Friday, December 26, 2008


Photo by Dave Larson


In the darkest hour
those that did not hide
from the light
realized that freedom
cannot be curtailed by the forces of darkness.
And others have not yet experienced
the darkest hour
for they know light
always prevails.
Light is within.
Dark forces.
Light shines...
and always.

Good Day!


Thursday, December 18, 2008

Pecan Pie

I had a piece today. Pie -- so good. And I couldn't help comparing some experiences.

There are two ways to have a piece of pecan pie.
Served on fancy plate dishes
floral and gilt-edged
with a silver fork.
Cut the tip bite-size
nut-half wedge first bite
sweet and rich the taste
recalling every past pecan pie.

Or cut a slice with a butter knife
finger-morsels and crumb-dripping
ooze-- oh!-- on a napkin if your lucky
but palms and more fingers is fine
and in mouth-size bites
three of four in all
to tongue-watering reception
by instinct of textures
dissolving, sliding
to the being of sated joy
before the crust flakes
of butter-baked
and melting made happy
by pecan pie.

There are two ways of making love
and eating pecan pie.

--ak 12/18/08

Flying Kite

Sometimes poets and philosophers are lumped together and venerated. Or by others -- ridiculed as out of touch with the real world. There is truth everywhere. And we all have our own version. . . .

Philosophy -- not so!
Poetry -- So!
And common sense.
Give me a windstorm anytime
and paper and people.
Leave the moral surmising to monkeys
in the age of reason --
an ethical dilemma portending.
So I'll write the grace of flying kite.
String and ink are two thin lines to being.
Strong and taut. Long and flexible.
Poetic in rhythm and flow
to an audience coated,
with ears.


With You

When she walked out of the room, there was a slight inside side kick of the right heal. I smiled within. And remembered other things that make me happy.

Know what I love?
I love the first snow
anointing my window in silence
all warm in here
with dinner in the kitchen
content this cozy hour.

And I love a toddler's first legs now walking
or running with clumsy confidence
and a light heart of freedom
like -- when I got my drivers license
kid-crazy and wild
and I lived too!

Or Josi after first day of school
serious in study with papers and books
and counting her color crayons assorted
heart of gold and bright --
knew there was so much more
than this sampling
the wisdom of ages now ahead.

And you with that dance step
in your walk
you didn't know I knew
your glee, and best of all
that we can touch and cuddle
all we want and whenever.

May be cold outside
but warm in here
with you.


Friday, December 05, 2008

A Note from Granddad

When I was suffering
you gave me love
and gifts and well wishes.
When I was on my deathbed
your prayers of love
eased my way.
When I first arrived here at last
your relief and love
made me know my good fortune.
But your grief continues
and dampens my celebration.
Remembering our joy
will complete the occasion
of love and elation.

Friday, November 28, 2008

After Storm

When mind tries to take what Soul has made,
when uncertainty, stress or fear
halt the journey,
entries in its journal also cease
till there is a turning within.
Silence helps.

Okay, think.
But not too much.
Or thoughts are stopped.
Blocked. Stalled.
In spiral descending.
Opposing growth
Of cedar or pine.
Or the flight of an eagle
Time matters not
To the Eye of Light,
To the rate of waves returning,
The song of season's change.
The cliff on the cape
Forever washed by storm
And sailors dreaming.
The new day
Is lit by vision.
For thought
Cannot stop the sunrise
After storm.

I write. And it was a good day for Thanks.


Friday, November 14, 2008

Earth Gift

Though the leaves have almost all fallen, and snow is in the air as often as autumn leaves--beauty persists. In a morning of light and life, it was the view of the silver maple outside my window that inspired this poem. It is of Love. It is of a Divine Gift.

The word, HU in this piece is an ancient name for God. There is reference to it in Egyptian lore, Sufism and the religion of Eckankar and others.

Earth Gift

The breeze that animates the trees
Makes every leaf resound in resonance
And breathe. Your name
Is HU.

And then
At summers end,
Before full narrowing of light
The Sound anticipated
Almost by sense of sight.
From sun to rain and chill
A quickening of all earth life
The ring of needs yet to fill
The sounding toll before
The final bell
Is first
And HU is last.

After the turning – slow to start
The art released, once synthesized in green,
This sweet array of dreamers' scene
Falls silent once again
The song of silence
Light and Sound on earth
The Song of HU.

Green and yellow leaves
Of red. And white – the snow
Released. And now we know
The Gift to earth
Your name
Is HU.


Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Red-Tagged Black

It came to me this morning as looked back to the polling place waiting for my wife:

One on the cross
Another on the gable
Two black crows
Also ignore my vote
As I go from church red-tagged.
Black crow. Where do I go from here?

Now as I listen to the results of polls closing, it looks like it is as I have been saying all along. Obama will take it. There will be a lot of cheer and hope. Relief for a few weeks or months.

Then . . . Same as before, but worse. Less freedom. More taxes. And war continues.

But we, as a country, get exactly what we need to take us to the next step, spiritually. And hard as that may be, the human spirit will survive. Our value is within. When the consciousness raises again to a level to recognize the call of Soul is freedom. No one will take care of us. We will learn again that we can, and we must take care of ourselves. And we will no longer allow the corrupt to make promises to do what's right while dealing with the dark side.

Love will light the truth. Keep it in your heart and lives. It is our only hope.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

October Notes

Love this season. A walk, a drive. The view from windows west . . .
In just a week there was this turning. Earth warmth and rich in greens with fruit and seeded pods, to colors from a higher realm. And blest
with a new perception of your heart.

Sunshine on a cloudy day
Photo by Dave Larson
Photographer's note: Sunshine streamed into this hillside grove just before I started taking pictures near Chanhassen, MN.

October Notes

Abundance rich
The senses now reflect
A revolution of heart in gold
And colors primary full unfolding
Crossing lined and rolling ways
Lies lace and jeweled by sun
The rain's first mist in touch
And yet before advance of wind
After night's chill and blessings fall
Like love notes from months past and next
Heaven's message in these leaves
To buffer winter's risk alright
Warm now with your hand
And hearts together tried
Still holding.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Waiting for Perfect Light

In contemplation this morning a scene of natural setting came to me. Not a lot of detail, but vivid in its beauty and light. I chose to paint it in haiku.

blue boat by gray dock
matching the distant hills
she waits with pastels

In selecting that last line, I thought of a friend--an artist and writer. So I visited her website and found a similar scene in her Waterways gallery. I can see her there on the bank in yellow hat.


Saturday, September 27, 2008

Relationship—The Lessons We Learn

This isn't poetry, but rather a short piece of humor from which you may detect a bit of wisdom gleaned along the lines (front lines, that is) of the battle of the sexes. That war, by-the-way, is one I do not support—though as a reporter of the human condition, I have been known to get caught up in the battle a time or two too many. And if you are a believer in reincarnation (like over 50% of the world population) you may appreciate the suggested answer to the two original questions that came to the thinking being, indeed our race. And we are still running.

Who am I? Why am I here?

If our mission were to unfold in divine blessings singularly under one God, I'm quite sure my incarnations would have been limited to a handful. But, alas, I detected another soul in my world and I uttered, or I gestured, or I reached out and touched that one. At first it was quite exciting. New and fresh. Every word, every effort was a way to improve my condition. I knew it was good by my feelings, physical—and . . . some other, undefined way. Every echo of my call. Every response to my action, were all reflections of my desire. All day long.

And the next day she said, "What about me?"

I said, "Me? I am me." And she contradicted, saying, "No. I am me."

And these words and similar went on for some time—about ten-thousand lifetimes. And finally one of us started to realize—perhaps it was the day at the still lake when she saw herself as I saw her. And she saw me, but backwards and behind her. And I've been behind her ever since in the words department.

She said, "It's all about perspective. I see you and you see me. And we are different. And we are the same. I am me, and you are you. And we are we. You see? The birds and the flowers and the bees and the trees. and my mother's great aunt…."

And I said, "Oh."

But I did see, though sometimes I had to plug my ears to do so. I saw what she saw when I realized my reflection is a good way to see what I've become.

So for some time, about a hundred-thousand lifetimes, we've been learning about the differences and likenesses of each of us. You and you, and you, and me. And you and you and you. Actually there are quite a lot of us now, and only one me.

You see, one thing we always agreed upon is how good it felt to couple. Even if only for the pleasure to me. And you, of course, as your own me. And so there continues to be a multiplying of a lot more us.

Us! That's it. We all have wants and needs and desires. And some of us started to realize that what gives you happiness also gives me happiness as well. And your happiness gives me happiness. And that mine does not take away from yours.

So with her wisdom I am starting to learn that relationship is a give and take situation. Or is it give and give? After all, it was take and take for so long. Balance is good.

Balance in relationship. That's why we're here—for the lessons learned therein. And what we really gain when we put what we have learned into practice.

Take me ahead about a million more lifetimes. I'm looking forward to when I won't have to come back anymore. I'll just stay there with you. And you and you and you. We all have hope.

