Shelter In Place

I’m in Jeffersonville OH tonight. I was just getting ready to take Vinny out one last time when my phone went off…tornado warning, shelter in place! I grabbed my camera and Vinny and stepped outside to the harsh drone of the local siren going off. No tornado’s but some big storms.

006 (Large)

004 (Large)

005 (Large)

010 (Large)

Sometimes nature has a way of showing you how little control you actually have in this world. I drove into Joplin MO years ago right after the big tornado they had. The vision I saw that day will be forever burned into my memory. So many people died with very little warning. Cherish every day as if it was your last.

Long Live The Pioneers, Rebels And Mutineers

052 (Large)

This is Upper Range Pond in Poland Maine. I took this picture this morning on my way down to Cumberland Center to look at a boat for sale. I wanted to sit in a 30 foot sailboat to see if it “Felt Right” and was big enough for me. You can look at pictures all day long, but getting up close and sitting onboard will tell the story. Here’s an idea of the size compared to the car beside it.

059 (Large)

This is a 1974 Pearson 30, or some call them a P30. Over 1000 of these were made. Here is the copy from the add:

New lower price, motivated to sell.
Always a cruiser, never used as a racing boat and always well-maintained.
Ready to be launched.
New North sails at a cost of $4,500 included
Pearson 30 Hull #374
This family friendly, comfortable cruiser set the standard. “Over” built in 1974. Sleeps 6: The main cabin has a double berth, quarter berth and single bunk, private v-beth sleeps two, separate head with sink, galley, plenty of storage.
Edison steering wheel with compass
New North Sails, used 2 seasons, very white and crisp
Furlex Roller reefing for genoa
Main sail has one set of reef points, the genoa has roller reefing
Lazy jacks
Lewmar winches
Boom vang
New genoa sheets
3 halyards
Bow anchor mount, Danforth anchor, chain and 200″ of line
Smaller picnic Danforth anchor
All fenders and lines included
Newer lifelines, with a gate on the starboard side
VHS radio
Stuffing box recently serviced
Dodger (which is a bit “dodgy”)
Stern ladder
Cockpit cushions
Interior cushions in good condition
Sleeps 6: private v-berth, slide out double bed/bench, quarter berth and starboard berth
Screen door for companionway
Raritan LectraSan head
New 2 burner Cook Mate stove with wooden cutting board top
Ice chest
Solar fan in v-berth hatch cover for fresh air circulation
Headroom 6″3′
Yanmar 2gm20 with 823 hours
Well serviced
Solid decks, no soft spots, all fiberglass is in great shape.
saw horses for the mast during winter storage, to store the mast above the boat.
This model boat has a reputation of being easy to sail, very responsive and above average in build quality. As I looked her over and sat inside, I realized 30 feet is enough for me. At almost 10000 lbs it will be comfortable in heavy seas compared to anything smaller, and has the space for the gear I would need to live aboard. Even though it is 43 years old it’s in great shape. Here’s a few pictures of an identical sister boat as we did not take off the cover.

as long as its funI’ve talked about Lin & Larry Parday before. They are two of the foremost “Cruisers” in the world today having circumnavigated 4 times I believe in boats under 30 feet that they built themselves. Their motto is “Go small, and go now!” That’s become very apparent to me lately as I thought about how long it would take me to save the money for a bigger, better boat.

Over the last few weeks I have been planning how much I could save over the next year to purchase a smaller boat, and today solidified Lin & Larry’s motto in my mind. Something this size is all I need, so I bought it!

That’s right, you read it correctly. I bought this boat! They wanted $8500.00 and I took a shot and offered $1000.00 down and $500.00 per week until paid for, and they accepted! I almost fell down with excitement but I kept my composure until about halfway back to Bangor. Poor Vinny must have thought I was mad as I half cried then yelled so loud he jumped! I can’t believe it’s actually started, my goal is starting to come into focus.

It will take about a year to refit this boat the way I want before I launch it, but that’s OK now that I have something to work on. I should have this paid off by September and have it hauled up to my area then. I can do some exterior work this fall, interior this winter with a heater, and finish the exterior next spring, I hope to launch next season to at least sail during the summer, then maybe work one more winter before I officially become a “Liveaboard” full time. Even if it take another two years to finish the boat completely, I don’t care at this point, my journey to a better life has started.

