Life is short.
The craft so long to learn.--Chaucer

Who taught him how to live—
the 2 Henrys— Miller and Thoreau,
and Lawrence Ferlinghetti, all advised:
See and hear everything new
as if you were a traveler from a distant star.
Brace yourself for falling in love,
the way a good horse opens its mouth
at the sight of the bit.
Only take a bus marked Not in Service.
Don’t be afraid to wear a sheepish grin.
Always fly one flag at half mast
for every loved one you lost.
Be kind to everyone you meet,
but reserve your deepest compassion
for painters who can only paint
with a brush between their teeth.
Never forget the crunch of a crisp
Macoun apple, under the crimson hues
on an autumnal sky. Avoid snarling coyotes
of the world, they all reek of halitosis.
Apply for a job that doesn’t feel like work,
and then work as hard as you can.
Let nature take its course.