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Selected Poems of Steven Curtis Lance

Displaying Poems 2126 thru 2150 of 2786 Poems

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Dec 27, 2005, 9:47 am

Riding the Riddle

Rhyme is not a prison but a puzzle
Not to confine but refine and define
Not for the weak but that by which we speak
As by megaphone and not by muzzle
Meaningful pattern turns in the right hands
Water of prose into poetry's wine

Yet rare is the poet who understands
The true gravity of this alchemy
Heard in the silence and seen in the dark
Squaring the circle the taming of time
As practiced by madmen bearing this mark
Riding the riddle and gaming the rhyme

Poetry chooses some few for its will
Never loses nor refuses its thrill
To those who dare to answer it like me
We who claim the call then inherit all
Of poetry returning what it gave
Changed and exchanged saved by that which we save

Enslaved by poetry to be made free
As part of everything even if small

+Steven Curtis Lance

Copyright MMV

Dec 26, 2005, 10:23 am

Two Hearts Will Understand

For all the wrong words which wound and lay waste
A poem is an act of redemption
For all the things said heedlessly in haste
A chance to say it right an exemption
An opportunity to speak to light
Cosmos out of the chaos of the night

Wherein we say in our most perfect way
Considered reconsidered thought about
That which we wish we had said yesterday
And though a little late the truth comes out
Clarified rarified into our best
Hoping that others will forget the rest
All the imperfections of life and speech

Since we never know the right thing to say
Till after the moment after the test
A poem is a letter in which each
Word has been chosen with the utmost care
We can only hope someone will be there
To read the words we meant in the first place

So go on and write a poem for me
Say things you could never say to my face
Two hearts will understand ...and destiny

+Steven Curtis Lance

Copyright MMV

Dec 24, 2005, 11:17 pm

The Silent Singing

Echo of a winter night
When creation listened
And the daystar gleaming bright
Like a diamond glistened

From beyond the starlit sky
Comes the silent singing
Soundless echo from on high
Through the ages ringing

Once aloud in silent field
Shepherds heard those voices
Still in silent hearts revealed
Still the night rejoices

From beyond the starlit sky
Comes the silent singing
Soundless song to never die
Endless ages ringing

+Steven Curtis Lance

Copyright MMV

Dec 24, 2005, 12:03 am

Kept Reality

You say reality is true
Yet never bother to explain
What true means and even should you
Stoop to speak of it still disdain
To answer questions if you do

Since you refuse to face again
That true reality which grew
There in the dark you always knew
Would never ever go away

But throbbing closeted all night
Coils cocked to rock your world someday
Once it escapes out into light
When reality brings you to
This closet where you keep your fears

Where you have kept me all these years

+Steven Curtis Lance

Copyright MMV

Dec 23, 2005, 7:22 am

Of Nietzsche God and Mermaids

Nietzsche is dead yet God persists
The lonesome town is falling down
The aching heart remains resists
Unsinkable and will not drown
Despite the cold steel efforts of
The cabal of conformity
To suck originality
From what we are and what we love

The shaking of their angry fists
Seems impotent in retrospect
If these damned fools are the elect
Who mark us down in little lists
Then dig up Nietzsche and ask him
What we should do in times like these
Descending with the cherubim
Into triumphant vanities

They do not speak for God to me
I swim with mermaids and caress
Their shining skin and feel God bless
Us in the sea since on the land
The Hitlers of hypocrisy
Who never say thank you nor please
But only hate and make a mess
Would not could never understand

+Steven Curtis Lance

Copyright MMV

Dec 22, 2005, 12:20 pm

Christmas in The OC

Orange County, California, USA

Eighty degrees for Christmas and not a cloud in the sky
The surf is fantastic and I have some plastic which I
Intend to spend on gift cards at Starbucks this afternoon

The government reads my emails but I still have the moon
They tap into my telephone but I am not alone
If they can get their rocks off without taking their socks off
Then glad to be of service nor do they make me nervous

As Christmas comes again to The OC it comes to me
I can handle whatever the government cares to send
My reality will never break because it can bend

I deal with insanity by practicing poetry
I jump right in and do it and it helps me get through it
To write a poem about it to make you smile awhile
Christmas in The OC you see is a matter of style

+Steven Curtis Lance

Copyright MMV

Dec 20, 2005, 3:34 pm

A Stone to Mark the Mile

I have been Christmasing a little while
And been pleased to find presents left for me
Tonight a bag of pecans brought a smile
Like my presents did when I was a kid
I found a nutcracker in the pantry
And brushed up on my nutcracking technique
With Christmas coming the end of the week

