Introducting Scarlet Clover

Introducing Scarlet Clover Publishers!

On Monday authors of Blue Feather Books, Ltd., received an email. The nearly decade-old publishing company is to be dissolved.

For me it was very sad news. A book company would be lost. On a personal note, I grieve for what made Blue Feather Books special – Emily Reed, and the staff of Blue Feather Books, cared. Em cared about the authors and about the readers.

Emily took a chance on my book about a sixty-year old woman finding romance in Appointment with a Smile. She took another chance on a book that was uncomfortable – it talked about two war. There were Hippies and a Concentration Camp – good and evil of life. Careful Flowers might have gone unpublished if not for Em. She is a hero to me, and I thank her and wish her the best.

I wish Em, and all the authors of BFB a happy future. Speaking of authors, and the world of publishing – there are so many magnificent women providing today’s Sapphic literature. I’m so very proud to be part of this ‘golden era’ of words.

Ann Bannon wrote a few books that changed many of our lives. Emily Reed reconstructed a publishing company – and gave so many of us an opportunity. Beth Mitchum created not only her own brilliant work, but she’s promoted women’s poetry and fiction with her amazing publishing company, Ultra Violet Love, and Sappho’s Corner Series.

Blazing the way in the enormity of Sapphic literature, these leaders have forced the best in us. As writers and as readers. Each book written makes a commitment to the future. So I thank all those who read and who write. I also thank the Reader – they support our cause.

For me there is no competition. I truly admire each of the publishing houses, and the authors. We all make one another better, and stronger. So let’s keep constructing words, and our love of the scrambled alphabet. I wish you all good fortune.

Monday, after reading the email that took a little part of my heart, I became determined to contribute in some way to Sapphic writing. I put a dream together in my mind. I’m a technologically imperiled. Uncertain how I could realize this dream, I talked with my mentor and dear friend, Beth Mitchum. She has always encouraged me. And that was when Scarlet Clover was born.

The name, Scarlet Clover – well, yes, it is after my dog, Clover. The scarlet part – well, I know that red clover comes in varieties. Scarlet (the most intensely red), crimson, and pink. My sister loves the Scarlet Clover.

Fields of Scarlet Clover are not bashful.


April’s A’Tossing

April is a’tossing all kinds of great emotional pleasures of the season. It does this every single year.

I really like Vita Sackville-West’s lines from “Spring,” The Garden. She says:
April the angel of the months, the young
Love of the year.

Hey, my bulbs are protruding through earth’s surface. Crocus, tulips and more dots of color. That’s good enough for me. Although I know there will be a little kick or two left from Winter – for the most part – it is a done deal. Mentally, I’ve got my garden planned and planted. My happiness is sprouting like fireworks on the 4th.

The birds are obviously every bit as delirious as I am. This morning they were having an April  sing-along. They make me smile – realizing that smile from the beginning to the end, as my lips curl.

Blossoms, clear skies with the warmth of sun and ‘can do’ attitudes become magical festivals.

I’ve always been sold on Spring. But there is a funny thing about having Colorado’s four seasons. Summer’s turn will find us standing in rows of fresh growth. There is the green herbal  of everything from dill to lavender. And Summer will thrill me.

After Summer is the Autumn bounty of harvest, and the magnificence of fall colors. Then there’s that moment’s rush when large, cleansing flakes of snow drift down. Winter.

Life is certainly a ‘Gee Whiz’ event. I’m glad that Spring has tossed us an April of simple heart pleasures. Those are the joys my life appreciates most.

While it may be April Fool’s Day, I’ll be the first to admit – my soul isn’t fooled one little bit. April’s A’Tossing out days, weeks, and months of wonder.


Copyright: Kieran York 2014


Kieran York’s latest fiction is Careful Flowers, available in book form through Books and Kindle e-books are also available through Amazon.

Her romance, Appointment with a Smile, a 2013 Lambda Literary Award Finalist, is also available in both book form and e-book through Amazon, Blue Feather Books or Bella Book Distribution.

