Lacking Focus…Oh Look a Butterfly

Good evening all! I hope everyone is doing well. I know it has been a while since my last post. My hiatus has been more about laziness and my lack direction. Lately I can’t seem to muster up enough concentration for more than 5 minutes at a time on anything. About the only thing lately I have spending any lengthy amount of time on is video games I think that is because I can just do that without any real focus, just plug and play so to speak.

I have been thinking a lot about what I want to say, what I want this blog to represent. Do I want it to be another pop culture source? Snarky reviews of bad movies, music I like or television? Do I want it to be a place to showcase my writing as far as my poetry goes or maybe the occasional short story? Do I want it to be political or just an observer’s view of the world around me. I have read a few articles concerning blogs and they state that you need to be focusing on a subject, some sort of goal to work towards. I suppose that is true. I have been reading a lot of blog posts and there are some fine writers that just write about everything. I really envy just having the drive to do this every day. I know very few people read my posts and that is fine. I am not looking to make money from this or to have any recognition. It is meant to be a therapy for me. My depression has been a strong influencer in my life for the past 20 plus years. I am not making an excuse, but it is there. I can’t hide from it. Some days are worse than others. Lately it has been worse than normal. There is something inside of me holding back and making me not write like I want. I have discussed that before with my music in previous posts. It’s making myself do this and once I start writing, I do tend to find I can ramble on for quite a while.

I have these brief moments of creativity during the day. I think of a subject that would make a good blog post, but yet I don’t write about it later. I shrug it off at times and just blame it on being tired after a long work day. Nothing kills creativity and the willingness to write for me than real life. I have really guided myself into thinking these pursuits are not worth it. It brings no monetary value, then why do it? That is with anything. A mortgage, light bill, water bill, credit cards, etc…these things have killed the creative person in me. It’s probably more likely that I have killed that person slowly over the years. I am trying to plant those seeds again. It is hard some days. I am working on fighting my depression. I am working on just trying to find myself again after all these years. The focus is hard to come by. The concentration is harder to find, but I am working on it. I know I will never be some great writer, but I do want my voice out there. I suppose it’s vanity, some of it is my small portion of immortality, maybe it just the only way I can be myself.

So be patient with me and I will do my best to get out here and write more. It will come, but I am sure it will be slow and it will be all over the place. Now with that I need to go chase some butterflies.

Take care!

What is Poetry?

Hello all! I hope everyone is doing well tonight. I thought I would try my hand at defining what poetry is and means to me. Since I have been blogging again, I have had a chance to read and follow some really talented writers. Each have their own styles, ideas and motivations. By motivations, I just mean what drives them to write. For me, it’s the need to get emotions and words out I could not speak aloud. I know my poetry is simple, there are not any word tricks or clever ideas that have hidden meanings. That is not me. I have written things like that in the past, but they are not very good and just kind of meander. My poetry tends to rhyme. I know that’s not everyone’s cup of tea, but it fits my style. I am more influence by my music heroes more than traditional poets. That is where the rhyming comes in. Sometimes the hardest part of that is to not make it sound forced. It does limit me I suppose, but I think with the themes and ideas I write about it fits.

For me poetry only needs two things to feel organic and real. It has to be honest and it has to have meaning for the writer. The honesty can be felt, especially when one writes about the sad or bad times one has. I can see that in a lot of people’s poetry I read. You have to be honest with yourself when you write. You have to make yourself feel before you can make others feel. That is where the honesty comes in. Just bare yourself with your words. It’s therapeutic and it can make you see things in a different light. It opens you up and exposes yourself to your readers. That’s scary, but I think it is part of writing poetry. (Now I want to take a quick minute to say, I am not a poetry expert. I do not know the technical aspects of writing poetry nor any writing tricks to make it better. I just go off of what I feel and what is on my mind at the time). Poetry is personal. You do not have to be a professional to write your feelings. Your personal experiences are unique to you. Write them out. I say this to encourage people to write. Don’t be afraid to be criticized because you will be. Just write with your heart. Someone may tell you your poetry doesn’t fall into a traditional form, but that doesn’t matter. This writing for you. If you want to share your emotions and feelings, I don’t think anyone can really criticize you if you’re honest. Too many people are held back because some “experts” tell them they are not any good. Do not let that stop you. We need more people to write from their heart. Now this is all my opinion and I am sure a lot will not agree. If I can just influence one person to write and to feel good that they did it, that will make this all worth it.

