On My Mind: the writings of Sarah Bracey White                                                                                        

 
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My first book of poetry. Self-published in 1979.


 

DO NOT LOSE ME

 Do not lose me

In the shallow waters

Outside your heart.

My ship requires

The deep harbor channel

Of your soul

Where the bottom is deep,

The sides wide

And the current strong.

 


BECAUSE THE FEELING EXISTS

Laughter, joy, pain and sorrow

Are all emotions that seduce my pen

And inspire it to act as scribe for my heart.

I must feel; therefor, I must write.

 

This is no mean task

Which my heart must perform.

It is an obligation incurred in my childhood

And renewed at each milestone I encounter.

 

Like magic, my pen moves.

Like water, the words flow.

My head becomes the computer, my heart the programmer,

My hand the tool.

And the message is set down on paper

As proof that the feeling existed somewhere.

 


TO DECLARE ORDER

I AM AN ARTIST;

THEREFOR,

I MUST DISTURB THE APPARENT PEACE,

WORDS ARE MY WEAPONS,

CAREFULLY CHOSEN

TO INTRUDE UPON

YOUR

   C

    H

     A

      O

       T                                                        MIND

        I

         C                                                      MIND

 

                                                                 MIND

WITH RATIONAL ORDER.


 

WINGS

 

Wait for me

While I try my new wings.

I

 shall

      not

         fly

            away.

 

But they are so new and so light.

I must see how fast they can carry me

And

   how

      far

 

And how much weight they can bear.

I awoke one morning

And

   found

        them

            here.

 

I had never seen anything like them.

They were so light and pretty

And

   of

     beautiful

              colors.

 

When I found that they could lift me

From the ground to heaven's heights,

I

 grew

     still

          in

            amazement.

 

They were mine and could do those things.


FREE FLIGHT

I'm gonna ride the surf

Feel the waves upon my back

And hear the sun sing in my brain.

I have decided...

No more will I fear the heights

Or dread the fall

Or keep lead weights on my feet.

I will be as free as a glider

Caught on the tail end of the Gulf Stream.

I will travel as far as Time

And as slowly as infinity passes

Realizing the absurdity

Of a weighted existence,

Relishing the enchantment of free flight.


SPRINGTIME

It came...

Rang my doorbell

And asked for me by name.

Invited me to come outside.

Bid me leave indoors

My woolen coat,

High boots, gloves

And winter worries.

Kissed me softly

On both cheeks,

Brushed against

My sleeping mind,

Grabbed me by the hand

And said

Come play with me

I'm springtime.


THE RAIN

Have you ever watched a rainstorm

Coming 'cross a hill at sunset

Arrayed in early evening splendor,

Moving slow and sultry,

Smelling hot and earthy

Caressing the ground tenderly?

 

Have you ever watched lightning

Flash across a mid-day sky

Slice through the clouds

And open the way for quick

Piercing bullets of wetness

To strike the ground

In rapid succession?

 

Have you ever watched it pour

Satiny smooth curtains

Down your window pane

Filtering what little light

Was left outside

Making ruffles on the glass

Like the memory of the tide

Upon the seashore?

 

I feel like that rain

In all its many forms

For I too come in many guises,

Be it gently, fierce or piercing

I will find a way to live

Neither at your command

Or under your control

But always for your growth.

 


FOR SYLVIA WOINGUST BRANCHCOMB

(Tony's Poem)

They come

Without being called.

Your strong vibrations

Reach out across the miles

And beckon them closer...

Closer to the source of their strength

And their peace.

 

And they remember

All the happy times you've shared.

The laughter and the tears...

The steadfastness of your love

That never changes

Even though the miles spread wider

Between you.

 

Your past surprises for them

Form the giving of their present.

Your lessons spoken in abbreviated design

Form the backdrop of their present lives.

 

It is with awe that I watch you

Command their attention

With the movement of an eye,

An inflection of your breath

Or the humor of your laughter.

 

Ah, it is the value of a life well lived

To see its reflection in the young ones

Whose lives you have touched.

And yours has been a life well lived.

Reflected in the eyes of all the youngsters

Who love you ever so dearly.


FRIENDSHIP STILL LIVES

Two people get to be so close

Then circumstances separate their lives.

Their interaction lessens

And soon the joys

That they so frequently shared

Are no more.

So they independently seek other people

To share their daily lives

And the fire of their friendship wanes.

No it is not dead,

It only slumbers

And flames so softly

That it loses its once brilliant glow.

And yet, in time of need

It can still burn brightly

With only one small puff of breath.

 


 MY BIG SISTER

When I was thirteen, she was seventeen

I thought she was the most beautiful girl in the world

Prettier than all the movie stars on the silver screen.

She was chosen “the most popular girl” in her senior class

And I agreed...I adored her.

I’d sneak to the store and buy her cigarettes

So the owner wouldn't know they were for her

And tell our Mama.

You see, she was my big sister

And I would have done anything for her.

All I ever wanted was to grow up

And look just like her.

A boy I knew kept asking me

"You gonna look like your sister when you grow up?

If so, I'm gonna wait for you."

 

She finished school and went away to college.

I didn't see her often after that.

One of the few times I did,

I lent her my entire week's allowance.

We've both grown up now

And gone our separate ways.

She recently sent me an office newsletter

With her picture in it.

As I looked at the picture,

The old familiar feeling

Snaked around my heart

And all the years slipped away.

