die a King in your fantasy.

I don’t want to be a burden

I just wanna sit here and read.

So if that’s ok

then the band can play

I’ll look up a couple times to see.

Everyone who’s silently cursing

checking out the latest feed.

There’s someone I knew

from another life

I look away so they don’t notice me.

It’s a living, a hard living

the barista says while pouring cream

a couple swirls and a twist

now there’s a swan swimming in my drink.

Guess I never really felt like drowning

I just swam in this misery.

I guess I can’t complain

I made my bed

skipped my prayers

now I’m counting sheep.

Guess I never really felt like dying

just romanticized how life could be

it’s like a game of chess

you protect the Queen

and die a King in your fantasy.

Cause it’s a living, a hard living

it could be worse is a common phrase

a couple riffs then applause

now the band packs their noise and leaves.

If I have to take a vow of silence

plead the fifth in double time.

With all due respect

I think I must confess

I cracked up like a nursery rhyme.

Still I can’t sing that song without crying

so whatever shall be shall be.

I guess the world’s the same

rinse repeat complain

the punch line never hit with me.

So if you’re living, a hard living

here’s raising this glass to you

and if you’re worried, don’t worry

there’s bound to be an answer soon.

Cause baby I don’t wanna be a burden

I just want to write my poetry.

Because I’m not a rock

or an island but

ain’t that the only way to be free.

alone and warm and aware

The sun is warm on my face

grey shadow upon wood grain

stuck somewhere between

sympathy and harmony

with the universe

and where a headache should be

there is none

and where a heart should be

there is stone

and where I should be

there is shadow

alone and warm and aware

cast too across wood grain with

the closing doors of another work shift.

a beautiful life.

At the end of this life

if you can say

I did some things

I really, really enjoyed

and helped some people

along the way

all the while

laboring loves labyrinth

then that

I’d say

is a beautiful life.

getting out of bed

However you get up and out of bed

or off the sidewalk

however you dig yourself

out of the grave is commendable.

And if you choose nothing

that too is just as valid

as choosing something.

I see far too many people

driving themselves mad

with work and love

and money and power

and fitness and greed and guilt

trying to fit into some sort of

idea they’re bred to believe

will fix them when really it won’t.

They don’t need to be fixed

or loved or loathed or accepted.

They just need to listen.

Listen to the air.

Listen to the ice crack when hot water hits.

Listen to the sea spray.

But I know nothing really.

All I know is what I see and what I see

is beautiful and diseased and delicate

like a rose petal or a dandelion flower

plucked from the earth by a child

in the outfield of a baseball diamond

wanting nothing more than to drift away

with the seeds he’s blown to anywhere else.

However getting out of bed

or the sidewalk or gutter is the first step

and the rest well, the rest is just —

up to you I guess.

affliction or redemption

What’ll it be

said the man

on the stand

to the reflection

looking very grim

sunken eyes

of redemption

come on come on

choose our next addiction

this time though

be aware

aware of my remission

I know I know

what fun is there in that

hell why don’t we find out

it’s either or perhaps

I’ve given you the right

that now I’m taking back

the will to fight the urge

I know that’s what I lack

so taking down the mirror

with no one staring back

the man poured the reflection

with ice into his glass

he calmly took a sip

one more than another

and when the glass was empty

to him it did not bother

just one more

thought the man

understanding his reflection

it’s up to you to choose

affliction or redemption.

yours to keep.

There’s hope out there in the sunshine

and there’s hope in here in the darkness

I’m sure of it, you know

it’s kind of like early in the morning

when fog hangs around mountaintops

there’s a peak up there

you can’t see it but it’s there

so you climb farther and

farther than you ever imagined

now close your eyes and breathe

and in the darkness of the mind

breathe in all your worries

all the war that is inside

then breathe out and feel

one moments relief

that there is yours

that there is hope

that there is always yours to keep.

a beacon

There must be something better

than living in this state

like a free floating feather

I must be on my way

it just took me some time

like Jenny on the run

through city lights, a heroine

to forest I have come

to recognize the stars

on a boat far out at sea

floating through the sky

my legs have taken leave,

and behind all of the people

I’ve passed along the way

is a shining light, a ray of hope

a beacon to this day.