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3h · 30
Cowboy Up
Rodeo Poet,
bronc riding Sage
Arena unbridled
—dallies unfrayed

(Las Vegas: December, 2021)
4h · 35
Full Circle
Your arms around a memory,
your heart around the past
your hope around tomorrow’s wish
—your present to recast

(Dreamsleep: January, 2022)
16h · 52
Rip Tide
It’s always been different
and always the same
it’s all been anonymous
and all had a name
It’s had no beginning
and having no end
the truth lost in playing
this game of pretend
The magic in giving,
what’s been taken is lost
the price of the folly
exceeding its cost
And we search the horizon
never leaving the shore
the waves ever constant
now as then—and before

(The New Room: January, 2022)
2d · 55
Potentia Mutare
You can’t fill your dry spots
out of a whisky bottle
Or chase away demons
with a ***** needle
Or change the future
pointing the finger of blame
The freedom within you
—the power to change

(The New Room: January, 2022)
2d · 58
Matthew 18:3
Tonight, I became my youngest son,
my oldest son now gone
My youth reframed, new joy proclaimed,
a lost returning song

Tonight, I became that little boy,
whose playpen sets me free
All toys reclaimed, no further blame
—to enter joyfully

(The New Room: January, 2022)
The only one along this road…
riding shotgun through my mind
Tomorrow waits for someone else,
lost wanderings consigned
Forgetting what the moment augurs,
living in the past
Confirming what I’m most afraid of
—behind whoever’s last

(The New Room: January, 2022)
3d · 42
Lost To Love
Your memory found me wordless,
too mute to carry on
Trapped between old verbs and nouns,
silence for a song

With love a distant haunting,
we mime a tragic vow
What once we had… the good, the bad
—this quietude abounds

(Dreamsleep: January, 2022)
4d · 77
Aenigma
Hard to love
—harder to know

(Dreamsleep: January, 2022)
You can burn a book,
but never burn its truth
The flames sear the meaning,
tattooed at the root

Dousing this sacrilege,
my felony went untried
Escaping with the Muse in tow
—a fugitive decried

(Dreamsleep: January, 2022)
What’s in a photograph
in reference to time
The events as portrayed
or what they call to mind

Focused on tomorrow,
the picture is lame
Its history frozen
—the future unframed

(Dreamsleep: January, 2022)
Religion
a prison…
to fence and restrain

Spoken
or written…
it tries to contain

What can’t
be conscripted
or coveted pure

The Presence
as given
—freely endures

(The First Book Of Prayers: January, 2022).
The future hung desperately on to the past,
like a pilot fish to a whale
Swimming through the current of times gone by,
lost moments were impaled
The seconds ticked down, day blacker than night,
intention in denial
As deep in the din, voices cried from within
—eternity on trial

(The New Room: January, 2022)
6d · 122
Gypsy Wind
The beginning and ending
are easy to see
The middle much harder
and masked by degree

It moves and it changes
from angle and scope
To keep you uneasy
—and married to hope

(Dreamsleep: January, 2022)
7d · 51
Jail Break
Hiding between imprisoned lines,
a fugitive of verse
turning my back on pleadings made,
musings that amerce  

The lengthy sentence of my mind,
fleeing my recall
to leave the spoken word confined
—released to scale the wall

(Dreamsleep: January, 2022)
7d · 416
Apex Predator
To run from today
or hide from tomorrow,
the ultimate hunter,
time waiting downwind

Each day a stalking,
your tracks to betray you,
escape out of season
—the wolf closing in

(Sacandaga Lake, New York: January, 2022)
“Replay the riff in G,”
Robby said to Ray

“Come in a half beat behind,”
they both said to John

Then the three looked at Jim who said…
“Lay it all down,
turn it all over,
and pull it all back”

(8901 West Sunset Boulevard: West Hollywood California, 7-21-1966)
Is there something unwanted
or even decried
that lives in the bottom
of all you’ve despised
to weep when you’re happy
the prefect of tears
confusing the moment
defying the years
its magic conscripting
new days into night
trapping what’s in you
embracing the fright
one saving question
the clock striking twelve
destiny tolling
—your answer indwells  

