Posted in Leaves on the Poet Tree

Category 5

i have rarely been gentle with myself

at times my inner storm bursts forth and i lash out at those closest to me

it is a cyclical pattern as predictable as the spinning cyclones birthed upon the waves each hurricane season

o for the calm that resides in the eye
to trust that change will come in its own good time
that the divine does her work with or without my help or obstruction

o for the will to simply stop spinning and listen
the patience with my broken self and the brokeness in others
whose perceived stagnancy
reflects my own
and spins the inner rage
which so often overflows
in word and deed

o for the silence
that follows the whirlwind
that calls me forth from
the cave of my
skewed assumptions
into a spirit
of deep love and
quiet grace

Posted in Musings


When the night is cold with what I am unable to give, I awake to a day filled with gifts beyond counting.

Posted in Prayers

I Am

I am the creature crying at 4am.

I am the sleeper who responds with grace.

I am the relief that comes with the release of waste.

I am the grateful lick I taste.

I am the watcher in the chair far away.

I am the room in a healing place.

I am the father who waits for the phone call.

I am he with hands for a face.

Posted in Prayers

Dead Leaf Hanging Lonely


i dont want
you to see

there is a
balance in
letting you

cut away
that which
is dead
in me

and the
that when
you look
at me

all you
see is

(Featured image with kaleidescope filter #GodsView)

Posted in Leaves on the Poet Tree

Stole Softly Love

I searched in vain for Love
since she did not search for me.
I prayed for her flame,
but lonely only warmed me.

Yearning deeply darkly for
the caress of her hand,
I swam within the hourglass
in the clutches of the sand.

The bell chimed.
The chimes rang.
The hands whirred in glee.
The pendulum would swing and
cut my heart,
A cascading sea.

In dismay I looked and saw
the future’s crushing weight,
of sweetness never tasted,
dangled before the grate.
My hands through the bars
could only feel the wind
of her precious wings as
Love passed by again.

As I sank within myself
in the blankness of despair,
to my side stole softly Love
and caught me unawares.

October 30, 1987

(Reposted from June 2016)

Posted in Leaves on the Poet Tree


I am a man among a sharp-edged people
with corners like the rocks
that made this
scattered on the slopes all the
way down past Hog Run,
tumbling through the
baptismal silt
to the Shenandoah
and beyond.

They are smooth by then,
worn by water and
collective abrasions,
knocking against each
other on the

I am not enamored with edges.
I prefer more subtle curves with their
laughing reminisces.
I want the joy of the end
without the pain of the
sharing that makes
stones smooth.

O for the grace to be content
in the midst of this angry splashing of
love where I am learning to be at best
an awkward swimmer.

(Written January 14, 2006, reposted from July 2011)

Posted in Leaves on the Poet Tree


it seems i have been facing
these walls
in my ongoing
attempts to make this room
and house whole

o for the grace and patience to endure
the kind
and gentle
of my

Posted in The Sunday Driver: Life in the Slow Lane


I used to believe that I wrestled with God.

I do not.
I wrestle with myself,
my Geminian twin.

God is a bystander.
Until we separate, make wide the circle, and
let her in.

I am still a card-carrying member of original sin.

(Originally posted here in July 2011)

Posted in Musings

k(NO)w Justice

You’re surprised?

It doesn’t mean we don’t keep working towards it.
But don’t act like it’s an entitlement.
Yeah, you deserve it.
But so does everyone else.

And be careful what you wish for,
cuz we’re all under the same judgement,
and for the final one there ain’t no parole.
If we choose another way, the Judge will simply say, okay.
Your Honor won’t be happy about it.
(You won’t be too thrilled either.)
But the Judge don’t want no zombies.

It’s a choice.
You’ve been given the complete freedom to royally and utterly screw your life up.
(How has that worked out for you, btw?)

Or you can choose life.
And the way of love.

Look around you.
It don’t take no rocket scientist to figure out that we got a ways to go before that healing stream really gets rolling.

It may not be here yet.
But it’s coming.
And God’s justice has got some teeth to it.

We better hope and pray you and I aren’t what it’s having for lunch.