Category: Prior Art


Old Poem: “… many colors.”

… many colors

By J. K. McDowell

November 2010

 

The flames capture your deep looking and hold fast to

What was once just a glance of the soul. My advice:

Do not turn away. Others will avoid the window.

 

The stars suggest flexibility and grace.

The healing is over, why do the cast and the

Crutch remain? Does this street of suffering suit you?

 

She is the ghost that haunts your remembering.

I need to be more than a phantom memory,

Rather an eerie tingling chill, a stolen caress.

 

I suppose the whole thing is rather unsettling.

A confined balance of panic and pain.

I wonder, is a change of address in the future?

 

I notice a dragon in the conure’s sneer.

Surprised, I peer closer, she has never breathed

Fire before but somehow my eyebrows are singed.

 

The dark half of the year has hatched, J. K.

In time, we fall back to refuge, reminded

That black friday comes in so many colors.

 

This piece appears in my poetry collection “Night, Mystery & Light,” published by Hiraeth Press and is available at the Hiraeth Press website:

http://hiraethpress.com/store/books/night-mystery-light/

 

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Emily Dickinson’s Birthday

Today is Emily Dickinson’s birthday.  Her soulful cryptography remains an enigma to ponder and sip from.  Dickinson’s presence is explicit in this poem of mine that appears in “Night, Mystery & Light” called “… peaceful rest.”  copyright Hiraeth Press 2011.  Please consider this an early Holiday Gift.

. . . peaceful rest.

Often we are undone by the incompleteness
And inconsistencies of this sacred landscape.
Your Soul has already traced the path – now go.

I read the sign: “No Dogs OR Irish Allowed.”
How true – none of us are welcome everywhere.
And duende? Circle back, the trail is still fresh.

In a past life I was a more talented poet.
Of course I never had the courage to write.
Is it true she only wrote her words in pencil?

Dread – a distracting stowaway, ever hungry.
I recall searching the gravestones for my name.
And avoiding the places of silent starvation.

The ants have decided my chocolate is fair
Payment for Dali’s thoughtful snub. The feeding of
The smallest of things should never be neglected.

The carriage will not be trusted with the coffin.
Jim, join these five sons of Erin and carry sweet
Miss Emily from the Homestead to peaceful rest.

A Favorite: “… this is.”

“… this is.”

 

By J. K. McDowell

 

This is Night. The Moon conducts a silent chorus
Of angelic voices. Darkness has a certain
Glow, a true presence that should not be ignored.

 
The light of Her flame dances across the wall.
I remember that mystic water on my forehead,
The blessings swirling about, around, then through me.

 
Yes, I am still learning the ways of ritual –
The sense of patience and timing and season,
Now lost in the treachery of modern existence.

 
Praise. This overcast sky is a blessing. Few things
Last long in harsh sunlight. Now, this midday, calm and
Restful, reflect on the change that approaches here.

 
Too often, we curse the darkness with our eyes closed.
Oh Friend, be brave, look to that single candle flame
And realize you are peering into a mirror.

 
You keep telling people, Jim, “Paths entwined in
The Beauty of the Soul always cross again.”
Honestly, you have no clue as to how true this is.

 

 

Appears in “Night Mystery & Light” published by Hiraeth Press copyright 2011.

Still “… made real.”

This poem appears in “Night, Mystery & Light” published by Hiraeth Press.  The poem was written on March 21, 2003 as a wedding anniversary gift to Paula, my beautiful wife.  This is one of the most personal poems in the collection and maybe one of the most powerful.  I have read it a few times in the last decade, even at public poetry readings to balance some of the darker works.  As I read it again tonight as part of this posting I am amazed at the honesty and sustained truthfulness.  There is a phrase from Coleman Barks’ Rumi = “when grapes turn to wine, they’re wanting this.”  Today is “this” =  26 years of “… this dream made real.”  Good Night.

. . . made real.
I know poetry for this event is not new
And yet feelings a drift become focused in this
Lens of love, remembrance and hope for the future.
Sixteen, a small number against eternity
Yet the strength of our union was forged before
The tick tock of time and will be everlasting.
I know Emerson was right and all things begin
As a thought and I thank God I held the notion
Of a wedding in March and my life with you love.
You know the celebrations of breaching whales were
Close by on our honeymoon. It was a sight and
Sound to be enjoyed a dozen years later.
Of the future I only have one claim, loving you
And God’s blessing of that love in return makes the
Ring complete against all uncertainty and chaos.
While an annual anniversary is the custom
Marking of time, I praise, declare and confess our
Love with every breath and cherish this dream made real.

 

Poem from November 2010.

This poem appears in “Night, Mystery & Light” published by Hiraeth Press.  Possibly a fitting reflection on this Black Friday.  Blessings and Gratitude  -=-=- JKM.

 

 

… many colors

By J. K. McDowell

November 2010

 

The flames capture your deep looking and hold fast to

What was once just a glance of the soul.   My advice:

Do not turn away.  Others will avoid the window.

 

The stars suggest flexibility and grace.

The healing is over, why do the cast and the

Crutch remain?  Does this street of suffering suit you?

 

She is the ghost that haunts your remembering.

I need to be more than a phantom memory,

Rather an eerie tingling chill, a stolen caress.

 

I suppose the whole thing is rather unsettling.

A confined balance of panic and pain.

I wonder, is a change of address in the future?

 

I notice a dragon in the Conure’s sneer.

Surprised, I peer closer, she has never breathed

Fire before but somehow my eyebrows are singed.

 

The dark half of the year has hatched, J. K.

In time, we fall back to refuge, reminded

That black friday comes in so many colors.

… once knew.
J.K. McDowell

The shaman walks through the briar with ease, not a
Snag or a scratch. Today, I bought a new sweater
And I am fresh out of adhesive bandages.

Libations – dust drinks down the moist offering.
Dreams float unconcerned with the pull of the earth.
Can intension focus the eyes that turn away?

No Free Spot and this Bingo Card is in Ogham!
We want a prize when things line up, when we should be
Following the dark stranger with the crooked walk.

The end of our friendship? True, true, I dreamed of
Your funeral but that is no excuse not to
Return my calls. Oh this indiscrete disclosure.

What if Castaneda never left the library?
The Otherworld still exists and holds you close.
Wisdom always shines through the fallibility.

The morning sunlight is quiet on the cliff rock.
Soul embraces you tight. Jim, listen deep to the
Music under the silence, the song you once knew.