The next time you feel your backed in a corner, nowhere to turn. The next time you see no hope for a better life, feel like giving up. Dig deeper and know if you try just one more day, you never know what will find you.Watch the video of this song, the title of which will be the name of my boat and my future, and understand what it REALLY means to overcome hardship.


Run away with me
Lost souls and reverie
Running wild and running free
Two kids, you and me

And I say
Hey, hey hey hey
Living like we’re renegades
Hey hey hey
Hey hey hey
Living like we’re renegades
Renegades, renegades

Long live the pioneers
Rebels and mutineers
Go forth and have no fear
Come close the end is near

And I say hey, hey hey hey
Living like we’re renegades
Hey hey hey
Hey hey hey
Living like we’re renegades
Renegades, renegades

All hail the underdogs
All hail the new kids
All hail the outlaws
Spielberg’s and Kubrick’s

It’s our time to make a move
It’s our time to make amends
It’s our time to break the rules
Let’s begin

And I say hey, hey hey hey
Living like we’re renegades
Hey hey hey
Hey hey hey
Leaving like we’re renegades
Renegades, renegades

Renegades – X Ambassadors



An Old Familiar Place

Another week behind the wheel, another week closer to my goals. I’m parked in Dingman’s Ferry Pa again tonight, and I took Vinny for a walk up the hill. Anytime the weather is good we go up top to stretch our legs.

IMG_9084 (Large)

I say hill, but it’s not much really. This may only be a parking area by a McDonald’s, but it’s better than a dirty old truck stop! It’s a short steep hill but worth the climb.

IMG_9085 (Large)

IMG_9092 (Large)

The wind is strong today but the temp is 70 or so and Vinny just stands there as it blows past, slowly sniffing the scents we will never notice.

IMG_9103 (Large)

I think it would be good to be a dog. Every moment a cascade of pleasure surrounded by the people that care for you and the simple pleasures only a dog could know. Sometimes he stares at the sky and I wonder if he can appreciate the beautiful blue color.

IMG_9111 (Large)

When the wind rustles the dry leaves in the woods, does he sense the rhythm of nature, the symphony it places before us if we listen?

IMG_9112 (Large)

I can’t help but feel a sense of comfort, a feeling of calm as I sit here. I’m in my element outdoors and I relish every moment I have to spend in the sunlight. Tomorrow I will drive 600 or more miles, and by Wednesday morning I will be in Georgia and half my week will be over. I hope to be back by Saturday so I can visit some people that have an existing charity in Maine and have offered to help me start my plan of sailing adventures for veterans and their children. I’m very excited to get started down my chosen path, my chance to make up for past mistakes and make a real difference. You can stand me up at the gates of hell but I won’t back down.

I’ll Remember

Hmm, hmm
Say goodbye
Not knowing when
The truth in my whole life began
Say goodbye
Not knowing how to cry
You taught me that

And I’ll remember
The strength that you gave me
Now that I’m standing on my own
I’ll remember
The way that you saved me
I’ll remember

Inside I was a child
That could not mend a broken wing
Outside I looked for a way
To teach my heart to sing

And I’ll remember
The love that you gave me
Now that I’m standing on my own
I’ll remember
The way that you changed me
I’ll remember

I learned
To let go
Of the illusion
That we can possess
I learned to let go
I travel in stillness
And I’ll remember happiness
I’ll remember, hmm

I’ll remember, hmm
And I’ll remember
The love that you gave me
Now that I’m standing on my own
I’ll remember
The way that you changed me
I’ll remember (I’ll rememeber)

Now I’ll never be afraid to cry
Now I finally have a reason why

I’ll remember (I’ll remember)
Now I’ll never be afraid to cry
Now I finally have a reason why

I’ll remember (I’ll remember)
Now I’ll never be afraid to cry
And I finally have a reason why

I’ll remember (I’ll remember)
Now I’ll never be afraid to cry
And I finally have a reason why

