Here I Am

— Lesa Medley

Here I am,
right here,
in front of you
I am not invisible
I have a heart, a soft heart
that beats and loves
breaks and weeps
Look into my eyes
and you will see
I have a soul, a tender soul
that cares deeply
perhaps too deeply
Yeah, I cry sometimes
I have feelings
sensitive feelings that get hurt
when I am ignored,
taken for granted
or taken advantage of
I have been a friend
to some that didn’t
deserve that friendship
to some who never were my friend
not really, not when it truly mattered
I have been misunderstood
underestimated, criticized
and unappreciated
Please, do not look past me,
or brush me aside
Please, do pay attention
look at me, listen to me
I have a voice
and I have something to say
something you just might need to hear
Here I am,
right here,
in front of you
I am not invisible…
and I am not going away.

Sleepless In San Jose

— Lesa Medley

Another long night
cold, dark and lonely
I’m so very tired
yet sleep is elusive
I’m restless
mind bustling, racing
busy as Santana Row
early on a summer evening
tossing, turning
too much on my heart
memories and emotions
keep swirling
and churning
through my head
like so many electric currents
sparking, not connecting
pulsing erratically
with too many thoughts
weighing me down
winding me up…

I can’t find the off switch.

While The Moon Is Still Blue

— Lesa Medley

While the moon is still blue
I want to walk with you
hand in hand
barefoot on a long, lonely
stretch of tropical beach
Moonlight shimmering…
illuminating the water
and the sand beneath our feet
as the sea waves
gently caress our toes
and the wind softly
brushes our cheeks
and rustles our hair
Sweet music can be heard
coming from somewhere
in the distance
accompanying the sounds of
the ocean, constantly in motion
I want to taste the faint saltiness
of your lips and feel their warmth
as you kiss me
I want to see the moonlight
reflected in your eyes and
shine in your smile as we laugh
and walk together
and talk of our dreams for the future
and I want to hear you whisper
I love you,
And I want you…
to kiss me again…

while the moon is still blue

The Old Woman in the Moon

— Lesa Medley

I know she is there
before I ever see her
She’s always there
watching me and smiling
looking so wise and so kind
She knows that I am lonely
So she just stays up high in the sky
shining big and bright, guiding my way,
                    and smiling
always smiling
I wonder why she smiles?
Does she hear me talking to her,
sometimes late at night
when I am the loneliest?
Am I her friend?
Is she lonely, like me?
Do I keep her company too, sometimes,
on the long drives
                    in the night?
The long drives to nowhere really
when I can’t go to sleep
and it is too lonely to be home
when the stars are the brightest,
the sky is the blackest black
and The Old Woman in the
Moon is at her shiniest bright
Does she like the country music
coming from my radio?
She must, because she follows me,
glowing and lighting my way,
                    and smiling
She looks so big and so close that I
want to just reach out and touch her

Sometimes I try
But she is shy and if I get close
she just moves higher up in the sky
So we keep driving down the road
driving away our loneliness, windows down
listening to country music, just me,
                    and the Old Woman in the Moon.

Maui Revelation

— Lesa Medley

Standing at the edge of the world
my bare feet plunge into warm, wet sand
I wiggle my toes and smile
Taking in a deep breath
of plumeria perfumed air, I sigh
and whisper softly,
Aloha! Mahalo!
Around me palm trees are swaying
almost dancing
in the gentle breeze of trade winds
Out in the distance, a white sail shimmers
like a diamond in sunlight
against the deep sapphire blue of the ocean
I back up a few steps as a wave rolls in
sending the warm water up to my knees and I am hit
with a stinging spray of mist on my face
I slowly run my tongue across my lips
savoring the raw saltiness of the sea
I sigh again and realize…
I will search no more.

The Front Porch

— Lesa Medley

You don’t see them much anymore
Or if you do see them,
They are mainly for show,
Not really being used.
Everyone is just too busy,
I guess.
I am talking about
A real front porch,
With steps leading up to it,
A swing in the corner,
Some pretty plants and
Baskets of hanging flowers.
A couple of comfortable
Rocking chairs
With a small table in between
To place your book or knitting
And your glasses.
Beside a pitcher of lemonade,
Or iced tea.
A place where a friend
could drop by
and the two of you
would just sit a bit,
Wave hello and exchange greetings
With neighbors and passersby,
Solve the world’s problems
And discuss a few of your own;
Or just sit and rock in silence,
And watch the sunset.
I can’t help but wonder…
Wouldn’t the world be
A much better place
If everyone had a real front porch…
And spent time there?

Your Last Christmas

— Lesa Medley

Our birthdays are two days apart, in December,
yours on the 17th and mine on the 19th.
You were 5 years younger than me, my big
handsome brother Steve. You looked so cool;
the moustache, the Indiana Jones hat and
Iron Maiden blue jeans jacket. With your
trademark Donald Duck imitations, and wicked sense
of humor, you always knew how to make me laugh.

That year, 1995, you wanted to make it here
in time for us to celebrate together.
It seemed important to you.
But, it didn’t happen . . . you missed that by 3 days.
Then, on December 22, you called me up
saying you were in Santa Cruz and needed directions.
I told you to head North on Highway 17 and to call me
when you got to Los Gatos and I would come meet you.
We met at the 7-11 across from the High School
and you followed me home down Blossom Hill Road.
We would get to celebrate our birthdays, Christmas
and New Years together.

