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3X Top Writer. Licensed psychotherapist. 3 poetry books published. Dreamer. Poet. HSP. Empath. Love espressos & my chunky cat.

How we need to include downtime in our schedules

Lately, I’ve been swamped and feeling the stress. First thing, each morning, I usually write in my journal. For weeks now, I start with, I’m tired. And then stare out my kitchen window. I manage to get a few more words out.

The rest of my thoughts feel paralyzed and static. I’m baked, fried, roasted. Just roll me down a hill and let me stay there — preferably a hill that leads to a quiet beach and a cove insulated from any demands.

For months now, there’s been a steady inner voice telling me to do more. For transparency’s sake…

One more poetic translation for eternity

a magical trance
waltzing through
chasing away
sun or gloom

preceding a preamble
of mystical shades
and a splash of lime

flock across the sky
drenching the rotation
of this very earth
dazzling with accents
of the starry worth

backlit horizons
escape within clouds
billowing bravely
the celebration
is rather unearthly

how many poets
before you or me
have described
twilight’s homage

I believe
it predates eternity
as I sit here
with this magic
just about to
rearrange its
evening skirt

I’m flummoxed
and fervently betwixt
by sun and moon
while writing this
liquid poetic symmetry
to narrate twilight’s
fully felt enchantment

A love note to you

When the day starts out gray
and the trees glow a soft green haze
let’s twirl the air
with our thoughts
and let them slowly dribble

sort of a quiet
without worry of why
or why not

there will be days
when exclamations need to be
put aside
too sleepy in this enterprise

let’s curl up with a full stop
purposefully knitting clouds
into a cozy space
where footsteps are cushioned
by a mossy gaze

if you by chance
are having one of those days
I beckon you
to join me

we can skip rocks

So wild and indescribable yet you can taste them

When I can’t
describe a mood
I turn to Nature
and she
in all her wisdom
will paint a vision

it starts with
the bluest sky-blues
complimented with feral greens
running with a paintbrush
over hillside

turned to a meadow
down a mountain
as the mood reaches

the ends of the earth
pulled in by the deepest seas
cresting with a nest
of whitecaps

you should stop there
and become the salt
on the rim
of each wave
touching your cheeks

you know that feeling
you might get
from spinning and spinning
laughing ‘til crying

because happiness
can touch sadness

A lipogrammatic poem

Seduced in my
rain-soaked garden

under thirsty intimate
darkened skies

my muse executes
such timely rumbles

teeming prose
it extends holiness

understanding how
opal openings

neither normal
or ordinary

measure the moments
inside of stormy skies

dearest garden
gratefully growing

roses unrivaled
in this Spring’s

timely thunderstorm
tickling the tapestry

stitched of raindrops
emotionally reassured

how nature is elated
into this two-part harmony

disclosing secrets
titillating passions

dedicating regular
soft slow dances

of erotic desire
timed tenderly

in the supple
ring of rain’s roar

This lipogram was inspired by Galit Birk, PhD’s poem. Galit was inspired JD Greyson’s April writing…

I am a circular soul

If you see me daydreaming
it’s not an escape
but a necessity

I need the honesty
of seeing beyond
what is and what isn’t

if you see me wandering
I’m not being aimless
I am exploring

those inner depths
constellating with

as I am
and as you are
part of this cosmos

when this happens
I can barely hold
this current reality

this patch of time
of linear
is too straight

for I’m a circle
with my rivered soul

such intricate designs
are constantly dancing
with the energies

so, if you see me
I can’t help myself

A poem dedicated to the ones who listen

Even your words
were like safe kisses
over the unseen decades
too often
dismissed and forbidden

I couldn’t forget them
and there you were
figurately touching
the hurt spots
with your loving attention

And though you may
never fully understand
how much you meant
you were more than
a blessing but an answer

You filled the gaps
between yesteryears
and todays
where the nightmares
were carefully accepted

No longer alone
carrying the secrets
counting the minutes
until dawn would
bring daylight

You didn’t just
scratch the surface
you paved a river
to my heart space
’til I felt safe


A poem of self-acceptance acquired by nature

Fairy leaves
the color of a green apple
bashful and bittersweet
wakened me by my window

the tint of a bird’s song
ribboned in pureness
nothing fake
only holy

no need to perform
to be seen
without applause

those fairy leaves
welcome me
throughout the seasons
just as I am

a kinship of solidarity
steadfast as can be
founded as a seed
baring its majesty

nature’s natural tutelage
is unencumbered
adept at offering
what we need to see

Carolyn Riker is the author of three beautiful books of poetry and prose. She’s also a licensed mental health therapist in…

One woman’s journey through the ups and downs of dieting

My story isn’t a typical weight loss story. I’ve learned over the decades that one change leads to another and another. Some of those changes are harder, and others are waiting for the moment to say the time is now.

I’ve experienced a grand scale of varying weights in over five decades, from excessive dieting and exercising, spurred by a need to be as thin as possible. In those early years, I’ve passed out in school and at home. This fainting was mainly ignored or, worse, shamed.

Later, in my first year of college, I went to see a therapist…

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