Thursday, August 11, 2011

“Where I Live”
I don’t live in the role of father;
Although I do.
I don’t live in the role of husband;
Although I do.
And I don’t live in the role of teacher or friend or son;
Although I do.
I live on the crest of the wave
That flushes out the space
Between what it means to live this life,
And my existence.

Because what it means to live this life is the ethical question
The devil and the little angel that rest their horns and wings
On my shoulders, and the question never goes away.

I live this life in the guttural the vocal the physiological
Obsessions and insecurities, addictions and disease.
I live this life in the real the moment the visceral
Guttural way that life sucks me up, spits me out
Makes me feel - in juxtaposition to death.

I don’t live life in a plain and ordinary way;
Although I do.
I don’t live life in the linear, dry working-stiff life;
Although I do.

I live where Hesse creates the Steppenwolf,
Where Conrad creates the heart of darkness,
Where Salinger creates the dead-and-lost Caulfield.
I live where I seek the space between knowing and not knowing,
Where I connect to something greater; yet feel disconnected most of the time.

I live in my mind and my heart. And sometimes people get it;
But most of the time they don’t.
I live on the crest of the wave that moves through time.
No reason- no rhyme.


As human beings, we think, we feel, and we take actions. That's it- simple, really. And as we think, we use words; and as we feel, we use words; and as we act, we use words. Words can take us to the heights of exhilaration and success- and they can take us to the depths of despair. One word spoken from another to you can have the power to build and connect; or, it can have the power to disconnect and destroy.

Learning how to use words is a lifetime experience. It never ends, and that is the challenge: to continue to learn and grow and change your words, your ideas, your thoughts your attitudes and your actions. If you're always open to change, you'll always be a student of life- you'll avoid getting 'stuck'. As a student of life,  you have a great responsibility: To find the words that will make yourself, and others, better.

Wordle: words

Towards a Definition of what it means to ” Learn”

Towards a Definition  of what it means to ” Learn”
If a Tree Doesn’t grow, it Dies
            Learning is the easiest, most natural experience humans can have. The only time problems occur is when we stop doing it. We can make mistakes, small ones like ignoring the sound coming from under the hood while driving; or big ones such as collectively dumping so much garbage into the oceans that the seas die. But as long as we can learn, we will always have a chance.
            If we strip everything away and think about learning as part of our natural experience we can see that there is the obvious ‘growing up’ which is fated learning (learning whether we like it or not) and then there is the learning which is for the most part optional- we can choose to grow or not. The areas of learning include childhood to adolescent to adult, learning skills, a trade a profession, learning about relationships, lovers, friends, relatives, and learning about self- who am I? Now, what would cause us to choose not to grow in any of these areas?
One answer to this question is: we would stop growing and learning if we thought we knew enough. If, in our learning, we came to the lesson that spoke to us and said: “insert your name, you have learned enough, you are a genius, you should stop pursuing knowledge and understanding and skills because you are perfect now at this age of insert your age.” On the one hand, we are perfect just as we are. No matter what age or what innocence or what ignorance, we are perfect where we are; otherwise, we would always be flawed or in need, and then we could never be satisfied and I don’t believe that is our natural state. If we are perfect just where we are, then what to do? Answer: learn.
"The best thing for being sad", replied Merlin, beginning to puff and blow, "is to learn something. That is the only thing that never fails. You may grow old and trembling in your anatomies, you may lie awake at night listening to the disorder of your veins, you may miss your only love, you may see the world about you devastated by evil lunatics, or know your honour trampled in the sewers of baser minds.
There is only one thing for it then - to learn."
T.H. White, The Once and Future King, 1939
            The education system came up with the motto. “Lifelong learning” a few years ago and yet once you are out of that system you might  be led to believe that learning is the most boring, contrived, closed minded system ever invented. It could scare people from ever entering another school again. So how do you reconcile the idea that learning is a natural and positive experience with the idea that learning is painful schooling?
            It’s a tricky business to facilitate a learning experience. There are so many variables, and for public education, everyone has to be accommodated. But we are humans and most of us who are adult, recognize the disconnect between what learning is and the education we experienced.
            Learning is an effort to understand ourselves, others, and the world we live in. It is also an effort to get better at things (skills). At the same time we are growing in knowledge and skills, we also have the capacity for meta-cognition, to think about our process for learning skills and knowledge.
            But no matter the path we take in terms of our learning, learning is one of the most natural, most pleasurable experiences we can have as thinking human beings.

Therefore I...

One Fine Night

I believe in some-thing
I believe in s-ome-thing
I believe in someth-ing
Some-thing good.

Universe ex-pan-ding
Universe ex-pand-ing
Universe e-x-p-a-n-d-i-n-g

Universe in-fine- ite
Universe in-fine- nite
Universe in-fine-night

Universe e-tern-al
Universe a-tun-nel
Universe e-turn-all

I am a part of this thing
I am apart of this thing
I am a-part of this thing
This thing

Therefore I me ternal
Therefore I’m eternal
Therefore I meet turn all

Therefore I’m in-fin-nite
Therefore I min fine-nite
Therefore I’m in-fine-night
One fine night.

