Poem-A life of Searching

Above all, I have lived a life of curiosity and seeking by being, a thinking and learning person, on this beautiful journey, and that in itself has been an enormous mystery, privilege and adventure. So having said that, I wrote this poem to share my view of this adventure.

 

A LIFE OF SEARCHING   

Most of the time, I am very active and in motion

At best, finding no place to peacefully rest

No finality to the searching, just searching on this quest

One is always nearer to finding the unknown

By keeping on, keeping on, keeping on …    

Never giving in or up, just searching

Trying with persistence to find final answers

In a curious life of discovery and adventure …

On an endless journey of the unknown…unknown…

This provides pleasure and pain…

Being this unsettled person observing, thinking and questioning

On an  adventure of being and learning

Still the answers are beyond my reach…my reach 

And unknown, unknown, unknown…

 

 

Poem: Alive in the “Here and Now”

Stop, take a deep breath

Feel you lungs expand and your body relax

Mind is alert not tense or chattering

Be ready and focused

Not criticizing, judging or thinking bad thoughts

Feel your feet on the ground and be ready

Trust yourself…

Not dreaming, worrying or feeling unsettled

Being open, attuned and flexible

Smelling the fresh air and warm sun on your back

Being wholly and quietly in the “Here and Now”

Alert, aware and ready for action

Alive in the moment…Alive in the moment…

POEM: Solitude of Summer

Solitude of Summer-by MW Hardwick 
In the solitude of Summerafternoon
I smell the true meaning of life
In the slow gentle rain and wispy breeze of the Hill Country  —
I feel my body relaxing and my heart awakening
In the stillness of my being and sweet smell of a summer rain and
Boggy smells and sounds of Loneman Creek 
I am now one with nature—Self-aware.
I STOP …
One with Nature… 
Take a deep breath … then another…then another
I now feel relaxed.. as the warm rain of Summer engulfs me 
Clear mind. I put a smile on my face.

Hope. Joy and Gratitude flow.

Grounded… in this moment of beauty and —

Solitude…Solitude… Solitude

Being one with Nature…

 

Poem–Reflections On Loneman Creek and Common Ground

 

Reflections on Solitude and Common Ground by MW Hardwick 

This is the place for rest and relaxation

The hills and natural grass fulfilled my need for solitude

Alone with nature

You come to it over the low water crossing

Of  “Loneman Creek”  its freshness dripping along toward

A small but beautiful flowing dam—called shorty”

This house  designed by us in the Hill country of Texas

To be a refuge from the constant turmoil of life

An eye for light and sunshine accentuated  by 12 foot ceilings and

over 66 windows (some from the Yale Law library) in 1200 sq ft

Bringing the inner space and outdoor together in one continuous flow

This was our wound licking place,

a place safe for nesting now,

away from the pains of external life.

It is the opening of my eyes and my heart

It is the vision of restoration and loss of innocence

seen now as the reality of suffering and pain, and truth they hold.

It is the heart after years

of bruising and trying to fix the unfixable

speaking out loud in the clear air of  Loneman Creek.

One question remains why now and why us?

If I could look back with clear eyes–

what does it all mean and where do I stand?

I promise myself to the rolling hills and ash juniper

and to the shaky foundation of the “sun downer” from which

beautiful sunsets are viewed at the day’s end

and the warm southwest breeze to heal my sorrow and lift our  future–of a hopeful tomorrow…

an invitation for who knows what …

This is the bright home in which we escaped to live,

this is where I ask my soul to speak to me, our friends to come,

this is where we want to leave things barely touch by us,

to love all the things nature——it has taken me so long to learn to love…

Who knows what…what…life has in store for you and me.

The visible nature and invisible peace working together in this place called–

COMMON GROUND. Common Ground. common ground…

Don’t over think it…just enjoy, embrace life’s precious moments…

 

 

Poem–On Kindness by MW Hardwick

ON KINDNESS    

Feeling safe with others and comfortable with self

Is a gift to remember and pass on…

Having a sense of trust to speak our minds,
Be open and not hidden behind a false persona

Feeling accepted –just as you are …
Warts and all,

Provides a model for being unselfish
Learn this lesson early in life …

By showing respect, kindness  and consideration for others

By honoring differences and uniqueness in self and others.

