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Selected Poems of Steven Curtis Lance

Displaying Poems 1 thru 25 of 2779 Poems

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Nov 19, 2017, 3:52 pm

Fred the Red

for Elma Palad Belen and her students at
Pantabangan West Central School in the Philippines

The night I met Fred
He climbed up on my head
I was quite smitten

Fred the Red my kitten
A long time ago
But for a long time though

I was at my worst
And hesitant at first
But had to agree

He kept me company
And so that was that
He was to be my cat

In my studio
In a cold treehouse then
The old house again

Fred the Red got me through
What I had to do
Before he had to go

I was going mad
Best cat I ever had
And then he was gone

But I know he went on
Was sent and was meant
Wherever he may be

Wherever he went
To be a part of me
Though we are apart

Though they said he was dead
Here he is instead
Becoming poetry

Written in my heart
My kitten Fred the Red

Steven Curtis Lance

Nov 19, 2017, 12:41 am

Is a rarity

But the thing
More than anything
Of many
Things before any
Thing I seek

How I want to see
And to be
Now the thing for me
What I got
For my trouble but

Is not for the weak

Nov 17, 2017, 8:34 pm

The Hard Way

What happened here
Was anger and fear

Met cupidity
Liked what it saw
And made it the law

So here we are
Having gone too far

I have no doubt
The truth will come out
Will overcome
Tomorrow will come

But for today
We learn the hard way

Steven Curtis Lance

Nov 12, 2017, 9:22 pm


Living through catastrophe
Has given me the point of view
Of to be or not to be
So I know what to do

I know this is time to be
More than it ever was before
And so this is time for me
To spread my wings and soar

Instead of giving up I
Am going to live up to what
Is instead of what is not
Why not instead of why

Seeing as how thoughts are free
To fly I thought I ought to try
Seeing how to be from the
Perspective of the sky

Steven Curtis Lance

Nov 10, 2017, 1:23 pm

For Getting and Not Forgetting Me

for my friends

My existential whiskers resist
The top of my head getting bare
Otherwise to my surprise I exist
Getting on now but getting there
Not knowing what to do but persist

The southerly migration of my hair
Getting to be an offering
In the letting go of everything

But with other things to think of
Until I am not I will be still

Being myself doing my thing
Wanting to be happy in the end
Despite the nightly shadows hauntingly
Taunting me to be or not to be
I am the offering I bring

Having withdrawn and gone on to transcend
And send my friends my poetry
For getting and not forgetting me

So here it is with all my love
Take it and make of it what you will

Steven Curtis Lance

Nov 8, 2017, 11:03 pm

All That Really Matters

Having been disappointed by
The nonsense I was taught
I let go and thought I ought
To get the point myself so I
Went off to find out why

What it all meant anyway
To be or maybe not to be
Not just to come through it
There must be some meaning to it
To get or else forget it

Having to learn the hard way
It turns out I could not
Forget what I recall of it
After all that made me stay
For the end and not regret it

Having been through all of it
Now that this is it I get it
How it is us humankind
As we find our humanity
Being human being kind

After having been around
Before I go I found
The meaning between you and me
In the in between of
Us I found what it means is love

When reality shatters
Love is all that really matters

Steven Curtis Lance

Nov 7, 2017, 6:29 am



Subsisting on rice and ramen
Untouchably un-Brahmin
Maybe Illuminati though
Not a Nazi heavens no

But just a German Lutheran
Doing the best he can
Uncommonly uncommon
Son of a hitman one who may
Be un Mafioso

Out in the wilderness now
Falling through all the cracks somehow
Persisting through the hard way
Always resisting anyway

Insistingly being me
Subsistingly but free


I always thought the world would end before I died
Because of how they taught me then (or they tried)
At a church that seems now to have been about fear

But the world and I are both of us still here
All of them dead I wonder what would they have thought
I hope the world survives but know I will not

They thought I was crazy and they were right but wrong
About what the world was about all along
Out of my mind yes but the world was on my mind

How they taught me then (or they tried) died when they died
But I am still here now too crazy to be
Afraid having made my decision to transcend

To live for love giving away poetry
Grateful to the world for what it has given me
Hoping to make us both better in the end

I bet they were surprised crossing over to find
It was love all along for our humankind
That it was all about but that they left behind


This is the hour when the dogs bark
When the birds fly across a sky
Showing its colors before going dark

Under it wondering here I
See faraway stars start to spark
This is the hour when why not becomes why

This hour of opportunity
In the in between of to be
Between day and night is no time to die

I want to live and to embark
Through the dark for light I might see
At this twilight hour the right time for me

