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Footsteps. Conversations.
Spinning wheels. A million eyes.
The sounds and the voices of a city-
always changing, constantly making itself be heard,
taking to itself, feeling the rush of being alive.

A cyclist weaving and racing through lines of cars,
vans, and trucks, gridlocked and stationery-
but glowing and constant red lights
doesn’t stop him for anything,
and for all he knows every light is green;
a commuter in a crowd making their way to work,
desperately holding on to the umbrella in one hand
and the take-out coffee cup
that they are holding onto tightly in the other-
just trying to get to work without bumping into someone else,
or crossing a street and almost being hit
by a fast-peddling cyclist that they nearly didn’t see.

Meeting places.
Get togethers.
The relay and transference of information and knowledge.
A starting point, a route, a destination, a direction, and end
that is merely a jumping-off point to a magical adventure-
like a song that you sing before following a yellow brick road.

There is traffic all around us-
in the sky, above the clouds around Earth,
over land, over sea, under the water, below the ground;
there is movement even in the stillness of a picture-postcard scene
that you don’t see, but which you can hear
by its noticeable feel and sound.

Life is always on the move,
and I find that absolutely phenomenal and terrific.
Life is an endless motorway that is connected and ventured down
and navigated every second by an infinite stream
and network of traffic.

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What matters to you? And why?
Who matters to you?
What makes you feel the most?
Who always makes you cry?

If there were one book in the entire world
that could sum you up, which one would you choose?
Is there one film, one television show, one play,
that your passion and knowledge of says the most about you?

Is there a place that if it were not called what it is
it would have your name written all over it?
Is there a thing of your own making,
something that you had a part in creating,
that is a thing and a word to you
akin to that of magic?
Is there a place that you will always call your home?
Is there a face that will always be your idea
and example of perfection?

Is there someone who could never be cloned?
Is there something that you have seen
that you think a lot about and always stands or sits
within each and every reflection?

What matters to me is what I see,
what matters to me is what I feel,
what matters to me is a person, a look, a lock, a key,
what matters to me is a true secret that will never be revealed;
what matters to me is sharing every second of the human
and living experience,
what matters to me is a question, a road, an iris on and of
the infinite and complex cosmic and meaningful life
that we are all a part of,
what matters to me is what matters to everyone
who is able to use their senses and feel a presence,
what matters to me can’t ever be explained inside or around you
in the ground below or even circling the stars above.

Questioning is not a bad thing.
Answers are not everything.
The prize that is life is something that if you want the most of
you truly have to work for every thing in it
and you have to look up and down and around
while you concentrate on the steps that you take
and the rungs that you climb like those of a long and tall ladder.

Take every step as they come.
Embrace every thing that is unexpected.
Be glad for what you have got, not what you haven’t.
Make the most of everything,
be grateful for all that matters,
because in the end that is all that matters.

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I have been thinking a lot about New York recently,
actually I haven’t stopped thinking about
the city of my dreams since I left.
I still remember the taxi ride that I took to the airport
when I knew I was leaving, and actually becoming teary-eyed,
and incredibly sad to leave-
I felt like I was leaving a part of me behind,
I felt lost, I felt bereft.

As I watched the skyscrapers disappear in the distance over my shoulder,
I remembered every extraordinary moment that I had
in the best city and my favourite city in the world;
I remembered the friends that I had met for the first time,
who I cannot wait to meet again;
I remembered the places that I visited,
and even now can still remember every detail of every moment-
from the faces that I saw, to the sounds and the noises
and the voices that I heard-
I still feel I am reliving every overwhelming and inspiring moment,
as if I can easily jump backwards and forwards in time
from the now to the then, and back again.

Being in New York City was one of the best times of my life.
While I was there my entire destiny came into focus,
and I realized where I was and where I wanted to be.
Being in New York City, feeling the energy of everything
and everybody inside of me made it possible for the first time
to connect me to a higher knowledge of purpose,
and I felt unbelievable wherever I was-
whether I was standing in Times Square being bathed in colour
by the giant screens or the flashing lights,
or standing at the top of one of the tallest buildings in the world-
and I even remember closing my eyes and reaching above me,
as if I could literally touch the sky.