Once again I was thirteen

And she was seventeen

And I still thought she was the prettiest girl I knew.

 

 

 

MOTHERHOOD

A life begins with you.

Ever so tiny

Ever so defenseless

Ever so dependent

But, oh so powerful.

It is able to change your walk,

Influence your spirit,

Improve your outlook,

Imprint upon your life

A sense of purpose,

And soothe your minor fears.

So take this life

And share its joys...

Contemplate its development,

Contribute to its independence

And cherish your part in it all.

Motherhood is a gift to tomorrow

Bestowed upon many,

Welcomed by most

And cherished by a few.

 


KALI

Welcome to this world

Small, sweet child.

"Kali" they have named you

Love we shall give to you

And joy you bring to us.

You are but two days old;

Still you have great power

In your small seven pound body.

You can see, you can hear, you can feel

And you can know.  So know this:

We shall love you,

We shall guide you,

We shall watch you grow

And we shall pass on to you

Those things we hold most precious.

You, Kali, child of love

Our hope for tomorrow

Welcome to our world.

 


SHE'S HERE

A new face dances on your stage of life.

Her name is ablaze across the lighted marquee

And the spotlight focuses on her tiny, perfect form.

Your baby is here!  A brand new person

Who has yet to see the sun rise

Or feel the wind blow upon her body.

Through you, she will see, hear, feel and touch this world.

She will open your eyes to the newness of the old

As she discovers your "present."

Hold her close, but let her grow

Into the marvelous creature that God means for her to be.

Congratulations for your contribution

To the world of tomorrow.

May the three of you continually please one another.

 


BABY-MAMAS

I've been watching Mamas,

Mamas and their babies...

Not Mama-mamas, but Baby-mamas

Near eighteen years old

With barrettes holding

The latest hairstyles,

The latest fads

On their slender bodies

And their three year olds

Holding their hands.

 

Yes, I've been watching Mamas

And wondering how

Those Baby-mamas

Can teach their babies

To survive intact

While they're still trying to learn

How to survive at all.

I've been watching Mamas

While they made eyes

At eighteen year old boys

And played the games

Eighteen year old children play

While holding their three-year-olds

By the hand.

 

I've been watching Mamas

With their innocence and youth

Chained in the responsibility

Of caring for a three-year-old

Who calls Them Mama.

I've watched these Baby-mamas

Proud when a passer-by

Say, "what a cute baby!"

But shy when a boy catches their eye

Then looks past them

At that same cute baby

Holding their hand.

 

Life is hard enough

For a Mama-mama.

But for a Baby-mama all alone

What is she gonna do

With a baby-child?

 

 

                 PERSPECTIVE

I used to say that maybe I ought to have a baby

Because I had so much to give a child.

and because I had seen so many of the mistakes

Other people made with their children.

And finally, I felt an innate ability

To relate to, guide and understand children.

Even those reasons were not strong enough

To impel me to give life to another human being.

Now, it is too late, I no longer can choose.

Yet, I am not sorry that I did not take that fateful step.

There are children in my life.

They are simply not my children.

But then I wonder

Would or could even a child from my own body be mine?

You cannot make a child love you.

Either they do or they don't.

They will only be with you in body, not spirit.

It is their will that prevails, not their biological parents'.

Perhaps I have not lost anything at all.

I may even be ahead of the game.

 


I REMEMBER YOU

You know, You look familiar

I don't recognize your name

But your face is a part of my past

My college days.

 

Oh, so you're a lawyer now?

Long way from the young college guy

I used to see.

I remember you because you never had anything to say,

To me that is

But I heard your crude remarks

About my skinny legs and nappy hair

And narrow hips...and your snickering.

I remember you, and it still brings a bitter taste

To my mouth.

 

My, my. . . how things change.

You condescend to speak to me now.

To ask my help?

You say you only ask because

You've got a difficult case coming up in court

And you need some vital information fast

And I come highly recommended, huh?

And you're willing to pay?

 

I'm not surprised somebody recommended me,

I know how good I am.

Too good to be wasting my time on a brand new lawyer

Who doesn't know a damn thing.

Go ask your political favors elsewhere, man.

Ask one of the girls you talked to a long time ago

Maybe one of them will be in a position to help you.

Ask them...not me.

I'm too busy.

I give my favors to those who took the time to care

Otherwise, get in line

Behind all the others out there.

There are lots of folks who need my help today.

Lots of folks, who are better than you.

 


TO THE RESCUE

I have been rescuing folks

From too-soon deadlines,

Fast arriving holidays

Lack of ready cash

Shortness of time

And loss of temper

But never myself...

Never do I rescue me

From the perils of life

I am far too busy.

But I am not every man's Messiah

Put here to ease the road ahead.

I must stop smashing the rocks

In other's paths

And crush those in my own.

I must come to my own rescue

'Cause I am surely

In need of rescue.

 


THE PROCESS

You want to be my "friend"

So you do and say all of the right things.

You praise my good ideas

And steer me away from the not so good.

You encourage me to try harder,

You listen to me

You talk to me

Your share my secrets

And you help me plan ways to accomplish my dreams.

You seek out the vehicle for my travel

And you travel with me.

You are no longer simply my "friend"

Your description means more.

You have set foot in a private domain.

Your title now is "lover."

 

Now the role steps in.

I expect you to be all to me.

I no longer feel that your attention

Is a cherished favor,

But a possession to be clutched and treasured.

