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a poem by aleia ruth, given to me on “hallows eve,” a tribute to Daniel…

The bass player
Supplying the steady reliable, hopefully spicy, rhythm
Always underlying
dependably there for others to play over, with…

The lady’s man, so often ‘the bass player!”, so many ladies!

“Nice girls”
A boatload, with rapid turnover
Is he capable of love, this one?

When he finally met his ‘one’ oh yes!
A different man showed up
All hers
The steady, reliable, unwavering pulse
Their love was palpable

Until the curtain was suddenly drawn
An abrupt end to this mystery play…

How could their paths diverge?

His from hers?

We all fell in love with her too, you know
And the ‘you’ that showed up because of her
You know, the one with the heart
that exploded into another realm
She thinks she’s alone now you know!
She can scarcely hear you
You’re so deep inside her
She can’t hear the forest for the trees
You left her quaking, shivering in the cold of your sudden disappearance
We all think we have forever
until we don’t

The abrupt lesson of treasuring every living moment, even the hard ones
Staying centered in the only true meaning in life

Oh steady rhythm man
Help your wife, your one true love
Make the connection thru the veil
At this thinning time
Give her some of the peace you’ve found
Assurance that you survive
That she’ll survive, thrive again

Till death do you part?
Love is stronger than death
Death, a shadow puppet
(the gurus say is bliss)
Creative hands playing in the light.


search my pocket to double check

scrub the keys with my desperate fingers

afraid i’ve lost something important

like the anxious feeling of returning to the car

fearful the dog will mysteriously be gone

or the car won’t start

something gone wrong, i don’t want to face it

so instead, belongings take on a false importance, frantic if they’re out of my reach

what have i forgotten, where did i go wrong?
how could i let preciousness slip from my fingers?

the relief when my hand curves around the found cell phone or wallet

the key that fits easily into the lock

opens the door

welcomes me back to safety, of a home now silenced of your voice

an absence not lost on me

settling into the art of how to relinquish
in a world where we’re only taught how to acquire

trust i can’t lose

trust it’s not possible

to lose what’s really important.


let me dream of you tonight
since i can’t see you with my daytime eyes
let my night vision see the texture of your skin
let me stand in your presence
gaze upon your form

speak to me
as you would when you were here
look at me, let me see your green eyes twinkle

your form is withheld from me here
so let me soft-dive into dreamscape
where you can take form
reveal your image to me…
i’m ready to see you now

don’t make me wait any longer
let me dream of you tonight.

silhouette of a man
making his way up the hill

with a hat
lanky legs

your mother used to call them stork legs
we would both fall out in laughter recalling that
and they were
like stork legs

open well in my heart, i fall down it
gazing at that figure across the field
pretending it is you i see walking

brim of your hat
your casual stride
my heart beats fast and god, how i want to wave at this man
how i want to believe it is you
and not a stranger mimicking your gait, the shadow of your hat

i jerk my head to the crow of a bird
shift my sight away from the man who i want to be you
as if we could have a reunion
there you have been all this time just walking along

newfound feather catches my eye
i bend down for a closer look
tears drip and melt into the sand
i pick up the feather and the man is gone.

just like you.


three months turned to six

then six to seven

now from 57 i am 58

and this is the time without you.

the minutes pile on top of another and time stretches itself into new realities
wanted or not

in all this time you are still the DJ to my playlist
the bird in my sky
the feather under my step

as the sun sets behind my back
beyond your warm body
the next day brings me
one day closer to you

it’s closing up the space between us
days are ticking off
the last time i beheld you further away
until the day i reach you, getting closer.



our love was tall and skinny
graceful but dynamic like aspen quaking

we could never hold the sound echoing from the friction of our leaves

bright hot fall colors
so loud against the blue sky

and i don’t dare question it now

i have to let that echo ripple off
let drop the dried leaf
into the world of the past

stand tall, shivering in my awakening

this is a tree that is not coming back

roots so deep and for so long that i thought they would hold us forever

but you were felled and all that was us fell too
crashed like an earthquake
thundered in a new terrible reality

graceful white tree
no longer tall against the sky
leaves me lost in a cleared forest

lost love crushed under the weight of cut branches
scattered leaves

it’s a terrible thing when grace is felled

but a beautiful thing to let go, when it’s time
and let it lie in peace
its quaking stilled

leaving only the echo of love
in the composting roots

i plunged into the shallow end

ran along until it got deeper

and the current began to pull me along

i looked upon the shore

and saw you there…

i called you in

but you were of the land and you ran alongside

spotting me from above

the water sailed me along

i went deeper down

again i called you in

from the shore getting steeper, the precipice much higher now

but you assured me you could see clearly from your landing

and you blessed me on my way

as i continued down.

and i allowed the space of you upon that shore

the distance between us

you on your way, your feet on the ground, your love of mother earth

and me in the water, flowing, deeper down

but then you surprised me

you sprinted

much farther ahead

and in you dove, so far ahead of me

beyond all human sight…

and now it will take a lifetime

for me

to catch up to you.

Photo by Sandy Page Taylor



she said brown

and strongly masculine

all encompassing nature

that was you

where you inhabit horizons skimming the edges beyond where i can see

in the blindness of grief i can only trust you are there
and here at the same time

i braille this fine line of believing yet not knowing

i falter, fall on the trail, shun the sage

the tears slide me down, stop me until i regain my vision to stay even with your eternal heart

where i can see the sage again

remember you strong

feel your sage eyes of love that show me how to see beyond the seen

and today i walk among the brown dirt, aspen, rock and sage and i see

yes, you are here

in this green, this love, this nature

for me, you always will be.

Photo by Sandy Page Taylor

for ruth curtiss

elegant flight
you are beauty in the sky
the breeze of your wings
so gentle on my skin

graceful bird
with the next life to come
nested in your breast
your spirit is soft
and unhurried

let me feel the gentleness of your breeze
to lift the gravity of my heart
see the vista of your inner eye
to broaden my finite vision
and rest my grief

as you leave behind this mechanical world
let me feel the transcendence of your ascent
float my eyes to the sky
and watch your divine flight
so graceful
so right

blessing your journey
as i sit on this lonely shore
within you
unbearably without you
watching on

I’ve linked a song, Sometimes, by David Gresham, lyrics by Jessica Radcliffe that is very touching and i feel goes well with this poem: Sometimes

i observe two women at the table by the window

one like me and one like you

and i wish she were my mother

and that was me sitting across from you

i would watch and listen to you from across the table

like i see her do

watch you eat your soup

with crinkled lips

see your eyes make contact with me over your bifocals

your necklace dangling

i would take in the familiarity of your face, like mine

share a salad with you like two women would

passed would be the days when we would have been at odds

sharp words from opposite sides of the table

delivering judgment upon each other like passing stale bread across the dinner table

i watch your face look astray when you hear a word askew

marvel at your manners which once repelled me

and for the first time, not experience you as formidable but as someone who was once a vulnerable child

our conversation stops for a while as we sit together

mother and daughter, woman to woman

peers at the table of some restaurant on a Friday afternoon

the lines on your face and your delicate bones would reveal we are cultivating a new relationship, the beginning of you depending on me for a change, you leaning on me for advice

the woman in me resumes our conversation

and then i listen for some of me in you

my mother in me.

like these two women i hungrily spy upon

we would have certainly become friends by now.

"Love is Like" by Belinda Chlouber See more of Belinda's work at:

“Love is Like” by Belinda Chlouber
See more of Belinda’s work at:

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