I’ll Remember – Madonna

I remember one day when you dropped me at kindergarten so long ago.
I remember going to Red’s Dairy Freeze.
I remember cookouts in Fort Williams.
I remember riding my coaster on a hill in Fort Williams.
I remember riding into Portland in your pickup.
I remember you rushing me to Dr. Russel when I had a reaction to a bee sting.
I remember sitting on a spare tire while you pulled Cheryl and I with your truck on the frozen lake.
I remember going with you to work on Exchange St.
I remember you picking me up many times when I had no ride.
I remember how hard you worked to make sure we were provided for.
I remember you always had Life Savers in your pocket.
I remember how much you loved Ginger your dog.
I remember helping build your house in Poland Maine.
I remember helping you plow and sand the camp road.
I remember camping at Tumbledown.
I remember how you struggled with cancer, and how I should have been there more for you.
I remember getting angry with you because I didn’t understand your behavior.
I remember watching you decline so quickly once the dementia took over.
I remember how helpless I felt.
I remember living with you and mom in Strong, and how much I wanted to help you.
I remember how much we really did love each other, we just couldn’t find the words.
I remember visiting you at Togus when you jumped out of your chair and hugged me.
I remember how much I regret not making a stronger effort before it was too late.

I remember how much I miss you Dad.

IMG_8945 (Large)

Take The Good With The Bad

I’m at a very bad truck stop tonight in North Carolina. It’s the kind of stop you don’t want to walk around at night so I take Vinny out one last time at dusk. Here you see the usual trash cast aside by those with no respect for others.

IMG_9078 (Large)

Like I always do I try to find some corner of content, a little wedge of clear elegance in the midst of human disregard. I think I succeeded.

IMG_9077 (Large)

This field of wheat reminds us that even surrounded by people that don’t care, in the middle of the decay of society as a whole, the beauty of nature shines through to give us something to be thankful for. For one to truly live a life of fulfillment we must learn to look past the jagged edges, through the barbed wire, and take the good with the bad.

IMG_9081 (Large)

Higher Ground

People keep on learnin’
Soldiers keep on warrin’
World keep on turnin’
‘Cause it won’t be too long

Powers keep on lyin’
While your people keep on dyin’
World keep on turnin’
‘Cause it won’t be too long

I’m so darn glad he let me try it again
‘Cause my last time on earth I lived a whole world of sin
I’m so glad that I know more than I knew then
Gonna keep on tryin’
Till I reach my highest ground

Teachers keep on teachin’
Preachers keep on preachin’
World keep on turnin’
‘Cause it won’t be too long, oh no

Lovers keep on lovin’
Believers keep on believin’
Sleepers just stop sleepin’
‘Cause it won’t be too long, oh no

I’m so glad that he let me try it again
‘Cause my last time on earth I lived a whole world of sin
I’m so glad that I know more than I knew then
Gonna keep on tryin’
Till I reach my highest ground

An’ Stevie knows that nobody’s gonna bring me down
Till I reach the highest ground, ’cause me ‘n’ Stevie, see
We’re gonna be a sailin’ on the funky, funky sound (till I reach the highest ground)
Bustin’ out and I’ll break you out, ’cause I’m sailin’ on
(Till I reach the highest ground)
Just sailin’ on, sailin’ on the higher ground (till I reach the highest ground)

Higher Ground – Red Hot Chili Peppers

Someone said to me recently that I was reinventing myself on this blog, but I don’t see it that way. I think I’m the same person now as I was in my youth, minus the drugs! I don’t think much of who we are on a very deep level changes over our lifetimes. Sure your opinion about this or that will differ, your taste in friends may temper, but the core of who you are will not. You still hold on to the things that brought you joy, you still like the same music, you still follow the same ideals. Were you born with this? To some degree yes, but alot of it was taught to you when you were young by your parents, teachers, and even the shows you watched on TV. You are the cumulative effect of genetics and outside influences in your formative years.

So who am I? I have asked myself that question alot over the last few years, and I think I denied the truth as a way to placate those to whom I feel the most connected, the few that matter in my life. I’ve tried to keep a balance of what they wanted and what matters to me to keep the peace, not ruffle feathers as it were. But I understand now that if they truly care about me, as I’m sure they do, they will accept me no matter what. Here’s a few truth’s about who I really am!