Now after all of that, I think it is only fair of me to share another of my poems. This is another old one. No title, per usual with me, but it is very personal to me. I wrote this a couple of years after my mother died. I wish I could have shared it with her, but she died when I was young and I was not really sharing anything with anyone at that time. Feel free to let me know what you think. Send me a tweet! I am @MLCTaskforce.

Another year has gone by with you not here,
I can't believe just how fast time does fly.
I wish you were here to see what I've become,
I hope you can see me, looking down from the pale sky...

I should have told you I loved you more,
You deserved for all of your dreams to have come true.
Stolen from this life you loved so quickly,
The time for your celebration is long overdue.

Today I celebrate your life and all it brought everyone,
Today I cry those tears I've held in for so long.
Oh how I wish I could hug you just one more time,
And tell you just where in my heart you belong.

I stare looking into the distance, I can feel you near.
The breeze is your whisper in my childish ear.
Why are you gone when I need you these days
To guide me through all of my desperate way

Please forgive all the times I was so terrible,
I didn't mean to hurt you in any way.
Mine was the crime of selfish youth,
I just wish I could tell you all these things today.

And as I walk on down the road you made,
I can understand that there was once a love so true.
Never will I forget the things you have given me,
For those things, I will always love you...

I hope you enjoyed my post and my poem. Take care all! I will be writing again soon.

Wednesday…that’s all I Have

Hello all. Hope everyone is doing well and had a nice long holiday weekend. I know I’m a few days late posting, but honestly not much is happening. I am still floundering when it comes to the direction of this blog. I’ve honestly been more active on Twitter as of late. I gave definitely gone more political on Twitter. I think it’s good to have voices out there coming together as one to fight all of the bad in the world. Discussion is the seed in which action grows. I hope to meet some more interesting people, learn more about people I didn’t know before and just keep a positive vibe on everything. So this is all tonight. If you would like, follow me on Twitter @MLCTaskforce. Take care and I promise more material soon.

Let’s Have Some Fun-My Top 5 Albums

Good evening all! I hope everyone is doing OK tonight. It’s Almost Wednesday, so that’s a good thing. I wanted to do something I have not done in awhile, talk about music. I mentioned along time ago, I love music and I am trying to listen more than I used to. I wanted to just give you guys a small taste of some of the music I listen to. Everyone loves lists, so I figured this is the way to go! I imagine most will find these albums boring, especially any younger readers who happen upon this. I am not saying these are the best albums ever made, but these are my “go to” albums, depending on my mood. I used to be a really terrible music snob. I have definitely mellowed over the years. It’s not for me to judge or say that my music is better than your music. It doesn’t matter. You like what you like and I like what I like and life goes on. With that, here we go!

Number 5: Jethro Tull The Broadsword and the Beast.

Now this album is probably not a fan favorite, but it was one of my first exposures to Jethro Tull and I instantly fell in love with it. The album is during a short phase where their music was a heavy mix of keyboards and did not have the traditional “Tull” sound, however the essence is there. It is a mixture of songs dealing with politics, love and the changing times. English folk is there, but the sound is more electronic not as organic as previous albums such as “Heavy Horses” and “Songs from the Wood”. This is an album I can get lost in. Ian Anderson’s voice is on point and the songs flow together nicely. There is definitely a nostalgia factor with this, since it goes back to middle school where I first heard it.

