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Letter Box On Line (LBOL) Files #27

  • Section A: July 15, 2008
  • Section B: August 15, 2008
  • Section C: September15, 2008
  • Section D: October15, 2008
  • Section E: November15, 2008
  • Section F: .................................................................. December 15, 2008

    Del Rey Oaks, CA

      [3 fruits]


      there are three fruits on this table
      probably seven of them
      or maybe five
      or as few as three
      it was always an odd amount
      he never knew why
      it was the way
      it had always been

    Stephen Brown
    (Check out Steve's new web site

    Colorado Springs, CO


      Postulating I consider
      the possibility that
      I may actually
      know of what I speak.

      The mind falls silent
      and straight lines
      turn into circles
      nothing is what it
      appears to be
      with one turn
      of the kaleidoscope
      patterns change
      into designs
      radiant with color.

      Silence becomes
      sound as the
      song of the
      soul lets loose
      vibrating a pitch
      so high it cannot
      be heard by human ear.

    Patricia Ann Doneson

    Carmel Valley, CA


      I am going home.
      I can smell the salty air.

      I don't have to see the ocean
      to know its rhythms.

      Tall trees rise
      from ancient roots.

      Walls expand and contract
      like lungs.

      Light shifts and plays
      over each moment.

      Only this moment,
      only this home that remembers me.

      The earth trembles
      under my unsteady hand.

      A cool mist dissolves
      in shimmering sunbeams.

      What I know and don't know
      co-exist in an uncrowded room.

      A stream flows through the valley,
      wears down obstacles.

      All the ghosts are here,
      the ones I loved and who loved me.

      I move toward the inevitable.
      I am going home.

    Laura Bayless

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    Section E: .................................................................. November 15, 2008

    Colorado Springs, CO


      Passion Play
      goes on.

      Crucifixions still exist.

      individuals stretch
      people on the cross
      everyday nail them
      to it with words,
      with silence.

      There are
      millions still crying,

      have you
      forsaken me."


      Endings are
      just beginnings
      or so the story goes.
      Ya gotta close the
      door behind you
      do your weepin'
      on the road
      for there's
      a bus a comin' on this
      no place, nowhere road.

      No ticket
      you'll be needin'
      on this gonna
      nowhere bus
      and ain't no
      time for
      'cause there
      sure are plenty of us.

      Leave behind
      the shoulda been
      and coulda been
      had I 'cause we're
      joinin' up together
      and no one's
      askin' why.

      So tap
      your toe and
      sing your song
      we're travelin'
      through the dust
      we'll squeeze you
      in and stand you up
      on this goin' nowhere bus.

    Patricia Ann Doneson

    Del Rey Oaks, CA

    There is a myth in the Northwest that Crow returned fire to man. Fire which was so useful was stolen by the Badger people and taken to their underworld home. Crow, since he was a dark color flew into this underworld undetected. He found fire and returned it to man who is forever grateful.


      Lightning struck
      beyond the door
      flash the room
      into the sun
      placing time
      beyond the pale
      hanging seconds
      in the vail
      wistful shimmer
      marks the tear
      along the edge
      of spirit land

      our hero
      turned in flight
      one wing down
      the other high
      through the door
      before it closed
      nipping feathers
      with its slam

      leveling off
      in normal flight
      pumping wings
      toward the dark

      on he went
      into the mist

      stirring green
      toward the purple
      mixing black
      into the brown

      with each pulse
      his flying wing tips
      moving forward
      into unknown

      inner guided
      beyond by the source
      no distraction
      ever onward

      passed the morning
      passed the day
      ever onward
      never pausing
      toward the hidden
      into the night

      keeping cadence
      with a wing stroke
      he carries
      on and on
      never resting
      never stopping
      this guided flight

