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Jun 2012 · 716
My Father is With Me
Timothy Clarke Jun 2012
On this first ever Day when I had no card to send,
My own children graced me with their tributes and breakfast.
The joy that they bring me comes with a sense of joy I must have brought him.
This weekend my father taught my son how to change the brakes.
And my father hugged my girls...
And teased my other boy, ruffled his hair.

As I keep moving forward with my projects and this life, that he was proud of, I smile.  
His love I feel because it is my own.

I know he is proud of me, I feel it.

My Father is With Me
Feb 2012 · 992
Tell Me About Your Dreams
Timothy Clarke Feb 2012
“Tell me about your dreams”
These words are comonly spoken
As the miles fly under the wheels of our family van.
As children shift constrained and belted
Anticipation focuses attention when one of us says
“Oh yeah… I had a great one last night”

Cars fly past windows unnoticed as crazy stories unfold
Bizzar and often histerical recollections recreated
Pulling smiles from faces that had been grimmed by
A sister or brother sitting
We all share and in turn we spin our tales
Keeping thoughts inside and miles unnoticed.

In rare, fortunate times only one sits beside me
As we hurtle past thousands of dashed lines.
We talk about dreams of the future.
About possible lives.
And of where we are going, in the larger sense.
And sometimes dreams of love.

Were this another time, these would be fire side stories
Or told in a quiet cabin piled deep with snow.
On these fleeting days the chamber that traps this family togeather
Is of steel and upholstery and lost toys,
empty water bottles and forgotten french fries.
Time limited only by the seasons of these children and the miles of the trip.

“Tell me about your dreams”
Most of all, mine is that someday
They too share long car rides with their loved ones
And capture many extra miles of their children’s journeys,
As often as they can.
Nov 2011 · 1.6k
Far Away Miss (Limerick)
Timothy Clarke Nov 2011
There once was a far away Miss,
Who wished she could give her man bliss.
She knew what to do,
And immediately blew
Him a sweet little SMS kiss.

Oct 2011 · 1.2k
His Last Project
Timothy Clarke Oct 2011
My Father passed away this Fall, finally overwhelmed by the Pulmonary Fibrosis that had slowly taken away his air and his vitality over the past 5 years.  Right before he died, I had the honor of being the assistant engineer on my Dad’s last project.  In his last month, my Dad had became focused on his “router project”.  Dad had sent Mom to the store to find a very specific and necessary *****.  They had spend hours bolting and unbolting the router from underneath the saw table.  With the help of mom, Dad had spend much of his precious last breaths of energy shaping pieces of aluminum and drilling and tapping holes in order to accomplish... “something”.

Mom was getting a little frustrated by the whole thing. She was indulging his efforts, but she didn't understand what he was trying to accomplish. After I had been working with him for a few hours she asked me if I could tell what his objective was because she couldn't understand why he was spending so much energy and effort on a router. I explained it this way, "Mom, he is just tying up loose ends while he can. He doesn't want the router to fall when the next guy uses it. He is making a safety device. It is important to him... I'll help him figure it out"

Truth is, I had already figured one thing out, Dad's design had a serious flaw. He has made some serious miscalculations about the direction which gravity acts. His "safety catch" would only prevent the router from floating up to the ceiling. He knew it didn’t work but he was not able to understand why. His very sharp mind was being worn dull by lack of oxygen... I broke the news to him as gently as men do “Well, Dad, your idea won’t work. Not ever going to work. I am pretty sure we have to abandon it, unless gravity is going to start pulling things up to the ceiling some time soon.”  and then I cut him a little slack... “But I think the general idea is a good one... let me see if I can think of a way to modify it”

All the time we worked together, he didn’t speak more than a few works. He didn’t have the energy or the breath.  I read his eyes, his body language and his emotions.  He was very disappointed that he could not solve this problem.

