Thankful

Turkeys are cooking
Families traveling
Snow is falling
And Christmas lights a’glowing

We count our blessings
Remembering the good things
Be they large or small
And giving thanks for all

But not all enjoy this season
Some have no reason
Some huddle beneath bridges
Some hide from relatives

When you pray and give thanks
Spare a moment and give a thought
To all those who are without
To all who are hurting now

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Still

The morning breaks silent and still
Rows upon rows of men stand still
Their spears gleam in the light
Like a thousand lamps
Their shields polished silver and bright

The day gains strength
Rows upon rows of men prepare
Their hands grip weapons and shields
Ten thousand men stand ready
Ten thousand men stand still

A terrible horn is heard
Than the ground begins to shake
Out of darkness they come
A steady beat of feet against earth
Out of the darkness come men
Out of the darkness comes the enemy
Bronze shield form a living wall
A forest of spears follows

A terrible sight to behold
An army greater than had thought
On and on they pour through
Ten thousand men at the front
With many more following still
Hearts are shaken
And knees tremble at that sight

One man rides before the silver host
“Stand your ground!” He cries

Today we fight not for our own
but for our families
Today we fight not for our king
But for our love ones
Today we stand and defend

With a roar the silver legion cries
A wall of silver forms agains the wall of bronze
Silent in resolve
Weapons made ready
The silver host stands still
As the enemy marches on

Ten thousand feet
Five thousand feet
Three thousand feet
One thousand feet

Friday Thoughts: Fog


Fog.

To adults, a dangerous hazard while driving or walking about late at night.

To kids, a wonder of walking through a cloud.

To movie makers, a key element for suspense.

Fog is often used or seen as something supernatural or spooky. The harbinger of the monster’s arrival or the warning of some character’s death. In reality, fog can hide dangers in driving or hiking. Obscuring familiar landmarks while hiding holes or drop offs. Some people don’t like it.

But I rather like the fog, not for the thrill factor but fog changes things.

Fog strikes me almost like an artist painting over a photo. It warps familiar landscapes and scatters light in a strange way. People appear and vanish only a few feet away.

By walking through thick fog, one can easily see how fog was seen as doorways to another world. Maybe they still are. Not the magical or mystical doors of the ancient eras but the mysteries and wonders for artists and writers.

orange streets lights along a paved road in the early morning

Friday Thoughts: Simple Things

It’s the simple things that matter.

That is what many people say with smiling faces and perfect lives. And a lot of times I glare at them and say, “That’s easy for you to say. You have everything.”

But it is true.

Lately, on my commute home traffic has been snarled. A side road often gets me around the bottleneck. But I don’t take it to avoid traffic or because it is faster. I take it because it is one of the most beautiful scenic routes I have found. It is a winding dirt road with old trees lining either side. Their branches reach up and over, forming a tunnel of branches. Breaks in the trees allow light to pass through, providing a warm setting. With the right amount of cars kicking up dust, it becomes fog-like.

It is a beautiful drive and I love it.

And it is little more than a detour on a narrow farm road.

But it is a simple thing that makes me happy. In this world of negatives and depressing news, finding small things that makes one happy is rare indeed.

The Woods

It stands not too far
Appearing for all like ancient woods
With bent and weathered trees
With thick underbrush
With scurrying animals and birds
Yet the air taste strange
And the trees more alive
When you near these woods

A power lies upon these woods
An endless twilight
Beneath green leaves
Strange lamps can be seen
Among bough and trunk
Strange laughter can be heard
Deep within the woods
All who enter never stay
All who seek never find
All who are lost find food and shelter
But those who seek harm are never found

A power lies upon these woods
Be it summer, spring, winter, or fall
A peace can be found
Where the weary find rest
And the restless find stillness
A whisper can be heard
Like wind among leaves
Or the quiet song of strings
Playing through the night
None have ventured to cut tree or stone
None have questioned why this forest remains