But love grows not in cramped quarters

It must be free to flourish.

Yet I am jealous and want all of you.

 

You rebel, I pout and say,

"If you loved me, you wouldn't want anything else."

You respond with, "yes, I love you,

But you cannot be everything to me."

I cry.  You have rejected me, I feel.

So I cut all ties.

Reject you as both friend and lover.

We are both losers to the "role."

Your title now is "ex."

 


WHAT WILL YOU DO...WHEN?

What will you do with me

when I am old?

When my skin is no longer smooth,

But wrinkled and dry.

When my dancing eyes

No longer dance...

And my lilting voice

Grows cracked and weary.

When the thick dark hair

Your fingers love to touch

Grows first gray and then thin.

When my bouncing walk

Becomes only aged locomotion.

What will you do with me

When my firm high breasts

Are only a memory in your mind

The mementos sagging on my chest...

When my strong, supple thighs

Can no longer easily entwine your own?

When my long, slender fingers

Grow twisted, becoming arthritic reminders

Of what once moved so elegantly?

When your questions go unanswered

Because their meanings escape me

As will have so many of my dead brain cells?

What will you do with me

When I am no longer young,

And no longer beautiful?

 


INCOMPATIBLE

We ar not compatible, you and I

My Dear, Sweet Gemini

For the stars have decreed it so.

My watery brand of warmth and closeness

Overcomes both your selves

And make you so very uneasy.

You only want me when I am gone

And gone, I do not need you.

So in our separate worlds

We search for ideal lovers

Ordained by the stars and planets.

But I am truly sorry,

For I loved you ever so dearly

In spite of the stars.

 


I AM GONE

You don't even realize it,

But I have left you.

My body is still here

And so are my eyes, my smile and my voice.

It is my soul that is gone.

That part of me that makes me ME

Found it impossible to stay

And endure the pain

You crammed time and again

Into the tine space that held my SELF

I never begged you to stop the hurt

I always thought that love would stay

A hurting hand.

But I have found that this is not so.

The hand still strikes in spite of love

And because of love,

The pain is doubled.

So now I live in dreams.

A world where love is true

And pain is not.

My friends think I have gone crazy.

I do not know.

For I am no longer here

And your pain cannot touch ME.

 


MEMORIES

I saw your smile as sunshine

In a room so filled with gloom.

I heard your voice as music

In the stillness of a tomb.

I felt your arms about me

Giving warmth in bitter cold.

I knew your dreams as legends

Sung by troubadours of old.

In time, you became distant

Like the clouds o'er yonder hill.

You smiled, but where not with me

And you look did make me chill.

Now by candles, stars and moonbeams

Shining in my room each night,

I sit and clutch your mem'ry

As a thing do dear and bright.

And I hope that you'll remember

That I sit and wait for thee

Beside the chair that held you

When you came to visit me.

 


LEAVE SOME BEHIND

We came together and we loved

You took all I gave, then left me.

Still, I do not hate you.

To do that would mean

All the time we spent together was wasted

I cannot do that...there were good times.

There were things we experienced, shared and enjoyed,

I loved you...

I gave a part of me to you

And I still carry a part of you inside me.

I force myself to remember the good parts

To salvage from the relationship all that I can

And not let the bad ending be an explosion

That destroys the entirety.

In order to hate you

I must destroy that part of me that you carry

And each time I destroy another part of myself

I leave less to love once more.

 


PAST, BUT PRESENT

You filled her yesterdays,

Now you watch her tomorrows

Like just so many images

Flashed upon a darkened screen.

She has moved on to newer things,

Still, she cares for you...

You are a distant memory

Nibbling gently at her brain,

A flashing light

Illuminating her heart

A remembered pressure

Upon her soul.

Wise, but distant man

Sole witness to her pain...

Prime contributor

To her book of pleasure

She thanks you.

What could her life be

Without your warming memory

To thaw her on cold mornings?

 


WHY DIDN'T SOMEONE TELL HER?

Why didn't someone tell that young girl

When she designed her room

That there would be no man to share it. . .

To hang his cares upon the corner rack

Or dream his dreams

Upon her high, soft bed

Or brush his feelings

Before her wide eyed mirrors.

No man would ever see

The multitude of jewels

Splashed upon her bedside table

Brilliant in her love light...

Why didn't someone tell her

So she could have made her room

Dark...and barren...and joyless,

Like her life would become?

 


IN HER EYES

She shows it in her eyes

As she watches her man;

Love, because the mere sight of him

Makes her heart sing again.

Disillusionment, because he didn't keep

Any of the promises he made on their wedding day.

Sadness, brought on by the realization

That he'll never be any different than he is.

Anger, from knowing that he'll always have

Another woman on the side.

Fear, that one day he'll leave her

For newer pleasures.

Disgust, with herself for loving him so

And wanting him to stay.

 


IN THE SILENCE

Hourly I am surprised to find

That another number has fallen into place

On the stark-faced digital clock

Sitting sullenly upon the wall.

Signifying that I have at least momentarily

Pushed YOU out of my mind

And let another hour pass softly from my life.

I consciously do not let myself

Dwell upon your past words...

Or actions, or inclinations, or absence.

Bur suddenly, a memory will sneak up,

Grab me by the mind, and twist a tear

From the corner of a darkened room

Where laughter once reigned supreme,

But now lies cloaked

In the silence of loneliness.