By giving others a break and expecting no returns

By learning kindness and living to give… but do it now …Don’t wait…

Remember what Dr Suess said:

“A person is a person, no matter how small…”                                                                                 

Everyone matters and deserves to be seen.

Never forget to respect each other’s differences.

We are all are just trying to figure this out …

figure this out…figure this…out…  

 

Sources: Inspiration for this poem came from George Saunders speech and book about kindness.

1. http://6thfloor.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/07/31/george-saunderss-advice-to-graduates/?_php

2 . http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/04/24/george-saunders-commencem_n_5200836.html 

Poem: On Being Courageous

Courage To BEby MW Hardwick

To say and act on what you believe.

To stand up for what is right, 

To face difficulties with calmness, openness and flexibility.

To stand your ground when fairness and morality are shelved.

To be accountable and to hold others accountable,
To share ideas, information and resources,
To use caring confrontation when conflict arises
To partner to find solutions

To never stop listening with empathy.

To confront fear, pain and injustice

To take-on reasonable risks

To accept life’s uncertainty

And find the courage to face difficulties,

To act right in the face of opposition and intimidation

To never stop learning. Never stop learning.

To keep your dreams alive by speaking your truth…

Truth…Truth…Truth…

Poem: Living in the NOW. Now. Now.

 Poem: Living in the NOW. Now. Now. MW Hardwick

Listen for understanding.

Stop. Reflect. Act.

Explore other people’s point of view

Take an imaginative trip into their world.

Withhold judgments.

Be thankful for there willingness to share.

Try be more accepting.

Catch them when they are falling.

Embrace change.

Trust in yourself and others.

Do what you love.

Follow your own drummer.

Dance to your own music.

Be caring and thoughtful.

Let go of control.

Embrace the unknown and ambiguous.

Say thank you more often.

Be open-minded and flexible.

Be the change you wish to be.

Make peace with your enemies.

Play with a 5 year old.

Break the rules once in while.

Live and Life of No Regrets.

Do Random Acts of Kindness.

Forgive and let go even when it’s hard.

Compliment others.

Live a balanced life—time for work, for family and yourself.

Be creative –paint a picture, write a poem or throw a pot.

Don’t count the minutes enjoy the “here and now”.

Laugh, cry and smile more.

Be grateful for all you have.

Help others rediscovery there brighter side.

Enjoy being creative and playful.

Conquer your fears by “leaning-in”.

Learn to pick yourself up after failing or falling down.

Clean up your messes.

Take your first step to living your dreams—Now. Now. Now…

New Poem: Choose the World You Want to Live in.

Choose the World You live-in
Live-in the World You Choose.
– Mark W. Hardwick Ph.D.

                                                                                        

Choose the world you want to live in–by MW Hardwick 

Positive energy, clear focus

Happiness in the “here and now”

Past is past and lessons are learned

Move on and enjoy the comfort of the present

Deep breath counting, relaxed body, mind’s alert and wise

Smile on face and Eyes twinkle,

This focus serves us well.

Softing pain, problems and fears melt away…

This is pleasure of living in the world you choose…

Choose wisely and living is happier…happier…

New Poem: Why Not You?

Poem: Why Not You? by MW Hardwick 

 

Play with abandon and freedom

Choose with no regrets.

Laugh

Appreciate life’s gifts

Don’t ask–just act

Life out loud

Do what you love

Be a life-long learner

Live what is–not what should be

This is all there is-deal with it

Smile and Laugh

Think clearly –and reach for knowledge

Live your feelings fully

Where are your scars from life’s difficult times

Insideout learn from mistakes , if you never fail you are being too easy

Stop worrying—it drains energy and stops action

It’s not weakness to need others—they can be your way out of darkness

Remember reality is easier to face than the fears that come before

Push yourself and things get done…Pull yourself through is perseverance 

Find the right balance in life and leave no voids

Reach for the stars..