So I solved it... I came up with a solution that worked.  Admittedly, I was rushing a bit and it wasn’t exactly elegant.  I shaped the metal, drilled the holes, ******* things together and after a few minutes I showed it to him.  He frowned. Stuck his chin out a bit further and shook his head “no”.  

“But Dad... see it works... it can’t possibly fall now”.


And then somehow I read the reason in his eyes. “So... you think that it will all come apart with vibration? Is that it Dad”

(nod... yes)

“Well... I can put some lock washers on it... that will hold it all together”. I proceeded to find the necessary lock washers and bolt it all back together...
(frown... no)

“So... you just don’t like it do you?”


Then I got a bit frustrated. My design was adequate and would likely work. But then I realized that the tides had really turned and it was time for me to show him the same kind of patience and kindness that he had show me countless times over the years. “Well then Dad I think that we should toss out my idea, it is only getting in the way of the best idea... let’s take a look at it again and see if we can figure it out”

We stared at it for another 15 minutes or so. Both engineers confounded but open to new ideas. And then the idea came...

Dad spoke. “Take out that *****... cut a slot... Dremmel tool”

Brilliant. A solution much more elegant than either of our first ideas.  In short order I had the work completed and the router hanging back under the saw table.  

Last project done.

After he thanked me for the help I encouraged him, “Dad... it was you that solved the problem.  You just needed me to get you past your first bad idea so you could get to your good solution.”

Before I left to go home he thanked me again for helping him finish his project and I had the opportunity to tell him for the last time that I loved him. I sat on his bed and kissed his head and held his hand for a few minutes until he made it clear that I needed to go. He didn’t want me to see him cry.

A few days later Mom called and said that Dad was going downhill fast and that perhaps being relieved of that one last project had helped him to finally let go.  

What an honor.

The very next day Mom called again and told me that Dad had asked her to make some measurements for new rain gutters.
Jun 2011 · 651
With You in Sleep (Sonnet)
Timothy Clarke Jun 2011
She lays down in her down
Pulling covers to cover
My arms wrap like a gown
Legs entwine like a lover

A light kiss on her spine
Deep breath of her scent
Her body is thine
When the day has been spent

As her spirit sets adrift
Through her dreams to roam
I watch over this gift
Until she comes again home

Let free troubles you keep
I am with you in sleep
Mar 2011 · 3.4k
The Daughter I Never Had
Timothy Clarke Mar 2011
She’s the daughter I never had,
All grown now, I am not her Dad.
All her childhood, I did not see
And yet, somehow, she seems like me.

She’s the daughter I never knew,
Only close to her a time or two.
Of my influence she's completely free,
And yet, somehow, she thinks like me.

But now I have a fleeting gift,
Of time with her to fill the rift.
Paths long parted finally blend,
I believe that she is now my friend.

Even if we had never met,
Her path to success has long been set.
She needs nothing that I have to give,
To live the life she is going to live.

And so, although I’ll never be a Dad,
I hope to provide what she has not had,
Shade underneath my family tree,
And a chance to know someone like me.
Of the many gifts that my new wife brings to my life, the most precious are her four daughters... Her oldest is a wonderful young woman ready to start a life of her own.
Mar 2011 · 551
Awethome Apothem
Timothy Clarke Mar 2011
There once was a nice small apothem,
Hidden below a beautiful blothem.
The equation would satisfy,
When set equal to the radii,
The results are always quite awethome.
This poem is a bit PG-13, but only if you know your geometry.
Jan 2011 · 1.8k
Bermuda Triangle
Timothy Clarke Jan 2011
He needs not a compass, newfangle
Gets so lost he needs an untangle
When he sails on her seas
He just goes with the breeze
Lost in the Bermuda Triangle
Dec 2010 · 838
The Stone and the Turtle
Timothy Clarke Dec 2010
After careful contemplation, the Zen Master knew the best placement for the last stone in his rock garden.

After lifting the heavy stone and walking to the point he noticed
a small turtle standing on the exact spot.

And so the Master waited patiently.

... As did the turtle.

