#AtoZ2016 : P Is For Patience

There is one thing in this life
I will never have enough of.
One thing I will run out of
Every day.
One thing I won’t have
When I need it most.

You know this thing too.
And like me,
You wish you had more.
So much more.

I need it when I’m listening
To someone who hasn’t got a clue
Try to explain their point of view.
Limited as it is.
Blind as it is.
To me.

I need it when I’m teaching
Someone something new.
Something they don’t know.
They may not understand.
That may scare them.
That’s simple to me.

You know this thing too.
And like me,
You could use more,
So much more,
Than you have.

I need it when I’m driving,
To anywhere.
Dealing with the traffic on the roads.
With people being people.
Driving too slow.
Driving too fast.
Running stoplights.
Stopping to turn right.
And, in general,
Driving me nuts.

I need it when there’s something,
Anything, really,
I want to do.
Because sometimes,
I can’t do what I want,
When I want to.
Because I have to work.
Or take care of my home.
Or spend time with her.

You know this thing too.
And like me,
You’ll never have enough.
You’ll always need more.

I need it when I read something
Someone wrote.
Something I don’t agree with,
That angers me,
Frustrates me,
Makes me ask,
“How can they be that way?”

Because I know this truth.
And you know it too.
All it takes
Is a little time.
A little perspective.
A little patience.

And everything changes.
The anger fades,
The frustration washes away.
And everything becomes

I know this thing I need.
This thing I won’t ever have
In sufficient quantity.

You know this thing too.
And like me,
You won’t ever have enough.


Do I need more.

It’s April 20th, and I’m a still one day behind on the A to Z Challenge for 2016. I expect to catch up on Sunday. Only 10 more letters to write stories for this month.

Please, go explore the A to Z Challenge, and the sites of others who are participating in this adventure.

#FFT 29 : The Gate Still Squeaked

The gate still squeaked. “Dang it.”

I swung that sucker back and forth, and in response, it sang a kind of song. “Shreek, clack, tock, tock, tock, tock, tock, groan, pop, pop, pop, ting!”

“Dang it,” I grumbled. I took the can of WD-40, and sprayed the hinges again, until they shined in the sunlight. Then, once more, I swung the gate around.

Once more the gate sang an infuriating song. “Shh, skreee, tick, tick, tock, mum, mum, mum, mum, gronk!”

I threw the can of WD-40 into the backyard, where it collided with the railing of the deck, “Clack!”

“Useless junk!”

I punched the gate, causing a loud “Whack!” followed by another song, “skronk, tack, tack, tack, tick, wonk!”, as it swung away from my fist. I felt splinters from its wood embed themselves in my knuckles. I looked at the back of my hand, and saw bits of wood sticking out from the knuckles of my index and ring fingers. I watch blood start leaking out around the wooden stakes.

I growled, and ripped the splinters from my knuckles. “Son of a…” I let the thought trail off, knowing I’d caused the damage to my knuckles myself. It certainly wasn’t the gates fault. Or the WD-40s fault.

I looked up at the clouds in the sky, “Yeah, yeah. I know. Another lesson in patience.”

I let the knuckles bleed, and I went to the garage to get the quart of lawn mower oil. SAE 30. I went back to the fence, and dumped motor oil on its two hinges. Oil dripped from the hinges to the ground. I didn’t care.

I swung the fence back and forth, working the oil into the metal joints. Gradually the song of the gate faded. “Skree. Skraw. Skree. Skraw. Swee. Swee. Free. Fraw. Zee. Zee. Zee. See. See.” The noise faded away, until the gate swung silently.

I leaped in the air, “Yes! Take that, you! Ha!”

I closed the gate, put the oil back in the garage, left the useless can of WD-40 in the back yard somewhere, and went inside, proud to have successfully completed the task of silencing the gate. Inside, I washed away the blood on my knuckles. I left the wounds open to the air, wearing them with pride.

That’s when she got home. She parked in the driveway. I heard her heels clacking on the sidewalk, as she headed for the gate, to take a walk through her veggie gardens. She got to the gate, and opened it.

And the frackin’ thing said, “Grooooonk! Tang! Tang! Tang!”