Variety of Poems


Swimming in the warmth
Comfortable in my womb.
Then some jerk disturbs me
And I enter the world.

Backyard 1

Life is the little bug
That lives under the bark,
As the red and white crested woodpecker
Picks and struts his music.

Life is a squirrel rummaging for food.
And the pieces of fallen bark that will make up his home.
Life is my daughter's voice that echoes in the distance.
Life is knowing that this will someday be gone.   Sunday April 24, 2011.

Backyard 2

Spring sun shines shimmeringly.
I don't deserve this.
Paradise in my backyard.
I must allow this to be.


I want to tell you a story
But I don't think I will
'Cause I don't think you deserve it.
You'll blame and you'll stew.

It's a story of forgiveness,
One might almost say grace,
Because the human it happened to,
Very nearly saved face.

But I can tell you he didn't get it
He killed someone that night
And the person he slaughtered
Had saved his life.

She cared for him and loved him
But he was lost in his role
And that night he finished it off
What was left of his soul.

The Buffoon

Let's face it, he helped no-one,
Sorry that's not true- he helped himself.
To a life of uncertainty
In a post modern world.

He wondered and thought, and thought and wondered.
Found a world without answers and answers without a world
Then slept with uncertainty, the whore of tomorrow.

The sky vibrates over his city
The stars say yes to whomever he is.

The sky says glory
The sky says grace
The sky says cold,
In this insignificant place.

The Existential Angst

Poem 1 Jan. 2010-01-31
The rub between living and meaning
A fight made up by me.
My cat doesn’t stress like this.
So why do I?

The friction between the day and the life,
Seeking for something more,
But, nothing more do I find
But another day closer-
 To worms meat.

Searching for meaning in this crazy world
Wanting something that doesn’t exist.
Meaning can be mean, said the lady of thought
Until you turn that meaning back to the moment,
And see,
The bliss of here and now.
Another challenge to be able to do.

Knowing that that’s all there is
Creates, the rub
Between living and meaning- The angst of existence.


Nothing to be Done

Nothing to be done
Nothing lost, nothing won
One road one life
Time and a choice
And the never ending
Of life within death-
And death within life.

And so I laugh
At the smiling moon
She’s pale- and weary
Of looking at me;
Yet, still smiling,
Watching me writhe and squirm,
A worm
About to be trod on-
Nothing to be done…

My Life in the Shade

My Life in the Shade
The light and the shade
Is the essential paradox
Two is always the nature
Of love and conflict
Two is always the flavour
Of yuck and mmm.

Every age, for the single human
And the single era
Probably the single eon,
There appears to be an
It’s me and you and you and me
It’s all the things that we can be
But aren’t

And I hope that before I die
I experience its opposite
The unnamed
The one.

Tom- March 5, 2010.

I Don't Want to Die on a Day Like This

I know what it means to die now
Thinking abstractly does not do it.
With only my words sitting in my yard, I begin to cry.
The May day of bloom and sun and beautiful daughter's,

And through my sun glassed sun drenched teary eyes
I see blue heavens sparkling through maples
And buds so young and green,
Witnessing life growing.

Birdsong is beautiful; but not like this.
Thinking about my time so imminent
I know what I see of my canoe and my daughter-
She's spraying and playing and tending the garden-
Is but a moment of forgotten time.

As I realize this, my heart aches to know I will lose this;
This moment- the ache of knowing what I will miss-
I don't want to die on a day like this.

Creepy Doll

 CREEPY DOLL (May, 2010)
When I was a little girl
My momma said to me
Daughter, don’t go to the basement,
There’s something I don’t want you to see.

Well, for a long time I didn’t go down there,
But then my cur-i-os-i-ty
Kicked in really strong-like,
And it got the better of me.

They say curiosity killed the cat,
And they say a cat has nine lives
I decided to go to the basement
And I carried with me two knives.

When I tried to turn the light on
It was broken at the switch.
So, I walked along in the darkness
And for a moment I noticed a witch.

It was a face that I saw in the dark
Not a witch but an ugly old doll,
Sitting on a box in the corner
Not looking at me at all.

A glimmer of light from the window
Showed me the head of that doll
And it showed a scar and a tattoo
And some blood had splattered the wall.

I laughed at my fearing that toy
A scarred up, dirty old doll’s head,
 Then it turned and gave me a smile
And laughed- this is what it said:

“Hello little girl, do you want to play?
We could go out and play in the sand.
Pick me up and take me upstairs
And, oh, give me that knife that you have in your hand.

I felt so very hypnotized
I gave it both of my knives
The doll used the knives. That night
Me and my mom lost our lives.

The new owners were cleaning the basement
They saw the blood on the wall

They tried to box up that little doll
And their bodies were never found at all.

The doll's name is Sabrina,
A cute little name it seemed
If you own a cute little doll,
Treat her very well indeed.