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1

When lilacs last in the door-yard bloom’d,
And the great star early droop’d in the western sky in the night,
I mourn’d—and yet shall mourn with ever-returning spring.

O ever-returning spring! trinity sure to me you bring;
Lilac blooming perennial, and drooping star in the west,
And thought of him I love.

2

O powerful, western, fallen star!
O shades of night! O moody, tearful night!
O great star disappear’d! O the black murk that hides the star!
O cruel hands that hold me powerless! O helpless soul of me!
O harsh surrounding cloud, that will not free my soul!

3

In the door-yard fronting an old farm-house, near the white-wash’d palings,
Stands the lilac bush, tall-growing, with heart-shaped leaves of rich green,
With many a pointed blossom, rising, delicate, with the perfume strong I love,
With every leaf a miracle……and from this bush in the door-yard,
With delicate-color’d blossoms, and heart-shaped leaves of rich green,
A sprig, with its flower, I break.

4

In the swamp, in secluded recesses,
A shy and hidden bird is warbling a song.

Solitary, the thrush,
The hermit, withdrawn to himself, avoiding the settlements,
Sings by himself a song.

Song of the bleeding throat!
Death’s outlet song of life—(for well, dear brother, I know
If thou wast not gifted to sing, thou would’st surely die.)

5

Over the breast of the spring, the land, amid cities,
Amid lanes, and through old woods, (where lately the violets peep’d from the ground, spotting the gray debris;)
Amid the grass in the fields each side of the lanes—passing the endless grass;
Passing the yellow-spear’d wheat, every grain from its shroud in the dark-brown fields uprising;
Passing the apple-tree blows of white and pink in the orchards;
Carrying a corpse to where it shall rest in the grave,
Night and day journeys a coffin.

6

Coffin that passes through lanes and streets,
Through day and night, with the great cloud darkening the land,
With the pomp of the inloop’d flags, with the cities draped in black,
With the show of the States themselves, as of crape-veil’d women, standing,
With processions long and winding, and the flambeaus of the night,
With the countless torches lit—with the silent sea of faces, and the unbared heads,
With the waiting depot, the arriving coffin, and the sombre faces,
With dirges through the night, with the thousand voices rising strong and solemn;
With all the mournful voices of the dirges, pour’d around the coffin,
The dim-lit churches and the shuddering organs—Where amid these you journey,
With the tolling, tolling bells’ perpetual clang;
Here! coffin that slowly passes,
I give you my sprig of lilac.

7

(Nor for you, for one, alone;
Blossoms and branches green to coffins all I bring:
For fresh as the morning—thus would I carol a song for you, O sane and sacred death.

All over bouquets of roses,
O death! I cover you over with roses and early lilies;
But mostly and now the lilac that blooms the first,
Copious, I break, I break the sprigs from the bushes;
With loaded arms I come, pouring for you,
For you, and the coffins all of you, O death.)

8

O western orb, sailing the heaven!
Now I know what you must have meant, as a month since we walk’d,
As we walk’d up and down in the dark blue so mystic,
As we walk’d in silence the transparent shadowy night,
As I saw you had something to tell, as you bent to me night after night,
As you droop’d from the sky low down, as if to my side, (while the other stars all look’d on;)
As we wander’d together the solemn night, (for something, I know not what, kept me from sleep;)
As the night advanced, and I saw on the rim of the west, ere you went, how full you were of woe;
As I stood on the rising ground in the breeze, in the cold transparent night,
As I watch’d where you pass’d and was lost in the netherward black of the night,
As my soul, in its trouble, dissatisfied, sank, as where you, sad orb,
Concluded, dropt in the night, and was gone.

9

Sing on, there in the swamp!
O singer bashful and tender! I hear your notes—I hear your call;
I hear—I come presently—I understand you;
But a moment I linger—for the lustrous star has detain’d me;
The star, my departing comrade, holds and detains me.

10

O how shall I warble myself for the dead one there I loved?
And how shall I deck my song for the large sweet soul that has gone?
And what shall my perfume be, for the grave of him I love?

Sea-winds, blown from east and west,
Blown from the eastern sea, and blown from the western sea, till there on the prairies meeting:
These, and with these, and the breath of my chant,
I perfume the grave of him I love.

11

O what shall I hang on the chamber walls?
And what shall the pictures be that I hang on the walls,
To adorn the burial-house of him I love?

Pictures of growing spring, and farms, and homes,
With the Fourth-month eve at sundown, and the gray smoke lucid and bright,
With floods of the yellow gold of the gorgeous, indolent, sinking sun, burning, expanding the air;
With the fresh sweet herbage under foot, and the pale green leaves of the trees prolific;
In the distance the flowing glaze, the breast of the river, with a wind-dapple here and there;
With ranging hills on the banks, with many a line against the sky, and shadows;
And the city at hand, with dwellings so dense, and stacks of chimneys,
And all the scenes of life, and the workshops, and the workmen homeward returning.

12

Lo! body and soul! this land!
Mighty Manhattan, with spires, and the sparkling and hurrying tides, and the ships;
The varied and ample land—the South and the North in the light—Ohio’s shores, and flashing Missouri,
And ever the far-spreading prairies, cover’d with grass and corn.

Lo! the most excellent sun, so calm and haughty;
The violet and purple morn, with just-felt breezes;
The gentle, soft-born, measureless light;
The miracle, spreading, bathing all—the fulfill’d noon;
The coming eve, delicious—the welcome night, and the stars,
Over my cities shining all, enveloping man and land.

13

Sing on! sing on, you gray-brown bird!
Sing from the swamps, the recesses—pour your chant from the bushes;
Limitless out of the dusk, out of the cedars and pines.

Sing on, dearest brother—warble your reedy song;
Loud human song, with voice of uttermost woe.

O liquid, and free, and tender!
O wild and loose to my soul! O wondrous singer!
You only I hear……yet the star holds me, (but will soon depart;)
Yet the lilac, with mastering odor, holds me.

14

Now while I sat in the day, and look’d forth,
In the close of the day, with its light, and the fields of spring, and the farmer preparing his crops,
In the large unconscious scenery of my land, with its lakes and forests,
In the heavenly aerial beauty, (after the perturb’d winds, and the storms;)
Under the arching heavens of the afternoon swift passing, and the voices of children and women,
The many-moving sea-tides,—and I saw the ships how they sail’d,
And the summer approaching with richness, and the fields all busy with labor,
And the infinite separate houses, how they all went on, each with its meals and minutia of daily usages;
And the streets, how their throbbings throbb’d, and the cities pent—lo! then and there,
Falling upon them all, and among them all, enveloping me with the rest,
Appear’d the cloud, appear’d the long black trail;
And I knew Death, its thought, and the sacred knowledge of death.

15

Then with the knowledge of death as walking one side of me,
And the thought of death close-walking the other side of me,
And I in the middle, as with companions, and as holding the hands of companions,
I fled forth to the hiding receiving night, that talks not,
Down to the shores of the water, the path by the swamp in the dimness,
To the solemn shadowy cedars, and ghostly pines so still.

And the singer so shy to the rest receiv’d me;
The gray-brown bird I know, receiv’d us comrades three;
And he sang what seem’d the carol of death, and a verse for him I love.

From deep secluded recesses,
From the fragrant cedars, and the ghostly pines so still,
Came the carol of the bird.

And the charm of the carol rapt me,
As I held, as if by their hands, my comrades in the night;
And the voice of my spirit tallied the song of the bird.

DEATH CAROL.

16

Come, lovely and soothing Death,
Undulate round the world, serenely arriving, arriving,
In the day, in the night, to all, to each,
Sooner or later, delicate Death.

Prais’d be the fathomless universe,
For life and joy, and for objects and knowledge curious;
And for love, sweet love—But praise! praise! praise!
For the sure-enwinding arms of cool-enfolding Death.

Dark Mother, always gliding near, with soft feet,
Have none chanted for thee a chant of fullest welcome?

Then I chant it for thee—I glorify thee above all;
I bring thee a song that when thou must indeed come, come unfalteringly.

Approach, strong Deliveress!
When it is so—when thou hast taken them, I joyously sing the dead,
Lost in the loving, floating ocean of thee,
Laved in the flood of thy bliss, O Death.

From me to thee glad serenades,
Dances for thee I propose, saluting thee—adornments and feastings for thee;
And the sights of the open landscape, and the high-spread sky, are fitting,
And life and the fields, and the huge and thoughtful night.

The night, in silence, under many a star;
The ocean shore, and the husky whispering wave, whose voice I know;
And the soul turning to thee, O vast and well-veil’d Death,
And the body gratefully nestling close to thee.

Over the tree-tops I float thee a song!
Over the rising and sinking waves—over the myriad fields, and the prairies wide;
Over the dense-pack’d cities all, and the teeming wharves and ways,
I float this carol with joy, with joy to thee, O Death!

17

To the tally of my soul,
Loud and strong kept up the gray-brown bird,
With pure, deliberate notes, spreading, filling the night.

Loud in the pines and cedars dim,
Clear in the freshness moist, and the swamp-perfume;
And I with my comrades there in the night.

While my sight that was bound in my eyes unclosed,
As to long panoramas of visions.

18

I saw askant the armies;
And I saw, as in noiseless dreams, hundreds of battle-flags;
Borne through the smoke of the battles, and pierc’d with missiles, I saw them,
And carried hither and yon through the smoke, and torn and ******;
And at last but a few shreds left on the staffs, (and all in silence,)
And the staffs all splinter’d and broken.

I saw battle-corpses, myriads of them,
And the white skeletons of young men—I saw them;
I saw the debris and debris of all the dead soldiers of the war;
But I saw they were not as was thought;
They themselves were fully at rest—they suffer’d not;
The living remain’d and suffer’d—the mother suffer’d,
And the wife and the child, and the musing comrade suffer’d,
And the armies that remain’d suffer’d.

19

Passing the visions, passing the night;
Passing, unloosing the hold of my comrades’ hands;
Passing the song of the hermit bird, and the tallying song of my soul,
(Victorious song, death’s outlet song, yet varying, ever-altering song,
As low and wailing, yet clear the notes, rising and falling, flooding the night,
Sadly sinking and fainting, as warning and warning, and yet again bursting with joy,
Covering the earth, and filling the spread of the heaven,
As that powerful psalm in the night I heard from recesses,)
Passing, I leave thee, lilac with heart-shaped leaves;
I leave thee there in the door-yard, blooming, returning with spring,
I cease from my song for thee;
From my gaze on thee in the west, fronting the west, communing with thee,
O comrade lustrous, with silver face in the night.

20

Yet each I keep, and all, retrievements out of the night;
The song, the wondrous chant of the gray-brown bird,
And the tallying chant, the echo arous’d in my soul,
With the lustrous and drooping star, with the countenance full of woe,
With the lilac tall, and its blossoms of mastering odor;
With the holders holding my hand, nearing the call of the bird,
Comrades mine, and I in the midst, and their memory ever I keep—for the dead I loved so well;
For the sweetest, wisest soul of all my days and lands…and this for his dear sake;
Lilac and star and bird, twined with the chant of my soul,
There in the fragrant pines, and the cedars dusk and dim.
Two Maronite schoolchildren practice their English…

“Cedars! Cedars! Cedars!”
“See theirs, seethers, Caesars,
See her cedars Caesar?”
“See here, a sea-fare and see there?
And oh, I see Sir?”
“Do you see her? Yes I see Sir, -Caesar!”
“Cedars! Cedars! Cedars!”

And they are descendants of Solomon’s thirty-thousand, the great-grandchildren of Hiram’s workers.

“Sol Indiges!”
“Sol Invictus!”
“Sol-Ammon!”

“Now children, how do the three monkeys act?”

“Sol, the root of solar and it means the Sun, it means also to see or sight as it infers the light of seeing.”

“Am means fire but it is also the meditative word, Aum, therefore it cannot render evil through sound!”

“On is Egyptian and it connotes speech so it represents hearing.”

The instruction in language is not terse. Requiring broad-based understandings of how the West characterizes ideas. These two are particularly adept being taught from birth in both Maronitic and Latin and now English, in preparation for their exodus, as home has become a battleground where they must leave soon. Only in the West can they find peace and practice their faith so expressively. Only in the West can these two girls attend school if their lands are befallen…

“Now children, what does this mean?”

“See no evil!”
“Speak no Evil!”
“Hear no Evil!”

“And that children, is the Wisdom of Solomon!”

Breaking news! CNN reports that a car bomb has exploded in the ancient Lebanese town of Mejdeloon. Shocking footage now of a series of homes that have been reduced to rubble near a Maronite Church where rescuers are just now pulling out the bodies of two young school girls. Christopher Talias reports live from the Lebanon.

“Sol Indiges is the voice of god,"

Sol Invictus, in light, his mind;"

*Sol-Ammon is the understanding and wisdom for all time!”
The name Solomon can be broken into three languages as three roots words representing the phrase, "see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil." There also happens to be three gods that have names holding a similar meaning to each part of the phrase.
Aztec Warrior Aug 2016
Snow Falling On Cedars**

The Dream: Death 1

snow, falling on Cedars,
soft and gentle,
is like your whisper’d breath
spoken in silent wisps
of warmth felt seductively
on my ears.
Each flake
a kiss,
a thought
of lavender
and honey’d dew drops
caressing my lips.
It’s a sensual touch
the way my face
curves into your fingers;
into the smile
of your eyes
finding the sparkle of mine.

The Reality: Death 2

snow falling on Cedars
is a Winter’s kiss;
the emptiness of white,
of hard pack’d earth
and its message of death.
Your fingers are cold,
your lips frozen, lifeless
and wrinkl’d with the too sweet
taste of rancid fruit.
It is a brittle, cruel love
that mingles in this wasteland,
infecting
and influencing hope
and the dreams of light
with the bleak melancholy of despair.

The Finale:

snow falling on Cedars,
the darkness of vengeful breath
covers everything with the
emptiness of white;
softly
gently
like whispers of silent death.

Aztec Warrior/redzone 8.13.16
...thanks for reading
John K Trainer May 2014
I Walk through the lonely ancient woods
And hear the voices from the Cedars of Lebanon
Whispering a truth known to all
But remembered by few

A felled branch reveals the wound
That smells of comfort and wisdom
Your knots are like the eyes of God
Scrutinizing my every intentions

I feel at ease as I rest in your strong arms
And think --
If I had a choice for a final resting place
It would be under your majestic feet
Ozioma Ogbaji Apr 2015
As beautiful as the famed city of Atlantis
Gloriously flourishing in her perfection
There is a place where my soul and heart is
A perfect place without grief or deception

Where my heart is always merry
And peace blossoms like the cherry
The sun smiles at me gently caressing
My body as the birds sing melodies-
So beautiful they keep me guessing-
The beauty of future melodic memories

Like the Cedars of Lebanon
Beautifying the palaces of Ethiopia
Purity, love and perfection adorn her every season.
This place is within me; this place is Utopia
Valentine Mbagu Oct 2014
Behold Nigeria my motherland
A land that sits upon the hills of many waters
A country built on the ancient landmark of heroes band
An Eagle that protects her citizens in the arms of her feathers.

A beautiful Nigeria whose fields are as green as green could ever be
An Iroko that stands on the root of peace and unity
A fertile land that is as fertile as fertility can ever be
A united people, a proud nation void of segregation nor discrimination in her city.

My motherland a land that upholds the staff of dignity and natural endowment
A land of unity and peace glowing like a river of gold across the horizon
A nation that feeds on the diet of heavens supplement
An ocean that runs through the test of raging storms un-torn.

