Posted in Leaves on the Poet Tree (Poems)

Ode to Morpheus

O Sleep, I give up on thee.
Hast thou forgotten me?
The sheep I numbered are running free
past all pretense of profundity.

I can trace the path that brought me here,
but the way of return is ne’er so clear.
I taste what hath sought to steer
me from what I yearn to draw near.

O Sleep, now it seems I must succumb as into my burning brain I have plumbed
to reap my dreams for words to come,
my yearning plain, O shouting eyes, be struck dumb!

Posted in Musings and Reflections

Awake, O Sleeper

I arise from another nightmare
to gray skies and rain,
struggling to understand
the strange synapses
in my brain.

What a relief it is to awaken
and find that what was taken
still remains.

Though perhaps I am mistaken
and that which I thought I lost
needs to be forsaken
to make room for a
different refrain.

Have I become so encumbered
to certain things
that they are now numbered
in my dreams?

I know not
only that the difference
between waking and slumber
is often not as clear
as it seems.

Posted in Leaves on the Poet Tree (Poems)

In the moments before midnight

Here now
in the moments before midnight
tree shadows
given life by wind and street lamp
dance across the curtains and my frame
as i hover in the darkened room
suspended within the final moments of wakefulness
wondering if there is one thing yet left undone
before to the land of dreams i must succumb

then i am tumbling
fading fast
realizing right as my eyes close that there was indeed one thing left to do
and it was to build this wall of words
gathered around me while
i sleep
my guardians
silent sentinels of mind
my soul to keep

Posted in The Sunday Driver: Life in the Slow Lane

The Antithesis To The Train Bleu

Upstairs in the bathroom, after I have dressed and left the laptop on the dining room table, I hear the lonesome call of the 4am and the tell-tale rumbling through the open window. I think I must have heard it coming in my sleep.

I woke up to hitch a ride like some drowsy hobo.

Once it starts rolling in my head, there really is no stopping it. There are no depots on this track. My thoughts fill the baggage car and I’ve got to unpack each one before I can get off this train.

There are a lot of suitcases.

But I’ve done this long enough to know that there is a finite number of them and eventually I will reach the last one. My mind will come to its destination, I will hop off the train, and return to elusive slumber.

I am not the only passenger. The people I think about sit in the seats like silent ghosts. I carry on conversations with them (though I am really talking to myself), but eventually we, namely the myriad parts of me, reach some sort of understanding.

I know the conductor well. It is he who I must trust with my baggage, whose gentle hand will take my ticket from me if I let him, who will point me to the sleeping car after I have released what I do not need to keep.

And I can slowly tumble from these worries into sleep.

Posted in Leaves on the Poet Tree (Poems)

Nocturnal Duo

The coon is in my mind,
a shadow revealed by the porch light,
turning in circles in the back yard,
licking each blade of grass.

Is this behavior normal?
Is the creature sick?
Does it know that another masked insomniac
seeks something here?
Will it accept food from my hand if
I step from these walls into the night?

The visitor disappears and I am
reluctant to cut the light.

Will there be a second coming, a revelation of the wild?
I, awake with the questions, keep watch through the window,
feeling so much like an orphaned child.


In the morning the walnut tree has grown a different nut.
The neighbor dog has treed the coon.
They sit on limb and root
heads down in saddened state,
neither happy with this stalemate.
I open the door to join the inaction.

I seek some distraction.
The dog finds its own, rushing off for its morning dig
in the compost heap.

My nocturnal companion sees its chance,
moves head first down the trunk and
scampers off to sleep.

(originally written March 13, 2006)

Posted in Leaves on the Poet Tree (Poems)


Big blackbirds wake me in the morning.
I can hear them through the window and the door.

I wonder if I can drop back to sleep.
Quoth the Raven,
“Not anymore.”


Posted in Leaves on the Poet Tree (Poems)

Moon Walk


Joy brings me down the stairs in the night.
Contentment bids me glance outside.
Awe shows me the land as if covered in snow.
Wonder reveals the pale touch of moonlight.

Posted in Leaves on the Poet Tree (Poems)

In the Time Before the Dawn


dog bark wakes me at 1
as he has done
every night this week

bleary eyed i ponder the mystery
as i open the door for he
to be released into the dark

i stand shivering and cold
upon the open vestibule
awaiting his return

his contentment is a simple thing
here now beside me lying
in the time before the dawn

Posted in Prayers and the Sacred

Insomnia Ad Nauseum

here i am again
losing sleep
worry my
reading news of
tragedy in a vain
attempt to grow
so exhausted
that i drop off
when prayer
should be my
only friend