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1.9k · May 2017
Writing (Senryu)
Richard Grahn May 2017
The act of writing
Compels me to magic and
Elevates my soul
UPDATE: This was written before I had any idea what the difference between a Haiku and a Senryu is. I'm still a child in these departments. "Writing a Haiku" was the original title but this is not a Haiku. Therefore, after more than 1700 views, I've decided that it should be more properly titled. The title that fits best is simply this: "Writing" and it is more properly a Senryu.

It's no wonder this has been so popular here. We are writers and we know what the craft does for our souls and for the world. Nomenclature is really unimportant. What's important is the doing...

THIS IS THE INITIAL NOTES ENTRY: This is very true for me and I know it is for many of you as well. Writing is medicine for the soul and I don't know where I'd be without it.
1.9k · May 2017
Good Night Haiku
Richard Grahn May 2017
Good night my true one;
Let your dreams lead you on as
They take you away
1.8k · May 2017
Pollination (Tanka)
Richard Grahn May 2017
In splendid repose
One blooming rose lies gleaming
Hummingbirds kiss her

The wind whispers their secrets
As the pollen keeps drifting
This is my first shot at a Tanka. Feedback is most welcome. I can’t really help getting somewhat anthropomorphic about it. Thanks Chaetura for reminding me of the word anthropomorphic.
1.6k · Sep 2017
I Still Miss You
Richard Grahn Sep 2017
I was used to you.
Each day was new.
Each time we played,
We played a different game.

Drifting through
The murky haze,
We’d think it through
And then we’d do.

I’m lost without your pleasant gaze.
Traveling down the roads we paved.
My soul was yours, the one you saved.
Our dreams they lived from day to day.

One day you left, it’s hard to say.
The bus came by and wrecked our day.
I miss you more as time goes by.
I often stop to wonder why.

That lasting kiss you left me with
Is all I taste, it’s all I feel.
The harmony you brought to me,
It filled the well inside my dreams.

My dearest one, I still see you,
Laughing, happy, loving me.
My heart is torn beyond compare.
These shoes are worn but I still care.

I can’t forget the plans we made.
Each day I live to honor thee.
The raging sea can’t quell our dreams.
The love we shared still sets me free.
For Jen. My love for you will never die.
1.4k · May 2017
Queasy For You
Richard Grahn May 2017
Pick me up easy
And put me down slow
You’re making me queasy
I thought you should know

It’s not all that clear dear
Don’t know where to turn
I’m running your gauntlet
In your fire I will burn


Pick me up gently
Be tender and kind
Don’t try to pretend girl
You know that you’re mine

I’ll be yours forever
Or to the end of our time
For now and whenever
Let’s dance together
1.3k · May 2017
Just One Moon
Richard Grahn May 2017
There’s just one moon for you
But countless stars to shine on you
The heavens they will dance for you
And the sun will rise and set for you

The wind will blow so strong for you
The tide will ebb and flow for you
The skies will turn to blue for you
And birds will sing a song for you

The fog will lift its veil for you
The sands of time will flow for you
The leaves will grow and fall for you
And I will live and die for you
1.2k · Apr 2017
Tangled (Senryu)
Richard Grahn Apr 2017
Love shares its meaning
In the recesses of time
Tangled in my mind*

1.2k · May 2017
Earth, Wind, Fire and Rain
Richard Grahn May 2017
Breaking on a weathered shore
The waves of time in tempest rhyme
Relentless through the open space
They’ve left my mind in a scattered state

The winds of change have blown this way
Across the void into my dreams
Upon the mountains of my mind
And through the valleys they do whine

The trembling earth beneath my feet
Shakes me up and all around
Gravity’s tremors wrestle with me
To pull me down into the ground

A raging flame roars in my ears
I turn around to face the sound
That fire that burns inside of me
I hold it close but carefully

The churning vortex draws me in
Its clutch is great and the goal is clear
I spin and spin till the daylight’s gone
And find no end to its endless song

There’s nothing mentioned that can’t be said
But the wheels of fortune can’t be read
The mind of matter can’t be defied
And the rains from heaven will not be denied

When rain comes down to quench my flame
When the earth turns round and pulls me down
There’s very little that I can say
But I choose to take it my very own way

This was a fun write in a serious sort of way. It started with a simple line a just grew from there. By the end of the first verse, there was a roadmap in mind but that roadmap kept changing right up to the last verse.

