[POEM] sitting in your car

it was a day of sitting in cars
in his, to say goodbye
in mine, to find quiet
and yours, to smile and feel warmth

I asked if I could sit with you
bum a cigarette
told you I had a shitty day
you told me how you broke two pickle jars
glass and juice everywhere
how was that for a bad day?
I laughed, exhaled the smoke through the mostly open window
the weather outside a reminder of Spring

we talked about nothing and everything in 15 minutes
marriage, kids, health insurance, hair loss & growth, past jobs
I told you I was uncertain about the future
you said that you got over your ego a long time ago
I enjoyed the smoke in my lungs more than I thought I would
but maybe it was just you and the comfort I needed in that moment

when our time was up you smiled
told me that I was easy to talk to
I get that a lot, I said to myself
but wondered whether it was really a good thing
I thanked you for the cigarette and conversation
I needed it today, I reminded you. 
tomorrow maybe too?

and for the foreseeable future
until this hole in my heart
patches itself

/ / /

Gina Thompson
24 March 2017
Bellefonte, PA

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[POEM] shouldn’t there be 

shouldn’t there be

he spoke of a wish, a hope that someday
shouldn’t there be
a pill that you can just take
instead of extending the pain and agony
when you’re too far gone for repair

but society wants to fantasize death
and the process before
The treatment, the ebb and flow of improvement, the waiting

there are certain ways that society doesn’t accept
I thought while I listened
the death pill
and you and me together
with the others somehow
as one big collective we

/ / /

Gina Thompson
18 March 2017
State College, PA

free write based on WordPress Daily Prompt: Controversy 

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[QUOTE] The Ginger Runner on Doubt

I love doubt. Doubt tells us we are not strong enough. It demands that we’re too slow, unworthy, incapable, and weak. Our lives are riddled with “I can’t”s, “I won’t”s, and “no way.” And often we believe it. We let doubt win. Now people question why I run, why I train, why I spent a majority of my time focused on a hobby that wrecks my body and tolls my mind. I do it for me. Because I doubt myself. because I tell myself “I can’t”, “I won’t”, and “no way.” While so many people move through their life consumed by doubt, petrified by it, I face it head on. It does not consume me; it fuels me. I welcome the doubt. I welcome the doubt because it makes me try impossible things.

for you. for me. for us all.

i love you, keep going.

Follow The Ginger Runner (Ethan Newberry) on all of the social medias:

Thank you Ethan, for the continued inspiration.

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[POEM] in silent coordination


in silent coordination

in clusters they gather
along the guard rails
perched on telephone wires
flying in shapeless forms against the blue sky
sometimes there are so many you can’t ignore
the controlled chaos of their flight path
watch the silent coordination from your car
you don’t even know what kind of bird
but you’ve been told more than once

other birds are returning now
because it’s spring, or close
even though there’s still snow on the ground
(but not enough to be fun)
just enough to remind us of cold and gray and wind

you slept in this morning because late in the night the world
(or just ours)
shifted forward, just a little bit
just enough to make you feel
as though something big will come of it

/ / /

Gina Thompson
12 March 2017
Bellefonte, PA

free write based on WordPress Daily Prompt: Murmuration

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[POEM] morning swarm

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morning swarm

in my brain the words swarm
there’s no context and the noise
outside my body is too loud
children voices
no concern for quiet
or the sleeping bodies of others
or me, trying to capture thoughts
quickly appearing like fireflies
in the night sky

to compensate
i drink more coffee
bite an already chewed nail
finger scroll through social media
text with a friend

and give up on any formulation of these
swarming thoughts

/ / /

Gina Thompson
7 March 2017
Mount Snow, Vermont

free write based on WordPress Daily Prompt: Swarm

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[POEM] it’s sunny today, too

if i lived on my own, I would have to buy a coffee maker
and a milk frother
and raw brown sugar
and iced tea spoons

that would be just the most immediate need
of solo living

in the mornings when i walk downstairs
i mutter “coffee” with each step
with half closed eyes my routine begins:

pick a mug (always handmade)
fill with a little milk or, if i’m lucky, half-and-half
microwave for 30 seconds
froth milk with my fancy frother thingie
pour in coffee
(the excitement builds)
a couple scoops of raw sugar
(scooped by a wooden spoon from Africa)
stir with my long-handled iced tea spoon
and finally… sip.

