My Heart’s Desire

Who knew that a gondola ride was my heart’s desire? The day trip to Venice was completely unplanned. Our Florence guide was adamant we must take the 2 hour train ride to experience the unique and beautiful and watery. His advice was good. I was transfixed the second I stepped out of the station and took in the Grand Canal. On the crowded water taxi my singular thought crystalized. My obsession became a perfect glide with a handsome young gondolier wearing the classic striped shirt and jaunty straw hat with the voice of Perry Como crooning Italian love songs while we held hands under a scratchy wool blanket. No busy tourist corner would do. No scruffy wool capped gondolier chomping cigar stub in shabby shirt stretched across his bulging belly for me. Mine would be a solo practitioner tucked in the corner of a lovely square with uneven stone steps down to his boat. We crossed scenic bridges with flowered draped window boxes scouring the corners for my perfect pilot. Was he really illuminated by a single beam of light in the center of a brick square? Waiting for me?

Perfection. A plastered grin from ear to ear was my entire face. An unknown dream come true gliding among glorious teal doors and wrought iron rails and shabby balconies with t-shirts drying. The lilting croon danced across the water. Who knew a gondola ride was my heart’s desire?

Maine Memory

The bridge rumbled loud above our heads
As we scoured rocky Maine tidepools
Seeking starfish amidst the copious golden kelp
Flipping stones, scaling boulders, puddle jumping
Searching for life signs beneath clinging shells
Slip-sliding our way nearer the churning sea

Mist not rain dampened our slickers and
Fogged my glasses, wiping away drops while
Seeking the five pointed cherished prize
A champion photo op of the highest degree
All the time knowing while precariously climbing
The full emersion exploration is our actual joy

Too Tired to Stand

“Are energy issues at your business impacting your bottom line?” said the commercial on the radio.

Immediately I imagine a disheveled worker, round shouldered and shuffling, head downcast and eyes half closed. A human cheese curl with tousled hair. Thinking more about napping than deadlines, his shirt tail is half untucked, and not in a cool way. An important paper dangles from his fingers, begging not to be dropped. He’s reminiscent of the the humans in the movie Wall-E but in white shirt and mussed khakis. The worker of my imagination can still walk, but barely. The Wall-E people were apparently permanently affixed to movie theater recliners in full recline; the red jump-suited roly-polies floated supine in their loungers without the strength or energy to stand or walk. My mind’s eye energy-issue worker isn’t quite such a marshmallow; he leans whenever there is the opportunity but so far isn’t too tired to stand. But he’s close.

All this jumbles through my mind in the seconds it takes for the announcer to get from the words “bottom line” to a suggestion that Philadelphia Electric will do an energy audit to help reduce office energy usage. I realize with a half-smile that I conjured my entire cartoon imagery for nearly nothing (but fun).

I’m slightly saddened too at the realization that there isn’t a solution for the low-energy office worker shuffling exhaustion and pushing papers through his day.

“Mod Squad” 2018 (Or, Movies with 2018 version of “Mod” Titles)

Woke Witches (Inside the Beltway)
Savage Swingers
Lit Litigants Battle Bosses
Snatched Suit
Turnt Toddler Tirade
YAAS Youth
Goat Gals Gala
Salty Shift
Fire Friars Feud
Extra Existential
Sus Southy

Definitions for the uninformed (or old)
Double parenthesis ((words & definition from Readers Digest;
These “cool words” likely leftover from 2016 or were never cool)):
Woke (culturally or politically aware)
Savage (disregard for consequences)
Lit (as in parties)
Snatched (On point – such as clothes, eyebrows hair)
Turnt (super excited or drunk)
Yaas (Yes, and then some)
Goat (greatest of all time)
Salty (annoyed or bitter)
Fire (hot)
Extra (over the top)
Sus (suspicious)


On this side a bird’s eye view of sunrise
Soaked brown mountains with sharp black
Shadow lines and watercolor pools of
White liquid clouds forming streams
And lakes between angular peaks.

On that side a large plaid shirted stranger,
Head tilted back with wide gaping mouth
Emitting high decibel snores battling for
Dominance over the engine’s modulating hum.

Between the cloudy mountains and the sleeping
Giant we two huddle, shuffling phone photo
Memories in a sleep deprived stupor while
Silently counting down miles in hours as the
Eastward jet stream ushers us toward



It was magic. Unquestionably.

The timing that is.

The miraculous decision to shave her head at that precise moment. Lobbying her parents with a Powerpoint presentation on the benefits of a hairless head.

A teenaged Bruce Wayne.

A wide-eyed Peter Parker.

Imagine her list: So much cooler. No more shampoo. Money saved. Free-flowing drains.

But what about these?
They’ll listen to the girl without hair.
A modern day Samson in reverse.
And, most urgent:
Please release the magic.

How miraculous that the sheering occurred at the moment it was needed. Mere moments before tragedy struck.

The tragic and magic coexisted on camera for 11 minutes. “I call BS” flowed through tears from the fierce bald-headed girl with an unwavering gaze and ferocious courage.

And the nation listened.

It was magic that the timing was perfect for a hero’s birth.

Then she lead with a devastating “would never” refrain before standing strong, blinking through the pain.

And the excruciating silence.




The courage to be silent.
A superpower.
Pure magic.

A hero was needed and she was born with an electric razor and a kind resilient heart. From mind-numbing tragedy she emerged with a spellbinding look. An unwavering heart.

And razor focus.

She’s hope for our future.

True magic.

Hallowed Grounds

I spoke to Jefferson that night
Or to his statue to be precise
On my visit decades later
On the side of the lawn
Hidden by dark bushes
On the deep winter night
On those grounds I had loved
During those lonely years
Where the beauty of the place
Was my favorite part

“What do you think of him?
Avoiding his name
On the virtuous ground

Sadly the answer
From his frozen gaze
Or my own addled head
He’s not an intellect
Or a patriot
Not an inventor
Or builder of anything real
Not a writer
Or a man of conviction
Not a crusader for truth
Or a champion of honor
(There are no hallowed grounds in his future)

As I take in the place
Built for learning and legacy
I pray for our beautiful country
Cringing in his path