'I have never started a poem yet whose end I knew. Writing a poem is discovering.' –  Robert Frost
1.1k · May 2017
A Little Nap (Tanka)
Richard Grahn May 2017
Snuggled together
In a nest full of feathers
Four wings and a nap

Little hearts they are beating
As these lovebirds lie sleeping
1.1k · Apr 2017
My Shoebox of Scraps
Richard Grahn Apr 2017
A writer writes…
so that’s what I do.

Not that I must
But it’s the right thing to do.

It’s not always easy
to lay down a line
on a small scrap of paper
that’s so hard to find.

Expressive nouns and passionate verbs
they assault my brain and
take me away.

There’s no way to dictate them
out on a page.
So I write them all down
any place that I can.

While at the bar,
a napkin will do.
Or in my car,
a matchbook or two.
A Post-It will get me by
in a pinch.
Or any other paper
I’m happy to find.

And into my shoebox
I tucked them away.

I laid them right there
for another day.

Occasionally I’d come back
to see what they say.
Reading them over
again and again.

Into my brain,
that's where they have gone.
Stuck in my mind
for a decade or more.

The shoebox is gone now
from so long ago…but
the memories still linger
inside my brain and
out to my fingers
they continue to flow.

I write them all down
and expand on those thoughts.
Remembering the memories
I once thought were lost.

An explosion of words
pouring out on the page.
These many little thoughts they
now have a stage.

The lasting memories
are now down in print.
The shoebox is gone
but the words are in ink.
1.1k · Apr 2017
The Circle
Richard Grahn Apr 2017
From somewhere deep inside the circle
We come upon a special place
There is no harm in staying there
We can take our leave without a care

It happens all the time you know
And takes just a moment to notice it so
Takes more time to really care
But life is something we can truly share

The circle of life reflects on our time
And spins up new moments for us to find
We struggle with the trials that we all have to face
Our time is short and not to waste

We're caught in the vortex of the hands of time
The wheel turns round and we stand on its rim
The world goes by as we spin through space
Looking for a place we can truly fit in

“The wheel is turning and you can’t slow down
You can’t let go and you can’t hold on
You can’t go back and you can’t stand still
If the thunder don’t get you then the lightning will”
-- From the song titled "The Wheel" on the album titled "Garcia" featuring Jerry Garcia of the Grateful Dead
1.1k · May 2017
Transformation (Haiku)
Richard Grahn May 2017
Inside your cocoon
You think of this as home but
You must learn to fly
Transformation depends on letting go. Get too comfortable and the next thing you know, you’re trapped in your cocoon. If you’re made to fly, then fly. If you’re made to write then, by all means, write!
1.1k · Apr 2017
Where Did I Leave My Head?
Richard Grahn Apr 2017
This is a pure “stream of conscience” poem. There is actually a story here despite the fact that none was intended.

“I became insane, with long intervals of horrible sanity.” Edgar Allan Poe

Lost in a chasm of broken dreams
Can I measure the depth with my inky quill?
Is there another place in the realm?
Do you remember where I put my head?

Where in the world did my orb get placed?
How can I get it back and reply?
Little issues pass by
There’s something to say
Catching my breath is the chance that I take

Traded for a note, I spy with my eyes
Clashing in the path of a desert wind
Rasping in the hash of a convincing beat
Born of a lion I cannot defeat

My feet walk the trail and I scratch at my head
Oh there you are, my trusted friend
It’s good to have you back again
Of that I am sure and you can depend

I’m set on the path that I trod with intent
Never was better a moment spent.
I’m lost in the magic of this well worn dream
A casual glance is all that I need

Well, that and my head.
1.1k · Apr 2017
Little Steps
Richard Grahn Apr 2017
Taking a step that’s mine to take
Just dancing a dance that I cannot shake
Under the moon that shines down on me
I’m lost in the starlight and a subtle breeze

I look to the heavens so deep and wide
Falling on in, I take my next stride
Around and around the stars they do spin
There’s never a though of beginning again