(Dreamsleep: January, 2022)
Jan 9 · 57
Out Of The Void
That pit in my soul…
a space left unfilled
The harder I struggle,
the deeper it drills

Its emptiness constant,
dominion unsure
A puppet on tethers,
with vacuum secured

One choice left unspoken,
whose die never cast
To reach through the darkness,
the blindness unmasked

A backfill is starting,
my cavern relines
The light has reentered
—new future defined

(The New Room: January, 2022)
Jan 8 · 46
Hunting The Silence
Sleeping inside my fury,
the predators keep away
Passing downwind of my ire,
seeking lesser prey

My strength is wrapped around me,
no more armor do I need
The fangs of lions, bears, and wolves,
break upon my sleeve

My campfire roars in anger,
the birds have stilled their wings
The tracks of blood I left today,
tomorrow’s path to bring

As ruler of this forest,
my range the great divide
To those who hear me coming
—upon whose fear I thrive

(Dreamsleep: January, 2022)
Jan 8 · 168
Finality Of Love
Shedding a final tear
from the cellar of my pain
The walls close in the sorrow
imprisoning me again

Breathing a final sigh
into a memory you forget
My words trapped into silence
—alone with my regret

(The New Room: January, 2022)
Jan 7 · 49
The Bottom Line
If a million people read your work,
or possibly just one

What then will change, the numbers feign
—result still zero-sum

(The New Room: January, 2022)
Jan 7 · 54
-Debt Service-
I’m running out of money,
but I’ve still got some time
and only just one question
…can you lend me a dime

My dollars spent on something
that quarters can’t divide
my nickels for what’s come and gone
…can you lend me a dime

Tomorrow comes as landlord,
whose lease you can’t cosign
my place reserved but not in ink
…can you lend me a dime

My tenancy is in arrears,
foreclosing on my mind
last chance to stay evictions sway
…can you lend me a dime

(Dreamsleep: January, 2022)
Jan 6 · 81
Answering The Bell
Using the intellect
to understand God
A circle unending
no light in the fog

Our mind like a hammer
to pry and to nail
Constrained by our motion
and destined to fail

But deep in our essence
that we’ve named the soul
A voice is there calling
a bell waits to toll

To ring in tomorrow
with songs of today
Proclaiming the music
—our spirit’s ordained

(Beaupre: January, 2022)
Jan 6 · 88
Whole Card
He outlived his father
to outlive himself
The shadow he chased
—an ace left undealt

(Dreamsleep: January, 2022)
Jan 6 · 54
Surviving The Dream
I hate the business of writing
the commerce of word craft
the tedium of publishing
the deadlines imposed

I hate the word count
the editing and proofing
the book signing travel
and agents exposed

I hate the promotion
each workshop and fair
the reviews and the podcasts
the bookstores that sell

But I love the writing
when the words come together
releasing my spirit
—my fortune to tell

(The New Room: January, 2022)
Jan 5 · 52
Copper Wire
Does your writing lack power,
is it merely verbose,
as you labor line to line

Is the message red meat
or a vegan’s delight,
its essence so defined

Each word as an arrow
that strikes for the heart,
its tip to preordain

The strength of the meaning
abandoning all
—when destined to explain

(Dreamsleep: January, 2022)
Jan 5 · 61
Business Tenet #1
It’s not about what’s right…
but about who has the power
to dictate what’s right

(University Of Pennsylvania: January, 2022)
Jan 4 · 45
Above The Tree Line
Somewhere West of where he was,
and East of where he’d been
The mountains called their distant cry,
a pleading heard within
The alpine air, the red-tailed hawk,
their spirits hail his name
To thence return, the past on fire
—his freedom to reclaim

(Chief Joseph Highway: September, 2021)
Jan 4 · 37
Silent Thunder
Oftentimes, what doesn’t get said
—makes the loudest sound

(Hotel Majestic Saigon, Vietnam: January, 2014)
Jan 4 · 107
A Quiet American
Hear…
before speaking the words
unwritten

Speak…
after writing the words
unheard

(Hotel Majestic Saigon, Vietnam: January, 2014)
Jan 3 · 44
Within Us All...
No people or culture
lack the knowledge of God,
no matter how tribal
or famed

