Some Poetry About Life–and some about writing poetry

unadulterated shit (Owned by Donald Smith of St. George, New Brunswick, who loved this poem so much he paid me $25 to buy it in about 2001. MY 1ST OFFICIAL SALE!

i sat beside a mountain brook
and wrote a book
and when i read what i had written
i was smitten by the
of reality

the words did not make sense
and the plot was much too tense
for the mood and for the tone
which had shown the anti-idealism
of surrealism

so i threw it page by page
into the water which did rage
with laughter at each word
till a bird flew by and read it
and shit on it

a poem of silence

noises unheard
not one word
no peep nor cheep
nor footstep creep
nor bleep!

no one home
but me
does anybody be?
i cannot see

to be alone with silence
is to be alone
in the universe
not knowing for sure
if anyone else exists

this could be frightening
and border on insanity
but not necessarily so

silence can be:l,
peace of body
peace of mind
peace of soul

just me
and the universe
in cosmic harmony


a ball of words

sometimes i wonder
is it really worth it
to spend my time on rhyme and verse
to curse the world and all its faults
to praise the beauties i can see
and then i answer
it is
to me
even if not to anyone else
for myself it does wonders
to calm a confused mind
and straighten out my head

moments like these
are ever so rare
in our galloping world
that to curl myself up
into a ball of words
is a pleasure
of uncommon delight

the miracle

pictures are worth a thousand words
but poetry is worth a million
so on i write
into the night
cringing in fear
with insanity near
breathing new life
into words as old as death

isn’t it amazing
in all the length of time
humanity has spent upon this earth
someone can still combine
words into lines
that never before have graced
the printed page


are all around us

if only we had

the presence of mind

to see them

epitaph at birth

allow no man
to be my teacher
for he cannot live
mine life for me

allow me not
to be his teacher
for i cannot live
his life for him

let him help me
where he can
and i shall help him
wherever i can

we are brothers

let us remain that way

following my desire

like an eagle on the wing
soaring ever higher higher
trying to capture sun and stars
following my desire

like a mole beneath the earth
burrowing blindly through the mire
digging deeper than before
following my desire

like a leaf cast off by tree
like a snowflake softly falling
sliding down then gliding up
seeking rest — yet stalling

so i live my life each day
to opposing goals i do aspire
learning good exploring bad
following my desire


why do i see
when everyone i meet
sees mere humanity

is this a cursed blessing
is this a blessed curse

like a near completed puzzle with
just one piece to go
but the last piece doesn’t fit
that’s how i feel

i cannot fit myself into
the puzzle of this world
no matter how i stretch and strain
this enigma lies beyond my brain
to remedy

significant language signs

goes bacon in the dead of night
awakening my neighbours
who pound on my door
who pound on bacon
whom i see nevermore

propound a baconism
if you know one
(i don’t
i didn’t mean to wet your appetite
or rain on your purr-aid)

a pound of bacon
for breakfast
a bunch of bananas
for lunch
and for supper a steak
with roast potatoes
and you

you are my night
if i were a woman
would you be my knight
i mean if you were male
wearing mail
i might add

twenty-two plus twenty
makes forty-two
but even douglas
doesn’t know the question
from adam’s
garden of eve

have no meaning
but the meaning i give them
when i write them

and if i believe that
you’ve got some prime property
(canada grade a bacon?)
in florida
to sell me
but i have no money so
i can’t buy that

so why do i continue to string signifiers one after the other (as if they were words in a sentence {You’re Guilty!}) in a vain attempt to communicate my thoughts to some imaginary being called ‘reader’ (providing they get past an even more imaginary being called ‘publisher’) whom i cannot be sure exists and who has no conception of me (that was my mother’s job)

i am a person
at least i was
until i wrote these words
at which point
i became
a poem

and that me immediately vanished
by the ticking of the clock
ripped asunder
by the tickless time bomb
as under the foot of a flea
who got swept down the gutter
of gravity

imagine the coincidence
the play i saw last night
concerned gutters
kate and annie
maggie and polly and ellen
(they made a lot of offal jokes)

is that what inspired this crap
crepe-paper pancakes
inedible solid liquid

a lunar tune

to crash wildly
through jungles
of green
to chase wildly
on dewy
changing streams
in the middle
of a
changing screws
in the middle
of a
to follow
after none
but those
you don’t know
to fathom
the heights
of green


