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23.6k · Mar 2017
A Bird in the Hand
harlon rivers Mar 2017
A sound was heard at my
garden door
A feathered smudge found upon it

There she lay in frightened
trembling dismay
   A giant knelt ...
yet still towering above her

He reached out and touched
her pounding heart
Then cupped her warmth
in his hand

She stayed awhile until
she could smile
At the kindly human mystery

This love they shared
is uncommonly rare
She knew she could be freed

Before she flew
she whispered a song she knew
into the gentle giant’s  beard :

“I cannot make you happy
You're a wounded Bird like me ―
be Free...
you must find the strength to Fly”…

"A Bird in your hand
  is worth two in the bush ―

   Come fly away with me"...

March 2012 © harlon rivers ... all rights reserved
Thank you so much for the special feature this simple heartfelt poem has been allowed.  It is based on actual events that happen often where habitat
meets civilization.  As humans we can mitigate this footprint left behind by lifting the weight of caring with actions that speck louder than words. Who among us has not needed a helping hand when we are struggling with the unexpected?  Moments we must find the strength to carry on with a little help from our friends?

   Find the strength to fly ―

Written March 1st, 2012
reposted from my original account
18.6k · Nov 2017
The sound of a snowflake
harlon rivers Nov 2017

in the quiet of stillness
I can hear a snowflake
gently land
upon my cheek
a flurry of gossamer
frozen lace lilts ~
the ennui
of chilling silence
into a wilderness symphony

thank you to all
for stopping by to read
"The sound of a snowflake"

written by:  h.a. rivers ... 11/13/2017
9.0k · Jan 2017
The Slow Death of a Poet
harlon rivers Jan 2017
...a diary of the falling dominoes chapter

invisibly dying from the inside out
no one is looking into unseen eyes
no one can hear a muted voice fading
no one is close enough to be near

the deafening thrums echo
anxieties’ racing heartbeat
within morphing flesh shell ,
gasping for new breath
in a hovering stale silence

from a distance
the broken mirror ricochets a subdued light ;
much closer the reflection reveals
someone I once knew by heart

now an unrecognizable mask
enshrouds a terminal emptiness
inconspicuous at a fleeting glance ,
impossible to discern what storms rage
from the inside out ,... unnoticed  

an uncontained wildfire
smoldering within,  lies in wait
for the imminent winds of change
to fan the flames into the final
eternal silent ashes

a poet reaches out demurely
offering a candid look
into the window
of the imperfect human soul

there is no poetry
met by indifference
just gathered unread words scribbled,

squandered time
dripped slowly on an empty page ;
moments turn into days
days turned into years

invisibly dying from the inside out
an unfinished life trickles out
like seeping blood evanescing
from a bottomless puncture
wounding ... penetrating the heart,
leaching out the slow death of a poet

for poetry is only words unless they touch someone ...

befallen to indifference is poetic death
by salted paper cuts ...

a muting suffocation
that hiddenly erodes away,
silencing the passion
of a musing soul
one unread word at a time ...

© harlon rivers ... all rights reserved
it is an enigma how poetry evolves in meaning over time
― like a self-fulfilled prophecy, some become transformational, some become new beginnings or some become a finality of a metamorphosis of peaceful endings or deleted attempts at understanding the misunderstood...

... all to be determined and allowed to let be

8.7k · Sep 2016
becoming silence
harlon rivers Sep 2016
The quieter he became ...
the more he could feel
only a single lit candle
moved the stillness ,
gripping the void between
lucency and obscure darkness

longing eyes slipped slowly closed
as the flicker faded ,
inner quietude dimming all light
the darker it got ...
the more vividly he could see

a nearly silent exhaled sigh
let the memories flood ;
leaning into the bereft
where there once was light ,
he became a timeless silence
                              without form
                     only shaped by retracing
                        re-remembered words

yearning to understand
some of the greater things life unfolds
experiencing the unknown
                             without fear ,
                      for to clinch and feel
that which seems indefinable

     for here ,
in this formless
manifest dimension ,
all layers of essence
are peeled back
to the bared aurora
of a soul's spirit light ;

at the core of inner stillness
      nothing is impossible

© H A Rivers all rights reserved
. daybreak meditation

"There is a hidden meaning behind all events,
and this hidden meaning is serving your own evolution"

"In the midst of movement and chaos, keep stillness inside of you."    ...unknown
7.4k · Aug 2018
a fistful of sand
harlon rivers Aug 2018
The waves spilled the rising tide
back into the scattered footprints  in the sand
deeply entrenched in life’s mystery,
receding into every breaking wave

A stiff sea breeze put back every grain of sand,
elements of a larger object gathers,
gravity firmed, into the silent shoreline chasms—
a beheld essence washed out to sea
by the fugitive tides and retreating sea-foam

Soon all trodden traces visibly vanish;
unmarked mileposts on a metaphysical pathway
slip away back to a windswept shoreline
and elapsing summer tide

Seabirds glide in slow-motion,
held sway into the shapeless gusts —
as if feathered puppets hovering,
hanging from the rafters
of the burgeoning orange sky

There's an uncommon peace in the renaissance;
effervescent crisp ocean air filling
the indefinable emptiness
marooned within each heartbeat’s echo

Each new breath inhaled,  disappearing within
the unhealed hollow of every thing once believed;
fully aware this life is unholdable as time,
yet feeling many things deeply retained
    in each passing moment—
slipping away like a handful of sand
sifting through all these hands once held

Presence becoming wreathed in a miasma of stillness,
space that levitates like an unpredictable fog
that seeps into the gnawing voids
of an unsated hunger

harlon rivers  ...  August 1st,  2018
a piece from the TRAVELOGUE collection:

Getting away from my ordinary life maze seems to be changing perspective; moments still unfold as they are intended, but there is less peripheral distraction, more focus on the simple things that enrich life in the moment.

I did not plan on posting anything else until back to daily Internet access
in Fall ... plus, much I've scribbled these days, seems derivative of the last  pieces i've published: that said, this is of the present moment and as close to peace as I've tread in eons:  Thank you for taking the time to check out something newly written at a time when my web access and participation @ HePo is sporadic at best.   :)  rivers
7.1k · May 2018
On half-moon lake ☽
harlon rivers May 2018
(a travelogue)

He stared down through
the unbroken silence
lapping the shoreline
Water skippers dart around
the rocks and windfall driftwood
settled juxtaposed in cattail reeds
and emerging broadleaf sprouts

A petrified heartwood timber
lie fallow waiting bare barked,
hushed like a pining lover’s
     timeworn love seat,
     rubbed smooth as
     the crystalline waters
     of  half-moon lake

Lingering for a while  ―  
like a hidden stalker,
a perched wildcat waiting
for the full moon’s  
swooning spell to saturate
the thickening dusk quietude;
     arousing the urgent
     call of the wild —
exhaled from the held breath
of the wilderness nocturne
    on half-moon lake

The stillness was scattered
with the soft downy hairs
of the sleeping cattails,  and
the newly shed catkins
a spring gust bestrewed
from a tall resin birch tree
nigh the Sitka willows

     He  sat  quietly ...
     time out of mind ―

tossing his eyes up into the sky;
taking the time to read the stars ―
catching  them  each  again
as they fell into his gentle hands,
to show him who he was

Seeing their sparkly tracers  
trail-out above the cattails,
     from a distance
they resembled falling stars
unable to perceive their own renaissance ―
plashing lightly upon the still-water
     on half-moon lake

A lone shadow glides stealthily
near mid-tarn,.. swimming  
enchantingly with the grace
     of a blackswan
Appearing to glance shoreward
at the glowing low stars
rise and fall, as his eyes
twinkled skyward over
     the moonlit lagoon ―
heavenward of its moonlit ballet;
the lone sleek dark shadow
     slipping through
     a faint circular ripple
stirring the smooth as glass waters ―  
disappearing like a fleeting moment
     waning deep aneath
     a subtle silent wake.

When all the clear lines blurred,
he knew it had been so long ...

     but hearken !
… an interceding
     long drawn out wail  
     echoed  a feral ache
     across the stillness,
     breaking the silence ―

as the shadow reappeared;
     his tears surrendered
to the undulating call of the wild;
he felt the spirit of the sole Loon,
     as black and white
     as the moonlit night,
stir deeply in his wanting heart ―
     lay bare the silence
in lengthy yodeled psalms
to the god of the moon

Diving down deep yet again,
keeping the light he’d been given,
vanishing into the lifespring
sanctuary of half-moon lake

harlon rivers ... May 2018
travelogue: 4 of some more
Notes: i'm certainly aware i've not been here as often and active as i once was. **** happens and so does life, and it will ... so much so, the travelogue chronicles felt worthwhile for a moment, the first 4 were from the 1st 3000 mile leg of a 6000 mile and 6 month round trip road-trip journey ―

All apologies to those that found the length of my work tedious.   When i've tried to make the ink go other than where and how long it flows naturally ― i fail and stifle, paused in my own sown silence.   Too predictable to continue to ignore ― peace
harlon rivers Nov 2017
The nakedness of winter lies heavy upon
the tolling Sunday quietude
Shed  leaves perish into yesterday
and the dream of another
dawning  someday wanes

The  sun ― lay low
the drudging  ashen  skyline  
Barerd emerald moss scaffolds
draw much more distantness
to the pallid shadowed horizon

The evergreens step forth,
roots grasping sacred heart,
soil  and  rock
In the swelling aloneness
you can feel the grain
of  the  heartwood
rooted in your soul

There are no hard feelings
but there's an enduring ache,
like a tree with a rotting limb
languishing  within
its blackened bark sacrifice

It's not just the grinding time
that slips away begrudgingly;
more of the same takes a toll 
as if another unrung belfry hour
in an empty bell tower
without a song rang out in vain,

peeling  reflections
of reluctant hours  c r a w l  by
in the insensible apathy

A so called holiday passes ―
its footprint bears down
hard  and  deep
as if a paling winter rose
grieves its own passing

