Eyes to Eyes

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Sitting in the kitchen

The table not quite white

I’ve stared at that floor many times before

The kitchen wow when was the last time

We used it? I miss baking especially.

I looked in the cabinets

I pick out a skinny pop and a strawberry granola bar

My diet got me thinking

And I’m not annoyed by that anymore

In fact, I adore my new life

I implore you to find things that bring you joy

The room is pretty empty of people

The food is plenty

The company is the best part

I knew that from the start

Announcements and Soft music

Julie popping in, we are still wearing masks

I suppose safety first

Vivid Memories of cooking there

I grab them tightly

Photos don’t do those memories justice

The cabinets

A metal mass

The food standard snacks

Chairs that over time hurt your back

That familiar room

The familiar smell

Like between Heaven and Hell

I dwell here

Peering around

No longer staring at the ground

Instead to my delight and surprise

Eyes to Eyes

Adventure is out there

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To my delight 

We did unite

And undertook 

The rare joy of being 

Once again in activity group 

Seeing everyone after so long

Apart

It truly warmed my pounding heart 

With Julie and Adam as our leaders together

We took off despite the humid weather 

But when we got to the lake

Make no mistake 

The wind blew through our hair

And for that time together we didn’t care

About our worries at all

Because what we loved most of all

Was the togetherness we got to have that day 

And we wouldn’t have it any other way 

Thinking about going out with a bang 

We actually went in with a bang

The tang of the burger on my tongue 

With Adam as grill master 

I had more than one 

We could enjoy beautiful weather and great friends 

The fun never ends

So there’s no dismay 

Because we agreed wholeheartedly 

It was the best day 

An Anti-Ode to Tuna

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Oh my dear Tuna Fish

How desperately I wish

I didn’t ever meet you

That I didn’t ever eat you

You smell so badly

That I’ll trash you gladly

Your odor is so strong

I could describe it all day long

Foul and gross as can be

Your mere existence ruins me

Once someone bought you

And brought you home

I wanted to roam

And far away

And until you’re gone there I’ll stay

Because while you’re feelings

I don’t want to hurt

I can say with a straight face

You taste worse than dirt

I don’t want to offend

So I’ll pretend that you’re alright

But one smell

And I’m closing my nose tight

If I never see you again

It will be too soon

You are a buffoon

Go away from me

That’s what I want so desperately

To those who enjoy you that’s fine

But you’ll never be mine

And I’m happy to say

That I want to keep it that way!

Grace, Gratitude, Grit and The Great Heights You can Ascend to Despite Despondence: Crying in the Bathroom By Erika L. Sanchez

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This book, this marvel, this masterpiece, that I consumed in one sitting, only stopping to take a ten minute shower and eat cold Chinese Food transcends everything that I ever thought could be possible in a book. Erika L. Sanchez lays it all out and bares her soul to us. She is raw, unfiltered, vulnerable, and it’s all absolutely stunning. Although the book was filled with profound suffering, I couldn’t help but notice how she kept going through it despite the misery she acutely felt. Having a mental illness myself, reading her book made me think wow! I can survive this! I can be successful. The message will sit with me forever. Her life was a life of her making choices, that all made her become someone that she wanted despite highs and lows, and that is ok. I love that she was so courageous to discover many facades of life until her found what she craved and needed. Her writing is so captivating I was in a trance. She had awful struggles in a world that doesn’t understand mental illness, reproductive rights, and difficult decisions that woman must and should be allowed to make, and being brown in a world where white supremacy is on the rise to a shocking degree was something she navigated brilliantly. As a white woman, I will not be able to understand the feeling she has, but can appreciate the candid way she explains things. She had great fortune with her family accepting her flaws and loving her, that part was so beautiful it gave me chills. The honest, no nonsense way she writes about ideas of sex as a woman and also about waiting a career of her own before raising a family should not seem revolutionary but they are! This book is a letter to women everywhere saying: don’t listen to others, live the life you want and need! Because she put her thoughts to paper and shared herself with the world and I can’t imagine how much guts that takes. Thank you for your deep honestly about so many different aspects of life and what happens if you say: I am picking my own pen, my own paper, and I am writing my own story. That is exactly what Ericka L. Sanchez did, and I am forever in her debt for this wondrous gift that I have been longing for – hope. Hope that as someone with a mental illness there is a light, you have to go through a tunnel to get there. Once you do, the brightest light will greet you.

