You Are to Me a Very Special Sun

You are to me a very special sun
That shines upon a world few ever see,
A world I'm shy to show to everyone,
That hides its urgent truth from even me.
Without your light it is a world of darkness;
Its heaven and its hell lie fast asleep.
With you as sole and sympathetic witness,
The words come forth from out my vasty deep.
And so I cannot be myself without you;
No one is whole without some loving friend.
There is a quiet joy in me about you
That lets me say what I need not defend.
Long may we serve each other to give light
To all the loveliness that haunts the night.
You Have a Smile that Lights the World
You have a smile that lights the world,
Shining from within,
Breaking out between the clouds
That form the skin of self.
Lucky we, to live nearby
That unpretentious sun,
To share its fire, to feel its love,
To know its warmth so well.
Just as the sun's sweet liquid joy
Is captured in the wine,
So with us your happiness
Is captured in our lives.
Your Friendship Is the Sky Above My Home
Your friendship is the sky above my home,
The crystal air I breathe, through which I see.
I can't believe how much you mean to me.
Without you with me, time would turn to stone.
I don't know why I need you so, or how
I know so absolutely I'll be there
In times your wounded heart can hardly bear.
I only know this truth is with me now.
Why is it in our lives that we need friends
To be awake and fully what we are?
Alone we dream but never cross the bar;
With you I share a grace that never ends.
Your Laugh Is like a Silver Bell
Your laugh is like a silver bell:
Clean and light and free;
Just like the hours of happiness
Your friendship brings to me.
You're like a room of sweet wind chimes
Enlightened by a breeze,
Or like an open, grassy field
Dotted with old trees.
I'm grateful for the things you do,
But more for what you are:
A breath of clear, bright open sea,
Of life beyond the bar.
I Would Not Be the Sun to End Your Night
I would not be the sun to end your night,
Nor would I be the wall to turn your tears.
But I will watch with you until it's light.
Because there are no words to set things right
Nor hopes that one immersed in mourning hears,
I would not be the sun to end your night,
Offering a wisdom far too bright
To soothe your pain or put to rest your fears.
But I will watch with you until it's light.
There must be time to grieve that sorrow might
Be equal to the love of days and years.
I would not be the sun to end your night.
For grief, before it breaks, must reach its height,
And tides must turn before one homeward steers.
But I will watch with you until it's light.
There are agonies no friendship can requite,
A bitterness unstained till dawn appears.
I would not be the sun to end your night.
But I will watch with you until it's light.
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Thanksgiving Is a Moment to Remember

Thanksgiving is a moment to remember
How little we can do to move the stars.
All we are and have we must surrender,
Nor is Earth less inscrutable than Mars.
Knowing this, we know the need for friends
Sharing both our pleasures and our pain,
Giving, though it may not serve their ends,
In joy the love that will our love sustain.
Very much like water in a lake,
In sum we serve as mirrors to the sky.
No one alone can heaven's picture take.
Given friends, we know the reason why.
The Happiness I Feel at Your Achievements
The happiness I feel at your achievements
Reflects the happiness you feel at mine.
Friends expand the pleasures of such moments,
As mine in yours, and yours in mine, combine.
The same when we look forward to our futures:
So much more unfolds when there are two!
Populating your proposed adventures
Gives me a joy that mine must give to you.
We've been through much, and will be through much more,
But traveling together is more fun.
Whatever life and love may have in store,
Two is always preferable to one.
Your graduation thus becomes my pleasure:
Your happiness is mine, a double treasure.
We've Just Been Friends, and Now You're Going
We've just been friends, and now you're going
Far away for many years.
But please don't leave me without knowing
How I feel as your time nears.
I know you're older, more mature,
And far beyond me in some ways.
But there's between us something pure
That's given me these magic days.
I thank you for the loveliness
That your sweet friendship's brought to me.
Think of this poem as a caress
That says, "I love you" gracefully.
Why Did You Change
Why did you change? What did I do?
We were like brothers, and now
Your face is a wall without windows, while you
Abrogate what small claims you allow.
I don't understand what undid the sweet bond
That for years yielded nothing but joy.
I am who I was, and yet you respond
As though it were my aim to annoy.
Perhaps there's no why when some untoward wind
Whips away what we hold to our hearts.
Though bitter it be to leave loved ones behind,
It remains the most precious of arts.
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Valentine's for Lovers and for Friends

