storm

the weight crushes
almost everything
except the dull ache
which swells slowly
to a roaring blast.
it rips the hinges
from the storm cellar,
winds its way deeper
down and finds you
in your darkness
searching for light.

** I have dealt with depression, and there is no shame if you have felt the same. Writing poetry is one way that has helped me navigate those feelings, but I also reached out to family, friends, a good counselor, and yes, medication has been a big help. Please reach out if you feel you are losing hope. Help is there. https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/

the baseball bat

as a child i can remember him
slipping away from the house
into the shed, then reappearing
with a hand-made baseball bat,

one of the many he crafted long
ago for a forgotten ozark team.
they all shattered or cracked
from wear, and we believed

all were lost. but after he died
we found a bag inside the shed
under years of dirt and dust,
twelve baseball bats remained.

i keep one near my desk, still
smooth with the brand burned
deep in the wood like the many
memories of him upon our minds.

flight 365

the year is half-gone into eternity,
and time’s black hole does not relent.

what is this place where we believe
we can acquire anything, but always

leave empty-handed and alone?
we live in a slumber where dreams

seem like reality while existence spills
from our bodies like jet fuel behind

a damaged aircraft in mid-flight.

A Year in Review

It has been a year or so since I first started posting on a consistent basis, and I’ve settled into posting about once a week now. I’m thankful that you continue to take a few moments to read my poems. You have helped me to write more consistently and to keep creating.

Today, I am posting a few poems from the past year that readers have enjoyed the most. Thank you again for stopping by.

the cemetery bench

wind weaves through the graves
whispering names long worn
from the headstones. we visit
on anniversaries, speak in low tones,
but mostly sit, as if before a mirror,

wondering what face will appear.
how many years will these ghosts
stay with us, whispering secrets
we will only understand when light
fades giving way to brighter sight?

Walking at Night

The leaves do not fear fall,
and the fading sun
does not quarrel with the moon.

The berries on the bough
are bitter indeed, so why
do I walk in these woods

on frozen nights of shadow
when you have not been here
for a thousand years?

Prairie Fire

I remember the smoke
above the horizon,

spreading out until dusk
swallowed it whole.

People stared across
the plain, tested the wind,

wondered which way
the fire would turn.

But I was transfixed
by something invisible

attending to our sorrows.

imperfections

under the surface
we are free. all spirit
and essence waiting

for brokenness,
for the slightest flaw,
for an opening

where the true self
emerges as light,
escapes into being.

 

 

* Written last year in response to Robert Okaji’s beautifully haunting poem “His Softness”. After reading it several times, the phrase “somewhere, under the surface, / unattached” stayed with me and prompted this poem.