Monday, September 22, 2008

in the river

there is
the sea that draws me
from ground spring
and forest rain
to carry its life on leaf
and rippled song -- a notion
thought of going home
becomes an urge
ocean of heart
current in this river
there it is
the sea

Saturday, September 20, 2008

New Straw

The other day, at my desk at work, for some reason I picked up a scent like none other so rich and comforting. It took me back to my boyhood on the farm. And this morning a golden glow out my morning window . . . In my journal I brought it together in verse:

New Straw

Late summer scent
New straw sweet
Cut and drying
Save morning due
The cooler nights
And now at first light
Reaching low over hills of gold
This glow and the harvest
Of my heart opening
Each new day
To love

Monday, August 25, 2008

I Walk

Discomfort with pen. The time almost up. It's been years since I haven't read my hour's creation. It's writers block in writers group. On Thursday night our group meets. Fresh writing for an hour, then reading. I wanted to capture the sense of peace in a forest walk. Too many false starts. But it is not to be. The flow of ink is stopped by a dull mind after long day. Resigned, I stop grasping for straws and I reach in another direction.

Then it begins . . .

I walk in the city, approaching Times Square from the direction of Madison Square Garden -- south, I believe. Hundreds of cars and cycles, taxis and trucks. Thousands of people. Black and white and colors of clothes. Suits and coats. Decked out in dress. And skinheads and dreds. Hats and backpacks on mothers-to-be.

The movement of masses. The people and traffic. Like a churning sea. The wave of human current does not wait for signal to flow, but crowds the street as a break in traffic allows. The tide forever rises and falls, not resting when gravity pulls by the cycles of earth and moon.

New York. Steel and stone. Pavement and people. Lights and song of everything industry. Culture and commerce. Theater and glow. Pulsing with arts in symphonic show. Vendor's display in windows and street. Rayon and silk. With mustard or sweet. Characters diverse. Derelict and divine. Beggars at church. Panhandle for wine. Bells and whistles and horns I hear. Cuisine, the finest. And pizza and beer.

Before I visited the city, I perceived it differently. A picture of life in fright from cramped quarters and crime. But in this walk I realize. It's all part of a much larger whole. Soul sees the higher view.

I walk toward Times Square. This too is life! And a new sense of invigoration. And control. Like I'm shooting the rapids. Or surfing the perfect storm. I am in the sea, but of the Love that gave all Life.

And at once -- a new setting. Serene. Overlooking the Pacific. On the north Oregon coast. The trail from the rain forest opens to the vista on a knoll of wind-bent coarse grass. And below -- a soft-sand beach. Unfurls in Light. The Sound. And forever -- the Sea.

I walk in peace within.


Tuesday, August 12, 2008

swing rhythm in oak

A friend told of a memory and her love of pastime in swing. I put the pictures it evoked into verse . . .

rings the sitter for the boys
walks down the street to the old church
white steeple, steep steps and trees
there's an ancient oak with arms
and a rope-slung seat
that calls her
the child
and dreamer
of Pegasian adventure
beyond the shade and stars

an hour sails past then two
the child six now grown
has flown years
by swing
always to ride
by the rhythm of life
till troubles of day
turn to waves
in the light
and sky

Barefoot and Naked

This one actually started as a sense of oneness with a usually-less-loved side of nature. I was barefoot in cut-offs and without shirt while picking raspberries. Then some nettles tuned my senses to its possibility of my discomfort. And a bee buzzed my head.

I long ago learned that bees and wasps do not attack without cause. Neither do nettles or thorny vines. And even an encounter with such elementals have purpose beyond pain. (Google bee sting therapy. Or stinging nettle therapy.) Fear is a worse affliction. Love is the antidote.

Barefoot and Naked
On the other side of comfort
there's a garden too
past blooms and roots
tomato red
mint scented
protected by elemental
thorn, thistle
and bumble bee.
As Soul I am free
don denim and leather
boot and sleeve
and long for adventure --
oh pillow and rocking chair.
Still barefoot and naked
on this side of me.

Friday, August 08, 2008

in soft velvet

smooth, round & purple
hiding in soft velvet leaves
first eggplant ripens

Sunday, July 27, 2008

I Will

When I was much younger, I would banish the thought.
But as I advance toward an age of retirement,
I am glad to release some of the
past importance.
Plot is so much more intricate and character fine.

What youth may not even notice
is a world of adventure, exploration
and insight.

When I am old
I will remember
the glee and song.

When I am old and wise
I will remember
the lesson of questions and sky.

