Jamaica

I knew the moment you smiled at me
We locked eyes
And I returned your smile shyly
I’d see you again

You come back the next day
I lay on your table
Melting under your warm touch
You slowly undress
Caress and tease
I loll in the cool Jamaican breeze
You slip off my pants
Stroke my thighs
Invite me to dance
To the hum of the tides
In your personal yoga retreat
Massage therapy

I sneak out like a rebellious adolescent
Climbing the fence at night
Walk the wooden plank into your world
I don’t know where I am
I shouldn’t be here

You guide me through my fears
Gently grabbing my hand
We make love in your gym
A weight bench
A massage table
A parrot watching us with disapproval

You light up a joint
I lay basked in fluorescent nakedness
A foreigners bliss
A Jamaican fling
An accent so thick
I can’t understand a thing
A connection of the eyes
The smile is inviting

Your beautiful skin enticing
I caress your wounds
Unravel your stories
Your bullet holes and glories
Explore your past
Knowing this will not last
I make notes on your skin
Remembering
Etching into my story
Transient passion
Glorious sin

You drive me home at dawn
I pretend like I haven’t gone
Sneak in smiling
At my secret
The yoga retreat carries on
Yet your name creeps into my song
My experience

I’m in Jamaica for one more night
But I’ll remember that massage
For the rest of my life

Freedom

What is it to be free
Is it to think independently
To have lots of money
Buy anything you want
Own property
Be on the right side of the red line
To have status and credibility

Do we get it when we are wealthy
Or when we learn to set boundaries
Maybe it’s not blaming others
Taking personal responsibility
Over our lives
Or does it have to do with being happy
Certainly it’s not being right
It seems quiet hard to define

Is it the ability to leave the country
To sit quietly
And turn off the mind
Freedom of press
Openness to express
Our true selves
Not being confined

Is freedom movement
To exercise your ability
Move about the world freely
To seek whatever you want to find

Is it to make your own decisions
Perhaps it’s concerned with our rights
To speak and act
Think and move forward
Without looking back

Perhaps it means something different for everyone
A fluid state
A dance, an escape
From the system
That tells us what to do and think
Absence of foriegn control
The corrupt government
Pushing us to the brink
Of our humanity

Perhaps there’s levels of freedom
To be free mentally
Overcome your childhood
Trauma of your family
To be free physically
And have a healthy body
Participate in society

Free your mind
But how will we know when we find
We can have it and lose it a thousand times
To have freedom is to have power,
But what kind?

Freedom
Maybe it’s an instant feeling
Like flying
Or perhaps it’s gradual
Like a deep sigh after a long day
Simply just breathing
Allowing things to unfold
Knowing what to do or say
Without being told

We all seem to want freedom
But we don’t know how to find it
We can try to detach and let go
Yet we are still alive
We have wants and needs
To thrive and survive

We are so influenced by our society
This culture, this state
This idea of being free
Perhaps to talk about freedom is hypocrisy

Who made this word
This elusive idea
And what did they want it to be
How will we know
When we are free?

Maputo

I sit on the ledge
Waves lap at my feet
I’m content, yet not present
You’re always on my mind
So many things I’m searching for
I have yet to find

Tears fall for the things I want
A feeling that will never stay
I don’t believe in God
Otherwise I would pray
For you

I wonder where you are
I know I’m so far away
But I still care
More for you, than you care
For yourself right now

You are not well

I don’t know how to tell you
You need help
Yet you will not help yourself
There’s nothing I can do
But to care for myself

So I sit here
Wipe away my tears
Ten minutes feels like years
Smile in response to stares
Dodge potholes, centipedes
Try to fulfill all my needs
In a foreign place
I have so much space
So much time

I want to leave
But I don’t know where to go
Or how I’m supposed to know
Where to be

So the cool ocean breeze
Soothes me
And I make peace
With my tears
My fears of losing you
For I have so much to do

And so little control
I send my wish
Out to the sea
And breathe deeply
I keep walking
In Maputo
Eventually,
I’ll know where to go

The Ocean At Night

The ocean at night
Is mysterious
A dark lover
That holds all the secrets

I know you are there
But I cannot see you
Waves roll in from the darkness
Inviting me in rhythmic motion

The ocean at night is intimate
I walk along the edge
Of a cool saline sadness
Dancing with the water

Daring it to come closer
Playing with the unknown
Black expanse
In front of me

There is no end
To the ocean at night
It’s solidute is inviting
I ask my questions to the moon
Negotiate with the shadows
I’m still trying to figure out where I’m going

The moonlit tides
Soothe me
They tell me it will all be okay
Wispy clouds say
Keep going

