Surviving

Feeling the warmth of the sun on a cloudy day. A glimpse into a blind billy goat's unique, ever changing perspectives.

2017 06 26 Journal Excerpt Page 40 June 26, 2017

 

Some days I don’t feel much like writing. Other days, it feels like I didn’t write enough, or I didn’t write about the right thing, or I strayed to the left when I should have veered to the right. Through all of my time spent writing, I have built up quite an assorted array of essays, stories, poems, and a ton of other things that I don’t really know what to call. Through my fingertips a new world has arrived, and as I have read back through this journal, I’m glad I was chosen to create the text.

 

In a word, thanks.

 

Deon

 

***

 

Page 40

Fall 2011

 

During the month of October, I had the chance to attend my first white cane and guide dog walk of independence in Augusta. My wife, son and grandson Jack also came along, and again I had the chance to meet some people in the blind community of Central Maine. The day was perfect, with warm temps and sunshine flooding the streets of the capitol, and as the canes and paws made our way around the downtown area, I realized that when it came to mobility with my white cane, I wasn’t alone.

 

My retired VRC Leona McKenna was also in attendance, but she wasn’t able to go on the walk with us. She had just been through a rather difficult surgery procedure on one of her feet, but she was there 100 percent in heart and spirit.

 

I did get the chance to talk with another woman, Marge Awalt, and her husband Hugh. They had brought a door prize with them, a voice activated dog that reacted to an accompanying book being read. Did I describe that good enough for you to follow along? Anyway, it was a pretty cool door prize that Jack ended up winning.

 

I just talked with my friend Lynn Merril on the phone, and she remembers being there. By the way, I should remind you again that this page post differs from others, in that I am writing it right now, the 25th of June, 2017. I am gap solving with additional journal info that I never wrote about, until now.

 

Well, the fall was full of differences, as you can imagine, and that I never would imagine. A funny thing happened on the way to writing a short story for my Saturday online writer’s group. We were directed to write a short story for Halloween, and so I set off on a quest to do just that.

 

I didn’t end up writing a short story though.

 

Usually short stories consist of roughly ten pages or so. As I started writing my story, something inside me kicked into gear. I knew after a couple pages that this story wasn’t going to be a short story. Just the way the events started happening, and the way that the movie inside my head was playing, I knew it was more than a short story.

 

Well, Saturday came, and during the group meeting everyone started discussing their stories. During the week leading up to the meeting, members usually submitted their writing piece to the groups list serve, an email list only accessible by group members. This way, the writers had a chance to read the other writer’s submissions in preparations for the next meeting.

 

Anyway, the online meeting started, and the critiques started flowing. When the critique moved to my submission, I told the members that I tried to write a short story, but couldn’t find an ending to it, so I submitted it anyway.

 

Everyone seemed to like the 8 or nine page submission, which I had entitled, Chapter One. There was another writer in the group who decided not to write a short story, but instead continued with chapters of a lengthy story he was writing. Even though I felt a little awkward not being able to end the short story, I shrugged it off as a stepping stone for things to come.

 

And come they did.

 

During this time, my sessions with Mike Adams also continued. I was becoming more comfortable with using my computer, as well as web stuff, in particular, my blog. I had started the blog off with posts declaring my hate for cancer. I had named the blog “Surviving”, as a reminder that I was a cancer survivor, or as I like to say, a cancer conquerer. I hadn’t really thought that the name could mean so many different things, such as surviving blindness, mobility lessons, lawn mower repairs, one sock coming out of the dryer, and probably the worst thing of all, running out of chocolate. The word had so many possibilities, and with each possibility came a world of issues, of chances, of opportunities that could either set you on your ass, or pick you up and take you to the other side where the roses were handed to you in the winner’s circle.

 

Yes, the lessons with Mike proved to be very beneficial, as I had become very dependant on my computer. I communicated with people with it. I felt so comfortable with writing, and while doing so, I didn’t have to worry about maneuvering around my day. I did my maneuvering with the keypad and my fingers. The text that JAWS read to me became a world that I could control, and without the vision there were so many things that I was constantly coming in contact with that kept reminding me how much of my day was completely out of my control. I mean, how could anyone control what they couldn’t see? How is that possible?

 

So many times those slogans of AA came into play, Keep it simple stupid, Turn it Over, Let go, Let God, they all reminded me of the one true thing that I could always control, and that was me. Little old me.

