The sand crunched underfoot.

Few shells lined the beach.

The sand here was not powdery soft, not white like home.

A wave rolled over her feet.

When the water retreated, sea foam coated her toes.

She looked around at the sun-faded pieces she could find, hoping to find at least one shell intact.

But she frowned when only pieces appeared, until a beautiful sand dollar revealed itself.

As the sun continued to warm her shoulders,

She looked up the beach from under her floppy brim.

Figures in the distance appeared like multi-colored lines with their reflections in the cocoa colored sand.

The water turned from muddy blue to sapphire as she looks out towards the West.

Days like this, they do not last. Enjoy them when they are here.

Thankfully the memories, they remain.


Surprise Dinner

She stepped out in a flowing navy sarong tied around her neck. He stood back watching her as she finished hanging her earring from her left ear. She smiled. She loved when he watched her get ready.

He was dressed in some cargo shorts and a casual buttoned-down shirt, perfect for their tropical dinner she has planned.

“I have a surprise,” she said as she entwined her hands with his. “Follow me.”

She led him down the decking from their overwater bungalow and to the beach.

A butler met them as they stepped onto the powdery soft sand. He looked at the woman and nodded, then turned to the man. “Sir, Ms. Miller here arranged for a special evening for you with our staff. Please, follow me.”

She looked up and grinned. He knew something was up, but not what. They followed the butler into an arched opening into the palms and followed a sandy path.

Finally, the path opened. A candle-lit linen covered table and chairs sitting next to the surf greeted them. The butler pulled out the chair, “For the lady.”

She sat down and set the napkin across her lap, then tilted her head up at him. “Meet your approval?”

He just stood there, looking at the little oasis carved out among the trees. He spied an outdoor bed to the right of the table and a sheet hung from the trees. He suspected the sheet was to provide some privacy perhaps.

He slid into the seat next to her.

The butler then poured drinks for each of them. “Tonight, we have arranged to have Chef Angelo prepare for you a meal most delicious. I will return shortly with your first course. In the meantime, please enjoy some bread.”

The butler opened the breadbasket revealing warm breadsticks, then turned and walk away.

Her companion chuckled. “What are the odds….breadsticks!”

She chuckled a bit to herself, then shrugged her shoulders.

They both looked out to the sunset shimmering over the waters. Around them, the butler lit torchiers which gave an ambient glow; then returned to the table.

“Our first course is a simple salad dressed with Italian dressing,” he announced as he placed a large bowl on the table. Tomatoes, onion, pepperoncini, parmesan, and dressing speckled throughout a layer of lettuce rested in the bowl. The butler then filled two cold shallow bowls with the mixture and offered freshly grated parmesan.

Her companion looked at the bowl. “Looks familiar!”

She giggled. She did arrange for the evening after all.

They enjoyed their salad while laughing and reminiscing over their trip thus far.

The butler deftly removed their salad plates ahead of the main course. Before them he set a trio of delights – chicken parmigiana, lasagna, and a sirloin steak cooked to perfection.

Her companion looked up. “This isn’t quite the Tour of Italy…”

Finally, she burst out in laughter. He’d finally figured out their meal. “Well, I knew you needed some meat to get back your strength!” She winked at him.

They dug into their meals as the skies turned dark and the stars began to shine overhead. It amazed her at how many stars one can see so far from civilization.

The butler appeared to clear away their meals as their conversation quieted into glances over glasses. “If I may, one more item is set up for you this evening. You are welcome to stay here the rest of the evening, but the path is also lit to guide you back to your room. It is completely private here when I depart once I set this last item up for you.”

The butler guided them to the outdoor bed and fumbled with the controls on a projector. It flickered a couple times.

She guided her companion to join her. As they settled in, scenes from Voltron ’84 flashed on the screen.

He looked her over and went in for a long kiss. “I can’t believe you did this!”

The butler bowed his head and bid the couple good night as they snuggled in close to each other.

poetry, writing

Early Morning

Up at dawn, the twilight fades away.

It has been weeks since I last saw this time of day.

Awake before the birds start their song,

Except for the final hoot saying so long.

Cotton candy clouds float in the sky.

While hot streaks skim up high.

As more light fills the void of night,

This morning’s beauty is such a sight.

Finally the birds chirp and tweet.

Today is surely going to be sweet.


Rambling to Motivate

So many excuses get in my way,

Work demands are unpredictable,

And this dizziness makes me afraid.

Top it off with a heaping dose of

Depression and self-loathing,

A frightful combination ensues.

But I know it needs to change,

I need to get into me too.

