Abandoned in a Manger & Going to Hell Might not be such a Long Trip

There is no need for an introduction. No allegory, No hidden meaning. Just two of my narrative poems.

ABANDONED IN A MANGER

The infant was left for dead – forgotten by fate.
Music of her mausoleum birth was a choir inside the vacant cathedral.
Infancy happened within the tabernacle’s stench of decaying timber.
She was beneath the crunch of crumbling plaster.
Her birth announcement was scrolled by times deformed signature.
Within a sacred, musty darkness, she’d arrived.
Garbled in her robe of shadows and solitude, she was.
A dank, breaking day chased her chanting sobs.
She was whelped there in that corner – there, squint your eyes – there.
There, where bloodied, second-hand swaddling decomposes.
Rotted cloth ovals merge with rotted lumber.
Clumps of viscid afterbirth once clung to planks of termite-infested flooring.
By now the straw has disintegrated.
It was told how she’d been left for dead – history’s homily corroded prior blessings.
A stranger wailed an operatic solo of pain when joined by the infant on that morning.
It became a duet of weeping, or was it the lamb gently baa-ing?
No matter, she had heard what she’d heard, and felt what she’d felt.
Stabbed in half, her umbilical tether was carved.
A handheld paring knife has sliced.
Concern was gone when severed – but then, she was left for dead.
She was only alarmed by a chilling breeze as it snuck through a boarded window’s crease.
Bright stars paled toward a maiden day as she struggled in death’s opposite direction.
Living was a flashy lure in front of her surrender.
Life lulled, twilight provided white vespers, as she continued.
Her entombed heart ticked its shallow drumming, while limbs batted shivering flails.
Silhouettes were cast, as if they were a dozen thrashing hummingbirds.
Wizened flesh would not become a delicacy to be ripped by gnawing fangs of roving rats.
Their scurrying feet played hurried hymnal scales over keys of mosaic glass.
And chords lifted from rusted tin.
She was alone in the audience.
Newspaper accounts would verify the birth – no psalmody was added.
Breath would not be pilfered by oily rags that corked her mouth, it was reported.
But had her gag been gathered away by a phantasmal savior?
Had her moans expelled the obstruction from a raw and choking throat?
Was death repelled by a sneeze of survival – the facts were unknown.
This condemned building was not earth’s altar emptying itself of answers.
This house of worship once was filled with a genuflecting parade.
It was not muted with rubble, and leaning walls were purged of truth by time.
A wrecking ball, with chiming globe, demolished the hollow, skeletal structure of her origin.
Investigations reveled she was left for dead.
No room at Metro General; no room – no room at all.
No room at Memorial Hospital; no vacancy – no room.
No culprit and no crime remained.
A commission of sin had faded into ethereal oblivion.
Wiped away by season was the evidence that rain had melted.
Gone is the blessed holy water, gone – all gone.
An offering lingers, embracing yesterday’s secret creed.
What canonicity solves the attempted murder?
What answer locks itself beneath the scriptural grace?
She knew the chant was there – she knew the prayer by heart.
Worn away by years, blaring city squalls seem out of tune – but she hears them yet.
She recalls a time when they were together alone for the first and last time.
That time when she was nearly murdered by the song of sadness.
That time where her eyes turned blue and she was abandoned in a manger.
Among yesterday’s debris, she was left for dead.
She often listens in on the lyrics of her birth.
She sees the video replay, and touches nearly worn-away fear.

GOING TO HELL MIGHT NOT BE SUCH A LONG TRIP

Going to hell might not be such a long trip, the street person contemplated.
With pulse beating, and through a wheezing gulp of air, she waited for the next installment.
Although lassoed to a problematic life, she searched escape.
Or perhaps more correctly – she retreated.
The thin, haggard woman recognized one thing early on – death is a brutal poacher.
We are, she considered, a wall of people buzzing around our own existence.
We don’t select ear caning, or being placed on a rack.
No fire is friendly fire.
Rights are not secured by past glories.
And fate contributes to what we are – and we make us who we are.
Our calling cards are locked away – lost as we turn out our pockets.
The emptier the pocket, the more precarious the days.
Although life is provisional, earth is no guaranteed cornucopia giveaway.
She wondered if the wheels on her chair would rotate fast enough.
Racing the red light always left her breathless.
Just as fear had left her a few years ago.
Her lungs were as dry and empty as they’d been on dusty marches.
Those processions included exploding bombs – buried with alacrity and precision.
Now, as she gasped for air, she acknowledged she was only combating a traffic light.
And an angry driver telling her to go to hell.
Hell was a location she already knew intimately.