Anything can happen because
This is the hour now when it does

Steven Curtis Lance

Nov 6, 2017, 2:26 am

Before I Go

I know old people always say
This but I will anyway
Mad as I am I ought to know
Everything is crazy now
Outside my head as in somehow
I see this and I worry

Never this bad before though
My memory is not the best
This late hour but even so
May it get better for the rest
Having lived to see this may
I live to see some better day

May it come before I go
But it had better hurry

Steven Curtis Lance

Oct 30, 2017, 6:13 am

Hallowe'en Reality Show

I find myself at a very
Disquieting time to be
But I suppose it always was
Heaven knows it was for me
Though I forget and yet it does
Make this Hallowe'en scary

At least to me not least because
All the people on TV
Running the show make me wary
Make me wonder if they know
This is our reality
And not their reality show

Until I find the remote
About all I can do is vote

Steven Curtis Lance

Oct 28, 2017, 4:01 pm

To Rise and To Fall

May this kleptocracy
Of cruelty fall
Of its own weight to fate
Through what does not wait
To the past by surprise

May the people rise
Up at last after all
With hope in our eyes
Ahead and not behind
Seeing big not small
Opening up again

May we seek and find
Ourselves becoming kind
Being humankind
Is how the people win

Not like this has been
This kakistocracy
Too tacky to be
Attacking you and me
And the ties that bind

But with an open mind
With an open heart
Together not apart
Now in the fall when
The wheels of justice start
Turning after all

Now may it all begin
To rise and to fall

Steven Curtis Lance

Oct 28, 2017, 8:03 am

For You

I was a very unusual child
Some thought I might be devil-possessed
With something scary and wary and wild
Others on the other hand thought might be blessed

With something extraordinary
In the semblance of resemblance to my
Father the hitman but it was I
Was a very unusual child (very)

I always knew he wrote poetry too

Wary of being misunderstood
I kept to myself and wondered about
Understanding things I wondered if they could
I had to go the hard way to find out

My mother on the other hand always knew
And still does from the other side when
I am feeling misunderstood again
But my mother taught me what to do

And so Patricia Lance this is for you

Steven Curtis Lance

Oct 25, 2017, 4:46 am

We Can Do Better Than This

Although I know it appears
To be going backward now
Reality in arrears
To those who chose yesterday
Forward is the only way
It knows how to go somehow

Although it gets bitter here
In the dark where we have been
Hope finds strength in what is right
Wronged but stronger through the fear
Opening minds overnight
Rising will surprise again

Until more and more find out
Better through the getting worse
Of the fewer who still miss
Out on what the universe
Means for us to be about
Love is what it means to be

Love the light by which we see
We can do better than this

Steven Curtis Lance

Oct 23, 2017, 12:15 am

A Spark in the Dark

I always knew what I wanted to be
In my lonely haunting of reality
Wanting only to be a poet when
Young and hungry to become somebody then

For it to come true I had to go through
With what I had to without what I had to
Leave behind to find what I had to find
Out about love had to go out of my mind

But having gone through it came true and now
Who and where and what I wanted this is how
Alone but not lonely if hauntedly
I want to do my best for the rest of me

To say what I mean and for it to mean
Something to somebody in the in between
Of seen and unseen between me and you
To live for love giving myself to be light

I always knew what I wanted to do
If only for this rising moment to shine
A spark in the dark otherwise tonight
Seen through other eyes between these lines of mine

Steven Curtis Lance

Oct 22, 2017, 3:55 am

I Love Hallowe'en

I love Hallowe'en
And have the eccentricity
Of using an apostrophe
From one E to the other E
In the in between

Jack o' lanterns and
Masks and makeup and monster feet
Asking for handouts trick-or-treat
Up and down both sides of the street
But you understand

You remember too
Before November winds blew in
That night reality grew thin
And magic brewed between us then
What we used to do

You know what I mean
I love Hallowe'en

Steven Curtis Lance

Oct 18, 2017, 9:20 pm

In the End

Having never been before somehow
It was now or never so I chose now
Better now than I have ever been
Having ended up beginning again

Not bitter about how it turned out
Now that I know what I learned the hard way
Mindful I had to find out about
How love is the only thing that matters
Even when reality shatters

I wonder but understand in the end
What I am here for is to transcend
To be more than ever before today
All I ever wanted anyway

Steven Curtis Lance

Oct 14, 2017, 6:58 pm

Shades of Us

with thanks to Guy Lance on the other side

My mother had brown
Eyes my father had blue
The brown was passed down
To me the blue passed through
To my daughter then
Two brown-eyed sons again

