Lace and Denim

LACE AND DENIM

Lace and denim – I wear them both.
As I’ve aged with the splendor of lace and the durability of denim,
I’ve inserted both inside my poetry and prose.
My youth has faded into after-hours times.
Tarnish may have built up, but patina is well-layered.
Yet my heart is never far from being center.
I’m in the middle of a tranquil and wondrous life.
I chuckle when admitting that my emotion
compares to a well-ridden horse.
Much of my life I’ve been a stray mustang.
I’ve galloped lighted paths enamored with all.
My mainstay has been interior peace.
I belong to a once-hidden sisterhood.
We are now in clear sight, and proudly so.
Our love is mostly a generous guardianship.
Shakespeare had written about black vesper’s pageants.
Okay, over the years I’ve had wounds,
but they became my heart’s foster care.
Sappho mentions her heart has been shaken by love.
My winter song is unshaken.
I wrap my skin with lace, and then slip into denim.
Perhaps we women exist within our own revolution.
We share healing psalms, and the embrace of reverence.
Sonnets are written when exuberance throws off sorrow.
Romance is an ego massage kneading another’s heartbeat.
Indoctrinated by homespun philosophy,
my epigram is nearly always visible.
Genet speaks of love’s worst traps;
Whitman asks if self can be given.
I know very little about the fabric of humanity,
other than the moments I love.
Youth recognizes odes to ovaries.
Age knows the edit by heart.
And I’ve learned the kiss of a sunrise is magnificent.
Just as the embrace of moonlight warms me.
So many patches cover my ancient soul.
I believe in words spoken by wisdom through letters.
Compositions speak to all ages, all through the ages.
My existence has been a song only time can best sing.
Romance and friendship are the handrails of living.
Lace and denim are my armor – I wear them both.

COPYRIGHT: Kieran York

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Please check out my 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. The books are available through http://ultravioletlove.com and Amazon.

If you’re interested in romantic fiction, please check out the 2013 Lambda Finalist in the romance category, Appointment with a Smile by Kieran York. Books are available  through www.bluefetherbooks.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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WAR CLOUD WORDS

At times it seems that we are surrounded by war. Explosions rob us of one another. Countries, with mad posturing, aim their threats across the world. And I go along with little-to-no understanding of war.

I caught the flowing thoughts that stampeded through my mind. War Cloud Words is written with pain, with hurt, and with ingredients I admit not to know how to decipher. My vision of a world filled with war cloud words has a flip side. I can also hope for humanity’s long reach to finally hold a sky filled with love and peace.

WAR CLOUD WORDS

Words, no louder than a wasp emits, were sighed.
Vividly detailed hatred shouted its message.
Each nation’s declaration was galvanized with stealthy resolve.
When trepidation converted to fear –
terror became a shiver announcing there was no way back.
Such a small deed was required – barely a blemish.
Watchdogs suffered from the violent feeding frenzy.
A veiled cradle had been leavened into time’s mud.
Metal twisted stick-figures.
Uncoiled trinkets were barely identifiable as they
anonymously cascaded to earth.
Hollowed-out lands, homes, people were estranged
from their mission of life.
Death remnants of pungent air, and hovering souls
were reinvented.
Exalted, vile, and evil laughter claimed sad victory.
A desolate calendar continued digging earth.
Naked flame of once bright ceremony
duplicated blisters of excruciating agony.
Life was haunted by love converging
in a cobwebbed corner.
Delusion invaded destiny.
Rushing away was the fake charisma
of a well-armed circus barker.
All songs smashed into their own silent stone of anguish.
No one had truly conquered the darkest day ever created.
War exploded – while love imploded.
Emotions were folded between crease of flesh.
Drills scratched the globe to find the depths of blood.
Hate’s taste had forever fouled the air.
Yet perfumed trails of love curled toward heaven.
If we pressed our lips to kindness,
would unkindness not hide?
Such a searing microcosm had ushered in disruption.
The clasp of love could assuredly will peace with simplicity
and with the majesty of perfect care.
Yet villainy intruded with deliberate intent
to scar that very decency and carve it away
Hostilities, so chaotic and cruel seemed ever-present.
So honorable was trust and benign hearts.
Prayer from the sky above sent utterances of charity.
And war cloud words were shrieking ever louder.
At least until the world became weary of listening.
And then without contrition,
without pseudo-justice,
yet with compassion for victim, and not villain –
reason lived.
The sky cleared.

