Today as I walked under our oak trees a persistent morning breeze coaxed a myriad of leaves from their home amidst the trees.


(For those of you experiencing winter…who think a poem about fallen leaves is just wrong…Remember…I happen to live Florida…where the leaves fall all year long!)


A breeze I could not see but I could feel and hear its sound…caused a multitude of leaves to bid their their limbs adieu and flutter to the ground.


And for a moment I was a child again…I felt innocent and small

as I laid down in the grass (by the way…the best place to watch them fall).


And I found myself thanking the wind and the trees and thanking Mother Nature by her name…for once again reminding me how nothing ever stays the same..


Every day change is occurring right before our eyes…trees lose their leaves, babies are born…new clouds soar across the sky.


The weather changes every day…today it’s warmer…yesterday it was a little colder…and every day, as part of life, we grow a little older.


Since, like the leaves, our days upon this planet are finite…our time on Earth is measured…every second of life should be cherished…every moment treasured.


No moment should be thought too insignificant…

for everywhere there is magic to be found…

like laying in the grass on a breezy morning

and trying to catch some leaves as they flutter to the ground.



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He found a feather on the ground, picked it up and said, “Oh Dear!  I’m so sorry little feather that you have landed here.”


“Did you come from somewhere close by…have you traveled very far?  

I imagine there’s a bird up there who’s wondering where you are.”


“Are you sad you and your bird are never again to meet?

“Are you sad that you have drifted down and landed at my feet?”


“Are you sad that you will fly no more…are you filled with gloom…or woe at all the things you will not do…all the places you won’t go?”


The feather smiled saying, “Let me tell you something we are told from the time that we are small…there will come a day, we’re taught, when every one of us will fall.”


“Since the fact that we will fall is something we can’t hide…we are also taught from an early age…that we must enjoy the ride.”


“You ask if I am sad today…my answer is NO, and here’s the reason why…

For a wonderful moment in my life I knew what it was like to fly.”


The feather smiled at the boy…”you see for happiness I do not lack…do not feel sorry for me.” and the little boy smiled back.


Suddenly a gust of wind blew the feather from his and hand and high into the sky…

“It’s nice to know,” the little boy waved, “you haven’t forgotten how to fly.”



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The fence that surrounds our back yard is old and rickety…some of its boards we’ve long ago misplaced…for many years it’s been way past repair and probably should have been replaced.


But even though that old fence is leaning here and there..and in one section there’s a hole…that old fence has a history…it has a past…that old fence has a soul.


It’s the fence that has surrounded our back yard since our children and grandchildren were kids…we haven’t had the heart to replace it…and today…I’m glad we never did.


The young couple who live on the other side of our fence a young couple we’re just getting to know…who were pregnant when they moved next door…had their baby a week ago.


We were in our back yard yesterday…taking a little break…when we heard those distinctive sounds a newborn baby makes.


Joe, the father, was in his back yard holding Oliver, his baby, and Deborah and I were stunned…when he asked from over the fence if we’d like to see his son.


If you know anything about Deborah and I you know babies…we adore…

“Yes we would!” We shouted….like two kids in a candy store.


But in the midst of this pandemic we weren’t sure how this would commence…until Joe said, not to worry…I’ll meet you at the hole in your fence.”


So through the hole, that wonderful old hole, that years of weathering has produced…Oliver…Deborah…and I were formally introduced.


Oliver is beautiful baby…I say this with no pretense…and his beauty was framed perfectly by that hole in our old fence.


That hole in the fence that surrounds our back yard…where a few boards we've long ago misplaced….that old fence that surrounds our backyard…that we never will replace.


Because as we’ve grown old together….as our years unfold….

we find we’re less likely to get rid of something just because it’s gotten old.



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I truly love my birthday…it’s a day that I hold dear…and I love the fact that my birthday falls on the last day of the year.


It’s a time to think about my friends, my children, my grandchildren and my wife…a time to reflect on the latest year in my Fairy Tale life.


I have always loved a good Fairy Tale…and though I know they’re only pretending…I love the stories…I love the adventures…and I love those happy endings.


I have often wondered why I love happy endings…its never been quite clear…if it was the Fairy Tales from my youth…or being born on the last day of the year.


But whatever the reason…now that, today, my birthday is descending, I feel blessed to have lived another Fairy Tale year…with another happy ending.


