My Published Poems

Tulip And Rose

published Righter Monthly Review, April 2015

A rose beguiles with petals and fragrance,

Tulip And Rose

Tulip And Rose

Enticing while brandishing thorns,

A tulip explodes in a poised elegance

That demands to be taken directly without glove,

And unlike the rose which yields but warns.

As these flowers, your beauty glows

In the quiet garden of my heart,

And in every season your blossoming passion grows,

Inspiring in me ever greater love,

Raising our romance to higher art.

——————THE END—————————-

My First Novel

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Ocean Of Dreams

published Righter Monthly Review, September 2014Pub_2015_2015_Ocean Of Dreams Small

 

A birthday is a moment of rare reflection,

When we are instinctively asked to recall

That we swim freely in the depths of our lives,

Rolling in the ocean of our dreams we fall.

To the abyss of desire and the reef of tragedy’s knives,

Then–in upwelling pelagic streams–rise to the shimmering surface of our most dearly held fascination.

 

——————THE END—————————-

My First Novel

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September Lovers

published July 2014, Righter Monthly Review

Eleven years together we have marveled at the blue skies of September,

And laughed amidst the glowing shrouds of autumn leaves. Pub_2014_2014_September Lovers Small

Shivering, embraced, as November winds portend

The dark chilled days of year’s end.

Cheered by bright candles in the season of light,

We clutch and comfort with tenderness of heart,

And pin best wishes to dreams for the new year near start.

Spring finds us romping in roses delighted with bloom.

Deep green of summer traces a succulent, almost hidden path,

Where stolen kisses multiply our passion in exquisite lover’s math.

Silky August nights drape our laced bodies in lustful perfume,

And cooling evenings suggest we are coming around right

To the blue exhilaration of spirit that the Equinox achieves.

We join hands in faithful devotion, as we, September lovers, remember.

———————THE END———————–

My First Novel

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She Has Come

published May 2014, Righter Monthly Review

In a place of charged being, purpose emergent,

Rel_2014__She Has Come SmallLike the wild, bright hills of the Paha Sapa land

Or the shadowy cloisters of Jerusalem,

She came to herself, graced with intent.

A woman fully realized, inspired with bloom,

Radiantly beautiful, destined with him,

For enthused love, welcomed with a gentle hand.

 

I first saw her before my heart was ever rent,

When but a boy, serving the world’s command.

Not of the world, but dwelling at the its rim,

Beneath which hope and goodness are bent,

She was pure love, unmarked by gloom.

For one man’s heart, she was the shim,

Cracking paradise, sleaving its golden sand,

 

Making a path to true love, fixed and urgent.

Long years I awaited her, but suffered reprimand

While my florid dream of her grew dim

And the loves I did know came less ardent.

Now, she has come, swept to me by Fate’s broom,

And the songs of our hearts, entangle in a sacred scrim,

The inviolate love we signify by donning the golden band.

————–THE END——————————-

My First Novel

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 Yellow Tulips

published April 2014, Righter Monthly ReviewFresh from Noordwjik and a bracing North Sea wind,

Pub_2014_2014 Yellow Tulips SmallShe welcomed the cloistering canals of the Old Town,Nuzzling her way through the narrowed crook and bendOf Amsterdam’s ancient, intimate, aboriginal site

Treasuring the café with the lounging cat, three steps down.

 

Aboard the Museum Boat drifting through the city’s watery veins

She came to herself, time and again, confronting a canvass,

Unaware of the soil grief had deposited atop her former life’s remains,

Confidence now supplanting a past instinct for fright,

She explored Rembrandt and the chocolate shops with equal finesse.

 

Seized by a fanciful notion for fresh flowers,

She took to herself yellow tulips in a small bouquet,

To brighten our tidy hotel room in our remaining hours,

And fade to inconsequence by the following night,

Withered upon departure, thoughtlessly tossed away.

 

Yet the yellow petals refused to go, began to glow,

Not luminous but portending some great sign,

A picture she had painted for herself, a new landscape to know,

Not yellow flowers but the blossoming of her rainbow heart was her delight,

For she could freely love herself now and join that tender passion with mine.

 

——————–THE END—————————

My First Novel

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Helen Ascending

published March 2014, Righter Monthly ReviewRel_2014_2014_Helen Ascending Small

It was as if she were a frame of an old kinetograph,

In pose even as she rose up climbing the stair,

A sparkle in the eye, on the lips a faint laugh,

A light turn of the hip, traipsing, wending,

Mounting the steps with seasoned innocence, aware.