My motherland! My motherland!
A Nigeria that adores her women more highly than the Queen of England
An Olive that yields more than the cedars of Lebanon
A land whose daughters are as beautiful as the daughters of Job in Jerusalem's land
An independent country as powerful as the King Nebuchadnezar of Babylon.

It's Nigeria my motherland
A land that rests on the pillars of her freedom
A country seated on the pearls and treasures of many Ireland
A Nigeria that lives on the soil of heavens wisdom.
I.

One night at the Troubadour I spotted this extraordinary girl.

So I asked who she was.

‘A professional,’

That was my introduction that on a scale of one to ten

there were women who were fifteens—beautiful, bright, witty, and

oh, by the way, they worked.

Once I became aware,

I saw these women everywhere.

And I came to learn that most of them were connected to Alex



II.

She had a printer engrave a calling card

that featured a bird of paradise

borrowed from a Tiffany silver pattern

and,
under it,

Alex’s Aviary,

Beautiful and Exotic birds.



A few were women you’d see lunching at Le Dôme:

pampered arm pieces with expensive tastes

and a hint of a delicious but remote sexuality.

Many more were fresh-faced, athletic, tanned, freckled

the quintessential California girl

That you’d take for sorority queens or future BMW owners.





III.

The mechanism of Alex’s sudden notoriety is byzantine,

as these things always are.

One of her girls took up with a rotter,

the couple had a fight,

he went to the police,

the police had an undercover detective visit

(who just happened to be an attractive woman)

and ask to work for her,

she all but embraced her

—and by April of 1988 the district attorney had enough evidence

to charge her with two counts of pandering

and one of pimping.

For Alex, who is fifty-six

and has a heart condition and diabetes,

the stakes may be high.

A conviction carries the guarantee of incarceration.

For the forces of law and order,

the stakes may be higher.

Alex has let it be known that she will subpoena

every cop she’s ever met to testify at her trial.

And the revelations this might produce

—perhaps that Alex compromised policemen

by making girls available to them,

—perhaps that Alex had a deal with the police to provide information

in exchange for their blind eye to her activities

—could be hugely embarrassing to the police and the district attorney.

For Alex’s socially correct clients and friends,

for the socially correct wives of her clients and friends

and for a handful of movie and television executives

who have no idea they are dating or

married to former Alex girls,

the stakes are highest of all.



IV.

Alex’s black book is said to be a catalogue of
Le Tout Los Angeles.

In her head are the ****** secrets

of many of the city’s most important men,

to say nothing of visiting businessmen and Arab princes.

If she decides to warble,

either at her trial or in a book,

her song will shatter more than glass.





V.

A decade ago, I went to lunch at Ma Maison,

There were supposed to have been ten people there,

but only four came.

One of them was a short woman

who called me a few days later and invited me to lunch.

When I arrived, the table was set for two.

I didn’t know who Alex was or what she did,

but she knew the important facts of my situation:

I was getting divorced from a very wealthy man

and doing the legal work myself

to avail lawyers who wanted to get a big settlement for me.


Occasionally, she said, I get a call for a tall, dark-haired,

slender, flat-chested woman

—and I don’t have any.

It wouldn’t be a frequent thing.

There’d be weekends away, sometimes in Palm Springs,

sometimes in Europe.

The men will be elegant,

you’ll have your own room

—there would be no outward signs of impropriety.

And you’d get $10,000 to $20,000 for a weekend.





VI.

The tall, slender, flat-chested brunette

didn’t think it was right for her.

Alex handed her a business card

and suggested that she think about it.

To her surprise, she did

—for an entire week.

This was 1978, and $20,000 then

was like $40,000 now,

I knew it was hooking,

but Alex had never mentioned ***.



Our whole conversation seemed to be about something else.



VII.

I was born in Manila

to a Spanish-Filipina mother and German father,

and when I was twelve

a Japanese soldier came into our house

with his bayonet pointed at us,

ready to do us in.

He locked us in and set the house on fire.

I haven’t been scared by much since that.



My mother always struck me as goofy,

so I jumped on a bus and ran away,

I got off in Oakland,

saw a help-wanted sign on a parish house,

and went in.

I got $200 a month for taking care of four priests.

I spent all the money on pastries for the parish house.

But I didn’t care.

It felt safe.

And the priests sparked my interest in the domestic arts

—in linen, in crystal.



A new priest arrived.

He was unpleasant,

so on a vacation in Los Angeles I took a pedestrian job,

still a teenager,

married a scientist.

We separated eight years later,

he took our two sons to another state

threatened to keep them if I didn’t agree to a divorce.

Keep them I said and hung up.

It’s not that I don’t have a maternal instinct

—though I don’t,

I just hate to be manipulated.



My second husband,

an alcoholic,

had Frank Sinatra blue eyes, and possibly

—I never knew for sure—

had a big career in the underworld

as a contract killer.

Years before we got serious,

he was going out with a famous L.A. ******,

She and her friends were so elegant

that I started spending time with them in beauty salons.

They were so fancy,

so smart

—and they knew incredible people,

like the millionaire who sat in his suite all day

just writing $5,000 checks to girls.



VIII.

I was a florist.

We got to talking.

She was a madam from England

who wanted to sell her book and go home.

I bought it for $5,000.

My husband thought it was cute.

Now you’re getting your feet wet.

Three months later,

he died.

After eleven years of marriage,

just like that.

And of the names in the book

it turned out

that half of the men were also dead.

When I began the men were old and the women were ugly.



IX.

It was like a lunch party you or I would give,

Great food Alex had cooked herself.

Major giggles with old pals.

And then,

instead of chocolate After Eight,

she served three women After Three



This man has seen a bit of life

beyond Los Angeles,

so I asked him how Alex’s stable

compared with that of Madam Claude,

the legendary Parisian procuress.

Oh, these aren’t at all like Claude’s girls,

A Claude girl was perfectly dressed and multilingual

—you could take her to the opera

and she’d understand it.





He told me that when she was 40

she looked at herself in the mirror

and said

Disgusting.

People over 40

should not have ***.

But She Was Clear That She Never Liked It

even when she was young.

Besides, she saw all the street business

go to the tall,

beautiful girls.

She thought that she never had a chance

competing against them.

Instead,

she would take their money by managing them.





X.

Going to a ****** was not looked down upon then.

It was before the pill;

Girls weren’t giving it away.

Claude specialized in

failed models and actresses,

ones who just missed the cut.

But just because they failed

in those impossible professions

didn’t mean they weren’t beautiful,

fabulous.



Like Avis

in those days,

those girls tried harder.

Her place was off the Champs,

just above a branch of the Rothschild bank, where I had an account.

Once I met her,

I was constantly making withdrawals and heading upstairs.





XI.

We took the lift

and Claude greeted us at the door.

My impression was that of the director

of an haute couture house,

very subdued,

beige and gray, very little makeup.

She took us into a lounge and made us drinks,

Whiskey,

Cognac.

There was no maid.

We made small talk for 15 minutes.

How was the weekend?

What’s the weather like in Deauville?

Then she made the segue. ‘I understand you’d like to see some jeunes filles?’

She always used ‘jeunes filles.’

This was Claude’s polite way of saying 18 to 25.

She left and soon returned

with two very tall

jeunes filles,

One was blonde.

This is Eva from Austria.

She’s here studying painting.

And a brunette,

very different,

but also very fine.

This is Claudia from Germany.

She’s a dancer.

She took the girls back into the apartment and returned by herself.

I gave my English guest first choice.

He picked the blonde.

And wasn’t disappointed.

Each bedroom had its own bidet.

There was some nice

polite conversation, and then



It was slightly formal,

but it was high-quality.

He paid Claude

200 francs,

not to the girls

In 1965, 200 francs was about $40.

Pretty girls on Rue Saint-Denis

could be had for 40 francs

so you can see the premium.

Still, it wasn’t out of reach for mere mortals.

You didn’t have to be J. Paul Getty.





XII.

A lot of them

were models at

Christian Dior

or other couture houses.

She liked Scandinavians.

That was the look then

—cold, tall, perfect.

It was cheap for the quality.

They all used her.

The best people wanted

the best women.

Elementary supply and demand.



XIII.

She had a camp number tattooed on her wrist. I saw it.

She showed it to me and Rubi.

She was proud she had survived.

We talked about the camp for hours.

It was even more fascinating than the girls.



She was Jewish

I’m certain of that.

She was horrified at the Jewish collaborators

at the camp who herded

their fellow Jews

into the gas chambers.

That was the greatest betrayal in her life.



XIV.

She was this sad,

lonely little woman.

Later, Patrick told me who she was.

I was bowled over.

It was like meeting Al Capone.

I met two of the girls

who worked for her.

One was what you would expect

Tall

Blonde

Model.

But the other looked like a Rat

Then one night

she came out

all dressed up,

I didn’t even recognize her.

She was even better than the first girl.

Claude liked to transform women like that.

That was her art.

It was very odd,

my cousin told me.

There was not much furniture

and an awful lot of telephones.

“Allô oui,”



XV.

I had so many lunches

with Claude at Ma Maison

She was vicious.

One day,

Margaux Hemingway,

at the height of her beauty, walked by.

Une bonne

—the French for maid

was how Claude cut her dead.

She reduced

the entire world

to rich men wanting *** and

poor women wanting money.

She’d love to page through Vogue and see someone

and say,

When I met her

she was called

Marlene

and she had a hideous nose

and now she’s a princess.

Or she’d see someone and say

Let’s see if she kisses me or not.

It was like

I made her,

and I can destroy her.

She was obsessed

with “fixing” people

—with Saint Laurent clothes,

with Cartier watches,

with Winston jewels,

with Vuitton luggage,

with plastic surgeons.



XVI.

Her prison number was

888

which was good luck in China

but not in California.

‘Ocho ocho ocho,’ she liked to repeat

Even in jail, she was always working,

always recruiting stunning women.

She had a beautiful Mexican cellmate

and gave her Robert Evans’s number

as the first person she should call

when she was released.



XVII.

Never have *** on the first date.



XVIII.

There will always be prostitution,

The prostitution of misery.

And the prostitution of bourgeois luxury.

They will both go on forever.



“Allô oui,”



It was so exciting to hear a millionaire

or a head of state ask,

in a little boy’s voice,

for the one thing

that only you could provide

It's not how beautiful you are, it's how you relate

--it's mostly dialogue.



She was tiny, blond, perfectly coiffed and Chanel-clad.

The French Woman: The Arab Prince, the Japanese Diplomat, the Greek Tycoon, the C.I.A. Bureau Chief — She Possessed Them All!



XIX.

She was like a slave driver in the American South

Once she took a *******,

the makeover put the girl in debt,

because Claude paid all the bills to

Dior,

Vuitton,

to the hairdressers,

to the doctors,

and the girls had to work to pay them off.

It was ****** indentured servitude.



My Swans.



It reached the point

where if you walked into a room

in London

or Rome

as much as Paris

because the girls were transportable,

and saw a girl who was

better-dressed,

better-looking,

and more distinguished than the others

you presumed

it was a girl from Claude.

It was, without doubt,

the finest *** operation ever run in the history of mankind.



**.

The girl had to be

exactly what was needed

so I had to teach her everything she didn’t know.

I played a little the role of Pygmalion.

There were basic things that absolutely had to be done.

It consisted

at the start

of the physical aspect

“surgical intervention”

to give this way of being

that was different from other girls.

Often they had to be transformed

into dream creatures

because at the start

they were not at all



Often I had to teach them how to dress.

Often they needed help

to repair

what nature had given them

which was not so beautiful.

At first they had to be tall,

with pretty gestures,

good manners.

I had lots of noses done,

chins,

teeth,

*******.

There was a lot to do.



Eight times out of ten

I had to teach them how to behave in society.

There were official dinners, suppers, weekends,

and they needed to have conversation.

I insisted they learn to speak English,

read

certain books.

I interrogated them on what they read.

It wasn’t easy.

Each time something wasn’t working,

I was obliged to say so.



You were very demanding?

I was ferocious.



It’s difficult

to teach a girl how to walk into Maxim’s

without looking

ill at ease

when they’ve never been there,

to go into an airport,

to go to the Ritz,

or the Crillon

or the Dorchester.

To find yourself

in front of a king,

three princes,

four ministers,

and five ambassadors at an official dinner.

There were the wives of those people!

Day after day

one had to explain,

explain again,

start again.

It took about two years.

There would always be a man

who would then say of her,

‘But she’s absolutely exceptional. What is that girl doing here?’ ”





XXI.

A New York publisher who visited

the Palace Hotel

in Saint Moritz

in the early seventies told me,

I met a whole bunch of them there.

They were lovely.

The johns wanted everyone to know who they were.

I remember it being said

Giovanni’s Madame Claude girl is going to be there.

You asked them where they came from and they all said

Neuilly.

Claude liked girls from good families.

More to the point she had invented their backgrounds.



I have known,

because of what I did,

some exceptional and fascinating men.

I’ve known some exceptional women too,

but that was less interesting

because I made them myself.



Ah, this question of the handbag.

You would be amazed by how much dust accumulates.

Or how often women’s shoe heels are scuffed.





XXII.

She would examine their teeth and finally she would make them undress.



That was a difficult moment

When they arrived they were very shy,

a bit frightened.

At the beginning when I take a look,

it’s a question of seeing if the silhouette

and the gestures are pretty.

Then there was a disagreeable moment.

I said,

I’m sorry about this unpleasantness,

but I have to ask you to get undressed,

because I can’t talk about you unless I see you.

Believe me, I was embarrassed,

just as they were,

but it had to be done,

not out of voyeurism, not at all

—I don’t like les dames horizontales.



It was very funny

because there were always two reactions.

A young girl,

very sure of herself,

very beautiful,

très bien,

would say

Yes,

Get up, and get undressed.

There was nothing to hide, everything was perfect.



There were those who

would start timidly

to take off their dress

and I would say

I knew already.

The rest is not sadism, but nearly.

I knew what I was going to find.

I would say,

Maybe you should take off your bra,

and I knew it wasn’t going to be

beautiful.

Because otherwise she would have taken it off easily.

No problem.

There were damages that could be mended.

There were some ******* that could be redone,

some not

Sometimes it can be deceptive,

you know,

you see a pretty girl,

a pretty face,

all elegant and slim,

well dressed,

and when you see her naked

it is a catastrophe.



I could judge their physical qualities,

I could judge if she was pretty, intelligent, and cultivated,

but I didn’t know how she was in bed.

So I had some boys,

good friends,

who told me exactly.

I would ring them up and say,

There’s a new one.

And afterwards they’d ring back and say,

Not bad,

Could be better, or

Nulle.



Or,

on the contrary,

She’s perfect.

And I would sometimes have to tell the girls

what they didn’t know.

A pleasant assignment?

No.

They paid.



XXIII.

Often at the beginning

they had an ami de coeur

in other words,

oh,

a journalist, a photographer, a type like that,

someone in the cinema,

an actor, not very well known.

As time went by

It became difficult

because they didn’t have a lot of time for him.

The fact of physically changing,

becoming prettier,

changing mentally to live with millionaires,

produced a certain imbalance

between them

and the little boyfriend

who had not evolved

and had stayed in his milieu.

At the end of a certain time

she would say,

I’m so much better than him. Why am I with this boy?

And they would break up by themselves.



Remember,

this was instant elevation.

For most of them it was a dream existence,

provided they liked the ***,

and those that didn’t never lasted long.

A lot of the clients were young,

and didn’t treat them like tarts but like someone from their own class.

They would buy you presents,

take you on trips.



XXIV.

For me, *** was something very accessoire

I think after a certain age

there are certain spectacles one should not give to others

Now I have a penchant for solitude.

