We Fell Asleep

We Fell Asleep

In March 2020,
I had a dream
that we all fell asleep for three years.
When we woke up,
we remembered that not all of us woke up.

Our friends had slipped away in the long
grey night
down a hidden staircase and across
A deep lake.

They are dancing now.
A disco on the head of a pin.

Now we are bestirred
Missing that which escaped through locked doors
masked like a thief.

The normal pace of days –
we just can’t seem to get the hang of it.

Lost in a wood where the trees have leaves of silver.
Snap off a twig.
Could be useful later.

and as tired as a child at the fair.

So tired
and afraid to fall asleep again.

With the masks I could see your eyes smile,
but not your mouth.
Now I see your mouth smile, but it does not reach
your eyes.

Let us wander a bit further along
where the trees have leaves of gold
and the faint thump of the dance floor is heard.

Let us say the name
of each one we have lost
or lost track of

Let us say the names of those who suffer
riddled with fatigue
unable to stand up for themselves
laid off
laid down
laden down.

And now I say
your name.
To honor you
and your sleeping
and your waking
and your smiling
and your tears

And the crumpled up bit of ambition that’s still in your pocket

And the loud thump of your endlessly loving heart.

We are here to learn a new way
maybe gentler
Maybe hungrier.

We’ll travel together to where the trees
sparkle with diamonds
and we’ll wear out our dancing shoes.

©Sam Bennett

Photo by Andisheh A on Unsplash
Ode to the Busy

Ode to the Busy

I see you
Making life easier for everyone else.
The way you are patient with the clerk
Pick up yet another errant sock
Get another mostly homemade meal on the table
Plus extra in a tupperware for the ailing neighbor.
“Busy” is a word you left behind long ago
Because it implies that there is a world – or a day –
In which you are not busy.
In every moment you are working, planning –
Juggling –
Giving your warm-hearted attention to this issue and the next
To this needy person and the next.
And it seems like being strong and capable is
Its own punishment
Every moment a sharp-toothed hydra, growing two heads for
Each one you think you’ve handled.
Everyone turns to you.
Every problem is yours to solve.
And you still feel as though maybe you are not
Doing enough.
The painful fear of failing is
Worse than the fatigue
So you keep going.
Luckily, you have an excellent sense of humor
And a love of long walks
And three close friends on speed dial.
And you are excellent at counting your blessings.
Blessed are those in back-to-back meetings, for theirs is the patience of mountains.
Blessed are those who are annoyed by willful ignorance, for theirs is a righteous fury.
Blessed are the uncomplaining, for theirs is a peaceful surrender to the inanities of the world.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for carbs and wine, for they shall be comforted.
Blessed are those who dance in the kitchen
Make time for family game night
Say, “I love you” at every single opportunity
Ignoring the eye rolls of the young ones
As you go out of your way to make an
Ordinary moment
A memory.
Because it is the memories that matter.
A legacy of moonlight on mown grass
And a quick hug.
You are indeed as busy as a bee – the Queen Bee –
Sensitive to the hum of the whole hive
Filled with sweetness and good medicine
The center of the whole eco-system, really.
The center of the benevolent hum.
©2022 Sam Bennett
A Prayer For Our Family

A Prayer For Our Family


None of this has turned out how we thought.
But we’re old enough to know that maybe we thought wrong to begin with.
Either way, we are also old enough to be exquisitely grateful
for the path we have walked together
for the moments when a single glance changed everything
and for the still-felt love of those who have gone on before us.
We see the beauty in the dented silver settings.
We smile to hear conversations as familiar as old songs.
Pause, now, and take a snapshot in your mind of this moment:
You – here now – in the shape you’re in –
not as new as you once were, but not as old as you will be.
Feel a hug from a distant friend
and, if you like, you can repeat my family’s toast,
“To those who are here, and those who are not.”
P.S. If you would like to share this, please feel free – just be sure to include Sam’s name, copyright and website, OK? Thanks so much.