      far before him
      barley hinted
      he saw it there

      now rewarded
      now renewed
      he did not falter
      he did not pause

      ever slowly
      ever patient
      it awaited him
      to end the flight

      guards were laying
      watches sleeping
      relaxed in vigil

      crow was on it
      with his beak
      taking hold
      with all his might

      sure it burned him
      of course the pain
      he slowly wheeled
      turning back
      toward the tear
      away from menace
      leaving it behind

      muscles straining
      ever onward
      toward the center
      a new beginning
      ever onward
      pumping forward

      the dark had lightened
      with the coming
      of the end

      now the challenge
      now the test
      which direction
      which belief
      ever onward
      toward the core

      there was no flinching
      never pausing
      ever flying
      toward the door
      firmly sealed
      without redemption

      all the creatures
      had long been gathered
      waiting for
      the scene to come
      gathered here
      in huddled circle
      with each other
      waiting excited
      they had to see
      is start to happen

      lightning struck
      beyond the door
      flashing the room
      beyond the sun
      placing time
      beyond the pale

      crow now stood
      there with the reason
      standing glory
      he returned the fire
      into the hearth

      long forgotten
      long bewildered
      others waited
      beyond the sky

      man had lost it
      now returned
      lacquered finished
      a new beginning

      was crow rewarded
      certainly not

      some still like him
      but there are the others
      who have forgotten
      it was he
      who returned
      the warming fire

      it once was stolen
      by the badgers
      taken away
      from mortal man

      now returned
      in to the circle
      we waited thunder
      we waited death

      but from the center
      came the fire
      a new beginning
      he's surely risen

      lightning struck
      beyond the door.

    Stephen Brown
    (Check out Steve's new web site

    Carmel Valley, CA


      Under the autumn-hued
      grape arbor
      I linger
      within the quiet light
      of dusk.

      The moon,
      a white mare's tail
      pinned to a fading blue,
      sways free
      of the last hour,
      suspended over
      a black ridge.

      I hang on
      to swinging silence,
      delaying my own descent
      into darkness.

    Laura Bayless

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    Section D: .................................................................. October 15, 2008

    Colorado Springs, CO

      HEAR ME

      I might
      die tomorrow.

      these mere words

      Help you
      to understand
      my great desire

      To know you.

      have been
      my quest, my longing.

      do we say good-bye,

      we have not yet
      learned to say hello.

    Patricia Ann Doneson

    Piedmont, CA


      How we study life
           Are we hopeful and optimistic
           Or are we doubtful and cynical
           Are we energetic and enterprising
           Or are we lethargic and lazy

      How we react to life
           Do we face each challenge
           Or do we hide in our daydreams
           Do we overcome obstacles
           Or do we lament life's demands

      How we cope with life
           Will we walk out and meet the day
           Or will we drag our feet along the highway
           Will we stride forward into the sunshine
           Or will we let the gloom surround our hearts

      I will walk out and meet the day!
      I will stride forward into the sunshine!

    Pam Quesnoy

    Carmel Valley, CA


      All along a lush meadow
      redundant rainstorms convert trails
      into streams and pools,
      an obstacle course reflection
      of real life's recurring tempests.

      Water seeps through leather shoes,
      soaks thin socks,
      everyday defenses no protection
      from bogs and quagmires.

      Scraps of hard feelings
      like infected wood splinters
      left to fester.
      Fragments of discontent
      ferment and multiply.
      Bitter seeds germinate
      beneath verdant facades.

      I seethe, scratch
      what irritates, extract
      toxic revenge from derelict
      love affairs,
      retreat to burlesque memories
      to neutralize spite.

      1 walk woodland paths,
      attempt to evade the next cloudburst,
      wait for light shed through thunderheads,
      forecasts of returning rapture.

    Laura Bayless

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    Section C: .................................................................. September 15, 2008

    Del Rey Oaks, CA


      The medicine man began the dance
      out beyond the silent walls

      his rattle shaking away the fear
      feathers moving through the air

      the smoke of knowledge weaves around
      to claim the space from here to there

      grabbing hold between the legs
      the haunting center of it all

      destined to a new beginning
      flight will take us through the air

      as we climb into the sky the fear is gone
      the night is clear

      the path will lead forever on...

