Some have taken those found well-traveled by
while others traced those seldom worn
or led on by dreams, birthed beyond the sky
seeking visioned hopes - found freshly born.
Some have never moved at all, stayed put
tethered to oneís field where first been raised
wear life through without lure of one's foot
neither nerve nor need could draw - merely lazed.
Some found who have traveled many ways
while others taken of but few
circumstance life brought, one leaves - one stays
if had not traveled - never known you!
March 22, 2000
As each shared what lay within, tends to sort it out
tests life's strength as reasonable, or perhaps with doubt
both those light or deep, said with loud laughterís mirth
spent what their friendship lends - earned its valued worth.
Supper shared, kids same-fed - happy childhood in their eyes
recasts in mind, memories of my own - still found therein lies
know the present wears much the same as the past - makes one sigh
only those now old can understand - enough to make one cry.
Those unseen tears, not of sorrows nor loss of oneís youth
touched upon those deeper yearnings, reasons brought of truth
to know and share that tender taste of life, most profound
human need for friendly love - as long as held earth-bound.
When growing old, so much held - interconnects within the soul
gathered from life-long gleanings, harvested to make one whole
as if final pleasure, what friendship brings - perhaps its goal.
March 28, 2000
Long wear of Winterís murk, ashened days wan and frayed
dayís length cut short, night's wide fingers broadly splayed
drab climate casting such weathers, but bland and dull
as if Life's cracked shell - yields but an empty hull.
Former sweets of life consumed, remembered flavors now forgot
purposed plantings sparsely gleaned, new seedings late done - left to rot
only hope inward held - simply abide til Death quenched lifeís wick
when sun rays vanish as night descends, of Lifeís end - wished come quick.
November 24, 2000
So oneís offspring might gain some needed edge
shapened their destinies from what birth fledge
historyís influence and one's birthing, gives of such
recrafts latent tendencies - with a different touch.
Suppose by and large, each strongly driven by those genes
tis what gifts divergent diversities, with othered miens
yet each faith-called to revamp one's heart, by what there teaches of
life-long spent, retooling oneself - to learn a greater love.
November 25, 2000
Fully grown, toiled to earn from what had learned
til Happenstance interfered, with what now yearned
fret of mind, sweat of brow - til hopes wrung dry
only later - began to wonder why.
Now aging fast, sparring Life with fickle Fate
before Choice or Chance brought Death to my gate
thence grim Grief slew half of me, now again but to dream
until have lastly found, tis Faith's hope - my only scheme.
June 2, 2001
Yet grateful for what came to hand
though unknew how to write in sand
first love bound with but their own
clan shared between - bone with bone.
Trust held within one's tribal clan
women held unequal with man
toiled each day, food required
yet wondered of - those expired.
World held with magic's mystery
only themselves knew their history
unkeeping count of days and hours
yet hopes presumed - far greater Powers.
Home but where each day found
sacred-held - beast and ground
unholding bonds except whence wived
lives ancients lived - merely survived.
July 13, 2001
What Time finally brought to birth
far beyond Universe and Earth
lie depths of Faith's valued worth
less of hate and more of mirth.
Where Space ended, once thought so small
now found so vast, perhaps never ends
Infinity out-measures all
no end held in sight - seems forever bends.
Yet Love's been found as deepest Truth
oft mis-understood in one's youth
not fully gained this side of Hell
only after Death - who can tell!
September 10, 2001
When Time wears love with rapid haste
brief years hoped long, too quickly traced
then full worth of one's life begins to slow
but why this should be so - I still do not know.
When sap of long love flows no more
brief years, too soon closed by Death's door
then full worth of being, begins to grow
but why this should be so - such to God I owe.
September 19, 2001
Still teaching their former deeds by episodes
memories recalled, deft Time soon corrodes
recast, updated - their wisdom daily shares
separating good from bad - like wheat from tares.
With hindsight, grace our days and deeds with much forgiven
knowing life's stern school, requires learnings long striven
simple days of childhood, re-taught by facts of Fate
early judgements soon learned deeper depths - of love and hate.
Their influence still wears upon our thoughts and hopeful dreams
past histories teaching what our present daily schemes
their lasting presence nurtures judgements, we make each day
their childhood much like our own - still has much to say.
October 23, 2001
Full-circle came in after years
a silence brought when Death lent tears
without warning, whispered no tune
unlike before - in Summer's June.
In an ancient abbey of long weathered stone
whence midnight clerics sang, in old-psaltered tone
soft rains outside, inside - left unheard
of Latin words sung, what meant - felt inferred.
Til mind drifted beyond those celestial stars
healing olden lesions brought of life-flung scars
though words and song gave sounds, outwardly heard
inwardly a silence felt - all else absurd.
Much spoke between, as dark blackened into night
til all each had said, felt beyond what hurts might
anguish deeply burned, when love's death sharply stings
tis such silence tells - what hope's quittance brings.
Need not speak what words have no need to say
between them both, eyes and lips gayly play
tomes of logic, but idle words saying naught
as silence wed their love - by what each lips brought.
December 14, 2001
Presumed by many, long out of date
what still might learn, some thought - far too late
yet tis a misnomer - but a lie
for much still known - some brief glimpse brought by.
What oldsters now tell, first learned when young
marveled words first-formed with gifted tongue
explained what and when, how such came by
although much told - seldom tells its why.
To learn of such, seek out those old
knowledge captured when dared be bold
listen what lisping lips have yet to tell
tis only there - wisdom yet found to dwell.
January 30, 2002
So nebulous, Truth uncertifies their veracity
facts and fables foiling depths, learned with sagacity
occasions some discernment noticed, within that haze
leads one down unremembered tracings - an endless maze.
Strange revealings reappear, subconscious conveniently forgot
shadowy forms found slowly emerging from their burial plot
seldom happens, for requires unexpected Chance to birth such themes
collected from capricious wanderings - brought of idle dreams.
A place portraying certain slant and strength of sun
a time calendars date with proper season spun
sounds still echo notes, of those long-forgotten tunes
odors clearly remembered - scents of budding June.
Thence the curtain rises, performed like some ancient play
rewears upon both heart and mind, like some wayward stray
hungers sate one's soul, til fills forgiving eyes with tears
episodes from one's past - recast from forgotten years.
Leaves one with vague feelings, so often sensed surreal
amazed what memory once caught, how much may reveal
gathered from lees long thought lost, midst waste of passing years
wears a Truth first unknew, now chance-found - midst distant Spheres.
February 3, 2002
Some budding truth, first dimly caught the eye
touch of trust given, after - found a lie
well-planned schemes, one's future years might fully claim
found with empty hands - a day that never came.
Circumstance swelling the heart as one proud
visions fashioned, as if spoke from some cloud
too soon found, Chance foiled by another's will
labors longly toiled by - no longer thrill.
Of how then tis one to survive when hoped-fors fail
thence recalled of those many, who yet briskly sail
for much is but an attitude, heads held up high
never cede defeat, for Life's worth - is but to try.
February 5, 2002
Should of an evening's silence, quelled by day found done
daring deeds of happenstance, some rare challenge won
now bridging lost years, one's life had formerly crossed
a time of quiet repose - idle what Time lost.
Here in this latter time, again rewoven anew
re-patterns what some remembered day, once briefly threw
seen in perspective, from what after-years accrue
more aware of its worth - life-gathered hints give clue.
How so proudly ignorant, when thought we fully knew
perhaps gave cause for what led on to wet wastes of tears
midst an evening's silence, gray shadows evening drew
now regathered by - across far reach of passing years.
Learning's ripened yield, old-age gleaned far too late
facts leading on to but more mysteries, that yet must wait
proud youth once staunchly believed, worth their weight in gold
later years easily bartered, quickly bought and sold
til surmise enigmas unending - when growing old.
February 5, 2002
Gifting time but one's own, perhaps to think
til mid-afternoon's sun, made shadows shrink
nearby woods still held bald trees naked bare
dreamed - recalling of what once happened there.
Whereof I pleasured, from what old history reads
phantoms fashioned in my head - Pioneer deeds
for in those woods below, remains of ancient spring
hand-cut stones, log remnants - as if still heard axen's ring!
Smoke curls beyond chimney's bight, drifts midst those limbs
though morning churched, someone still hums Sunday's hymns
as husband with wife alone, took their private walk
as distance themselves from children - their chance to talk!
