Like A Joke

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You make a joke

You throw a joke

I am the joke

Can’t I take a joke

They laugh, they look

You smile, I within

I am the joke

What’s wrong, but

They know, I just

Can’t take a joke

I am the joke

It is me

And they laugh

At your jokes

They laugh at me

You grow like

A giant fed by

Their laughter, and

I shrink – tiny, tiny

Me, and that makes

An even better joke

So you say that, too

The laughs swallow

Me up, tiny me

disappears

Like

a

joke

yellow tree

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talk to me, yellow tree,

tell me how you sing in gold

harmonies of light and float,

you lift and fall in autumn

pieces on the ground ~ whisper

your dance of shifting limbs

you tell time with your turn

teach me roots that grasp

frozen grip when all they hold is

gone

The Music Man and Peace by the Sea

 

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The Music Man, he soothes; he plays all his chords in blue,

leans back his head, eyes closed, fingers of a poet.

He plays out his soul, in sonnets of electrics strings,

harmonies of rain and green. He’s made of music, mountain,

and silence, still searching for his home.  His melody

so sweet that clouds rain words, lift hearts into bloom.

Miles and miles away, she sits in peace by the sea,

and the mountain tells the waves the Music Man’s song.

She hears it all, Music Man’s dreams never sleep; she collects

each note, each word, each dream, two souls – and builds a home for both.

honesty

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secrets like a tree torn of leaves,

each one a truth untold, even

the desperate grip of branches

could not stop the fall. sun stares,

demands honesty, reveals deceit

in her glare. his wooden arms

are no match for her golden gaze,

so all of it falls, half-truths and lies,

and he becomes bare, only bony

fingers of regret, reaching out,

as if she would forgive. she covers

her eyes in clouds and turns away.

Silent Christmas

In the dips of the Blue Ridge Mountains,

where the soft blue cast blends with mountain streams

and stone walls, I settle in to a sparse cabin

on the side of a hill.  It is Christmas Eve,

and I’ve made my journey, here,

away from what Christmas isn’t, to this

stillness that is coming home.  The cabin is bare,

and cold.  With twigs and logs left by another, I start

a fire, the fireplace making the cabin glow a gentle orange,

smell of wood smoke that makes me want to lie on

the worn blue couch and fall asleep to the crackling wood.

But it is Christmas eve, and I have no tree.  In my many

years, I have never spent one without a decorated tree.

It seems a tradition I cannot forego.  So, before I settle

by my fire with hot tea and dreams, I zip my coat and head

out into the blue twilight with the axe left by the door.

It doesn’t take long to find the perfect evergreen.

She calls to me, from the hill next to the cabin, and I go to her,

admiring her symmetry, the round of her back, her perfect point.

As the wind blows through her needles, she smiles at me,

and I know I shall never chop her down.  I drop my axe

and contemplate.  Surely she must be decorated for Christmas!

She shall look like a queen.  Scurrying around like a chipmunk

gathering nuts for the winter, I collect pinecones, and berries,

dried flowers, and even a bird’s nest.  Soon my splendid tree

is dressed for the holiday.  The sun has set, and the cabin calls.

I sleep by the earnest fire, awaiting a silent Christmas,

 and my Christmas tree dancing in her place in the hill.

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The Tree on the Hill: A Love Poem

I touch you gently, running a finger down your trunk.

You have knots, scars, and holes; I move my hands

across your roughness.  Leaning into you, we breathe

together; I listen to your wooden heartbeat, to the rings

of years you have grown, to each of the grabbing roots

you pushed through the earth.  You are strong.

You faced wind and rain, snow and cold, on this hilltop,

alone, begging birds to sit with you and lend their songs.

Branches bare and reaching for sun, you no longer hold

your blanket of red and yellow, and we both shiver in the cold,

as your fingers bend and twist skyward in a graceful dance

with the wind.  The clouds lean down to hear you whisper, but I say,

“Talk to me,” for I am enchanted by your strength, the turns

of your trunk, and the way you reach for the sky.  You have secrets

you’re not willing to tell me, though I throw my arms around you,

scratching my face on the rough of your bark, your arms remain aloft.

I trace a heart with my finger, turn, and walk down the hill,

stopping only once to admire your grace.

You don’t belong to me.Image