Tales From The Heart: Dad

Nova Scotia, July 2017

Of great character
Lovely men earn the prizes
Strong and gentle wins

Cowards wilt in their presence
Fight or flight; laugh while they run

Haiku / Tanka

 

I’ve written a few times about the days of my childhood, when my mother was alone or alone within the presence of an abusive man who tormented her and her children. I’ve even written a bit about that broken man. Yet, I’ve never been able to really put down a word of meaning about the man who would ultimately become my beacon of manly decency, the barometer for all who’d follow and be measured against.

No matter how hard I tried to write a nod of love for Father’s Day or his birthday, whatever event, I would draw a blank or the words I put down felt far too much like a eulogy. Even when I wanted to relay one of his famous tales of hilarity, I’d cringe at how much it felt like I was standing at a funeral lectern; the same feelings washed over me as did when I delivered a eulogy for one of his grandchildren.

Then, this summer holiday, during our annual events of hugs and dinner talk, huge laughter, day trips, familial eye-rolling impatience, and intense political arguments that look like someone’s about to get offed, I entered epiphany territory. If I didn’t say these things now, for him, to him, ultimately my words really would simply become the very thing I feared.

So here it is, not a “Happy Something Day” anything. Just a summer hug to my dad, who as a step-father, stepped in it and all over it in his own inimitable way, to become the embodiment of what a man of decency and character should be. Whose heart was far bigger than he needed to shelter us. Whose protective and respectful love is genuine and unreserved.

He’s shown how it’s done after screw ups. Oh yes, he’s definitely a pro at screwing up, BUT he’s equally adept at employing his best to undo his infractions. His apologies are quick and he fills the holes of his failings with triple the ratio of acts of kindness. I’ve never met a man who wants to make up for his failings as badly as he. It’s one of his most admirable aspects which has repaid him with enormous, widespread respect.

Outside of that, he’s your basic straight shooter, what you see is what you get, and certainly honesty is a key attribute. Well, unless he’s got a story to tell. There’s no doubt he’s got a blarney bone floating in there, but that’s just one more lovable trait, right? I’ve not met anyone yet, who can tell a tale with his level of wit and witty circuitous routes. That’s bonus material right there.

Tin man 7.jpg

Oz never needed to give this Tin Man a heart

And so, if all this isn’t the embodiment of good character, what is? His shoes will always be a bit of a loose fit for someone to fill, but that ain’t no complaint by me. Damned certain neither of us will ever make apology for that. I hope when he sees this note, he’ll feel my respect too. Maybe he’ll even have seen something that surprises. Whatever his feelings, I do know I’ll get a hug not long after.

Thanks, Dad.

RL

Figments Of My Heart

Summer heart purging, it’s like spring cleaning, but the summer haze softens reflection edges without the sweat inducing labour. If you’ve a chance to sit back for a bit with your memories and you’ve grown enough with them to have learned something real, something honestly measurable, forgiveness is sometimes an unexpected result.

I know there are different understandings of what forgiveness means, and for me, it’s mostly along the lines that the flare of anger sparked by a flash into my past is essentially gone. It’s that point where I can remember an event – even with a shudder, but without the piercing hurt. Where I can speak freely without tears, where I can see I was led astray and where I followed even when my instincts stung me with a no.

It’s when I know if I were to meet that situation again, I’d know exactly how to handle it in the best interest of my heart forevermore. It’s when I know I have stopped beating myself up and in clarity, realized where it all took me. So far, even the worst of monsters in my life ultimately mined strengths and abilities I’d never dreamed were in me… and beyond even that, the truest reveal is, I’m at peace.

ProselyliarsDo ask the prophet
Please sate your spiritual needs
‘Cause he’s God’s right hand

Ask him, pray tell all knowledge
Your belief, the deadly price

Double BillingDouble dog billing
Starring bereft alpha souls
Red and gold flame outs

Beware harem frenemies
Two faces, double the bites

Ogres and  MonstrositiesFair and fairer won
Booby prizes of the year
Outsmarted themselves

Thought they knew better than, but
Fell harder than anyone

RL

Here’s to the times we get the last laughs… Cheers!

 

Street art photo credits and much gratitude to the talented Randall Willis of CreatedByRCW and So, What’s Your Story

 

 

 

Tempered

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Narcissus banished
Comforting reality
New sweet nothings real

Overwhelmingly cherished
All storms tempered by love’s grace

languid

And, I win.

Fabulicious street art, thanks to the wonderful walking & eye spying work of Randall Willis of CreatedByRCW and So, What’s Your Story  Randall’s photo posts are amazing views of art, wildlife and human wildlife… He has gifted me another batch of creativity challenge and for that, I’m thrilled to have the privilege of immersing in poetic thought for most of the summer. Hopefully.