A dry wishbone unbroken
lay bare the poignant
truth  it  holds;

it takes two to make
this wish come true

Written by:  harlon rivers
a winter Sunday
11. 26. 2017

Note : alternative title before
accidentally published
by write/ public/default

"Unlucky Wishbone"
4.4k · Dec 2017
A deeper understanding ...
harlon rivers Dec 2017
In a midwinter night’s dream
  i found myself lost again,   
  or was it even this year ?
  It may even go back farther
  than yesterdays out of reach,  
  older than an ancient pyramid stone
Before the rebirth of past life deposits,
  unborn orphaned motherless sediment,
  flotsam of the ages adrift,
  unknown for more than a thousand years

... waiting for so long to see beyond the bounds

High atop a slippery edge-cliff
  i clung  ―            
Searching for a deeper understanding
  of who i am;

Roosting like a starving bird of prey
  with a broken wing
  born alone ... holding on
  With a fear in his eyes
that only i could comprehend
  Staring way down deep in the pith,       
into an internal pitch black abyss,
  just begging to see beyond ―
  Mindful it's so hard looking
  into the eye of a storm

Intimately parsing the recurrent source
  of reigning pain
Where the perpetual fog of isolation dwells;
an inversion,     preventing dispersion
  of the nimbus  cold  and  dark

In the darkness, there bides a suffocating
  A swelling silence what loudly knells,
  leeching through a perennial ache

An abating voice within hollers unheard,
  invisible as a bitter cold wind howling
  relentlessly through the hollow pang;
  Echoing the subsiding say
(squeezed out) ... of an orphaned soul
  deep beneath the light

Awakening to realize  ―  once i was alive
i could feel me holding on to you

Written by:   harlon rivers ... 12/30/2017

Thank you for reading this personal introspective journey  ― peace
3.6k · Mar 2018
wild iris
harlon rivers Mar 2018
wild iris leaves
pierce the meadow sod,
reaching outwards
from cold reclusive shelter
beneath native strawberry
carpeted  repose

juxtaposed  ―  smoke rises
to  the  sun
like the basal verdures
of fleeting winter's escape;
crawling up an invisible
spiral staircase seeking
the azure heavens
r e n a s c e n c e

a  nexus ―
stormy winter’s windfall
  irony of a wooden match,
gathered winter tinder
inflamed,   sacrificed
to the heraldic spring skies
of the begetter;

just  like
the  wistful  soul
beheld a simple  man
that impatiently rests
on the threshold
   of a dream,..
by the billowing silence
of evanescent
winter exile:

a peaceful ascendance;
dissipating puffs of smoke
drifting  away
unto the ether,
weightless as light

harlon rivers ... spring 1st, 2018
thank you for reading
the past moments shared
harlon rivers Jan 2017
Gathered pieces of a great puzzle ;
refreshed perspective like ocean riptides
foment at the confluence collecting dark rivers’ flow
Repurposing back-eddies ,
rejuvenation of stagnant brackish waters ,
inherent buried soul-shine purging
from the ancient core of earth mother

Light arising from the hidden depths
of inner stillness as if a refilling wellspring
burst forth , reawakening muted sighs unspoken
Forming poetic constellations of black and bright
to lighten afar the nebulous darkness ,
a sea of swirling ink transformed into poetry

A sage opus renewed
by the muse of a migrating flock ,
striving to discover new sacred grounds ;
yet there is an undeniable song sung
in the howling winds of change
An incitement from a higher dialect
that empowers a restoration of spirit
Oeuvre uplifted by rogue waves
of summoning winds ,
arousing that which time erases

A manifest renaissance
among the rousing nuances
of poetic continuum ,
judicious to rediscover
the enthralling vastitude
of every breaking wave
in a boundless sea of poesy

Where prevailing currents
stir oceans of verse eternal ;
provoking a verve revival ,
the magnitude of an unbroken circle ,
ocean swells merging singularity
with the omnipresent colour
of uncharted depths

As if thoughts are assuaged
by a union of intimately touching souls
with words of intangible spheres ,
sparking subtle shades of meaning
spanning poetic immortality
Transcending barriers of unexplored lexicon
to manifest the immensity,
enkindling rhapsody of hearts and minds
Deeply rooted soul replenishment
harvested from the tree of humankind ,
willingly sharing without regret nor intention ,
with deference to the soul of one-blood,
one-love enabling an enlightening
metamorphosis of the human journey ...

© harlon rivers ... all rights reserved
3.6k · Oct 2016
Cleansing Rain
harlon rivers Oct 2016
Look up and breathe it all in
The sky is crying, exploding
with a torrential waterfall.
Inhale natures’ showering
an unblemished symphony
The black cloud’s unavowed weight
lingers invigoratingly overhead

Emotions ebb and flow
with the moment’s
immanent spirit of light;
there is a liberating sensation
that excites anticipation
of the sky’s impending
purposefully fated  release ...

Heavens… flood down holy water
in a drenching act of baptism
a merciful drowning in a river
of celestial tears
Dowsing rains wash over
in a cleansing rain

Refresh the dust and ashes
the fallow summer leavings
What once was a blossoming presence,
evolving into a dimming  
cold winter reign...

Now all that remains is but
a shadow of what once was;
hearts and bones nearly eroded away
by the years of fallen tears

To rinse away unrequited love’s
stagnant inversion, washing away
the invisible bonds that bind
to the loathsome heavy ball
of an unforgiving chain ...

Know the cleansing rain
is the spirit of love, washing over
a malnourished heart of soul;
exposed and bared naked
to a remiss world

Looking out with thoughtful eyes
into the boundless universe
Never to stop believing
rejuvenating dreams course beyond
this long road

Imagine the storm clouds
parting in the ominous
threatening sky
as an uplifting awakening light
comes shining through;
renewing the promise
that surrendering to love
shall renew purpose

and it feels like rain...
baby can you feel it (?)

December 2012 © harlon rivers ... all rights reserved                  .
The first cleansing rains of Oregon Autumn
sent me looking back for this poem
from The Word Whisperer collection
unpublished here after the conclusion
of my original hp account...I guess at some point
the more things change the more they stay the same?

Its hard to believe it went from : "come September ... when the leaves come falling down"   to "cleansing rain" in such a few golden autumn days...
harlon rivers Jun 2018
I saw the sun steep
into the seascape ―
lonely as a drowning
         on still-waters

the dimming of the day
rescinding evanescent daylight                                                         ­         .
fading with the slack tide
         lost at sea ―
a gloaming moment
         let fall from
the remains of the day,
like some other passing
sea bird's molted feather
drifts away untamed

I sit silent as the driftwood
lingering at the watermark,
watching a random gust
    erase the footprints
of another recurring day, 
bearing abandoned memories
    and vacant heartbeats,
atrophied in the drifting sands

    and I see you walking
    towards the abating  
    midnight sunset ―
         but I know
    you're just a mirage;    
like the dimming afterglow
of so many waning moons
ever-changing tides grow low  
and promises made lightly  
         do ebb away
Scanning the distant horizon ―    
    a blindfold heart    
    mooning all at sea;
parsing a deserted shoreline,
    wondering if love
          is too late ,..
    to stem the tide ―

        harlon rivers

      30   May   2018
Note:   apologies for the inconsistent reading, posts and replies.  Internet access comes and goes out here off the grid.   Thank you for taking a look through the words― h.a. rivers

Chronological TRAVELOGUE collection:
9 of some more here; published & unlisted
3.3k · Oct 2017
Lonesome as a Blue Moon ☽
harlon rivers Oct 2017
Maybe it's been written
somewhere in the constitution
     of the waning moon

                                         ― When somebody loves you,
                                               you can never be lonely ―

But, appearances
  to the contrary,
the moon is sometimes blue;

counting stars alone
in a sky full of stars

is just about as lonely
as 'once in a blue moon'
                              can be ―

Like when the night is yours alone
                  or feeling alone
               in a crowded room

hearing Hank Williams moan within your silence
       "I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry"

                                         ― When it's hard to say
                                               you love someone,..
                                               but it's harder to say
                                               when you don't ―

                • • •

A coyote's pleading howl
breaks the silent twilight engulfing trance
cast by the dappled moonlight;
like there's some kind of lonely madness
    swallowing him whole,..

    these two hollow eyes
                 gaze out through
                                     the chilly,
                                                   Autumn air
                                                             ­    spilling
                                                                ­  in through
                                                            the open window,

                                                        ­           counting stars ― alone
                                                           ­             in a sky full of stars

                                                       ­             the crackle of the fireplace
                                                       ­            echoes, startling the silence
                                                         ­                of a feigned warmth
                                                                ­          from the other side
                                                                ­ of an otherwise hollow room

and i feel frayed as a hole in an empty pocket with nothing left to lose

the impending dark winter nights are lonesome
            and  linger longer than before ...
seeing the empty space beside me
   I remember how it really really aches to just be ...

                                                            *­lonesome as a blue moon ― *

                   ✩                        ✩                                       ­ 
                ✩                                       ✩                           
✩          ­                                                      ✩
         ­                                                                 ­                                

moonless ― rivers ... 2017

Lonesome as a Blue Moon
Written by:  h.a. rivers
harlon rivers Mar 2018
An indifferent ache swirls in the silence
throbbing like a dancing candle flame;
no one understands the heart of silence
moving the darkness with its ancient dance

Its voice is only felt but never heard
the way it whispers the reality it bears;
disrobing the nakedness of a fragile heart
exposing inherent truth deep in disguise
retouching the chaos passing of love laid bare

Unspoken emotions that nobody hears
float around a muted tongue benumbed by fear
doubt is a bitter taste that knows not love
searching for a labyrinth to begin to wend a better way
trying to feel the unfelt warmth of love in an endless cold
waiting on a frozen emptiness that never thaws

No one understands the haunting fear,
... surly it couldn't happen again ― and surly it will,
a heart stifled silent,  silence doth loudly peal
                poignant dreaded words:

                 "It's not you ― it's me ,.......
      I love you but I'm not in love with you"

and like winter dreaming for the sun to reappear,
to come back again and dry the memory of fallen tears,
a hushed heart falls off the earth lost in ether shadows lay
mooning in the lonely silence within moonlit dapple

When you pull love too close ― it will push you away
some silence heals ― a dissonant silence cuts to the bone

       Only the lonely feel a silent voice sigh
         Only one hears a silenced heart die ...

               harlon rivers ... March 2018
harlon rivers May 2018
"From every wound there is a scar, and every scar tells a story.
A story says, I survived." - Fr. Craig Scott

... a tribute to a fallen brother ― R.I.P  Les
... you were with me every step of the way to the top

crampon cleats tickle her bedrock
far below the frosty powder dusting;
released from where her majestic peak
parted yester night’s obstinate clouds.

the alpine atmosphere
first chilled and then plummeted
as the starlight glistened;
illuminated ice crystals sparkle
like diamonds in the rough.

