2020 Poems September-December
Poem List 2020 September-December
Old men will see visions Print this poem only
I hear the piano playing softly
pulling me from these rutted plains
into a moist green meadow
a vision of a flowing brook down the hill
makes me believe the words of the Prophet:
“Your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions.”
yes, I am old, but I see and feel the rising gentle treble notes
lighten my leaded limbs
awaken my spirit
and thrust me into the realms.
It is the touch and glide of the pianist’s fingers
across the ivory skin of the keys
that transports me
in the waning hours of this day.
How sweet it is!
Poor poor pitiful me Print this poem only
I am broken
bent and misshapen
sad and lonely
dark side of the moon
not caught in undercurrents
but submerged in a bog
Oh what a pitiful state
I’m embarrassed by myself
not s’pose to be like this
people need me to be upbeat and bright
not in darkness but in light
good for a laugh or a smile
wanna be with me a while
but this mournful me
like a salty dead sea
they’d rather not
I don’t blame them
I don’t even wanna be with me.
It’s dark outside
thunder storm rolling in
just perfect for my mood
I wanna thunder out loud!
Ha, oh what a putz!
Writing it all down like this
makes me want to laugh
at this oh so pitiful me.
I feel better already.
And here you are reading this
what a pure beautiful soul you are
obliging me by listening.
Now you can laugh!
Have a good day.
Author's Note: This poem demonstrates how writing in general and for me, writing poetry can be very therapeutic. When I started writing (that first stanza) I was just writing down my feelings and sentiments but it became a poem and as I wrote my feelings became transformed and I was able to laugh at myself. Thank God and his Holy Spirit for poetry.
Flickering Green Glass Print this poem only
I am bowed by the weight of bad news
tentacles of evil
creep in to wrap around me
like a dark cocoon
at mixed intervals each day.
Oh how I need love!
It is the only power greater
than the clouds dripping, pouring upon us.
The burning candle
its flickering flame
in the green glass
speak life to me
beyond the reach
of threats and fear.
I bow to the light.
love and its green flame
capture my attention
I adore it
and throw off the cloak of darkness.
Here I stand
What would life be if… Print this poem only
I could paint a rainbow on the moon
Mozart came back to give me a tune
climb in a conch shell and float its coral sea
bring my Mom back to laugh with me
I had a five-year old’s fancy and joy
I giggled as free as a little boy
I could ride a buffalo on the great plains
course through Jesus’ veins
Chief Joseph advised me on a vision quest
I were never ever again depressed
Neruda came back to teach me to write
I could take wing with butterflies in flight?
Author’s Note: This poem was inspired by a Garth Hill photo-creation (seen at the right). Garth usually has an inspirational quote below his photos on flickr.com. This is the quote accompanying the photo: “What would life be if we had no courage to attempt anything?” – Van Gogh
Long Traverse Print this poem only
My mind is active ever looking searching
to grasp what lies beneath the surface
but my intellect in its hectic quest
with the short verse
of its voyage.
I have episodes of wandering
with brief sightings -
a dim light cast
in the corner of this room or that
the church lot playing touch football
or singing in my prepubescent tenor voice,
me shaking his soft hand over cookies at rehearsal
for he, in his mostly stern visage,
I open a dusty old book
and smell its yellowed pages
cast back to the university library
searching with eagerness
for evidence of Cortes, Aquinas, Longfellow
or other explorers of humanity and the divine.
I smell incense
and remember my mother kneeling
praying the rosary before Mass
and the candles glowing
gold vessels sparkling
where I heard the call to serve
and with sadness recall leaving the seminary halls
in the middle of the night
to enter the world and all of its allures.
Our fifty year journey together
of loving, laughing, and crying,
our many travels:
west across the Rockies
east to Daddy’s land as a child and young man,
south across the Sabine to the swamps,
crawfish, Zydeco music, mardi gras, cousins,
the Bayou Teche where Mama swam
and the cane fields
in the muddy acres of Inez' French roots
and back and forth to Houston
where I met my bride and her family.
I have passed across many boundaries
for good and evil
gone through stages of life
and it seems I am here
like the Ancient Mariner
with regrets for my sins
and joys for my victories.
I found in Coleridge a verse
to help me navigation what days are left:
“He prayeth best, who loveth best
All things both great and small;
For the dear God who loveth us,
He made and loveth all.”
Your Splendid Shallows Print this poem only
You are an ocean of love
I float and drift on your surface
but under your sparkling skin
teems an ineffable life
another world mostly unseen,
selfless, unsung, and undeserved.
But here I am not even skin deep.
Am I afraid
of drowning in your depth
of being overwhelmed
in my modest capacities?
Oh my love
even if I see only what you reveal
to the sighted
I saturate myself in your splendid shallows
and await those precious interludes
of your deeper touch.
Gray Man Print this poem only
He leans against the old battered lamp post
just as twilight fades away
hands in his pockets
the lamp spills its soft rays on him
as if to assure him there is light left.
His rumpled gray suit
has seen its better days
perhaps in a high rise a few blocks away
it hangs on him like a haunting shadow.
Despair looms in his eyes
a frown droops his pale face
he barely breathes
staring at the drainage grate
just beyond his dusty shoes.
Has his life seeped down into the gutter?
He is bowed by some awful weight.
And across the street
I gaze at him
in my own shadow.