Love, it’s a complete destroyer,

It’s impossible,

a horror,

l’angoisse.

It’s the only time in my life I was jealous.

I’m not a jealous person, but I was épouvantable.

He was jealous too.

We broke plates over each other’s heads;

we became jealous about each other’s pasts.

I said one day

It’s finished.

Sometimes I look at myself in the mirror and say:

Break my legs,

give me scarlet fever,

an attack of TB, but never that.

Not that.



XXV.

I called her into my office

Let us not exaggerate,

I sent her away.

She came back looking for employment,

but was fired again, this time for drugs.

She made menacing phone calls.

Then she arrived at the Rue de Boulainvilliers with a gun.

She shot three bullets

I was dressed in the fashion of Courrèges at this moment

He did very padded things.

I had a padded dress with a little jacket on top.

The bullet

—merci, Monsieur Courrèges

—stuck in the padding.

I was thrown forward onto the telephone.

I had one thought which went through my head:

I will die like Kennedy.

I turned round and put my hand up in a reflex.

The second bullet went through my hand.

I have two dead fingers.

It’s most useful for removing bottle tops.

In the corridor I was saved from the third bullet

because she was very tall

and I am quite petite, so it passed over my head.



XXVI.

There were men

who could decapitate,

****, and bomb their rivals

who would be frightened of me.

I would ask them how was the girl,

and they’d say

Not bad

and then

But I’m not complaining.

I was a little sadistic to them sometimes.

Some women have known powerful men because they’re their lover.

But I’ve known them all.

I had them all

here.



She will take many state secrets with her.



XXVI.

I don’t like ugly people

probably because when I was young

I wasn’t beautiful at all.

I was ugly and I suffered for it,

although not to the point of obsession.

Now that I’m an old woman,

I’m not so bad.

And that’s why

I’ve always been surrounded by people

Who

were

beautiful.

And the best way to have beautiful people around me

was to make them.

I made them very pretty.





XXVII.

I wouldn’t call what Alex gives you

‘advice,’

She spares you Nothing.

She makes a list of what she wants done,

and she really gets into it

I mean, she wants you to get your arms waxed.

She gives you names of people who do good facials.

She tells you what to buy at Neiman Marcus.

She’s put off by anything flashy,

and if you don’t dress conservatively, she’s got no problem telling you,

in front of an audience,

You look like a cheap *****!

I used to wear what I wanted when I went out

then change in the car into a frumpy sweater

when I went to give her the money she’d always go,

Oh, you look beautiful!



Marry your boyfriend,

It’s better than going to prison.

When you go out with her,

she’ll buy you a present; she’s incredibly generous that way.

And she’ll always tell you to save money and get out.

It’s frustrating to her when girls call at the end of the month

and say they need rent money.

She wants to see you do well.





We had a schedule, with cards that indicated a client’s name,

what he liked,

the names of the girls he’d seen,

and how long he’d been with them.

And I only hired girls who had another career

—if my clients had a choice between drop-dead-gorgeous

and beautiful-and-interesting,

they’d tend to take beautiful-and-interesting.

These men wanted to talk.

If they spent two hours with a girl,

they usually spent only five or ten minutes in bed.



I get the feeling that in Los Angeles, men are more concerned with looks.



XXVIII.

That was my big idea

Not to expand the book by aggressive marketing

but to make sure that nobody

mistook my girls for run-of-the-mill hookers.

And I kept my roster fresh.

This was not a business where you peddle your ***,

get exploited,

and then are cast off.

I screen clients. I’ve never sent girls to weirdos.

I let the men know:

no violence,

no costumes,

no fudge-packing.

And I talked to my girls. I’d tell them:

Two and a half years and you’re burned out.

Save your money.

This is like a hangar

—you come in, refuel, and take off.

It’s not a vacation, it’s not a goof.

This buys the singing lessons,

the dancing lessons,

the glossies.

This is to help you pay for what your parents couldn’t provide.

It’s an honorable way station—a lot of stars did this.



XXIX.

To say someone was a Claude girl is an honour, not a slur.



Une femme terrible.

She despised men and women alike.

Men were wallets. Women were holes.



By the 80s,

if you were a brunette,

the sky was the limit.

The Saudis

They’d call for half a dozen of Alex’s finest,

ignore them all evening while they

chatted,

ate,

and played cards,

and then, around midnight,

take the women inside for a fast few minutes of ***.



They’d order women up like pizza.



Since my second husband died,

I only met one man who was right for me,

He was a sheikh.

I visited him in Europe

twenty-eight times

in the five years I knew him

and I never slept with him.

He’d say

I think you fly all the way here just to tease me,

but he introduced me

by phone

to all his powerful friends.

When I was in Los Angeles, he called me twice a day.

That’s why I never went out

he would have been disappointed.



***.

Listen to me

This is a woman’s business.

When a woman does it, it’s fun

there’s a giggle in it

when a man’s involved,

he’s ******,

he’s a ****.

He may know how to keep girls in line,

and he may make money,

but he doesn’t know what I do.

I tell guys: You’re getting a nice girl.

She’s young,

She’s pleasant,

She can do things

she can certainly make love.

She’s not a rocket scientist, but she’s everything else.



The world’s richest and most powerful men, the announcer teased.

An income “in the millions,” said the arresting officer.

Pina Colapinto

A petite call girl,

who once slid between the sheets of royalty,

a green-eyed blonde helped the police get the indictment.

They really dolled her up

She looks great.

Never!

What I told her was: ‘Wash that ******.’





XXXI.

Madam Alex died at 7 p.m.

Saturday at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center,

where she had been in intensive care after recent open heart surgery

We all held her hand when they took her off the life support

This was the passing of a legend.

Because she was the mother superior of prostitution.

She was one of the richest women on earth.

The world came to her.

She never had to leave the house.

She was like Hugh Hefner in that way.


It's like losing a friend

In all the years we played cat and mouse,

she never once tried to corrupt me.

We had a lot of fun.


To those who knew her

she was as constant

as she was colorful

always ready with a good tidbit of gossip

and a gourmet lunch for two.

She entertained, even after her conviction on pandering charges,

from the comfy depths of her blue four-poster bed at her home near Doheny Drive,

surrounded by knickknacks and meowing cats,

which she fed fresh shrimp from blue china plates.



XXXII.

She stole my business,

my books,

my girls,

my guys.

I had a good run.

My creatures.

Make Mommy happy

Oh! He is the most enchanting cat that I have ever known.



She was, how can I say it,

classy.

When she first hired me

she thought I was too young to take her case.

I was 43.

I'm going to give you some gray hairs by the time this is over.

She was right.





XXXIII.

I was fond of Heidi

But she has a streak that is so vindictive.



If there is pure evil, it is Madame Alex.





XXXIV.

I was born and raised in L.A.

My dad was a famous pediatrician.

When he died, they donated a bench to him at the Griffith Park Observatory.



I think that Heidi wanted to try her wings

pretty early,

and I think that she met some people

who sort of took all her potential

and gave it a sharp turn



She knew nothing.

She was like a little parrot who repeated what she was supposed to say.



Alex and I had a very intense relationship;

I was kind of like the daughter she loved and hated,

so she was abusive and loving at the same time.



Look, I know Madam Alex was great at what she did

but it's like this:

What took her years to build,

I built in one.

The high end is the high end,

and no one has a higher end than me.

In this business, no one steals clients.

There's just better service.



XXXV.

You were not allowed to have long hair

You were not allowed to be too pretty

You were not allowed to wear too much makeup or be too glamorous

Because someone would fall in love with you and take you away.

And then she loses the business



XXXVI.

I was pursued because

come on

in our lifetime,

we will never see another girl of my age

who lived the way I did,

who did what I did so quickly,

I made so many enemies.

Some people had been in this line of business

for their whole lives, 30 or 40 years,

and I came in and cornered the market.

Men don't like that.

Women don't like that.

No one liked it.



I had this spiritual awakening watching an Oprah Winfrey video.

I was doing this 500-hour drug class

and one day the teacher showed us this video,

called something like Make It Happen.

Usually in class I would bring a notebook

and write a letter to my brother or my journal,

but all of a sudden this grabbed my attention

and I understood everything she said.

It hit me and it changed me a lot.

It made me feel,

Accept yourself for who you are.

I saw a deeper meaning in it

but who knows, I might have just been getting my period that day!



XXXVII.

Hello, Gina!

You movie star!

Yes you are!

Gina G!

Hello my friend,

Hello my friend,

Hello my movie star,

Ruby! Ruby Boobie!

Braaawk!

Except so many women say,

Come on, Heidi

you gotta do the brothel for us; don't let us down.

It would be kind of fun opening up an exclusive resort,

and I'll make it really nice,

like the Beverly Hills Hotel

It'll feel private; you'll have your own bungalow.

The only problem out here is the climate—it's so brutal.

Charles Manson was captured a half hour from Pahrump.



I said, Joe! What are you doing?

You gotta get, like,

a garter belt and encase it in something

and write,

This belonged to Suzette Whatever,

who entertained the Flying Tigers during World War II.

Get, like, some weird tools and write,

These were the first abortion tools in the brothel,

you know what I mean?

Just make some **** up!

So I came out here to do some research

And then I realized,

What am I doing?

I'm Heidi Fleiss. I don't need anyone.

I can do this.

When I was doing my research, in three months

I saw land go from 30 thousand an acre

to 50 thousand an acre,

and then it was going for 70K!

It's urban sprawl

—we're only one hour from Las Vegas.

Out here the casinos are only going to get bigger,

prostitution is legal, it's only getting better.





XXXVIII.

The truth is

deep down inside,

I just can't do business with him

He's the type of guy who buys Cup o' Noodles soup for three cents

and makes his hookers buy it back from him for $5.

It's not my style at all.

Who wants to be 75 and facing federal charges?

It was different at my age when I

at least...come on, I lived really well.

I was 22,

25 at the time?

It was fun then, but now I wouldn't want

to deal with all that *******

—the girls and blah blah blah.

But the money was really good.



I would've told someone they were out of their ******* mind

if they'd said in five years I'd be living with all these animals like this.

It's hard-core; how I live;

It's totally a nonfunctional atmosphere for me

It's hard to get anything done because

It’s so time-consuming.

I feel like they're good luck though....

I do feel that if I ever get rid of them,

I will be jinxed and cursed the rest of my life

and nothing I do will ever work again.



Guys kind of are a hindrance to me

Certainly I have no problem getting laid or anything.

But a man is not a priority in my life.

I mean, it's crazy, but I really have fun with my parrots.



XXXIX.

I started a babysitting circle when I wasn't much older than 9

And soon all the parents in the neighborhood

wanted me to watch over their children.

Even then I had an innate business sense.

I started farming out my friends

to meet the demand.

My mother showered me with love and my father,

a pediatrician,

would ask me at the dinner table,

What did you learn today?

I ran my neighborhood.

I just pick up a hustle really easily,

I was a waitress and I met an older guy who looked like Santa Claus.



Alex was a 5' 3" bald-headed Filipina

in a transparent muu muu.

We hit it off.

I didn't know at the time that I was there to pay off the guy's gambling debt.

It's in and out,

over and out.

Do you think some big-time producer

or actor is going to go to the clubs and hustle?



Columbia Pictures executive says:

I haven’t done anything that should cause any concern.

Jeez, it's like the Nixon enemies list.

I hope I'm on it.

If I'm not, it means I must not be big enough

for people to gossip about me.



That's right ladies and gentlemen.

I am an alleged madam and that is a $25 *****!

If you live out here,

you've got to hate people.

You've got to be pretty antisocial

How you gonna come out here with only 86 people?

That's Fred.

He's digging to China.

You look good.

Yeah, you too.

It's coming along here.

Yeah, it is.

I wanted to buy that lot there, but I guess it's gone?

That's mine, man! That's all me.

Really?

I thought there was a lot between us.

No. We're neighbors.



He's a cute guy

He's entertaining.

See, I kind of did do something shady to him.

I thought my property went all the way back

and butted up against his.

But there was one lot between us right there.

He said he was buying it,

but I saw the 'For Sale' sign still up there,

So I went and called the broker and said,

I'm an all-cash buyer.

So I really bought it out from under him.

But he's got plenty of room, and I need the space for my parrots.

Pahrump will always be Pahrump, but Crystal is going to be nice

All you need are four or five fancy houses and it'll flush everyone out

and it'll be a nice area.

They're all kind of weird here, but these people will go.

Like this guy here,

someone needs to **** him.

I was just saying to my dad that these parrots are born to a really ******-up world

He goes, Heidi, no, no; the world is a beautiful garden.

It's just, people are destroying it.

I’m looking into green building options

I don't want anything polluting,

I want a huge auditorium,

but it'll be like a jungle where my birds can really fly!

Where they can really do what they're supposed to do.

There were over 300 birds in there!

That lady,

She ran the exotic-birds department for the Tropicana Hotel,

which is a huge job.

She called me once at 3:30 in the morning

Come over here and help me feed this baby!

Some baby parrot.

And I ran over there in my pajamas

—I knew there was something else wrong

and she was like

Get me my oxygen!

Get me this, get me that.

I called my dad; he was like,

I don't know, honey, you better call the paramedics.

They ended up getting a helicopter.

And they were taking her away

in the wind with her IV and blood and everything

and she goes, Heidi, you take care of my birds.

And she dies the next day.

She was just a super-duper person.



XL.

I relate to the lifestyle she had before,

Now, I'm just a citizen.

I'm clean,

I'm sober,

I'm married,

I work at Wal-Mart.

I'm proud to say I know her. I look into her eyes

and we relate.





I got out in 2000,

so I've been sending her money for seven years

She was…whatever.

Girlfriend?

Yeah, maybe.

But ***, I tried like two times,

and I'm just not gay.

She gets out in about eight or nine months

and I told her I would get her a house.

But nowhere near me.

I didn't touch her,

but I'd be, like...

a funny story:

I told her,

Don't you ever ******* think

about contacting me in the real world.

I'm not a lesbian.

Then about two years ago, I got an e-mail from her,

or she called me and said, 'Google my name.'

So I Googled her name,

and she has this huge company.

Huge!

She won, like, Woman of the Year awards.

So I called her and I go,

Not bad.

She goes, 'Well, I did all that because you called me a loser.'

I go, '****, I should've called you more names

you probably would've found the cure for cancer by now.



XLI.

No person shall be employed by the licensee

who has ever been convicted of

a felony involving moral turpitude

But I qualify,

I mean, big deal, so I'm a convicted felon.

Being in the *** industry, you can't be so squeaky-clean.

You've got to be hustling.

Nighttime is really enchanting here

It's like a whole 'nother world out here, it really is

I’m so far removed from my social life and old surroundings.

Who was it, Oscar Wilde, I think, who said

people can adjust to anything.

I was perfectly adjusted in the penitentiary,

and I was perfectly adjusted to living in a château in France.



We had done those drug addiction shows together

Dr. Drew.

Afterward we were friendly

and he'd call me every now and then.

He'd act like he had his stuff together.

But it was all a lie.

Everything is a lie.

I brought him to a Humane Society event at Paramount Studios last year.

He was just such a mess.

So out of it.

He stole money from my purse.

He's such a drug addict because he's so afraid of being fat.

He liked horse ****, though. He did like horse ****.

This one woman that would have *** with a horse on the internet,

He told me that’s his favorite actress.

Better than Meryl Streep.



XLII.

The cops could see

why these women were taking over trade.

Girls with these looks charged upwards of $500 an hour.

The Russians had undercut them with a bargain rate of $150 an hour.

One thing they are not is lazy.

In the USSR

they grew up with no religion, no morality.

Prostitution is not considered a bad thing.

