The earth in her eyes, time
stopping a moment and you see
nothing but the opaque hues,
the amber ruse, the wondering
brow—soul to soul,
and she’s off, a deer in light
an enchanted moment never
explored again, but remembered
The answers cosmic to questions
tragic, mystical creation yielding
to childlike intuition.
Is love in the brain?
Heart to heart, the toddler
finds the sandbox and a parent
will remark: look how he plays,
does he know he’s loved?
Does he give and receive with
grace, does he say “thank you,”
Does he have the courage to love?
To be himself? To give his gifts?
What if he is rejected?
We have no power to overcome well
the hurt you feel when your dreams
and feelings expressed get waved off
God bless us to a spiritual space,
pass along to our kids not only the
self-confidence to be true;
but the wisdom to keep a Higher Power
there for our appeals in failure.
The higher, mystical truth outside
the lines on structured drawings,
the native Great Spirit—the Hebrew
LORD, Allah, Muhammad and Jesus,
their words, those who raise hands
Matoax and her blessings saving a
new white race, the scar of murder
on their face, all forgiven when we ask
accept her furs, the earth a spaceship
with room for all views, check your
energy, check in prayer every detail.
Are you with Faith or Fear? How do
we reside where the questions stop,
in peace of mind?
Is love in the brain becomes question
no more on the wind of Spirit, live
for it not her or him, fly with the eagles
and magic, love lost wives and beware
the snares that are mere human
hang-ups, grounding us as long as
Ask, receive, love, blast!
Give your song to God and wind
and the denied sandbox dream becomes
only a part of the dance David called
us to before slaying along with
Goliath every prayer-resisting fear.
Wake up, skip the rock and see the
smile on the wind for your life, the hope
the universe has for you being endless
as the pool and its rings in rainstorms.
The rainbow is in the heart;
wait there for all things loving past
insane; it’s all in balance when
love is in the brain.
War shoots up through the ages,
depending on where you’re standing
and on how you define your terms.
Law lays down when men and women
require an even playing field on which
to play. Folks start bullying, using
“God” or another name for evil,
try to push us around, until the winds
blow, the sun again shines, and Congress
forms to check the king. Battles are
“won” but lost if from afar you see
the forest from the victory that
folks got hurt, even died… Does
death exist? Depends on where you’re
standing and on how you define terms.
Language is a funny fertilizer, one of
many great measures, as the universe
expands and contracts into big people
banging and creating new beings,
the egg or chicken appearing first
or last—it doesn’t really matter, just
more words you can throw up into
the sky like stars, fly away or plant
yourself to them define; take a stance
and write your Congress person, unless
you are one, then what? Do you win
when you take more than you need,
store up money and goods?
It depends on where you’re standing
and on how you define your terms.
Sometimes when you win, you lose
said some movie down the bluff
from me. I used to be a potted plant,
then broke away to live or die as
a wildflower on the hill, you know
like the ones along the route to San
Take the bus not the train, if in
Spring you care to from L.A. to the
north express for God the song
Orange, purple and yellow blossoms on
a green hill above blue water, white
clouds above coagulating while I
ruminate on how buses in Mexico
are better than ours.
Free lunches and movies again, down
the bluff from me and Einstein—
depending on where you’re standing
and on how you define the terms.
There is a pulse and a spirit
under and over our lives,
giving us sanity, clues, natural
grooves to those who are
willing to stop, walk up the backs
of crevasses and ravines, nature’s
cherry, tall mountains yielding
peace in the mind of the sound.
We come out fighting—sperm to
egg, out Mom at whatever pace
We have to develop sixth senses,
cosmic attachments to energy
there when we ask. I asked
for poetry, travelling the song
that is Mexico.
I don’t like music anymore,
because it gets in the way of
Who’s connecting today? Where
is the medicine man, the prophet
designated to go up the hill and
ask for God’s blessing.
A priest denying himself sex?
Folks who meditate in buildings?
Who knows what the earth wants,
can report the facts to others,
pick up an instrument to play again
only when we’re on the same
page, one pulse attempting to please
the LORD, like the Jews in the desert.