COPYRIGHT Poetry of Kieran York

Please check out some of my other poetry in a collection called Wet Violets, Sappho’s Corner Poetry Series, Volume 2. edited by Beth Mitchum. Books are available through http://ultravioletlove.com and Amazon.

If you’re interested in romantic fiction, please check out Appointment with a Smile by Kieran York. Books are available through www.bluefeather books.com. Or order through Bella Books distribution for books or e-books. Books and Kindle e-books are also available through Amazon.

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Prelim Insights on Book Creation…

There is always more than enough to do with house, yard, my trusty schnauzer – Clover, correspondence, watching and interacting with my nine great-nieces and nephews, etc.

I’m between a major project (book writing) and next major project (book edit) – and it is a book heavy on my mind. Although it will probably be out Spring of 2013, I wanted to share my preliminary thoughts on this book.

It is titled Careful Flowers. I began writing it a couple years ago, and it is a story very dear to my heart. All an author’s writing becomes important, if not – how can it be important to the reader? As most writers know books of fiction become personal – and we think of them as family. Selecting a favorite is difficult. I’ve come to conclude that each of my endeavors is most loved when I’m writing or rereading it.

When the growing of CF began blossoming in my mind, I felt it was something very important that needed writing. As it began blooming, it took on its own meaning and messages. Uncertain if it would be of interest to my publishers, I wrote only fifty thousand words. But more was needed to be said.

I am so blessed! Blue Feather Books courageously takes chances on controversial material. With my last book, AWAS, Blue Feather Books published a romance about a senior Sapphic woman.

After submitting CF, I was encouraged by Blue Feather Books to write an additional fifteen-thousand words, expanding on my universal messages. They are bravely willing to publish controversy.

Fleur Hamilton is a botanist, is in a relationship, and finds crossroads before her. Life isn’t as simple as she had believed before she entered her fourth decade. For me, her story was written through my own obsession to detect and relay historical truths. Love, hatred, kindness, evil, and the decency of both forgiveness, and remembrance, became my starting point.

A manuscript that means so much to me was expanded to allow the flowering of my completed fictional treatise. Interweaved with the main character’s emotional journey, a tour of history is included. It takes her on an odyssey to discover both her personal past, as well as her unique humanity.

She locates her true past as she glances back into the unwrapping of her parent’s Hippie Era. She more importantly uncovers her beloved aunt’s understanding of both love and hatred, as the world of a Holocaust survivor unfolds. And as these two worlds converge, Fleur Hamilton locates herself.

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If you’re interested in romantic fiction, please check out Appointment with a Smile by Kieran York. Books are available through www.bluefeatherbooks.com. Or order through Bella Books distribution for books or e-books. Books and Kindle e-books are also available through Amazon.

Please check out some of my other poetry in a collection called Wet Violets, Sappho’s Corner Poetry Series, Volume 2. Edited by Beth Mitchum. Books are available through http://www.ultravioletlove.com and Amazon.

LOVER WOMAN

I preface this poem with a message. “Lover Woman” is about someone in my past. 

I think it takes viewing the early days of a poet, to understand the updated version of poems. And so, I’m inserting a days-gone-by poem. I have also written another poem to this woman, which was included in Wet Violets, Sappho’s Corner Poetry Series, Volume 2. Edited by Beth Mitchum. The poem in Wet Violets is titled “Bluejean’s Youth Blues.”

It is one of many poems I’ve written for her over the years. It was self-delusional to have lent my heart to a Sapphic butterfly. Perhaps it better prepared me for understanding the relationship in which I am happily involved. .

