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Today is my birthday.
Well, in actual fact, today, right now it is not my birthday,
my birthday is two days away;
however, the next time that someone reads this poem
will be on the day of my birthday,
and the next person to read it will be you,
and if you are reading this you probably already know me,
but if you don’t know me I would just like to say hello
and thank you for finding me.
To everyone, I just want to say that the last 33 years-
all the years, all the months, all the days-
have been more amazing and more epic than I could ever truly describe,
and you who have been with me, and who have followed me along the way,
have been fantastic and amazing,
and I would not be me if it was not for you.

What a life! What a world!
What a ride it has been!
What has happened to me throughout my life
has been more than words could ever describe,
ever since I was a boy and my hair was curled.

Am I who I thought I would be when I reached the age of 33?
Did I think what happened would ever of happened to little old me?
Someone once told me that “life was better than a dream,
because everything that happens to us while we are awake is tangible and real”;
but then again, there is a favourite quote from a favourite book of mine
that I love that says something along the lines of “life is but a dream”.
To me, dreams are the place where great and epic ideas happen
and where we all break a timeless seal,
and life is where we take those ideas and thoughts
and run with them, and ride there currents
like a fast-moving stream.

What I have seen;
what I have learned;
who I have met face to face, and in my dreams,
who I have have been saved by when it looked as if
all my bridges were going to be burned,
has given me everything anyone could ever want and dream of,
and what has not yet happened will either take the form of a figurative
black crow, or a white dove.

My life has changed so much, and it is about to change again;
my life is constantly changing shape, changing colour,
changing feel, changing speed, and that is why sometimes
I have to stop, take a breath, and count to ten.
My life, like the universe, like my mind, like my heart,
is always on the move, and never rests
even when I am lying asleep in bed;
my life, and me, has been dark and black,
light and white, and my life and I is there for all the world to see,
when I write the poetry of my life, and it is read.

Night is when I come alive.
Night is when I am free.
Night is when I feel my drive.
Night is when I am me.
Night is when the universe can truly be seen.
Night is when the sonnet of the stars can be read.
Night is when I go to the places I have never been.
Night is when I live the dream others imagine
as they lie asleep in their bed.
Night is when the heavens look there most beautiful.
Night is when the call of the wild can be heard.
Night is when people change into something
that connects them with that
which goes beyond the physical.
Night is when no one needs to utter a word.
Night is when you see, hear, and feel things
that take your breath away.
Night is when sound reigns supreme.
Night is when you look back and remember
all of the things that happened to you that day.
Night is when you reflect on the way things are,
the way things were, and the way things could have been.
Night is when the best stories are born.
Night is when we all cloak ourselves in the wonder of the dark.
Night is when the world catches it’s breath
before the awe of the new days dawn.
Night is when fire returns to being
the seed of its first spark.
Night is when we find peace.
Night is when we gain a new sight.
Night is when every dog is let off the leash.
Night is when we become the embodiment of the night.

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There is no sound,
there is nothing to be heard;
there is a couple sitting at the next table from me
in the cafe I am in
talking completely and fully without words,
and the beauty of their silent conversation,
even though I do not mean to pry in any way,
has me not only lost for words
but also lost in thought,
and I can feel my heart start to pound.

I can’t hear a word that they are saying to each other,
but I know that that is because their voice
is not meant to be heard by me-
they could be saying anything to each other-
but what I do know, just from observing the looks
that they are giving each other,
is that this couple is in love;
I recognize and I have seen this unmistakable,
silent, and mutual, connection of spirit
in myself and in others a thousand times,
and it never fails to read, at least to me,
like the most beautiful, natural, and special, poetry.

The eye-contact, lip-movements, and hand-gestures and signs,
they are making is entrancing,
the way they are so compelled and in-awe of each other
and do not need or want the attenton of anyone else
in the entire world is mesmerising-
I am not afraid of confessing.

I wanted to be a part of their conversation,
but I also, secretly, did find it cool that I and everyone
was an outsider because we couldn’t understand their code
and are not meant to.
I must admit I did smile at the thought of them
having so much privacy, and the gift of one to one communication
without the potential of being evesdropped on.