Burn the incense, retreat back to
the dirt and calm—
God forgive our running around
with cotton in our ears, so eager
and ready to spout what others
We “Edged Out God” the acronym
for ego used today.
Give us peace, God, and with it
your voice to teach us the way!
Before the change, you wait
until lo and behold: it’s too late,
the wind and the spin of the planet
beginning again around the sun,
ninety to a hundred times seen
per blessed life, Hebrew kings
and justice is still right. Pinch here,
pinch there, we’re different
I’ll miss her.
As long as I’m alive I’ll live July
Something dreams and I’m stronger.
We get up in peace, as long as we
yesterday struggled and sacrificed
enough, took our shopping money
to the street, clothed a man on his
last leg, wet pants—you said and did
the right things, changed him with
a tear as he said three cheers.
You walk at limp pace with the suffering
masses, being sure you’re not “ahead
of your skis,” the advanced run wisping
by trees toward Heaven.
There are no signs for it, minus the
aforementioned dreams. And they do
not come remembered until you commit
to truth, take off your own threads,
give your life to powers unseen, see
your part in the general flow, put an
extra coat on—hoping for one more
splash in the song that is today.
I’ll miss the winter, when long
from it I wet my own sheets dreaming
of she’s and he’s who like me, admit
they can’t do it alone.
I’ll miss the winter, when in the Truth
of now I shine a light on age, rocks
sagging off a sheened rebel coast,
Scotland crags, Welsh hills awaiting
As we stand to holler one more time.
I’ll miss the winter, as I shout my
colors into the wind, national flags
sagging likewise around children and
infants raped by ignorant knives
as mother cries, father and so many
on the wide path of “I don’t know”
and “Whatever they say—”
We abdicate our will to white coats
until grace appears at point of death.
We see light at last, breathe and smile.
Dealt this, we cope, try to accept the
wrongs but call them out so the next
little boy and girl tastes opportunity
and freedom sooner you hope—
than you did.
Sighs breed change as winds their
leaves returning—yell out “God”
or something like it now. Grab
today! The hope, stay warm at night
say good night and pray.
It’s getting warm again, as you knew it
would. You shake it off, stare at the
“Until next year,” you think of things
only God should.
The best spaceship is Earth,
moving and singing through space,
the wind whipping through
bringing tears to our collective face.
God is not myth, it’s concept;
look it up, Google’s okay, a red
book from the past defining all
words as words, inventions—
we made them, including these…
up. We did not make the waterfall,
the rocks, the snow—interventions,
song-like, beauty with or without…
Wind chime, lost in souls out of
time, God is the good, orderly
direction needed to stay on the ground;
without supplication, we fly
un-humbly off the cliff, where strong
physical facts land, bloody and
definite. There is a power greater
than ourselves, this is a fact,
leaving the atheist looking foolish,
mad at the hatter for not making
us warm enough shoes. Peace, with
or without the letters is a feeling
much in line with the calm after rain,
the end of pain a mixture of symbols
that collide with other words describing
bodily fluids and explosions of thought;
neurons that if not written, would
surely be forgot, time is ticking as
the wind chimes nothing, one, two—
the Earth has again moved.
So predictable until we swing and miss;
we thought we knew so much,
then looked into a baby’s eyes,
a revolving door of life making the
annual turn around the sun so unique
and amazing this 2018 that poets are
on the move too—so much so, we
chime our own winds, try to make up
some new words, ways to say them
so me and the Earth can again be friends.
The seed wars to become a flower.
Democracy lies—calls people power.
Songs rhyme, the words nothing compared
to truth itself. You pause, pray,
Give strength clean away, turn it over
We can rise. With a god of your own
understanding, we can rise, the mystic
reason for the four seasons calling
in the night, dreams the funeral of
ignorance, chopping off parts of a penis
while our infants cry; listening to the
devil, the easy way, “What did the white
Great native spirit, aboriginal ESP, a poem
scribbled into sand by Vikings or Celtic
sages, Romeo and Juliet giving English
reasons like seeds to sprout and spread
like a wildfire of color across a northern
California coastal hill.
