Be Still and Know

Be Still and Know

veiled in mindless mystery
the new year starts with fog
a wind of chilled uncertainty
a silent shroud of doubt

there are no sounds of distant trains
no birds, no passersby
no dreamy thoughts of far off Springs

just loneliness
just me
just I

but as I hear my trembling heart
craving love’s sweet warmth

whisper words from long ago

be still

be still and know

tio stib

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Burning Dreams

today
I burned our dreams

all the visions
all the goals
all the plans we’d made together

I placed them on a funeral pyre

lit them up

let them go

watched them melt in flames
felt them float away in smoke

and I smiled

for together
we lived those dreams
walking hand in hand

in the heart of God

tio stib

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Shape Shifting

the mirror of life stares back at me
a history of those times once free
the many men I’d tried to be
the many worlds I’d longed to see
so many new realities
I lived in hopes of finding me

some were good and some were bad
there were happy times and sad
joyful moments and some quite mad
questing for the dreams I had

some lasted days, some only hours
some grew from seeds to lovely flowers
but then the moment finally came
when each went up in spirit’s flame

was I born a vagabond
to never settle down for long
to never truly quite belong
heart pulled on by distant song

lovers, friends, and passersby
I’ve known them all
said my goodbyes
but now, as I face the end
I wonder if I’ll fly again

the caterpillar exists to eat
the pupa then goes off to sleep
and in its sacred, silky place
transforms into a different face

and so I build my new cocoon
as life within me starts to swoon
in hopes that with the coming moon
I will stretch my wings once more
and fly away to distant shores

so begins my every day
shape shifting in the cosmic play

tio stib
2016, 2018, 2019, 2020

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Breakfast of Memories

for fifty years they’d each returned
back to the same cafe
gathered round the same table
these small town knights
slowly sipping coffee
reviving the Camelot of their youth
alive again
in a breakfast of memories

stories swirled
more smiles than scars
the pranks, the mindless adventures
girlfriends real, love imagined
mountains climbed and races won
friends recalled and gone

they talked of how they’d loved this place
had never thought to leave
but life and time had swept them off
to chase their separate dreams

not one head turned to watch them go
the gray men and their ghosts
and silence roared to fill the void
of legends lost to most

tio stib
2019, 2020

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First Snow

first snow
white oblivion
whispers
to sleeping earth

hush…

let go
frantic mind
surrender

hush…

forgive your past
your sins
your separation

hush…

a blanket
of serenity

hush

white oblivion
cuddles me
in love’s eternity

first snow
melts,
drips
slowly
down the face
of my soul

hush…

Tio Stib

2014, 2019, 2020

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The Blind Side Parables – 15

Jimmy Jacks loved action, the adrenaline rush of suspense, the excitement of unexpected surprises. This is why he nearly knocked over the bowl of popcorn on his basketball size belly when his team’s quarterback connected on a deep pass to a wide receiver who dodged a defender and dashed into the end zone.

“Touchdown!” yelled Jimmy as he threw both hands high in the air.

“Ouch!” he muttered to himself, remembering that his seldom stressed body was not accustomed to such exertion. He settled back into the couch and the more cautionary exercise of popping snacks into his mouth, topped off with the occasional gulp of beer.

Ah, this is the life, he thought, then suddenly realized that the popcorn bowl was empty. Loathe to break a sweat or make any unnecessary movement if at all possible, he considered his options.

The dog, who had long ago adopted his master’s sedentary habits and lay asleep in front of the television, was not going to help.

Marla, his most recent girlfriend, was gone over six months now. She’d quickly realized that his sole reason for picking her up at the local bar was to have someone who would fetch cold beer during his sofa sitting sports watching sessions.

What’s a man to do, thought he who had completely committed himself to a life of vicarious pleasure.

“Ow!” Jimmy cringed as his quarterback was annihilated by an onrushing defensive end.

Moral: Nothing ventured, nothing pained.

tio stib

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High on Gratitude

in the muck of news’ day platitudes
I’ve lost my cheery attitude
midst hate and anger screamed and spewed
what happened to beatitudes

but past these ugly, mindless feuds
beyond behavior simply rude
there is another world that can be viewed
in Nature’s holy latitude

in this world outside our doors
flowers dance, birds sing, and oceans roar
a world that heeds not human news
where souls soar high on gratitude

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Tio Stib

2016, 2019, 2020

Birthdays

 statistically, in today’s world, 
 each of us shares the same birthday with about
 20 million other people
  
 that’s a lot of birthday candles
  
 imagine that everyone in your city 
 has the same birthday as you
 imagine that 20 million birthday buddies 
 are celebrating simultaneously
  
 imagine that you and the 20 million inhabitants of Mexico City are
 partying and shouting
  
 “felice cumpleanos!”
  
 or you and your 20 million birthday buddies in New Delhi are
 greeting each other with

 मुबारक
  
 wow! 20 million people having one huge  party
 Every person you meet singing out
  
 “happy birthday!”
  
 and you joyfully respond
  
 “happy birthday!”
  
 this thought made me so warm and fuzzy I decided to try it in my own town
 not a megalopolis by any measure but the best I can do for now
  
 walking down Main Street, I greeted each passerby with an exultant
  
 “happy birthday!”
  
 Sadly, the odd responses did not live up to my hopes
  
 which is why I’m back to a party for one
  
 I wonder what my 20 million other birthday buddies are doing
  
  
 tio stib
  
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