cronechronicler

Exploring the poetry of everyday life

Haiku: Time Management

Future time unknown
Time past is extremely vast
Now’s best time for me

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Brand New Day: Back to Basics

I walk with a cane
Hiking staff put to new use
I like style and flair

Chic has its limits
No disguising poor balance
I sought therapy

Baby steps trained me
I’m a whiz on the gym floor
A wimp out-of-doors

Summoned my courage
Planned to navigate sidewalk
Leading home from church

Tucked cane under arm
Walked just like I remembered
Arrived unafraid

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Passages

Summertime six years ago
I settled in this space
Unpacked and put my memories
On walls and table tops
In places I found evidence
Of occupant who came before
Tiny holes in closet door
Suggest a place to hang his ties
Apartment life is transitory
I put roots down none the less
Created my new home.

These past six years began a tale
Chapters of unexpected change
So many things I used to do
No longer are within my reach
My apartment is the same
It is I who have a different view
I will re-member cherished gifts
Grieve and lay them to the side
Look out the window at the tree
Watch pink clouds at early dawn
Embrace anew life’s mystery.

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The Art of Wheelchairing

Finally in 2015 I gave in and ordered a wheelchair for a trip to Mexico to celebrate Thanksgiving with my family. I considered it would be useful getting me through Customs. That was the beginning of my shaping a new world view from the sitting-point of a wheelchair.

The first leg of my flight took me to Chicago. But Chicago was having “weather” and I never got there. Instead I spent the day in the Cleveland airport parked in my wheelchair near other wheelchair occupants. My first lesson was that not only elder folk use them. A youngish woman who had injured her leg in a motorcycle accident sat beside me. When she wanted to buy food she loaded her carry-on bag in the chair and pushed off. At lunch time I followed suit feeling only a little self-conscious. My new journey began. Not only is a wheelchair good as a conveyance for carrying luggage and making small trips to find food, but also it is quite comfortable. The arms and foot rests are a cut above the usual seating in the gate area. I discovered the wheelchairs in the Houston airport, where I ended up after Chicago closed down, even have cup holders.

Last weekend I flew to Minneapolis to visit my son and his family. There were delays going and coming back home that left me to settle into my compact wheelchair world. I noticed in the concourse that people were using wheelchairs to push large luggage and small children. Wheels have always been a radical part of moving civilization forward. When I pushed my wheelchair to the Women’s restroom I was having trouble getting my chair into a stall that had a Handicap sign on it but had room only for a person. A kind young mother accompanied by her child in a stroller tried to help me. I confessed that I was not very good at navigating. She replied that I was doing great and she could never do as well. I thought to myself that she had already learned the basic lessons from pushing her children around and just didn’t realize it.

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Sea-scapades: Part Two

The sand has its own challenge
I found as I sat in my chair
Low to the ground and comfy
Not so when it’s time to arise

My legs do not work in close quarters
Needing more distance to stand
I dug with my heels like a turtle
And carved a big hole in the sand

I rocked forward a few times
Until I was almost launched
Caught my balance and stood up
A bona fide victor at last.

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Haiku: Alchemy of Aging

Days become more still
Old siren songs grow quieter
New drumbeat sounds now

Amazing freedom
Choreographs day’s tempo
Measured steps suit me

Laughter and lightness
Transform binding to-do lists
To “catch as catch can”

I watch with wonder
Diminishing energy
Re-shapes my desires

Life has new balance
I find joy in small things
Transformed into gold

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Everyday Inspiration Day Five: “What Is Real?”

It doesn’t happen all at once, said the Skin Horse (to the Velveteen Rabbit). You  become. It takes a long time. That’s why it doesn’t happen to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off (by children who play with you), and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and  very shabby. But these things don’t matter at all, because once you are Real you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand.   From The Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams.

I discovered this quote from a children’s book  long after my children were the age for bedtime stories. I was going through a divorce when I first read these words. They echoed the words of a counselor who told me I had to go through this difficult time, not around it. What the Skin Horse said about being Real comes back to me now that age is actually loosening my joints, I no longer have vision in one of my eyes and I am a bit shabby compared to my younger years. I  do still have my hair, now grown white.

Aging has challenges I do not expect to escape. Still, being Real is pretty wonderful. It helps me see that I am much more than what is visible on the outside. I’ve gained self-acceptance,  wisdom and strength  letting myself just Be.

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Haiku: ExUBERance

Had to quit driving
Still retain independence
Think I’ll call Uber

Like Don Quixote
Setting out to tilt windmills
Saddled a smartphone

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The Permanence of Now

While I ambled along with my shopping cart
A car pulled up beside me.
A voice asked for my ID
Because I walked too speedily.

It was a joke. I know the man.
A mainstay in my travel plans
He provides me rides to catch my planes.
He gave sad news. He’ll soon retire and move out to LA.

I moved here four short years ago
Already my future is rearranged.
If I should choose to dwell in “now”
I’ll freely live in daily change.

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Give and Take

Two big trips in one month have undone me.
I see in the mirror that aging’s o’er taken me
My bones creak with knowing, my gait is slowing
I certainly have been brought up short.

Mind set on perseverance I plowed ahead
Burned all my energy going the distance
Got home, collapsed and then I asked
Is this really worth it?

The answer calls for creative investment
Spending my energy on what I like best
Expanding, enriching life in my home town
Short travels with family icing on my cake.

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