My Grandfather Lance
Was a poet like me
In the desert he
Had blue eyes that could dance
Knowing what they knew
At one hundred and two

About Lancelot
Camelot and old days
That were made always
In shades of us that got
Passed down from the old
To the young red and gold

Or Gules a Fess Or
For after our before
Shades of us in eyes
Of love in brown or blue
That have seen a lot
And I have seen it too

Love I recognize
In eyes to see me through
Seen through me too in
My eyes to rise again
Having been passed down
In eyes of blue and brown

Love is what we get
And what I have gotten
From unforgotten
Shades that do not forget
Shades that are not gone
But in our eyes gone on

Shades of us and of
Unforgotten love

Steven Curtis Lance

Oct 13, 2017, 11:59 pm


This tacky kakistocracy
Being embarrassing as
It is unhinged is cringeworthy

All the worthiness it has
In its illegitimacy
Mocking lost democracy

The worst and not the best of us
Punishing the rest of us
Unhingedly cringeworthily

Idiocracy came true
But nobody knew what to do
About who is you-know-who

Each day more impeachment-worthy
25 45 please
Whatever it takes anyway

Anything but please not these
Shenanigans of day-by-day
Cringeworthy indignities

Mueller please hurry up before
He gets us all killed this way
Whether by worry or by war

Until the day comes someday
When we will not cringe anymore

Steven Curtis Lance

Oct 7, 2017, 8:30 pm


for Franziska

When I knew I had gone mad
The rest of the way finally
Then is when I saw I had
Been sadly had been badly wrong
After all and all along
So took a look around to see
I had found the other side
Of my erstwhile reality

Looking at it from outside
I decided that I was free
Having fallen through a crack
In my erstwhile society
All the way with no way back
Through a fun-house one-way mirror
Into my interior

I found myself after the fall
Gone through the mirror one way
On the other side of the wall
Where the unseen can be seen
More clearly here in what I call
Being in the in between
With nothing left to prove at all
To anyone anyway

Seeing things but also seeing
In between them what they mean
Between these lines of mine being
Myself and seeing what for
Doing this thing I know how to
Better than I did before
I fell through that crack and broke through

Out of sight and out of mind
Out of the mind I left behind
Glad to be if I had to
Be to see this breakthrough of me
To do what I am glad to
Do but I had to go mad to
Having to go mad to be
Free to do what I had to do

The hard way but what I get
From it is this and this is it

Steven Curtis Lance

Oct 4, 2017, 4:16 am

Universal Kiss

I had to let myself go to know who I was
And what to do about it anyway
Having lived over winter given over to
An unexpected entering of spring

I found myself childlike but knowing what to do
This time around here when here is the thing
Some things I regret but most I forget because
My second childhood spring is underway

There has to be a reason for me now as I
Return for this second season to see
How it goes knowing how going on to know why
To be at this late hour or not to be

I found out on my way out my way out is in
Ready to go already having gone
Through winter to enter spring again and go on
Ready to be already having been

The lessons of the universe return until
We learn them (the hard way if we have to)
In winter then I knew when spring was coming through
Asking will you learn to answer I will

And this was the answer I had missed until then
Learning the hard way returning again
I found I had to give up to live up to me
The first time around I was mistaken

Then shaken awake when everything was taken
From me but this childlike simplicity
When the how of somehow becomes now forever
This becomes it more than ever before

Learning how it turns out to be now or never
This is it then at the what of what for
What I missed returned with a universal kiss
I learned my lesson the hard way for this

Steven Curtis Lance

Sep 27, 2017, 4:28 pm


The jackrabbits are back today
Leaning in habitually
Inclined to be italicized
Backhandedly toward what they mean

Seeing them be I realized
Today the way they always lean
Headfirst their ears inclined to be
Forwarded through the in between

As realized by the surprised
Factually actualized
Aslant into reality

When being here then seeing where
A little bit ahead of me
They are already being there
From here to there in nothing flat

In interdimensionally
Habitual jackrabbitry
Jackrabbits in their habitat
At the Hi-Desert hideaway

Glad to see them I had to say
The jackrabbits are back today

Steven Curtis Lance

Sep 16, 2017, 5:28 am


The wind was blurring a cloud
Slurring the words of the song of a bird
Singing it in a swinging tree
Being transcendental right out loud

Unafraid to sound absurd
Used to acoustical anomaly
Bringing its song along to me
The long way where I was there and heard

I might not have understood
The words in the end it sang in the wind
But heard it was out to transcend
Like I would too and that sounded good