A new book of poetry is planned for a summer release. Blushing Aspen is a Sappho’s Corner Poetry Series Solo book for 2014 – published by Ultra Violet Love. Her poetry is also published in the best-selling Sappho’s Corner Poetry Series: Wet Violets, Volume 2; Roses Read, Volume 3; and the newly released Delectable Daisies, Volume 4. These collections are edited by award-winning poet, Beth Mitchum. They are available through and Amazon.



A print interview with Kieran York is available by going to: You’ll find it under Featured Author’s Series: Inside the Writer’s Head.

Two blog radio interviews are available through: – click left on Be(h)n’s Bookshelf to find discussion on Careful Flowers and Appointment with a Smile.

JFK Remembrance



The following is an excerpt from a book written about my junior year in college. I was a creative writing student at the University of the Americas, in Mexico City. The year was 1963, and the month was November. Our president was murdered.

I’ll never forget those horrific days – and certainly, I shall never forget the funeral Mass held in Mexico City. I attended with friends. We shared a moment in history.

From my book an excerpt about that time – JFK remembrance:

It was a time for our somber pilgrimage to honor our martyred president.

While John Fitzgerald Kennedy’s coffin was taken by caisson to Saint Mathew’s Cathedral for a funeral Mass, the American colony of Mexico City assembled at the Basilica of Guadalupe. Seats had been reserved for Americans.

As young John-John was saluting his father’s flag-draped coffin, my friends and I were a country away, saluting Kennedy in the only way we could. The final leg of our journey across Mexico City to the basilica was by streetcar. Nora, Leigh, Carlos, and I traversed the city in silence.

Arriving, there was still only minimal conversation. We made our way through the plaza, passing wooden-faced merchants. We stopped for Nora, Leigh, and I to put mantillas on our heads. While we busily pinned down our lace head scarves, a Mexican handed Carlos a small American flag. Carols fished his pocket for change, but the peddler moved away. He had wanted to give an American one of this flags today.

I was in awe when we entered the basilica. It was magnificent. Transfixed by the image above the altar, I wished my Gran could see this. At the atrium was the venerated, miraculous painting of the Virgin Mary. I recalled hearing that Kennedy had visited this place. He had worshiped the image of the Madonna. I reflected, wondering if he had prayed for guidance and peace. Or if he prayed for a world without violence.

I bowed  my head throughout the Mass.

And when it was finished, we filed out onto the plaza as if we were weary warriors returning from a lost battle. Kennedy’s charisma and vision had ended. The Mass had ended. But the memory of blazing candles, the aroma of incense, the Latin chanting, and the congregation of fellow Americans would remain.

None of us could grasp it. But we all knew we’d been transformed. The chill of reality caught us. The fragile thread that ties us to life’s most precious aspirations had been weakened. Our leader was lost. The life of our youthful, vigorous president had been severed.

It not only shattered Camelot, it had rearranged history. It had rearranged us. It was seared into our memories. It painted our justice system with the primary colors showing our deficit – our infamy. It displayed our inability to resolve a complexity that yielded only faded images on tattered canvas. Throughout the muddied investigation, a futile search would continue. Our frailty was to be exposed. It would also brush away our own beliefs of immortality. For a portion of our best hope had been destroyed.

No one lives forever. Youth of the 1960s, as all youth, believed otherwise. But this act intruded upon our security.

We shall miss him. We shall miss the part of us that was Camelot.

Copyright: Kieran York


Fiction by Kieran York: Careful Flowers, her latest release. Appointment with a Smile, is a 2013 Lambda Literary Award Finalist. Both books are available in book form through  Or order through Bella Book Distribution for books or e-books. Books and e-books are also available through Amazon.

If you’re interested in poetry, please check out her poetry in the best-selling Sappho’s Corner Poetry Series: Wet Violets, Volume 2; and Roses Read, Volume 3. The collections are edited by award-winning poet, Beth Mitchum. they are available through and Amazon.