Long memories held, those one's grandmother knew
my Sunday dreams based on facts, pioneers grew
so might see what others can't, midst those trees
depends what pair of eyes used - one now sees.
Tis why old folks oft spend hours in one spot
as long as weathers unfound too cold or hot
for are not here, another time - long ago
such you too will learn - when old enough to know.
When Sunday afternoons found with weathers fit to sit
a-porch in one's quietude, allow old memories flit
re-living times never did, yet fully tasting such
re-feel what love once gave - tendered by its touch.
March 10, 2002
Quirks that belie, each a bit insane
lurks within, at queer times found profane
oddly mixed from life's journey, happenstance briefly cast
strange behavior gathered of, some circumstance - long past.
March 18, 2002
How deep have we delved
dusty tomes long shelved
burning late-midnight's oil
til blind - from reading's toil?
How far have we thought
what past learnings taught
discerning truths from lies
still to question their whys?
How much have we cared
hands our gifting shared
thankfulness in their eyes
new found hopes - gave rise?
Til at last, Faith dealt
what Life's learnings felt
stumble yet rise again
now knowing - cost of sin
For each but a prodigal son
wealth of the world must be won
concerned with our growing estates
as our Father - patiently awaits.
August 27, 2002
Remembering how much each had done
endeavors, living too quickly spun
onward days outwore, til left but one
yet grateful - for all our loving won.
When my widowed eyes saw their smiles
like erasing days off Time's dial
now togethered, face future trials
love slowly dripping - from Life's spile.
Reminded - my wife's wedding smile
her happiness shown without guile.
As I proudly watched both walk with style
when wived my son, thence downed churchen aisle.
August 29, 2002
Til of their loss of care, she with his money lost
he with her ceaseless cost, knowing - not even friends
thence of their standing there, she with her anger
he with his tears, full-knowing - how love ends.
August 31, 2002
Besides, mountain's air growing thin
need rest far more often than been
yet these reprieves brought beauty by
til gathered more reasons - to try.
So struggled on, growing steeper yet
tired muscles ached, eyes bleared from sweat
doubting if this excursion truely wise
should have choose some mountain - with lesser rise!
Thence found mountain's air growing colder
hard keeping warm, since one now older
yet my slowness gave me time to think
til full-vistas viewed - at mountain's brink.
Then realized had reached its top
with happy tears, eyes could not stop
grateful for what those visions brought
as well as what those new hopes taught.
Learned, tis not the pain - but one's aim
for life's struggles are not a game
never giving up, taking one's time
thankful had not quit - that challenged climb.
Going down seemed well-worth its long climbing up
as if had fully drank from life's profered cup
for tis by trying, gives Life meaning
from rich-ripe harvest - comes the gleaning!
September 4, 2002
Then we both retired, kids now gone
lots of time remains, perchance to walk
both of us - to Nature always drawn
lots of time remains - for us to talk.
But too soon, Death stole that best of me
too late found, little remains of she
unknowning time left, til will soon follow her
brief time yet remaining - old memories stir.
September 8, 2002
Passing years rebuilding old hopes, once thought lost
slowly learning how expensive, love's high cost
until greed replaced by gratuitous giving
Love and Faith but the same - makes life worth living.
September 22, 2002
Fifty years anon I chanced there to visit by
late morning through fading afternoon, just she and I
bright eyes of youth-time still entuned with her smile
but found of her laughter - age had changed its style.
Now but a gentle chuckle, loud laughter grown mild
passing years subdued high pitched laugh, when a child
a change, health and love's sufferings refashioned down lost years
those brightful eyes now oft found - easily shedding tears.
Formed not from morbid waste of hopes gone sour, as if life gone dry
but a taste of deeper caring, both age and loving brought by
as there we outwore some hours of day, sharing past years between
brightful eyes with full smile, her loud laughter - now serene.
September 22, 2002
Beyond those dual sounds of winds and heat
all else held soft silence of peacefulness
an arrangement, old-age finds most meet
pondering former days - in silent idleness.
Alone with past memories, when life full and fast
scattered across those too brief years of long before
episodes, Chance and Choice schemed throughout life's past
nurtured by moan of kettle's croon - winds spoke outdoor.
Yet midst those drifts of snow, old memories dream
when hopes still fashioned plans for far future years
not so much of Earth, but those - faith-hopes scheme
til kettle's croon turned to whistle - interferes.
Aroused from my deep reverie, gave heed to kettle's call
arise to brew a cup of strong Columbian coffee
while up stood window by, watching snow gently fall
soon lost amidst those former days - when life felt fresh and free.
Such wears a Winter's day should squall-winds howl
warmed by wood-stove's heat, crooning kettle sings
within/without, weathered times fair or foul
here brought to versify - such a poet brings.
January 10, 2003
Knowing life seen far better days in the past
when wife and children redeemed, what foul Fate cast
former years enriched, from those labors living hast
squander one's remaining days - til Death comes at last.
Living now sensed much like a second generation
fashioned by one's Culture - not Nature's creation
until Death grants release from Life's probation
trusting my Faith - sufficient for salvation.
January 19, 2003
Strange house tamed by former relics here rehung
saved from former days, when she and I both young
memories past years salvaged, old hopes yet cling
pondering what future days left - might bring.
Life once driven by inner hopes and dreams
now replaced by cold Death and dying themes
ill adventures her love and mine forgave
grateful for all ahead - new years repave.
Beyond highest ridge further East, lies that distant sea
survive by hopes eternal, only Death gifts one free
because high-hill dwell, enables me to view one's past
finding deeds of married love - best my Life ever hast.
February 14, 2003
Four children, she when meet again
remembered hopes, that might have been
til death takes each one down at last
family name forgotten - long past.
February 17, 2003
Compared with what already worked out
Time spent reading, some mood brought about
though my wife's loss, unleft me to doubt
found worth of one's past - can't do without.
March 7, 2003
Both good and bad, molding what late-life becomes
til mind addles with confusion - then succumbs.
March 29, 2003
Such reminds, how tenuous Chance occurs
for some brief bit of Time, friendship confers
age where so many move far away
neighbored folks once knew - unfound today.
Where she now abides, years since put aside
bonded by similar likes, interests provide
friend knew for awhile, Chance freely gave
til Death took down - lost to her portended grave.
April 1, 2003
Of how we so waste our years
until at last, aging by
someone's kindness felt with tears
til old eyes - must often cry.
April 7, 2003
Of those times, will not come again
friends and neighbors, those close akin
shared between, now heard but within
those still knowing - may yet convey.
Things only oldsters now recall
such memories still found to enthrall
ever hoping their Death Time forestalls
for what has been - Death cannot replay.
So I often visit, keeps such alive
days of one's youth, old tales revive
only memory's loss may deprive
aging minds too soon found - betray.
Stories remembered of recent past
even these soon found fading fast
until one's History, lost at last
old stories once told - at last decay.
April 16, 2003
What Life so dearly brought
each one's love begot
what cold Death lasty wrought
old graves - soon forgot.
What Married Love once wrought
Time allows to rot
dead memories soon forgot
until left - but naught.
April 26, 2003
No better way to die than wake up dead
yet tis more easily said than quickly done
so many birthed, loved - at last die in bed
yet more must die, til wars fought - their final one.
April 30, 2003
Melding human dimensions, each holds inside
tis from scienced Truth, art's Beauty will decide
what lies unknown, Faith more firmly believed
strengths each must earn, within one's soul - achieved.
May 1, 2003
So much indifference felt, by which we spurn others by
ignoring their needs, unhearing their anguished cry
nor cede one's own time, to ever question them why
quick-leave before can hear their exhausted - bitter sigh.
How so much intolerance, many shout with festered hate
unlistened of those views their anger seeks - rightened straight
drifting beyond that frightful fringe, where justice can but wait
unconcerned of others pain, until of such - found too late.
How so much belligerence, til peace unfound everywhere
each scurries like a hunted prey, to slow down - unaware
angered words railed, as if preached from some doctrinaire
hostile encounters reap their whirlwinds - anywhere.
How so much exuberance we flaunt - have done or are
idled toys early purchased, life has brought us far
our proud boastings with shoutful lips, heard in any bar
volumed voicings droning on - like rantings of some czar.
How so much sufferance, I have finally come to know
idled life with pleasures, playthings a child wants to show
til Fate brings Death, divorce, disasters one's Life may throw
Wisdom late-learned from suffered days, so much to others owe
but to suffer for one another - tis how one may truly grow.