COPYRIGHT: Kieran York

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Please check out my 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, the books are available through http://ultravioletlove.com and Amazon.

If you are interested in romantic fiction, please consider the 2013 Lambda Award Finalist, 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 available through Amazon. York’s latest book is titled Careful Flowers, and will soon be released by Blue Feather Books.

A Thought

This has been an active week concerning same-sex marriages. A couple of decades ago I wrote a short story – “X-Chromosomes” – part of a collection of short stories. As I was hearing news reports about equality, I thought of this story. It contains some of the fears parents had about losing custody of their children if they were found to be lesbian or gay.

Well, here’s my offering, and we are still concerned about inequality. What silliness when all we should be considering about any portion of life is – good hearts.

X-CHROMOSOMES by Kieran York

“That’s the ticket,” Dolly Riggs reassured. She leaned down to give the child’s plump cheek a soft tweak. “A smile is better than a frown any old day. Why you got a sweet little face when it’s smiling, Violet. Your name suits you. For a fact, it does.” Standing back, Dolly gave a frisky nod toward the five-year old. “We all like happy endings.”

Violet Thomas blinked into the sun. She focused her squint on the spry octogenarian. One of the neighbors had called Dolly Riggs a senile old bat of dubious sexual leanings. Miss Agatha Dillard, Dolly’s dear friend and housemate, had died two years ago. Dolly had shared a home with Miss Agatha for over fifty years. Everyone on the block had called the two women spinsters. Some however, were more graphic. Violet had no earthly idea what ‘leps-beings’ were. And her mother told her it wasn’t of any true importance anyway.

To Violet, Dolly was only a nice old neighbor lady. She wore strange garb. A huge pagoda straw hat was always worn in the sun. And long-sleeved shirts and pants, because Miss Agatha had always said that Dolly had a bad way with the sun. Dolly’s wardrobe may have set her apart as eccentric, but even that seemed to endear her to the children on the block. She always had time for them. Time to give them apples from her giant apple tree. Time to tell them stories of Joanie Appleseed. That was the feminist version, naturally. And she insisted the kids call her by her first name rather than Mrs. Riggs. The formal title annoyed her.

“Davey run off with my favorite seashell. Aunt Lana brought it from the ocean. Brought it special for me. And Davey stole it,” Violet tattled with a grumble inside her jaw.

When her parents divorced, Aunt Lana had moved in with Violet and her mother, Jody. Aunt Lana was a traveling business woman. She often went near the ocean, and always brought a special shell, and a t-shirt, for Violet.

“Why on earth would Davey do that?” Dolly quizzed. “That boy has more toys than good sense. He’s as selfish as the day is long. Why his big brother never acted like that. He was a gentlemanly youngster. But that Davey!”

“Well, he did it. He took it offa me. To be mean, I ‘spose,” Violet incriminated her playmate. She gave a sway of her curly blonde locks to confirm the crime.

“Never thought I’d see the day when he could get one over on you, Violet Rae Thomas.”

“He did it to be spiteful. Aunt Lana tells that Davey is a spiteful little shit if ever there was one. And my mom says Aunt Lana knows character. Why Aunt Lana even told Mommy that my Daddy wasn’t right for her. Mom says I was the only good thing that come outta getting married. But she had to try marriage on.”

“Lots of folks don’t pick the right flavor first off.”

“Aunt Lana says she’s amazed my dad didn’t goof up with a Y.”

“A Y?” Dolly questioned, gawking down at the child.

“Yes. Instead of the X-chromosome.”

Dolly grinned. “Aunt Lana said that, did she?”

“Yep. Now, how am I gonna get my shell back?”

“Why that’s clear as a fresh scrubbed window.” Dolly’s frown broke. Memory, she mused, is where the past is reinvented. She found similarities in most events trailing from her many yesterdays to today. “One time I wanted something that was taken from me. I set my mind thinking and came up with a plan.”

“Criminy sakes,” Violet squealed. “I just need me a plan.”

“Can’t use my exact plan. It’s been used up by me. But we can change it about.” She crossed her spindly arms defiantly. Leaning down, she asked, “Want to try that?”

“Sure. You can come up with a plan for me.”

