Arah . . .*

621-nov-001-64

Black Moon Night – photo by Wild Thing

Today we grieve . . .
Wear black
Beat our chests . . .

Keen “ARAH!”
Let the pain out . . .

Til we rise . . .
Like the sun
Stronger . . . wiser

Knowing . . .
There is always
Light in the darkness

Wild Thing ©Nov. 9, 2016

*I wrote this poem the day after Trump was elected. In view of the over 95,000K deaths due to the corona virus, it seems more needed today than ever.

Pandemic

Pandemic

I don’t know who originally designed this rendition of Trump, but I enhanced it for the purpose of this poem. I thank whomever did the original artwork.

90,000 and counting
reapers wait
to retrieve
thousands more

the faithful gather
to spew macabre
words of hate
from their lips
emboldened by their
false prophet

small cowards
scream “hoax”
pretend soldiers
wave their
weapons of war

while the lunatic
sits on his
faux golden throne
a smirk on his
hate twisted face
and finds it good

Wild Thing ©May 17, 2020

The Loss

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he walked
as if shackled

his large hands
held a wooden
box of ashes

eyes blurred
he gently set
the box
on the table
fell onto his knees

he turned
wrapped his arms
around her legs
face buried
in her lap

her soft touch
upon his head

in this moment
he cried like
the boy
he once was

Wild Thing ©April 10,2020

Too High

121

once
a witch flew
too close
to the sun

her ashes
drifted down
on the wind
down to earth

slowly
she nurtured
them to be
reborn

she looked
like herself
some scars
still visible

she left them
to remind her
never fly
so high again

Wild Thing ©April 2, 2020

The Bag Collector

BagCollector

she locked the door
a grim laugh

who was she keeping out?
there were few people
left in Pedesina

she lowered herself
onto the top step
and rested
light mist in the air
felt good

she bent over
put her bare feet
in the plastic
garbage bag
then pulled it up

she wanted to take
a deep breath
but feared the
coughing

she leaned back
against the door
that’s better

she pulled the bag
up over her arms
strength gone

nothing to do
but wait
for the bag collector

Wild Thing ©March 27, 2020

Ancestral Messages

Ancestral Warriors

strong women
from ancient years
speak to me at night

be brave our
darling daughter
they whisper
you are strong

square your
slender shoulders
for the weight
tis always been
ours us to bear

the pain, misery
of the people
that we feel
we take and create

the universe listens
when we weave our spell

Wild Thing ©March 20, 2020

Sharing the Wait

007

Two women sat at the table
Quietly sipping coffee
Their voices low

Just one light overhead
The clock ticked to ten
Outside a black blanket

The older woman slid
A pack of cigarettes to
The younger woman

“Take one, it makes
The waiting easier.”

“I quit smoking.”
Said the younger.

The older woman looked
At her saying nothing
Letting her eyes say it all

Hand shaking, the younger
Took a cigarette
Lit it and inhaled and asked

“You have any bourbon
To go with this coffee?”

Wild Thing ©March 19, 2020

Need Not Apply

Need Not Apply

there are depths
of my love
to be plunged

whole worlds
of my soul
waiting
to be explored

my mind
labyrinths of
mystery and wonder

faint of heart
weak or easily
distracted
need not apply

Wild Thing ©November 30, 2019

Heartsong

Heartsong

barefoot
out the door
skirt hitched up
in answer
to morning light

roaming through
field, valley,
on hillside
wild and free

sunkissed cheeks
bedewed toes
flowers in her hair
earth’s child

on the wind
soft, melodic
her heartsong
guides her home

Wild Thing ©November 30, 2019

My Girl

Dreams

Dreams – photo by Wild Thing

everything that
radiates light
or warmth
is dependent
upon something else

no woman is an island

do not fear
the challenges
ahead of you

fire is liberation
sending out
crackling bits
that fly from home

stay to what is
balanced and true
to gain
inner freedom

seek what
shines in you
in others
and life itself

never forsake
your belief in
what is right

remember the
good that has been
and is yet to be

hold to these
ideas and you
will hold
the power
of the light and love
within you

Wild Thing ©March 10, 2019

Invisible

Daisies

Dark Daisies – photo by Wild Thing

She sipped coffee
All rushed around
As they left
She said goodbye
No one responded