May 2, 2003
Plucked and bowed or those their fingers strummed
a magic I can not play, yet deeply share
neither danced nor pranced, though often hummed
gathered notes - scattered upon late evening's air.
Laughter loudly wrung from stories told
released those tensions their loud performance swore
til clock gave clue, night quickly growing old
such pleasures always pleased - 'twas what evenings for.
Simple rendezvous, one night each week brought
to eat, munch or chew - spitting in between
loud and soft, sprightly clear their music wrought
for years, weekly met - became our routine.
Those who weekly came, sang and laughed 'neath light of moon
now finds but a darkened room, its unheard silence saved
those past gatherings, only memories hear their tune
music but dying echoes - olden friendships once played.
May 21, 2003
Saving wasted days or nights that hide the truth
fearful yet trusting, old words that lie
lost between those whites and fading grays
others speak with disabled couth.
A kindness here an evil there, midst varied plots life gifts
struggled down nights and days, yet deep within - felt alone
wearing Time with our sharing care or curt denial
as endless Infinity - slowly drifts.
Love wasted by lies we but pretend, though prefaced with a smile
hopes firstly promised, soon lost midst ravaged scraps of love
some trite forgiveness may amend thereof
such lies - beneath our hateful guile.
Til like our first nativity, Life by Death rebirths one still alive
beneath dying waters, found new dimensions Love will give
knowing still alive, beyond that outer dark - each one hopes will survive
upon our bowing heads, untimely Death - new Life will live
Faith's stout convictions - fully presumed.
May 29, 2002
Where those sequestered in high places hide
behind royal seats, sold for highest bribe
gained but raveled dregs - of a wasting tide.
Across arid lands, hot sun dried
victors won, yet vanquished cried
chained in irons - like beasts were tied.
Quests searched beyond reach of oceans wide
cash bartered between flesh-hunters guide
gaining wealth - sold from slaver's hide.
For without love, all else fails
soft as snow yet hard as nails.
Without love, life becomes but tasteless dust
not by ravaged lust, but with gentled trust
til world finally dries - to brittle crust.
May 30, 2003
A vestige of truth, time gathered from life's straying strands
new learnings bearing good testament, their truth yet stands
of what tells, past events retold as fully true
notes jotted down, attest what then occurred - I knew.
Time and place, unneed tell nor described in detail
suffice to share - a celtic inn of ham and ale
midst raucous Irish crowd, those of hard working class
cooled my throat with ripe good number - of aled glass.
Til long after-hours, I stumbled up unknown stairs
found a room with ample bed and covers, but were no chairs
my disoriented balance, had need to shed my clothes
as danced upon one foot, in taking pants off - I suppose.
Nearly noon til wakened by a maid - came to dust and clean
bid me time to dress and wash, I think her name was Maureen
tis not of her I tell, for my hunger held sharply keen
a splendid lunch of ham, eggs, spuds and something - reddish-green.
Shared table with a simple lass, who told me where
might find my wanted aim, those roads leading there
best to walk, save my brass - hills of gentled climb
thought coat best, for dawn's early dew - could be rime.
Several days brought my ventures nearby a sheltered cove
a grandeured spot, where both sea and land neatly wove
their pastoral pattern of sheep, rocks, few trees and ample grass
whereby an ancient abbey, built with stones of volcanic trass.
For several months, weathered rustic humor - til each one laughs
helped where could, writing some - kept regular with local drafts
when early Autumn's cold came, stayed in Abbey's single cell
quizzed of their holied visions, rich wealth Faith earned - such might tell.
A dory's three days drift, brought me back to whence first lit out
again spent two days of an Irish inn, strong aled stout
but like all good times, must end when other aims made their call
later flew out for the States, thereby to end an Irish Fall.
Well you say, so what does all this reveal as pertinent
several months spent midst Irish pubs and Abbey - as relevant
first alluded to in opening lines, freshly penned above
as might be believed, this poem a right good tale - tells hereof.
Will find in its beginning, cautioned - mere vestige of truths may be
long ago and far away, of war and after - across the sea
torn tatters of outdated episodes, one's age puts far behind
somewhat laced with idle meter, ill-attempts as one mostly rhymed.
Its strange tale told of long ago, will be found further down - far
be forwarned, tis an episode rather long, entitled: Valiant Vagabond.
May 31, 2003
Though city reared, yearned of Nature's country fields and farms
frequent trips to grandmother's place - sheds, coops, silos and barns
acquainted with varied fauna, flora each year unfolds
til that visioned road a perfect Eden - my heart beholds.
As early summers wasted through, since oft left alone
relieved stress of few duties asked, a child would bemoan
each time reviewed that road, remodeled by what lately yearned
soon rearranged by some new fact came to hand - read or learned.
Every book I read library lent, gave more facts to craft
adding or subtracting roadside structures, would newly draft
til in my dreams of later years, perchance comes out to play
each step and view clearly seen - felt like a warm summer's day.
Then for a time, long labored learnings schooling years applied
as road of youth moldered in dream-like dust, work cast aside
an adult world, marriage and family required
road abandoned, former raptures - no longer inspired.
Yet hidden in one's psychic, idle road remained in tact
til harsh events life cast, returned upon road's olden track
refound forgotten pleasures childhood secretly saved
as walked barefoot in dry trodden dust - for road not yet paved.
Still familiar as if strode its gathered length but yesterday
what life birthed then lost, candles quenched like Good Friday's Tenebrae
coming back to a promised land, childhood dreams brought to birth
yearnings of a lonely youth - created one's hopeful worth.
Mattered not of its seasons, weather whims - dawn, day or night
each turn and lifting rise, downward slopes - if one should or might
til that road became an inner refuge, safety therein found
rural lays and dark wooded hills, farmed fields - sheep pastured ground.
An ideal each holds to save one from insanity
some Eden to shelter from harsh world's urbanity
took my daily walk despite what weathers wear, ill or fair
dwelt an idyllic paradise - til Death gifts one more rare.
That dream-dreamt land fantasized so many years long ago
a gladsome riddle I can never solve, like one's rainbow
an ancient sign, some foul calamity never comes again
upon such fragile stray strands of hope, one's life-long faith holds within
til Death gifts life anew, where childlike - another Road begins.
June 7, 2003
Those kindly deeds shared others, enriching so
as both given and giver, gathers greater wealth
passing years molding each better, yet very slow
til Death not surprised to find - they died in good health.
June 10, 2003
Between birth and death, striven years fashioned from fevered dreams
studied years spent learnings of, Nature's wisdom so wisely schemes
by force or love, wars or peace - cold Destiny ever deems.
Deeds unlasting but mere moments, beyond their ventured birth
or endured long centuries through, usage still found of worth
brought either by rape of force, or freely mined - from Mother Earth.
Such toiled labors to gain or give, waste or save one's Life thereby
deeply mulled within the mind, for what their pleas to their gods imply
until Death at last descends, thence may hear - of what those gods reply.
July 22, 2003
Doors unopened, for no one knocks
phone seldom rings, in mute silence mocks
those driving by, neither slow nor wave
til even a wrong number rung - now crave.
Dogs quickly trot by, with a furtive backwards glance
even flocking migrants fly higher, take no chance
no matter what season, seldom gifts sun's bright ray
soon found this world - each goes their separate way.
Within dark gloom of dour despair, must daily fend
gathering hopes from whereof, my lost past may lend
wound-up clock's still ticking, hands seem forever slow
counting out days that lie in wait - I will never know.
Stray dog found and fed, had a crippled leg need set
two days after, truck speeding fast - killed my two day pet
so I merely sit, house cluttered both within and out
should vermin take one look inside, quickly leave - no doubt.
So I often send emails to myself
too tight to buy a stamp for letters sent by post
or rearrange knicknacks upon my book shelf
as idle-sit here left alone, tis this - done the most.
October 27, 2003
A challenge cast on those birthed to live
in the end, for what His Love may give
some might equate much like a holy hymn
flung across those stars - left to sink or swim.
Searching what growing hopes may finally find
slowly fashioned within dark depths of mind
til each found vanquished, by stealth of silent Death
anguished til languished - die with ceasing breath.
Thereafter thrown among those stars of endless Time
abide within dimensions of some unknown clime
grateful or resentful, for what their life brought by
perhaps then understanding God's Love - and Its why.