Valentine's for lovers and for friends.
All my love goes out to you this day!
Love is something different from desire:
Even, silent, peaceful as the sky.
Nor is love interested in means or ends.
There are no selfish needs that it must weigh.
Instead, love's plenitude itself inspires,
Needing neither cause nor reason why.
Each day my thoughts enchanted with you lie.
We Met Four Years Ago While Hunting Deer
We met four years ago while hunting deer,
And ever since that time we've been close friends.
I'm the killer, he's become the bear:
I love the layered message that this sends.
He drives two Chevy GMC's--one black,
And a red one that he calls the General.
Four-wheeling down some bumpy backwoods track
Is what makes him and me most comfortable.
We're buddies, even though a boy and girl,
And through the years our friendship's only grown.
Life gets to you sometimes as troubles swirl,
But he's the best ear I have ever known.
We have, of course, compatibility;
But, deeper, love and rough equality.
We're Never Completely in One Place
We're never completely in one place. Some part
Of us hangs out on streets we barely remember,
Or converses with faces no longer familiar. Or we start
Lunch in June, and sneak off into December.
Every encounter has a beginning, but never
An ending. Like an exquisite ecosphere,
The mind turns each raindrop into forever,
Nor does it allow one word to disappear.
Some evening, years from now, we'll be driving home,
Talking, I in your car, or you
In mine, driving through rich Iowa loam,
Or flowering Jersey suburbs, or Kalamazoo.
It will not matter, as we speak, whether
Our lives are bitter or sweet. We'll be together.

When I Was Young, I Thought You Hung the Moon

When I was young, I thought you hung the moon.
You cast your pleasures through my open heart
And lit my darkness. Then you moved away,
And my world lost its music. All I'd known
Drifted off like ashes, and the moon shone
Madly, as if there were no truth by day.
Now we've found each other, and the harsh
Moonlight of the time when you were gone
Has once again the ambiance of your art.
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There's No Friend Quite like an Older Sister

There's no friend quite like an older sister.
Often when I rummage through our lives,
Memories like orange-colored lanterns
Yield your face, gold against the darkness.
So many times you were what I would be,
Initiating dreams that now are me,
Showing me my youth in all its starkness,
Treating with soft charm my fiercest phantoms.
Each time I think of you, my smile revives,
Recalling when I was your little blister.

To Lose Someone Who's Loved You All Your Life

To lose someone who's loved you all your life,
Having held you long against the darkness,
And felt the press of friends upon your sadness,
Need cutting through your torment like a knife . . .
Kindness is a sign of inner plenty:
Yours does much to mitigate my pain.
Of grief comes neither clarity nor gain
Unless friends fill its passion with their beauty.

To Say Goodbye's Impossible Forever

To say goodbye's impossible forever,
And yet we must too soon exchange goodbyes.
No magnitude of love when someone dies
Can manage the immensity of never.
Yet even death cannot our friendship sever
Though you may rest somewhere beyond our sighs
And all the talk of afterlife be lies.
Eternity is our brief glimpse of ever.
Even as each breeze must alter time
And each unruly rock reshape the sea,
So love lasts beyond our consciousness.
Each pulse of life's a piece of the sublime,
A breath so full of grace it cannot be,
A wave that ripples endlessly through darkness.
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Old and Good Friends Share a Piece

Old and good friends share a piece
Of passion, pain, and pleasure
That no one else, no family can
Begin to know or treasure.
It's as if a secret room
Held their private store,
And every time they met, they could
Go through some special door.
It doesn't matter if they see
Each other every day,
Or years and years go by before
They come and go away:
The moment that they meet it all
Is there--the memories of
Fierce loyalty and times of need
And gratitude and love.
Our Friendship Is as Close as Closest Sisters
Our friendship is as close as closest sisters,
Two flutes with a single melody,
Interchanging runs through changing vistas,
Notes like birds alighting on a tree.
To some, friends are like books upon a shelf;
Yet you to me are like another self.
This music will not stop for other misters,
Nor will it pause for princes, real or elf.
However life may wend, we will be we.