I love hard ass rock and roll. I know many of the songs I put on my blog could be considered mellow, but I am really edgy and heavy metal underneath. Nothing fires me up more than playing Higher Ground at 120 decibels on my new car stereo! I get too loud and curse alot when I’ve had a few, much to the disdain of those with me. I like guns and have many, including an AR15 and a 44 magnum revolver. I don’t like people much and prefer to keep to myself most of the time. I do put on a good show around those I work with, but only 2 have proven to be anything more than workmates. Their loss I say.

My goal for the future is quite simple, get away from society as much as reasonably possible. I’m tired of the social drama you have to go through just to fit in. I don’t care about your kids, your new house, what car you drive or how much you make. I’m tired of all the insecure imps thinking with their genitals, spouting their ill informed liberal opinions about this group or that, trying to impose their belief system on the nation as a whole. I’m not saying you should shut up, you have the right to speak your mind. I’m saying I don’t have to listen to you. In comes the sailboat.

With a sailboat I can have what I feel has always been at the core of who I am. FREEDOM! I won’t be tied to any one place, free to go where I choose when I choose. Free to be the person I so long to be, free to express in pictures what inspires me the most…nature in it’s raw form. Although I can be a little abrasive, deep down I am very sensitive about certain things. Every day I see animals dead on the highway, and every time it bothers me. I can’t watch anything about animals being killed, even by other animals! Nature is what it is, but I’m not fascinated with watching animals die. One of the hardest days of my life will be when I have to put my dog Vinny down in the not so distant future. I’m not an activist by any means, nor am I a vegetarian. If I was hungry enough Bambi would be on the table, but animals should be treated humanely.

I don’t care about the middle east, and I’m never going to visit a Muslim country. They have been killing their own for centuries with no end in sight. Yes it’s sad what happens to the people in war ravaged countries, but it’s their own doing. If they really wanted to end their strife they need to stand up as one and take control of their countries. I’m not against sending food or medical supplies but that’s it. We need to take care of our own now instead of sending our sons and daughters to die in another country. And if you choose to go over to volunteer and get abducted, your on your own…STUPID! What did you think was going to happen?

The only thing in this country that is a right is “Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” and that’s all. the rest are gifts as we are the most generous people in the world. You are not entitled to anything else unless you are willing to work for it. My father was never without a job, even when it meant working in the cold winters of Maine. He understood what it was to be a citizen, to take care of your own, to carry your own weight. As children we wanted for nothing, we felt secure, and I thank him and my mother for their efforts.

Yes there are those to whom we should strive to take care of, those who through no fault of their own, cannot support themselves for one reason or another. I don’t think anyone would deny them food, clothing, shelter or medical needs. But today’s society has become a feeding ground for all those who are not willing to put forth the effort, those who feel they are entitled to these things. I for one am tired of paying for you, so in the future I will work only enough for me to live so I can pay almost no taxes that go to those who abuse the system. I will do my part for those that deserve help through voluntarism and direct help. Their is nothing more satisfying than looking into the eyes of someone you have helped in a direct way. It’s all the payment you need.

No, I’m not reinventing myself. I’m embracing who I really am without the worry of being judged, without apology for the things I hold dear. As I strive for my Higher Ground I feel a great relief in expressing what I feel is my life’s work, my true purpose in this world. I wish to bring another perspective of what life has to offer, another view of the world around us. I want to put in pictures how I see the beauty around us that so many take for granted, the quiet side of our existence on this planet called Earth. If we could learn to live with nature, go back to a simpler time, I think we could understand what it means to have a better life worth living.

PS: On another crazy note of who I am…I get my first tattoo’s in a few weeks!

Am I Alive Or Thoughts That Drift Away?

Jan lays down and wrestles in her sleep
Moonlight spills on comic books
And superstars in magazines
An old friend calls and tells us where to meet
Her plane takes off from Baltimore
And touches down on Bourbon Street

We sit outside and argue all night long
About a god we’ve never seen
But never fails to side with me
Sunday comes and all the papers say
Ma Teresa’s joined the mob
And happy with her full time job

Do do do do do do

Am I alive or thoughts that drift away?
Does summer come for everyone?
Can humans do as prophets say?
And if I die before I learn to speak
Can money pay for all the days I lived awake
But half asleep?

