Daily Prompt: Facade

via Daily Prompt: Facade



We sit beside each other at the game. The parents know we cheer for number 32.

We interact with family online and in life. The siblings accept the plastic smiles.

We drive, we cook, we wash the dog. The neighbors see us come and go.

We have naked ring fingers and ties to stories and local spots that diamonds haven’t cut.

We open doors, we say hellos, we are courteous and kind. The children feel the love.

We ache, we pivot, we waffle, we dance. We take stock of the passing of time.

We sit in silence, sleep in grind, wake to chests opened and pained.

We laugh, we cry, we do our time. Our friends know how to walk the line.


There’s a way to do this right. And there’s a way to do this wrong. And then there is doing the best we can. 

#for Reticent Mental Property. Participation in Word Prompts Sept 29, 2016.




Daily Prompt: Silence

via Daily Prompt: Silence


Still my head in the clanging of the night, the time when darkness amplifies the messes of a life

hard on ourselves, we shush the racket, we roll, we toss, we justify it

A reason for the clamor banging inside our skull; there are a hundred

the list makers tally one two three

the naysayers find, then deny, the pattern

the lost find crumbs in the replay- the words, the moves, the comebacks missed

Jaws clenched, shoulders shrugged, the toss, the turn, the ujjayi

This life

and where it is taking you, in this one night-

relived, revised, reviled-

Breathe through,

settle a silence in palms open,

and cradle forgiveness beyond admonition,

allow your gentled, paused and playful spirit

to hold abundant grace and mercy for your reflections.


She is certainly stilled;  yet crossed leg with foot twitching, gives her silence a war.

#for Reticent Mental Property. Participating in Daily Prompts. Sept. 20, 2016


Daily Prompt: Learning

via Daily Prompt: Learning

Perhaps we are trying too hard to heal ourselves.

Why can’t we hold out our heads like we do our hands, let our minds reach out, caress all the fears into a deep slumber, tenderly wrap the injured plans and broken promises in bandages, a soft kiss on top and all better…


The poker game is over.

The dealer, cuts, holds the halves, taps the stray bottoms to the table, once twice, thrice, bends the unwilling, thumb inserted just so, releasing the tension on the halves,  letting them feather together, layering a card from the left, from the right, from the left from the right into one, once again.

Your left is under me, over, me, piled on top of me.

I am searching for trump, watching for the bower, short one for a royal flush.

The dealer hasn’t been kind.  There’s no Ace in the blind. The goddamn Joker has been laid. Again.


She prefers to play partners. She holds the cards. She calls the suit. She hates the game. 

# for Reticent Mental Property. Daily Prompt participant. August 23, 2016

Daily Prompt: Jeopardize

via Daily Prompt: Jeopardize


There’s a reason we can’t look away when we are looking for answers. We seek signs where none exist. We seek direction from those who were once lost. There’s always someone who has it better, and worse.


“Go placidly amid the noise and the haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence. As far as possible, without surrender, be on good terms with all persons.

Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even to the dull and the ignorant; they too have their story.

Avoid loud and aggressive persons; they are vexatious to the spirit. If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain or bitter, for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.

Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans. Keep interested in your own career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.

Exercise caution in your business affairs, for the world is full of trickery. But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals, and everywhere life is full of heroism.

Be yourself. Especially, do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass.

Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth.

Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings. Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.

Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here.

And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should. Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be.

And whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life, keep peace in your soul. With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.

Max Ehrmann, “Desiderata“.[1]


Can’t look away from the train wreck if we are on board.

#for Reticent Mental Property. Images courtesy of the web. Daily Prompt participant. August 22, 2016.


Daily Prompt: Confused

via Daily Prompt: Confused


Remember that walk down to the city from the resort on the back road to the club in Playa when the air held a combination of eucalyptus and rotting fruit?

When we came home I couldn’t place it. It found me at the office, followed me sometimes in ceremonies and circumstances where tropical heat and a bass beat should not be interfering with the business of earning a living.

After vacation, my colleague walks by leaving a lingering fragrance. In an instant, a shot of dark streets and laughter swirls into my face as her body passes mine. There’s the leather of the eight chairs pushed close to the polished wood of the conference room table. There’s fluorescent light and the sound of paperwork and progress.

Yet her presence brings sharp awareness of wet sidewalks, the dip and weave of couples shuffling shoulder to shoulder to take over the dance floor,  bodies shiny with exertion, their persons brushing each other, at hip, and hand and mouth.

I rest my pen on the page, lift it, set it, lift the tip to hold my confusion in the this sliver of space between the nib and the connection to the whitespace, searching for the reason I’m filling with nightclub energy when I am positioned to be serious and savvy and settled.


In your head, there’s a place that holds the scent memories of places, persons, fears. Steel yourself for the ones that carry your regrets and seek your truest self in all the rest. 

#for Reticent Mental Property. Participating in Daily Prompts. Daily Prompts participant. August 15, 2016

Daily Prompt: Complicated

via Daily Prompt: Complicated


There’s the box and there’s the way mom makes them. It’s not complicated.

There’s pour into a bowl and carry over to the faucet for some water and there’s measure, and add, and whip and fold. Okay, there’s a way to do things; it’s a little complicated.

There’s the add egg, add oil choice and there’s farm fresh, pulled- with a nervous giggle and the smell of muddy straw and musty and crusted roosts- from under the laying hens at Collette and Andy’s. The warmth and kindness of neighbors is not complicated.

There’s a bowl and a spoon and then there’s three bowls, the beaters and the coconut oil. Yes there’s some mess in the making, but it’s the care-taking, solid, simple, never wavering constant of tackling the complicated. It’s the request from the little boy who misses his mom after a week in the Northwoods with his Grandparents,”I just want your waffles, Mom.”


There’s living in the box. And there’s the stepping out of it. It’s crazy complicated. But. It’s delicious.

#Reticent Mental Property. Images courtesy of the web. Daily Prompt participant August 14, 2016






Daily Prompt: Surface

via Daily Prompt: Surface


annboatfeetThe boat is a late 80’s model Chris Craft beauty. She’s got a 350, 8 cylinder GM OMC under the cover and they don’t make them like this anymore. Tan with red and black seats, we get grandfathered in to carry twelve across the water.

And we carry.

Took it up to 50 last Saturday morning,  cut through the glass of the water, broke the surface with the bow raised,  just to fly, to leave the world behind for a little while, engine opened up with a throaty laugh at the shore, a cry into the dawn that asks for applause rather than pity.

The boat has all the friends on the lake. She is the head-turner. Parked on the lift or anchored into the sandbar the stares are not for my bikini-clad self. The appreciation for the simplicity of power, for the care and keeping of an aged machine, the subtle value of going old-school, whatever it is, the draw to the boat brings an energy exchange that sparks conversation and brings waves of recognition.


We are known. We are seen. We are what others are not. And this is the way we like it. 

#for Reticent Mental Property. Daily Prompt participant. August 12, 2016