I. Predator Flight
In her eyes the fire of light,
some poets grind, others take photos
at dawn or dusk, still others wait for the
fog and make their own light.
Technology makes things easy, they say,
but none have said better than Lao Tzu
who said: do not try to change the world.
It cannot be done!
Then folks like Wyatt Earp come around,
make changes and you’re forced to amend
even Lao Tzu.
Nothing useless is or low—each thing in
its place is best… Stop reading this poem
if you have not studied Longfellow, I’m sick of
And what seems but idle show strengthens
and supports the rest. Yes!!
Longfellow found paradise with his pen,
Buddha meditating, Yoga people stretching,
and Yogi the bear eating picnic baskets.
To laugh out loud is a part of heaven we try
to reach every day, those who don’t post on
Facebook. Just kidding or JK, JFK putting peace
before politics and getting killed for it.
Love is a strange song sung by the courageous,
following in a long line of creative people starting
perhaps with King David, or maybe a dude in
Africa banging rocks together for the first time.
Love strikes chords, in and out of music and can
wind up floating in a flood through New Orleans,
or dreaming its own dream, shooting poisoned
arrows through the heart of the 1980’s.
Dreams, things unclean, soft memories of the eyes
of youth on me. They are the future; I am
fading with middle age;
Everything I have I give to children—please join me
to end age discrimination. Throw open the floodgates
in this case, they deserve the vote, all the educated
and inspired even and especially kids!!
At eight years old all I wanted to do was to vote in
the 1980 presidential election. I knew more about
the candidates then than I do about them now…
Was excited, couldn’t wait for outcomes, passionate,
But no, disallowed, come back in ten years, they say.
Ten years later I am biased, angry, dispassionate, feel
cheated and abused so F it.
Opportunities missed, Caroline and Alicia my young
neighbors following me out to vote when I’m twenty-
six, them knowing more of the issues than me. They
cared more, knew more: they were no more than
twelve years old, should have been voting alongside
me, but no.
Disallowed, discriminated against.
Goes to show the value of “politics:” NIL until everyone
is allowed in…..
II. Predator Patrol
We wake up in bliss when sober, clean and sure.
Paradise is close to us, we are surer and surer, each smile
from the heart speaking to the Earth, exclaiming great
We did not die as friends did in the mire that is
alcohol and drugs, felt guilt at times, what some
call survivor guilt.
And still we patrol the shores where
enemies like self-doubt and fear,
the wounds from overdose creep and
More is a deceptive disease, stealing in
late at night behind and past some defenses.
Evil lurks in quick tempers and angry reactions
to computer error.
New at Higher Power, those in early recovery
must try and try again at placing God first, God
first, God first, God first.
In doing so we change the way we do or not
do all things. Everything changes, in fact, we slow
actions down enough for them to be controlled
by loving decisions, smart ones.
No longer do we shoot then aim, looking to
satisfy first thoughts and feelings. We had a
buffer zone made of dreams, tempered with
We let go.
III. Predator Pray
Forgiveness is the dream of the peaceful.
I’m not preaching we forgive and live with abuse;
perhaps just forgive it.
The change continues as we shore up our borders;
South runs the line toward pain and confusion, but
prayer diligently adhered to as a stop before acting
and often even thinking…
Keeps us heading North on the treadmill toward
peace of mind. We have nice views along the way,
visiting Columbus, Ohio in the winter for a shock—
just making sure our senses are alive.
All four seasons are welcomed into the new life,
Paradise—once mentioned by Milton as something
lost, the Bible, the Jewish part—seems within reach despite
what even the Jehovah’s witnesses say.
Far off is far off, now is now, the smile we get with
peace is a post-rain color explosion in the clouds. We have
a rapidly moving sense that Paradise is right now!
Then it fades like the rainbow itself, into the sun,
particles lost and found as well, Particlus writing an epic
poem about it, Particle Bill responding years later.
Some have positive views, some take different views,
some view the same thing from the same angle but
report differently and say the other has it wrong.
I see Paradise now in the wind, not far from the sound
of hammers breaking up perfect Saturday morning sun
One of the different views is hammering for his peace of mind
and mine fades, not because I didn’t try hard enough,
but because because, leaves fall making room for more,
change is everywhere, God give me the strength to endure it.
IV. Trouble in Paradise
We haven’t even officially found it when it breaks down,
the dream of it even.
The absence of control frustrates until we find we
must let go even more, and soon, reduced to who we
are, the pill catches in our throats. We spit and keep trying,
there must be more moments for us up ahead.
