The Mighty Viking

Conquering those things we must, one story at a time

Category : Poems

It Wasn’t My Intent

It wasn’t my intent to wake you

With stumbling around in the night

But now that you’re up

Can I brew you a cup

And sit with you here in the dawn’s gentle light?


It wasn’t my intention to burn

The potatoes and parts of the toast

But talking with you over morning news

I may have been somewhatly over-bemused

and held by your company over-engrossed.


It wasn’t my meaning to intervene

and fiddle and fret with your plans

The worry I express

is considerably less

than the fussing I spent on the burnt frying pan.


It wasn’t my meaning to overindulge

on the cookies you left on the rack

T’was not just the taste 

that made them erased

but thinking of you took me wistfully back.


To when I intended to wed you

and time with you ran at a prime

the things that you baked

became feelings that waked

the thought of you all of the time.


It wasn’t my aim to unload

these troubles at the end of the day

I was really just groping

for a way of eloping

just us two, together forever away


I certainly didn’t want to bore you

with singing and playing this guitar

I took your quiet to mean you want more

imagine my shock when you started to snore

But you’ve got to rest for tomorrow’s morning star


Which I certainly did NOT mean to wake you for.

So, while you were sleeping, there was this.




Yes Dear

Yes, Dear.

I say it despite knowing
the joke of the man so stripped of confidence
that he values himself so poorly
his capitulation captures the derision of everyone.

Yes Dear,
Because I trust that you know this
that you don’t want a man
who is no man,
Who eschews his manhood
Who rages against being who he is
Because I trust that you believe in this man
And whose dignity and masculinity is important to you.

Yes Dear.
I trust this, and trust you.
to take what I give, and return it to its place
having packed my admission of devotion
with your own admission of acceptance
and returned to me an equal measure of devotion
to the Thing that we are

Yes Dear.
Because there is no distinction between you.
and me
We are a Thing unto itself, that cannot be separated
That will not be separate
To say “Yes Dear” to you
is to trust that I am, through you,

saying Yes to myself
This is how We are,

Yes Dear.
is not a denial of my own pride
nor a submission of one soul to another
But rather a statement of pride
in the Us
in the Trust
that you and I are equal participants in We.

Fair winds ride

wind ride 3

The wind from the east is but a wind from the west

bested by throttle,  soul dispossessed

spirit set free turns to wind on my chest

race the horizon, freedom undressed.

Pull of the curve, power compressed

gravity’s laws are put to the test

Howl of the wolf taut muscles obsessed

chase down your quarry, victim possessed.

Full moon overhead, heaven’s bequest

Night Ride purifies, moon goddess’s guest

sins of the daytime brought here to confess

Midnight reflections sets the mind at rest.

The wind from the west is but a wind from the east

bested by throttle, Sanity leased

Days in the wind for my soul’s release

The falcon sent hunting, finds spiritual feast.

wind ride (1)

The Stupid Dog


At 7am, demanding the door

with the restless snuffles and scratch on the floor

bleary and weary I dress for the chore

of letting the dog go out to explore

At 9am with the dew on the grass

showers of dirt from the garden fly past

unseen vermin, escape way too fast

the dog’s disappointed, and I stand aghast

At 12 in the midday, sun overhead

rusted squeak of the mailbox being fed

reason enough to wake up the dead

with an outburst of snarling, terror and dread

In the heat of the day, the late afternoon.

dinner is served, or should be real soon.

sooner is better, depends on for whom

paws on the counter foretell certain doom

Evening rests dreamy in the family hut

food is all eaten, the kitchen is shut.

tortuous, repast rumbles the gut

stench in the room – it comes from the mutt.

Day-weary humans, devoted pup

retire for the evening, he’s not allowed up

left on the floor, the ostracized cub

licks hand anyway, ignoring the snub

4am comes, drenched in nightmare’s sweat

demons come haunting the battle-scarred Vet

canine nuzzles the face beset

 muzzle lies heavy on the heart upset

hand stroking fur till comfort forgets.

hand stroking fur till love forgets

hand stroking fur, companions forget

hand stroking fur till mourning forgets

hand stroking fur, morning forgets.


Desert traces
Seeking shelter from the swelter,
in my love’s embraces

Winter’s pardon
Seeking Grace from War’s disgrace
Heals the battle-hardened

Summer’s pillow
Flowered vase for love’s embrace
Devotion’s languid billows

Emotion’s ships
Oasis charted,
Garden started
Meadow gartered
Loneliness’ eclipse


The Paper Hat Parade

image Somewhere in the Caribbean:

The clouds come scudding across a timeless sky, an armada of impish children riding with the mysterious breath of unseen mothers, little boys with paper hats, Sailing from unseen waters, where those mothers gather of a Sunday morn, and blow their babies kisses, and blow all the joy in their hearts and lungs into these bassinets, and send them off to play, to grow, to age, and maybe in time to weep their sorrow and return home to their mothers, sunburned sailors, battle-worn soldiers, traveling wizards with the dew of life in their bosom.

And yet, today they are but children, and I dream here on an island in the midst of their silent child’s’ parade. I’ve sailed the place of their birth, I’ve traveled the lands of their death.

But here in-between, I watch them pass as a father, wishing to play with them, quietly laughing at their pretend severity, hoping for them to grow strong shoulders, wishing I could be with them as they frolic, and mature, tip and taunt the fisherman, plunder the earth, and woo Life Itself from the farmers seeds. I know their end, and want to weep with them as they weep their Last Sorrow, as if they were mine.

