My first “official” public poetry reading at Unity Church of Houston Thursday, March 22nd 2018. Part of Assemble for Action, a series of motivational gatherings with candid discussions, personal reflections, musical incantations and poetic recitations all leading up to the monumental March for our Lives demonstration this coming Saturday, March 24th, in downtown Houston. I briefly discuss my perspective on gun violence as a military veteran and mental health advocate, followed by three poems on the respective themes of war/violence/destruction, grief and loss, and redemption through a commitment to lasting peace. Enjoy.
She arrived bearing leaflets
gathered hastily from a tree
that once made its home
along the bluff that bowed
in the direction of All Saint’s Creek,
Where the flightless seraphs would
traverse from time to time
to retrace the melody
that escaped somewhere between
celestial monuments immemorial
And the hallowed confluence of
electric mists and vernal shadows
that marked the beginning
and the end of a journey’s refrain,
just beyond the bend.
One leaf was given to a man of great wisdom
who preferred the wistful caress
of remote breezes emanating from
solitude sweetened with age
and fortified with crystalline shells of Faith.
Another was given to the golden-haired urchin
who painted the meadows with colors
birthed out of fond remembrances of
tender passages from lullabies
that dared to trace their lineage back to Blue.
Several more were given to
the animals that dutifully roamed
the forgotten stretch of the forest
in which visions of sunrise trickled down
like nervous rain on its journey beneath the surface.
The last leaf was given to me
as I wondered into the chestnut stream
that flowed from her eyes.
I held it to my heart and promised her
that I would awaken each morning hereafter
Bearing lavender periwinkles for her silken hair
extending in every direction, culminating into
tightly-woven star steps leading back
to the beginning of the Creek
where there were dreams of flight, patient and graceful.
I promised her that when the leaf crumbles,
my heart will divide the pieces among
every meandering soul in search of her lament,
and legions of despondent youth
will arise and build spatial arias from her maiden cry.
And the galaxies will awaken, changing form
with each resolution, presaging the moment
when each star will descend upon the horizon
and illuminate the spot where the leaflets once
graced her outstretched hand.
I sit and mark the journey
of lost stars that find their way down the bluff
and into my bosom, where I inscribe her smile on them,
and turn them into wings that glow in the dark
for the angels who plant trees at night.
Art by Matt Wisniewski
I am happy to announce the availability of my debut collection of poetry for purchase. Please follow the link below to access the title from my Create Space page. It is also available on Amazon and Kindle, and in about a month look for it at a bookstore near you! Enjoy and thank you so much for your support.
And there I stood
at the threshold of infinity,
the tides would cease to swerve,
when the moon would
turn to face me and weep,
when the lighthouse
would become darkened
by the sempiternal emptiness
of unanswered questions.
And then I chose a star to hold,
to cherish and protect as the path takes on new direction.
I speak to a destiny that radiates possibility,
that dissipates the tribulations of yore
and casts them into the pond
where I once thought the answers awaited me.
And here I sing robust melodies
bejeweled with red stones,
warm and smooth to the touch,
filled with a luscious silence, a knowing.
The future reveals an exploding genesis,
its particulates raining upon my head
down my face, attached to my song,
christened by the scintillations
emanating from my bosom.
Nestled by the fireside,
The temperate caress
of an errant flicker
awakens the latent
serenade of the season,
carrying expectant smiles
to their place beyond the sphere.
in this series of nows and forevers,
in the way your hand
Lies untroubled in mine,
redolent of the halcyon’s
repose after her flight
through celestial reveries
interconnected by the vestal melodies
of winged seraphs
perched atop the star that sits aloof
bearing our likeness.
I’ve heard the echoes,
chased the shadows,
danced with the reveries
of phantom caresses.
Retreat with me
to a safe space
‘neath the snow-laden burrows
behind the curtain of remembrances
where we will carve out
of innocence and mirth,
and ascend the smoky hills by night’s end.
Art: “The Road in front of Saint-Siméon Farm in Winter”
under the cherry blossom tree,
where we will absorb
the full range
of moonlit harmonies.
when the forest of extreme
when the trees pant and beg
for eyes that never
a moment of caprice,
worlds became intertwined
and flowers laced
traces of virgin earth.
Art: “Beating Heart”
of a void
for her touch…
Art: Odette Hayon Itah
where the branches met their
birthed itself from eternal hiding,
Where the minions of fate
worked in concert
the ornamented veil
of futures subsequently
Where drops of sky
a soulless moon
to its final appearance,
the fringes of darkened hours.
Art: “The Black Swan”
William Degouve de Nuncques