Thank You for You: For Who You Are

Thank you for you: for who you are,
However far away;
And for the words you send to me,
Near mad for what you say.
Knowing simply that you're there,
Yet thinking much of me,
Opens up my happiness,
Undone for all to see.
Thank You for Your Friendship and Your Love
Thank you for your friendship and your love.
However life may turn, this gift will be
A mountain that has made my river bend,
Nor will it flow the same way to the sea.
Knowing you is something I'm made of.
Years will not this part of me remove.
One lives for just a brief eternity,
Understanding truths that never end.
There Is in Friendship Just a Bit of Eden
There is in friendship just a bit of Eden,
Harboring our early innocence,
Acting out of pleasure in our pleasure,
Not calculating cost or recompense,
Knowing the abundance that we breed in.
Your friendship is a book that I may read in,
Opening a truth I cannot measure
Unless it be with signs or sacraments.
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May Our Friendship Last Forever

May our friendship last forever;
May I sail upon your sea.
May we go through life together;
May there always be a "we."
May I be your endless sky;
May you breathe my gentle air.
May you never wonder why
Each time you look for me, I'm there.
May we be for each a smile
Like the warm, life-giving sun;
Yet when we're in pain awhile,
May our suffering be one.
May we share our special days,
The happiness of one for two;
And if we must go separate ways,
Let my love remain with you.
May Poetry Flow
May poetry flow
From your moonlit garden,
From your cool, dark fountain,
Untouched by age.
May your spirit read
The book of life
With the same enchantment
As the child within.
My Tears Are Not of Loss
My tears are not of loss
But of time too quickly gone.
I miss our days together
Even while they're going on.
I savor odd, sweet moments
When you laugh or when you smile,
Nostalgic for your presence
Though you're with me all the while.
Strange how fantasy
Can wander in and out at will,
Looking back from somewhere
That is just beyond a hill.
And so when once you leave
You will not leave me alone,
For I will have you with me
Long, long after you are home.
Of You I Know So Much
Of you I know so much, and yet
Nothing that I know
Encompasses just who you are
Or explicates your glow.
For you I would do anything,
As you would do for me.
Knowing this is breathing life:
Intense, serene, and free.
No one else so touched my soul
Deep in, with charity.
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Just as a Wave Is Lifted by the Shore

Just as a wave is lifted by the shore,
Then breaks across the slowly rising sand,
So as I watch you weep my feelings pour
Across the wash of what I understand.
I wish I could just take you in my arms
And all your pain could melt into my chest,
And all the violence of passing storms
Could pass through me and finally come to rest.
No words can set things right or presence lend
A miracle to light your darkened way,
But there is solace in a loving friend
And comfort in what I don't have to say.
Whatever circumstance you cannot bear,
Just turn to me, and you will find me there.
Let Me Be the Bandage for Your Bleeding
Let me be the bandage for your bleeding;
Let me be the ocean for your tears.
Let me be the secret of your healing;
Let me be the song to still your fears.
Love isn't love that cannot love in darkness,
Nor is it love that turns away from pain;
Nor would I love would I not hold your sadness
And with my love your love of life sustain.
So do not think your malady a burden,
And do not think my willingness deceit.
Just let your sorrow flow into my garden,
And I will share with you the harvest sweet.

Love Is Patient with a Life

Love is patient with a life
That brings its share of pain.
We know sometime there is an end
To the most stubborn rain.
We know the sun comes out again
On a world that's fresh and new,
And all the gifts we freely give
Somewhere, sometime accrue.
We know sometimes we have to wait
For life to come around,
And sometimes that it won't, but still
There's some good to be found.
And even when things happen that
Your soul can hardly bear,
Know that I'll be next to you;
My love is always there.
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I'm Sorry that I Disappointed You

I'm sorry that I disappointed you
And did what I had promised I would not.
Mistakes can often teach someone a lot,
So please give me a chance before we're through.
Of all the punishment for my disgrace,
Regret at losing you has hurt the most.
Recall, I beg of you, this tearful ghost,
Yearning to return to your good grace.
I've Screwed Up Pretty Badly
I've screwed up pretty badly,
And I don't know what to say.
My only option, sadly,
Seems to be to go away.
Only your forgiveness will
Restore this love gone cold;
Redeem a lovely friendship
You and I might have and hold.
It's Been So Good to Have You as a Friend
It's been so good to have you as a friend:
As sweet and rich as honey-colored sun
Slanting steep across a summer lawn,
Gilding life with all that love can lend.
And now that you yourself have griefs to tend,
I want to be the strong and caring one
To count to you the lovely things you've done
Until these troubles pass and sorrows end.
You are so beautiful in form and soul
That you bring happiness to all you're near:
Just as a sea rose, flowering in mist,
Makes a paradise of some bleak shoal,
Turning truth to something far more clear,
No pain unsoothed or rain-swept cheek unkissed.
Julian is a true and loving friend.
Underneath the words there is the heart.
Life is not a table set for one.
If one would eat, one cannot eat alone.
All we have we borrow and we lend.
Nor do I breathe without your taking part.
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I Sometimes Think that I Could Be Alone

