life: acoustic & amplified

poetry, quotes & thoughts about life

Archive for the month “September, 2017”

morning and evening

And still now every morning,

each momentary wish for healing

is a risk, a wakening call

to change, to choose,

to leave so much behind,

and be again made new.

– Steve Garnaas Holmes

It was a quiet way—
He asked if I was his—
I made no answer of the Tongue
But answer of the Eyes—
And then He bore me on
Before this mortal noise
With swiftness, as of Chariots
And distance, as of Wheels.
This World did drop away
As Acres from the feet
Of one that leaneth from Balloon
Upon an Ether street.
The Gulf behind was not,
The Continents were new—
Eternity it was before
Eternity was due.
No Seasons were to us—
It was not Night nor Morn—
But Sunrise stopped upon the place
And fastened it in Dawn.


It was a quiet way by Emily Dickinson

onder if writing this poem

will spill you out of me

through my fingertips

will the ink become your blood

this paper your skin

for me to touch

again and again?

I wonder if stretching my hands to the sky,

while standing on my tiptoes

will release your wings

so you can fly free with me

into the starry sky

discovering all the worlds we have inside?

I wonder if I stand as tall, and as still, as a tree

you will come to me

climb up inside me

twist your arms and legs into my branches

hold me close and never let me go?

I wonder if I sing you a love song

if I will become a part your soul

and you part of mine

both of us sewn within these chords

of mine and yours

absorbing each other

into our very dna?

Will we become each other?

Forever becoming each other's other?

mirrors of beauty

to dance inside the aleph

where heaven meets the earth?

I sit here alone with my feeling heart

I think of you

and I wonder….


Amy Lloyd

Now in the blessed days of more and less

When the news about time is that each day

there is less of it I know none of that

but walk out through the early garden

only the day and I are here with no

before or after and the dew looks up

without a number or a present age


Dew Light by W. S. Merwin


slow learner


the little girl quietly walked away 

from the real and scary world

through the secret door 

where no one could follow her

into the world of make believe 

where everyone loved her

and understood everything she needed to say

where the play was all about play

and the laughter was not at her expense

the angels loved her singing

and all the magical fairies were her true friends 

For so long I grieved my losses

extreme as they were

but now

right now in this magic moment! 

I am learning

bit by bit

to love the sound

of the word ‘NO”

to love the sound

of my footsteps 

as I walk away 

from those people and things

who cannot, 

who do not,

 love me

and so,

are not meant for me

Amy Lloyd


I was taught to stand in line

I was taught it’s not my time

I was taught to people please

I was taught to bend my knees

I was taught to raise my hand

I was taught I need a man

I was taught to never speak

I was taught to not move my feet

I was taught that I was wrong

I was taught I don’t belong

I was taught my church was right

I was taught a certain fight

I was taught I wouldn’t finish

I was taught I should diminish 

I was taught to take abuse

I was taught to just excuse

I was taught to obey

I was taught to walk away

I was taught that I was vain

I was taught to live with pain

I was taught to live in fear

I was taught to not drink beer

I was taught the way to heaven

I was taught on May Eleven 

I was taught I didn’t matter

I was taught that hearts will shatter

I was taught to give and give

I was taught these rules to live

I was taught I must say ‘yes’

I was taught I was a mess

I was taught to stay and die

I was taught to live a lie

I was taught that love meant loss

I was taught money is boss

I was taught to say ‘I’m fine’

I was taught that words should rhyme 

Then I turned and found the away

To learn anew for every day

To break the chains

To teach myself

To love my life

To grow and heal

To love and know

To just be real

To share my words

To break those rules

To speak my truth

To say my ‘no’s’

To dance my dance

To sing my song

To go my way

To be set free

To live my heart

To just be me

Amy Lloyd

my way


I stopped going to therapy
because I knew my therapist was right
and I wanted to keep being wrong.
I wanted to keep my bad habits
like charms on a bracelet.
I did not want to be brave.
I think I like my brain best
in a bar fight with my heart.
I think I like myself a little broken.
I’m ok if that makes me less loved.
I like poetry better than therapy anyway.
The poems never judge me
for healing wrong.

