Math is not my friend
We buck heads over answers
That must be right or wrong
Gray does not exist in the minds of math-minded
There is a narrowing, whittling to the n’th degree
The theology of numbers
Has no room for interpretation
Or personal history
But I know this to be True
Three is holy
And three is my friend
But who is counting
The three children
One watched Count Dracula
With me, Sesame Street math
Serving numbers up with sugar coated ease
Three writers at a lit lunch
Time stands still
Math and science don’t believe it
Ask the poet writer how
She will find the words
And three amigos
Simple counting on one hand
Friends in triplicates
Warm and fuzzy
Math matters not at all
With matters of the heart
God knows the sacred
In the number three
This poem brought to you
By the number three
A braided cord too
Strong to break

The Turning: In Which Around Every Corner Is A Discovery

shrimp boats on at night

Often they are small. And then other times they are wonderful and large, looming truths about life. They hover like ebony rain-packed  summer clouds in the afternoon. Or they float by like seeds blown from a spent dandelion. They are coming and going. A constant force to be reckoned with. They are hatchlings and seedlings and fledglings of this life.

Birthed in unexpected places and moments, they appear. And I am called to be vigilant and at peace. A combination of human emotion that allows tender and tough to co-exist. Tender enough to capture the magnificence. And tough enough to know that in the netting, there will be objects that must be released. It is not all glory and it is not all beauty. But seeking the lovely, the grace-filled and the glorious requires casting the net into the life seas.

In a state of watchful child-like wonder I can live this season of my life in a state of re-born newness. Like a bivalve cracks open and lets the water flow in and out, receiving and releasing. Keeping the nutrients, releasing the sediments. I am called to continually take in the discoveries of my life. I would starve on a diet of bland, if I never crack open the door to wonder. I would miss the shades of blue on the hydranga that go to purple, lavender and aqua. And  the hidden greens waiting to decide which color to be.

We would never know the way rain feels, dropping from a summer storm on warm tanned flesh if we remain cocooned in dry places. One more day reveals one more smell or taste, never before experienced.

And words of an eighteen year old child who want to tell their story get tangled in my net. I can choose.  I choose to  listen and realize there is more than the words unfurling from the man/child lips. There is a heart of curiosity and trust. There is his own discovery needing a place to land and light.

In a moment or two, a child will awake from her warm quilted bed in an air-conditioned room and tell me of her ten day mission trip. She has gone away and seen poverty and a world outside of her own. She and her passport are back. And there are stories to gently receive.

A parent lives a layered life of discovery. Because she holds the key to seeing through a child’s glistening eyes. Her own, the ones who look to her and call her momma. And it magnifies the wonder. For at once she is receiving discovery  through her own glassy portals  and stooping down to see through the eyes of those she is raising.

If I see with open wonder and a seeking heart, will I show my children how even in my fifty-fourth year of life, the beauty never ends. The unveiling never stops. And his Kingdom is filled with marvelous intricate designs. That art is living, breathing, waiting, hoping, pulsing all around.

And I am in this middle place. I see through the eyes of my aging mother too. The joys rebounding in her life. The strange and child-like discovery that is hers as she moves through her days. She forgets and then she remembers. And if I can learn to refine a listening heart,  I will hear the most intricate details of a woman, a mother and another poet’s life.

Around every corner is a discovery.  I will raise my net.

And bend into a low and listening stance, ever vigilant, ever watchful. Filled with the ready knowing that something is waiting. And that something is beautiful.

I will round the corner at a slow and steady gait. One that expects to not miss a single fleck floating in the sun-soaked or moon-drenched air.


Joining Jennifer and Emily

Bullseye, The Peach, and A Blue Thread : A Trilogy


bullseye bike

You did not miss the mark
The feather-tipped arrow of your release
It did not fail to land
In the right spot, spot on
Perfect imperfection
A bullseyed penetration
Drilling through the target
Seen by eyes of love.


