Thursday, June 16, 2011


I remember the first time that I realized my Father was growing old. It was at my Aunt’s funeral. My Dad’s brother’s wife. Standing next to him it hit me how small he looked. How thin he looked. Standing there talking with friends, his voice was still that strong baritone I grew up with. The one that, on more than one occasion when we kids wouldn’t settle down at bedtime, would boom a “Knock it off” up the stairs. Immediately silencing both the cowboys and the indians. Standing there this night though, his suit looked too big. His neck didn’t fill out the collar of his shirt like it used to. And I remember thinking...Hold on here...Wait a minute...I’m not ready for this. You “da” man. I’m not ready to be “da” man yet. Then he slipped his arm in mine. A body growing old needing just a little support. It was then I realized my Father was growing old. And all those years of taking care of us had taken its toll. I held his arm a little tighter. It was time to start taking care of him.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

What if...

What if there is no heaven, no spiritual afterlife, no freeing of the soul from its physical body to seek another plane of existence? What if when you draw your last breath and your heart beats its last…it truly is over? You would feel no sorrow because you wouldn’t feel at all. There would be no guilt over anything done or not done. There would be no regrets, no what ifs, no what might have beens, no disappointments lingering in your soul…because you wouldn’t have one. You…would be over. You would never know that you ever existed. To you it wouldn’t matter how richly or poorly you felt you lived your life or how you treated people or how people treated you because you…no longer exist. There would be no memories, no thoughts to look back fondly on, no judgement…no nothing. Your spirit and its amazing beauty, wonder, curiosity and capability to love, hate, hurt and heal…would stop with that last breath and beat. The end.
I find that odd. I can’t quite get my hands around the thought that a being capable of creating music…would not go on…somehow…somewhere.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

To a gentle soul

I’ve seen you there every day as I drive by that place along the side of road. That place just at the edge of the woods next to the pond. A new snow softly covers your resting place this morning though. I wonder if anyone else knows you’re there. Traffic flows, lives are led and days go by, time goes on, but at the edge of the woods, next to the pond lies a gentle soul at final rest. A gentle soul who will no longer walk the woods in perfect silence or leap the streams in perfect grace or wake to morning in perfect peace. A gentle soul lying still beneath new fallen snow. I wonder if anyone else knows you’re there. Come Spring, when the snow is gone there’ll be no trace of you, but I’ll know that there is a place along the road…at the edge of the woods…by the pond…where a gentle soul once lay. Sacred ground.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Painful Decisions

“Tough choices I’m telling you, hard choices. We have to make some painful decisions here,” the congressman said, as the cameras rolled and he picked a speck of lint off his $2000.00 lapel. “Government spending is out of control and we’re going to stop it right now. And we’re going to start with those pesky entitlements…if you know what I mean. All that money the government is spending on old people, kids and veterans. We can get this deficit under control if we just cut out a lot that spending the government is doing on health care and Social Security for those old folks. We’ll save a ton if we chop the money spent on food stamps and hot lunch programs. And those unemployment insurance extensions…hey…need I say more? Tough choices I’m telling you, hard choices. We have to make some painful decisions here. Sure, some are going to have to choose between buying food or making their house payment…medicine or gas to get to work…the bill for heat or the bill for electricity. Hard choices…painful decisions, but America you are not alone. We all have to make sacrifices. We all have to share in the suffering. I’m right there with you. My three-week vacation in Hawaii is a thing of the past. Two weeks in Cancun will just have to do.”

Monday, January 3, 2011

Christmas Past

Well…Christmas time is over this year. All the outside decorations are looking a little windblown and tattered. The bows along the fence are all a little crooked and the garland is sagging a bit. And a few of the twinkling lights don't seem to have any twinks left this year. As I walk past the tree I can hear the sound of dry needles tinkling as they dance on decorations while heading to the floor. It's time to once again wrap baby Jesus up in tissue paper along with Mary, Joseph, three sheep, two camels, a donkey and two of the three wise men we have left in this old nativity scene and put them in the box marked living room. All the Santas and Snowmen come off the mantle and the last of the pistachios is gone. I'll vacuum up the fallen needles and fill the house one last time the smell of Christmas tree. It's time to move into this New Year and see what it holds. It's time to put the magic away for a while…but only for a while. See, it's only 11 1/2 months until Christmas.