Friday, January 05, 2018

Learning The Last Song Of Summer…

Learning The Last Song Of Summer…

*Note: I had this dream this morning that I had to get down, here’s the result.*

It was dusk on the last day of Summer as I meandered down Main Street, filling my eyes with neon and party lights and the last indigo rays over the horizon. The evening crowd was thinning for the dinner bells of sidewalk cafes and patio tables, dining under soft old street lamps after a day of carnival.

The Gypsy wagons were parked all along the streets with little strings of lanterns strung between, and I spotted a wayward last August firefly out of the corner of my eye, or so I supposed.
Suddenly from three wagons down the street, I heard what seemed a mournful tenor saxophone bellow. I love the instrument, so I walked a little faster toward the sound. To my amazement it was no saxophone at all.

Between the parked wagons were some small tables and chairs, where sat a band of Vaudeville hobos dressed for all the world like Red Skelton on a Friday night. Each was holding a stringed instrument made of painted tin like an antique toy full-grown. I had heard the cello player warming up his strings.

I looked around in wonder at the bassist and banjo player and a beautiful tin guitar in expert old hands, and they began to play in a slow and mournful fashion, something like wind and distant thunder.

They were making little jokes of the people walking the street, harmless really. “Look, Loquatius, that one’s so tall he could touch the sky when he writes.” “Jedidiah, do you see that gal there in the colors of a balloon on the clouds?”

I stood in the shadows a bit, looking and listening in wonder, as they got in tune and played, Like grass grown dry and amber swaying in a near-harvest breeze. “Call for Carmelina and Serenata, Cornelius.” I heard the leader say.

Suddenly a young lady as beautiful as the moon led a bejeweled elephant up to the center of the band, and the two began singing a duet, Carmelina the elephant, and Serenata, whose name is Italian for Night-Song.

They serenaded Summer off down the street without moving an inch, and you could feel Jack Frost and his minions breathing on the road to town, all the way from the North Pole they were coming, and you could feel their steps on the road, steadily marching to the beat of the tin drum by lantern light.

I walked up and sat on a street bench rapt and listening to the melancholy pull of warm winds battling cool breezes. When the band stopped on the last soft notes of their song, everybody knew that Summer had surrendered, and Autumn was on her colorful way to town.

I walked up after and put a Finn in the leader’s tin cup, and offered cigars all around to the band, cracked open my bottle of dinner wine and poured the first glass for Serenata and then shared the rest with the band. I told them my name was Poet, and asked them to share their story.

“I can tell you a little.” said Loquatius, the leader of the Gypsy band. “We found Serenata and Carmelina in a pair of milkweed pods, many sweet Summers ago. Lady Summer told us to plant them by our campfire as Autumn walked the land that season, and gave us the music to learn.” “Play it for them as they rest in the Earth and grow through Winter’s long cold days,” she bade us, “and teach them to sing the verse as Spring warms you and they come forth and flower.” “Your song will hold the Storm Demons of Winter from your camp, and Jack Frost will never be able to do more than follow you.”

“So, you see,” said Loquatius, “We keep Winter and her cold-eyed demons from us as we roam from town to town, and the ladies here have learned to sing from the time they were wee seeds low to the ground.”

I looked at the warmth of my cigar cherry and the cheer of their never-frozen camaraderie, picked up a tin fiddle, and joined the End of Summer Tin Man Band, being sure to keep my pen and journal close to hand.


By” Daniel A. Stafford
(C) 08/13/2012

Dan Stafford

Thursday, January 04, 2018

In A Summer Chair Reading Poetry…

In A Summer Chair Reading Poetry…
Cigar smoke rises up on a hot breeze,
It’s dance in the sunlight lifts the corners of my mind,
Still snarled around the pages of Poetry magazine,
A thing of melancholy beauty,
Glorious wounds of the psyche travel the world on its back.

A day like this should paint beautiful prayers,
Make young lovers strip down to the sweat,
Push people into lakes and pools,
Rustle green leaves and cook them in bird call spice.

I close the page and release what I read,
Remainders dangle unripened until a rainy cold day.