Everyone knows the story of St. Stephenson.  We learn it at our parent’s knees.  But recently, while renovating the Rediscovery where St. Stephenson came to First Life, a strange machine was discovered hidden in the hull.  At first no one knew what it was; our investigations were not able to determine its function.  At last St. Stephenson was consulted as to the purpose of this machine.  His exact words were, “Oh, that?  It’s nothing, just a black box.  You can throw that away.”  We were about to do exactly that when someone wondered aloud what was a black box, and why it was not black, but bright orange?  We consulted our old records, from back in the early centuriess of space flight, and we found that a recording device called a black box, was used, amongst other things, to record on tape any words that were spoken in the cockpit, in case a problem developed, so that the problem could later be investigated.
    It was lucky for First Life that we looked into this, for when we decided to listen to the recording, we discovered on it, in St. Stephenson’s own words, the mental processes that he went through that took him from kangaroo-court-criminal to Prime Representative of First Life.  St. Stephenson was contacted again, to see how he wanted those words preserved, but he said to destroy them.  In almost every case his orders would have been carried out, but in all consciousness, and in responsibility to First Life, we agreed that destroying these words of his was impossible.
    Instead, we wrote them down, in the format you are about to approach them, so that everyone could know what he went through for us, but most especially what St. Stephenson went through to reach First Life.  For we who first heard his words, the experience was incredible, as if we were there in prison with him, and he were talking to us as if he could see us.
    We hope that in this presentation the experience will be equally moving.  Making this transcript was both fortunate and unfortunate for humanity.  Unfortunate, because as we copied the words, the tape from which we were making the copy began to disintegrate from its great age; fortunate, because we got all the words down in print before the tape finished disintegrating.  So, while we do not have St. Stephenson’s voice to present his words to you, we do have his words; this is the best we can ever have now, because St. Stephenson outright refuses to re-record these words for us.  Therefore, we present them only in this format, for your edification and enjoyment.
    We have tried our faithful best to present the following poems to you, and for you, in the manner which he chose to speak them, or sing them, as he sometimes did.  As St. Stephenson went through the process of learning how to compose poetry, we went though a similar process of how to best transcribe it in its pure form.  The language is an archaic form of Canadian English, the language of St. Stephenson’s youth, and the language he used on the recording.  We, your transcribers, hope we have preserved the simplicity of the poetry, and brought forth all the meaning with which it is endowed.  But this is enough of us.  Here then, is St. Stephenson:

The First Life Revelation Society

5368 F.L.

Thus starts the poetic novel of the universe’s first immortal human. Next, if you care to waste your time, are two of the “EFFORTS” that St. Stephenson verbalized as he slowly went insane.

Effort 96 (of THE CRAZY MAN TAPES: A Transcription)

Was probably the very first word
Spoken by prehistoric man
And had so many meanings
It needed a dictionary for itself

Then someone added agh
And language was born

Agh was non-ugh
Yet developed as many meanings
Agh ugh the conversations went
And everyone understood them

But someone wasn’t satisfied
They added argh
And tried to make it mean as much
But agh and ugh described most things
Argh could mean but argh

Agh ugh ugh agh agh agh ugh argh
Told the story of the hunt
How the mammoth was brought down
And lost its spirit

Ung and ang soon joined the crowd
Describing fire and rain
Then somebody sounded ogh and oogh
And igh and egh and ergh

Ung egh argh agh ugh oogh ogh ang ang ang
Was the big black clouds coming over the hill
And since then nothing but rain rain rain
It went without saying the hunt had been postponed

Ang engh ergh ugh ugh agh argh oogh
Ugh uck ack ung urk ock
Ugh ung ang ang eck igh ack ack
Oogh ugh agh ugh ugh oock



Effort One Hundred and One   (of THE CRAZY MAN TAPES: A Transcription)

If I accept as fact the sights I’ve seen
The fact is this
The universe began with birth of Life
But Life itself did not know itself alive
It lived and lived
And was nothing but itself

Then recognition came
It knew itself
But self was nothing
And thus it knew it needed more
than it

It took a form
And lived and died
And didn’t live again
Till recognition came anew

This happened more than once
Again again again
It needed more than life
To conquer death

Trial and error and error and trial
It tried itself itself it tried to try
Life was only lived until its death
It needed change

It needed to reproduce itself
So it would live on after death
Success at last came to our virgin Life
Fission made it safe to hope for more

But fission didn’t work
The same life lived again
The hoped-for change did not occur
The nothing stayed the same

Now Life went on but nowhere went
It was it was it
If only it could change itself
One life to the next

Double helix

This was evolution
This was change indeed
It bred itself to itself
And entered a state of progress
But the progress was too little
The change was much too slow
It knew it wanted more
And didn’t know how

It tried a different form
Based on the good things of the first
And it learned a trick or two
But not enough

Time passed
Though it did not know it
And in this time it grew new forms
As myriad as the atoms

But no matter what it tried
No matter what it learned
It knew the vast emptiness of itself
And yearned for more

It was surprised one time when
two cells joined together
And lived as one
It had not intended this
So it watched and learned

And soon it saw the value of the team
It encouraged other cells to meet
and join
But it lost control of its experiment
And helplessly stood by

One-celled two-celled three-celled
Animals and plants
Life exploded everywhere
And lived upon itself

The nothing now was something
But it wasn’t very much
And its progress was so slow
It hardly noticed it

The organisms grew
And became much more complex
They built upon themselves
Then built on that

And each life was the Life
That started at the start
Part went away at birth
And returned again at death

And brought with it experience
That added to the past
And pointed to the future
That came and went
One day self-awareness
Burst upon the scene
It watched now fascinated
And discovered fear

These little lives that it sent out
Were each a part as knowing
as the whole
Indeed they thought themselves
the whole
And recognized not their parthood

At length the Life was forced to act
It acted on itself
Each little life that it sent out
Forgot it had a past

Until it died in life
And returned back home in death
Only then it knew itself
And went insane

In self-defence the original Life
broke up
To protect the little lives that went
and came
Barriers were created
But the knowledge to join again
in each remained

Separated now the One was more
than one
And each piece learned its life
in isolation
The memory of the whole was all
it had
And soon forgot to remember
even this

If what I saw the other night was real
Then all of this is true
It’s a memory that doesn’t belong
to me
But I have it all the same
Though words are all I have to
give expression
To ideas that are impossible
in words
It’s all so inadequate
But at least I tried

If these poems interest you at all, the entire novel is available starting at with the index on the right designed to read the book in fairly easy sessions.

your poet/author