The book I refer to in the final lines of this poem, is a book written, yet not published. I hope one day it will be. For knowing BlueJean, as with every brushing touch of life, impacted me. She is someone every woman who loves butterflies should know. She is indeed a lover woman.

I have been blessed in my lifetime to have known many wonderous women. In my past, yes.  And I’ve never been more blessed than I am at this very moment. 

For now, regressing –

LOVER WOMAN

BlueJean extracted my vow.
I was to write poetry by taking a direct line
through my heart and soul.
Then, I was to dedicate that trek to her.
The heart is a muscle
and the soul is perhaps softer than air.
What path was it through my beating sack of a heart?
What trail leads across my mystical, compartmentalized soul?
My lover woman’s description defied explanation, or excuses.
I’d witnessed some of her casualties with grumbles on their lips.
She’d left sad women in her wake.
Those poor left-behinds warned me with garbled, static messages.
Warnings told me to beware.
Rational inquiry didn’t help irrational decision.
There was the passion of her.
Her smiles deflected my doubt.
Caresses were not platonic.
We’d both maneuvered away from love’s clutch.
So taking a chance on a bad bet was a two-way gamble.
Answers came in mildly adequate proportions.
Depth, width, breath, and mystery were all visible.
Audible were her words, philosophies, and hidden gazes.
We pointed toward the skies and swore on constellations
we would remain within one another’s hemisphere.
Communication was from her skin to her soul.
She’d unlocked; then I unlocked.
Belonging was an exploration into sensory paradise.
We were both blatant transgressors in the land of love.
She taught me nothing is absolute.
We undressed; we occupied one another’s loneliness.
I’d believed in inertia.
We were saturated with our garbled thought’s best promise.
We believed, at least until morning when our star-ride ceased.
My Lover Woman’s previous Love Stats had come and gone.
That was little consolation for either of us.
However, I later wrote a book about her.
It was a love story of BlueJean and when I was part of a 1970s band.
The promised poetry would come later.
COPYRIGHT Kieran York
From BlueJean’s Sonnet

Please check out some of my other poetry in a collection called Wet Violets, Sappho’s’ Corner Poetry Series, Volume 2. Edited by Beth Mitchum. Books are available through http://.ultravioletlove.com and Amazon.

If you’re interested in romantic fiction, please check out Appointment with a Smile by Kieran York. Books are available through www.bluefeatherbooks.com. Or order through Bella Books distribution for books or e-books. Books and Kindle e-books are also available through amazon.

Writing Appointment with a Smile: First Glimmer – Senior Sapphic Sensual!

Recently I received a review of my latest book, Appointment with a Smile. It made me consider my good fortune. All my reviews have been wonderfully supportive of my writing a romance about mature senior Sapphics.

Some writers are very nonchalant about reviews. I am no such thing. Are you kidding me? I devour them, memorize them. Absolutely. Good or bad, they’ve enlightened me, and assisted in forming my direction. And I appreciate each of them. Appointment with a Smile reviews were welcomed and embraced.

Earlier this week one review published, was written by Sage 320. And it beautifully encapsulated my message about women of a certain age. Love transcends increments of time. It just does.

So from where did my story about wrinklies (as my Brit friends would say), in their dotage years emanate? Well, I looked around at my own vibrant, intellectual, passionate friends. They have been enhanced by age, experience, and their zest for life.

Yet general fiction does not reflect them, nor does it cater to their quest to read about themselves. In fact, the aging Sapphic topic is shunned – as if  irrelevantly hidden.

The message is If you’re between fifty and death, get over the emotional lift of love. If you want to read about yourself in a romance book, locating one is tough. You’ll find empty bookshelves filled with nope. We aren’t sex in the city, or anywhere else. Our aisle in the bookstore is relegated to menopausal reading. How to identify, how to cope, how to – everything.

What about the equation of love? That other facet of our being?

Within my first glimmer was the desire to write about a woman of age, falling in love. My main character, Danielle O’Hara, is passionate about her art, yet stagnating in both painting and romance. Her own passion shriveled at the side of the road – like lost heart songs unsung by those of us over fifty.