Clementine von Radics

When I get old
I wonder if I will hide my stuff in weird places.
Will someone cleaning out my living space
find things like
my baptismal certificate from 1932
in a plastic Oil of Olay box
mixed with various items
like eyebrow pencils,
miscellaneous change,
and various sizes of
finger nail clippers?
Will I place a baby hair brush
in a bag wrapped in paper towels
with coffee filters
and refrigerator magnets of all sorts?
Will I hide my telephone and address book under my mattress,
and my bills under the bathroom sink?
Will I buy more shampoo than I have years left to use it all,
and put cans of soup in my entertainment center?
What will I do when i get old?
I’m sure it will be eccentric and unusual.
I’m sure it will seem totally understandable to me
when I put my socks and underwear in the bathtub
and keep my kitchen cabinets completely empty.

Amy Lloyd

Don’t you wish they would stop,

all the thoughts swirling around in your head,

bees in a hive, dancers tapping their way across the stage.

I should rake the leaves in the carport, buy Christmas lights.

Was there really life on Mars? What will I cook for dinner?

I walk up the driveway, put out the garbage bins.

I should stop using plastic bags, visit my friend

whose husband just left her for the Swedish nanny.

I wish I hadn’t said Patrick’s painting looked “ominous.”

Maybe that’s why he hasn’t called.

Does the car need oil, again? There’s a hole in the ozone

the size of Texas, and everything seems to be speeding up.

Come, let’s stand by the window and look out

at the light on the field. Let’s watch how

the clouds cover the sun, and almost nothing

stirs in the grass.


Thinking by Danusha Laméris


To be nobody but yourself in a world doing its best to make you everybody else means to fight the hardest battle any human being can fight.                      ~ E.E. Cummings

after the four Miles had come and gone

and the three tenors had paused abruptly 

my two legs stopped to design some landscapes 

plant a few hedged borders

build a moat 

or maybe several 

the forsythia’s flame had burned to the ground in minutes

I had no cake

so I sat eating a protein bar by the ocean


tho the sensual strength of it makes me smile)

sand, definitely, all up in my business

I lay, watching blue and white swirls

birds up high – teaching me to trust 

the sun making a last stand atop the tree-line

water…well, what more do I need to say..

breathing deep

achieving serenity

smelling favorites 

the erotic mixture of charcoal and meat

mixed with freshly mowed grass 

I float in tune with the laughter of children 

fading in and out as they just run until breathless

<there was nothing sexy 

about the couple loudly talking staff meetings 

beside the waters edge>

but the feather left on the path in front of me 

on my way home

spoke of wisdom meant just for me

I carried it home in my pocket

I used to miss you on a Friday night

now I make an important discovery 

as I slowly make my way home

between sitting on freshly cut stumps

and old stone bridges

writing poems on the path

Now Im much too busy to miss you

 being at peace

with my own lyrics

being in love

with my own shades of life

Amy Lloyd


play misty for me

It only takes a reminder to breathe,

a moment to be still and just like that,

something in me settles, softens,

makes space for imperfection. The harsh

voice of judgment drops to a whisper

and I remember again that life isn’t a relay race;

that we will all cross the finish line;

that waking up to life is what we were born for.

As many times as I forget, catch myself charging forward

without even knowing where I am going,

that many times I can make the choice

to stop, to breathe, to be and walk

slowly into the mystery.

Walk Slowly by Dianna Faulds

Wispy thoughts

Soft white shadows

Smoky Silhouettes

Of Trees on hills

Shades of white on white





Soft fog filling the world

I drive through this soft world

the only edges

are cut mountain rocks




teaching me about life

teaching me about spirit

Changing me

Softening my eyes

Filling my heart with a new holy

Softening my darkness

as hope slips in

under the closed door of my heart


Amy Lloyd

falls in love

🍁Autumn is the hardest season. The leaves are all falling, and they’re falling like they’re falling in love with the ground. 🍁 Andrea Gibson

I drive down Copperleaf Lane

looking at those copper leaves

falling from the poplar trees

(well, to tell the truth,

I’m not sure they’re poplars

but that fits well with my poem…

it’s called poetic license)

I see why the street is named thus, though

it is a copper way

on a copper day

Must have been named in fall

because other seasons the leaves were all


or absent

I love nature

reveals so much


one leaf

one name

one slow movement

at a moments time

and words can always find the rhythm and the rhyme


Amy Lloyd

Fall, leaves, fall; die, flowers, away;

Lengthen night and shorten day;

Every leaf speaks bliss to me,

Fluttering from the autumn tree.