I am overwhelmed
by the peaceful aura
surrounding me.

watching how
mark the snow
a lucid,
stirring awareness
of my existence;

a conscious moment,  
extraordinarily deepening
the realization of being.

harlon rivers ... May 24th, 2013

the poem above is notes turned prose poem...still stirring from a moment remembered. We were best friends from the neighborhood just shirt of 20 years.  When we were teens, skiing, we used to look up to the tip top of Mt Hood and say: "someday we'll climb up there together and look back down here from the top";  four years later i saw him drive away down our gravel road for the last time ― you never know which goodbye is the last ―

This is a piece inspired by climbing a snow and ice packed, 12,000 foot dormant volcano in the cascade mountains of the Pacific Northwest.   The original, that this is intended to be an intro for, is "Beyond the Telegraph Road"
Edited to say: Thanks for the encouragement Laim...without it I may not have shared the rest of the Memorial day story here at HP...
harlon rivers Feb 2018
The hollow wind funneled the voice
of the distant night-train crossings,
awakening  a  familiar  silence
hanging from the vast wilderness sky
A restless heart hearkening the echoes,
imagining  a  runaway  Pullman
flew away off the rails,    airborne
on the winged wind headed north

Winter  pausing  for a moment
in  the  shadows  of  familiarity,
as if parsing the unspoken breathings
in an  echoless  surrendered sigh;
uncertain if tacit words set free
could ever allow a heart broken
        to feel whole again

There  is  no  absolving  voice
that whispers in a solemner tone :
        Death  has  no  mercy  ―  
love remains marooned in the wake ,..
and it feels like the world’s gone mad
letting time be the arbiter of perpetuity

The fading dream of a motherless child;
a wish to be held maternally
fell to the ground with a thud,
        breaking the silence,
dissipating formless as the shape of water

Muted cold lips so full of questions
morphing into fugitive sighs
come the unsettled night;
when shadows disappear like frail memories
that  passed  too  soon  to  grasp,
thickly palpable as the warm breath
a winter bird alone on frosty branch

There’s no fear in braving the darkness
in the  winter wilderness of life borne alone
There’s no way of knowing what you’ll find
down that long empty road back home
Life just flashes by silently before your eyes
        through the windshield
    of countless miles and miles

And there’s nothing you can do about it ―
It’s like hearing the moment of truth in a lie
when all I was looking for
was  how I got here in this now,.. yesterday

only finding a hopeless poet
scribbling  slightly stained pages,
spilling  a  bitter  sweet  dream ...

        harlon rivers ... February 2018

1st night back home:  the end of a 2400 mile road-trip

I know I can't catch up here, all anyone can do is start again..

I've heard it said: "starting with the ending is the best place to begin."

Thanks for reading !!!
harlon rivers May 2018
" Don't walk behind me; I may not lead.
Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow.
Just walk beside me and be my friend." - Albert Camus

                 ~              ~               ~    

The telegraph road circled through the foothills,
rising towards the majestic mountain high
It’s been a long and twisting passage soon forgotten,
with the pavement abruptly dead ending,  
just below the timberline

The dawning blue heavens look so much closer now
Just a step away from standing within reach                                  
The birds uplifted on the telegraph wire rest atop me;
perched on the final material traces
disregarded by a digital world

My awakening soul is ascending beyond
the distant alpine meadow horizon  
At the threshold of an untrodden wilderness wonderland,
climbing up above the meandering clouds

It’s exhilarating to look back and know
there is no turning back around;
I’ve never been higher
and can never get back down

What unknown frontier lies in wait before me now?
Just on the other side of the impossible dream?
The last step forward to find the next step beyond the bounds
There is not that much that changes,
when we just repeat the same old song

The atmosphere’s thin air leaves me gasping for wings
Like dust and ashes free to soar with the tempest breeze
If only time would sever these loathsome ties that bind
The ones that enchain the weight of this load unto me

While understanding the pace to a long journey’s rhythm
The only barometer you have to trust is in your heart
Adaptation is at the core of freedom's survival
But it feels almost like running away  

I have felt the fear of falling with nothing left to lose
I’ve climbed as far as flesh and bones can reach
I've come this far always feeling subtly afraid
It has been a great distance back from the beginning;
knowing I must take these last steps alone.

Understanding it was love that brought me here
Naturally tugs at the spirit in my soul encouraging me on
I'll keep searching for the shining light of guidance
Listening for a voice that softly beckons me home...

written by:    harlon rivers ... May 24th, 2013
Authors notes: a prose prologue;

5/26/2013 Edited to delete the back story:    ...thank you for reading.
3.0k · Mar 2018
Spring Mountain Willow
harlon rivers Mar 2018
Crimson maple buds magically pucker
under brightening skies
Lenten rose reluctantly unfolds
absolving the shadowed snow,
stemming the wintertide

Spring's impending bloom
mystically stirs the delicate human heart  
soothing from outside its sheltering shell

A converging pleasantness
of a sunshine sown awakening
cleanses each morning breath drawn
to sate an urgent restrained longing

The wilderness carpet comes alive
with a burgeoning salient sweetness
drawing out a glimmer of gladness
from stale suffocating darkness’
wallowing in the winter ennui

Another kind of poignant balm sinks
from the tall mountain willow tree
touching the sprouting blue sky

Furry fragrant catkins blossom sweetly
like the remnants of a love once known
softly brushing against a fading memory
of unerasable stains begrudgingly beget

Like fawning flowers falling fallow
in a passing season’s pollination breeze
Manipulating frayed heartstrings,
unhealed as the deer peeled scars
and rubbed bark of a mountain willow,
scarred  from another season past

Some protective shell ― never grows back
when benign heartwood is brought to light

harlon rivers ... Spring 2018
harlon rivers Oct 2017
Penned on watermarked cotton paper
Cursive letters script the words
of a surrendering rhythmic rhyme.
The ardent sonata was written
by the light of a Blue Moon’s shine.

The blood red ink bled through
the white wrinkled cotton pages;
musical notes dried by the warmth
of glowing Moon Beams radiance
in the subtle pollination breeze...

The maestro Coyote’s howl cried out!

Instinctively rousing the stillness of the night;
       a feral essence echoed
       through the eerie silence
       of the distant horizon,
bringing helpless lovers to their knees.

The words to the Cabernet Sauvignon
       stained midnight  lullaby,
       were emotions quilled,
       blending an aura accenting
       organic warmth of tones...

       The native maple trees'
flowering canopies of Spring
released a dusty yellow pollen
onto the watermarked cotton sheets.

In a moment of rapturous intimacy,
       an elixir of intoxicating bliss
illumined the achingly euphoric moments.
A natural untamed wildness was exhaled;
       savored ecstasy released
       into a passionate song of love …

That poignant melody forever lingers,
       like hieroglyphics on the walls
of some long lost abandoned cave.

Engraved, etched, brushed and stroked
       onto the brattice canvas
       of a musical Minstrel’s
            melodic montage ...

       Watch the artiste’s fingers
       prancing graceful ballet
       Worn down catgut strings

     ­                  weep


       crying out lustfully.
     as if it were
    enraptured lovers'
  breathless sighs

  the rhythm’s cadence
whispers a masterpiece
       in an infinite
       harmonious time...

       The tempo’s lines


             ♪♫♪ ~ ♫  ♪♪

        Listen to the pictures flow...
Listen to the weeping guitar strings
      of the passionate troubadour
stroking the metaphorical canvas scene.

       The ebb and flow
       of the musical rhythm's throb
arouse the Blue Moon’s hypnotic  allure,
    throwing incandescent shadows
    that dance around Moonbeams.

Joyfully twirling, blissfully embracing
in the blossoming Forget-me-not fields;
            Bluebonnet Lupine
               swirl and tango
       with the moonlit breeze.

       Lilacs fragrant aroma drifts
with spring’s churning romantic haze;
rekindling this fleeting memories recital.
The Minstrel and the Minstrel’s song
         now yearn to be set free ~

      Timbre without reverberation …
The twilight serenade was never penned
  to be hidden from the Nightingale

A romantic moment’s sorrowful lament
to be abandoned like a broken dream;
   fading unnoticed into forevermore ―
      Unsung,  unsaid, unreleased,
                through eternity…

              The maestro Coyote
       is a wilderness troubadour
       illumined under the gloaming
               full moon’s spell.

                Howling soulfully...
               wailing impulsively ~
              ... crying hopefully
             pleading mournfully
the Minstrel’s breathless cadenza ...

A bitter sweet musical embryo of love
                 found and lost
           the full Blue Moon’s
               glistening light…

©  H.  Rivers ... 2012, 2013
           all rights reserved
Notes (optional)

"It's a marvelous night for a moon dance"
from the written pages of a hopeless romantic

Post Script:

An attempt to blow the dust off  the hidden archives and the aging tomes to bring my unpublished writing portfolio back into the light.