By The Way, You Look Really Great Today
A Prayer for the Strong

A Prayer for the Strong

After weeks and weeks of barely being able to write at all, I woke up yesterday at 5am with this:

A Prayer for the Strong

You come to God willing to be an
equal partner. 60-40, even.

“I’ll do the work,” you pray, “Just
show me where to go.”

And you are careful to pray more for
others than for yourself.

And you never, ever complain.

You really try to keep your requests
concise: Serenity. Courage. Wisdom.

But deep within there is the cry of
an anguished teenager, a broken-hearted
child, a damsel in distress.

Perhaps withholding your tantrum isn’t
doing God – or you – or the world –
any favors.

Perhaps you don’t need to fold your desire away
like cotton panties in a drawer.

Perhaps you could stand there, naked, tear-stained,
helpless – allowing raw grace to descend
upon your weary soul.

©2020 – S. Bennett

I hope this finds you well.

Stay #CalmKindCreative



By The Way, You Look Really Great Today

For the Kids

For the Kids

So this week I’ve been hosting a little poetry seminar for my niece (age 12) and my nephew (age 10). We get together on FaceTime each day, and we read a poem together and talk about it. Very casual, and a fun way to connect with them.

Yesterday, my niece suggested that we each try to write a poem, and she suggested the theme of “Change.”

Game on.

So here’s what I wrote:

For the Kids

I didn’t notice this morning
Or even this afternoon
Dinner seemed just regular
But now by the light of the moon

I see that you are different
Much taller than you were.
And something in your eyes –
You seem much more mature.

There’s growing up that’s going on
I’m getting older, too
And what I wouldn’t give for
One more moment with baby you.

© S. Bennett

I gave myself all the #AuntieFeels with this – it totally puddles me up – and I’m happy to share it with you.

Feel free to post it or forward it or pass it around in whatever way feels good. (Just keep the attribution, please : )

Also – I highly recommend poetry writing as a stress-management technique.

Even just a few minutes spent playing around with words calms me down, you know?

Stay #CalmKindCreative.


By The Way, You Look Really Great Today


drop drop drop
drop what you have been holding
drop what you have been holding
drop the idea that you are confused
drop the idea that you are broke
drop the idea that there is any part of you that is unlovable or unnecessary
drop it
set it down
set your burden down
set down your grief
set down your aloneness
set down your your stubbornness
sit down on the side of the road
set your bundles down next to you like cats just sit there
don’t do
don’t rush
don’t have a thought
feel your heartbeat
feel the breath go in and out of you
feel how you are supported in this very moment
there is nothing you need that you don’t have in this very moment
there is nothing that is not possible for you
don’t do
don’t rush
stop thinking
be on the side of the road
set your burdens down
maybe there’s some more that have popped up
take them off of you
you can pick them back up later
just set them down for now
set down your identity
set down your desire to be liked
set down the frantic need to be approved of
set down the idea that there is any lack or absence or shortage of anything anywhere

feel your heart beat feel your breath
feel the air on your skin
feel gravity
become aware again of the net
feel yourself as part an inextricable and critical part of this whole
stop fighting
we love you and you’re doing great
let your hands be loose
stay don’t wander
stay don’t rush to answers
stay in this moment
stay in not knowing
feel the forgiveness for not knowing
it’s like a rain comes down and washes the dust off of you
you are warm and safe
you are needed and loved
you are perfect whole and complete
there is nothing wrong with you
and your ego will fight that
do you see it throwing its little tantrum
you say “I love you ego, you are loved and you’re doing great”
so together we gather in this circle
sitting down by the side of the road
with our burdens and our stories and our excuses
the same 57 negative thoughts
that we have been thinking since we were twelve
we have set aside for now

you seek transformation
you are in the place of transformation
you seek a new life
you are in the place of a new life
you can relax
you’ve made it
congratulations you found it
you can stay like this
this is the real world
this is the real world



The above is a partial transcript of the spiritual improvisation I did on April 14, 2018. The full improv may be accessed from this page.

A spiritual improvisation and free teaching with bestselling author Sam Bennett.