Where and then feast

Updated: Jan 24th 2019


“Where and then feast

have we sat together

but to build and pray

Have words smelled of color

that wrap in winters breath

as we lie in tranquil

When, in the peace of time,

does the sound breathe.

Together, lost in love and patience.”

~ Lance Kassle November '04

A poem by Lance KassleHe wrote that poem. It was part of a collection he was putting together.  We had talked about gathering them all and putting together a book of his poems. He sent me so many that summer. That summer he died.

I stumble over them sometimes. On days when I'm doing good not to remember him, he throws them down in front of me like roadblocks to grief recovery.

He's been gone for years.  Gone… like he's away on some extended work trip to Dubai and I'm not allowed to go there because… because I'm still alive.

I didn't understand this poem. To be clear, I didn't and still don't understand a lot of his work.  His mind was complicated and I found complicated poems difficult.  When he sent it to me, it was one very long sentence. It drove me insane trying to see through the punctuation issues that I desired.

Today I took it apart and I see something more.

Where and then feast.

I want to feast on the memories of where , not now… but then. I want more time.  I want him to explain things to me again, this time slowly and I promise I'll listen.

have we sat together

but to build and pray

He loved having an audience to teach and to share ideas with.  He was so dynamic in everything. People were drawn to him. They wanted to know him intimately, male and female, platonic and more.  He built a community of followers.  And yet I always felt like I was on the outside of his following.

Have words smelled of color

that wrap in winters breath

as we lie in tranquil 

I love this line, though it takes me to different places each time.  I want him to look at it again, I want him to finish the rough drafts.  But I don't, because the confusion makes me think deeper and find my own meanins.

When, in the peace of time,

does the sound breathe.

Always, when I see this part I find myself taking a deep breathe and pondering the life of words.  His life was short, ended before he was ready. Good strong men shouldn't die on the street, alone and yet surrounded by strangers.  Good men should live long lives and let go surrounded by sisters and lovers.

Together, lost in love and patience.



Mindfulness Monday -No Good


Sometimes I'm no good

at writing poems.

I tend to lie

about what seems to rhyme.

Sometimes I am just terrible

   and can't find the words

I have a mean temper

   when writing poetry.

What does that say about me?

   that poems seem so hard?

Sometimes I'm no good

   at being a Poet.


I wrote this poem back in 2014 as part of a creative writing experiment. I remember being frustrated about spending time on poems when I didn't enjoy them. As a result, I struggled with this portion of the creative writing group I was in. I procratinated and I was annoyed at having to do the poem.

I can see the frustration in the poem.  But deeper, it wasn't really about writing the poem, but something different. Do you see?

Do you write poetry? I have a few that I like. But to be honest, I am not a huge poetry fan.  I like to get to the point as I get older.  I think I enjoyed it more when I was younger and found being vague exotic and creative.

Today, I want you to think about how you express yourself. When you are talking with someone, take a moment to consider what you are going to say before you say it. Listen with mindfulness intent on hearing everything including the sound, the inflection, and the ideas expressed.

The deeper we move into mindfulness, the more we look at the little things. What brings us joy and what actually annoys us just a little is brought to the surface. Not placing judgment on it, but putting value to the thought.

In your meditation, do you have a mantra?  Some people have poems they recite in their minds.  Maybe a power statement.  This is an expression of self.

Let's talk.  Do you enjoy poetry?  What's your favorite?  What's your meditation mantra?


Poet Neil Hilborn “OCD”

Love and pain, beautiful and heartbreaking. Truth. These are dancing words.

Poet Neil Hilborn shared his emotional dance with the world. Now around the world people are nodding their heads with tears and cheers for his piece about living and loving with OCD. Neil Hilborn performed ‘OCD' in June during the individual finals at the 2013 Rustbelt Regional Poetry Slam.

I haven't been a fan of poetry, but this piece makes me want more.  I want to know what happened! I want to know if she comes back, if he finds someone better.  I laughed and nodded as I thought of those I know with OCD and sighed as I understood the frustration of having to wait as the one you love has to go back to the parking garage to the car parked at the top after you have gotten to the bottom to make sure it is locked.. again. Today I loved a little more and danced with words with this amazing man's song.

Hilborn explains that the poem was written in 2011. The tics in the performance are intentional, he says, “but they are also .. actual tics. Sometimes in performance they become real.”

If you want to see more of his work, Like him on Facebook like I did.

Want to learn more about OCD? Check outDopa.  Most of the largest sites on the Internet aren’t accessibility compliant.  51 million Americans have visual, cognitive and other challenges that make it difficult or impossible to access websites you and I take for granted every day.  Websites can't be accessibility compliant without sacrificing design, interactivity and general user experience for visitors without disabilities (paying 50% more for designers and coders might help but would still fall short).  Think of Dopa as the alternative to Wikipedia for important topics related to psychological and learning disabilities.

Truthfully, I really don’t like poetry.

I know.. I know.. I am a girl, I am supposed to like butterflies, rainbows, and poems.  I am supposed to have looked for a guy who likes long walks on the beach, making me dinner, and whispering sweet quotes into my ear as I drift off to sleep.  And I might get kicked out of the girl club for saying this, but I really can't stand poems.

April is National Poetry month.  All across the blogosphere people are giving their best shots at being a poet for the month.  Hell, even I did a challenge where I tried to lay down some poety stuff.. it sucked.. I sucked for writing it. I am pretty sure part of me died that day and at the minimum a large portion of my writing cred when down the drain.

I have given poetry a real chance.  In fact, Rumi is pretty awesome and I enjoyed a few of his poems like The Guest House. But it's rare for me to find a poem that I actually like.

So what is it that I despise so much about poetry?

I hate having to decipher what the hell the writer is talking about.  I am not a fan of the style of writing that poems like to follow.  I really don't like that I feel like I suck as a woman for not liking poetry.

Now I do actually like butterflies… they are cool, like little flying flowers that actually eat other bugs. “HA! NOT A FLOWER. NOW MEET YOUR DOOM!”

Rainbows are interesting.  You don't see them everyday… well, unless you are doing a pride thing.. or a gnome on a unicorn.. or.. never mind.. you could see them every day if you want.

I am not looking for a guy who likes long walks on the beach, my hubby has the attention span of a goldfish once we get to the beach.  He can handle about a minute walking in the sand before he's trying to figure out what's next and how long I want to be there, maybe even how long he has to pretend he's having a good time before I will let him do something else he actually wants to do. So I let him go make the dinner plans on his laptop while I enjoy the wind and water.

As for whispering sweet quotes into my ear as I drift off to sleep, that's just creepy… really.. it's weird.


So, are you a poet and know it?  Tell me why you like poetry!

Do you have a poem that you think might change my mind about poetry? Share it!
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