When the wind blew in the night
And a bird remembered what I forgot
We transcend in the end or not
I thought a lot and knew it was right

The wind might blow me away
Already away I am ready here
I might appear to disappear
But I go on going anyway

Steven Curtis Lance

Sep 11, 2017, 5:31 pm

Something For My Trouble

Sometimes there has to be trouble before
The bubble pops and the mind sees more
Clearly about what the trouble is how
It nearly always was but for now
Trouble is not troubling me anymore
Having passed some sort of test somehow

Roughed-up and toughened by enough of it
To get what was sent and meant to get
A troubling of the mind all the way down
To find myself mindful or to drown

Having gotten through a lot of regret
Learning the hard way not to forget
With nothing to prove for better or worse
Being approved by the universe
To be as transcendental as I can
For the rest do the best I can do

Withdrawn but not gone and better off than
I was before trouble taught me what
Is ultimately real from what is not
Learning the hard way is turning out
Well for me now gone to hell coming through
Knowing not to be going again

Gone on but not gone going on to grow
I always wonder never quite know
Looking out for trouble looking for me
It took a lot of trouble to be

I can see why now it had to be how
It was because of how it is now
Coming through madness overcoming doubt
About my being and doing this
Learning it turns out the way out is in
Something for my trouble anyway

Coming the hard way I might as well stay
Wondering under this midnight sky
Never mind heaven but heaven knows I
Tried not to be but curiously
Found myself out of curiosity

Being like this too curious to miss
Seeing what the trouble was about

Steven Curtis Lance

Sep 8, 2017, 8:57 am

No Fear of the Dark

for Franziska


In my December I remember when
The thunder said turn back and I wondered
Forswear thy foolish ways is what it thundered
I wonder now again like I did then

I remember now how I was somehow
No turning back going wrong all along
Knowing but learning the hard way I was wrong
In my December I remember now

Though mad being glad I remember what
Is real after all seeing what is not
Sadder but wiser they say but what I say
Is when I was born it thundered that day


In corners better not to look
In consequence of a chance they took
In parallel reality

In an existential irony
In there without toxicity

In but not out of proximity
In where to be is not to be
In belittled little boxed-in hell

No vacancy in the roach motel


I had to choose between the Bruckner Third
Symphony on the radio
Or else what I thought was this bird I heard
That I had never heard before
Hearing it appear out the kitchen door

Having to choose to stay or go
Out and about to know or not to know
Unheard what this bird had to say
The dogs and I wondered but understood
Go out there no doubt Bruckner would
Still be on the air until afterward

Though they knew I had heard no bird
But misheard some flute in the symphony
Become a bird and fly away
The dogs were glad to go out anyway
To know or not to know with me


The light is so bright it hurts my eyes
The moon tonight rising to my surprise

O moon take me up too as you rise
To wake up the night shake things up like you
Seem to do O moon enlighten me
Wake me up fearless like you seem to be

No fear of the dark to frighten me
Surprise me and make me surprising too

Steven Curtis Lance

Sep 1, 2017, 4:57 pm

Ending Up

for Marisol and Bowser

No collars and no ties
Nothing binding us
No dollars but no lies
Nothing blinding us
So never mind the fuss

A sensitive snout
Or two out and about
As three of no doubt
Of one sensitive mind

Two old dogs and I
Amid a midnight sky
Follow our noses
To desert primroses
Whenever we find
Them opening their eyes

Out at this late hour
With fate reminding us
We two old dogs and
One old man understand
Us three of a kind

Transcending like we do
Soon the sun will rise
Through a lot but not through
Not yet anyway

Ending up at our
Hi-Desert hideaway

Steven Curtis Lance

Aug 30, 2017, 9:12 pm

Only Love

Having been a fool is how
I know not to be now
I know because I was what
I learned the hard way not
To be the way a fool does
Before it got too late

It got better so I was
Better late than never
Got better not bitter fate
Bloomed later than ever
Unexpectedly said yes
I guess nevertheless

Grown a little wiser at
The end to my surprise
Now that this is it and that
Is that I realize
In the ever after of
What matters: only love

Lonely though to get to know
To love is to let go
But it grew and it came true
In unexpectedness
What I got that got me through
Lots of meaninglessness

To get through what I had to
I had to love a lot
But did and I was glad to
And love is what I got
Having been a fool I learned
By having love returned

Not having expected it
Not having dared to feel
Having rejected it it
Was there and it was real
I was a fool to deny
What I know now is why

In between reality
Love is what it means to be

Steven Curtis Lance


Displaying Poems 1 thru 25 of 2779 Poems

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