Breakfast cleaned up
She showered
Brushed her teeth
And hair
Applied makeup

She posted to
Social media
Her plans
“City Photos, Later!”
No one answered

Sitting on a bench
At a busy corner
She snapped away

A man sat down
“Morning.” She said
He took his phone out
Stared intently at it
Deaf to all

In the afternoon
Dusty country road
Wildflowers, animals
Silent but
Familiar friends

Dinner for one
By television glow
Comments to Rachel
Laughs at herself
Rachel won’t answer

Snuggled into bed
Light overhead
Mind drifts
Dreams of a life
Where people answer

Wild Thing ©March 9, 2019

Bloody Sunday

Bloody Sunday

Spider Martin’s most well-known photograph, Two Minute Warning, shows marchers facing a line of state troopers in Selma moments before police beat the protestors on March 7, 1965. The day became known as Bloody Sunday.

It was just 54 miles
Honoring Jimmie Lee
Died protecting
His Mama

Led by John Lewis
And 3 others
Joined by 600 more
Marched from Selma

Heading Southeast
On US Hwy 80
Men and women
For Voting Rights

Over Edmund Pettus Bridge
Named for a KKK member
One who fought
To keep them down

Line of white men
In blue uniforms
Stood waiting
At the county line

Said to stop
They refused
They had a right
To go to the Capitol

Billy clubs
And guns
were drawn
Waiting for the signal

Knowing their fate
They stood firm
Their time was now
Voting rights for all

The White men
Rushed them
Billy clubs, tear gas
Stinging eyes

Ms. Boynton
Lay unconscious
It didn’t matter
If they beat a woman

Hands over his head
John was clubbed
Was sure he would die
Scars visible still

Cries, shouts, chaos
Filled the air
As they fled back
Into Selma

Seventeen hospitalized
50 plus treated
Minor injuries
Skin, bodies broken
Not their spirit
They would march again

We remember
As we march
Across that bridge
Bloody Sunday

Wild Thing ©March 5, 2019

Summer 2018

Summer 2018

Summer 2018 – photo by Wild Thing

children torn
. . .  from loving arms

Singapore slough
global insults
Helsinki betrayal

corruption run amok
no one responsible
blame others

red meat rallies
people of color
called stupid … less than

threats and lies
obfuscation
conspiracy
obstruction

press named
. . .  enemy #1

fire pirouettes
. . .  over California

Wild Thing ©August, 2018

She Is . . .

Irish Fire

Irish Fire – photo by Wild Thing

Irish wildfire

Untamed and yet

Strong as the mountains

Gentle as a breeze

Passionate as the colors of autumn

Fierce as the winter freeze

Endless as the spring skies

Hot as the burning sun

Mysterious as the moon

Forged in flames

Hammered, tempered and shaped

Both Goddess and Woman

Vision, dream, healer, muse

A love for the ages

Wild Thing ©2017

Parkland

Never Again

Digital Art by Wild Thing

Quiet
Tock, tock, breath

Stillness
Heavy weight
Can’t move

Fear
Deep
Soul fear

No life
Above
Shaking

Warm
His blood
Her tears

Finally
All clear
Over

We rise
Cry
Grieve

#neveragain

Wild Thing ©April 4, 2018

On the Porch

Winona Lights

Winona Lights – photo by Wild Thing

I’m humbled to have my poem “On the Porch” featured at the Late Night Footfalls blog last month. It is a wonderful poetry blog and I haven’t seen another like it. It’s the hard work of @CletisTStump and features not only the work of poets such as myself, but his beautiful poetry as well. If you want to lose yourself in beautiful imagery and words … I suggest you take a stroll over to Late Night Footfalls and just let go.

On the Porch

across the river
the lights in Winona

Wild Thing ©February 2018

 

Pending

Sirens
Neighbors gather
Coffee cups in hand

The local Miss Havisham
Leaving her home
In a body bag

Jilted late
No children
Kept to herself
In her Mother’s home

Sailed out weekly
To purchase staples
Dressed oddly
Wild hair

Then, back home
Hidden behind closed
Doors and curtains

Her death
As was her life
A mystery

No obituary information
Pending notification
Of kin

Wild Thing ©February 17, 2018

 