A friend from my musical past ask me to publish this once again and LEAVE IT could I say no to one who uplifts the low (?)!
harlon rivers May 2018
Three thousand miles
navigating a storm
without drop of bad weather
Abacus odometer clicks
rotating forward ―  
spinning with the
world go round

Circling back down
a long and winding road;  
where unforgotten memories
were once searchingly explored,  
untrodden pathways
coursing way up north of alone
on the low highway
Now an aging shepherd
wonders without a compass ;
a vagabond deprived of light
from an ever blurring north star
Heart empty as a gas tank
with a broke down gauge,
running on fumes of hope
for unpromised tomorrows
Running from loneliness
just to be on the run

The gales of silence bellow
No feelings I can see ― lay me low

Wild-eyed daydreams
of Full sails billow out
through the windshield,
only hearing the unspoken
moments sigh restlessly ―    
The dull droning road rumble
re-sighs renunciatively,
a tired monotone voice
mimicking the loathe silent echo
wallowing in an
omnipresent hollow void
deriding unspoken chaos
between the passing centerlines ―

A frost heave pothole erupts,
with a leaf-spring rattling thud,
as a fleeting cloud of dust arises,
set adrift with the draught
headed off the east side
of the Alcan highway:
blown way outside the lines,  
towards the Alberta prairie

White knuckled steering wheel
held sway,  rolling down
a beckoning wilderness
default reset button paused ― 
stuck in a moment ― until another jaw rattling
frost-heave pothole in the highway,
            jars it free

Leaving it all behind
like a sigh breathed
in a silence a heart has outgrown;
just a fleeting cloud of dissipating dust,..
         a paling whisper
the past seems to send forth
  like a fading last breath

Letting it all unfold to become what it is

     harlon rivers ... May 2018
       ... travelogue 2 of some
2.6k · May 2018
in memoriam to memories
harlon rivers May 2018
“You cannot hold it, but it will cradle you.
You cannot see or touch it, but when contact comes,
You will see me, hold me, as in the days of your youth,
When you loved me best,
And I, you.”

From: Seven New Poems for Seven Days #2: Hover
... by Nat Lipstadt


in memoriam to memories:
for Miriam and Nat

reading each thought numerous ticks of days,
imbibe the silent of the silence
hanging from the rafters this wilderness roof;
grayed heartwood walls that separate
fractals of inseparable distances ― celebrations
the roads taken ― memories of those left behind
at the side of the mile untrodden

Congregated love and sorrow’s spoken words
scribed on paper bark touchstones ―
etched watermarks of perpetual tides
patina the afterglow of life's ebb and flow,
traces of everything and naught can ever fill

Experiencing intimate moments immemorial;
the whispers of living pulse still murmurs
in the gentle breeze between the gathered words of heart
breathing deeply ― a rush of systemic truth
born in the wholly sacred blood bequeathed

A soul outside the lines ponders ―
the sum whole of a life well lived;
coming to understand, although
all might not see the same light shine:

there’s a place one day we’ll return
we found along the way
because one day will come by here …

harlon rivers ... Memorial Day weekend ... May, 2018

“Out yourself.
What will you be remembered for,
if at all?”
... Nat Lipstadt

seven poems (+ 1) for my mother (July 2013)

thank you for sharing the love, friend...
2.6k · Oct 2017
Slip Slidin' Away
harlon rivers Oct 2017
when you start
feeling as if
just being you
    is not enough ,..

when you see
the sunlight slipping away
sliding into the ocean
and the outbound tide
    is pulling strong ,..

   gravity throbs downward ―
you see it's weight groan
pacing in lonely eyes,

you feel it's burden
bear down on
a wayfaring stranger
   wandering away alone ,..
wondering what went wrong

stalled by a riverside
frozen in time ;
walking on slippery rocks
and fallen stars,
searching for peace
along the meandering shoreline

the waterfall surrenders
a river's silent lament ;
the storm gales' surge stirs
the urge for moving on

a heart broken knows
how fickle tides change
which way the wind blows ,..

which way the rain
     comes falling down ―

watershed moments
serpentine rivers,

unbridled terrain waters
veritably cascading  beyond
blurred latitudes,
uninhibitedly drifting
     in shapeless symmetry ―

a deep ocean rises
with the calling tide's

  the shorebirds linger ;
hole up with the peace
of the unsullied sands
at the sea stained
      tide-mark ―

barnacles cling
to the pulse
of the tidal sway
where starfish hold on to
   slippery rocks ,..

being enough
to while away
just a little bit longer ―

to simply let it all be
and wholly wash out
in the water
waiting for the tide change,

to swallow whole
the rivers stagnant flow,
    the stars in swirling silence ―

in the unrestrained
    rhythm and the sea ...
mazy rivers ...October 25, 2017
thank you for reading

just be you
no matter wherever you feel
the earth move under your feet;
no matter which way
the wind blows ―

"Slip Slidin' Away": song title by Writer(s): Paul Simon 1977
harlon rivers Aug 2016
Come walk with me a mile...
Walk on without our burden’s weighty shoes,
warily trudging over the long rocky pathway
a lifetime in my soul.
A final edifying voyage to freedom.
The winds of change are blowing briskly
as we walk charily over the long and narrowing
rock-strewn passageway.

I shed these boots and skin, no longer fitting
my scared, blistered and callused soles.
As time slowly passes,
this craggy passage has evolved
from a two-way trail,
into one-way jagged forage…

Standing barefooted and naked on rocky ground,
dark sunken sleepless eyes scan
the rolling vista as the wind blows
dust from the halo around the sun,
blurring the delicate wispy cirrus clouds.

The sun’s radiance paints frozen ice crystal azure
into a vivid aura of prisms’ brilliant corona.
Kaleidoscope rainbows adorn the closest of solar stars.
There's something in the ethereal air
that leaves my soul unsettled,
grasping for an evocative stability
trying to understand the silenced voices
crying out within…

The pain and suffering has vanished
as if the body and soul have separated,
numbness from the ache of longing,
severed nerves, callused fears
ruptured on serrated rocky edges,
deadened useless flesh cut to the bone
by misjudged obstacles encountered enduringly.

The barefooted spirit courses on,
suffused in the solar spectrum’s dust;
yearning, longing to saunter
above and beyond the bloated feathery pillows;
cumulus clouds finally resting at peace.
Dipping heart's lesions and these benumbed toes
into a healing balm
from the bowers of bliss..

An unfinished life
an open ended dream,
reluctantly waking to take the last ,
surrendering steps  beyond the threshold...
A long and winding rocky journey’s destiny
draws near

The halo around the moon
illuminates an understanding firmament;
the celestial sphere’s
pending imminent soulful rain awaits
the metamorphosis at the brink of dawn.

A shower of heaven's rain
shall mourn the loss of flesh form
as the spirit of an untamed soul lives on,
naked and free
like the dust in the wind
absorbed eternally...

2011 © harlon rivers
all rights reserved
Hope is like Faith, believing in something you can't see,
but knowing in your heart it’s real.

We all have faith in something...

"Never deprive someone of hope ~
it may be all they have"....Anonymous
2.5k · Oct 2017
The tracks of my tears
harlon rivers Oct 2017
You followed down through the gathered pages
to the  labyrinth that leads back through the changes
A long and twisted line of unmapped rivers,
*** holed low-roads and tattered mileposts
glancing homeless back-alleys as dark as lonely crossroads

Past the broken wings that fell from skyward treetops
scattered feathers amongst rose petals wilted
at the hand of tear stained faded photos
of frozen black and white faces;
hidden ghosts in the closet that fell from grace

The pathway narrows where the traces dissipate
passing under burning bridges, beneath locked stairwells
A fickle feather floating upon rivers ragging
like the hubris disconnectedness of time rolling out to sea ―
Shadows growing darkest as you reach the blackest silence
and you kept the answers to all the questions at arms length
hidden in the darkness ― where you saw love disfigure me

It was then and there I knew I'd dreamed of someone like you
looking for someone more than I could ever be
Just an unsated curiosity,    trying to see beyond
your own misunderstanding,   to feel and touch
an unknown depth beyond  reach

As sunset pales the distantness, the night is yours alone
when  tomorrow's  morning  rain
hangs  on  the  falling  leaves       ―       I’ll  be  gone
Just a wayfaring loner in a lonely world

Where rivers are only water
                                         and love was once a flowing river
I thirst to swallow ― 
                                         to wash away these tracks of my tears ...

                                      rivers ... 2017
Post Script:

'I can't remember all the times I tried to tell my myself
To hold on to these moments as they pass'
nod to Counting Crows---Long December

Giving up and letting go are different
and yet the results are often the same;
at the end of the day you realize,
the things you thought mattered ―
and it’s easier being lonely ... alone

"I tried so hard and got so far but in the end it doesn't even matter." Chester Bennington. (2017) RIP

The tracks of my tears
Written by:  h.a. rivers
2.3k · Nov 2017
Blackwater River
harlon rivers Nov 2017
Blackwater rise up from artesian fountains

Upsurge from the provenance of earthen soul

Mingle unto a river of willow’s bend and sway

Rooted in boulders
scattered  within      



                                           riverbed Cornerstones

                                                   ­                                       Gray

As though empowering sown seeds mightily strewn

With intent a higher law's freshet flows

For to stream from silence in a satiating tongue

Rolling currents thickly bestow

A  river  of  simple  truth lay  bare

A stream of random kindness betides,

Rivulets of unconditional love abounding
Rootstock birthplace coursing passage from whence

Unbounded rivers' silent reverie manifests

Rippling cadence immersing pulsing whispers

Unbounded rivers rushing deep and wide

Blossoming undercurrents gushing,


rhythmic  ebb  and  flow

Verve undulating wholly alive

Genesis of soul marrow's enlightened shine ―

Wellsprings arise from bedrock

ancient mother earth

A surmounting light leavens abidingly

From imploring water's flowing river song

To illuminate the beckoning pathway's bearings

divergent from thither and yon
Through  which  to  portage

A way to carry back home in psalm

*h.a. rivers ... November 4th, 2017
Notes:   The Blackwater River I once flew into
is farther north in the British Columbia wilderness
2.3k · Apr 2017
Thunder Whispers Beneath
harlon rivers Apr 2017
Earth Day, April 22, 2017  "give back to Earth",
as an "offering" for all the planet gives us.**
For Global Earth Day information visit:

       Her ominous shadow
             shown a path
   far beyond the miles high
  a majestic mountain stood

   Silently climbing down
         million year old  
      steep canyon walls
               at dawn,
  each step chosen carefully
     coursing with purpose

    Finding a way forward
         was the only way
           to look back up
      river carved ravines
     where higher ground
              once stood

  Instincts drawn downward
       gravity feed towards
         the faint murmurs
       deep echoes tracery
   down sheer basalt cliffs

          Artesian waters'
       resounding gurgles ―
     bubble up to quench
     a lost soul’s incurably
   intrinsic parching thirst;
       to find an unfolding
       metamorphic peace
     in the trove of igneous
     fountain veins of earth

    There’s not need to wait
      on sunrise pathways lit ―
   there is no fear of gravity’s
     downward silent weight  
      nor burden to be borne

Listening beyond dark silence      .
      igneous bedrock roots
     beckon deeper expanse ;
  spirit realms of ancient souls
     whisperer like thunder
        to the soul of man ―

Awakening ruptured lifelines
    deep below earthen crust ,
    creations hidden essence
     eternally remembered
         by the light above ...

