Posted in The Sunday Driver: Life in the Slow Lane

Lost

last evening
we walked toward a destination
knowing where we wanted to go
yet unsure how best to get there
following the gps
towards the setting sun

a boy fished from the shore
hoping for a catch
turning towards the sea
then back to watch his
family pack for home
after a long day
at the beach

children swam
in the dark waves
shouting laughing
mama leave me here
holding onto the joy of the water
until the last
minute

a couple asked if
i had lost a phone
held it up for me to see
wiped the sand away
to find they could
not unlock the screen

as it grew dark
the beach became deserted
a white heron stepped
out of the gloom
we wondered if we
should continue
the phone could no longer show us the way

we chose to go on
guided by the music and the lights
in the distance
walking barefoot
between the sand and the sea

laughter
chased away the doubts
and the brief shivers
of fear

later
after our refrescos
walking back on the dark road
she rescues a frog that had strayed from its hiding place in the grass to hop out into the traffic

in the unscripted
i am reminded again
of the opportunities for compassion
for joy and tastes of adventure
if i am watchful
for the signs
like this flashlight on my phone which i point towards the oncoming cars
so they know
we are here

Posted in Art and Photography

La Manera de la Hoja 64

Mas fotos de la Hoja en la playa de Luquillo, PR

Posted in Leaves on the Poet Tree (Poems)

La Playa

here where i walk
are many other prints
made by those who
were here before me

i am tired
my body still recovering
from what i left behind
my mind immersed in the angst of yesterday
i speak to the wind

an earlier visitor
has scribed words
of gratitude and comfort
in the sand
seen for a moment
until like the signs
of our passing
they are washed away
by the waves

soon my rantings cease
my questions are
captured and cast away
by the ocean wind

a pelican flies away
across the water

Posted in Leaves on the Poet Tree (Poems)

Heiwa Haiku 101

i stand on white sand~
gazing out at seas of green~
soft wind on my face

Posted in Finding Frost's Road: Encounters with the Culture

Love Your Anemones

It was going to be great vacation.

I had my own little room, stacks of books to read, and we were a 100 yards from North Myrtle Beach. North, as in way north, away from the crowded, crazy tourist trap to the south. There were even some private ponds on the property where my nephews and I could do some fishing. Dad had rented a golf cart to run around. We were settling in.

Then a nasty woman by the name of Bonnie decided she wanted to spoil our party. Bonnie, as in HURRICANE Bonnie. And an evacuation, as in a GOVERNOR-ordered EMERGENCY evacuation. So much for vacation.

We did salvage some of it in Gatlinburg, but it wasn’t the beach.

That was 9 years ago.

And I hadn’t been back to the beach since.

Until this year.

Sunrise

The weather was perfect.

Beach Chair

The beach was nice.

Sunrise2

So was the ocean.

Family at Sonic

It was great to be with family.

Waiting for the Sun

The Outer Banks are wonderful this time of year.

Footprints

And best of all I could choose when I was going to evacuate.

(Originally published on SlowMover October12,2007 – reprinted here as we recover from the most recent Bonnie)

Posted in Finding Frost's Road: Encounters with the Culture

Island

Dedicated to my sisters everywhere.

island-by-kmls

I lay awake in the night, waiting.

We had talked often of this night and our love. Yesterday had been the one year anniversary of our unfortunate encounter with this place when an angry and raging sea had vomited us up onto a lonely island. The wreckage that came with us and washed up in the following days convinced us that we were indeed alone. We were too weak to bury the corpses and watched as Nature went her constant, unerring way and picked the bones meticulously clean. I marveled at her apparent lack of concern for our fate, then realized that I had done the same with regards to her in the past.

At least we had each other. The thought of someone close by kept the panic of never seeing home again from rising too high and choking the sanity from our brains. We were indeed alone, but we were alone together.

The wind and the sun toughened us; browned our skin and bleached our hair, but we refused to become barbarians. We prided ourselves in the two huts we had constructed side by side amidst the palms with wreckage, palm fronds, and whatever else we could find. We laughed at their strange, ungainly appearance at times, but they were dry and represented home for us here. We surrounded ourselves with as many things as we could make and find that reminded us of our lives before and we spent hours daydreaming together about that far away place called Civilization.

I joked often about turning our little island into a resort and pointed out to Maria where the women could lay out on the beach with their oily bodies and smooth legs glistening in the tropical sun. She never showed much enthusiasm for my imaginary resort or women and chose rather to focus on her family, life, and us. I talked of Jean and the kids too, but the dream of the resort was less painful to think about.

We had chosen to live separately out of respect for our families in the event of a quick rescue. We were pleased with our self-discipline, and yet, as the days slipped by, the hope of rescue diminished to a dull throb and love began to grow and take its place. We did not discard the bands of gold on our fingers and struggled often with our dilemma. In this time of death and despair, something had chosen to blossom within each of us. We had accepted the emergence of our love as we had accepted our fate here and rose to meet the challenge.

A soft step on the beach behind me roused me from my musings and I turned to see Maria coming down from the huts. Her hair shimmered in the moonlight and fell in golden hue around her shoulders. I raised myself to one elbow as she knelt beside me and I read her desire in her eyes and in the smell of her hair as it brushed my face. Then she was in my arms. I kissed her eyes, the curve of her neck; my lips couriers of my love and desire for her.

Tenderly, I placed my hand beneath her skirt and began to caress her leg, moving my fingers slowly up her thigh. She shuddered beneath me, in desire I thought, and I entered her.  We moved together, our bodies writhing, moaning in ecstasy. Warmth exploded from me and I swam in the sea of pleasure. I held her thus for awhile, basking in the glow of her thighs wrapped tight around me.

Maria trembled again and I opened my eyes to hers. She turned quickly away, but I had seen. I turned her face towards me, saw the tears glistening there, the speck of blood on her lip where she had bitten it in pain. Puzzled, I pulled her legs from around me and found them sticky and wet. Her legs were covered with cuts from the ankle to the thigh, ugly streaks of scarlet which dripped tiny drops of her blood. She read the question in my eyes.

“I used a piece of glass that I found on the beach,” she said. “I wanted my legs to be smooth for you.”

In a flash, I saw the resort in my mind’s eye, the rows upon rows of luscious flesh stretched out across the beach. Then the picture shattered before me in awful misery and the pieces fell down around me like Maria’s silent tears. Mine joined hers and as we wept, the moon disappeared behind dark clouds and it began to rain. We stayed huddled together on the beach and let the water wash over our bodies, two lovers lying broken on a deserted island in the sea.

Written 3/15/90 (Edited: 11/15/93)