The sky and water merge
In the dark
And I feel at ease
In my secret world
Where only I belong

The waves blow my troubles away
The salty breeze sets me free
I dance in the darkness
But you can’t see me

I sink deep into the chilly sand
Into the infinite
Stars and sea
Laid out before me

I trust the ocean at night
The invisible hum
A soothing lullaby
Asking me not to forget
That there’s a plan
I just don’t know what it is yet

Dark waters are illuminated
The moon smiles as if to say
You’ll see
Follow my soft light
I won’t lead you astray

Wilderness

I walk amongst the ruins
The visible passage of time
Life displayed outside
And I think about mine

Nature dominates all that we create
We think we are in control
Yet the gnarled branches overtake
The wild chaos determines our fate
We plant the seeds and must surrender
To the overgrown brush and weeds
Rough and rugged, somehow tender

Amongst tall grass and flowers
Is how I pass the hours
There is no set path
Each way is correct
All the winding trails connect

Weeds softly caress
Doing their best
Flies buzz around me
Also looking for a place to be

I shake off webs that tingle
I dance with the flowers and mingle
Birds and bugs sing to me
Reminding me all I have to do is see
Beauty

Appreciate what is
Everything around me lives
Life gives life
Forget your worry and pain
Time will pass all the same

Enjoy the moments where you find
Quiet in your mind
And wilderness in your soul
The wind gently pulls
Me closer

Life takes it’s toll
But the rivers wash over
My troubles
And I become whole
For a moment

I find bliss
In the wilderness

Decisions

How to make the right decision
And is there a right one
If I choose one path, do I forfeit another
I’ve made my choice but I still wonder
What I should have done

Making choices is hard
I try to go with the flow
But even after I decide
It’s hard to know
What I should have chose

I sit here and ponder
Where I’m supposed to be
What path should I have followed
Sometimes I wish I was not here
But I’m waiting for the Universe to lead me
How long do I wait
Do I follow or choose my fate

I accept my consequences
I choose my actions
Yet I question myself
Every time I become uncomfortable
I don’t accept my reactions
To uncertainty
Despite my precaution
There’s no guarantee
That I’ve made the right decision

For whatever is not happening
I cannot find
It’s not real
Only transpiring in my mind
Yet I question everything
Drive myself crazy
Filling my time
What if I miss what’s right for me?
Make the wrong decision
I try to re-evaluate
Adjust my position

For I always have another choice
I am not stuck
Despite my feelings
My apparent luck
The things that don’t go my way
I always have a voice
I can choose my path anytime
Shift and realign

Perhaps the best I can do is think less
Let go and try to not make a mess
I don’t know what’s supposed to be
What’s right for you or me
For there’s so little I can control
I can’t comprehend or pretend
To understand the flow
Life is a practice of letting go

Release

I release my deepest desires
Through my eyes
I still don’t have an answer
I still don’t know why
Must I always fill up my time
For it isn’t until I have space
That I can arrange and place
My feelings
My dreams unrealized
Quiet my mind

I’m a relationship with the Sun
I found the one
It’s bright and yellow
A handsome fellow
The trees whisper
Don’t be afraid
For I can’t listen
Until I’m silent
Until all the feelings have been flushed away
The pain sways with the breeze
I stomp my frustrations out
On the crunchy leaves
Nature restores my energy
Only then can I say
To the blue sky, the sun, the trees
I trust you

I trust you and I don’t understand
I had so many things planned
That didn’t happen
That I wanted to happen
I made demands
The Universe laughs gently
And they don’t land
I throw tantrums
But it’s all bigger than me
I can’t possibly see
Still I make more plans
It just happens
Like breathing
So easily

It’s not until I leave that I can see
My imagined plans and designs
And how it’s not aligned
It somehow makes sense in my mind
Yet I get so intertwined
That I can’t find the answers
Until I step away
My perspective changes
Life rearranges
My place looks different from far away
I can’t see myself fully in the space I usually stay

I feel lost I say to the trees
And they look back at me
You’re not lost, you just can’t see
I come back with fresh eyes
And realize
There are no answers
I must keep walking
Things will materialize
You’re not stuck
You just don’t know where you’re going
It will all unfold
Try not to hold
So tightly

Release your pain to me
I can take it
Say the leaves
Don’t do anything
Listen to me sing
All you have to do is breathe
The sun will never leave
Even when you can’t see
It’s just waiting patiently
Stay for awhile
I’ll make you smile
Trust me

Masks

I must wear it when I enter
But not when I sit down
Don’t you think particles can get around
This invisible barrier
As long as it makes you feel better

