or distractions in the morning. The drive to work is for prayer. I actually say three prayers out loud and try to focus on God alone.

Unfortunately when I am in a severely depressed or distracted state, it's hard to even concentrate on the prayer itself. Well, in the last four days, after a weekend of calm and relaxation I finally had a breakthrough. Not only does prayer connect you with what ever your source for strength and healing is, for me it also eliminates, even for just a moment, the anxiety that comes with depression.

The last four days, I have not only felt a presence of God, I have also experienced people that have shared things with me, strangers in line, friends, family. I have realized a connection and understanding with complete strangers that is hard to explain.

In the midst of all of this prayer, ideas have become concrete. Clear images of what I need to paint, ideas that have been so vivid and complete I had to pull off the road and write them down. This is the first of a series about a strengthening of my faith if not simply a reconnecting with it.

In the last four days, I have a children's book that is written and illustrated in my mind, a collection of paintings of favorite garden plants, two cartoon characters to create and accompany comic strips that have been dormant for many months, ten new blog posts about religion, three new posts about leadership and current events. I have also begun painting a series that is still in the works.

Sounds a bit manic I know, you can connect it to what ever purpose or reason that makes sense to you but I believe in divine intervention. Many time he is there, I just don't see him or acknowledge him. With the way current events are going, I think we could all use a little more faith.

Monday, July 4, 2016

Happy Fourth of July: Be grateful, be proud, be united.

People have died for an idea, a lot of people, they fought and gave up their lives because they wanted something better for their families. They faced hardships, starved and met great obstacles to start something new and daring. A place where you had freedom to choose your own destination, religion, opportunity: America was born.

Over time, our perspective changed, what was right and wrong challenged and again people died for freedoms that we all share. They died to keep a country united, they died because they believed in something.

The following years there were people who rode the bus against the rules, dared to speak when they weren’t welcome to, dared to imagine being equal, being free. They fought, they died for an idea, so their families could know freedom and justice.

In our current complacent state, there still are wrongs, there still are injustices but we have come too great a distance to see our country being divided by the same government that is supposed to unite it. We have a media that speaks the same language the government speaks and insists the victims are victims and insist they deserve something, even at the risk of crippling them.

We have candidates insisting they will make everything better, again, little hope that we, America, could stand and be America again. I don’t see us as a country full of victims but if you listen to the news you would think that’s what makes America.

Police are criminals and criminals are saints, sounds like an old familiar song. The same freedom soldiers died for allows us to step and degrade the very flag that allows us the freedoms we don’t, by right, deserve. We are lucky to live in this country, we are lucky to be able to complain about how hard we have it, I would suggest instead thank a soldier and thank God we live in America.

Let us Make America the best it’s ever been!! Together, not divided, one nation of people, not colors, not creeds-we Americans. Happy fourth of July.