I shall smile when wreaths of snow

Blossom where the rose should grow;

I shall sing when night’s decay

Ushers in a drearier day.


Fall Leaves Fall by Emily Brontë


Photo sources found on / al513

in good company

The darkness takes refuge beneath our bed again, and it doesn’t matter

that the sun has risen a minute sooner than it did the day before. We

have curated a warmth merely by lying here, and we take turns hitting

the snooze button. The dog has not complained. The birds will not die

down. We wait for the eggs to cook themselves.

Leisure by Charles Rafferty

November morning

I help Mother

write her obituary

wisps of fog

shroud the maple leaves



there’s always something

to let go of

the long slant of ash

on the incense stick


cleaning out

Mother’s lingerie drawer

the tears in her stockings

sewn up so tightly—

all my unanswered questions


yesterday’s desires

what were they?

a vase

without flowers

holds only itself


walking the path

through the dark garden

moonlight shines

on the flower

with no scent


A selection of tanka by Margaret Chula

I was standing in line at the bank today

when the old fellow in front of me

dropped his glasses (luckily, within the


and as he bent over

I saw how difficult it was for


and I said, “wait, let me get

them. . . “

but as I picked them up

he dropped his cane

a beautiful, black polished


and I got the glasses back to him

then went for the cane

steadying the old boy

as I handed him his cane.

he didn’t speak,

he just smiled at me.

then he turned


I stood behind him waiting

my turn.


Helping the Old by Charles Bukowski

Last night as always

I called Bruce


he is the best telephone

person I know

he nearly

always says

Can I Call You Back

because he is Doing Something.

Last night he was

cutting up zucchini

and I asked him,

I always ask him

why he can’t talk to me

at the same time as he

cuts up his zucchini but

he can’t. He just can’t.

Later, he calls

back to explain What Happened

the Last Few Days

(nothing and everything)

Mike the painter

has landlord problems

red flying squirrel

still eating Bruce’s grapes

and I listen, thinking

how words

are the musical

notes I love.


Can I Call You Back? by Esther Cohen

(you know it takes two)

let’s use the word tango

and plan on multiple uses of that fun word, cahoots

we can do that, right?

just you and I

it’s hard to hold hands with yourself

it’s much more fun with someone

than trying to lead the dance alone,

follow cannot even be spoken without at least a couple thrown in

one is still the loneliest number

(tho one is preferable to a dominant second)

Equals of one plus one always add to an even balance

of the perfect two

which is just what it takes

to make whoopie

a pair of wild bohemians

we’re all looking for a second

to show us love reflected back in glowing eyes

caught in the light of the moon

shining through the open french doors

in the still of the night

let’s only fight about me stealing the covers

then make up immediately upon my asking forgiveness

before the sun comes up

and one by one

we once again

make our solitary way into our day jobs

Amy Lloyd

Night night luv u

The electric eyes of comfort

Ushering you into the stillness of the night

Wrapped in the arms of a plush cuddle bear


Sue Timony-Hall


wrapped up

“An enigma wrapped in a paradox and shrouded in a conundrum” (Levi, 2008)

Impermanence is both a process of continual loss,

in which things exist and then disappear.

And it is also a process of continuous rebirth or creativity,

in which things that do not exist suddenly appear.

~ Joseph Goldstein

Paradoxical thinking is key to creativity, which comes from the capacity to entertain apparently contradictory ideas in a way that stretches the mind and opens the heart to something new. Paradox is also a way of being that’s key to wholeness, which does not mean perfection: it means embracing brokenness as an integral part of life…..To be whole I have to be able to say I am both shadow and light.

