Posts Tagged ‘prayer’


no joy.  no sorrow.
no doubt.  no certainty.
no cardboard box.  no manuscript.
no publisher.
no desire.
nothing to correct.
no spare change.  nothing to change.
no poem.  no ink.
no waiting page.

no emptiness.

no eyes.  no ears.
no voice.  no lips.
no nose.  nothing to judge.

no father.  no mother.
no history.

no emptiness.

no nothing.

beginner’s light.


neil reid © january 2013

new year.  what you reading?  now my several books all want reading at once.
here, some shards.  and yea, too clever still.  but then, it’s fool’s january.

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Self-indulgent? Perhaps. Probably. What choice sometimes?

Half-shells, number one

Words are sticks are stones
they have weight they are not birds.

Each uttered is a birth delivered
a solstice falling into long earth.

Brush strokes on canvas more
thousands now. But we don’t count.

All threads, like the call unanswered
last night. Another now eyes closed.

I can’t say happiness. Meanings
could break a spine too adorned.

Quick. Pull the covers before dawn
before sun can see my face.

Morning calls from folded wings.
Scattered seeds the sound they make.

Prayers before first day flight?
Maybe that’s how.

Kissing cousin, invisible moon.

Would your hand brush my bare arm
in casual conversation? Told you
last night, you could make my day.

Just so easily like a breeze.

neil reid © july 2010

neil reid © july 2010

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read write poem   napowrimo #08 two

prompt by Jill Crammond Wickham unusual love connections

Just a second poem for this day, and just because. Still some related to Jill’s prompt, but also after reading some, this is what arrived.


All fall down

since birth, falling forward into time

feelings like gloves, thin and wooly thick

used then dropped behind, chrysalis

fingerprints like faces line up

bricks laid like thought,

memory’s goat on a leash

metered flood of prayers

every word ever said, all of them

all scoured and licked

groomed into wings

stout or not

your few words in this rain

make such difference

upon the tongue

and all these layers shed

toward what remains downstream

of me

Neil Reid © April 2010

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Charles, with a period at the end

Starting Over, READ WRITE POEM Mini-Challenge

poem group index POEM #4 RWP Mini-Challenge Prompt

It won’t be easy you understand.

Said to myself as an afterthought.

Who would believe what I believe?

Even me?

He taught me to pray, really pray

for the first time in my life.

Because there was a need?

Or was it desire?

It was a daily public place.

People all about. But before

I ate, a prayer to say.

The theatre audience was dim.

I was afraid to look.

Say it’s a day like others are.

And for all his genuine faith,

fearless spirit, there towards

bright and bright,

He earnestly wanted life!

With all his mind, with all his strength.

With all his heart.

Yet when another common day

arrived, and to no one’s surprise,

he didn’t answer any more.

Surely we were wrong. He is

kidding us. He’ll stand, and

the joke’s on us.

One brief ride into sunny

country hills. We gather round.

Someone says a few more words.

It’s not too late. It’s possible.

I’d be willing to believe

a new common place.

We stand, mostly words remain

in our pockets, and watch.

Really real approaches close.

Last chance. Last chance,

before the mortar goes dry.

Arise. Say it was just another

lesson we needed to learn.

I’ll believe. Willingly.

And he never knew that day

what he’d given me.

I still pray, and one day

it saved my heart.

Neil Reid IHL Remembered this January 2010

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In plain view

Saffron yellow, and here, for a friend

In plain view


Prayer and ink, subtle imaginings entwine.

Desire’s rekindled touch bridges this glance,

     lining my pocket in small

     intimate saffron whispers.


Fingers map texture, newly faced.

Tender embraces unreasonably rocked

     in slumber by fingertips, molded

     between breaths, cast in amber relief.


This yellow scarf of drawn words, traveling

distant and days with me, pocketed within

     warm stride.  Remembering you.


Wandering familiar streets, names becoming

untied by winds, reading these tea-leaf colors

     till words become, repeating sounds till

     resonance lands on the page.

     Journey’s full measure given reign.


In plain view I hold these folded pages

between fingers’ circling touch, this fond

alchemy moving unseen but listening.

     A smile grows on my lips.


     See what’s become of me!


Movement for the joy of nothing much.


Movement for a dancer’s veiled name.



Neil Reid © 1996



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Second shade

Second shade


There is smoke inside the leaves.

There is lightning inside the weeds.

One ridge away outward of sight

a close moment awaits, when

     everything speaks.


Town folk walk upon what that canopy 

of oak inscribes, brittle summer’s breath.

Mounded shield leaves a rake will gather,

a match transform.  And tame,

     give story to listening sky.


Then slow, that milling scent wanders

blind to fences, makes ribbons of hosted

sighted limbs.  Certain whole lives by

so bare and slight a touch, all recall.


Second thought asks, what of these

to sweep on that pile, smoldering flame,

soon forgot?  I make a list.  Hesitate.

Surely, the bitter last of chosen lists,

unrealized love who walked away,

a child’s breath turned charcoal lies.

     Surely these.  Yet.


A mountain paw does allow, far of sight,

a fallen leaf to root, become in hand March

and sweet.  Redeemed of autumn’s bloom.

     Be no other heart than this,

     a prayer to keep.



Neil Reid © September 2009

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Prayers falling

Prayers falling.



I am afraid of the next leaf falling,

     and it is autumn.

Limbed red leaves shimmer anticipation

into the still-yet-to-be coming breath.


My own thoughts flicker past

the line of trees, past the gray distant crown,

hills sleeping brown and green.


Some voice contemplates the next word.


Within my own chest that wind begins to tug

and I know I have no chance but to meet

the next face that comes falling to me.


1998 © Neil Reid

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The dreams that grass dreams.

Each night sky climbs down close,

answering the small prayers of grass, left

lingering on echoes where feathers have been.

Each night grass takes it’s secret drink,

    and sky says – tell me.

    Grass answers – here, and here,

here a man’s feet passed over me, and here,

another’s crossed and vanishing into brown

    on the dry hillside,

here a deer’s small stone feet, here

a child and dog, scattering like leaves,

here a deeper impression – someone slept,

    roots whisper – and dreamt.

In the telling, grass is healed.

    Some nights I awaken –

Do I hear the rustle of your passing embrace?

The trail of your fingers across my bare skin?

    Each night spirit comes, slipping beneath

my garment of memories, faithful or not,

drawn along the long thread of my dreaming,

healing doubts branded by the sun’s long gaze.

    Some nights – it’s you, laying beside me.

And each dawn, briefly, the grass

is blue shadows and sky is green swirls.

1998 © Neil Reid

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