My novel explores love’s remembrances, as well as the igniting of romance within Danielle’s aged soul. Is that so impossible to imagine?

For me, writing Appointment with a Smile was a compelling journey that required I take it. Mature adult, Sapphic romance category? Previously vacant, or nearly so – but I would add one more voice.

I began with the premise that the book must honestly concern itself with the myriad of events culminating a life’s span. Years, emotions, joys, losses, gather into each of our lifetimes. Some events overlap, some are deleted, but all have constructed the wonder of us.

I didn’t want to ignore, or minimize the obvious. Through the decades, losses become reminders. As life pulls aside of us, we may lose our sculpted goddess bodies, and perhaps youth’s glib attitude. But replacing that loss is the ability to dabble in new and exciting wonder, with a fresh perspective.

Age offers the magnificence of reexamination. It shows the overview. Affords a glance back. There is a subtle nudge to make sense of our life’s relevance. Achievements are glory. Mistakes are life’s tuition.

Writing Appointment with a Smile was cathartic. That was a bonus. My objective was to capture an artist’s soul. I wanted to spotlight the topic of Sapphic ageing . And the importance of love. And I hope with all my heart I did that. I want to believe this unusual love story will matter to the golden, matured Sapphic.

Perhaps women in other age brackets will read it. They might want to imagine the existence of romantic love in their futures. The expedition of love beyond fifty, sixty, and on, awaits.

Encountering romance – well, that miracle simply is ageless. Being receptive to love’s possibility – beyond priceless.

Appointment with a Smile is not just for older readers. There are points here that can appeal to many ages. However, it was nice to read about life from a different perspective.” – Review by Lynn Pierce. Amazon. You can read the thoughtful review in it’s entirety here: http://www.amazon.com/review/R2WWZMWV1ROXB0/ref=cm_cr_rev_detup_redir?_encoding=UTF8&cdForum=Fx7D6LJ16ZFVD4&cdPage=1&asin=1935627864&store=books&cdThread=Tx8JQCEPEAS7AN&newContentID=Mx82F67CN2HDDQ#Mx82F67CN2HDDQ

Avery’s Morning…And the Colorado Wildfires

Avery landed on earth mid-March. Parachuted in by a special team of stork/angels. The infant’s condition required a guardian angel as well. It took some fine medical assistance, and the protective cherub.

It would also require an infant’s heart telling her to hold on – to wait for help.

The cord that had twice wrapped around Avery’s neck was released. Breath returned. Avery’s color went from bluish-purple to bright baby pink. The birth canal ride had been rough, but Avery survived with only a mark above her left eye that soon faded.

Avery, my great-niece, is now in her fourth month. She’s unaware of the wildfires within her home state.

In the last few days, updates have continued charting the many devastating fires of Colorado. Tens of thousands of people have been forced to leave their homes – vacate their special corners of the world.

Neighbors helping neighbors have tried to move one another’s livestock to safety. Small pets and belongs have been packed into vehicles. And a reverse call arrived, telling them it was time. Residents moved out, saying goodbye to the areas that would never be the same again in their lifetimes.

Maybe they glanced back to see ground squirrels scampering away, and a few birds with wings beating as they forged through the smoky airways. The hummingbird feeders, so lovingly filled, remained behind.

With a fire’s mass evacuation, there are often perilous escapes through blinding conditions. Gridlocked drivers searched out new shelter.

Walls of flame that climbed ridge after ridge will be reduced to embers and ash. Ferocious winds will rest. The horizon’s darkness will unclog, and blue will one day resume.

What can be saved, will be saved by heroic firefighters. The fire crew’s harrowing efforts to save homes, to rescue life, and to smother fires, are sagas of dedicated courage. I applaud them. And may they be blessed. There would be far more destruction without them.

Residents will mop-up. And many will rebuild. Their pain and fear will not be easily washed aside. Yet most will continue on as our forefathers have. Taming the lands, for we’re a tough breed.

The many who will return to see burnt out, scorched, and smoldering patches of land will remember. Their eyes once filled with wonder. For I believe there is a part of us that can actually fall in love with place. It is not only where we live – but where our spirits claim and are claimed.

