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gator-golf-blgb-september-30-2016s

author’s note:

Maybe what I was told as a boy is true: sports build character.
 

MINIATURE GOLF PERSPECTIVE

Sometimes I play miniature golf
just to shift my perspective:

when I see
that model course
I see
a little litany of lessons

and in so seeing, I then see
the course we call “real”
as a round of lessons as well

and if I can later recall
the silliness I felt
as I struggled to deal
with things so fancifully small
I’ll deflate a bit
and as a result
love more:

maybe I’ll again feel
the love I feel
for the real course–
even as I struggle, I love
that daunting windmill.

I also try not to forget
the many lessons–
for instance:
how I got past that alligator
by rolling right into its jaws.

That may not be big
but it’s still important.
 


© 2016, Michael R. Patton
myth steps: a poetry book

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rosey mountains 436w - August 1, 2016s

author’s note:

If I thought these poems only related to my own experience, I wouldn’t bother to publish.
 


OUR BLESSED MONSTER

A miracle birth occurred
the moment your storm
collided with mine:

though born with
a bumpy riot of a heartbeat
that monster baby refused to die—

even when stuffed in a box
and buried far underground
the life of our union bled upward
through black volcanic rock

to burst forth and blast us again:

a difficult child and yet
its twisted limbs forced us
to find our strength

and in the process of finding
we climbed

up this divine rosy mountain
of dark thorny crosses

up—
until we’d gone as far as we could go
together

then the blessed beast slipped
our tightest grip.

Now, as the clouds slowly slowly clear
I’m beginning to see our accomplishment.

And yet…
on one of my stormy nights
I may fall back to being small
and again try to imagine
the freedom I could’ve enjoyed
had I done as I’d once planned
and traveled alone…

but when I wake to find myself
in the mud of such regret
I just push myself back up

and keep on climbing…
 


© 2016, Michael R. Patton
dream steps: a blog

heart eye gray eyes b - May 25, 2016s

author’s note:

With regret, I cut this stanza from the poem below, for the sake of continuity:

and because someone
wants to punch us
after we’ve written “loss is gain”
we know our words
must be accurate arrows.
 

ON THE CONTINENT OF LOVE LOST

She said
her heart had exiled her writing
to the land of love lost.

But I told her
that land need not be the island—
it can be the continent:

on the island
when we write of love lost
we write of the garden lost
we write of childhood lost

and we also write of that
on the continent
but we add:
we must lose the garden
in order to evolve.

On both the island
and the continent, we write
of the confusion of love lost

but on the continent
we write of the drive
to find our way back home.

On the island, we write
of returning
and not knowing
the one we once loved.

But on the continent
we write of returning
and again knowing the one within.

On the island
we write of open wounds
that refuse to mend

but on the continent
we write of how
those open wounds
can lead us down
to the deep wounds:

we write of mending
of mending all the way down—

we write of gaining from loss.

On the island
we’re afraid of losing—
of losing again

and we’re also afraid
on the continent—
despite all our gains:

we’re afraid of a love
we can not escape
a love we can not release
a love we can not hold—

we’re afraid
yet willfully go ahead
because we know we must.

All this I told her
but then admitted:
I don’t always inhabit
the continent

but when I do, I’m able to honor
the past and the present
with memorials and celebration:

memorials
because on the continent
we refuse to ignore our grief

and celebration
because on the continent
even shadows have light.
 


© 2016, Michael R. Patton
finding Beauty: the book

sweet embraceable tree - December 24, 2015s

author’s note:

Here’s a term I often hear used derisively: tree hugger.

Well, if you’re losing your balance and about to fall off a cliff, I think you might be relieved to find the arms of a tree.

 

SONG FOR THE TREE HUGGERS

The tree tells me:

if suddenly
your love rises so high
that you feel you must
either release the flow
or die

then please encircle me
with your desperate arms
and I will accept your offering—

I will accept your burden
I will accept your suffering:

In breaking yourself open
you will heal.

But maybe you can’t feel
your love—
maybe you hurt so much
you can’t bear to touch
any thing at all—

not even a devoted tree.

If so, I trust
your greater desire
will eventually
push you past your fear
and you’ll straggle here
to embrace me

and in that surrender rediscover
your overwhelming love…

and once done, return
to help others find
their way back
to this tree.

 


© 2015, Michael R. Patton

cartoons of Christmas past

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