 


OVER YOU

I no longer cry

The salty pearls of sadness

Nor sing a plaintive song of woe.

I no longer feel

The pain of your farewell

Nor wear the look

Of sad depression,

For I have gotten over you.

 

My face is now a mask

Of clear illusion,

Marked by just another smile

That reaches no further

Than the corners of my mouth,

And warms neither my heart

Nor that of any other.

But I have gotten over you.

 

My eyes are now one-way windows

No longer revealing

What I'm feeling in my heart

Or dreaming for my future.

Just windows looking outward,

Allowing me to move about the world

Without stumbling over sidewalk cracks...

Now that I have gotten over you.

 

Resignation is the only rouge I wear, and

Stark disillusion colors my eyelids.

The darkest shade of pain

Outlines the tragic droop

Of my no longer blooming lips

And paints a matching hue

Upon my bleeding fingernails.

But I have gotten over you,

Or so I tell myself.

 


ONE WHOLE YEAR

Twelve months have come and gone

Since this madness first began,

I have silently watched four season

Caress the ground where my feet walk.

My heart has been turned to stone

And that stone is washed by pain.

I have seen the trees change

From bare to buds to lush greens...

To dying browns.

And now they grow bare again,

To remind me of the pain that first I felt

Twelve months ago...

When I first learned

another ruled your soul,

And teased your mind

And made you laugh,

Instead of me...

I've stopped crying, but still I hurt.

I cannot seem to forget

I do not want to forget.

I hold onto the pain as a memento

Of how love can victimize the unsuspecting...

And one thoughtless act

Can spoil an eternity of happiness.

It cannot be erased, so it is remembered

One year later.

 


TO MY MOTHER

I watched you only through my child's eye

For you left me long before I grew to womanhood.

All your values were imprinted upon me

As were your fears and your dreams.

You even taught me to see with blinders on.

No wasted moments of leisurely love passed between us.

We had so much ground to cover, and so little time left.

You loaded my mind, cocked the trigger with morals

And aimed the barrel at high achievements.

But always the blinders were there.

When you left me, I took them off

And found myself alone . . . 

With so many unanswered questions ringing in my brain.

But you were gone...who could I turn to find your answers?

So I put my blinders back on and kept randomly shooting.

Always aiming where you last pointed.

Oh, my long dead mother, I still call out your name

In dire need.

So speak to me...answer these many questions

So that your child, now grown in body, can also grow in truth.

 


DESTINY

Nothing is as sure as change

Little is as painful as accepting it.

Once more I have reached a rocky spot

In the road I travel.

Rough stones tear at my bare feet

As I try to cross them lightly.

They laugh...

For even stones know

That you cannot tread lightly over them.

But cross them I must

If I am to reach those smooth spots

In my path yet to come.

I try to cast my mind

Either ahead or behind me

And think of the good times.

Hoping that these bad times will not hurt me so.

But past or future joys

Bring little ease to present pain.

So I set my mind each time

On taking just one more step

And trying not to think

On how badly I hurt.

I cannot change the stones in my path

I can only pass over them

And heal once more.

 


BUT WHERE?

I'm going away

Leaving behind all those things

That never meant anything to me anyway

Carrying with me bits and pieces

Of all the people who have touched my life

And the person I love

Hoping to find a place where I can breathe

And grow stringer in self

Contribute something to tomorrow

Leave a bit of me on the pages of history

Sleep in a familiar bed, safe, sound and peaceful.

Wonder where this place is...and wonder who controls it?


LET ME

Let me find the self I lost so long a time ago.

Let me discover who I am and swiftly come to know,

That in my body beats a heart a soft and tender thing.

Now ready to accept the warmth that only love can bring.

Oh let me learn to trust again and recognize the feel

Of love when given tenderly, so genuine and real.

Let me touch the child in me and calm her troubled fears.

Replace her cool protectiveness with love, and dry her tears.

Oh let me share the beauty of the love I have to give.

Let me discover life with you and make our hearts to live.

 


WOMAN

She rejoices...She adores...She dreams...She hopes...

She likes...She rejects...She endures...She protects...

She accepts...She remembers...She hurts...She loves...

She grows...

 


I AM WOMAN-BLACK

I am Woman-Black

By history I am:  strong like iron,

Smooth and taunt like steel,

Straight and true like an arrow.

I do not cry or whine,

For I am Woman-Black.

 

I flutter not in the wind,

I don not break in the storm,

I do not melt in the rain.

Neither do I swoon in the noonday sun

Nor cry out in the darkest night.

For I am Woman-Black.

 

My life is not like your life.

No spangle adorn my dress

Or diamonds my fingers.

No summer sun darkens my skin

My father's genes did that long before I was born.

For I am Woman-Black.

 

My children differ like jewels of the earth.

One is the color of her father,

Another is the color of me.

And the other two?

They are colors barely dreamed of by gifted artists.

For I am Woman-Black.

 

I carry a tradition of strength

Deep within my being.

Work is a thing I do

Because my family needs the pay.

My Mother did the same,

And her Mother before her.

 

I am Woman-Black

Within my soul and on my lips

Is a prayer that the man I love

Will save me from this iron prison.

Remove my mask of steel

And see the softness here within.

Touch my heart with his kindness

And heal my wounds with his kiss.

Share the pleasure and ease the pain

For we are both people-people Black.

 


HOW SHE DIFFERS

She is not stirred by mid-evening breezes

Or softly twinkling stars in the nighttime sky.