“God” is the name itself for some, the
goal heaven, and for it we rise.
We can overcome the worst, from ashes
bloom again, seven deadly sins trying to
burrow into holes made before we make
The cliff upon which we walk is forged
to challenge, the echoes of forefathers
and foreskins causing blood to pour out
in lines, the prayer a call of the realistic,
the humble are true when they admit they
cannot without divine help reach the
golden crest that is Peace of Mind.
We can rise.
But we must first admit we fell, ring the
bell that we’ve been to hell.
God, forgive us, let’s mobilize with every
breath to make amends for friends like
wind forgotten with circumcised sips
of flammable liquid passed down from
generation to generation,
Friends in armor, friends who gave
us warmth and farming techniques,
helped us survive winters before
we cast them out at gunpoint, claimed
to found a nation already here.
I’m a white man living on stolen land,
littered concrete and asphalt, helicopters
screaming war while anyone standing
high enough for peace is shot down from
Gandhi to Jack to Martin to Bobby to Oscar
to John of the Beatles, the evil wind
soaring never changed.
We can rise, the minority report flourishing
at times, enough to give us hope
like a birdie between double bogies,
We can rise.
With an ounce of truth told into the
hurricane of lies, we can turn the evil
ship around, apologize.
Admit we raped, pillaged and stole,
see the humanity we are—naked
and part of the earth.
Don’t ever snip earth worn naturally
by children, mutilate a baby against
The baby’s cry is God’s protest; stop
cutting, start listening. Get out of your
car, join me on the walk to Heaven.
I don’t know it all, of course—
the in’s, the out’s, the going to
war, learning how to kill and
You learn the devil’s code against
10 commandments or other
dreams available to children
Murder is never defense, the
attacker you fear’s heart does
not have to stop beating to
cease as threat.
John F. Kennedy was from so-
and-so peeps, Catholic Church,
big money from Dad’s bootlegging?
No matter to me.
He captained a boat, killed Japanese
people, survived a crash, helped
fellows survive, as the story goes—
The ignorance of alcohol abounds,
I used to call the Catholic Church
the Alcoholic Church, and why not?
They say he womanized, the sinless
throwing stones—many thrown by
his killers I’m convinced, evil converging
A different time and era, sad for
those sad at tragedy; a father and
husband murdered, how different
from the Japanese?
Picked off sadly from a Texas knoll,
confused, bedeviled soldiers carrying
out orders of revenge for Bay of Pigs,
Clearing the deck for bloody Vietnam.
It’s tempting to be angry at death
and evil, but one must not play into
it—and instead love our enemies, they
hate it before converting.
“You think you can change the world?
It cannot be done,” yells Lao Tzu
thousands of miles and years away, yet
still we try!
Whatever Jack was before 1963,
he had become quite a voice for peace,
probably the world’s leading one
Same could be said of Gandhi. Martin,
Bobby, and John in December of 1980,
so many things we cannot control—
I pray for the CIA, for murderers’ row
full of “Who knows?” and fraudulent
piety known as national security!
They need hugs not scorn, so hello,
I love you won’t you tell me your last
name? No? I love you anyway, I’ll
until Truth sets you free. To tell it
we must have safety, and with Higher
Power like the Jewish LORD psalmed
wisely by David
who could be against you if you
decided to break ranks with Fear
and blow the whistle, “Jack!!! We killed
And we are sorry. Sorry for Vietnam, for
the lies, for war and evil and injustice—
the money was good and we took it.
We didn’t know that fear is often
False Evidence Appearing Real, and
that there is a God, and that there
is a Heaven.
Find Love and God now!
Turn and find Jack within, forgive
yourself, see the less fortunate,
the unclothed give them a bite!
