Orchids

Back in the 90’s
now a fading dream
we lived on Maui
soft tropical island

I placed orchids
in trees 
and beneath a trellis
in a garden
surrounding our home

I installed small drip lines
to bring them water
offered them food
and watched them thrive

Now in the Bay Area
I see orchids indoors
seemingly out of place

In the grocery store
a field of orchids
carries me home

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Central Park

Where do names come from?
What place or person lives in them?
Born perhaps in a fleeting
or drawn out moment of presence.
Vessels for memories, hope, joy, love and life
remembered and longing to be expressed,
to be seen and touched.

As fas back as I can remember
there is only One Central Park.
The one in New York City,
surrounded by many museums,
temples to art holding centuries of inspiration and creativity.
Inside the park, bordering Fifth Avenue
you’ll find the Metropolitan Museum of Art,
home to one of my favorite paintings:
Lady in Blue by Ingres.
I have stood in front of this lady
time drifting by.
Losing myself in her eyes,
in the breathtaking transparencies and delicate details.

Then there’s Alice, in her wonderland, sitting on a mushroom,
Mad Hatter and White Rabbit by her side.
An invitation to all the little, and not so little ones to climb aboard.

Model sailboats of summer give way to skaters in the winter.

On the South end of the Park,
on the other side of W59th St,
stands The Plaza Hotel.
Home to Eloise
As far as I am concerned this is the Plaza’s one and only claim to fame,
and the only reason to enter the hotel is to see her portrait (if it’s still there)!

New York’s Central Park is a universe of its own
It is magical and timeless
Movies are made there
People fall in, and out of love
Kids grow up
Some of us move away
This park remains, welcoming us upon our return.

Then there’s San Ramon’s Central Park!
A ten minute walk from my apartment.
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Before moving here from my old neighborhood
I would only drive by this park.
I couldn’t begin to relate to this place as a Central Park.
It’s like “There is no town here!
Central to what? To where? To whom?”


Today, walking through it,
I realized that I’ve a acquired a fondness for this space
with it’s redwoods, dancing manzanita trees,
surrounding hills and mountains.
Near by, Mount Diablo disappears into the clouds.

A playground and several playing fields invite children, adolescents and adults
of multi nationalities, races and cultures to come together.
To play soccer, baseball, cricket, toss frisbees to dogs,
and celebrate the Fourth of July!

For now this is my home.
I feel immensely grateful to come and walk here.
That on days like today I can sink my feet into now deep, lush, soggy grass.
A gift from the wettest storm in ten years.

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How are names born?
What, or who, lives in them … for you?

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Post inspired by WP Photo Challenge: Names
I invite you to wander over to the site and see how this challenge has inspired others.

California Dreams?

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2016
A place down the road.
Simple, basic suburbia.
Selling for 1.5 million.

Water is an illusion as temperatures rise.
But hell, it rained last winter.

We’ve just been told there is no drought in California
And climate change was invented by the Chinese.
So we’re good.

California Dream?

 

Sometimes I just gotta rock out!
Find my earbuds
Turn up that volume all the way
Close my eyes
Let the guitars, bass,
percussion and voices
Lift me above it all.
Back to 1976

Welcome to the Hotel California
Such a lovely place, such a lovely place…
I was thinking to myself
This could be heaven or this could be hell…
You can check out any time you like
But you can never leave…

Stillness

Mi’ijo, my son,
I sit holding you as we glide back and forth in the middle of the night.
You are so tiny.
You fit, with space to spare, between the arms of the gliding chair.
This quiet room merges into the soundlessness of the outside world.
As I watch you breathe I sink into the stillness.
Such peacefulness, my heart opens, precious, vulnerable.

My Dad died in ’86. I kept some of his old shirts.
The ones with his initials stitched on the breast pocket.
Wanting to keep him close.
They were so large I didn’t think I would ever wear them.
Then, five plus years later you came, and these old blue shirts fit perfectly.
And I sit and glide, night after night, holding you as you nurse and fall back to sleep.
As if my Dad, who never got to see you, were now holding both of us tenderly.
My heart expands as I write.
I feel so moved.
Tears of gratitude making their way into my eyes.
Where do tears come from?
Life is so precious.
The sound of our breathing, separate yet overlapping, yours a bit faster and more shallow.
In sync with our gliding.
Gentle, rhythmic, fluid, and quiet.
Endless space from the depth of my being as it blends with yours, then the room,
to the place outside the window, past the hills, into the night sky.
Fullness.

Amma,
I kneel before you.
Your face so close as you hug the person in front of me.
Your deep brown eyes catch mine for a moment of eternity.
Your left hand on their right shoulder, just inches away, draws me like a magnet.
It seems so soft and gentle.
I feel the caress it holds.
Could I be a feather or a light breeze
as I slowly reach up and barely, as delicately as possible,
let my finger tips touch your hand.
Time stretches out as I bring them back to touch my forehead and lips.
Wanting this moment to last forever.
My heart expands as if it would burst.
Waves of gratitude.

I am now in front of you.
You smile and pull me towards you,
Into you.
My face buried in your chest.
I sink in.
Find refuge.
Your voice in my ear …..daughter, daughter, daughter.

The universe opens up and once again I glide into the quiet, endless night.
The dark, deep sky illuminated by stars.
You are the universe and we are all your stars.
Tenderness, compassion, belonging, peace, acceptance
Breath
Heart beat
Presence

Can I remember that all this lives in me?
Driving down the freeway at rush hour.
Waiting in line at the café.
Sitting in a restaurant overhearing a conversation laden with judgments and evaluations.
Having a difficult interaction with my now twenty four year old son.

Pause, breathe, touch the quiet place, the night sky, the stillness.
The wonder of our humanity.
That I may be all of this

Love

Written for Challenge for Growth Prompt #5: I am Love