When I am old and wise with white hair
I will remember
my youth and the color and the hearing
if I remember.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

My Window

It could be the first light announced by robins at dawn. Or the arbor still black in silhouette. A squirrel or neighbor's tom. Or semi versus motorcycle in distant freeway traffic. From my window I see and hear. I go there by love seat and journal. Come with me if you like.

Today in the rain
a deer looked my way
from the tree line 50 yards off.
I raised the paper in my hand
and waved to her.
White flag of peace.
Ears perk and gaze more alert
She looked south
before her fawn
came bounding closer
Then both were off
to the safety of a thicket.

In the forest
what color is
the flag of peace?

Earlier . . .

Still before storm,
and Starlings gather.
Elm and oak are occupied.
Talk in the alder is of earth and sky.
Why do we bother with thoughts of loss?
Clouds roll up into thunder heads.
And peppers ripen.

Yesterday, lifting the morning blinds to a new day, they greeted me again. A pair of crows. So often they show up as my muse and inspiration.

Two crows of consciousness
sitting on a fence
One flies right and one leaps left.
Black as a feather,
blue as the sky
While they are living,
They'll never die?

Thursday, July 10, 2008

A New Glade


There! The sun shines on the green wall.

Wall of the forest facade.

I see just the first bank of trees

In leaf, showy and bright.

But vision is not just of this.

Penetrating. I see.

I’ve been there before,

Beyond the facade.

I’ve walked through the layer of bright-lit green.

I’ve walked through the light.

Away from song and dance of everyday.

Into the past. The future.

And into the silence of now.

Even the rustle and twitching of unseen events

Adds to the silence of a softer hue.

Sings of a cool summer shade

And touches the glade of memory:

Your first breath in my ear.

The word before I knew

Your name.


I walk. I sit.

I dream and fly.

And we are together.

Beyond the facade and the song.

Till the sun’s angle changes everything.

And there is but one peace.

And love.


Saturday, July 05, 2008


This morning I did more than look out the window. I took a cushion, a book and my journal out the door. An old, twig rocker in the shade invited me. Then, in a sense, I went "out of my mind" in Thanksgiving. Perfect Morning. Summer holiday. Family & friends still sleep. And the cat on the couch. Inside.
But I. In the world of my senses -- inner and outer. My Garden. Birdsong and Breeze. Out of my mind. Inspired. I contemplate. And write. . .


My Love.
First there was Life.
Then you are in my Garden.
Planting. Cultivating. The Harvest.
How could life be better than this?
Where Life Serves Me?
And I Serve It?
With You?

And in the heat of the day
We stop and rest.
With Strawberries.
Red and Sweet.

Then a gray squirrel
Brings an acorn.
And Blessings.


Friday, July 04, 2008

Claiming Dreams

Through my morning window I observed motion on the tree across the street. Three squirrels. My first thought was 'Haiku.' But it is the 4th of July, Independence Day in the US. I start to grasp the net that ties it all together . . .

Claiming Dreams

New maple domain
Early sun broadsides gray trunk
Young squirrels play three.

All is right across the lot
Yet others say, It's too late
To celebrate this day
Independence Day
Freedom from oppression
Claiming our destiny.

In my dreams
I can do whatever I want
A rock becomes a leaf
A leaf -- a bird
And I become a squirrel
To claim my domain.

Hey wait a minute!
We can all dream.

Why wouldn't our dreams
Out-vote the nightmare
Of fear and despair?
Of terror and poverty
And global disaster?
Which do we choose?

Good Morning, World!
Wake up!
Claim your domain.
It starts with a dream.


Monday, June 16, 2008


Every Father's Day there is an airshow somewhere close. Like a lot of men I love aviation, but I chose not to go. I garden instead.


Pulling pigweed from potato hills
and watering strawberry row,
I hear a warbird roar.
No. Two in formation fly by,
and off in a distant drone.
Blue sky through trees,
and white clouds,
like smoke on horizon.
My attention is drawn up
and northward. Reaching.
I remember another life...
Was it Nam? or France?
Or a movie clip
that moves my soul.
I go there for seconds.
Maybe minutes like the first.
Then a bluejay lands in the maple.
And another. Excited. Ready.
Like dads at an airshow.
I watch -- and they're off
in a dive, a bank and a roll.
Dad at an airshow
as I take my hoe.
Delighted again
in reflection.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Contrast in Morning Song

Traffic with its accent
and backbone of motorcycle monotone
lingers from window to wane.
           A robin in contrast to city.
           give me forest and glen
           and the silent side of Mt. Rushmore
           is real life teeming.
I breathe in this solace of Life and Sound.
Dreaming of true song
and patter.