November 9, 2003
Lost amid debris, self-seeking sought
stealing what remains, had never given
shared and cared for others, that each may learn
growth of self-worth must be longly striven.
Labored sweat slowly toiled, daily by
patiently practiced - learn one's worth to try
til grown strong, so as do their best thereby
self-forced by convictions - fully knowing why.
A treasure unmeasured, some self-sought goal
a secret, perhaps unknown within oneself
assuring one has hopes to make one whole
only gained by honesty - instead of pelf.
October 27, 2003
Way you give best is by suffering
way you suffer best
is by denial.
Way you deny best is by death
way you die best
is with Faith.
November 14, 2003
Yet Ignorance blunders without shame
like crude structures, hand-built of cane
as starvation leaves behind - no name.
Destiny but a pauper's dream
blameless Fate holds no special scheme
nor Karmas self-induced - vaguely deem.
Deeds done of Choice or Circumstance
by necessity of Happenstance
blind Opportunity - often grants.
World still hears moans of despair
long striven labors, oft unfair
or hopeful dreams - one risked to dare.
Such a tangled web World yet weaves
some to forage among fallen leaves
others plucked ripe fruit - from older trees.
Tis our Ignorance, not Fate - we should blame
Life taken serious, tis not a game
learn how smoldering wick rebirths - life's flame.
November 17, 2003
Well remember a smile, one once gave
freely given, far stronger than their wave
thence turned, soon lost within that rushing crowd
how does one measure - pride of feeling proud.
A needed lift one freely offered me
when learned of why and where had need to be
in foreign land, lost by a language I unknew
how does such measure, for me - altered his venue.
One whose silent nod and eyes - told elsewise
of where others plotted for me to go
whereof I quickly left with simple lies
how does such measure - one will never know.
As one tallies up Life's forgotten yields
rich harvests reaped from fully ripened fields
friendly folks, their kindness freely given
measured as full-measured by - in Heaven.
April 1, 2004
Of such remembered, country lanes yearly wore
endured as a country boy
that in-between stage of play and daily chore
treasured one's homemade toy.
Weathers foul or fair, hot or cold, wet or dry
held no excuse, when play desired
should labors need children's help, would fret or cry
excuse profuse - when work required.
Life's growing, soon outwore one's heedless youth
til old age retired to hours of idled Truth
reflections honing one's keen perceptions
finally dissolved those childhood deceptions.
Springtime's early years so quickly passed
Summer's teenage time of hopeful yearns
Autumn's labored toils, family cast
Winter's wisdom - old age slowly earns.
April 10, 2004
As sun began to rise
gifting light for one's eyes
in search of other things
sun's rising - slowly brings.
As pathway led me on
to where its leading goes
sunlight brought of dawn
such - brightful beauty shows.
Til morning's light found where
pathway would circled wide
urged me on as its guide
to whence - I was unaware.
Yet was precisely there
I learned that truth of Truth
and harsh bite of falsehood's tooth
one's temptations chanced to dare.
As late sun began to set
dim pathway led me downwards
to levels I now preferred
where both Truth and Beauty met.
A day, a season - one's lifetime
time and place, each travels by
lived and learnd by asking why
a challenge found - Life decides.
April 17, 2004
Of what my questions brought - to question why
one behind counter, talked to one close by
as idled chat with one old-aged, thinning dry
sharing years long past - memories still lie.
Fumbled skipped words, quick thinking brought
of whom, where, when - lost years had fought
thence eyes behind counter give me their glance
I stepped forward, asked why my car should prance.
His eyes held my trust, as I freely explained
began to nod, knowingly what his mind contained
not to worry, sounds like loose axle or untightened studs
such new-machines now require - despite occasional thuds.
With thanks, bid my nod - as turned to leave
to find eighty-years had left to whence would go
such recalled, his life's loss still must grieve
happy advice back counter gave, unlike most
who seldom know.
April 20, 2004
Til old age's use of want and waste
hearing Death's dim distant call
of how might hope, soon found searching far
some youthful balm, to salve harsh wear - Death flings.
Long struggled years spent, to earn what living brings
gathered that wear and waste of such temporal things
songs early sung, old age prayers - now proudly sings.
April 23, 2004
Ever trusting by self-willed reason, and that of Hope
once hung Itself upon heavy burden of a cross
each one asked to bear upon their own broad shoulders
weighted down with one's internal hopes - or eternal despair.
Life lived just to keep alive, for some brief stretch of years
time too quickly wastes behind, unraveled deeds of sin and love
warding off strong brunt of man against another - or Nature
as if thereby pays one's way - into further future days
much like all those years have gathered by - long before.
Some with a fading gleam still found, left in their eye
to see down that well-traveled road, taken step by step
or launch a daring leap, across those unfathomed voids
one cannot always evade - if life is to be fully lived.
What holds one to stay the course, their health and yearnings
must yield to, for what another day or hour might bring by
to lead us on by such dreams, each one daily schemes
so gain an eternal end without proof - unknowingly knows.
Ever hearing that distant toll of knelling bells
briefly scattered across unexpected ears
for whom it may toll, someone's ending now foretells
of one's life's long struggled stress - of passing years.
MUCH AS TODAY SO OFT DONE BEFORE
Of such high price, war's cost so quickly spends
to waste ensuing years, with but vanquished dreams
of shattered hopes, when finally sees how war ends
soon rebuilds another peace - of hopeful schemes.
For Nature wears each one so much the same
people soon learn, must obey those who rule
Life's cards had shuffled out, as if a game
for wealth must win, those poor - but play the fool.
An eternal game, world leaders still deal out
with well-marked cards, conned by their scheming eyes
gambling on another's loss, never left in doubt
stakes Life often dares - yet Death never lies.
April 28, 2004
When a question firstly asked, left unspoke
as our talks ambled on, thence saw beyond
sun slowly shifting, gliding its brightful rays
into that shaded corner, once darkened by
til sunlight revealed a book's title - clearly seen.
One he co-authored in his vibrant youth
solving some unsolved axiom's rich truth
greater minds than his had never solved
til sun cast its bright far further drawn
lit upon a vase - of angled cut-glass.
That left us unanswered with his answer
precocious people presume, known by all
once solved, left forgot - as now fully understood
as sun-beam's slow drifting, shown through that glass
he held observing of, not its bright but those colors
til prismed his eyes to glitter - with an after thought.
Afternoon felt as if had sat before a king most wise
shadowed depths, light held with such clear clarity
that spark of celerity his keen-thinking found
til most humbly yet so graciously - bowed our exit out.
April 29, 2004
Strange silhouettes pranced in dim dark beyond, shifting olden themes
words could not explain, those inner hauntings, camp fire oft conspires
disturbing one's thoughts, til felt alone in forest's dark
wavering shadows strangely flickered - late into night.
When night owls ceased their echoed calls, left a silence clearly heard
beyond camp's fire, til embers burnt to ashes - left but its dying glow
with blanket tight-held around his shouldered neck
drifted off to sleep - midst life's forgotten dreams.
Again to wake a cold dawn, as last ember rebirthed its heat
to cook his breakfast by, last night reveries quickly thrust aside
planning schemes new day would provide, as feet scattered dead ashes
back into dust, his leavage left behind - soon forgotten of.
For in the end of any life left to live, light and dark regathers
into scraps of hope, unclearly seen yet felt, old memories dreamt
found rebirthed midst those burnt-out ashes, life's embers recast
into strange shadows of night, awaiting some time - utterly unknown
when those icy hands of cold Death - will quench life's fading wick.
May 4, 2004
Fall or Spring, when ground's moisture just right
neighbor's three-horse hitched, to pull his plow
curled rolls of severed soil, til falls upon itself
plow shiny sharp, ground velvet black - yet drying brown.
Ground birds just ahead, soon fly behind his back
allowing teamed horses to plow on past
feasting on freshly out-turned grubs and worms
from depths below, well-fed theirselves - into birds.
Half-way rest, then later at field's end
horses resting themselves and plower
time taken, cost of his labors felt proud
earned to buy back old fields - newly plowed.
An ancient practice, first learned need to plow
furrows over-tossed upon their near neighbor
recurved into coils of field's rich earthen ground
left fallowed or put to seed - fresh plantings found.
When finally done, plow greased to keep its shine
come next season, furrows formed a straight line
ritualed practice, twice yearly - take their plow in hand
livelihood farmers still labored by - upon their land.