In fact, it’s considered a great way to make money.

That’s why it’s exploding here.

What we saw was just a tip of the iceberg.

These girls didn’t come over here expecting to be nannies.

They knew exactly what they wanted and what they were getting into.

The madam who organized this raid

was making $4 million a year,

laundered through Russian-owned banks in New York City

These are brutal people.

They are all backstabbers.

They’re entrepreneurs.

They’re looking at $10,000 a month for turning tricks.

For them, that’s the American dream.



XLIII.

If you’re not into something,

don’t be into it

But,

if you want to take some whipped cream,

put it between your toes,

have your dog licking it up and,

at the same time,

have your girlfriend poke you in the eye,

then that’s fine.

That’s a little weird but we shouldn’t judge.



She was my best friend then

and I consider her one of my best friends now,

because when I was going through Riker’s

and everyone abandoned me,

including my boyfriend,

I was hysterical,

crying,

and she was the one that was there.

And, when somebody needed to step up to the plate,

that’s who did, and I have an immense amount of

loyalty, respect, and love for her.

And if she’s going to prison for eight years

—that’s what she’s sentenced for

—I’ll go there,

and I’ll go there every week,

for eight years.

That’s the type of person I am.
Mark Rubilla Apr 2010
Be still my soul, be still
Dont worry about the open tomb
There is a reason, why is this happening
Trust Him, instead of doubting
He has drawn the portrait
In a perfect beauty and form

Learn to adapt this moment
Look at whats ahead of this
Its a guarantee to find answer that is unknown
Reflect, ponder each of this
Open this eyes like a first time
Like a new born baby

Be excited to the future
Evaluate this heart O God
Echo again the words in my ears
It is finished, it is finished
The curtain was cut into two

O through Your blood I am victorious
Nothing in this world can separate
This life was meant for You
Burn me with fire from heaven
Strengthen this redeem man
I need You this all day long
Jonny Angel Oct 2014
I've been told
there's a place
called Heaven,
where the sea
meets the golden desert,
mountains rise up
& tall cedars kiss the sun.
And in this place,
anise-spirits flow
& pistachios grow
in abundance.
Angels exist there,
honey-flavors drip
from their pretty mouths.
One in particular,
has the sweetest lips,
like baklava,
I am intoxicated.
They sing to me
songs of hope
& I am swept away,
swept away to that place
along Mideastern
shores.
Sara L Russell Sep 2009
Ch. 1.

1.

Behold, thou art dark and comely, my love;
richly hath the sun favoured thee,
delighting in thy presence.
Let me savour thy kisses of wine;
for in the gardens of the temple
the lotus furls open,
wild bees fall asleep on her face.


2.

Lilies and jasmine bloom
in the garden of my love;
falls of wisteria,
carpets of thyme.
Let us lie in the shade of the olives
to gaze on the sky.


3.

For many hours my love slept
  beneath the cedars,
couched on cool swathes of linen,
like the Lord of Midnight enthroned on a cloud.
Long tresses of willows shivered to cool his face.
I called his name but he heard me not,
being entranced in slumber,
deep in the thrall of dreams;
therefore I shall let him awaken when he please.




Ch. 2.

4.

A warm breath of nard is my master, my king,
A great golden deity haloed with stars.
Behold, the noble bearing of a king,
the finely-wrought body of a man.
In my dearest dreams he standeth before me
out of my reach, gesturing for me to follow,
calling unto me like the very embodiment of love.


5.

Night comes softly, o daughters of Jerusalem,
My king's desirous eyes have grown heavy with sleep.
His black hair ripples about his face
  like curtains of smoke,
gold bracelets entice my gaze to
the sinews of his arms.
Like roses unfurling, so open the lips of my love,
  I burn for their flavour,
yet awaken him not till he please.





Ch. 3.

6.

Out of the forest I came, with my
maidens and minions;
with carpets of hibiscus strewn at my feet.
Columns of frankincense curved into the air,
burning from lamps of copper and gold.
From the broad slopes of Edom
my soul's love stopped to observe us.
I felt his warm gaze upon me,
so soft a look as touched like caresses of hands.
I am weary with desire, my lord and king,
Bring me the looks of thine eyes, dark as midnight,
That regard me with touches of silk.


7.

Though I may stand with my legion before thee,
an army behind me,
The west wind roars to my left,
the east to my right,
a million strong with all my banners, warriors
and standard-bearers,
still my delight were only to serve thee,
see how I tremble with awe by thy side.


8.

Behold, my ladies, the noble bearing of a king,
the finely-wrought body of a man.
My king is a custodian of the sanctity of love,
see those arms with the strength to smite
yet full of the will to embrace.
Nightly cometh he to my chambers,
whispering of love,
with the stealth of a lion,
as meek as a lamb.




Ch. 4.

9.

Preparing for my beloved,
I have put on my mantle of midnight sky
garlanded with stars.
My black locks are hung with beads of gold,
my neck is anointed with sandalwood and rose.
Come, my ladies,
Bring me my white chargers,
my sedan lined with silks from Lebanon,
my heralds and cavalcades of guards;
My beloved king awaits my pleasure.






10.

When I am in the embrace of my beloved,
He is worlds of landscapes of desire,
he is all the earth, air and sky to me.
His eyes shineth as my sun and moon,
his broad chest becometh as the
cool desert dunes by night,
where I may rest my head.
Go safely in thy dreams, beloved king,
with sentinel angels, to roost with the doves.




Ch. 5.

11.

Such a turmoil of a dream
hath troubled me, my sisters,
I dreamed that my love approached my window,
Calling unto me through the
rosewood trefoils of the lattice.
Forgetful of our tryst I answered him not,
all oils and fine trappings were put away,
mine eyes were full of slumber.
When finally I rose from my bed
   he had gone.


12.

Overwrought and afraid,
I went out in the streets,
  calling unto my beloved,
receiving no answer and calling again.
  The night watchmen came and found me,
they smote me and denounced me as pagan,
calling me harlot and worshipper of false idols,
harshly they beat me with flails
and threw me into the darkest cellars
of the palace of Solomon.


13.

Awakening at last,
I felt a warm breeze,
It was my love's breath upon my face.
Let all the world suspend in time,
let hate, rage and darkness flee as a shadow,
otherwise let me die here in the arms of my king.
There is but this one hour, one place,
in one lingering moment,
When my soul's love and I are conjoined
in the petals of love.




Ch. 6.

14.

Midnight has fallen in the gardens
  of the temple of Solomon.
The moon communes with her sister in the lake,
painting the magnolias with mother-of-pearl,
turning her buds into silver doves.
Passion and beauty intertwine in my love's garden,
Like the twisted trunks of the fig trees of Judea.
Behold, my beloved,
thou art more comely even than the moon.
Come and walk with me
in the balmy air of night.


15.

Only through the love of another may
a soul come to know of itself.
My king is mine and I am his;
The sun and moon each taketh their
turn in the sky,
the shepherds go sure-footed
over their hills and valleys,
the merchants go their ways in the
spice markets of Lebanon,
while he and I are lost in one another's eyes.




Ch. 7.

16.

Love's weariness hath overcome me,
beloved lord and king.
Bring me thy pleasant fruits, thy tender words,
Lie betwixt my *******; my hair shall
be thy curtain,
these arms shall be as thy cocoon.
Let the tides cease their turning
and the winds give pause to hold their breath.
Awaken not my dearest love, until he please.


17.

Even in sleep,
such beautiful eyes hath my beloved;
his eyelashes rest upon his cheek
like the feet of a butterfly on a lily.
Come, my sisters, we shall make him
a bed of hemp and poppies,
with fruit of the lotus,
that he may languish beside me
for many days and nights.




Ch. 8.

18.

Filling my days and dreams,
here is a man with the grace of a young hart,
whose honeyed voice speaketh mantras of desire.
Arise and follow me, beloved, for my vineyards
are ripe with luscious fruits,
the doves beat their wings and fly from the cots.
Emerging from the amber of sunrise,
with a swirling of veils,
summer dances into the season of our love.


19.

Lying amid the twisting vines
My love and I are deep in each other's embrace
and his lips taste of roses heavy with dew.
I am a queen of the Red Sea,
an orchid from a sacred garden,
and my kingdom reacheth to the farthest hills.
None but my love shall pass the boundary
where my vines bear the sweetest fruit,
nor taste their heady wine.


20.

The gates of my vineyard are wrought of
iron clad with gold,
taller than cedars, decorated with
the royal insignia,
guarded by three score watchmen,
by day and night.
While other men are kept without
and the foxes are driven back by dogs,
see how swiftly they open for thee.




Ch. 9.

21.

Behold, the noble stature of a king,
the finely-wrought body of a man.
In the sanctity of love
we may walk in the realm of paradise,
undisturbed by the foibles of men.
Come beloved, awaken,
the new dawn opens as wide and fresh
as infant eyes.
Come run with me through the spice hills
  and gardens of Lebanon.
The old lady planted roses near the corner by the driveway
She never planted roses by the door
I remember once she told me, "Bees come out to get the nectar"
And a bee sting can be deadly or quite sore
Instead, she planted herbs along the walkway to her cottage
You'd pass by, the scent was rather nice
Rubbing rosemary and lemon grass and sage against your trousers
Sometimes you would even walk by twice

She had hollyhocks and primrose, a classic English garden
Lots of fragrant trees and bushes there as well
There were cedars by the windows and hyacinth close by
If she even had a lawn, you couldn't tell
There were irises and tulips, daffodils and more
And great bushes of white lavender abound
Not only was the lawn gone, with the bushes and the trees
I bet from inside you'd nary hear a sound

Around the back the same thing, exactly as the front
Herbs and plant life, and I'd say maybe more
Than all the plants in Englands  Kew Gardens have to see
And more lilacs by the walkway by the door
The vents from down the basement blew through cedars and the lilacs
Sending warming scents around the clustered yard
There were windows to the basement, blocked by flowers and the trees
And to see in was really rather hard

The one day I remember when I came out to the house
Is one I know I'll not forget
For walking down the pathway with a policeman on each side
Was the old lady with a look of deep regret
It seems the scented flowers and the bushes and the trees
Provided scents to hide the smells from deep inside
The air was vented out directly through the flowers
The house was just a grow op in disguise
Frank Ruland Oct 2014
Good--I'm glad I have your attention.
Look, I don't have much time
before those nut-hoarding *******
discover my secret contentions!
The furry devils want what's yours and mine
and won't stop until we're captured!
Some people think I'm lost my mind
but I think I can trust you with my words.
As I speak, those tree scurrying devils
spy upon all us of from behind!
Some fools think I'm absurd,
but in their pompous accusations I revel!
The heathens aren't just burying nuts--
no, food storage isn't what this is about.
They get what they need from bird feeders.
They've finally gathered enough guts
to plant listening devices all around,
while they listen inside oaks and cedars.
They want to take over the human race
and steal our resources for their own use.
The cretins are smarter than you think!
They feel scorned by the genocide taken place--
rendering them roadkill--flattening their faces!
We run them over; drive them to the brink,
and for this they wish to make us pay.
Please, heed my warnings and prepare
for a war unlike any you have ever seen!
There is carnage coming this way,
to be dealt by tiny, fuzzy hands, but don't despair.
It's not too late to stop their regime!
James M Vines Aug 2016
When the cold wind blows and the Whipper Whippoorwill stops its nightly song. I walk among the tall Cedars that are evergreen. I see the hues of Blue and Silver on the needles of the tall sentinels that stand along the road and line the banks of rivers and streams. They fill the valley with their scent and give haven to birds from the coming winter chill. Though their bark is rough, their heart is soft and fragrant. Sometimes I cry when one is cut down, but I do not mourn long, for I know it will be transformed. The tree will become a hope chest or the frame of a bed filled with childhood memories. So I walk on among old friends and feel a sense of peace. As I stand among the cedars of the valley where I live.
Hilda Nov 2012
1 ¶ Bless the LORD, O my soul. O LORD my God, thou art very great; thou art clothed with honour and majesty.
2 Who coverest thyself with light as with a garment: who stretchest out the heavens like a curtain:
3 Who layeth the beams of his chambers in the waters: who maketh the clouds his chariot: who walketh upon the wings of the wind:
4 Who maketh his angels spirits; his ministers a flaming fire:
5 Who laid the foundations of the earth, that it should not be removed for ever.
6 Thou coveredst it with the deep as with a garment: the waters stood above the mountains.
7 At thy rebuke they fled; at the voice of thy thunder they hasted away.
8 They go up by the mountains; they go down by the valleys unto the place which thou hast founded for them.
9 Thou hast set a bound that they may not pass over; that they turn not again to cover the earth.
10 ¶ He sendeth the springs into the valleys, which run among the hills.
11 They give drink to every beast of the field: the wild ***** quench their thirst.
12 By them shall the fowls of the heaven have their habitation, which sing among the branches.
13 He watereth the hills from his chambers: the earth is satisfied with the fruit of thy works.
14 He causeth the grass to grow for the cattle, and herb for the service of man: that he may bring forth food out of the earth;
15 And wine that maketh glad the heart of man, and oil to make his face to shine, and bread which strengtheneth man's heart.
16 The trees of the LORD are full of sap; the cedars of Lebanon, which he hath planted;
17 Where the birds make their nests: as for the stork, the fir trees are her house.
18 The high hills are a refuge for the wild goats; and the rocks for the conies.
19 ¶ He appointed the moon for seasons: the sun knoweth his going down.
20 Thou makest darkness, and it is night: wherein all the beasts of the forest do creep forth.
21 The young lions roar after their prey, and seek their meat from God.
22 The sun ariseth, they gather themselves together, and lay them down in their dens.
23 Man goeth forth unto his work and to his labour until the evening.
24 O LORD, how manifold are thy works! in wisdom hast thou made them all: the earth is full of thy riches.
25 So is this great and wide sea, wherein are things creeping innumerable, both small and great beasts.
26 There go the ships: there is that leviathan, whom thou hast made to play therein.
27 These wait all upon thee; that thou mayest give them their meat in due season.
28 That thou givest them they gather: thou openest thine hand, they are filled with good.
29 Thou hidest thy face, they are troubled: thou takest away their breath, they die, and return to their dust.
30 Thou sendest forth thy spirit, they are created: and thou renewest the face of the earth.
31 ¶ The glory of the LORD shall endure for ever: the LORD shall rejoice in his works.
32 He looketh on the earth, and it trembleth: he toucheth the hills, and they smoke.
33 I will sing unto the LORD as long as I live: I will sing praise to my God while I have my being.
34 My meditation of him shall be sweet: I will be glad in the LORD.
35 Let the sinners be consumed out of the earth, and let the wicked be no more. Bless thou the LORD, O my soul. Praise ye the LORD.*

*~KJV~
November 14, 2012
Brittany Hesse Mar 2015
With the wind under my wings I soar
I see the west Canadian shore
The drum it echoes, echoes, echoes, the drum it echoes through my core
Whispering a haunting rhythm of time, change, and war
Nuu-chan-nulth – A caring and nurturing people are thee
Small families among the mountains, rivers, and sea
Vancouver Island’s west coast is where you reside
Awaiting your canoes on evenings incoming tide

Your men are fishing in the ocean’s secret places
Worry and hope etched in their weathered faces
Each man knowing the days hunting success must provide
For many wives, children, and elders the spoils they must divide

Your rhythm and harmony with the ocean is strong
Whale hunts and oceans spirits intertwined through your song
The drum it echoes, echoes, echoes, the drum it echoes through my core
Whispering a haunting rhythm of time, change, and war
I hear the east call, and open my wings to take flight
The distant drum’s heartbeat calls from the suns rising light
The drum it echoes, echoes, echoes, the drum it echoes through my core
Whispering a haunting rhythm of time, change, and war
Coast Salish – You know how the sea dances and quivers
As you watch the expanse from your inlets, and rivers
Vigilance is needed in case a Storm approaches
To mount a defence if an enemy encroaches.