So much in every moment . . .


Crow calls
and a black crow
lights on a wire beside it.

           We watch the morning garden
           in its light and life.

Till the next call. And off.
A second. An interlude.
A crow.


Morning Light

I love this time of day!!


Morning Light

Every morning
earth's first breath is a blessing in Light
rolling uninterrupted
through infinite possibility.
As we synchronize our Breath
with each other's
we know this love:
Reflective. Translucent.
And Live.
And when night falls here
millions of mornings are re-lit.
It hasn't stopped yet.
So we soak our oats and know more grow
till the Harvest is brought in
by Summer's Light.


Friday, May 30, 2008

Crossing the Tracks

--A short short story conceived in a few seconds on a drive back from Greek food at the Athens Cafe. Just by the gait and stride of a young mother in an evening walk, it unfolded...

Crossing the Tracks
by Ardi Keim

Left at the church on the corner. Past the playground of the school of The Holy Family. Recalling the laughter, shrill screams of girls and the most important demands of boys, while two teachers watch half-attentively in their conversation at the edge of the blacktopped confine. Will Robbie be there one day, demanding fairness his way? Another girl shrieks the ending quote of that cyclone fenced memory.

What is freedom?, she wonders now, and every time she passes the school yard--kids or no kids. When she was one of the shrieking girls there, her dreams didn't go much beyond the moment and the fence. But now, approaching the railroad crossing at the dog-leg bend of Orchard Street, she reflected on later thoughts. Was it the spider on the signal box that retreated around the edge as she got closer in this late spring evening? Still a chill in the air, but the sun's angle on the silver-painted metal box reflected the glare of a hot summer day. Though last week she brought the snow shovel from the porch to storage, now she looks southeast down the tracks to another world in August.

She and two girlfriends on one of their adventures mothers never know, in the year before she met Dale. Wild then -- and free. Her only job was assistant to the activity director at summer camp in Wisconsin. She couldn't wait to be out on her own then. Her own car and a good job. There were tracks past camp too--parallel to county road 121. She remembered the rumble in the evening after dinner in down-time on her bunk, or walking by the lake. And once her granddad told her and Tom some stories of his early days on the rails, riding the cars to Spokane and Portland, and once to a place called Lafayette down south somewhere. Adventure and Freedom! And summer day dreams. She could see forever down the tracks. Tom joined the Marines last year. His life seems exciting, even still in training. He says he might go to Pakistan in the fall.

Bump. Bump. The wheels of the stroller hobble across the second track. And her last look southeast, as she re-enters her neighborhood and the realization returns. Dale, Robbie and the news from the doctor earlier today.
(c) 2008 Ardi Keim

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Imagination Day: Spring At Last

This day

so far away from last month’s

last chance at winter

in its fits of tightening

and releasing its grip.

Finally, I relax. I soak. I see.

I hear the life in vibration of each pleasing bee

and ant—buzzing, crawling

—climbing to the heights of sky and tree.


How do they know?

Is it by memory or deduction?

Or is it by pure imagination

conceived on the dreams of ancient ancestors

and last year’s hive?

The colony survives by these dreams

and written in rote,

not even known till green leaves to light

the way through season.


I see the spectrum of new leaves emerging,

At first pale and cheerful in this becoming – and lacy.

Seems almost tentative in their approach.

But even without memory they invade

with the full force of summer color.

Bright and bold, jade and olive

and always multiplying

to fill each tree and yard and forest

in logarithmic advance to their natural abundance.


There is no lack in life and love.

In each twig and bud and leaf is the belief in the Divine.

And not by deduction, but by doing

the deed of each instant and dancing

to the song of now.


I too imagine,

my becoming is new

in the true sense of Spring.

How could it be any different

than each step and each breath

advancing, proceeding from previous green?


I am an ant on a bud, and the world is mine.

Sweet nectar. And Blessings

of Light and Love.


Saturday, May 10, 2008

Good Tea

She was due home last night, but got bumped in Boston. (Phoenix, really. But I write by license of poetic dreaming.) So one more night. I wait. . . and awake this morning with this most natural thought. (Or was it "the man-on-the-spot"?) :

Good Tea

Good sleepy time teacups together.
Retire relaxed and intending,
but passing the chance
of one kind of bliss
when heads hit their pillows
they're off in a wisp to white willows
and sun of the sandy white shores
where warm breezes easy
asleep in their peace
of good sleepy tea
and dreaming
as one.

