our lives are but short bursts of energy surrounded by light and darkness.

we arrive
we worry
we progress
we stress
we stride
we provide
we drift off into the ocean beyond

i know very little. i live by few rules.

be kind
make time
be on time
be generous
love completely
passion over skill
find the bright side
understand before judging
leave it better than you found it
the harder you try, the better you feel
listening will get you much farther than speaking
do not let any man determine your decisions or your beliefs.

love is not an infatuation. love is a choice. love is the decision every day. not a starry eyed feeling for 50 years, but a conscious effort to treat another the best you possibly can, to care for them, and to commit to them. love may be many things, but effortless is rarely one of them.

i love you.

though at times hidden behind a sky of grey, the sun will peek through on even the darkest of days. one day the sun will rise, and you will see that it’s no longer in the sky, but in the eyes of one that means more than the stars in the sky and the moon that embraces them.

keep your moon, and your stars.

just be my sunshine.

what defines me?

is it the clothes i wear? the place i live? the skeleton and muscle that make up my body? the job i have?

words define me. the words that come from my mouth and pen and heart. the ideas. stories. the innocence and guilt. the crimes i’ve committed and lives i’ve saved.

i am the guilt that drives me. i am the crimes that haunt me. but i am also the hopes and dreams. i am the proud moments where i do the right thing. i just pray, at the end of it all, that in my own eyes the decent acts i’ve contributed outweigh the cowardly failings i have allowed.

i don’t want to be alone in a world of so many drums beating to their own hymns when i am drumming my fingers and hoping that girl at the pulpit will one day tap her feet to the beat and have a seat, next to me.

pain is not weakness leaving the body. pain is a cue that all is not well in the world. whether emotional, physical, mental, or spiritual in nature, we weather the elements of pain or we don’t. every moment is a conscious choice: fear or hope. fear sneaks into our being and absorbs our atoms. fear clouds judgement. fear crushes souls, and leaves scraps in the junkyard of our spirits. yet hope does the same. hope allows us to find the good, to seek the positive. and with hope comes discipline.

fear is a choice. hope is a choice. but one is simply tacit approval while the other requires work.

hope is work. work hard.