One of my sons has hidden presents here
I had better not mention what they are
Should his recipients read this I fear
It would snatch surprise from their curious eyes
But I can feel the sparkle of a star
Rising on the horizon of my heart
I am ready for the magic to start

Today I think my new book will arrive
And that always excites me even now
Things like new books make me feel so alive
With Christmas present power at this late hour
I never grew up in that way somehow
And when I get that package it will be
A Christmas present from my poetry

I feel like it will all be worth it when
I hold that gathered harvest in my hand
If you make things too you will understand
That my work at last will be finished then
A little while: a stone to mark the mile

+Steven Curtis Lance

Copyright MMV

Dec 19, 2005, 1:58 am

Happy New Year to Us!

As a gentle gentleman of letters
I have reached a point of repose of sorts
Having outfoxed the worst of my betters
Snug in my foxhole immune to the snorts
Of those who resist happy holidays
If we should dare to speak the wrong greeting

Those supermen who ever and always
Know what is wrong with us without meeting
Without ever bothering to listen
To what any of us lost souls might say
As on their brows their anointments glisten

They seem to have shut up and gone away
So it seems feasible to me that we
Who have at their hands known heartache and fear
Having survived all their mischief might see
Happier days in the coming new year

That half-empty glass looks half-full to me
Since were it not for hope the heart would break
And given self-fulfilling prophecy
Those who give up on hope make a mistake
And we can ill afford another one
This year we have all made enough of those

But soon we will see a new year begun
I can see hope if we keep on our toes
The only way is up (since we have done
About as badly as possible) so
Happy New Year to us! Our future is now

My brothers and my sisters here we go
I believe in us and want you to know
I have a good feeling about us somehow
That we can do it that we will get through it
With style and with grace with a smile on our face

And as for our masters? Agree to disagree
Look forward and not back nor let us regret
Our annus horribilis anomaly
Some of us are on a roll and I will bet
No matter what has happened the best is yet
To be for you and me: the best is yet to be

+Steven Curtis Lance

Copyright MMV

Dec 17, 2005, 12:18 am

Riding the Rainbow of Reality

Day by day the lessons of life are drawn
Complicated designs in lines of grey
Form patterns for this rainbow we ride on
The rainbow of reality is made
Moment by moment until we are gone
Of colors in every value and shade

Black and white minds shout no and turn away
Insisting on the certainty they paid
For being made for platitudes of power
Swimming upstream like battleships to spawn

Set to devour us this colorful hour
Disdaining those who dare to disagree
With their official myth agreed upon
Draining the color from you and from me

Drunk with power they think themselves so clever
But since their eyes see only black and white
Their vision is so narrow they never
Can understand until it is too late

They are the past now and we are their fate

So smile awhile now in the rainbow light
It is just a matter of time until
We are free and we see the victory
Which was ours all along and is ours still
A living spectrum colorful and bright
Riding the rainbow of reality

+Steven Curtis Lance

Fiat justitia ruat mundus: fiat lux

Copyright MMV

Dec 16, 2005, 1:16 am

Christmas Crossroads

So close to Christmas and so far away
From everyone from everything tonight
I fear both life and death and so I stay
If tentatively with the door in sight
In the midst of it all decking the hall
With forty feet of garlands my daughter
Gave me when she surprised me and brought her
Encouragement her strings of sparkling light

I must gather myself arrange my face
At least buy gift certificates somehow
Some way or other get through this with grace
If I can then it will be over now
Before I know it I must not show it
Not this darkness not this terror I feel
Not this shadow which lurks within these walls
I have something tangible to embrace

The love of my children honest and real

In the light of their love the shadow falls
Because of how they look at me that way
It dries the dark to nothing in a smile
A tender hug which makes me want to say
I might just have to stick around awhile
To see how things turn out in a new year
Which could only be better than this one
There are those who love me who want me here

The shadow falls: my Christmas has begun

+Steven Curtis Lance

Merry Christmas

Copyright MMV

Dec 14, 2005, 10:53 pm

Hand on Holiday

I woke up this morning my right hand did not
My left hand remembered my right hand forgot
But has remembered something is wrong with me
Making it challenging to write poetry
Being distracted neurologically
Which is about as logical as I get

I keep waiting for it to wake up and yet
Watching this hand write as though it belonged to
Somebody else entirely and not to me
Is a worthwhile if unsettling thing to do
An alternative perspective certainly
Not artifice nor literary device
My numbed flesh-and-blood right hand makes me think twice
To make this estranged member work properly