See that we could go further than
free the slave, we could give them a
piece of the profit they stoked,
the Native American pushed out
there and waiting to regenerate the
land with us, the litter we fanned
too much, the noise we fueled
the Great Spirit battling serpent
covert ops, the secret devil in you
ready to be banished when you
say no to easy money, lift palms
to the sky, see your spirit and
love connect embracing earth
Die now, old life! To the killers of
Jack and to the Devil himself I
say no thanks, I give you my back,
and I smile because I love the fight
that wins every time we surge
to declare Truth at the scary dinner
three-piece suits and cigars over
flammable liquid sold and bought
as “drink,” the devil alive with every
Jack with the saints because with
his last breath he declared Peace.
When I was young, I heard
and saw a lot, listened—took
it in, used my senses to try
to be the best I could be.
Sort of a win before life began,
something the humble guard
as theirs to be, open-minded,
a sponge in the open sea—
God overhead, faith within
the soul, but this was before
the words crashed upon my
mind’s eager shore, yours too.
Mom was nice, but sometimes
I was passed on to other laps
and arms, thought they were fine,
growing up now I heard three
Words. I heard them, but I did
not feel them or want to
repeat them; I needed more
evidence but in vain I searched!
It may have been Grace that
pursued me, Senator Klobuchar
on the Judiciary Committee—steady
truth, still not in my diet.
I nearly passed out, then teetered
on a jacuzzi ledge, smoked out
on pot, lit up with flammable
liquid in my veins—
I avoided the three words, the
feeling in them, maybe because
my super fun and amazing dad
never used them.
“I love you” was whined into the
wind by a loving, conflicted mom
who canned Dad on a dark night
of confusion, not long after Dad
gave me his last sip of bourbon
to drink, the same room reporting
“Divorce”—despite Jesus’ teaching
against its very existence.
God help us, was not yet prayed,
but off to college I went full of
love—but Backed Up, like a troubled
sink, I threw my guts up on the seat.
Anne Devereux was all I wanted,
tennis on the circuit—no one listened
we discriminated against children
I’m just another weak heartbeat.
God, help us was not prayed, because
the need not peaked, not yet at
bottom the alcoholic I’d become
sought answers elsewhere, namely
in grades at school, trying to be cool,
all a cover-up over love for Anne
and Mom, all a cover-up for the lies
I told myself to tell other lies that
I was not lying when I said I only
had a beer, when I had three, and for
me at 90 pounds that was quite a buzz,
a mini-suicide, love walking away
from me, the next girl Melanie, a JJ
in there, maybe a Marne, Allison in
Summer, all an avoidance of telling
the Wife of my Youth
“I Love you.”
Three words, hard to learn, harder
to say, so when my AA sponsor said
them to me in 1996 without needing
to hear them back from me,
I felt something I could not brush off,
it was unconditional love, something
he learned at home but more in AA.
Weeks later I said, What the hey?
And I started to say the words, three
of them to express the love I feel
for life and you. Three words to
bring the love revolution out of
the sad alcoholic closet and into
the open, below the big bright blue;
God above, faith in our spirit, the
shine all around the moment we
clean the street off, tell the truth,
ask a higher power into the mix,
and tell Anne how sorry you are
you did not tell her how you felt.
Back then was back then, and
here we are living in the stew and
stink of the pain of past wrecks.
But we rise for another day, turn
wine back into water, study
even further than our teachers
suggest! Be the best we can
possibly be, with or without a
big cross tatted on your chest. To
believe in a big world and universe
and to play a small but impassioned
part is to live toward peace of mind.
To say “I love you” key to indeed
living truthfully and ably from the heart.
by Bill Watkins 9/26/2018
I was confirmed Catholic in a haze of “getting it done,” not quite hungover but certainly between hangovers.
My first memory of church was Dad’s legs, moving really fast. “Come on, kids! We’re late!” and he sped-walked up the boulevard to church. We followed, the rest of life pretty cool with lots of well-timed presents and stuff around to keep us entertained.
My first love went un-reported, as Proverbs 5:18 and Malachi’s 2:14’s Wife of your Youth was not much preached or cared for in our neck of the woods. Alcohol was everywhere, something I now see as a false god, along with college and anything else that distracts us from the straight, narrow path to Heaven.
