Into the Woods

For Henry David Thoreau

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Live life deliberately,
Minute by minute
Day by day,
Mindful of every moment
From birth to ultimate decay.

Don’t be distracted
By trivialities, luxuries;
Empty goals for which the desperate strive,
And realize at the graveyard gate
That you were never truly alive.

7/14/17

What the Cost Can Be

When going to battle monsters,
Surely the noblest of deeds,
Don’t lose sight of your purpose,
Abandoning your noble creeds.

Don’t be so desperate to win
That noble ends justify any means,
Stained in blood and life of men,
Just like all the other fiends.

No one does evil on purpose,
We all always think we’re right,
‘Til our deeds come back to haunt us
In the dismal darkness of the night.

Standing on the Rubicon shore,
You think you know what to do,
But as you gaze into the Abyss
Know that its gazing into you.

5/3/17

Its Getting Darker (a Ghazal)

The sun fades into night, its getting darker.
Someone turned out the light, its getting darker.

Facts become opinions become lies,
You know its not right, its getting darker.

Fear, paranoia; propaganda rule the day,
Riots they incite, its getting darker.

Slave pitted against slave,
Much to master’s delight, its getting darker.

Everything ends; nothing lasts
Sinking like sunlight, its getting darker.

You’re tilting at windmills, John,
And still you write: Its Getting Darker.

4/20/17

This is my first attempt at a Ghazal.

Poem #21 for National Poetry Writing Month (aka #NaPoWriMo)

So Tired of the War

Sopping wet cotton towel
Laid across broad shoulders,
Heavy, cold; pressing down
Like two one ton granite boulders.

Frosty goose skinned arms
Shivering in the back of the night
Blurred vision, runny nose,
No energy left to fight.

Enemy within, enemy without
This war just needs to end.
Losses heavy, steaks so high,
The home-front can’t comprehend.

The end’s in sight, the pain will stop,
No longer be afraid:
This old soldier’s mission ends
When in the ground he’s laid.

4/12/17

Poem #13 for National Poetry Writing Month (aka #NaPoWriMo)

How it Started (a Pantoum)

It all started with a photograph
A sample and a lure
Beauty captured in mid-laugh
A potion without a cure

A sample and a lure
A promise of things to come
A potion without a cure
A city without a slum

A promise of things to come
A prophecy self-fulfilled
A city without a slum
A foundation on which to build

A prophecy self-fulfilled
Beauty captured in mid-laugh
A foundation on which to build
It all started with a photograph

4/5/17

Poem #7 for National Poetry Writing Month (aka #NaPoWriMo)

My first attempt at a pantoum.

Alone (a Troilet)

Isolated, alone, even in a crowd.
Silent, quiet, but not without something to say,
Darkened corner, a solitary shroud,
Isolated, alone, even in a crowd.
Bent by the crushing weight of darkness: bowed,
Salty tears, could there be no other way?
Isolated, alone, even in a crowd.
Silent, quiet, but not without something to say.

4/3/17

My first attempt at a troilet.

Poem #4 for National Poetry Writing Month (aka #NaPoWriMo)

 

The Promise of the Runes

 

sleipnir

Looking at reflections in jagged shards
of a shattered mirror,
The fall of twilight’s shadow
grows ever nearer,
But when you see the reaping angel
There’s no real reason to fear her.
Remember the words and visions
of the blind Nordic seer
The promises made of runes
sworn on the life of Sleipnir:
Bridges will burn, stars will fall,
Witness it with your own eyes.
Life wanes, blood flows,
Darkness alone fills the skies.
Smoke will settle, the fires cool,
And the Sun will once again rise.

3/29/17

Note: Sleipnir is pronounced “Slayp-near”

Image:  Sleipnir, Odin’s eight-legged horse by Mike Craghead

Its All Poetry to Me

Rhymed or un-rhymed
Formal or informal
Metered or free.
Long or short
Macro or micro
Its all still poetry to me

Personal and Confessional
Made up and Mythological
Literal or metaphorically.
Verse or Prose
Sung or spoken
Its all still poetry to me

Haiku or sonnet
Tanka or villanelle
Romance or philosophy.
Epic or mundane
Serious or not
Its all still poetry to me.

3/22/17

Where did it go?

Where did it all go,
Day by day in steady flow,
Swept away by the river’s currents
Lifeguard warnings are poor deterrents,
Yesterday a baby on my knee
Content, ignorant of your destiny.
If you’d known, could you’ve changed it?
If able, would you’ve exchanged it?

Did you know it would end this way,
Dread the coming of this wicked day,
When your mother Frigg’s tears wept,
As your body the undertaker prepped?

3/20/17

All Things End

adam-and-eve-expelled-from-paradise-1961-6

The sun outside is shining;
I feel a chill in the air,
The Fates themselves I hear crying,
Drowning in the howls of despair.

Shadows fall over Eden
The future turns black as ice,
Flaming swords and poor choices
Bar the path back to paradise

Threads look so long at the beginning;
Tragically cut short when it ends.
Life is a shelf of books we write ourselves
On either end oblivion is its bookends.

3/10-3/11/17

Image:  Adam et Eve chassés du Paradis (aka Adam and Eve expelled from Paradise) by Marc Chagall, 1961; France