A Fool from Indiana (A Tiara of Sonnets)

I
In everything I saw from where I stood,
my vision spanning heaven and the earth,
were subtle kind reminders life was good,
enticing me to seek a sense of worth.
the way I saw no blessing was denied,
the flowing of the sunshine or the rain,
convinced me that where disciplines abide
the dross shall wash away and gold remain.

I set my soul against the crouching dark
endeavoring to master every sin,
then blew to life each dimming, dying spark
of faith, pursuing purity within.

The choice to order better, when I could
was something to exalt my personhood

II
was something to exalt my personhood
a thing to be pursued? I could not say.
Humility bred doubt, but passion stood
heroically to chase all doubt away
and reinforce my sense of holy pride.
in all my hands endeavored to achieve.
My faith and works were seamlessly applied
to manifest the things that I believe.

I turned my eyes to those I saw with needs
and took the time to sooth a wounded soul.
Then gently I’d illuminate misdeeds
applying truth to make the errant whole.

In me were love and justice intertwined.
I saw I was a gift to all mankind,

III
I saw I was a gift to all mankind,
to those around who bear the human flaw.
Compassion, like an endlessstream inclined
my heart so outwardly, the angels saw
the way my footfalls bless this guilty sod.
Though others traveled through and left no trace,
I chose a tear-soaked path; where I had trod
each imprint that I left reflected grace.

I stood upon the pinnacle of me
and looked to see if someone, anyone,
wascapable of rising up to be
this awesome thing I am, but I found none.

“Is anyone like me,so wise and kind?”
Quite logically, the question came to mind,

IV
Quite logically, the question came to mind,
“If there is none like me so greatly blessed
to stride like one with sight among the blind,
with such compassion, unlike all the rest,
“What am I then, if I am not a god?”
Then like a prayer that’s borne on wings of lead,
that still-born thought of misdirected laud
returned its awful weight upon my head.

My words were daggers, plunging to the hilt
in my own belly, gravely wounded I
was bathed inblood insolvent to myguilt,
and would have tasted death. But gods can’t die!

Then lavished with your undeserved esteem,
You woke me from that egocentric dream
,
V
You woke me from that egocentric dream
where fantasy and pride wove dark and light
so seamlessly together, it would seem
I could not disentangle wrong from right
revealing my self-image was a sham.
Your spirit and your word cut like a knife
to separate the idol from the man.
It seems I’d worshipped self most all my life.

And once that deed was done, I would have thought
that I was left bereft of anyworth.
But purchasers envalue what is bought.
You purchased me, and offered me rebirth.

Creation has a unify ing theme:
You showed me your desire to redeem

VI
You showed me your desire to redeem
at any cost, for all, refusing none
had mandated the ultimate extreme.
The body and the blood of your own son
imbues me with your worth, just as I am.
My tarry guilt, in its totality
was lifted off, and placed upon the lamb
to justify my soul and set me free..

As though the stone which secreted his tomb
was lifted from my tongue, now I can raise
my heart and mind to heaven and assume
an attitude of endless, selfless praise.

The guilt was mine, you took it in my stead!
You own this heart, invade this sorry head,

VII
You own this heart, invade this sorry head,
this sometime haunt of fantasy and pride.
So sanctify my mind, and there imbed
you law, so that your spirit may abide
and I shall learn to dream your dream instead:
where kids shall rest with lions at their side.
Your people follow gladly where they’re led,
and by your throne of grace, all tears are dried.
`
Now leaving “worth” behind, I gaze across
your dreamless real vistas, old yet new
and sheltered in the shadow of the cross
I stand beside the pinnacle of you.

Uncovering reminders God is good
In everything I saw from where I stood,

Reprise:
In everything I saw from where I stood,
the way I saw no blessing was denied,
was something to exalt my personhood
and reinforce my sense of holy pride.

I saw I was a gift to all mankind,
the way my footfalls bless this guilty sod.
Quite logically, the question came to mind,
“What am I then, if I am not a god?”

You woke me from that egocentric dream
revealing my self-image was a sham.
You showed me your desire to redeem
imbues me with your worth, just as I am.

You own this heart, invade this sorry head,
and I shall learn to dream your dream instead.