She is not content to travel the outer borders

Of this jungle world called life,

Or view the mountains' glory

From the stillness of the valley below.

She is not satisfied to pluck a single grape

And tease her tongue with its moisture

Or content to dip her hand in the well of life

And rub it coolly across the warmth of a fevered brow.

No picture postcard lover is she

No idle observer of the flashing lights

That shine upon another's stage.

Her desire is to quaff the thirst of ages

And bathe her weary heart in life's soothing springs.

Hers is a joy from fearsome coastal gales

Fiery thunderstorms, swiftly falling stars

Noonday eclipses...rumbling volcanoes

And deafening waterfalls.

She is the eighty mile gale, the electric current

The rumbling earthquake and the raging flood

All beneath the placid contours

Of one thin layer of harvest brown veneer

She is your woman...every woman

Vibrant in her self discovery.

 


RETALIATION

In a country marked by malice

And a nation moved by might

There exists a special people

Separated by their plight.

By their colors do you know them

That determines their distress

Not the workings of their minds

Or their willingness to "yes."

 

Give them not a job to feed them

And ignore their natural drive

Then sit back and count their numbers

While they struggle to survive.

Daily curse them while they hunger

'Neath your cold inhuman gaze.

Separate them from their past, then

Fill their minds with useless haze.

 

'Tis a paradox to see them

Fight the odds and reach new heights

While the powerful declare them

To be void of all insight.

Take their hopefulness and candor

Turn their lovingness to hate

Fill their hearts with righteous anger

Watch their smiles disintegrate.

 

Think not that your mighty power

Will avert my peoples' wrath

For no price will be too mighty

And no sacrifice too vast.

'Neath their skins of many colors

Beats one heart and brain alike

They will one day rise in union

To destroy their victor's might.

 


A MEETING OF THE MINDS

A sigh across a noisy room

A look behind a shielded eye

A smile upon a stony face

Implies a meeting of the minds.

 

You rise and walk between the pairs

Then stand before me, take my hand

Into your arms I slowly glide

To share meeting of the minds.

 

The music speeds, my heart keeps time

Your closeness takes my breath away.

I cannot think, I only feel

This sudden meeting of the minds.

 

Without a word, you lead the way

My body follows silently

You pull me closer, press me near

Insure this meeting of the minds.

 

The music stops, my heart beats on

My feet no longer touch the ground

And then you speak and guarantee

A lasting meeting of the minds.

 

No voice is heard, no visions seen

No people share this dancing room

For you and I alone exist

To know this meeting of the minds.

 

I leave my body, merge with yours

We move beyond the confines of

A world where so few know the way

To marry both the flesh and mind.

 


THE MEETING

When first my eyes touched you

I felt a movement beneath my stomach

Like the faint stirrings of an unborn child.

Yet, never had I been with child.

The verbal introductions were mere words

Acquainting my new outer self with yours.

My inner self already knew you,

From the time before...

When we were man and wife

And shared a thousand days in one.

Nothing differs...

Still you charm my mind

And unleash my urgent need for you

With the unseen movement

Of your thundering heartbeat

Against your chest.

I grip with my mind

The memory of what you wear

So that I may relive this 'dream'

In vivid refrain

Tomorrow...when I awaken.

I know it must be a dream

And we both must be actors

For I have never seen you before,

Or...have I?

And your familiarity must be an old lie

That I tell myself each night I dream

This old familiar dream.

 


I AM LOVE

I liked his eyes

And the sound of his voice,

So I stayed for a while and listened.

One by one, my shells were shed

And my secrets left my tongue.

 

I told him of my dreams and fears,

No stones were left unturned.

Ours became an intellectual friendship

Marked by laughter and sharing...and

Based on mutual admiration.

 

He fed my ego and I his.

But underneath our egos

Lay a creature seldom seen

Who thrived on our truth and honesty

And quickly outgrew the confines of our restrictions.

 

Soon he became a dominant factor in each our lives.

Without success, we tried to subdue him.

He would not let us ignore him,

He demanded to be heard.

So finally, we listened.  This he said:

 

"You have denied my existence with your over exercised minds.

You no longer feel with your hearts;

Instead, you lead blindly with your heads.

It has only brought you to the brink of self delusion.

You don not even recognize me.

 

ME!  Who gives meaning to your lives

And directs your very being.

ME!  The inner core that lifts your lives

From the mundane to the sublime.

You have mistakenly labeled me lust

And have treated me accordingly.

To label me does not alter my being,

I am LOVE, the center of all you are and ever shall be.

Treat me accordingly!"

 


SPECIAL

It is not just a sexual arousal that I feel.

It is as if my very soul is stirring,

Coming alive from its season of rest.

It is neither love nor passion that stirs within me.

I cannot call its name,

I can only experience its awakening.

I feel it begin to breathe and take life.

Its heartbeat is mine...I know its sound;

And yet, it is a stranger to me,

A stranger within.

He makes me want to shed my clothes

And climb into bed with him

Not for sex...

But for the sheer joy of our bodies together

Breathing, sharing, touching and talking.

He treats me special,

He makes me feel special.

With him, I am special.

 


YOU-IN DARKNESS

It seems our paths only cross at night

When our faces are lit either by the moon

Or some man-made light.

I know not the true color of your eyes,

For never have I seen them by daylight.

They seem to be a dusty smoke,

Not the sparkling dancing brown

That I know sunlight must make them.