A Buddhist, Swahili,
a Mayan or Jew,
His message embedded,
ingrained

Those willing to listen
and heed to His call,
a power within
drives them on

Until Armageddon
brings light to the dark,
our natures so given
—to Him will belong

(The First Book Of Prayers: January, 2022)
The ego of the atheist,
himself the standard bearer
Where power of a mortal mind,
inflates beyond repair

His facts he weds intensely,
dimension fencing in
What’s not explained, he must profane,
all emptiness within

Whose formulas and strictures,
his Rosary to proclaim
What can’t be solved, new facts resolve,
dismissive in his shame

The ending predetermined,
his choices lock the door
Alone, his dialectic dies
—naked to implore

(The First Book Of Prayers: January, 2022)
Jan 2 · 48
Spiration
Water, ice, and steam,
the Trinity as seen  
Three persons unto God,
whose will and spirit laud

In Holy contradiction,
their essence so defined
Divine interpretation,
eternity sublime

This moment of no matter,
nor past nor futures blamed
Embedded in our deepest selves,
beyond forsaken claims

“All glory to the Father,
devotion to the Son
Open to the Holy Ghost,
proclaimed—our souls become”

(Beaupre: January, 2022)
Jan 1 · 62
Medium Vitae
What is the value
of faith without doubt
Love without hatred,
peace without routs

What is the meaning
of joy without pain
Words without silence,
sun without rain

Into the middle
both sides fall within
Dimension redundant,
all endings begin

The yin and the yang
the long and the short
When hands clasp together
—right left to import

(The New Room: December, 2021)
Jan 1 · 135
Blood Stains
Compelled to fight *****,
in attempts to stay clean
The shadows conscripted,
clandestine and mean
Surprise as an ally,
you stalk and you spy
To vanquish the monster
—declawed and defied

(Villanova Chapel: December, 2021)
Dec 2021 · 31
Aureola
Kurt Philip Behm Dec 2021
Will,
the highest power
ensouled

Choice
so anointed
—sacred beholds

(The First Book Of Prayers: December, 2021)
Dec 2021 · 104
One Choice Remains
Kurt Philip Behm Dec 2021
Often life more cruel than death,
pandemics to defy
Each breath of pain a new refrain,
whose fate we must comply

We live each choice right to the end,
all consequence dethroned
Until the reaper grants reprieve,
no mercy to be shown

This giant chorus sings aloud,
discordant and alone
The fear we face subservient to
the dread of the unknown

Those tracks we leave with blood to mark,
the distant by and by
One choice remains to end the game
—a final last goodbye

(Dreamsleep: December, 2021)
Dec 2021 · 85
Removing The Veil
Kurt Philip Behm Dec 2021
The essence of wisdom
lies in simplicity
hiding in plain sight
—for eyes that can see

(Dreamsleep: December, 2021)
Dec 2021 · 49
Terminal Reef
Kurt Philip Behm Dec 2021
Like water…
fear seeks its own level
Rich or poor
it wades through our consciousness
Driving us inward
toward sirens of darkness
Shrilling the moment
—with lyres of doubt

(Hereford Inlet: December, 2021)
Dec 2021 · 62
Katana Slashings
Kurt Philip Behm Dec 2021
Do words serve the meaning,
or meaning the words

Simply delivered,
complexity heard

Muddled presentment,
the message undone

Brevity pointed,
to pierce zero-sum

(The New Room: December, 2021)
Dec 2021 · 20
The Omaha Gate
Kurt Philip Behm Dec 2021
Lost in a card game
that others would pass
I feel the time slowing
while covering fast

A dim all-night roadhouse
blue plate of regret
whose neon but flickers
my hunger to bet

A *** full of memory
has come unannounced
with bare knuckled waging
I raise every doubt

But the road’s calling silent
its direction unclear
my thumb pointing inward
to ante the fear

The odds long but taken
to gamble and run
my fortune extended
and past rebegun

A graveyard sits lonely
on the side of a hill
awaiting those fated
last dealer to ****

A light in the distance…
the ‘Omaha Gate’
it’s twelve minutes early
tomorrow is late