If I am dreaming and wake up suddenly
Then you will never read these lines because they
Will not be written into the light of day
But if you are reading this my hand is numb
A fascinating foretaste of things to come
At least I finished my seventh book somehow

I guess my hand has gone on holiday now

+Steven Curtis Lance

Copyright MMV

Dec 12, 2005, 5:30 am

Behind Enemy Lines

a survivor struggles to survive

What is it about me makes him hate me so?
God knows he is a piss-poor poet
He reminds me of my Uncle Jack I know
And the people who know me know it

That same dark anger which destroyed my childhood
All the torture the being misunderstood
Is all brought back to me in flashback
This man might as well be Uncle Jack

Of course Uncle Jack never wrote poetry
Hated my father because of that
But now when I encounter the bigotry
Of this man I only see the fat
Flushed sweating fury of Uncle Jack again

Something which was locked away breaks loose
He triggers me he opens that box of pain
Bearing the broken bones of abuse
Which I have kept locked like Pandora these years
But what comes out now is pity: no more tears

+Steven Curtis Lance

Copyright MMV

Dec 11, 2005, 1:33 am

Existential Togetherness

I have a few on whom I can depend
Other people come and go and hurt me
But I have three great kids and one great friend

As fickle and flighty ones desert me
I count my faithful few and find these four
Quite enough really and I ask no more

Of course one can never have too many
Should you like to become my friend come on
Years I wandered without having any
None anyone could ever depend on

But I am blessed now and not complaining
I wish those who have come and gone the best
That these four know me without explaining
Means everything and never mind the rest

Now that I think of him I should add Fred
Without my fat old cat I might be dead
By now but all of us made it somehow
This far because of what great friends we are

As sure a thing as one can find in life
A surer thing than wealth or health or wife
And yet I am ultimately alone

But let me pretend now as I descend
Now as I slip into the great unknown
I have a few on whom I can depend

I realize that maybe tomorrow
My friend might leave me and cause me sorrow
So this is it then irreducibly:

My kids and my cat are just stuck with me
Three kids a cat and possibly a friend
Which is still pretty good if understood

+Steven Curtis Lance

Copyright MMV

Dec 9, 2005, 10:01 pm

For Patricia Lance and Mildred Graham

My avocado tree is wide and tall
Heavy and massive a hundred years old
Here in December the great green tears fall
When wind breathes warm or when rain drizzles cold
I cannot bear to think it is in pain
No they are tears of solidarity

I think of those I loved and lost again
My tree knows this as trees know everything
And lightly drops these green gifts down to me
I gather them as the morning bells ring
The bells which counted out the mortal span
Of those who lived and died beneath this tree
So we are all alone now tree and man
And who knows of the future after all

I have never tasted merely gather
These our green treasures dropped down from the sky
From the soft bed of leaves and would rather
Give them to somebody else who will die
But who is alive now along with me
I pass along these tears of man and tree

Under the lawn forgotten but not gone
Evergreen avocado tree and me

+Steven Curtis Lance

When this you see remember me

Copyright MMV

Dec 9, 2005, 9:00 am

Cross the Rainbow Through the Sky

I have tried to seek my heart
Words combined and recombined
I have sought to speak through art
Emotions defined refined

I have struggled toward a start
Of a journey with no end
Knowing that I am going
With only one span to spend

Going yet not knowing where
Showing as I am growing
Hoping to share with a friend
Words which fly away like birds

These pieces of me you see
Blow away like leaves in fall
When we get there we will share
Shattered heart-shards after all

Having learned at last to fly
We will know when we get there
Cross the rainbow through the sky
Taught to care and not to care

What it means to live and die
When we get there you and I

+Steven Curtis Lance

Copyright MMV

Dec 8, 2005, 2:43 pm

Bush League Endgame

Once their best were sly spoke seductively
And their hair was just-so no matter what
Their lesser lights reasoned deductively
Both worked from a script they never forgot
Though they never governed productively
Dividing us into have and have-not

But their complete control has frayed undone
Scooter got in trouble and the bubble
Has sprung a leak and is ready to burst
The beginning of their endgame begun
The Bush League's woes are about to double
Three years to go from bad to worse to worst

What a fuss they once made of a blowjob!
Small stuff next to this supersized snowjob

We can only guess as it falls apart
The scope of their staggering corruption
We always knew they were not very smart
But now this unfolding interruption
Will reveal how they lie and cheat and steal
As well as their being incompetent

Not only to govern but to repent

Hey Bush! No one believes you anymore!
You could have really done some good up there
But turned out to be a ruling-class whore
You got to the top then you went nowhere
And you took all of us along with you
To pay for every stupid thing you do

Time for the Bush League to leave the field now
As the rest of us muddle through somehow

+Steven Curtis Lance

Copyright MMV

Dec 7, 2005, 3:39 pm

The Red Book of Lance

A spark in the dark to set the world on fire, words of flame cried in the wilderness by a madman who is damned to tell the truth, The Red Book of Lance is fourteen dozen of this modern master's meticulous poems introduced by his physician and illustrated with cover portraits by his son.