430 Words

I wrote this for Week 29 of Alissa Leonard‘s Finish That Thought. Please, go read all the creatively shared stories in this week’s challenge.

A Little Faith

It has occurred to me.
If I am afraid to try.
If I am afraid of life.
Why am I still here?
Why am I slowly reaching for
New things?
Why am I slowly bringing
Dreams to life?

I’ve got a job.
Had it for a year now.
I know
It’s not the best job.
But it’s a good first step
Into a life
I never had.
A life
I denied myself.

A lot of people act
As if the job I have
Is all wrong for me.
That I should have a job
Like the one
I used to have.
Before all this started.
Two years ago.

They don’t know.
They don’t understand.
They see the world
Differently from me.

I didn’t get this job
By sheer dumb luck.
I picked it.
I waited.
And when it was time.
I applied for it.
I chose it.

Because it gives me
What I need
In my life right now.

Time to heal the wounds
In my heart and soul.
Time to change my course
Through life.
Time to write.
Time to dream.
Time to learn new things.

There’s nothing wrong at all
With the job I have right now.
Nothing at all.

I want to write, you know.
I always have.
It’s always been a dream
Of mine.
One that I gave up,
‘Cause everybody knows,
You can’t make a living
Writing stories.

I had to grow up.
Get a real job.
Be an adult.
Not a dreamer.

So here I am.
With the job I know
Most people don’t approve of.
I can almost hear them say,
“It’s sad.
So sad.
What happened to him.
The fall he’s made.
The broken person
He’s become.
He’ll never be the same.”

Just another victim
Of the ways of life.
We’ll leave him behind.
He fell by the wayside.
But the rest of us
Are OK.

I hear those voices.
Hear those thoughts.
And I know them
To be false.

For the truth is something more.
I changed.

I’m not the person
I once was.
I’m me.
The way I’m meant to be.

And with time.
And patience,
I’ll learn
The things I need to learn.
To breathe life
Into the dreams I have.

Step by step.
Day by day.
I’ll find a way
To use the skills I have
To help those around me.

And one day at a time,
I’ll find a way
To write.

I can’t help but feel
I’m on my way.

I just need
To have a little faith
In me.


I feel pressured.
As if I’m supposed to be
Doing something.
At a job.
That pays me what I’m worth.

But then,
I stop and think.
What the heck
Am I worth?

I feel pressured.
As if I’m supposed to be
Doing something.
Making a plan.
With target dates.
So that I have my life
All planned out.
And know
What I’ll be doing.
Where I’ll be
A year from now.
Two years.
Five years.
Even ten.

But then,
I stop and think.
What the heck
Do I want to do?

I know My Lady
Is frustrated.
With me.
She’s told me that.

She’s also told me
That she understands
How badly I was hurt.
And how long that it takes
To recover,
And to heal,
From injuries
Like the ones I had.

But still.
I feel pressured.

One of my doctors,
Bless his soul,
Keeps trying everything he can
To get me back in motion.
To return me
To a life
Like everyone else leads.

With a job.
And responsibilities.
Chasing the
American Dream.

I try so very hard
To have patience.
To let everyone say
What they want to say.
And make them happy
In some way.


In the end.
I have to face
The person in the mirror
Every day.

When will I pick up
The pieces of my life?
And become what everyone
Thinks that I should be?

I won’t.

I’ve decided to take the time
To find me.
That person that I lost
So many years ago.
The one that got buried
Under all the demands.
The responsibilities.
The one that I could not afford
To have.
To be.
To let exist.

That would have gotten in the way
Of me being able
To be
What everyone else
And needed.
Me to be.

I want to know.
Who I am.
What I believe.
What I feel.
What I think.
What I want.

Because I don’t.
And I never have.

And I know
From the pain
That I’ve been through.

That being
What I believe
Someone else needs me to be.
Someone else wants me to be.

Leads down a long

Of self-destruction.

I won’t walk that path
No matter how many times
You ask me.

I will come back to life.
On my own terms.
In my own time.
At my own pace.
In my own way.

Because I know this truth.
That I learned
The hard
And painful

I can’t be
What you want me
To be.

I have to be