 

Every once in a while I go back and read an old blog post. Often times I sit and laugh while reading, and I ask myself how I ever learned how to write the things I do, the way that I do. I’ve often said that my writing is sometimes like a ping pong ball bouncing all over the place. I just shrug it off, and consider that as long as all the words end up on the screen, then it’s all good. Most of the time, they do, but how the hell would I know? grin

 

And now, for those three little words,

 

To be continued…

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2017 04 29 Poetry: Road Map April 29, 2017

29 down, and 1 to go. Actually, many many more than 1 to go, because it feels like my writing is never finished, and there’s something else that I need to write about. Thousands of words, lines, sentences, phrases, thoughts, descriptions and meanings, all rolled into 7 years of hunting, finding and punching keys, and there’s still something I feel I need to write about.

I never dreamed I would reach the age I am. I never dreamed of being married. I never dreamed of having a child, a son and a grandson. I never thought. I just never.

We lost our power tonight, and I was right near the end of another poem I was going to submit tonight. Unfortunately, I didn’t save the stupid thing, and lost it with the outage, so, below you’ll find another one I just wrote. It’s quite a bit different than the first one, and try as I did, I couldn’t come close to remembering it.

I know, I know, a lot of you are shaking your head right now. Some are thinking what a fool am I, some are thinking about a similar experience, some are just wondering when I’m gonna stop rambling and get on with the poetry.

No matter what the lessons are that we learn, life continues to chug along at a pretty good clip, and that ain’t the half of it.

Ok then. Right. Here we go with my 29th submission for this National Poetry Month. This is actually only my 27th submission, as I skipped two days. Like I told a good friend, I’m still batting over 900, which ain’t too bad in baseball terms.

And away we go! Happy Saturday night to you all, and whatever happens, don’t you ever stop writing.

Best to you all.

Deon

***

Road Map

There’s a road map sketched in my mind,
Taking me to places I’ve already been,
Taking me to places I have already seen,
Taking me to places I will never let go.

There’s a song playing in my mind,
Singing to me a childhood lullaby,
Singing to me some old time rock & roll,
Singing to me some folksy blues.

There are pages turning in my mind,
Reading out loud about a shy, timid little boy,
Reading to me about an unexpected love story,
Reading to me about an incredible non fiction drama.

There’s a movie playing in my mind,
Showing a classic that I can watch again and again,
Showing me an unforgettable theme,
Showing me a fascinating 3D epic drama.

There is an image collage displaying in my mind,
Picturing a life changing gears,
Picturing a life changing lanes,
Picturing a life unfolding a worn and tattered road map.

 

2017 04 20 Poetry, Colors of Spring April 20, 2017

Well this past Easter Sunday it looked like spring was here to stay put, but oh how this Maine weather can turn on a dime. It snowed today, and rained, and the raw chill to the April air reminded me once again where I live. Now, don’t get me wrong, as I love living in Maine. Heck, it’s all I’ve ever known, but it seems the older I get, the older I get. Grin

The colors of spring have a habit of arriving on time, although it seems a little late some years. With those colors come so many characteristics that lend to the array of imagination and reality. Nature comes in many forms, and as the colors hold their own story, so too do the bright eyes and bushy tails that scamper around from color to color.

Oh ya, don’t forget the flyers. How could we ever forget the magnificent flyers of the skies.

I wish you all a colorful April day, and may there be many more to follow for you all.

This poem is my submission for April the 20th. NPM is still going strong, and BOE is living, writing proof.

Deon

***

Colors of Spring

Crocuses breathe a sigh of relief
Daffodils trumpet their call
Daisies and tulips paint a scene
A colorful canvas stands tall

A woodchuck yawns away his rest
A pole cat waddles by
A chipmunk hangs upside down from a tree
The osprey soars out with a cry

Starlings line up and head on north
The flight of the geese is heard
Humming birds dart and dance about
The recipe of spring is stirred

 

2017 04 19 Poetry, Harmonious April 19, 2017

April 19th, and here we are again.

I’ve spoke often about how I like to write poetry. It doesn’t matter whether or not the words rhyme to me, as long as the poem flows like a song.

