Life is not a straight line. It's a downpour of gifts, please – hold out your hand

Thank you for being here. I'm so glad you're here.


Below is a sample of my poetry.  My new book On the Other Side of Fear is filled with many more of these little pieces of my heart.  Click HERE to get your copy. (ies)

*          *          *

On the Other Side of Fear

You don't have to wait

a second longer
to move
to step
to shimmy
through that mirage
of can’ts and not

You don't have to try
to be
something you've always been
something you can't
not be.

Breather of life
one who cannot be contained
or named
one who sleeps and dreams
and wakes
who forgets and stumbles
who hungers
to be Seen
and understood

one who despite-
despite so much
and returns
to Love

I know how very tired you are.

You can let go now.
You can let go of those mountains
you carry.
You don't have to wait
a breath longer to be
all you ache
to be

all you so perfectly are.

Simply breathe
a breath so wide---
so cracked-open wide
even the moon
enters.  And the two of you
with your galaxy full
of Light
with your naked wide-

can shimmy
can shimmy right on through
to the other side

Image found here

Angel Aunt May

I wonder how it would have been different
if someone had looked closer
if someone had sat with the tenderness of you
as you trembled
as you let a lifetime of hurt rip you 

I wonder how it would have been different 
if someone had looked deep
enough to see you finally.
The crying-out little girl who hungered
to be loved.  The young woman who couldn't go on
she wasn't.

I wonder how it would have been different
if that someone had gently 
held your heart in theirs
and leaned closer
giving you permission to empty
the ache

And if, after there was nothing left to empty
that someone had stayed.
And whispered these words--

I love you just the way you are.

I wonder how it would have been different
if you could have seen you in someone's reflection

if you had known 
how heart-breakingly enough you were
if maybe then
you would have decided 
to stay

I wonder if in your leaving 
there is a message here
for all of us


I've been looking 
for It 
all day

in rain-soaked sidewalks
in the lit tip of his cigarette
in the threads 
of the canvas, in the ink 
off this page

naked branches
and dew drops about to fall.  Praying 
that I'll find It 
in things I can see
and name

As if It
can be reeled in 
and caught

As if 
can be found
in things out 


Finding the Words

Where are the words, she asked
and why don't they come out all sparkly clear
and clean, like hers 
or his
why must i work so hard to shine
my shine
when all I want is to 

like the ancient oak
to open 
my wings
like those cormorants do

Why, rather than sailing with 
the current
must i turn my back on it
when all I want, all I've forever wanted
is to empty the fullness of me 
like the sky empties rain

a torrential downpour 

that leaves us quenched 
and drenched 
and blissfully basking in
the mind-blowing Glory
of You


What if I just sit here
right now 
and maybe 

sipping tea
and poetry, breathing in 
each word 
like it's all 
that will keep me


as the right now
wild rain
grows wilder 

just the two of us 
side by side
our thirsty hearts
all over the place


We got really good

at tiptoeing
Walking on eggshells 
she used to say.

We never knew 
when a misplaced word
or step
would unleash

his pain

There weren't warnings
for these storms 
that raged.  Never enough
time to take 

The jolts 
the pounding, the quaking
left us
drenched and dripping

Lifetimes later

we wait
for the aftershocks
to end

*          *          *


She thought
she needed to find it
fix it
grasp it
reclaim it
become it
prove it
get to the root of it
try harder

She thought
if she did
created enough
found enough
lost enough

tried harder

that maybe she'd
be enough
and could lay down
the mountain
she'd been carrying
for a thousand years

She didn't know then
what she knows
that if she paused
and asked
and listened

the moment's soft whisper
would turn her toward
she'd always wanted
she's always been
all of it there

Fall back
fall all the way back
let the current
carry you

open wide
to the smiling sun;
to the laughing moon, to clouds
and trees and bees and butterflies

They all know
as the river knows
as the twinkling little stars know

As your open, big heart knows
when the rest gets out of the way

Fall back
dance with the storm clouds
let all the way go
and be carried
the whole way
the whole way back

to your open

If only we could be as brave
as that tall growing oak
rooted deeply to the warm earth
It reaches its naked branches
up to the sun
and drops its leaves
one by one
never once stopping
to cling or hold on
or question
or long
Just a tree
being a tree
being a tree


On My Knees

I am on my knees
I don’t know what I’m doing here
I do not scream out
or cry
I do not hold anything back
Yet nothing comes
No voice telling me what to do
or not to do
No answers to the questions
I’ve asked for millions of years
I do not feel angry
or sad
just a noisy numbness
and an aching need
to be Free



Without words
we sit in quiet.
Stillness wraps
around us
in its soft, electric way
There is no wanting
or needing to know
what comes next
No questions
or place to get
We are not
in yesterdays
or turning toward

Just us
and something
that will
through births
and deaths
and lifetimes
A million nows from now
A million nows from then


This morning
I walk the well-worn
path, out of bed
into the kitchen
where the scent
of coffee and little girl giggles
As I pour that first cup
and bend down to them
my heart whispers
this is it
this is it


to tuck into a corner
under soft fleece
to hush noises and pictures and words
want to stop
and remember
to sink
all the way in
want to release
old stories
screaming loud voices
silenced ones
who can't and didn't
want to wrap them
in warmth
to hear them and see them
to tell them
they can
want to know
and keep knowing
how to be
how to be free
of want 


I see her shadow first
casting orange
on the open
Then her slow,breathing body
and see-through wings

She sits
on an empty
all six legs anchored
and still

The wind comes
gently at first
then with some force

But still, she stays.

I wonder
why she’s chosen
this branch
on this tree.
This tree
amongst so many

Receive, she says,

And I do.