Darker than his other books yet brightened by flashes of mad humor, the work reflects the gravity of the times, speaking prophetically of political change and social evolution.

This seventh book of Lance is a distillation of deep meditation on life and madness, the world and the universe, the self and others, and the journey of the soul.

In The Red Book of Lance the poet breaks out, breaks through, and means to change your mind: burn baby burn.

+ + +

The Red Book of Lance
Is a most useful thing
It shows how to dance
Out of that suffering
Which given the chance
Eats away at the soul

Now I choose to live
And to suffer no more
Let destiny give
Me something to live for
Let there be someone
To share this life with me

Since this book is done
And I find myself free
Now I dare to explore
With another to love
What I shunned before
What I was afraid of

I open the door

+Steven Curtis Lance

Copyright MMV

Fiat justitia, ruat mundus: fiat lux.

The Red Book of Lance is ready now, available all over the world on all the Amazons and other book websites, on order from bookstores, or you can get it from Lulu at these links:

http://www.lulu.com/content/201148 (Softcover Edition, $10.00) or http://www.lulu.com/content/209506 (Hardcover Edition, $20.00).

Dec 6, 2005, 10:48 am

Silent the Snow: A Christmas Carol
warm wishes from my heart to yours

Silent the snow
The song sweet and low
Soft on the lips of the tender maiden mother
Straw on the ground
The beasts crowding round
Offer their warmth to the Son of God our brother

O Alpha and Omega
O Bright and Morning Star
O Jesu de Maria
How beautiful you are

Crystal the cry
Of angels on high
"Glory to God in the highest and on earth
Peace and good will"
Rang bright through the chill
Swift ran the shepherds to see their Shepherd's birth

O Alpha and Omega
O Bright and Morning Star
O Jesu de Maria
How beautiful you are

Splendid the song
Of right over wrong
Life over death and true love transcending sorrow
Happy are we
Who have eyes to see
The light in the darkness that we rise tomorrow

O Alpha and Omega
O Bright and Morning Star
O Jesu de Maria
How beautiful you are

+Steven Curtis Lance

Copyright MMV

Dec 4, 2005, 8:29 pm

Universal Intimacy

At peace with the past
The future unknown
This moment alone
First only and last

The observed interchangeability
Of humankind seems to agree with me
I live and let live with all or with none
One person seems as good as another
This one a sister that one a brother
Without possessiveness or jealousy
All are my family many and one
As I would not a slave nor master be

Entangling alliances have hurt me
In the past so at last I have evolved
To where I enjoy them all equally
No muss no fuss and the conundrum solved
In practical pleasant propinquity
No winners no losers no one to blame
No means no ends and six billion good friends
Nothing stops nor begins the world just spins

In our universal intimacy
Getting up with Jack getting down with Jill
Is one and the same except for the name
If one will not love me another will

At peace with the past
The future unknown
This moment alone
First only and last

+Steven Curtis Lance

Copyright MMV

Dec 3, 2005, 8:43 am

Chicken Hawks

They are completely hollow
And then they are filled with sh*t
With just a little black hole
Where most people keep their soul
And no heart as you can tell

They order us to follow
But they are so out of it
They never know where to go
As they march us into hell

The last hope for tomorrow
Best and brightest led away
Sent by cowards to the fray
While we are left with sorrow

How many will die today?

Chicken hawks who know no fear
Lead our children from the rear
To glory six feet below
Only leaving us the bones

Can you see why we throw stones?

The chicken hawks never will
If they had a mind it would
Be made up and locked for good
Death the exit strategy
Until everyone lies still

Snug and smug behind their doors I see
Chicken hawks living dangerously

+Steven Curtis Lance

Copyright MMV

Dec 2, 2005, 9:51 pm

Nobody But Me and Everybody

Reaching for personal intimacies
Left for dead in an avalanche of debt
Straining for everlasting verities
Left alive with existential regret

Losing my money and feeling funny
But not in a way which could make me laugh
I am alone but the sky is sunny
Better off free without a better half

The biological imperative
To perpetuate and to multiply
Would seem to last as long as we men live

But having played my part in this now I
Enjoy the company of those who were
Perpetuated so successfully

