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Everything Around You Duplex


Everything Around You Duplex

in a Georgia State Park, you can breathe –

everything around you is pure and natural 

organic beauty seeps from everything around you 

in picturesque form, unclouded with worry 

wild simplicity in picturesque form beckons 

you to take a pulse check: slow down. breathe. 

take a pulse check and breathe clean air 

unclogging oxygen to free the mind 

unclogging troubles, releasing drama, lifting spirits 

like fireflies writing crystallizing truths 

on a canvas of trees- truths that set you free 

to savor moments, re-oriented with a fresh mindset 

a fresh mindset that re-orients the soul

in a Georgia State Park, where you can breathe

Invitation to write:


Seize the Day Nonet


Seize the Day Nonet 

How does someone truly “seize the day?” 

Find the answer in a state park: 

everything around you is 

teeming with pure, wholesome 

breath of life – nature’s 

pulse check, syncing 

life’s rhythm 



Georgia State Park Acrostic

 Today’s poem is written in response to Kwame Alexander’s invitation to submit a poem about parks and recreation 


Georgia State Parks Acrostic 

geocaching, kayaking, hiking, camping –

everything around you is 


resplendent fresh-soul peace  

grounded in the magnificence of the 

inner sanctum you know is 

always there – but too rarely plugged in

step in to the park and light up 

the soul! take it all in! breathe! 

a mama duck prodding her ducklings… 

trees rocking hammockers….

everything around you is  

prime life – swimming, fishing, biking –

a full connection with a live screen – 

real life (none of this virtual stuff) – you’ll 

know you’re part of something bigger 

                   when you 

step into the park

To Morganton!


To Morganton! 

Morganton, Georgia

4-wheel drive with traction to

get up the mountain 

Three-story house on

Ruby Gulch, wood-planked ceilings

but best: sparse decor! 

Do we take the boys?

They have boarding arrangements 

We can change our minds…..

A Journey Mandala

A Mandala Poem 

a bubble, a ticket, a leaf, a camera, a suitcase 

A Journey Mandala

a bubble in the babbling brook 
rushing down the stream rapids
over rocks and twigs –
thrills and chills 
holding on tight 
for the wild ride 
     like mine! 

a ticket to somewhere – 
anywhere, really, 
that a writer can think:
log cabin with a crackling fire 
leaves crunching under foot 
on the path 
to the front door 
like those ideas 
that crinkle and stir

a hidden camera 
in Trafalgar Square 
stalking the situations and conversations – 
a people watcher on a techie level 
studying human nature
considering all the lives lived

a suitcase – 
a keeper of
only what is necessary 
for the journey 
for traveling lightly 
    through this world 
      knowing that the best souvenirs  
        are the memories
         of presence in each moment

understanding, finally, what 
Steinbeck meant when he wrote 
“We find after years of struggle that we don’t take a trip; 

a trip takes us.”

Irish Spider Buries Terrible Beauty with a Golden Shovel

Golden Shovel inspired by Anna Roseboro uses last lines of Billy Collins’ “A Terrible Beauty” and “Irish Spider.” 

Irish Spider Buries Terrible Beauty With a Golden Shovel 

I hear the swoosh of her 

text, click to see the latest 

manipulative photo: a dripping 

bowl of juicy watermelon, silvery

veined, picnic crown 

of the sultry beaches of 

Florida – now pure ice 

on the screen – but 

I’m not swooned by memories, not 

stirred by her fooling 

manner to lure me 

to be wooed by 

this narcissistic bully, not a 

puppet in her show a single minute

Preacher Dad


Poetry host Denise Krebs inspired us at the ethicalela.com Open Write to use a mentor poem in our writing today – so I used Billy Collins’ “Irish Spider” and a stanza from Kevin Hodgson’s “Short Thoughts About Writing” (stories don’t exist until we speak) in today’s poem. 

Preacher Dad

It was well worth traveling home 

for Father’s Day 

just to sit at the ancestral oak table eating piping hot chicken pot pie, 

sharing wine and stories- 



don’t exist 

until we speak 

to laugh 



and reflect 

as he pretended 

to be any old average dad 

father of two ill-behaved 

         preacher’s kids 

like God hadn’t given him an extra sprinkling of love and wisdom 

         for the task

but not fooling us for a minute!