Still Life


Arranged meticulously,

posed purposefully,

captured faithfully —

life not as it happened,

but a skillful composition.

Sliced pomegranate,

with a few loose jewels nearby,

a vase full of poppies,

wine glasses half full,

a fresh loaf of bread

a steak knife flanking

an empty plate.

We stand on the outside

looking in,

a window to a moment,

forever undisturbed —

not life as it once was,

just an arrangement.

Take this with you,

only in memory,

no flash photography.



Winds of change,

carry me away,

I will spiral

as I ride the currents,

to still waters,

to green pastures.

The gale will wail,

but I will not falter,

it’s fury will take me

somewhere new,

I have faith.

I will put down roots,

I will stand as tall as I can,

from midsummer,

through first frost

but, here, I cannot stay.

Winds of change,

I will follow your lead,

I fear no obstacle,

you have carried me above them.

Though you have set me down,

I will not rest,

The sun sets in the West,

I will face East,

and take in the morning light,

no matter the hand I’m dealt.

Winds of change,

carry me away,

I wish to see the world,

carry me away.


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DECLASSIFIED: I Hope you Find What You’re Looking for


Read the original here.

Ever cloud-watched at night?

It sounds paradoxical, but if there’s enough light pollution in your corner of the world, the clouds stand out even in the night sky.

And it’s disappointing sometimes that you’re able to do that; wouldn’t you rather see the stars?

But just because you’ve been dealt a hand that you’re unhappy with doesn’t make the clouds any less spectacular than they are in the daytime.

Thousands of tons of water are floating miles in the sky, never in quite the same shape or location as their counterparts.

Stars, on the other hand, will always be there. Most are probably dead anyway, so far away that the light we see from them is essentially showing us how they looked billions of years ago. They aren’t going anywhere in the grand scheme of things.

Perspective is what matters, insofar as that it’s under your jurisdiction.

The sky, however, is out of your grasp.



View the original story here.



I edited this piece pretty heavily subsequent to publishing it. A friend told me it “didn’t feel finished” upon reading it, which spurred me to make revisions and extend it too.

It’s hard to hear something that you don’t want to.

Ever baked brownies? If you’ve never baked before, it seems pretty counterintuitive to put salt in them, but anyone whose neglected that one step can tell you it’s just not quite the same.

Criticism, if it’s from a genuine place, is never unwelcomed. To offer guidance is an act of kindness, even if the words themselves sting a bit.

Bad can be good, and good can be bad, doesn’t that mean they’re related? Doesn’t that mean they’re more similar than their surfaces suggest?

Dual dynamic, dyadically-divided, concentric-contrailed comets.
Binary– but also not.

This is yin and yang.

What looks like a Pisces is really a Gemini.

DECLASSIFIED: Human Behavior


View the original poem here

Imagine you’re driving in an old Impala with four of your closest friends on a road trip across the United States.

“Let’s go to the Grand Canyon,” says your best friend, in the passenger seat.

You’ve hardly nodded your head in agreement when you hear called out from behind you “What about Mt. Rushmore?”

“I want to see the space needle!”

“It’s too cold there, let’s go to the Everglades!”

You tense up, frustrated by the dissonance. It’s going to be a very long car ride, especially if this continues.

But why do we find choices stressful, even when they lead to fun things?

My worst nightmare isn’t a monster chasing me, or falling to my death or being caught in my underwear in public.

I’m staring at blackness, my muscles feel muddled, I hear muffled voices.

I can’t move, like I’m stuck in lukewarm mollasses.

It’s a dream I can’t wake up from.



View the original poem here.

“It’s the little things in life…” is one of the most wonderful clichés I’ve ever taken for granted. We populate a universe so incomprehensibly huge that even some Earth-shattering event is actually quite tiny in comparison to the immense cauldron of empty space we’re all slowly spiraling through.

Suffice it to say all the little things that populate our lives are, as it were, tiny even in comparison to us!

Still, as that time-tested adage says, ignore them at your own peril.

We as people are not separate, distinct entities from the universe.

Take your phone for instance.

It isn’t one object, it’s a bunch of tiny parts all working as one synchronous whole, all designed and manufactured by different companies, all incorporating parts sourced from all over the world.

This was assembled by a stranger in a foreign land thousands of miles away, and was shipped to you on a huge barge. You bought it with your own paper money and can use it to talk to your friends, all with different yet compatible devices with roughly analogous procedures used to make them.

Leave no stone unturned when looking for amazing things, only then are you bound to bump into them.



View the original poem here.

Sometimes I’ll say to myself internally, “I’m thirsty.” It follows that I drop what I’m doing, walk to the faucet and pour myself a glass of tap water. This is a logical set of steps that is quite satisfying, even necessary to my survival, but sometimes I’ll hit a snag. Once in a while I’ll find myself walking down the steps, and maybe my mind is somewhere else, but by the time I get to the kitchen I’ve totally forgotten why I walked there in the first place.

Sometimes I’ll play it off like I didn’t and end up grabbing something else- say a plate- and only once I go through all that trouble, I realize “Oh! I’m thirsty!”

How much of my life have I missed just because I wasn’t paying attention to myself?

It doesn’t have to be absent-mindedness, and it doesn’t have to be internal.

If I could see the amount of time I’ve wasted procrastinating or complaining, I’d probably have no way to justify that to myself.

Take this with a grain of salt, though. There’s plenty of time for reminiscing, just make sure not to make too much. That’s also not to say that thinking is a bad thing, just make sure you’re only thinking when you think. Try to cut down on procrastinating and complaining, though, I can’t think of many situations where they do much good.

We’re all barreling forward into the future, no matter what twists and turns our minds are making.

In that way, we are both pilot and passenger.