A tangle of ivy wet
A night the color of loss
The fog wreathes around me
A long lost zephyr dragoness left here by tonight’s rain
A half-moon of pewter caresses the undulating fog

There is a small girl in the myst
in the darkness
A fresh stone says her name is Nena
She is too small and so – tiny
I go over to her and her face splits into a mask of bone and fear
A horrible scream and she is gone

I go again the next time it rains
and she is there
She avoids making eye contact
but when I move toward her
she strikes at me and I am wounded

The next time it rains my consort says
‘Don’t go – she will hurt you.’
Says ‘You spend too much time in darkness.’
I go
and the tiny little one is there in the myst
She is angry
When she comes I do not block her
I take her into my heart
She starts to eat the light there
but then I remember my Preceptor
I am not alone and a light grows in my heart
A blinding light tsunami
and the tiny girl is confused
She is tumbling in the light
I reach into the maelstrom
I reach across the distance
and my hand is all she can see
so she grabs it
It is the grasp of a frighten, desperate child
It is the grasp of death and I hold
at the cost of my hand
at the cost of my soul I hold

In the book over my heart
On a slip of paper written by my Preceptor
it says ‘He that risks his soul for the protection of a child
will not die.’
The light nourishes me and burns away her madness
She is strangely calm now
tumbling in the light
and I can tell it never happens for her this way

Every child’s smile is a treasure

There in the distance are the others
Her kin
They have come for her and she can see them now
and it’s OK
Her grandmother looks to me and blows a silent kiss

I am allowed to return from where so few return
and I am grateful for this chance
This golden wonderful chance

I am tired

Tears of the Muse

She sings

I cry poetry from my eyes
Harvest my tears from the skies

Hold them for a time
shining in the sun shine
but like all dreams in the grass
they can’t help but pass

Dream and come to understand
a sparkling grain of sand
gives birth to poetry
that sinks below the sea

She sings
Come to me
come to me . . .


Every poet is a mirror
Reflecting on the dance of Light and Shadow
Breaking the surface of the lake
into a mosaic mandala of shimmer
Every poet is a lens
Refracting intertwining self recursive fractals
Twining through the Temple
where koi meander aquatic forests
Every poet bleeds ink
and pours their heart out through their mouth


The Universe has strung droplets of dew
along this strand of spider web

A string of transparent pearls
in this morning’s clear light

Shimmering in the sheer delight of Being

Let me lift these
and twine them around your arm
That I might behold the two most beautiful aspects of the Universe
in the majesty of this lingering morning moment

Lost in the Moment

Lost in the moment
She sometimes gets this look
A look that seems come
most especially on rainy Mondays
A look that takes her wholly and completely
Takes her to distant shores
distant harbors
That lie beyond the verde sea
safe harbors under cyan skies untroubled by clouds
Takes her . . .

She offers no maps to this far
far distant place
No photos
no notes
nor records of passage

Lost in the moment
She goes there without me
And though she says she’s sorry I can’t go along
I know better
I see she’s happier there
than she can ever be with me

. . . And That’s Why People Fall in Love

“Albert Einstein nailed Space/Time
But the wild thing had him stumped
Al baby
Two and two makes five and a quarter
that’s why people fall in love . . .”
Thomas Dolby
​ Astronauts and Heretics

Gravitation cannot be held responsible for people falling in love
Albert Einstein (source unknown)

​ Dramatis Personae
Gaggette ~ Android robot who falls to Earth
Frankie Armada ~ Detective noir (Alpha Xeno)
J. R. Nerdsworthy ~ Expert on all things Scientific
Æros Inigmæ ~ Primal Life force
Hobokin LaRue ~ A Man between residences
Psychus Agorae ~ The Voice of caution
Mildred Abernathy ~ Grandmother Spider
Gaffer McRay ~ Resident of another time Coyote OldMan

The Game of Traveler and Guide ~ Opening the play
The Game of Ghost and Virgin (Earth)
The Game of Sea Monster and Mermaid (Water)
The Game of Vampire and Angel (Air)
The Game of Frost and Green Sprout (Fire)

End Game

The Game of Traveler and Guide ~ Opening the play

{Frankie is on stage leaning against a lamp pole in the dark and Hobokin is on a park bench covered with newspapers when play opens. Lights up.
There is a flashing light off right. Gaggette enters awkwardly walking in high-heels and approaches Frankie cautiously}

Frankie: Hey, you {low and slow, real cool}

Gaggette: {nervous}
Who me?
You talking to me?