I sometimes think that I could be alone:
Really alone, with neither God nor friends.
The people near me then might well be stone:
Just faces on a frieze that never ends.
And I would travel in my mind towards death,
A world within a world sealed like a tomb.
My thoughts would be as silent as my breath,
And, like my breath, expire at my doom.
Such thoughts would make me shudder, were not you
A world where I may enter and find rest.
A rock gives way within, and I walk through
To be in laughing eyes a welcome guest.
Thank God I have you, friend, that I might stay
And be as I could be no other way.
I Used to Doubt You Cared for Me
I used to doubt you cared for me
When love was bright and blue.
We ran like puppies through a field,
But this I never knew.
We both said we were friends for life,
Not knowing what it meant,
Not knowing how to go through hell
And not somehow repent;
Not knowing love was something hard,
Like stone against the wind,
And life itself might be a prize
The heart would leave behind.
But now I know the depth of love,
And it was worth the pain,
Though not for love nor life would I
Go through that hell again!

I Would Not Ask You to Forget

I would not ask you to forget
How I've betrayed your trust.
I'm asking, though, that you forgive
Because I feel I must.
I can't just let our friendship go
Nor let this silence last.
I know I can't undo what's done,
But, please, let past be past.
Let my mistake be memory
Where you may keep your pain,
While I annihilate this thing
I'll never do again.
And let us once again renew
A friendship that is real:
Limping, yes, but still alive,
With wounds that time can heal.
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I Love You, but I'm Not in Love with You

I love you, but I'm not in love with you.
I want your friendship minus your desire.
I would not lead you falsely or betray you.
I feel the tenderness, but not the fire.
I have no reason for my lack of yearning,
No explanation for what I don't feel,
No other love to whom I might be turning,
No anguish to suggest this isn't real.
Passion is a horse that knows no master,
And I cannot with fences make it stay.
It must run free towards daylight or disaster,
Awake to glory in no other way.
So I must say what you don't want to hear,
But it's a truth that both of us must bear.
I Miss You on Your Birthday
I miss you on your birthday,
Not only for your smile,
But for the piece of me that's gone,
Left within your care.
I'm in an empty hallway
And have been for awhile,
Gazing inwardly towards home,
Neither here nor there.
How quickly we've turned distant!
The months pass by like years.
How could friends so inseparable
So soon seem so apart!
How imprecise the instant
Held hostage by my tears!
Though Time may seem insatiable,
I have you in my heart.
I Pray for You and Wish I Could Do More
I pray for you and wish I could do more,
But more I cannot do from far away.
Like leaves before the wind we cannot stay,
Ripped dancing, dancing to the forest floor.
I wish I could your ailing health restore
And bring you to the strength of yesterday,
But all we mortal souls can do is pray
That God might alter what we have in store.
The beauty in our fragile life is love,
The only thing that makes the moment matter,
The golden thread that binds us all in light.
I wish, I wish I could your pain remove,
But like a wall the truth my will must shatter,
And so I send my prayers into the night.
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I Have a Friend with Benefits

I have a friend with benefits,
Whom off and on I see.
While I use her to get my kicks,
She also uses me.
She's not my girlfriend, just a friend
With whom I have some sex.
Too young to love, we play the game
And wonder what comes next.
We try out stuff from porno sites,
Watching what we do
As though we were on film, and someone
Else was watching, too.
Yet somehow, somewhere even we
Still know we yearn for love,
And wait like withered stalks to feel
That wind within us move.
I Know I Must Have Hurt You, Caused You Pain
I know I must have hurt you, caused you pain.
More, I know that I have lost your trust.
I wish I had that moment back again
To pulverize my carelessness and lust.
Sometimes we have to lose what we most cherish
To understand how much we are in need.
We play with life until we nearly perish
To dare the darkness, though within we bleed.
I need you as the sun must have a rose
To turn its empty radiance to glory,
Or as a nation needs someone who knows
The secrets of its long-forgotten story.
I know my need of you more than before;
Thus for my trespass you may trust me more.
I Know It's Only Half a Year
I know it's only half a year
That you will be away,
But it will feel far more than that
Each long and lonely day.
A day without a friend is like
A meadow turned to sand,
A garden turned to weeds and dust,
An ocean far from land.
Time enters a slow-motion zone,
Repeating endlessly
The tearful grimace of the heart
Till you return to me.
I Love You as My Closest, Dearest Friend
I love you as my closest, dearest friend.
Boys and girls can be just closest friends.
There is no passion greater than the one
That touches not the body but the heart.
You mean much more to me than someone who
I date and undate, want and then don't want.
They're the waves, and you are like a shore
Where I can sit and watch them kiss the sand.
I'm sorry I can't be with you today,
When you should rule by virtue of your birth.
Please accept this tribute of mere words,
Poor substitute for all I am and have.
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How Little in Me Is Not Touched by You