Great Egress

Great Egress

Great Egress – Digital Art by Wild Thing

The clown car broke
Tears drip down
Grease painted faces

The ringmaster’s voice
Hoarse and broken
He walks away

Jugglers give up
Acrobats can’t jump
Hoops rusted away

Lions wander unfettered
Grumbles belie
Once ferocious roars

Trapezists fall
From grace into nets
Without breath

Empty popcorn cups
Cotton candy cones
Left behind

Audience of one
Gets up . . .
This way to the Great Egress

Wild Thing ©January 26, 2018

The Wise Gardener

WIld Roses

Wild Roses – photo by Wild Thing

In a garden corner
A wild rose bush
Unattended / Overgrown
Protected by thorns

Season after season
Gardeners came to tame
The Rose

Inexperienced / Impatient
They gave up

Years passed
Blossoms withered
Thorns sharpened

In time an older
Wiser gardener
Came

He started
At the edge

Patiently removed
Smaller weeds first
Worked through
Years of overgrowth

Found the fragile
Shoots underneath

Gently pruned away
The woody stalks
With the sharpest thorns

The Rose blossomed
As never before

The wise gardener tended
The Rose with love and patience

Impatience is never wise

Wild Thing ©December 9, 2017

Take a Knee

abcnews.com

Photo by abcnews.com

When my son
Was little
I’d tuck him in
Assure him
There were no monsters

Only to fall in bed
To fight the ones
In my own head

War torn villages
Stench of death
The buzz of flies
Cries of a lone child

I worked hard
So my son
Wouldn’t
See the horrors
I saw nightly

Now in my seat
Of honor
A young man
Turns and waves
I wave back

“Oh Say Can You See …”
I watch him
My white son
Link his arm
With his black teammate

They take a knee

I begin to cry
Tears of pride
I grip the railing
Arthritic joints creak

I take a knee

Back straight
Proud I raised
A good man
Who understood
What I fought for

Wild Thing ©September 24, 2017

 

 

Naught to Fear

Halloween Smile

Halloween Smile – photo by Wild Thing

Pumpkins gleam
Witches fly
And Ghosts appear

Rest assured
There’s naught
To fear

All a sign
That Halloween
Will soon be here

Wild Thing ©October 20, 2017

The Legend of “Stingy Jack” (Where Jack O’Lanterns Came From)

Stingy Jack

Stingy Jack – digital art by Wild Thing

People have been making jack-o’-lanterns at Halloween for centuries. The practice originated from an Irish myth about a man nicknamed “Stingy Jack.” The Irish brought the tradition of carving pumpkins into Jack O’Lantern to America. But, the original Jack O’Lantern was not a pumpkin. Pumpkins did not exist in Ireland. Ancient Celtic cultures in Ireland carved turnips on All Hallow’s Eve, and placed an ember in them, to ward off evil spirits.

Stingy Jack, a blacksmith by trade, was a miserable old drunk, who took pleasure in playing tricks on just about everyone; family, friends, his mother and yes, even the Devil himself. One night he invited the Devil to have a drink with him. During the evening together, the Devil in his vanity, was showing Jack how he could transform himself into anything he wished, first a barstool, then bird, and so on.

After a time, true to his name, Stingy Jack didn’t want to pay for his drink, so he convinced the Devil to turn himself into a coin that Jack could use to buy their drinks. Once the Devil did so, Jack decided to keep the money and put it into his wallet next to a silver cross, which prevented the Devil from changing back into his original form.

Oh, how the Devil yelled at Jack. Cursing and telling Jack to let him go. Jack eventually freed the Devil, under the condition that he would not bother Jack for one year and that, should Jack die, he would not claim his soul. Desperate to gain freedom, the Devil agreed. Opening his wallet, Jack let the Devil out.

The next year, the Devil arrived as promised. Jack agreed to follow him if he would only climb up into an apple tree and bring him an apple before he go with the Devil. So, in this way, Jack tricked the Devil into climbing into the tree to pick an apple. While he was up in the tree, Jack carved a sign of the cross into the tree’s bark so that the Devil could not come down until the Devil promised Jack not to bother him for ten more years.

Soon after, Jack died. As the legend goes, God would not allow such an unsavory figure into heaven. The Devil, while upset by the trick Jack had played on him kept his word not to claim his soul, and would not allow Jack into hell.

“But where can I go?” pleaded Jack.

“Return to where you came from!” the Devil snarled.