Oh I’m one of you hu . . huuuumanes
Yeah sure
Nobody here but us huuumanes

You wanna cigarette?
Yeah there ya go
Just how do you eat these things anyway?
{Frankie starts to light cigarette but doesn’t quite make it}Yikes!
{Gaggette hides under park bench}

Frankie: You’re not from around here, are ya? {Silence} Yo? Listen I’m not gonna hurt you. Ya don’t need to fear what ya don’t understand. Come on . . . hey . . . There now, is that better?

Gaggette: {nervous}
Ah . . Thanking you
I will be the going now {doesn’t get far, turns back}
Ah . . . you are the correct
I am . . . strange
I am stranger here

Frankie: I’m not arguing the point, mind ya, but you need to stand still a minute, get your breath {pause} Is that better?

Gaggette: I am . . . still breathing, yes. Better?

Frankie: Relax, OK? I’m not gonna hurt you, promise. You got a name?

Gaggette: Do you?

Frankie: Frankie, Frankie Armada

Gaggette: Well hello Frankie, Frankie Armada.

Frankie: I hate when people do that . . .

People, yes
Nobody here but us huuumanes

Frankie: We’ve already been through that. Let me try this again {explaining it loud and slow like she might be retarded} Do you have a name?

Gaggette: Yes Frankie, Frankie Armada.

Frankie: Just Frankie . . .

Gaggette: Your name is Just Frankie, you are Just Frankie?
Over there you said you are . . .

Frankie: Forget it . . . {starts to walk off, she snags him}

Gaggette: Oh . . . oh no . . . oh my . . . I have touched you . . .oh please don’t tell . . . {becoming hysterical}

Frankie: {gently puts his hand over her mouth} It’s OK . . . Now try to calm down. {nods his head she nods affirmative, he takes his hand off and she starts to prattle, she covers her mouth again with his hand} Noisy thing aren’t ya. Look, I am going to take my hand off your mouth and you are going to tell me your name, got it? {she nods affirmative} Just your name, got it?

Gaggette: Gaggette

Frankie: No last name? What’s your last name?

Gaggette: Gaggette

Frankie: OK, first name?

Gaggette: Gaggette

Frankie: {she looks baffled} Most people have at least two names, look, don’t worry about it. No, its OK really. Gaggette {says her name as a question to see if she will respond and she does with eagerness} why are you here?

Gaggette: Why are you here?

Frankie: You first, what are you doing in this park at this time of night?

Gaggette: Mission parameters? You wish my mission?

Frankie: I think . . .

Gaggette: {reciting like a mimic} Research mission parameters, code as follows,
One: Establish contact
Two: Initiate conversation
Three: Attain definition of this LOVE word

Frankie: Love, you are looking for a definition of the word love?

Gaggette: Yes . . . most definitely. There is much talk of this love thing in the waves departing this place

Frankie: Love? Why?

Gaggette: Yes, please. Tell me love definition.

Frankie: Goodbye . . .

Gaggette: Oh please, I am sorry I almost touch you again. There is an understanding of most of the other things in the waves, and I need understanding, this love thing. Please.

Frankie: Where are you from?

Gaggette: {indicating where she made her entrance} Over there.

Frankie: Cute {she acts pleased} but not very helpful. {she acts down cast}

Gaggette: {has an idea} Show me love. I will buy you food.{proud of herself}

Frankie: Finally get a line like that and it has to be a freaky space chick.

Gaggette: You love freaky space chicks?

Frankie: Not before tonight

Gaggette: Then tonight we both learn something new. What is love?

Frankie: {thoughtful for a moment, signals J. R. who is off stage right} {to Gagette} Love huh? {J. R. Nerdsworthy rolls in a board}

Gaggette: Who is this?

Frankie: J. R. Nerdsworthy, local authority . . .

Gaggette: Why is he here?

Frankie: Do you want my help or not?

Gaggette: Is this going to happen a lot?

Frankie: That depends . . .

