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Poems, Lyrics and other Writings...

Because I so often work with various texts while composing, I have developed a great love and appreciation of well written texts, whether they are poetry, verse, or prose - I love word-play, and I very much love how excellent texts set up a great bit of songwriting and composition.  I have been writing lyrics since high school, and more "proper" poetry since graduate school.  I am currently working on a large-form, epic-length poem which I hope to publish someday, but typically the sort of things I like to write are often wry, little observations of something that amuses me.  However, I've found that I'll exchange poems with friends (like trading baseball cards it seems), and sometimes those can become more serious or are meant to encourage or cheer up those who might need it.  One or two of these are texts for various songs or choral pieces for which I could not find suitable texts written by others.

I will rotate in and out the writings I post here - thanks for coming to view them!

Bitterroot Homecoming   (2006)          


I am born of mountains,

crowned in light and

    serenaded by star-strewn nights;


I am tousled by valley winds,

raised by forests and

    bathed in running waters.


Newborn streams, running

fresh and bright, springing;

Summer’s born of life and love

   when rocky heights release its snow.


Autumn’s heart, deepening

aspen’s golden garments, quaking;

birches, pines and firs, wed

   to my river’s expanding soul.


Winter’s peace, blanketing

river’s restless life, slowing;

deep mountain faces watch

    the waters sing me home.


Oh, carry me back, back to my valley,

fold me into the river’s bed;

So I may sleep at last in peace,

    and there at rest, will never leave again.

Mother, dear! (from Nearly Madrigals)     (2012)


Mother dear!

It may truly be as you have feared,

that I might not love, nor may I marry

someone who’s an actor, or a boxer,

or a cabbie, or a dentist,


Not an author, buyer, cowboy, drummer,

envoy, forger, gardner, nor a

harpist, intern, jockey, kicker,

lifeguard, mobster, newsman, nor a

ostler, plumber, quilter, racer,

stuntsman, tubist, umpire, nor a

vendor, nor a wranger, nor an

X-con, nor a yankee nor a zombie!


(for I am fairly certain that I am allergic to someone else’s brains)



Mother, not an athlete, bassist, critic, doctor, emcee, farmer, gilder, nor a

hacker, inker, juggler, knitter,

lawyer, mason, nomad, nor an

oarsman, painter, quibbler, rancher,

singer, tailor, usher, nor a

vampire, nor a writer, nor an

ex-pert, nor a yeoman, nor a

driver of zamboni,




I am pretty sure that if I could be given such a chance –

Then!  Mother dear, I am certain that I just might

Yes, I think I just might have to kiss one.

Voice of the Mountains       (2012)


O Man, take heed
for our time is not your time --
Through every age the sun sprints
across our upturned faces
while we yawn and stretch,
we rouse and smile,
settling back into our mantled beds,
as a thousand millennia of mankind will pass you by

Take heed -- O man, take heed
Our time is not your time.

For Amanda Nesvig (2017)


the roast is properly done
a set number of turns of the grinder made
the puck packed tight

water that's hot streams down and through
a dark brew is espressed
met with caned sugar
stirred by silver

aroma is anticipation
and taste is fulfillment
as life begins anew

beginning again


à l'université de la haute cuisine  (2013)


a noodle clogs my dreams
a shining flavor packet
meaty yellow dusting
rehydrating a taste
of modern feathered tyrannosaurs,
merely bending
(not breaking)
the existant coin of my realm

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