Thursday, January 10, 2019

Of Philip Levine and The Water's Chant

photo © Mark Butkus 2018
A clear mountain stream in the High Sierras.

Seven years ago I went into
the High Sierras stunned by the desire
to die. For hours I stared into a clear
mountain stream that fell down
over speckled rocks, and then I
closed my eyes and prayed that when
I opened them I would be gone

Saturday, January 5, 2019

Hannah Rodrigues On Keeping Warm in Winter

photo © Mark Butkus 2003
Baby, it's cold outside.

It all started
on the 11th of November...
when you have to keep warm
for the winter hibernation.

Sunday, December 30, 2018

Happy New Year y Gracias to the Writers of Bar None Group for 2018!

photo © Mark Butkus 2018
Our journey this year began on the Sea of Cortez in Mexico.

What an incredible year!

The first days of 2018 were spent in Mexico along the Sea of Cortez and the last moments of 2018 are spent anticipating family visits. Thank you to all of you who have read, contributed, inspired and shared the words within the pages of the Bar None Group this past year.

Happy New Year to:

Friday, December 28, 2018

Max Ehrmann's Desiderata: The Christmas Poem that Wasn't

photo © Mark Butkus 2003
One time presidential candidate, Adlai Stevenson had planned to use Desiderata in his 1965 Christmas cards.

Go placidly amid the noise and haste,
and remember what peace there may be in silence.
As far as possible without surrender
be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quietly and clearly;
and listen to others,
even the dull and the ignorant;
they too have their story.

Thursday, December 27, 2018

Sunday, December 23, 2018

The Savior Must Have Been A Docile Gentleman

photo © Mark Butkus 2014
A Christmas poem by Emily Dickinson.

The Savior must have been
A docile Gentleman—
To come so far so cold a Day
For little Fellowmen—

Saturday, December 22, 2018

Christmas Blues of a Young Woman or A Charlie Brown Christmas?

photo © Mark Butkus 2012
This is not A Charlie Brown Christmas character. We don't have the rights to them.

“I think there might be something wrong with me
Christmas is coming,
But I’m not happy
I don’t feel the way I’m supposed to feel

Friday, December 21, 2018

They Were Alone in the Winter

photo © Mark Butkus 2014
A poem for the first day of winter.

Each night, I braid my daughter's hair.
My fingers slip through the thick silkiness,
weaving the strands into a single black stream.

"The air feels like something will happen,"
she says. "Maybe it will snow."