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Sunday, July 27, 2014

What Mom Taught Me

My mother liked to tell the story of how her grandfather, my great grandfather, worked on building the Brooklyn Bridge. I miss her stories, but that Bridge was built to last.

My mother led by example. She loved to talk, but articulation of the important stuff, the complex things? Well that was never her strong suit. That stuff she just showed you. She showed me how to love, how to cry, how to fight, and then how to make-up after a fight and not carry a grudge. She taught me how to stand up for myself. She showed me how to share. She showed me the importance of saying "I love you" maybe two or three times before hanging up the phone. She taught me, maybe most importantly, how to withhold. I found out very early on how little patience this world has for the truth.  Mom got that. She knew how powerful truth could be. And she showed me how not to abuse it.

There are a million things my mom taught me that I can't remember here as I write this, but they come to me nearly every moment of every day. She taught me how to dream, how to not only get by, but how to thrive with very little. How to appreciate the small things.

 how they are:


My mom gave me life. And I intend to relish it, wallow in it, play with it, celebrate it and share it! Even the sad stuff, because most recently, my mom...taught me how to die. She showed me how to do it with grace and dignity and peace and calm.

Not long ago my mom showed an interest in a movie that had been made into a play. I got her that movie. We were going to try and take her to see the play like we did on her 80th birthday when we went to see Jersey Boys. Inspired by mom, I went to see the play "ONCE" based on the movie of the same name, directed by John Tiffany of BLACK WATCH and the most recent Broadway revival of The Glass Menagerie. Seeing it made me want to write a song.  Here are the lyrics.

Once or Twice ( And the Melancholy Soothes Me)

I've been doing this a long time
Playing someone else's songs
On a borrowed guitar

Now, this time, it's only for me
And it feels like my whole life
Is just one big broken heart

And the melancholy soothes me
All those
sad songs about love gone wrong
On the radio
All those sappy unhappy endings
Going on forever 
Man, that kind of stuff just turns me on!

I never let my passion get
the better of me, though I don't 
know where the better of me went

Thought the best thing a man could say
Was "I love you" even if he
Never knew just what that meant


I know I'm lucky to have found you
And the many magic places
we have together gone

Even though I've done my best to face my fears
I can't imagine walking down
Those roads alone


And the melancholy soothes me
Lets my restless wild spirit
Sleep at night

Sets my dreams in motion
Before the dawn of another chance
To get this right

And I've been doing this a long time
Shadow boxing with my demons
Like I don't care

Never landing one damn punch
like I'm disappearing 
Into thin air


Thank you all for being there for me.
Love, love, love...


Thursday, July 3, 2014

At My Age

This is a bit crude. I composed it at the surgeons office where I was having my Lipoma examined. The past month has made me more and more aware of how little time there really is.  Since mom passed even my dreams seem more vivid. Each moment of the day carries a new significance which I never imagined. I never imagined life without mother. I just wouldn't. Couldn't. I loved visiting with her. We watched TV, caught up on the family gossip, and I got to ask her how she met my dad. No doubt there is a huge hole in my life now. But with her passing mom taught me the final lesson. Live. Live now.

At My Age

Its about the kiss
Not the...f*#k

The taste
Not the glut

The aroma
Not the smell
I begin to have
The discipline
To Tell
With a whisper not--

Not a yell

Slowing to enjoy
The miracle of

Sharing with family
My wife.

All the good
All the time

Present to each

And each triumph
As each obstacle
Is overcome.