I have felt the curl and thickness

Of the hair that caresses your skin.

I know that it grows in plush abundance

Everywhere my hands have touched.

Beneath it, your skin is but a velvet texture

Imprinted on my fingertips.

Your smell invades my brain like warm acid.

I recognize the fragrance

Of newly washed skin,

Touched with the essence of some earthly spice,

Whose name I do not know.

I once wondered if you were real

Or only a fantasy of the night

Dreamed up by my desires, to fulfill my wishes.

I feel like a blind person who once could see,

And noticed everything.

I want to see again...

I want to see your breath

Against the winter's coldness.

I want to see the shape of your fingers

And your mouth...

Your soft lovely inviting mouth.

And the way it must move

When you speak and laugh and smile,

And how your eyes change when they fall upon me

By daylight.

Let the sights of you be mine too,

And put in harmony my universe

Of touch, smell and sound.

 


PARALLEL LIVES

The hour is two a.m.

And here I sit in another city.

Yet, the memory of a time twenty four hours ago

Rules my mind with a sensuous hand.

It compels me to remember a touch, a word, a sound.

As brilliant as the taste of ripe wine

Is the memory of your lips touching mine -

The feel of your body beside me, above me and beneath me -

Still lingers on my skin.

Suddenly a frightening thought assaults my brain.

 

How can I ever embrace his life

When it is set upon a course so different from my own?

My inner self provides a simple answer.

"You have both charted courses for your lives

That travel steadily across the heavens.

Neither is exclusive, neither is wrong.

They simply run parallel to each other.

Continue on your course,

But reach out to that person who travels nearby.

Share the joys, and halve the troubles.

You can both reach your goals, alone...but together."

 

Our lives merged at a special moment in time.

Each touched the other with a special magic

That transforms the ordinary affairs of everyday life

Into the sublime treasures of fantastic ecstasy.

There is no end to the pleasures we can share,

Only the promise of fulfillment

Within the realm of each new dream we dare to dream.

With my mind's eye and heart's passion

I see you beside the path I travel.

I offer you my hand so that together

We may make happiness as we strive to reach our dreams.

 


FINDERS KEEPERS

How did we chance to meet

You with your thick armor

And me with my virgin coat

Wrapped tightly about me?

How did we ever see the people underneath

Or even know that they were there?

Yet, you found my sizzling heart

Capable of thawing ice cubes

On a zero degree morning.

I, in turn, found your little-boy joy

And together we put roller skates

On the word love.

 


STONE FACADE

You were the only one

Who ever took the time

To look behind the stone facade

I used to wear.

You lifted back the gates

That hid the inner me

And loosed upon my soul

A certain ecstacy,

And so I wrote this song

To tell you how I feel.

I see your smiling face

Somehow I know it's real.

No longer need I hide

Behind a stone facade;

Instead I wear a smile

No longer need I guard

For I'm protected by

The strength of your sweet love

And I can live my life

And show the inner me.

 


FOR COMFORT ONLY

I called you baby

A twelve year old child in disguise.

How very right I was.

I hear you calling out in the night

And reaching for feelings

Hoping that they're there,

But fearful that they aren't.

Your mind is adept at making it seem

That you are not hurt by rejection.

I can almost see you gather your mantle about you

To shield you from the wind.

But, the wind seeps through

Its loosely woven threads.

It provides no protection and little comfort.

True, the winter wind blows most fiercely,

And even love cannot stay its sting.

But I am not the winter wind.

I am the gentle summer's breeze

That caresses your soul

And carries it softly across the meadows of my life.

My love I give you as a banner.

Wear it around your heart.

It will sustain you,

It will comfort you,

And it will please you

Child that you are.

 


HURRY BACK

You have been gone so long

That the song in my heart took a vacation.

Come sing it to me again.

I remember the music

It is the words that have grown vague.

When I have not seen you for a long, long time

And have not touched your heart through sound,

You seem to be only a distant sweet memory

In the back of my mind.

I remember what you look like,

Faintly how you smell,

Vividly how you feel

And very well how you kiss.

But the reality of you existence escapes me,

And I clutch at my dream.

Hurry back, My Darling,

Hurry soon.

 


WAITIN'...PASSIN' TIME

How long have I been sittin' waitin'?

Perhaps a lifetime

Maybe years or only just hours.

I only know that it feels so familiar

As if I have always done it.

I have learned how to pass the hours

To take myself from one period of time to another

Markin' time until you...

Until you called,

Until you returned.

Until I could put my arms around you once again.

I've grown dependent on your face,

Dependent on your touch.

So, I sit and wait...

And curse myself for needin' you so.

 


MY RELEASE FROM HELL

Being in love is a real high;

But it can also be a haunting, humiliating

State of affairs.

We purposely put ourselves

Through the tortures of the damned

And pray that things stay that way.

All the while, we do not want to be released

From that self-imposed hell.

For even at its worse,

We fear its alternative-

Loneliness.

 

But tonight,

With fear in my heart

I faced the monster

And demanded my release from his hell.

No longer did I wait

For a situation to present itself

And let me react accordingly.

I set the stage for the confrontation

And made the first move.

"I am unhappy with things the way they are...

I am angry."

My words...my words.

I actually said how I was feeling.

It was as if I were a stranger

Listening to me talk for the first time.

I did not run away

I did not hide.

I said to him what I was feeling

In my heart.