Back in the days of family with her
The mother of my children who was wise
Enough to remarry to my surprise

Which I thought I might do myself but no
It was not to be at least not with she
Who is someone else's trophy now so

Nobody here but me and poetry
Nobody but me and everybody

+Steven Curtis Lance

Copyright MMV

Dec 2, 2005, 2:03 am

Of Diamond Stars on Blue Velvet Sky

I like to read poetry which asks me
Questions and causes me to wonder why
Things are as they are like a shooting star
Crossing my mind to leave the world behind
And I also like for poems to be
Like meditations or ruminations
About the nature of reality

Of diamond stars on blue velvet sky

Sparkling in autumn when the nights are clear
A sky just meant to be for poetry
When Santa Ana winds are blowing here
For the lovers as their warm breath hovers
Between those stars up there and you and me
The breath of the desert from far away
Breathing magic through the night by starlight

Warm and cool at the same time as in rhyme

I like poetry which helps make me free
Which inspires me like that breath of the wind
I want to share in this freedom with you
A freedom no government can rescind
And so I will write and so I will fight
I hope you will come along dreaming too
As we make dreams of poetry come true

+Steven Curtis Lance

Copyright MMV

Dec 1, 2005, 6:01 am

To My Smug and Smirking Masters

You can haunt and hurt and hate
Belittle me and judge me
But too little and too late
Now you can never budge me
For fate manages this stage
Nor can you eradicate
That which I leave behind me
You can never close this gate
My children will remind me
That long after I am gone
In a better brighter age
Truth and justice will live on
Past your impotence and rage

You cannot stop history
You are doomed to fail and fall
And you never will stop me
As I triumph after all

You imagine you have won
The people hate a bully
They will rise and turn on you
They will study war no more
Nevermore to be your slaves
They will win what I fought for
As the dead cheer from their graves
And you will never fully
Understand what hope can do
Until this good work begun
Which I undertake today
Will be done with you undone
When the stain is washed away

You cannot stop history
You are doomed to fail and fall
And you never will stop me
As I triumph after all

+Steven Curtis Lance

Copyright MMV

Nov 30, 2005, 9:07 pm

Fighting Back

I won six dollars in the lottery today
And I only spent a dollar so it was good
The house wins unless you know when to walk away
So I took it as a good omen understood
And with a new spring in my step went on my way
Marveling that this was only one of many
Lucky breaks after a long time without any

The first paper-white narcissus of the season
Bloomed beautiful and fragrant sprouting from a crack
In the hundred year-old concrete of my driveway
Before the winter spring has made an early start
Another good omen and just one more reason
To dare to dream again and begin to fight back

As now with all my heart I want to do my part
Anything I can do to end my people's pain
That is what I will do and I hope you will too
Today I go out naked into the hard rain

The conservatives all turn themselves inside out
Making such a to-do of the A. C. L. U.
So I joined today and made a contribution
That should give them something to rage at me about

Sick of oppression of the many by the few
I decided it was time for retribution
So I also became a Democrat again
Moving from Decline-to-State to committed blue

I want to be free and with those who stand with me
Shoulder to shoulder struggling for lost liberty

And even if we fail and nothing comes of it
If this injustice reigns forever unopposed
By those with the power to make the pieces fit
And these minds like steel traps remain forever closed
At least there were a futile few of us who tried
Fighting back to honor the blood of those who died

+Steven Curtis Lance

Copyright MMV

Nov 28, 2005, 10:32 pm

Avocados and Pomegranates and Crystal Meth

On this startlingly sparkling autumn day
I went out in my backyard and I found
Two big ripe avocados on the ground

I never eat them but give them away
Left in a shopping bag for my neighbor
Who gives me pomegranates in return

I never eat those either but I learn
Dynamics of friendship trade and labor
Backyard fruit becomes currency exchange
Barter economics if rather strange
Practiced with green and red commodities

Avocados and pomegranates are
Coin of the realm in neighborhoods like these
Subtropical fruitful communities
Trading in subtropical oddities
Nobody here keeps their fruit in a jar

I only wish I had an apple tree
Now there is a fruit on which we agree
If I had apples I would eat them all

A crazy man came screaming down our street
Pushing a shopping cart and pulled by death
Shopping for something which we do not grow

And somewhere within his bone-chilling call
I heard somebody who might like to eat
A pomegranate or avocado

I also heard the cry of crystal meth

But he was so angry he scared me so
For now it looks like I may never know

+Steven Curtis Lance

Copyright MMV


Displaying Poems 2126 thru 2150 of 2786 Poems

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