April  2017 © harlon rivers ... all rights reserved
deep artesian rivers flow
from the wellspring fountain of soul...
     homage to planet earth ―
Celebrate World Earth day ... April 22nd, 2017
2.2k · Aug 2016
The Womb of Time
harlon rivers Aug 2016
hours drip slowly
onto a taunting empty page
the soul’s depictions brushed simply

a palette of whispered words
dry as if it were thoughts painted
onto a tightly stretched canvas

it's been said so many times before
     form clots at the tip of the quill
finally surrendering to gravity’s flow
as the ink scribes the paltry ruminations;
flooding the same stifled notions
another way into another moment

metaphorical sleights of hand
incarnate onto the absolving
       sheet of parchment;
traces of past now’s ensconced
       in considered words

        miles of silent reverie,
        like a spider reprocessing,
        carefully savoring
        each fine silk thread of web,

        spinning the womb of time...

© H.A.  Rivers 2012 … All Rights Reserved
... dedicated to all lonely, wayfaring word whisperers,
lost within the silent confines of a bared soul
2.2k · Sep 2018
One Man's Wilderness
harlon rivers Sep 2018
words drift away unfettered
from whence they came,
passing like undreamed clouds
– pragmatic eyes to the sky
   in a searching stare –
unsought thoughts disappearing hence
a fog bow fading into sunlight

there are days when
   it comes out in my silence
there are days when
   it falls down in my tears:

muse – muted in poet's pause,
heart and soul whispers
  laid bare unwritten
  behind parsing eyes
disregarded words let loose,
the way low hanging fruit
falls benign — unharvested —

   shortsighted  insight
   from a bird's eye view
silently fermenting traces
and unfiltered memories
come and go unheeded words,
discarded like the passing
   time of our lives

at times  it's  ludicrous
   to follow down
lingering footprints
left behind callous:
when the shoe won't fit;
slogging across eroding
time-worn stepping stones
scattered on this twisted line
these feet have been walking down,
trying to make a getaway
   from myself

walking away from the memories
like so many indelible footprints to escape
– while dreaming stardust into stars
   in nameless constellations –
reaching out from the inside,
   site unseen,
   trying to experience
   the empirical shape
   of  stifling  silence
   in a theatre made by chance

distilling the gifts and burdens
of trying to live a worthy life
   only I'll see...

harlon rivers ... September 27, 2018
pondering reticence, my recent hesitation makes me wonder — do you ever just not write down the poetry that is right in front of the eyes of your soul? This is the last piece i've written and feels as if it could be... but any poet knows — you can't steer a river

"One Man's Wilderness" by Richard Proenneke, is the title of a book I read twice this summer "Alone in the Wilderness"

"poet's pause" a truism/expression coined by Pagan Paul

Thanks for reading.
harlon rivers Aug 2017
He knew the ache could not be recompensed
they knew it too the moment echoes fell silent
There was already not enough love
in a world grown dark as darkest past

It wasn't the color of his skin nor dialect
or the  journey of a  thousand  miles
Not the place that he'd come from
       back when ―  left behind

             nor a heart of gold,  
      that never became a home

The colour of  unwritten silence
had  eclipsed  the waning  light
On the run from who he'd become;
     ashamed for all he was,  
couldn't erase a lifetime that felt a waste ―
               trying to untie a Gordian knot

He saw his body as an entombing barbwire cage
    imprisoning  a  wellspring  of  love writhing deep therein

Immured at arms length from the outside world
    where  the soul of a teardrop  abides  within
                         its insignificance

Shielding the  inherent  maelstrom
                          from the innocent passersby
Buried thoughtfully for the greater good of all ―
for the unsatiated dream boundless love betides

Written  artifacts  exhumed  like  ***** secrets
a lifetime of stigma's stain swept under the rug;
just whispered words written from an unfinished life
few ever really looked deeply between the twisted lines
arising from the soul of just another passing stranger

The long road begets a suffocating silence
choking out,           extinguished love inhumed
Ashes  of what once had been life aglow of light
               forevermore shrouded
          like the dark side of the moon

August 20, 2017
harlon rivers Sep 2016
He squeezed his voice out of the throat  
an old Dreadnought guitar
He bared his soul to anyone
who would listen to his psalms;
purging the torn an anxious silence within,
surrendering an unspoken heart in a song

Some days you feel
like you live too long
Watching the recurrent tides
recede and grow low
This life, such an unplanned journey,
given to lose what’s been lost once more

How many times
must a heart be broken?
To realize a heart heavy
won’t stop beating strong
Steal away the broken inside
these flesh forsaken walls;
breathe one’s last bated breath
in the peace of a song

Sometimes life falls
w a a a y y y y short of expectations
Though passing time
may assuage evanescent dreams,
there is a stillness that floods the moment
awakening a motherless child in a soul

Fate befallen a wordless silence
in the aftermath of finally letting go
Fingertips no longer calloused
Dreadnought wood dusty gone cold
Melancholy madness echoes unrequited

A lonely bird without a song ...

* September 2016 © H.  Rivers*
              all rights reserved
harlon rivers Nov 2017
Hops and topsy-turvy jumps ― blurred movement
muddles across  the dewy meadow floor,
as though dawn brushes away the sandman’s magic
from the corner of sleepy eyes,
                                  to cast an enchanting spell
    A sudden hazy yet abrupt stop…
    hastily,  halting ,   frozen motionless

Stillness, as if some final destination has been reached…
Neck stretched and craning,
tilted with an eye to mother earth ;
a canted focus beyond interruption
   In the blink of an eye,
   with a vigor too rapid to capture,
   as the nowness of urgency flashes ― 
   She stretches the earthworm
   with the grasp of subsistence
knowing after fall   becomes the long winterlude.

The morning sun illuminates the glow of the native Maple’s
glorious fiery orange and yellow color palette  
A steady stream of animation rushes in and out
   of the giant tree’s golden splendor

Abundance perishes with the seasonal gardens decay.
Mornings of blueberry and strawberry feasts
have left the red breasted robbers foraging
for the last rotting apples the deer have left behind.

   Harbingers of spring…
   Blueberry sneakers…
   Gleaners of fall and winter..

“Teeek”  “tuk” “tuk” “Tseep”....
        fills the overhead air
   with a beautifully chaotic verve

The flock returns repeatedly     to and fro     the towering Maple
to the ripened cornucopia of scarlet berry clusters of the Mountain Ash

The Robin’s flock ravage and gorge on the plentiful delights
Soon the crimson berries fuel of flight will disappear
   as if it were only an unspoken allusion
          of the passing seasons

The pearl gray sky is an ominous backdrop
          for the fickle fleeting migrants
Daylight fades as the flock disappears
          into a break                in the clouds
fleeting unto the ominous pending winter sky…

In the blink of an eye ... life’s  senescent seasons
transform the stormy whirling winds of change
bearing the golden Autumn leave’s splendor
   across the rolling vista
like a higgledy-piggledy murmuration
   of a migrating beautiful mess

The naked rooted scaffold’s branches stretch
across the sprawling tapestry of the wooded sanctuary.
Winter flocks of Thrush and Robins,
    arrive on a frosty new dawn
Red breast feathers puff with the morning sun’s rays,
warming the tree tops leaning toward the southern sky;
   Their journey here and now,
from distant mountainous horizons,
   is part of a soul’s sacred circle of life…

November rivers ...the final autumn entry of 2017
Postscript:  ... something fitting and gentle for a beautiful fall  morn
in the Pacific Northwest ~ I've realized I want to share lighter moments in life when they are writ,  readers or not...this is for the few with eyes that see beyond the obvious sense of nature's vastitude ...ubiquitous zen ~

The Mountain Ash grove is always a fascinating spectacle in the fall…After watching for several days…recording the thoughts, mentally painting the picture for a sit down at the table, in the window with a pen and paper  tablet.   Today was the day for a 30 minute stream of natural consciousness in this narrative prose poem about a reoccurring seasonal fascination with the American Robin’s cycle of life…
When I stop to ponder the irony, actually our circle of life is just as round…

Some say all poetry is about the writer, at least in some subtle way,
even when they try to convince themselves it is not...
This writer wants his poems to become just as personal to the reader,
whether a writer or not ...Why say that here & now?
As most writing from me is too deep for many readers...
we all need to breathe deeply and exhale a sigh now and then... these days
I try to stay out of the Robin's way... it's my  nature's way
Giving up attachment to things is impossible...
"Attachment to things drops away by itself
when you no longer seek to find yourself in them."

... thank you for reading "it's only water" final fall chapter

Flight of the Red Breasted Robin
Written by:   h.a. rivers
1.9k · Feb 2018
I Breathe You in My Dreams
harlon rivers Feb 2018
The trap was set by the light of the winter blue moon ;
just a simple blank sheet of paper and a pen
The Antique Cherry carved poster bed stood alone ,
adorning four Bordeaux colored silk pillowcases ,
fluffed feather pillows impatiently laying in wait
The stone cold down comforter that blanketed the loneliness
was neatly turned down from where it lay tucked and rolled ...

I close my eyes with a surrendering sigh ;
the cold touch of solitude brings a breathtaking shiver
Curling up in a fetal ball for a sense of closeness ,
like a tiny abandoned child, waiting for the sandman
to steal away the remains of another lonely day ...

In the imperative silence of the moonlit stillness ,
you could hear the blood running through my veins
The pounding heartbeat is reluctantly softened
quietly drifting off into a dream ...