Narcissist in Charge

Narcissist in Charge  (A Tiara of Sonnets)

I
When arguments are simply otiose
because he thinks he truly knows it all
and he’s aware that he’s the one we chose,
some facts, to him, are not real facts at all.
Because his mind’s his mind, mind you, not yours.
his self-importance dims all other lights.
His plans, most often, pause for quick detours
to “tweet”, as disagreements must be fights.

Obnoxious though he’s now days come to be,
we knew he’d flown along a selfish path.
The fear that he’s insane’s what frightens me;
that war will bloom to sooth this one man’s wrath.

A joke’s been played, and now the whole world knows
when strategists can simply not come close.

II
When strategists can simply not come close
to structuring a social plan he’ll own
because that’s not his nature, I suppose,
to countenance a theme not his alone.
it’s up to us to put in place the cures.
to emphasize the common traits we share
to act in ways that lifts and reassures,
and in so doing, demonstrate we care.

For when embracing one who’s not like us
we elevate each other in one act
and make one wonder, “Why’s there such a fuss”
because some folks are white and others black?”

Humanity can’t push the dark away
When prejudice and ownership hold sway

III
When prejudice and ownership hold sway
we’ll learn from him of course, “both sides are nice”;
torch waivers shouting, and the KKK
our leader told us that, not once – but twice.
Division’s easily sparked by self-served men.
“divide and conquer”‘s been a rule of war
and politicians use it now and then.
and clearly for this man, it’s worked before.

His second cadre is the really rich.
He promised he’d not act to steal their swag
so they’re secure within that favored niche
and they’ll support him, though he makes them gag.

It will take time; can’t all be done today.
Supremacy is hard to take away

IV
Supremacy is hard to take away
when it’s a myth embedded in one’s thought.
My hubris is my due, and it’s okay.
I can’t reject the mantra I’ve been taught
when it’s been taught since God himself knows when.
Intra species violence seems nature’s rule
but man’s cerebra’s special to our ken;
that ought to elevate mankind from drool.

I think, therefore I am; and I can hate,
and love, and hoard, and share, and laugh, and cry
and better that I learn before too late
my legacy will be here when I die.

Let’s shut down hate before a darkness starts
While ample strength abides in good men’s hearts

V
While ample strength abides in good men’s hearts
an egotist in power can raise hell.
Our being, (set forth by Rene’ Descartes)
is not enough, unless that self does well
to overpower fulminating hate.
So join me, partner, let us all arise,
and show by actions, we’ll not take the bait
to shed the human love that he’d abscise.

Ask one whose dress, or style, or even race
sets him apart from what defines your norm,
to join you, (when in a convenient place)
then feel your prejudice and fears deform.

A compliment, or kindness, is the start;
It comes from human consciousness, in part.

VI
It comes from human consciousness, in part,
the urge to hug or shake a friendly hand.
The urge to smile, I think, comes from our heart
and goodness urges us to take a stand.
But conscious will’s required to give it weight.
If we’ve an appetite for brotherhood
our reasons and results will resonate
by sharing joy of doing others good.

Sometimes I want to quit this muddled mess,
just stand aside and let the chaos reign,
but that would yield to his nurtured abscess
and bullies’ volume would increase again.

Our humor’s something we need never ration
So laugh at “tweets”, then spread around compassion.

VII
So laugh at “tweets”, then spread around compassion.
A bonded population’s more effective
at viewing “tweets” with thought and calm dispassion
then smiling at, and mocking his invective.
Diminish him until he’s out of fashion.
We sometimes make electoral mistakes
and cast a vote that’s lacking any passion.
Then riding out the storm is what it takes.

When we, object, to no avail, devices
he’s used to denigrate and target some,
we must reject and obviate his vices.
Til all can see how little he’s become.

The odds we’ll change his mind are not that close,
When arguments are simply otiose

Reprise:
When arguments are simply otiose
because his mind’s his mind, mind you, not yours.
when strategists can simply not come close
it’s up to us to put in place the cures.

When prejudice and ownership hold sway
division’s easily sparked by self-served men.
Supremacy is hard to take away
when it’s been taught since God himself knows when.

While ample strength abides in good men’s hearts
to overpower fulminating hate
It comes from human consciousness, in part,
but conscious will’s required to give it weight.

So laugh at “tweets”, then spread around compassion.
Diminish him until he’s out of fashion.

