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2016 Poems

Waiting in the Park By Dan Fox

Just a stationary figure,
sitting on an old park bench,
just an old and wrinkled woman,
dirty clothes and quite a stench,
she just sat there every day,
summer, winter, spring and fall,
never bothered anybody,
they hardly noticed her at all.

She was just a crumpled figure,
from another time and place,
people passing saw her sitting
but they never saw her face,
she was just a fixture,
like the statues in the park,
no one ever bothered asking,
what she did when it got dark.

Faded glory, long passed favor,
sitting on a last park bench,
no more striving, human spirit,
a spark that finally is quenched,
and will our souls survive again,
when our last day is marked,
just stationary figures
sitting idle in time's park.



Gifts By Dan Fox

A gift I wanted to give you,
no money had I to spend,
I wanted to show my love to you,
to you who so loved me.
So I gave you stars in a woven basket,
tears in an evening sky,
I gave you the new moon's silent promise,
a gift of beginning again.
So I gave you a rainbow's arching beauty,
a smile on a rainy day,
I gave you flowers that shower the fields,
a promise of life new-bloomed.
So I gave you all the things I had,
my love of far-flung places,
my joy in a summer thunderstorm,
the peace of a forest glade.
I gave you the beautiful things I owned,
the valuable, worthy things.
Yet still all my gifts
will never quite measure
the love that I'm feeling for you.



Lost Child By Dan Fox

He appeared in the doorway
of a mission down on skid road,
wild-eyed, filthy and rough,
stinking of cheap whiskey
and stale, reeky cigars;
even the do-gooder ladies
from the Society to Save the Bums
shrank back.
Yet he was one with those men
we glorify in movies
and cheap teevee series,
those men who built America;
who trapped the beaver and hewed
the forests for your pleasure.
He was one of those 
the French so aptly named,
enfants perdu,
children sacrificed in the battle
to subdue the earth
and advance society
with no regard
to the costs in enfants perdu.


The Tree By Amy B. Gayhart


Through the leaves, shattered,

shards of light,

mirrored glass reflecting back the sun.

Emerald reflections of alternating shades, both light and dark.

Morning sun and Summer heat, sparkling

mottled shadow across the bladed ground.

Dark hardwood swirls of brown and ncarly black.

Deep ridges and whorls of fibrous stængth.

Roots reaching out, a hidden hand beneath the earth.

Held fast,

a power keeping life teeming within the branches.

A tree stands, reaching a leafy hand holding out a shady palm ovcr a country house of yellow,

creating a cozy scene framed in hilly patches of forest bathed in light.

Shattered shards, glass raining upon the blades

of green life below and catching my imagination.


At The Grapevine by Amy B. Gayhart


Dry, brown; a seemingly dead vine, sitting tangled. In truth alive, yet sleeping, frozcn In a winter drcam. Constant movement, dancing among the dormant gmpevincs; birds singmg a beat that only they can dance to.

They frolic and leap around the thin woody arms. They peck and scratch, an endless search for sustaining seeds,

fallen from the birdfeeder above. The fat gray thief, as squirmly as ever, hungfily steals grainy goodness, thc less tasty bits falling down like snow, 10 lhe delight of the birds below.

Sparrows, chickadees, and blue jays share a mcal with Mr. and Mrs. Cardinal. Crows and mourning doves stop by for a visit, while the chipmunks lun laps

and the woodchuck keeps time.

Antsy and twitching; a cat sits trapped inside, stuck to thc window.

Her tail swings rhythmically back and forth, while her tongue 10110ws suit.

The animals appear 10 thumb lheir noses at the frustmtcdly famished feline and laugh.

The scene unfolds before me as the curious deer come to say hcllo to thc fury face in the window. A sigh leaves my mouth in a cloud of breath and my hear! warms me deep inside.


Impatient By Amy B Gayhart


I'm impatiently patient, calm, yet agitated,

on Lhe move, while sitting still.

I 'm never satisfied with good enough, a pcffcctionist

though strangely lazy.

I'm eager to find the next project, finished Wilh Ihe old, while it's still new, forcvcr sccking,

yet always feeling rushed.

