It is a universal truth that time moves onward…hour by hour…day by day 

flowing in but one direction…stopping for no one along the way.


The time that’s measured by our clocks marches forward…absolutely

The time that ages our bodies…advances resolutely.


But there is a countenance of time that plays by a different set if rules

defying the lessons, the information, the things we were taught in school.


It’s when old friends get together…for no matter how much time’s amassed

in that moment they are young again…as if no time has passed. 


There is a wrinkle in the time continuum…a wrinkle all friends know

allowing them to immediately pick up from where they left off years ago. 


It matters not how much they’ve aged…if they are old and grey…

for the moment they get together…the years between them fall away.


And though it goes against the laws of nature…and occurs without reason or rhyme…

they begin to feel younger…as they travel back in time.


They feel blessed time has has allowed

to relive old joys and smiles

Blessed as time journeys ever onward


she has paused for them a while.

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To her myriad of friends

she was the moonlight

and she was the sun…

Her magic was how she made each friend 



as if they were her only one.

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It passes between them silently

the moment their two hearts blend

Still, they feel the joy 

the surprise

and the wonder

when two people 



two friends

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I pass this lovely bougainvillea every day and am happily aware

how a bush this bright and beautiful can exist with oh so little care.


It is a fact of nature…one we can’t dispute

how the bougainvillea doesn’t need much tending…once it’s taken root.


The other day an old friend stopped in the bookstore, 

one I hadn’t seen in years

and I was reminded how old friendships 

in spite of time and distance still endear.


Seeing him was a wonderful surprise…it gave my heart a thrill.

We talked as if it was yesterday…as if somehow time stood still.


Friendship has a unique way…when it comes to time…

to circumvent…

for when old friends meet…any time that’s passed…becomes irrelevant.


It was just a short visit and after he left I joyfully conceded

how to keep our friendship going…this was all the time we needed.


I paused by the bougainvillea on my way home…

happily aware

how a friendship bright and beautiful can exist with oh so little care.


For it is another fact of nature…one we certainly can’t dispute


how a friendship doesn’t need much tending…once it’s taken root

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We attended a retirement party or a friend who won’t be teaching anymore.

He’s been teaching at the same school…since 1984.


We sat in the back and watched the people sharing laughter…sharing tears

with the man who has been changing lives for the last 35 years.


I watched him hug one person after another…I watched as other hands he clutched

and I thought here is a room full of people whose lives this man has touched..


I have no proof to back this up…but in my heart I believe it’s true

whenever a person touches your heart…a piece of that person stays with you.


When compassion, generosity and kindness between two people are exchanged

though they may not realize it at the time…both of them are changed.


And as I looked around the room…and listened to what was said…

I realized in its simplest form…this is how love is spread..


One drop in the ocean might not seem like much…but in reality

that one drop, that simple drop…can find it’s way across the sea…


I’m not sure how far his drops have traveled…how far his drops have roamed

but as I watched him at his retirement party…they found their way back home.


They returned to him in a smile, 

in a hug, 

in a poem

in the many ways he was caressed….

And as I watched countless people celebrate this one man 

I thought…


We all should be so blessed.

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When a man goes on a date with four women

one being his wife-who sits by his side

he realizes almost immediately…

he’s in for a wonderful ride.


When a man goes on a date with four women

he is thrilled, he is quiet…he’s reserved

and he realizes almost immediately

how much wonder there is to observe.


And how much time he has to observe it

(I imagine this is true in the north, in the east, west and south)

because when a man goes on a date with four women

he never gets a chance to open his mouth!


So he smiles to himself because he knows

when this day is done…and in his memory long after

he’ll remember their stories, the look on their faces

he’ll remember their smiles and laughter.


He’ll remember how the moments seemed to flow easily

one into the next…

how they blend.

He’ll remember what it’s like to be sitting

in the midst of a circle of friends…


He imagines it’s like sitting in a garden

and he loses track of the minutes and hours

refreshed by the breeze that is born of good friends

surrounded by the beauty of flowers.


Yes, when a man goes on a date with four women

and one of them happens to be his wife

along the way he realizes not only is this a wonderful ride


but it’s part of a wonderful life.

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After listening to his final lesson 

the wise one was approached by a young woman and young man…

“We have a question.” they asked softly. 

He nodded, 

“I will answer it if I can.”


“We’ve listened to all your teachings.” They said

“We’ve taken them to heart.

You’ve taught us about beauty 

about friendship, love and art.” 


“You’ve taught us about acceptance and compassion

about how to have an open mind.

You’ve taught us about peace, 

about wisdom.

You’ve taught us to be kind.”


“We’ve listened and we’ve learned.” they said

“We’ve held on to your every breath.

Yet of all the subjects you have taught…

Yet you never speak of death?”


Their teacher looked at them and smiled, 

touched their shoulders 

then began to speak…

“Death eventually finds us.” he said…

“All the others…


we must seek.”



They grew up close together…sharing laughter…sharing frowns

playing in their backyards…hanging upside-down.


The world was oh so different then, as they hung so effortlessly

It was a simpler, uncomplicated time…more innocent and free.


A time when all that children needed to do was laugh and sing and play

when hanging upside down…unimpeded…they would sway.


For they were making memories…no future memory would surpass

As they hung there…upside down…or ran barefoot in the grass.


And as they look back at this picture now…it’s those memories they see

awakening from a place where they shall always be…


And when thy close their eyes to remember…that certain time…that certain year

sometimes it brings a smile…sometimes it brings a tear


Because they realize how lucky they are 

to have shared a life time of laughter

and of frowns…

from a friendship that began so man-years ago

while hanging upside down.

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When I think of friendship…I rather like the notion

that we are captains of our own ships that sail across the ocean


As we grow our ship grows with us at a slow and steady rate

growing longer, wider, stronger the more friends we accumulate.


As we sail across life’s ocean…we find from day to day

new friends board at different ports…while old ones disembark along the way.


Some return to visit to share a memory…a laugh, a cry 

because there’s always room aboard our ship for those who’ve said goodbye.


For once we’ve made a friend…it doesn’t matter how or where or when

the friendship reignites when our sails cross again.


And some friends, if we’re lucky sail with us forever…

through oceans vast and wide…

and we’re filled with a sense of happiness knowing they are by our side…


Knowing we can count on them no matter what waves the ocean brings…

as each year cycles from the Summer, to the Fall, Winter and Spring.


Knowing no matter where the journey takes us…through weather foul or fair

all we need do is turn around and they’ll be standing there.


And knowing as we sail together…sharing our hopes and dream…our cares

that as our friends help sail our ship…we help sail theirs 


ready to lend and ear a hand…a hug…or with a kind word to say

together on each other’s friend-ship…until our dying day.


Yes, when I think of friendship…I rather like the notion

That though we are the captains it is our friends 


who guide ‘cross the ocean.

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