Motionless Abandon

A Forgotten Life

On an empty stage whispering to an audience of one
Staggering through a deluge of words and dreams
Pain and tears begin ravaging awakening memories
Once lost in pervading mists on the distant horizon

Exploring shadow thoughts through lingering fog
Escaping the darkness of a long neglected mind
Desires flock, wailing in a harmony of loneliness
Shaken from their reverie by a fetid air of despair

A beggar sits, beset with motionless abandon
Reaching into the ruined harbours of rejection
Bereavement shattered with the coming twilight
A sadness feasting on scraps of a forgotten life

Copyright © 2014 Shawn D. Standfast. All rights reserved.

Beggar, Hoboken

Beggar, Hoboken. Photo © Library of Congress

Long Summer Days and Dark Autumn Nights

Stars and Fireflies

No matter how far I go I’ll always remember
Long summer days and dark autumn nights
Cold winter snow and wood burning stoves
Clear starry nights and the Northern Lights

Memories flow through child eyes of days long ago
Those lazy days and clear blue skies
The sound of crickets through the window screen
As stars and fireflies light the cool dark nights

Wild strawberries, raspberries and blueberries
Stained fingers and lips, the tell tale signs of joy
Leaving just enough for winter preserves
While waiting for the apples to ripen and fall

Lying on soft grass staring into starry skies
Northern Lights shifting in midnight breezes
With the Northern Star shining bright
As the Milky Way arches through the night

Buzzing mosquitoes search through the dark
As black flies crawl beneath bed clothes and bite
Late night voices heard from a crystal radio set
“The Shadow” and eerie sounds from outer space

Smell of fresh cut hay drying in the fields
Sitting atop a creaking split rail fence
Waiting for the chance to steer the tractor just once
Getting bored when the opportunity never came

Summer holidays came and went too fast
School busses ran with the September rain
Morning mists shroud the low lying fields
As burning leaves choke the cooling air

Rare autumn warmth and cinnamon float by
Apple, blueberry, rhubarb and pumpkin pie
Ready for giving thanks and the town dance
Wood split and piled, cord next to double cord

Late October looms, trick or treating in the rain
Pillowcases filled with spoils, we run for home
Emptied on the hearth rug, to all an equal share
Rolling thunder echo as autumn storms set in

A leak in the roof–split-splat–into an old sauce pan
Rain pours down; more drops hit the hot cook stove
Sizzling and bubbling, scurrying to the edge, hissing
Protesting the heat and journey through shingled roof

Rain turns to snow and warmth to bitter cold
Trees stand bare having shed their coat of leaves
Shivering in mid-winter winds, covered in snow
A white halo twinkling in mid-morning light

Flakes fall morning, noon and night, collecting
Soft, fluffy snow perfect for snowball fights
Forts made, sides chosen, battles lost and won
Snow continues to fall as days blend and blur

Fresh pine needles carpet bare wooden floors
Their sweet scent foretelling joys of Christmas day
Waking in the early morning to heavy snow falling
With the smell of roast turkey and pumpkin pie

As carols play on the radio, to the tree we all did run
Handmade socks and woollen hats for one and all
Colouring books and Matchbox trucks just for me
Singing songs and feasting all the day long

Sitting by the fire, making toast from wood coals
Strong winds blow as the snow piles up outside
December fades and the pine needles cleared
Warm fires roar as dark nights became colder

In February the days become longer and nights shorter
Sunny days of March warm the thawing ground and trees
Sweet tasting sap starts to rise, tapped and gathered
Boiled down to make sweet golden maple syrup

Exposed rocks, heated by the morning sun
Snakes roused from winter bathe in the warmth
Lilies break the surface and begin to bloom
Leaves sprout as summer rolls round again

No matter how far I go I’ll always remember
The taste of maple sap on frosty spring mornings
The smell of wood smoke lingering in the air
And long summer days and dark autumn nights

Copyright © 2014 Shawn D. Standfast. All rights reserved.

