Like most children, I loved sweets,
Candy, soda, and pastries,
A Milky Way, a Coke, and a donut,
Twice a day until age fifteen,
Graduating to a six pack of Mt. Dew
And a king size bag of M&Ms.
Only on weekends. I had to cut back.
My dentist said I was his best patient,
As he handed me a treat after each visit.
Adulthood, coffee with extra sugar
Became my new craving, with a donut side.
You can’t have one without the other.
I hope Krispy Kreme and Dunkin Donuts
Never merge to monopolize my cravings.
It will confirm my premature demise.
My gravestone inscription will read,
He was a sweet man
Known to all as Sugar.
An expert in love,
I knew it at first sight.
A natural born talent,
Finely tuned daily.
Love is like medicine,
Practiced, never mastered.
Failed experiments occur,
Trials in human nature.
Observe and listen,
Take mental notes.
Discuss and share,
Learn how to complement each other.
Develop bonding ties,
Tackle each day, hand in hand.
With love is the answer,
How do marriages succeed is the question.
When this trip ends
I’ll regret the kiss.
The kiss missed.
Whispers in the night.
I’ll kiss her flirty lips
If she’s interested in
Friendship inspired desires.
Slicing through the
Sitting on a
Extending to the
Toes touching the
Dropping your head,
Arching your back,
White knuckles gripping,
Soaring to new
Close your eyes
And Dream of
Far away worlds -
Jupiter, Saturn, Venus
The galaxy awaits
By Robert Stanhope
I closed my eyes and opened my mind.
I tried to access the neurological freeway.
The ramp was closed to traffic.
I followed the orange detour signs.
A left turn and then another
Into a dimly lit valley of my cerebrum.
A storm was brewing in the distance.
Flashes of light lit my unknown route.
The road suddenly came to an end.
The only exit from the valley
A ladder to the left, a door to the right.
Or, I could have turned back.
The top of the ladder wasn’t visible.
The door was chain locked.
The return route had turned pitch black.
I chose to climb the ladder.
Each step to the next rung was stable,
The flashes above brighter.
My legs began to burn as I climbed,
My hands remained firmly gripped to the rails.
Blue, orange, and white flashes,
An eerie shadow and an ominous growl
A pit of fear formed in my stomach.
A pair of eyes appeared with a bright flash.
I had climbed too long to turn back.
I had to face the unknown shadow.
The growl became a constant.
Everything was suddenly pitch black.
The darkness drew silent.
The shadow grabbed my arm and threw me.
I was tossed deep into the darkness,
Helpless, screaming, and fearing where I might land.
I began to feel weightless, as if in space.
Motionless as I came to a sudden stop.
The bright flashes no more,
Just pitch black, the night starless.
As my heart raced, I tried to calm down,
Talking to myself and counting through deep breaths.
My chest throbbed as the void began to close.
The pitch black world turned to anxiety.
I screamed to break the silence.
Not a sound, not even my voice.
I felt as if I were being buried alive.
A great weight crushed my body.
Then a light appeared beneath me.
An opening to what appeared to be a large tube.
I began to fall with great speed into the tunnel.
Brighter and brighter, the light glowed.
A blinding white flash in a freefall,
Nothing to grab to slow my rapid decent.
I could hear myself screaming,
A heat mounted as I went deeper,
I was burning up in the core of my brain.
I awoke buried in sand up to my neck.
At first, I noticed a few mischievous children,
Forming a circle around me with an evil grin
On their faces, all with the same maniacal laugh.
Their numbers grew and grew
Casting a shadow over my face.
Darkness returned to my world.
The children were still laughing.
I could no longer see their faces.
Sweat formed a puddle around my neck
Rising to touch my bottom lip
I couldn’t move an inch as I tasted
A salty liquid coating my tongue.
I began to drown, surrounded by children
Laughing as I gasped for fresh air.
The liquid engulfed my mouth,
The children’s laughter ceased.
I was dying in a pitch black world.
I jolted from my bed, gasping for oxygen.
I turned and saw the time on the clock.
It was 5:22 in the morning.
I reached for my cell phone.
I had my oneirologist on speed dial.
A groggy voice came from the speaker.
He questioned, “Pitch black again?”
Then a child began to laugh.
Before the simple life,
There’s a job hunt
And a mate search,
Entry level wages,
And school selection,
A seven-year itch,
And marriage counseling,
And retirement planning.
A Florida condo,
And peaceful reflection.
Often out of necessity.
I found who I am.
New Year’s Eve.
A Hotel full of partygoers.
Invited to the celebration.
Thankfully, I had a suit.
Stranger in a strange place.
Then I saw her.
She wore a shiny silver one-piece
With a ribbon at the top.
I circled the room
Glancing her way at each turn,
Closing the space between us.
Standing next to her,
I couldn’t get a word out -
Too many guest distractions.
The first chance I had,
I grabbed her with my hand
And quickly made our escape.
I laughed with amusement
As I ran, like a mischievous teenager
Down an empty hallway.
After reaching my room
Slightly winded, grasping my key,
I couldn’t believe my foolishness.
As the green light appeared
I pushed the door open,
Quickly making my way to the bed.
I pulled off my tie,
Kicked off my shoes
And loosened my belt.
She was ready. I was ready.
I pulled on her ribbon
Releasing her shiny one-piece.
She touched my lips
So sweet and smooth.
This kiss was familiar.
I’ve cheated many times before.
I’m a chocoholic.
My heart beats wounded,
Scarred by a broken bond.
Memories of love surface,
Palpitating through my core.
The damage is done.
There’s no turning back.
The words can’t be retracted.
The lies were meaningless.
Like a surgeon with a scalpel,
Your cuts were deep, your damage everlasting.
If this was your plan,
It’s a reflection of pure evil.
If it wasn’t your plan,
This life lesson is pure evil.
The wounds never fully heal.
Time will be a lifelong therapy.
Her name is Seasons Change,
A love child of free spirits.
She fights her changing colors.
As cold as a blustery winter day,
Blowing through town biting mad.
A fury no man dares to tame.
In Spring, she is the face
Of flowers blooming and birds chirping,
Bright eyed with a glowing smile.
Hot and racy in the summer scorch,
Leaping naked in a sea mist,
Drowning blues in spirits and one-night stands.
Autumn brings balance to Seasons,
Rich in color, calm in emotion.
An early flake can spark a change.
Seasons migrates like a stray bird
In search of a comforting retreat,
A place to escape her haunting namesake.
Writer and photographer.