They looked like they only had time
and only had eyes for each other,
and that truly touched my heart and made me happy-
the joy they were feeling about talking to each other,
sitting facing each other, of one mind and intent,
was noticeable, palpable, and wonderful to see.
Communication on every level of society and by every means
all around the world in a million different ways
has always fascinated me,
and the gift of being able to reach out to someone,
especially someone that you love, in some way, in any way,
no matter who you are or how it is done
never ceases to fascinate me.

The couple that I was watching had their own language,
their own code of communication that even I could see,
surpassed the language they had been taught
to share what they want to say;
and it occurred to me after I left the cafe
that they have a code, everyone has a code,
and even I have mine-
my language, my code, is that of patterns and poetry;
and I also realised that if I or anyone wants to be a part
of any conversation, I and they have to learn and read
what is being said all around us every second,
sometimes silently without a sound,
because the answer to what is being said is
all in the signs.

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There is no greater thing to give,
and there is no greater thing to receive,
there is no greater expression
that you are thinking of someone, than a card-
especially this time of the year;
to me, there is something special,
more so than any gift or present of any size,
about the knowledge that people are in each other’s thoughts
no matter where they live, nor the reality that they don’t talk
or see each other as much as they used to anymore;
to me, knowing that I have picked and written in a card for someone,
and that someone has picked and written in a card especially for me,
means something to me, and because I am who I am
I read light-years into every word, and I pay especial focus and attention
to the ever-present poetry.

I love taking the time to make a card.
I love sitting down while thinking about the person I am writing to,
and letting my feelings and emotions flow from me
and become imbued in the ink that I am writing in.
I love having the gift to be able to express so easily
what others sometimes find hard.
I love retracing my own footprints
and reuniting with old memories of friends and family
at special moments of our shared lives together,
and remembering and reliving those things we have seen,
and returning to the place where we have been.

There is a card for every occasion.
There is a card for everyone.
There is a card to be made in everyone’s imagination.
There is a card to be created that can be a simple sentence
and sentiment that even though it may only be short
can be what you really want to say in a way
that is the culmination of elation, affection, explanation,
and liberation, that needs no translation.

Messages are precious. Time is finite.
What we say sometimes is fast, frenetic,
unforgettable, and often times in a rush.
How we spend our days and hours is often split and divided
between different relationships with very different people that we know,
and it is sometimes hard to know where you are
until you turn out the light at night.

To me, a card- a birthday card, a Christmas card,
a postcard, a get well card, an anniversary card-
is a great and a wonderful thing,
because it is an opportunity, a place, a way,
a method, and a means, that is more special and means more
than a text message, an email, or a phone call-
for some that is the only way they have to reach out
and make contact with someone,
and those messages and calls mean the world,
and being able to share something, anything,
from one person to another is so incredible.

The right card to send someone and the right thing to write inside
can take a lot of thought, but it shouldn’t have to be a science
and it doesn’t have to be a masterpiece of art.
The right message and remark does not have to be the most amazing
and poetic declaration ever written, or ever said-
as long as what you really want to communicate is there for anyone
and all to see and read by anybody who sends, receives,
opens, writes, and reads, something in a card.

If you are reading this,
then you are like me-
when we see something that interests us and intrigues us
we don’t stop trying to open a lock
until we find the right key.

If you are reading this,
then you know that everyone share’s a connection with each-other,
we always have, but that link is easier to prove and see
now, in the 21st Century,
because of the gift of modern-day technology.

If you are reading this,
then you are an example of my favourite person-
you are somebody who looks for something or someone
to take you away from what you know, for a short-time,
and to brighten your day-
like a hint of blue-sky on a cloudy day,
or a sudden, stunning, burst of light from the sun.

If you are reading this,
then please take this poem with you wherever you go-
it doesn’t have to be in your pocket,
it can simply be a thought that stays in your imagination-
like a kiss:
poetry can be as simple as a smile,
or as complex as a look that leads you to bliss-
all things are possible to you,
if you are reading this.

'If You Are Reading This'

Please check out my book of poems ‘Poet of the Sphere‘ on Amazon.co.uk: http://amzn.to/ZTLOW2

Thank you! 🙂

-Mark

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