Music fills the dead air, construction work kills it,
the birds and wind through trees battling our hammers
and guns every day. Art wins some days, nature others,
and on some cool mornings they are the same thing…
We love the goals that soccer makes, but woe to the injured.
We celebrate the heroes of war and mourn the loss of the
fallen. Medals go out, trophies. Some go out to those who
stayed out of the battle, the real warriors of the mind
who call out on Capitol Hill for more this, less that,
and let’s get this other thing going.
Their pay betrays them, and still we exclude and keep
certain types out of congress. No old white man likes to be
shown up by little black girls; they forget that all of life
is a great journey back to childhood.
Innocence tries to win, conjuring light from fog,
blurry in the night, a San Francisco bell bringing in
the harvest of boats long and short.
Trains too, they roll in. People hope against hope the power
won’t run out for what then? Dependence on modern convenience
we have sold to ourselves as necessary.
We step away from the known just enough on long
hikes to make the spectacle of poverty endurable, and
we remember Jesus’ words that the meek will inherit
We are sure we are worthy of God’s best as we hunker
down for Her worst, prepositions dogging ends of
sentences in the face of Polytechnic’s best grammar
We abandoned running on and sarcasm, realizing the root
of the word is Greek for tearing flesh. Al-Anon helps
A.A., long train rides helping music and the Tao Te Ching,
we remember everything, that script we made to help
free children slaves.
We had a purpose once, but we must abandon all we know
and escape into nature to remember it.
Go back to life after you leave it – something good awaits
the other side this strange hammering.
V. Touch and Go
The pain gets great, you don’t know.
It seems worth it, we’ve come so far
searched far and wide.
Maybe they’ll take the dreams I have inside,
after I die have a party, donate all my truths
and lies to a worthy charity.
Fame in death, go out in a blaze of glory,
someday they’ll remember me and be sorry
they didn’t pull the red carpet out for my
steps as they approached the pedestal.
Awards and fame, nothing will ever be the same,
but that’s it it all fades to dust now in the calming
mist of whirlpool steam, we kick our feet up
in a final Jacuzzi, this must be the end.
No, not yet!! No, we fight off death at the last
gate, nine out of ten ways to ten until we’re gone
we make a goal line stand and fend off the reaper.
Peace and joy comes to the golden effort given
by the golden sleeper. We see peace ahead, more
work slightly to be done—
VI. Paradise Found
Love, peace, rainbows unity. The greatness we
think becomes the greatness we see, five senses
turned on to experience this kind of beauty.
It was all here before, musty Columbus snow, gyms
filled with volleyballs and achievement, effort
Ventura waves in day, drumbeats at night, a piece
of hot pizza served by Tony by the train station
this is Paradise!
I once described it as a “smiling state of mind,” a
reggae song without the pot, we needed no substance
but life to feel all right, no Jehovahs to tell us “wrong!”
Paradise is here and now, it was always between my ears,
it was always my attitude, my decision, a decision that as
the red book says “declares victory for one side of
an argument over another.”
Love and peace, think of the trees—Poplars by
Aldington, dreams from Frost and Lowell, imagists
all rhyming and scheming before we were born.
Link hands and destinies down the golden road to
happy peace; this is the stuff, this is the dream. Some
dance, some sing, it is “peace of mind” and no other
Heaven is a peace of mind that comes from knowing
I did the best I could to be the best person I was
capable of becoming.
John Wooden and I define and find Paradise, waiting
for you to win ten and join us…
God bless you and keep you until then!!
Paradise! It’s here and now, hear me now
get yours before it’s too late, choose today
as your good start, open minds, willingness and
honesty the keys to the gate. Ha!!
Milton turns in his grave, John Nash says again
to Adam Smith: “Incomplete!!” Paradise is lost
and found everyday, lost and found one moment
to the next, give and don’t count the cost
echoes of St. Ignatius St. Francis praying
for giving and peace…
Forgiveness just another Ventura wave in a
lonely world populated by endless rivers and mountains,
people and animals. The snow comes unless
you run from it, coast to coast in America, ‘round
the world and back.
Don’t ever leave Paradise once you’ve
found it, you need lots of prayer to do that.
Paradise once found still needs water and sun
to grow true, rakes and shovels, sweaty brows
We may as well work with smiles and songs
on lips and think of the Midwest shiver.
They’ll remember us each Christmas, enjoy fuller
seasons and say we got cheated;
Los Angeles has me trapped forever in freedom
because my choices are true. Thank you, LORD
each letter capitalized to spell an Anglicized YHWH.
Borges reviews my poem, words cut out, Lao Tzu
thanks me also, returns and comes with the Tao,
rainbows soft at recall—
I am reborn today, in Paradise…
This is nice