Rectified. A poem.

I wish that I could rectify
all my copious sins and lies.
I wish I could rebuild the trust
I stole from you with prurient lust.
I wish I could remove the stain
upon my family’s blessed name.
I wish I could reset this life,
changed so paltrily now to strife.

But I cannot rectify these things.
And so I must abide with them;
regret, it seems, my only friend,
goes ever on, until my end.

 

The All or the Nothing is my first e-book of poetry. To find out how to buy a copy, click here.

Chasm. A poem.

I stared into the chasm
and it stared right back at me.
My cries echoed off its pithy walls
until I nestled silently
in its precipitous embrace.

The chasm walls engulfed me;
the sky above sequestered and aloof.
The comforting, yet uncomfortable
damp and dark engaged my palate
until I could consume no more.

The walls around, too slick to climb,
the asseveration of escape beyond me.
I realised, then: I’d made this fracture
my cold, igneous bed, within which I lay.

The All or the Nothing is my first e-book of poetry. To find out how to buy a copy,
click here.

Would. A poem.

Would you shed a tear for me
when I’m gone or about to go?

Would you wave as I depart,
smile awhile, wander alone?

Would you care if I passed away
from this world, from this fray?

Would you be lost if I moved on,
a wilderness, your compass gone?

Would you shed a single tear
when I leave this place, gone from here?

The All or the Nothing is my first e-book of poetry. To find out how to buy a copy,
click here.

Consequence. A poem.

If I had my chance again,
would I change the things I did?
I am so invested in this pain,
and have lost, yet gained so much,
it was surely
meant to be.

And if I had my chance again,
would it truly set me free?
We only learn from hurt, it seems,
from bitter consequence
and suffering.

God found me there,
alone in my electric chair,
death’s certainty suddenly
uncertain.
I reached out in return
and embraced the grace
that He did bring,
acceptance,
the consequence of things.

Do I need my chance again?
It seems not, for this humbler life
accedes to the betterment
of consequence.

The All or the Nothing is my first e-book of poetry. To find out how to buy a copy,
click here.

Artifice of Love. A poem.

I wish she would read
this artifice of love
and know my asinine attempt
to swim to her waters
‘festina lente’,
my yearning to sweep
her off her feet
and cushion her
with desirous imposition,
is meant solely
to glorify her absolute
magnificence.

Perhaps, one day,
my muse of truth
will read and understand
that everything I write
is for her alone,
and that my need to
rest in her arms
is beyond all measure.

The All or the Nothing is my first e-book of poetry. To find out how to buy a copy, click here.

Indifference. A poem.

Every indifferent look
is broken glass,
slicing my already
severed heart.

Your indifference,
(bricks laid by me),
is the wall separating
our dual Berlins.

Your indifference
is the pendulum
that crushes me whole:
nothing left
and nothing right.

Every indifferent look
leaves me lost inside
and needing so much
more in life.

The All or the Nothing is my first e-book of poetry. To find out how to buy a copy, click here.

Swim. A poem.

Dewdrops on my skin
as I rise from your embrace.
Your satin caress beckons
and I return to your verge.
Each twist and turn I take
moves me closer to apogee,
whence all efforts expire.
Here within your tidal girth,
I float in liquid suggestion.
Here amongst deliquescing salt,
I make my mark and plough you deep,
from here until eternity’s siren call.

If you liked that, then you’ll love the poems in my first book The All or the Nothing! And at just $5.99 for 62 poems, that’s less than 10 cents a poem!
To find out how to get a copy, click here.
Support starving poets everywhere!

Wrecked. A poem.

My gallants and topsails,
tattered, torn and twisted;
shrouding the devastated deck
like grasping lichen on a forest floor.

My ship creaks and moans,
weary and spent from the storm;
a mass of broken timbers,
of shredded hopes forlorn.

The watery maelstrom pulls be down,
slaking this unholy, melancholy thirst,
grasping my hull solemnly
in an abattoir grip; a grating death rattle.

In the dank, dark green encircling below,
where dead men tell timeless tales of woe,
my ship will join my vacant hope,
upon the coral, where loneliness is sowed.