Just wandering along, one step at a time
I feel the beat quicken my heart with a rhyme
I walk with a notion of what I have found
The path leads me down to my place on the ground

My feet tread the journey I was destined to make
My mind ponders over the route that I take
Blessed with the peace that I’m happy to find
I step off the road inside my mind

I take up the new path with a fire in my gait
There’s no waiting around, time simply won’t wait
Caught up in the whirl with a skip in my step
I waltz through the moonlight with no regret
950 · Apr 2017
Sky (Haiku)
Richard Grahn Apr 2017
A waning season
Clouds billow without reason
Morning sky hovers
869 · May 2017
The Chase
Richard Grahn May 2017
Your words in my mind
Resonate through the hollows
And chase me through time
Richard Grahn May 2017
Curled up by the fire
Mesmerized by its warm glow
Our love is burning
858 · Apr 2017
A Dividing Line
Richard Grahn Apr 2017
Comparing the past with the future at last
Sitting on the fence in between the sides
Caught in a moment of grand reflection
We weigh out a measure of our place in this time

Loosing the arrow of change, it flies
Into the deep heart of space it climbs
Correcting the manner we chose to stand
We ladle our sauce from the grand design

Born of contention we pass it along
Setting our feet on a different path
We can sell our souls for a scrap of stale bread but
Aren't we just dreaming our time in the sun?

Passing the day with a turbulent fact
Losing our way on the pathway back
We are telling our tale for a chance at success
Reliving the moment a it rolls off the press

Saving our tick for another day
Tomorrow is fiction or so they say
The day past the moment always comes and it goes
We’re drifting and gleaning the time that we’ve sown

Measuring the thought that we’re glad to know
Surrendering nothing, we take some time
Never regretting the breadth of our soul
Believing in a future that will make us whole
849 · Apr 2017
My Polish Friend
Richard Grahn Apr 2017
My Polish friend he
Loves his *****
I can barely understand a single word he says
He loves the girls, cigarettes, beer and cards
Always a sucker for a good cigar

Only one place he’d rather be
Loves his car in which he likes to play
An average student never had his way
Five of ten is the turn that he took

The director smiled
And asked him for more…
I love this man and
We drink together
We laugh and smile no matter
the weather

His friendship rings true
As does all of mine too
Our pleasure’s a chance
So we choose now to dance

Like a teddy bear
He sleeps through the day
And into the night
For heaven’s sake

We tender the measure
Of an unsung rhyme
Our thoughts comes together
As we begin to climb

My Polish friend
Has lots to say
But it rattles along
And I can’t get away

His English *****
I’m happy to say
That my Polish *****
In the very same way
836 · Apr 2017
For You
Richard Grahn Apr 2017
Love is not something to throw away
Love is not something to disregard
Love is just something I love to do
Love is just something I have for you*

813 · May 2017
Nectar (Haiku)
Richard Grahn May 2017
Soft blossoms blooming
Hummingbirds preferring the
Sweet nectar inside
Hummingbirds know what they like and are very good at getting it. It takes a lot of flowers to feed a hummingbird and it’s a fascinating thing to observe.
798 · Jun 2017
Simple (Senryu)
Richard Grahn Jun 2017
These three simple lines
From the pages of my mind
Were so hard to find
Sometimes the obvious is so unobtainable.
779 · May 2017
Passion’s Flame
Richard Grahn May 2017
Rivulets of flame
Lick at the wounds
Of a thousand lifetimes
And countless tears

This flame is a passion
A fire in the mind
It’s lifetime is passing
But it isn’t done lasting

Burning the strife
From a well-weathered soul
It cuts like a knife
Where the malady lies

Its heat melts the ice
Frozen deep down inside
Its light casts a glow
Where the shadows reside

This flame will not die
While the dream is alive
It runs like a stream
Through the channels of my mind

The world may be turning
But the flame keeps on burning
This passionate inferno
Will not be denied
753 · Apr 2017
With Love (a song)
Richard Grahn Apr 2017
I want to make you say you’ll stay
But that’s just in our way
‘cuz the lights are burnin' dim in town
And the rain keeps coming down...

