Kinship with Salmon




She looks at her river

Worked up by hubris,

rushing with ignorant rage.

“Why must we go back?” she asks.

The fever simply says, “Because it’s always been.”

To them, her words mean danger.

So she flails at the rapids that rush to silence her,

Slips past grizzlies who feast without guilt,

And ignores her own anger

At what’s always been.

Finally, she buries her eggs in the gravel

And dies

With hope that her smolt yet unborn

Will break from tradition,

Think for themselves,

Stop self-destructing,

And live.


Dream with Eyes Wide Open



Today, dream with eyes wide open.  

Let go of soil where you first sprouted,  

Forget reminders

Of a rocky start.

Ignore whispers filled with condemnation

Floating in the breeze,

Memories of guilt and regret,

Warped versions of who you really are.


Instead, accept what was, is, and will always be,  

Before life was breathed into you,

Before time was measured,  

Before dark ignored light.


Accept imperfections,

Then stretch for the sun.

Push past self-doubt,

Let what-ifs fall away;

For they sap strength

Turning worth into worthlessness,

Belief into unbelief,

Strength into sorrow.


If thirsty for hope, stop drinking brow sweat.

Just surrender.


Then lift your eyes, sprout wings, and

Fly over walls

That once overshadowed, and

Plant yourself in fertile soil.

Once there,

Look up and dream with eyes wide open.

Drink in what you have always known –

You matter,

You are perfect,

You are loved.

Tobacco Barns (Revised)

Tobacco Barns in Mt. Sterling


grassy pastures peek inside dilapidated castles

silently pleading for protection

from threatening thunderheads above.


Wooden slats half-heartedly stave off

pittery-pattery uncertainty

          as clouds growl,

                pour out frustration,

                         and leave in a huff.


After, sllivvery sunlight pays homage to the past.

Wrens fill the silence with songs of  praise

for the battle-scarred keeper who guards

South’s once proud king.


The king watches in contempt as,

Mere miles away,

the Future races West

to conduct Big City Business

or East

to worship at the pedicured feet

of the great Daniel Boone.


Here, though, time crawls,


        Refusing to walk,


           preferring the Present,


                content just to be…


                                            In the now…


                                                                 Forever and ever,