How little in me is not touched by you!
A friendship is a light that fills the heart,
Painting with its gold each darkened hue,
Providing warmth to each sequestered part.
You are the mirror of my better self,
Verifier of the best in me,
A bridge across the unsuspected gulf
Lodged between what can and ought to be.
Expectations can be wings, not bars,
Necessary to sustain our flight.
The faith of friends in us is wholly ours,
Incoming to uplift us to its height.
No soul can see itself, but must depend,
Each on each, upon a trusted friend.
I Do Not See You Often with My Eyes
I do not see you often with my eyes,
But often you are with me in my heart.
We rarely speak, but there are deeper ties
That keep us close while we must be apart.
Friendships don't depend on sights and sounds,
But on the mysteries of need and grace.
You're with me always, unrestrained by bounds,
In some sweet field more permanent than place.
And so your marriage is a widespread glory,
Shining on a world of more than two.
All the characters in your life story
Share the happiness that's come to you.
No love but must with all love intertwine:
The joy between you two is also mine.
I Don't Understand What Happened to Us
I don't understand what happened to us
Or why you have turned away.
Of course you are free to do as you like,
But first I have something to say.
To me it had seemed we could go on forever,
So close were our hearts, and at ease,
So much did we share, yet the words never faltered,
So I thought as time did as it pleased.
Whatever I did that has made you unhappy,
Or am that is not to your taste,
Or would be were I to return to your graces,
Or won't be if I am replaced:
I want you to know that your friendship is something
I treasure, and would not now end.
If you would be willing to turn to embrace me,
You'd find in me still a good friend.
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Graduation's Reason to Rejoice

Graduation's reason to rejoice,
Remembering what lies beyond our ends.
And so yours gives occasion to my voice,
Delighting in the gift of being friends.
Underneath your pleasure is my pride,
As yours remains the rock on which I stand.
The window through which I can see inside
Is hung upon the mirror in your hand.
One cannot be one without the other,
Nor can we be ourselves without another.
Friends in High School Are Forever Young
Friends in high school are forever young.
Unchanged, they're where you always will belong.
The crowd is never gone, the pleasure stays,
The music of the moment always plays,
The time remains a field of wistful grace
To which you may return from anyplace.
Of course, you may still know them later on
When you are someone else and years have run;
And you may love them dearly, and they you,
But time must make their friendship something new.
Meanwhile, flourishing within your heart
There is a whole, of which you were a part:
A group of friends, one in love and pain,
In whom your longing comes alive again.
Here Are Festive Flowers for Your Room
Here are festive flowers for your room,
A spray of springtime on your bare night table:
Placed upon a place within your view;
Placed where best to light your harried heart.
Yet my blossoms can't dispel your gloom,
Even were they many times more able:
All that gifts from loving friends can do
Sings just one unaccompanied inner part.
The music cannot come from aught but you,
Evangelist beside the empty tomb
Rejoicing with all innocence and art.
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For Most of Us Life Passes like a Dream

For most of us life passes like a dream,
Revealing only what is on our minds.
Inside the prison of the self we see
Each object as a shadow on our wall.
Nothingness awaits, as sure as night.
Did I not have you, dear friend, I might,
Shadow on a shade, not be at all.
How much we need a word beyond our sea:
In love and laughter, thoughts of different kinds,
Perhaps, with luck, unraveling a seam.
Forgive Me if I Come into Your Bed
Forgive me if I come into your bed,
Open wounds to read therein your shame,
Remove your skin to gaze on naked sorrow,
Tear out your heart to substitute my name.
You wish, no doubt, to keep your personhead.
One we are, and one will be tomorrow;
No one is ever utterly unwed.
Even strangers are one flesh in joy and pain.
Friends Are Prisoners of Expectation
Friends are prisoners of expectation,
Reflected in the mirror of their need.
Instead of being happy on their own,
Each knows that one cannot survive alone,
Nor think unless another plants the seed.
Dependent all for person on relation,
So to be fed, must one the other feed.
Goodbye, Dear Friend and Graduate
Goodbye, dear friend and graduate!
Our golden time is over now,
Our time of nothing more than time,
Days of simply being friends.
But I will always treasure how
Your love for me slipped into mine,
Embracing me where courage ends.
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Christmas Is a Holiday for Friends

