How Many

white wooden crosses
waiting in the shed
nameless and claimed

they stack up
for future news days ahead

the children of the future
living out their numbered days

smiling goodbyes to parents
normal weekdays
mask the threat

to school for learning
how to run or hide?
to school for fearing
sounds of death
in hallways pockmarked
with bullets and blood

white wooden crosses
waiting in the shed

how many will be made
how many must die
how much death

how many children
how many futures
how many screams
how many last goodbyes

how many
how many

how much will it cost
how many hearts stopped
how many guns bought
how many bullets shot
how many crosses
how many tears

how many
how many

they don’t answer
because money is louder
than the questions

than the screams
than the tears
than the lives

than truth

~ Em C.



Master Carpenter Creates Cross Memorial Outside Santa Fe High



you died at the cusp of midnight
but no one knows for sure
the exact minute of departure
you carried your own sword

the sweat from life still dripping
down skin that kept you here
a shell around the broken
bones that never really healed

a voice that sang for the world
echoing truths in ancient air
singing intricate melodies
to words that carried fear

they carried love and anger
pain filled notes dance in black
dotted paper trails
lyrics of loss traced your tracks

giving your all to all, we followed
till your breath’s untimely end
yet we still follow to this day
since we haven’t found your end

woven like exotic tapestry
you weaved lives in decades’ time
as from restless times come beauty
painted true colors by your design

you died at the cusp of midnight
alone — so one would think,
yet souls of millions buoyed by you,
and your music won’t let us sink

afloat we travel onward
lightened by your light
never to be dimmed, nor
succumbed to endless night

~ Em C.



Friday is the one year anniversary of Chris Cornell’s death. I have spent much of this year going through the grief of that loss, especially since I grew up here in Seattle during the grunge era — it is impossible to escape his essence here…he permeates every sea and mountainscape, every gray rainy day, sunny day, every bend in the road, he is the king of this city — his poetic lyrics and music are the soundtrack to my youth.

I have yet to decide how I’m going to mark the day. But, I will be sharing some of his amazing words and music in this next week. I encourage you to really read his lyrics, and listen to his bluesy soulful voice, all 4 octaves.  He simply has the best voice of his generation, and arguably all time. Rest in peace, Chris: “No one sings like you anymore.”


Hello don’t you know me
I’m the dirt beneath your feet
The most important fool you forgot to see
I’ve seen how you give it
Now I want you to receive
I’m sure that you would do the same for me

‘Cause I know I’m headed for the bottom
I know I’m headed for the bottom

I know I’m headed for the bottom
But I’m riding you all the way
Yeah, I’m riding you all the way
I’m riding, yeah

For all of your kisses turned to spit in my face
For all that reminds me which is my place
For all of the times when you made me disappear
This time I’m sure you will know that I’m here

‘Cause I know I’m headed for the bottom
I know I’m headed for the bottom
I know I’m headed for the bottom
But I’m riding you all the way
Yeah I’m riding you all the way
I’m riding you all the way
I’m riding you all the way
Riding, riding all the way

My place was beneath you but now I am above
And now I send you a message of love
A simple reminder of what you won’t see
A future so holy without me

I know I’m headed for the bottom
I know I’m headed for the bottom
I know I’m headed for the

But I’m riding you all the way
Yeah I’m riding you all the way
I’m riding you all the way

Oh I’m riding you, yes I’m riding you
Oh I’m riding you, yes I’m riding you
Oh I’m riding you all the way

~ Chris Cornell, “Mailman” on the album Superunknown by Soundgarden, 1994


Peach Suns

when all is left are peach suns

setting on water’s bed

when stars unsettled

sparkle, messages unread

when words fail and thoughts

rail, beating drum inside

your head,

when names fade, and smiles

die, dispatched along time’s map

when efforts fall short

stuck type writer keys

letters never stamped

when clock stops

the phone won’t ring, and

i love yous hang

in vacant space

when lips mouth heart’s oath

muttered under stale breath

when reconciliation hurts

more than distance kept

when silence heals

the broken space deep

within cracked chest

when knowledge of self comes

when everyone is gone

when only you can fix what ails

no one else can take that on

when all is left are peach suns

giving way to dark’s ascent

when stars kindle in morse code

look for your map within

~ Em C.


Hello friends,

I am getting spam followers by email with the address. It’s been happening for some weeks now. I remove them from the list when I can, but now some aren’t even showing up under followers even though I get the email notification. It doesn’t make any sense, and I’m not sure who might benefit (and how) from playing those games.

Anyone else? And what can I do?

In other news, I hate doctor appointments, especially ones with surprise pap smears. Just a routine check-up today, but that was waiting for me and didn’t know it. Doctors appointments just bring me more stress when I’m trying to reduce it. I’ve been stewing since I got home over all the grrr — even though I’ve been doing relatively okay, all things considered.

I’m still very focused on my continued rehab and life balancing act. Wish I could catch up on all of your works. But sometimes life has other plans, sometimes you have to slow down and tend to the minute functions of every day. I’m trending the right direction gradually.  I did my vestibular rehab on the beach yesterday which was a level (or 5) up from where I was — sand is a super challenging and unstable surface, even for those without vestibular dysfunction, so although I felt fairly decent before and during, I was walking on the sinking Titanic the rest of the day.

Today feels relatively okay considering how I felt last night, so it’s the biggest guessing game. And to make it more fun, in order to get my brain to compensate to the new stimuli, I have to repeat it. I have to get dizzy and off balance at just the right amount doing the prescribed therapy, right when I feel like I’m doing better. And repeat.  And primary care docs just don’t get it, so today’s appt was supremely frustrating. Thank God I have my vestibular therapist.

Sometimes you just have to ignore the docs and listen to your gut. They can’t possibly know everything and only spend 20 minutes with you, which is not nearly enough.

I will check in with my muses as I go and when inspired I’ll write, and when I can, I’ll read.

~ E

Forever and Never Before

I am rose water and almond oil
toes against the waves
I am fog that parts by noon
schooner aiming away

I am music no one hears
muscles torn and warm
I am earth born and sky free
salted butter on the tongue

I am fire and antarctic ice
question seeker me
I am night walker wandering
sleeper traveling dreams

I am loyal dog at heel
passionflower climbing vine
I am heated popcorn kernel
potential energy expands

I am stockholm syndrome survivor
bonnet wearing pilgrim
I am knit scarves and angel wings
quilt with endless pattern

I am comet leaving trail
dust in beam of light
I am dragonfly on reed
swirling skirt with pleats

I am the end of movie reel
peanut butter chocolate
I am all and none and everything
forever and never before

~ Em C.



fading into forever
nothing left behind
all the worries wither
reaching far to feel fine
all your calls unanswered
the letters in the box
forgotten whispers flitter
figments fractured by our dark
days that turned to nights
nights that never end
until i found my road
beyond the road’s last bend
where no signs point to me
where maps fail to lead
to places i find solace
in solace’s gentle bed
fading into forever
for now is far too raw
safe in my own embrace
the only arms i trust
away from words too sweet
the lies of mouths that gush
the truest sign of fraud
the ones who glitter gold
give me souls dirty,
ripped, torn, and dull
the ones that hide away
the ones i stumble upon
humble in their countenance
unafraid to show deep scars
i’ll trust the gritty any day
over polished fake facades
find me gone forever
from the world i thought i knew
from what once lured me
i’ll slip into the unreachable

~ Em C.