The climb up


every step seems

to soak up through

and build from the sole

to the soul

so that it’s not higher

but more than


above a tally of



What can’t be seen

or figured

when stared up at

from the negative

Equal and opposite

up and down

every contraction

a waiting relaxation


to elevating

The view from the


mind piqued

that this is the same air


when it feels different

less pressure than

on the ground

that can’t be

The ground is waiting

to prove

the thesis

Up is fleeting

Down is stasis

The slide is


Only friction

the coefficient

we collude

to ignore

or ennoble

Bottom collecting

its specimens

to return

to the path

For another climb




When was the last time you were happy?

Right now?


Sometime today?



Was it hot?


What underwear were you wearing?

Do you remember?


Do you believe in happy?

Are you sure?

Have you seen it?

How long did it last?

What happened to it?

Did it float away—a vapor,

or change from happy to…






Where did it go?

You had it?

You had it.

I believe you.

I don’t need to see it.

You saw it.

Didn’t you?


Do you remember?

I can’t remember.

Maybe it happened too fast.

I wasn’t looking.

I wasn’t living.

I wasn’t there.


Who was?


I thought I caught it.

Last night on the couch.

Then later again on the couch.

Then in the kitchen.

Did I?

Did I make it up?

Or did I make it?

I made happy.

I thought.

That’s what they tell you.

But I wasn’t alone on the couch

or in the kitchen.


What if don’t want to remember happy on my own?

I’ve gone there by myself.

I’ve gone alone and come back


I knew enough to know

I was fine,

I was good enough,

I wasn’t happy.


Are we allowed to want someone

to help us remember the happy?


Just someone to take notes.

In case there’s a test.


Is that cheating?


If I use that, or want that,

I don’t need that.

But need hat?


Do I not get the happy

If I don’t play by the rules?


I never saw the book.

But I worked really hard for it.


I know wanting isn’t enough.

I put in the hours.


Enough happy

for all the hours.


Okay, not all…


some of the hours…


One hour?


Five minutes?


Just once,

for a heartbeat?


Aren’t we made for that?


Social creatures








Because being fine

being alone is fine.

Can smile there.

Can happy there.


But maybe

it doesn’t have to be a goal.


Just like blissfully tied

isn’t always the best ending,

neither does strong, walled-off

need to be.

I don’t remember.

I don’t know.

If I leave it in

the corner, hiding

until time,

will it be there?


Will the happy sneak out the door

while I’m looking somewhere else?


I don’t want to miss it.

I want it to wait for me.


I want to remember.

My new book Drowning Above Water is available now in paperback and on Kindle though Amazon. 


And then…

And then, I was happy. 

I was still me. 

Still with my anger and my regrets. 

Still with my sadness and my hurt. 

Still with my scars. 

But, I was happy. 

Bright and blooming. Ready to show and share. Wanting to reach to the sun. Just an inch. Just a moment. 

It might not stay. Sure as spring, wrought as winter. Might wilt like the stems and become stagnant and viscous like the water. 

But, now, today, this moment, I had a breath; of growing, of clearness and clarity, of being needed and wanted in that vibrant, green space. A look at hope and with gratitude. I felt a coming alive. 

It was beautiful. 

And I was happy.