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Our Collective Muses - ChrisTuna

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© BZ Leonard, 1999 All rights Reserved.

Dirty Haiku

by Jan Klute

Firelight flickering
Naked hips undulating
Flesh flows together.

On my knees at the
Altar of love worshipping
Holy with my mouth.

The Path to Lorien

by Nathan W. Garner

From over the hill came a breeze,
stilling my anger and granting me peace.
Tugging me onward to a place unknown,
never faltering, never slowed.
Urging me onward, my ethereal guide,
with gentle nudges and silent sighs.
Through a meadow to heavens glade,
a place of love our dreams hath made.


by Michael Levy

Awaken To a new dawn,...
I stretch to Infinity n' reach Beyond the Stars,
In an instant I return,
filling every tissue, sinew, with Joy,
I feed the nectar of life, into each molecule and cell,
The mind and body embrace Divine love
Through the eye of time I see eternity,
Life in life shine bright,
Shine the torch of majestic light,
Find the path to my universal frame,
So I may bask in the wisdom of pure potential,
Guide my hand to write your words.

Biker Scum

Roadside Diner, just up ahead,
in front, a primo spot.
Backed in my scoot,
laughed at my boots,
"more dirt than leather," I thought.

Wasn't exactly very well scrubbed,
been one hell of a long, hard ride.
A burger sounded good,
and, if need be, guess I could,
take my grub and eat it outside.

Once inside, those classic stares,
that sets me all aglow.
Was it, "No Good Bum,"
or "Biker Scum,"
which touched my heart just so?

The 'ol waitress who worked the joint,
probably from day one ...
thought, for sure, was gonna shout,
"grab yer gloves and get the hell out!" ...
smiled and said, "Help ya son?"

I smiled, she winked, told me, "Pay 'em no mind,"
She gave me a Coke,
told me a joke,
said, "Sorry hun, aint got no suds."

She took a break and sat by me, reminisced awhile,
about a son,
her only one,
how I kinda had his smile.

Her eyes welled up, as she went on,
of how he loved to ride.
I held her hand,
said, "I understand,"
"It's a feeling deep inside."

Orders were up, she had to go,
"I too have to run,"
On my way out,
she barked at the crowd,

©Copyright 2000 Laurence P. Scerri

Salome Dancing For Herod

By Doug Tanoury

If I was in the great hall
Of the palace
Watching Salome dancing
For Herod
I too would marvel
At movements
So erotic and executed
With animal precision

Her heaving breasts
Swaying pelvis
The white waves of her skin
Moving in soft undulations
Across her abdomen
And I smile knowing
That the king and I
Are both drunk with dance

And the beat of the music
The rhythmic flashing
Of bare thighs
Naked belly
Awaken the pagan in me
Who knows that lust is to love
What poetry is to prose
A sensual awakening of sight and smell
And sound and taste

And I would swear too
At that moment that the bounce
In each breast
Was worth the heads
Of a hundred prophets
And is more moving to me
Than the words
Of all the holy men in Judea

And I Am

By Doug Tanoury

And I told her
Matter of factly
That indeed I am
A poet of naked breasts
And that umber nipples
Centered in amber aureoles
To me are pupils
And Irises that serve
As windows to the soul

And I went on to say
Confident and self-assured
That I am too the bard
Of the bare thigh
That to me is nature revealed
Tan like the underside
Of sycamore leaves in fall
Softly wild and untouchable
As a sleeping doe

And I concluded by saying
That I am a lyric that can versify
The plump lushness of
A pale ass
In still-life form
Like so much fruit
As if it were a honey dew melon
Sliced in two and resting
On the kitchen table

At The Waldorf

By Doug Tanoury

At the Waldorf
Where desserts are done in art deco
And abstractions in chocolate
Twist in many shapes
Everything is golden

The lobby a cathedral
Large and brightly lit
At a table draped in white linen
Like an altar prepared
For solemn High Mass

I study the ceiling
Done in Greek revival
Where reliefs of nudes
In white plaster
Resemble marble

At the Waldorf
Where words are whispered
Like prayers of the devout
At an altar
Draped in white vestments

And in gilded murals
On Peacock Alley
Where I see a sugar-coated sunrise
Over the rundown landscape
Of the far eastside

August Rain

By Doug Tanoury

I remember an August once
When I could talk to him
But didnít and each word unspoken
Rested like a brick on the silence
That lay thick as a layer of mortar
And grew into hardness between us