T hate to wait, needing it now, but held back by the daily grind.

I wait, the choice nol my own.

I .ife is measured, not caring about our desires.

Patience is a virtue I strive to find, falling short, I do my bcst.

Impaticntly patient,

the best I can do.

I don'! have lime, this ncw projcct has gotten old.

I'm eager to find, yet sick of looking.

Patience, a virtue I 've yet to find.


Gentle River By Chuck Wiser


This gentle river, thatflows hy me

Is headed North, not toward the sea

A spring of Gold, becomes a stream

Who knows itsfate, what wmdd one dream

Thru hills and valleys, its path to forge

That over time, becomes a gorge

Its scenic beauty is next to none

Its lore is known to everyone

Thru centuries, its storied past

Has Mem'ries made, that long will last

The Native tribes, would be thefirst

To taste its waters, quenching thirst

Now thru the years, its.fame has grown

And passed to all, to call their own

Roll on sweet river, for all to see

This gentle river, the Genesee


Hands to Hold By Chuck Wiser


Thank you Lord ror hands to hold Big or small, young or old.

My mothers were the first I'd see

So soft, yet strong, they seemed to me.

When school days came with years that passed, My hand would hold me fast.

The teenage years, the hearts first crush,

When holding hands would bring a blush.

In time, a special love would bring, A hand to hold to place Lhe ring.

The love that followed, would bring to birth, New hands to hold, to walk the earth.

The years have passed and still we keep, Our hands in touch before we sleep.

Thank You Lord for hands to hold

And taking ours within your föld

Chuck Wiser, Another Poem for Cheryl, Oct. 2015.


Within His Hands By Chuck Wiser


In His hands we are free to speak. In His hands we are free to seek

He comes to us in many ways. He comes to us when we kneel and pray

In His hands we are taught to love, He shines his light from up above

We learn to love, to hope and care. The strength from Him is always there

Tn I lis hands, He will hold who grieve. There's life ever after if you believe

In His hands all things can be. With open hearts and eyes to see

In his hands though tired and frail, if faith is strong we cannot fail

In Ilis hands, so full of grace with faith and n-ust our fears we face

When daylight fades or the journey ends, let us sleep or lay, within Ilis hands


Go Past Passion By Ronnie Schenkein


Go Past Passion

For desire is the root of all pain.

Go Past Passion

Do not collect $200, go directly to jail.

Or isn't it

Go Past Passion

To the warm glow of friendship,



Prospective Renewed.

Go Past Passion

The rocky cliff which you must climb,

From which you can fall down, down

And land so hard.

Go Past Passion

Through it

Beyond it

To the high plains above it

To the vivid plateau

From which you can see so far.


Sweet November By Vicki Grant


It’s hard to make a positive out of a negative, they say

But I need to try and do it anyway

A grandchild lost is such a hard thing

Knowing the laughs and the coos they bring

God, in His infinite wisdom, I’m told has a plan

But this Mom and Grandma doesn’t understand

The whys, wherefores, and whats askew

Are out of perspective in my humble view

First, I can say, I was nearby and free

A support to my daughter I was able to be

Through my tears and my prayers I did drive

To the hospital far; I did finally arrive

Second, I did try to display calm and some peace

Hoping to quell her concerns, at least

Providing “Baby Lips” to my “baby”

And lotion for hands will help maybe

But the news, oh so hard, was almost unbearable

To see the taut face that seemed unwearable

To the hall while she talked to her one true man

To gather my strength to help where I can

The ride home was the third, and, yet, the best

Holding my girl lovingly to my chest

Stroking her hair, long and light brown

Massaging the temple of my baby’s crown

Listening and watching and just being there

Was my fourth positive to show how I care

Fielding calls and the news for others to share

And shielding well-wishers away from her there

The hardest and worst of our trials then

Was the birth of her lost one and the cry of her when

“Mom!”…and I knew; the babe had arrived

Though we knew in advance, ‘twas not to survive

This fifth time did shake me down to my core

The shakes and the shudders I did try to ignore

For, though sad, I was blessed to be there for calm

And hold my dear grandchild in my hand; just the palm

So, in this November, so sweetly bitter

The strength of God will help make me fitter

To share this bond of loss and of love

With my daughter and her sweet one who lives up above.