If you liked that, then you’ll love the poems in my first book The All or the Nothing! And at just $5.99 for 62 poems, that’s less than 10 cents a poem!
To find out how to get a copy, click here.
Support starving poets everywhere!

Ghostly. A poem.

Am I a ghost to you,
incorporeal as mist,
drifting on the fulsome breeze,
far beyond your view?

What would it take
to anneal this brume,
a somatic conversion
to make me real?

Your fugue is my grave;
Here I will linger on
until I fade completely
from your uncaring heart.

If you liked that, then you’ll love the poems in my first book The All or the Nothing! And at just $5.99 for 62 poems, that’s less than 10 cents a poem!
To find out how to get a copy, click here.
Support starving poets everywhere!

Stuffing. A poem.

The stuff of yearning dreams
and wanton, empty years,
stuffed to the seams,
stuffed with regret.

How much more stuffing
could this vagrant heart beget,
stuffed full to bursting,
stuffed with loneliness.

If you liked that, then you’ll love the poems in my first book The All or the Nothing! And at just $5.99 for 62 poems, that’s less than 10 cents a poem!
To find out how to get a copy, click here.
Support starving poets everywhere!

Haiku Friday. ‘Cold’, a haiku trilogy.

‘Cold’, a haiku trilogy.

1. Cold
It’s so cold in here.
Icicles within your stare
doth make me shiver.

2. Distant
To cross this tundra,
where wind, snow and ice, doth reign.
Find a way to you.

3. Frozen
Frozen statue, me.
Fear hath made me what I am.
Fear won’t let me go.

If you liked that, then you’ll love the poems in my first book The All or the Nothing! And at just $5.99 for 62 poems, that’s less than 10 cents a poem!
To find out how to get a copy, click here.
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Paranoid. A poem.

Are you
looking
at me?

Stop looking at me!
So many people, I see.

All
looking
at
me.

Who do you think you see?
Who are you to judge me?
Why won’t you let me be?

Just stop!
Just stop
looking
at me.

If you liked that, then you’ll love the poems in my first book The All or the Nothing! And at just $5.99 for 62 poems, that’s less than 10 cents a poem!
To find out how to get a copy, click here.
Support starving poets everywhere!

The Timely Fool. A poem.

Long years of suffering,
so tinged with hope and fear.
I have watched you from afar,
but outstayed my welcome, here.
Now, your door has shut so tight
and my path to you is blocked.
Now, I’m back to wandering,
to the relentless ticks of clocks.

I wish that you could sight me, here,
from your tower, oh so tall.
But I am just a speck to you,
a distant, lonely thrall.
As I wonder through this wilderness,
my thoughts belong to you,
and as days turn into nights, adieu,
I’m your lost and timely fool.

If you liked that, then you’ll love the poems in my first book The All or the Nothing! And at just $5.99 for 62 poems, that’s less than 10 cents a poem!
To find out how to get a copy, click here.
Support starving poets everywhere!

Lottery. A poem.

These dubious numbers
will not fall in line for me.
Indeed, more’s the fool;
those digits that summon
up every heavenly aspect of you.

A token parody
of a prodigious, passionate girl.
Just numbers spinning
in my head and heart,
my lottery, my heady whirl.

These fallow yearnings,
have fallen now, far from grace.
My mad desire to win your
succulent mind and soul
like all things, is lost, again.

Lost, my heart disgraced.

If you liked that, then you’ll love the poems in my first book The All or the Nothing! And at just $5.99 for 62 poems, that’s less than 10 cents a poem!
To find out how to get a copy, click here.
Support starving poets everywhere!

The Black Tree. A poem.

The tree is black and formless,
its charred soul departed
so many years before
from this noxious darkness.
This fractured stump,
dreaming of chlorophyll
and carbon dioxide smells.
This burned and sullen timber
that in this wasteland dwells.

If you liked that, then you’ll love the poems in my first book The All or the Nothing! And at just $5.99 for 62 poems, that’s less than 10 cents a poem!
To find out how to get a copy, click here.
Support starving poets everywhere!

