Weathered Boats

Those wrinkles, proud lines on the face,
Where life has touched us.

Where love has broken us, where feeling
Pours into us,
The scars of cat fights in the night.

The cracks in our soul where we may settle
And grow,
The hollows of roots torn from the earth.

Those claw marks of love where we’ve bled
Tears,
Where our layers of certainty have fused, only
To flake and crumble within
This wise passage.

Feint borderlines between sadness and joy,
The ghosts of expressions which have contoured
Our life,
The red canyons of emotions where our
Soul erodes and flows,

Ledges where the moonlight has taken hold,
The sun has gripped and scored our skins;
Edges where we’ve fallen out of ourselves
In moments, years and chapters
Behind our curtains of skin.

Those wrinkles, in bundles and waves,
Our unique print in the breeze, where our years
Have opened to a noble decline,
Engraved by hidden forces, branded by beauty.

Wrinkles like the rings of saturn, the lost leaves of
Holy books, burnt autumns, love letters;
Feint elemental brushstrokes which suggest the
Hands of someone, imprints of
Our underlying splendour,
Sunken rivulets where rejoice cascades into the
Waiting rooms,
The beds of dried out rivers, still and soothing our
Growing pains.

Wrinkles as creation’s seal of approval.
The patterns of being, the artistry of knowing,
The crests of feeling,
Our living tattoos of turbulence;

Our war paint now faded, creases in the heart
We cannot hide,
Growth lines of our ever blooming nature
As we stretch and retract, warp and wane;
Here, in our faces,
Sites of great conquests, lost battles and unknown
Victories,

The legacy of the lives we’ve inhabited,
At best, a pilgrim’s old boots,
Sat in the corner, dusty and worn,
This contact sport within birth and death,
Where we are hunted
By our infinite whip.

The tracks of creatures which prowl upon
Our bodies at night,
Thin footsteps of laughter trailing quietly
Into the fresh snow.

Our faces are the page of our life, wrinkles are
Our handwriting,
Can you read this shared language of ours?

To be human, to feel the grains of existence
In their vivid fullness,
The hot sands moving around us, the friction
Which sparks and warms,
The stabbing frozen tundras of twilight,
Sometimes the sharp taste of storms,

Real conditions,
The loosening of binds and the sores they reveal,
The folds we wear when our sails are
Lowered in grief.

To crinkle, wrinkle, crumple and mend;
To crack, dimple, sag and rend.

To see the age staring back in a mirror,
To tilt the head and giggle;
Ages built on sound foundations
Well within the chasm of life too short to tell
Of ends in sight and the
Death dance of stars;

Beneath the mirror of sky,
Weathered boats in lines, sitting by the waves
On the white beaches,
Setting to sail beyond the oceans of time.

You show me your wrinkles.
I’ll show you mine.

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The ways of the world

The ways of the world are resting,
The earth is healing;

Fathers are lighting fires in homes,
Their tools are lain low;

Mothers are gathering all close to their
Hearts, embracing what is,
When the winds outside know no names.

Children learn new ways,
New lessons arising, embedded in the real
And unwavering stare
Of the ways of the world.

As families fall in on each other,
And themselves, a deeper embrace will be felt,
All arms around each other, to protect and
Relieve the spaces between us.

Tied together, seeing anew how our roots
And branches are tangled in many ways,
Tied together as one,
Like a forest of hopes and dreams,
Fallen branches and misery,
Colouring and drawing on the ways of
The earth.

The seeds of this Spring will grow in new ways,
Follow different moons and suns, while the planets
Watch on, the complexion of earth will shift,
Our faces will darken for a time,
Tears in eyes and rivers,

Only to reveal a broader smile and a stronger
Laugh and song, bred in the fullness of experience.
All temporary sufferings and joys.

The ways of the world are calling,
The earth is healing.

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The Bull

So I am the bull both sacred and hunted,

The holiest of holy and fresh meat walking.

 

The blood in my flesh may be drained;

My tail hung from a wall, or will I be washed in milk

And sent out to pastures golden and gated.

 

Blissful, serene, and yet disturbed by my own power.

My strength to trample those weak fences

Is my greatest inhibition.

 

In my horns, the crescent of the moon,

It’s curves catch the still air, the intensity of my breath

Wets the red desert breeze.