Earth Artist

The book I’m currently writing is called Earthen Trinkets. In it the main character is an artist of pottery. It reminded me of a poem I wrote many, many years ago. I’d titled my poem “Earth Artist” –


Earth is awhirl within the sprawling heavens.
It is designed as our natural inheritance –
of that I’m certain.
A potter’s hand sculpts earth.
Those hands reshape clay,
and interprets precious clumps of soil.
Those hands cut clay blocks with wire strings.
There is the lift and plunge of a fist into a rotating block.
Guesswork begins, and it turns into the calculating touch of skill.
Earth’s direction began unpredictably
as it unleashed across this universe.
In throwing clay, with each whirl of the wheel,
creation is forged.
Spinning discs promise the imagination a free ride.
Circular, orbital, as with the galaxies, the wheel rotates.
Clumps of gray, tan, red – and in between colors of wonder
stitch expression into reality.
The cool, damp clay is adroitly formed
with wet hands that allow the wheel to dictate its pull.
Edging clay upward is a communication
between the imagination and the touch.
A container is born, a sculpture is invented.
Clay lifts, edging as a sediment-sweetened sponge drips.
Stoneware is formed.
The land’s face connects, for it is tilled.
Potters caress molds.
Framing the terrain’s bounty into contours
of beauty produces life’s bounty.
Fine ceramics are engineered
as they are cradled by knowing touches.
Lessons of clay reflect chance,
just as our globe’s destiny presents itself.
The crust fades, when fragile material is overly stressed.
The clay is placed aside and restored by time.
Time settles both terracotta and territory.
Time strengthens both and gives each endurance.
With insured plasticity – art is constructed,
and becomes pliable, and then resilient.
It is sturdier than raw clay.
Learning patience with each effort,
the potter comes to know life’s wait.
Drying time, produces its own lesson.
As the vessels, and creations await firing,
the artist accepts the timing of existence.
Drying time is where ‘preludes’ seem most at home.
When the leather-hardened art is fired,
fortune takes command.
Cone-monitored temperatures assist in predicting creation.
Speculation is only a dream that presents a lesson.
For preparation corrects mistakes; prevents mistakes.
The beauty of earth takes on another form of loveliness.
From the kiln comes bisque.
After it is dipped into vats of glaze,
brushed with oxide, and twirled,
it becomes an artist’s vortex.
Chemistry has mingled the best rainbow designs
from inside a potter’s mind.
Sunrise colors and twilight hues
blend into nature’s visionary promise.
Although there is an awareness buried somewhere within,
there seems to be no way to encroach upon reality.
There is only imitating nature.
Nothing is overlooked, and nothing is ignored.
Inspiration finds its reverence
and appreciation of life’s components.
Expressing, translating, and conducting impulses,
energy flows from hands to the touch of earth.
Connecting, yielding, and sheltering,
is part of the process.
There is the beguiling swirl of invention and vision
when indentations are created from a serrated tool.
The corner of the artist’s heart must be shown.
From the glow of a prism, to the texture of life,
it becomes a replicated knowing of the universe.
Earth is often scarred, punctured, and battered.
Yet with peace, patience, and acceptance,
there is love’s reprisal.
It is captured within a magnificent reward called art.
Earth’s alloys and bonding agents are nearly as complicated
as each of life’s earthlings.
In each unfurling of creativity
wisdom is created as if by a miracle.
An earth artist’s task is to sculpt
an offering of pleasure.
And most importantly,
a texture of love.

COPYRIGHT: Kieran York


Fiction by Kieran York: Careful Flower, her latest release, is available in book form through Or order through Bella Book Distribution for books or e-books. Books and Kindle e-books are also available through Amazon. Appointment with a Smile, a 2013 Lambda Literary Award Finalist, is also available through Blue Feather Books, Bella Books and Amazon.

If you’re interested in poetry, check out her poetry in the best-selling Sappho’s Corner Poetry Series: Wet Violets, Volume 2; and Roses Read, Volume 3. These collections are edited by Beth Mitchum. They are available through and Amazon.

Careful Flowers

  • Careful Flowers

It is my love letter to three generations of women.

It includes many varieties of love, as well as of hatred. It is the story of both valiant and villainous hearts.carefulflowers4

Careful Flowers by Kieran York is about a woman whose life has been careful. She finds that nothing is as she believed it to be. Life suddenly becomes an unknown.