Finally his student came into the garden to inquire of the Master
Why he had been holding such a large stone for over an hour.

"Master, are you thinking of a new place to put your stone?"

"No, I already know where the stone will go"


"Where this turtle now stands"

"Master, will you crush the turtle?"

"Please don't be an idiot"

"But Master, the turtle does not want to move"

"It is such a beautiful spot"

"Master, what will you do?"

"Isn't it clear what should be done? I am going to put this stone down close to where it should go, move the turtle, and then correct the stone later"

"But Master, why have you not done that?"

"I am contemplating the best placement for the turtle"
When we make a decision that is best for us, it will involve other people and may force unwanted changes to their lives.

It does not have to be a choice between inaction and disregard.
Dec 2010 · 1.1k
Timothy Clarke Dec 2010
I know my 14 year old boy is not yet fully a man,
But movie theaters and theme parks consider him an adult.
And he is fine with that.

But the other day, I took him to a museum
And they charged less for children up to 17 years old
And he smiled and said to me...

"Look Dad, I have been Youth-anized!"


The next day we went to a movie together
And, of course, I had to pay full price...
And I smiled and said to him...

"I guess now you have been Adulterated"
Dec 2010 · 971
Her Body Sleeps Beside Me
Timothy Clarke Dec 2010
Her body sleeps beside me
The gentle nape of her neck
The graceful turn of her ear
The beauty of her eye lids.

Her body sleeps beside me
Moon-lit Ansel Adams landscapes
Gently rolling hills and valleys
Covered with comforters.

Her body sleeps beside me
And as she lightly breathes
Her perfume breath fills my lungs
And invites me to leave my body also.

As I hold her naked form in mine
The cold stays away for one more night
And my heart fills with the deepest of content
We no longer dream of what might have been.
Timothy Clarke Dec 2010
What do you do when the test is through and so are you?
When you have given your all and have time to stall?

You pray to your God, only he'll help you now.

You pray that all those stray bits of knowledge,
     will somehow spin to into gold.
You pray you will get a few extra points,
     for the B S you've told...

Yes, pray to your God, only he'll help you now.
Blowing dust off of another old silly poem from '86
Timothy Clarke Dec 2010
The hard thing about being me,
Is putting up with my insanity.

The hard thing about being you,
Is putting up with being a shoe.
Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha.
Dusted off this old silly poem from 1986.  I wrote it while cramming for final exams.
Dec 2010 · 1.0k
What a Gift You Are To Me
Timothy Clarke Dec 2010
Eleven gutted stockings on the floor by the fireplace,
(Mine, yours, my 4, your 4, and the boyfriend)

Scraps of wrapping paper and bows.

Left over roast beef, cornbread, rolls, cupcakes and pie.
(Is the pie "left over" if we didn't even slice it?)

Piles of loved toys soon to be played with.

What a wonderful Christmas it was, the best I have ever had...

What a gift you are to me.
Timothy Clarke Dec 2010
The secret things
For no one but me
Kept always guarded
Only I have the key

I'll let you see them
But only in part.
I'll watch you closely
As you're touching my heart.

But as soon as you begin
To like what you see
The lock goes back on
So I can be free.

That may sound crazy
But I wait for the day
When my secret things
Will be given away.
Long ago poem of mine... back from 1987. Nice to see how I have changed... grown.
Dec 2010 · 484
Straight Up To God
Timothy Clarke Dec 2010
I lay on your bed and you were brushing your teeth.
We continued our funny, loving, back and forth as best we could
Over the buzz of your electric tooth brush,
And through the doorway of the bathroom.

I felt so much at peace
And so happy to be in that moment
And so happy to be on that bed
And so happy to be in that house
and just to be with you...

Some especially silly comment must have passed between us...
You poked your head into the room and smiled at me,
Into me.
Poured joy into me and filled me up
And then you quickly disappeared
(probably to spit).

But then something completely unexpected happened.

My heart open up...
And a beam of warm fire poured out and straight up to God
Orange, yellow and red connection... up to God.