 

In a new town, in a new house, a new life she started

Not with the light gait of a maiden never hobbled

But the measured step defined by sorrow just parted

And the wary eyes whose wince at delight were not pretending

That Gracie’s cold jaws had not seized her dream and gobbled.

 

With a slight limping lilt she displayed her new wares,

Trinkets of habitation, adornments of domicile,

And weakly decried any further romantic affairs,

But the echo of the lie struck her while ascending,

And eased her foot ever slightly in quest to reconcile.

 

For ardent love was her genius, and jugular as well,

No street, no house could she inhabit without its ken,

So the collapse of one romance is not love gravely fell.

The cherished truth of herself in its shards, rises, transcending

The grind of misfortune and girds anew, the unbreakable Helen.

—————-THE END—————————

My First Novel

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Delving Into Blackberry Jam 

published Feb. 2014, Righter Monthly Review

Delving Into Blackberry Jam SmallOn the edges of light you will find them,

Dense, tangled, leafy ribs of briar.

If rooted in shade, longing inclines the stem

To arch its spiny back towards the sun,

For shadow captures not the essence of desire.

Sprouted at the rim of the pine wood ridge,

Encircling the spring hill beyond the barn,

The broad leaves of the cane seek to bridge

A germ of defiant growth secretly begun

With the prismatic glory of the dawn.

 

Above the drooped grass and unambitious shrub,

The headstrong stalk rises with thorns distended,

Sets fruit in proud clusters, tantalizing amid scrub,

Which distill pure sunlight, by earnest reach won,

Into the juice of journeying, of quest unended.

 

A woman may recognize herself in the blackberry yield

And hurry to gather baskets of tender, swelled globes,

Which, cooked, ladled into glass jars, capped and sealed,

Preserve the purple genius of her heart for the special one,

The man knowing luscious jam is the passion she disrobes.

 

———————THE END————————–
My First Novel

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Pub_2014_2014_Ex Cathedra Small

Ex Cathedra

a ballad

published January 2014, Righter Monthly Review

 

The raven from the bough,

Is missed by none at all.

He died here yesterday,

And is missed by none at all.

 

The king is in the castle,

The lords have gone there too.

The peasants are in the fields,

Working for their dues,

The harvest is in the air,

The crops will soon be shared.

 

The princess is in the tower,

Is singing o’er the land.

The peasants in the fields,

Her singing moves their hands.

The peasants to the castle,

In solemn march they go.

They’re bringing in the harvest,

Before the castle door.

The lords within the castle,

Receive their bounty due.

In banquet halls they celebrate,

The harvesting is through.

Fish and fowl and meats and stews,

And spicy cakes for more,

Are waiting for the mighty lords,

Behind the castle door.

 

The peasant in his shelter,

Prepares a bit of meat,

And when the meat is done,

He has a little feast.

And when the feast is o’er,

By the warm firelight,

He sings a song of praise,

He sings into the night,

“Mary, mother of us,”

“Mary, mother of us,”

“Comfort us with your comforting,”

“Jesus Christ is king,”

“Comfort us with your comforting,”

“Jesus Christ is king.”

 

The lords within the castle,

Are plotting out the war.

To spill more blood on bloody ground,

Before the game is o’er.

The peasant in his shelter,

Is singing praise or lore,

He’ll lose his sons,

But Christ is king,

King forever more.

 

The raven from the bough,

Is missed by none at all.

He died here yesterday,

But is missed by none at all.

For he’ll return tomorrow,

Before the cock can crow,

For he’ll return tomorrow,

Before the cock can crow,

For he’ll return tomorrow,

And sound the trumpet of war.

—————–THE END——————————
My First Novel

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American Holocaust

published October 2013, Righter Monthly Review

 

American Holocaust Small

Innocents they were, nearly three thousand in number,
When evil struck on that fine morning in September.
Fomented by the disease of deity,
Focused against the cause of liberty,
Into the heart of America they flew,
Deadly black buzzards of hate,
Ravenously, mercilessly they ate
Delivering that anguished fate,
That distant cowering cowards proscribed.
Burning, screaming, terrified they died,
While cowering cowards deified
The cold cruel slaughter of what were innocents, they knew.
For being Americans they were brutally crucified,
Broken apart, scalded, crushed, choked, buried alive,
They perished in agony beneath the red, white and blue,
Because cowering cowards keenly knew,
That the goodness of America was true,
And would finally expose them in a better sphere,
As the shallow, insubstantial unevolved beings who fear
The nobility of the human spirit coming near.
From the purity of that earthly light,
Cowering cowards take flight
And plot their grisly revenge,
Against those who assert human freedom with courage.
———————-THE END———————–
My First Novel

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Lady Armagnac

published September 2013, Righter Monthly Review

Pub_2013_2013_Lady ArmagnacLady Armagnac among her chickens went,
To sow the feed they would need,
And make her heart content.
For her love was nearby,
And never again would she cry.
He gave her treasure in each deed,
Such that his love for her could not be spent.

