The Conqueror

fearAnd I ran for miles
I ran through blackened fields hissing
Below my scarred feet, through dirt roads
Sidelined by progress and the advent
Of the telephone and the cultivated rose
And I ran for being here

We remember
In our bones if not in our behavior,
The struggle inside the web,
The thorn of the hackberry
And the stronger man’s grasp,
Made strong by words
And not by muscle

And I swam too far
I swam out through the river
Til time could not reach me
And the gnats circling
Above the rotting branches
Punctuating every stroke
Finally abandoned me

We remember
Each life blossoming in the new,
The courageous choked in the bully,
The weak reborn in a singer’s lullaby
To the world ever-changing
And never-changing and waiting
To surrender
Its
Hold
On
Fear

–Shaun Perkins

This World is Open

worldisopenWe have these stories about the perfect place. That first Biblical story of the land of love and fruit created in the image of the fruit-maker, the lover of all things sensory, all things finite and mortal. Potential blossomed on the vines trailing across the garden paths.

Paradise in the stories where people go to find the lost world of hope and opportunity, where the streets glisten with welcome and the seasons adopt the human to nurture through change. Continue reading

Poem Town

national-poetry-month-520x271I just submitted a grant application for a project I’ve been thinking about . . . maybe all my life. Poem Town. There’s some inspiration there from Edgar Lee Masters who created Spoon River Anthology, a collection of poems from former residents of Spoon River talking from the grave. When I taught high school, we always created a town and emulated Spoon River by collaborating on a cast of characters and then writing poems to go with each one. Imagining a town and its inhabitants and the stories that intertwine and create the community is an exciting, inspiring act. Continue reading

Down the Road

My notebook of old typewritten poems

My notebook of old typewritten poems

Is this a dream or not, I’ll say
Sitting in the dark
With a magazine in my hand
And the harmonica on the floor
By my socks
The war outside continues
Constant crashing, breaking
The drip, drip of the melting icicles
As they fall softly to the ground
To the snow
Put on your boots and go outside
Crash Continue reading