Number 4: Pink Floyd- Wish You Here

Now there is not much I can say about this album that hasn’t been said before. It is my favorite Pink Floyd Album. Way back when I used to have a homemade cassette tape with this on one side and “Dark Side of the Moon” on the other. I can’t even begin to know how many hours I would sit in the dark listening to those. This is a very laid back album. It is another one you can put on and escape in.

Number 3 Van Morrison- Avalon Sunset

This album has a lot of sentimental value to me. It takes me back to a certain time in my life where I was in love with someone I thought was very special at the time. It is also one that inspired me to write a lot of poetry and it is a joy to listen to. This was somewhat of a “comeback” album for Van. I know that “Whenever God Shines His Light” got radio play of some adult contemporary radio stations. It’s funny how music can take you back. This album does it so well. The songs explore, love, spirituality and long summer nights spent with someone you love. I have to mention one outstanding track for me. “Orangefield”, that song always takes me back to that special person. It is a bittersweet memory, but I think eventually all memories become bittersweet.

Number 2 The Rolling Stones- Exile on Main Street

This album has been played by me so many times over the years. This to me is the best album the Stones ever made. I know critics all say that, but there is a reason for it. This album is a perfect mix or rock, blues, country and everything that made the Stones great. They never topped this album. They never could. It’s a complete album, Put it on and let it play through, but you have to play it loud! Get the remaster, it is well worth it. I love the Stones and this album is the reason why. For me when I think of a “classic rock” album, Exile is it.

Number 1 Jackson Browne – Late for the Sky

I have to confess, this album is an all out nostalgia attack for me. So many songs fit the way I was feeling when I was in my 20’s. The songs seem to flow parallel with my life at the time. This is my rainy day album. It is for when I want to look back and just remember some special times and friends. Songs of lost love and friends, of misunderstanding of feelings. It is another laid back album, two upbeat songs and the rest ballads. The album is like a long lost friend that you rediscover and realize again what you loved about them. It’s worth a listen to.

Now I would be amiss if I didn’t add a couple of honorable mentions to this list. These albums also got played to death when I was younger and now as well. It was hard not to add these, but I really just wanted to do a top 5 for now.

Honorable Mention- Stevie Nicks- Bella Donna

Well, this album holds a very special place in my heart. It was the first CD I ever owned. I had the actual album before it. I love Stevie Nicks. She is amazing. Total disclosure, I had and still have the biggest crush on her. Her music spoke to me at a young age. I guess it was the romantic in me. Loving someone the way she must have and to have it come out in her music always moved me. I will always be a fan. Please give this one a listen. I do not think you will regret it.

Honorable Mention – The Kinks- Muswell Hillbillies

This album is a really well crafted album by a band that had already had a list of hits behind them. This is just a fun listen. It talks about various subjects as modern life and the stress involved, going home, the English love for tea. It is not really a concept album as their previous albums were, but more a collection of songs with similar themes and feelings. When I first listened to this album, I know I played it at least three times in a row. I love the Kinks and this is one of their best.

So there you have it! Here are some of my favorite albums. It’s not really a hodgepodge of different styles and such, but these albums have a lot of meaning to me. I hope you take a chance and listen to one. Might not be your cup of tea and I get that. If you do happen to listen to one, please let me know!

Take care!

In Support of Millennials

Good evening everyone! I hope everyone has had a great week so far. Tomorrow is Friday and that’s not a bad thing at all. I wanted to talk about something different tonight. This week I have been reading and actually seeing in my job a bias against millennials. I mean a lot of negative things. “Millennials are entitled, spoiled, lazy”. I have heard and read it all this week. I don’t understand it. These young people are our future. I don’t see all of these negative traits. I see people who are passionate about their world, their politics and life. Work is not their first priority nor should it be. I have played the company game ever since I was 24 and I followed the rules and did what I was told and I am just a little better off than when I started. These young people can see through the corporate bullshit and know life isn’t work. Life is everything except work. Work is there to pay bills. If you have a job you’re passionate about, that is awesome. Hard work can be good, especially if it involves bettering society as a whole. Millennials are smart enough to question the status quo. Change cannot happen without it.

