A kick in the head!

I will always be curious

and allergic to cats.

Ain’t that a kick in the head!

The ability to discover is a gift in itself and it’s that same gift of discovery that makes our individual perception unique.

Have you ever noticed that the thing you are most excited to share with another person, be it a new book, movie, podcast, idea, or what you think happens to be something to be considered “the greatest,” that their excitement never quite matches your own?

Of course you have. We’re all human.

And have you ever noticed that upon showcasing this thought or idea to another that when you do, their reaction never quite lives up to your expectation, which leaves you feeling either hurt or discouraged?

I will not take it upon myself to assume that you have though I will tell you this: I have.

And it’s a very tough thing to understand.

In the moment of realization that your appreciation for something you deem extraordinary hasn’t been deeply felt in the same way by another can often cause conflict, misunderstanding, and judgement—that is reactionary rather than honest.

Instead of expressing our pain for what seems a lack of appreciation in the moment, we often turn to criticism, which is in itself a form of false pride.

Rather than saying, “I’m confused as to why you don’t feel the way I do about what I’m showing you,” one says, “well, of course you don’t get it,” or more often than not, we say nothing, letting our emotions fester to distress and shame.

In the Alchemist, Paulo Coelho writes: “It’s not what enters men’s mouths that’s evil, it’s what comes out of their mouths that is.”

Well if that’s not the boldest yet truest statement to have ever been penned than I implore you to enlighten me as I’ve found myself in this predicament more times than I am willing to admit.

My point is, we can’t expect another’s reaction to mirror our own.

We shouldn’t expect them to for the simple fact that they are their own person, with their own background, beliefs, and experiences that before judgement deserve appreciation and due time to process and articulate what is being presented.

What took the time to find, understand, and appreciate should also be granted—the time—to another.

It’s like telling someone rather than suggesting someone read a book.

Your willingness to share does not determine one’s willingness to receive.

It’s like giving someone the answer without allowing them to solve the equation.

The ability to discover is a gift in itself and it’s that same gift of discovery that makes our individual perception unique.

So the next time you offer someone a gift, regardless of their reaction, remember who you’re sharing it with and why you chose them to share it with you all over again.

I think then you will find an even deeper appreciation for yourself and another.

Santa Monica. September 6, 2020

leaving only the snakeskin they’re worth.

Look at whoever

made you feel inferior

misplaced or intolerable

and ask yourself:

Whose burden do they carry?

Then remind yourself:

That weight is not meant for you.

Now tell whoever

made you feel inferior

misplaced or intolerable

you love them

And watch:

Their puzzled concern, still only for themselves.

Then walk away

leaving only the snakeskin they’re worth.

What have we done?

I am not quite sure exactly what

Some parent’s expect of their children

In terms of success and failure

Because of course each individual is unique

In their own belief system developed through life

Though I do know exactly what

Some middle aged men and women

Expect of their parent’s, which is

Love and Understanding that

Love and Understanding means more to them

Than any award or prize, delusions of wealth

And superfluous measures of success

Handed down from Great-Grandfather to Grandfather

Then Father to Son who’s soul purpose it often seems

Is to belittle the latter, like some draconian wheel

Turning itself in circles, only to cause

An endless cycle of fear and inferiority

Leading nowhere fast, leading nowhere good

On an endless road of resentment and ill worth.

And we don’t ask for this. We are born to this.

We are flesh and bone

Fueled by the imperfections of our father’s

Father’s, father’s son

Who one day will understand he did nothing wrong

Oh Mother, dear mother

What have we done?

I believe, I believe, I believe in you

I’ve a laundry list of confessions

like the phases of the moon

Sometimes they pose a question

sometimes they propose two

I’ve got a long list of suggestions

to sink my teeth in to

Half the time full of dimension

still I love the dark side too.

Some people live by first impression

I tried but couldn’t resist

Tangled knots in life’s suspension

marionette’s even sometimes quit

Bottled up untapped aggression

like a dog in heat I bit

Every hand who fed I bargained

sold my soul for half a cent.

Sometimes I just don’t feel ok

when color seems to fade to gray

But even I knew better days

were drawn like window shades.

Put me on like a flannel

in the middle of May

Wear me out completely

with the words that you say

Today the sun is shining

brighter than yesterday

So strum these heart string chords

cause you know just what to play.

Blow me out like a candle

I’ll be your flickering flame

Tuck me in like a child

too old for past mistakes

Let me sing to you a while

and the words that I’d say

Light the sky like a storm

and your rain’s saving grace.

Sometimes I just don’t feel ok

and you tell me that that’s ok.

I believe, I believe, I believe in you

I believe in you everyday,

cause I believe you believe in me.

