23,000 began as the poem you see below.  It has since morphed into a song–which is not quite completed.  Now I can’t read it without humming that song in my head.  I hope you enjoy!


It is the unconscious rhythm that orders my days
23,000 times a day in a steady stream of inevitability
sometimes quick and shallow
others deep and peaceful
23,000 breaths which fill my lungs
with a beautiful monotony
23,000 breaths—
an invisible umbilical cord which births my living
new each day
23,000 gifts unfolding between two sunsets
23,000 sighs of longing
23,000 inhales
23,000 exhales
and a love that has captured them
taken each one prisoner and carried it away—
the spoils of war
rescued from a gray stagnancy

(and each day’s 23,000 breaths)
became your pirate bride
by you
until breathing became
with loving you
and each of my
was colored by your palette of
intimate grace

Each day I offer
my 23,000 gifts back to you
intertwining the spirit-breath which first formed me
with the daily rhythm of my breathing


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