Look at life from their eyes. Fresh out of college they start out drowning in debt. The job market is insane. Companies want an incredible amount of education for bad underpaying jobs. They are finding their way and all they seem to face is the criticism from older generations. This is not the America of 50 years ago. One cannot just have a single income home, buy a house, a car or take a vacation. Millennials do have it harder I believe. The real problem is us. By us I mean anyone older than this generation. A lot of people have the attitude of “I got mine so fuck you” or “I had to go through all of this, so should you”. Why should they? Why should they fall for the same trappings of life that we have? Consumerism has plagued us. Not just in general shopping, but also in the image of what people believe life “should” be. You need to be married, have kids and be ready for life all by the time you’re 25. There is a tremendous amount of external pressures put on them. They resist. We haven’t. We gave it all for the “American dream”. So we can sit in front of our TVs after work and forget everything else that is going on in the world. Millennials see the bigger picture. They know the world is dying from climate change. They see the hatred and the racism that older generations have brought on to the earth. Millennials have a conscious and they worry more about the future of the world than anyone older than them.

Millennials face challenges that were not there 25 years ago. Social media has made the world more open to us all, but it also has open the doors for hateful people looking to make others miserable. There is more of an openness about issues such as gay and trans acceptance. (Although I really don’t like the term acceptance, it seems to have negative connotations behind it. Just let people live their life. Try to understand and love them unconditionally). Social medial has brought the ability for gay and trans people to express their feelings and let everyone know what hey are going through. That is excellent; however, it also brings out the trolls and the idiots who find pleasure in making fun of an issue they could never understand. It’s nobody’s business how you identify yourself. You are who you are. I do not understand how in this day and age that there is still so much hatred about a person who the world doesn’t see as “normal”. There is no normal. What is there are billions of people on this planet that are just trying to survive. If any person can find happiness and a feeling of peace within themselves, let them have it. We have no right to deny that. I might not understand it all myself, but I want to learn. I am a 48 year old married man, no one special, but I want to know what makes us tick as people. I truly hope one day that this will be a non-issue and people can live their lives the way they want to.

This has been on my mind all week. I hear my peers just off handily say that Millennials are lazy. They do not see the world the way it is. What I say to that is they are trying to mold the world into a better place. The world does not have to be the way it is, it can be changed and I believe Millennials and future generations will do just that. I wish them all the luck in the world.

Take care!

Yet another Poem, but wait it’s a New One!

Hello again! I am trying something new tonight. I am going to try and write a poem off the fly. See if I can shake the rust out of my mind and soul and actually create something. It’s been quite a while since I have written, but I am going to see what happens.

Have I paid for the sins of my youth?
Have I come any closer to finding the truth?
The truth of life and the truth of love.
The truth that comes from the stars above.

I’ve put a part of myself in exile for far too long.
I’ve isolated my love of words and my love of song.
Surrounded myself with walls I can’t seem to climb,
Living a life that is more like a crime.

I am trying to forge a new path towards something new,
But also find the spark that made me see what I once knew.
It might take tears and it will definitely take time,
In the end it will lead me to the light and sunshine.

Well that’s where my words took me. It’s starting over and it’s trying to find my way and get back to my words and feelings.

Let me know what you think!

