Sketch of Myself/ Self-Portrait

Sketch of Myself/ Self-Portrait

      From this hour I ordain myself loos’d of limits and imaginary lines,
                        Going where I list, my own master, total and absolute,
                      Listening to others, and considering well what they say,
                             pausing, searching, receiving, contemplating,
                 Gently, but with undeniable will, divesting myself of the holds that would
                      hold me.      

                                         I inhale great draughts of space,
               The east and the west are mine, and the north and the south are mine.

                                          I am larger than I thought,
                                 I did not know I held so much goodness.

                                            All seems beautiful to me;
                 I can repeat over to men and women, You have done such good to me, I
                                       would do the same to you,

                                      I will recruit for myself and you as I go;
                            I will scatter myself among men and women as I go;
                         I will toss the new gladness and roughness among them;
                                   Whoever denies me, it shall not trouble me;
                     Whoever accepts me, he or she shall be blessed, and shall bless me…

                                                          Excerpt from the ‘Song of the Open Road’
                                                                      By Walt Whitman


Inspired by Walt Whitman’s poem “Song of Myself”




the peaks hid-den in angels wings.

My breath—
each inhale bathing my lungs
every exhale
creating pools of sparkling droplets
soaring to the unknown.

the beating in my chest
roaring like a ravenous lion
in search of sustenance.

The crest—
in sight.
I rush to the edge
losing all sense of

I tumble
I fall
and I am broken.

Lying motionless—
I open my eyes
rubbing away a
smattering of debris.

My ‘lashes’ rise.
I attempt to focus.

it is so clear
from ‘down’ here…

My hand washes over my eyes
a second time.
A veil removed—

How was it I was
SEEING everything
from this descent?

I stood
brushing myself off…

The ground held me
for some time and then let-go.

I stepped…
No one would see this moment.
No one might believe it true.

Yet, some-ONE was beside me,
around me and within me.
There was no sound
and this voiceless One
lured me, beckoned me…



so I AM.

Sketch of Myself/ If ONLY


Sketch of Myself

                                     “If ONLY I touch the hem of the garment…”

Inspired by Walt Whitman’s poem “Song of Myself”

Lion and Lamb

Lion and Lamb

                        “May ‘we’ learn to live side by side and dwell peacefully
                                      NO matter what the Season be…”


Sketch of Myself/ Reflections

Sketch of Myself
                                                “Reflections…past & present”

Inspired by Walt Whitman’s poem “Song of Myself”

The Gallery

The Gallery

One by one
dangling like stockings
from a mantle

each ‘image’ casting
shadows in between flames
filling a room
with warmth, wonder & awe.

Messages poured out
on paper
—no words.

The creator
sits on the floor
head bowed.

Sheets with endless
prints strewn around—
pencils, pens littered
like a tool box
tipped over

each instrument a jewel
—setting what will be made

The silent soul
sitting in the gallery
gazes a moment…
—a solitary tear
—a pause of gratitude.

The space holding
the pieces~~~
A Universe of Stars.

Many have stopped
and ‘stared’
a kaleidoscope of expressions—

When the gallery’s door closes,
the artist rises
sets a few more logs
on the fire.

If you are lucky enough to peer
through the window~~~
the images come to life

so, too, the one with the
pen in hand.

Sketch of Myself/Loaves & Fish

Sketch of Myself/ Loaves and Fish
                                                      “Everyone Welcome”

Inspired by Walt Whitman’s poem “Song of Myself”

In Memory of 41…RIP

In Memory of 41…RIP
                                        “Ceiling And Visibility Unlimited”

When did the listening stop?

When did the listening stop?

How long?
When did the music seem
to slip from the page?

The harmony, the rhythms,
the beating of drums—
a hollow ache

Hidden in the trees
a voice…
A guttural sound
split the skeletal branches
of the barren trees.

The solitary song of
the owl carried on
like a ripple longing
to greet the shore.

but then it was gone
Lured ‘into’ so many
things to do, to accomplish,
to get done.

Can you hear yourself?

sinking softly into
the nest of being
the dawn preparing
its rise.

A red-bird hits a
high note….
it matters not
if anyone takes notice.

Today…I AM

Sketch of Myself/ Look up…

Sketch of Myself
                                                 “Look up…they are in flight”

                                    ‘Come Dasher & Dancer and Prancer and…’

Inspired by Walt Whitman’s poem “Song of Myself”

A Lemon Drop

A Lemon Drop

A sea of froth
swirled in a
bottomless cup that was
the sky.

