Start Today

Alarm rings, fumbled for it in pitch black,
Early wake-ups are no fun but gotta get an early jump before the sun’s up,
Grip’s still sleeping, phone seems slicker than oil as it slips onto the mattress,
Blind instinct takes over from eyes still unadjusted to the darkness,
Trudging to the bathroom, splashed cold water on these craggy features,
Ray of light bouncin’ off the mirror, reflection within got you squirmin’,
This old vessel’s sailed one too many voyages, the wear and tear’s evident,
The ocean once seemed endless, now the port’s visible in the distance,  
Hit you like a gut shot from Tyson, hourglass was tricklin’ now it’s pourin’,
Yearning for a breather, just want to hit the pause button,
Or at least get back on play, someone stop fuckin’ with the fast-forward,
Your hands must be numb, can’t feel the remote that you’re controllin’,
Hit pause then rewind, zip back to years long gone,
You are the captain of this ship, only you alone can right the wrongs.

Through the eyes of innocence the world’s a magical place,
Surroundings seemed straight out of sci-fi, the concrete jungle with tall buildings stretching sky-high,
Mountains and fields were straight out of picture books that Teacher read to the class in between grinding hard for a piece of paper that said you passed,
Lived in dreary suburbia, for you it was utopia, away from the confines of school fun times lasted forever,
But time was ever-present, worked in silence and prowling unnoticed,
Revving up slowly, creepin’ like a predator that you never saw coming,
Took off like Roadrunner, Wile E. didn’t have a prayer,
Now you’re grown up and bewildered trying to keep it all together,
Seen enough of this world, curiosity faded from your make-up,
Know-how and wisdom co-existing with stress and anxiety plus a decline in physicality,
Terrible teens and roaring twenties they quickly came and went,
Past the point of quarter-life crisis, not quite ready for mid-life, greying strands suggest you’re drifting from life’s morning and closer to night,
Panicked tunes are ringing, on loop the crescendo’s rising,
Countdown’s on, time to leave this hole in which you’re slowly decomposing.

Different day, same shit, nothing new, same tired fucking routine,
Get up and work, go home and sleep, eat, rest and move in between,
Runnin’ ragged on that treadmill but circumstances can’t bear the full brunt,
You were given legs and free will at birth but you stay put like a horse stuck in mud,
You used to be so brazen, bold, daring and resilient as a street urchin,
Climbed up the highest slides in the playground, beat your chest like you were King Kong, slid down on your belly, hands first like Superman towards the sand box,
Graduated to hormone-fuelled hedonism a decade later, fooled with the opposite gender while trying different substances,
Made it out alive, the scars and stories remain, younger generations can’t accuse you of being lame,
It was various escapades twenty-four-seven, you could’ve been the spawn of Hunter S. Thompson,
Motley Crue would’ve saluted you, childhood buds idolized you and in adulthood they still do,
But they’d surely be disappointed at what had become of you,
The animal that they knew, it’s unrecognizable as you’re wasting away like some lifeless fool,
Slavin’ for bread, kissing ass to eat at the table, talk about misguided servitude, you played yourself like a fiddle,
Wanna slow time? View the world once more through a child’s eyes,
Keep searching and learning, your mind’s been softening for a long while,
Spice things up, expand that memory bank, muscles can plateau without switching up training plans,
Kids give everything a shot, passed or failed before moving onto something different,
Just like pint-sized Marco Polos they are always down for exploring,
Grown-ups are shackled by fear and bullshit rules, customs and expectations in their damn minds, kids take on all comers fearlessly, even if they might stumble and fall a few times.

Scrap that daily routine, be like Jordan and slam dunk it into the trash,
Rearrange or start fresh, pop that neuralizer like they do in Men In Black.
Travel and see the world, talk to strangers and get to know ‘em,
Swap stories like soldiers on break, you just might find a few kindred spirits,
Learn a new language, that would surely expand that cranium,
Test yourself in a new setting, enjoy it even if you can only remember how to order chicken,
Not ready to go big? That’s cool, little steps are better than zero,
Still beats putting up with monotony and coming full circle in a hurry,
Read a new book, listen to new tunes, give that hair a new do,
Send that dominant hand on vacation and give its lazy co-worker a promotion,
Begin again and keep evolving, keep that body and mind challenged,
Be curious and live forever young, add more years and enjoy it,
‘Cuz ain’t nothing scarier than regret, that window’s limited no matter how wide it’s opened,
The past is gone, the future ain’t promised, start today and get right on it,
That ship will reach port to send you to the next level, can’t duck and dodge it forever, it’s inevitable,
Aim to stand tall at the pearly gates to proudly declare that you’d earned it.

Thinking About You: In My Mother’s Shoes

Somehow, some way, this song by Frank Ocean took me back to ’95,
Autumn break from school, the air was cool even as the sun was in bloom,
Carefree as any ten year old while temporarily paroled,
From school not juvy, but for the immature mind it might as well be,
I was home on this day, in between gaming messing ‘round with Lil’ Sis,
Grandma played sitter, Pops was working while Mom’s out buying groceries,
Childhood innocence, now long-gone, looking back with misty-eyed nostalgia,
Smiling at the memories as life sails inexorably towards the future,
Let’s take a walk in Momma’s shoes, relive a rather odd moment,
Unremarkable, to be sure, but not one soon to be forgotten

Another day of groceries, stay-at-home duties ain’t one big jamboree,
Still workin’, not just chillin’, when the kids are home it’s pure insanity,
Headed out early before the place lit up like a college party,
Found a good parking space, near the entrance, coveted by every harried shopper,
Got the essentials, fruits, veg, grains, meats and the necessary condiments,
Got a house full of eaters, kids are growing and don’t get me started on my husband,
Forty-five spent traipsing through the aisles, checkin’ sales and clearances,
Lined up at the check-out, took care of business and feeling triumphant,
Pushed the trolley towards the car, parking lot’s full and I’ve been spotted,
An eagle-eyed driver’s ghosting to take my spot, waiting to pounce like a lion,
Put all the bags in the back then drove outta there and that was that,
More cars are coming like the peak of the school run, parking lot’s about to get a lot more fun.

Reached a set of lights about five minutes from home,
Quickly turned red and stayed that way for much longer than the norm,
Another car ahead of me, several behind lined up like train carriages,
Taking deep breaths and wondering why this red’s taking ages,
Finally turned green, gotta head home to fix lunch and dinner,
But the fool out front’s stuck in unexplained inertia,
One second passes, no movement, two and three go by,
Four then five, dude’s still napping, time to give the ol’ horn a try,
Blasted it hard, others followed suit, louder than a 21-Gun Salute,
He snaps out the trance in shock, jumps up and throws his hands up,
His left clutching a dirty magazine, had a half-naked temptress featured on the cover,
Well that explains why that fool’s focus went straight under,
Quick as a rocket, fuelled by shame he revs up the engine,
Gunned that ride hard, high tailed it like he was Louis Hamilton,
Some folks are loco but gotta give him points for honesty,
Reached home, finally, that hour seemed to go smoothly.

There you have it, another random blast from the past,
Still has me laughing now, even if Momma was the one that witnessed it,
So next time you’re stuck in traffic, Son,
Trapped behind some chump that refuses to budge,
Give ‘em a honk and you just might see that they are off with the fairies at some other place that they’d rather be.