Your wise headmen lead with such divine humility
Your family life embodies true equality
Your features are defined by a broad face and flat brow
Your girls with plucked brows, braided hair prepare for their vow

You seasonally harvest your rivers resources
Spawning Eulachon and sturgeon complete their courses
The drum it echoes, echoes, echoes, the drum it echoes through my core
Whispering a haunting rhythm of time, change, and war
As I leave your forests of tall cedars and aged fir
The drumming beckons me up the wild Fraser River
The drum it echoes, echoes, echoes, the drum it echoes through my core
Whispering a haunting rhythm of time, change, and war


Okanagan – You survive in the Valley and slopes
In a legend of a coyote you set your hopes
He educated you how to live off the hard land
Your very own lives you bestowed in his paw like hand

Your offspring, your joy, your future you know must be taught
So at an early age, to the elders they were brought
Your youths are handpicked and taught the roll they shall assume
If a warrior shall fall another shall resume

Your seasonal harvest of forest meadows and marsh
Will insure you survival when the winters are harsh
The drum it echoes, echoes, echoes, the drum it echoes through my core
Whispering a haunting rhythm of time, change, and war
With the updrafts I glide over the dry desert plains
I hear the drum call from a land where it hardly rains
The drum it echoes, echoes, echoes, the drum it echoes through my core
Whispering a haunting rhythm of time, change, and war
Secwépemc – your men come out through the eastern sunrise’s door
Your women’s entrance faces the stream to ease her chore
In seasonal cozy houses built into the ground
In a secret place your spoils and possessions are found

Your request for spawning salmon grows louder each day
The messenger crickets announce salmons on their way
You hunt with arrows and spears you crafted from strong stone
Needles and jewelry you made from animal bone

You patiently, wait in the winter’s silent brisk eve  
For the deer’s stealthy approach from the snow covered trees  
The drum it echoes, echoes, echoes, the drum it echoes through my core
Whispering a haunting rhythm of time, change, and war
The drum it beckons from the land of river crossroads
The land where men come to bring and trade their canoes loads
The drum it echoes, echoes, echoes, the drum it echoes through my core
Whispering a haunting rhythm of time, change, and war


Dakelh – You are the people who learned how to barter
You are known as the people who travel on water
With gathered roots you weave fish weirs in the evening air
And you set your high hopes in the chanted salmon prayer

Your children learn from the oral traditions you tell
Chinlac massacres, caves where dwarves shooting arrows dwell
Your widows carry ashes of the husband they held dear
Their Mourning and sadness that will last over a year

The respect for the land for everything you have gain
Though much, and bountiful your harvest some shall remain
The drum it echoes, echoes, echoess, the drum it echoes through my core
Whispering a haunting rhythm of time, change, and war
A plume of smoke and drum beat come from the distant Northwest
Echoing from the place where the Skeena River rests
The drum it echoes, echoes, echoes, the drum it echoes through my core
Whispering a haunting rhythm of time, change, and war

Gitxsan –Your Home is surrounded by snow tipped glaciers
Forests of spruce, hemlock, cedars, and subalpine firs
Your chieftain name and duties you hold for a short time
Other Wilp members are only ‘children’ in their prime

Like the rivers your families closely intertwine
Each account told is a lesson that is sublime
Each Wilp has your story told by a tall totem pole
Your History affects and moves you deep in your soul

Deer, Moose, and small mammal in the wild woodlands you stalk
You pursue the Mountain goat through rugged peaks of rock
The drum it echoes, echoes, echoes, the drum it echoes through my core
Whispering a haunting rhythm of time, change, and war
The drums incessantly pounds as I take to the sky
Urgently calling from remote islands of Haida Gwaii
The drum it echoes, echoes, echoes, the drum it echoes through my core
Whispering a haunting rhythm of time, change, and war

Haida - You live in the pacific northern islands
Your fam’lies Belong to the eagle or raven clans
You watch the tide rise and fall over the rocks and sand
Great mighty sculptures you have created with your hand

With strong healthy cedar trees you made your long dwellings
The entrance way totem your history is telling
Your warrior canoes glide through the rolling waves
Through victories and battles you have prisoner slaves


The sound of the drum beat is mixed in saltwater spray
To Vancouver Island’s west shore I must fine my way
The drum it echo, echo, echo’s, the drum it echoes through my core
Whispering a haunting rhythm of time, change, and war
As I leave your vast, and memorable territory
In the soft twilight air I watch the sunset’s glory
The drum it echoes, echoes, echoes, the drum it echoes through my core
Whispering a haunting rhythm of time, change, and war

Kwakwakawakw- So proud you are of your mother tongue
Born in this beautiful land your ancestors came from
Noblemen, Aristocrats, commoners and your slaves
Your narrative exists among your forefathers graves

Your canoes bow is carved into animal features
The whale, otter, salmon and other sea creatures
You hunt with such heroic assurance all year round
In the shapes of well carved masks their likeness will abound

Your long homes are protected by the oceans embrace
First nations, my people, you are a amazing race
The drum it echoes, echoes, echoes, the drum it echoes through my core
Whispering a haunting rhythm of time, change, and war
I leave your land of legends in a misty gray veil
And on the horizons comes change’s white sail
The drum it echoes, echoes, echoes, the drum it echoes through my core
Whispering a haunting rhythm of time, change, and war
The Europeans came into your isolated lands
Dividing your people into tribes, reserves, and bands
Before their arrival you lived mighty, strong, and free
Now your children fight to reclaim their identity

The drum will echo, echo, echo through time’s core
It will whisper a rhythm of time, change, and war
The drum will echo, echo, echo through your core
It will whisper a rhythm of time, change, and war
cedars sway their boughs
in evergreen agreement,
bowing up and down with
reverence to nature~
nodding in unison to
the weight of the wind


Written by Sara Fielder © Nov 2016
Aaron Combs Apr 2015
Do you remember the garden?
Do you remember the garden?

Where
we
lived.

The Charlotte roses filled the wild,
peace was uncaged, unbroken,
and the dragons and doves flew together,

And the thousand horses ran free.
And the thousand horses ran free.

I notice resting inside your eyes
and heart hasn't been so hard. Wrestling for you,
holding you,
like a child, it hasn't
been so different.

I'm taking you back there, Eve
into the Land of Eden,
just drink of my lips
a little longer and you'll remember
and see.

Do you like to dance, Eve?
Let me make your imagination full
Then let me bring it to war as  we step
into it's gates.

Let’s Dance.

For the wind of the evening
still weaves dreams between
the heavens and the earth.
There. Look.

For your heart outshines the moon, I see the hurt, the regret
The pain in the pool of you precious eyes.
And I still see you, I still love you
For you.

I hear the rhythm of your breath
and dreams, the electricity and earth
of your voice. I see the blood written
words in your heart, let me show you what
they are.

Now see the memories come
together, as you believe.

The endless garden,
the red cedars,
the cool four rivers crashing
near the rock, where we once slept.  

And look, where we hid.

See, like I promised you, we are here again,
we are here.

Where the petals sip the dew upon
the face of the earth.
where the rain and the moonlight has
not fallen.

Now look at the stars, Eve. Everyone of those stars
are named, the star of Orion, the Bear,
and Leo, everyone of them.

Everyone of them will fall
                            Everyone of them,
                            Everyone of them.

So don't be afraid in your pain
in your feelings,
just come to me.

For you can take my hand,
and be safe in my arms of
love. Even when it all falls.
Even when it all comes crashing down.

Just  
   Trust me.

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx­xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

200 votes?

100 comments?
My 6th Poem. May it bless you all.
Oh what is that country
  And where can it be,
Not mine own country,
  But dearer far to me?
Yet mine own country,
  If I one day may see
Its spices and cedars,
  Its gold and ivory.

As I lie dreaming
  It rises, that land;
There rises before me
  Its green golden strand,
With the bowing cedars
  And the shining sand;
It sparkles and flashes
  Like a shaken brand.

Do angels lean nearer
  While I lie and long?
I see their soft plumage
  And catch their windy song,
Like the rise of a high tide
  Sweeping full and strong;
I mark the outskirts
  Of their reverend throng.

Oh what is a king here,
  Or what is a boor?
Here all starve together,
  All dwarfed and poor;
Here Death's hand knocketh
  At door after door,
He thins the dancers
  From the festal floor.

Oh what is a handmaid,
  Or what is a queen?
All must lie down together
  Where the turf is green,
The foulest face hidden,
  The fairest not seen;
Gone as if never
  They had breathed or been.

Gone from sweet sunshine
  Underneath the sod,
Turned from warm flesh and blood
  To senseless clod;
Gone as if never
  They had toiled or trod,
Gone out of sight of all
  Except our God.

Shut into silence
  From the accustomed song
Shut into solitude
  From all earth's throng,
Run down though swift of foot,
  ****** down though strong;
Life made an end of,
  Seemed it short or long.

Life made an end of,
  Life but just begun;
Life finished yesterday,
  Its last sand run;
Life new-born with the morrow
  Fresh as the sun:
While done is done for ever;
  Undone, undone.