The first arousing whisper broke the silence ,
as musings tiptoed through the silent reverie
Songs danced throughout the secret places ,
safely kept out of the wilderness' nocturnal voyeurs eyes
Words murmured expose an unsated caged yearning ;
an insatiable thirst that aloneness can not quench ...

Emotions ebb and flow within the twilight depths
of our thickly breathed word play
Intertwined in the infinite beauty
of enchanting moonstruck conjured delights ...

We glide speechlessly in the starlit moon dust,
levitating blissfully like giddy adult playmates
with  an  uninhibited  wanton  glee
Mesmerized by a rousing romantic essence
stirring up an urgent swooning breeze
If only this recurring dreamfulness
could reach out beyond reach a bewitching dream
to tenderly touch another impassioned heart of soul ...  


The sweat soaked sheets are now tangled ,
twisted traces of ecstasy tossed and turned
Awakened flesh trembling with the uncovered morning chill
A body drained and exhausted
as if there were never a moments sleep ...

The trap was set by the light of the winter blue moon ;
perfectly placed to catch the spilled secrets
of a moonstruck midnight spell
Awakening to find a paling illusion’s memory
laid bare in words, stranded on the cotton sheets of dawn ~

In the heat of the night these three simple words 
were clearly scribbled, trapped on the once blank sheet of paper ―
                       to remind me in ink blue ...

                               It  is You !!!


               " I breathe you in my dreams "

             harlon rivers ….❤  happy belated St. Valentines day ☽
Thanks for reading !!!

"Breathe You in My Dreams" ― Trixie Whitley
1.9k · Jun 2017
Someone said a poet died
harlon rivers Jun 2017
... a lamentable natural disaster ―
no one really ever understood
the uncomfortable loneliness they read,
left unsaid,  in the silence between the lines

Gathered words often revealed
an awkward vulnerability
a life tethering by a frayed thread
unable to shed the skin that enfolds
the dauntingly misunderstood laments

Suspended at friendless crossroads
melancholy days of malignant indifference
stifle the whispered thoughts,
"accepting an unfinished life"
evanescent as the faltering light,
musing many a sleepless night

It’s as if there was always some wordless reason
to never feel "good enough" to just be,
unworthy to discover elusive love,
cleave a labyrinth out of the darkness,
okay to just let go

It’s not a weakness to be human
"Tears are the heart’s traces" … he once wrote
"only eyes cleansed by teardrops see clearly"
heaven's rain unconditionally enlightened
by love and light.

Someone said a poet died
trying to make sense
out of all he thought he'd given
a word at a time was left behind
only abandoned words remain
                             orphaned in the drowning silence

                                      harlon rivers ©
JULY, 2017 : for every beginning there is an end...proverb
1.8k · Aug 2016
This restless solitude
harlon rivers Aug 2016
Daybreak brushes pink clad
hovering skies
beyond back lit mountains of Cascadia

Sunrise peaks through
the dawning nimbus
a variegated rosy
glowing consonance

The passing marine endowed sky,
framed by pinecone adorned
old growth timber stand,
near and far

Red sky some mornings,
awakens heart on sleeve
without warning

a lone mourning dove calls out --
drowning out the drone
a lonely heart's throb

Harbingers of seasons change
cast nebulous shadows
over mountain
greenery meadows

imminent reminders
-- ready or not --
what’s come and gone
a moment passed

Though hearts may shine brightly
carefree summer's lazy days,
prevailing currents portend
the ever-present
winds of change

Someday heaven's healing rain
is going to fall softly
on this restless solitude;

cleansing a weary soul,
renewed once again,

mostly whole

© H.  Rivers ... today
all rights reserved's nature's way of telling you
listen to her ubiquitous psalms...

note: Cascadia --  the Pacific Northwest of North America
1.8k · Dec 2017
In the Winter Wildwood
harlon rivers Dec 2017
Gray Owl hearkens
the dappled daybreak knell
echoing through
the wildwood forest stand;
rock doves and frosty stones abide,
where a marooned heart doth dwell,
disrobed by the longest night's frigid touch

Timber stand grips tight
red clay and bedrock of ages,
postured tall and strong
as eagle's spirit throne

Pine cones hide
in the low drifting clouds,
ripe acorns tumble down alone
unto  a  windblown
shallow earthen grave,
hillocked  beneath
the sky-high canopy

Bones of branches,
furrowed bark from burled oak,
wood-grains of pith,
natural gnarled achings
peeled by the shivering
wind's breath

Paling autumn memories
grow dim as the receding sunlight,
recollections of ebbing Jasmine's
mellowing fragrant balm
waft aloft in a favorite fading fantasy,
the edge of winter metamorphosis
bears down with a prodigious weight
of a different kind of retreating light;

brindled Queen Anne's lace
hold sway across
the tawny frostbitten meadow
imbuing the poignantly
whetting breeze

The blink of an eye winks,
to catch sight of
an intimate glimpse,
an unspoken
solitude holds forth,
the mesmerizing coo of rock doves,
reverently mirroring
the sanctity of the forest wildwood
lingering amongst the frosty
ferns and stones

The harmony of tranquil silence wanders;
only the bowing resistance of the boughs
manifest the shapeless wind’s
whispered  breathe
swirling above the labyrinth threshold;

therein lies an unfractured fault line
rooted deeply beneath
the earth’s crust
like the sonorous heart
of a sanctuary hearthstone

Hence there is symmetry
felt in silence that only whispers
in the deep toned consonant
of our own harbored sighs

a holy human blood link
born of  heritage wilderness heartwood
beats keenly alive

written by:   harlon rivers ... December 2017
Notes: Midwinter orifice into the North-woods

Thank you for looking through a soul's portal at winter solstice
harlon rivers Sep 2017
The fleeing clouds have cleansed the tawny earthen meadows
Migrating sun doth steal away waning light of summer’s glee
High atop fir boughs bow in wind whispered homage
To the sapience the coloured leaves hath gleaned

The sweet scent of auburn brindled pinecone clusters
Ooze of  glistening pitchy resinous fruit
Sticky figured squirrels chatter while they gather,
Stashing a survival cache of acorns and spinner seeds,
For another moment in sleepy winter tide dreams

A swirling eddy of spiraling leaves whirl beneath the tall timber
Fluttering gracefully with a gravity only falling leaves embolden
Enchanting like the evanescent timbre poignant piano notes decay
Writhing silent as summer Jasmine’s fragrant final bloom

Dandelion wishes soaring higher to kiss the fleeting winged skies
Lazily adrift up and over Cascade Mountain Crest
Fuzzy treetop flyers ascending far beyond darting dragonflies below

The sliver of golden harvest moon’s blossom aglow ,…
While wishing upon a shooting star's paling gleams
Serendipity sown about whimsically in the blustery wind
For to sow the will of untamed heart’s desires                                    

A festive troop of Chickadees clinging like tiny acrobats
Foraging on ripened ginger hued fir-cone seeds
Wings to the sky wave goodbye to the deciduous cadence
Softly wafting with a pungent Lavender potion scented breeze

There is a secret place where memories go to hide deeply alive
Amongst the wild wood and impending leafless trees,
The only place on earth I've ever understood a sense of belonging

Where Autumn coloured leaves whisper in the gentle breeze ,…
                  “I would do it all over again”

Come September ,..when the leaves come falling down

                      © ... September 15th, 2016
if … we will be remembered by our poetry;
It would be my hope to be recollected
for an intimately personal love and respect of all creation
Although there has not always been an emboldened sense of belonging with others, I have come to understand I've always belonged to the untamed wilderness of myself, still understanding that love is the eternal purpose I'll strive ―

Sometimes we sense that we feel too much
Being highly sensitive is not an imperfection but a gift - -
not a misunderstood, stigmatized, dark &  broken star
befallen a Sky  full of  Stars

always believe a poem can make a difference -- even if it is only a difference within you-- rivers

Come September ,..when the leaves come falling down
Written by:  h.a. rivers
1.7k · Oct 2017
Coyote was going there
harlon rivers Oct 2017
Coyote’s mournful howl echoed
in the new moon’s enchanting sultry ether;
breathing the living harmony of the wilderness rhythm

He seemed to sense a soul reincarnation
      within a pervasive spirit light
      an oft misunderstood
      common thread shared
      this hallowed land’s night

An uncommon Zen stirring from within,
              stifling apathy ..,
. . . of rumble deep beneath
      a dormant volcano reawakening ;
      that which lies undiscovered
      just before the ruptured moment ..,
      liberation of release ―
      dust and ashes taking flight

Through open window              insomnia churns
                          fifty shades of blue ..,
      cast in shadowed hues of broken silence

Coyote stirred the stillness
      with a hauntingly familiar cry
      reading the ridge-top echoes
      like the book of my mind

" YIP YIP   A ―W O O H !!! " . . . the somber plea

For it is in these final hours chosen chore
      the recurring torn
      these chains and things

Coyote was going there ―
      to stand these watermark crossroads
      this hour of need

Accepting brother has always been lonely
      sometimes anything
      means something - -
and so it goes ..,

Coyote communes in pulse
      from ancient realms
      this sacred blood ..,
         the lost chord

      wounded healers ,
. . . one mutual spirit
      runs marrow deep
      where dogs run free

The moan of doves whisper to the impending dawn
. . . always known these days
      too soon do come and gone

What once was a life well lived ,
      s l o w l y     e v a n e s c i n g
      like the summer river’s flow

some say ..." you never miss the water
      'til the well runs dry "
. . . regrets a waste of time - -

Rumination, a loathsome silent reverie
      a taunting unsolved koan

      an unplanned oxymoron ,  
      beget of a deafening silence
. . . dust sleeps with indifference
      veiling a beautiful handmade
      unstrung guitar
      muted - - abandoned,
      tone poems, unsung

and so "re-begins" the task ...
      come what may rise up
      into the dark star's light ...