J. R. Nerdsworthy: {Reading and writing on board}

Merriam-Webster unabridged dictionary
Pronunciation: ‘l&v
Function: noun
Etymology: Middle English, from Old English lufu; akin to Old High German luba
​ Date: before 12th century

1) : strong affection for another arising out of kinship or personal ties {maternal love for a child}

2) : attraction based on sexual desire : affection and tenderness felt by lovers

3) : affection based on admiration, benevolence, or common interests {love for his old schoolmates} b : an assurance of love {give her my love}

4) : warm attachment, enthusiasm, or devotion {love of the sea}

5) : brotherly concern for others or a person’s adoration of God

{exit J. R. Nerdsworthy}

Gaggette: Interesting . . . but not very helpful.

The Game of Ghost and Virgin (Earth)

Psychus Agorae:
Seasons of Life ~ first movement ~ Spring

Milky jonquil
in a waxing spring moon
Passing from burgeon to bloom
Flourishing in the warm night

The zephyr stirs

Gaggette: Also not helpful.

Frankie: I can see that is going to be . . .

Gaggette: Who is first to love?

Frankie: The first love? Guess that would have to be Motherly Love
Stronger than steel and softer than a kiss
If it wasn’t for a mother’s love there would be no next generation

Psychus Agorae:
The Boy

There was a boy on the bus
Who was afraid that his stop would come
and he would miss it
He did not know the bus driver
and he was sure the driver did not know him

His breath clouded the window
and he made little foot prints
He wrote my name on the frosted window
he could see the snow through the letters
He could see his mother standing in the snow
He was going to be alright

Gaggette: Who was that?

Frankie: Psychus Agorae. You asked me to show you love, these people, these huuumanes will help me to illustrate, for instance . . .
{Enter Mildred}

Mildred Abernathy:
The Price of Chocolate

Empty spaces in the chocolate box
are the prices we pay
For children

We can only speculate
about the taste
of the foil wrapped pieces

{Enter Gaffer}

Gaffer McRay:
The Boy In My Shoes

I remember as plain as this morning
The first time he put on my shoes
They were so big on him
he had to scuff his feet
to keep them on

“When I grow up daddy
I’m gonna be just like you.
I’m gonna wear your shoes
and live in this house with mommy.”

And then one day
My shoes fit
He wore my shoes on his first big date
He didn’t think his standard tennis shoes would do
And I stood at the door
watching my shoes walk away…

He has outgrown my shoes
nowadays he buys his own
And he told me that his son was wearing his shoes last Saturday
They were so big on him
he had to scuff his feet
to keep them on

{Hobokin sits up – surprises Gaggette}
Last night I dreamed I had my dog again
I know that’s . . . well
it’s stupid
but it’s still true

I dreamed she was in our favorite chair
sleeping beside me
Just laying there . . .
God, I loved that dog . . .

{ enter Gaffer McRay}

Gaffer McRay:
The Little Toy Train

The paint has chipped
From the tiny little wooden train
That we hang on the tree every year

Its faded colors
the barest remnant
Of their former glory

And yet
If you asked
“From a burning house,
What would you snatch first?”

My little toy train
my little toy train…

{ exit Gaffer McRay}

Then there was that time aunt Mildred came to visit. {enter Mildred. She and Frankie start to mimic clearing a table and washing dishes. She tries to nudge in and take the dish washing cloth from him}
Thanks, I already have a mom, and have more than enough trouble dealing with her.

Mildred Abernathy: I don’t know where any of your plates go.

Frankie: Live a little, look through the cabinets, explore. You know me. Where would I put things.

Mildred Abernathy: I want to wash.

Frankie: I know. Dry

Mildred Abernathy: While we were at the DMV I noticed that you’re not an organ donor.

Frankie: How did you manage that?

Mildred Abernathy: It says so on your license.

Frankie: And?

Mildred Abernathy: You really should, you know. {Frankie starts to laugh} Don’t give me that look. You laugh at the strangest things . . . stop.”

Frankie: Laughing or washing?

Mildred Abernathy: Both.

Frankie: No.

Mildred Abernathy: You need to take this serious . . .

Frankie: Dry and talk or dry without talking

Mildred Abernathy: You can be so . . . infuriating

{Mildred and Frankie hug, Mildred exits}

Psychus Agorae:
A Poem Without Words
{Grand bow }

The Game of Sea Monster and Mermaid (Water)

Psychus Agorae:
Seasons of Life ~ second movement ~ Summer

Snowy Queen Ann’s lace
dancing in a sizzling summer sun
Complete in every detail
every nuance

The cicadas whir

Love, then there is the love of a man for a woman, a woman for a . . .