All I could do was lay back and enjoy the connection
and enjoy the Joy...
and enjoy the Love...

In my joy I thought that I should call you to me, to warm yourself, but all I could get out was "Oh Wow!"

And then... after a few minutes, maybe five... and you were walking back into the room, by attention turned to you and my Love went to you and the fire left me.

I have never felt so much love,
As I do with you.
Dec 2010 · 456
Only Because She Wants To
Timothy Clarke Dec 2010
Each day, she gives me no clue
To the conditions
That must be met 
In order for me to receive
The same sort of love
That I received yesterday.

She provides no hint at all
Of the changes that I need to make
In order to be perfect in her eyes.

She provides no guidance
As to how I can be any better man than I am,
Any more attentive,
Any more loving.

She says nothing about my faults...
She lists not my imperfections...
Her complaints about me are silent.

Then she take it even one step further.

She calls me handsome.

She says I am intelligent and useful.
She smiles when I enter the room.

And she kisses me...

Only because she wants to.
Dec 2010 · 980
A Lucky Man.
Timothy Clarke Dec 2010
The shove,
The insult,
The push to the door...

Backing up, shocked, disbelief...

Clinging I am to the door frame.
Fighting I am to stay.

I am told that I must go... I am unwelcome.
I have no value. I am unneeded.

I fight, despite...
I cling to stay...
I don't want to go out into a world that I don't understand
One where I won't know where I stand... on sand...

But I am just adding my own injury to insult.
Life has changed and as I cling onto the door frame of the past,
I am tearing off my fingers... I am crippling my arms that are unneeded.

And so...

I let go...

and down I flow...

crashing down the stairs... bouncing towards the street...
arms flailing...

uncontrolled and bruising...

smashing my head against steps and hand-rails.

I finally come to rest

and then I open my eyes and look past the blood trickling down from my nose or mouth or ear.... or all...

and I see something...

There... under the stair... always unseen until now.
There... under the stair... ignored all of these years on my trudge up to the door to the house where I lived... unwanted...

There... under the stair... a bag of gems. Sapphires... Rubies... Diamonds... riches never seen before.
Never appreciated.

I limp away... a lucky man.
Dec 2010 · 553
Space Girl Kailey May
Timothy Clarke Dec 2010
Let’s go fly in my rocket ship
Out where the air is thin.
So I can learn all about the moon
And why the earth does spin.

And when we’re ready to take off
I hope there will be no delays
I’ve already got my white helmet on
And I’m wearing my favorite P.J.’s

I’m so glad you’re coming with me,
Rocket noises might make me scared
It seems this kind of adventure
Is one that’s better when shared.

We are flying out in space together
Past the Moon and out to Mars.
I am such a good “rememberer”
I won’t forget all of these stars.

I think that it’s time to fly back now,
To our Earth and it’s changing moon
I’m sleepy and I want to go to bed,
But I hope that we fly again soon.

For now I am just pretending
That I’m Space Girl Kailey May.
But I can do anything when I’m grown up,
On some bright and future day
Dec 2010 · 512
Things My Father Never Did
Timothy Clarke Dec 2010
I went home for Easter Sunday
During my senior year of college.
I was at that age
Where only my mother
Could call me a boy.

At one point in the weekend
When I was alone with my father
He tried to apologize
For all the things he had not done
When I was still a boy.

There are many things
My father never did.
He never called me stupid
He never yelled at me or demeaned me
He never clipped my wings
And he never clubbed my head.

Ther are other things
My father never did.
He never left home
He never came home drunk
He never beat my sister or brother
    or my mother
He never failed us.

There is one last thing
My father never did.
He never has told me he misses me
Nor have I said it to  him
But I could never doubt that he does
Because I do
And we are two of a similar kind.
Dec 2010 · 496
Sumer Dance
Timothy Clarke Dec 2010
On the day the summer ended, he was full of joy
And he danced of his joy.
He danced, and ran and tumbled on the grass,
And he danced like he never had before.

