Tag Archives: poems

All Able Bodies

Another soldier
answers the call,

still clean uniform
and well oiled gun,

marching to war

with blue and yellow
flowers braided in her hair.

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torn in a tattered
back seat,
spread like confetti
at midnight,
littering the sidewalk
outside a Cafe. 

swept from hospital

clinging to thresholds
of freshman dorms,

among old

just some of the places
I have left
the pieces
of my heart

a quadrille for dverse



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Dreams – Restrained

The boy is twelve, maybe fourteen,
course, curly hair cut close to the scalp,
his skin is dark, the genetic dark of generations spent
roaming savannahs under a hard sun.

Now he roams rough streets in a hard neighborhood,
more often hungry than the ancestor with a spear,
more often afraid of the lurking predator,
more often alone, with no tribe for protection.

He dreams of escape from this life he did not choose,
to run from this place of hardship and fear
to where lines of difference are blurred
and seeking betterment is not betrayal.

At night, when he flees through his dreams,
a hand grasp him with a grip like a shackle,
refusing him the escape for which he longs,
a hand with the same dark skin as his own.

Ekphrastic of a Seattle Mural
By Artist Alex Gardner

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moves slow
when sought out

ever waiting
within the shadow
the master of patience

indifferent to your plight
he offers peace to the sleepless

a welcome choice when her joy no longer
brings you joy, but only lesser misery

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The End of the (Seven Bridges) Road

I think we all (of a certain age) dreamed of deciding
to go,
of following the stars
in the southern sky,
of being loved tame and being
loved wild,
of standing beneath the trees
in moss filtered moonlight.
I find trepidation in the hints of what
might lie beneath the shadows on that road.
Perhaps it is my tendency to
over think,
but what if we were to go,
what if we were to cross
the seventh bridge
and reach the end of the road
with the taste of honey
sweet on our tongues?
What if we never find it again,
or some other road
which calls the soul,
or another taste so sweet,
or stars so warm?
What if there was never
anything better,
or, perhaps more,
what if there was?

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Questions of Consistency, A Prose Poem

We are in a restaurant, unknown to each other, at adjacent tables, when I take my companion’s hand and bow my head, ask a blessing and give thanks for our meal, speaking low so that only we two can hear. If I were to turn partway through, while you thought my eyes were closed, would I catch you roll your eyes, or perhaps snicker a little, as you brush aside my aside my actions as naive, or quaint, or antiquated? Would you post something about me later, dismissing the fruitless actions of the unknown guy at lunch? What if I chose to participate in the feeding of the poor by being present each time the plate was passed; would you think it foolish to trust a church to do good with my funds? What if I told you in casual conversation that I believed salvation had been granted on a cross, that a covenant had been entered and that any who wished were free to take part? Would you sneer, or argue, or just leave, deeming me dimwitted and unworthy of conversation; would you judge me for my actions and my single, simple belief, all the while claiming none other should be judged for theirs? Would you insist I keep my ideas to myself and out of public view, all the while fighting for all others right of free expression and acceptance.


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Poet Lost – A Found Poem

We have lost a poet, a friend. Viv Blake, known to most as Viv In France, was a regular at many of the online Poetry forums. She was a regular contributor of fine poetry, and a dedicated reader of other poets work. She was one of the first to follow me here, and if I look at my stats page she sits at the top as my most frequent commenters, by a large margin. Always polite, always encouraging, forever finding a positive thing to say, even when it was clear she was less than enthused. She was also my most dedicated proofreader, making sure any mistake I made did not linger and cause me embarrassment.

I did not know her well enough to write anything for her, or about her, but there are pages upon pages in my comments with her name attached. I have created a found poem of her words. The following consists only of comments she has left on my work, and I think there is a kernel of her there. I hope she would find it worthy of stopping by. Goodbye Viv, you will be missed.

In Viv’s Words

Your memories make a sublime poem,
I just wish it wasn’t so real.

I know that feeling. Halfway between awe and shivering.

I like all your shelves of books and photos – we seekers need them to feed us.
I love this one.
This one brought a lump to my throat –
not a word wasted.
A story which is greater than the few words which contain it,
Poignant but beautiful. No regrets,
not a word wasted,
we mustn’t let those memories disappear.
I thank God that there are still books to be read.

I share your despair
at this unfair world.
I can only ask: Where
will it end?
Keep your chin up.

I would weep for a fallen oak,
loving and calm,
waiting for warmth, for renaissance,
to start living again.
When the cherry blossom falls in April,
I experience a similar lightening of spirit.
There are enough problems in this life
without spoiling the pleasures with guilt.
So glad I don’t live in a city!

Sad to say, this is profoundly true,
I can’t pretend that I care what happens to my ashes,
but the children assure us that it matters to them.
A sad truth, your last line will stay with me.


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A debt called family —
of family,
from family,
because of family

which cannot be repaid —

not by intent
but only of means

but reasons…

reasons are irrelevant,
cannot be reconciled,

nor explained

to the children
of the child.

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Amidst Chaos

We embrace,
the air acrid and thick,
dust and particles
cling to our clothes.

We embrace,
debris is scattered about,
fallen walls, ceiling tiles,
glass, shrapnel and suitcase contents.

We embrace,
unable to hear the cries,
the shouts, the sirens,
the questions.

We embrace,
holding tight to each other,
oblivious to the chaos,
and the bleeding man

on the ground behind us,
reaching for his own
salvation as
we embrace.
another bombing…discussion of who, why,
and how do we stop it become increasingly irrelevant.
I was struck while reading of a photo of a couple
who looked to be standing outside hugging
while a man lay on the ground behind them,
clothes ripped and bleeding.


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She knows the

 ……………every rule memorized
           each move instinctual

but studies the

knowing the outcome

but by the


for the Mag


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