And though this year has seen its share troubles which tried so desperately on my happiness to infringe…seen it’s share of wickedness and evil that would make even Mother Goose cringe…


It has also seen its share of joy…of acceptance…of compassion…of love and kindness extending…which, if my Fairy Tales are correct, is the definition of a happy ending.


But this is just one happy ending to one chapter in the Fairy Tale I’ve created…The words of next years chapter have yet to be dictated.


When they are I hope I’ll see joy, acceptance and laughter blending…so the end of my 2021 will also have a happy ending…


Because I believe, in life, if you find ways to savor all the joy and cherish all the laughter…..if you string enough happy endings together…

you’ll get your happily ever after.



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In a way we’re all like prospectors panning through the river of life 

for each day, as we grow old…

we search for little bits of happiness…

our own little nuggets of gold.


And just like prospectors…we never know

in the river about to be mined

what happiness we might discover

what nuggets of happiness we might find.


For happiness comes in many colors, shapes and sizes

to discover this is paramount…

and if we’re lucky at the end fo the day

we have more nuggets than we can count.


And if we’re truly blessed at the end of our life

when our story has been told

we’ve collected a lifetime of happiness

of little nuggets made of gold.


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When searching for the key to happiness 

It’s difficult to know exactly what to do

Sometimes I wonder if we should be looking

into our sadness too…


We should look for someone who knows our sadness

who can see the tear before it reaches our eye

for someone who accepts our sadness

who knows it’s okay to cry.


For someone who understand us

who can read our changing mood…or tone

who knows when we want to be held

and when we want to be left alone.


For someone who understands sadness has its own schedule

who knows what is at stake

someone who will sit beside us…and hold our hand

no matter how long we take.


For someone who knows when it comes to sadness

this lesson they have learned:

It is only through patience and love and understanding

that happiness will return.


And if you’re lucky you will find your happiness…

You’ll find that someone who

all the while you were looking for them

they were looking for you.

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Most mornings when I walk I am fortunate to be graced

by the same rabbit…at the same time…in exactly the same place.


It’s difficult to read a rabbits feelings…they’re so quiet and reserved.

Like most creatures they don’t readily show affection…

unless affection is deserved.


When I first began to notice him…he didn’t have much to say

In fact every time he saw me coming…he’d quickly hop away.


Of course I know rabbits are silent…they do not vocalize

but rabbits have this funny way…of talking with their eyes.


So over time we’ve built a tentative trust…

for now when he sees me coming his way

he stops 

he rises up

and he looks at me…

before he hops away.


And though I’m not sure of our exact relationship…

I do have a feeling we are friends

because at the same time most every morning

he’s waiting as I round the bend.


It is a simple yet fulfilling friendship…for a human and a hare.

He seems happy when he sees me…and I’m glad to see him there.


And I know the days I don’t see him…

When he’s not there to play our little game

I am disappointed…and I wonder…

does my rabbit feel the same?


This is the extent of our friendship…

but what a wonderful way to start the day…

even if we only share a moment…

then go our separate ways.

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Phoenix Wings


You wrap your arms round me like giant wings,

You protect me,

Youre there for me,

You care for me,

You love me,

I love you,

I care for you,

Im there for you,

I protect you,

You hold me in your wings,

As soft as a cloud,

Bright flame red and orange feathers,

I can feel your heartbeat,

I can hear your heartbeat,

Feeling your wings hold me tight,

I look into your eyes,

As blue as Neptune,

My fears and worries melt away,

I feel like im floating,

Your touch sends ripples across my skin,

Tiny little fiery sparks dancing,

You are my everything,

The air in my lungs feels so pure,

My senses overload when youre near,

You make my heart feel free,

Like it has wings too,

I would do anything for you,

I Love You My Phoenix!

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So many things in life are out of our control

We don’t control the sun, the moon,, the stars, the wind…the rain

We don’t control those moments when our heart fills up with pain.


Perhaps then while we’re alive it should be our goal

to do the best that we can do….with the things we can control.


We cannot control our past…and the future’s not always in our hands…

but we can control how we treat the animals…and how we treat the land.


We can control how we treat others…if we are unkind or humane

We can control if we cause another person’s happiness…or pain.


If we make treating the animals, 

the land around us 

and people 

with compassion as our goal….

It becomes much easier to accept those things that are out of our control.


For they will be there to support us through the uncontrollable winds and rain

and they will be there when we need them most…when our hearts fill up with pain.

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