She’s Dancing Again

She introduced them- my parents

She met me when I was 8 months old

The oopsie baby who rolled over on her living room floor

I was 4 years old when she became Mom #2

At age 6- I spilled blackberry brandy in her purse

What a sticky mess

Beautiful blue eyes with a dark ring around the edges

She was sassy, smart, articulate, and feisty

5’ 2” who didn’t take crap

From anybody

Watching Dad and her dance was a thing of beauty

They loved to dance, they loved to laugh

They were always touching- connected in a way I’ve never seen

Every Sunday I woke to coffee & chocolate chip cookies

She was foxy, those hips in her turquoise bikini turned heads

Cherry Monte Carlo with a T-top- our hair blowing in the wind

We would sing like pop stars to Barry Manilow & Neil Diamond

She gave wise council

Shared life experiences

Had more energy than my Puerto Rican friends

She was fierce, she was fun

She let me drink wine on special and not so special occasions

Taylor Pink Catawba

Oh the parties, the friendships, the jokes

Laughter, always laughter

Everyone loved Hal & Ardena

They never judged

They always would lend a hand

An ear, a hug, a drink

They worked hard, they played hard, and they loved hard

Embraced all

Their home was a place of calm, freedom, honesty

She was an amazing cook- her Italian- AYYYYY

Her idea of fast food was a bucket of KFC

Pool parties

Cherry chocolate chip ice-cream out of the bucket- two spoons

She built her own home, yelled at contractors

Stomped her feet and gave them hell

She had three sons; Army Ranger, still born in Scotland, diabetic Scott who is gone

Now with her

She gave her time, her heart, her continuous support

Without pause

Her life experiences helped her to see angles no one else did

Her perspective was unique and different

No one else saw it until she did

Many times she was misunderstood

Her battle, her passions

But EVERYONE admired her grit, her moxy

Her fierce ability to never let go

I loved her, I will miss her, and I will mourn her

I’m grateful she’s pain free

And with the man she truly loved

She’s dancing again

Cutting up a rug- once again, reunited

In each other’s arms

 For Ardena B. Taylor (11/17/1939 – 4/20/2018)

 

Zombies

They walk
Some fast
Some slow
Some confused
Angry faces
Perplexed faces
Not too many
Smiling
Not too much
Joy
Rushing
Feeling the grind
The get there now
No patience
Time ticks
Loudly
Life is passing
Us by
Risky?
Play it safe?
What
Brings
You peace?
What
Brings
You hope?
Lonely?
Keep moving
Find your self
In the jostling
In the hum
The drum
The heartbeat
Of the
Zombies in life
That push
And shove
Through the
Sea of others doing
The
Same
Thing
Just getting by
The happy
One day when
Not for me
No thanks
Observing
The sludge
The pounding
Of my heart
Of a life truly lived
I don’t regret
My courage
My candor
My truth
My shoulders back
I meet gazes
Directly
Not ashamed
Of who I am
Rocking purple lipstick
Shoulders back
A grin
I see you
I really see
The good
The bad
The ugly
The beauty
The colors
That push by
In a flurry and a scurry
Am I different?
Thank God I am
Hand to chest
I feel my
Own heartbeat
And I smile
Grateful
To be alive
To be
Here
Now
This
Very moment
In an airport
Jostling around
Eyes meeting
I see you
In the jostling
In the hum
The drum
The heartbeat
Of the
Zombies in life
Passing by
Too quickly
Missing
Everything

REGRET

REGRET

Perspective
Intention
Momentum
Is everything
Mixed with a dash
Of courage
Joy
Peace
In your
Core
Balls-to-bones
Your truth
That resonates
And vibrates
Like an audible
Hum
Do you love
Out loud?
Are kind to others?
Offer hope?
Encouragement?
Embrace?
Or does
Your past
Cloud
Your
Everything?
Living in
Remorse?
In regret?
When Death
Comes
Oh it’s coming….
How will you
Be remembered?
How will you
Remember them?
In regret?
With regret?
Should have?
Could have?
Didn’t?
What will you do
When regret
Gets ahold
Of you?
Will you change?
Will you cry?
Will you beat yourself up?
Or will you grow?
Want?
Long?
Morph?
Into a better human?
Will you
Live in the past?
Too much in the future?
Or the now?
No regrets
Perspective
Intention
Momentum
Is everything
Mixed with a dash
Of courage
Joy
Peace
In your
Core
Regret nothing
If
You
Can