Tell me a story

There’s a part of me

that see’s this all clearly

like a child standing in a crowd

there’s really only one way out.

What is it that you see

it’s fine to disagree

why if the world’s mine oyster please

forgive me for the lack of belief.

I had this faith in you

I thought you had it too

how many smiles does it take to show

the unhappiness we grew to know.

Do you take this hand

would you understand

lighting matches just to prove you could

did it ever do you any good?

Tell me a story, one without love, cause it’s taken me for granted so many times—enough.

There’s a part of you

engrained in me now

I’d be a liar if I didn’t admit

it’s a piece I won’t ever regret.

So what’s the point of these prose

and insecurity poems

like a fish needs water to breathe

I guess it really isn’t up to me.

If this is just a passing feeling

I’ll agree to disagree then

watch the sun rise and fall once more

a couple hours then I’ll start the chore.

You see I know my problems

it’s not up to you to solve them

if I go out the Hemingway

like Kerouac first I’ll have my say so

Tell me a story, one without love, cause I’ve taken you for granted so many times—c’mon.

Tell me a story, one without love, cause it’s taken me for granted so many times—enough.

alone and warm and aware

The sun is warm on my face

grey shadow upon wood grain

stuck somewhere between

sympathy and harmony

with the universe

and where a headache should be

there is none

and where a heart should be

there is stone

and where I should be

there is shadow

alone and warm and aware

cast too across wood grain with

the closing doors of another work shift.

that certain something

You can love somebody

anybody

unconditionally

but the one thing you can’t do

is change them. You can’t

make them who you wished

they would be, although

yes it’s there

that certain something

always shining

like a diamond in the rough

sparkling is their beauty

but only for a moments glance

before it’s lost again.

God how I wish I could tell them

of everything that I see within them

of all mine and their desires fulfilled

though they wouldn’t believe me

for they couldn’t see themselves

like I see

their souls burning in denial

wanton and wild

whether it be love or vile

you can love somebody

anybody, but

you can’t change them.

Not really.

All you can do is tell them how you feel.

So tell them.

Chances are

they feel that way too.

getting out of bed

However you get up and out of bed

or off the sidewalk

however you dig yourself

out of the grave is commendable.

And if you choose nothing

that too is just as valid

as choosing something.

I see far too many people

driving themselves mad

with work and love

and money and power

and fitness and greed and guilt

trying to fit into some sort of

idea they’re bred to believe

will fix them when really it won’t.

They don’t need to be fixed

or loved or loathed or accepted.

They just need to listen.

Listen to the air.

Listen to the ice crack when hot water hits.

Listen to the sea spray.

But I know nothing really.

All I know is what I see and what I see

is beautiful and diseased and delicate

like a rose petal or a dandelion flower

plucked from the earth by a child

in the outfield of a baseball diamond

wanting nothing more than to drift away

with the seeds he’s blown to anywhere else.

However getting out of bed

or the sidewalk or gutter is the first step

and the rest well, the rest is just —

up to you I guess.

don’t think twice it’s alright

She said she had nothing to say

and the hard part was

that I kind of believed her.

She had it sometimes, this spark

but never really fleshed it out.

And even when she did

she always just kind of played the part

but never really got it how I saw it in her.

I think I just wanted her to be this muse

which she understood she couldn’t be.

Not because she didn’t want to but rather

because she’d already given so much of herself

that there really wasn’t more to give.

And what’s the point of giving your all

to something that never really gave you anything

but headaches and a broken heart?

Oh how we live for those who treat us like dirt

because in the end we respect them better than

the rest who smile and nod and tell us how

good of a job we’re doing just to get through the day.

But they don’t really care. To them

we might as well not even exist. I mean really

who do you call when you’re at rock bottom?

You call the ones you’ve loved, lost, and

will love regardless of the pain they’ve caused

because even when she said she had nothing

to say, I knew better than that.

I just pray she wasn’t telling the truth.

Hell even when I have nothing to say

I have something to say. But that’s me.

That wasn’t and will never be her.

“So don’t think twice it’s alright.”

Bob Dylan said that.

“I’ll let you be in my dream if I can be in yours.”

Bob Dylan also said that.

“Write with fire,” I said that.

I’m probably taking this harder than I should

but that’s who I am and what I do.

I know this. I admit it. I am this.

There is no turning it off, no turning back.

I’ll wake up tomorrow pen in hand regardless.

Don’t it feel good? That spark. Like fire, right?

You just can’t put it down no matter how hard you try.

See, you don’t choose it, it chooses you.

And if you don’t say it, someone will.

It’s all just wishful thinking in the end

so here’s another penny to the well

funny how it doesn’t even make a splash anymore.