Fleur Hamilton is botanist with an important project and a pending grant. She’s in a relationship facing a crossroad. Her love for the woman in her life has taken a critical turn. As she enters her fourth decade, she finds not only her relationship being topsy-turvy – but everything in her life has capsized. She has lost her beloved great aunt.

Ever the scientist, she becomes obsessed with discovering the truth about her aunt, and about her own roots. It takes an examination of many lives for her to locate her own historical truth.

As she slowly uncovers her parents’ Hippie Era and their lives, she also discovers more about her Great Aunt Golda’s life as a prisoner of the Holocaust. Fleur is forced to make a horrific decision. Her unearthed heritage strengthens her as it directs her.

Love, hatred, kindness, and evil overwhelm her once tranquil life. It is the flowering of a  treatise of what went before. Fleur’s emotional journey comes with not only a tour of history, but it includes the by-stories of each era.

Her odyssey to San Francisco is where she first discovers both her personal past, as well as her unique humanity. She unlocks her background by unwrapping her parent’s Hippie Era. She uncovers her beloved aunt’s understanding of both love and hatred. She sees the world of a Holocaust survivor as it unfolds.

Her adventure becomes Fleur’s own history. As the stories are layered, they converge for Fleur to discover herself. She can then deal with not only her broken relationship – but her future.

It is today’s story of yesterday.


Careful Flowers is available in book from through Or order through Bella Book Distribution for books or e-books. Books and Kindle e-books are also available through Amazon.

Kieran York’s romance, Appointment with a Smile, a 2013 Lambda Literary Award Finalist, is also available through Blue Feather Books, Bella Book Distribution and Amazon.

If you’re interested in poetry, check out her poetry in the best-selling Sappho’s Corner Poetry Series: Wet Violets, Volume 2; and Roses Read, Volume 3. , and Delectable Daisies, Volume 4.-isThe collections are edited by Beth Mitchum. They are available through and Amazon. Also available through and Amazon is the book of poetry by Kieran York Blushing Aspen, Sappho’s Corner Solo Poetry’s Series, Volume 4, edited by Beth Mitchum.

Tender Territory


Awaking to life’s kiss is a tender territory.
The blink of night’s shade lifts.
At the horizon’s edge, lips are half-opened, and awaiting.
A unfurling smile is a great effervescent swath of light
directing us toward our day.
This globe loans us fervent magnificence,
Steeped in intensity – lands, oceans, and skies rally.
Without pretension, nature enchants.
A chunk of forever is actualized – and becomes our very own.
We, the eavesdroppers, the voyeurs, the surveyors, and guests –
we debark from the cavernous wombs of destiny.
We, the passengers, those cosmic terrestrial folk,
those newly-minted life forms –
we eagerly spur our spirits.
And we thrust our bodies toward life’s love affair.
We interlace with both the finite and the infinite.
Once held inside a cradle’s miracle,
we now skip across the edges of earth,
and swim from shore to shore across the seas,
and wing a path through the air.
We canvass our salvation.
Migratory, with great compulsion to search, we drift.
From our start,
we have been shackled by those obtruding our freedoms.
For territory, we have fought, and been protective guardians.
We have influence, as good devotees of all.
We have crossed a thin rope – from canyon’s sides.
Within the arms of love,
we have also been cuffed
within the musculature of greed and hate.
We seek always to locate others – and ourselves.
For we are links of a golden fob,
chaining us to the luminous dial of existence.
Yet terra, sea, and endless space
have been sullied, trampled, obliterated, and destroyed.
We’ve committed betrayal, adultery, and murder of our planet.
We poach treasured gifts.
With gluttony, we’ve siphoned one another’s prosperity.
We’ve pilfered one another’s bounty.
Earth’s eternal crest is ablaze with immense splendor.
It asks nothing in return; demands nothing.
We clench tightly to each woven wrinkle of territory.
We drain the waves as seas lift and curl.
We poison precious morsels of air.
This home, our shelter, has long embraced us.
With crevices, curtains, and plush ecstasy as our coverlets,
we are clothed by all that is the globe.
We are nourished by each aquatic caress,
each shawl of vegetation,
and each breath pressed inside us.
Uniquely formed, tangible and intangible gifts are borrowed.
Our spindly planet of semi-hollow magic carries us
through the vastness of the heavens.
Our appetites are satiated with wild, salient views –
our internal treasury.
Nutrients for our imagination are rarely depleted.
We have made of earth our pincushion, punching bag,
and our experiment.
We unveil and forfeit the riches of this planet – for profit.
Weeping, I wonder why we haven’t understood our acts.
Our interchange might have been the reunion of our souls
with a tender territory.
We might have realized the truth earlier.
Earth is our lover.