Windblown and lost in the dark night, Jack pleaded with the Devil to give him a way to light his way. The Devil, wishing to get rid of Jack, threw him a glowing ember from the fires of Hell. Jack put the coal into a carved-out turnip and has been roaming the Earth with ever since. So, if you see a light in the far off distance wandering here and there on All Hallow’s Eve, tis Stingy Jack roaming the countryside.

The Irish began to refer to this ghostly figure as “Jack of the Lantern,” and then, simply “Jack O’Lantern.”

In Ireland, people began to make their own versions of Jack’s lanterns by carving scary faces into turnips or potatoes and placing them into windows or near doors to frighten away Stingy Jack and other wandering evil spirits. Immigrants brought the Jack O’Lantern tradition with them when they came to the United States. They soon found that pumpkins, a fruit native to America, make perfect jack-o’-lanterns.

Wild Thing

Bricks

Crumbling

Crumbling – photo by Wild Thing

Walls built

Brick by brick
Through
Hard lessons
Heartbreak
Deception

Crumbled
In one night

Left down
All sides open
Believing
Trusting

The world
Has not evolved
Deception
False faces
Still exist

Brick by brick
The walls
Are rebuilt
This time
Re-enforced

Stopping
Head rests
Brick pillow

For a moment
A wish

Starting over
Brick by brick

Wild Thing ©May 16, 2017

Spirit Freed

Villagers gathers
All come
Mourning begins

Honoring
That life

No matter
How meager
Or great

Sending it on

Old loves
Grudges, debts
Die with it

The Spirit
Now free
Of pettiness

Through
Laughter,
Song, stories,
Love
Fills
Empty hearts

Wild Thing ©July 29, 2017

Please Vote

The above photo is one of my most popular photos. Currently it is in the World Photography Contest at Viewbug.com . . .

If you like it, I would greatly appreciate your vote on this image. You can click on the caption below the image, or just go here:  “Here I Will Abide” and scroll down. The vote blue button is just below the awards section on the lower left of the page.

Thank you so much . . .

Wildly Yours,

Wild Thing

Once Upon A Time

Once upon a time
A few mistakes ago
Off to market I went
A maid born low

Basket in hand
List in the other
Humming a tune
Taught by my mother

On the wharf
Looking at the fish
The master required
Fine meals on his dish

The farmer’s stall
With veggies and beef
Though closer to home
Would make my trip brief

The sea called
With its salty air
Blue green waves
Breeze lifting my hair

Fish wrapped up
I stop to eye a mussel
Grabbed by the waist
I began to tussle

Then darkness
A bag on my head
Trussed up like a hog
Heart filled with dread

Tossed into a boat
Men shouting, rowing
Off we went
My fear growing

Time has passed
Too much to tell
Each day a challenge
Aye, a true hell

But fight I did
Despite difficulty
I gained my ship
Yea, my liberty

The men? They
Now fight for me
Together we travel
Over the sea

A female captain
Of a pirate ship
Those who know me
Fear my whip

Aye, a pirate lass
And fearsome I be
Raise your glass
Give a toast
To Pirate Captain Me!

Wild Thing ©August 11, 2017

Body and Soul

Stacked Rust

Stacked Rust – photo by Wild Thing

He saved everything …

Phone would ring
Often as not
It was family
Friend or neighbor
“Jim, my . . .”

It was always something
Car, sink, furnace
What have you
That was broken

He could fix anything
Nine times out of ten
He had the part

Back then
It was always about
Keeping body and soul
Together
Food on the table
Clothes on our back

He’s gone now
The parts rusting away

Wild Thing ©2017

no limits

No Limits

no limits – photo by Wild Thing

the world
safe / asleep
invisible

we drift
side by side

not of day
of dreams

this world

this world
of no limits

Co-written by
Cletis Stump & Wild Thing
©August 18, 2017

The Elemental

The Elements

The Elements – photos by Wild Thing

Wild untamed
Free to roam

Fierce
Both in love
And spirit

Like the wind
Hard to capture

Born of the
Energy of fire

Fluid emotions
Powerful

It’s strength
Of earth, itself

Unobtainable
It only comes
If it chooses

A rare gift
To those it’s
Given

It remains
For as long
As you wish

Send it away
It may never
Come back

Like lightning
It seldom
Strikes twice

Wild Thing ©May 3, 2017

Elemental