This love meaning is perhaps the most baffling thing to know
So much noise and . . .
Much more than necessary for species propagation

Courtly Love
was Shakespeare’s second biggest obsession
You get any Shakespeare out there? {she nods affirmative}

There are many
that will tell you
Love is a transaction
a system of exchange and barter

I give you what you need
so that you will give me what I need
I give you love so you will give me sex
You give me sex so that I will give you love
Coin of the Realm

But I have seen love
A Love
That asks no return

Fascinating . . .

Doesn’t happen all the time
But when it does . . .

But it happens in actuality?
At least that is what can be heard in the waves
So if this love thing is real
It must have a beginning
A middle
And an end
How does it start?

{Gaggette and Frankie watch as the players do their parts}
{Enter Psychus Agorae}

Psychus Agorae:{enter Æros Inigmæ}
{illustrating Æros Inigmæ as though she is a manikin on display}
Young Lover

Cobalt eyes
high tanned cheeks
Raven-jet hair
electric blue highlights

Strange to the tongue
The smell of you
rich and raw

An abrupt jolt
drifting off to sleep
A tottering feeling


Hobokin: {Addressing the audience but indicating Psychus Agorae}
For The Pleasure of Her Company

She comes down the passage
pulling her coat closer
around her
As though its colder
in here
Than out there
in the storm
I wipe my nose on my sleeve

She explains all the details
producing charts and graphs
timetables and photographs
She makes me
recite it all
So I won’t forget
I nod, knowing what I’m about

She makes such a scene
of discretely sliding the cash
from her concealed pocket
She smiles now
and turns
I don’t want her money
But it’s the only way
I get to see her

Æros Inigmæ: {Addressing Psychus Agorae}
Thunder and Velvet

The wind rises
Soft from the valley
Flows through my fingers
The eternal evening Sky
Carmine satin
Stark against your silky
Black hair
I reach
Touch . . .

You turn . . .
Mysterious eyes
Enfold me
Twin points of light
In your chocolate-amber eyes
Speak the timid
Twinkling souls
Dissolving into the world
Above the Earth

And this thing inside me
This thundering velvet Thing
Hungry as Fire
Burns away the madness

​ Psychus Agorae:{to the audiance}
​ Raven’s Workshop

Your Potter’s Wheel
turning turning turning
Smeared across your cheek and over eyes bluer than robin’s eggs
You laughed when I asked just how to throw a pot
“Over handed”
your reply
Your hands stained to the elbow
Deep inside your latest undertaking
A thing of soft geometry
Taking shape in your palms
Defying gravity
Defying the Earth
that bore it
This thing swims up to meet you hand
Unwilling to steal you from this place of mind
That you love so
so much
I orbit
Out of reach
scratching paper
with pen
Chartographer of the moment
You pause in your labors
And say
Poetry . . .
Shouldn’t it be dreams on paper?
Each line a humble altar
Monument to a Moment
A book
Like life itself
disintegrating even as you read it
New pages spontaneously appearing in the back
I bear witness
Golden rays of Autumn cascading through the window
And there you are
My bare foot lover
Framed in a square of sunlight
The cross demanded by the window’s pane
across your left shoulder
Spilling onto the floor
reflecting in your azure eyes
A small Universe of glittering
twinkling motes
Around you
A nimbus of astral energy turning in this space
​ I see you
Like the first time I saw you
I am transfixed in the moment
Awash in terror
You glance up eyes flashing in the Light
What is it?
What is this shapeless
question you ask?
A forgotten sensual spirit quickens
Just beyond sensing
It turns
Lifting your eyes
Shiny cyan eyes
Reflecting everything inside your workshop

{Enter J. R. Nerdsworthy}
J. R. Nerdsworthy:
The Scientific Basis for Love

Love ~ an altered state occurring in humans and most higher order mammals
This state resembles nothing so much as an addiction
Endorphins are released in specific sites
The brains is set awash in a sea of hormones
The pupils of the eye expand and the heart rate increases

In it’s empirical form, Love can be defined as a driving force
It is the creative, attractive force in the Universe
Love is magnetic
it creates understanding and is radiant

Well . . .
It’s that or a score of zero in tennis or squash as in ; “it was 40 love”

{Exit J. R. Nerdsworthy}


Frankie: Love is love
Don’t ya just hate that kind of definition
But still . . .
how else can you say it

Hate is not the opposite of love
Hate is love that never found a way
to say
I love you

Some will tell you
That our knowledge of opposites
Is the reason we got kicked
out of the Garden

Gaggette: Kicked out of what garden?