May 8, 2004
Out and about, skin burnt before full tanned
when labored long Summers through, all by hand
yet knew Summer over, when plums late-canned
natural knowledge - taught its peculiar charm.
Though not far away, but now long ago
when pace of living moved patiently slow
deprivals early learned, growing pains understood
friends were more friendly - within one's own neighborhood.
Trusted with an honesty, both kith and kin
yet sharp clever to know, if still boys or men
were those who were rascals, few even mean
some a bit lazy, yet some - right-sharp keen.
But all this has changed in mere sixty years
when social freedoms respected others
what once was but local, now felt global
days Time has lost, trusted - but one's brothers
Once held each together, now scattered far-fled
man's honor disproven by war's shattered dead
like many oldsters, fled back to countryside
back to land of their youth - beyond those citified.
Midst one's kindred kin, where proud honesty tries
friendly neighbors still loudly laughs olden lies
gathered with family and friends, much like long ago
grouse a-drummin', Summer a-comin' - woods below.
July 10, 2004
Not only grew, but also learned
should we soar beyond those extremes
some distant god could not redeem,
Our youth allowed to take, when bought
til dark shadows - dull thinkings brought
down through those lost ages - still taught.
Rather, send out signals Faith might throw
tis by such learnings, one's soul may grow
where matter meets matter, knowledge trusts
fueled by our freedoms - to give it thrust.
Like those jealous gods of ancient times
boundaries set up, beyond need not go
as would singe our wings, til melts by doubts
burnt to charred ravels - from our heated travels.
Stay close at hand, be kindly near
those needful of our hands or ear
as touch and speak, what kindness may
such legends tell - for worth they say.
July 14, 2004
Appraise of what they may think about
as well as what may doubt
consider precisely what they know
or inaccurately show.
Til we wonder of just who they are
as well as what they yet may be
remain closeby or range further far
Death will measure up - finally free.
July 22, 2004
Freely elected to decide
what newer path might provide
other than onward-way firstly chose
another path taken - whereof goes.
Such wends Life by our election
freely chose by one's selection
uncertain to whence will lead
lured on - by some innate need.
At that moment, pondered within
to gain or lose what might begin
new path might more easily make
unlike before - first chose to take.
Whereby taken, if brought a difference
unknowing before of its consequence
yet with stout pride and high hopes of confidence
thence freely taken - trusting in Providence.
To learn valued worth of Trust
by high cost of learning Love
until one finally knows
a friendship - each one grows.
Bound together by connections
held with tight strings of convictions
life once unraveled long ago, til new days arrived
gave birth of newer visions, old eyes contrived
one's ignorant youth - unsaw back then.
What early pride had proudly denied
inflicted upon their pandered days
frittled prattles of idle thoughts
wild words had early thrown
uncontested - if truth or lies.
Til weathered into such strength
grown of passing episodes
each life reads into itself
fabled like fools, now thought wise
self-grandeured in youthful eyes
til pride cut one - down to size.
Learned those lies of truth and truth of lies
one's oxymoronic wisdom ties
into knots of laughter, packaged with a smile
as friendly humors, put angry anger to shame
til late night lips absolved all - at least for a while.
Such takes away proud Pride's shameful name
until each knows who they really are
a blend of genes, deeds and dreams
like cobwebs stretched across that breach of years
we thought our own - to keep as only ours
spent with such waste of frivoled hours
until at last became - of who we are.
Thus occurred so far away and long ago
when Life's force thought fully free and only ours
til came that divergence, one's decision had shaken
as stood by two roads, til chose that one - humbly taken.
July 26, 2004
Fifty years between, back then and now
balding hair snow-white, both beard and brow
as talked of past school-days, shared by us both
and all that after came - from aging's growth.
Views and hopes wore much the same between
same culture bred, labored years routine
a day spent togethered, with olden friends
our ceaseless talk spoke - until evening ends.
Nods and smiles, as each bid their farewell
perhaps will never meet again - until
first to go, attends other's church-garth grave
only memories now left - old friendships save.
August 27, 2004
Those middle years of wait and see
life's aim to do but what needs be
so might find - bit of time for me.
Those latter years of sit and scheme
life's idle waste, a constant theme
so might find - bit of time to dream.
Those final years of waiting for
life still recalls those days of yore
so might find - bit of time to snore.
Of those ending days, cold Death brings by
as deaf ears hear swish of reaper's scythe
so might find - a bit of time to die.
October 8, 2004
Celebrate what earned by age, each struggles upon life's stage
to wonder what Life lived for, or fractured love - out wore
those few unfound thereof, recalls remembered love
distance or death forbid, time's circumstance - outbid.
Size and shape, health crippled by change of venue, work must try
hair ageing gray or yellowed white, hinting of each one's - final night
gendered brood looks but ahead, paternal hopes left unsaid
a day of joy shared between, when family reunions convene.
Til day grows into leaveaged hours
midst those kindred and kin of ours
hugs and kisses bid farewell, tears in their eye
family reunions - friendships remembered by.
October 11, 2004
A solace allowed of those growing old
matures one's inner peace, world can not bring by
self-sought greed destroys trust, til love lies cold
peace or war, less or more - human hopes forever cry.
October 17, 2004
What magic gave man courage, til believed
whereby one found lying dead, sadly grieved
some ill-defined second chance, chanced to be
earned by death-chanted prayers - felt given free?
Cave fires glimmered, til night-shadows weirdly flit
dancing dreams performed upon dank cavern's wall
an ancient magic, first words that spoke of it
chalked pictures drew - rough fingers crudely scrawl.
Blank presence birthed into what tomorrows bring
hungered pangs yearned of those days, beyond the now
eons later, enchanted music still sings
life after graved, hoped - behind receding brow.
Man birthed into a freedom, animals unknow
creature slowly evolving, unlike all before
passing centuries birthed between those ancient snows
across dry deserts, mountains high - Hopes would explore.
Lust led each to breed, daily hungers held them one
culture reared from stories, ancestored memories spun
night dreams fostered visions, giving purpose to their why
til Death assured a resurrection - beyond the sky.
October 31, 2004
Words my ears gathered
reaped what others told
what really mattered
most - to those grown old.
Tis of such I yearned
til earned high price of life
others deeply learned
to escape stress of strife.
Hard toils labors seize
struggles, life learns by
a kindness - as would please
before one should die.
November 13, 2004
Whereof long gathered across far reach of years
future times, will neither miss nor birth wet tears
once formed of what became, earned by toiled tasks
back-years taught to learn or care - now no one asks.
As natural world hurls on without a thought
mountains yet rise and fall, olden seas come and go
man still dissatisfied, why frequent wars are fought
peace but a brief reprieve, old records - histories show.
December 8, 2004
Awakened by morning's light
took away those 'mares of night
til warmed a friend to wave
happy eyes - freely gave.
Thereafter health returned
with such strength, one could freely laugh
at themselves, til concerned
more with full-seeds - instead of chaff.
December 11, 2004
Yet future years may re-alter such
quickened by some unexpected touch
new adventures recently chosen
when red lips found one's cheek - to rosen.
Tis of such election, earned when freedom
gave strength to reach beyond those distant stars
finally knowing whom have late become
despite painful wounds - of Life's ravaged scars.
December 12, 2004
Til one's hopes fondly yearns of warm Summer days
clear skies bright blue, no sign of ill-weathered haze
short nights, long days, early morns, long evening rays
til one's hopes satisfied - sunlight warmly splays.
Is it culture that molds our moods to come and go?
Perhaps is true, for weathers likewise brings of such
sparring midst those dark glooms, melancholies sadly sow
memories of the past, old love themes - lips cannot touch.
Sort of day, dog's eyes open - but does not get up
no one comes, phone dead, mail delivers only junk
coffee heated left forgot, til when sipped - cold cup
half-cooked meals tasteless - vapid appetite has shrunk.
Til long days end at last, nights do not cure
dreams but nightmares, sleep lies but half-awake
hopeful hopes of future days, doubts obscure
should early rise to gain the day - big mistake.
So with pen in hand, odd words inked into rhymes
each line's ending, same as one just chose before
miscount of words, spelt with unmetered time
til what ill-written, no poem at all - I ignore.
As calendar counts off desolate days like those before
eat less, coffee replacing food - til my stomach's sore
of those strange gods now before me, I meekly implore
if like groundhogs, I could hibernate - would deeply snore.