And if that life is life,
  This is but a breath,
The passage of a dream
  And the shadow of death;
But a vain shadow
  If one considereth;
Vanity of vanities,
  As the Preacher saith.
CA Guilfoyle Jul 2012
Vine maples alight
paths dappled green
forest fronds reach for skies unseen
in deeper wood comes the black of day
red cedars fallen to decay
oxalis spring - softly flowered white
sway, leaning into the light
wild berries burst upon a mossy floor
drink sweet the red wine poured
mouse and bird drunk in their delight
will cozy sleep this woodland night.
CA Guilfoyle Aug 2017
I think it quite strange living here walled by this house
when I was wilder than now I lived in nature
stalking birds and pollen laden things
always my toes in sands or hot footed in summer.
I was in love with the sky, no matter the weather
in storms I hid beneath branching cedars
sleeping on mossy pillows, in the woods of my backyard.
I never gave much thought to houses then, I only went there
to sleep or eat and waited to leave again
waited for an inkling of sun to warm the cold grass
spent days climbing trees, red plums and cherries
I imagined that's how life would always be,
living outdoors under the sun or clouds
wet with rain, always picking flowers.
Now Morn, her rosy steps in the eastern clime
Advancing, sowed the earth with orient pearl,
When Adam waked, so customed; for his sleep
Was aery-light, from pure digestion bred,
And temperate vapours bland, which the only sound
Of leaves and fuming rills, Aurora’s fan,
Lightly dispersed, and the shrill matin song
Of birds on every bough; so much the more
His wonder was to find unwakened Eve
With tresses discomposed, and glowing cheek,
As through unquiet rest:  He, on his side
Leaning half raised, with looks of cordial love
Hung over her enamoured, and beheld
Beauty, which, whether waking or asleep,
Shot forth peculiar graces; then with voice
Mild, as when Zephyrus on Flora breathes,
Her hand soft touching, whispered thus.  Awake,
My fairest, my espoused, my latest found,
Heaven’s last best gift, my ever new delight!
Awake:  The morning shines, and the fresh field
Calls us; we lose the prime, to mark how spring
Our tender plants, how blows the citron grove,
What drops the myrrh, and what the balmy reed,
How nature paints her colours, how the bee
Sits on the bloom extracting liquid sweet.
Such whispering waked her, but with startled eye
On Adam, whom embracing, thus she spake.
O sole in whom my thoughts find all repose,
My glory, my perfection! glad I see
Thy face, and morn returned; for I this night
(Such night till this I never passed) have dreamed,
If dreamed, not, as I oft am wont, of thee,
Works of day past, or morrow’s next design,
But of offence and trouble, which my mind
Knew never till this irksome night:  Methought,
Close at mine ear one called me forth to walk
With gentle voice;  I thought it thine: It said,
‘Why sleepest thou, Eve? now is the pleasant time,
‘The cool, the silent, save where silence yields
‘To the night-warbling bird, that now awake
‘Tunes sweetest his love-laboured song; now reigns
‘Full-orbed the moon, and with more pleasing light
‘Shadowy sets off the face of things; in vain,
‘If none regard; Heaven wakes with all his eyes,
‘Whom to behold but thee, Nature’s desire?
‘In whose sight all things joy, with ravishment
‘Attracted by thy beauty still to gaze.’
I rose as at thy call, but found thee not;
To find thee I directed then my walk;
And on, methought, alone I passed through ways
That brought me on a sudden to the tree
Of interdicted knowledge: fair it seemed,
Much fairer to my fancy than by day:
And, as I wondering looked, beside it stood
One shaped and winged like one of those from Heaven
By us oft seen; his dewy locks distilled
Ambrosia; on that tree he also gazed;
And ‘O fair plant,’ said he, ‘with fruit surcharged,
‘Deigns none to ease thy load, and taste thy sweet,
‘Nor God, nor Man?  Is knowledge so despised?
‘Or envy, or what reserve forbids to taste?
‘Forbid who will, none shall from me withhold
‘Longer thy offered good; why else set here?
This said, he paused not, but with venturous arm
He plucked, he tasted; me damp horrour chilled
At such bold words vouched with a deed so bold:
But he thus, overjoyed; ‘O fruit divine,
‘Sweet of thyself, but much more sweet thus cropt,
‘Forbidden here, it seems, as only fit
‘For Gods, yet able to make Gods of Men:
‘And why not Gods of Men; since good, the more
‘Communicated, more abundant grows,
‘The author not impaired, but honoured more?
‘Here, happy creature, fair angelick Eve!
‘Partake thou also; happy though thou art,
‘Happier thou mayest be, worthier canst not be:
‘Taste this, and be henceforth among the Gods
‘Thyself a Goddess, not to earth confined,
‘But sometimes in the air, as we, sometimes
‘Ascend to Heaven, by merit thine, and see
‘What life the Gods live there, and such live thou!’
So saying, he drew nigh, and to me held,
Even to my mouth of that same fruit held part
Which he had plucked; the pleasant savoury smell
So quickened appetite, that I, methought,
Could not but taste.  Forthwith up to the clouds
With him I flew, and underneath beheld
The earth outstretched immense, a prospect wide
And various:  Wondering at my flight and change
To this high exaltation; suddenly
My guide was gone, and I, methought, sunk down,
And fell asleep; but O, how glad I waked
To find this but a dream!  Thus Eve her night
Related, and thus Adam answered sad.
Best image of myself, and dearer half,
The trouble of thy thoughts this night in sleep
Affects me equally; nor can I like
This uncouth dream, of evil sprung, I fear;
Yet evil whence? in thee can harbour none,
Created pure.  But know that in the soul
Are many lesser faculties, that serve
Reason as chief; among these Fancy next
Her office holds; of all external things
Which the five watchful senses represent,
She forms imaginations, aery shapes,
Which Reason, joining or disjoining, frames
All what we affirm or what deny, and call
Our knowledge or opinion; then retires
Into her private cell, when nature rests.
Oft in her absence mimick Fancy wakes
To imitate her; but, misjoining shapes,
Wild work produces oft, and most in dreams;
Ill matching words and deeds long past or late.
Some such resemblances, methinks, I find
Of our last evening’s talk, in this thy dream,
But with addition strange; yet be not sad.
Evil into the mind of God or Man
May come and go, so unreproved, and leave
No spot or blame behind:  Which gives me hope
That what in sleep thou didst abhor to dream,
Waking thou never will consent to do.
Be not disheartened then, nor cloud those looks,
That wont to be more cheerful and serene,
Than when fair morning first smiles on the world;
And let us to our fresh employments rise
Among the groves, the fountains, and the flowers
That open now their choisest bosomed smells,
Reserved from night, and kept for thee in store.
So cheered he his fair spouse, and she was cheered;
But silently a gentle tear let fall
From either eye, and wiped them with her hair;
Two other precious drops that ready stood,
Each in their crystal sluice, he ere they fell
Kissed, as the gracious signs of sweet remorse
And pious awe, that feared to have offended.
So all was cleared, and to the field they haste.
But first, from under shady arborous roof
Soon as they forth were come to open sight
Of day-spring, and the sun, who, scarce up-risen,
With wheels yet hovering o’er the ocean-brim,
Shot parallel to the earth his dewy ray,
Discovering in wide landskip all the east
Of Paradise and Eden’s happy plains,
Lowly they bowed adoring, and began
Their orisons, each morning duly paid
In various style; for neither various style
Nor holy rapture wanted they to praise
Their Maker, in fit strains pronounced, or sung
Unmeditated; such prompt eloquence
Flowed from their lips, in prose or numerous verse,
More tuneable than needed lute or harp
To add more sweetness; and they thus began.
These are thy glorious works, Parent of good,
Almighty!  Thine this universal frame,
Thus wonderous fair;  Thyself how wonderous then!
Unspeakable, who sitst above these heavens
To us invisible, or dimly seen
In these thy lowest works; yet these declare
Thy goodness beyond thought, and power divine.
Speak, ye who best can tell, ye sons of light,
Angels; for ye behold him, and with songs
And choral symphonies, day without night,
Circle his throne rejoicing; ye in Heaven
On Earth join all ye Creatures to extol
Him first, him last, him midst, and without end.
Fairest of stars, last in the train of night,
If better thou belong not to the dawn,
Sure pledge of day, that crownest the smiling morn
With thy bright circlet, praise him in thy sphere,
While day arises, that sweet hour of prime.
Thou Sun, of this great world both eye and soul,
Acknowledge him thy greater; sound his praise
In thy eternal course, both when thou climbest,
And when high noon hast gained, and when thou fallest.
Moon, that now meetest the orient sun, now flyest,
With the fixed Stars, fixed in their orb that flies;
And ye five other wandering Fires, that move
In mystick dance not without song, resound
His praise, who out of darkness called up light.
Air, and ye Elements, the eldest birth
Of Nature’s womb, that in quaternion run
Perpetual circle, multiform; and mix
And nourish all things; let your ceaseless change
Vary to our great Maker still new praise.
Ye Mists and Exhalations, that now rise
From hill or steaming lake, dusky or gray,
Till the sun paint your fleecy skirts with gold,
In honour to the world’s great Author rise;
Whether to deck with clouds the uncoloured sky,
Or wet the thirsty earth with falling showers,
Rising or falling still advance his praise.
His praise, ye Winds, that from four quarters blow,
Breathe soft or loud; and, wave your tops, ye Pines,
With every plant, in sign of worship wave.
Fountains, and ye that warble, as ye flow,
Melodious murmurs, warbling tune his praise.
Join voices, all ye living Souls:  Ye Birds,
That singing up to Heaven-gate ascend,
Bear on your wings and in your notes his praise.
Ye that in waters glide, and ye that walk
The earth, and stately tread, or lowly creep;
Witness if I be silent, morn or even,
To hill, or valley, fountain, or fresh shade,
Made vocal by my song, and taught his praise.
Hail, universal Lord, be bounteous still
To give us only good; and if the night
Have gathered aught of evil, or concealed,
Disperse it, as now light dispels the dark!
So prayed they innocent, and to their thoughts
Firm peace recovered soon, and wonted calm.
On to their morning’s rural work they haste,
Among sweet dews and flowers; where any row
Of fruit-trees over-woody reached too far
Their pampered boughs, and needed hands to check
Fruitless embraces: or they led the vine
To wed her elm; she, spoused, about him twines
Her marriageable arms, and with him brings
Her dower, the adopted clusters, to adorn
His barren leaves.  Them thus employed beheld
With pity Heaven’s high King, and to him called
Raphael, the sociable Spirit, that deigned
To travel with Tobias, and secured
His marriage with the seventimes-wedded maid.
Raphael, said he, thou hearest what stir on Earth
Satan, from Hell ’scaped through the darksome gulf,
Hath raised in Paradise; and how disturbed
This night the human pair; how he designs
In them at once to ruin all mankind.
Go therefore, half this day as friend with friend
Converse with Adam, in what bower or shade
Thou findest him from the heat of noon retired,
To respite his day-labour with repast,
Or with repose; and such discourse bring on,
As may advise him of his happy state,
Happiness in his power left free to will,
Left to his own free will, his will though free,
Yet mutable; whence warn him to beware
He swerve not, too secure:  Tell him withal
His danger, and from whom; what enemy,
Late fallen himself from Heaven, is plotting now
The fall of others from like state of bliss;
By violence? no, for that shall be withstood;
But by deceit and lies:  This let him know,
Lest, wilfully transgressing, he pretend
Surprisal, unadmonished, unforewarned.
So spake the Eternal Father, and fulfilled
All justice:  Nor delayed the winged Saint
After his charge received; but from among
Thousand celestial Ardours, where he stood
Veiled with his gorgeous wings, up springing light,
Flew through the midst of Heaven; the angelick quires,
On each hand parting, to his speed gave way
Through all the empyreal road; till, at the gate
Of Heaven arrived, the gate self-opened wide
On golden hinges turning, as by work
Divine the sovran Architect had framed.
From hence no cloud, or, to obstruct his sight,
Star interposed, however small he sees,
Not unconformed to other shining globes,
Earth, and the garden of God, with cedars crowned
Above all hills.  As when by night the glass
Of Galileo, less assured, observes
Imagined lands and regions in the moon:
Or pilot, from amidst the Cyclades
Delos or Samos first appearing, kens
A cloudy spot.  Down thither prone in flight
He speeds, and through the vast ethereal sky
Sails between worlds and worlds, with steady wing
Now on the polar winds, then with quick fan
Winnows the buxom air; till, within soar
Of towering eagles, to all the fowls he seems
A phoenix, gazed by all as that sole bird,
When, to enshrine his reliques in the Sun’s
Bright temple, to Egyptian Thebes he flies.
At once on the eastern cliff of Paradise
He lights, and to his proper shape returns
A Seraph winged:  Six wings he wore, to shade
His lineaments divine; the pair that clad
Each shoulder broad, came mantling o’er his breast
With regal ornament; the middle pair
Girt like a starry zone his waist, and round
Skirted his ***** and thighs with downy gold
And colours dipt in Heaven; the third his feet
Shadowed from either heel with feathered mail,
Sky-tinctured grain.  Like Maia’s son he stood,
And shook his plumes, that heavenly fragrance filled
The circuit wide.  Straight knew him all the bands
Of Angels under watch; and to his state,
And to his message high, in honour rise;
For on some message high they guessed him bound.
Their glittering tents he passed, and now is come
Into the blissful field, through groves of myrrh,
And flowering odours, cassia, nard, and balm;
A wilderness of sweets; for Nature here
Wantoned as in her prime, and played at will
Her ****** fancies pouring forth more sweet,
Wild above rule or art, enormous bliss.
Him through the spicy forest onward come
Adam discerned, as in the door he sat
Of his cool bower, while now the mounted sun
Shot down direct his fervid rays to warm
Earth’s inmost womb, more warmth than Adam needs:
And Eve within, due at her hour prepared
For dinner savoury fruits, of taste to please
True appetite, and not disrelish thirst
Of nectarous draughts between, from milky stream,
Berry or grape:  To whom thus Adam called.
Haste hither, Eve, and worth thy sight behold
Eastward among those trees, what glorious shape
Comes this way moving; seems another morn
Risen on mid-noon; some great behest from Heaven
To us perhaps he brings, and will vouchsafe
This day to be our guest.  But go with speed,
And, what thy stores contain, bring forth, and pour
Abundance, fit to honour and receive
Our heavenly stranger:  Well we may afford
Our givers their own gifts, and large bestow
From large bestowed, where Nature multiplies
Her fertile growth, and by disburthening grows
More fruitful, which instructs us not to spare.
To whom thus Eve.  Adam, earth’s hallowed mould,
Of God inspired! small store will serve, where store,
All seasons, ripe for use hangs on the stalk;
Save what by frugal storing firmness gains
To nourish, and superfluous moist consumes:
But I will haste, and from each bough and brake,
Each plant and juciest gourd, will pluck such choice
To entertain our Angel-guest, as he
Beholding shall confess, that here on Earth
God hath dispensed his bounties as in Heaven.
So saying, with dispatchful looks in haste
She turns, on hospitable thoughts intent
What choice to choose for delicacy best,
What order, so contrived as not to mix
Tastes, not well joined, inelegant, but bring
Taste after taste upheld with kindliest change;
Bestirs her then, and from each tender stalk
Whatever Earth, all-bearing mother, yields
In India East or West, or middle shore
In Pontus or the Punick coast, or where
Alcinous reigned, fruit of all kinds, in coat
Rough, or smooth rind, or bearded husk, or shell,
She gathers, tribute large, and on the board
Heaps with unsparing hand; for drink the grape
She crushes, inoffensive must, and meaths
From many a berry, and from sweet kernels pressed
She tempers dulcet creams; nor these to hold
Wants her fit vessels pure; then strows the ground
With rose and odours from the shrub unfumed.
Mean while our primitive great sire, to meet
His God-like guest, walks forth, without more train
Accompanied than with his own complete
Perfections; in himself was all his state,
More solemn than the tedious pomp that waits
On princes, when their rich retinue long
Of horses led, and gro
Thomas Thurman May 2010
When your creator took her crayon box
That day she thought to draw you all alive,
She found a certain green to sketch your locks,
Another green to show you grow, you thrive;
A green of richest thought unlimited,
A green to match the green of your creation,
A green to go, to boldly forge ahead,
A green for lands of peaceful meditation;
  The Greene King, standing proud with all his queens,
  Jack-in-the-green, surrounded by his trees;
  A thousand other shades of other greens;
  The greenness of the deepness of the seas;
And I, I fall and marvel at the light,
A million greens, like fireworks in the night.

That day she thought to draw you all alive
She drew your outline, sketched you, and refined
And shaped your eyes, that surely saw arrive
The laughing people in the frame behind,
The humans, dogs and kittens, trailing plants,
Who fill your background; all you love are here
Around you in the middle of the dance,
And as you watch, still more of them appear
  Beyond your face within the frame advancing
  Children and relatives and loves and friends
  Holding their merry hands in merry dancing
  Extending off beyond the picture's ends;
I know your other folk would say the same:
It's such an honour dancing in your frame.

She found a certain green to sketch your locks,
A deeper green, a perfect green attaining;
And now another from her crayon-stocks;
Refreshing and repeating what's remaining:
She bleaches it and tries another shade
Then leaves it for a while and grows it out,
Returns it to the colours that she made
Begins to work again, and turns about;
  And why this careful labour to provide you
  With perfect colours captured in your hair?
  She knows your colours mirror what's inside you,
  Eternal greens within you everywhere;
And still beneath, the ever-growing you
Shall dye, and yet shall live with life anew.

Another green to show you grow, you thrive;
Out from the snow the snowdrop breaks in flower.
Who could have called this sleeping bulb alive?
Yet buried patiently it waits its hour,
Counting the snowflakes slowly settling
Their weight upon the heavy earth above;
One day its Winter changes to its Spring.
Who can predict the power of life and love?
  Hope that at last the final frost is dead.
  Faith that the Winter dies and Spring shall rise.
  Love for the life that up through blades has bled.
  Joy to a hundred children's waiting eyes;
For every hour it slept beneath the ground,
A thousand wondering eyes shall gather round.

A green of richest thought unlimited.
I try to say I love you every day:
I know I keep repeating things I've said.
Perhaps I'll try to phrase another way:
Suppose I counted all the money ever
From now until when Abel risked his neck
With my accountants, who were very clever,
And wrote it on a record-breaking cheque...
  It wasn't half your empathising, was it?
  Your thoughts are treasured more than bank accounts;
  The bank won't put your loving on deposit.
  And could they take it, given such amounts?
The jealousy of cash makes misers blind,
And who needs money when you have your mind?

A green to match the green of your creation!
She took her time in sketching out your features,
Shading you well, and, drawn with dedication,
You took the pen she gives to all her creatures
And set about some drawing of your own,
Filling the art with arc and line and shade,
Showing your work the care that you were shown,
And making them as well as you were made;
  And much as life your drawing hand was giving,
  Another life from deep within you drew:
  A life, not merely likeness of the living,
  So separate, yet such a part of you:
Who finds your baby-picture on the shelf
And smiles and finds you, showing you yourself.

A green to go, to boldly forge ahead,
Should shine on traffic lights for every person.
If you should find a colour in its stead
That stops you-- not an arrow for diversion,
To Edmundsbury, Hatfield and the North,
Or any other place that's worth the going--
But rather reds that block your going forth;
If traffic signals freeze your days from flowing,
  Your life is green and you deserve the green.
  And if you try to go about your day
  And greens are coming few and far between,
  And reds and ambers blare about your way:
If so, I pray your days to hold instead
All green, and never amber, never red.

A green for lands of peaceful meditation.
You call: Come stand upon my sacred ground,
Come sit and breathe the peace of contemplation,
Come feel the grass beneath, the lilies round,
Come sleep, come wake, and drink the quiet waters,
Come to the maytree, blackbird, waterfall;
Come know yourselves the planet's sons and daughters.
The people pass and pause, and still you call:
  It's waiting for you when you ask to try it:
  Peace (and the air) cannot be bought or sold.
  You'll never gain it if you try to buy it:
  It's not an asset crumpled fists can hold.
All that you have is nothing you can lose;
You stand on sacred ground. Remove your shoes.

The Greene King, standing proud with all his queens,
Guarding a land of oaks and aches and cold.
It's not a normal place, by any means,
This island of the oldest of the old,
Where bow the ancient oak and ash and thorn
In homage to a figure on a hill;
Deep in the hills where Wayland Smith was born
You stand, an English body, English still.
  For odes and age and air and ale have filled you,
  Made you their own and promised you belong;
  And since their homesick longing hasn't killed you,
  I think you'll be returning to their song;
Come, take your time, and sit and drink with me!
What say you to another cup of tea?

Jack-in-the-green, surrounded by his trees,
Had given birth to leafy life aplenty,
He'd introduced his firs by fours and threes,
And sowed his seedling cedars by the twenty;
The field was filled with trunks and twigs and roots,
The soil was sound and fertile, and the fall
Would fill the forest floor with growing shoots,
And none but Jack was there to watch it all
  Until you came to wander through this field,
  To walk within the ways within the wood;
  Your mind was brought to peace, your spirit healed,
  The forest given form and blessed as good;
Jack-in-the-green will wonder all his days:
your presence never ceases to a maze.

A thousand other shades of other greens:
"Leaf", "emerald", "sea", "bottle", off the cuff;
"Viridian" (uncertain what it means),
But there's so many. Names are not enough.
Yet, in another life, your maker might
Have picked you out among primeval glades
To work as keeper of the rainbow's light
And in another Eden name the shades;
  If so, the planet's poets will rejoice
  That, given life together with a name,
  The colours sing a stronger, clearer voice,
  And every hue will never seem the same:
Each of the shades looks loving back to you,
Its namer and the one who made it new.

