Saturday, September 27, 2008

Poetry Of Late...

I Was Born On A River…

September, 2008 Poetry Submission,
Bolingbrook Writers Group
Fountaindale Public Library,
Bolingbrook, Illinois USA 09/27/2008

By Daniel A. Stafford


1. A Consecrated Magical Tool
2. Soft Water Blue
3. Raucous Echo At Eleven
4. Gulf Coast Prayers
5. In Between Skins
6. A Lot Of Candle Light
7. Climbing The Tree
8. If A Raindrop Had Eyes
9. For Want Of An Olive
10. Our Hands
11. I Was Born On A river

A Consecrated Magical Tool…

She’s a high priestess from California,
Working magic amidst the sunbeams,
Playing her harp in mystical fashion,
She’ll raise your hopes and open your consciousness,
A darling voice playing under pagan trees joyfully,
Whispering spells of love and success so gently.

She speaks of her harp by its given name,
Enchanted trance-fingers dance the strings by candle light,
When the moon is silver she’ll croon her highest power,
And take your soul on a distant flight,
Breathless and wondering,
Wood and strings she claims are a consecrated magical tool,
Just as any musician would know and say,
Upon recovering breath from when they play.

I know the feeling in my own space,
Bello glints yellow brass about the place,
I seek the notes where the magic lies,
The one that make my hackles happily rise,
For in music there’s such simple joy,
To uplift the spirit we all play to employ.

You can’t play a song to cast a curse,
Because if you try nasty noise will burst,
Over every ear about the place,
Such blasphemy flies back in your face.

You know you know this – it’s a simple spell,
When you play your favorite songs space and time are a deeper well,
Transported away by the treasures of many,
Instruments are a sacred gift,
Come God or gods entrusted to few,
All consecrated magical tools.

By: Daniel A. Stafford
© 09/20/2008

Author's Comments
*Note: to find the inspiration for this piece, search “Regan High Priestess” and read the latest blog entry on her site.*

Soft Water Blue...

At the beach house again,
Low and slow waves of relaxation,
Young relatives leaving as we arrive,
Passing each other on the sandy path that leads to and from the beach,
"Beach switch" they call it.

The sky starts off cloudless,
Sunshine ripples on calm waters,
Seventy shades of blue and waves topping at one and a half feet.

Plant a folding chair in the yellow-tan sand,
Take off the last vestiges of the modern world,
Except your suit.

The water is chill at first,
Ice lapping slowly up from feet to waist as you wade in,
At some point near there it's just too much,
You have to dive and get it over.

Swimming long and cool,
The waves and boat wakes push you down the beach,
Splashing against your face every now and then,
Reminder of the Lake's power.

As you stare out where sky meets seemingly endless water,
You remember the school of minnows that dodged your feet as you waded in.

Sea gulls glide overhead and float on the waves,
Their brothers and sisters scamper about the beach.

Sun hats and beach chairs dot the sand for more than a mile in either direction.

There is a thick haze on the Western horizon,
It cocoons you into a world of sand and grass and blue and breeze.

People walk dogs up and down the lapping waves,
A cigarette boat roars colorful across the horizon.

You sit drying in the hot sun,Sand squeezed between your toes,
Absorbing every moment you can steal or beg - just being.

A cheeky sea gull waddles around your chair,Curious but not quite close.

A wall of clouds covers the evening sun,
You pack up and climb sand for a shower.

It's just begun.


© 09/02/2008
By: Daniel A. Stafford

*Notes from last week vacation.

Raucous Echo At Eleven...

It's everywhere,
The maudlin whispers,
That celebration of darkness,
A whisper of ghosts from within a black cloud.

The cries and whimpers haunt me,
As I wonder of answers and illusions,
It's all a matter of trust - lacking.

I saw things my own eyes tell me aren't physically possible,
I see shame and sadness in nooks and crannies across the land,
Wondering who won what and remembering the cost,
All the answers in the universe pale,
No matter their say.

Echoes, echoes, echoes and screams - I remember - even without belief.


By: Daniel A. Stafford
© 09/11/2008

Author's Comments
9/11/2001, shrouded in controversy and politics, is at its heart a horror story of lost lives and lost freedoms. The people and the ideals are what really mattered, and I, for one, will never forget.

Gulf Coast Prayers...

Reading, hearing seeing, dreading.

The weak among us are running for their lives,
The lives scattered and broken for three years,
Faded for many of us,
Ignored by the seemingly strongest of us.

The monster Gustav comes howling and all you can do is beg.
Beg the sky to be gentle,
Beg the sea to forgive and rock softly,
Beg God to forgive our errors and protect our brothers and sisters.

This is why many never went back home.

This comes before we're even close to cleaning up the last one.