Coyote was going there - -
      a dawning metamorphosis
      under another nebulous sky

. . . refreshed by Luna's potent alchemy bestrewn
      in her spellbinding lambent moonlight elixir of life ...

harlon rivers  ... 5. 21. 2015
Notes: This poem is republished from my original
harlon rivers account for the friend that commented on October 5th:"I hope the maestro Coyote’s howls yet again"  
BTW my sage ol'  great grandpa, that passed at 99, always reminded me I was born under a Coyote Moon ― some things never change


all roads lead to all roads..,
poetic pathways do cross
seeds of heart and soul sown ... nurtured
birth tendrils of a thousand flowers
nascent buds to blossoming fruition
do come to wilt like the last winter rose,
full circle in seasons ever changing light…

just because the blossom dgoes not last forever
does not pale the impassioned light of its poetry

be remembered by your life's poetry ..,
believe a poem can make a difference - - -

Thank you for reading of many rivers ―
peace on the shoreline ...

Written by:  h.a. rivers
harlon rivers Jan 2018
There was a fog that seemed to hover thickly
over the perceived salience of his musings
It was as if there were a veiled mystique
that left hopeful understanding ,
                   ambiguously obscured ...

His soul's cadences fell beyond the pale ,
like a reverberant iron bell’s clamor ,
                   drowning acumen ;

albeit , unmistakabe crystal clear allusions ,
scanning inwardly, rhapsody in his mind's eye

                    Illusive accord ,
                    beclouded by seeming stigmas
                    borne of the flesh ;
                    delicately sensitive nuances ,
                    misunderstood imperfections ,
                    bespoken utterance weighed heavy upon heart ...

In the hush of pensive repose ,
flow of soul streamed forth from its retreat within ;
bequeathed as if darkness
was magnetically drawn towards light ,
purging muted understanding ...

                    Assuredly seeking all questions with verve ,
                    accepting , that all answers sought
                    are not meant to be understood

A realization of those who wish to speak yet abide unspoken ;
the unseen mark of those that wished they had been loved ,
befallen the music of a thundering heartbeat ,
understanding a circle is vulnerable ,
only makes it stronger ―

                    hence ,..
                    it had been written
                    in countless misunderstood ways ...

Knowing he resists an inner-voice to endure silently
for a fear of that which remains indelibly writ ,
tattooed on introspective walls
far removed from the afterglow of light ,
where depth of soul yearns to be freed ;

                    heart speak hushed , deft words avowed
                    in enigmatic tongues ― Vayu doth whisper

                    soul's prevailing tides ebb and flow
                    from unseen depths , permeating
                    deeply within inner realms

The spirit of soul once steeped his heart’s intone :

               "Spell words that bind together passing strangers  
                 Coalesce  thoughts to inspirit those whom often walk alone
                 Append the goodwill of poetry, aspiring to bond individual
                 hearts and minds with words of love and light.  
                 Conjure written  spells to bespeak sincerely ,
                 a faith in unabated love

and yet ,   he will write it again and again ,.. searching beyond words

…words grasped from emerging thoughts
                   drawn in to the light
                   searching for other adept words
                   to recite yet another way ,
                   sketch another word-scape ,
                   written with the relentless inexhaustibleness
                   of an unstoppable awakening ...  

Another winter dawn imbues a new day come to light

                   he will write it again and again ,

                                          ... finding another way to be set free ...

                                                          ­       Harlon Rivers
Thank you for reading

Stanza in italics is from :
*Spell Words that Bind Together Passing Strangers*
harlon rivers May 2017
Before I close my eyes ... Before I drift away ...
      fallow as the evanescent tide grows low;
      before the falling sun echoes
      upon shown waves of estranged sandbars

Before I draw this life’s ending breath ...
      as beclouding skies ache like a windswept shoreline
      kissed by a bitter sweet gale of love and misery
      beget a chilling spell cast of invisible winds of change

Before you no longer remember ...
      the way the song a gentle wind's caress
      swirls and sweeps away bare feet
      set free to soar beyond the reach of your eyes
Before these eyes see the final sunset tiptoe down the sky ...
      even the sun feels the dimming in its wake ;
      unrequited footprints in the sand course straightaway,
      never turning around to look back whence they came

Before another tide floods a deserted oceanside ...
      erasing the traces of where we danced naked as the dark
      glimpsing the diminishing horizon ― 

                              and I let go .........
      as the tears steal away the last glint of the sea

           The way you took your love from me ...

                 © harlon rivers ... May15th, 2017
love always,... was a moment ...
"since you took your love away"

mused by a life event and an affecting song:

Chris Cornell "Nothing Compares 2 U" (Prince Cover)
Live @ SiriusXM //
1.6k · Nov 2018
The Listening Rain
harlon rivers Nov 2018
Listening rain plashes
upon crystal spring waters
It hears the trailing distance
disguised in the silent gravity
chasing it down the sky;
refreshingly sprinkling
where spotless fawns
drink from mirror pond
green and peacefulness

     A man falls from
a distance he knows by heart;
dropping like a wind broke tree ...
Breaking all the silence hidden
within the deepest places
          of his soul
Hitting the ground hard
to see if he still feels —
laying there broken
feeling the raindrops
     soothe the hurt

Certain when he’s able
     to get back up,
hearing a distant calling
to the fountains of his soul —
he may fall down again
     bearing the weight
     of broken dreams
     But he’s seen it all
for long enough to know:
he’s no candle in the wind

Awakening in an unfinished life,
coming back from the dead,
     still feeling each
     feral breath enough —
     to keep on trying
to chase down the wind ...

     harlon rivers                                                           ­                          .
November 4th, 2018

Rumi said:   'Whoever brought me here
                     Will have to take me home'
1.6k · Oct 2017
Waft of Mountain Sage
harlon rivers Oct 2017
The blustery east wind
gathers the fragrant  
Warm Springs
high desert
mountain sage,
Dry Creek pass
surging downward
from above
the Hood River valley,
with breath of sky's bouquet
of billowing
aromatic avalanche,
of heaven's zephyr

The poignant
sudden starkness
of fiery autumn leaves
letting go
whirling ― falling
helter skelter,
pushed urgently
flying westbound,
beckoned franticly
distant whispered
ocean bellows
blowin' in the winds
    of change ―

Adrift across
mountain meadows,
Coyote  bent,
paw trodden
ripe sweet grasses,
pungent  with
waft of mountain sage
and fermenting apples fallen ―
the waxing silence
of the marvelous moon
echoes  just beyond
the Lost Lake of the Woods,
its golden orange crescent
dances on clear lake ripples,
high perched
sky reflection lapping
the moon kissed shoreline

 ― alone ―  

The Sliver of the Moon,
skinny lithe
unripened youth
as unsated
       summer love  ―  
sage memories
waxing and waning,
whiffs of honeyed Jasmine
writhing witherings,

    time drifts onward ―   

unstoppable changes
never turning around
looking back
to see
their fading reflection
    recurring ―


august rivers 2017

note to self:
September 15, 16 east wind
Breathing Waft of lingering Mountain Sage
another Autumn soon comes

... and I'm getting older too
When our senses are heightened, do you ever think about the journey of the stimulus(?)!  like the path of scent or even smoke...or a distant sound.
How far is the distant horizon you see...even how far away can we be touched (?)! in its many realms...

Just stuff in drafts...
all these are real places
on the long road home

All habitat at Mt. Hood's fingertip reach
in Oregon, North America
Home of the devastating Eagle Creek wild fire of 2017
In the treasured western scenic Columbia River gorge

Waft of Mountain Sage
Written by:  h.a. rivers
1.5k · Oct 2019
Soul of brother wolf
harlon rivers Oct 2019
Waning  dappled  moonlight mantles
the margin at the wild-wood edge
Stiff tufts of summer dried grass spears
sporadically sway — raking against
the  scarlet  poison  oak  leaves
gently sweeping away the moonlit silence
airing the sounds of velvet antlers rubbing
barkless mountain willow trunks bare

Subtle nuances constantly animate
twilights rhythm;  heaven flickers
upon a dark umbrage of forest pillars
softly as a candlelight’s  fluttering  glow
evanescing  half way  across  the  sky;
the  sparse  illumined  clouds  stream through
the lambent halo around the rutting moon
fleeting in the blink  of  sleepless eyes

and like the silent touch of a talisman,
transfixed eyes are entranced by all
the  restless  night  disrobes,
captured and cocooned by the seeker’s
awakened senses

An erratic,  familiar feral bark peals haughtily;
a pack of maturing spring pups yip, bellow and shriek
in youthful pursuit;  the howling report back,
ignited by the scent of a rabbit's paling squeal,
aroused by the pulse of brother wolf
rippling deeply through their blood

The dried grass game-trail crackles towards the ridge top:
an aging full moon is not enough skylight
to see beyond a seeker’s stirring silent reverie
the coyote choir’s sudden reveling echoes rekindling
an extraordinary sheltering intimacy within;

bending slithers of moonlight into a dull moonlight mantle
but I can feel its weight breaking me ,... forlorn I can't physically
reach out to touch them in an absolving moment  —
understanding love was always the purpose of being ,...

futilely repining — I  can't  face  myself  alone  again

            harlon rivers ... October  2019                                                  

Notes: a coyote moon

3am — eyes wide open — embraced by a presence that robes the night
gazing at the ecstasy of feeling nature's deep roots in my soul

Thanks for reading ... rivers
1.5k · May 2017
Stormy Seas
harlon rivers May 2017
A storm is raging on the frothy sea
Mountainous waves toss the vessel all around
The ravaging gales impale with a deafening blow
Raucous sheets of salty spray
soak and pelter             to and fro

A bucket bails the raged sloop
She moans and groans as she’s flung about
A sailor sails ― A sailor endlessly bails
Engulfed alone in the perfect storm

Two oars are manned on the stormy seas
The halyard torn and ripped from mast
To row and bail is an impossible feat
It’s hard to tell when you've sprung a fateful leak

The captain mans the forlorn skiff
There'll be No white flag of surrender flown ;
   " I will go down with my ship! "
  A furious soul             laments life’s toil
As violent waves crash the gunnels hold

He screamed out loud,    
         " My time has come ! "
                  " My ship is sinking!!! "
" Her broken pieces ne'er to be found ..."