Do do do do do do

A life is time, they teach us growing up
The seconds ticking killed us all
A million years before the fall
You ride the waves and don’t ask where they go
You swim like lions through the crest
And bathe yourself on zebra flesh

I’ve been downhearted baby,
I’ve been downhearted baby,
Ever since the day we met

Standing Outside A Broken Phone Booth With Money In My Hand – Primitive Radio Gods

I needed some downtime today so I went for a ride down the coast of Maine to recharge my inner battery. I’ve had a difficult couple weeks as of late and time alone with Vinny and my thoughts always helps to refocus my mind back to what I am working so hard for. Interactions with people have drained me to the point that the only person I wanted to see today was my mom, and I stopped to see her during my escape. She’s the only person that really matters to me at this point and I was happy to see she was doing well.

IMG_9033 (Large)

There’s something about the coast that gives me a feeling of peace, the toils of life seem to fade ever so slightly into the background. The smell of the salt air combined with the mud flats bring me back to a more innocent time as a child sitting by the shore in Cape Elizabeth. I stopped many times today when the view called to me.

IMG_9039 (Large)

I made my way down to LL Bean again to look at canoes for this summers adventures. They have a wonderful assortment of kayaks and canoe’s to choose from. I think an “Old Town Discovery 119” solo will do the trick. I don’t mind paying a premium for quality that will last a lifetime and these canoe’s fit the bill.

IMG_9061 (Large)

IMG_9059 (Large)

IMG_9058 (Large)

When I made it to Brunswick I stopped at a wire bridge to walk Vinny and get a closer look. The river is roaring right now and the day was brilliant. A great day to be in Maine.

IMG_9049 (Large)

IMG_9046 (Large)

IMG_9045 (Large)

As far as I have come over the last few years I still find I’m wrestling with demons of my past, still looking for release from the sometimes harsh reality of the world we live in. As I sat beside the water today I’m reminded of what it is that has always given me the most happiness, the soft blanket to rest my soul on. Walking with my dog, the solitude in nature, no sound but the wind, the sun on my face. Some moments are so surreal I ask myself, Am I alive or thoughts that drift away?

Soon I’ll Be 60 Years Old

Once I was seven years old my momma told me
Go make yourself some friends or you’ll be lonely
Once I was seven years old

It was a big big world, but we thought we were bigger
Pushing each other to the limits, we were learning quicker
By eleven smoking herb and drinking burning liquor
Never rich so we were out to make that steady figure

Once I was eleven years old my daddy told me
Go get yourself a wife or you’ll be lonely
Once I was eleven years old

I always had that dream like my daddy before me
So I started writing songs, I started writing stories
Something about that glory just always seemed to bore me
‘Cause only those I really love will ever really know me

Once I was twenty years old, my story got told
Before the morning sun, when life was lonely
Once I was twenty years old

I only see my goals, I don’t believe in failure
‘Cause I know the smallest voices, they can make it major
I got my boys with me at least those in favor
And if we don’t meet before I leave, I hope I’ll see you later

Once I was twenty years old, my story got told
I was writing about everything, I saw before me
Once I was twenty years old
Soon we’ll be thirty years old, our songs have been sold
We’ve traveled around the world and we’re still roaming
Soon we’ll be thirty years old

I’m still learning about life
My woman brought children for me
So I can sing them all my songs
And I can tell them stories
Most of my boys are with me
Some are still out seeking glory
And some I had to leave behind
My brother I’m still sorry

Soon I’ll be sixty years old, my daddy got sixty-one
Remember life and then your life becomes a better one
I made a man so happy when I wrote a letter once
I hope my children come and visit, once or twice a month

Soon I’ll be sixty years old, will I think the world is cold
Or will I have a lot of children who can warm me
Soon I’ll be sixty years old
Soon I’ll be sixty years old, will I think the world is cold
Or will I have a lot of children who can warm me
Soon I’ll be sixty years old

Once I was seven years old, momma told me
Go make yourself some friends or you’ll be lonely
Once I was seven years old

Once I was seven years old

Lukas Graham – 7 Years

I heard this song for the first time today. I almost changed the station as I don’t usually listen to this style of music, but I’m glad I listened as I think I have found my next favorite song. It hit me really hard as I watched the video just now, and I had to write this post to get the feelings out or I might burst.