Kill. A poem.

Why don’t you kill me?
Release me from this misery?
This womb that clings
and grinds me down
to tombstone dust
and empty dreams,
restrains me tight
in chains of languid
and bitter thoughts.
Oh, but for a little death,
a dance with angels
or demons to portend.
Not for me.
With life and pain
I must contend.

If you liked that, then you’ll love the poems in my first book The All or the Nothing! And at just $5.99 for 62 poems, that’s less than 10 cents a poem!
To find out how to get a copy, click here.
Support starving poets everywhere!

The Luminous Details of Poetic Description

Exercise:

  • Poet Ezra Pound described the “luminous details” that reveal and transmit an image swiftly and deeply.
  • Find an image that resonates with you. Write a poem about this object in no more than 10 lines, keeping in mind the art of description, and the luminous details that move the reader.
  • When you have written this poem, write a quick explanation of how exploring the ‘luminous details’ felt to you.

IMG_0534_cropped

Barn. A poem.

Slumped, your brother’s shoulder a welcome resting place.
The creaking of aging joints, the wind ruffling patchy tresses,
liver spots of brown and red on bleached and crusty skin.
Iron will a testament to endless winter frosts and summer heat. 
Littered memories at your feet, the dust of bitter/better years.

Stephen Thompson

Last year I drove my parents to Queensland for a holiday (I wrote and posted a poem about it at the time); I then picked them up when the holiday was over. (No, I didn’t want to holiday with them. Does that make me a bad son?) 4400 kilometres later, I had nothing to show for it other than this photo I took of an old, collapsing barn outside of Grafton, New South Wales.

I like the use of imagery and metaphor to describe the details of objects, features and conditions. Sometimes my poems are a little too ‘obvious’ in nature, so I like to stretch myself when I can. I enjoy using what poet Ezra Pounddescribed as “luminous details” and acting “as a filter, finding the most resonant, charged details to transmit the image to the reader”.

In this poem I saw the barn as an old man, the dead tree next to it providing support, a literal brother-in-arms. For me it reflects the state of many old and abandoned buildings, but also the aged people in our lives, who are hopefully not as neglected or forgotten.

How do you feel about your own poems? Do you feel you capture the luminous details that Pound mentioned? Why not try this exercise and share the resulting poem with us.

Cheers

Steve 😊

Stair. A poem.

We stopped upon the stair,
our furtive conversation
like a tender questionnaire.
She smiled and talked and stared
and in the animation of her lips
and smile and hair,
I found a love that swelled
long after she had left me there.
And that fire that burned in me,
as I yearned to breathe her air,
consumed me from within,
because she was, oh, so unaware.
And so I dream and often think of her;
and perhaps one day, she’ll care,
and perhaps one day she’ll feel for me
the way that I have dared.

The All or the Nothing is my first book of poetry, and at just $5.99 for 62 poems, that’s less than 10 cents a poem! To find out how to get a copy, click here.
Support starving poets everywhere!

Perspective. A poem.

I face my window
Pale droplets obscure
The external world
In my tiny womb I turn
To face another day

If you liked that, then you’ll love the poems in my first book The All or the Nothing! And at just $5.99 for 62 poems, that’s less than 10 cents a poem!
To find out how to get a copy, click here.
Support starving poets everywhere!

Mirrored. A poem.

I mirrored you subconsciously,
perhaps you noticed you in me.
You mirrored me subconsciously,
perhaps I noticed, but didn’t see.

Neither mirror could reveal
beyond the veil, our hesitancy.
Neither mirror would let us read
of love, of fate, of destiny.

If you liked that, then you’ll love the poems in my first book
The All or the Nothing!

And at just $5.99 for 62 poems, that’s
less than 10 cents a poem!
To find out how to get a copy, click here.

Support starving poets everywhere!

Happy Endings. A poem.

Is there any such thing
as a happy ending?

Maybe only in books and
history told by the winner,
but not for me and you,
we lonely sinners.
I find I no longer
believe in fairy tales
or story book codas.
But all I really want to see
is a life long happy ending
for me and you, you and me.

