The Ocean

19

February 16, 2017, Carlsbad, CA-

I have traveled, from one healing place

to another,

and then to another, yet.

Prescott has been my refuge,

for six years,

and six months.

Blythe is a wide spot

in the Colorado Desert,

of California’s underscored East.

I stayed there,

because it has the river.

A desert was once an ocean.

Dig deep enough,

past the scorpions’ nests,

and the caliche,

and there will be shell fossils.

La Jolla,

bustling,

overcrowded,

expensive as a place to live,

but sublimely peaceful,

if you look past the mobs.

It reminds me of a time,

long ago,

when I was in the Bronx.

on a Sunday morning,

in April.

No one else was about,

just me,

and Yankee Stadium,

and the animals of Bronx Zoo,

and the murals,

painted by those of good heart.

Today,

it was all the parents and kids,

beautiful people of tomorrow,

and a small colony of sea lions.

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There are few murals in La Jolla,

but  there is a Museum of Contemporary Art

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I left La Jolla,

and negotiated the hordes of people

trying, desperately, to get past

one another,

only to meet again,

at the next light.

We did this dance,

on I-5

and again

on the PCH,

from Encinitas,

to Carlsbad.

Here, I bought

yet another box

of Girl Scout cookies,

because mother and child

were alone,

ignored by those

passing in and out of Von’s.

I bought a box,

because this girl

is our future,

and the future needs

the water of encouragement.

I was followed

by a grandmother,

who bought four boxes,

which Mom proclaimed

the biggest sale of the day.

Encouragement

draws more encouragement.

I settled in,

at my Econolodge,

one of my refuges,

near the ocean.

 

Palpitations

6

March 22, 2017, Prescott-

My heart was aflutter, somehow, this morning.

I felt an intense, gentle warmth, coming from an unknown source.

My thoughts went to a barely-known friend,

some distance to the southeast of here.

I felt her energy and encouragement.

Then, they went to Dad.

He’d have celebrated his ninetieth birthday, today,

had his heart not failed him,

on that warm June morning, thirty-one years ago.

Dad always wanted us to think of the sunny parts of life,

to get us through the challenges.

He never wanted any of us to give up,

and that’s largely why I’m still here.

Love is always the secret.

 

Deserving

6

December 16, 2016, Prescott-

Today was long,

because of wind, and rain.

Two of our boys fought us,

tooth and nail,

over the tests the class took.

Self- determining a curriculum

is something that

requires inner discipline.

Our students don’t

exactly  have that,

in spades.

I overheard a girl

saying that one

of the boys

likes every girl

in the school.

She said he was named

for an angel,

but couldn’t pass for one.

I think every girl

deserves to be liked.

As with boys,

that liking should

be for who she is inside,

and for her dreams.

As with boys,

girls need to know

they are surrounded

by unconditional love and encouragement.

How is it that doesn’t go without saying?