Both in their slumber
under the quilt of their drifting
blissful in journey somewhere
until chill of cool morning air
draws across errant hair
tickling brow or cheek.
Now from her sleep
still half in a dream
that's quite pleasing,
and hand in that natural spot.
Enjoying no care and pleasant the thought
of the one that's beside her still gliding
out in white clouds of somewhere.
Oh, could it be here at the spot?
And would this one dream
care to catch two?

She reaches across
to a world still receding
and finding the hand of her man
at the most natural spot in support.
Attention! Good Morning.
Good sleepy time treat.
Now awake by intent
or delay of effect.
What matters
comes naturally.
Yet question--priority:
Do we roll for the rocking?
Or first shall we pee?
Good morning.
Good sleepy.
Good tea.

Would Celestial Seasonings have it any other way?

Saturday, May 03, 2008

Love the Feast

What is love, but an honoring of God in everyone?

Can it be for just one without being for all?

You and You, and It and Me

in a tree and on a hill.

We tell the same story

in connection with Source.

We are of a sacred station.

Not tethered in stanchion by thought,

unless we think a lot in circles

and forget who we are.

Are we worthy of a feast?

Reason only takes us so far.

And we’ve all been further than that.

There are seeds in my apple,

orchards in my future with pie

and cinnamon's right


Love the feast

we are.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Pink Bow

Spring forth green earth.

Lighten the mood with white buds and laughter.

What was last month, but a fading memory?

Dark clouds no longer shade my days,

but portend a rain of blessings.

Spruce from its laden posture

now lifts in anticipation

of each solar event.

Days of the quickening

lace limber saplings with Forsythia.

Pink is soon to join the daffodils by tulip,

blossom of apple wood,

prunus avium,

and a bow on your jumper.

Me too! Let’s go.

Spring forth in this love.

I remember our first kiss.

Was Spring in a fever.

Your jumper and pink bow.

So free, the memory.

And you in your laughter.

Oh yeah, the reliving

in every Spring.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

the window

when I leave
I will slip out the window
unseen -- like a thief in the night
taking only the jewel but leaving a seed
of its light for visitors who can see
with the eyes of every night
as stars shine through
the window


  • We watched the movie, Juno, last night. Sweet. Appropriate drama. Love working its way through lives becoming aware and living rich in unfoldment.
  • And in the night, in the night and this morning awakening, the leg of my wife and lover, bent and laid across my middle... my hands remembered the emergence:


you touched me
with the emerging force
of an always-known universe
forgotten and remembered
a million times
each like the only
remembering of my
very self -- the touch
a heel or elbow
you know
with both hands
on her belly
you touched me

  • One daughter. Two. Or a million... And how many sons? In this life, upon our first birth and her subsequent emerging in light and character, I wondered how could love be any better than this. Upon the second, I knew that love is not limited to the small concept of one or two, but is expressed in the limitlessness of the One Source in All. And I'm reminded every day in the voices and actions of a story that reforms and self-rights a back-story of limited minds. Our intellects have a low ceiling without love--offered and accecpted.

Monday, April 14, 2008

late martin

knocking now on dawn's window
what was only random thoughts of longing
now a song more seen than heard
as the frozen wind
rattling branches and drifting white
wisps for a new note
of possibility .
only yesterday
still rain and gloom-cast
then like a late martin migrating
air currents carry my heart
to every corner of chance
now seeing only aces
in a hand of magic
to play the heart card
and start a fire in the hearth .
knowing weather's wind of change
and every morning's dawn
draws open the blind
of new possibility
and sunshine

Saturday, April 12, 2008

First Breath

As a scent on the wind, or a mist
rolling into the valley at night
as a glance of a stranger
a smile from a baby's
contended delight
at awakening…
Come to me
like the thought
of great grandfather
who died before I was born…
Oh God, come to me like my first breath
and the breast of my mother
the Magic, the Life
of your love

Friday, April 04, 2008

Along the River

Some lives are lived ~ and at the end: fond memories.
Others -- relief at their completion. What next?
Remember the journey
along River Millennia . . .
Was endless and joy
in the summer
of bounty
sweet reverie together
before the forest
and quiet sleep
of dreams
with amber light
white clouds building.
And then . . .
Do your remember?

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Island Oasis

On the desert of mystery
My thirst is quenched
And flasks are filled
At the oasis.
Lost at sea in a dingy
An island appears
Promising life,
O rejoice!
I am a traveler of time
Mariner of the universe
Pleiades, Atlantis, Egypt and now.
Island oasis for Soul
And I know my true home
Is of ever and always
Of an island oasis
Not here.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

On Time

Listen up. Light the torch. Awaken sweet dreamers.