On the day the summer ended, he was full of life,
And he danced of his life.
He sang, and jumped and spun in the sun,
And the music beat in his heart.

On the day the summer ended, he was full of love,
And he danced of his love.
He wanted everyone to share his love and be with him,
And he danced on and on without thought.

On the day the summer ended, he was full of innocence,
And I danced for his innocence.
I loved him for who he was, free and alive.
And we danced until the summer was gone.
Dec 2010 · 601
One Quote
Timothy Clarke Dec 2010
One quote that I should always like to remember came from an eleven year old girl named Elizabeth.  I was helping a bundle of girls about her age bowl in the Special Olympics.  I am not sure what her handicap was, I guess developmental problems of some kind.  To me she seemed to be a wonderfully happy little girl who just wanted to be held.  She was sitting on my lap, waiting for her turn when she told me the most devilishly perfect, beautiful lie.

"I am not ticklish"

Imagine what it would be like if the only lies told in the world were just sneaky attempts to get hugged, kissed or tickled.

I am not ticklish either, Elizabeth
Dec 2010 · 561
Timothy Clarke Dec 2010
When I heard her hello
I could taste the good-bye
In the tone of her voice

She said that she wanted to see me
But I knew that she didn't
So I said she could come over

When she smiled at my door
It was only on her face
And her eyes no longer shined

We gave small talk
Like we never had before
And I realized I could not touch her

So I asked her to explain
What I already knew
Because it had to be said

And when she was through
I told her I was sorry
Even though she would not believe

And when she gave her good-bye
I heard the sound of a cry
That would start when I couldn't be there for her.
Dec 2010 · 1.2k
The Peddler
Timothy Clarke Dec 2010
There was an old salesman; a peddler, he called himself
Who came to stay at my house when I was a boy
When he was on
His last business trip

To him we were strangers

One day
I asked the old salesman
If I could borrow his penknife.

He lent it to me

And when I tried to return it to him
He did not remember that it was his.

When I asked my troubled father
What I should do
He told me to keep it.

Someday I may give
That peddlers penknife
To my grandson
And I will tell him about the time
My grandfather gave it to me
When he was on
His last business trip.
Dec 2010 · 686
Sitting Naked in the Rain
Timothy Clarke Dec 2010
Sitting naked in the rain,
I'm trying to break reality
In order to rebuild it
In a way that pleases me.
I dive deep in to my head,
I lie warm in my bed.

I gasp for breath

When I open my eyes
I am again,
Sitting naked in the rain.
Dec 2010 · 502
Who Woke Me Up?
Timothy Clarke Dec 2010
I'm losin' some snoozin'
From ongoing bongoing...
Dec 2010 · 659
Unspoken Rhyme
Timothy Clarke Dec 2010
Line Two

I think that it would do,
To end this poem at line two.

Line One**

I think that it would be fun...
Nov 2010 · 771
My Woman
Timothy Clarke Nov 2010
My woman has good looks that amaze,
Nutmeg eyes into which I do gaze.
     But it's not what I see,
     That's distracting to me.
Her perfume, it's the scent; donut glaze.
Her "Poeme" perfume smells like glazed donuts... Yum :)
Nov 2010 · 1.1k
Timothy Clarke Nov 2010
In the morn I often awaken,
To a smell not easily mistaken.
Aroma, not of toast,
Or of fine coffee roast.
Her fragrance, much better than bacon.
Nov 2010 · 1.5k
Slaying Dragons
Timothy Clarke Nov 2010
He rolls out of bed
He drops out of his rack

He puts on his armour
He zips on his flight suit

He buckles his spurs
He laces his boots

He grabs his longsword
He grabs his helmet

And walks out to the stable
And walks up to the flight deck

To his steed
To his plane

He saddles the beast
He pre-flights the beast

Gets in

Rears up
Kicks in full burners

And gallops forward
And takes a cat shot

Lowering his lance
Arming his missles and guns

He looks for dragons to slay
He looks for dragons to slay
Nov 2010 · 1.1k
The Mountain
Timothy Clarke Nov 2010
I climbed up the mountain
And laughed at those
Who were not as strong as me
And felt sorry for the boy
With braces on his legs
That I passed on the way up.

