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Three years ago I was much better man;
three years, five percent, of thus far life span?
I was riding high, surfing crest of wave,
little did I know of upcoming pain.

Exited Iowa for Tampa Bay,
left frigid prairies, southeastwardly strayed.
Angle of descent forty-five degrees,
left behind cornstalks for leaves of palm trees.

Over half my life spent in great white north,
near three-dozen-years clung to Great Lake shores.
Midwest born and reared, Midwest head to toe,
dreamed ocean’d be fun, little did I know.

Lansing, Hartford and Iowa have dwelled,
one tenth globe, forty-second parallel,
twelve-hundred miles of distance demarcates;
equilat’rally  life triangulates.

Southeast move, never dreamed would lose my niche:
Surf and sand, soon life became quite the beach.
Beach bodies, stand your ground, “Florida Man!”
all this and more for me Florida stands.

Life without winter means never comes spring;
depression’s trough was deepest ever been.
Mariana Trench half-a-world away;
lower even than that fear my soul strayed.

Florida left behind Thanksgiving Day,
twenty-seven months of life that was gray.
Eight-twenty-six marks arrival in hell,
blame peninsula and that beach’s spell.

If life is a beach then we all should play;
hope waves and sand bring joy to you each day.
Florida deep, dark and vile, stay away!
Thirty-fifth parallel planning to stay.

Each to our own, for me Florida not;
smell of rot and decay wafts round a lot.
I’m living again, but life’s still no beach;
continue my climb till summit I reach.

Resilient and strong? For me’s poppycock,
but I won’t give up nor let my soul rot.
I’ll work toward my  goals, establish my niche,
pray soon I’ll again partake of life’s feast.