RL

Haiku/Tanka

 

Killer Words 2

Mighty Pen2

The best weaponry
To slay thy enemies well
Ubiquitous BICs

RL

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/paragon/
#Haiku, #Micropoetry #powerofthewrittenword
Image craft by RL

Amusements

toying with kittens

Toying with kittens
Child’s play, like taking candy
Fear not wee scratches

Little ones playing at big
Amusements of life growing

RL

Haiku / Tanka
Writing challenge: Chuckle
https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/chuckle/
Photo: Zawadi Mungu, lion dad at Oregon Zoo, Portland

Turning Corners …and Tossing Blanket Excuses

Street Art, say hello to my little Haiku…

Chortles for healing Chortles for healing
Yes, another truth cliché’
Eyes wide open; cured

Chasing fiends togetherPain’s scales fully cleared
Nothing’s like smiling with you
Cleansing fiends away

createdbyrcwNice doggy...good doggy.JPGProffered disclaimer
“Stimuli response creature”
His faults “in stasis”

Ah, ha ha, behold
How sweet to laughably view…
Saps teach ogres wordsSaps and Ogres

createdbyrcwBefore the morning coffee finally kicks in.JPGSadly, pulled below
Into sulphurous kisses
Temporary bath

createdbyrcwLady of the LakeFool’s paradises
Repelled for solid grounding
Upscaled to real life

createdbyrcwGlorious colours on a dank day2.jpgElevated me
New knowledge; true tenderness
Freedom completed

An exercise in summer re-discovery. A former summer’s draft of haikus met up with a friend’s last summer street art photography. Great fun matching up those thoughts to these illustrations of chance.

Outside of that, I’m guessing at this point in the year, many of us are in a need of some seasonal change. I’m definitely hungry for more sunny experiences in sunny destinations.  I’ll bet you are too. Let’s get at ‘er, mon anges et amies!

RL

All photos – various Toronto, ON street/graffiti art and graciously leant to me by photographer and writer, Randall Willis, of  CreatedByRCW and So, What’s Your Story

Light Support; Shaped by Haiku

Awakened white seas
Clocks ring loudly, finally
The brown been waiting

Dipping polished toes
Safety check for measured calm
Mustn’t stir too much

Awareness; fear roused
Voted for chains for years
Emergency now

Must rally a spine
Refined emancipation
Is it safe enough

White seas mostly safe
Standing Rock, Africa; not
Still crushed in between

Witnessed lunch ladies
Sounding bells to wake; small fights
Hopes to be movements.

Fear shakes up the bobs
Their voices speak out, lightly
A real enough shift?

trump-images-around-the-world

I’d witnessed a couple of semi-‘ladies who golf and lunch’ having a discussion surrounding Trump’s upcoming policy changes. They were Republicans, one of which presumably, after some consideration and perhaps listening to news sources outside of Fox News, did not vote for Trump.

It was she who brought up the legitimacy of his changes. The other challenged her with a certain level of strength (not in policy knowledge, but in force of voice). This caused the non-alpha to step her point back and re-frame it as a statement akin to, “I was just sayin'”…

Yep, I thought, some of them have started to see the threats aren’t just about the formerly conveniently distant folk, but neither the threat, nor these ladies, were anywhere near the levels of marching for change just yet.

Although, perhaps we can give points for non-alpha later deleting that conversation and replacing it with several feverishly forwarded messages of those who dare to speak first, followed a week later with some test-i-fyin’!  Howah, look at girl go now!

RL

A Strange Cawcophany

The window rattled
Harbinger delivery
Deep eyes command, “heed”

Friends caw with concern
Wariness is in order
Step back from the sill

Strange portents unveiled
Holding unforeseen remorse
Seeks to change the past

RL

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/anticipation/
Photo contribution via Facebook, T Mungo

October Surprises

He knows he’s always been loved
Held by an eternal ribbon of energy, binding lifetimes after lifetime
Until madness strikes, darkening, once again, all revelation

Hope became obscured by landmines of poisoned frivolities
Silly id dreams; a dance mix of Oedipus, Tantalus, Aristippus…
Every step an intriguing claim of elevation, all baseless; mocking Divinity’s design

The guileless taken unawares that soon their sky would become green
and the clouds will rain red and azure seas would boil brown
The world turned inside out within the haze of fear’s divisive fires

october-butterfliesHe knelt before her
held out his hand to her heart
whispered, forgive me

She sighed, can’t do dark
Only light truly sees light
You’ve always known that

You still felt my heart
in every distraction
Holy exceeds all

She takes his hand and holds it in her lap
She said, you were always my sun
and she joined all the spots on his hand with her lips

Her tracings on his hand reminded them of the beginning
when she first saw him and she connected all the dots
of a future begging to be mapped

Hope was their only highway
and desires assured everything was real
before meaninglessness ruined yet another lifetime…

…and then, Divinity promised another…

RL
Photo Credit: Randall Willis, who was treated to the lovely surprise of Monarchs October 2nd at Beaches Boardwalk, Toronto
Daily prompt, writing challenge: Promises
https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/breakthrough/