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Headshot -- Bill Watkins

I got my eyes from my mom,
she got hers from Scandinavian
Winters and endless days unseen
between songs, Viking memories
and Celtic dreams.

I got my soul from pain, rap music
and jazz from Dad and the strange
winds in life that turn Welsh into
“American,” stolen land and the
sin of slavery to work it.

A black nanny raised me, as one
raised Dad, his dad I’m sure
the same, in the deep south
still awaiting freedom and the
return of Native people—

whose gold was wisdom and love for
the land.  Unfortunately the
British and Spanish crowns, among
others sought metal and cash only,
skipped that which could

have been truly brought back
to save them more than even
great bible messages!

I got my humor from God
as I understand God, at the time
I prayed for one it was the
Judeo-Christian kind, biblical
certainly, then add to it some
Alcoholics Anonymous truth
and flavor, Al-Anon for the
family members or friends
of drunks.

I got poetry from the same
source a year before in 1995,
started to tell the truth,
has led me to more and more
until I now demand it from myself
and others.

I got some wisdom, as I spoke
of before—from the Native
American chiefs, who lived close
to and with the land.  They were
one with the Earth, listened and
knew how to live here.

Harmony and song, between us
and our lives;

the poetry of birth, landing, leaving—
dreaming and living those dreams.

The vision, inspiration—being
true to our callings;

Yell the truth with me, “We
Stole Land.”


I got my injuries from mistakes,
what hurts me most teaches
and challenges, the game so
fair it seems unfair!

I got to go, soon to remove
myself from Native American
land, I got my plan from the
conscience I got, when I
got sober and started to work
the twelve steps.

I got some peace listening to
the Tao Te Ching; Bibles and gospels
of nature, trying the impossible
task of capturing truth in words,
paper and ink, computer screens
and social media posts…

I’ll be saying this with a sigh,
as Frost said, somewhere ages and
ages—you know…

I got my song for the day, and
it’s been good, a day is life, karma
play, working no longer alone but
for the Great Spirit, the inkless god.

I’d rather be a poor original than
a fancy, loud, flying fraud