Remember the beginning
how we sat crossed-legged,
knees brushing knees
while you fed me mango,
one slow bite
after another.

Eyes seeing
all the way
to the deepest parts.

We kissed
in produce aisles,
next to blooming Rhododendrons
In wide open meadows
where wild flowers grew.

Between juicy bites
and slow sips of red wine
you told me.
Not with words
but with hands
and eyes

and layer after
layer fell
leaving behind
a fullness
calm and cloudless
and sure.

Then came the I dos,morning sickness,
middle-of-the-night feedings,
toddlers and tantrums
and disagreements
over who should
or shouldn't, who did
or didn’t

And the insatiable need for sleep.

But under layers
of heavy storm clouds
that clear sky

Still and sure
and waiting
for our quiet

in old stories
I circle around
and around, forgetting all
I know

I try
to stand still
to fix the broken parts
to be
the one who is okay

I wish I hadn’t
I should have
if only
I had accepted
instead of pushed away

I hold too many pictures
of the wrong things
the ugliness
of too many lifetimes
trapped inside

I don’t want to be the keeper anymore.

I will
empty myself
again and again
and again

until all that is left is
and a Knowing
that it is all

Just as it was
Just as it is

Oh, sweet moment
I inhale
every part of you
Black, looming clouds
tiny buds
and full blooms
I open wide
my Self to you
I laugh out loud
open my mouth
to the rain
I am full
and overflowing, spilling
out to you.
Finally I See
The space
that knows
no end
I bow to you, sweet moment
Again and again
And again

On the other side
of yesterday
not quite tomorrow,
she finds herself
through pages
and dark corners
and shadows
For some trace
or whisper
to grab hold of
that can’t be held
and has no name

Sitting still.
There is
to go.
One breath
after another
of crisp
Autumn air
rich, wet soil
fallen leaves.
enters too, into
open lungs
where it lights
and warms
the cold spots.
And then
a moment
of anything
A moment
when doubt
its tired grip
mixes with
October air
and silently

You can see it in her eyes
the way they look beyond
to something not there
by her slow, hesitant walk
that somewhere down the road she missed
a turn, or perhaps she took the turn but forgot
to get back on the road

She remembers the five year old in pigtails
who wished on stars, searched fields for four leaf clovers
blew dandelion seeds
as far as her small breath would allow and watched
while they scattered into the spring breeze
She threw her head back and made a wish
that she was a fairy and could fly up to the quiet clouds, away
from his angry eyes and her silence
that she could make them smile and hold hands
like other mommies and daddies did

Brown eyes wide, lit open with possibility
a skip in her small step.

Where did all that life go
that little girl in pigtails
now a distant acquaintance
were they related?
She pictures her from time to time
running bare-toed through warm grass
sunshine on her round cheeks
And sometimes when that first evening star appears
her grown-up self wishes that her little self
would come back and teach her
how to skip again.

The tiny snowman on the front lawn
has lost his carrot nose
and acorn eyes
his stick arms reach out
as if to say
I’m still here

His body holds pictures
of a snowy afternoon
big flakes melting on open smiles
and freckled cheeks,
giggles warming frozen air
lighting gray with pink

Toddler hands touching snow
for the first time, sisters
taking turns rolling
and building, until--delighted,
a form is shaped

The little one points upward
her brown moon eyes
meet the setting sun,
the sky now blushing roses;
She points as if to say
Look. Stop. Pay attention.
It’s still here

Moments frozen
in that snowman’s body
in cold little girl toes
tucked in pink boots,
brown curls dancing with snowflakes;
young ones in awe of it all.

I look through frosty glass
at the faceless snowman, dripping
his snow body onto winter grass;
my heart a puddle
of moments
that were.

What difference does it make
You with your luggage
hauling all that weight
as if something depended on it
You with your smile and hopefulness
ready to change the world.
You look away self-consciously
always so conscious of yourself
black-rimmed glasses
take over your face, obstruct
the view of your absent eyes
It can all go in a billion directions
do you remember the stars?
There is a universe
out there
inside you too
waiting patiently to be discovered
So finally
you can forget yourself

And so very much depends on it

She sunk
into warm sand
barefoot and tired
Out to sea
she looked
and looked and looked.
One after the other
waves crashed and foamed
and crashed and foamed
None of it would go away
and then all of it did.
A wave of calm
and she knew.

So, what do you think
are you going to let it
get the best of you
let it call the shots, around
and around it goes
chasing its own tail, barking
in circles
running away, forgetting
to come back
are you going to let it win
or are you going to step in
and Do something
about this mess you’re
we’re all doing it
listening too closely
to the wrong end
waiting impatiently
for something new to begin
looking that way, over there, beyond
pushing for an answer
instead of listening
with every itty bitty part
of ourselves
listening with our eyes
and breath
listening until we hear
something unobstructed
by the monkeys sitting noisily
on our backs
IT has something to do with that tree,
I’m sure
the way it stands so assured
so rooted and forever
so not this or that
so not trying
but simply BEing
all of this
And that

Climbed that hill today
tossed those fears
at the bottom.
A quieter voice kicked in,
all the others
ran ahead
of the self-doubts
high-fived the can'ts
through the I wants
All that was left
were the
I cans


Sipping Jasmine tea
with the rain, I remember
I only have a few more days.
To be this age, I mean,
the one I am now.
And then it's on
to another moment
that turns
into another season
and wrinkles
and more gray
And wisdom, I'm sure.
and pain.
I’m sure too
that I'll never
be sure
that tomorrow
it will all change, the flowers
will bud
then bloom
then die.
We all will, I know.
And with each inhale
I get closer
to buds and blooms
to death
to Life