In hellfire and lead
Starvation for a pillow
How is your sleep?—send me a letter
Keep up the peace
Don’t buy diamonds from Caucasian creeps
And blank B of A
Just give it away

Hey, get your hands out of there!
We’ve got work to do
You can’t mess up my brain
But you’re driving meeeeeee to

So good bye for now
Or whenever
With love


With Love was written for Maria Luisa Garza; a great lover of music, poetry and poets, art and artists, Mother Earth, the cosmos and more. A staunch environmentalist and a skilled gardener she was when I knew her. We tangled up in love and then went our separate ways under the best of circumstances. This song was written around the time we parted ways. I will always love her for her free, hippy spirit, her fierce ******* and a great many life lessons.
732 · May 2017
Sharing the Moments
Richard Grahn May 2017
There are times in a lifetime
When meanings collide
Times when we wonder
The reason why

There are moments of sadness
And gladness too
Those memories won’t last us
But they might have to do

There is such a fine line
Between the now and then
Such precious little moments
That we learn how to tend

So take up my hand love
And sing me your song
Our moments together
Won’t last all that long

Your heart is my mainstay
My chest full of pearls
Your laughter has taught me
My place in this world

Let’s spend time together
And weather the storm
We can chase all our dreams now
Before they are gone

Let’s live for this moment
And play out the game
Let’s share this adventure
To the end of our days
727 · Dec 2017
Richard Grahn Dec 2017
a caterpillar
takes flight on sweet winds of change...
chrysanthemums bloom
Wrote this thinking about my early years and the many changes taking place at the time.
710 · Sep 2017
Little Ripples
Richard Grahn Sep 2017
Rolling waves, little vibes.
Subtle words locked deep inside.
Relax…step back...and ride the tide.
Seek to find what’s locked inside.

Little ripples flowing in a rolling sea,
Gently washing all over me.
Watching you as you pass the time.
Reaching out to make the climb.

We’re celebrating new-found worlds.
Choosing words as yet unheard.
Building mansions in the sky.
Dreaming…believing…asking why.

The tales you tell,
They rise and fly.
Wisps of clouds…wet and dreamy…
Floating by.

I love you more than time can say.
Beyond the mountains, we must stray.
Dwelling here inside your waves,
Our love evolves in special ways

Tempting fate…
Our ripples flow.
Tossing stones into the hole.
The echoes ring throughout my brain.
Your rain pours down, removing pain.

In hues of blue,
It seems to me a pleasant scene.
That timeless dream you paint for me
Is sprawling here for all to see.

I’m all absorbed,
Never bored with what you say.
I love the way you look at me,
Just how your eyes divine on me.

The world is tossed, our love is bound.
Rumbling over this hallowed ground.
All we’ve shared and all we’ve seen
Is what we’ve found and can believe.

The trees have seen our blooming dreams.
Nothing means so much to me.
That warming fire inside your eyes.

To my surprise, it’s no surprise.
Your flame, it warms my pulsing stream.
The heat that’s raging in my soul
Is whole with you, your role is true.

The only moment we can ever spend
Must last for now…and now…and now.
Please remember that you please me so.
Just grow with me as the river flows.
As with the previous poem. This was written in the hospital.
699 · Apr 2017
Rain Dance (Haiku)
Richard Grahn Apr 2017
Chasing a rainbow
Ever dancing in puddles
Daylight is misting

681 · Apr 2017
Richard Grahn Apr 2017
Let’s keep this short and to the point. This is my first ever shot at writing a haiku. Would love some feedback on this please. Thank you kindly.

*Brevity’s lessons
They are scarcely not something
To elaborate.
676 · Apr 2017
My Elusive Habit
Richard Grahn Apr 2017
There is an old homonym used in this poem e.g. “habit”. Its usage in the opening lines is something I wrote on a napkin decades ago. It creates a pleasant ambiguity in the mix. Homonyms are words that are spelled and sound the same but have different meanings. The question is, it a nun’s habit or just a good/bad habit?