The greenness of the deepness of the seas:
A home to fish of many a scaly nation.
Follow the shoals; the smallest one of these
Swims as a fishy summit of creation.
Yet every one's indebted to the shoal,
All subtle in their difference from the rest:
A fish of friends, a member of the whole,
A mix of traits, a taking of the best.
  So you and those of us you love so well
  Will grow along with other friends' increase,
  Required ingredients in the living-spell:
  Each person brings a necessary peace.
The level-headed people mix with mystics,
And both are living mixtures of holistics.

And I, I fall and marvel at the light,
This changing light that grows throughout the years,
Extinguished not by hardship nor by night
Nor foolishness nor sadness nor by tears.
When we were separated by the sea
I wished myself amidst your myriad days.
My wish was mirrored in your missing me;
Your maker joined our wishes, joined our ways;
  She placed our hands on one another's heart,
  And you and I began a lifelong learning
  Of one another, like a magic art
  Whose telling grows with every page's turning,
And holds our friendship as a growing bond
Till seventy years old, and still beyond.

A million greens, like fireworks in the night.**
I fear this sonnet never can be done.
So many colours burst upon my sight
I cannot tell the tale of every one.
But I can tell how vast excitement fills me
When all the flying sparkles fill the sky;
I want to tell the world how much it thrills me
To hold you close, reflected in your eye;
  I want to tell in all my earthly days
  And yet beyond, of what you mean to me;
  I want to say I love the myriad ways
  Of what you are and what you'll grow to be;
These counts combining made the building-blocks
When your creator took her crayon box.
Written as a Valentine's present for and about my partner, Fin.

I recorded myself reading the poem at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=27EykqTr-w8 .
Chris Thomas Aug 2016
Slowly
Surely
Inevitably
We gather round to sing perpetual praises
While subtly taking jabs at the merry masters

Their chatter is chaos in our hearts
And in our ears it rings endlessly
Their balance is impeccable
But we possess unbreakable destiny

Dying
Rotting
Finitely
We dissolve into the soil of meager meadows
And evolve into cedars of circumstance

These roots will become our legacy
And proof of their coveted love
The branches will become our sanctity
Reaching worlds beyond these frail bodies
JJ Hutton Sep 2013
I'm running 7:25 splits. Eight miles in. I haven't got stuck at an intersection. Not that I ever do. Runners got the right-of-way. And like my buddy Randy Run 'N Gun would say, I'm zen. Very ******* zen. Used to be a walker. Not no more. Not after the heart attack. No, siree, I'm a runner. A good runner. Lost 45 pounds. I did. I did. I stick to the left side of the road. So I can see the guilt in the drivers' eyes as they pass by. They're thinking, there's an old man out there taking care of hisself. I should be taking care of myself.

And they should. They really should.

But what's exercise to the people in this town? A walk down the block to Loaf 'N Jug for a Snickers, that's what. Or if you're a rich *****, it's twenty minutes on a Stairmaster three times a week. And I have to wonder if they're really doing it for them, you know?

I'm on the way back to the house. I peel off 30th, cutting across four lanes of traffic. Head into Garden of the Gods park. I do this so people get the right idea of the city. When I was a tourist here, I thought to myself, why's everybody all lumpy-assed and tied to children. Made a promise to myself. Told myself, when you move out there, you're going to be the trophy. So, I run through the red rocks and insert myself, mid-stride, into all those family photos. That way, when they get home, they'll point at their pictures and say, everyone in Colorado is so fit.

Now I'm getting close to the spot. It happened about a mile--mile and a half into the Snake Trail over by that 30-foot tall rock that looks a bit like Lyndon Johnson. I was a tourist and a walker then. Not no more. Not ever again.

There's a stretch of blacktop that cuts Snake Trail in two. I can't remember the name of the road. I think it's named after some preacher who got cholera, lost his faith, regained his faith in the end. One of those touching trajectories. Those stories always sound like a lot of fluffy *******, if you ask me.

Cars are backed up on Wishy-Washy Preacher Road. There's a crowd of people gathered in the middle. I look at my running watch. I don't like this. This is the kind of unplanned circumstance that skews your splits. Then your run time makes you feel like a lumpy-***, and that ain't me. Not no more.

I start pushing through the crowd. There's a lot of whispering and a lot of little kids all snotty and teary-eyed. And it's all just frustrating, because I feel like I'm cutting through molasses. I look at my running watch. I reach the center of the crowd.

A mule deer had been runover--well, halfway. The stupid beast still uses his front legs, dragging his crumpled and ****** backside along in a mad circle. A screechy whimper comes out in intervals like beeping hospital machinery. He's so scared, some middle-aged woman with a kid to each hip, says. A longbeard, beergut hippie starts into a prayer,

Gods of the natural world, gods of the sweet animal kingdom,
we ask that you wrap this wounded beacon of your light
into your warm embrace. May you replace his great pain
with the great comfort of your cool breezes, with the great
comfort of your warm sun, with the great comfort of fresh water.

I unzip my running belt. It's not a ***** pack. I pull out my NAA Guardian .32 automatic. It's not a woman's weapon. See, Randy Run 'N Gun, got his name because he invented this kind of running. I respect him for it. Got nothing but respect for that man. See, a fella has to be prepared at all times. There are mountain lions. There are bears. And perhaps worst of all are all these ******* mule deers. They ain't even scared of people. They stop and wait for you to feed them, blocking the sidewalk when I run, skewing my splits.

These hippies ain't going to do ****. They're taking photos with their cellulars and saying theologically vague prayers. And all these tourists are watching. So I walk right up to the mule deer. Someone behind me breathes in so hard, it's like she vacuumed all the sound. Pop. Pop. The beast stops its beeping. Legs twitch. Legs stop twitching. I'm the only one with courage enough to grant a mercy ****.

It's all about doing. Right? That's what the heart attack taught me. Before the heart attack, I thought about being a runner. The rhythm of it, the mechanical discipline appealed to me. Liked the idea of doing a marathon or the sound of it.  I was walking in Garden of the Gods. Noticed the LBJ rock, said to myself, Holy hell that looks like Lyndon Johnson. I heard these quick steps coming from behind me. I thought some potstentch, beergut hippie was going stab me. Felt like the gears at the center of me came off their handle. The right side of me just wasn't there anymore. As I fell I saw it was only a runner.

I reach the Lyndon Johnson rock. I'm eleven miles in. My splits have averaged to 7:43. ******* deer. The ground is lower at the spot where I had the heart attack. Why? Because I dug a hole there, that's why. The old me, the walking me, the tourist me lies dead in that hole. As I pass by, I spit it the ditch as I always do. Good riddance. Yep. Yep.

The trail finally turns downward. A little more oxygen in Ute Valley. Randy Run 'N Gun he calls moments like this, Runner's Reward. And I like that. Nature's okay. The cedars, the meadows, rivers -- all that **** -- is just fine. But what I like about running is the metaphor. See all the hippies, all the tourists they live their lives in a constant state of reward. They think, I'm alive, so I'll smoke this ***. They think, I'm alive, so I'll take ******* pictures of everything. But runners, runners know that you don't deserve life. It's a gift to be earned. So you work your *** off. Mile after mile. A reward for me is a valley. The reward doesn't last long, just long enough for me to catch my breath, you know?

I exit the valley. I pick up the pace. Try to make up for earlier delay. I cross Flying W Ranch Road. I hear metal-scraping-metal. And I'm hit.

I'm in the air. I'm sliding. I'm bouncing. My knees and elbows are hot. I blink.

A woman in a bright pink tank top and yoga pants stands over me. Stay in the car, Jacob, she shouts. Oh my god, oh my god.

I tell her runners have the right-of-way. But she doesn't respond. I say, Lady help me up, you're ******* up my splits. But she doesn't respond to that. She repeats over and over, You're going to be okay. Your'e going to be okay. Just keep looking at me.

I turn my head. The display on my watch is cracked. I can't read my splits average. My head is a ton of bricks. My elbows and knees are hot.

Jacob, stop, the woman says.

Her boy stands over me, taking pictures with his cellular.
Woody Aug 2018
The unnatural light
on this last dusk of July
sends the grackles
into the cedars
rattling their wings
in the evergreens
making a sound
like Ishmael did
casting his bones
around the deck
of Ahab’s ship.
Chris D Aechtner Mar 2012
I think in Japanese,
write down my thoughts in English,
then twist it all back into sushi:
a tasty bite to eat.

My mind is like origami
folding thoughts into meditation;
meditation unfolds
into a crisp sheet of city lights.

I love you big much,
love you big time;
I love the way you giggle nervously.
Titter-titter,
"Tee-hee-hee!"
It must be amazing to find everything so funny.

Big city, sake sunset;
a karaoke moon rises
over a robotic, neon inception.
(transmutation)
Transformers, Transformers:
autobotic-neurotic Bumblebee
comes to the aid of Samurai Prime.
"Autobots, transform!!"

Bored of the bright lights?
Weary of the snappy-happy gaijin
doing photo-photo
while they look for a sweet sakura-panpan?
Then take a leisurely stroll up to Hokkaido,
where there's less sucky-sucky,
and more bow-down-low-austerity
alongside the 108 gongs a-bonging.
Chant a few prayers,
speak with the sacred cedars,
take a dip in the hot springs
with some smiling monkeys,
and watch snow fall, together.

Nippon, you offer everything.
I can eat 20 times a day
without gaining a pound.
There's always more room
for miso, chanko nabe, shabu-shabu,
gyozo, okonomiyaki—
I am going to stop writing this list
so that I don't drown in my saliva.

I refuse to look back,
refuse to go back to the boredom
of white picket fences and hamburger dreams;
I want to stay here forever.
I love you big much,
love you big time;
totemo ureshii da.




March 1st, 2012
Sharon Stewart Oct 2011
There was no need to ever
stop and ask
if you were listening
when I was mid-ramble.
But I would anyway.
It's true, you remembered everything,
heard me above a football game,
I'd stop mid sentence, and you
hung on every word on the phone,
attentive to any thought that passed
by my lips.
I think you must have really
loved me for a while.

When you
left me, I never completely
picked myself back up
off the ground.
No one was there to listen.
Things escalated,
I got
lost in my mind,
fell to pieces this summer.
Homeless,
I needed to leave,
run away and brave the
farmlands of America,
get back to where
I started,
find the easy, unassuming
cornfields of my youth
to hide away in for a while.

I called you at the end.
You know how you said
you were always listening?
Feisty and broken and living in my car.
Wild like a cornered animal,
with darting, untrusting eyes.
It was too late for me to talk.
I wonder if you blame yourself.

We got drunk
because a part of you will always
want me, and slept together
in your new apartment that
I was a stranger in.
Do you remember the way my nails
would dig into you?
"Tell me you love me,"
I pleaded that night.
Do you listen
still
to things I used to say
in your head?
You left me so
long ago, but I know
the voices of ghosts
don't know how
to keep time.

I was ***** a month before.
I don't know any other way
to tell you.
I didn't know him.
Went out with him, hoping to meet
a good listener I guess.
He
did all the talking.
I was cautious and polite, but
he got angry after a few drinks,
something came over him,
****** and serpentine.
Locked me in his truck and drove.
I couldn't fight back, and that
thrilled him. Made him want it more.
His eyes were brown, the only thing
gleaming in the dark.
Carried me through tall cedars,
pitch black night,
miles from civilization.
His own secret spot, he said.
He was so strong,
hands careless and hard.
Tried to throw me into the water,
rushing loud like dark acid, threatening to hide
any evidence.
Dispose of me easy.

You left with more dignity,
but it felt just the same.
That's why I couldn't tell you.
When I was brave and determined
and set on changing things,
I couldn't.
When I was alone and broken
and begging for it to stop,
it didn't.
How could I ask you for help that night?
You gave up listening
long before he left me wounded
and tattered
on the bank of the Sandy River.

Two thousand miles away now,
I sigh through rolling farms in
perfect solitude,
watching the same stars, fuzzy and far,
that I watched helpless through cedars
on that night that everything looked
so far away.
With practice, I learn to hear
the sound of my own thoughts
again
and then, slowly and steadily,
begin to explain myself to
the only listening ears
of corn around me.
David FauntLeRoy Aug 2015
To gather the peace
That swirls through the
Cedars in the yard

To put it in
With where I would
Store my record collection
If I were to have one

If the world still turned slow

To combine that bark stained whisper
With the notes that find my ears
When I can’t find my mind

To give you the music
That animates my thoughts
And the stillness that animates their origin

To acknowledge my weakness
For your smile and its sweetness
To gather and gift my secrets
To hope that it pleases
To sort through the meaningless
To make you laugh till your chest wheezes.

To walk further along if these blessings don’t meet us.

To keep pushing forward
With all I have left
To keep my soul’s doors unlocked
With no fear of theft
To accept you may listen to my music
And wish you were deaf
To prepare to gather up the chunks of silence
After you break it over my chest

To trust that chaos
Is not the rebellion
Of the cedars’ breath
Marian Feb 2013
Under the shade of weeping willow trees
The air is filled with birdsong an anthem sweet and beautiful
The soft sweet song of the bubbling creek
The fragrance of honeysuckles drifts from the forgotten garden
Where daffodils, violets, and many other flowers grow
Mountains high and valleys low covered in the cloak of spring
Hunter-green cedars and deep-green firs sway in the dancing breeze
Even the lonesome desert and vast wilderness
With its pretty sunrises and sunsets bears its own beauty
Morning glories in the Enchanted Forest unfurl their soft sweet petals
At Dusk when all are sleep
Sunrays shining through the dew covered leaves of the majestic trees
Waves wash onto the sea of time where lots of creatures live
And where fishes and sea turtles peep up out of the ocean
Where palm trees grow their lacy-green leaves providing shade for all
Where rocky island cliffs hold treasures forgotten a long time ago
When pirates hunted for gold
Where old forgotten battleships are at the bottom of the ocean
And the people on them long since dead. . .
Pearls and treasures hidden from sight at the bottom of the ocean
Where dolphins sleep and play ready to save some swimmer
Sea-green coral and seaweed are pretty ocean plants
Seashells at the very bottom of the ocean
Seagulls sing to one another from the coconut trees and many other birds sing a
Tropical anthem blending with the sweet perfume of hibiscus and a lone tropical girl
Plays a sweet song on the ukulele
And the horse gallops on the sandy shore happily enjoying his freedom
And the world to all is beautiful
Tropical sunsets blazing dark goldish- orange with the silhouettes of palm trees
On the beautiful rocky island
And the world is hushed to sleep with the tropical lullaby of the singing waves
When the world awakes with dew the sweet hibiscus

*~Marian~
Marian May 2013
Mists of beauty
Sprinkles of rain
Rain-covered leaves
On the beautiful trees
Raindrops on the green grass
Raindrops everywhere
Raindrops on the lacy ferns
Raindrops everywhere I turn
Pines and evergreens
And lovely cedars sweet
Saturated in raindrop kisses
Such a lovely prelude
The misty forest
Is enchanted
This I say
This forest
Is enchanted
No matter what
This is where Fairies live
This is where Fairies dance
This is where their wings flutter
In the ever blowing breeze
This is where the harps
Are played
This is where their songs are sung
This is where the Fairies harp
Plays nocturnal melodies
And graceful notes
This is where my Fairies live

