The Tundra Blues (Boreas)

Boreas,
God, have mercy on my soul.
Boreas,
God, have mercy on my sould.
Take me from this tundra,
it’s turning my heart dark and cold.

Outside my door’s a blizzard,
inside my mind’s a storm.
Outside my door’s a blizzard,
inside my mind’s a storm.
Haven’t left the house for weeks,
can’t take this frozen life no more.

Winter days they turn to weeks,
then months, then steal the years.
Winter days they turn to weeks,
then months, then steal the years.
Hardly remember what my limbs feel like,
Boreas get me out of here.

Boreas,
God, have mercy on my soul.
Boreas,
God, have mercy on my sould.
Take me from this tundra,
it’s turning my heart dark and cold.

Fields are white and windswept,
crops and creatures blue and black.
Fields are white and windswept,
crops and creatures blue and black.
Grab your sled and shovel,
head south while you can.

Lightning sparks the sky,
snow thunder rumbles down.
Lightning sparks the sky,
snow thunder rumbles down.
Boreas, is that you?
Deliver me to somewhere warm.

Boreas,
God, have mercy on my soul.
Boreas,
God, have mercy on my sould.
Take me from this tundra,
it’s turning my heart dark and cold.

(3/1/2019: Colectivo Coffee, Madison, Wisconsin)

Ages

It’s been ages since you came around.
How’s that west coast treating you,
now?

Been through stages you wouldn’t comprehend.
Let’s just say things are different.
How?

So you’re back in town? For how long?
For good like the rest of us?

Yes I’m back in town, just for now.
Ain’t no finer place to rust.

It’s been ages,
more than awhile.
Got a past and a future
to reconcile.
Trees are taller
or is it just me?
Kids are younger
or could it be
since I made my
last farewell
I wore myself in
some myself?

You look familiar. Tell me your last name.
Say hello to your folks
for me.

I’m unfamiliar with myself out here
on the front step of my home.
Strangely….

I scan the faces out on Main,
look down and pray to slip away
without a trace.

Do I know what I need?
People, purpose, a city?
Oh the waiting.

It’s been ages,
more than awhile.
Got a past and a future
to reconcile.
Trees are taller
or is it just me?
Kids are younger
or could it be
since I made my
last farewell
I wore myself in
some myself?

Re-make yourself at home.
Mirror, mirror, off the wall.

(8/20-8/26/2018: Irish Acres, Mount Horeb, Wisconsin)

As the Crow Flies

As the crow flies east, so do we.
Deciding when to say goodbye ain’t easy.

Since I was a boy, I dreamed of California.
Back when I was twenty couldn’t imagine it could come true.
Then I was twenty-five, arrived and never dreamed of leaving.
Since yesterday I knew we had to.

We came, we saw, we conquered our-
selves & all this golden state had to off-
er us, it was abundant. We’ll
be back again.
(You’ll see)

Loving hard for a time’s just fine.
So’s heading out when the time is right.
Import now, an export then.
Prodigal stranger in a once homeland.
Bringing that which can’t be left behind:
Sierra blood, Pacific mind.
Oakland heart, wild San Francisco nights.

We came, we saw, we conquered our-
selves & all this golden state had to off-
er us, it was abundant. We’ll
be back again.
(You’ll see)

On the wing.
Riding on thunder & wind
through the plains in dark of night.
East we go, as the crow flies.

(11/14-23/2017 – Adams Point, Oakland, California)

Just Our Parade

3/22/15

Passing the time up on this hill &
you are looking down on me.
When I ran through woods in wonder,
shepherd showed me, on his knee.

Elder in the family, you
took a leap & moved down south.
Bull was bucking hard & heavy,
stayed in-saddle past the count.

Bugs & grass & maple trees
in the yard, red Saturdays.
At the Camp and in the Barn we
watched the band & Badgers play.

Answers, back then, didn’t have them.
Stories, curiosity.
Tasting all you had prepared for
Grandchild, growing up to be

A lion, proud of the pride,
leading a life a fighter.
Peaceful inside, fierce on the outside,
out on a limb, lucky again
as the curves of the moon make the crown on your head.

The one thing I have to ask that
I’ve been holding in so long:
Do you remember our talks together
when it was late & we were alone?

Well, I’ve been holding on so long,
so deep, so tight, so close so strong
To our talks together when it was late,
& we were alone, just our parade.