Why not you…reach for your potential…

End is important in all things…

Leave your mark…

Make a difference…Make a difference…

New Poem–Connections “and that is the way it is…”

Connections–And that is the Way it is– by MW Hardwick 

If you’re uncertain about life that is okay
Experiences push you to confront and accept yourself

A boys’ life rich with imagination, questions and challenges

Sometimes I thought that
Nothing could touch me or reach me,
When dribbling my peach like leather ball on the gravel

Or standing at the foul line fingers in the groves

Arc of the ball go through the net

Hearing the …swish…

Imaging the winning shot…

Wouldn’t you rather
Be doing this than sitting down
For dinner of cream tuna, peas and toast

Or hearing the latest from Cronkide
All of us listening…to and waiting for

“that is the way it is” … “that is the way it is…”  DEC 5TH, 1959

Almost as powerful as my connection with the ball…

Approaching life as a game…I made my enjoyment greater than my effort.

Just Doing Enough is Okay…Poem by MW Hardwick

Just Doing Enough…Is Okay by MW Hardwick 

Any day is what you make of it.

The morning energy that leads to the afternoon dip.

Routines followed or just going with the flow

This day is messy and a bit painful.

Mr. time ticks on.

Believers celebrate and pray for peace… Cynics complain and wish better days

Still others are worried and anxious about what comes next.

I wonder if I can once again summon the energy to meet expectations.

I try to be more gentle on myself …

Then the new and old battle to see who is left to handle life

Unanswered questions and expectations.

Perfection walls. Expectation walls. Self efficacy walls.

And the high walls of expectations are the most difficult to get through…

Is this a pivotal time of internal rebirth?

It takes mindfulness, centering and positive energy to push through

And over the walls

Of staying relevant and being listened too …

I lean on Caring, Love and Energy.

The greatest of these is Caring.

Focusing on others as the center of my attention.

Selflessness, love, caring and compassion be yours.

Because this is your day… messy, disappointed or whatever…

May care and love prevail in the chaos.

Just do all you can do and that is enough…enough…enough…

This provides a greater directness in life

Limits interference and distraction

Provides focus and mental clarity

As to who I am and what I am about

No more pretending…I can be who I want to be

Enough…Enough…Enough

Stability in life at last, at last at last…

New Poem : Relevance of Giving and Thanks by MW Hardwick

Relevance of …Giving and Thanks by MW Hardwick

 

This This is the day of giving thanks for all we have…

 Not material blessings but more soft things like the beautiful color of the Fall leaves

But what about those less fortunate, stumbling, and hungry .

Yet our blurred screen of reality leads to inaction–self-absorption

This leaves a hole in our soul…

This is the time for courage and vulnerability.

People need help not more rhetoric

No job, hunger and nowhere to turn

One  good deed is  the life-line for hope
and more satisfaction for the giver

not just for one but thousands who watch

… and are inspired to act…inspired to act…inspires others–the ripple effect

Many times giving is more about gratitude and the ability to give …

Do what you can? Do what you can?

For that is the power of giving…

The gift that keeps on giving…

Relationships and family are–most-important thing many say

And then we do nothing to sustain them–

So are we bull shitting ourselves

STOP the Bullshit–and give the source of life

Loving and Caring…this works 100%

Joyfully give and encourage small caring acts of kindness this day…

Remember to give of your self… this promotes happiness

Be courageous and vulnerable on this day of giving…

giving, giving and giving…

New Poem: An Awakening–MW Hardwick

An Awaking—By MW Hardwick

Today,  I saw beneath the bright blue sky  
the dancing of star like angles on the calm water
and I heard the voice of the world speak out,
I knew then, as I had before
life is not the memory of the pass
nor the  future of what may come…

It is an awakening to my truth –the living the moment         

Is this all there is… my reality the vision of what is now…
With eyes wide-open seen life for what it is–the joy of the moment held tight.

It is the heart pounding in rhythm to this moment
No  words  to capture  the brisk, clear air of the moment.

It is a moment of all moments………Stay awake I say quietly to the moment.

It is a moment of all moments………

It is my heaven
astonishing as it seems,
opened at last to me…,
to love and enjoy ————this moment of moments.

 

New Poem–“Stuckness” by MW Hardwick

“STUCKNESS” …by MW Hardwick 

Being “stuck” or broken means not growing.

Giving up on things that matter—love for yourself and others  

Staying “stuck” is settling and playing life the safe way.

