Poetry’s Prison

I am finding that as much as I love writing and reading poetry, it has bona fide limits in its execution. These limitations can be resounding. In a temporal, evaluative, contemplative space, there’s all the room in the universe to think, ponder, ascertain, spot, pontificate, exercise, expound, and eulogize. A perfect world for thought, a space for consideration, and emotive spirit bringing like and unlike things together in metaphor even a place for pronouncement and exhalation.

However, where comes the landscape, context, actors, characters, dialogue, topography, and linear time within a play?

So much is missing around the edges. Perfect for a soliloquy but by whom, for whom? Always the writer’s perspective? His or her own voice?

What chronology of time do we exist? What town, village, or city do we reside? On what dirt or pavement in what corner of the globe? What persuasion? What age, gender, civilization do we hail? To whom is our object and where do all these foundations reside on the other side of the equation? Character or reader, in fact?

Stifling? Sitting at desk.

Situated? Standing at a podium.

Pressed? Recorded by voice with a microphone.

Folded? Stuck in a book.

Muted? A thought for yourself.

And musicians say, that in the audience they find an energy that lifts, the song and melody to new heights, alterations in transitu, so a mutual connection amplifies such a conversation. As the art appears, the give and take of sensory feelings work upon one another. The audience becomes part of the essence of the work. For a poem, it is like the slab of a tombstone embedded in the ground, solitary in some foreign, distant, derelict, left tilted in some obstructed, overgrown field.

At least, a poem can be a coded message sent from one Cell to another, through the bars, by some slip of paper, in the hopes another has the inclination for such amusement in the decoding of it, and the consideration which follows.

 

 

Shadowlight

Shadow light touches me, awakes this life,

Warms the window, light touching at my head.

The wall shapes an hourglass of my wife.

As I stand, the light trails in my stead.

My shadow dances ‘gainst backdrops, slips to,

There, conscience, memory, history, all,

Silent partner to my movements, tilts to,

My trials, ambitions, triumphs, love’s fall.

In all my acts, what would you say, fine friend?

Do you choose to lead instead of follow?

Or severe by magic, extinguish, end?

Which cruel beast doth move? Who, the most hollow?

Sleep, fall two foes, weary jousts disappear

Let dreams salve, be a poultice ’til day nears.

NOTE: https://thevarsity.ca/2016/10/16/for-the-love-of-sport/

 

 

The Splendor

The Splendor by TOMA

 

Version One

 

And I wonder (yes I do) what this world is coming

for children, me and you

And I wonder (better believe it) bout me and you

and what we can do, to change a thing or two

 

Blank Chorus

 

Heard a man (yes I did) that his voice didn’t matter

Can’t remember his religion or the color of his face

Heard a woman say (I swear it) that no one’s ever listening to what I say,

Even when I’m polite about it

 

So what are we to do

Together us few

Raise a hand

Take a stand

For the Splendor of this land

 

And I wonder (does everyone know) what this world has to offer

It’s resting right in the palms of our hands

And I wonder (surely everyone knows) that love is at our command

And we have the freedom to do all that we can

 

So what are we to do

Together us few

Raise a hand

Take a stand

For the Splendor of this land

NOTE: I wrote this song and shared it with Mr. Travis Charbeneau, who liked it so much he wanted to work on it in his studio using his lap steel guitar. He did marvelous work. Sadly, he died of cancer shortly thereafter, and I am so glad to have had my time with him especially for what he has brought to my work.

I wrote this song some ten years ago.

 

Dearest Sparrow

Dearest Sparrow in your foreign Nest

What Skies do you see and hear Tonight?

Does warmth come from Twigs or by silver Crest?

What Dreams unmasked in slumber lend insight?

I wish to unfold my Wings around You

And feel your tiny beating plummaged Breast

And pluck a Feather, a token from You

Grasped in my Talon, forever to rest.

The Night we pranced to Music’s melody

Upon the windy Currents, Wing on Wing

While others floated, spun in parody

Locked, we descended softly on a Limb

I search the Flocks for Images of gray,

Where Hearts, one Spirit, never had to say.

 

 

Marlboro Man

marlboro man

(A Song)

The Marlboro Man*

by TOMA

https://whistlestop.bandcamp.com/

 

I’m thinking about the Marlboro Man

And how I heard the word he’s dead

And wondering how it happened

 

He sat on his horse all day

Smoking his life away

In the great wide open

 

He must have worn some fancy suits

Not just chaps and leather boots

Rugged he was, in or out of the saddle

 

But when you get to give your life

When you had nothing to say, wrong or right

Well that ain’t so bad, is it?