The rampart boat, well fortified yet built to fail
Plummets from hills of oceans pitifully tall

Cracks are leaking where the lurid light gets in
But so does the briny water, will drowning soon begin?
Lost hope floats the helpless, fearless one man crew
His soul now guides the ether voyage ―

A vessel drifts lifeless on the empty calming sea
Nothing but it can be seen for miles of skies
The free board is deep the salty water high
Two apathetic oars lay silent, is a lost soul inside?

                     ©  Harlon Rivers
One of my oldest published poems
with minor edit

At times we feel trapped and stuck in a moment we cannot get out of …The haunting feeling of drowning in lost hope; the human struggle to survive, to fight back difficult times, the uncontrollable gravity of feeling terminally alone, yet knowing these steps must be walked alone

... Where is the strength to be strong?
1.4k · Nov 2018
etomb'd in raindrops
harlon rivers Nov 2018
Remains of the summer
sunlight drip out,
entomb'd in raindrops
from the prevailing
gray beclouded skies
Memories of joy
bathed in sunlight
unravel like a wind
frayed kite dancing
above a day at the beach

Soaring seagulls ponder
all thousand feet of kite string
tied to a hidden bliss below —
hurtling through
the shapeless heavens
tethered to refreshed
dreams still lingering
within an untamed
child of the wind

Morning falls
from  the  trees
in whispers
of golden sorrow
The damp chilled air
smells fresh as the traces
of heaven's cleansing rain —
befallen drop  by  drop,
each plash counted
from an angel weeping,
splattering the broken silence
all  through the night.

An inflamed montage
of leaves surrender
all this unholdable lifeline
we  ever  know;
blanketing the fields
of  autumn's tawny  grass —
Sowing a mosaic colored
reclamation  reposed
atop a nascent green,
soon enrobed by impending
winter’s pallid slumbering hues

The darkening hush
imbues a shadowing
fugitive peacefulness
bathed in wind river eddies
of autumn’s blessing rains

harlon rivers
November 3, 2018

"Every man has his secret sorrows which the world knows not;
and often times we call a man cold when he is only sad."
― Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
1.4k · Feb 2017
A Million Raindrops
harlon rivers Feb 2017
There must have been a million raindrops falling down hard
Loud drops plummeting from the place where the sky overflows
The seemingly infinite pitter patter painfully counted one by one
Noir moments impinged beyond a rainy night:

Splashes splatter, showers flood torrentially,
Shards of water blind the befogged windowpanes,
Catching the candle light’s dull flicker
Upon the sway to the heartwood of the rain sodden trees
But underneath it all, there's this heart
Nobody really knows ― unborn and alone

Waves of silent reverie seize firmly a fragile heart,
Only learning to grasp the soul’s most poignant sensibilities
Wrought fifty shades of melancholy blue

Dreaming with eyes wide open
to see you tiptoeing around me
Bereft of touching as we reach for love
As if it were a moment we could hold
But I'll reach to you from where time just can't go
In that beloved moment leading the way back
into my dreams

Broken silence roused the moment's ache
With a boisterous sigh, the daunting fading murmurs
Of unspoken breath cogently exhaled
Hallmarks  of a secret place no one else can go,..

One drop at a time…

© harlon rivers ... all rights reserved
Post Script:                                                                                       .
There are memories reawakened in the rain
I've been there, and here in a moment
that let me back in ... leading the way back to let it be
― this poem is like a way back, a process...
it took along time to get back here ―

even though a moment by its true nature, cannot last
like a million raindrops on a lonely winter night,
serially comes to pass
harlon rivers Jun 2018
There’s an ancient duct tape patched
roller suitcase still up in the attic,
scarred by sky miles and undiscerning
indifference;  it came to rest like a final breath
exhaled at the end of the long road ―

In the dusty rafters of silent repose  
the death of an alter-ego comes to life
and jars and jogs the  sleeping dogs 
that lay benign as a pothole riddled road

Holding onto memories buried alive,
hidden away remembered ― 
      sans wings to fly away
laid bare unweighed with the weight
of everything else garnered and saved
      subsisting in a shallow grave;
hoarded and hidden away breathing
locked up with the other baggage borne
       behind tired eyes

Feeling the ache of blood stained knees
falling down sullied at the side of the road
Hindsight and a roll of duct taped memories
linger;   stuck to the  grey bandage scars,
second guessing should have thrown out
with the permanently temporary
fading plasticized luggage name-tags
back when I was still close enough to care;
too many miles to reconsider  ago

Some say: "it's the journey not the destination"                                    .
Some day when its too late we'll know
Some day it will be too late to make amends
        for everything i could not be ...

           harlon rivers ... 07  06  2018
apologies for the inconsistent reading, posts and replies.  Internet access comes and goes up here off the grid

To anyone interested, this is a piece from a collection from the summer called TRAVELOGUE:
harlon rivers May 2018
Rest stops and road weary vagabonds
Peanut butter, water and stale bread;
Cookie crumbs and lip smirched paper cups
Somewhere's last weeks coffee stained newspaper
Blown out tires and the side of the road  
Deep, thick, unmistakable, bear paw-prints
lie fallow ― undead in the mud

Feeling the raw silence of what you’re thinkin'
ooze out of a festering puncture wound within
Churning soliloquies  gnawing  away
at the unspooled  threads  fray,  
understanding there’s  no  fear
in  less  than nothing  to  lose

Sometimes change happens
so fast you don’t even notice
We can wait a lifetime and never be sure;
never taking that first step that leads to a journey
of a thousand miles ― just a step away

It’s not some kind of bewitching
     loneliness  spell  cast
never seeing another sole
in measureless hours and days
Passing moments languish imponderably,
there are no feelings I can see,
        by  looking  away ―
always as blind as we want to be

Wanting what was taken more than what is given;
still doing the things we learned we shouldn't do again
The longest miles are the trodden ones
with only traces of learning how to be
    alive ― off the grid; alone again

It’s a journey where there's no map to guide you
Just  a deepening furrowed lifeline standstill
Stalled at a crossroads in the palm of your hand;
uncertainty deriding  where you’re headed ―
both a reason and an excuse when we're not sure
we're not alone on such a long one way road
we've been out here traveling  on

Forbearing the truth that holds my soul,
the only way through the ache
is through the wound
                                     ... and
I’ll get down this long road somehow

    harlon rivers ... May 2018
     ... travelogue 3 of some
Notes ―  lyric from:   Side of the Road;    
written by ... Lucinda Williams

'If I stray away too far from you,
don't go and try to find me
It doesn't mean I don't love you,
it doesn't mean I won't come back and
stay beside you
It only means I need a little time
To follow that unbroken line
To a place where the wild things grow
To a place where I used to always go' ...
1.3k · Sep 2016
The Azure Violin
harlon rivers Sep 2016
The Violin’s azure strings wept softly,
from inside of a mind made cell;
musical echoes lamenting,
a poignant abyss too vast to fill
each and all silenced reverie,
leaving the philosopher’s stone

Blue guitar minor chord changes,
bent notes phrasing sharps and flats;
memories ―      gently weeping confirmation
as a repressed flow of soul
pensively leaks out

The spirit's currents eddy
suffused within written verve;
silently purging the soul's fountains ―

                                    musical rivulets swell
                                     quietly overflowing
                              an alchemist’s soul unfurled

        © harlon rivers ... all rights reserved
September sojourn ...9/15/2016
... journal entry: an unexpected perfect storm, casting ashes into the ocean
& bluebirds

A musician with a wounded wing ...
trying to find the strength to fly.  
Nothing fills the chasm left behind
when we lose an invisible,
indivisible, irreplaceable thread
that binds the tapestry of our lives... never know what you've got until it's gone.
Amos Lee - "Violin"
1.3k · Jun 2018
wings to fly away ...
harlon rivers Jun 2018
a ****** of Crows
gather Carpe Diem;
fluffing their throat feathers,
the dead-weight
each unshod foot
bending the world below

the horde of cleft feet align
      leaving no footprint behind ―
bowing the antique
frayed telephone wire
party-line swaying with the wind
over the washed out road;

at any moment
the land-line
might break
     from the overload ―  
level with the ground ―
but no one
on  earth
    even cares ...

they've  got
the whole world
in their palm
      beneath the sky ―
and the crows
have wings
    to fly away ...

harlon rivers
June   2018
The intelligence of crows vs. humans starring into a "smart phone"
— HANG UP!!! LOOK UP!!!! Go build a garden —

Carpe Diem:    Used as an admonition to seize the pleasures of the moment without concern for the future.
1.3k · Nov 2017
Thimbleful of Love
harlon rivers Nov 2017
.          Seized by the moment,
          the gravity of a memory
           lay closed the window
             to the outside world

               Eyelids surrender
            in the breath of a sigh,
         the silent pacing footsteps
unable to walk beyond their shadow
       nor their footprints left behind,

      never needing to turn around
               to look back to feel
      the weight of every laden step
         across the old Arch Bridge
        spanning the river far below

             The cold wet sidewalk
         rumbles like the throbbing
              heartbeat still echoes ,..
           through the muted voices
          of a past buried away alive

                 Halted footsteps
           become a blacker silence
                  at the precipice
     of the Arch Bridge railing ties;
   revisited deeply with eyes closed,
         wide open so many times
                 before  and  after
  that  long abhorred day since past

   Reliving an old noir silent movie,
       tarnished time and the river
              coursing through it,
    remaining unable to wash away
    the stains of that watermark tide

                 Standing   frozen
      as a weatherworn bridge tower,
  high above raging waters far below
feeling a cold chill, empty as a pocket,
            perpetual teardrops flow
  filling an empty thimbleful with love

           A thimble seems so small;
               just a pitted silver cup
       to shield from a piercing pang,
              and yet  a welling  love
             uncommonly  overflows ―
        tossed over the bridge railing
             toward the river below
       to see if hope really does float

            Seized by the moment,
          a random act of kindness
            and a thimbleful of love,..
                    lay open again
            a pensive soul's window
                to the outside world ...

                 rivers ... 11/06/2017
Notes:   nothing put away
alive,  within, ever dies ―
it can reawaken like a dormant volcano,..
ruptured in the blink of an eye

Thank you for reading
... Thimbleful of Love

I forgive it all...Tom Petty & Mudcrutch
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