It’s like sitting in the non-smoking section
Thinking that you won’t be affected
By what’s already in the air
Smoke travels
It’s an enclosed space
Maybe we don’t care about logic anymore
We eat snacks just the same
Sitting on the plane
Removing our masks next to each other
But our germs better remain
In their places
For the few moments we are exposed
A thin piece of cloth will save us
Better keep it
Imposed on our faces

We can’t exist in a room
Without covering our face
We now prefer to Zoom
Only communicate with your eyes
Can’t smile at babies
Or attractive guys
Don’t sneeze or breathe on me
God forbid you cough in public
You’d better not go
Any time you feel remotely sick

Some even mask alone
In their car
Talking on the phone
Running down the street
Breathing
Threw a filter
You’d better hide
We’re not even safe outside
Still you must comply
But are we safe anywhere?

We just need rules
Mask mandates
Enforced, political tools
To control us
Make us feel like we’re doing something
We’re definitely winning
Virtue signaling
Put your mask on
We’re still going strong
Yet we’ve known all along
We need to see each other

Letting Go / Smashed Avocado

I threw the salsa across the room
Smashed an avocado on the floor
Exploded a seltzer on the refrigerator door
I don’t understand what to do
And I don’t know what’s in store
For me
I can’t see a way through
So I take it out on my food
My anger falls on the groceries
On my clean white walls
After all
I can always get more

But my anger is just fear
I’m afraid of not getting what I want
The only one who can see
My tantrum is my apartment
My secrets are reflected in the windows
I cannot hide from what’s inside
It comes out eventually

Staring at the chunks of tomato on the ground
I feel heavy and still haven’t found
An answer
I turn it over again and again
My frustration bubbles up
And spills out all over my kitchen
It feels like I can’t win
Judge me all you want
But throwing food is not a sin

Smeared avocado on the hard wood
Creamy green
Laughs at me
My irrational actions
Immaturity

Wasted groceries
Money can’t buy me what I want
My smashed food
Destroyed unnecessary
Puddles reflect my unmet needs
Unsatisfactory

So easy to make a mess
Takes so little time
But cleaning up is a procees
Picking up the pieces is
Unglamorous
I won’t share my un-success
I’m embarrassed by my regress
By my silly actions
My tainted floor
Unrealized passions
I always want more

But somehow I feel better
Pressure released
Broken glass
Dreams smashed
This feeling will pass
Nothing lasts
I let my mess sit for awhile
Maybe the universe will see
And smile favourably, take pity

I still bargain with something I don’t believe in
Momentarily
Looking for a reason
Letting go is not easy

Maybe we all take it out on something else
Other people, driving, food, exercise
We are all trying to get by
Do whatever helps
You deal and survive
With life

Maybe letting go is like a smashed avocado
Guacamole on the floor
I don’t know what this struggle is for
It feels like everything is falling apart
Perhaps it’s a new start
My expectations explode and resettle
And then I explore
Something better

Adults

When do I become an adult
And if I become one
Do I stay that way?

Is it a state of mind
Like being high
That I can slip in and out of
When it wears off
Go back to my childish ways

And then do I make a decision
To be an adult again
I do my laundry and pay my bills
It’s a fluid motion, a negotiation
Perhaps it happens at a certain age
When I have children, get married
Or reach a certain stage
I know many people who own a house
Have pets and a spouse
But certainly have not figured it out
Maybe it’s when I can rent a car
Vote, smoke, and go to a bar

Maybe no one is an adult
It’s just a made-up idea
A word we play with
Trying to be something that we’re not
Do I become an adult when I have responsibility
Show up to work, participate in society
And give up adulting when
I do drugs and smoke pot
But it’s okay for adults to gamble
Get drunk, argue with kids on the internet
I guess we’re not done growing yet

What does it mean to be fully grown
Developed
Does it mean that I own property
Save money and achieve financial security
Or does it just have to do with my body?
What about those that never grow fully
Must I be fully grown mentally, emotionally?

And do I stay there permanently
This state of being grown
I looked it up in the dictionary
But I still don’t know

Who made the rules about being an adult
Perhaps it’s emotional maturity
When I do something wrong
I admit It is my fault
The ability to communicate appropriately
Or maybe it’s a declaration
A decision we make arbitrarily

I’m an adult when I say I’m one
For we are never done
Growing, evolving
No matter the age
Maybe I can be an adult at any stage

Or perhaps I became one and I didn’t even know
It happened when I wasn’t looking
Through my life experience
My highs and lows
Day to day
My actions will show
If I’m adulting

As I move through time
The more I find
That no one really knows
What they are doing

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