And I felt the better for saying it.

And from hearing him respond.

I had been playing the game

With men all before.

Yet, I had never had a part

In setting up the rules.

So always I was the silent loser.

Now perhaps I too can win.

 


IF I AM TO BE THINE

Come,

Not because thy jewels call my name

And need my parts

To complete their splendor.

 

Nay,

Come because thy heart is lonely

And need to speak with mine

If only for a moment.

 

Surely,

As I am flesh and blood

I also am emotions

And that part must be touched

If I am to be thine.

 


SWEET SALUTATIONS

There is such an ease about him

No hurriedness.

Just soft, gentle touches.

He kisses my fingertips

And strokes the hair on my arms.

He touches my ears, and my nose,

With his warm, soft lips.

 

He seems to anticipate my need

And aims to meet them at their inception.

So different, so sweet, so sure.

 

I like the way he kisses me,

Gently, yet firmly and with vigor.

Softly he probes the interiors of my mouth

With his sweet tongue.

All the while, his hands

Are giving sweet salutations to my body.

I feel as if I am an ember in a fireplace

And someone in gently blowing on me

To awaken my fire and make it flame.

 


YOUR BODY

Something pleasurable just flitted through my mind

And brought a smile to my lips.

I tracked it down

And found it to be the memory of your body

As I first saw it unclothed.

My eyes embraced your skin

And traced the broadness of your shoulders,

Following the line of your back

Down to the tapering of your hips and thighs.

It brought joy to my eyes then

And the memory still brings equal pleasure.

I watched you move so very sensuously that day.

I followed you with my eyes

As you turned full circle before me,

Exposing yourself fully to my view.

I wanted to reach out and touch each place

That caught my eye

And made me marvel at the wonder of it.

You are truly a magnificent creature.

Your skin is like new honey

With the sun shining through it.

The distance between your shoulders

Allows a lover an endless expanse

Upon which to plant small, sweet kisses of adoration.

Your hands carry a protective strength

Gloved in the softness of caring.

Unencumbered by clothing,

Your loins give tribute to their maker

For his ability to combine beauty with utility.

Just enough hair to decorate without obscuring,

Enough initial size to titillate the imagination

And give promise of infinite pleasure,

And enough strength of character

To live up to the promise of it all.

 


OUR PRIVATE WORLD

Let's lie a-bed

And watch the misting rain

Outside the bedroom window...

And listen top the wind

Gently shape each droplet

Before it kisses the ground.

 

Come, let's press our bodies

Ever so close together

That even the air

Will not pass between us

As we breathe.

 

Let's lie a-bed

Where language grows too bold

And must succumb to touch

To tell the store

Of the joy we share

Inside this private world

Surrounded by the rain.

 


TO EXPRESS THIS FEELING

For oh so many months

I have wanted to create something.

Something of flesh and blood

To feel growing beneath my heart.

I have wanted you to leave me fruited...

Carrying your unborn child

After our lovemaking was over.

A thing of flesh and blood

To prove that you touched me

And loved me...

And to make me yours and you mine.

I have wanted to see you morning brown eyes

Duplicated in our baby's face.

And your tender moving mouth

Suckled gently at my breast

I have wanted to see your rich skin color

Stretched smoothly over an eight pound baby's frame...

And your wonderful name repeated on a birth certificate.

You, and you alone, give me the urge to reproduce...

To reproduce and celebrate this joyous love I feel

That so surely needs a new life

To fulfill its expression.

 


ON BUTTERFLIES

If I could, I would void your past

Deny your future

And keep you in a now of my own making.

I would possess you like a thought

And keep all life at arm's distance from you.

I would preserve you like new fruitcake in old wine.

I would send them all away.

Let your laughter be heard only by my ears

Share your beauty only with the sun and moon.

Have you touch reach out to me alone.

I would deny you any other contact.

I would be selfish and hoarding with you, my Darling,

But I know all too well

That then, I would only have a beautiful

Dead Butterfly

Preserved in cold but loving glass.

And I prefer my butterflies flying free.

 


AS   IS

Sometimes when I think of you

I want to expand this relationship of ours

But then

The whole sense of magic

That encompasses our meetings

Flashes upon my brain

And time is crystallized into solidity.

Our meetings are never real

Always they seem too bright, too vivid

Too arousing to be the stuff that mere humans experience.

When I am with you, neither of us is human...

Time is not measured by clocks

Words and feelings are not exchanged

By breath across vocal chords

And need is something I know nothing of.

I am surrounded by all that ordinary life

Pretends to offer the masses.

Your hands are not bones and muscles and skin,

Your tongue is not tissue and nerve endings and moisture.

You become an extension

Of the unspoken romantic make-believe in me

That the harsh realities in life

Tuck into the inner recesses of my soul.

You become the velvet energies

That twinkle in and out of my mind

And arouse me beyond the restraints of should or ought

You become the teasing wind that carries me

To heaven's door and hovers with me there

While my spirit ponders whether to enter or die...

For both would bring equal joy.

You, My Dear, are a blessing to my romantic heart.

No further expansion is needed.

 


MY LOVE

I do not blindly rave

At the originality

Of each breath you take

Nor randomly applaud

Every utterance you make.

Mine is the approval

Of a critical mind and ear

For a truly beautiful, intelligent,

Sensitive, yet irrational, human being

With love to share

With all who need.

In my silence,

I am loving you most.