Dreams of Flight

Dreams of Flight  (Sonnet Crown + Reprise)

I
When all attempts at flight just end in “can’t,”
with noses windward, knees of black and blue,
the only recourse left is to recant;
admit the laws of gravity are true.
But others soar a stratospheric arc!
How blessed are they to watch the earth recede.
And yet for those earth-bound, the view is stark,
and hope alone will not fulfill the need.

What cruel adjudicator of our fate
should choose who’s born with wings and who with paws?
What discipline permits us to relate
impersonal but universal laws?

The dreams of flight do little to supplant
confinement to this dusty low secant.

II
Confinement to this dusty low secant
itself should not preclude a happy life.
But some are predisposed to whine and rant.
Their choice to foment pain and augur strife
ensures the path just turns a darker dark,
where even those who try to use their gifts
find dampened tinder won’t accept a spark.
Such efforts only serve to widen rifts.

So blinded, then, by raging jealousy,
that even if our skills should raise the dead,
then speaking out of total honesty,
we’d choose the more mundane effect instead.

A heavy, darkened heart will not apprise
the miracles we work, in our own eyes.

III
The miracles we work, in our own eyes
do not appear to be worth much at all.
In retrospect, they’re more akin to lies,
enchantments, and in truth they are banal,
are rubbish, lacking substance, will not last.
And even if they suit another’s need
they’re lifeless vain reminders of the past
which tarnish as vague memories recede.

So arms which could have resurrected hope
and point another toward a rising star
instead are made to vainly flap or grope,
like who we wish to be, not who we are.

Conclusions that we know our past implies,
conceited with the future, we don’t prize.

IV
Conceited with the future, we don’t prize
abilities we know that we possess.
They atrophy, while haughty mocking skies
stare back, and we are wont to dispossess
the pyramids and sphinxes of our past.
The world views them with wonderment, and they
should give a sense of self-esteem to last
but fail, somehow, to keep the dark at bay.

There comes a sense of wonder, does there not?
The eagle, peering down must think us dumb,
but is he satisfied with what he’s got?
Or does he rue the lack of working thumb?

We cannot pick. No matter how we mourn,
we do not choose our dreams, they’re softly born.

V
We do not choose our dreams, they’re softly born
where fantasies and follies might collide
and flutter wingless downward in the morn,
the love-child unexpected come betide
of water and the spirit in our heart.
Then reared within the arms of Meant-to-be
While flitting moths keep watch, and minnows dart.
Then weaned on solid food of Wait-and-see.

The universe falls hushed a moment yet
while destiny unveils the work she’d sewn
like some heroic and eternal bet…
then prince or princess Dream ascends the throne.

There is no fear to feel while blood stays warm,
but if abilities do not conform.

VI
But if abilities do not conform,
despite all hope to nurture aptitude
with certain deviations from the norm,
anticipating future attitude,
then disappointment’s destined from the start.
The prince will surely never gain the throne.
The threaded tapestries all fall apart
the princess shall a-spinster all alone.

But no, no fatal crash nor grand decree
accompanies the dying of a dream
for what once was, just simply ceased to be
at most, perhaps, tears trickle in a stream.

No answers, then, we’re left to wonder why,
when we can’t use the limbs we have to fly.

VII
When we can’t use the limbs we have to fly,
no parting gift, or hope for better days,
no recompense, or “someday” left to buy,
but somehow life proceeds in hoary haze,
there’s naught to do but shake them at the sky.
From whence the cursed edict emanates:
“Fix leaden feet to earth, where dead things lie.”
Don’t ponder motives deep or speculate.

No matter how the chalice overflows
or what Divinity has filled the cup
if it is not the beverage that you chose,
you’re more than justified to turn it up.

The future, then, has nothing left to grant,
When all attempts at flight just end in “can’t.”

Reprise:
When all attempts at flight just end in “can’t,”
but others soar a stratospheric arc,
confinement to this dusty low secant
ensures the path just turns a darker dark.

The miracles we work in our own eyes
are rubbish, lacking substance, will not last.
Conceited with the future, we don’t prize
the pyramids and sphinxes of our past.

We do not choose our dreams, they’re softly born
of water and the spirit in our heart.
But if abilities do not conform,
then disappointment’s destined from the start.

When we can’t use the limbs we have to fly
there’s naught to do but shake them at the sky.

by Kenn Henry, 2014