“The truth is that everyone is bored, and devotes himself to cultivating habits.” Albert Camus

Take a look at this old habit
I know it’s worn, I’ve had it for years
It’s tattered and torn in all the right places
Cost me a dime and a lifetime of tears
Transforming my soul it is worn with respect
Counting the memories it passes the test
Round the corner off the end of the bend
My shivering tears contend with the rain
Mentions of settlements wrought in pain
Never will I ever be here again
Deliver me now to the dragon’s lair
I don’t even care if it’s not really there
Made a hat to match from a well weathered mat
I tossed it aside to the place where it’s at
Never again will I tread on this time
“Buyer beware” of this train of thought
It could cost you a page
From your own weathered book so
Never forget when you came on this chance
And never believe you can get it all back
669 · Aug 2017
Sprout (Choka)
Richard Grahn Aug 2017
Yearning for sunlight
In this warm summer daydream
My stem reaches out

From the moist earth around me
Into the sunshine
I reach out for the heavens
Just learning to sprout

In the breath of the morning
Down by the river
With the crisp air around me
I  bask in the glow

In the still of the daylight
Warmed by its bright rays
Mesmerized by the dewdrops
I can now cast my shadow
Started this poem about a week ago.  Then my body decided to have a stroke. Spent four days in the hospital and then came back and finished the poem. A brush with mortality can surely sharpen the senses. All is well though.
635 · Apr 2017
Entranced In Spring
Richard Grahn Apr 2017
A dense fog rolls in
Waterlogged, the mountains sing:
Vernal flowers bloom.
611 · May 2017
Echo (Senryu)
Richard Grahn May 2017
I said: “I love you."
Will you please be my echo?
And say “I love you.”
606 · Jun 2017
That or This
Richard Grahn Jun 2017
Only* made nothing!
Only that or this.
Only for a moment but,
Only for a kiss.

Beware conceived of something.
Beware of that or this.
Beware of giant thoughts in there.
Beware of mindless bliss.

Content took just a moment.
Content with that or this.
Content to breach the levy.
Content in the abyss.

Always stops at nothing.
Always that or this.
Always finding something.
Always gets the gist.

Amazed comes on in waves.
Amazed of that or this.
Amazed rained down in teardrops.
Amazed was not remiss.

Aware was very clear to see.
Aware of that or this.
Aware took all the rainbow seeds
And vanished in the mist.

Amazed, she kissed the Only.
Only touched Beware.
Content reached out for Always.
Amazed became *
592 · May 2017
Sandstorm (Senryu)
Richard Grahn May 2017
Your desert winds blows
Across the sands of my mind
I’m wrapped in your dust
Not sure if this is a good thing or a bad thing. Depends on how you view dust I suppose
582 · May 2017
Physical Confrontation
Richard Grahn May 2017
My fingers started in her hair
And tangled up in her curly locks
So soft and very silky there
I dreamed of things that we could share

Her lips so close
She cooed to me
Into my ear she whispered……….“please”

My hand, it drifted to her face
And touched her cheek
That rosy place

Where tears of laughter once ran free
Her blush of love smiled back at me

I took her nape and held her close
She smiled at me and nudged my nose

Our lips entwined as flesh combined
My heart jumped harder as the kiss got wetter

My hands they roamed about her curves
I could taste the scent
Of her succulent breath

My mind was spinning
As I tore at her dress
My buttons popped
As she exposed my chest

Breast to breast
And cheek to cheek
The castle burned
And the walls came down

We lost ourselves in the whirling gyre
Undulating in a torrid fire

The sands of time beneath our feet
Were swept away in the blinding fray

Our hearts came together
Where two should meet
Our magic together
Is now complete
581 · May 2017
Kill Me Slowly
Richard Grahn May 2017
Oh please won’t you **** me slowly
Turn your blinding love upon me
Let me soak up your charms
And die in your arms
Let me sing you a tune
And believe that we are...
In love.
580 · Oct 2017
Morning Rain
Richard Grahn Oct 2017
In the morning rain
There’s a feeling that grows,
Softly dripping,
Gently slipping
Into a dream.

It’s another day as
Thoughts gently sway.
Walking with memories
In this drizzling mist
Is hard to resist.

Across the meadow
A whippoorwill sings.
Down in the valley,
The echoes resound
With a joyous sound.

