An easy-to-use guide to what I’ve published on Medium

A magnifying glass focusing on a page in the dictionary
A magnifying glass focusing on a page in the dictionary
Like most writers, I use words when I write. (Original image by author © 2016)

Below you will find an easy-to-follow guide to everything I’ve published here since joining in November 2020. The most recent stories in each category will be at the top.

You’ll notice some stories will appear in multiple categories — politics and humor, for example — while others only appear in one. The whole idea behind this page is to make it easy for readers to find stories of interest on my profile page.

The categories are:

  • Author’s Picks
  • Politics
  • Poetry
  • Short Fiction
  • Humor
  • Music-Related
  • Original Photography Included

The Author’s Pick section includes stories and poems I feel strongly about sharing…

Here, there and everywhere — all at once and little by little

Photo by Ahmad Odeh on Unsplash

There is movement inside the stillness,
perpetual motion in particles and waves
even as the force that temporarily propels
sputters, coughs, runs out
of metaphysical soul fuel
on the great interstellar highway of life.

There are worlds with lightspeed highways,
and worlds where access roads never got built.
Ours is a world where respected scientists
crunch numbers both madly and with precise focus,
bent on going somewhere new before it gets here first. …

“Some people get rich and others eat sh** and die.” -Hunter S. Thompson

Photo by Brendan Church on Unsplash

The mood on the patio was hot, getting hotter by the moment.

“You listen to me and, listen good, Alton, man! ‘Overnight Meat Thaw’ is a stupid name for a band! Stupid, man! Like, really idiotic! I mean, like, what the effin’ ef, man? You cannot be serious!”

Gizmo Wahoo, the 47-year-old bass player and co-founder of the Freakerman-Wahoo Exponentials, was livid. He used his chipped Budweiser key chain to open another bottle of expensive imported beer, procured from Alton’s refrigerator.

Gizmo had not paid for any beer in the two months he’d known Alton Freakerman and the other guys…

Inhale, exhale, bask in the poetry of being alive

A chair in the woods
A chair in the woods
A chair in the woods, Land of Medicine Buddha, Soquel, Calif. (Original photo © 2013)

Think about Spirit,
the Breath of Life inside us
share thoughts, breathe freely . . .

Technology makes living in the past easier — is that our future?

Photo by Ralph (Ravi) Kayden on Unsplash

Everything becomes a verb eventually
and probably is to begin with.
It just takes some time to notice things,
and things are not always what they seem.

I’ve never trusted nouns,
their fuzzy specificity constantly blurred
by the moving picture that is Life,
the motion of action around and within.

To do, to be, to see, to free,
to witness it all again in unreal time
after preserving the procession of moments
with a convenience machine.

Everything behind us is frozen already,
except it’s not, it’s still accessible
as we turn toward the past,
almost timeless, almost out of time.

That which is recurring comes and goes, yet always remains

Image by พงษ์ดนัย ทองเกษม from Pixabay

Rain falls fifty years ago,
I am a wet boy sailing a toy boat
in small streams alongside curbs.

Rain falls fifty minutes ago,
I mutter bitterly about the umbrella
hanging dryly in my closet.

Snow falls when I am 8,
I ask my mother for a carrot
to use for a snowman’s nose.

Snow falls when I am 55,
I regret turning down the job
that was waiting for me in Orlando.

The wind blows where it will
when I am a child, a teen,
a young up-and-comer, a man with gray hair.

The wind blows where it will…

Our teeth and how they serve us can make us pretty nervous!

Photo by Nathan Dumlao on Unsplash

26 times per bite,
we were told as children,
As if each grinding motion of mouth
was its own letter
in an alphabet of chomping
that must be performed like a duty
before our little bellies would understand
the gastric musicology
of nonverbal orchestras
that accompany peristalsis.

What a mistake it now seems
to have turned happy office sheet cakes
or succulent baked salmon
into mere byproducts of digestion!
Is that why bakeries make icing so colorful?
Is that why delicious fish rich in Omega 3s
swim upriver to spawn?

How I’ve wept when I floss my teeth upon…

Retracing our footsteps does not always mean reliving the past

Photo by Kevin Bluer on Unsplash

“Best of all,” she snarled,
“It means I’ll be leaving
this dump of a town.”

Decades later, upon returning,
she spoke softly,
choking back tears:
“It’s good to be home.”

That’s how it is with youth,
brash and audacious early on,
wiser once the certainty fades,
wiser still when it relaxes
into the changing pace of the journey.

Time ticks and time tocks
with or without clocks,
and the painful parade of wasted yesterdays
magically takes form as unwritten tomorrows
brimming with the possibility of presence.

We all go home again, some of us with more time to spare than…

If poetry were rain, would it only fall in the shadows?

Image of a lunar eclipse
Image of a lunar eclipse
Image by Pete Linforth from Pixabay

It has to do with forward motion.
It has to do with sitting still.
It has to do with embracing.
It has to do with letting go.

Modern lives come in one long act,
each breath its own scene.

Sometimes the themes are big:
the homecoming of forgotten clouds
now thought of as what passes for drought,
now thought of as anticipation of drizzle,
now thought of as water
in wading pools for children.

On the news this morning, I heard talk of a total lunar eclipse fully visible from California, and at a convenient hour if only the clouds…

Darren Richardson

Headline writer & copy editor for 15-plus years in newspapers (1990–2006) ; digital professional since 2008. Twitter:

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