If Only…

If only…
The start of a most tragic thought through all of humankind
To ponder possibilities of what could come behind
Some desired course of action. Some decision so sublime
Observes no answer for repeated questionings in mind
But simply cycles downward in a whirlpool of the time.

If only I had not done that
If only I were there
If only life were not so tragic, weary, and unfair
If only I could fly away
If only I could flee
If only… With such words as these we grovel and we plea.

If only…
What thoughtless hopeless despondence queries as these depict
When lowly mortals seek to sort all of natures rhyme and writ
It leaves them hopeless. Barely coping- The temerity of it!

If only…
Take these useless words away
That I be not obliged to say
Ever again within my speech
What I was once fooled to believe.

Write them off or discard me
For I have naught that you should need
But save me from those cursed words
And take from me that bitter scourge

If only…
What fiendish mind begat those words?
What thought had he but his own hurt?

There is no ‘if only’ to be had
What you’re given is what you have
Not more not less and if you feel
that probity might somehow seal
a future more desirable
I tip my hat to your pure soul
For you have not yet learned the woes
that life displays when it implodes
then suffocates you with its lies
to crush the innocence you prize.

If only…
Ah quite useless it
But still provocative the rift
That forms within your mind amidst
The echoes that these words emit
To taunt like cold fingertips
Daring you to not forget.

If only…
Not again I say
‘If only’ never comes to stay.

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The Keeper

“Before this last time that I leave
take I beg of you this key.
For it alone can free my heart
which I have kept quite set apart
within a stronghold so secure
might and force cannot procure.

Take and hold it here for me
until someone who is worthy
should venture in to claim its prize
releasing then this heart of mine.”
With that she placed that silver key
into the hand of Him unseen.

A Tragic Tale

She cried for her brother
as he journeyed beyond
the peaks of the mountains
in search of a song

She asked of her mother
if it would be long
before the night tempest
turned into the dawn

She begged of her father
“Oh, let me I pray
venture out searching
I’ll find my own way.”

She called for her lover
“Come take me away
for I’ve lost the reasons
that force me to stay.”

She fled to the city
such exciting sights
no thoughts of the future
she lived for the night

Until came a moment
when dark pleasures bite
demanded a payment
in exchange for a life.

She turned to a bottle
so no one would hear
the sounds of her crying
her shedding of tears

She thought of the Preacher
after many years
and hope of procuring
a peace from her fears.

But instead she took potions
and pills of a kind
that take away notions
and thoughts about time.

And wasted and ravished
frightened and alone
she fell to sins cycle
hopeless and unknown.

If I Leave…

I suppose if ever comes the day
again when we meet face to face
I do not know what I would say
to make it worth your time to stay

Supposing I had strength to play
some song of love to break the chains
of loneliness which still remain
Perhaps then I, your heart, could sway.

But still again supposing I
could spread out wings and upward fly
what good would be those wings of mine
if I forget the heart inside?

Perhaps I won’t recall today-
this thought, this rhyme, this foolish flame.
Perhaps tomorrow I will say
“Goodbye my love- I go away.”

Without a Chance

There’s an old, old story
that I once read
tells the tale of a peasant
and the deeds that he did

First at the beginning
though, I must commence
lest you understand not
where I’m going hence.

This story begins
with a king grown old
who had not an heir
to bequeath his gold

Save only a daughter
a damsel so fair
that the nobles for miles
would stop and stare

But the king in his wisdom
understood that their stares
though simple and subtle
indicated that their

Love for his daughter
was for the beauty she bare
and not for her person
her health and welfare.

But alas though this king
of this truth understood
yet still he retained
no thought of what should

Be done to bequeath
his fortune of gold
or how to find one worthy
of his riches untold?

And so he devised
a plan so bold
that only the bravest
would care to be told.

He locked up his daughter
in a tower so high
with ice like a mountain
sloping on all sides.

Sealed up with his daughter
were three apples of gold
the value of one which
could not be told.

Then the instructions
to all men were told
the rich and the poor
the young and the old

“Whomever among you
my daughter can free
by climbing this ice
while riding his steed

And bring to my palace
the apples she bares
He’ll then be my son
the prince and my heir.”

Thus with fortunes awaiting
only to be claimed
there came such a crowd
that could countless be named

Of kings, and of nobles,
princes riding steeds
the finest of which
poor men only dream.

They all came together
to lay claim to the prize
to prove they were worthy
of the benevolent eye.

But alas to the king’s
very grave dismay
not a man could be found
to succeed that day.

That day turned too many-
and then many weeks
no one had come close
to reaching the peak.

As weeks turned to months
and months turned to years
the nobles forgot
of the beauty so clear

That shone from a damsel,
who sat locked away
in a tower of ice,
whom no one could claim.

But the princess still stayed
all alone in her tower
with three apples of gold
three tokens of power.

Now to that peasant
where my rhyme had begun
you knew I would get there
before we were done-

He worked in the fields
bringing hay and straw
to feed all the horses
both great ones and small.

He knew of this legend
of this damsel so fair-
but it really was not
of that which he cared.

For this peasant saw
a woman indeed
a prisoner who needed
at last to be freed!

But to be released
one man had to climb
not only once-
but at least three times!

And though this he wished for
he knew he could not
for he had no steed
and knew none could be bought

That would ever be able
to that height attain
for horses were simply
not built to maintain

The level of strength
he’d assuredly need
if he were to ever
gain the damsel’s release.

But then something happened
while he worked one night
when a lightning bolt shattered
leaving quite a sight.

A horse dressed in bronze
the sound of whose neigh
was the sound of a power
that was not human made.

On this sight he pondered
for whom could this be?
And who was it who granted
such a stout noble steed?

And truth is the answer
to that question’s unknown
and he marked it down
to the fairies alone.

So up on his back
this peasant did ride
wearing the bronze armor
that had come alongside.

He raced between crowds
to the great icy slopes
and began to climb them
as the king had long hoped.

His steed dug his hooves
using all his strength
carving a passage
a third of the way.

But he could continue
up no more that way
and turning around
he left off for the day.

But before his returning
brought him to the ground
the damsel above him
tossed an apple on down.

And holding his prize
which he’d won that day
he wielded his steed
and galloped away.

*** *** *** *** ***

My conclusion is brief
yes returning next day
the peasant climbed higher
earning two of three

Then once more enduring
he claimed apple three
by reaching the top
and at last she was free.

The king knew his promise
and made him his heir
for no other was worthy
who conquered his dare.

But now hear my question
of you I will ask
what if the damsel
was not in distress?

Would the peasant still climb
for three apples to gain?
Surely one was enough
for it was priceless in trade.

But alas even that
is not the question I fear.
For three golden apples
he could never have neared

Save for some fairy mother
who granted a steed
a horse like no other
to accomplish the deed.

Why then the bother
of trying to earn
what only can come
if you’re granted a turn?

A turn that if gained
like the peasant you’ll be
ready and able
to accomplish the deed-

For what of those others
those from far and wide
were none of them worthy
to be granted a try?

Or is fate simply laughing
at all those who yearn
to be something more-
With no chance if no turn.

A Legacy

The longing, the yearning
to be something more
to reach the unknown
where none have before

To live in the moment
be present and still
training this body
bending mind and will

The pain is still burning
the mountain so high
but my soul enduring
through fire is tried

So again to the void
once more through the pain
perhaps in this moment
my victory’s gained

There is no surrender
there is no defeat
I live as a fighter
I cannot retreat

Don’t ask me a reason
don’t tell me it’s vain
for time is still ticking
recording my name

And all of my footprints
across sands of time
outline the legacy
from this life of mine.