Christmas is a holiday for friends,
However they may be, or not, related.
Remember that the three wise kings were strangers
In search of one remote, uncanny dream.
So may we all be far more than we seem,
Together bound for dark and haunting changes,
More lovely for the loves we have created
Along the lonely paths from means to ends,
Stumbling towards that star of Bethlehem.
Daryl Rose and Anthony Are Friends
Daryl Rose and Anthony are friends.
All their thoughts and feelings are entwined.
Regarding the strong message that this sends:
Yearnings can be shared and not combined.
Lives can go down separate paths, with friends
Reaching separate homes, though intertwined.
One waits upon some hour; the other sends
Such candor as with love can be combined.
Each is bound for other hearts, for friends
Are never quite so desperately entwined,
Needing open air and wind that sends
Them word of greater rapture uncombined.
Heed the happiness of two close friends,
Oak-like in their postures, unentwined,
No doubt who hear the hints the cold wind sends
Yet choose to love each other uncombined.
Farewell, My Friend and Confidante
Farewell, my friend and confidante!
As you go, so must I
Return upon the well-worn path
Each soul must travel by.
Wend where you will, my wanderer,
Even as you stay
Long-treasured in my lonely heart,
Loved well, though far away.
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Love Has Never Been About the Genes

Love has never been about the genes,
But about beauty, and unforgiving grace.
The wolf that suckled Romulus and Remus
Had nothing in her heart but wrenching joy.
Oh, yes, of course, love also is a means,
Serving the survival of the race.
But more, it is a longing that redeems us,
An end itself no ending can destroy.
And so it is with mothers who love children
Not of their flesh, but of their nurturing.
The origin fades, the years of love remain
Vivid in the background of a life.
For Rome, the wolf will always be its kindred,
Ancestor who took fate's offering
And made it hers through sacrifice and pain,
The legacy that would her long days light.
Thank You for Loving Me
Thank you for loving me,
Having me in.
All you have given
Now I hold within.
Kid in a vacuum
You made your own,
Or else I had been
Unborn and unknown.*
*Or, "Unloved and alone."
Thank You for Loving Us
Thank you for loving us,
Having us in.
All you have given
Now we hold within.
Kids out in limbo
You made your own,
Or else we might still be
Unloved and alone.
There Are Times when Happiness Descends
There are times when happiness descends
Just like a god out of a clear blue sky.
We make hard choices, not quite knowing why,
Only hoping to pursue our ends.
And yet we cannot see beyond time's bends,
Nor ever know where our true interests lie,
Nor love, and not at times our love belie,
Unaware of what some word portends.
So now the child you once gave up returns,
A joy you never dreamed your life would hold,
And truth so near your heart, at last revealed,
Within you like a sacred fire burns.
Thus sometimes do mysteries unfold,
Restoring gifts that time has long concealed.
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Happiness Lies Just This Side of Heartache

Happiness lies just this side of heartache,
As both are set aflame by one desire.
Perhaps one would best never light that fire,
Pursuing pleasure purely for its own sake.
Yet joy can be as fragile as a snowflake,
Full as oceans, brutal as barbed wire.
All your love is all that you require,
The grace that inundates the granite heartbreak.
How beautiful to take on such a burden,
Entering into contract with the void,
Responsible to some judgmental stranger,
'Ere meeting, for the seedtime of its soul!
Sing, then, of a quest that gains no guerdon,
Dearer far than pleasures now enjoyed,
A journey arduous and full of danger,
Yet sacred for the gift that is its goal.
Happy Birthday, Dearest One
Happy birthday, dearest one,
Sweet child of my heart!
We've become one family,
Of which you are a part.
And so I sing out equally
To all of those who are
Mine by blood or fortune blessed,
No more, no less my star!
We are one in love and joy,
In fondness and in worth,
And so as one we celebrate
This day, your day of birth!
Happy Birthday, Mother of
Happy birthday, mother of
A dream undreamed, unveiled at last,
Portion of a past unpassed,
Part I'd not partaken of,
Yet one in which my self was cast.
Before I knew of you, I knew
Inside myself your whispered word,
Remembering what I'd never heard,
The me that was exactly you.
How glad I am that we now share
Directly that long love unseen,
A gift from you that's always been,
Yet now for me is always there.
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Foster Children Move from Place to Place

