Parenting toddlers means that Melissa and I are swear-word spelling bee ninjas.

We can cuss a blue streak letter by letter faster than Cookie Monster can devour chocolate-sprinkled carbs.

However, the thing about our system that fails is that when Melissa speaks in alphabet code, I’ll reply with,

“Oooooh, so you want to take the boys to the SCIENCE CENTER?” 

We joke that I would suck at a life of crime.

I’d be the one by the getaway car asking the police officer how fast she thought I could get from zero to 90 because, after all, we’re going to need all the horsepower we can get once my accomplices roll out with the loot.

This is why I’m a musical theatre misfit toy. I wanna bring what’s inside to the outside and sing about it for three maybe four mins. 

It’s also why I write poems. 

Here are three that I wrote for you in the last couple weeks.

I hope you’ll let yourself have a moment of slowdown, read one whose title draws your eye, and have a smile or heart-hug moment you wouldn’t’ve had otherwise.

Sparrow in Manhattan

I always remember a story Ghana told me
At work in downtown Manhattan one morning.
She saw a sparrow on a railing. Free
And loud, she sang in celebration adorning
The horn-exhausted air with vibrant chirp-
Chirps! God’s eye was on this creature chanting
Significance into the tiny park. Usurp-
-ing her iron throne was impossible. Just planting
Her feet on another bench would establish her domain.
She sang because she was happy, and Ghana told
Me it made her feel liberated somehow–that hearing
The bird’s song cutting through the cold
Cacophony hugged her with God’s ceaseless nearing.
I heard a bird in Greensboro today and recalled
My friend’s story of this winged singer unwalled. 

Low Hanging Fruit

When I watched A Star is Born with Lady
Gaga and Bradley Cooper, I thought that “Shallow”
Song was really good. During a shady
Walk pushing the stroller watching marshmallow
Clouds in the May sky, I texted an old
Student of mine: “Hey There! Do you know
That “Shallow” song from A Star is Born?” Bold
Choice, I thought, for a pop song in her book to show
Off that top belt range. She politely replied
That she knew it and would check it out. It was kind
Of like when I heard “Someone Like You” and tried
To add it to my rep–what a find!
It worked for comedy once, though–came in handy–
Overdone songs: more than just ear candy. 🙂

Today is Refrain from Terrorizing Yourself Day

Today is Refrain from Terrorizing Yourself Day. 
You get to walk the unfamiliar road 
Of kindness and gentleness toward your soul by way
Of fierce protective honor of the load
You’ve chosen to carry thus far. You 
Can put the pack down now. All that weight
Was not your burden to haul. Walk through
This next stretch barefooted, and meditate
Into the sound of your voice singing a tune
With happy intervals. You believed that sack
You left behind contained supplies you’d soon
Need, not joyless stuff now behind your back.  
Leave it there, and try a skip or leap.
Cartwheels’ll come soon, though not cheap. 

That’s all for today, my fellow sharing what’s inside traveler.

I’ll abstain from secrecy-requiring crimes today if you will.

Always remember there’s only one you, and folks need to hear the story that only you can sing.

ps if you just. need. more. poetry. in your life, today’s your lucky day. Can you say bonus sonnet???

Holy Paw Patrol Dance Moment

I park the boys in front of “Paw Patrol” 
When I make their lunch. By the time the shells
Are al dente or the PB and J’s read’ to roll,
Jude runs into the kitchen, his toddler cells
Ready for action. His wide eyes telegraph 
That it’s that time. “Dance please!” he calls and lifts
His sweet sausage-y arms. I have to laugh
And pick him up. This is one of life’s gifts.
When we enter the living room, Noah’s ready
To join the choreo, so I hoist each nugget on a hip
And wait for the pup dispatch jingle.  Steady 
We go, I step-touch and try to keep my grip.  
These boys are always interrupting chores,
Injecting joy, and opening fantastical doors.