Not to go back to that twenty-year old physique,

But to find my way to, gulp, fifty,

And be fit for our upcoming spring retreat.

Hawaii is on the horizon,

a once in a lifetime escape,

And I want to wear a skimpy sarong

Wrapped around my nape.

Now it’s time for me to return to getting out,

Fighting the snooze and overcoming my pout.

Put that foot out, step by step,

And know I do it for me, and no one else.

It was easy when I did it for you,

I really don’t know why.

But this time it can’t be, so I sigh.

He doesn’t care, round is a shape,

But he’ll get the benefits when I have a smaller waist.

That will be okay, as long as I keep it up;

As long I remind myself, this is for me.



Loneliness, she walked away from it.

Or so she thought. But loneliness followed.

Distractions, work, hobbies, and more.

But loneliness continued to knock on her door.

She turned off the lights and slipped away,

While loneliness continued to rattle away.

Perhaps the morning light would chase it away.

Instead it hid in the corners, waiting to visit again.

Perhaps companionship would keep it at bay.

If only she could find a man who would stay.

Her heart was good, she’d never physically stray,

Finally one would not abandon her when life got hard.

For years, it was enough, except for in the deepest corners of heart.

But even then, that hole remained.

Perhaps it will follow her through all her days.

poetry, writing


Why won’t this feeling settle,

Always feeling adrift?

It’s time for nurses to meddle,

I hope it goes swift.

Turn the neck right and left

Flip over and sit up quick

I hope the therapist is deft

And I hope I don’t get sick.

I have no more time for being dizzy,

I have lots to do and need to get busy!


Wood Shop

She stepped in from the chilly outside. In the air hung the smell of old wood. Light from a fluorescent bulb flickered above as it warmed up. She looked around his wood-shop. She found it oddly comforting as it made her feel his presence even with him days away. She ran her fingers across his latest creation of wood and resin.

His space was his studio, but together they would seek out the sources. She looked over a large driftwood piece on the wall. They had found it together. He carved it to the perfect piece for his space. A photo of that piece hung in her space, taken before they harvested it.

A stack of driftwood rested in one corner. Another corner had planks of oak, maple, and pine ready for the next project. Some smaller finished pieces sat drying on the work table.

She touched the router as she finished her loop through the workshop. It was one of her contributions to his tools which she had inherited from her father. She was thrilled to give it to him when they reconnected. Finally it might get put back into use.

She gave a nod to her Dad in her mind and then another glance to make sure all was in its place. She heard the whirr of an engine outside and turned to the door. A smile came across her face when she saw that familiar car pulling up the drive. Finally, he was home.


Country Mornings

The crow of the cock echoed through the open bedroom window. Sunlight streamed in, casting warmth on bare arms resting over the covers. Her eyes fluttered open to see cotton candy pink clouds in the dawn. The gentle slopes of the mountains framed the sky.

In these early hours she enjoyed being where her ancestors lived. For several generations, they explored these mountains, farming the land, and digging into the ground, unearthing treasure from below.

However, later this day would bring throngs of family. She enjoyed time with some of her cousins, but massive family gatherings were too people-y for her tastes.

For now, the smells of breakfast floated through the air. Freshly baked biscuits, scrambled eggs, potatoes, and pork chops made her mouth water. She especially loved her grandmother’s biscuits with butter and strawberries on top.

She slipped out of bed and straightened her hair, then wandered out into to hall to wish everyone good morning.

Inspired by visits to my grandparents home as a child.



The skies darkened, heavy with clouds.

Winds picked up; trees swayed and bent.

Lightning flashed, filling the room, and

A thunderous clap shook the windows.

She shot up, her peaceful slumber broken.

He ran his hand along her shivering arm,

Trying to calm his bride as the storm raged.

She took a deep breath and sighed,

Then found her way to the crook of his arm.

He pulled her close and kissed her gently.

Skin on skin, fully trusting, never questioning,

they fell back to sleep while the storm raged on.



She found herself in a frenzy once more,

Knowing mother would soon call.

She didn’t know why she was this way,

But feared the sting of her biting tongue.

Cleaning was a must, along with a change,

Fresh sheets were in order, drying under way.

But her frenzy led her down a path,

One she barely recovered from.

The world spun as the comforter pile neared,

Catching her from a vertigo spiral.

She lay there a moment, covered in sweat.

Finally she stood back up, sopping wet.

She stumbled back to the room,

Oh no, she missed the bed skirt,

Covered in telltale traces of kitty fur.

At least she could sit to finish this task.

Finally the room was ready,

So off to the sofa she went to collapse.

Giving in to the rocking feeling in her head.