Lady Armagnac, never be blue,
I am ever your knight, faithful and true,
My sacred love is given only to you.
Do not fear being parted,
Our great romance has just started,
Streamed together we will be,
Ever and anon, you and me.
———————-THE END————————————–
My First Novel

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My Lady Of The Hollies SmallMy Lady Of The Hollies

published August 2013, Righter Monthly Review

 

In a voice as earnest as death,

And eyes sadly beseeching,

While yet they sparkled with hope and promise,

You implored me, then stilled your breath,

To teach you how to love.

An unclenched fist clothed in a velvet glove,

Your urgent request hinted at a future bliss,

That against your cold, shadowy cloister was already breaching.

 

Know this, my lady, in the very marrow of your being,

You are worthy of love, forgive yourself, begin seeing.

 

When first I came to you on the wild hillside,

I found two towering holly trees standing by your door,

Flush with lush green leaves sparkling in the sun,

Laden with clusters of red berries in garlands wide,

They whispered, the lady within needs love so here you must be.

Then I kissed you and I could see,

You were stifled, conflicted, eager to run,

Because your lonely hermitage could never be as before.

 

Know this, my lady, in your secret dream of yourself,

The agony of past betrayals has sluiced away like water through a delph.

The refuge from love where you drank your bitter consolation,

Denying yourself in desperate grief,

What your anguished mind decreed you did not deserve,

Affection, endearment, sweet adoration.

In panic and despair, you exiled your very soul,

And sealed up your heart in pitiless cold,

So you would not be forced to observe,

The death of your spirit from want of love, from lack of relief.

 

Know this, my lady, in the crucible of your pain,

Reap the love around you and come home again.

 

Because the heart only lives, it cannot die,

Like a well, it may stand empty yet it remains,

Encircling the deepest hurt until filled.

To the teaching you asked of me, I give this reply,

Love is like a holly, ever green and bearing red,

It is all the living can have until they are dead.

Green is reaching out, constantly willed,

And red is the expression of affection, free of chains.

 

Know this, my lady, love only lives when it flows,

Out of you and into another and back again it goes.

 

 

Within you my lady is the genius of your hollies,

To love, simply reach out to me,

And truly express your affection.

Fear not your missteps or follies,

Reach out with your heart to show me kindness,

Extend your voice and with your dreams, your love, your fears, do bless,

My love for you, my caring, my protection,

My most ardent fealty.

 

Know this, my lady, love is all we have,

To make life precious, to minister grief with a healing salve.

 

Reach out with your mind and reveal your ideas, your visions,

Extend your counsel when I err,

Reach out with your wisdom when I cannot decide,

Extend your touch when I am wounded by missions,

Reach out with your kisses to ease my duress,

Reach out with your naked body to share a sacred closeness,

Touch me, caress me, take pride,

That we join in pleasure, intimacy, affirmation and care.

 

Know this, my lady, in the kernel of your brain,

If you shower me with your love, I will dance in your rain.

 

 

My lady of the hollies, reach out to me, express your affection, stay fast,

Pour your love down on me like honey glistening,

In the joyous sunshine of your heart.

Sweet beyond death when we taste it at last,

Let us be content, in the moment we die,

That the well of our love is now empty and dry,

Because we drained it into our passionate romance from the start,

And went to our graves with the anthem of love in our spirits still singing.

———————–THE END—————————————
My First Novel

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August On The River

a ballad

published June 2013, Righter Monthly Review

They shook their heads that morning,

And said it was a shame,

That he was leaving Saint Joe’s,

And the family name.

Door hanging open to the cold,

They watched him turn and go;

Faces framed in the windowpane,

And footsteps in the snow.

The younger brothers would hear it,

In the Father’s simple way,

“Brother Sterling Cleon left the seminary today.”

 

Down from Calicoon,

With the wind rising high,

He lost himself and kissed his rosary.

Down from Yasgur’s frozen fields,

Where his nation had just died,

He looked for Mary along the highway.

 

Pennsylvania before nightfall,

If the rides were good,

Carolina by daybreak,

And friends that understood.

A truck stop in New Jersey,

An accident on the Pike,

A little girl dead and frozen,

And the sirens in the night.

