One, two…..

I focused on my breathing. Slowly in, slowly out. If I could control that, hopefully my mind would follow.

Three, four….

Counting sometimes calmed me. The rhythmic sound of the numbers. Up to ten and back to one. Divert my attention away from my racing pulse.

Five, six….

I wouldn’t always feel this way. It would pass, leaving my body as quickly as it began. This is temporary, this is harmless.

Seven, eight….

Another wave hit me. Washing over me and making it hard to take a breath.

Nine, ten….

Breathe. I should breathe. In slowly, hold, release. If I could control that hopefully my heart would follow.

Ten, nine….

I didn’t know how much more I could take. Fear was starting to take a stronger hold than I could fight off.

Eight, seven….

I closed my eyes and silently begged. I begged for strength, serenity. I begged for this to pass, to feel normal again.

Six, five….

How much longer could my body sustain this state? I was exhausted and shaky.

Four, three….

I opened my eyes and took a deep breath. I diverted my attention away from my head and into my feet. Slowly feeling every ounce of my body starting to relax.

Two, one….

I focused on my breathing. Slowly in, slowly out. If I could control that, hopefully my mind would follow.



Originally posted on



There are things I can’t control
Things that just happen
Things I have to
Learn to live with
Or things that just consume
Things beyond the scope of my ability
To change

Or are there?
Am I actually
In control
Allowing these things
To consume
Choosing to learn to live with them
Instead of stopping them before they start

Things that well up inside
Direct results of festering feelings
Allowing things to rise to a toxic level
Slowly start to seep out
Into everyday life

I will no longer allow
Such things to affect
I will no longer allow
Such people to affect
I will no longer allow
Their actions to create
Feelings inside
That fester and rise
To a toxic level

A realization
That if I do not let it matter
If I do not let these things
Become things
I will not have to learn to live with them
This thinking
This thinking
Is magic.

Why I Read

*Written for the Brattleboro Literary Festival


I read to escape.

To visit far away lands

That I have not been to.


I read to relax.

To have the adventures my body

Is too tired to have.


I read to think.

To expand my mind,

As well as my world.


I read to connect.

With writers, authors

And past generations.


I read to be a voyeur

Into someone else’s world

And mind.


I read to energize

My spirit and

My soul.


I read to soothe my daughter.

To fill her mind with stories

As she drifts off to sleep.


I read to remember,

Places I have been,

Times that have passed.


I read to write.

To be inspired,

To never give up.


And sometimes,

Just sometimes,

I read.

Just because.