Relative, The Movie Review

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A title with multiple meanings tied up neatly with a bow of compassion and an abundance of thriving and a bit of merely surviving. Relative was unlike anything I ever experienced as my existence as a human on this earth. You see, there was every movie that I saw before and now there is Relative, the bench mark for every movie I see from here on out. The way the characters went flowing through the scenes and the delicious conversations they had my full attention, my favorite quote being “I could drink a case of you and still be on my feet”, a statement that brought the film to new heights. There were many memorable lines, another being about how marriage is just putting one foot in front of the other. Such well fleshed out characters all gave a heartbeat to this film. (It is so rare to have characters that all have an individual personality but meld as a unit also.) This gem. This work of art. I am overwhelmed with everything that this movie made me feel about life, love, family, and what it means to exist, grow up, change, and do that within a fluid unit. Truly, I am unable to fully put into words the way the cinematographer was able to convince me of the pure beauty of the simple and make the ordinary the extraordinary. I was in love with the piano 🎹 pieces that were selected for this film. It was delightful. The house and settings were simply breathtaking and their own characters in their own right. Growing up in the suburbs and traveling through the city often, I know that blue line stop, I know Old Orchard Road. It was magnificent the way the characters played off each other and something like a graduation to bring the family together brought a genuine and raw quality of what it means to grow up.  Do we ever really “grow up?” The movie was a delight to me from start to finish. I wanted to rewatch it the moment it ended. That is the hallmark of a masterpiece.

Permanent swarming scarred thoughts of you

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It’s like a needed break that I cannot take

Not a minute, let alone an hour

Will spare my brain, body, and mind

Of those ridiculous, unlikely, impossible, heartbreaking

Thoughts of you

These thoughts they come in clusters like unwelcome bugs

They swarm my mind

From behind and I’m cornered nothing I can do

Will dispel the thought of you

I avoid your name, the music that I love that you played

But reminds me instead of your soft gray sweater and

The strings of your guitar

I once thought together we’d go far

It’s obvious the solution is there isn’t one

Waiting on a star, NO,

Inside embedded in my head

A tattoo, a permanent scar

Comparable to a raging fire

That cannot be contained

Comparable to immeasurable amounts of pain

The electric impulses are frying my brain

Sending out messages I don’t want to read

Sending out a truth I don’t want to see

Sending an SOS that made it too late

Numb realization, bordering on obsession

I formed this crystal clear opinion of you

The one who steals my thoughts

The one who knows my secrets

The one who lies, and grows in a vast ocean life of lies

I despise the way you claim that

You are being honest with me, that

You are just telling the other woman

What SHE wants to hear

Now I realize that we grew so close as friends but

The after that’s, really never mores

And everything else misery in store

I just want to look at the sun

And not suddenly be stolen into a flashback

Of you playing “here comes the sun”

I just want to go to church and not worry I might see you

I want to do things like they used to be two years ago

Fearless, worry-less and you-less

I want to no longer be stuck with

Permanent swarming scarring thoughts of you

Of pain which there is no remedy, no amount of medicine, alcohol, or anything

Can dissolve the thoughts of you

Maybe for a moment but then the pain hits and I know I’m not sleeping tonight

Casting a Spell

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So give me a formula

A trick

A spell The cure from “You”

I want to take it!

