One tree on the hill standing strong, standing tall
Through summer and winter, spring and fall —
This aged tree has stood the test for the best —
And what has she seen through fat years and lean?
So many foibles of humanity born of pure insanity,
But also beauty, bravery and much love from above,
For battles have been fought, victories blood bought,
And in peace lovers have promised passion, as well,
Neath her mighty branches, sounding wedding bells,
And so this majestic tree has seen heaven and hell;
Now what would she tell us if she could but speak?
This tree on the hill standing strong, standing tall?
There was a boy of ancient lore, who walked so regally through every door;
He was ruddy and strong, wise and as stately as an eventide song sung long;
He grew in stature and knowledge, and naturally knew what to do each day,
As he perfectly balanced work and play, and would say only what was right
In sight of everyone under the sun, because even in the dark he lived in light
So bright that many thought he’d been forged as a knight by heaven’s might;
And so it was that on a battlefield fierce he dared to pierce the enemy lines
With but sling and sleek stone by which he alone slew the one giant of fear,
Who stood so near on dreary day, while his people watched with admiration
And sensation as the great, husky foe fell to the ground with terrible sound;
Then did the army gain courage against pain of war and tore into the field,
Led by this brave boy whom history knows simply as David, born to be king
In the elder days
They abandoned better ways
And entered hell’s maze
No one entered in
To ask forgiveness for sin
To again begin
All good forsaking
Memories were left standing
And children weeping
In our own blind way
Do we do better today?
And what do we say?
Note: This poem is comprised of four haikus running along one theme . . . Hope you enjoy. Blessings to one and all!
An unseen hand turns the pages of time
And ages fly by but the sky still remains,
And does the range of humanity change?
Time, it seems, has been a poor teacher,
And history, too, an ill-sought preacher;
Thus the same lessons are taught
And oh-so very quickly forgotten
By unruly pupils who never do graduate
But so contemptuously self-congratulate
For achievements that grow cold
As their age grows old with time
As that unseen hand turns another page,
And for all our rage, we pass as shadows
Into the frightful blight of historic night,
But the sky still remains and gives rain
To wash away the stain of our humanity
. . .
An unseen hand turns the pages of time,
Page after page, age upon age upon age
An end in sight but there is a bend, too, to be turned;
While not everything left behind us can be burned,
Yet there is the unknown, frightening yet exciting . . .
Will we meet another street like the one we are on?
Or will it be fresh, clean and serene for us to travel?
We glance at the clock at the crossing of this block
And tremble inside; we cannot abide where we are,
No matter how brightly shines our star;
We will go far in a mere few steps, dear;
Time chimes late into this night as we look for light,
Bright sun newly risen on horizon with anticipation
And hope for better pilgrimage in a much better age;
But we do not know and this shows in our very eyes!
Some won’t make it to the bend; it’ll truly be the end;
Some will go swinging around bringing holiday cheer
Never knowing the Reaper is near;
Yes, sadly, it will be their last year;
Some will round the corner in fear
Of the unknown, asking what seeds have been sown,
And when they are shown, all the fear will disappear
In the brand New Year in which we will hear shouts
Of glee and bitter cries, hellos and sad goodbyes . . .
But it comes, nevertheless, as surely as the sun rises;
So may the New Year bring you cheer, I say this day,
And may blessings fall upon all who are near and dear!
As we rightly remember blessings bestowed
We cannot help but remember what is owed;
Land we now enjoy once belonged to bands
Of people here long before our Euro-throng;
So . . .
But Not For
CROOKS & BANKS
But Not For
The CRUEL & HATEFUL
But Nor For
ATTITUDES & EMPTY PLATITUDES
Yes, we are rightly thankful for the seeds
That we plant ‘n grow to meet our needs,
But we should count the beads of history
And recall the grand mystery we erased,
Leaving only shadowy lines to be traced
Happy Thanksgiving, perhaps, but also . . .
“Happy Indigenous Heritage Day,” I say!
Note: For a succinct chronology of the protests against DAPL (the Dakota Access Pipeline) you may want to read the following article:
Yesteryear is somewhere I hold not dear,
And shed not one tear that I can only peer
Into my past – to cast but a quick glance –
And it does not last . . .
Oh, yes, there’re fond memories, I’m sure
But they do not serve to cure my dejection
And so my rejection of too much reflection
Comes with ease with ne’er ghostly figure
To tease, and no shade to rise up to please,
Nothing to freeze my soul in bygone years;
And tell me, what could be more charming,
If not alarming, for an avid pupil of history?
Ah! an invigorating story I love, so savory!
But really there’s not one bone of interest
To pick from my own,
Sown in the mundane . . .
So yesteryear is not dear but rather drear;
But, then, I hear it is medicine for the soul
To reflect, to recollect, and so it might be,
So, you see, I do reminisce in quietness;
No, I do not hate the past, so I meditate,
Yet this does not last very long;
After all, I belong here and now . . .
Yesteryear may be as near as one thought,
But reliving those days cannot be bought
With the world’s gold, not even one’s soul,
And why try? To want to live in yesteryear
Comes from fear of bowing here and now,
Turning ‘golden days’ into towers of power
Under which one cowers . . .
And this came to mind as I was pondering
Flowered wreaths are laid on graves and flags are waved,
Precious photos are saved and placed in handsome albums,
As should be for you and me and all who are near and dear;
Old movies are played, prayers prayed, as memories fade,
And old books are read while nostalgic looks are shared
From the bed of the past to make something glorious last
For as long as possible… Ah! But is it not quite impossible
To resurrect what has gone, and do we not really suspect
That it is the present with which we dissent and the future
We rather resent as we recall only the pleasant of the past,
Of days gone by, focusing on the highs, ignoring the lows
Else they blow away our feelings in kneeling at the altar
Of history and the stories we have conjured in our minds
That bind our hearts to an idealism that ne’er existed?
Oh yes, to honor the dead is a golden banner of humanity,
As this helps us keep our sanity and guard against vanity;
But there is the danger that in fear and anger we simply
Desire to live and expire in the past rather than live
And fight now for what will last!
Yes, always remember the past…
No, do not dismember the present