Whereof will end these days of harsh cold and frozen snow
Spring's wanted breath, so as might breathe deep once again
drunk on coffee, I but sit and wait - as days come and go
dreaming not of distant past - but what could well have been.
February 3, 2005
Where neigh by Molly's Knob, rolling hills beneath God's skies
spread south across valley, old truths - future turned to lies
a day chanced to bring, view again what last seen so long ago
unknowing what childhood treasures - my return would bestow.
In disbelief, ageing eyes viewed that playground of one's youth
all so harshly altered of, til I argued with aging Truth
for devil found in its details, changed scenery proved them true
like a glacier came and went, eons later - grew all things new.
Mown fields neatly clean where met grown woods, without their fence
flat lands of youth, passing years have re-grown to ridge and crest
bottom meadows now flooded, pine woods grown up darkly dense
planted long past, full-grown forest now blocking views - looking west.
Barn, sheds, corncrib, out-house fallen-down, orchard gone - disappeared
pristine memories of my youth, former dreams first pioneered
Time slowly re-engineered, altered quite otherwised
memoried dreams from long past - officially authorized.
My hungers, sharp-whetted for heady taste of former days
despite those lies old eyes re-saw, landscape now strangely told
rudely found of my youth's weathered years, old age sharply slays
precious dreams long clutched within - new truths could no longer hold.
Newly resurrected, struggled like a doubtful Thomas
sorting out waste of chaff and tares, years grew overgrown
dreams of recent owner, fresh seeds cast with hopeful promise
yet my eyes saw truth of my dreams - fully overthrown.
Dusty lane led strangely on, curving here then there
unaware those former trails, out-worn by wear
like new found hopes, led me on to far elsewhere by
my past unknew nor thought, years back - first brought to eye.
Remaining molder of planked flailed floor, barn first laid
but wasted grains of rotten dust, brambles daily shade
several rolls of rusted fencing, tangled midst briars and thorn
my old eyes clearly felt passing years - now clipped, sheared and shorn.
Yet with hand to ear, within the mind could inly hear
echoes of flail's pound, old memories heard loud and clear
their cadenced beat still echoes across those intervening years
past labored hands gleaned into bins - without need of steel gears.
Raw smell of horsen sweat, growing straw-stacks blown high
changing venue of farming days, new ways brought by
old lastly cast aside, tools replaced with newer bought
such thoughts sung within my dreams - as there I longly thought.
Fall apples halved then quartered, til filled apron spread - knees held
added to boiling copper kettle, til kid's belly-aches cried
sugar making early spring, drained maple trees overnight
husking bees Autumn's brought - letters written by candle light
hog butchering, lard rendered, meat salted down, scraps - dogs fight.
Til my ears again could hear stories grandmother told
gathered parents of her past, passed on for future ears
keeping one up long awake, when Winter nights felt cold
brought back layer upon layers - of receding years.
But most sadly seen that day spent, eyes viewed from Molly's Knob
rich memories of one's youth, time and age must slowly rob
for t'was there my early childhood, first learned to share and trust
'mongst cousined kids at play or work, taught one's worth - of right and just.
Faith lived out with laughtered fun, or sadly wrung with tears
worth of kindly care or wild mood-swings, by one's fears
to mold and make of what became, late-life freely steers
echoes yet recall - strengthened by wear of passing years.
While there just beyond brick-house - clay-ground firstly fired
soon built a place to shelter both farm and family by
wry laughtered stories shared, both lies and truth acquired
early days, books firstly learned - old age taught proofs of why.
Kitchen-end long fallen in, two-storied half still stands
yet weather's wear and waste daily takes its ageing toll
winds, snow, rain and termites turned bricks and logs back to sand
til some night, caves in - filling up its darkened cellar hole.
For when a barn and house rots back to earthen dust and clay
brought down final end of historied farm, of childhood's day
old age thereafter dreams, but far off - beyond the sky
where eternal life rebuilds one new - old dreams will try.
As ambled back to where first came in, across - wide valley seen
lies another farm of note, likewise ageing to sterile dust
where other schemes of farming ways, my life would later glean
for what childhood grew up to do, not what wished - but must.
Thereof varied Summers labored long, early dawn to dusk
plodding drudge of daily toils, farming ways hard-striven by
machinery taught one to drive, orders given tersely brusque
not for one to understand, but to do - nor ask its why.
Whereof learned other schemes life required, long days
dawn to dark, little time left to sing or loudly laugh
Summer weeks quickly fled, without words of praise
til Autumn browned Summer's green - left but drying chaff.
Yet deep down within, felt another part of me
when sweat and blood fed a child growing up alone
gave cause to think and pray, brief reprieves left me free
another side of life, winds of Fate - had freely blown.
That homestead likewise fading back to dirt and ground
buildings falling in, years left to waste and rust
remnants of an age now gone, fading echoes sound
til few years more, finally dies - but dreams and dust.
Hardy youth full of dreams, seeking Future's quest
yet when growing old, past years now seem the best
re-hearsed within, taken like a history test
as groveled beneath those remnants, years left behind
long forgotten residue - life's lees now remind.
There but for several hours, reviewed what once had been
unknowing then what now know, years too quickly fled
short-sighted youth grew into fond dreams, dreamt back then
sights and sounds, themes and schemes - recalling those now dead.
As there below and beyond, high-hill named Molly's knob
old eyes scanned a past, future eyes both laugh and grieve
as life stumbles on, aware what fading age will rob
til late evening sun hid to tell - must shortly leave.
THEREAFTER AS I LEFT
How long brief youth took to age, years faded with quickened haste
whereafter treasured those memories, childhood grew of me
future days late distilled a brew, but I alone can taste
with its heady foam to mustache my lips - frosted free.
To leave and yet to stay, til sun's rise breaks new dawn
yet what eyes viewed of these fields, but a fading haze
dreamy drifts of bygone days, such one thinks upon
blindful views now lost - of childhood's early days.
Whence of some further day, again may well bring me by
once more to quiz much like today, again asking why
how one's brain cells can save the past, a remembered episode
poetic wit crafts into versing words - briefly cameode.
When full-moon first brinked above woods to the east
casting reflections, one's inner fields could now newly till
returned home, memories fresh-leavened with old-aged yeast
left behind my moon-light's shadow - as downed Knob-Molly's hill.
March 15, 2005
Like a diary early written
long ago, when youth so young
several hours deeply smitten
til olden eyes - sadly wrung.
Days of one's childhood now reviewed
adventured trip felt surreal
a blessing, til my spirit felt renewed
tattered remnants - still reveal.
Like a tour of one's own history
perceived with olden eyes
revealed forgotten mysteries
youth first conceived - with lies.
Reminding what once took place
changes made, seen so clear
re-inspired by a grace
those early times - held dear.
Echoes reheard from long ago
despite ravaged waste of years
memories restirred again to know
happy times - midst kindred peers.
A day worth its full weight in gold
midst those ruins of times before
found richly treasured, when grown old
those youthful times - that come no more.
Like stepped out of Heaven - back in time
rambled in silence, to hear what might tell
when fresh youth first felt so proudly prime
to know what first gave birth - then after fell.
A final view of one's childhood
preternatural, outside of Time
yet sensed in such wise, full-understood
as if delved - midst primeval slime.
Whereof a partial bit if day
found myself upon old familiar ground
one last time, returned to pray
aware standing there - felt like Heaven found.
March 15, 2005
Doe with double fawns
watched my drifting slowly by
canoe paddled on
visions birthed at dawn
whence I then unknew nor why
but a boyhoods song.
Years long forgotten
lately came to grace my mind
all those once knew
friends met one-on-one
most wore of an honest kind
how first met you.
Few are still around
firstly met so long ago
growing old and gray
most lie under ground
tis so much to them I owe
weekly prayers - still pray.
What life-time slowly gathered
passing years friendly grew
of those others far scattered
with names - I never knew.
March 19, 2005
Those deeds of former days, left behind
hopes and chanced-happenstance put in play
time and place practiced of, Fate designed
words heard or spoken - lips launched to say.
Taught by life's trials and tribulations
tether-tied to future hopes, one dreams
friendships kindly waved with gratulations
til years freshly gathered - future schemes.
Plots life firstly dealt, in past days long ago
their olden themes now seem extraordinary
old-aged reflections, both Time and age bestow
brought back to those seasons - daily-ordinary.
March 29, 2005
But was a time, far-past year
keen-honed of mind, sharp of ear
memory recalls his distant past
eye's embered amber - softly cast.