I had no relationship with God or any kind of Higher Power until I went to an alcohol and drug rehabilitation center, where my sister had checked herself in in January of 1995. On February 7th of that year, in a small therapy group on the campus of the Betty Ford Center in Palm Desert, California:
I had a spiritual awakening.
It involved telling the truth. A black social worker named Lee Harris asked me in that group if I had a girlfriend, after asking me why I was “excited” to be there. Between those questions, he asked how my relationship was with my dad. “Loving? Affectionate?” I said “We hi-five and watch sports.”
So Lee asked if I had a girlfriend, and I looked left and right, saw a safe room—and admitted the truth to all there that I had Never had a girlfriend. My big secret. I had no intimacy in my life, no close friends. I played sports. I drank alcohol. And I pretended to believe in God at church, something impossible to accomplish without telling the truth.
February 7th, 1995
The scales lifted, the eyes clear.
Honesty, finally the truth at
twenty-two given with a tear.
“I’ve never had a girlfriend”
coaxed when the moment was right,
I let down my guards to finally
see the light.
You can’t be helped ‘til you ask
for it. You can’t ask ‘til safe,
I looked left and right before I
truth supplied and saw that it was all
right—I came out!!!
I was unhappy, even though I had
friends after friends coming to my
I was empty even though the trophies
and plaques on walls increased
and filled—attempted to fill, this would
have to be enough!
Spiritual Awakening—LORD, have me!
Done hiding it was safe to bloom,
and now, no more garden parties,
I separate the happy with the gloom
and see the world in poems—
I did not ask for permission and leave
another world behind: self-doubt, beer,
hollering around death, we put up
our hands at fear.
Trapped no more at Betty Ford
the 7th of February a.d. ‘95
ready to turn the boat around…
Trapped no more you want more
and more so ditch tomorrow for today.
They criticize you and analyze you
as you smile and accept today
From Betty Ford, I went into the Al-Anon program, for family members and friends of problem drinkers. Betty Ford had prescribed two meetings a week to all Family Program attendees like myself, but I’ll report here that I started out going about once every other week.
I limped into the meetings, learned about my perfectionism and people-pleasing, started to believe in a Higher Power—which at first was the unconditional love of my Al-Anon groups.
Later, my definition would expand, come back to the Bible, the Tao Te Ching, the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous, and even the Native American Great Spirit.
My last conscious drink of alcohol was on March 6th, 2002. I now celebrate sixteen years of sobriety and growing health, after I almost died in two drug overdoses, 1999 and 2000. My drinking started on Dad’s lap at five—his last sip of bourbon on his lap. It was then that I let the Devil into my life.
I was blacking out with friends on the substance by age thirteen. Graduated Polytechnic School in Pasadena, California a full-blown alcoholic at age seventeen in 1990. I did well in the classroom and sports field, headed to the false god college without God, graduated, then found my way to Betty Ford, chronicled above…
Recently, I came back to the Church. My father passed away in December of last year; he used to attend mass every day, and I saw a vision of starting to go, to get out of the house, get started early and be of more service to other people and God. I’m glad I have decided to do this, despite the many problems I see in the Church.
For instance, where did YHWH go in the New Testament? LORD, all capitals? Weird, we go down to “Lord” in the New Testament, and everybody nods along, as if nothing strange is afoot. Many Christian churches call Jesus God, but I studied the Old Testament, saw an amazingly deep and convincing description of YHWH that would never accede to being watered down into anything else.
I love Jesus. A best friend with words from God to be sure! He teaches us to be as little children, truthful, and Loving!
A path to heaven is carved by the Word, and I love to study it and try to do what Jesus taught, along with obeying the ten commandments God gave to Moses for the Jews to follow. So, therefore, I consider myself a Judeo-Christian, and think all true Christians are that, including Catholics.
You can’t master the New Testament without obeying the teachings of the Jewish Torah. But then there’s that lingering continuity error, regarding “LORD” being reduced to “Lord.” By who? Jesus? His disciples? The Greeks who wrote the gospels down on paper?