Frankie: The Garden of Eden

Gaggette: Oh that nice place where no one really needed you

Frankie: What?
Never mind

Gaggette: Show me more love

​ Psychus Agorae:{Addressing Psychus Agorae}
Corn Lover in Winter

Barely disturbing the stainless snow
on the rusty corn husks
The echoes of your memory
dance across the painted porch
The winter air crackles
with your presence

The unswept oak leaves curl
in your wake
a whirlpool lament

You laughter
just at the threshold
I lean
poised to listen

{Enter Gaffer McRay. Æros Inigmæ crosses to Gaffer}

Æros Inigmæ: Tell me a story. Something that starts out tragic but has a really neat ending. Where a tired old man finds a new life in the arms of a stunning young woman.

Gaffer McRay: I continued to stir the rice though there was no real reason to do so. “Doesn’t a young woman such as yourself have better distractions than harassing an old geezer?”

Æros Inigmæ: Can’t help it, Its biological or something. You see young girls are just naturally attracted to older men because they have all the wealth and power and let’s face it. They can be downright sexy. By the way you beans are burning.

Gaffer McRay: What? Yikes! Get out. Get out of my kitchen. Go read a book or something.

Æros Inigmæ: You got cable?

Gaffer McRay: “Yeah, it hooks the TV to the antenna.” She sauntered off into the living room. I dumped the beans down the disposal and tried to come up with a food plan B.

Æros Inigmæ: Wow! What a stereo.

Gaffer McRay: Do not scratch my CD’s.

Æros Inigmæ: You have The Cars?

Gaffer McRay: If I need an editorial on archaic musical talents I’ll buy a paper.

Æros Inigmæ: No. I love The Cars. {silence} I’m still waiting for my story.

Gaffer McRay: “Who said I was going to tell you one in the first place?” She peeked around the corner filling the room with the glow of her life.

Æros Inigmæ: Oh you will.

Gaffer McRay: After supper. I can’t do more than one thing at a time you know.

Æros Inigmæ: {long silence} Nothing is gonna happen, is it?

Gaffer McRay: Probably not.

Æros Inigmæ: Mind if I ask why? Its because I’m too pushy isn’t it? Tell me the truth.

Gaffer McRay: That’s nonsense. If it wasn’t for pushy people, nothing would get done.

Æros Inigmæ: Then why?

Gaffer McRay: Its me . . .

Æros Inigmæ: Oh my God. The ‘Its me’ speech. Mom said . . .

Gaffer McRay: If we can be serious for a moment. {Æros Inigmæ is laughing hysterically}

Psychus Agorae:{Addressing the Audience}
The Transparent Nature of Things

The young man is trapped
by his concept of Time/Space
Trapped in the amber
of his own thoughts and beliefs
Never testing
the unyielding nature of the Universe

The older man is frightened
by the transparent nature of things
Afraid that he might fall
through the walls of stone
Without warning at any moment…

I was suddenly in a mood to eat something truly weird. You know, like a cold tofu dog with that hideous mustard that no self respecting oriental would touch. I plundered the cabinets for what seemed to be hours and came across a can of mushroom soup. I kept looking but my hand kept drifting back to that can of soup. So I thought what can I put this soup on? And the answer, eat it straight.
Wasn’t all that bad really cept it gave me some really funny dreams.

The Game of Vampire and Angel (Air)

Psychus Agorae:
Seasons of Life ~ third movement ~ Autumn

Cinnamon blossoms in autumn’s waning moon
fragrance fills the air
A moment worthy of memory

The clouds gather
Beyond your picket fences
Cornflowers run along sun-baked roads
Snow in the heat of summer
Queen Anne’s lace
searches for salvation
Prays for rain

A toad watches you pass
Moving at the speed of Life
in a dream of steel and glass
You fall into that trance state
Where you can be driving
and watching your pudgy child fingers
dance the rainbows of the water hose
Amber and rust leaves
curl in your wake

Without knowing why
Your heart turns down a side road
into a black space memory
Of a stark grey tree
Praying for winter rain

Æros Inigmæ:
Are like fireworks
They are only beautiful
In that moment
When they destroy themselves

But what happens if someone loves someone else and they don’t return that love?
What happens if someone loves the one that they love?
How do humanes negotiate resolution if they lose love

“and still the raven remains in my room
no matter how much i implore
no words can soothe him
no prayer remove him “
Edgar Allen Poe . . .
We were close
What most people seem to miss is that the Raven is a love story

Æros Inigmæ:
Pleasure and pain
There are people who will give you both
Without regret

Son of the Maple Tree

Your son
More you than I could ever be
looks out the window
in a dream
His breath clouds the glass

Mists boil up over the river bank
And move across the yard
hiding everything
His eyes are not silent

In the coming darkness
I put my hand on his shoulder
I want to hear his question
Perhaps that would be a start

He stands without looking at me
and moves to the empty table
We eat in silence

Psychus Agorae: {to Æros Inigmæ}
Depart From Me

Depart from me
into the noise of midday

I would not want to hear
Your footfalls
retreating into silence

Æros Inigmæ:
Winter Lover

On that day
The snow fell
soft as vampire feathers
Sucking the warmth
from the lonesome road
Draining the sound
from the hissing trees
Drawing out the pain . . .

Memories leave footprints
in the virgin snow
Some seem to dance
some to falter
Some linger a moment
by the stream . . .

I try to whisper
to no living soul
But I don’t really
want them to hear
I want to cast them out
of my clenched heart
Want to bury them
bury them all . . .
Bury them in
the snow that falls

Psychus Agorae:
Window in the Twilight

The silvered mirror
Felt your kiss
I smudge
the lip stick
With my finger

Stained glass
Shafts of Light
Coin of Sun
Hand held Rainbow

I watched you
From this window
Watched the four winds
Gather in your wake

I watched the blue velvet night
Cascading down from the sky line
While everything in my heart
Spilled over this window sill

I watched your back
Statues turned
Marking your passage

{Enter Mildred Abernathy}

Mildred Abernathy: {Addressing the Audience}
For Peter Abernathy
my husband

The gentle old man turns from me
and starts to walk away
My heart beats
near bursting

He lifts his hat to his head
as he walks away

For just a moment he turns to look at me
and there is nothing in his eyes but peace
Those sky gray eyes….
eyes that have smiled for me in my worst moments
Those sky gray eyes….
I have lived and died in those eyes

I can’t stand it
I start to run after him
but he holds up his hand
He smiles
he tries to tell me that it will be all-right
but he is too far away for me to actually hear his words
I stop confused….

He waves
He turns….
he turns and he’s gone….
{Gaggette indicates that this is not funny, Frankie agrees}

The Night My Guardian Angel Bailed

Suddenly there
out a no-where
This really haggard
extremely nice middle age woman
Leaning against the wall

You have been a chore
Can’t hold on no more
Gotta go

Here’s your life
complete with strife
Can’t help no more
feelin poor
See ya son
Its been fun
But bye

Just like that

Psychus Agorae:
Your Name

Alone at last
The wind speaks your name
A name not unlike any other name

The willow is moved
to weep
The oak creaks a lament
The blue sky lake

I lift your eyes
Unlike any other eyes
From the well of memory
The well into the deep places
The well that moans when
The wind speaks your name

{Enter J. R. Nerdsworthy}

J. R. Nerdsworthy:
For The Record

Who can account for Love?
Who can reckon it to thirteen decimal places?
Satisfy it?

And yet
Who would not open the door
Seeing it on the porch?

This is the very essence of Faith
It moves without touching the sides
It is never corrupt
It proceeds with neither
beginning or end
It has always been

Love runs its own course
in its own time

Gaffer McRay:
Bide a Moment

A yellowed
withered rush
Can still dance
if the current’s right

The settled dust
is thinking
“Oh, but, for a lovely breeze
just one gentle gust”

Psychus Agorae:
Whisper Touch

I read your words
and whisper your incantations under my breath
Atoms of your essence ionize
and your image flickers at arm’s length

I conjure the spheres of yesterday
and with trembling hands
I whisper touch your face
your shoulder

The smell of you
still clings to my fiber
Your presence
still sends shivers down my spine

The embers of memory still smolder here
in this inner room
where I keep the shred of your shadow

Could I bear exorcising your echoes
from my hallways
Can I ever be free of you
with all these fragments of you
tucked away in every corner

I wonder if I saw you again
If my heart would burst

Mildred Abernathy:
To Dance is to Feel

There are some
Who never feel
their own body
Who have no idea what it is
to dance
And perhaps they are lucky

To know your body
is to know pain
The bitter ecstasy of pain

{Everyone remains on stage}

The Game of Frost and Green Sprout (Fire)

Psychus Agorae:
Seasons of Life ~ forth movement ~ Winter

Your snowflake-kiss brushed my lips
burning like frost
Crimson maple leaves
fell from your hair

Suddenly alive
We danced . . .
Barely disturbing the stainless snow
on the rusty corn stalks

My Wife
My Love

The sunflower more permanent now then the dying maple
Turns to face the setting sun

Summer dream
butterfly’s autumn
the distant mountains blurring into the ocean
the edges fading
disappearing . . .

The amber walls of the world falling away in the sunset
The white weathered fence post
ghostly now in the moonlight . . .
monument to a ruined heart

What happens to this flat stone after it stops skipping?

I held a coin of sun
In your room
And watched a library . . .
watched a library burn down

And they put you in a box
You hated boxes
You called it
The Curse of the Twenty First Century Boxes
Living in these . . .
These boxes
Driving around
In all these little metal boxes
And when you die . . .
Just another
Real expensive Box

The night passed
The sun came
soft in the gray
And for just a moment I slipped
I was looking at a dogwood blossom
And I slipped

Is it Ok for me to dance
Now that you’re dead?
Do my feet betray you
in lightness?
Do my eyes betray you
in smiling?
Does my heart betray you
in song?

I mean no disrespect
But the sun came out today
And my mind slipped
just for a moment
Only a moment . . .

Is it Ok for me to dance
Now that you’re dead?

Gaffer McRay:
Guess I’m a Mystic

A dandelion
I dawned with the sun
golden and common

We met
Your hands
a benediction
a saving grace
Your eyes dance
blue in crystal
Your taste… wine
amber in satin

You passed…
I closed in the night
against the darkness
To open with dawn
snow in July
The seeds of my love
dance on the wind

Psychus Agorae:

each day
a precious coin
each breath
a temple
each heartbeat
a prayer
within the cathedral
of that moment

Mildred Abernathy:
Winter’s Farewell Kiss

And as the Winter wind
Moves to a place
Away from here,
How I shall greet thy passing breath
with a tear

Perhaps I did not understand
That is some peculiar way
I have come to love thy snow and sleet
Though I stamp to warm my freezing toes
And rub my hands through gloves

But now that you depart
I find a marvelous symmetry
in this winter land
Where the dance of Life
Moves to a pace of slumber
and rest
And in the mad rush to grow
and burgeon
I will miss your fairy kiss

Gaffer McRay:
The Old Seeker

I have seen a thousand river beds
Some brimming with
gentle waters
sun dappled and swirling
under a canopy of oak and poplar
barren arid canyons begging for rain
Others singing the sush-gushing song of flood
The song of commerce
And the lap-ripple song of baptism
But there is still one more river
that I have never seen
I have seen a thousand skies
Crimson skies filled with the blood of the Day
Skies darker than the blind eye of Desire
Skies peopled with all manner of clouds
promising to pound the Earth with Rain and Thunder
or Love
Skies where the Wind turns to Snow
where the Sun loves to linger
Skies painted with ten thousand silver stars
each offering a thousand stories
of what its like
to live under different Skies
But there is still one more sky
that I have never seen
I have seen roads
filled with people
And empty roads leading nowhere at all
I have seen faces
and shirts
and shoes
and hats
And trees
And animals
And . . .
All these things and more
But there is still just a few things
That I need to see

Psychus Agorae:
The Problem

Vampire thoughts
Brainware viruses
Cherished family heirlooms
Passed on with mother’s milk

Clever little parasites
That infect
without killing
Bloated ticks of the psyche
Secure only in the darkness
of Ignorance
They bide their time

Æros Inigmæ:
The Cure

Embrace the Sun
Swallow the Light
It burns away the flesh
but not the heart
Light flows through the rivers
of your veins

Beauty in All Things

What is it about shafts of light
piercing the darkness a vacant room?
Golden coins of light strewn across the floor

Borne of water and darkness
We love our silence
Yet this intrusion is welcome
And who can say

And what of me?


