Sunday, July 29, 2007

Questions and Answers

When I asked you questions

About matters of the heart

You gave me bitter answers

I didn’t really want to hear.

But still I listened to every syllable

Your face bathed in early morning light

With an audience of song birds

Singing proverbial melodies above your head.

And yet we never get it right

Even with countless chances

Our words pour forth

In perpetual circles of futility.

In spite of everything I know the secret

that will unravel all the mysteries.

It lies somewhere between the stars of Orion’s belt

And the petals of the black-eyed susan.

If you don’t find it there

It just doesn’t exist

Except in sordid back rooms

Where we hesitate to enter.

As your angry replies continue

I know your truth is what I need

If only we could find the answers

Before the sun sets and darkness falls.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Sudden Storm

I’ve memorized that afternoon
ceiling fan spinning leisurely
an expectant silence so thick
it filled the small room
then moved next to your chair
tapping you on your shoulder
to make sure you noticed
just how quiet it was.

the approaching tempest startled us both
rain pummeling against the pane
wind ripping through the branches
of the tree right outside our window
the thunder loud and forceful
hammering on the window
to make sure you noticed
just how unruly it was.

after the downpour
the room again fell silent
with no expectations this time
just the kind of stillness
that follows a sudden storm
tightening around your chest
to make sure you notice
just how lonely it is.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Empty House Haiku -

in the quiet house
         curtains dance in the warm breeze
  shadows come alive

Friday, July 13, 2007

Hard Times

Hard Times Come Again No More

Let us pause in life's pleasures and count the many tears
While we all sup sorrow with the poor
There's a song that will linger forever in our ears
Oh, hard times come again no more
It's a song a sigh of the weary
Hard times hard times come again no more
Many days you have lingered around my cabin door
Oh hard times come again no more
Though we seek mirth and beauty and music bright and gay
They are frail forms a-waiting by our door
Though their voices are silent, their pleading seems to say
Oh, hard times come again no more
It's a sigh that is wafted across the lowly plains
It's a wail that is heard upon the shore
It's a dirge that is murmured across the lonely grave
Oh hard times come again no more

Written by Stephen Foster. My favorite version of this song
is on the CD, Appalachian Journey, and is performed by
James Taylor and YoYo Ma.

Saturday, July 7, 2007

For Susan

Time stands still, breathless by her side.
Unfettered breath rises, then falls.
Can it be captured?
Or will it escape to rest silently on crisp white linens?

Long slender ache,
Blue-veined hands stroke my heart.
Creamy, white softness covers the pain.
Shadows take flight as sunlight collides with darkness.

The radiance blinds our eyes.
Each step is on a precipice.
balanced on the edge of a spiraling chasm.
When the pieces fit will the puzzle be complete?

Eyes dream of faraway,
Time stands still.
Shivering breath rises like a feather,
bounces off the horizon and lands on a distant shore.

Unspoken words lie scattered on the floor.
I gather them all in my hands, eyes lock.
Doors close in a hundred corridors.
We each accept the gift.

Wednesday, July 4, 2007


The road stretched out far into the distance,
heat waves shimmering on the horizon.
My thoughts reflected the bright sunshine.
Then his words brought me out of my reverie.
His warm voice resonated inside my skull.

I felt the ground circling in a turbulent orbit beneath me.
My eyes closing, I longed for a resting place to embrace.
I climbed a spiral staircase to a balcony
overlooking a sheltered lush garden.
I spread my arms to grasp a mighty oak
but instead found myself roaming through
a forest of gigantic oaks strewn with moss.

I stepped into the cool shadows,
each tread cushioned by fallen leaves.
Every step brought me closer home.
All paths led me to where I belong.
Now I lie down beside him
and listen for my cue.

Monday, July 2, 2007

The way out

All my time
taken by force
given back in
small boxes
each one a
different color
scattered ribbons
on the shoreline
drifting out to sea.

Shadows surround
And conceal the sun
his disguise fools no one
A black coat slips over
the horizon
As the bather
enters the surf
walking slowly
pulling the clouds closer.

Cool and dark
the tide erases the footsteps
every step leads somewhere
each stride obscures the path
silver curtains drawn back
reveal a wooden stage
draped in blue velvet
the yellow moon
smiles and wanes.

Scale the fortress
enter the tower
soft music rises
candles glow
all is forgiven
as the wax flows
onto the sifting sand
sweet surrender
take my hand