    Stephen Brown
    (Check out Steve's new web site

    Colorado Springs, CO


      Our country
      stands silent we
      have witnessed fire
      we have seen for
      ourselves the everyday
      battlefield of the firefighter.

      Silent heroes
      men and women
      so willing to give up their
      own life to save another.
      How does one wrap
      the mind around
      such courage.

      Some of their soldiers
      are missing along with
      those they tried
      to save. In this
      silent heroes
      raise the
      American flag
      and plant it firmly
      in the face of terrorism.

      Not a word is uttered.
      With this single act
      the firemen deliver
      their message.
      You have not won
      you have not
      our symbol
      this flag is who we are.

      the hearts
      of a nation left
      grieving this flag
      still waves and never
      has it looked so beautiful.

    Patricia Ann Doneson

    Carmel Valley, CA


      Late winter rains have filled the gorge
      with rangy shrubs and prolific poison oak.

      Trailing threads of bindweed unfurl and sprawl
      through paintbrush spikes and cactus patches.

      I rub shoulders with yellow bush lupine,
      hedges of blue ceanothus and thistle sage.

      Pale pink morning glory runners fuse
      with greasewood and strands of bird vetch.

      The ravine reaches out for me, crowds
      the narrow path, snags my sleeve.

      I follow the trail between green canyon walls,
      step gingerly across a melodic stream.

      Watercress and delicate ferns merge
      at the rim of water colored stone compositions.

      At the entrance to the cool forest
      I pass between two sentry redwoods,

      follow shadowed passageways flanked by
      coarse russet trunks and leafy sorrel clover.

      Under the canopy of thick woods, I caress
      rough bodies of trees, grasp at the truth,

      gather myself for the times to come.


      In the eucalyptus grove
      light dapples a motif of crescent leaves
      and empty elf cap seedpods
      scattered on a shaded trail.

      Boulders shaped like caskets
      unearthed from a woodland graveyard
      rise randomly from brushwood thickets
      under laurels and cottonwoods.

      A column of young quail
      parades to the creek to sip
      from the shallows of the stream.

      River grasses fan gracefully
      into clustered pinwheels
      of gleaming green
      in September sunlight.

      An ensemble of river stones
      plucks melodies from flowing water,
      sends them adrift through the secrecy
      of fragrant woods and tangled vines.

    Laura Bayless

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    Section B: .................................................................. August 15, 2008

    Pacific Grove, CA


      Flapping their wings strongly
      to attain the air together,
      a set of shore birds,
      gulls or terns,
      something white and gray,
      flies into the sky
      low over a calm sea.
      Not an organized glide
      like large, brown pelicans.
      Or the frantic flutter of geese
      heavy until aloft and sharing
      the drag of friction in a V.
      These birds race in circles
      aloft, their twins a reflection
      on the water below.
      Two worlds, one urgent,
      the other an echo.
      Each as real in its own realm.
      One a ghost or memory
      of the ability to fly
      lying reluctantly
      on a mirror surface,
      broken by distance
      and a rising tide.

    Sharon Davies

    Colorado Springs, CO

      THE VOID

      I lay in waiting
      for what I do not know
      is it for prey or for purpose.
      The heart quickens in this
      unknown space waiting
      as the thistle waits for
      the bud of a rose
      that seeks life
      from the thorn.

      as the night
      waits for light
      to burst upon
      the horizon.
      I surrender
      to this waiting
      as life surrenders
      to death knowing that
      death and dying are
      a part of living.

      This day has died
      and a part of me
      has died with it
      who will I be
      the thistle, the
      thorn, or the rose

    Patricia Ann Doneson

    Carmel Valley, CA


      On the cliff trail at Montana de Oro
      sand shifts beneath my feet,
      burns calf muscles to quivering cords.