I climbed down the mountain
And rejoiced in myself
For accomplishing something
That was easy to do
Until I met the sam boy
Who could not go any further.

We climbed down the mountain together
Using my legs and his strength
As I carried him down
He told me about his accomplishments
And I rejoiced in him
And felt sorry for myself.
Nov 2010 · 2.0k
Single Socks Suck
Timothy Clarke Nov 2010
Single socks ****.

(well they do...)
Nov 2010 · 557
softly rain
Timothy Clarke Nov 2010
dripping drizzle sofly rain
lightly touch on window pane
draining me off and down to sleep
washing away concerns I keep
rain that falls with lazy drops
will soak my dreams before it stops
Nov 2010 · 3.9k
Timothy Clarke Nov 2010
Eating grapes in bed is not dumb
They taste real good and leave no crumb
Nov 2010 · 928
Timothy Clarke Nov 2010
There once was a woman from Oceanside,
Who took me to Heaven,
     though I never died.
Like an angel she sings,
     though I've never seen wings.
In all the times I've examined her backside.
Nov 2010 · 4.4k
Rainbow Sonnet
Timothy Clarke Nov 2010
Once a man stood in rainbow light
While the magic considered his measure
She knew at once this man was right
But he left unfound his treasure.

He traveled on through leagues and years
While above him still her beauty shined.
Each alone had pains and joys and tears,
While they held the other in heart and mind.

Now grown as wise as hair is gray
He reached new earth where she does rest
And stands again in her color spray
Realizing now he's truly blessed.

Together they stand in the other's hold.
Together they are the treasure gold.
The backstory behind this poem is that I once dated a beautiful girl in school, but because I was graduating and going to Navy flight school (and because I was a foolish) I did not continue the relationship with her.  Years later... a few divorces and lots of children later... we found each other again and we both shared stories of wishing our first relationship had worked.  Now we are engaged and the 10 of us are looking forward to wonderful life together.
Nov 2010 · 380
Some Other Soul
Timothy Clarke Nov 2010
I would
If I could
Reach out and touch
Some other soul
But I can't
And I don't
Even dare
To open my eyes
And once again stare
At the ceiling above
And think about love.
That makes me want
To reach out and touch
Some other soul
But I can't
So I won't.
Nov 2010 · 575
Equations Lost
Timothy Clarke Nov 2010
Formula forgotten and
Equations lost,
I want them back
Whatever the cost.

I go to school,
And learn every hour,
Yet all them **** theorems
Wash off in the shower.

So take pity upon me
And treat me real kind
'cause soon all that I know
Will fall out of my mind.
Nov 2010 · 912
Timothy Clarke Nov 2010
Awfully alluring alliterations
Come quickly to my mind.
Deftly driven downward and outward
Through thick thought and diligent diction,
Putting pen to page,
They are finally laid to rest.
Nov 2010 · 365
Forced Verse
Timothy Clarke Nov 2010
Don't make me,
Don't make me,
Don't make me write
Poetry, in the day
Or the night.
Nov 2010 · 504
Boy With a Boy
Timothy Clarke Nov 2010
An old boy;
Careless, free,
Caring and trapped.
Life's grip has clenched down on him
But he has not broken.
Not yet.

How long can he last,
This boy with a boy?
How long can he last
If he has to give all of his strength
To save his life,
And that of his boy?
How long?
Only God knows.

But I do know this:
He is stronger than he seems
And he can give more love than he thinks
And he has lasted longer than most.

The young man
Has to survive,
So he will survive.

I pray.
Nov 2010 · 412
Timothy Clarke Nov 2010
If leaves were anvils,
I'd be dead.

When I was walking,
One fell on my head.


— The End —