Good Humans Being

there is a dream
that I hold dear
of times when men
have grown past fear

when lies and hate
have blown away
when hope and love
guide each new day

yes
this may be fantasy
something that can never be
but I need this dream
to feed my soul
to guide me places
I need go

I dream of one day seeing
a world filled with
good humans being

tio stib
2017, 2020

You might also enjoy: “Desert of Dreams,” “First Snow

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

You might also enjoy: Paddling a Submarine vs. Living an Authentic Life, A Friend Passes

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

You might also enjoy: A Friend Passes, Life Journey Poems & Prose

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

You might also enjoy: A Mirrored SmileLife Journey Poems & Prose

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

You might also enjoy: The Blind Side Parables – 14; Taxi School

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

You might also enjoy: Morning Bliss; Life Journey Poems & Prose

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
  
 You might also enjoy: Inspiration; Life in Reverse

  
  
  
   

The Blind Side Parables – 14

Most of the small seaside town of Puerto Cielo was still sleeping, but the Bernie brothers had already assumed their positions. In the shade of the overhanging veranda, sitting side by side on the bench outside the entry to the 3 B’s store, they had a commanding view of Main Street. From this strategic location, armed with a cooler full of beer on ice, they could monitor the town’s goings on. And so they did each day, from sunrise until sunset, excepting Sundays when their wives dragged them to church and the beer cooler was off limits.

At their feet, laying dead still, was Lazarus. Nicknamed “Lazy,” the mutt had adopted them mostly because the morning sun on the wood deck made for a perfect place to sleep. There was very little that could stir Lazy from his deathlike slumber.

The brothers  were identical triplets, much to their mother’s surprise. In fact, so shaken was she with the news that the expected single baby boy turned out to be three, that she named them all Bernardo. Her logic, which to be fair makes some sense, was that if she called them all by the same name, she would never mix them up.

This practicality turned out to be quite convenient. If someone asked the name of one of the brothers, the response was simply, “oh, that’s Bernie.” However, between themselves, the brothers had adopted the nicknames of Paco, Poncho, and Gus.

The three had turned out to be an enterprising trio, starting the town’s first video rental store, which had done exceptionally well. They’d been practical businessmen, offering video’s that did not conflict with the town’s religious standards, although it was rumored that a special collection of “art films” existed in a secret back room.

The brothers had expanded into other branches of the blossoming IT industry, from computer sales and repair to business networking. By the time videos had disappeared and DVDs and online streaming became the rage, younger family members had taken over the business. 3B’s was now the town’s largest internet service provider, along with cell phone and computer sales and service.

Looking at the three old grizzled faces under their bleached cowboy hats, wearing faded shirts, dirty dungarees and scuffed boots, one would never guess that these were the three richest guys in town.

And so, each with a cold brew in hand, they surveyed their kingdom.

Three wrinkled faces turned to peer up the street, past the rows of crammed together multi-colored buildings on either side, towards the sound of an oncoming motorcycle.

Patrolman Castillo was in a hurry.  Having taken longer than usual to shine his knee high boots, adjust his uniform, primp in the mirror, and wax his mustache, he would now be later than desired to reach city hall. He gunned the little motorcycle’s 200 cc engine and it howled like a hive of mad hornets as he steered to miss the street’s ubiquitous water filled potholes. the ones he could not avoid sent a bone shuddering pain up his spine. 

The three Bernies watched as Castillo came into view, his cycle thunking with a splash into one last pothole before slowing in front of the two story white Stucco City Hall building across the street. 

The patrolman kicked out the bike stand and dismounted. Removing his helmet, he ran his fingers through the well oiled receding hair atop his head and gave his mustache a final twirl. Then he adjusted his equipment belt which included everything from a service revolver, flashlight, pepper spray, handcuffs, and ticket book. He hoisted and jiggled the belt about his ample waist, then stopped, took a small bottle from a chest pocket, and liberally doused his face with cologne. Satisfied that he was ready to introduce himself to the extremely attractive new girl in the accounting department, Patrolman Castillo put his helmet under one arm and strutted up the steps to City Hall to make his conquest. 

Across the way, a bottle was removed from the cooler and the top popped. The dog’s ears moved and one eye opened. The bottle of beer was put in front of his nose.

Lazarus came back from the dead. Slowly bringing himself to his feet, Lazy watched as a weathered finger pointed towards City Hall. He shook himself awake, then turned and slowly sauntered across the empty street.

With all the patience of a priestly ritual, Lazy squatted beside the parked motorcycle and dropped a steaming load. Not quite done, the dog then lifted his leg on the front tire, leaving a stream of yellow urine dripping down the wire spokes. Satisfied, he retraced his steps to the porch. Here, the dog sat in front of the three Bernies awaiting his reward.

The opened bottle of beer was tilted into Lazy’s mouth. He chugged the entire contents  empty in a series of long gulps, paused for a deep breath, then belched.  The morning exercise over, Lazarus turned two circles before collapsing in his favorite pool of sunshine and resuming the posture of his namesake.

It was Paco’s turn to make the call and he dialed 911. In a frantic voice, he told the operator that a domestic dispute was happening and gunshots had been fired. He gave the address of the mayor’s house in the west side of town and then hung up.

Patrolman Castillo had made the mistake of stopping their sister, Sylvia, for a bogus speeding violation. When she wouldn’t pay the bribe he really wanted, and screamed abuse at him, he had added harassing a police officer to the charges. The ticket had been tossed by the municipal judge, who recognizing Sylvia’s connection to the 3 B’s enterprise, was not going to jeopardize access to his favorite videos in the store’s back room. Still, Castillo had made lifelong enemies of the vengeful Bernie brothers.

Three new bottles of beer were retrieved from the cooler, tops popped, and the boys waited.

It didn’t take long. The city hall entry door flew open and patrolman Castillo hurried out, adjusting his motorcycle helmet on his head. He stepped around his cycle, slid a leg over the seat and kicked the engine into life. He rocked the bike forward to release the stand, then stopped and looked down, slowly raising his left boot.

Despite the helmet covering his face, the patrolman’s curse could be plainly heard across the street. As the frustrated cop putted off to deal with a calamity that didn’t exist, the three Bernies smiled and clinked bottles for a job well done.

The three B’s were always surprised that Castillo never grasped that he was being played. They’d sent him to investigate a peeping Tom at the town’s bordello, a robbery at the twenty four hour laundromat, and theft of the mayor’s car, all obvious hoaxes upon close inspection.

For his part, Lazarus was only too willing to help out for a tall cool one.

Moral: Never underestimate the power of a cold beer.


tio stib

Note: This is an excerpt from my current writing project, “The Resurrection of Puerto Cielo.”

You might also enjoy: The Blind Side Parables – 13; Taxi School