I can still remember the smiling face of my friend,
the fantastic street-performer Natalia Paruz
playing her musical saw in the subway,
I can still feel the elation that I felt every second
I was standing in front of her hearing her completely hypnotized
and in-awe of her, watching her, talking to her,
telling her how I couldn’t wait to come back to New York
even though I hadn’t yet left, seeing her again,
maybe even collaborating with her someday,
and being a part of her music that truly moves me like no other,
and of course hear her and watch her play.

I can still remember standing in Grand Central Station,
being surrounded by what seemed like thousands of people
all in transition to somewhere else;
I can still remember waiting for my amazing and awesome friend Kyle
to arrive and for us to share a meal and a meet-up together
that was epic on every level,
and added on an extra level of magic to my time there-
and the Umami burger that we had was to die for, I can tell you,
and it tasted like nothing else.

I feel like I am still sitting in Central Park sometimes,
on my favourite bench in the shadow of a statue of William Shakespeare,
in the incredible and beautiful golden light of the early morning sun-
every morning at seven I would wake up, get dressed,
walk out of my hotel, go to my favourite coffee shop, Starbucks,
and then walk through Central Park,
and then just sit there and take in everything that I saw, heard, and felt,
and feel like I left my own impression there, my own shadow there
for me to one day return to and find and relive again the incredible experience
that it is to be a part of the place that makes your heart beat like a drum.

I don’t want to forget anything that happened while I was in New York City.
I don’t want to replace the memories that I made there,
and I don’t want to forget the joy that I felt taking every step
down every avenue and street on every sidewalk.
I want to go back as soon as I can.
I want to go there and share everything that I know
and will always love about this city,
and what it will always mean to me.
I want to go to the crown of the Statue of Liberty,
look back at the city, and stare, and say out-loud
the thing that I have been repeating in my mind and in my heart
from the second I left and longed to return:
and that is that I love this city so much,
I love my New York.

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It all starts with our parents;
it all begins with the role-models that we choose early on;
it all grows from the first seed sewn
in the soft ground of our early years
when we are soaking in everything that we see,
and asking what it all meant;
it all falls into place when we hear something
and understand something for the first time, instantly,
and we take it to another level in our mind
until we can no longer contain what we know,
and we feel the need to pass all that we have learned
and the knowledge that we have accumulated on to someone else,
and perhaps even to a completely new and inquisitive generation.

People say that teaching is in the blood,
and I would have to agree;
but I don’t necessarily believe you have to be a teacher
in a school to educate another person-
to me, you have to have the insight and the gift
to show and to make someone, anyone, understand,
and imagine something that before they met you
they were unable or not yet ready to see.

Everyone can be taught;
however, their are some people who don’t want to learn.
The best teacher, the most inspirational
and amazing of guides of knowledge and life
can teach you something without you knowing-
they can encourage you to raise your hand
without you feeling that you have to wait your turn,
they can give you lessons to learn and live by
that you will remember always,
and to you will forever be a blessing.

We all have come to a time in our lives,
when we must take a step back again
and watch while someone who knows more about something than us
has to teach us so that we may better ourselves
for our own benefit, and that of someone we may never know,
or ever meet;
we all feel a great sense of pride in ourselves,
and in our teachers, when we then communicate that wisdom
and enlightenment and see with our own eyes
the moment when a open-minded and willing student
finally raises their head and says ‘I understand’-
for a teacher it just does not get any better than that.

I have been a student, and I have been a teacher.
I will always be the one who seeks out new knowledge,
and I will want to pass the torch of what I hold in my grasp,
even if it is just to one other person at a time,
but with the impact, the energy, the influence,
and the resonance of a public speaker.

We can all be the one who is there
to inspire the mind of someone else;
we can all be the one who is living the dream,
but who is also there to spark the imagination of a fellow dreamer;
we can all be the one who is keeping alive the fire of enthusiasm
in such a way it could never be doused;
we can all be the one who is both the pupil,
while at the same time they are the teacher.

The easiest thing to do is to say nothing,
the easiest thing to do can feel like the best thing to do,
and because it feel easy to you it seems like the best thing to do-
and if you go too deep and if you happen to go too far
with something even though you know shouldn’t
but you did because you needed to-
it can be a long, hard, heart-breaking journey back for you.
“What is the alternative?”, I ask myself everyday.
I am unable to just switch off my emotions
and forget what has happened with the snap of a finger.
That is what happens when you fall into the powerful realm
of love, and you immerse yourself in every effect of its drug
and the way that it makes you feel- love is great, amazing,
unbelievable, but what people don’t tell you
and can’t explain to you fully is that love is a road
that is hard to turn off from,
and the speed that you drive down it
and what every moment and experience does to you
is extremely addictive.