It stands not too far
Appearing deserted and old
A remnant of what it once was
The people watch and plan
Yet somehow it always remain
Year after year
Century after century
Where the air is rich
And the trees sway in windless air

Eerie Morning

city lights on a morning horizon
The morning breaks
As it has every day
Yet there is something more
The breeze flows
Yet it holds a chill

The morning breaks
As it has every day
Yet there is something more
No birds sing
No bugs speak

The morning breaks
As it has every day
And there is something more
The morning clouds
Reflect a strange light

The morning breaks
As it has every day
And there is something more
But now I know what it is
It is not the eastern dawn I see
But a western light

Friday Thoughts: What to Believe?

Christian? Atheist? Buddhist? Cat-lover? Llama hater?

What do you believe?

The world is beautiful? The end is coming? Elvis is still alive?

This question has been asked over the ages for different reasons and different intents. What god do you serve? What religion do you follow? Which king do you support? Who do you fight for, the peasants or the nobles?

But in more recent times the questions have been more “Do you believe there is police brutality?” or “Do you think the flag represents oppression?”

What if you don’t know what to believe?

If you don’t there is a wide range of “experts” on the web that will tell you the truth. And if you disagree then you become a bigot, moron, or “you’re what’s wrong with the world”. And in some cases, you can be called all three at once.

So.

What do you believe?

What do you believe?

There is a lot going on that I don’t fully grasp or have time to devote to the research it would require in order to find the answer. Because at this point, there is too many opinions and graphs being promoted that conflict with one another. All of which serves to stir up emotions without offering a solution. For me, thinking emotionally is fine and all but I often find myself easily manipulated when I think emotionally.

Because it sounds good.

Because it feels right.

Because that’s what everyone believes and if I don’t then I am a bigot or racist or blinde or an idiot or whatever the catchphrase is this week.

But that is the problem. It is based on feelings. Emotions that can change by the hour or even by the minute. Getting lead by the heart and the heart alone can get you into serious trouble. That is how people fall for the wrong person or stay in dangerous relationships. Because they are only listening to their emotions.

Logic, as hard and cold as it can be, serve as a balance to the knee-jerk as heartstrings are pulled by the news and opinions.

Of course, going completely ice-cold logic is an easy way to become ruthless and harmful to your fellow member of mankind. That is how you get people who worry only about the bottom dollar or the final product.

A prime example when logic and emotions are out of synch is the Japanese Internment of World War II.

Innocent men, women, and children were collected and shuttled off to the middle of no-where after Imperial Japan launched a surprise attack on the United States, causing our entry into World War II.

Why? Because the government feared a fifth column rising. For those who do not know, fifth columns refers to local population rising up and aiding a foreign power. A real possibility since Germany almost successfully raised a fifth column of their own. Was the jailing of citizens right? No. Was it a logical response to a real possibility? Yes. How was it able to pass? People were afraid and angry.

Revolutionists are also great examples of getting people to think emotionally. By getting the masses to react out of anger or fear you can get the Bolsheviks into power and establish the Soviet Union. Or the French Revolution where the streets ran with blood and heads. Why? Because of a few anger people were able to tell the population what to be anger and hurt about. To get them to stop thinking.

On the other hand, emotions can be great motivators. Hundreds of citizens got into their private boats and sailed to the French coast to pick up the surviving soldiers at Dunkirk. No one asked them. They weren’t equipped. They just went because it was the right thing to do. the English air power did what they could to protect them and they focused on getting troops out.

Much more recently, the Cajun Navy and regular Texans headed south to where Harvey had laid waste. No one said “I order you to do this” or demanded people hand over their time and resources. Nope, they just loaded their boats with supplies, plotted a course, and went. They did not show up as an extra pair of hands. They came prepared. Emotion rose up at the plight of the victims. Logic guided preparation and execution.

At the end, you have to rely on what you have seen and test what you are told. Check the sources, do a little research, and force that individual to prove to you that they are telling the truth.