Simplification


focus

I wish I lived during simpler times

When text messages or emails were letters written, sealed with wax and mailed with hopeful intentions

When the sound of clopping hooves on a gravel road, not a ‘ding’, meant a message was arriving

When things took time, when nothing was instantaneous, when we relied on our own selves to fill the lulls – to read, to write, to draw, to stare at nothing and daydream in silence

There are too many options, too much noise, so much stuff!

The need to acquire more things can’t be satiated

I try to simplify, declutter, compartmentalize my stuff, my thoughts, my life

But I need to do it over and over

The white noise, dinging tablets, vibrating phones is a constant distraction

A force that pulls my mind away from what matters

A beckoning to come and see what I might be missing

And when I finally give in there is no satisfaction

There is only regret when I notice I missed nothing – just like I knew, but couldn’t let go

Feeling like a fool I vow to simplify my life

But know how the cycle goes

And do what I can to minimize the distraction as I try to live my life

 

Reminiscing About School Days


BackToSchoolVintage-GraphicsFairy

(Photo Credithttp://thegraphicsfairy.com/vintage-clip-art-back-to-school/)

I used to love going back to school after the summer…

A blank slate
A new beginning
The smell of paper
The smell of new text books
The smell of wax crayons
And Mr. Sketch markers
Intoxicating to a child starting a new year at school

New school bag filled with
Fun new pens and pencils
A new lunch bag with lots of snacks
Made by mom with love
A new outfit and shoes
Freshly-washed hair with barrettes
Pinning it back to show a fresh, smiling face

Eyes looking up at the school
Nose sniffing the fresh air
Mouth turned up at the sides
Heart beating with anticipation
For the first day back to school

©Cristina Cole  

Lost at Laundry


sock

The lonely black sock
Waits for its other half to return,
Reminiscing about the days when they were snuggled
Side by side in the cherry-wood drawer.
Those days were warm.
And even though they’d be separated later,
It was only a foot apart.
They could still snuggle when the feet they covered nestled together on the couch
Or wave hello as they swung by each other during a stride.
Neither was jealous of the shoe that covered the sock
For they would be reunited again, in the cherry-wood drawer one day.

But before they can return to their cozy home
A hard journey must be faced.
Each week, before the promise and warmth of each other can be enjoyed
They must fight to stay together through a war.

First they’re torn from the feet they cover with a rush.
Then, they’re thrown into a basket.
Sometimes they’re lucky and remain close,
Other times they land in a heap of other clothes.
Tough and rigid jeans stand between them like a wall.
They must wait a few days, longing for each other.

Then the day of Laundry finally arrives.
They can catch a glimpse of each other as they’re
Thrown from the bin into the Angry Sea of Suds.
Twisting and turning, they struggle to stay above water,
Trying to reach each other, to stay close.

Fear grips them as they’re torn apart
During a vicious spin.
All they have are their memories of the
Cherry-wood drawer to keep them hanging on a little longer.

Once they’ve made it through the Angry Sea of Suds
They’re thrown into the Wicked Wind of Warmth.
They’re tossed around for what seems like days
But it’s only an hour.
An hour of sheer torture as they can see each other,
Almost touch each other,
But there is too much chaos.
And the tough rigid jeans laugh at them.
At their little selves trying to stay together
Amidst all the strong clothes of the load.

Once the Wicked Wind of Warmth subsides
They feel relief and joy.
Their journey is almost over,
Soon they will be reunited.

Usually, they’re snuggled side by side by that evening,
But tonight is a very sad night.
This time, the journey wasn’t a success.
What happened to this poor sock’s partner?
Did the Angry Sea of Suds devour her?
Did the Wicked Wind of Warmth blow her into an abyss?
Or maybe she fell out of the basket on the way.
His poor soul is sad and lonely.
He’s tucked into the cherry-wood drawer on his own.
He has a week to wait for her to be located
By the laundry police.
If she isn’t found by then
His fate will be a long lonely life of waxing wood furniture.
How his heart longs for his other half,
Who was lost at Laundry.

© Copyright – All rights reserved – Cristina Cole

Ten Terrific Blogs to Check Out


Besides writing, I love to read. And there are some amazing bloggers out there. I’m highlighting ten that I love. Check them out, you won’t be disappointed!

1)      Rosie Says – I love reading this blog for its bluntness. She doesn’t beat around the bush or sugarcoat anything. She says what’s on her mind about everything from sex to body image, politics to media and more.

2)      Shackled and Crowned – I get excited when I’m emailed one of her posts. I know I’m in for a deliciously provocative read. And sometimes, I can feel a pinch of pain – as though she’s looked into my soul and dug up some bitterness from my past. I’m instantly inspired to write poetry when I read her work.

3)      In Your Corner – I feel a little less crazy when I read her posts. She offers a lot of great advice for marriage and parenting. And her writing style is light and easy to read. I never feel like I’m reading a how-to article. It’s more like getting great advice from a close friend.

4)      Mom Times 4 – I usually get her posts first thing in the morning while I’m enjoying a coffee. I’ve learned to not take a sip while reading her work. I’ve pulled a take-a-sip-read-and-choke because what I’ve read made me laugh. And her little illustrations are awesome.

5)      Reluctant Mom – When I first started blogging, it was because I was having some serious baby blues after Jacob was born. I needed a place to permanently store my feelings. I started cruising WordPress for mothers who wrote about tough stuff so I could feel less alone. This blog was one of the very first I followed. I can relate to all her posts and love how honest she is. She’s a great writer, and her work is a pleasure to read.

