January 4, 2012


There’s a tricky switch
on my coffee maker…
It’s got three positions:
Auto, Off and On.

Auto is the timer: It waits to make the coffee.
Off is off: It doesn’t make the coffee.
On does not wait: It makes the coffee now.

It’s tricky is because it’s hard to move.
It tends to move suddenly
and all the way, left or right,
whichever direction you’re pushing.

Turning it Off takes repeated effort
because the switch skips right past it.
Auto to On, or On to Auto.

But that’s how it goes with extremes…
Left is Left and Right is Right
and the middle is hard to find
because it lies in-between.

Some say the middle is easy
because it plays both sides
and does not make choices.

I believe just the opposite,
because the middle requires balance
to considers the ebb and flow
as the stream bends and turns.
Choosing one bank or the other
you must leave the flow behind
for that still, false security.

Your bank seems steady and safe
and you disparage the other side
while the stream erodes both away.


  1. Middle is so hard-the balance-to achieve and then maintain. Well stated. Although you appear fairly balanced most days (lucky duck!)

  2. That last line was the money! Never take for granted the bank, and never disregard the stream. Both are subject to change and our flexibility to adapt and to be aware and to move accordingly are what help us survive.

  3. I used to be married to someone like your coffee maker.

  4. Wise words, not always easy -- unlike the coffee maker.



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