Angel of Words – A Tribute to Maya Angelou

May 31

Angelic words,Maya Angelou Wikipedia 1
With points of view,
She set us free,
With words so few.
Compassion grew,
From endless prose,
She spoke of pain,
The kind she knows.
The words she chose,
Could force a tear,
Or coax a smile,
Or banish fear.
She wrote of birds,
That cages keep,Maya Angelou Wikipedia 2
Whose freedom came,
And made us weep.
She wrote of healing,
Racist ways,
Her pen dug deep,
Through song and plays.
Her meaning shows,
Between her lines,
Poetic words,
That God defines.
Her words will live,
Where Maya spoke,
Within our soul,
Her words evoke.Maya Angela Wikipedia 3
We feel her spirit,
Poetic clear,
Forever scribed,
In hearts still here.
Steve Dahl Copyright 2014
With Maya Angelou’s passing we lose a creative voice for all humanity. Who will fill the void? Who will speak for those less capable than you? What is your creative contribution to the world? What is your contribution to the world? 
Images courtesy of Wikipedia.
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Gluten-Free Chaos

May 26

First came low-fat diets,
Then – coffee was so bad,
Then wine became so healthy,
For that – I was so  glad.
 Red Wine glass from Wikipedia
Then low fat made a u-turn,
Then wine was not okay,
Then milk became the culprit,
But what is it today?
There is this thing called gluten,
In all the bread you chew,
It’s in your yummy Mac and cheese,
It’s in your licorice too!
This drives me kind of nutty,
Is gluten bad for me?
I think I’ll go bananas,
But are they gluten free?
But wait! You cannot see them,whole_wheat_bread_loaf_Wikipedia
This drives my head insane,
These tiny little proteins,
Keep messing with my brain!
“Give us this day our daily bread,”
If gluten’s what I’ve read,
Forgive me lord, I’m not quite sure,
But do you want me dead?
I think it’s not that good for me,
I know, I think, I guess…nutritional_label_Wikipedia
I cannot taste this sticky spec,
This gluten thing’s a mess!
No gluten in my oatmeal, (yuck)
No gluten in my beer, (burp)
No gluten in my pizza slice,
What is this gluten fear?
I cannot go to restaurants,
Or lunch to see a friend,
But may I have a dinner roll,
Or will that be my end!
Is wheat the biggest culprit,apple_Pie_Wikipedia
Or GMO’s gone wild,
Will I have a heart attack,
Or something rather mild?
Marketing comes from corporate,
Where gluten-free began,
They’re hyping up this “gluten thing,”
To build no gluten’s brand!
They have me pasta paranoid,
Fresh bagels make me cry,
I’m scared to death of grandma’s scones,Dinner rolls Wikipedia
My god I miss her pie!
So screw this gluten-free chaos,
And dinner rolls that kill,
This gluten free will wipe us out,
Before more gluten will!

Copyright 2014 Steve Dahl 


There is certainly a lot of nutritional science that says gluten can cause a lot of people a lot of problems. I’m well aware of that! And, like the fat-free craze or the low cholesterol craze, the marketing gurus like me were not going to miss THIS opportunity! This little piece was inspired after a git-t0gether with some friends as we comically tried to arrange the pot-luck approach to the evening to cover all the varied dietary considerations of the group. Some were gluten free, others vegan, others paleo, others, well, normal. That’s the world we live in.

And, not that one should ever be skeptical of the advertising world or the media, god forbid, but do your homework on this one!  Going gluten free will likely help you lose weight, reduce inflammation and make you feel better. And, maybe it’s not an issue for you. Get tested and follow the science.

By the way, I’m gluten free and I feel much better! 

You might consider taking 30 days and go gluten free to see how you feel!

Have a gluten-free day!

Images courtesy of

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Let Ending Begin

May 23

That end-of-life chatter,Door to End of Life
We’d like to ignore,
Is never that easy,
As we head toward that door.
That door we all open,
While treatment transpires,
When medicine fails,
And breathing expires.
But we wait and we wonder,
When do we say,
Time is up – it’s now over,
And hope fades away?
Our hope is not wasted,
As we struggle for words,
But this talking ‘bout death,
Is still for the birds!
We fear talking, fear dying,
We fear one final breath,
Too much hesitation,
On this topic called death.
But discussion gives courage,
Let us say what we must,
Through discomfort and pain,
We simply must trust.
We must trust our intentions,
And seek strength from above,
This end-of-life chatter,
Is a topic of love.
For if love is your message,
Then fear cannot win,
Trust yourself and start talking,
And let ending – begin.



The Mayonnaise Metaphor and a Free eBook

Yes, we all have this in common, blah, blah, blah. We’re all going to die, yadda, yadda, yadda. I work in palliative care so the topic of pain and end-of-life-suffering is a common topic of discussion in my line of work. Yet, most Americans would prefer to avoid discussing the joyful topic of expiration. Wow, I can’t even say it myself. Maybe that’s it! Maybe we just look at ourselves as a jar of mayonnaise!

Then we don’t need to use the D word! “Hey honey, I won’t be good for two weeks after my expiration date so maybe we should put those Advance Directives together!” (You can get a free eBook I put together with Advance Directive checklists and guidelines  at .

My wife often opens that jar of mayonnaise a few days after the expiration date and will ask me to give it the sniff test to see if I think it’s still good. So, while you’re still “good” have a chat with someone you love about your expiration date.

Discussing death before it’s pounding on your front door is a lot better than dealing with it during crunch time. We’ve all got that expiration date on the back of the bottle so I encourage you to spend some time with loved ones chatting about what you want towards the end. Who is going to be making decisions if you can’t? Who will manage your affairs? What is your password for Facebook? And important stuff like that.

I know what you’re thinking. “Really, Steve – a mayonnaise metaphor?”

What say you?

© Copyright Steve Dahl 2013

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