The Peach

peach 2013

Sitting on the counter
Inviting me
To open up
rsvp my intent
And begin the ritual
Tradition washes over me with sticky memory
And sweet my taste buds eagerly await
Weigh the choice of
All alone or mixed with cream
Perhaps thrown on a bed of greens
The remembering is the beauty halved
Of the ripe flesh and soft warm skin
I peel back to find the gift and enter in the dance
Peach and I
Our summer can begin
We cannot hurry
Nor can we wait
In blinks and nods and a few short days
September will arrive
And memories of sweet ripe fruit
Will dance alone
Like visions of summers past rolling around in my mind, a dream
Of days in the past
So I must eat a peach
And savor all that is ripe and good
And ready for the picking
These are the days
These are the hours
Of grateful living
Peach and I, I and Peach
Our summer has begun.


A Blue Thread

modern trouseau charleston

Followed me
Or I followed it
On the way
To Blue Bicycle Books
Everything was shades of blue
Cars behind at red lights
Who knew they made dump trucks
In front he lead me down Highway 17
And then I crossed the bridge
Under a canopy of blue
With white monstrous clouds waiting to release
And hit the sidewalk like a blue streak
The storefronts presented me with blue
And I wondered if this occurs everday
This theme of beauty
Threads through a day
Some days it is red and others gold
And greens of summer, water’s aqua too
If I would look in front behind and closer
At this one  life
That like the two  young men on the news
Not yet at the age I am
Could end like that
And have it all just stop
Out of the blue.

The Hands


The Hands

It is the hands. Though no body is a single piece or part. It is your hands that I always recall. A sanctuary of  tender love. Those hands. Though there were always the blues that cast a loving glance, wet often with tears. Slight movement of the heart, a word or song could cause your vision to fog and blur, misty eyed you’d cry joy more than not. Tender is your heart.

And it is your legs that trudge and travel, work and seem to never stop, doing good and doing more. Hoping planes and pacing sidewalks, roaming door to door. Knocking for a cause and giving out of love. The legs which have climbed mountains. And boarded trains.  There is a whole spinning orb that you have seen. You left a part of yourself in Haiti once or twice or more. Long and lean your legs determined to tell of Christ have crossed and crisscrossed, this Earth, in love. On the backs of elephants you have served, always filled with a holy love.

And your laugh. It comes on loud and deep and your bright smile, it flashes wide and long. The one you thought you’d take to Washington to change the world or at least some things. But you were stopped. And that was good. There were lives to touch much closer to home. When life was heavy you gave your laugh. Infused with childlike playfulness. And that saved the day more than once. It needing saving and you could turn the tide. You could turn sorrow to joy. And you did turn sadness into happiness. More than once. More than twice.

Red and beating fast, keeping you always moving, loving life and loving Christ and loving others is your heart. It is large and looming over those who count on you, to build them up, to give them hope. To help, in love. It has the capacity for love, not often seen. Out of love, you live a life of giving back. The heart of man, the heart of you is beautiful when it is loving well.

But it is your hands Daddy. The way they are always warm. Your fingers long, your grasp on mine, firm and strong. The ones that never seem to give out or  up. They grasp and hold in love, a child a woman and her children too. The way you squeeze and make me feel secure and loved. Though you have all that makes a godly man, I will never forget your two big hands. I remember, as a child. I remember your love shown through the endless generosity that flows. From your hands.

It is your hands that grab my heart and hold it still. This day in June I know you would hold mine,  walk me up or down the mountain. If I were there within your reach. You would hug me, hold me, tickle me and squeeze me. Still and always, I will be your child.

And in the years that remain, I know my eyes will see, a life continuing to be built on living well, in love.

So spilling on the page and through the screen are my three hand squeezes, you know what they mean.

Happy Father’s Day. I love you.

And  now you know how much I love your hands.


Dedicated to my Daddy on Father’s Day, June 16, 2013.

(photo credit: Tumblr ( Michael Angelo’s — David)