The blue blanket
pulled the creamy white
clouds increasing in majesty.

A soft aroma stirred—
The sweet savory scent of
a lemon  drop—

Was it my imagination?

Rising from the cup—
steeped with a million and
more flavorful vapors

It rose.

The sky, the clouds ‘stopped’—
there was a silent moment as if
‘all’ creation paused to genuflect…

Night was around the corner,
but the moon promised to give light
in the beauty of darkness that
would carry its glow.

Sketch of Myself/Rooted

Sketch of Myself

Inspired by Walt Whitman’s poem “Song of Myself”



He was a child…

in his basket, he carried
a few fish he caught beside the sea.

A boat arrived
and, as it did,
a multitude of persons
stood at the banks of the shore.

A man stepped
off the vessel.
He felt the ‘pangs’ of hunger
in each ‘pupil’ his eyes cast.

“Is there any food here?”
the man asked.

The boy
without hesitation
handed over his fish.

He did NOT say,
“If I give these to you
I will go hungry, my family
will starve.”

He handed them to the man.

THIS—when the miracle

Everyone fed—
and there were baskets of leftovers.

Adapted from John 6:1-15

Sketch of Myself/ Wisdom speaks to her daughters…

Sketch of Myself
                                   “Wisdom (SOPHIA) speaks to her daughters…”

Inspired by Walt Whitman’s poem “Song of Myself”



The velvety skin
of each fragrant petal
curls back
then leans as if
longing to kiss the sun
warming the tender
flesh moistened
in the morning’s dew.

Only NOW have
I begun to grasp
the significance of
the rose’s intricate
dance of blossoming.

In younger years
when I held this flower,
I believed I KNEW,
I understood
its mastery.

Glancing back,
it was my self-made
mastery I beheld.
No…this was NOT at all
bad.  It was my

My coming to be—
I see now how I
unfolded the petals
pushing the process of ripening—
thinking ‘this’ was the plan
I was following.
I tried or hoped (THIS plan)
was ordained by ‘something’
higher than myself.

Deep within,
I watered, tended—
pursued ‘that’ which
would ordain the trail
I chose to walk.

This present moment
I am learning how to hold the
rose…differently than before.

I know where to place my
hands so as not to get
pierced by thorns.

Often times I reach
attempting to take back
what “I” know…
A subtle jab and I begin
to bleed.

I can still choose my
path as it unfolds…
but, the garden of life
has surrounded me with
the most exquisite flowers
which slowly are beginning
to fade.

I watch—
their elegance in aging
captures my breath.
They seem to know an
unfolding that is timeless.

The sweet succulence
they have given to life

as their dance
draws nearer to completion (HERE in this NOW).

No longer soft to the touch,
there is a willingness to crack,
dissolve— ‘forgiving’ yesterday’s
storms and, without preparing,
THESE flowers
await their descent…

a ripening
a rising

they never had to do
anything but reveal themselves
in the morning’s sun
and the moon’s hidden


Sketch of Myself/ A Grandfather’s Blessing

Sketch of Myself
                                                   “A Grandfather’s Blessing”

Inspired by Walt Whitman’s poem “Song of Myself”

This Garden

This Garden

In a garden—
I tread lightly
every footstep placed—just so!

The path between all that
and beckoned me…’come, come!’

Walking, I held
the fragrances—far too many
to name.

Intoxicating, the blends
but not at all overwhelming or

I pressed on…
often times I knew my soles
crunched upon a place I was
not meant to step…
or perhaps I was?

My eyes captured a yellow rose in
the distance—
its beauty lured me like no other—

I rushed to meet ‘this’
elegant flower…

I stumbled—
I fell…

Is this supposed to happen in the garden?

I reached the place—the bush
ignited with soft petals.

I crawled on my knees
until I finally arrived at the
standing bouquet lit like the sun…

BUT…what I noticed were
the thorns.

The ‘blood’ of the piercings in my
life dripped from the pools of my heart…

The thorns seemed to ‘seep’
them inward.

Then—as if pulled—
My ‘roots’ trusting the ground
they found themselves in…I rose.

Life’s trials, moments one could
never plan for—these are what
have allowed me to blossom.

ALIVE in this Garden

I’m home in Eden…
Really—I never left.
Its soils have always been
the place I call HOME.

Sketch of Myself/ The Lights On…

Sketch of Myself
                                                          “The Lights On…”

Inspired by Walt Whitman’s poem “Song of Myself”



Someone asked,
“Write, will you, of evil…
bare its long projected fangs…
reveal the traces of blood it
leaves on doorposts, lentils,
and hinges.