I’ve always been fascinated by what people can do with the power of text. The strength of words can overwhelm you if you’re not aware of their ability to creep into your soul and have their way with your passions, your desires, your soul and any other thing you give up to the letters. I love that about writing, and when you feel the emotion stirred up with script, well, it doesn’t get any better than that, or worse? Depending on the style, the experience, the perceptions and the inspiration, it all melts and forms a place in our hearts that can’t be ignored.

The following poem is in honor to all of you, to all through time who have graced the pages with poetry. I will always love how it can change with a read, how it can form into so many different things, and how it can hypnotize the mind as it bends the page.

Thanks to you all for lending us your poetic phrase through this National Poetry Month of April 2017.

Take good care, and don’t ever stop writing.

Deon

***

Harmonious

Once upon a passionate time,
Along came a talented poet.
It seemed that everything this guy wrote, rhymed.
Couldn’t you, wouldn’t you know it?

Phrases lengthy and not so much,
Formed a unique rhythmic song.
No matter where the words carried themselves,
He just couldn’t type no wrong.

From the time he was but a wee little boy,
To an older man turning grey,
The stanzas formed, the poems took shape,
Until the light disappeared for each day.

His collection grew large as his time here grew small,
But he never paid it no mind.
He just licked the tip of his pencil a bit,
And rhymed every word he could find.

A lifetime has passed since this poet of old,
Crafted his musical phrase.
The melodies formed from the lines of text,
Shall last through the end of all days.

A harmonious script of musical words,
Was his gift to the eyes of our young,
The tides of chorus that rolled with the seas,
Were those same rhythmic songs that he sung.

 

2016 04 17 Poetry: Mr. Moon April 17, 2016

One thing I used to love to do was sit and stare up at the moon. Different times of the month brought down a different view. New moon, crescent moon, half moon, last quarter and good old full moon. My favorite was the crescent moon, especially when you could hang a bucket on the bottom of it. I also used to love looking up at a full moon when there was a ring around it. It seemed to shine a little brighter than usual when that ring showed up. I remember as a kid, out sliding in the winter under a ful moon. It was like there was this huge flashlight hanging up in the sky. Pretty cool stuff I’d say.

I’ve always been amazed how something so big, so old, never veers from its track. It’s a constant that is always, well, constant.

Not many things in life are a constant, outside of love that is. What’s here one minute, can be completely gone the next. It’s just a never ending barrage of inconsistency, and there he is, my good old friend, Mr. Moon.

Thanks for dropping by, and if you get the chance, take a look up at the sky at a dear old friend.

Take good care and shine on.

dp

****

Mr. Moon!
A poem by DP Lyons

So there you sit, all big, round and fat.
Can’t you see that down here’s where it’s at?
I thought you’d have figured that out by now,
With that innocent look, and that one raised brow.

So all you do is just float there and spin?
Do you always have to wear that cheshire cat grin?
How’s about you throw me a slice of that cheese.
Ok, alright, I heard you. Umm, please?

You know, we could probably use a hand down here.
This rickety ride’s getting rougher to steer.
Our map is all faded, our compass is broke.
It seems that we’re always the butt of a joke.

It’s not quite the same as when I was a kid.
It seems we’ve gone into a wickedly skid.
Some folks will tell you how wonderful it is,
While others won’t jest, they’ll just give you the biz.

We work and we play while we laugh and we cry
We pray to the orb that just hangs in the sky.
And there you sit, with that sharp cheddar grin,
All covered in cheese, from your cheeks to your chin.

I suppose that by knowing you’re not far away,
That you’re there every moment of each waking day,
Will help us to open our eyes and see
The abundant beauty that’s amazingly free.

There’s so much that we overlook while we live,
As we teach what we’ve learned, while we learn how to give.
While you rest on your clouds, we fall back on the love,
Shining so bright with your beams from above.

Man in the moon, I bid you good night.
I wish you a restful, perpetual flight.
Give us a wink that will last us a while,
As you scatter your moon dust and throw us a smile.

 

2016 04 16 Poetry: Flowered Bag April 16, 2016

We all have things that peak our interest, right? Until our time here on earth is through, we go through periods in our lives where our infatuation with certain things, although perhaps trendy, grabs us and yanks us back and forth, until it has our complete attention, and believe me when I say that it’s our attention that it demands.

Creatures of habit, like me, grab a trendy piece of today and run with it for all it’s worth, that is, until the next doohickey comes along and jabs us in the ribs.