 

CHORUS

Well, the Marlboro Man is dead and gone

No more galloping horses, to carry on

A ripped out page from a Cowboy day

In smoke filled dreams, of the American way

 

Never knew if he shot off a gun

Or if he lost more than he won

But we all knew he was mighty handsome

 

Roping and wrangling all day

Smoking his life away

With a lasso ‘round his shoulder

 

CHORUS

Well, the Marlboro Man is dead and gone

No more galloping horses, to carry on

A ripped out page from a Cowboy day

In smoke filled dreams, of the American way

 

I’m thinking about the Marlboro Man

And how I heard the word he’s dead

And I kinda miss him

 

*Marlboro Men: Darrell hugh Winfield, died January 12th, 2015 at the age of 85. Eric Lawson, January 10th, 2014 at age 72. David Millar, in 1987 at the age of 81. Wayne McLaren, in 1992, at the age of 55. David McLean, in 1995, at the age of 73. Richard “dick” hammer in 1999 at the age of 69. These men died of cigarette smoking related deaths. Christian haren, another marlboro man died of complications related to aids. He was 61 and died in 1996. “Over the course of Marlboro Man’s 45-year history, dozens of men have played the iconic role. The Marlboro Man himself was retired in 1999, after the Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement banned public cigarette billboards in the U.S.” according to TIME, Inc. By Nate Jones. updated 01/28/2014 AT 07:00 PM EST originally published 01/28/2014 AT 04:25 PM EST. http://www.people.com/people/article/0,,20780930,00.html

 

 

Out of the marvelous

(A song)

 

The sky turned to yellow

While the blue turned to gray

The evergreens in silhouette turned to purple

As the autumn leaves began fading away

 

And the lavender on the crest of the sky

Still tried to shine its last light

And the leaves turning from green to rust

Still try to parade their colors before turning to dust

 

And as we walk among the shadows

And sing our own songs in the chilly night

And we are just like everything around us

In the quiet, out of the marvelous

 

The sky turned to yellow

While the blue turned to gray

The evergreens in silhouette turned to purple

As the autumn leaves began fading away

 

NOTE: Listen to first draft of song, sung by Ms. Jewel Adgerson: https://www.bandmix.com/whistle-stop/

 

Early in the morning

(A song)

 

Sunlight in the windows

The smell of coffee in the air

Breakfast on the table

Laughter coming down the stairs

 

Cool breezes through the doorways

Birds twittering through the screens

Children running ‘round the table

Such a joyous scene

 

Blank Chorus with “Early in the morning”

 

Life is a conversation

‘Bout money, jobs, and homes

Dogs keep wagging their tails

My how the kids have grown, yet they’re all home

 

And the seasons, they change

And they pass as quickly as summer rains

But we’re all here

Early in the morning

 

There’s nothing we can do that

Will make us stay the same

We all have to go on our own way

It’s just that way

 

And the seasons, they change

And they pass as quickly as summer rains

But we’re all here

Early in the morning

 

NOTE: Listen to first draft of song, sung by Ms. Jewel Adgerson: https://www.bandmix.com/whistle-stop/

This song has an odd tuning/ EBEDAD

 

 

 

 

 

Roanoke Girl

(A song)

 

Roanoke Girl

 

 

Chorus

I met a girl in Roanoke, she made me forget about my fears

I met a girl in Roanoke, she made me forget about my fears

She was a long legged brunette, with a smile to her ears

 

With her long hair flowing, right down her back

With her long hair flowing, right down her back

And her hips and bosom swerving, a full frontal attack

 

There was nothing to say, we knew we’re outta sight

There was nothing to say, we knew we’re outta sight

Like fire to the wind, it just works out that right

 

Like Mist on the Mountain, the Hart to the Stream

Like Clouds on the Hilltops, Sunlight on a Leaf

It was as natural as nature that we two should meet

 

Found a girl in Roanoke, she made me forget about my fears

Found a girl in Roanoke, she made me forget about my fears

And she’s been beside me since, the rest of my years

Firefly

(A song)

 

Everyone is dancing under the moonbeams

The silver light is everyone’s shade

Our bare feet on the green grass, feeling groovy

Drinking vodka, lime, and lemonade

 

Everybody’s coming round

Just to listen to the sound

The stars shine with delight

At the magic of our sight

 

The boys look wonderful in their blue jeans

The girls play a game of charades

The blue night folds us up as in a daydream

And let’s us flit and dart about the glade

 

And the night is falling down

Everyone’s calling us around

Dancing among fireflies

I can see the wildness in your eyes

 

And the night is falling down

Everyone’s calling us around

Dancing among fireflies

I can feel the magic of your light

 

NOTE: Listen to the first draft of the song with Brant Huddleston, https://www.reverbnation.com/toma7

 

silly silly fool

lyre(A poem, song)

 

silly silly fool

who plays the harp so loud

don’t you know they’re not listening

you’re muffled by the crowd

 

silly silly fool

you’re eager to join in

without a music stand or sheet

without words to chime in

 

so make a song, however long

you’ve time to think & hum

And mutter sweet melodies by the plucking of your thumbs

 

all seems in frenzied discord when there’s someone near

so simply play your new songs only for your ear

 

silly silly fool

so many chords to pluck

pluck some here, pluck some there

till the day is done

so many many new songs that still haven’t been sung