Asleep in the boxcar
alone with myself
the questions keep playing
—one ace left undealt

(Sinking Springs Diner: December, 2021)
Dec 2021 · 59
14 Peaks
Kurt Philip Behm Dec 2021
From the beginning
we shake hands with death
At first as a stranger
when caught in its net

And last as a friend
bearing gifts from beyond
A bridge for one crossing
past futures begone

While leaving behind
the measure of fate
Transcending tomorrow
  we unlock its gate

What’s last becomes first
closing open interred
a singular journey
—not shaken but stirred

(Watching 14 Peaks: December, 2021)
Dec 2021 · 83
Regifting
Kurt Philip Behm Dec 2021
Spiritual commerce
Poetic lies
Phrases for sale
Proselytized
Prescience begins
Necessity ends
Words given freely
—tomorrow defends

(Dreamsleep: December, 2021)
Dec 2021 · 137
Muted & Alone
Kurt Philip Behm Dec 2021
In the poverty of sound
hides a final goodbye
Mortgaging the silence
with debt to decry

A tenancy of sorrow
with melody banned
An orchestra homeless
—foreclosure at hand

(Dreamsleep: December, 2021)
Dec 2021 · 42
Moses Walked
Kurt Philip Behm Dec 2021
You can’t think your way to faith,
all reason unadorned

Or speak to what is felt inside,
self-knowledge most forlorn

For those invested time must bow,
a legion unto one

As seas will part and bushes burn
—in rapture’s kingdom come

(First Book Of Prayers: December, 2021)
Dec 2021 · 42
...To God's Ears
Kurt Philip Behm Dec 2021
If I could trade my pen for flutes,
the ink would disappear
whose harmony no page beholds,
a rhapsody so clear

If I could trade my thoughts for sound,
an orchestra of one
my heart would fly inside my voice,
the searching all but done

If I could trade my words for notes,
and lettered verse for scores
celestial choirs would sing on high
—in tribute to my Lord

(First Book Of Prayers: December, 2021)
Dec 2021 · 43
Bourne Free
Kurt Philip Behm Dec 2021
Too wise for anything
but faith…
to be carried by angels
in love’s holy grail

The light in her eyes
to reign majestic
illumined by heavens
flowering dale

(Dreamsleep: December, 2021)
Kurt Philip Behm Dec 2021
The house is quiet,
as Knothead’s asleep

Hershey Kisses in place
on the staircase to reap

There’s snow on the roof,
with the chimney unblocked

For Santa to enter,
new soot on his frock

The cookies and milk
on the hearth reappear

With Rudolph’s one favorite,
chocolate chip to endear

The sound of his footsteps
arrive on the roof

As Knothead awakens
to Santa’s reproof

“Get into the sleigh
as I’ve told you before

“TC and Melissa
deserve so much more

“Your mischievous wandering
has caused quite the stir

“Mrs. Claus is upset,
the good Elves much deterred

“And clean up your mess
before we move on

“Those wrappers a danger
to those woe begone”

But as they departed,
the naughty Elf smiled

Two silver reminders
ensconced to beguile

Both hidden in cupboards
for children to find

Christmas 2021
—to forever remind

(Christmas Poem: 12/24/2021)
Backstory:  Knothead is the naughty Elf who has plagued the Behm household for over 40 years at Christmas time.  To catch him, you need to put out Hershey Kisses, so that Santa can follow the trail of wrappers, capture him, and take him back to the North Pole.
Dec 2021 · 78
Rolling Downhill
Kurt Philip Behm Dec 2021
Tumbling down the stairs
of misfortune

Slipping on the banana peels
of time

A curtain came down
on his opening act

The Fat Lady singing
—unrhymed

(Dreamsleep: December, 2021)
Dec 2021 · 46
Autumn Breeze
Kurt Philip Behm Dec 2021
Memories of a summer day,
chasing colder winds away

Lasting treasures so defined,
lace the corners of my mind

Zephyrs of a distant past,
breath unto my soul’s repast

Every hope and wish redeemed
—melting fast this winter freeze

(First Book Of Prayers: December, 2021)
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