Monday, March 30, 2009

Too Close to the Sun (a fable)

Once upon a time…which, as good folk of all ages know, is when all good stories begin…there was a remarkable woman. She was a beautiful girl with a beautiful mind and a beautiful spirit…she had long dark hair and sparkling brown eyes and a smile that could effortlessly warm the coldest heart.

It was a glorious day and the woman and the man…a stalwart fellow of seemingly dour mien (though those who bothered to look close could see the twinkle in his dark eyes and the evidence of many, many smiles and laughs plain to see at the corners of his mouth where his full lips met his full black beard)…were on a verdant cliff over looking the lush seaside valley where they both lived.

“I’m a grown woman,” the woman pouted, futzing with the golden cord secured around his waist, “I don’t need this.”

The man, holding a coil of golden cord in his big hand, stepped close to her. “Do you trust me?” he asked looking directly into her eyes.

The woman smiled shyly and folded into him. “You know I do,” she said in a small voice, burying her head against his chest and feeling so very comforted by the sweet music of his tender heart.

The man smiled and gently kissed the top of the woman’s head. “Then trust me in this.”

The woman sighed petulantly even though she was smiling warmly inside. “Oh, all right.” The woman closed her eyes and hugged the man, part of her never wanting to let go, and then she took a deep breath and stepped up to the edge of the cliff. “I’m ready,” she said her eyes full of awe and wonder as she looked down on the roaring sea and the lush valley and then up into the azure sky.

The dropped the coil of golden corn to the ground and took hold of the tether that went from the coil to his hands to the waist of the woman. “I won’t let you crash,” he promised.

She favored him with a creamy, healing smile. “I know,” she said with an impish wink. She turned back to the edge and took another deep breath. “Hey,” she said looking back over her shoulder and said, “I love you.”

“I know,” he said with an impish wink.

The woman laughed musically and then, with one last deep breath, she leapt. She leapt off the edge of the cliff and plunged a little. And then she soared. She soared up above the lush seaside valley. She soared high into the azure sky, the golden cord secured around her waist glinting in the soft sunshine as it wound down to where the man was carefully letting the coil un-spool while keeping a sure hand on the connection between the woman and him.

Glorying in the perspective from so high, the woman laughed and danced and sang as she soared ever higher.

The sun, in all its majesty, looked down her with affection and admiration.

The wind, feeling a bit bored even on such a beautiful day, caressed her as she soared. “Go higher,” the wind sang, “go higher. It will be okay.”

The woman knew that there was only so far that she should soar lest she suffer the fate of foolish Icarus but her spirit was filled with such unbridled joy that she felt the impulse to heed the entreaties of the mischievous wind.

On the cliff below the man watched carefully making sure his grip on the golden tether was strong and sure.

The woman flew higher, her will to soar ever higher undaunted, and she reached out to touch the very sun itself.

“Careful, daughter,” the sun said, “do not get too close to me, I cannot temper my heat and my radiance.”

“Don’t listen, girl,” the wind said, “it will be fine if you go higher.”

The woman stretched out her hand…and then she stopped. There was a tug around her waist and she could go no further. Below, the man had pulled back on the golden cord and was pulling her back from the precipice of danger.

“No,” the woman said, looking longingly up at the luminous sun. But she did not fight as the man gently pulled her back into the expansive azure sky.

“No,” the bored, mischievous wind, said blowing hard and making the woman lose her way for a moment.

Startled by the sudden shift in the wind, the woman lost concentration and began to fall towards the ground…towards the verdant hill and the lush seaside valley…below. At first the woman started to panic but then she remembered the man’s promise and she took a deep breath. She closed her eyes and allowed the warm of the sun and the coolness of the breeze to steady her resolve and calm her mind.

The wind, feeling guilty that the game had gone too far, rushed down to slow her.

Below, the man took a deep breath and kept his eyes fixed on the woman. He reeled in the golden cord furiously and, with the aid of the guilty wind, the woman glided down into his waiting arms.

The woman opened her eyes when she felt herself gently embraced by the man’s strong arms.