Leave nothing out—
how it drapes itself
over the most ‘crafted’ pieces
shattering into numerous specks
never to be placed again—‘together'”

A heavy request—
I felt the weight as I lifted my pen.
The tip touched the paper—
words ‘dropped’ only to disappear
one by one they vanished.

I was ‘lifted’ not from the page
but, instead, from the enormity of the
weight I was asked to ‘reveal.’

Certainly, I know the stings
of pain, suffering—
those encounters one does not bring
on oneself (unless one chooses—
consciously or unconsciously).

I have entertained those moments…
I have learned to become a sort
of ‘host’ to them, for them.
We have sat together—
lengthy encounters.

As the host, I knew to wait.
Whatever was would leave, move on—
but, first I had to ‘dine’ with
the guest…(I suppose one could name
the encounter just about anything).

Freely, I pen these words.

I could have responded
differently to the request,
but then I would be ‘captive,’—
held against my will to write
what is NOT of me.

The one who
fills these blank canvases
is inspired by all life’s experiences.

My roots dip deeper
into the ground of all being


even if I’m dug-up
from THIS place,
I’ll grow again
in the darkness.

No matter how silky black
the night sky prevails…
the richer the void of seeing—

STARS have a way
to shine.(All Saints Day)

Sketch of Myself/ …the eye of a needle

Sketch of Myself
                           “Camel…can One really fit through the eye of a needle?”

Inspired by Walt Whitman’s poem “Song of Myself”



it was…

You could hear its pulse.

It was growing in tempo
shades of blue
bled from the sky.

Rising from a source hid-den
it furled its face

it brushed the surface.

Holding ‘a’ moment
it began to arch
like a feral cat spotting a mouse.

Then a curl—
Spun around absolute nothingness
it held
weightless permanence


into the rocks
it stormed
spraying infinite drops

cascading in fathomless directions…

True North seemed to wield its reigns.

All was still…

In the not so distant distance
it was making its way
again and again.

This living, breathing ‘flow’
will never be held back…

Its breath holds no ending.

Sketch of Myself/Wind is in the air

Sketch of Myself
                                      “Wind is in the Airrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr”

Inspired by Walt Whitman’s poem “Song of Myself.”

Dawn’s Arrival

Dawn’s Arrival

Hidden ‘between’ satin sheets of
fading ‘blackness’—dawn positioned
itself like a leopard in the trunks
of trees fanned behind green
stalks—their color mattered little
in this hour.

Stars hung over spools of tapered
clouds…eyes adjusting—
but, to what?

A few street lights flared their rays,
but the night held like an abyss…
Deeper, like a knife peeling back the
skin of an orange…what do I smell?

No, it is not citrus, but
instead the sweetened moisture
of dew drops splashing what now
was becoming visible.  How?
It mattered not…pupils diminishing
in size, color streaking the skies
like an artist’s pallet running
before a brush stroked plate.

This is dawn.

Dawn…YOU arrived unannounced, unexpected
yet how you wind your way ‘in’—
only the poets can tell, only the
musicians can play you and the
chorus carry your tune.

Dawn, your presence incomplete yet
it is your perfection—
It cannot be mastered.  Your reign is
eternal…before all things and
after all living beings.

The leopard now lays in the
standing grasses—
its prey linked in its paws.

Dawn has made its way—
The darkness shall pave its way
again tomorrow.

Sketch of Myself/ You can cross…

Sketch of Myself
                                                         “You can cross…”

Inspired by Walt Whitman’s poem “Song of Myself”



The branch
grasps an array of green
leafy silks

dangled as if hung
from an exquisite
‘made to order’ laundry line.

Holding steadily
like fingers reaching
for ‘anything’…

they are held as if
in a posture of prayer.

Out of nowhere,
an invisible source
permeates what
has appeared undisturbed.

The wind
pushes the veins
held in the ‘gloved’ body.

They begin to ‘touch’
one another—

a sound echoes in
what was
hushed ‘nothing-ness.’

Prayer has unleashed
speaking in a voice
made audible
by the harmonic perpetrator
who entered this

For a long while
the chorus ‘plays.’

It never will
re-play the same

The song lives on.

Each leaf a note
that eventually will FALL

creating ‘space’
for a melody—

From a source
some might call God
or a conceived place
of Nothing-ness.