~ Parker Palmer

I sit with relief

A feeling Unfamiliar for 120 days

welcome yet Tentative

Am I out of the worst of dark?

It’s hard to tell

Hard to trust

Reside of dark

Leaves soot on the soul

Holes seared in the heart

The burning rings

Still glow around the edges

Like that day when my sister, Nancy, dropped ash on her new red skirt as we sat in the old Pontiac sharing that stolen cigarette

I was 5 or 6

I still feel her fear

It tastes like ashes in my throat

The fire has burned very hot

Will I recover?

Not likely

The flame has changed the chemistry 

Of the soul it touched

What will be the new metal?

Will it be stronger and better?

To hot right now to touch

Gotta cool down

Hopefully this will be the alchemy

To turn a fool into gold

Only Time will tell


Amy Lloyd

What gets you through the desert?

What gets you through?

What gets you through the chemo,

the healing from abuse, the bad marriage,

what gets you through

the job that tries to kill you,

the dark alley of the shadow of death,

the rotten places, the placeless places,

the evil you fear, the evil you’ve done,

your daily inadequacy,

what gets you through?

Some will call it courage or stamina,

luck or faith or reaching down deep.

But you know it’s not you, not yours.

It’s given. To you. For you.

From the Holy One.

The thread you follow,

the source you drink from,

the encouraging voice,

the Divine desire that you thrive,

the gift amid the desolation,

you fund it anywhere—

the usual, the impossible,

the unwelcome.

You learn to recognize it.

You learn to receive it.

For that grace that gets you through

you learn to say thank you.

You learn to count on it,

and be surprised,

every morning.

Every morning.


Steve Garnaas-Holmes


any way the wind

The wind comes riding down from heaven.

Ho! wind of heaven, what do you bring?

Cool for the dawn, dew for the even,

And every sweetest thing.

O wind of heaven, from pink clouds driven,

What do you bring to me?

The low call of thy love who waits

Under the willow tree,

Whose boat upon the water waits

For me, for thee.


~Harriet Monroe

LONG ago I learned how to sleep,
In an old apple orchard where the wind swept by counting its money and throwing it away,
In a wind-gaunt orchard where the limbs forked out and listened or never listened at all,
In a passel of trees where the branches trapped the wind into whistling, “Who, who are you?”
I slept with my head in an elbow on a summer afternoon and there I took a sleep lesson.
There I went away saying: I know why they sleep, I know how they trap the tricky winds.
Long ago I learned how to listen to the singing wind and how to forget and how to hear the deep whine,
Slapping and lapsing under the day blue and the night stars:
Who, who are you?

Who can ever forget
listening to the wind go by
counting its money
and throwing it away?


Wind Song by Carl Sandburg

hearing the rain fall

watching birds bounce off the roof

grateful for it all

haiku-kate lamberg~ ’16

This morning at C & J’s

The trees are singing welcome…

There’s wind in ‘them thar’ woods

It’s a sound I remember in my deepest parts

a sound I’ve loved all my life

Though this morning is the first one I’ve ever fully brought that thought into my center

Noticed how my soul sways with the rhythm of the leaves

Maybe the first time I’ve fully connected with how close this is to the sound of waves on the shore

Yet how completely different it is as well

How everything dances lightly with it

Responding with natural grace

How music plays in all these harmonious sounds

Like a softer version of singing bowls

How the marigolds add just the right notes when called upon

Like bobblehead backup singers in orange sequined dresses 

adding all that brilliant jazz to the mix

How the cactus hold the drum beat with such steadfastness…

…Because His eye is on the sparrow…

a hawk soars over the dancing trees

a little fuzzy birdie perches atop afresh jar candle scented with summer flowers 

I write poems and play songs to share with you

feeling this morning’s layered virtues moving within me

The life of this pilgrim is so incredibly blessed 

I bow and give thanks to begin this new day


Amy Lloyd

September 20.2017

Matthew 6:26-34New King James Version (NKJV)

26 Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? 27 Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature?

28 “So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; 29 and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?