COPYRIGHT: Kieran York


Please check out my poetry in the latest, best-selling Sappho’s Corner Poetry Series:Wet Violets, Volume 2; and Roses Read, Volume 3. Edited by Beth Mitchum, the books are available through and Amazon.

If you’re interested in romantic fiction, please consider the Lambda Award Finalist (2013) Appointment with a Smile by Kieran York. Books are available through Or order through Bella Book Distribution for books or e-books. Books and Kindle e-books are also available through Amazon.

And watch for the latest fiction release, this month – Careful Flowers!    

Lighthearted Yesteryear

Childhood should be a time of lighthearted days. This is often the case, and sometimes not. But I invite you to take a rhyming journey with me – for a feel-good glance back.


All aboard for yesteryear land.
If you wish to go, please take my hand.
We’ll wander along to distant treasure.
We’ll journey back to homespun pleasure.
Close your eyes, dream of skies
blue and clear, have no fear.
You’re the captain of your ship.
And off we’ll go on our little trip.
Hang on tight with all your might.
We’re going right to see the sight.
Huge balloons and candy canes,
sugar dolls on gumdrop lanes.
Kids on parade drink pink lemonade.
Bright blue bicycles race gleaming red tricycles.
Hop aboard a merry-go-round.
Listen to the hurdy-gurdy sound.
A Jumping Jack has licorice in a sack.
A tiny red fox plays in a sand box.
With candy bars and toy cars,
and a kaleidoscope for color’s design,
and a giggle says that all is fine.
Animal crackers eat jelly beans.
Lollypop signs point to silly scenes.
Inside castles there are kings and queens
celebrating Christmases and Halloweens.
We’ll have great times in this place I know.
We’re all captains and we can row
across the sea of make-believe we’ll go.
With court jesters, and acrobats
we’ll all wear special funny hats.
Hoist away, spread the sails.
We shall wait for husky gales.
They’ll float our ship across the blue.
We’ll travel ever and ever anew.
When we arrive at our own special land
we’ll wiggle our toes in glittering sand.
There will be gifts galore
inside a huge toy store.
We’ll hear music and song
and know we belong.
Here comes the cake
hear the squeals we’ll make.
Now comes the shakes, malts, and soda pop.
If we spill, whoops, here comes the mop.
Candy will sprinkle out from the sky.
Paper airplanes swirl as they fly.
Chocolate, gingersnaps and laughing we are.
We’ll charge up a mountain to touch a star.
After all, it isn’t that high.
Not if we reach and really try.
We’ll run in the meadow, then climb a hill.
We’ll eat Cracker Jacks until we get our fill.
We’ll jump and run; then waltz with the sun.
When night has come and day is done,
we’ll wander on home and hop in our beds.
We’ll pull up the covers and then the spread.
Tucked into bed by kind, gentle hands
we’ll return to our own special lands.
We’ll wake blurry-eyed to wait for our friends.
And off we’ll travel around twisting bends.
Back to our place,
we’ll hasten to race.
Hear the train coming, clickety-clack –
coming down the well-worn track.
It will pick us up to take us shipside.
We’ll ready our departure to take a ride.
There are flowers with colors all aglow.
The hills ahead spread like a huge rainbow.
We’ll pluck new petals each as they bloom
from a magical flower in our playroom.
Childhood is bright as all the sun’s rays.
So let’s recall the best of our sweet days.
A childhood with love and without fear
is the best kind of lighthearted yesteryear.

COPYRIGHT: Kieran York 2013



Please check out my poetry in the best-selling poetry collections, Sappho’s Corner Poetry Series: Roses Read, Volume 3; and Wet Violets, Volume 2. Edited by the award-winning poet, Beth Mitchum. These books and other wonderful books and music are available through and Amazon.