Away from your hand

That power only you have over me

It’s one I can’t stand

I want to take it

And twist it and turn it

Take it deep in the woods and burn it

I want to stop feeding your powers

But this is a double ended sword

The other end is your powers

Your purple pixie dust

That activates when our eyes meet

It’s the best pleasure in my life

And the worst torment at the same time

A paradox – that’s your true power

You have my in rapture one moment

Then captured by tears the next

Unable to breath, swallow, or move.

I want to take it, shatter and break it THERE

Now, It commands me no more.

Permanent swarming scarring thoughts of you –

They’re gone.

Ode to Lonely Nights

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Oh, lonely Nights

The stars are dimly shining

I lay writing

Hoping one day

I won’t be so lonely

And that I could read this poem

To someone besides you

I have a feeling it will never happen, true

As the cloud that masks the sun

Or the firm looks of okay that masks a breakdown of self

Oh, Lonely nights when my lover

If my lover breaks my heart

I will remember these lonely nights where I did start

At the beginning – square one

Before hypothetical heartbreak starts

But please lonely night end soon

I can spread staring, penetrating the moon

Lonely nights thank you for alone time

It may have been a bit too much

For now my body fears every touch

May have been a bit much

For now my body fears every touch

Get close, tug down shirt

Slowly back down before you get hurt

Lastly lonely nights

Although I am currently hateful

You make me grateful

For everything, faithful too.

Ode to Birdwatching

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To the downtown few people see

To a hawk almost catching a chipmunk

Ode to Bird Watching which I thought was literally watching birds migrate

Ode to learning about Oregon and Irish Twins from Kyle

Listening Arianna and Katrina Laugh

This is an Ode to being a witness to Ken ripping plants out root and all and eating everything!

Being sad and wondering what happened to Sam our fearless leader, and Kyle and Lily

Running across stones and sitting on the edge of the lake.

To Lupe’s face between two trees.

To Climbing the tree, adding one person at a time.

Seeing Yellow Finches and the Brown Creeper.

The Huge Deep Fish in the Waves.

To the boats and yachts the Sun hitting right at that time.

Measuring shoe sizes with Kyle,

To meeting professional bird watchers.

The sunflower mystery…

Lying underneath a little tree and

Being quiet.

Disgusting by garbage

Learning, listening

What’s this plant? What is that big tree?

Picking out my walking stick.

To tripping, sliding, snapping a tree branch.

Posing by the Lake and failing.

Katrina tired,

Ken in Solace. (A new wetland bedazzles him)

Trying to be quiet

Lupe posing me by the lake

We meet Zack, he fins us.

“Shit you guys are hard to find!”

What is that tower in Paris?

Ode to not building windmills in the middle of the lake

Thai food, mock duck, and Damian

Delicious smells

Wonderful conversations

Better company

Purple walls in the bathroom,

Someone else goes to see.

Exquisite little nook in the world, this restaurant.

What did you learn?

We go around in a chaotic fashion and share.

What a strange fortune…

My House Moves

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    My house moves to its own beat completely

    Quietly, quickly, orderly, neatly

    Its  turns and it drums

    As the curtains do waves

    The air conditioner

    Giving a wild display, a path it paves

    The way for the icemaker

    The sleeptaker

    The sound maker

    The insinuator of

    Click Click Clack

    My house moves to its own beat completely

    It grooves and moves a mystery

    It dances it prances

    Draws lances with nearby houses

    It lurks and jerks

    And ticks and tocks

    It bores and roars

    It laughs and it snores

    It squeaks just like a mouse

    And filled with life my full house

    Swells and propels joy

    With each little trinket and toy

    My house moves to a beat

    Its own completely

    Shrieking, come see

    What makes me tick

    Come meet me It invites it delights

    Excites you to the bone It gives you peace of mind

    It listens to you for long hours when you are on the phone

    Alone and it moans

    Its bark is worse than its bite,

    When a mess it’s not a pretty sight

    It has the ability to enchant you with books,

    Good looks, in every cranny and nook

    My house moves to a beat

    Completely its own

    It bubbles, has plenty of troubles

    But mostly it’s home