Foster children move from place to place
With memories that walk the night alone,
Nor is the love theirs that they must embrace.
Yet most survive with a peculiar grace,
Even though their hearts should turn to stone
As they move about from place to place.
Perhaps within themselves they find a space
To furnish as they would a mobile home,
Finding scraps of things they can embrace,
A memory like some much-fingered lace,
Thoughts and dreams that only they have known,
Moving as they do from place to place,
Their childhood impossible to trace
In the years of yearning after they are grown,
Filled with love they've chosen to embrace,
Yet with their losses etched upon their face,
Pain for which no penance can atone.
How can they move and move from place to place,
Surrendering the love they must embrace?
Gifts Come in Many Shapes and Guises
Gifts come in many shapes and guises:
Apples meant to nurture seeds
Wind up in many strange disguises,
Ministering to other needs.
When a new soul comes into being,
Hope anew springs from the Earth:
No one has the gift of seeing
What new gift comes with each birth.
What brings a young girl savage pain
Can bring joy to a man and wife:
One cannot weigh the loss or gain,
But one can always treasure life.
Life's a gift beyond what we
Can know or understand or say:
There's a nonstop ecstasy
Beneath the hum of every day.
There's a love so radical
That nothing can escape its glow,
Luminous and magical,
Everywhere we are or go.
And so we take this gift of love,
A little piece of it, new-born,
And feel some lovely fortune move
Within us towards eternal dawn.
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Thirty-six sets out on her career
Halftime, with her baby on her mind.
If women are emancipated, still,
Remaining issues wait upon the will,
That tends to track the turmoil of its kind,
Yearnings that can sing and soar and sear.
So must she balance melodies with skill,
Interior harmonies, by love designed,
X-rays of a heart that one can hear.
To the Heroines Still Not Well Known
To the heroines still not well known,
Those who would be famous were they men,
And those whose sunlight never fully shone,
Veiled for life behind men's fear of sin:
Now it's time your tales were well told,
Well past time you got your bit of glory!
We need to rescue you so that the old
Slant no longer skews our common story.
Those who love the truth and know the past
Is never past, that stories steer one's choices,
Will want to look for heroines in the vast
Store of women's lives and hear their voices.
For All That You Have Given Me
For all that you have given me,
I can return but love. For you
Bound up the wounds I did not see
And gave me hopes and passions new.
I can return but love for you,
Whose unmoved faith my heart did move,
And gave me hopes and passions new,
And loved me till I turned to love.
Whose unmoved faith did my heart move?
The mother of my heart, not blood,
Who loved me till I turned to love.
And I became the soul I would.
The mother of my heart, not blood,
Bound up the wounds I did not see.
And I became the soul I would
For all that you have given me.
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I Am a Female of the New Times

I am a female of the new times,
Which means I really haven't any clue.
Men may carry over some belongings,
But women will be altogether new.
Each of us will have to be a sculptor
Carving madly every stage of life.
Our models must be pure imagination
Dancing in the winds of daily strife.
I'm sure there will be much I will regret:
Freedom offers vast fields for mistakes.
But I will spend my time among the mountains
Bathing in the shock of icy lakes.
I know that I don't know what I will be,
And find that total ignorance inviting.
May many of my sisters come with me!
The journey will be painful and exciting.
Dr. Barbara Rubin, in Her Consize and Pity
Dr. Barbara Rubin, in her consize and pity
Re-sent study, has shone
(Regarding mothers and daughters)
Udder facts den dose we taut
Before ye olde chain-male scholarshit was punatrated
(In due coarse) by woe men! recently re-leased from mousehold jaws,
Noing what they new were rested intervests.
Patricia is a gentlewoman's name:
A name that's rooted in the world of men.
The modern version's not what you'd call tame,
Rough on shoes and words. But she knows when
It pays to shift her voice to feminine charm,
Choosing to take weakness off the shelf,
Intimate in order to disarm
A passing lover--and, perhaps, herself?
Sarah knows precisely what she wants
And doesn't have a clue to what she needs.
Revising all the journals of her heart,
A modern woman springs from what she reads,
Her faces alien to the ghosts she haunts.
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You Feel the Fortune of Your Years

