For the Farmer and the Fisherman

Today I walked alone,

Silently, among the fallen.

Snowy cold, standing stones

Basking ‘neath the setting sun

Stretching to eternity.

Here among these Legions,

I came across the one

Bearing my mother’s maiden name.

One of many, stretching back

To our very founding;

Fathers, grandfathers and greats.

Not all of whom retired here

To this, once, grand old estate.

Another found, I know, his rest

In a distant mountain stream,

The place he lived his later life,

The place he loved, by far, the best.

I honor them, those grand old men,

My few, among the many,

Not only for their sacrifice;

I honor them, out of love,

And, I suppose, that must suffice.

Evensong

Shrill

Inarticulate warbles

Muted in passage through walls

And woods.

Anger

Understood by tone

And cadence long before

Any sound clarifies to coherent

Words

Heat

Beat

hasty

Retreat

Words

Pulse

Thrumming temples

Dread descends with every step

Upward to that door

Where home fires burn

Doorknob

Chill beneath palm

Hand lingers

Warming brass

As crass language

And rage harass

His tired dragging ass

Inhalation

Exhalation

Knob turning

Welcome

Home

For My Old Friend Harry

Some claim the measure of the man 

Lies in something tangible and firm;

His stature, his strength, 

His fame, his fortune.

But I, for one, find none of these, 

To be a fitting yardstick.

Rather do I measure Harry’s worth 

By the stories we have shared,

Comedies and tragedies,

Dramas and histories

Yarns of adventures gone awry.

Be they Joyous or humble, 

Painful or proud,

Of good times or of Ill,

I have found in these shared sagas,

His humanity,

Well hidden by gruff temperament,

Masked by mumbled words,

Infused with a certain spirit,

And well punctuated by profanity.

It is not despite these flaws

But rather more because of them,

That his tales of love and loss,

Of dangers, of trials,

Of hardships, of misadventures,

Resonate within my soul 

And will remain forever with me.

Godspeed my old friend.

Honors To an Unworthy Master

In this year, since your passing,

Your son and I have tried our best

To mend the rifts you left behind

When you slipped away in death.

*

We’ve struggled to craft a fitting legacy

So in your eye, we could stand tall.

Our quest has shed some light upon us

And cast a glow down darkened halls

And yet these chasms defy our efforts

To fill and heal, for good and all.

*

Yet still, we hammer at that granite

To true the ragged blocks you left.

This working slays my sheathing anger

But your son, seeks on, bereft.

I pray, one day, he’ll strike the facet,

Split the stone, and find his way.

*

I was not able, while you were living,

To earn that trust I longed to see.

Your son still struggles, feeling keenly,

That worthlessness learned at your knee.

*

So on, together we labor, brothers,

Striking now, to square our ashlars,

Moving forward. 

So mote it be.