Categories
Education Haiku parenting Poems Poetry

Youths!

It’s never enough

You can work – or stay at home

You can have game nights

And family dinner

You can take an interest

Or give them some space

But no matter what

To a teenager…

It’s never enough

Categories
family Haiku Poems Poetry

Deck Parties

Mild, summer evenings

Bring bubbles of joy and chaos

That float like pink clouds

Across dying grass

In a rush we talk over

One another

Not because we’re not listening

But because we’re trying

To steal extra minutes

From a waning day

Who’s jewel bright light filters through fluttering green leaves

“Hurry,” it whispers. “The day will soon sleep.”

So we spill our stories

Incomplete as the broken light

Their shards reflecting our smiles.

Categories
family Haiku Poems Poetry

Inevitable

Inevitable.

A word we use

And we overuse

Inevitable

We say; knowing that our friend

(Who’s boyfriend we don’t like, by the way)

Had a stormy break up

It’s never surprising

It’s inevitable

When a perfect movie star

Gives birth to the most perfect baby

Who’s perfect silver spoon lands them

Directly in trouble…

and it’s filmed.

Inevitable.

When the earth makes another trip around the sun

And the morning stretches and the night yawns

And it happens again

And again

Until you’ve seen 10,000 new days.

Except. It’s not. Inevitable

That the clouds will fray at the edges with that shade of pink blush from your mothers fake leather make-up bag

That same shade you’d smear on your finger and pat on your cheek until you’d made a hole in the powder.

And is now inexpertly lighting up the western sky with the same bright intensity as a two year old in her mother’s

Cheap fake leather make-up bag

It’s not inevitable

That the stars will look like that Pearl necklace of your grandmas that night in eighth grade some boy named…

Brandon

Kisses your cheek during the firework show at a theme park.

No.

Because it is not.

Inevitable.

Categories
Haiku Poetry Teaching

Rehearsal

Plunking piano

A chiffon haze fills the room

Muscles stretch and tense

I rise on my toes

A ballerina wannabe

Watching professionals

Categories
Current Events Haiku Health Care Poetry

800,000

And rising

800,000

The number of people lost

In the pandemic

Double World War Two

Almost triple World War One

These are civilians

Selfishness led here

American pride and greed

Is this “real” freedom?

We are held captive

Capitalism brought down

Because a virus

And…of course…because

Some refuse to help others

…get vaccinated.

Categories
Uncategorized

Culture of Transaction

I can’t imagine that you don’t know by now, but Biden has called on states to offer a $100 incentive for people who get a covid vaccine. A number of states are offering incentives (you should click that link and check out what Hawaii is doing, it’s amazing), including $100 for getting the first shot.

I want to be clear, I am not against this. Whatever we need to do to get people vaccinated must be done. However, as more states start offering incentives, or start considering incentives to get their residents vaccinated, it has made me think about a few things.

At heart, in the United States we have a “pull yourself up by your bootstraps” kind of culture. It’s not “help your community” it’s “help yourself.” I call this Toxic Individuality, and it’s something that’s irked me for a long time, and something I’ve brought up in multiple blog posts.

In America, there’s no reward for community.

I believe that American culture sees no reward in a healthy community. Our culture is extremely transactional on an individual level. “I will do this because it helps me. I will vote this way because it helps me.” Not, “I will do this because it helps the community.”

Even church is a transactional experience. People do good or live by a moral code in exchange for personal spiritual salvation, not necessarily because it’s what is good for the health of the cities our country they live in.

Ok…so what?

Right now our communities, our schools, our churches, and our families are in the middle of a pandemic. That pandemic is not waning or getting easier, rather it is infiltrating more of our country, making us more divisive and angry. The past year and a half has made it very clear that the cult of toxic individuality and our culture of transaction is…well…literally killing us.

What we need is a radical change of thinking. Rather than think, “If I get this vaccine, I will get $100”, we need to think “If I get this vaccine, a child that I have never met and do not know may not end up in the ICU.”

I know, it’s not as glamorous. And I KNOW, the $100 and other incentives are very useful for a lot of people. Again, I am not against them.

But $100 won’t be enough to get us out of the mess we are in. We have to start considering the health of our community as the end game. It is not you against the world, it’s all of us against a virus. That virus..it’s killing us, it’s leaving lasting impacts on our economy, our children, our future…it’s time to stop pulling yourself up by your own bootstraps, and instead help out your neighbor. Do it for no reason. Do it anonymously.

The reward is a better future for everyone – not just for the individual.