As years aged up, grew one down old
what now inly hears, can't be told
he and I aware, time will come
grave-side gathered there - last hymn sung.
Whereof after, who has nerve to say
tis those left behind - I daily pray.
March 30, 2005
Dreams or demands, Life asked
a time and place be fulfilled
across wide world's vast
seeds fast growing - daily tilled.
Destiny has freely measured out
til became of what become
to choose or deny, yet with doubt
wise Prudence - could deeply plumb.
Stumbling steps, years long gathered
past failures quickly shattered
age now finds but scattered pieces
until life's long quest - finally ceases.
April 3, 2005
Monied wealth growing by leaps and bound
music dulled by crude discordant sounds
vapid thinkings, ignorance proudly crowned
til buried beneath - their forgotten mounds.
Cast upon life's sea, ever churning
both truth or lies equally spurning
erratic steerage, helm's constant turning
hopeful yet doubtful - never learning.
Cost of Life, Greed and Hate expended
times of Peace or War must contend
Faith thrown aside, lost Hopes pretended
til Death itself - cannot amend.
April 6, 2005
High winds loudly howled, yet rains did not fall
saw Death darkly cowled - held no face at all
by then, diggers fled - drank of Paddy's stout
fear told what each said, each one - filled with doubt.
Paddy's locked-up tight, five and more returned at night
all to see of what they might, by dim glow of star-light's bright
grave much as when they'd left, silent as deserted grave-yard
til one saw where mound cleft - white lily growing on its sward.
Peacefully growing there, as full-moon gathered high
their fears soon knelt in prayer, aled stout's strength brought by
how explain lily growing, knowing McGwin - village clown
tomorrow's weekly mowing, living lily - soon cut down.
Morning found all six hid there, McGwin already mowing
although grave's grass close-clipped bare
saw that lily still growing there.
All afternoon, those six gathered by
at Paddy's pub - questioned why
Father McGlynn slowy drank his rye
seen a lassie there - to cry.
Herself seen re-planting lily white
tis of such a grieving woman might
til their fears replaced with Irish wit
Priest told, all laughed - t'was end if it.
April 7, 2005
Warmth of one's youthfulness, soon grows cold
as passing years gradually unfold
when at last, gentles down - growing old.
April 29, 2005
Parents tempers bred, children always dread
reason's logic fed - children sent to bed.
Pleasant days when a child, usually meek and mild
were times when acted wild, yet after - mother smiled.
May 1, 2004
When they were young and I grown old
well understood of what they said
distrusting much for what they told
now well-remembered - when they fled.
Both young and old have much to tell
each learns what others taught them by
youth soon finds out, tis just as well
for old folks know - how soon must die.
Youth and old age have much to share
whereby both may learn how should care
experience and age, each may give
no matter how long - they might live.
Tis each to each, have much to say
no matter how old one may live
with time to learn and time to play
til finally learned - how to self-give.
May 7, 2005
Should we gather a-porch late of night
to while away - like long ago
as rising moon lends its feeble light
talk of those now gone - we used to know.
With our loud laughter, we told far more lies
than Fate itself could ever scheme
deeds those friends squeezed from life, our humor tries
strange episodes, we now - but dream.
Would that Heaven after, be much the same
with gathered friends, well-known in our past
to lie as we used to lie, without blame
whiled away - as long as Time will last.
Tis of such old friends dream upon, those gone before
hidden works of nature, childhood must explore
fading episodes, gathered years husked til hands sore
memories saved from our past - those that come no more.
May 9, 2005
Crazy I say, by now gone mad
though if true would be truly sad
oh well dear, do what you can
- a ploy used by any man!
Such wife told me, after re-hung phone up
as I sat by, drinking my second cup
strong coffee keeps one regular, you know
best not drink too much - for soon have to go.
After she left, I went out for a quick ale
old friends, they and I - as scanned morning's mail
only after, gathered to our local pub
neither they nor I cared - to join a club.
T'was nearly noon when I returned to eat
wife still gone, nothing on her memo-sheet
after lunch, took a stroll down St Edward's way
watched local farmers, take in mid-summer's hay.
Ah, to be young again - back on the farm
born there, as a kid - couldn't do much harm
was then heard local siren give its alarm
as idled those by-ways - of old English charm.
Found wife well-distraught, when finally came back
of what she told, I was quite taken aback
Audrey shot herself and bed-bound husband too
as wife grumbled of whatever - we ought do.
Attend funeral and obsequies, I replied
proper thing to do, done with old English pride
but all the while I spoke, my wife only cried
a terrible thing, one's husband - her suicide.
Well, this occurred ten years ago, or so it seems
wife still has nightmares to disturb my nightly dreams
well, time will heal all - these things happen you know
such was my response, as once again - had to go.
Naught else much happens here about, a birth or two
she and I growing old, soon both be eighty-two
eight children, all yet living - doing rather well
of this sad tale told - tis all have need to tell.
May 19, 2005
Back in hard times of both beast and men
especially when railroads came in
for survival found - many ways to sin.
Just to stay alive, a lot of men tried
trust only one's own, rest usually lied
when angers flared, proud youth - quickly died.
Many pushed on to those wild frontiers
til land grew scarce, claimed by first pioneers
gold-filled purse, well-sold - by sharp profiteers.
Same today, yet now under rule of Law
despite noble image of one walking tall
slow with their hard talk, yet quick on their draw.
Cars, dope and guns, latest craze it seems
no matter their age, youth in their teens
still living out - their wild-west dreams.
Embattled the Peace til ready for War
their unbridled greed, yet seeks far more
hell-bent for self-freedom - like days of yore.
Stick-'em up quick or else down you die
saturday films, theaters shown by
those innocent times - no one asked why.
Lone Ranger, Hop-a-Long, Billy the Kid
wild-west movies, got in for half-quid
until now looking back - see what it did.
That old neighbor next door would often say
some take what they want, rest of us must pay
midst sin each must live - til our dying day.
May 21, 2005
As emissaries sent back and forth
with hopes of their final backing down
already pre-planned - set for the fourth
when first frost turns Autumn leaves - to brown.
Hence war began, like those days of old
sacrifice others who bravely die
quickly frozen by winter's harsh cold
their proud ignorance - unquestioned why.
Of course they had no chance at all
as northern winds hurled snow all night
morning's birth still shouts its screaming squall
found river-waters - now frozen tight.
Their boats abandoned, struggled on afoot
what little food each had, was equally shared
when night came, fire built by which to cook
yet behind their smiled jokes - each one scared.
Journey endured of harsh winter's cold
til Death left behind, those who downed to die
quickly frozen, their living Death sold
their last agony bought - unquestioned why.
May 22, 2005
For fame but an honor briefly held
married love, a name newly spelled
those who lately died, church-bells knelled
kind memories recalled - love compelled.
Fame or name, love and kindness - much the same
attributes one quickly learned to share
one earned a grave, without dishonored shame
their life and living - had given heir.
Til close friends attend, gathered there
to honor those who have lately died
old friendships gave their final prayer
blessed by tears unheld - each freely cried.
May 25, 2005
What Life learns to give
Death takes down to die
how long one may live
needs not asked - nor why.
May 25, 2005
Catalpa tree once gave its shade, now long dead
high winds finally threw its fall on nearby shed
until both found collapsed, entangled by vines
Mother Nature seeded - tenderly enshrines.
Yet t'was that well first sold the land - to farm
first felled trees, plows broke of virgin ground
early days, when toiled by beast and arm
recent days sold out - left but its silent sound.
Land still abides, yet wearing back to dust
worth of human values, out-measures why
change soon churned into waste, for what it must
yet to me, those old dreams - still treasured by.
My youth slaved upon its hard-earned soil
weathers ill or fair, must daily toil
worth of man's labor, held proudly loyal
til farm sold out for high price - of oil.
History of that farm, those birthed and died
formed much of what my life later came to be
recalling hot day's sweat, parched tongue dried
saved by that well - beneath young catalpa tree.
June 2, 2005
Dawn birthed cloudless skies, cool and freshly clear
announced by symphonic orchestrations, heard
across those dimensions, one's hopes held without fear
measured out with a freedom - futures stirred.
Ephemeral visions, cast upon an endless Time
undaunted by those failed schemes, that felt no shame
ever onwards, unwearied - healthy strong in ones prime
seeking some distant dream - that holds no name.