Bowling for Forget-me-nots By Vicki Grant


Upon a starlit night I dreamt

Of thoughts and wants and what they meant

I conjured up a strange visage

Of lanes and balls, an odd mirage

‘Twas Rip Van Winkle, I do think

That dreamt of bowling; thus, the link.

In the fog of God’s lush valley,

Thunder rolled along the “alley.”

Clouds and rain complete the aura;

Dreamlike state that I want more of

For, in slumber, cometh peace

Restlessness does seem to cease.

Startled now, the noise grows louder

Lightning strikes; I start to cower.

I raise my face, a chance to peek

To see the cause of the noise I seek.

“Strike!” He said, “Oh, boy, I’m lucky.”

“To foul the line would sure be sucky”

“Want to try?” He threw my way

“Sure would be nice a foe to play.”

I assent and rise to face Him

Anxious, thrilled, my hat to throw in.

“I’m unsure of all the rules, but

I’ll give a try, my best I’ll strut.”

“Aim down the lane,” He said to me.

“Of this lush valley, don’t you see?”

“The target large is at the end.

Aim for the prize and do not bend.”

I grabbed my ball and took the “stage.”

And feared my style would give ‘way my age.

I took my stance and danced my dance

Let go my ball, then hiked my pants

Shielded my eyes, the course to see

Anxious to know, the score to be.

Twinkle-toes, my nickname was

Fred Flintstone style was all the buzz.

My eyes grew wide, the ball curved once.

Then curved again, I was a dunce!

It took off to the right gutter,

“Drats, shucks!” I began to mutter

He laughed once, then laughed again

“Thou are rusty, my young friend.

Try again before you weaken

And hike your pants before you’re streakin!”

I took my stance, yet one more time,

And drew a bead on down the line.

I blinked my eyes, the sight to seize

Then stopped to ask, “What pins are these?”

“They look like flowers, not pins at all

I’ll kill them sure with this bowling ball.”

He smiled a smile with knowing eyes

“I told you once, aim for the prize.”

“What were your thoughts and wants in sleep?

Before you woke from slumber deep?

Your calm, your peace upon your face

Reveal your true destined place.”

“I want one thing, one thing only

To not be so very lonely.

A child of mine, to love and hold

Whether it be one young or old.”

“You see,” I said. “I long to foster-

My name’s etched on the DSS roster.

But I don’t see the real link

‘Twixt kids and flowers, I do not think.”

The bowling Master shook His head,

“You do not see what lies ahead.

Look closely now and you can see

Those flowers are children growing free.”

“The head pin there, a lily lovely

An infant child, skin like a baby

And next in line, a tulip red

A youngster’s lips so sweet,” He said.

“The rosebud ‘pin’, so pink and fair

Bodes of sweet cheeks that blossom there.

Tiny toes the daisy counts

The loves me; the loves me nots

Tendrils of morning glory vines

Thoughts of a teen who’s soon to shine

Impatiens with a varied hue

Spawns thoughts of children; special too.

So, pick a flower, take your aim

And vow to win in Life’s game.

A ‘pin’ for your own special course

For meaning, purpose in Life’s force

Your ball will choose the one that’s right

So concentrate and set your sight.”

“But, wait,” I said, “that is not true”

My ball, last time, did not go through.”

He smiled, “Yes, a gutter you got.”

Look close, for there’s forget-me-nots,

In those ruts upon both sides,

Springs pinks and blues in their small size.”

“Your heart is big as all outdoors,

You’re not content to “take the floor.”

For, in the gutters, you will see

Many children who are free

To be the apple of your eye

And spark your spirit, by and by.

Rascals and imps and little gnomes

Make life worthwhile in your home.”

And then I knew that what He said

Was like the dream found in my head.

“Pinks and blues” in the gutter spots

Were girls and boys, God’s forget-me-nots.



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