These dayís I think of him
Mostly when rain falls in gray sheets
With a soft hiss as droplets
Paint the pavement with color
Of an overcast sky and collects
On the road in pools in brought to full boil

In summer storms with the
Sound of thunder on my skin
I recall in the airís smell and
The wind cool in my hair
An August once when rain fell
In mortar gray hardness on our silence

Habeas Corpus

By Doug Tanoury

Years from now when I am gone
And you sit at the kitchen table
With people who never knew me
Show them this so they will know

That I was touched and slightly
Giddy with the silly art of poetry
That to me was harmony and
Melody floating everywhere

They should know too that with
Eyes and nose and mouth and ears
And every organ that ties us to the world
That I love you and it grew and multiplied

Like fission in the nuclei of cells and
Was carried in corpuscles speeding
Through capillaries toward lips and
Fingertips and other body parts

That celebrate a passing touch

As Much As I Hate My Death

by Ward Kelley

The rope is more like twine...
it twists and cuts the skin of my neck
as they drag me past my door...
my wife and babies follow, screaming,
and I see she has forgotten to hide them
from my death... even though we spoke
of it many times.

I know these townsmen, I have lent them money,
yet I do not know their souls...
I cannot stand the cries of my wife
and babes, and their shrieks cause
my own eyes to tear as the twine
jerks my neck across the yard,
toward our small orchard...

Before they tie my hands, I form
the sign, moving my fingers on both
hands, yet I am not certain my wife
has seen me do it... she must
stop her screams long enough
to see the sign we have discussed...

It is my message to my children
that I have forgiven these foolish
neighbors... for as much as I hate
my death, I must not ruin my children's
lives with such hate... they must know
I have forgiven, forgiven, and they
must learn to live from this final gesture.

My hands are bound... they throw the rope over a limb and yank me... yank me... I think I see my wife signal...

Bice... of Dante's Soul

by Ward Kelley

The passion of the point: it is where
I dwell, where I believe, and the place
where I want to bestow my flesh...
it is an endeavor, you know, this
cadence of the skin as it spreads
across the words; always we have a need
for sensuous words, as they are where
we breathe.

You have to learn how to shake out
this passion, learn how to allow it
to conduct its words across
the parchment of your flesh...
this is seldom a sensation
that can be taught, but rather
it must be learned over the decades.

Save me... save me...
I know I follow this fleshy course
all the way to the termination,
and it is there that I find
the back end of my soul
who looks ahead into the desires
of the next life, the next point,
the next way to save what is left
of me, placing myself like a florin
into the repository of eternity.

The Greater Value of Dung

by Ward Kelley

There is one proper cure for your gout,
which I will inscribe quickly on this
parchment... then your swelling
will subside, and your pain lesson.

Yet there are more important issues
concerning your body which we should
consider... I worry about the poor confidence
exhibited by the pallor of your skin...
it expects to age and discolor and decay.

I take concern in the nonchalance
of your bowels who unthinking
will remit all that is good of the earth
directly back to the soil...

Then I note your obnoxious bones,
whose leers are seen on every battlefield
and cemetery... never once does one
view contentment on the jaws of naked skulls.

And in the end, there is seen the melancholy
of your soul, the one human element
beyond the reach of my medicines...
yet in my observations of souls,
I find the happiest moment is in the spirit's
release from the dung of the earth...

and in this do we not find the greatest
cause for hope right there,
right in the grip of fear,
right in the very death
we all spurn?

"Heaven Is Never Hidden"

("At that time Jesus felt extremely glad in the Holy Spirit and said, 'I praise Thee, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because Thou hast concealed this from the learned and intelligent and hast revealed it to babes! Yes, Father, for thus it is pleasing in Thy presence!'" Luke 10:21)

heaven is never hidden from children who play at life
like it's the only apple on the tree,
they hear pigeon wings,
they watch butterfly maneuvers,
they converse with angels and make room for Jesus
in their swings

they conquer with laughter what adults fail to
move with their serious chatter,
their precarious planning for tomorrow,
their uneven placards loudly denouncing allowances
and differences,
their conversations with small circles on tethered phones
that leave Jesus out
in the cold

holiness is never missed by children who gain more by joy
than ever earned by shouted truth
or abrupt uprightness;
they learn from dances in daisyfields,
drink from undistilled pleasures,
inhale each moment unashamed of before
and unfettered by after

deliverance is always present at the side of their simple-joy,
uninquiring hugs, unstudied trust, and unconditional acceptance
of the moment's unveiling of Jesus
in their world

wide-eyed and waiting,
mark p.