(Art from Dan's Papers.)

On Time

Moving through the night unseen
except where posted lamps flood light
on its progress growing.
Would you ever know
if you were deaf?
Are you?
Train comes early.
Or is it just on time?

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Secret Pages

One from the past...

Image from re-nest.

Secret Pages

Secrets you keep from every other
show ever painted in the color of your eyes
in the corner of your smile
and while you never speak or write
the truth of heart
that grandchildren will not find
I read it in your eyes and in your smile
know you like my soul
wish I knew myself as well
can’t help the heart it cries
in echoes calling you
and me from lifetimes
of past ancestors progeny
while generations
issue script will be once more
of secret page’s note
can’t ever speak or write
or paint its color outside the lines
words and tones reflected in your eyes
in the corner of your smile
in the rhyme
secrets kept and stories never told
you’ve kept the secret yours
the verse is mine.

--ak 1/5/02

Saturday, March 15, 2008

April Desert in March

Many years ago I was traveling by bus from Tucson to Ft. Huachuca, Arizona for a military assignment. Looking across barren landscape variations, meager vegetation, rocky precipices -- ancient memories ~~ Traveler in Time. Stark. Pure. Fresh in the arid air. Never like it before -- that bus ride. (I found the art below on the Sojourn Bike Tours website. It portrays well the images I still feel.)

Then yesterday April told me of an experience she had while visiting the Tucson area last week. It brought me back to that long-ago journey of mine. I had to write. In verse...

April Desert in March

Desert precipice with vista
Facing wind and the universe within
See the sand dance and crackle
The dryness without you

If I could cry a thousand tears
would rain replenish this River
and quench my one thirst?
So many other Souls
may never know
the first call
is Love.

Thanks, April, for the memories. :)

Monday, March 10, 2008

First Call of Spring

I wrote this one a number of years ago. And even though we haven't experienced temps much above freezing lately, there have been some robins feeling it too, and calling in song.

First Call of Spring

First call of spring
From dense boughs of fir
And bare-twigged lilac
Robin and friends
Call the bulbs still deep beneath
The snow bank, white and gray.
How many inches will melt today?

First call of spring
And the crocus
Gathers its pull of moons and suns
To lead hyacinths
Ahead of other banners
Of March through May.
Colors from black earth
When the thaw turns it green.

Before the light dawned this morning—
The first call of spring—
The robin, snow crocus,
Black earth turning green.


Sunday, February 24, 2008

A Small Book of Poetry

This is something I've wanted to do for so long. It is now available:

Tree Song -- Poetic Tribute to Earth and Sky
by Ardi Keim

It is a short collection of my poems (14) on this arbor-lovers theme. I first put it together for my mother's birthday several years ago when she was still with us. I now share it further. Some of the poems you may have read on this blog already.

When I get with it and set up a PayPal account, I will offer it for $5.00 on River-Tree Whispers, including shipping to US addresses.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Toll of Revolution

Morning window inspired . . .

Refresh this day now cast in gray
Awake. A thought.
Then gentle current plays
Across this morning
Warming hearts
And melting winter's grip
I slip into a reverie
Of season's slow approach
Matt and white and gray
Succumb to pallet's paint
Blue and green and blossoms
Budding rich in pinks
The light of song
In robin's calling new
To trill the toll of revolution earth
And morning's gift. Awake.


Saturday, February 16, 2008

Florida Last Week

Tamiami Trail through the Everglades

Last week we flew from Minneapolis to Orlando. After a conference we drove to the Everglades and stayed with friends at the Everglades Spa and Lodge. What a relief from winter here, back home. Upon landing and pulling up to the gate, the captain said, "You might want to put on a coat. It's 8 below on the jetway." Reality sets in. But there is a memory . . .

Everglade Winter

Everglade weather in winter

and perfect sight

brilliant where color of flora

and fauna song calling

meet with grand appetite

to compete with each other.

Variety to match the many legs

of mangrove and egrets

still reflection

with the exception

of eye, nostril and bumps

floating, sunning or waiting for lunch.

Mud, grass and brackish swirl as the tide.

Swamplands give way to dense wood

green waves and vine bush

hiding more wildlife—

unseen and some near.

What wildcat? Raccoon.

And a deer’s leap only heard as we pass.

Long islands on a sea of sawgrass

Cypress Strands only growing

with the flow

from Ochechobee

Vistas also spotted by an archipelago

of cabbage palms and palmetto

each matched by a patch of sky white.