Ideas flow out but
Nothing comes easy.
The fabric is old
But a story unfolds
As the tapestry grows.

Woven with care,
This gentle refrain
Settles the soul and
Fills up the mind
With meanings.

Leaving behind
The mirage of time,
A rhythm explodes
Into mighty songs
Of healing.

Fashioned by fate
The music flows,
The flowers grow
And the raindrops know
It’s time to sow those tender feelings.
OK, I just noticed that this is the 400th poem I've posted on HP. A milestone I guess. My how times flies when you're having fun. ;)
563 · May 2017
Lonely (Haiku)
Richard Grahn May 2017
Just one lonely tree
Standing alone in a field
Embracing the sky
Sometimes we just need to step away from our longing and embrace that which is standing right in front of us.
551 · May 2017
Sky (Haiku)
Richard Grahn May 2017
A teardrop rains down
From the crest of the Heavens
The sky is alive
544 · May 2017
Contingent (Haiku)
Richard Grahn May 2017
Springtime delivers
A contingent of flowers
Earth’s splendid perfume
541 · May 2017
Scattered Story
Richard Grahn May 2017
These tempered thoughts
Roll around in my head
They spin me around
And fall to the ground
Down under my feet
Where I often tread
They’re broken to pieces
And left there for dead

But I pick up the debris
Of my shattered thoughts
And put it together
In a brand new design
One way or another
Let me tell you my dear
The story gets told
And the magic unfolds

In the heat of the moment
I take one more chance
I’m caught in your torrent
But I know how to dance
My mind turns around
And I look in your eyes
The picture I see
Is a pleasant surprise

I’m drowned in your laughter
And lost in your smile
That tale that you told me
Might last for a while
The music you played me
Is such a sweet tune
The moon in your eyes
Took me down deep inside

So…that Is my story and
I’m sticking to it
I’ve given you a deep look
Inside my mind
Don’t bury the treasure
Or think something’s wrong
Just let it sink in
And I’ll sing you a song
This poem was created from a stream of consciousness. I like writing this way from time to time. This just means that there’s no specific destination in mind in the beginning and I just let the poem unfold one line at a time.
539 · Aug 2017
Yearning (Haiku)
Richard Grahn Aug 2017
Little drips of rain
Come together in a stream
Yearning for the sea
Can't tell you how much I miss the ocean.
535 · May 2017
One Tiny Seed (Choka)
Richard Grahn May 2017
I’m one tiny seed
For a little while longer.
My hope is to grow
And present you a flower.

I don’t need much care
But I need to be watered.
Illuminate me;
Let me bask in the sunshine.
Rejuvenate me;
Let me waltz in the moonlight.

I’m one happy seed.
Contemplate me completely.
Just plant me and watch
As I grow in your garden,
As I greet you each morning.
This is my first shot at Choka. Had to sleep on the last line. The 5/7/5/7…pattern has a distinctive rhythm that is tough to break out of at the end.
531 · Jun 2017
Ding Dong (Senryu)
Richard Grahn Jun 2017
Love at the doorstep
I am here on your doormat
Just ringing your bell
522 · Jul 2017
Clouds (Tanka)
Richard Grahn Jul 2017
Clouds in the heavens
Hazy spirits in the sky
Just dreams floating by

The wind hums a gentle tune
The sun calls out for the moon
520 · May 2017
Longing To Fly (Haiku)
Richard Grahn May 2017
A caterpillar
Dreams of becoming a moth
It’s teased by the wind
506 · May 2017
Stardust (Haiku)
Richard Grahn May 2017
In the realm of space
Time churns many stars to dust
Powdering the sky
Every line in this gave me fits. Hours and hours of fits. Started with a concept that just wasn't interested in confoming to the form.
And to make matters worse I gave it the wrong title initially.. It changed so much it no longer matched the original title.
505 · May 2017
Twilight (Senryu)
Richard Grahn May 2017
The twilight listens
For the pluck of a heartstring
Melodies unfold
Finally got the titles straighten out for this and the last poem. Stardust took hours. This one took minutes. Go figure.
499 · May 2017
Richard Grahn May 2017
Teetering in Space
Dancing through the mire of time
We long to embrace
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