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Stole Brooklyn

I didn’t make it to Brooklyn to visit my
Cousins. They said, ‘bring me the things you steal’,

Fighting rough in the wild streets, stay tender
In violence, ferocity in peculiarity. Keep

Talking, feel the warmth, all the brutal
Thorns we can only ease to dislodge.
Golden period maybe, terrible drinks poured
Into illness, great friends line the

Route of our strange Subway souvenirs,
Tucked away in respectable compartments,
The neighbourhood was a drought,
With my feet on the dinner table.

I took a pigeon hole as my own, built
A life on a pot hook and typewriter,

Writing at night to
Sell my soul, little by little, into the dark,
The soft light luminescent, grows in the
Lucrative trap,

Bearing witness to the lovers who’s name we
Forget and not sure how we got out.
So this is my article, a string of words,
You’ll like me there, for 5 cents,
Maybe more.

Never to be printed, like a reindeer tucking
Into stars, all that family tree of cheerful
Madness, no one asked a real question?
Pointing out the window at the blue sheep

And the black bile, some people are too
Much, lazy in the face of hate, too young
To be afraid of a bullet, weeping; families
Are a tree we should not climb, the moon
Is fascinating but the mind makes the
Heart bad in the end.

For and inspired by Henry Miller

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Warm Earth

Swaying in the sunlight,
Ash on the eyes, as the canopy of palms shapes my soul.

Bougainvillea speak in some ways familiar.

To this green palace, our home.
Rich land and earth clads the bones;
Each clearing the sky,
And I turn my cheek to the calm moss
Inhale the rising nature.

This morning’s crystal dew is well risen
To the tune of babbling form.
I rest my cheek to the ground
Make wishes and listen,
Long distance calls to distant constellations.

The infinite, not filled by blue giants,
My cells a billion gods colliding and reforming.
The clear air a sweep of vermilion emotion,
These sunset colours are my own.

Collapsed hearts, broken promises.

The warm earth ambivalent and pristine,
Forgives all.

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Melting Stream

Firmament, fervour, born to the furnace,
Entwined in fiery embrace, man is the flicker in fire again.

Jousting with self, not wicker rocking chair, but granite chest;
Nerves fire off tropical storms and convulsions of energy
In majestic wave forms; bread knives, sinister laughter.

All hewn and etched, no solidity found.
A melting stream, falling aimlessly to be closer.

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Lay Me Down

 

I’d like to say that god, is the answer to all my little problems,

but I never met him and it looks like he’s disowned me.

 

I’d love to say that love, protects and breathes freely,

but you know sometimes, the loving just escapes me.

 

In this old world, seems like we’re always learning,

to breakdown, the little, that we are.

 

We may reach out, into an age of discovery,

but looking at you my child, I have some doubts.

 

You could venture, into the unknowable,

But too many questions remain unresolved?

 

Like when did we let go of the garden,

and where does the dying sun not shine,

 

As we step out, into another paling mystery,

Each moment, hand in hand, and the freedom there within,

 

Uprooted, yes, but seldom knowing

Of another silent lesson, a way to forgive.

 

Doubting, sometimes, the great revelations,

That your true beauty does not reflect mine.

 

So we grow, down by the old oak tree,

By the river that runs bronze and fierce sometimes.

 

All the things I did and said, bury them beside me,

Seems to fit with one who’s passing through.

 

I wish to thank, the glorious unknowing,

That grips me, by my primal roots,

 

And the longing for distant, faded horizons,

That drew me close to an endless brighter stain.

 

But some glory, even fleeting, seems to be revolving

within the soft breeze of change.

 

I’m no longer out for a greater understanding,

Seems some things, are best left for the grave.

 

Lay me down, in this elemental shadow,

Let me rest in that fragrant rose for a while,

 

And breathe in some forgotten perfumes,

And fall to settle, for unspeakable demise.

 

Lay my body down where the raven can see me,

Leave the door open, open wide.

 

I know you’re tortured by those who raised you

But Jesus, cut yourself some slack.

 

I’m not asking for you to take up all my burdens,

But please let me know, when you’re gonna break my back,

 

You know I’ve painted a world, in colours I find pleasing,

And the shapes of sentiments, you held so dear.

 

In our loving embrace, you left me watching over,

Some kind of myth without tragedy to bind.

 

So here we are now in this elemental mystery,

know that you can change it, and it’s alright,

 

Go out beyond the boundaries they fix about you,

Bury your heart in something wild,

 

Go beyond the borders of your heartlands,

For out there, is the true and holy land.