“Hello,” the man said, smiling with relief, “thanks for trusting that me.”

“Hello,” the woman replied, looking up into the man’s smiling dark eyes, “thanks for keeping your promise.”

The man let the woman down and she reached up and hugged him. “I want to go back up,” she whispered.

The man nodded. “I’m ready when you are.”

She smiled her bright and creamy smile and went back to the edge of the cliff.

“Hey,” the man, getting a good grip on the golden cord, called out, “I love you.”

The woman giggled joyfully and looked back over her shoulder. “I know,” she said with an impish wink.

And then, undaunted, she leapt off the cliff again and soared back up into the azure sky.

The wind danced with her, caressing her face and making sure she flew high but not too high.

The sun looked down proudly at his bold daughter dancing in the azure sky and his stalwart son holding steady on the verdant cliff.

The man looked up and smiled as the woman’s happy laughter echoed across the lush seaside valley below.

And the woman…the beautiful girl with the beautiful mind and the beautiful spirit…soared gracefully…joyfully…surely. She soared with a wisdom that had eluded foolish Icarus….close enough to the sun that she was bathed in its glory but no so close as to be immolated.

And she lived (and learned and laughed and loved) happily ever after…which, as good folks of all know, is how all good stories unfold.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

150 Words: Moonlight

The moon, if it was out at all, was obscured by clouds…but he had already rewritten the memory to include a full measure of warm, golden moonlight…it just felt more right that way.

The ocean sang its eternal song, an amazing soundtrack to a sweetly amazing evening, and he was sitting in the cool sand, his heart racing, his senses captivated, his arms around the girl snuggled comfortably against his chest. Yeah, there just had to be moonlight.

The moon, her radiant smile beaming approvingly, witnessed the moment and he, for too brief a moment, forgot that there was anyone else in the world other than the girl…he willfully forgot that they would not…could not…ever be together for more than the fleeting moments they defiantly took for themselves.

The ocean shared its song…Luna shared her tender moonlight…and the moment lingered just long enough for him to know it was real.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

I Find Myself (Spring Returns)

I find myself dancing,
dancing and dreaming and basking in the healing sunshine
as Spring makes its welcome return.

I find myself smiling,
smiling and singing and wanting to make love in soft shadows
as Spring makes its blessed return.

I find myself wishing…
wishing and wondering and feeling content in my own skin…
dancing and dreaming and basking in the healing sunshine…
smiling and singing and wanting to make love in soft shadows…

I find myself dancing
as Spring makes its wondrous return.

Sunday, March 08, 2009


And the laughter flowed…easy, bittersweet, joyful, rueful laughter…and the tears were held in check (though sometimes just barely)…as friends gathered and shared memories…memories of our friend.

And I was pleased…and not at all surprised…by the number of people who came to celebrate the fact that he was, for too brief a season, here on this sweet old world with us. I was pleased…and not at all surprised…that his passing on to whatever comes next for our eternal energies could not…would not…go unnoticed.

In the end the most precious treasure any of us could ever possess is the fact that there are hearts and souls that will miss us when we are gone…that there are hearts and souls that will carry memories of us…that will carry us…long after we have ascended from this verdant mortal coil.

And in the end he lingers…in memories, in sacrosanct corners of our hearts…a humble and blessed being here for too brief a season, possessor of the most precious treasure any of us could ever hope to possess. And in the end our lives…those who had the sublime pleasure of knowing him…are much better for having had him in our lives…for having him in our lives still and always.

Monday, March 02, 2009


It's best friend...passed away a few hours ago and all I feel in the moment is numb.

Maybe not so strange...I don't have the luxury of breaking down because there are still things I have to do for him and for those who will mourn his passing...especially since that passing came with so little warning (just three weeks ago he was bright and alive...he was everything that made him the person people gravitated towards...and now he's gone...lingering in our hearts and in our memories...but gone from this bittersweet old world.)

At some point I will break some point I will embrace the enormity of the void in my life...but right now...right now...I'm just numb.