"I don't believe in magic."
I dared to say it,
And I'll ever regret it
For as long as I live
Because from that day onward
He dared to prove
How very real
Magic could be
In every word
Of every line
In nervous hands
And feet dancing
In every future plan
To come true
And make new
In every picture
Every time
I cried
And he was there
Every time
I smiled
He was there
Behind it

Until he wasn't.

Until magic got too real.

And then
He turned the clock back
Without permission
One tiny tock tick
At a time
Because he was afraid
But it never went unnoticed

No more cards
And extra kindness
No more little gestures
Of affection
No more of what I love
The most
The little thoughtful
Bits of real life
Magic that set me free
To love again
And hope for more
Than magic—
Reality that makes me happy
Because I believed
You were happy too

Maybe, I don't believe in magic
Maybe, I simply believe in you.

Hope and wishing
Lit anew within me
The day I walked upon the floor
In my mind I was dancing
Through time
To when magic
Real magic
Work and love and care
Would bring your loving heart
To know that you belong
With someone who can see
How infinite you are
And believe in magic
Just to prove
Love can come true
Even for me and you

Magic is what you make it.
Magic can be made new.
If you choose.

riding a bike

My little boy still struggles with riding a bike. I didn't realize it because I haven't prioritized buying him a bike for at my house since he has one at his dad's, and I don't like to steal thunder. I just assumed he knew how. But tonight, some friends gave him a bike, so he wanted to practice, and I didn't realize I was going to feel so brokenhearted.

I didn't realize my sweet little guy didn't have the confidence to just get on the bike and ride it home. I didn't realize he needed me out there to watch him to feel safe and confident while he practiced wobbling along the sidewalk. He was so cute as he voiced feeling grateful that he has grass to land on just in case. I'm glad I was able to see him overcome his hesitant outlook and be able to make the turns "without stopping at all."

It got me thinking about my experience when learning to ride a bike. It was so different. I don't recall where I got the bike from, but I do remember it was a yellow banana seat bike with those crazy handle bars that remind me of Harleys. I also remember getting on that bike and not stopping until I could ride that bike. I got skinned up knees because I was riding my new bike in a dress of all things. Not so good for when you fall on blacktop. But quite fancy, I guess. So anyway. I stayed out there trying and trying and trying until I could do it. It happened at dusk when there was barely enough light to snap a photo, but I have one. My mom had got out the camera and caught me smiling and riding my bike. She caught my determination on film. It has been a long time since I saw that photo, so I'm not sure where that photo is, but when I do find it, I'll add it here.

My bicycle story is so different from my son's. But my entire childhood is very different as well. I don't want to get into the fine details, but I'll just say that I'm thankful for my dad who loved my mom and worked hard and did what it took to stay. I'll add that I'm thankful for my mom who loved my dad and worked hard and did what it took to stay. They each had their faults and opinions that could drive someone away, but they loved each other enough to do what it takes to make things work. So much sacrifice and loving care. So much meeting in the middle and going to the other side at times. So much sharing the load. Even with all the abuse I suffered, I had confidence because of them. I just know it.

a phoenix with no wings

No dignity for me
As I descend from the top
Of stairs so fair
Burnt to a crisp
I jumped in head first
So a mess is all I get
I spoke before I should
And now I'm taking
My foot out of my mouth
My heart out of my throat
And my head out of the clouds

There is nowhere for me
No love
Or safe harbor

There is only hurt
Pain and crying
Into the night
With no one here to hear

There is nothing but
Empty wishes
Broken hope
With nothing shared

I look upon what
Led me to such height
And my body trembles
At the misguided thoughts

Like a phoenix but with no wings
I can make it on my own
I've tread for years through fire
And made it out alive
Even still there's nothing wrong
With wanting a companion
To walk alongside
To guard me from the coals

But that is not for me
I do not get to have
What I wish
My heart's desire
It is not permitted
For people like me
Who don't know when to stop
Before they start
Something that
No one else wants

leave a light on

Denver Capitol Building

I don't want to get quiet.
There's something about it
That kills me inside
When I don't let anyone in
To see and feel with me
The light whether barely
Or brightly beamed.

The only problem is
That no one wants in,
So is it better for me
And everyone else
That I shut this mouth of mine,
That I close my heart and
Stop making a fool of myself,
That I quit allowing myself
To think I belong anywhere
With anyone—
That I could be loved
Enough to belong,
To find a home,
To be in someone's heart
Long enough to know
That I belong and
Never question again
Whether I am loved?

I want to shout
How I am worth it.
I want to cry on
Comfort's shoulder.
I want you to
Embrace me.
I want to know
I am not just a safe place
You seek
When no one else is around.

But neither shouting nor keeping quiet
Are what will set things right.
Somewhere in the middle
There is a voice whispering
Inside of you—not me—
That needs to be acknowledged.
Things wouldn't hurt so much
If you'd listen to the love
That wells up inside of you,
If you'd stop shutting out
Your heart's voice
And let it take wing.

It is not for me to find
A way to the joy
You have left behind.
Find it—
And you will see me.
Only then can possibility
Become reality.
Only then can we
See our destiny
In the full light of day
Without fear
Of hurting
Our love,

Until then,
I'll leave a light on
Dimly lit,
Burning through
The dark of night,
Through any trouble,
Time and space.
I'll keep it here
Within this heart
And mind
That won't forget
The happiness
And heart that
You alone have brought to life.

erasing feelings

Words have been erased. I write so much, but then I throw them away because I feel thrown away. I don't want all the pain of today to stick. I want to write but not be reminded of how I have felt. Having a space to write and be reminded here has taught me that I am most certainly reminded. I have laced each poem and memoir bite with a pretty poison to either hurt or delight. I have a stack of journals from over the years that hold pain and tears and happy times intermingled. I have sheets and sheets of email letters. I know about being reminded by what I choose to write—and keep. 

Maybe if I could write my words in the wet sand at the beach, carving out my heart, then letting the tide wash it all away. Maybe that would work. Maybe. But I don't live near the ocean, and I can't get there soon enough to try this experiment while I need release. I'd love to set my heart on a month-long sabbatical to the seaside, but that's an option for people who aren't me. So I must be contented with writing letters that go in the garbage and writing poems that hide until I feel brave enough to cut my heart out with my own words. I must be content with erasure.