Ode to Tony Robbins, Thanksgiving Eve

I just love that I get to write a poem the day before Thanksgiving, in part so I can tell you, cherished readers how much I appreciate you sharing my journey!  Blessings to you and yours tomorrow!

Ode to Tony Robbins,
Thanksgiving Eve

Lately, I am listening to the motivational mogul
Tony Robbins when I drive throughout my day.
This morning instead of snoozing the alarm
and popping a cookie in my mouth first thing
I am supposed to be having an hour of power,
take a walk while deep breathing,
four counts in, four counts out,
while tapping my fingers together
and expressing gratitude in an expanding circle
first myself, then family and friends,
work and the world.
Finally I am to plan my day,
visualizing the people I am to serve,
the joyful connections I am to make,
then my life as if my dreams have come true.
Thank you for the book tour in fifty states,
the European trip with all the kids,
the yoga retreat, the mountain cabin.
if I can’t manage an hour, he urges
at least try thirty to thrive,
at the very least fifteen for fulfillment.

I love Tony Robbins, all six foot seven of him,
with his huge hands
and gravelly voice that sounds like
he has screamed one two many times
as people run over burning coals to prove
mind over matter.
I love that he speaks of his house in the plural,
each with a cold plunge and workout pool,
that he used to eat broccoli for breakfast
until his second wife mellowed him out.
I love that he tells us about depressed people
who were forced to smile for twenty minutes a day,
that at the end of the twenty day trial period,
they were less depressed than if they’d taken Prozac.
That he coins phrases like
change your physiology change your life,
that he awakens the giant within.

At seventeen Robbins started his motivational gig,
driving to meetings, his hands pounding the steering wheel
as he pumped himself up with incantations.
At seventeen his alcoholic mother chased him
out of the house with a knife.
At seventeen he began to care for and provide for his siblings.
Say what you want about the expense of his workshops,
the material you could get in a Napoleon Hill book
Think and Grow Rich for a dollar on Amazon,
at seventeen Robbins also started feeding families,
first one, then a dozen, now millions.

Sometimes my children ask why we have to say grace,
they poke their elbows at each other instead of holding hands,
roll their eyes across the table.
Often, it is the most I can do in a day,
to stop and bow to taco salad or tuna melts,
to mention the farmer who picked
the tomatoes, gratitude for a floor under our feet.

I felt Tony yesterday, that millennial guru,
that informercial messiah
came to me like Jesus,
(who knows what he’d be hawking
if he was born in the twentieth century).
His presence was with us as we sat at the table,
as I faced grumpy teens and preteens.
It was the same feeling I have been getting in the forest
when I stop at the base of certain firs,
gazing upward into radiating limbs,
I am supported by their cathedral columns.
There are some lives, like Tony’s, that dwarf the common man,
I am the huckleberry growing at the tree’s base.
Robbins would urge me to offer the sweetest berries.