“You’ll need to be clever as all get-out.” Dolly hesitated. “Solving problems can usually be done in one of two ways. Blossoms or bullets.”

“Blossoms or bullets?” Violets face squeezed with pure bewilderment. “What’s that all about?”

“Blossoms, well, that’s giving folks a smile. You serve Davey up some tea-cakes and sugar.”

“Davey is too spoiled for that business. His momma bakes a bunch.”

Dolly reconsidered, “Well, I mean by being kindly to him, but I do believe he’s far to strong-willed for blossoms to work.” She dipped the brim of her hat. “Blossoms are out.”

“I got no bullets,” Violet whined with a shrug. “I don’t even got a gun.”

“Bullets don’t mean real bullets. It means you use tactics that aren’t so kindly.”

“That’ll get me in Dutch at Sunday School.” With a puffy sigh, she asked, “What did you have so you needed blossoms or bullets?”

“My best friend wanted my husband. I married him. Thought I would have family of sweet little ones. That never came to be. Anyways, my friend still wanted him. So I gave him to her. I sort of traded for her roommate. Well, she regretted the trade. And I never regretted it for one minute.” Dolly cackled. “Not one minute of my whole life. Agatha and I were better suited.”

Violet’s lips protruded. “I want my shell back,” she brayed. She stomped her foot. “And I’m gonna get it, too. Aunt Lana said not to be in-tim-a-dated. Not by him, or any other boy in the world. Tells me never try to be equal to boys ’cause that would be lowering my standards. She tells me I’m already better because of my X business makin’ me a little girl.”

“What’s your mama say?” Dolly quizzed with amusement.

“Says Aunt Lana is a radical, separatist, feminist Sapphic.”

“Gracious,” Dolly said with a bolt. “But that’s your little secret.”

“I got another secret, too.”

Dolly’s eyebrows lifted. “I’ll bet I can guess.”

“You can?”

“I’ll bet your Aunt Lana isn’t really your aunt. But she’s a pretend aunt.”

“How’d you know?”

“Just a wild guess.”

“Yeah, but I can’t tell nobody. Besides, Aunt Lana is the best aunt I could have anyway.”

“Yes. Now then, little Violet, what do you intend on doing about your special shell?”

“This blossom and bullet tactic isn’t for me,” the small girl answered. “I’m gonna give Davey a shake or two. Smack him in the tummy if I got to. That should do the trick. Aunt Lana said it was okay to tear a strip offa him or any other bullies. An’ I’m gonna do just that.”

Violet stormed down the sidewalk. Pure determination was her ally. Dolly shook her head and snickered for many moments. She watched until Violet was out of sight. Then she returned to tending her begonias. Dolly fussed over her flowers with the tenderness they deserved. Several times she put down her garden shovel and chuckled to herself.

“X-chromosomes, indeed!”

COPYRIGHT: Kieran York

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Please check out my 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, the books are available through http://ultravioletlove.com and Amazon.

If you are interested in romantic fiction, please consider the Lambda Award Finalist 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 available through Amazon.

Bookmarked Romance

My grandmother always said things turn out for the best. I have searched for decades for my personal best! And I’ve always hoped everyone else finds their best.

All those years ago, my special Lady appeared. It was to be temporary – I was a pastime, and she was designed to patch my broken heart. Death had robbed me of my true love, so my Lady Jen soothed the time.

I knew Jen would be leaving after her education was completed. She knew I would remain in Colorado. She was in her mid-twenties and I was in my mid-thirties. She was too young, and I was forever in mourning for my lover. So, it was a perfect – safe – fit. And we knew ‘goodbye’ was something that one day would have to be said.

After she left, I realized the songs and poetry I’d written for her were meaningful – more than I’d imagined. A song I wrote told so much:

SHARING YOUR DAY

*Did you feel you had to run so far?
Don’t you know I’m there wherever you are.
So go ahead and move away
I’ll still be sharing your day.

You can remove yourself from my sight
If you think that moving might
Turn off that old emotional lever
You don’t understand love reaches into forever.*

You can mouth the word ‘forget’
But I’ve memorized you from the day we met.
And you can’t get me off of your mind
Try telling me you’re leaving me behind. *

And I’d written dozens of poems about her. Two have been published in Sappho’s Corner Poetry Series, Volume 3 – Roses Read. They are “Visiting a Pink Shell” and “Tangerines” – and now I’ve written an update poem. Because my love and I have updated us.