If you’re interested in romantic fiction, please check out Appointment with a Smile, the 2013 Lambda Finalist in the Romance category, by Kieran York. A new book is scheduled for release in autumn of 2013, titled Careful Flowers. Books are available through Or order through Bella Book Distribution for books or e-books. Books and Kindle e-books available through Amazon. 

Rocky Mountain Intimacy


High country, and our Rocky Mountain intimacy,
belong exclusively to us.
We amble between stony curtains.
Wildlife squeaks, bugles, rustles, warbles, and chirps.
Before us is our meadow of lush grasses,
delicate flowers, jutting chunks of granite,
and an assortment of brush and leaning trees.
A blanket we spread fits the ground perfectly.
Edges lift from the soft plant clumps beneath it.
As we relax, and stretch out upon the quilt,
we inhale the loam, the pine, and the sweetness
of thin, clean mountain air.
Harmony infuses us with all the love in the world.
Tranquility is an intrinsic pleasure of the moment.
Clouds trick us with their tender metaphoric language.
We savor one another’s joy.
For each time I gaze at you,
silly infatuation converts to love.
And our intimacy captivates me.
Our mountain picnic is in the midst of perfection.
Color dresses up the trees with new growth.
Echoing is a nearby stream’s melodious voice.
From that gentlest of all brooks,
trickling waters splash as they bounce over polished rocks.
A cool forest breeze is crooning a scat song
known to all eternity.
Our hearts make us wayward Bohemians.
We are trekkers on an impromptu mission.
Looking into one another’s eyes,
we become aware of our place.
We are no longer estranged spirits.
Nor is ours the evangelized ardor
of an idyllic script too often spoken.
This moment, and this monument
becomes the contour of us.
Our smiles are within the enormity of a universe.
Our embrace is between rock layers of protection.
We are extemporaneous, and our laughter proves it.
I slip a columbine, that matches your eye’s color,
into your outstretched hand.
You grin your approval.
There is some euphoric cohesiveness
I’ve never felt before.
And perhaps shall never feel again.
Love’s imprint is much greater
than a sparsely uttered slice of rhetoric.
Wilderness is a song sung only for us.
I would rather not return to civilization.
Hiking down the trail, we’ll promise to return.
Although it will be then, not now.
It will still and forever remain ours.
It will be another time and another place
of our Rocky mountain intimacy.

COPYRIGHT: Kieran York 2013


Please check out my love poetry in the best-selling poetry collection, Sappho’s Corner Poetry Series: Roses Read, Volume 3; and Wet Violets, Volume 2. Edited by the award-winning poet, Beth Mitchum. These books are available through and Amazon.

If you’re interested in romantic fiction, please check out Appointment with a Smile, the 2013 Lambda Finalist in the Romance category, by Kieran York. A new book is scheduled for release in 2013, titled Careful Flowers. Books are available through Or order through Bella books Distribution for books or e-books. Books and Kindle e-books available through Amazon.

Mockingbird Stolen


The tragedy of a stolen mockingbird saddens me. I recently read about Harper Lee.

Most everyone knows that Harper Lee wrote a book called “To Kill a Mockingbird” half a century ago. A Pulitzer Prize winner, the classic has been one most of us have read more than once, and seen the movie.

It was successful fifty years ago, and is still required reading. Royalties for books sold in 2009 were over a million and a half dollars. Ms. Lee lived modestly over the years. She suffered a stroke a few years ago. Her rights were signed away during a time when she was experiencing a multitude of problems – vision and short-term memory among them.

By the time she recently turned 87, what royalties she received had been depleted. A law suit was filed in May. Charges were that her literary agent, an attorney, took advantage of the ailing Ms. Lee. The benchmark story was written by Mark Seal, and appears in the August issue of Vanity Fair. It is titled, “To Steal a Mockingbird” and explains the legal charges against the agent, as well as updated information.

Over the years numerous writers have been victimized by unscrupulous agents, publishers, and lawyers. Funds have been siphoned away from many of our literary giants. Such a sad commentary that the aging author of a masterpiece was treated unfairly.