As a little boy with no stress or care.
I said, look mom, there is a loose tooth here.

Mother looked and then said,
"Son that tooth must come out of your head.

"Come here and we will tie a string to it and see,
if that tooth will come out just for me."

"Now close your eyes and sit in this chair,
I will tie to the door knob and soon will be there."

There I sat worried about nothing more,
and suddenly mother jerked open the door.

The tooth popped right our of my head,
it was lying on the floor instead.

I looked at mom and begin to holler,
but mom said, "Son we just saved a dollar."

Russell Nelson


by Duane Locke

I must learn.
No you cannot learn,
It must be given.
I must be given the magic word
To turn you, bubble of water into a living girl.

But I cannot speak.
I am afraid and silent.
I cling to what is not
And the clinging protects me.
I cling to what does not exist
And the clinging sustains me.

Possible girl, can you understand my struggle,
My weakness.
I am weak because to be strong makes one a fool
And brutal.

A turnstone upturns a stone,
The word under the stone
Leaps out of the earth into my body.
I have a word to begin you, to speak you.
The summer legs of the turnstone
Send a quivering red reflection
Across the bubble you are.
The red reflection is the beginning of your lips
I have the words to begin you, girl now water.
I look at the beginning of your lips,
Every hair on my arm vibrates.


by Duane Locke

I must find words.
No, I must be given words
To speak and bring you, girl of water,
Into existence.

An oyster shell embedded in a black rock
Tossed back and forth in the foam
On the edge of an expended wave
Gives a white glow that is the beginning of your teeth.
A moonshell breaks through the sand,
Leaves clumps of white sand that form a circle.
The circle awakens me to another word
Needed to create you.,
The seaweed has become your hair;
Your hair dangles in the air.
Your hair dangles and seeks a shoulder.
I must speak the word.


by Duane Locke

I have been given words
To turn you bubble of water
Into a living girl.,
But I must have more words.

The words are blocked,
Because my past returns.
My education has taught me
To believe lies and not true words.
I have lost my confidence.
I hear my ancestors speak
Cruel and false wisdom.
My ancestors invite me
To spend my living days
Buried in the cemeteries
Of their cherished words.
Why can't I break away
And create a living girl
Out of the foam on the seashore.
Why cannot I abandoned the clock
And touch time.
Why am I such a fool
To repeat the wisdom
Of those who own swimming pools,
Tennis courts ,who have destroyed
A space of earth where
The least terms used to nest.
And hatched words for poems.


by Duane Locke

I am now deprived by the return
Of civilization to my body.
I am as tight and constricted as the sea anemone
Attached to an empty whelk shell
Tossed by a wave out of his true home, the gulf,
To land on a smear made by a shoe on the sand.
I'm once more a citizen, an upholder of ruins,
A perpetuator of destruction.
The blessed vultures no longer
Give me instructions on how to live among the dead.
The holy ibis no longer teaches me how to fly with words.
As a citizen I'm shut off from all sacred things,
Insults multiply in my blood.


by Duane Locke

Let the sea gull drop me on a stone,
Crack this shell, my ego, my enemy.
Let me spatter, spread over the earth.

Let me live as the wild flowers live,
The wild flowers whose white blazes out of pine shadows,
The wild flowers illuminated by stripes of the sun coming through pine needles.
But I'm still lost because I have an address.
I cannot wander aimlessly between
The shadow of the osprey and the shadow of the eagle
And be given words.
I am opposed
By the habitual thinking that inhabits my body.


by Patty Hiner

Words are such powerful things,
The rush of emotions they can bring.
Your words can hurt me so,
Bringing me up so high, or down so low.
Online, all that you can judge by,
Are words on a screen that are typed.
You miss all the nuances and expression,
From talking to someone in person.
I know there are times that I misunderstand you,
And I know you have misunderstood me too.
I try to not take things so much to heart,
As I donít want to give you the power to break it apart.
Even on here, as in real life,
Feelings are fragile, words can cut like a knife.
So please be careful with what you say,
You might really hurt me someday.
Kiss me once in awhile and hold me close,
Tell me I am needed, and whisper sweet prose.
Let me know if you really do care,
Your feelings, I do wish you would share.
These things my heart needs to know,
Will your words take me high, or bring me low.
Honesty is what I want from you,
Just be careful about the words that you choose...