Tuesday’s Gone

Good evening all! Hope everyone is enjoying their week so far. It’s been pretty uneventful so far here. A typical work week with the typical stresses and misgivings. So I am finally making good on my promise to post more. Might end up being a rambling mess, but I guess you guys are used to that by now. Been active on Twitter lately. There are a lot of passionate people out there. They are concerned about the environment, politics, the future, their kids and all things that can make the world a better place. Those people are what the internet was made for. An exchange of ideas. Rational discussion on important issues. (I will admit that rational discussions can sometimes be few and far between, but they do exist). I am finding there is a lot of good and caring in people. I do try my best to stay away from the anger and hate that is out there. There is plenty of that. On this Tuesday night however, I am focusing on the positive. There is so much hate and bile spewed out over the internet. I suppose having such a strong opinion or outlandish stance on something gets attention, but I just don’t know what it accomplishes. Everything is geared towards emotional reaction and not towards rational thought. I know people need to be made angry before any actual change can happen, but it seems to me that the internet is weighted down with so much vile and reprehensible misinformation just to make one side look stupid or to make another side look evil. There is evil out there. It’s in every man and woman that allows fear and ignorance to guide their way through life. I suppose this post will just get out there and be lost with the other millions of opinions out there, but I do want to implore people to learn more about the world around you. Not just politics, but science, nature, math, history. There is so much wonderful information to be explored and exposed to us all. Read about it, try to interpret it the best you can. Do not allow yourself to be swayed by any talking heads. Ask questions! Learn! Do not let this wave of ignorance that is crashing upon our country take over. Also, try to help your fellow humans out. We are all in this mess together and the best way to do this is to engage with each other. This all has been on my mind recently, especially not just from reading articles on the internet, but reading the comments. It is so hard to believe we have lived and evolved on this planet for this long and yet, we still have people who hate so strongly over issues that any civilized society would just let go. Let people be who they are. Let someone have a difference of opinion without threatening them. Let people live their life the way they want to. (All this goes with the caveat that your lifestyle isn’t hurting anyone). Try to let this sink in. Go out, experience other cultures, other ideas and ideals. See that the world is bigger than any one country or one philosophy.

Well that’s what is on my mind tonight. I hope everyone has an great evening!

Poems Volume 3

Good morning all. I hope everyone is having a relaxing Saturday morning. It has been a hectic week for me and posting here was put on the back burner. I am trying to see what I need to do to liven up this blog, but I am not sure yet. I do want to do more reviews of movies and music and the occasional book. I just want to bring something new to the table but I am not sure just how to do that yet. So I decided to post some more old poems. I do enjoy sharing these and I it feels to go these out there. Maybe it’s vanity or just wanting some recognition, but it nice to see when these posts get as many likes as they do. I want to thank everyone who takes time to read them.

In this poem I suppose I was trying to be more of a “poet”, whatever that really means. This one wasn’t meant for anyone in particular, just an idea I had at the time.

Two hearts joined as one.
Two hearts beating in time.
Two hearts seeing the dawn through
Two hearts together down the line.

The day is here, the time is now
For love to unite in harmony and song.
Open your hearts and let the sound in,
Play this tune your whole life long.

Together is the word.
Forever is the design.
This love can move mountains,
Carry us though several lifetimes.

Two hearts together forever.
Two hearts finding love anew.
Two Hearts longing for each other,
Two hearts soaring through skies so blue…

This next one is a bit long, but I suppose I had a lot to say about love and the person I was deeply in love with at the time. We were never meant to be and I don’t think she liked the poems I wrote for her, but things tend to work out the way they are meant to. You can’t make someone love you. It is either there or it’s not.

The lights are dim, our glasses empty.
In the whole wide world, there is only you and me.
We sway to the tune playing on the radio
And steal a kiss by the fireside’s glow…

I’ve never been in love like this.
All my senses come alive with just one kiss.
We laugh in the sunshine and play in the rain,
We share in the grief, when there is pain.

You are my woman; my life’s pride.
You’re the very reason I’m still alive.
You heal my wounds and chill my fever
Take away my doubts and make me a believer.
Make me believe in love and all of it’s joy,
Believe in the magic of life,
Believe in the great hope of tomorrow,
Believe I can toss away my sorrows.

This love makes me strong, makes me feel like I belong.
I’m no longer a stranger.
I can breathe again,
I can finally begin my life.
I love you so.
I can’t let you go…

Just hold me tighter, hold me closer

Let me be near you as we grow older.
Don’t wake me, just take me.
Take me away, make me come alive
I need you here, right by my side.