Sketch of Myself/ …’skip’ stones

Sketch of Myself
                                       Teach them ONLY how to ‘skip’ stones…”

Inspired by Walt Whitman’s poem “Song of Myself”

The Bank of a River

The Bank of a River

Oftentimes, I am held by my thoughts.
Filled, am I,
by drops of rain
until the river I am discovers
I am flowing over the crest.

Everything I have carried
from countless pathways
now seeps onto the landscape’s
endless pages.

What once was—
changed by this ‘spillage.’

Days pass and the waters recede.
Weeks slip by.
Months surge and the mighty
waters rush, ripple and settle.

In my later years,
I have gazed from the bank of the river
mindful how I arrived
to this place, to this time.

‘Thoughts’ gather once again,
and then, I look.
I see a tiny flower…

It has broken through the body of creation
that was once dripping from
the flood of so much unknown.

Unfolding in the sun’s radiance,
the flower unfolds.

It needs not ask
‘how did I come to this place?’

It matters little that no one notices
its miraculous beauty—
its soft perfumed earthy scent.

It becomes in the moments
of its existence, the dazzling
flower it was meant to be.

Nothing asked—
Nothing gained.

The flower did not have to do
anything except ‘grow’
into what it eventually became…

Ripening happened.

Now, a garden of flowers
lays silent along the shore—

A tender thought rises
and drifts on by.

Sketch of Myself/ Someone…

Sketch of Myself
                                                        “Someone lives here…”

Inspired by Walt Whitman’s poem “Song of Myself”

Papers of Identity

Papers of Identity

These papers
line by line
question after question…

reveal who I am!

THESE papers
do NOT come close…

Each day
I am surprised
by life’s joys and sorrows

THIS is who I AM.

Daily I ‘Become
as I step out beneath stars
as I lay adrift in clouds
as I walk beside a stream
or spread my arms soaring alongside a hawk.

My identity
is anything but a distinct heap of facts.

My SELF is a backpack
carried along on adventures.

Each moment planned, unplanned
guiding me on life…

FULL, broken, unmasked, tangled, spectacular!

You want to SEE my papers?

Go outside—
Feel the wind in your hair.
Get drenched in the rain.
Bake in the sun…be touched by the rays.
Catch a snowflake on your tongue.
Allow a furry friend to dab its muddy paws in your arms.

THIS is my identity.

If ever you wish to meet—
climb a tree…

I AM sitting in a branch.
(Look closely)

Sketch of Myself/Trust the Flow

                                         Sketch of Myself…“Trust the Flow”

Inspired by Walt Whitman’s poem “Song of Myself”

Sketch of Myself/ She knows…

Sketch of Myself
                                             “She knows so much more…”

Inspired by Walt Whitman’s poem “Song of Myself”

Far Deeper

Far Deeper…
Ahhhh—the ‘treasures’ lie far deeper.



“Courage is not the absence of fear, but the capacity for action despite our fears…”
In Memory of John McCain..A Hero
(August 29, 1936- August 25, 2018)

Sketch of Myself/ Be part…

Sketch of Myself
                                  “Be part of the wall inviting others to climb”

Inspired by Walt Whitman’s poem “Song of Myself”

Single Point (Burning the Candle at both ends)

Single Point (Burning the Candle at both ends)

There is a silent place
like a single point between
a candle burning at both ends.

No matter the winds of change,
the chaos swirls
the clamor increases outside.

Go to that place—
You will hear the soft voice

Like a delicate feather
un-tethered from a bird in flight,
it will envelop you—
comforting you

lifting any weight
that might be keeping
you down.

Stay in this shelter—
You’ll know when to rise.

Already the light is in your eyes.


The Queen Of Soul
                    In Memory of “Aretha Louise Franklin” March 25, 1942- August 16, 2018

Sketch of Myself/She carries…

Sketch of Myself
                                 “She carries so much more in her HEART…”

Inspired by Walt Whitman’s poem “Song of Myself”

WHO we are

WHO we are…

the night speaks.

Words on a page
light the dark
and illuminate a
mind seeking questions.

Holding infinite mystery
beholden to wonder…a silent pause.

The dawn ‘creeps’ in.
The black river of
sky disappears
toward the altar of the west.

The pen paints
its final words
on this limitless canvas.

Night shall rise again
and light the imagination.

The shadows that appear
will open the heart—exploring
a keener awareness

WHO we are…
simple fragments
of the Milky Way.