Throughout the ages agents and publishers have encouraged and protected the struggling writer, and the treasury of literature. Diligently the agent presents the work to publishers. They try to find a home for a manuscript. Publishers produce books, and are champions of the writer. They work tirelessly to make the best possible product for the reader.

Mostly, both agent and publisher make herculean efforts on behalf of the continuation of fine literature.

I commend honorable, ethical agents and publisher – and thank them. They are often the unsung and under-appreciated heroes. They understand trust is a very elusive quality, and when in place, there is an eloquence between two people who love the written word.

I think I’ll reread Ms. Lee’s gift. And be thankful for those honorable folks in the field of publishing. These are people we trust to tend our words.


Please check out my romantic fiction, Appointment with a Smile, the 2013 Lambda Finalist in the Romance Category, by Kieran York. A new book is scheduled for release in the summer of 2013, titled, Careful Flowers. Books are available through Or order books and Kindle e-books available through Amazon.


Kansas Dreams


Fireflies swarmed the shrubbery near my grandmother’s doorstep.
Fireflies – lightning bugs – by the time I was seven-years old,
I loved their descriptive names.
They seemed like miraculous events rather than insects.
They knew how to work a crowd.
Their brightly dotted tails sparkled with bursts of light.
As if they were pantomimic dancing – a graceful motion known only to them,
fireflies helped to shut down the day with their antics.
And they knew they could close tightly the evening with their mystery.
One of those Kansas nights forever beams back to my memory.
A storm betrayed tranquility.
The weather forecast included a steamy soaking.
Night’s pewter clouds began to seal away moonlight.
An uneasiness – a restlessness, was setting in.
Farm folks are aware of the fine line of fate.
One gentle rain shower is a healthy dousing.
And the other rain was a storm pounding stalks of green grain buds.
Wheat stalk, hulls – the gold of bread, would be embedded in soggy soil.
Midsummer night storms are often accompanied by destruction.
Once planted, what is to become of wheat fields?
They rely on both earth’s nutrients, and weather.
The kernels invite moisture, but not downpours.
On this night the sky’s face glared with ugliness.
No harvest is a chronicler of its own fortune.
Thankfully, this was a cooperating storm.
It flushed the vast sky of moisture, then waters turned to mist.
Thunder’s shriek drifted away into the night.
Worrying about the few lightning bugs my cousin had captured,
I hoped they had been spared, and found their way home.
Released from a Mason jar prison, they’d flown away quickly.
Their brief time as a faint lantern ended.
Their glow was too dim to usher a path for me to follow.
Perhaps they were beacons for my dreams.
When those dreams brought morning’s sunrise,
I woke with optimism.
The day of sweltering sun
dried remnants of last evening’s drenching.
So quickly through the day the landscape baked.
In the shade, I leaned against the oak tree’s bark.
Imprints were indenting my back with decoration.
Dried grasses crinkled and crumpled under my bare feet.
My mind shifted back and forth
from my library books to dripping Popsicles.
Would my life hold up against the world’s stormy agenda?
I’d never wanted the flash and cash of fame and fortune.
My dreams were not complicated, nor intricate.
I’d dreamed of the whispers of a thousand fireflies.
What would become of me when I grew up?
I vowed never to blink at earth’s loveliness.
I promised never to ignore kindness and love.
My Kansas dreams were never grandiose.
I wanted my own release from a Mason jar.
For I needed to light a moment of night.
I wanted nothing more than to place words together.
I needed only to write my heart’s language.

COPYRIGHT: Kieran York


Please check out my love poetry in the best-selling poetry collection, Sappho’s Corner Poetry Series: Roses Read, Volume 3; and Wet Violets, Volume 2. Edited by Beth Mitchum. These books are available through and Amazon.

If you’re interested in romantic fiction, please check out Appointment with a Smile, the 2013 Lambda Finalist in the Romance category, by Kieran York. A new books is scheduled for release in the summer of 2013, title Careful Flowers. Books are available through Or order through Bella Books Distribution for books or e-books. Books and Kindle e-books are also available through Amazon.