That one was from a long time ago. A much younger me. I wonder if I could even write anything like that again. You see life and love from a different perspective at 48 compared to 25. Just something for me to think about.

I hope everyone has a great weekend! I will be writing again soon.

Trying to Change my Feelings About Monday

Good evening all! I hope everyone had a good Monday. The start of a new working week for the 9 to 5 crowd like me. My normal Monday morning routine actually starts on Sunday night. It starts with the soul crushing dread I feel before bed. That usually leads to either a sleepless night or at the very least a night with three hours sleep and horrible dreams. The latter was my night last night. I woke up after a rough night and decided that I need to change my way of thinking. I need to push through my day and not let work affect me so negatively. All that ends up happening is I get mad and frustrated. Guess what? Work stays the same. I’m letting my emotions get the best of me. That is what really did it. I am letting my job affect my general mood throughout the day and week. So I’m going to try something new. I’m going to just let it all go. Let the frustration and the aggravation go. It’s not going to be easy, but I have got to get control of it. Take it one day at a time and all that. I’ll update you all as the days pass.

That’s all I have tonight. Just a short post. There will be fun stuff coming and more poetry eventually.

Take care!

Bonus Post! A few more Poems

Good evening again all! I really didn’t want to leave just yet, so I decided to post a few more poems. Please let me know what you think. Please tweet me @mlctaskforce or write me at I would love to know what you think.

A lot of my poetry was about longing. The idea of the perfect love, fairytale love, timeless love. When I was younger, I was heavily influenced by the music I listened to. Van Morrison and Stevie Nicks were huge influencers in my writing. I really wanted to be a poet. I just didn’t know if it was any good, so I only shared it with special friends. The poem below is an example of that longing.

Remember when soft breezes blew
And it was just me and you
Running down that rainy avenue,
Looking for somewhere to hide…

Remember when we were so young
Our lives had barely begun,
Listening for songs that had never been sung,
And we were at peace with the One.

I remember the feel of your arms around me,
The comfort and peace it brought me.
I remember the days of wine and roses,
Autumn nights and secret proposes.

Remember when we stayed up all night
Shivering while we waited for dawn’s grey light.
Hoping and wishing that it just might,
Feel this way forever.

Remember how those midnight flames burned
While we tumbled together we learned.
And oh how our hearts yearned
To make this love feel real.

I remember the feel of skin against skin,
The electricity that flowed had no end.
I wish it was that way again,
Cause I need it in my life.

As you can tell, I was hopeless when I was younger. A romantic in a less than romantic age of the 90’s. To have seen me then and now, you would not know that I would write complete sentences, let alone poetry. It was there and I guess it is still there, but it is slow to find the light of day right now. The poem below reminds me of the young couple I saw get married this weekend. (See my previous post).

Love’s light is leading me forward,
Moving toward something all new.
I can’t believe the way my life was before.
So empty and lost…all without you.

Been too many nights sitting all alone,
Too many tears shed in vain.
But now those days seemed to have vanished,
Only days of hope and joy remain…

How can you love a man like me?
What do I have to give to you?
A woman like you is a precious thing,
A rare gem, one of the chosen few…

Your love is present from dusk ’til dawn,
Leaving me breathless and full of wonder.
I have never met a woman like you,
So many wild and beautiful things to discover…

I want to hold you and make it all right,
Soothe your troubles and ease your worried mind.
Weep not again and let your spirit soar,
Know that you are the best love a man can ever find.

You give me hope and promise of something fine,
A woman who know who she is, body and soul.
Can’t imagine my life without you, don’t want to try.
Just want to make love to you and lose control…

Stand beside me as the evening draws nearer,
Hold onto my hand and walk by the sea.

Let me tell you of all of your wonders,
Of all you mean to me…

Well that is all for tonight. I am going to wind down and gear down for Monday morning. Everyone take care!!!!