Haunting Dreams

by Patty Hiner

You haunt my dreams at night,
You look so good and feel so right.
You kiss me softly and whisper in my ear,
All those sweet words that I love to hear.
I quiver with excitement at your touch,
Wanting, needing, craving you so much.
I feel so safe and happy in your strong arms,
Just love me, keep me, never do me harm.
In my dreams I can see,
I am everything that you need me to be.
You cherish me, as I cherish you,
Our love is complete and true.
I wish I could just sleep my life away,
And live in my dreams with you everyday.
I like my dreams better than the reality,
In them, you still want and love me.

Winds Of Change

by Patty Hiner

I feel the winds of change blowing my way,
Clearing away the clouds for a brighter day.
This is a scary thing for me,
As I have always just been content to drift along aimlessly.
I have grown and learned so much this past year,
As I have had to confront my insecurities and fears.
I have bared my soul and heart,
Had it mended and ripped all apart.
I have been pushed and prodded, forced to think,
Walked to the edge, been to the brink.
I think that now is the time,
For me to reach up to the stars and begin to climb.
My friends have made me realize, that maybe I can be,
The person that they all seem to see.
I am making slow but steady progress here,
We shall see what I can accomplish within this next year.
I am looking at life with new eyes, and a fresh point of view,
Hoping to start living my life anew.
To those of you who let me see what I looked like through your eyes,
I love you all, those of you that are still here, and those of you who havecut your ties.
I don't know what the future yet holds in store for me,
I just hope that a better person I will be...


by r nelson

A step through the door
Gravity all nonsense now
Falling home, smiling.

Paper Ballots

By J. Kevin Wolfe

We elect wrapping paper
(No spit all polish)
(easily seen

because we don't
know what
could be lurking
in opaque

So we vote the wrapping paper
of our conscience
(unless there's namesake
in Dad's wrapping paper)

The only issue is charisma
(What else?)
A smile, not too toothy
(we don't want bite)

We don't want policy
just heartfelt bravado
(Oh beautiful
for empty words)

Always fearing
that any more substance
(than a spangled balloon)
might tip the static quo

Picasso's Dora Maar and the Village Idiot

By J. Kevin Wolfe

I like your picture Dora Maar.
I would know you from it anywhere.
Your green-red-rose, pale-white skin
a flawless union
awash in morning yellow.

"I don't look normal."

Your forehead is unafraid
of your steelgreen hair.
Obedient in front
and disciplined behind your shoulder.
It is the choppiness of the Mediterranean
against a long deep pier.

"You are a handsome idiot."

Handsomeness is an attribute of idiocy.

"All I ever wanted was beauty."

You may have mine.
I would rather observe
the conversation of your eyes
that stare into each other.
One salmon, one white
as if you have two souls.

"Only an idiot could find me beautiful."

I find you perfect as a picture.
Traipsing red nails on rigid fingers
direct me to your lyric clef ear
like an invitation.

"If one finds me beautiful
no other critic matters."

When I first saw your picture I wanted
to kiss its strict nose with two left nostrils
and free you from your sleep of canvas.

"I long for your dumbstruck, perfect lips
pressed against the one blandness of my face."

Obtuseness is all that's worth kissing.

Satan's Minions

By J. Kevin Wolfe

The devil is flanked
by sixty seven thousand
eight hundred two in-
surance salesmen 'cause only
God can market certainty

The Tree Watches Over The House

By J. Kevin Wolfe

Hundred years ago
mama oak stood alone
in the summer
of a big flat wasteland

A someone
cut her knees
roughed her into boards
there chunked a human birthplace

Right beside mama
acorn grew
until the sharp summer sun
never pierced a window

yet he blocked not a stream
of genial light
in the razor air
of a January morn

Long as she stands so will he
as the tree
watches over
the house

the prospective model

by J. Kevin Wolfe

come to my room
i have some grapes

they are wine in adolescence
red and green
blood and innocence
in this tiny fingered orb

hold it to the light
see the veins and freckles?

i place the other half
between the promise of your lips
you bite
i'll kiss the sweetness dripping
from your chin

come to my room
i have some life

copyright © 1999 J. Kevin Wolfe

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