 


YOU WAITED

You waited while I tried my wings

Rode high on my self and

Tested all my senses.

You never squeezed me

Only prodded me to fly even higher and

Touch the sky with my little finger...

Paint my name in fluffy clouds

Visible only to me.

And you were always there

Holding the string

That kept me in contact with reality

but ever so gently...

Ever so securely.

I found it lonely out there by myself

And wanted company.

Your freedom let my ego fly

So very far out

It could explore from sense-to-sense

And rise outside myself

Allowing me to see its non-necessity

For my survival.

I found it all because you held the string

And let me fly free, but secure

And waited to draw me back

Take my hand and hold me close

When I was ready to be held

After I met my id,

Miles from here

And only wanted to come home

To where you were waiting.

 


FREEDOM'S JOYS

I used to promise each one

That I would love forever,

Never would I stray

Always would I stay

True and faithful

Till the end of time.

 

Then I found life changes so.

Each day brings something different.

Old things are transformed,

New  things bloom,

Undying love becomes a tomb.

A cherished love withers

On the vine of supervision.

 

So now, I only say I love...

You, my life...today, tomorrow

It leaves me free

Unfettered by restraints.

And now, I find

That my life flourishes

In this new virgin ground.

 

Its length, depth and endurance

I do not even question.

I only know that I love freedom

 

Outside the boundaries set by my mind.

My heart rejoices and flies free...

But each evening, I come home

And lay my head beside his

To share the joys that my freedom brings

To both of us.

 


A SUCCESSFUL INVESTMENT

Invested my love at the prime interest rate

Compounded the dividends to increase my security,

Contributed to the principle at every occasion.

Made no demands upon the banking institution;

Yet, graciously received each and every advance

While the economic value of my equity assets

Declared a glowing return on a successful investment.

 


MY LIFE

I touched life

Dared to reach out

To all its many passions.

Shed my insulation,

For as surely as it kept out the cold

It also kept out life's warmth.

Extended myself to share my talents

With those around me.

Received in return

The fulfillment of human contact.

Rested secure in knowledge of my self.

Acknowledge the self of others.

Watered the buds of truth and growth.

Cherished the gift of love

In all its many forms.

Chose a loved one worthy of my love,

True in spirit

And compatible in design.

Set my sights on God,

Spread my arms around my fellow man,

Embraced the promise of life eternal

And lived my life that all might see.

 


THE WILL OF GOD PREVAILS

Watch the pain in someone else's eyes

Hear the need in their voice

And know that you are helpless

To alter either in anyone else's life.

All that you can do

Is offer words, deeds and prayers.

For pain is both given and received

Outside the realm of earthly direction.

No shelter is strong enough,

No person so mighty

To allay the hand of God

That moves so swiftly

To impose His will at will.

 


DEAR RENAISSANCE MAN

So easily do I capture on paper the nuances of people I meet. 

Yet, with you, My Love, I have so much difficulty

giving depth, width and height. 

I think of you and my mind sees no visual parameters,

no stark, definitive lines, no beginning, no end.

I close my eyes and can only conjure your brown eyes

and their seriousness behind those rimless glasses,

or their sensuousness as they greet me on rising. 

I see your hands so definite and sure

as they move to accomplish a given task. 

They carry no lingering caress, only a purposeful touch.

brief, strong, quick. Yet thorough. 

I see your mouth as a blind man would,

and I hear your voice as a deaf man would.

And yet, none of that is you. The you I see

is a mass of energy, moving unseen

behind a whirling shield of condensation. 

The you I see needs no mouth to communicate,

or hands to touch, or eyes to see. 

The you I see, I do not see . . . I only feel. 

You are a radiance that jolts me into contemplation. 

You are the answer that provokes the question...

You are the idea that seduces the thinker...

You truly are the child who precedes the embryo.

You are my contact with another world

where I selfishly seek to dwell at all times. 

I can only get there through your doorway

and you insist upon cluttering it

with the ordinary affairs of mortal man. 

Despite it all, you are of this world . . .

I am not. 

My life has been an endless search

for the inner space connection to my outer space self. 

Are you that connection? 

Have I finally found my Nirvana?

 

INDEX

 

As Is  

A Meeting of the Minds  

A Successful Investment 

Baby-Mamas  

Because the Feeling Exists  

But Where?  

Dear Renaissance Man 

Destiny  

Do Not Lose Me  

Finders Keepers 

For Comfort Only  

For Sylvia Woingust Branchcomb 

Free Flight  

Freedom's Joys  

Friendship Still Lives 

How She Differs 

Hurry Back 

I Am Gone  

I Am Love  

I am Woman-Black  

I Remember  You 

If I am to be Thine 

In Her Eyes

In The Silence 

Incompatible 

Kali  

Leave Some Behind 

Let Me 

Memories 

Motherhood 

My Big Sister 

My Life  

My Love 

My Release From Hell 

On Butterflies 

One Whole Year 

Our Private World 

Over You 

Parallel Lives 

Past, but Present 

Perspective 

Retaliation 

She's Here

Special 

Springtime 

Stone Facade 

Sweet Salutations 

The Meeting 

The Process

The Rain 

The Will of God Prevails 

To Declare Order

To Express This Feeling

To My Mother

To the Rescue

Waitin'...Passin' Time

What Will You Do...When? 

Why Didn't Someone Tell Her? 

Wings 

Woman 

You-In Darkness 

You Waited

Your Body