Troubles merely trifles, solved by end of days
each dawn rebaptized with fresh morning's dew
heat of sun quickly burnt off dawn's early haze
for whatever might betide - unknowingness knew.
Til aging days tallied up full-worth of one's past
life's accounting found, too richly cost to buy
those first visions blindly seen, life had freely cast
proud ignorance unthought - to question why.
Whereof reaped a worth, Time rashly spent upon itself
joyed those moments, thought would outlast forever
youthful zest, age stole by Time's quiet stealth
til began to question worth - of life's endeavor.
Days of one's youth, old age now smiles with laughter
freedoms felt, as but one's full-right to freely own
til later years measured up its cost, long after
expense first paid to buy seeds - youth had early sown.
As fading mind and palsied hands, reached out with a hopeful trust
to strongly grasp for what a growing Faith, well-might
dim memories of early days, soon hardened with a fragile crust
Faith now seeing far beyond - by Life's wanning light.
June 28, 2005
Beauty weds with Beasts, tames the wild Savage
Love lost to lust, Wars and Hate daily ravage
Life ever birthing, Death begets but Grief
Earth slowly turning - Life so quickly brief.
June 30, 2005
Deep within, a silence still retains
those sights and sounds of touch and smell
as blind memory stumbles upon itself
lingering hopes held with a sacred trust
faith full-believes beyond, as it must
though sad eyes - must grieve their tears.
Atop a high point of headland, that thrust
itself against a harsh sea, where far off
one could see forever, as if all the world
firmly grasped - held with full command.
Bolstered with a trustful hope deeply held
to more fully be, only after Death has knelled
without a solid clue as to what thence betides
an ancient faith and one's hope - confides.
High-cliff held above that eternal sea, far horizons
without end, seemed as if the world had gone flat
time but an countless nothingness - without a change.
As if heaven-held already, yet here must further range
atoning for my ignorance, old lies yet held as true
now reviewing all my early youth - firstly drew.
What lies behind my back - far beyond the west
where one's past first feasted on, as life's true quest
gathered by a searching mind, to keep those hopes alive
garnered within my hungry soul - merely to survive.
Whereas what now lies before, but an endless sea
beyond its distant horizon, old eyes cannot see
full-certain tis there, full truth will be found
my trusting Faith thereafter - will be crowned.
Each morning's cool, felt that warmth of risen sun
rebirths light of day, for all that has yet be done
here to daily dream, self-hopes yearn to know
til late evening casts easterly - its western glow.
Of all that history tells, much occurred so long ago
that old world across the sea, gave birth to what I know
whereof I now sit, only echoes heard - one's living learned
for age has finally found its only need - but what Faith has earned.
T'was in evening's cool, I awaited sky's amber glow
when that nascent moon's emerging light begins to show
in that quiet silence, hearing voicings from long past
their teachings gave Hope's assurance - I will forever last.
For love is but a trust, one freely gives unseen
risking all one gave, will in turn be shared between
forgiving each other their false doubts and sins
an eternal life one unasked - birth but begins.
For out of those pristine waters, Life first began
til Time and Chance first gave birth of mortal Man
a story long unfolding, history cares to tell
tis of such I pondered on - as late evening fell.
High above, far beyond - heard sea-winds whisper so
huddled by an ancient craig, I long yearned to know
gathered words my life sowed, gleaned, thence brought to hand
where of an evening stood - at high end-point of land.
After sunset fell, ocean's edge faded with the sky
hopes and dreams, deeds of one's past - late evening gathered by
to smell tart salt-air, felt its cool caress upon my face
until stars began to whitely blink - far out in space.
There once stood at World's dark edge, late life knowing - soon must
behind my back lays a land, whereof made my life's living by
lips proffered unspoken words as prayer, offered up to God
with strength to trust Life beyond, now unthought - as strangely odd.
Those unfathomed depths of understanding, we cannot know
lie far beyond our ignorance, yet will forever grow
but a ruse to test us by, for love tis earned by trust
such surmised, a wisdom earned - at earth's sea-edging coast.
November 10, 2005
Those suffering pleas, poor still ask
their ignorance cannot understand
should be given an equal task
may earn enough - til upright stand.
Those held without legal rights of law
enslaved by hates, their owners own
each starved and beaten down, til they fall
in back-wood swamps - Death wastes to bone.
Those oppressed by unequal rules
mere birth decides, man or woman
men are men, women but ignorant fools
caste system bid by law - foredone.
Those looked down upon, soon cast aside
should lips plead, rejected out of hand
wealth and power, tis they who decide
as graft and greed - rapes their ravaged land.
Til one's honest vote holds no control
democracy but a veiled sham
their human rights tethered on parole
til a country's strength - not worth a damn.
December 1, 2005
Gathered friends cared to tell, their life's learning chose
truth or lies cast their spell, by their fruits - one knows
sin and goodness intertwines, til learns right from wrong
future years may redesign - until grows one strong.
Whereafter long traveled by, meet those we must forgive
love and kindness unasks why, Life and Death will outlive
of whom have become, tis others had taught us so
our grateful thanks now proclaims - each in time will grow.
December 4, 2005
Tis such anger, taught be held within
well-brought up citizens, need to show
for anger's temper can seldom win
in the end - disallows one to grow.
Hold ones tongue, say not one shouted word
allows anger's hot flames to flicker out
heart-felt, like fears of a captured bird
speak but kindly words - until leaves no doubt.
December 7, 2005
Thereafter, passengers recounted their fears
some brought to pray, for safe-deliverance sent
til storm clouds left, as sun and wind finally clears
each wondered why planned to go - or ever went.
Some four years later, survivor's letter sent
one of twelve, who finally attained safe landfall
a friend of those who died, knew how it went
tragedy years past, old memories - still recall.
December 10, 2005
Yet even there midst cited streets and alleys, il-lit dim
each day another day, outward futures held bleakly dim
yet Time still gifts each day, to view Nature's trees and leaf
something to wonder on - despite endless nights of grief.
Yes, tis such verbiage penned above, unsolves those found poor
birth and happenstance, Chance diced on world's weaving floor
lust, lies and laziness, past slavery brought people down
downtrodden seldom met or seen - beyond citied town.
December 15, 2005
Those former tools of trade, now melted down for war
seems every century found, Peace unheld to last
wealth buys into those powers wanting more
such still done today - as done in centuries past.
Forge bellow's drifting smoke midst leaves of chestnut tree
ring of hammer's ping, now echoes on silent ears
eternal hopes trusting, truth will set people free
yet beneath those rallied cries - old lies each now fears.
Eternal centuries still forge futures with former hopes
each age fashions up new dreams, soon pulled down with ropes
chestnut tree finally cut down, burnt up as kindling wood
village enlarged by city's wealth - greed well-understood.
Times that use to be, quite otherwise soon becomes
lust for wealth greed grew up, urged by war's rallied drums
few may still hear, beneath those few remaining trees
hopes and dreams of former years - widowed love still grieves.
December 18, 2005
Tis of such, childhood dreams
fancied within the mind
one's early ignorance schemes
far future years may find
mere Circumstance - had signed.
Each day and night come and go
hopeful Chance puts in play
far more than could ever know
passing years gift what may
much more than one - could say.
With future days at our command
we out-face those onward years
what growing dreams and schemes demand
despite waste and want - or fears
ends with friends - and grave-side tears.
April 13, 2006
Echoes of distant days, recalling those of our past
that of themselves, reawakens what we have forgot
in those idle moments, answered questions - though unasked
years had longly lain in wait, until now - were rethought.
Like ravaged leaves, cold weathers shed
Autumn's brown had thrown away
grey sky's dark broodings, cast with lead
such - somber moods now convey.
October 21, 2006
A smile turned to laughter, years after would recall
frail fragments long gathered, some far back year - in the Fall
fragile remnants still retained, memories bring back in play
passing years have long retained - for what you had to say.
From out those times long past, today - one came to tell
what his solid memory held, harsh words loudly fell
recast those days now forgot, youth's freedom once chanced to dare
when rowdy crowds cursed out-right, double hanging - hung there.
Those early years, one could quickly leave behind
trails grew quickly cold, future years would never find
episodes of one's past, old age regathered by the fire
to warm those hearts of young lads - before he would exspire.
My breathless breath held in, as not to miss one word
those wild days, round-up of western cattle herd
hard-tack and luck, well-fed that strength a man would need
to earn but a day's dollar - future years would lead.
November 6, 2006