If we could reach out and pull them North we would.

Pray, pray, pray - for mercy.


By: Daniel A. Stafford
08/31/2008 - copyright donated to public domain.

In Between Skins...

The drum beats softly,
Heartbeat across lands and continents,
Frequencies of light invisible,
No colors left.One world - one tribe - one family,
Members bellicose and benign a common thread.

Dance for the world,
Move for life,
Seeing tree leaves and wind and rain,
A web of life interconnected.

Spirit lies between skins,
Breathing the same air and water,
Every soul and piece of creation,
Recycled from endless time.

There is no here and there,
Only everywhere,
Lines in the sand are wind-blown nothingness,
Figment of a moment ephemeral.

Neither the sun nor moon care for sight,
Yet light is given freely,
Stars are had by all,
None is the wiser.

The arts of division equal to a prison,
Something is changing the equation,
Finally we breathe freely,
Regardless of fear or word one world.

Every disillusion must pass - it's clearly time.


By: Daniel A. Stafford
© 08/22/2008

A Lot Of Candle Light…

It’s August 16th again,
The candles are lit again,
In parade.

The songs we sing are sung again,
For the losses of summer,
Things dear never to be forgotten,
Neither humor nor heartache.

Memphis is glowing tonight.


By: Daniel A. Stafford
© 08/16/2008

In Memory of Elvis Aaron Presley,

Climbing The Tree…

Drumbeats like gumdrops on my mind,
Ripples on the pool I throw my troubles into,
Prayers of guidance and protection wash my mind,
Lush green and cool in the forest where the cave lies,
Deep inside,
The roots permeate All,
Tree of life,
Up or down I climb,
Another world of symbols,
Like wisps of candle light,
August is half-by,I
am opened tonight.


By: Daniel A. Stafford
© 08/15/2008

If A Raindrop Had Eyes...

Floating in a sea of breezes,
Heated, excited, expanded,
The sky is pulling and I fly from blue to nearly black.

Chilled through I shrink,
Speeding toward a mountain top,
Sparkling like a jewel in a sea of stars.

Resting in windy frozen silence,
Contemplating stars and sunshine,
A crack - and my congregation bullets down-slope.

Warming we slither down in congregation,
Picking up toys to play with,
Rocks and pebbles and sticks and paper and molecules.

We sweep all before us,
Anything lying or thrown in our path,
Pills and dead weeds and the things that killed them.

Muddy we sweep into the sea,
Carrying it all,
And some we even keep when we expand up.

Some day soon you'll drink me - and all that I carry.


By: Daniel A. Stafford
© 03/28/2008

For Want Of An Olive...

I stalk down memory lane hiding,
Lest a breath blow away my ghosts,
Hearing whispers of happy times,
A place where dreams were infinite.

You cant lose here as long as you dont disturb anything.

The filters that bring me to this place are diverse,
Songs or dishes or old antiques,
Some wisp of yesteryear on the internet,
A picture haunting a magazine page.

I can never get enough, how about you?

I tread with utmost caution,
Trying to glimpse anything I've forgotten,
Put it in my treasure box,
Filled with the ultimate of ultimates memories.

My hunger growls from my gut - unquenchable.

For want of an olive my shadows hear me,
Running off to Heaven on rainbow wings,
Discovery thwarted by distraction,
A lack of hypnosis and focus.

I awaken starving for more sleep.


By: Daniel A. Stafford
(C) 02/28/2008

Our Hands...

A hammer is light,
Swinging it flashes,
Nails driven quicksilver,
Houses or crosses,
In our hands.

Fish hooks and old leather,
Falling coconuts adrift,
Dying palms in a rising sea,
A plastic swirl bigger than the USA,
All at our hands.

A garden of summer delights,
Picnic for the hungry,
By the lazy riverside,
Flying cottonwood seed,
Prepared and tended by our hands.

Double edges need no swords.


By: Daniel A. Stafford
© 03/06/2008

I Was Born On A River…

I was born in the midst of frost and snow,
Ice jagged on the riverbanks,
Stars chilled almost still on a cold night,
Some small town I still see magic in.

The old lagoon used to freeze over,
Ice skaters in the warming house,
Now the paddleboats reign,
A fresh coat of paint on the doors.

The people that imbued that place with magic,
It seems many have fled to someplace higher,
Or flowed down the stream of life,
Salmon run out to sea.

Springtime comes and the fish jump,
Life awakens all about,
Green water and green hills,
Trees budding in the scent of river water.

New dandelions flower,
Tadpoles turn to frogs,
Cottonwood seed floats in the sunlight,
Yet the limestone blocks of the water tower stand.

I was born on a river,
Where the current never stops.


By: Daniel A. Stafford
© 01/31/2008