YHWH is the real deal, as a Native American would say about the Great Spirit, both reflecting true power and the Great Mystery.
We speak of Jesus, forgetting the Father.
There was the Hebrew text, the Torah,
what Christians call the Old Testament.
In it there was a SACRED Name, no vowels,
all capitals, that WAS NOT TO BE UTTERED
OR USED IN ANY WAY IN VAIN.
Not casually dropped in a sentence,
but used in worship for specific prayers
YHWH. Do not use it in vain.
In English, someone decided to write
this sacred name with a vowel, we must
forgive them: “LORD.” All capitals, though,
do not forget that, those that interchange
Jesus with God, “LORD” with Lord, the small
case “New Testament” version.
The Father is the Father, the son is the son.
Jesus came with God’s word not pointing at
himself, but Up, at his Dad.
“Our Father, who art in heaven,”
prayed and taught us to pray, did
Jesus. Not “Our Jesus…”
YHWH. Do not use it in vain.
Power, lightning ending your life
in an instant. Giving, creating, the Creator
Do not forget the order… Do not forget
the Father. Respect the Power.
The Great Spirit
Once upon a wordless time,
the beat and pulse of the universe
created a ball of fire that became
People walked on it, when it was
less hot, battled big beasts for
control, then learned to get along
in different areas in different ways.
There were things all people had in
common; others so different that it
led to more battles and fighting,
It’s always a bit of a fight for peace,
for the good feelings that arise when
we stay quiet and let bad times
roll into good like thunder from
lightning, rainbows from the rain,
the waterfall cascading down as
a poem from the Great Spirit above.
The Great Spirit is the Native American
concept for God, higher power, a
supreme creator and director of all
things and beings.
Be quiet a while.
Listen, and if in a bad energy, find a good
one when you can.
Take a walk, and let your legs
guide you to the Peace that you need
to spark an idea.
Recall that it was a great spark that created
the earth, all of us humans starting
as the love between man and woman,
the universe the same.
“Something there is that doesn’t
love a wall,” said Robert Frost.
Something wants the wall to break,
if for no other reason to get humans
off the couch to with the Great Spirit
up and Co-Create.
Do not always do your first thought’s
dream. Wait, sometimes, for a second,
even a third before you decide with your
highest form of prayer or thinking.
Move your arms or dance as a sign
to the Earth and sky, and call things you
see names that make you feel a connection
I am a former Englishman, living in
My native name is Naked Horse, as
in a wild horse without a saddle—
running free and guided only by love
If you, too, live here, maybe you want
to look out for a native spirit name to
Whatever you want, you may ask
The answer will come in your dreams,
if not while you are awake, so
listen well, and smile as you play
I could write another piece called “The Confession of a Polytheist,” my upbringing all over the place, never centering on God. “School, Sports, College, Girls, There, Here, no there!” Anywhere but humble at the feet of one, unifying power.
The best sermon I ever heard our pastor give was about putting God in the center of your life. There are good elements to the Roman Catholic Church, it does get me out of the house, socializing and mixing with people. The singing and music can be pleasing—not just to us, but to God, as David showed us…
Church is a thing, like school, like any other place, a passion, a hobby or interest. If one wants to be spiritual and do the will of God, the work is private, the prayer best done between you and God. Jesus warned against public prayer, and promoted private moments between you and God—public prayer being rewarded with a slap on the back, private prayer rewarded by God Him or Herself in private.
Humility—knowing our place—will bring us all to oneness and Peace. The rough places will be made smooth, evolution works, but no good thing thrives without honesty. I plan to continue attending mass, trying to be of service where the Gospel is spoken, songs sung to please the LORD. I wrote this piece to tell the truth and inspire truth, knowing how powerless I am over so many things. Admitting that, we come to believe in a Power greater than us, see the glory in turning our will and lives over to that power.
May no person, place or thing get in the way of that Power, of our dedication to trying to know God’s will and carry it out. No doctor’s diagnosis, college, or anything not clearly God. Beware false gods; they are everywhere, tempting anyone not rooted and committed to the One.