Is there any such thing
as a happy ending?

If you liked that, then you’ll love the poems in my first book of poetry,
The All or the Nothing, and at just $5.99 for 62 poems, that’s less than 10 cents a poem!
To find out how to get a copy, click here.
Support starving poets everywhere!

The Truth. A poem.

What would I do
if you belonged to another?
No hanging tree exists
that could free my heart
from your beloved tether.
Would I drown myself
in the incumbent surf,
or throw myself
from the weary heights,
dash all my hopes and dreams
with vertigo and a somnolent end?
Why am I frozen here,
the icy curlicues surrounding me
and choking by degrees
until I can move no more?
Speak to me, and I will answer
truthfully.

The All or the Nothing is my first book of poetry, and at just $5.99 for 62 poems, that’s less than 10 cents a poem! To find out how to get a copy, click here.
Support starving poets everywhere!

Advice for the Young (Poet) at Heart

Poetry was not really my thing.

I wrote poetry as a shy, insecure and sensitive teenager, much as other shy, insecure and sensitive teenagers did, but as I grew older it lost its allure. Not because I was less inclined (I was in bands and writing my own music and lyrics by that stage), not because I was any less shy, more secure, or insensitive, but because it no longer seemed to be needed to express what I was feeling (I think alcohol did that instead). But I’m not a teenager anymore, being just shy of middle-age. Now I’m a student, a would-be writer and a recalcitrant.

About twelve months ago, I woke up at 4:00am in the morning (nothing new there, I generally wake up at ridiculous times of the night with my head spinning) and immediately wrote a poem which I posted to my blog (see below). It’s the piece of writing that reignited my youthful passion for writing poetry.

Reborn.

Darkness then

             warming rays

                         bright fingers on my face

Cellphone silence

              binary muse

                          prod me back to life

Womb of sheets

               engulfs my being

                          consumed alive

Silken lover

                her promise yields

                           to the light

Reborn.

Stephen Thompson

Since I wrote that poem, I haven’t been able to stop. I write poems when I’m walking, when I’m sitting on the toilet, when I’m eating (hopefully not all at the same time). I have a vast amount of inspiration to draw on (as a result of my less than spectacular life choices).

Having rediscovered my own poetry, I find I am not as well read when it comes to poets as I should be. One particular poem I love is The Road Not Taken, by multiple Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Robert Frost, as it holds personal meaning for me in my less than spectacular life’s journey so far. Choice and predestination are things I could chat about for hours, but I’m sure you’d rather read the poem.

The Road Not Taken

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveller, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
 
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim
Because it was grassy and wanted wear,
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,
 
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way
I doubted if I should ever come back.
 
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,
I took the one less travelled by,
And that has made all the difference.

Robert Frost

As an amateur poet, I recommend that all amateur poets read as much poetry as possible and learn as much about the craft as possible, including the various formal poetic forms and meter and time. A great place to start is The Making of a Poem: A Norton Anthology of Poetic Forms, by Mark Strand and Eavan Boland, which includes poems from throughout the ages by some of the greatest living and dead poets.

Cheers

Steve 😊

My first e-book of poetry, The All or the Nothing, is available now. And at just $5.99 for 62 poems, that’s less than 10 cents a poem!
To find out how to get a copy, click here.
Support starving poets everywhere!

Back to Life. A poem.

The sun shone through,
my hope returned,
and I drifted on rays
of sutured miracles that
stitched the dark and light
together. And like the
Creator Himself, brought
me shining back to life.

The All or the Nothing is my first book of poetry, and at just $5.99 for 62 poems, that’s less than 10 cents a poem! To find out how to get a copy, click here.
Support starving poets everywhere!

Bleach. A poem.

Acid

wash away my pain

release me
from
this
blinkered

Bleach

burns me clean and pure

tear shreds off my heart
and break
me

Down

Until time bleeds on
my
just

Reward

And bleaches this
world

just

like

The All or the Nothing is my first book of poetry, and at just $5.99Au for 62 poems, that’s less than 10 cents a poem! To find out how to get a copy, click here.
Support starving poets everywhere!