A half-a-man in Delaware,

Vietnam amputee,

Brother Sterling Cleon threw away his rosary.

 

Down from Calicoon,

With the wind rising high,

He lost himself—there was no rosary.

Down from Yasgur’s frozen fields,

Where his nation had just died,

He looked for Mary along the highway.

 

Winter passed in a southern town,

And spring was growing warm,

A caravan would be leaving for the river,

Looking for a farm.

Empty years had made the choice,

Nothing left to say—

Brother Sterling Cleon waited for that summer day.

 

Spirit of the river,

Come inside a troubled mind,

And lay to rest the evil that you find.

August on the river,

Together let us be,

Together let us be.

 

The summer sun burned the grass,

And the old men that they passed,

Working in the fields of Ohio.

A song to ease the fears,

Of all the coming years,

Anthem for a long, long way to go.

 

Spirit of the river,

Come inside a troubled mind,

And lay to rest the evil that you find.

August on the river,

Together let us be,

Together let us be.

 

August on the river,

August to be free.

————————THE END—————————————–
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Reckoning

published May 2013, Righter Monthly Review

Reckoning SmallThere will come an hour

In an afternoon of reckoning

To shuffle down the hallway,

Turning in at the door—

The room is old and faintly terrifying:

You did not know them then.

At twenty they welcomed the sun for breakfast

And evenings sipped coffee—without fear—

As long black shadows fell across the fields,

Fell across the lawn and into the far corner

Where the beautiful baby slept.

There were flowers in the windows

And the yellow corn grew tall;

Easy minds explored the hours

Spent talking in this hall.

A woman was marked within her child

And a man with his sky-proud stalks

And time was marked within the sense

Of seasons and sunrises.

You did not know them that long December

When they rocked by the fire.

The farmer gave up his eyes to the flames

And the woman abandoned her eyes to the black woods

That held her first-born in the ground.

The world was past them then.

Come the New Year they would sift their minds

And find the ways to pass the time;

Come the spring the corn would assault the sky

And be pulled from its height by aimless hands

To be sold to the unfamiliar man in town;

Come the spring the wife would do the canning,

Thinking they must eat well the next winter.

You did not know them that long December

When they rocked by the fire.

In August the money from the yellow pride

Bought a box

And all the blood-kin came

To lay the woman in the woods

By a mound that grows grass quite well.

September was good for fishing

And the farmer passed the time

Until the air and leaves and sky

Heaved in that last great beauty of summer

And the man came in—

Came in to this quiet room

And stood in the afternoon grey.

Something old in the farmer’s blood—

A mind within a mind that could read the wind—

Shivered in this quiet room.

The world was past him then

And the sense lost in summers and graves

And the emptiness shook him like dying in a dream,

A dream that promised to be there

In shadows and sunshine

A vision on a wind

Stirring an afternoon of reckoning.

There will come an hour

In an afternoon of reckoning

And you will know the things that went before.

You will be here in the afternoon grey,

A mind within a mind that comes to read the wind.

———————–THE END———————————–
My First Novel

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The Blue Bottle

published April 2013, Righter Monthly Review

I was newly in love,

And did not know how to tell her,

So my clumsiness made her cry.

I confessed my heart and made her see,

The depth of my emotion.

But secretly I whipped myself,

Haunted by the jagged notion,

I had caused a tender woman to weep.

 

Then we drank from the blue bottle,

And in a labored whisper,

With caution as a nervous throttle,

And a sorrow she could no longer keep,

She put an ingrained fear on the shelf,

Did not question why,

And simply revealed to me,

From shards she had sown,

The greatest pain she had known.

She, like me, has no recourse from above,

But on that day, she started on her way,

To recovering the spirit of her soul,

And understanding that she must self forgive.

Because in her desperate hour,

She lacked the power,

To justly judge the path to take.

For years and years, the tyranny of mistake,

In thinking she had freely selected,

An act she could not have expected,

To transcend with wisdom matured,

Had not let her love herself or admire,

The purity of fire,

That in the canyons of her being endured.

Now wine from the bottle of blue,

And the gentle urging I could do,

Have cast a clearer light,

On the torment of her plight,

And helped her to find,

The justice of mind,

To see, that in her blackest travail,

Still she did not fail,

To grace the world with love.

For the true measure of spirit,

Can only be found,

When a soul, knowledgeable and free,

Strikes a mark on the ground,

And declares immutably explicit,

On this side, unmoved, you shall find me.

