In the Way

It seems the winds
of this universe
could not plot more
to make it worse
while all our plans and dreams
even our enemies' hidden schemes
were blocked on each and every day
because now
Life just got in the way

Not much joy here
days filled with sadness
sprinkled here with
silent madness
here in my self-exile
I know I have to stay a while
so sun may shine again some day
but again
Life just gets in the way

The here and now
opposed to time past
I go forward
so this can't last
we rarely ever get to choose
the life we want - we sometimes lose
when light is dark and clouds are grey
command it
Life get out of the way

Posted at Poets and Storytellers United: Writers’ Pantry #52: Year’s Beginning

The Murder of Mr Dean

 Maggie Gordon lived on top of the hill
in a house shuttered from the sky
No visitors darkened her door
and only one person knew just why

No lawyer would take her case
of the murder of Mr. Dean
The DA vowed to avenge his friend
who lost his life there on the green

In the land of forgotten memories
and outright stolen lies
The county judge issued a warrant
Maggie had no valid alibi

Witnesses' sworn testimonies
painted a dark forbiding tale
Of a burning love affair
and of passion that grew stale

Then the hardware storekeeper
said he sold Maggie a knife
The same one found at the murder scene
the DA proved she took Dean's life

On that day of sentencing
after Maggie lost her case
She pulled down her silken scarf
and showed her red-bare scar on her face

Some say it was Mr. Dean
who cut her in a rage
Some said it came from a former love
when she tried to turn that page

Forsaken by all that knew her
while years in her prison cell
The true story behind the murder
not a soul she'd ever tell

I've been spending my drive times with Bob Dylan with a sprinkling of Leonard Cohen for much of the summer. I ask of anyone that comments to help me out and offer up a poet or writer to help expand my universe. I trust my regular readers and I thank you in advance for the help (I could use some lately.)

Linked at Poets and Storytellers United, Writers' Pantry #43: Sunday Morning Cereal

A last request

Standing on the gallows
under distant skies of grey
soon I knock on Heaven's door
but you can now walk away

Though my neck is in the noose
on this my judgement day
I look to your passing Grace
please go on and walk away

I pause in this short silence
as you take the time to pray
listen to my last request
forget me and walk away

As I near this my end
I view life in mind's display
your only choice to take here
is to turn and walk away

There is only one ending
for the last act of this play
heed my words before I go
I beg you to walk a---

Posted at Poets and Storytellers United, Weekly Scribblings #40: Walking Away

Now you're gone

Harbinger of Spring when my brothers return
songs caress the soul on summer days
no longer heard at this time before fall
sitting here I hear the catbird call
not the same as a blackbird song
One day you're here - now you're gone

I miss the melody that was sung
you went to the south without a goodbye
drying stalks of corn all that remain
neglected nest that was battered by rain
in the back of my mind I hear the song
One day you're heard - now you're gone

Now I miss the songs that seem long ago
in the fields and up on the wire
final words to those now on the wing
when Winter is gone and your return come Spring
in the meantime I recall your last song
Hear it again - now that you're gone

One of our red-winged blackbirds from an earlier Spring

 Posted at Writers’ Pantry #38: Ominous Times

straight line winds - reprised

August storm forged east across the plain
straight line winds followed by the rain
Trees uprooted, limbs broken, roofs torn
laying over en-mass the acres of corn

Best corn that I'd ever grown
was my thought on Monday til
nature's wind being what it is
all creation bends to its will

And if I were a religious man
I'd heed the ancient words of
"After pride comes the fall"
but that's not all
not at all

Chainsaw serenade heard past midnight
house debris and limbs piled by daylight
Power out for nearly a quater mil
a hundred thousand without power still

A week later in recovery
the cleanup continues
in the battered landscape
in city and country views

And if I were a betting man
with neighbors like these
We'll rise up again
and will begin
to rest therein
(Yes, I remarked to My One the day before the storm that this was the best popcorn that I've raised.)

After nearly two weeks, there is still cleanup work to complete at the farm and in the community. One thing about Iowans is that we don't wait for help, we get to work. Those who had chainsaws started cleanup as soon as the storm cleared. Small food vendors have been preparing meals nearly every day for those who need them. Semi loads of food and water have arrived and distributed.

There's a lot of work left and about 10,000 electric customers in the area without power. The harder we work, the sooner we get back to our lives.

Linked to Poets and Storytellers United: Writers’ Pantry #34: Writing Is Easy

Grace calling home

Between the hills of red clover
the shadows still grow
beyond the whispering in my name
they still speak to me
in the still dark corners
where willows grow

I no longer heed the words
of my fathers
or of their mothers before them
but I hear their voices
and it saddens me still
as I am chained
to the past of lost tranquility

Keep on that path my friend
and don't linger
to hear the creek rush over smooth stones
for those stones are heavy
as chains of not so long ago
where once was peace
but now...

I see on the crest of the hill
the wake of the winds
it reaches down to the hearts
so hope may endure
for lost grace
to call me home again
Posted at Poets and Storytellers United: Writers’ Pantry #32: From Case Studies to Plague Poetry

Under the black cherry tree

She came to me from the eastern hill
golden feather in her hair
to meet under the black cherry tree
branches reaching to the night sky.

She stayed with me through the night
near the fire we built
glowing ash floating to mix with stars
night shadows just beyond the firelight.

Then she smiled
that tilted smile
and I knew - oh, I knew
the ancient ones had given me a chance
maybe one last chance at the redemptive power
from the forgiving heart.

As daylight broke over the hill
she turned to greet the sun
and smiled again as colors gained
in the fields of red clover.

As she gave a last smile and goodbye
she stepped back to the mists
the golden feather fell to the ground
underneath the black cherry tree.
Found under a black cherry tree
A dream after finding the feather while pruning the walnut trees this summer. I have dozens of black cherry trees growing among the walnuts and perhaps more in the near future.

Posted at Poets and Storytellers United: Writers' Pantry #31: Here comes August!

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