So many wonderful memories from that Christmas,
memories I will cherish forever . . . the quiet, lazy morning;
the drive up Shannon Road in the Jeep and the bobcat
that crossed the road in front of us, we pulled over and
watched it make its way through the trees, up into the hills;
we played Frisbee and fed the ducks at Vasona Park by the
lake that sunny and crisp California Christmas afternoon.
There was roast turkey and all the trimmings for our Christmas dinner.

We talked and laughed, a lot. You had so many plans
in your head. You talked of going to Alaska, Montana, or
Wyoming; someplace that was wide open, where there weren’t
a lot of people. You hated crowds. You said you needed the space
to breathe. It was so good to have you around, you had been out of
all of our lives for over 3 years and I was so very happy;
happy to have my brother Steve back in my life again.

Shortly after that you left but you said you’d be back . . . inside
I think we both knew, somehow, that you wouldn’t be.
Six months later, I received another phone call.  This one
from our brother Rob, telling me that you were gone.
The world stopped. My heart broke.

Take A Chance

— Julie Blanchette  (presented by Lesa Medley)

didn’t we seem to take more chances
when we were young?

the chance to climb trees in the pursuit of heights—
never thinking we couldn’t get back down

or at night, just before dinner,
the chance to run wild and free
by out smarting the bad guy and finding
the most daring place of safety in the darkest
part of the yard.

while listening to records and dancing in the living room,
weren’t we taking chances by singing at the top of our voices
pretending a perfect performance

back then, we didn’t know we were taking chances
we were just being ourselves
or pretending to be a TV character
and wove stories with danger and success and surprising endings
each playing our part and creating fun out of thin air.

We were honest back then:
“No, that character wouldn’t do that!!”
“What if this happens instead?”
“Hey that’s not fair! Play by the rules!”
(and if you didn’t you couldn’t get to play)

What If…
I really can choose my Character
And get to create the Successes and Dangers and Adventures
Just out of thin Air?
What if I Became like that Child again
And Lived by Make-Believe Rules and tumbling Imagination
Who would I Be?
What limits except for dinner and bedtime would I have?

If Not Now, When?

— Lesa Medley

If not now, when?
Yesterday is already in the past,
there is no guarantee
of tomorrow; much less
of the future, out there
somewhere, someday
so isn’t now
the only true option
any of us ever really have?
Everything else is
either in the past
or an illusion.
So… as Mary Oliver asks,
what will I do
with the rest of
my one wild and
precious life?
If not now, when??
If not me, who??

And I Spoke

— Lesa Medley

Heartbeat trembling,
it was time…
and I knew it.
It was time to speak
my knees were shaking,
my palms were sweaty.
But I needed to speak…
to speak my truth.
And I needed not only
to be listened to…
but to be heard.
I could hear my heart pounding,
it was beating in my ears.
I was sure that my voice would quaver
and that I would speak too fast.
No matter—can’t worry about that now.
I have to at least try.
So, I took a deep breath,
mustered all of my courage,
and I spoke. And spoke some more.
When I was finished, I sat down.
I was relieved. Relieved it was over.
And proud of myself.
I had survived,
and gotten through it.
I had also made an interesting discovery…
I found out then
that the floor beneath my feet
wouldn’t open up
and swallow me whole,
that the world wouldn’t end
if I spoke…
and gave voice to what was on my mind,
and in my heart.

Velvet Poetry

— Lesa Medley

Velvet poetry
with its
soft, smooth
graceful
and gently
rounded edges;
heals us
through hard times,
helps us
express ourselves
and enables us to
see the world around us;

Cactus poetry
with its
harsh, raw
penetrating
and sharply
protruding spines;
abruptly jolts us
out of lethargy
and apathy
in order to wake us up,
grab our attention and
perhaps,
move us to action;

There is room enough
and a deep need
for both.

Bored Lonely Shoes

— Lesa Medley

One pair
Black Mary Janes,
One pair
Brown, sensible
Walking shoes,
Lined up
Side by side
Ready, waiting
No place to go
Waiting for me
To slip in
My feet and
Take them
Somewhere,
Anywhere…
Work,
The bookstore,
Shopping.
Instead, they just sit…
And wait.
They are jealous
Of the flip flops
And white tennies
Who got to go
To Hawaii.
Yeah, they are
Pretty unhappy
About that. 
Now I have been sick
So I’ve just
Been shuffling
Around in slippers
And socks.
Poor bored, lonely shoes.
The black ones
Will forgive me
Tomorrow though.
Tomorrow, we are
Going to work.
The brown ones
Will go to work
On Tuesday.
Now the flip flops
And white tennies
Will sit, and wait.
Poor bored, lonely shoes.

The Winds of Change

— Lesa Medley

There were signs and signals all winter
they were all around me,
if I had been paying attention . . .
and if I had been open, and receptive,
alert to what the universe was trying to tell me.
 
If I had taken the time to get still,
to be quiet and just listen
to those small, sweet voices,
those whispers from deep inside;
my own intuition was speaking to me
telling me what I need to do,
what I must do.
 
It was there all along,
the guidance I was seeking,
my inner compass
was directing me, nudging me
to my own true north.
 
It is now Spring,
the winds of change are blowing,
I am paying attention and I am listening.
I don’t need to be afraid or weak,
I just need to find the strength and the courage
to do what I must do.
I am ready, to take that first step,
it may be a baby step . . .
but it will be the right step,
heading in the direction that I am to go.