Saturday, November 12, 2016

10 years 5 years twice 2 years 5 times 1 year...


The poem below, I think but cannot certify, is the first poem ever put forth on THE WALKING MAN. That would have been November of 2006. Close enough to say ten years of blogging has gone by and far enough away to say that once I stopped throwing my writing away that being able to look back at excruciatingly bad poetry, is good.

I probably have not spent enough time looking back at the, what seems, long road from my first day to this.  62+ years is an appreciable amount of time to look back on but when I do glance I rarely see my self. Instead I see the world and society I have come to operate in. I see the horizon at my back, not worthy of disregard but then not worth walking back to either.

Ten years is a similar amount of time to glance back at for a second. There have been somewhere near 3000 or more pieces of poetry put forth here, the majority untagged and sitting in my archives without real organization. I don’t know if I should consider that a problem or not. At the moment I take the “or not” path. Call it general lack of regard for what’s behind giving way to concern about what is in this moment.

I will say that now with the election done, Trump on the cusp of being anointed, the expressions of fear and hatreds I have been reading about and pondering over, I understand. I know that most everyone here is about the same standing and outlook as I am in the world. I have felt particularly targeted for the past 20 years or so. Now I feel like that target is actually drawn on my back and the backs of them who make up or made the middle class.

I know that them about old enough to be my grandchildren are chomping at the bit to have power and institute reforms they desire. I also know their parents, my children, will not easily give it up. I also know both my children and my grandchildren wish me no ill will personally but they have a jaundiced eye on me and what I have done in the world. I make no apologies. “fuck ‘em” I’ll die when I am ready. (all pronouns empirical)

So before you get to the severely bad poem, here is a short story, a parable if you will, I wrote on the fly and put on FB for them who are now in the streets protesting (I am in favor) in this most tumultuous 10th  year; 2016.

Know this though, I thank everyone who has ever crossed into this domain and taken from it. May peace find you and rule your mind. Give no place to fear or doubt, pain or defeat. Be as productive as you want to be in your endeavors and above all Be Well.


the cycle

The old oaks stand as a wind break, protection for them grown just beyond acorns. They allow the young time and space to become the mighty, the proud, an embodiment of all that came before.

The middling trees grow in size and numbers, their protection assured until there is no wind that can topple them. Their youth sends the roots deep, deeper than the old ones needed to go.

With nourishment they grow and grow and grow stretching far above them that once protected them. All that is life to the old oak is cut off, no water, no seed, no light.

The lumberman takes the old oak, it is worth more dead. The leavings are good for rot on the forest floor. Rot feeds the acorns which grow in size and number…

© M Durfee


Life is not like anything,
it is what it is.
We wake we breathe
and we go on.

Some to this,
others to that.

Some with a gun,
others with a bullet.
Some fat with cash,
others begging for it.

Life is birth
while living.

Life is seeing
while being blind
but loving
in spite of the darkness.

Life is loving
without caring
those we love
live in blindness.

Life is hating
we’ve learned to hate
instead of forgive.

Life is forgiving
we’ve learned to forgive
instead of hold on to hate.

Life is little more
than exchanging
one breath for another,
one moment for another
until the last
of all known arrives
and looking back
we see whether or not
our life
had been truly lived.


  1. Congratulations on years lived, poems written, seeing, breathing, loving and forgiving

  2. This has for me a particular poignancy--watching the young grapple with what I myself have found insoluble, watching age wash everything away in its current--the oaks stand as long as they can, but it's not in the nature of this world for things to last--only to give way. Perhaps that's the salvation of it all. Congratulations on ten years of this blogging thing. It's not easy to keep doing it, but the words have to go somewhere.

  3. Glad you are here, Mark. Knowing there are kindred spirits here in the blogosphere, if not always in my immediate sphere, has made life more bearable over the past years -- 11 for me!

  4. Ten years is a good solid time. a decade. Love that story. And the poem. The story particularly resonates though.

  5. I kept thinking you had been blogging loner than I had, but I started two months earlier. I hit my ten year anniversary and didn't notice.

  6. So glad you've stayed around while others ducked and ran.
    Let's aim for another ten.

  7. 3/5/2010 was my first foray into blogging egged on by my promoting daughter!...I still like to read my blogger friends posts as often as I get the time. It's a steady rock in a mad digital world. Thankyou Mark.

  8. Your elections was such a big news in our country Mark ~ I can only shake my head at the result ~

    Love the oak tree (a great metaphor of life and death) and poem on life ~

    Congrats on the 10 years of blogging and cheers for more!

  9. Beautifully expressed, WM! And the decade+-old poem is quite fine. A salute to you for your endurance, resilience and creativity, despite all.

  10. If mere words could express my sincere thanks to all who have, do, and will come here; I would write them. The best I have within me at the moment is Thank YOU all.

  11. I am so very glad you decided to take up blogging, and that our lines criss-crossed, my cyber-soul friend *kiss kiss*
    And nov 2006 is when I went to rehab and started blogging myself.... See. Criss-cross.


So Walking Man I was thinking...