Silence is a bullet to your heart.
Holding back can fracture your mind.
When you feel like you are the only one in pain,
explaining to anyone else can seem like a story
you have no idea from where to start.
When you need someone to listen to you and be there for you,
and when they choose not to be there,
the world can seem riddled with darkness and doubt,
hard to take, and to put it mildly unkind.

You feel like you are alone,
even though you are not.
You feel like you can’t even sit looking out at the world
from the place of love and security that is your home.
You wait for a response from someone with an anticipation
that makes your entire body feel inflamed and hot.
You feel confused by every conversation that you have,
because you feel like you have run out of things
to say to each other.
You make yourself believe that you can do no right,
that you will always feel this way forever.

People see you,
and even though you think they have no idea
what you could possibly be thinking and feeling,
they know exactly what you are going through-
the expressions on their faces are as telling as your own,
the memories of a similar time in their lives floods back
and they don’t have to feel a thing, they just know.

The key to getting through anything is to reach out, not recede.
The key to getting over a wall is to grow,
to look up, to want to overcome what is in front of you,
and to tell someone what you need.
It’s not a bad thing. It’s nothing to be ashamed of.
It’s never the wrong thing to express what you are thinking,
especially if it involves something intense
and all-consuming as love.
The key is to keep thinking, to keep doing,
to keep making, to keep walking.
For me, I know better than anyone
that if you have something to say
then you must say it, even if the person you are saying it to
doesn’t like it, or doesn’t want to hear it,
hears it, reads it, and then quickly forgets it,
and doesn’t reply to it.
The only thing I will say if you are feeling something in anyway,
is don’t stay silent, don’t fade away-
pick up the phone when someone is calling.
Keep talking.

We are born only once,
but in our lives we are capable of infinite restarts,
resets, and rebirths-
every day you can begin again, wipe the slate clean,
and live on a brand new version of Earth.

Life is a state of mind.
Feelings can change.
Too much light can send you blind.
Emotions have a range.

No one can know the future
until it becomes the present.
The past is an empty room once you have left it
and removed its contents.

A heart can never be broken,
it can only be scarred.
A mind can always be open,
but you can sometimes take its thoughts too far.

We tell ourselves that we will learn from our mistakes,
but we never listen.
We give others our words of wisdom,
but when the time comes for us to practice what we preach
our mind goes dark like an eclipsed sun.

Love is not enough.
Fate cannot be fought.
You can’t call the universe’s bluff.
A true gift cannot be bought.

Knowledge means nothing if it is not passed on.
Ideas are like captured lightning-
you have to harness there power
before there flash is gone.

You can’t run forever.
There comes a time when you have to clean up your own mess.
You can hide from yourself if you want,
but that plan isn’t clever.
Stand tall at the end and you will be timeless.

There is not a day that goes by
when I do not doubt how lucky I am;
there is not a moment in a day
when I don’t want to see as much as I can-
because, in life, there is always something to do,
somewhere to go, something to learn about others
and yourself that you did not know.

Not everyone has the time, or even the inclination, to stop and think,
or to do something that they have never done-
especially if you have a family to feed, love, and support,
as best that you can, when thinking about others has to be your sole-focus;
but if you can afford, even for a few minutes of every day
to take the time or to make the time
to really see passed the bubble that surrounds you,
and digress to whomever you wish something that is on your mind,
and then watch it grow as the idea becomes too big for you
to continue to repress.

This wonderful world continues to amaze me, faze me,
embrace me, raise me, craze me, at times;
but I am always thinking about it,
I am always learning about it,
I always want the best for it-
however, no one knows what the future will turn-out like,
no one knows how individuals actions
will affect the lives of everyone on our planet-
but to save ourselves from losing ourselves,
to me, everyone- every child, every adult,
every free-thinking person of consciousness and conscience
with the means of speech-
has to be able to have their say.
To me everything that I have thought on and experienced is a day in the life;
but I know that every day, especially today, is not just another day.
Every day of life means something to someone in every way.

