Verse by Caleb Mannan

If you like Robert Service, Longfellow, Tolkien, Milton, Robinson Jeffers, Whitman, Poe, The Bible, Tennyson, Ray Bradbury, life, death, Untermeyer, Pound, Donne, joy, sorrow, Siegfried Sassoon, Wilfred Owen, Robert Graves, children, beauty, Dante, Tom Waits, then set yourself down beside this fire.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

XI. A Father's Love

For Violet and Tennessee

My daughter, I’d give her princes,
My son, I’d give him queens
And palaces and lands that span
From sea to shining sea.
My children, I’d give you wisdom
And a vision to conquer life-
A happy, healthy existence
Free from natural strife.
But my children, all I’d give you
Would one day burn away
And what use is a limb
If it knows no pain?
So then, I will give you
That which I am of:
A humbled heart, my wicked hands,
And a father’s love.

X. Darkness Overcomes Me

Darkness overcomes me Lord,
For I am but a man.
From the watchtower I see the sky’s waning light
With the advance of the grotesque.
Let me be still oh Lord,
Let me then be quiet.
Gird me for my family
And even for myself.
Not to falter in the coming battle,
I cannot stumble in the least.
I grip my rifle tight,
And pray for quick salvation.

Darkness overcomes me Lord,
For I am but a man.

IX. Who may know what moves me?

Who may know what moves me, who may know my heart?
Who may know the strings that play me, or pluck my soul apart?
Am I a such a righteous man, that I can withstand my wicked heart?
I assure you in the face of sin I stand to fall apart.
Am I such a craven, that I’d tear a man apart?
If you heard the strings that play me, you’d see ‘tis in my heart.

VIII. I am a son of the earth!( unfinished)

My Queen-
I am a son of the earth!
Crude ‘n crass m’ lass,
but a son just the same.
I came unto with dirt under m’ nails,
And shall return with dirt on m’ boots.
I regard myself manly, bent n’ broken,
But a son just the same
I’s formed of clay by mygoodmaker,
Aye, he made me well.
With spittled beard I rush into fray,
Into the fray for you go I.
I will not be cowed, I will not be broken,
Until the dust it leaves m’ lungs.
For you I will wrestle the wolves,
And ford the fjords,
They are nothing to me in you,
nay, nothing to me in you.
I've the strength of legion for you momma,
I've hellbone in m' strength,
and I charge any man to come on hard,
and I will meet him in the middle
with a thundercrackbonebrokenbrittleaxerattle,
and I will stand over 'is fallen form,
and holler out to heaven and hell:
"I am a son of the earth!"

VII. Music

Music doth soothe my soul,
Soothe my soul the music doth.
The angels foresaw my birth within their songs,
Within their tongue of tongues.
And now it cradles me gently,
Ushered by my invisible brothers,
Whisper wind of Hayyoth’s hymns.