IMG_8253 (Large)My life to date has been a jumbled mess. Innumerable hours spent sitting alone by the ocean as a very young boy just hoping my dad would come and sit beside me. Trying desperately to fit in with the other kids in school, never really succeeding. Getting married with the hopes of having someone to share my life with, only to be tossed aside for someone else. I know I’m not alone with these sad occurrences, but these are mine and they hurt.

As I look at the scales of my life they are unbalanced, many more bad moments than good. Soon I’ll be 60 years old, and the passing of time seems to be speeding up. Do I have 30 years left? Since there’s no way to know I had better get to work balancing those scales.

mainI think these thoughts started Friday when I buried my father, I just needed something to help sort them out. This song made me look at my past in a way that reflected my underlying need for redemption, my search for the answers we all seek. It reinforced my goal of freedom on a boat and my want to touch the lives of fathers and sons that may be struggling to reach each other. Maybe if I can help them it will be like connecting with my dad in the way I always dreamed of.

I have reached out to other charitable groups that help veterans for the purpose of insight into the methods of starting my own non profit as I described in this post. Alone In A Field  I was going to wait until I had amassed enough funds to purchase the boat myself, but I feel that’s what I have been doing all my life…waiting. There’s no better time than the present, I say now is the time before time runs out.

DCIM100GOPROAnother thing happened to me in the last few days that reinforced my feeling that I can only really count on me. (And Vinny, of course!) No one is going to give me more strength than I can draw from within, no one can push me to succeed better than I can. I’ve heard it said that there’s always one person in the midst of any bad situation that steps up and handles the problems because they have the strength to see it through, the will to face it head on. I think I’m that person and I’m not going to back down now.

Starting this week I will put everything I have into this venture. I paid off my car last week and I am completely debt free now. I will still go camping this summer and share many pictures of Vinny and I’s adventures in the “Outback” of Maine, but every spare penny, every spare moment will be dedicated towards my purpose. I will make a difference or die trying.



I Won’t Back Down

Well I won’t back down, no I won’t back down
You can stand me up at the gates of Hell
But I won’t back down

No I’ll stand my ground, won’t be turned around
And I’ll keep this world from draggin’ me down
Gonna stand my ground and I won’t back down

(I won’t back)
Hey baby, there ain’t no easy way out
(I won’t back down)
Hey I will stand my ground
And I won’t back down

Well I know what’s right, I got just one life
In a world that keeps on pushin’ me around
But I’ll stand my ground and I won’t back down

(I won’t back down)
Hey baby there ain’t no easy way out
(I won’t back down)
Hey I will stand my ground
(I won’t back down)
And I won’t back down

(I won’t back down)
Hey baby there ain’t no easy way out
(I wont back down)
Hey I won’t back down

(I won’t back down)
Hey baby there ain’t no easy way out
(I won’t back down)
Hey I will stand my ground
(I won’t back down)
And I won’t back down
(I won’t back down)
No, I won’t back down
Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers – I Won’t Back Down

IMG_8931 (Large)

My father was born on April 28, 1929 and he would have been 88 today. At precisely 12 noon, I buried him. It was a simple ceremony with an honor guard playing taps and the formal flag folding. The young soldiers were very serious and precise, a fine example of the men that represent the best this country has to offer. When the officer presented the flag to me and thanked my father and I for his service on behalf of a grateful nation, I could see true sorrow in his eyes. I will forever be grateful to him and his service in my time of need.

IMG_8933 (Large)

My father was laid to rest beside many others that paid their dues so we could live a life of freedom and happiness. Safe we are behind the walls of this republic, the foundation set in the founding documents of this country that so many have fought and died for, and many take for granted. Would they feel the same had today been about their father? Would they burn the flag to spite the fallen? I for one believe they have that right BECAUSE of the sacrifice of my father and all the others, and they can choose to exercise that right if they want, but I feel they are misguided.

IMG_8938 (Large)

My father was never one to follow politics. He had his beliefs and ideals he followed throughout his life, viewpoints about this story or that, but it was always tempered by the feeling that we should all be equal in our treatment of others. Yes he shared opinions of this group or that, sometimes even a little prejudiced in it’s manor, but he was not openly hostile towards others in public as we see on an almost daily basis now from some younger people in this country. These people take protesting too far and approach the border of anarchy. They are not fit to walk the same soil as my father but I would not take away their right to.