31 “Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.


beauty begins inside


It is my job as a poet seer,

as one who feels before I see

to find the words, even if it hurts.

To carry the light into dark corners.

To bring the word that turns the heart,

the word that speaks into the barren centre

that it might spring to life.

We are each given life

to turn it from more than a spark,

to draw from it a forest fire.

All of us, are given the means to

grow the gifts we have received.

And they are not for us, never for us;

but we are blessed through their practice.

What brings life to others

charges us at our own core.

We live in the stream, when we are living who we truly are.

It is my job to follow my unravelling pen.

Just as its yours to draw the glory that you see,

to move heaven and earth in prayer

or lay out a table for your friends, and your enemies.

To turn compassion into action,

to bandage up and heal.

To express the love that is your reason, in the way you are designed.

We are each of us His

and He becomes revealed to the extent that

we express His heart through our gifts.

Yes, it is my job, even if it hurts

to faithfully draw images with my words.

To bring to birth again and again the

new thing He wants to do.

We have a vocation,

each a calling and to find it is to

follow the stream to the source;

to put out our clay jars

and watch them fill,

that we might pour them out

Into the world.


Ana Lisa de Jong

Living Tree Poetry

September 2017


You want me to

give up my story

so that you can

tell yours.

I want you to

give up your story

so that I can tell mine.

What if we both

give up our stories

To hear the waves

of silence

grinding our sculls

into sparkling sand?

To hear the glassy chime

of seven trillion stars

in the boundless heart?

What if we drown together

in the catastrophic emptiness

of love?

What if we truly listen?


Alfred K LaMotte

I lay down the backpack,

quit the journey to the far place.

I set aside the pick and shovel,

the coded treasure map.

I renounce the person I want to become,

abdicate mastery of my fate.

I rest my fears, desires and intentions.

Even the angel within me,

wings tightly wrapped, rests.

Already a holy vessel,

I rest with the Presence I hold.

I rest in this:

You, I AM,

in me,


and I allowing.


Steve Garnaas-Holmes

Unfolding And then there comes a moment

when all you have suffered

all you have learned

all you have lost and found

rise up and become

and suddenly –

you are

who you dreamed of being

so many years ago

suddenly you have arrived

at what you caught glimpses of

for so many years

and the search

the free fall of broken dreams

broken hearts

broken everything

tumbling down rabbit holes

stumbling over the feet

of your own lack of knowledge –

is over!

Suddenly you find yourself

on solid ground



raising your ‘Ebenezer’

(a joyful monument to God

for all the mighty stones of help

with building this foundation on the solid rocks –

you know each one so personally!)

and though the pilgrimage may continue

though the journey is definitely not over

though life is fragile

and security an illusion

there is a new sureness to your step

a trusting unshakable

a calm in it all

a new assurance of provision

a new traveling song to be sung as you walk forward

always forward

always pilgrim ready for new adventures

forgetting the names of what lay behind

you press on to your purpose

the glory of the prize set before

reveling in the mercies ever new

for each and every day

there is no stopping you now

you have found something

which cannot ever be taken

you have arrived here by your own determination

reached a place

both spiritual and physical

a place of such magnitude

the light shines from every angle

it has sealed up the oldest sores

bound up the deepest wounds

satisfied the deepest longings

changed everything

settled old scores with finality

no longer will you settle for less than you deserve

no more will you tolerate anything less than your best and highest offerings

you must be all you can be

gratitude fills you for this place

a place so lovely

it can bear up

even under the weight

of your hearts wildest desires

with just its simple name –

the word resounds inside your soul like a bell –


yes, beloved,

you are home.

right where you belong.


Amy Lloyd

For risky exploration. Journey to the inner world.
No map. No guarantees of success.

Yet no way of getting it wrong.

Possible full exposure of your own soul

in service to the American People.

Requirements : the possession of some

courage and a willingness to
surrender opinions of right and wrong.
Nashville Events Friday 22nd 6.30-10pm
and Saturday 23rd Daytime.
September 2017. Free entry in

exchange for undivided presence.

Apply for details to

Nic Askew @ Soul Biographies

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