Stiff Shoulders

Stiff Shoulders

Stiff shoulders and straight back,

you’re unwilling to accept comfort.

You think I don’t know that you’ve

done things that you’re not proud of.


I must seem to small to someone

with the universe on their shoulders.

Stiff shoulders and straight back,

lips pressed in a permanent line.


Stiff shoulders and straight back

will melt away from you tomorrow.

You’ll smile and laugh like always.

We’ll be companions again.


The universe is beautiful then,

when you’re acting as a tourguide.

Then it shrinks and gets inside you.

Stiff shoulders and straight back.


Stiff shoulders and straight back,

but I wrap my arms around you again.

I’ll ask what’s wrong, you won’t answer.

I’m not surprised by it anymore.


Your mouth is sealed with secrets.

Your mind is full of too many things.

Stiff shoulders and straight back.

That’s how you keep yourself going.


Stiff shoulders and straight back.

So tense, I can feel you’re hurting.

But I’m on the other side of the door

and your universe is unreachable.


Still, maybe something reaches you.

Tomorrow is going to be beautiful again.

Stiff shoulders and straight back

melt back into smiles and laughter.


Peace is Impossible

The leader sees people
but not individuals.
The lesser of evils
becomes ancient ritual.

The captain leads soldiers
with army field manuals.
His missions from folders,
the violence is mutual.

The person sees mirrors
and fails to be clinical.
There’s losers and winners,
both always criminal.

If the greed inside man
is always unstoppable,
there’s no Utopian land
and peace is impossible.

Peace is Impossible

The Fiddler’s Wish

The Fiddler's Wish
A fiddler on the road gave pause.
Riddle me that, a shadowy cat.
His fiddle clutched within his claws.
Oh, what a riddle, a golden fiddle.

The shadow's fiddle made of oak.
Riddle me old, that fiddle of gold.
And he all shrouded in his cloak.
Riddle me young, a song he sung.

His voice, it was as whispers soft.
Riddle me quiet, the song was silent.
His voice, the wind had borne aloft.
Riddle me here, a song of fear.

From the trees, another one came.
Riddle me this, a matching of wits.
Queen of Sidhe, Nicnevin by name.
Riddle me wild, a true Faerie child.

The fiddler met her bravely there.
Riddle me how, he never would cow.
She drew a new fiddle from thin air.
Riddle me fast, this fiddle of glass.

She lifted her fiddle, a bow took to it.
Riddle me now, that fearsome sound.
All its beauty passed right through it.
Riddle me foul, this glass fiddle's howl.

As she played, the devils danced.
Riddle me where, danced in the air.
Above her head, the devils pranced.
Riddle me then, that dancing is sin.

And in the ground, the fiddle rang.
Riddle me when, she played Tammlin.
And as she played, Nicnevin sang.
An old time riddle, on old time fiddle.

But though she played an hour more.
Riddle me fine, from eight until nine.
The fiddler stood as brave as before.
Riddle me back, that fiddler in black.

And then Nicnevin dropped her bow.
Riddle me one, her turn was done.
And bade the fiddler, put on a show.
Riddle and rhyme, the fiddler's time.

The fiddler lifted his fiddle of gold.
Riddle me broke, that fiddle of oak.
Its varnish shone, its sound was bold.
Answered her riddle, upon his fiddle.

His tune was of the trees and sky.
Riddle me then, a sound on the wind.
Beloved to those who live and die.
Riddle me this, the fiddler's wish.

It wasn't to win his fiddle of gold.
Never a riddle could steal such a fiddle.
It was to win the right to grow old.
Riddle of yore, immortal no more.

They say the fiddler played his soul.
Riddle me why the fiddler should die.
His heart from him, a mortal stole.
Riddles enough, he played for love.

Nicnevin took his song as her pay.
Riddle me here, she took his years.
Sent the mortal fiddler on his way.
Riddle me time, his lover to find.

For comfort on his journey long.
Riddle me this, the fiddler's wish.
She played that fiddler a song.
Of fiddler Bluff, and his mortal love.

One boy in the stars.

One boy in the stars.
His brain is a map.
When his eyes are shut,
he sees everything
mapped out on a grid.

A million thin lines
that each lead him to
different places
behind his eyelids.

The world in his head
is why he’s not home.
You knock on the door
but no one answers.

That is not to say
it’s not beautiful
to see him thinking.
Hours spent watching him.

He spins simple thoughts
into threads of wonder.
And his face contorts,
knowledge fills the gaps.

Some people live here,
the material world.
Others live in space,
alive between lines.

He is one of those,
the visible ghosts.
Intangible boy
who never speaks out.

You want to tell him
thoughts are not actions.
He can dream the world
but nothing changes.

It takes an effort
to make things happen.
You can’t just sit there
and hope for the best.

There is one step left.
Take your mind and soul
and shape the new world, 
visible or not.