BOOKMARKED ROMANCE

Ours was a bookmarked romance that waved us to and fro.
As the years passed rapidly, there were greetings and partings.
Our eyes twinkled remembering the tender accolades.
For dreams lifted our marquee high onto a relic plateau.
Who were these youthful women crossing one another’s vista?
Astonishing sweetness spread layers of love with our first glance.
Romantic intoxicants packed our vessels with excitement.
Heart songs lulled as we explored one another.
How could we be content to allow another sad departure.
Fate was an evil marker that saw to it we were parted.
Our heritage appeared to evaporate.
We regretted our delay.
The long flaps of day continued closing.
Our relationship mistakes were gimmickry – without selected significance.
Although tears prowled our lives we knew we must correct the past.
Sunset’s mighty cruise was before us.
We were weary of the ache of incorrect love.
Portrayal did not replicate the destiny of what we felt.
We each knew the elaborate mistake of years ago.
If only we would have reached, and returned.
Dreams that had been chased away were now grasping us.
Faux romance of yesterday provided my today.
Hope concerned itself with happy endings.
Now I recognize the weave of sunbursts across my sky.
Nature is perhaps as holy as any human soul.
For it directs us with guidelines of fresh sky and exquisite earth.
And this is where love makes its home.
We subscribe to the promise of country stars.
Two sculpted forms could forever awaken beneath a cordial moon.
When tattered bookmarks dissolve,
 there remains the one who loves you.
There is no need merely to remember.
For a touch reminds me that I belong in today.
The best of all my days requires a final bookmark.    
The location where I belong to her, and she to me.
COPYRIGHT: Kieran York

My grandmother was correct – everything works out for the best – eventually.
As the songwriter said: Love reaches into forever.

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 Please check out my 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, the books are available through http://ultravioletlove.com and Amazon.

If you are interested in romantic fiction, please consider the Lambda Award finalist in the Romance Category,  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 available through Amazon.

Poetry Month

April is Poetry Month!

I realized when I was very young how some words got stuck in my heart. The only way to dislodge the words that gathered was to write them. Perhaps I merely continue writing them as they’ve forever been written – with gleams from a heartbeat.

GLEAMS FROM A HEARTBEAT

Being different, and alone from the mainstream, dims light within.
Words fill up the blank pages of our souls.
Phrases spill as we grab for our pens.
For perhaps there is no other trace of us –
other than skeletal remains.
Yesteryear’s scratches have carved rocks,
and scrawled parchment –
to tell of us.
As generations press us across time,
we looked in both directions.
Then we looked up into the heavens.
We became less alone – for we all saw the same thing.
In the past we’d shared our caves with long-tailed lizards.
We were described as ancients –
we were sequestered and chained to earth.
Throughout existence, we’ve known the lies of prejudice.
Bloody, dripping paint splashes told of wild beasts.
Miniscule were the advancements we craved.
For we loved differently.
Our mistakes surely came from wild roots,
and amulets filled with holy sparkling gems.
Paths crossed,
and different symbols and marks were traded.
Plunderers burned and shredded many sequels.
Only destiny sheltered us between vast rainbows.
Erosion might have been all that saved us
as the facade disrobed – then shattered.
Beyond the altars, behind the fossils of our parents,
our secret had been hidden.
Tragedians called our souls twisted.
Dark Ages listed us as wicked.
Now we are compounded, raw materials
upon shelves of sand.
We are still misfits of the biosphere.
We tour the solar system by invitation only.
Strangers we are to Everything beyond.
We tread our gravitational field as we must.
On the floor of our planet,
we share our lectures.
Other cannonballs, those planets above,
jeer back at us.
They watch our mirrored probes
as if we are disenfranchised.
For we are still cloistered nomads of the atmosphere.
Beyond the visible, we take the invisible’s pulse.
Magnetic, our rocky rubble is the earth’s clothing.
We change styles with each rendezvous.
We gouge and dig the cliff’s robes.
We prod the folded mountainous shawls.
We plunge into the depth
of our ocean’s liquid wading pools.
Although guests ourselves,
we pretend to be planetary hosts.
Yet we fear emptiness as we voyage the stars.
We know rejection as we crawl the globe’s paths.
Our scrapbooks fall open with disheveled guesses.
We ignore both earth’s nucleus, and our own.
Our naked eyes witness the same bright dots
that were once examined from cave porches.
Our enzymes from loins of long ago
have been scooped and examined.
Our scroll of DNA has named us.
Molecules of chaos have been chiseled from flesh.
We are genetically misspelled samples.
However, we’ve survived the bonfires.
The hazing, the horrors – they have emboldened us.
We can share who we are with cursive alphabets,
with keys of electricity,
and with speeding waves of energy.
Most of us can now acknowledge our spirit’s rhetoric.
I can present myself to you.
I am Sapphic,
and my words are gleams from a heartbeat

