Aiming Towards the Sun

 Aiming towards the sun,

the hawk shows dedication.

Cultivating grace

in those who witness her flight.

She shows the path to follow.

Liner Notes for This Groove: This tanka was written in honor of a fellow student of Japanese tea ceremony. She recently got her tea name. What that means is that she has practiced tea for a long enough time at a high enough skill level that she earned a name that shows she is part of the Urasenke tea school lineage. My tea teacher told me that in older times tanka poetry was sometimes composed in honor of students who achieve a high level of proficiency. I decided to try my hand at it. She seemed quite pleasantly surprised at how well it turned out (she had no idea I wrote poetry at all).

I am years (and years) away from earning my tea name, but I do hope that if I do earn one, it will be as lovely a celebration as we had for her.

Blue Sky Dreams

All my blue sky dreams
surviving despite the rain
startle me. To think
I almost let them wither
fearing an endless winter.

Liner Notes for This Groove: This song is linked to Poets and Storytellers United's Friday Writings prompt. LOL, I did not in fact follow my own prompt (this song is one of my favorites), but I did feel like celebrating hitting a milestone for a work in progress I had to be goaded into starting. Thank you Magaly, for kicking my butt to the 40,000 word mark. 😜

My No Is. (I Am Just Like Everyone Else)

My no is
both scythe and scalpel,
cutting away diseased and dead bits
to make room for healing and growth.

My no is a sign
showing where respect ends
and disrespect starts, saying, 
"Cross at your own risk."

My no is a test
designed to offend only those
who think anything less than 
my complete and uncomplaining compliance
challenges their self-worth.

My no is not the reason 
this bridge is burning.

You brought the matches and the gasoline
only after I said, "Stop."

Liner Notes for This Groove: For my birthday, I decided to gift myself with setting a boundary that was long overdue. A friend had been taking advantage of my generosity for years, demanding I do a time intensive task for him regularly. Very recently he acted in a way that was highly disrespectful and minimizing of the work I did. I decided to tell him that I could no longer do it, and encouraged him to find someone with more patience time. 

I'd like to say I was surprised his response was to play the victim and end the friendship, but I long suspected I was only valued for what I could do. There is however a wonderful sense of relief I'm relishing. As I said, this happened on my birthday. And I was with family and friends who affirmed what good relationships look like (LOL, I owe a few of them a call back). 

As for the boundary breaker, I wish him well and hope he finds enough emotional maturity to honestly deal with why so many of his relationships go south. But he's not my problem anymore. Oh well, more cake for those I care about and those who care about me.