You feel the fortune of your years,
I hope. For all your children's love
This day must bring you happy tears
And thoughts that joyful music prove.
I hope, for all your children's love,
There is an island, be it small,
And thoughts that joyful music prove
Beyond what years you may recall.
There is an island, be it small,
Amid the passions of the sea,
Beyond what years you may recall,
Where you in silent grace can be.
Amid the passions of the sea,
This day must bring you happy tears.
Where you in silent grace can be,
You feel the fortune of your years.
You Taught Me How to Love You
You taught me how to love you by
The way that you loved me;
And by your unseen sustenance,
To see what you could see.
You gave to me through who you were
The gift of what I am.
Your pride in me is now my pride;
Your faith, my caravan.
Your life does not conclude with death,
Nor will it end with mine,
For all the lives I touch, you touch,
And so on through all time.
You've Been Everything to Me
You've been everything to me: a father,
Teacher, playmate, model, conscience, friend.
Sometimes I'm not certain why you bother,
If your feelings on my words depend.
I know I haven't been the child I should:
Far from it, and I really can't say why.
I know exactly what I'd label good,
But in the real world something goes awry.
Underneath my actions there is love,
Gratitude, respect, and admiration.
Sometimes I don't know what I'm thinking of,
But I thank God you're in for the duration.
I'm sorry, sorry for the things I do,
But please believe I cherish Mom and you.
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Home Is a Myth That Must Be Recreated

Home is a myth that must be recreated
As every generation comes of age,
Placed by their own children on the stage
Precisely when their fantasies have faded.
Yet one is more than amply compensated
For playing well the well-wrought saint or sage,
As love wells up beneath the camouflage,
The truth that makes the myth immaculate.
How beautiful it is to be a father!
Emperor forever of a dream
Repeated through the labyrinths of longing
'Mid memories more true than what has been.
Sing, then, of myths that tie one to another
Deep beneath the bulwarks of belonging,
As tales begun before the words begin
Yet fabricate the worlds in which words mean.
You Are Our Knight in Shining Armor
You are our knight in shining armor,
Pilgrim of our plea,
The Atlas for our wounded world,
Our rescuer at sea.
You are the pillar of our hopes,
The deep bass of our song,
The strength that underlies our strength,
The calm for which we long.
You came into our house of dreams
And turned it into truth,
Entering at just the point
Where yearning shatters youth.
What could motivate someone
To bear another's load
But that most beautiful of lights,
The inner lamp of love.
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To the Father of My Children

To the father of my children:
Open up your willing heart!
Take what music I can give you,
Hearing, too, my silent song.
Even as, arrayed in passion,
Finding love, I play my part,
A wonder like a wind whips through me,
Truth unknown for which I long.
How beautiful, this unspent yearning,
Ever for the darkness burning,
Rising like a summer storm!
To My Man on Father's Day
To my man on Father's Day,
On whom my life depends,
My children's cheerful champion:
You are where yearning ends.
My paramour and harlequin,
All I want, and all I can
Not want and be OK.
To My Dads on Father's Day
To my dads on Father's Day,
On both of whom we both depend:
My daughter reinvents my themes.
Years pass, and well-wrought love remains.
Dads are saviors, straight or gay,
Always where our oceans end,
Deliverers of desperate dreams,
Solid land where sunshine reigns.
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The Things You Taught Me I Will Always Know

The things you taught me I will always know.
How could I not? The roots have sunk so deep:
All lessons of the heart that I will keep
No matter who I am or where I go.
Kids learn from what their parents are, and so
You are my book of life, the thoughts I reap;
Only in your arms I quiet sleep;
Under my words your voice sings soft and slow.
From you I learned the rules of right and wrong
Against which I at times had to rebel,
Though with regret I carry with me still.
How lucky I am to have been loved so well,
Even as I pushed against your will,
Relying on a father fair and strong.
Though New at Fatherhood
Though new at fatherhood, you're surely not
A novice at the art of giving love.
With quiet tact you find the perfect spot
Among the needs of those whose hearts you move.
I never feel you slight me, even though
At times your time for me of need is slight.
Though working long and hard, you seem to know
Just how to make our son feel loved each night.
These gifts you give I know cannot come easy,
Although they seem to flow so easily.
You have a lovely air that's light and breezy,
That says: I get from you more than you see.
And so I am in awe of what you do;
You love so well that I love you well, too.
To Be a Good Father, What Must One Do?
To be a good father, what must one do?
First one must love, as the sun warms the Earth,
Nourishing those to whom it gave birth
With radiant pleasure and joy ever new.
And what then, my father, must a good father do?
Then one must give of oneself, as a rill
Flings itself carelessly down a steep hill
To fill up a hollow with heaven's sweet hue.
What next, my father, must a good father do?
Next one must gird up one's loins to protect
Those who might suffer from want and neglect
Were one not loyal, and to one's vow true.
Is there anything else a good father must do?
Yes, there is much more that cannot be said,
Addressed to the heart and not to the head
Of one who desires that passion to view.
But ah!, my dear father, that one is not you!
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