Blue Popsicles

I love the ocean, really I do, I never take a vacation without it, so often when I buy personal hygiene products I like to buy things with names like Ocean Breeze, Sea Mist, Briny Breezes, Misty Sea and Surf for Men, etc., etc., this seems to temporarily fill my need for an ocean fix, but this morning my system seems to have hit a snag when eyes shut, wallowing in the sheer dreaminess of hot water running over by head and down my back, I grabbed for my ever-dependable, too-wide-to-grasp, family-size, Suave Ocean Breeze with Infused Sea Algae Extract and Vitamin E Shampoo, and decided to put it to my nostrils to take a long, deep, savoring breath when immediately I became anxious as a memory flashed on a summer-sweaty, hedonistically-devouring 3 or 4-year-old child gorging on a delicious blue popsicle after mass with my father, and my mother asking me in her sweet, calm, quietly hysterical tone, the one she reserved for small children to refrain from full-tilt scream: “Joseph, who gave you the blue popsicle?”, and “How the …. will I ever get those gd blue stains off your brand new (short-sleeve) white dress shirt?” Moral: Don’t buy Suave Ocean Breeze Shampoo, it smells like blue popsicles, or some kind of deadly Monsantoèsque sea weed, beach plum and propylene glycol mix, and what is that blue popsicle flavor anyway?

Das Vagabonder

What I love

⁃ most

about vacation

is just wandering

wandering aimlessly .

it was this glorious,

get-outside-in-the-sun-Joseph!

picture perfect

beach day,

but I chose to spend most of it inside,

well,

inside my Marriott Bonvoy

points-paid suite of rooms

with wall-sized

sliding glass doors,

⁃ slid wide open,

windows supervising

a luminescent

azure pounding ocean

just beyond their reach,

see-through sheers

flying like ballroom dancers

on lifts of briny breezes

⁃ watching movies,

dream-reading

old American

frontier romance fiction,

then shuffling,

begrudgingly

in a pair of well-worn contoured

black leather Berkenstocks,

like a too-tired snail

pulling itself, reluctantly

‘cross a sun-drenched

southern French

terra-cotta-tiled pathway,

a trail of glistening slime

regaling its wake,

every centimeter, a toss

between

all the closer

and just too far

to the beachside cafe

for a hardy

sea-side lunch,

then, when all is said & eaten

the awkward posse of successive

backward tripping steps,

⁃ back

onto the bank of elevators:

l-o-b-b-y l-e-v-e-l!

exhorts the whispy

electronic she-voice

14th floor!

a muffled murmur responds

from behind

the faceless

canteen issue

baby-blue

paper pandemic

surgical mask,

schlepping

an empty

black

nylon mesh

back-pack,

back

to my sunny,

breezy window-treated

rooms

for just a little bit more

Sunday

inside, ocean-side

beach-day wandering

⁃ DasVagabonder

Birthday 63

For my 63rd birthday Jeff & I decided to take a shot (NPI) at golf! This was not a decision made as care-freely as it might sound. For as long as I can remember, age 4 to be exact, when after a certain 10-year-old uncle and his huddled gang of marauding 10-to-12-year-old buddies torpedoed a football at my chest while jeering me on to clutch it and sprint in a bee line toward the imposing, lone red maple, wide-stanced and broad-shouldered, its mighty chest proffered to proudly accept every hue of nature’s rainbow-speckled fall glory – a request I happily indulged like an eager-to-please puppy – and out of nowhere – BAM! – I ended up on the suffocating bottom of a pile of eight or nine 10-to-12-year-old boys – not as pleasant an experience as the more cynical among you might think. This was a defining moment, one that invoked immediate rebellion and a near life-long self-imposed ban on playing any kind of game involving a flying object even remotely resembling a football. Culprits have included: baseballs, tennis balls, basketballs, frisbees, hockey pucks, birdies, etc., etc., etc. I am happy to report, however, that I think I’ve finally found my sport! Never too late to find your flow, albeit a safe’ish, gentlemanly and leisurely game, golfing is a lot of fun, despite the tacit assumption that the occasional ill-intentioned marauding hoodlum most likely still lies stealthily in wait, cleverly queued in reoccurring ten-minute tee-time sorties, and camouflaged in colorful glove-tight, ergonomically yielding Lululemon active wear, just longing for the perfectly inopportune moment to lob a tiny, menacing, pimpled, neon ball aloft in my direction.

Overnight Journey

In an average
American lifespan
of 78.87 years,
we spend 25 asleep.

It suddenly struck me
– out of the blue
as many things, sometimes
often in fact, do
the idea that
we live Such
short lives!

that Sleep,
perchance to dream
while on the surface
the greediest of fiends
mightiest of foes! nightly thief
of precious ticking moments,
offers like clockwork
the soundest advice
on how to take
refuge
from pointless worry
& strife

a practice
for eternity
an overnight tour
an all expense-paid journey
direct to the source
of light, of being
of suspended believing
in this time-limited, conditioned
earthly existence
of thinking, of fretting
of measuring, comparing
of winning, of losing
of lollapaloozing

as Morning
stalks twilight
– luring all to return
like the moth to a flame
we’re back in the race
of time, competition
of ceaseless
opposition
to the lingering peace
lying
stealthily
within

Ding’s Vigil

A ferocious

whirling gust of high-pitched

biting

gale force wind

screeches

ripping ’round the shingled

northeast corners of a

weather-worn cape,

coiled tightly

into a sunken fury ball

a lying dog squeaks

and groans,

pressing harder

with every howl

she nuzzles ‘gainst her master’s

wooden, louvered door

fixed on the calming rhythms

of his long slow

pulling breaths

and sudden, deep, releasing sighs

yearning for the moment

when his gentle snores

will cease,

the door

will crack,

and a stormy morning light

will pierce the dark,

as another day

among her happy pack

begins

Overnight Journey

In an average
American lifespan
of 78.87 years,
we spend 25 asleep.

It suddenly struck me
– out of the blue
as many things, sometimes
often in fact, do
the idea that
we live Such
short lives!

that Sleep,
perchance to dream
while on the surface
the greediest of fiends
mightiest of foes! nightly thief
of precious ticking moments,
offers like clockwork
the soundest advice
on how to take
refuge
from pointless worry
& strife

a practice
for eternity
an overnight tour
an all expense-paid journey
direct to the source
of light, of being
of suspended believing
in this time-limited, conditioned
earthly existence
of thinking, of fretting
of measuring, comparing
of winning, of losing
of lollapaloozing

as Morning
stalks twilight
– luring all to return
like the moth to a flame
we’re back in the race
of time, competition
of ceaseless
opposition
to the lingering peace
lying
stealthily
within

Balance Beaming

What matters most
is living
a life in balance
between being
and doing
with the emphasis
on being

Open
without hesitation
to inhaling the moments
when chattering thoughts and
to-do lists, take up
residence
somewhere else

Like a child
tinkering mindlessly
– in the background
with puzzling
shiny projects
other than me

Truro Summer’s Night

A firefly flickers

my eyes draw

skyward

tailing its trail

A briney breeze

whispers

I savor its breath

The Milky Way

glitters

like chains of shimmering silver

electric jellyfish

contracting – thrusting forward

through’n infinite

sparkling silent

black-velvet sea