The End of the Affair. A poem.

At the end of the affair,
when all is lost, was won,
when the final note is written
when all has come undone.
The longing and the passion
converted now to envy,
the embers now black charcoal
of fires that once burned brightly.
The guilt remains, it always seems,
entwined with all the lies,
an empty feeling of redemption,
of honour, long defiled.
When familiar scents turn stale
and insomnia becomes your partner,
how dim the lights do seem
how the shadows seem much darker.
Life returns to humdrum,
an absence of spontaneity
at the end of the affair
no love, just shame and frailty.

The All or the Nothing is my first book of poetry, and if you like what you’ve been reading then you’ll love it! To find out how to get a copy, click here.
Support starving poets everywhere!

Hangman. A poem.

I hang on your every word.
Every nuance and subtlety
tightens your noose
and I gasp and grasp
for air and the latency of truth.

My limbs flail in puppet motions;
I’m a paper doll with button joints,
anointed in your sonic weave
and desperate for your affection.

Pull on this rope, hang me high
until my final death rattle
punctuates the scene like gunfire,
the memory of your voice fades
and I am left longing for more.

The All or the Nothing is my first book of poetry, and if you like what you’ve been reading then you’ll love it! To find out how to get a copy, click here.
Support starving poets everywhere!

Wings. A poem.

You endow me with gossamer wings,
a loving benefaction granted;
a gift that encapsulates and enables
flight to peregrine places
uncharted and exotic.

But with so many destinations
and arterial paths and so
many cloudy possibilities,
only one makes any sense:
the one that leads directly
and succinctly to you.

The All or the Nothing is my first book of poetry, and if you like what you’ve been reading then you’ll love it! To find out how to get a copy, click here.
Support starving poets everywhere!

Night, Again. A poem.

Night, again
and here I am,
pondering the specificity
of my unctuous requests,
enraptured and Heaven-sent
on the backs of clasped palms,
no random incidental
tests of charm.

Every night
I thank Him there,
for faith and hope and grace,
every single day I share.
all part, this humble life
under His long
forgiving stare.

Every night
I ask for love,
that this be finally done,
because without her this life
is lost and never won.
Without her
I am nothing
and no one.

And then
I turn again
to sleep, and join billions
of patient souls who pray
for all their souls to keep.
I dream of love and subtlety,
with those who wonder when
their prayers will bring them
long and
sweet
relief.

The All or the Nothing is my first book of poetry, and if you like what you’ve been reading then you’ll love it! To find out how to get a copy, click here.
Support starving poets everywhere!

Haiku Friday. ‘Caught, Caged and Sentenced’. A haiku trilogy.

Caught, Caged and Sentenced. A haiku trilogy.

Caught
You have trapped me here.
I once wandered, so lonely,
until your net fell.

Caged
I am in your cage,
your pristine cell; I’m locked in,
pacing back and forth.

Sentenced
Will you set me free?
Or will you taunt and tease me,
then leave me to rot?

Oh, delicious haiku! Your 5/7/5 syllable structure had me at ‘hello’. Or maybe that should be ‘haiku’.

Steve 🙂

The All or the Nothing is my first book of poetry, and if you like what you’ve been reading then you’ll love it! To find out how to get a copy, click here.
Support starving poets everywhere!

The Madness of You. A poem.

My futile and unavailing words cannot
express the anguished, quixotic,
melancholic, mad salience and
utterly unquenchable need
to hold you and love you
as no one ever could
or would or should.
But here I am,
alone.
Thinking
of nothing
and no one
else but you.

The All or the Nothing is my first book of poetry, and if you like what you’ve been reading then you’ll love it! To find out how to get a copy, click here.
Support starving poets everywhere!

This Oil. A poem.


This
oil,
viscous
and
thick,
holding
me
fast
in
the
tar
pit
of
my
black
heart
and
head,
since
the
very
start.
Wish
I
could
shed
this
black
dog
That
follows
me
everywhere.
Perhaps
soon,
anon,
I’ll
lose
my
empty
stare.
And
this
oil
will drain
out of me and this
crazy foil will set me free
to be something other than this oil

The All or the Nothing is my first book of poetry, and if you like what you’ve been reading then you’ll love it! To find out how to get a copy, click here.
Support starving poets everywhere!