 

So let’s swim, in the ocean, let it take us,

Let us forget about the ways of dry land.

 

And sink into a bottomless awakening,

Way down, in the blind spot of man.

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Pastures of Plenty – Woody Guthrie

Pastures of Plenty – Woody Guthrie

It’s a mighty hard row that my poor hands have hoed
My poor feet have traveled a hot dusty road
Out of your Dust Bowl and Westward we rolled
And your deserts were hot and your mountains were cold

I worked in your orchards of peaches and prunes
I slept on the ground in the light of the moon
On the edge of the city you’ll see us and then
We come with the dust and we go with the wind

California, Arizona, I harvest your crops
Well its North up to Oregon to gather your hops
Dig the beets from your ground, cut the grapes from your vine
To set on your table your light sparkling wine

Green pastures of plenty from dry desert ground
From the Grand Coulee Dam where the waters run down
Every state in the Union us migrants have been
We’ll work in this fight and we’ll fight till we win

It’s always we rambled, that river and I
All along your green valley, I will work till I die
My land I’ll defend with my life if it be
Cause my pastures of plenty must always be free

Performed by Michael Hurley 

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Lost and Found

happiness is a fleeing bird,
don’t try to catch it
you’ll crush it’s tiny heart.

joy is the call of a blooming lotus,
if you tried to listen
you’d drown out the chorus.

peace is a still and infinite pond,
and you the frog
croaking at the shore.

love is a fragile spring breeze,
may it linger to
grace these transient skins.

hate is a fire we try to hide,
it splits and burgles,
burns out our insides.

war is the charred borders of the soul,
which spills from the empty heavens
where we are not known.

bliss is a burp in the universal giggle,
we are lonesome when we
cannot swallow down the thistle.

life is a fleeting chance,
shining from a window where
we seldom glance.

death is a punctuation mark,
where we all full stop,
to be released, to start.

nothing ends, nothing begins,
and we are lost and found,
fragile kites in mortal winds.

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There is bronze in my blood

AmCelticSteve

How sweet the silence,
The nectar in which we hide,
Fragments of our self
We seldom seek inside.

We are lost to pitch coal night
Like frozen stars we orbit,
The moon blade is silent in glory,
Rising in early, clear light.

Countless memories to trace
An inception, a birth;
Strung out in mist of mind games,
A lover once known
Dancer distant from grace.

There are fragile shards
Of what I have become
Woven into thick rope,
Tough to the touch
And feelings so bound
That I am merely a stone in
The urn.

There is bronze in my blood
And in my bones,
There is blood on my teeth
The stain of murder
In my wounds.

There are nameless Gods
Which chart my path,
Through the forests, the mountain back;
Led by the skins of sheep
And the sails of billowing
Highland heather.

I am a man freed of fate,
A twisted dagger
Sure to tame
The wilderness of barren corners,
The drum that beats my heart.

I am smoothed in the valley stream
By the gentle ripples of time,
I am one with the mighty seas
I am one with the fire
I am one with the trees.

This man has wandered far and wide
Taken in exotic wines
To return an infidel and cured
Of the yoke of fear
And the noose of hope.

For to trust in self
To realise ones fate
Is but a strike of a skilled axe
On the countless rings
Of the fallen world.

I love life for her charms
Are not lost in the keepers lake,
I see the gateway to divinity
Where her weary body lays,

Where her gold locks tumble down
I caress this hallowed ground,
Plant wheat to watch it brightly sway
Rise fresh each dawn of glory day.

For with this love I am whole,
Not man, not flesh and bone,
But a spirit not easily found
In this self in which we drown.

Battling for the right
To lift my head and cry,
Dying for the call
To take what is left
No more.

Praying for the epoch
When desire is peace,
There grows a fragrant rose
Of which petals shall
Never fall.

Oh warrior!
Oh fearless sage!
We call to you this day
Cleanse our fear of death
Make us whole within each
Forgotten breath.

Calling to the night,
Breathing in the dark,
I ache with gilt memories
And play in silent arts.

Teach us how to slay
The infant as it lays,
For innocent and pure
We yearn for a Mothers call,
To be close to our kin, to faith,
To the hearth;
To sacrifice the ashes we share
And the ghosts which fuss our hearts.

 

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