parenting

Christmas Day

We emerge from our winter slumber.
It is still dark outside.
The sun has yet to greet the horizon.
The house is aglow
Lit with joy and glee
For Christmas is here.
And the big Jolly Elf
Emptied his sack
The giving and generous spirit he is.

The children can’t hardly wait!
They’ve counted down the days.
It’s taken so long, it seems,
For this day to appear.
The presents are lovingly wrapped
In festive colored paper
of snowmen, Santa himself,
Reindeer and penguins.
They shimmer in the
Sparkling Christmas lights
Under the tree.

It's the moment we’ve all been waiting for.
Let’s tear into the mysteries
That lie beneath
The paper and tape that sheathes its true contents.

Paper is tossed into a huge pile.
Opened packages are placed in neat rows.
A surprise accompanies a feigned smile, 
Sometimes confusion
Or a true delight.

I savor the magic in the air
 
Music softly plays
A fireplace flame flickers on the screen.
The kids sneak a bite of candy or two.
There on the floor,
Under the tree now bare
Its goods all opened
All before breakfast.
self-care

Coffee break

My hands cupped around 
the warm coffee mug.
It is full of aroma
And I savor the flavor.

My fingers hook
gently yet firmly
on the handle as
I bring it in 
for a sip.
The warm liquid gets
swallowed down my throat
as I promptly go in 
for another taste.

If I get distracted
with conversation,
with technology,
with making future plans
or anything that takes me away
from the simple pleasure
of drinking fresh coffee,
the liquid starts to cool
and moment by moment,
its flavor gets diminished.

The joy and pleasure
is fleeting.
And it is my intention
and attention alone
that keeps me centered
in the here and now
and not in autopilot.

The warm flavor
recedes like the
rip current that calls
waves back into
the sea.

I can still feel the
faint warmth of my coffee mug
cupped gently in my hands.
I do not want to squander
one bit of this
temporary reprieve of
the hustle and bustle of what we call
modern life.
self-care

The Blackberries

The blackberries
the quintessential fruit of summer.
On the brink of harvest
in the heat of morning sun.
They sit patiently
an offering.
Do I accept the invitation?

There is nothing like fresh fruit
the burst of flavor on my tongue.
The dark stained hands
from the fleshy bells.
On my chin and darkened my tongue.

The fruit is not forbidden
or only for the chosen few.
Only to those who happen to
look up at the sky
and notice
that there’s more than
meets the ordinary eye.

There is some effort.
I must confess.
Before you can savor the
reward of your labors.

It takes the body to the edge
just beyond reach.
With added vigor and strength,
I can reach what I desire.

It is now in my grasp
and my body relaxes and breathes.
Sighing as I place the dark bell into my mouth.
Yes, I’ll save some for later
and share the bounty.
But right now this is just for me.
This moment.
This effort.
This delicious reverie is mine to savor.
So I do.
Not caught up in agendas, past stories or future thinking.
Just the blackberries
The offering and
Me the willing recipient.

And I am filled with awe and gratitude
for the fresh delectable flesh.
Just mine.
All mine.

I touch the tree’s bark
and look up in the branches.
There is more than enough for everyone. For the birds, the insects, the squirrels and me.
All sharing a Thanksgiving feast.

The tree accepts all and turns away none. 
Is generous and sharing to all who visit her 
and enjoying her gift in her presence is the true gift.