Tobacco and coffee and hot sunshine,
Things made of the tufts of sunlight fallen from Heaven,
These belong,
Wet feet and sand belong.

Defiance of the ticking clock,
I am not fully Borg,
Will never truly be a crushed $pirit,
Though they frog-march me into the shadowland,
I escape a few moments or hours any given day,
Dreaming of freedom and longer telomeres,
I am the bottom of an aluminum can,
Never truly crushed and forever recycled.

There is another green in my world,
A place of yellow dandelions and frisbees,
Shady trees and cool pools,
Spinning bicycle wheels,
Freshwater waves and beach glass,
Music and moonlight,
Dancing and romance.

My numbers are still in play,
Hope for a break in the window of in$anity,
This artificial dinosaur crafted by twisted old men,
Only awaiting the right comet to crash into the gestalt of a world creaking,
Straining under its rotting weight,
Awaiting chrysalis.


By: Daniel A. Stafford
(C) 08/21/2013

Wednesday, January 03, 2018

The Joke...

Post by AquarianM on May 23, 2012 at 8:50pm

The Joke...

The joke is this crazy ephemeral life,
So incredibly poignant,
Rich beyond belief with every emotion,
Only to end in dust,
Fade on the wind as moments tick by,
Every legend,
Every sound and sight and dream,
Some circle of time leads us willy-nilly,
Laughing at our vulnerable hearts,
Letting the flow of air dry our tears,
All we can do is try to pass down to the young,
Whatever water hasn't flowed through our fingers,
And love with all of our might,
A way of praying for meaning,
As I wonder of the tide of fifty thousand years,
A pittance to the Universe,
So beyond any hope of ours,
Should an iota of our memory still even an atom,
Let alone a single breath,
But we go on,
With a smile we dance the stage of our season,
Trying not to reason why,
Nor to show a wistful teardrop.


By: Daniel A. Stafford
(C) 05/23/2012
Words are the mind's bridge - it's connection to the universe.
Love is the heart's bridge - it's connection to all other souls.
Loving words can work miracles.
All of my published poetry is at:

Tuesday, January 02, 2018

The Surface Tension Of Dreams...

Post by AquarianM on Jun 12, 2012 at 1:08am

The Surface Tension Of Dreams...

I burst into new knowledge and break its skin like overripe fruit,
The food of the Gods weighed out in hours and pages,
Web and paper meld into mental gold and eerie blue mists of light,
Waiting for the night to coalesce into a new understanding,
I collect the waters like a dam in the desert,
Aching to pour forth a torrent of healing wisdom,
Everything speaks to me of great changes,
The surface of the universe trembles and shakes,
This small little planet a steed ridden hard and wet across the undulations,
I wonder if it will fall from beneath us when dream-skin breaks,
Or if we'll survive the headlong pace racing to the bursting point.


By: Daniel A. Stafford
(C) 06/12/2012
Words are the mind's bridge - it's connection to the universe.
Love is the heart's bridge - it's connection to all other souls.
Loving words can work miracles.
All of my published poetry is at:

Monday, January 01, 2018

The Hollywood Bomb...

Post by AquarianM on Apr 3, 2012 at 9:28pm

The Hollywood Bomb...

I'm freakin' tired of it,
Bored with it,
Wore out to the point of sore with it,
The whiz-bang flash of deadly steel in the dark,
Hot lead in the heart,
The modern-day Roman coliseum on the Big Screen,
Life or Death but never a future,
Every possible problem laid bare,
But nothing positive since the days of E.T. and Close Encounters,
The best you can get is sex and romance,
Believe me,
They come in that order,
But something with a positive vision of our future?

Believe me true,
In 2012,
THAT would be a real Hollywood bomb.


By: Daniel A. Stafford
(C) 04/03/2012

Author's note:
I am tired of the same old stale death-cult mentality on the big screen. Hollywood has seen it's glory days long ago, and now they are stuck in the dog days of myth and legend and depressive crap.
Words are the mind's bridge - it's connection to the universe.
Love is the heart's bridge - it's connection to all other souls.
Loving words can work miracles.
All of my published poetry is at: