the rain is coming down
sweetly singing
the day is gray
a little cold
i so wish us together
it’s you
that knocks me down
i didn’t realize
i wasn’t prepared
for stormy weather
that one heart would
beat as thunder
that one smile should
flash as lighting
or passion as both
hurricane and tether
this is why
when we have coffee
and you pass a cup to me
i take the cup in such a way
that our hands should touch
men are weak and horses too
the force of an army faint
absolute power – powerless
better I face an angel armed with a sword
then a mother armed with her child
Art is more powerful then preaching
Experience more valuable then the teaching
A relationship more critical then a reading
And to hold you in my arms, much preferred to the reaching

on that last morning
the start of that last day
i looked around
knowing i’d have to go
i was alone
the brothers
were in prayer
you were a couple miles away
i grasped the net
i had to grasp something
hold anything
anything but you
seeing you only meant
the time to go was too close
and the time apart too close
and then you were there
on that last day
you were all black
a black woman
in a black coat
with a black blouse
and black pants
on your head, a black hat
you so smart - all black
I noticed you
if our paths should cross
in a meaningful way,
let us wait and see
perhaps i can help you,
or you can help me
oh, the power of ruth
lacking in everything
except the God who sees it all
don't blame imperialism, race,
any ideology or the WTO
neither government, 
nor power nor greed 
shall stand before my throne
that judgment, that moment
is yours to face alone

should not love light upon an open hand?
even as a butterfly, gentle and free?
you'd never tighten your grip
never crush something so delicate
so beautiful or hinder its escape
color and stars and smiles

oh - how beautiful you make the color orange look
how beautiful you make the color blue
i wonder? - what did these colors do 
before there was you? 
and have there always been star filled nights? 
there have been right? 
but i don’t remember, 
have they always been there?
and forgive my stupid question 
but has anyone ever smiled before?
or is that your invention?
did you come up with that too? 
it’s all new to me 
color and stars and smiles
i can’t find a beginning that precedes the day 
i fell in love with you
jarka's letter from makuru 
can't forget my children
can't forget my world
can´t exchange my life 
with some of these kids
i will go
they will stay
can't forget the sky
can't forget the african night time
if you look at it too long, 
you feel like you might fall into it
keep falling for the rest of the days
it is so big and so deep 
i could stand, on dirty feet
i could stand all night long, looking up
can't forget how big - how deep
never-ending and yet, not overwhelming 
since i know its´ Creator 
who is my Father
and so i pray, before I fall asleep, 
not forgetting about my kids, 
not forgetting about the world, 
smiling over all the happiness in my life, 
crying because i can´t exchange my life 
with some of these kids
every child deserves all i have 
so why am i so lucky?
i thank my Lord, i'm trying
every second trying
but i´m too human, too unworthy
still he stays by my side, fixing what I break.
i'm changed, 
i'm better,
i'm held in His hands
my children are held in His hands
the stars are held in His hands
it's all so worth the price i paid
standing barefoot 
staring at the african sky
i could stand outside looking up all night 
but i need to go to sleep 
because tomorrow at 6 a.m.
i  have to give kids their medicine
the tirade 
i feel i'm sinking - getting submerged in you
already i have tried many times to keep away 
i’ve tried to keep with your pace 
to keep in step with where your heart is
i thought i was far from the world 
and then suddenly i am meeting you
you govern me so well
that it is stirring this heart of mine

i’m at once powerless and empowered 
until i was thinking of running away 
from that reality for some time maybe 
and maybe i will be fine in my escape

though i don't think i will handle it 
still i jumped in  
with both legs and hands 
just understand me please

it's not easy for me to restrain 
soon i fear i will relinquish a tirade
not poetic but born of pressure and longing
and a love like non has ever felt
in His presence
mavazi ya Mungu 
see the weave
touch the button
touch the sleeve
drop some gold in the pocket
Mungu yuko karibu


the road ahead
will take it’s toll
mortality doth erode

but all the richer
be the soul
distinction thus bestowed
no one 
is too heavy then
to carry on the way

give and gain
and give again
and rest another day

you’ll never be alone
all along 
that uphill road

take courage, 
take strength, take love
and take a hand to hold
the smile
if my smile makes you melt
then i won’t smile
because i need you
but if you should melt
i’ll get a freezer
and make you solid again
that’s how it is with love
ode to patterson
a couple weeks ago 
i bought a box of matches on ebay
the seller was lifeisgood820
the box is full; the matches are from 1955
a 1955 box of ohio blue tip matches 
over 60 years old 
and still so beautiful
each match has a calling 
to burn for a moment
perhaps long enough
to light a candle
or to start a fire in a wood stove
isn't that good? 
isn't that love?
it is the same for us
only here for a moment
this is our little secret 
the secret of togetherness
that against the expanse of eternity
our moment, our record
will be love
lucy asked; have you ever preached?
i said yes; a time or two
she said God spoke to samuel
just last night, in two weeks 
the sermon falls to you
remorse for one last dance
an old horse-pulled plow sits turning to rust
it’s a three-row hollman cultivator circa 1932
it lies in the field it once sowed
a man of 72 years
drove it there in 1957 with a horse named china
he laid down 3 feet behind the plow
his heart could carry him no more
but he didn’t die alone
the horse who pulled the plow was there
she was 33 – too old to pull - born in 1924
the man lived alone for the last 53 years
the horse lived five more days harnessed to that plow
the man’s granddaughter died in 1993
it was she who found him there,
his body covered in dew
the horse’s body too
she’s the one who held the bible
when they buried him
just a hundred twenty yards away
atop a hill
the horse was buried where she fell
what his hand found to do
he did with all his strength
where his heart would have gone
he never went
neighbors and family said of him he spent his days alone
never recovered from the grief of love lost so long ago
nothing could be further from the truth
he danced with her a thousand times in his mind
a thousand more across his floor
he had found love
and though it ended way too soon
she died in 1904 – he buried her when she was just 18
it was for him enough – he was fulfilled though others never knew
the nag died giving birth to china
this made the man love that horse all the more
he weaned it himself, neglecting the crops in 1924
china survived, as did his only child
both would thrive
a life lived 72 years will have regrets
when he lay on the ground, he had his share
he wished he had written his grandkids back
he wished he’d taken more invites to visit with his son
he wished he’d not burned her photos in the first few days of grief
he wished he’d danced with her every night before she died
as he passed 
he felt just one remorse
that he could not stand once more, 
walk nine feet
and take the harness off his horse
the rose colored glass
never are we so splendid
as love allows
in another’s eyes
our many faults
they slip away
entirely unnoticed 
so why not aspire
to loves completely
corrupted vision?
i should be content
even half as beautiful
as your heart perceives
i want to be the one you see
if i strive at all to be better
to what other standard but your love?
with you, i never fail
with you practical
becomes magical
for sure, love is amazing
it makes us perfect
in another’s eyes
lucifer's jaw

i love lighting candles
i don’t have many scented candles
but I do have a lot of white candles
in february of 2016 
i bought about 50 white candles
some very large ones
some very small ones
some in glass containers
some (just a few) have a coconut scent
i like how they look when lit
more than that, i love lighting them
i use matches to light them
i don’t use a lighter
i love lighting them with matches
i hold the matchbook close and inhale as they ignite
there is a physical hit, not just a smell, but a sensation
maybe it’s the white phosphorus 
friction matches use white phosphorus
it provides no high, no intoxication, just a sensation
i discovered this as an art student
to open stuck paint tubes, heating the necks
allows them to open easily
i googled inhaling white phosphorus
it seems inhaling white phosphorus isn’t healthy
it can cause a condition called lucifer’s jaw
lucifer’s jaw is also known as lucifer match disease
it's horrendously disfiguring
it destroys the lower maxillary bone
i’m glad I googled it. 
i’m going to stop inhaling white phosphorus 
in february of 2016, i asked you to marry me
the room was filled with 50 lit white candles
i went down on one knee; then you knelt down
i offered a diamond ring with blue sapphires
it was meant for future her; you started to cry
you looked me in the eye
tears were surrounding your face
was any of that real?
struggles and love find their moments, don’t they?
only the candles remain
protecting you 
on my side
even if I am stressed
with any is
I don't go sharing
I never want people
to know your weakness
where the last wait be first

in slums are broken places 
where kings and queens reside
where the last wait to be first
there are beautiful people
whose hands are tied
where the last wait to be first
a girl's justice set aside
her persecutor paid a bribe
where the last wait to be first  
a man beat his wife again
so alone again and bruised again, she cried
where the last wait to be first
"the poor you will always have"
wasn't this prophesied?
where the last wait to be first
there is hunger, thirst, and nakedness
is it you, my Lord, being denied?
where the last wait to be first
the botox party 
I was at a Starbucks last week and there were three woman there having a business meeting. One was the owner and the others managers of a salon. The conversation was of who'd they may let go, how to increase skills and fees, what kind of waxes, hair extension training/equipment and finally the planning of a Botox party. 
My own excesses over a half a lifetime leave me no room to be critical or in anyway judgmental (I did say I was at Starbucks). But the contradiction of having seen children starving to death last summer (hair turning red due to malnutrition) and the excesses we reach in our everyday lives is astounding. It's all around us - great absurdity. It's everywhere - and I'm as guilty as anyone else - I'm working hard to change myself. 
I know life isn't fair, but still - people can be fair. As individuals we can choose to be fair. 
if love is not genuine, is it love?
if fame turns to vanity, will haughtiness not be its story?
can money gaine
d through deceit buy happiness?
if faith is varnished with hypocrisy, is it not quicksand?
if fairness is doled out with restraint, is it not corruption?
rather then love, then fame, then money, then faith, then fairness, give me TRUTH.
that my foundation is plainly seen, without restraint, without regrets.
sweet you 
it's sweet to dwell on you
easy to lose myself 
in the thought of your smile

i want your hand
to have
to hold

i want to walk with you
in sun
in rain

to stand with you
against the winds
the tides and time

it's so sweet to dwell on you
and to lose myself in the thought 
of us together
no smoking 

my Mom passed away
just a few weeks ago
i never told her i smoked
she thought i was perfect
when i was young,
we lived in hollywood florida
i was six
i had a magnifying glass
i found a cigarette butt
on the road
no one was around
i focused the sun on
the end of that cigarette

it lit
not knowing any better
i took a deep puff,
just one deep, deep puff
i started coughing
i coughed so hard, and i
couldn't stop
by the time i finally stopped
my throat hurt
and i couldn't speak
that's the only time
i ever smoked

i miss my Mom so much.
i would give anything to
call her right now
and tell her i smoked.
us us 

you you amaze amaze
with stars and lures
and that stuff 
catch the eye, catch the eye
you you deep deep
with thought
intoxication flowing
dandelion wine, and all the wine
you you, us us
your teeth around my lip
your boot upon my hip
let's get it, let's get it

i know a young woman named janet
janet has two sons, 
her husband geff is a cop
he is paid well - he loves his guns
his job is dangerous
he only works three hours in a day
and only three days in a week

on facebook one day, geff showed his weapons
one was gold-platted this was his favorite; 
all covered in gold, he said it was sensual
he looked handsome in his uniform
but rarely wore it, geff is an assassin

my fiancée said geff was taller than me
but I had a picture of him next to her
he wasn't taller then me
geff went into dangerous places
he worked from 1 am to 4 am
he killed people his superiors targeted
as they slept, with family around them
all in one bed, geff broke down the door,  
and shot and killed them
my fiancée said people respect him, fear him
i told her they only fear him
one night while walking alone, our paths crossed
i saw him and he me, 
he had a Spanish made cz scorpion 
strapped to the front of his chest
it was dark, i walked to him, and we embraced
the automatic weapon was forced upward 
it gently touched under my jaw
a handshake wasn't an option, either he would kill me
or something deeper would take sway
we agreed to meet and talk the following day
he wasn't taller than me
i sent janet $45 a few days ago, 
she and the boys are weakening
covid hits hard in these regions
i look back on the events and wonder 
if any good came or will yet come
janet thanked me and said it is a good day
tonight we will eat meat
tell me
i have news 
that we might rejoice
but how are you?
i don't know 
i prefer remorse
and to mourn with you 
if that's your course
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