I suppose I have good reason for having such a short attention span sometimes, I mean, look at all those shiny things over there in the corner, next to that colorful whatever it is you call it. Gotta have it, desperately need it and can’t remember why I wanted it!

Oh my, oh my, oh my how easily we are persuaded some days.

It looks like I forgot to tell you thanks, and below you will find poem number 16 for the month of April, and yes, it’s still National Poetry Month.

The poem below is one that I just wrote, and if I may say so, I wrote it rather quickly. I think I mentioned before that I like the ones that jump onto the screen. It’s like they were, they are meant to happen.

And here you go!

Thanks for dropping by, and I hope you grab that next thing you gotta have and really have the best time with it.

After all, the next one’s waiting round the corner.

Be well, and take care.

dp

***

Flowered Bag
A poem by DP Lyons

She sits alone, quietly
With a nervous smile, she shyly throws a glance over his way.
Dropping her eyes to her fidgeting hands, she averts his curious gaze
She wonders why he’s smiling at her
His eyes quickly dart from her, to a squirrel outside in a tree
Her hand moves to her face as she coyly looks his way again
Catching her off guard, he throws his gaze her way once again
They have peaked each other’s interest
Focusing down at her side, she reaches into her flowered bag
She fumbles inside the bag for what seems an hour and a day
He tries not to stare at her
She turns her head and quickly catches his gaze once again
His eyes rapidly dart to his own nervous hands
She finally pulls something out of her colorful bag and cups it in her delicate hands
Looking out at the squirrel again, he rubs the side of his face
Their eyes meet one more time
Taking a deep breath, she looks down at the item in her hands
She slowly starts to make her way across towards him
He doesn’t know what to do
His eyes feverishly search out a route of escape
Taking a deep breath, he watches her approach
She smiles and moves along side him
Still clutching the item from her bag, she gently offers it to him
He looks from her hand, to her eyes, then smiles brightly
She takes a deep breath and speaks
“Dabba mumma num num bubda mumma!”
He scrunches his head down into his shoulders, and then giggles
Looking up at her, he reaches and takes the item from her hand
His eyes open wide, and then he too speaks
“Mum mum bubba num num!”
She rolls backwards on the carpeted floor and laughs out loud
Raising his eyebrows, he throws his hands up in the air, then points out at the squirrel
Her eyes open wide as she stares out at the frolicking animal
Their mothers look at each other, smile, then laugh out loud

 

2016 04 15 Poetry: Detour Signs April 15, 2016

Ya ever wonder how you make it through the day? Ya ever think about all of the hurdles, obstacles, inconveniences and royal pain in the butts you encounter as the world spins underneath?

Oh, by the way, hello and welcome again to Surviving. It’s good to have you stop by. Actually, I’m honored and humbled to have you here.

As I was saying, some days are chock full of the things that can turn your knuckles white and make you growl under your breath. And then, once again, another day stands ready and waiting in the starting blocks to do it all over again.

I have to admit that knowing what some people have to endure during the course of their day is truly amazing. Whenever I think I have it rough, something comes along and makes me say, “There, but for the grace of God, go I”, and then, it doesn’t seem as bad as it did a moment ago.

Detour signs, warning bells, flashing lights, it’s all out there waiting for us.

I wonder if they’re ready for us, for you, for what we have to offer. Grin

And then, once again, away we go.

The following poem is number 15 for the month, and one that I wrote a few years ago. National Poetry Month to be precise.

Don’t forget to yield.

dp

***

Detour Signs
A poem By DP Lyons

Right back where I started from
Here I go again
Same old sounds, same old towns
What now, which way, what then

Left turn, yield, right of way
School bus stop ahead
Maximum height, thirteen feet
Lights changing, green to red

Left turn signal, look both ways
Apply the parking brake
Adjust the rear view mirrors
So many things at stake

Rear defroster’s on the fritz
AC’s blowing hot
Check engine light is on again
Let’s go, or get off the pot

Traffic jams and detour signs
Construction up ahead
Pedestrians have the right of way
Battery just went dead

Parking ban from dusk ’til dawn
Hidden one way signs
U turns, wrong ways, dead end streets
Toll booths, fees and fines

Quarter tank, and dropping fast
Alternator fried
Break down lanes. Tow truck chains
Nowhere left to hide

Information radio
Bottle neck ahead
Coming to a crawling stop
Take a right instead

Last turn now, heading home
Three more blocks to go
Right back where I started from
That’s all I need to know