Subtract. A poem.

This room is overcrowded,
ingurgitated hell.
But just you and me,
if you subtract everyone else.

This room is clamorous,
cacophonous hell.
But you could hear me (so very clearly),
if you subtract everyone else.

This room is overheated,
agitated as hell.
But algid enough for you and me,
if you subtract everyone else.

But if you subtract everyone else,
would you want to be
right here with me?
Perhaps, we’ll never know or see.

My first book of poetry, The All or the Nothing, is available now as an e-book from most online distributors. To find out more, click here.

Driftwood (Beached, part 3). A poem.

Driftwood,
floating on
percolating tides.
Saltwater soaks
fossil branches.
Sand embraces
nooks and crannies.

Driftwood,
meandering,
awaiting
a tactile, tacit end.
Longing for
a final, lasting
beach head.

The All or the Nothing is my first book of poetry, and if you like what you’ve been reading then you’ll love it! To find out how to get a copy, click here.
Support starving poets everywhere!

 

The Board (Beached, part 2).

Tri-fin cutting foaming swathes
in majestic, molten, crashing waves.
Off-shore wind: the only stakes,
paddling out to meet the break.
To take his certain place in line,
for the weaving surf to redefine.
To forge a newborn legend free,
the board; his truth, his destiny.

Dedicated to my good friend, Andrew.

The All or the Nothing is my first book of poetry, and if you like what you’ve been reading then you’ll love it! To find out how to get a copy, click here.
Support starving poets everywhere!

The Wild Surf (Beached, part 1). A poem.

The wild surf, like his impetuous heart,
pounds and beats the sandy shore,
like a pugilist with vanity to spare.
Here the relentless, crashing waves
make their mark in odd time signatures,
in fluid and passionate syncopation,
a symphony of wind, water and sand.

The spray in his face is explicative
of this subtle, blithely carefree place,
all this beach has ever been
until time ends and begins again.
The ocean’s magnetic riptide beckons;
a spirited soul returns freely to her fold.
Here his heart forever rests in she.

Dedicated to my good friend, Andrew.

The All or the Nothing is my first book of poetry, and if you like what you’ve been reading then you’ll love it! To find out how to get a copy, click here.
Support starving poets everywhere!

Focus. A poem.

You are my focus.
Without you I am a blur,
a hazy remnant lurking
on the periphery of this
sun-scorched existence.

You are the prism
through which I shine.
You are my multiplicity of light,
an enchanted, technicolour spectrum,
illuminating my darkness,
and showing me the way.

The All or the Nothing is my first book of poetry, and if you like what you’ve been reading then you’ll love it! To find out how to get a copy, click here.
Support starving poets everywhere!

Saccharine. A poem.

Your bold sweetness leaves
the bitter taste of regret,
a sensate lamentation,
dissonant on my tongue.

This saccharine tinge
leaves me cold and wanting;
a vine that dies from frost
that sears the roots black
and returns them back to dust.

Take your petty rejoinder
and fly from this place,
so that I might have my time
to remonstrate in peace.

My first book of poetry, The All or the Nothing, is available now as an e-book from most online distributors. To find out more, click here.

Climb. A poem.

Climb.

Against the 

winds that claim

this bitter peak, that scrape

and slurry and mince no words but

enforce dominion and push and pull and

drag you down until you can climb no more. Climb.

My first book of poetry, The All or the Nothing, is available now as an e-book from most online distributors. To find out more, click here.

Magnetic. A poem.

Feel me here:
antediluvian, lumbering.

As unlike as we are,
an inordinate attraction like
opposite magnetic poles,
dragging us together
like merciless luna tides.

Your lightning source code
will tame this savage beast,
magnetic moments designed
to simulate a halcyon dream
of mesmerism and strident yearning.

I am alone with you,
and you are all I crave.

My first book of poetry, The All or the Nothing, is available now as an e-book from most online distributors. To find out more, click here.

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