Sparked by Words

Archive for the ‘Just a Thought’ Category

Like a Broken Vase

I hurried, my hip glanced the table. The vase fell.

I hurried, I spoke too soon. The person to whom I spoke was hurt by my caustic words.

I am an imperfect person. I am deeply flawed.

The only staff that keeps me standing is understanding that so is everyone else.

I take no joy in discovering their flaws, but I know I can improve my conduct.

In their weeping eyes I see the reflection that is me, the disappointment, the criticism, the judgment. Their sorrow.

And the possibility that if I wake in the morning, I can try again. To repair and apologize, to expand my view and extend my palm, to lift them so I may be lifted as well.

Like the broken vase. Even knowing the cracks in the porcelain will still show, and will deflate the value of the vase, and will ever be the flaw that makes the vase vulnerable to breaking again, still I can repair it. Or try.

In the scattered shards lies a promise to fix what is broken.

So, to that person injured by the burn of my careless words, I am truly sorry.

Sometimes it’s the only thought that lets me sleep at night. That, and prayers.

 

 

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The Broken Pitcher, 1891, by William-Adolphe Bouguereau, courtesy Wikimedia Commons

 

 

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Fire California

California summer. The season of fire.

 

I live in California where it’s so dry a hot headed remark can start a fire.

 

Tragically, there are sixteen fires raging up and down this beautiful state, taking forests for tinder, buildings for ash, wildlife for collateral, lives for sacrifice.

 

My heart bellows for those who have lost their homes or businesses. My admiration soars for those who fight the infernos. My despair screeches for an end.

 

I drive my car and think about how much I’ve contributed to the environmental crisis plaguing our world. Could I have walked or ridden my bike or  stayed home? Yet I still drive. And the fires still burn. And people still suffer.

 

And California is laid waste by flame provoked by drought and heat. Fire clouds sere the sky. Fire thunder rakes the land.

 

Mercy, please.

 

Not for me. For you, for the future, for the children.

 

May the season of fire return to mere summer, hot and sunny.

 

 

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California 2013 Rim fire image courtesy en.wikipedia.org

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Genesis

All origins from the sea.

All future on the earth.

All eternity in the universe.

All mystery through the cosmos.

All shame in the marrow.

All lamentation with the soul.

All weeping by the grievers.

All salt from the sea.

 

 

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Ocean image courtesy Pixabay

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nothing Much

There’s nothing much to water. No fat, no carbs, no salt, no sugar, little taste. Frozen, vapor, or liquid, there’s not much to it.

Yet water is the single most essential element for life. It comprises most of our bodies and much of the world. Trekking across the desert, we ration our water assertively. In our exploration of the cosmos, we ardently seek water. Farmers carve into earth to plant seeds only once water has been located. From divining rods to space ships to artesian wells, mankind has always yearned for water.

When our body is parched, it’s water we crave to restore it.

When our thirst is deep, it’s water we demand to slake it.

When our skin is grimy, it’s water we require to clean it.

When our souls ascend, it’s water we choose to honor the journey.

Water is everything.

So tell me – what’s the water of your story?

 

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Waterfall image courtesy of Pixaby

 

 

What Do I Do Now?

Speak even when you are speechless.

Bellow when you are crying.

Whisper when you are lost.

Open your palms when words fail.

Pray when you are harrowed.

If nothing grows, plant weeds.

 

Reach out when there’s nothing left to do.

Hold others tight during a quake.

Take the hands of those who stand apart.

Give when your account is empty.

Share everything when nothing remains.

If fish die, water the oceans.

 

Imagine while you dream.

Rock while the baby sleeps.

Cradle when the aged weep.

Plan the future on the last page of the calendar.

Climb atop the barricades.

If you waver, stand on quicksand.

 

Awaken on the cusp of the new day.

Cross over as the piers collapse.

March on two broken feet.

Dance on your knees and elbows.

Crawl on the flesh around your ribs.

If you wear rags, scour the mud.

 

Avoid flight when evil approaches.

Listen to those who will not hear.

Sign for those who are made silent.

Thump your chest when your breath catches.

Pierce your heart when you shiver.

If the bees depart, bring honey.

 

Translate pain into self portraits.

Wail when words are not enough.

Write when words are all you have.

Etch in blood when your pencil breaks.

There’s always something you can do.

If not for you, for someone else.

 

 

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Painting: Mother and Child, 1914, by Julius Paulsen

 

 

 

 

 

I Will Tell

 

An old barn is a bane to a farmer but a boon to an artist

A dilapidated shack an eyesore for neighbors but refuge for the poor

A ruined mortal a quarry for accusers but forage for the poet

No matter the cunning snake that wallows in his deceit,

no matter the smirking ghoul who destroys a career,

the gossip who barters a confidence like cheap candy,

or the trusted friend for whom betrayal is a conquest

Even the repentant face in my mirror seeks amends

 

We hold a dance in the old barn for the lovelorn,

pretending we are not the target of the fiddle’s song

We thrust our hand into the poor box, denying our hunger

for the taste of human comfort, of slaking the thirst for touch

We witness the breaking of bonds, the loss of redemption

No matter the ink dripping red and thick as blood,

beating a drum’s dirge so close to the heart

The heat of fever spreads across the dampened cloth

 

Here in the shack lit by the flame within my marrow,

nerve endings steal my breath, fright scores my flesh

All the sorrows of life and demise, of hope and regret

Just this side of one being’s view of all’s fair,

another’s sight of conflict shrieking grievance,

each begging for sympathy and a sacred verse

To me, the ash heap of sorrow and confession,

Remains the mewling rasp of story, and I will tell it

 

 

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Old barn photo courtesy Pixabay

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Freedom

 

Happy 4th of July, Americans.

However you celebrate, remember that freedom is a lifestyle people worldwide struggle to achieve.

Freedom marches on sore feet. Freedom cries on an empty belly. Freedom learns in all colors. Freedom prays in many languages. Freedom hurts. Freedom heals.

We all have a stake in making the Declaration of Independence and the American Constitution an ongoing force. An evolving reality that began with dissension over wordage and power. And changed. And changes still.

Be civil. Be fair. We are stronger united but many voices demand an ear. Listen. Read.

We are the face of humanity for the rest of the world.

We are the standard of liberty for all people.

Be civil. Be seen. Be loud. Be present.

March. Write. Speak. Think. Vote.

Assure rights to all Americans. Every day. Every year. Every place.

Life. Liberty. Pursuit of happiness.

Happy 4th of July.

 

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Image: United States of America Declaration of Independence