IMG_8941 (Large)

As I walked down this path I felt the crush of sorrow for those who left this world in such a tragic way. Many didn’t even truly understand what they were fighting for, but they did their best for their buddies and us and I will forever be grateful. Freedom is not given, it’s earned. Earned by the sweet of our brows when we work for our pay, when the soil is tilled to grow crops to feed the many, when we help another that can’t help themselves. But the largest payment for our freedom has been paid by the military and the men and women who paid the ultimate price.

IMG_8945 (Large)

I placed my father in the cold ground today with what was his favorite possession at the end of his life, his Korean War Hat. His mind was so muddled towards the end that a simple hat meant more to him than anything. I protected it for you dad and made sure you got it back. I cant look at that picture without breaking down, without feeling some guilt for not trying harder at the end of his life to have a closer relationship. This was the hardest day of my life and I will spend this evening alone with my dog and reflect on a life now gone and what it meant to me. Goodbye Dad, I’m sorry for everything.

Lightning Crashes

Lightning crashes a new mother cries
Her placenta falls to the floor
The angel opens her eyes
The confusion sets in
Before the doctor can even close the door

Lightning crashes an old mother dies
Her intentions fall to the floor
The angel closes her eyes
The confusion that was hers
Belongs now to the baby down the hall

Oh now feel it, comin’ back again
Like a rollin’, thunder chasing the wind
Forces pullin’ from
The center of the earth again
I can feel it.

Lightning crashes a new mother cries
This moment she’s been waiting for
The angel opens her eyes
Pale blue colored iris
Presents the circle
And puts the glory out to hide, hide

Oh now feel it, comin’ back again
Like a rollin’, thunder chasing the wind
Forces pullin’ from
The center of the earth again
I can feel it.

Oh now feel it, comin’ back again
Like a rollin’, thunder chasing the wind
Forces pullin’ from
The center of the earth again
I can feel it.

Oh now feel it, comin’ back again
Like a rollin’, thunder chasing the wind
Forces pullin’ from
The center of the earth again
I can feel it.

How much control do we really have over our lives? Can we overcome anything that confronts us? We like to think we are the masters of our fate, our decision making powers provide us with the ability to take charge of the circumstances that present themselves to us, the forethought to have prepared for the worst. We are going to make our mark in this world before we die, we can make a difference that will leave a lasting change in the fate of others. But what if were wrong? What if there’s no rhyme or reason to it?

IMG_8868 (Large)

Will this be the last sunset I ever see? If so, can I savor it in the here and now with the knowledge of whats to come? I think not. I think we have no idea of whats going to happen in the future with any certainty. Oh we can plan for this contingency or that, prepare for bad times with the hope of skating by with little damage, but I truly feel it’s mostly just dumb luck.

IMG_8883 (Large)

Was this pond formed for the expressed purpose of providing a habitat for the woodland animals and migrating birds in this area, or was it just because it was gouged out by a glacier during the last ice age in the correct shape to hold water? How did the fish arrive in it’s depths? I think the human mind can think up all kinds of methods or reason many ways that this or that happened, but ultimately we don’t really know for sure. We can attribute some sort of consequence that led to our existence on this planet but we have no solid proof to show for certain how it came about.

I choose to believe there is a balance to all things. An underlying equilibrium that plays into everyday life. Not fate per say, but more of a poetry of existence that shows itself in the opposites of every action. As every child is born, someone dies having lived a full life, after a forest burns, new seedlings sprout to once again showcase the splendor of nature. A storm may wipe away a desert landscape, but a fuller array of life comes forth where only sand was before.

IMG_8895 (Large)

Like this flowering tree against a cloudy sky, life provides many contrasts, many colors that soothe the everyday trials. Our senses provide the impetus that completes the circle, the stimulation that gives us clarity of our surroundings. Each smell and taste, sight and sound, conspire to bring everyday experiences into a more concise arrangement, a palate of life full of the colors that show us how wonderful it is to be alive in this world. I for one relish every day of life and will continue until it’s last breath.