Mask lifted, shroud cast aside,
secrets revealed for all the world to see;
private life made public, your secret identity- the real you-
has been uncovered and set-free.

People work with you, they live with you,
and they think that they know everything about you-
from your hair colour to your shoe size;
people may see you and talk to you every day,
but they will never know you, nor would even recognise your true voice,
until you reveal it to them-
and the reaction to such a revelation can be one of unbelievable surprise.

Friends, co-workers, and family members,
don’t believe what they are hearing at first-
when the secret life that you have been living is announced to the heavens
it is always in a way that, if you had the choice,
you would have hoped to have rehearsed.

People don’t always intend to lead a second life-
most of the time the real you gets pushed to the shadows,
for the sake of conformity-
you act and talk in a way that you are expected to-
while in your private thoughts and moments
you live as best that you can
all the things that make you happy
and you become the person that you always wanted to be.

There is always a reason for a secret-
sometimes it is for protection,
sometimes it can be to keep a mystery alive;
sometimes a secret desperately needs to be told,
sometimes the depths that following a secret will take you to,
of something or someone, rival the discoveries of a deep-sea dive.

Even when you ask a magician how they did their magic trick-
even though you want to know- you never want to know,
for fear of the knowledge that it is something that you could do yourself.
People ask what the meaning of life is,
but secretly they would be content to never know
and keep the answer buried for all eternity below an ice-shelf.

Keep a secret for as long as you can, and if it is a secret about you
then think long and hard about what you are keeping a secret and why,
and ask yourself whether it is a secret
that you can always keep ahead of and out-run;
think about what other people could be keeping a secret from you and why,
and repeat in your mind and to everyone that you meet
that you really don’t know someone.

As the bell tolled ten,
as I stood at the twilight cloister between knowledge and faith,
staring up at a sculpture of a victorious St. Michael
standing over a defeated Devil,
inspiration came to me then and echoed through the space,
and I found myself there-after standing on another level.
The ground beneath me was like a river,
the rain did not stop falling for a second;
for an instant, I began to shiver;
when the chimes ended, I thought I heard my own inner-voice
say something, as if it were trying to respond.
There was no lightning-bolt that struck nearby,
but nevertheless I saw a flash of light
which I interpreted as being insight-
cloud and rain was all that I could see in the sky,
and even though it was morning it felt more like night.
I was transfixed by the university, by the nearby fountain,
by the stone spheres that were on the path before me,
and by the imposing cathedral-
even in this light everything looked so beautiful.
I wanted so much to understand what I was feeling,
but my heart could not tell me;
I wanted so much to share this inner-light with someone else,
but there was no one to be seen.
I stood for a few more minutes in silence,
and then I felt my feet and my legs
regain the knowledge of their function
and propel me on my path again.
I don’t think that I will ever forget that moment
outside Coventry Cathedral and Coventry University, in the rain,
as the bell tolled ten.

On a moonlit night, dressed all in black,
a man walks the streets of his town,
reflecting on the night that has passed
and also on the realization that he cannot give back.

To taxi drivers, and early-morning passers-by,
he is like a ghost in the street lights;
and as he takes a step closer towards home,
it occurs to him that no one really knows him-
people think they do, but he is not the person
that some people believe they are capturing in their sights.

We can never truly know how we are seen by others,
nor what our emanating first-impression is-
all that the man knows is that tonight
he got a glimpse into a mirror that showed him
how people perceive him,
and he wonders if it is a recurring after-image
that when he is described everyone sees.

Maybe it is because, these days,
his words speak for him without him even opening his mouth-
he has found that actions, especially his own,
have spoken silent volumes about who people are-
and that fact he too thinks long and hard about.

Perhaps he is a closed-book
that periodically and uncontrollably
sometimes has their cover opened
and their pages turned by the winds of the world,
and if it were not for a book-mark here and there
nothing about him would be known or unfurled.

We are all a mystery to one-another,
sometimes even to our friends, and our families;
sometimes we are even a mystery to ourselves-
just because we live our lives
does not mean that we know everything about our lives;
sometimes things lie out of reach on perceptions highest shelves.

Song-writers and story-tellers have been singing about and describing
men and women in black for some time now,
but until last night and this morning
this Man in Black never understood who they were talking about
and he never thought that a person like that
would be a person like me.
He wonders if he will always be a Man in Black;
however, that is not for him to know,
that is not for him to see.

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