Many of the most wondrous places of Colorado are now scarred. Our nation, and indeed our world, mourns the loss of this grandeur. They have visited us.

Yesterday Avery’s Mom sent me a video of Avery. She entitled it Avery’s Morning. It showed a brief clip of baby Avery saying good morning with smiles and infant eye-beams twinkling. Her mouth contorted into babbling and cooing translatable baby-talk. She issued her own optimism of the day.

Undoubtedly, she’ll one day be told of Colorado’s summer of sorrow. Her first summer. Stories about when fires lifted, and rampaged through entire communities. Where an exodus included thousands.

Perhaps as years pass, she will visit mountainsides with partial growth reaching toward an azure sky. And her cooing will have converted to words. Words of amazement. This land is returning to Colorado’s unique splendor.

Just as Avery’s beginning was a struggle to live, our lovely lands will brawl their way back to beauty.

I’m partial to smiles. Our Colorado smiles will also return.

Slow News Day – So I’ll revert to my memories…

Although my area of the world certainly has news – Colorado’s wild fires – that’s been ongoing for weeks. It’s painful, nearly to tears, to witness so much of our loveliness transforming into charred ruins.

To know that my fellow Coloradans have lost their homes saddens me beyond words. Creatures of the forests have been lost, and others retreating, outrun the fires – yet are thrown into their strange new worlds.

As each dot on the map erupts in flames, I recall times spent in that place of wilderness. We have a major fire outside of Estes Park. And I am familiar with the area.

Memories directed the flashback to Grand Lake. Years ago I’d taken my nephews, Robbie and Dusty, horseback riding around the lake. At the time the boys were about ten and seven.

From the stables, I’d requested gentle horses. With safety in mind, I’d asked to please give us the tamest of nags ever known to small cow-pokes. Especially for the little fella, Dusty.

The day was lovely, clear with an invisibility of fresh mountain air. The ride through the wilderness allowed a kinship with nature. The hooves of the horses were trotting over the footpaths of all that had gone before.

Along the metrics of civilization, were grottoes of sojourners, pioneers, and our ancestral bloodline. The pristine ride on horseback allowed our spirits to rendezvous with perpetuity.

For me the remembrances were congruent with an inspiration. I have always felt the Rockies are the vertebrae of the most wonderful, blessed country on earth.

And while the mountain peaks dwarf the slight package of flesh that we are, there is an invincibility also. And the groves of lush forest around the lake’s edge became our spiritual protection.

The horseback ride went great. Until passing back through the small community on our return to the livery stables. An ear-splitting, nerve-jarring sound blared from a power tool.

Dusty’s horse bucked, nearly throwing him, then galloped back to the stable. I rushed after my small nephew, my heart pounding with prayers. When I lifted him down, he was shaking. Safe, but terrified.

And so, a day that was to allow the seepage of history and reverence for our path, became a terrifying epochal moment of fear we all remember.

Dusty and his beautiful wife are now raising their own trio of strong, wonderful boys.

Dusty has never again rode a horse, and I can’t say I blame him. Nor that he requires additional steeplechase training. He keeps his feet on the ground. A lesson of great wisdom. The horse ride told me he wants no part of bucking, charging horses.

It also told me he knows how to handle emergency adversity with grace and a champion’s heart.

Right now, our nation struggles with wild fires, drought, and a multitude of other adversity. And a gigantic thanks to all those good thoughts, prayers, and rain dances from throughout the world.

The human spirit never fails to hold on tightly to the reins – just like Dusty.

Maybe slow news days are their own beautiful lesson requiring my gratitude.

Now Available – Appointment with a Smile

Appointment with a Smile is available through Blue Feather Books Limited. Please visit the site at http://www.bluefeatherbooks.com. Or through Bella Books Distribution for books or as an e-book. It is also available from Amazon. Wet Violets: Sappho’s Corner Poetry Series, Volume 2, is published by UltraVioletLovePublishing and is available through UltraVioletLovePublishing or Amazon.