But I do not grieve. I make a paper hat, and stand face-on into the Mother’s-breath of this Sea, and wait.

Poseidon’s waves will carry their souls back to the Beginning, and they will be born and blown again, by laughing, loving, breathful mothers of the Sea, They will adventure again. I wish nothing but to ride in their midst for the adventure.

4am Stories


The stories that come to me at 4 in the morning, to be told
Do not come to me to be told to someone else
They wish, like all stories in my head, to be heard, but I cannot tell them to others.
They are full of cold, of grey things that should have color.
Things that did have color. My 4am stories are stories of color lost
of Hope, forgotten.

But they will not let me forget.
These stories come back, look over my back. Wanting to get out and play with the others
But they do not play well with others, these cold, grey stories.
No, they make others go all cold and color drains from the lips of the storytellers

8am stories are full of anticipation. They yawn, and stretch, and smile through sleepy eyelids, remembering that the new day brings new things, fun things, joy and brilliance, dazzling in the morning sun.

Noon stories are full of Today – of the way of things happening now.  One moment I’m telling a story , the next it is being made.  Stories of weather, or the pranks of the day, of the smile, or kiss, or the touch of a hand still warm and fresh on my lips. 

Dinner stories are full of exertion, of telling the tale of success, of industry, things that has been done, that must be rested from, but from which great satisfaction has come.

In the evening, with friends I remember, memories of acquaintances I’ve had, or that I have now, things that are connected through this busy day, or of yesterday.  Evening stories are melancholy, rich fields ready for harvest.

In the midnight hour my stories are hushed, sleeping tales of bravery, epic heroes, requited love, flowing poems of deeds and dreams. The midnight hour is the time of my muse.

But when the waking growl of the log trucks break through the distant muffling fog, the 4am stories have already stricken me speechless

Sleepless horrors still unspeakable
Stories without words,
drowned in the watery depths of the sea
These stories can never share – should never be shared.

The cold creeps up from the Deep.
The grey falls down, the fading flicker of dying hope.

I am caught where they meet, in their steel jaw.

In a watery tomb my body grows cold

My mind becomes grey

An unwilling patron of an awful, eternal theater.

Father’s love, Love’s Daughter.

Daughter plays upon the heath

Father’s watchful gaze beneath

Innocence a halo’s wreath

Kept aloof by sword and sheath

Daughter wayward flees

Climbs aloft amidst the trees

Sword cast down, abandoned seas

Father’s guard exchanged for pleas

Daughter love her Father gives

Daughter’s love and Grace forgives

Pain and sorrow, love outlives

Freeing love, hate falls captive

Father lets his daughter go

kiss a memory, free her soul

Child to Woman, heaven’s glow

Another child begins to grow

Father watches time pass by

Daughter’s love is grace’s eye

Wife and husband edified

Father’s love is testified

I race

Free as the Summer


I race

carving an invisible groove through

the spruce-whiskered mountain pass

The canopy arcing overhead


I rush

Through the trees, and howling with mirth,

Shadow and light splash around me like surf

My heart has raced to these rhythms since birth

The beat of the wind on the sea –

the spray of light, dappling trees –

and here on this mountain, of forest and turf

I ride down a ribbon of asphalted glee


I run

a gauntlet of cliffs, beside me rising


Standing sentry, holding high their glistening swords

jeweled in emerald arches
 outside the rail,

Seeing the trees – watching, listening, standing sentry over the roads below.

They stand in stillness, while the twisted switchbacks rip through them, and though I cannot hear them, I know they whisper.

These trees, they are still, and to be in their midst is to be still.

I fly

There is a peace amongst them, not just of stillness, but of fulfillment of purpose.

I think of those places.

But still my mind races,

to the beat of the wind.

Or is the wind breathing

to the beat of my mind.

I cannot tell.


The trees stand, waiting, watching, listening.

They wait for the lumberjack, for eventually he must come.

They stand sentry, but when he comes,

They will not sound the alarm.

They will not try to flee, nor hurl the lumberjack from whence he came. They wait.

They are still.

For when the lumberjack comes, and they are cut,

their waiting will be over. And they will not have failed,

for their purpose was but to wait. And to be still. And to grow.

When their time is done, they will lay down,

and become part of another purpose.


I feel the wind, rushing about me, and it syncopates the thoughts in my head.

They rush, my thoughts, and are never still – they flow and rush, and jumble and carom, and sometimes cavort, up and down the mountainsides, through the woodlands. They move and turmoil, and seek, and quest,

and when they have quested,

when they have answered,

they quest again, for so they must.

It is what my mind does.

It watches. It listens, and paces against the stillness.

For so the stillness must someday come.

And when it comes, I will not raise the alarm.

I will not flee it, nor try to hurl it back from whence it comes.

I will sit amidst the stillness,

I will lie down, and become still. The wind will die down and rest

I will rest. And I will not have failed,

for my purpose was to race, and so – I have raced.

And now my race will be done, and I can find peace, as part of another purpose.

I will race towards stillness, as I must. The trees know this.

The wind knows this.

It knows me, and I know it.

I will become still, when the wind inside me is still

Requiem for a Bat:

Crazy night-time flying bat

Looked to me ’twas getting fat

Tried to dodge, but went kersplat

Flew akimbo off my hat

Dare I wonder where you’re at?

Hit the road, and there you sat

By the morn you’ll be run flat

Poor flat bat, to hit my hat, and die like that.

Twists my heart all pitter-pat.