Beckoning with Warmth and Light

The Journey

Strolling through the church yard
Weathered stones, lopsided and grey
Moss covered, aged with beauty
Carved faces, emotive and free

Sun’s bright glare exposing all
Cold winds whisper silently
Huddling close arm in arm
Sitting in the sun side by side

Trees swaying, bowing in the wind
Moss covered, vibrant with life
Aged and worn, beauty in their form
Past shaping, future steadily forward

Exploring streets hand in hand
Timber framed buildings row on row
Ghostly forms watching, guiding
Beckoning with their warmth and light

Greenery surrounds, ever flowing
Shaped by caring, guiding hands
Meandering, forming the path of love
Growing and strengthening with time

Apples ripen and fall silently
No hands to catch or care for
Bruised by falling but whole
Waiting to be embraced and held

The past and sadness overtakes
Yesterday becomes today
Joy mingles in heart’s sigh
Tears flow, relieving tension

Sharing memories of love
Sharing the pain of loss
Sharing hope for the future
Sharing each other arm in arm

Reflecting on what was
Taking time to ponder
Looking at the here and now
Future of wondrous unknown

Knowing each other’s hearts
Embracing and accepting
Moving, enjoying the journey
…our journey…together…

Copyright © 2014 Shawn D. Standfast. All rights reserved.

Scorched by Time

Cloaks of Sorrow

A twilight of change envelops
As the fevered light dims
Thoughts become dreams
Dreams become thoughts

A gaping chasm
Open
Inviting
Its teeth sharpened on experience
Grown with patience
Digested with confidence
Excreted in desperation
Reborn in ignorance

Cloister bells ring
A progression of loneliness
Leading toward emptiness
On a trail of despair
Guided by faith
Blinded by expectation

Marching feet echo in the silence
An army of deceit
Inflicting confusion
Despair
And sadness

Spirits gather in the shadows
Wearing cloaks of sorrow
Shrouds of all that is abandoned
Thirsting with uncertainty
Tortured by the light
Wraiths scorched by time

The falling rain blurs the horizon
Its sound drumming a relentless beat
Cutting the dark
Piercing to the core
Unrelenting
Unforgiving

Memories and thoughts wander freely
The smell of decay surrounds
Between the razored rain drops
Emotions gorging on thoughts
With every memory the hunger grows
Reaching out
Searching
Taking hold

Fear lurks
Uncertain
Intoxicated
Thirsting for vengeance
Cries muted by desire
Consoled by tears
Subdued by pain

Copyright © 2014 Shawn D. Standfast. All rights reserved.

It Started With a Song

The Dusts of Time

It started with a song
But it’s been so long
After you nothing’s the same

The cracks in our love spoke loud
Drowning out the sweetest of sounds
And when your memory weighs heavy
I call for you in the night

I knew I wanted to be with you
When the DJ played that song
Dancing through the night
Holding hands in morning light

I found the words to make you mine
Shaking off the dusts of time

It started with a song
But it’s been so long
Together we were strong
It started with a song

Sitting in the rain holding back the pain
Light grows dim with the rising dawn
You were the reason for me to hold on
Then you left me and now long gone

It started with a song
But it’s been so long
Together we were strong
It started with a song
It started with a song

Copyright © 2014 Shawn D. Standfast. All rights reserved.

As Shadows Harvest

The Stillness

Woken by early morning rain
Pitter patter on the window sill
Thoughts wander
Searching for a hand hold
The wind howls before daybreak

Youthful memories
Warm summer days
Long winter nights
Smell of wood fires
Looking through frosted windows
Feeling the stillness of loneliness

Sleep returns
Restless dreams awake
Hopes
Always there
Searching for a future

Thunder rouses
Lightning strikes
Shifting shadows
Reaching out
Grasping tight

Cracks in thoughts appear
What might have been?
What could have been?
What should have been!

Another thunderous crash
As reality bursts
Shaking dreams
Memories fade
The horizon narrows

Thoughts of her
A torrent of emotions
Dawn flickers
Lace patterns dance on the ceiling
Fade…
…leaving
Stillness and loneliness

A haunting from the past
As shadows harvest
Memories,
Hopes
…and dreams

Copyright © 2014 Shawn D. Standfast. All rights reserved.

From Days of Old

Autumn at the Mill

Bats dart and dive from attic cracks
And synchronize their attacks
With a Hunter’s Moon giving light
Prey is stalked and caught in flight

The smell of bonfires choke the air
Golden leaves blow here and there
Trick or treat on All Hallows’ Eve

From days of old I remember
A sweet mellow September
Then October presents its share
At the Orchard Apple Fair

Those happy days of yesteryear
Hearing rushing water flow
Sensing change as the north winds blow

Autumn begins its merry dance
As light fades and clouds advance
At the mill the waterwheel whirls
In the meadow tall grass swirls

From days of old I remember
A sweet mellow September
Calling me like a long lost friend

Copyright © 2014 James Day & Shawn D. Standfast. All rights reserved