Step

I see you
I know you
Every piece and part
I’m tired
Of always being the strong one
Hives
Everywhere
I have to get out
Of my head
You need to try
If
You
Can
Hope whispers
And goes
Like a vapor
We’re both left
Disappointed
I step
I’m tired
Of being the only one stepping
So
Now what
You here
Me there
I see you
Stepping
If I stop
I’m afraid of my own
Thoughts
Step
Stepping
Ironic
That my feet
Literally
Keep breaking
New beginnings
Step
Choices
Good
Bad
Let’s do this
The merry go round
Of life
Stepping
How long can we keep repeating
This same stepping?
Our past
Predicts
Our future
Is this
What our future
Looks like?
Step

JJ McCreary

6/25/17

Who Told You To Be Strong?

Born a fighter

A survivor

A stranger, head tilted

Eyes perplexed asked,

“Who told you

Since you were little

You had to be strong?”

Everyone

Seven brothers

Tackle football, concussions

Shake-it off, be strong

Twelve years old…decided to leave home

For a boarding school

Early decisions, strong decisions

Graduated high school at sixteen

Wonder woman?

Super girl?

Dedicated, focused

Enough was never enough

Stay strong

Be self-sufficient

Rely on yourself

Be strong, live strong

Here I am

Breakable

Back burner…everything

Must keep stepping

Stepping shows strength

No tears, shake it off

But some days I wilt

Tired of the grind

Of the stepping

I’m different

Unique

Purposeful

When do I stop being strong?

I can’t breathe

I just want to breathe…

A loner? A fighter? A survivor?

I use to view life as ‘One day when’, ‘I’ll be good when’…

Not anymore

In my now

Right here

So let’s stop stepping

And deal with the mess

Embrace the now & all it comes with

Cry, write, discuss, pray, breathe

Repeat

Now

Not one day when

He asked the question… a stranger

“Who told you since

you were little you

had to be strong?”

Everyone

But not

Right NOW

 

 

A Thousand Scrolling Faces

I sat and watched thousands of faces
Scroll in memory of them
They were young
They were old
They held their babies in their arms
They held each other
We watched and I wondered
What brought you to this place?
What heartache?
What pain?
What tragedy?
The smiling faces staring back at me don’t help me understand.
We gather, standing, holding our breath
Waiting for our loved ones face to come on the screen.
They’re gone
They are not coming back to us
To hold
To cherish in our arms
To watch their children grow
We are the ones left waiting
Wanting more for those smiling in the scrolling pictures than they wanted for themselves
I’m broken
I want to know their story
I want to know why
And then I see her
Holding her breath
Camera poised
To catch a glimpse of her son
Anxious
He can’t be missed
Never forgotten
None of them ever will be
The tears come for what we wish could have been
What should have been
Heroin destroys families
Hold on to hope
Get help
We love you
We miss you

“All I wanna do is make a difference, some way, somehow….maybe create a few smiles in the process.”
Christopher Holland 10/16/85- 3/7/2016

Hibiscus Girl

Hibiscus Girl

Radiant sunlight
Strawberry blonde hair glowing in the sun
Hot pink cheeks in the Florida sun
Humid, sticky
Run & run, play & run
Laughing
Aussies nipping
Birds chirping
Beautiful hibiscus flowers
Yellow
Hot Pink
Red
Dainty fingers choose hot pink
Huge grin
Proud moment
Outstretched hand
Hot pink hibiscus, plucked before me
Sparkling eyes, love brimming
Memories created & flash
Off again
There she goes
Aussies barking
Poop on shoes
Hibiscus flower tucked in
Strawberry blonde hair glowing in the sun

Jeni McCreary