COPYRIGHT: Kieran York

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 Please check out my 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, the books are available through http://ultravioletlove.com and Amazon.

If you are interested in romantic fiction, please consider Appointment with a Smile by Kieran York. Books are available through wwwbluefeatherabooks.com. Or order through Bella Books Distribution for books or e-books. Books and Kindle e-books are available through Amazon.

Songs, songs, songs –

This blog is songs, songs, songs – I’m posting some of my song lyrics – written decades ago. These were songs sung by a regional Colorado woman’s band. I was fortunate to be a member and friend of the women. I wrote songs, and was a barely okay singer and guitar player. And so I’ll include the lyrics of three of my personal favorites.

The group’s theme song was “Denver Dreams” and we opened every performance with it. The second is a song I wrote for a very special woman. The final song is a love song I constructed so many years ago, I’m not sure of how it evolved.

DENVER DREAMS

* It always seems those Denver Dreams keep bounding across my mind.
Thoughts designed to comfort me, won’t loosen up and be
The way that dreaming takes you back into a yesterday
Mellow dreams of Denver times, seems they’re here to stay.

We shared so many mountain walks
With late night campfire talks.
Mica that reflects the stars
And country songs on our guitars.
So many ways that we both seemed to care.
Scouting trickling rocky streams
Blended with our wildflower dreams.
So many times I reached and you were there.*

Evergreen brushed weekends
Aspen, pine, the scents they send.
Wooded paths we wandered through
And cabin smiles I’ve smiled for you.
So many ways that we both seemed to care.
Those coming home to Denver drives
Coming back to our city lives,
So many times I reached and you were there.*
Copyright – Kieran York

ANNE, HAVE I EVER TOLD YOU

*Anne, have I ever told you
I’d give my world to hold you
And lace sunshine into your day
Kiss your troubles all away.

So give your love without a fear
I’ll have kindness always near
And soft and warm just to build
A world that’s ever daisy-filled.
Entrust me with your days ahead
I’ll beckon smiles for you instead
Of frowns that might have come your way.
You can count on me to stay.
So here’s my promise, I’ll be strong
If you’ll allow me to go along.*

Let’s turn our dreams all around
I’ll share with you the songs I’ve found.
With happiness to pave your time.
The beauty of a simple rhyme.
Turn your tears back into a grin.
Allow my love entrance in
And slide the sun back into your eyes
Place rainbows thick against your skies.
So here’s my promise, I’ll be strong
If you’ll allow me to belong.*
Copyright – Kieran York

WARMED BY YOU

I want to touch the leaves
As they fall down through the sky.
Finish with a somersault on the wings of a butterfly.
And when I land I want to finally settle
In the middle of a columbine petal.
Nap against the grasses in the afternoon shade
Dream about a caterpillar parade.
Listen to the stream striking over stones
Making up music with magical tones.
And as the day drifts out against midnight’s blue,
I want to snuggle up and be warmed by you.

As the clouds sweep across the air I want to glide
And finish with a rainbow slipper slide ride.
Down onto a water-lily afloat
With rays of love spraying around as my moat.
Rest in a pond of sparkling sunshine rain.
Under a bluebell umbrella I’ll remain
Tranquil with my heart set into a smile
Hope I can stay right here for awhile.
And as the day drifts out against midnight’s blue,
I want to snuggle up and be warmed by you.

Copyright – Kieran York

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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 Beth Mitchum, the books are available through http://ultravioletlove.com and Amazon.

If you’re interested in romantic fiction, please consider Appointment with a Smile by Kieran York. It’s a 2013 Lambda Literary Award Finalist. Books are available through amazon, and e-books through Kindle.