*~Marian~
Hal Loyd Denton Jan 2012
Eternal Anaheim

Somewhere in the dark back streets of the big easy this scene opens a dope addict slumps in the chair by an old filthy bed in an old
Seedy hotel this last hit was his last to many trips the highs that were no better than the siren call of the ****** of the deadly
Godless streets a mockery a disgusting counter life contrasted with having a loving wife and a family now the needle dangles from
A dead used up body and all the time the sacred book, open its cover the twin doors of grace and love outwardly they open the very
Portals of glory speaking of highs your first steps on arrival the mountains surrounding the holy city on the peak the great Sequoia
Down the mountain then the Redwoods then the Cedars they not only are in stands but they have designs formations each has an
Esthetic quality a mood some darker blends into lighter a virtual mosaic that reflects the thoughts your thinking you can walk down
The mountain enjoying finding the right footing or you can do a slow floating glide and take out the hassle at the bottom the foot
Hills begin again trees but now they not only speak to the senses of the mind and eyes but the heart feels an inner talking and aliveness
That wasn’t known about trees before flowers are dispersed there are a sea of them high ones short ones they have continuity of flow
Should I say mind blowing well this is a true high isn’t it then the low lands flat lands which ever you prefer also your choice they can
Be moors shires or better mist filled with the hint of Gwendolyn and Sir Lancelot Camelot awaits my dear friend beyond in rings and
Diamond splendor gardens on the order of the hanging gardens of ancient Babylon or the royal gardens of Leningrad or Paris touched
With living scenes of Monet, Matisse, Renoir or Van Gough’s french country side then the orchards every fruit especially Pomegranate and figs apples
So sweet you can hardly resist dancing along as you enjoy its heavenly taste then the fields where the heavenly corn grows that they
Make the true angel food manna from the corn as high as the angels themselves seven to eight feet tall just a hint of green left here
It is translucent clear as glass to your ears comes the sound of mighty tumults of water coursing ever swiftly to the Crystal sea follow
It to the walls this bejeweled linear spectacle bluest Sapphire reddest rubies gold leafs they appear as strawberries Grandma should
Like that Emeralds now I like Onyx first its bands or white then it has practically all colors for you to view these are all the size
Of a locomotive is that Walt Disney at the throttle all the children will say it is and then the gates of perfect pearl the streets that start
From them is translucent purist gold feel left out sometimes I’m writing about your inheritance its in his last will and testament what is a
Place that isn’t defined by the wafting smells the Jolon Mission is made special by the wafting scent of Lilac that pervades the grounds
Here Manna cakes and cookies for a start but it says the master will feed the bride with a masterful banquet just go in your mind to
Grandmother’s kitchen or the smell of pancakes when dad used to cook them but you really have to stretch so the restaurants you
have visited with closest friends and loved ones add them all up then multiply by a thousand your getting close now for the city’s
Infrastructure the shops I mean I can’t believe that they will not have at least some that will be dotted with the whimsical huts and
Fiery tale feel like those in Carmel California then throw in some adobe architecture from New Mexico some Italian bistro or just stands
With pizza as the roof why not well the mansions are left and the most important the glorious throne and He who will set there as we
Lay our crowns at his feet joy singing his look of love and acceptance will be worth everything I have tried to describe back to our
earthy home there are prisons full of our children friends that are prisoners of other vices just as bad as the ****** they are going to
lose not only heaven but their souls that have been paid for in blood, agony and undying love reach them it’s a little bit of heaven down
here Merry Christmas
Two good friends had Hiawatha,
Singled out from all the others,
Bound to him in closest union,
And to whom he gave the right hand
Of his heart, in joy and sorrow;
Chibiabos, the musician,
And the very strong man, Kwasind.

Straight between them ran the pathway,
Never grew the grass upon it;
Singing birds, that utter falsehoods,
Story-tellers, mischief-makers,
Found no eager ear to listen,
Could not breed ill-will between them,
For they kept each other’s counsel,
Spake with naked hearts together,
Pondering much and much contriving
How the tribes of men might prosper.

Most beloved by Hiawatha
Was the gentle Chibiabos,
He the best of all musicians,
He the sweetest of all singers.
Beautiful and childlike was he,
Brave as man is, soft as woman,
Pliant as a wand of willow,
Stately as a deer with antlers.

When he sang, the village listened;
All the warriors gathered round him,
All the women came to hear him;
Now he stirred their souls to passion,
Now he melted them to pity.

From the hollow reeds he fashioned
Flutes so musical and mellow,
That the brook, the Sebowisha,
Ceased to murmur in the woodland,
That the wood-birds ceased from singing,
And the squirrel, Adjidaumo,
Ceased his chatter in the oak-tree,
And the rabbit, the Wabasso,
Sat upright to look and listen,

Yes, the brook, the Sebowisha,
Pausing, said, “O Chibiabos,
Teach my waves to flow in music,
Softly as your words in singing!”

Yes, the bluebird, the Owaissa,
Envious, said, “O Chibiabos,
Teach me tones as wild and wayward,
Teach me songs as full of frenzy!”

Yes, the robin, the Opechee,
Joyous, said, “O Chibiabos,
Teach me tones as sweet and tender,
Teach me songs as full of gladness!”
And the whippoorwill, Wawonaissa,
Sobbing, said, “O Chibiabos,
Teach me tones as melancholy,
Teach me songs as full of sadness!”

All the many sounds of nature
Borrowed sweetness from his singing;
All the hearts of men were softened
By the pathos of his music;
For he sang of peace and freedom,
Sang of beauty, love, and longing;
Sang of death, and life undying
In the Islands of the Blessed,
In the kingdom of Ponemah,
In the land of the Hereafter.

Very dear to Hiawatha
Was the gentle Chibiabos,
He the best of all musicians,
He the sweetest of all singers;
For his gentleness he loved him,
And the magic of his singing.

Dear, too, unto Hiawatha
Was the very strong man, Kwasind,
He the strongest of all mortals,
He the mightiest among many;
For his very strength he loved him,
For his strength allied to goodness.

Idle in his youth was Kwasind,
Very listless, dull, and dreamy,
Never played with other children,
Never fished and never hunted,
Not like other children was he;
But they saw that much he fasted,
Much his Manito entreated,
Much besought his Guardian Spirit.

“Lazy Kwasind!” said his mother,
“In my work you never help me!
In the Summer you are roaming
Idly in the fields and forests;
In the Winter you are cowering
O’er the firebrands in the wigwam!
In the coldest days of Winter
I must break the ice for fishing;
With my nets you never help me!
At the door my nets are hanging,
Dripping, freezing with the water;
Go and wring them, Yenadizze!
Go and dry them in the sunshine!”

Slowly, from the ashes, Kwasind
Rose, but made no angry answer;
From the lodge went forth in silence,
Took the nets, that hung together,
Dripping, freezing at the doorway,
Like a wisp of straw he wrung them,
Like a wisp of straw he broke them,
Could not wring them without breaking,
Such the strength was in his fingers.

“Lazy Kwasind!” said his father,
“In the hunt you never help me;
Every bow you touch is broken,
Snapped asunder every arrow;
Yet come with me to the forest,
You shall bring the hunting homeward.”

Down a narrow pass they wandered,
Where a brooklet led them onward,
Where the trail of deer and bison
Marked the soft mud on the margin,
Till they found all further passage
Shut against them, barred securely
By the trunks of trees uprooted,
Lying lengthwise, lying crosswise,
And forbidding further passage.

“We must go back,” said the old man,
“O’er these logs we cannot clamber;
Not a woodchuck could get through them,
Not a squirrel clamber o’er them!”
And straightway his pipe he lighted,
And sat down to smoke and ponder.
But before his pipe was finished,
Lo! the path was cleared before him;
All the trunks had Kwasind lifted,
To the right hand, to the left hand,
Shot the pine-trees swift as arrows,
Hurled the cedars light as lances.

“Lazy Kwasind!” said the young men,
As they sported in the meadow:
“Why stand idly looking at us,
Leaning on the rock behind you?
Come and wrestle with the others,
Let us pitch the quoit together!”

Lazy Kwasind made no answer,
To their challenge made no answer,
Only rose, and, slowly turning,
Seized the huge rock in his fingers,
Tore it from its deep foundation,
Poised it in the air a moment,
Pitched it sheer into the river,
Sheer into the swift Pauwating,
Where it still is seen in Summer.

Once as down that foaming river,
Down the rapids of Pauwating,
Kwasind sailed with his companions,
In the stream he saw a ******,
Saw Ahmeek, the King of Beavers,
Struggling with the rushing currents,
Rising, sinking in the water.

Without speaking, without pausing,
Kwasind leaped into the river,
Plunged beneath the bubbling surface,
Through the whirlpools chased the ******,
Followed him among the islands,
Stayed so long beneath the water,
That his terrified companions
Cried, “Alas! good-bye to Kwasind!
We shall never more see Kwasind!”
But he reappeared triumphant,
And upon his shining shoulders
Brought the ******, dead and dripping,
Brought the King of all the Beavers.

And these two, as I have told you,
Were the friends of Hiawatha,
Chibiabos, the musician,
And the very strong man, Kwasind.
Long they lived in peace together,
Spake with naked hearts together,
Pondering much and much contriving
How the tribes of men might prosper.
Praise thy Lord Our GOD, Praise GOD In His Sanctuary.!
Apr 29, 2015
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Praise thy Lord Our GOD from Heavens, Praise THEE In Heigths.! Praise GOD All His Angels, Praise GOD All His Hosts.! 
Praise HIM, Sun And Moon, Praise HIM All You Stars Of Light.! Praise GOD Thou Heavens, and Thou Waters above thy Heavens.! Let them Praise thy Name Oh Lord Our GOD, for HE Commanded and thou were Created. HE also Established thou Forever And Ever, He Made And Mode A Decree which shall not Pass away. Praise thy LORD from thy Earth, thou Great Sea Creatures and All thy depths... Fire and Hails, Snow and Clouds, Stormy wind, Fulfilling HIS Word.. Mountains And All Hills, Fruitful Trees and All Cedars.. Beasts and All Cattles, Creeping things and Flying Fowl... Kings of the Earth and All Kinds, Princes and All Judges Of the Earth. both Young Men and Maidens, Old Men and Children..  Let them Praise thy Name of the Lord Our GOD, For HIS Name Alone Is Exalted, His Glory is Above the Earth And Heaven... And He Has Exalted thy Horn Of His People, the Praise Of All His Saints Of thy Children Of Isreal, A People Near to Him, Praise thy LORD... Halleluyah... GOD Is Our Strength.. GOD Is Love.. GOD With Us.!!!
Praise thy Lord Our GOD, Praise GOD In His Sanctuary.!
The South wind said to the palms:
My lovers sing me psalms;
But are they as warm as those
That Laylah's lover knows?

The North wind said to the firs:
I have my worshippers;
But are they as keen as hers?

The East wind said to the cedars:
My friends are no seceders;
But is their faith to me
As firm as his faith must be?

The West wind said to the yews:
My children are pure as dews;
But what of her lover's muse?

So to spite the summer weather
The four winds howled together.

But a great Voice from above
Cried: What do you know of love?

Do you think all nature worth
The littlest life upon earth?

I made the germ and the ant,
The tiger and elephant.

In the least of these there is more
Than your elemental war.

And the lovers whom ye slight
Are precious in my sight.

Peace to your mischief-brewing!
I love to watch their wooing.

Of all this Laylah heard
Never a word.

She lay beneath the trees
With her lover at her knees.

He sang of God above
And of love.

She lay at his side
Well satisfied,

And at set of sun
They were one.

Before they slept her pure smile curled;
"God bless all lovers in the World!"

And so say I the self-same word;
Nor doubt God heard.
657

I dwell in Possibility—
A fairer House than Prose—
More numerous of Windows—
Superior—for Doors—

Of Chambers as the Cedars—
Impregnable of Eye—
And for an Everlasting Roof
The Gambrels of the Sky—

Of Visitors—the fairest—
For Occupation—This—
The spreading wide of narrow Hands
To gather Paradise—
WAEL MOREICHEH Sep 2011
PRIME OF FIRE. RESORT

Last night the Moon was still rises
That is       silver  cord
And I wake up and the station of London Eve
In my dream
with glory  
Venus  . But love
driving all burning love and you  looking at the mirror of passion
are we forget the Greece birth
Damascus at night
where
I CAN SAY NOT WELCOME TO ATLANTIC ARMIES

for ever and ever and ever

like the waves dancing with beauty land


The Earth waiting my Lady love
through all life
and passionate kisses
home for love and home for deep passion

CAN I LOVE YOU ??
  FOR EVER and ever


THE SECOND PART OF ANY SPRING

love wealth flower in your cedars and pines
are we do love  over do
new for modern times
  out Jupiter
Keiya Tasire Jan 2019
On the land of our family
Are the ashes of generations.
Each generation planted with the saplings of the trees  
The Cedar, The Fir, The Larch, and The Mountain Ash
Standing regal in the sun's early light.

It is a new day
Standing under their boughs
Comforted by ancestral arms touching
In a circle of Love and Light.

What is emerging?
Sprouting up from under the Sphagnum  
It's a seed! Raising its head
Peeking up, and stretching towards the sun.

Ever upward it expands
Though nights of rain and clouds.
Through days of heat and seeming drought.

Yet the seedling grows and endures
Bent by the late summer winds
The fiber of wisdom ever increasing within its core.

At the end of Indian Summer
The frost begins to unleash its chill
The young sapling freezes
As the blanket of white thickens across the land.

With the weight upon it's back
In humility the sapling bends low to kiss the earth.
Bravely holding this asana in the coldest of the winter days.

Today by my window
I am basking in the sunlight of a very early spring,
Bright are shimmering reflections of sunlight snow.

Squinting, with eyes half open and eyes half closed
The small rainbows begin to dance
Between each pair of lashes.
A delighted inner child
Chuckling with joy.

I can hear the sound of water running  
And ice falling from the rooftops above.
The snow is finally melting!

The tall cedar boughs dance with the wind.
Up and down, releasing their winter coats
As Ice crystals floating on the air.

Gazing across the white wonder
To the very spot where I last saw our little tree
What of the little seedling?
Is it still alive?
Or broken and crush by the ice and snow?
My musing over the Cedar Sapling
Shifted with a gasping surprise
It sprung up!
Announcing "I am still alive!"
And my inner voice giggled with delight.

Hum, I wonder
Do trees have a heart?
Do they perceive beyond their bark?
Do they remember?
In this very moment the sapling's sudden appearance
During my musing seemed to express, "Yes!"

Is it just a deep enduring feeling
That the elders of this world
Are the 400+ year old Cedars
Keeping their long record of time?

My dear little sapling
may you continue to grow into magnificence.
I will only see your first 100 years.

For your last four hundred
Allow me to lie at your roots
Under the Sphagnum from which you sprung.

And my children will water flowers at your base
That you may grow as the guardian of the ancestor
Who planted your seed and watched you grow.

Yes, the very one who is now delighted that you
Have popped up from under your blanket of snow.
The winter is giving to an early spring here where we live. There is a young sapling outside my kitchen window I have watched for two years now. This is the second season I have watched it pop up out from under the blanket of snow that has covered it thickly each winter. I am amazed at its flexibility, strength, endurance and tenacity. As the years pass I will continue to watch over this little tree with the desire that it will watch over me when I have passed and my body has been laid to rest.
Reem Jun 2018
where do flowers bloom?
i’ve seen them grow between your thighs,
by your hips; red roses.
on the crack by your collarbone; white roses.
on your lids; yellow roses
in between your knuckles; my roses.

where do angels sing?
i’ve heard them knock on your door
and chant for months straight,
the same song repeats with each of your heartbeats, gulps and blinks.
where you lay at night, where you spend your day,
where you bathe,
where you hide.
wherever you breathe, they chant.
“how glorious!”

where do trees grow?
on the palm of your hand,
oaks and palm trees stand.
olive trees swoon for you,
and cedars kneel.

where does my heart beat?
exactly where the flowers bloom,
where the angels sing,
and where the trees grow.

— The End —