Sketch of Myself/Beauty lies…

Sketch of Myself
                                       “Beauty lies in the changing dunes…”

Inspired by Walt Whitman’s poem “Song of Myself”

Incarnate you

Incarnate You

Pull back the sheets—
Draw the cover from your pupils.
Rise, lift the shade—
crack the window’s seal.
Glance at the stars
gathered in union.
Behold the flames of their
Yesterday they dripped their seeds
upon the earth.

Vast incarnations spread
impregnating the fields
—The heat of passion melted
a vast array of snow covered peaks
—Deserts moistened
holding the erotic dance of the Universe


today blossoms.

Ripening began.

We hold in our hands
the ‘fruit.’

Nothing asked.

We ‘touch’ the gifts
creation lays claim.

The tiller of the soils
laid the ground work.
THIS day we taste
always abundance.
The birthing of life
for everyone.

We are here to serve
each other.

No One hungry
or thirsty
or naked
or homeless.

May we SEE
the incarnation as
NOT a single moment
but a lasting impression
imparted on the chambers
of our hearts

allowing us to proclaim,
“You, too, will do greater
works than have been done.”

A star is shining—
are you finally ‘open’ to
the incarnate wonder that
is You?

Sketch of Myself/Smooth Sailing

Sketch of Myself
                                                       “Smooth Sailing”

Inspired by Walt Whitman’s poem “Song of Myself”



A furnace running…
The sounds of traffic begun.
Outside the window
a feathered soul sits upon a branch.

Perched like an opera singer
held in a stage of towering trees,
there is no warm-up.

It means ‘nothing’ to the little
bird if anyone is or is
not listening.

Her song ‘breaks’ before
the dawn’s rising,

pausing…quietly I listen

becoming the harmony
intertwined in THIS
land of the living.


Sketch of Myself/Straining your Neck

Sketch of Myself
                                  “You don’t have to strain your neck to SEE”

Inspired by Walt Whitman’s poem “Song of Myself”

The Hands of Time

The Hands of Time

How delicately they wind.

They pass—these hands of time
sometimes unnoticed
’til’ alas, we say with a sense
of wonder, “where have the minutes

The hours have cut into weeks
of rushing here and there,
getting this done, a host of
scheduled events, meetings we
masquerade as work
and, now—caught off guard,
we see the years that have
whisked away.

No amount of time will bring the minutes back

BUT, if we can pause each day,
between the ‘tick,’ the ‘tock,’
long enough to allow the hands
of time to hold us,
we can hear the rhythm in
the beating of our hearts.

We can listen to our breath—
in and out

and realize time has always
been on our side.

Round and round we go—

Time never stops and we
can savor the moments, this now,
as it passes

by simply holding ‘hands’ with

Sketch of Myself/Story goes Round and Round

Sketch of Myself
                                            “Story goes Round and Round”

Inspired by Walt Whitman’s poem “Song of Myself”

I’m Not Lost…

I’m Not Lost

I simply chose a
different way—
(The way the others went is not
wrong nor is the path I chose).

This ‘trail’ was right
for me…

The succulent green grasses,
the sky from this mountain top
a shade of blue I
cannot explain…

The clouds knit themselves into
my wool and when I sing a
lofty bellow into the air~~~

the wind scoops it from the tip
of my tongue and an echo plays
itself on and on.

I cannot see the other 99 from here,
but trust…

I’m not lost.
I’m not alone
and I AM far from the need
to be found.

Sketch of Myself/ Architecture Divine

Sketch of Myself
                                              The city and the river ‘together…

                            Tranquility—the bridge that finds peace amidst the tumult

Inspired by Walt Whitman’s poem “Song of Myself”



In the Beginning
God ‘created’…
AND…it was ‘good.’

When humankind was ‘created’—God said again,
“This is good”

AND i believe God said, “You, too shall create”—

and what architectural wonders have been designed.

Sketch of Myself/Reflections

Sketch of Myself
                                           “We hold each other’s reflections”

Inspired by Walt Whitman’s poem “Song of Myself”

Crafted from a Rib

Crafted from a Rib

a ‘piece’ of a whole…

another distinctly different
AND ‘one’ with
the other
fashioned from ‘within’
the same ‘cage.’

the cage does NOT
hold One hostage.
One has no right
over the other…
Side by side
they intended to dwell.

Together, called to observe
the harmony of ALL
living beings.

In Oneness
they were asked
to ‘care’ for…

To love
To serve
To tend.

No ‘rib’ was broken or cracked.

A rib was removed
in order to

We are from the
same ‘cage.’

Let us bind
what was so
elegantly crafted.