6)      Parenting and Stuff – How can you not be drawn to a woman sharing her struggles with a teen who cuts? In a short time, she’s reached over 1000 followers. I bet with every post written, one more parent feels less alone in similar struggles.

7)      Keeping It Real Mom – It never fails, I read one of Anka’s posts and I’m uplifted and lighter. Her posts make me laugh out loud, and smile till it hurts. She’s got a great sense of humor and isn’t afraid to make fun of herself. Her blog reminds me to laugh more and not take my job as Mom so seriously.

8)      Chester Maynes – His poetry is enchanting. No matter where I am when I’m reading one of his poems from my phone, I’m transported into his world. I could be standing outside in a snow storm, but the cold has no effect on me if his poem is about the sun.

9)      The Boston Mom – After reading her fun posts about activities with her kids, I am filled with all these great intentions for Jacob. I can’t wait till he’s a bit older so I can start taking part in some of the activities this woman  comes up with… one of them includes fake snow! Whaaat?! That’s right, there was no snow and her kids were disappointed, so she bought some. That’s the kinda mom I wanna be.

10)  Postcards From My Guilt Trip – If you’ve ever had a thought that you vowed to NEVER say out loud because people would think you’re a bad person, this blog will teach you that everyone has those thoughts! It’s just that most people don’t discuss them. Well, this blog does. I LOVE reading her posts. Every single one reminds me that I’m human.

Hope you visit some of these blogs and get inspired, feel less alone, and laugh so hard you pee a little.

Dawn


dawn

At dawn, when the dew
Graces blades of green grass
When the sun pierces through
Tiny slivers where the curtains separate
This is the most wonderful part of the day

Dawn is the new beginning
Events yet to be written
Memories yet to be born
A blank slate

Just like a newborn baby
Exudes a potent scent of joy
The fresh aroma of a new day
Fills you with similar excitement

Intentions chaotically swirl through our minds
Birds feel our joy and serenade us
Creating a song that jolts our spirit to life

I will never take a single day for granted
Because when Dawn greets me
I remember how good it feels
To be alive

© Copyright – All rights reserved – Cristina Cole

Photo Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/frank_wuestefeld/4306107546/

Black Umbrellas


black umbrellas

Within a cluster of roses
A buzzing bee imposes
On sweet pollen juice
Until it cuts loose
In fear of shadowing noses

A swift sniff of sweet delight
And then the nose takes flight
For droplets fall
And black clouds crawl
Above the vast sky once bright

Like synchronized swimmers
Rows of black shimmer
As umbrellas open quickly
And the rain falls thickly
Leaving the whole town to simmer

As though the thick rain
Were fire droplets of pain
All run in panic
And acting manic
People scream as if being slain

The storm has surpassed
With such heavy mass
But nature is now silent
Though moments before defiant
And black umbrellas lay dead in the grass

© Copyright – All rights reserved – Cristina Cole

Photo Source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/chunkfree/8151420528/

Angry Sea


This is the place I go when any bitterness from my past creeps up on me…

Delicate as a rose
Her skin is milky and soft
Beneath her the cold rock kisses her feet
Below the rock, waves crash with fury
Wind whips through her dark hair
Giving life to it
She looks across the sea
With a longing in her heart
As though the waves
Will bring back answers
Her ears are brushed with the wind’s whisper
Of promises
A calm comes over her
The anger inside her has found a home
She can feel it leave her body, fall over the rocks
And join the angry sea

© Copyright – All rights reserved – Cristina Cole

A Warm Day in January


It’s like extra sauce on your pasta
More icing on your cake
Something unexpected
It must be a mistake

A warm day in January?
There’s so much we can do!
You venture on the porch
Just to make sure it’s true

And there it is
A mild breeze
It tickles your face
Puts you at ease

The chores can wait!
You need to be outside
So you pack up your angel
And begin the stride

Pushing the stroller
You take in the air
There’s laundry to be done
But you don’t care

Jacob takes a deep breath
Enjoying the fresh afternoon
He seems to like the outdoors
Summer can’t come too soon

But until the days get warmer
We’ll take this slice of cake
A warm day in January
Is a special little break

© Copyright – All rights reserved – Cristina Cole

Nightmare


I can’t find you
I know you’re crying for me
I can’t get to you fast enough
My heart is being ripped apart
The rage in me is building
Rage for myself
For losing my precious baby
How could I let this happen?
How could I ever let you out of my sight?
Your cries become louder, longer, more high-pitched
You’re scared
You want to see my face
You want my comfort
I become frantic
Like an animal
I push through doors
Tear away at bed sheets
Throw furniture across the room
Where is my baby?
Please, please, please, I need to find him!

My heart beats so fast that it wakes me
I’m still frantic
Still searching
And then I realize I’ve been dreaming
The relief fills me up with a rush, like water filling a glass
My heart is beginning to mend already
It’s not missing that special piece anymore
You’re asleep, soundly, peacefully, right where I can see you
It was only a nightmare

© Copyright – All rights reserved – Cristina Cole

Time Goes By


I was looking through photos of your first day with us

It was just six months ago that you were born

But it only feels like a few weeks have gone by

Where has the time gone?

You’re already giggling and holding yourself up

I remember when you were so much more fragile

I’d hold you like precious china

Your little head fit into the palm of my hand

Your little body would cradle perfectly into one arm

Now you’re much bigger, much more aware

You’re looking at toys and reaching for them

You’re looking at my face and want to touch it

Your smile is so bright first thing in the morning

Your limbs jolt with excitement when you see me

You’re full of energy to start the day

Soon you’ll be reaching many more milestones

And I’ll take pictures of every one

In six more months I’ll look at them and wonder

Where has the time gone?

© Copyright – All rights reserved – Cristina Cole