Land of the Brave who are Free

You’re fine with other races

If they’re making music or playing ball.

You’re fine with immigrants

If they’re picking produce or serving you at the mall.

You’re fine with foreign workers

If they’re cleaning your room.

You’re fine with a woman

If she’s naked in your room or carrying a baby in her womb.

You’re not fine if any of these people have the gall

To stand up, stand proud, stand tall

Against your prejudice and hate

This makes you the reason there’s no time to wait.

No time to debate

About the changes that are needed in this place.

Because your ideas need laid to waste.

Now is the time

Now is the place

For our country to erase

All the hate

All the hurt

All the pain

It’s time for justice to fall like rain.

Maybe then we can be

The land of the brave who are free.

The Masks We Wear

The masks we wear

To muffle the lives we bear

Can get stifling at times.

We want to scream

We need to shout

For we feel no one cares about

Our lives or the humanity around us.

We shuffle through

Our lives untrue

To our own wants, needs, and desires

Wanting to stoke some fires

Of passion or passionate times

To wake up another person

Shake them from their mediocrity

Shake us from ours as well

To leave our self-created lives in Hell

To find comfort in their eyes and face

Or entwined within a long embrace.

To laugh

To feel

To love

What Matters Most

We chase after money,

Then we chase after time.

We’re told time is money.

All while being told we need more

More things

Bigger houses

Better cars

The latest technology.

Instead, we should chase after our children.

Give our loved ones our time.

Time is not money, it’s just time.

Our time

That finite amount of measurement

We are given in this life

To learn

To live

To love

Life is not a competition

It is not a race where the first to cross wins.

But a race against the clock that is our life

Our finite life

To learn more

To live more

To love others so much more.

That’s what matters most.

I Am Human

This is who we are as humanity. This is what matters most. Regardless of who you are, where you are, or what you do, treat others as you treat yourself whenever possible.

I am white

I am black

I am hispanic

I am asian

I am indigenous

I am Christian

I am Muslim

I am Jew

I am Buddhist

I am Hindu

I am Sikh

I am a pagan

I am a believer

I am an atheist

I am straight

I am gay

I am lesbian

I am bisexual

I am transgender

I am queer

I am asexual

I am intersexual

I am rich

I am poor

I am tall

I am short

I am thin

I am curvy

I am hairy

I am bald

I am old

I am young

I am single

I am married

I am a father

I am a mother

I am a son

I am a daughter

I am ___________

I am human

Then Freedom Will Ring

We are not united

But rather divided

By the Putin puppet placed to destroy us

Today there’s no celebrating

The birth of a nation

But rather the mourning of watching it die.

Death fueled by racism, homophobia, xenophobia, and babies in cages.

Alienation of allies while propping up enemies.

No swamp draining making the country great

But rather filling up with sludge full of hate.

It’s not time to debate

It’s time to be irate

Stand up

Speak out

Before it’s too late.

It’s high time in our evolution

To start a new revolution

Break the chains of oppression

Bring in real love in succession

Remove those who harm us

And those trying to destroy us

Impeach the traitors top to bottom

We sure as hell do not want them

No more corporate greed

No more ICE deportees

Not more sexist decrees

Let’s stand up from taking a knee

Against the prejudice

Against the hate

Against the corporate state

Then freedom will ring

More Than This

Our lives were made for more than this

For more than material things

For more than competitiveness

For more than working jobs that drain our souls while giving our earnings to others who’ve made us sell ours to them.

For more than all of this.

We were made to love, not hate.

To share, not horde

To make peace, not war

To coexist, not build walls

To understand and to be understood

To respect and be respected

Yes, our lives were made for more than how we live them.

So, why don’t we strive harder to live for how we were made rather than for what we’ve become?

Things I Learned From Running

Things I learned from running

Runners primary competition is themselves. It’s not like grade school where the last one to finish is ridiculed. Sure, there are jackweeds out there who will, but by and large runners tend to pull for one another. It’s about PR or PB, not trophies. (Personal record or Personal best, for non-runners).

I recall more times than not when I’d be slugging along at my usual slow pace and other runners would pass me and give me words of encouragement and support. The running group I was part of was fantastic for this as there was always someone there at our finish to give a high five and words of encouragement. This camaraderie meant a great deal to a big guy like me who was already self-conscious about myself and running.

Runners are an eclectic bunch. There are not many things runners keep from one another. Discussions can range from actual running to nutrition to bodily functions to just life in general. There are some amusing discussions such as underwear choice (or lack thereof) and trying to locate a place to relieve oneself during a long run with no facilities present. Part of the eclecticism is also ages and body types. There are runners from all age ranges and body types. All share a common bond of running that goes beyond class, age, gender, body type, and other labels we place on ourselves.

Running is a spiritual act. The very act of getting outdoors, urban or rural, is getting in touch with nature and even whatever cosmic deity one believes in. I recall running along a favourite path and seeing deer or chipmunks or other wildlife, hearing birds, and the sound of the nearby river. Stopping just to take in the views along my run. Sometimes I ran with music, but others were just the sounds of nature and my own feet plodding along. One cannot help but feel the hand and pulse of the Creator in moments like that. The sky becoming light while going along a pathway with the colours changing from dark to light. A run in the Autumn with the crisp leaves and air surrounding you. A cold winter run where the sound of your footsteps is muffled by the snow, except for the occasional sound made when you run through fresh snow that has a light frozen top to it.

That’s life, man.