Show me
Show me how to love you
without shattering
Teach me to write
without meaning

To live is to cry
It is Holy and Right
In this time
in this place

Teach me to laugh
without blinking
Tell me the things that
would shock your mother

Where there’s life
there’s crap
It is the unwritten law
In this time
in this place

Teach me things
I’ll want to forget
I want to recall
My name on your lips
My face reflected in your eyes
Give me something to remember

I don’t think that would be . . .

You’re not from around here, are ya? {Silence} Yo?


Listen I’m not gonna hurt you. Ya don’t need to fear what ya don’t understand.

That’s not funny

I came here looking for love
You are not from here either
What are you looking for Frankie, Frankie Armada?

How did you know?

You stand on the outside
You are not from where I am from
But you are not from here either
You are looking for love
How wrong am I?

You’re not wrong
Just unpleasantly correct

Show me love

Stop saying that

Forget it . . . {starts to walk off, he snags her, she laughs}

Many are the things
I may forget
But I will never forget you

I may forget the date
day of the week
When to get up
And when to go to bed
But I will never forget you

So many the things
I will forget
But I will never
never forget you

I may forget who I am
what I am
Where I’ve been
And where I have to go
But I will never forget you

Many are the things
I may forget
But I will never
never forget you

I may forget your walk
miscall your name
Reach for your hand
When its no longer there
But I will never forget you

My Reading for the Upcountry Literary Festival 2021

My Reading for the Upcountry Literary Festival 2021 ~ Presented this year on-line

Excerpts from my new and original book, ‘Silence is the Proper Prayer in the Museum of Intangible Mechanisms’ I am honored to be an invited participant in the Upcountry Literary Festival 2021 by the Upcountry Literary Festival Committee, USC UnionCopies of the book are available at:

The Wolf, the Woman and the Wizard ~ Ansiar

The wolf stalked a young woman named Martel, in an open field, under a pewter night sky. The wind smelled of leaves and coming rain.

She tried standing her ground but often broke into short sprints. Clearly the beast was playing with it’s dinner.

Just behind the woman and to the right a fire leaped up from the dirt, illumining the wolf’s eyes. LiKava stepped out of the light, facing the canine.

The wolf howled. Strangely there was no answer.
The creature snarled and dug the dirt with it’s claws.

LiKava moved to stand between the wolf and the young woman.
The wolf advanced.
LiKava said, “Stop and speak, animal.”
The wolf’s ears flattened, the fire in it’s eyes sparked but it fell back two steps.
LiKava stamped the butt his staff on the ground and lightning leapt for the sky. Electric blue bolts touched stones in the field. “You will speak to me animal.”

The wolf called out, “You know you can’t kill me.”
“Oh sweet pup, I can bite you in ways you’ve never imagined. Trust me, I can make the balance of your life a living hell.” A tongue of lightning licked the grasses between the man and the wolf.

The wolf hesitated a moment then called out to the woman, “You have no idea the bargain you have made little one. That one, he is known. You’d have been better off dying in my teeth.” The wolf turned and disappeared into the darkness. The lightning and the fire in the grasses abated.

She turned to the wizard.

“They are not particularly fond of electricity.” He turned and walked toward the distant hills.
She followed.

New Chapbook ~ The Thirteen Temples of Light and Darkness ~ Shalott’s Sojourn

Get your copy here

Shalott is on her Vacation of Self Discovery on a back country road somewhere in the Appalachians until she stumbles into the Thirteen Temples. Then things get weird.

Hand crafted quality chapbook for those who love to curl up with a good book
Story and art by William C. Burns, Jr.

Review ~ Fast fiction meets the epic: Homer’s Odyssey spans ten years; Joyce’s Ulysses sweeps through 24 hours; Burns’ Thirteen Temples fit between two heartbeats. Even with the breakneck speed of the story, the author’s roots in poetry and engineering collide to produce a clever machine that rings with magical sentences and glitters with winks of humor and hidden allusions. ~ Ian Whatley, Author of ‘Burning Hammers’

Aisling Sky

Itheann grá an bheirt againn
Titeann dhá amadán i spéir an tsamhraidh
Chonaic mé an fhómhar ag tabhairt ór do na duilleoga
Chonaic mé an geimhreadh ag goid gach dathanna
Ní féidir liom an ghaoth a chloisteáil ach anois




Sky dream

Love consumes us both
Two fools falling in the summer sky
I saw autumn bring gold to the leaves
I saw winter steal all colors
I can hear the wind only now