An echo-song calling

‘cross colors and water—

A memory repeating

as we are retreating.

Once conquered by weather

We relax in the note of this song

in the season when

Everglade winter sets in.

Saturday, February 02, 2008

Poetry Nut

Last night we watched August Rush. Its universal message about the calling of Soul applies to each of us whether our passion is music, motorcycles or make-overs. My art form is poetry. What is the kernel of your dream?

Poetry Nut

There’s something I can’t touch,
but I love its application
As I listen
to the nut
of every shell.

There’s a voice in every Soul
every scene
every stone
and it calls us to attention
when we listen.

There’s a gift in every form
transcribed as song
and dance and poem
if we listen
to the voice of every form.


Friday, February 01, 2008

What is Poetry?

Listening to the sound of light
and writing with the pen of freedom.
It speaks to you.

© 2008 Ardi Keim

Saturday, January 26, 2008

That Easter

Brick chimney, green ivy tapers skyward
Rain in northwestern New Hampshire
Fireplace in old country cottage
Red door, hook rug, and tea
I remember the scent
Of your sweater
That Easter
And you
Dreams are like smoke sometimes rising.


Sunday, January 20, 2008

Sheep Dogging

When I was a boy we had a dog named Togo. He took his job seriously--guarding the homestead. But we had a sign for callers:

Beware of Dog.


Sheep Dogging

Celebrity makes it possible
for all to drop a name
was it Reagan or John Wayne
who coined "Make my day!"?

And because one says, oh so sincerely
"I too have a dream!"
does it mean his truth rings true
to Martin Luther King?

Just because we know the jargon
of stump and social standing
it does not mean we speak the truth
but just in sheep-dog ranting.


Animals can represent the best and worst of human behavior. (Check out animal totems.) I love them and have heard it said that they hold the higher consciousness of the planet, which keeps us from self-annihilation. They have unique status in the kingdom of souls.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

freedom's long wait

A past life, a vision of possibility, or deep look into a soul too long in torment... I first saw it, heard it, in October.

rattle key and chatter of the rats
their echo halts my freedom dreams
by iron clank and clatter seems
to resonate in grinding off
the dross and reverie of loss

sound now low note of gate unlocked
drown out the chorus as I'm mocked
by enemy most, some were friend
all in this creaking song of time
rust still breaking in its whine

awaken now a thirst within
hidden by that ancient sin
knowing now I drop from bone
a cover drawn against the cold
to rise and pass steal door and go

I leave by these steep steps of stone
and cross the halls of reckoning
through corridors of jeering souls
this walk through time and now: sunshine
to freedom's wooden framed gallows

This isn't the best writing of mine, but I think the feeling comes through.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Secret in Love Song

Recognizing the beauty of a flower
or joy in the face of a baby
is not by degree
or pitch of exclamation
but by a sacred respect
only hinted at by glint of eye
or the smile held close in its brilliance
more a secret in the love song to God.

Fireworks express full freedom
when truth is of the heart--
for toll of ocean waves
crash long on shores
inhabited or not.

With the whack of a racket ball
catching the morning train
or love-making ecstasy--
each prayer is heard
by breath of heart


Grandpa's Wagon

I had two granddads I don't recall--I was too small after they passed away. But I had a dad and mom, and I know the kind of love of grandfolks. I can go there in soul, in poem. Fiction or not. Stories, the lives of others and gleaned from my own memories and make-believe . . .

Grandpa's Wagon

Grandpa told his stories
In a mind of other time:
When I was young
I had a wagon
Green and gold letters--the words
Don't know what the writing said
Stoked full and pulled
From Pa's woodshed.
I liked my little wagon
Green and gold.
And when the wheels got old and broke
Too many heavy loads
Pa replaced them with four runners
Lined with steel for snow and ice.

I liked my wagon sled
And new one painted red.
We stoked a lot of wood
In snow and rain
Grandpa always said.

I can hear
My daughter's daughter
Say, Granddad
Can we go out and play?


Tuesday, January 01, 2008

december morning gift

there are gifts in every season... blessings inside and out.
december morn
before horizon's gift
just hints its blue contrast
to roof's white pack aglow
and framed by branches rack
of turning textures brown
from spirits standing now
in skeletal remains
of images once green
then spread in red man's blanket
and sleeping under drift
yet deep within
an urge to spring
still silence
in the frigid forms
outside this window
warm inside
we squirrel in nest
recalling fall
and summer's hold
before horizon's gift
this frozen morn

(from journal page of 12/15/09)