sometimes i imagine these routines in another context
and sometimes i don’t ever want to

/ / /

Gina Thompson
4 March 2017
Bellefonte, PA

free write based on WordPress Daily Prompt: Doubt

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[POEM] on the periphery

on the periphery

at the center of everything
there is certainty
there is knowing
the center is where we strive to be
or where society wants to push us, anyway
it’s the path of least resistance
it’s where life flows along just so
no rocking of boats
no upsetting the equilibrium of forces
it’s calm waters on an uncertain sea
there’s no risk
but there is no living too great, too much,
too deep, too hard, too fast
not the way one should
or could
if they stepped just a little to the right or
just a little to the left
it’s living too small

the center of me
is the peripheral of you
and what you want for me, my life, my being
your center is where i want to avoid
ever settling
ever getting too comfortable
ever letting go of me

/ / /

Gina Thompson
28 February 2017
Boalsburg, PA

free write based on WordPress Daily Prompt: Center

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[POEM] the tempo of the forest


the tempo of the forest

before I started running I never understood the allure
but what I crave from running in the woods is
what we all crave from life: rhythm

there is a rhythm on the trail
it’s the in and out of breath
the foot connecting with earth
the cadence and stride of movement
it’s knowing what to expect
and expecting the unpredictable
the change of seasons
how weather affects the trail
snow crunch, wet leaves, dry leaves, soft dirt, mud puddles
big boulders, small rocks, rain, humidity, dry heat, cold wind
it’s all a part of the rhythm of the forest
the craving we have as humans
to experience joy in stolen moments

/ / /

Gina Thompson
23 February 2017
Spring Creek Park, State College PA

free write based on WordPress Daily Prompt: Rhythmic

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[POEM] rhythm & routine

it’s easy to fall in to
wake up with a warm body beside you
coffee already brewed, set the night before
coordinating the day over hot coffee and cereal
begging a kid to eat her food, get dressed, potty, brush teeth
there’s drop offs and pick ups.
for you: office hours and teaching and grading
for me: retail shifts, job applications, coffee shops, running in the woods
our paths cross in spare moments, when the day finally slows
tired from the day, from the kid, from the chores
and we don’t quite know what to do with one another
except that we do — we just live in each other’s presence
there’s an unquantifiable comfort
an old sweater you don’t often wear,
but can’t throw away the security
of knowing when you open the drawer, it will be there
I’ve held on to clothes for decades
and I haven’t worn them in that long either

/ / /

Gina Thompson
23 February 2017
Spring Creek Park, State College PA

free write based on WordPress Daily Prompt: Rhythmic

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[POEM] hideouts

when we were kids
we turned the desk in my brother’s room into a rocketship
taped paper buttons to the underneath
on weekend mornings after milk and cereal and cartoons
before heading outside to run through the woods
we’d crawl underneath the desk
my older brother in command, I always the co-pilot
we’d make some noises and press paper buttons
and blast off into space to discover the unknown

when we were kids
we collected scraps of woods
from our fathers’ sheds
dragged them into the woods
and built multistory forts
unstable structures enclosed by four trees
we sneaked cigarettes and booze
smoked Marlboro reds until we were dizzy
tried to be older than we were

when we were kids
we scraped our legs on tree branches
climbing to the tops of pines
looked out over the world
chased the squirrels higher
and made shelters from the fallen tree limbs
on the soft needled ground below

when we were kids
we were unstoppable
nothing was sacred
everything was sacred
we lived minute by minute
and enjoyed the rush of discovery
the joy in not knowing
what each new moment would hold

/ / /

Gina Thompson
22 February 2017
Bellefonte, PA

free write based on WordPress Daily Prompt: Hideout

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