      At the waterline
      vertical granite ledges align,
      stacked together, stone envelopes
      waiting to be mailed.

      Lavender beach geranium
      amass on every hillock
      and are along the path.

      Mists caress my face,
      cloak nearby mountain
      in gauzy vapors.

      Patches of blue emerge
      and disappear,
      sea and sky in a Virginia reel
      parallel union
      at a coastal junction.

      I am between alliances,
      content to explore,
      ripe with gratitude
      for what materializes
      and departs.

    Laura Bayless

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    Section A: .................................................................. July 15, 2008

    Colorado Springs, CO


      Where do you go
      for these words?

      Into dark places
      you would not care to enter,

      Nor, would you care to see.

      In this space—
      souls have been lost, and
      are screaming to be free.

      I sit, as others have
      before me, looking into
      hidden parts of self.

      Steal, as a thief
      would steal,
           all the pain of the past,
           all the hope of the future.

      When I have gathered,
      without judgment, all
      that I can hold.

      and only then,
      am I released

      To set my pen to paper.

    Patricia Ann Doneson

    Tucson, AZ

    From last night:


      The mesquite branches
      Move slowly through the moonlight
      On this warm June night

      The moonlight appears
      Through the earthbound turning leaves
      Of mesquite in June

      Tucson streets line up
      North to South by the Dipper
      Thus so this June night

      The Little Dipper
      Faded by the city lights and
      Desert Moon in June

      The Phoenix Lander
      Talking to the U of A
      Desert night in June

      I cannot see Mars
      But the Phoenix Lander can
      Red Desert Planet

    Poems from El Lay:


      There on the San Pedro Headland
      Live a row of bushes
      And some years before my date and I
      Spied a spider weaving a web among them

      The light was fine
      The air fresh as the thought of
      The Sea of Japan
      The afternoon was made for love and youth

      I wonder how those bushes fared with the years?
      The spider replaced by other spiders
      But the bushes—
      Replaced by asphalt and concrete?
      Protected by the City Fathers
      Ever intent on preserving tourist dollars?
      I will be replaced by other writers
      But the ideas—
      Will they be replaced by concrete and asphalt?


      Setting it up in an apartment
      In West El Lay
      On a hill near the 10 Freeway
      Where it snakes past the San Diego

      A baby came into our lives
      Hers and mine
      No more running around
      No more sport rutting

      Get a new sofa and a queen size bed
      A new frig
      All new stuff
      Had to when we left our furnished place

      Our new place was furnished with a baby
      And two parents who did what they mostly all do
      Wondered in awe and fear
      At this little life given to them

      When she grew and could walk
      We took her to the park on Santa Monica Boulevard
      Where we saw the heron on the island
      In the pond

      There we tore bread slices
      And tossed them to the seagulls
      Until our little one
      Went and picked up a piece for herself

      Our laughter came
      It could not be held back
      Or held on to
      The time passed into memory as it always does

    Christopher Lovette

    Carmel Valley, CA


      I am in the beginning of knowing
      something I do not want to know,
      an annoying mosquito of a lie
      I have told myself.

      I tolerate its presence on my hand,
      permit it to sting,
      but kill it with one swift slap
      before it can draw blood.

      I am considering
      whether or not
      to tear down the stronghold
      that keeps the half truth confined.

      Up until now
      surrender has not been an option,
      trumpet call for troops not sounded,
      witnesses silenced.

      Subliminal bulletins surface.
      I torch them
      with pyrotechnic tantrums.
      The subtext remains nebulous.

      A humble diligence disturbs
      the crypt where
      I believe I have concealed
      my deceit.

      Perhaps I will have an epiphany,
      perhaps not.

    Laura Bayless

    Thank you for your creative offerings!

    I invite readers to share their own creative works (poems, stories, images, comment, etc.) in Letter Box On Line (LBOL). I look for work and comments I feel support understanding and encouragement of the creative process, and hence, the process of life.

    The Editor

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