—————–THE END———————–
My First Novel

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Cotton Easter Small

Cotton Easter

published March 2013, Righter Monthly Review

The name perplexed me—cotton Easter—

For the plant did not bear red as the stain of blood,

Heralded not suffering in foliage luscious,

Hinted not at resurrection in drooping limbs.

Cotton Easter lays softly on the mind,

Peaceful and blissfully supine,

Without crosses and nails and moral shims,

That seek to align, demean and shame us,

Or drown our spirits with vengeful flood.

Eisegesis of true paradise in simple misreading: cotoneaster.

————————THE END——————————————-
My First Novel

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 Autumn Rose

published December 2012, The Friendly Naturalist

Autumn Rose Small

In Spring the bloom is on the rose

And, admixed with colored petals and rare fragrance,

Is a delight for the senses.

In the autumn of maturity, the bloom is in the rose,

Nestled in kindness, folded in generosity.

More cherished is the autumn rose

To those whose journeying through the garden has revealed the differences.

—————————-THE END——————————————–
My First Novel

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Felicity And Fire

published Nov. 2012, Righter Monthly Review

On this day that speaks of the heart,

Know that I have loved you from the start.

The lilt of your voice that first call,

Resounded, I knew,

The melody of myself, the anthem of you,

Harmony of passion and gall,

Duet—felicity and fire—

Sing ardently of our romance.

Desire and happiness intimately dance,

Twain as one,

To love,

Above

All.

—————————–THE END——————————————–
My First Novel

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Broken Angel

published August 2012, Righter Monthly Review

In a shadow, in a corner, that the world was passing by,

I found a broken angel, who knew that she could fly.

But the world is not kind to angels,

And she wept internal tears,

Because her poised, radiant wings were tattered,

And she was trapped within her fears.

From the tenderness in her eyes, I spun a silver thread,

Then I placed it in her hand and kindly said,

“It is not for me to mend you, but to stand guard instead,

While you bind your wings of passion and dream of the sky.”

With intelligent and educated skill, she stitched herself,

To hope and courage, to things that really mattered,

And she captured my heart while she fluttered.

“It’s only infatuation,” she demurely muttered,

While the fire in her eye said it might be more than we knew,

Like the writer freely bound to the beauty of his art.

In a flash of white brilliance, she left the ground and flew,

Into the tender canyons deep within my heart,

And I hoped my broken angel would be happy flying there,

Until death do us part.

—————————-THE END———————————————–
My First Novel

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Moses

A Ballad

published July 2012, Righter Monthly Review

The old man’s gone off to the hills now

Though it’s frosted over outside

He went off real quiet now

Like the winter momma died.

He won’t be going off to pray now

Praying man don’t need a gun.

I know, lord, it’s been coming on

Since he was twenty-one.

 

Living in the county was mighty hard

For a haunted woman and a bastard child.

She had no love to give him

The mountains raised him wild.

A lonely woman possessed by devils

And a boy believing in the wind

Scratched a living from a hillside farm

Till the bad times settled on them.

 

He went down to the city

In 1929

And slaved for flatland wages

To save their place from the mines.

At 21 he came back home

To put his mother in the grave

Going up to the mountain like Moses

He grieved his mother and prayed.

 

He took a wife in ‘35

I was born the very next spring

We ploughed good rows

And made the crops grow

And made a lot of living.

The hills are in your veins he said

You come from mountain ground

They’ll stir the blood inside your head

Like a wind that has no sound.

 

Two years later in the winter time

Gabriel made a claim

And Moses went to the mountain once more

To grieve and call her name.

 

[Pause]

 

Now the crops we need are gone

A killing frost is to blame

And the old man’s gone to hills now

But his leaving’s not the same.

The wind howling down the mountain

Stirs the senses of my mind

The old man wants me to go now

And leave these hills behind.

The wind howling down the mountain

Tells me Gabriel made a claim

Moses took his gun to the mountain

And he won’t come back again.

————————–THE END———————————————–
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Soneto From The Portuguese

published May 2012, Righter Monthly Review

Soneto From The Protuguese SmallWe began blank as the white-washed houses of Alentejo,

Strangers with a clean slate of heart between us,

Yet we were drawn together with colorless brushes

Dipping into experience as passion rushes

We striped our history like the basalt trim of the Azores

Then thatched our affections like the roofs of Madeira

All while drawing nearer.

We stenciled our saga with love and romance

Complex and engaged like terraces of the Algarve

Filigrees of entanglement we continued to carve

Azulejos we became, colors in dance,

Like shimmering sea waves crashing on shores

Of a rapier thin isthmus

Deeply into each other, destined to go.

——————————THE END—————————————-
My First Novel

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