Always avoiding risks and protecting self with heavy metal—

Bracing against life’s un-certain ways and waves of change

Not thinking. It’s giving up ownership and control

Of to whoever or whatever is in front and all around you.

Stuckness is the death of self-respect.

Signaled by being sad when alone…

You avoid decisions… daydream about what could have been.

You talk a lot about what you’re going to do. But do nothing.

You lay awake at nights and sleepwalk by day…

Tightness rises in chest…and dark rings around the eyes tell the story

Little things preoccupy your thinking, irritability and anger become the usual.

It takes more time and energy to get going in the morn 

Liquor store guy becomes your best friend, visits are daily…

You are isolated ignoring family and friends

Satisfaction and happiness allude your consciousness

You find every day the same old, same old…talking about the same things day after day

Your sense of purpose — remains loss in thoughts of disaster

There seem to be no answers for this inner turmoil and chaos 

Then I awake from this fog and step by step find ways to let the sun in–

 I find focus by looking at my strengths and talents I can give to the world…

 I start moving slowly again and focus on things to be thankful for

My physical energy starts to charge up

as I grind to start doing rather than thinking…

I take my dark pieces and stump on them and out

And slowly, slowly a vision for a positive future appears.

Foggy and ghost like  I find one thing a day to be satisfied with—

an interaction, a sun rise and colorful yellow chickadee or  a colorful rose…nature is restorative…

Personal relationships reappear more peaceful and settled

 I find meaning in small pleasures—

a cup of coffee or juicy orange…

I focus and think clearly.

 I have the courage to face my fears.

 I offer compassion to others in need…

 I offer forgiveness to others easily.

 I am growing and developing.

 I sense the presence of a greater meaning in life or higher power.

 I have a regular meditative practice.

 I feel a sense of joy and peace when I am in the natural world.

 I feel a sense of gratitude for my life.

 I maintain a balance of saving and savoring the world.

 I invest time in making a difference to others or to the world.

 I know what I want to be remembered for…

Remembered for… Remembered for…

And look for and initiate external experience and activity — by knowing I have choices in life.

To do my life in my own way

And be who I am…. who I am…who I am…

And accept how I want to be remembered…by executing my power of purpose…

Live My —MEANING. LIVE LONGER, BETTER…

Longer, Better…LONGER BETTER…

Poem: Low Winter Sun by MW Hardwick

                                                                                                                        

lost my courage, my frame of reference, and my cool…                                                                                                                                                                                                   The Winter Sun appeared low and blurred my vision                                                                                                                                                                                                         And I turn my back to gain a sense of control…and looked-up again with my eyes wide open.

My vision was better but something haunted me                                                                                                                                                                                                                 and caused fear again –

Light pour in and with this light–my trembling increased… my vision diminished…

In this moment I took a deep breath, paused realizing I was face to face with the fear of loss.

Loss of who I was and where I was going                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Slowly losing my sense of certainty and stability…

For this fear lives in the shadow side of my passions.

It lives waiting for the right moment to pounce – Each night in a different space…

Looking for the moment to betray…Each night when light diminishes

I confront these demons…I confronted them.

For vision only re-appears when you are strong –

Such toughness is learned from confronting and caring…

And imaging a better place by dreaming of and finding.

A magical moment and spiritual place beyond fear…

This place where I can pause and feel serenity…

 And solitude of awareness…and embracing the fear.

Knowing I am not the only one battling for clear vision, security and fairness                                                                                         

To sustain me…sustain me … and inspire me.

On this journey and mystery called life…life…life…

New Poem by MW Hardwick—If I feel…and…

Poem by MW Hardwick —If I Feel… And  

If I feel sad when bad things happen I pause

If I feel stuck- I try to reflect on what is in the way and stop efforting

If I see fear I will face it

And do what I don’t want to do– plunge ahead.

If I feel uncertain I will ask questions.

If I see homelessness and unfairness I ask why and I will raise my voice.

If I feel down I know there is an up coming soon.

If I feel incompetent I will look to others for direction and ideas.

If I make a mistake I try to accept it and learn

If I feel insignificant now and lonely

I will remember my successes–and smile.

Today I will make it better by being more aware and paying attention and…

Count my blessings, count my blessings, count my blessings…