© Carl Martin Johnson, All rights reserved

 

SORROW, MY LOVE
By Carl Martin Johnson

My Sorrow walks beside me.
She shares these dark days.
She does her best to hide me
From the sun’s happy, hurtful rays.

I cannot bear the joy
Or brightness of the day.
Smiles and laughter just annoy,
Now my love has slipped away.

At my love’s deathbed Sorrow met me.
She promised she would stay,
And never would forget me,
Now my love has gone away.

Sorrow lies with me in sleep.
She wraps me in her arms.
Pulling me down and deep,
Into the dark waters of her charms.

She dances me into nightmares
Where those like me despair,
Trading memory’s gloomy wares
Amid darkly dazzling prayer.

Faithful mistress she will remain.
I will never be alone.
She fills my heart with white-hot pain
Where once love’s gold light shone.

She is my beautiful Sorrow,
Shading me from all light.
Until God’s pity I borrow,
And join my love in endless night.

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MOON CLOUD
By Carl Martin Johnson

A cloud passed over the moon tonight,
And all the world was stilled.
The night went dark, that once was bright.
The land with deep black filled.

I froze in place.
I know not why.
Both time and space
Seemed to wither and die.

A cold wind cut through me.
It chilled my frightened soul.
Like an evil thing that knew me.
A beast who sought control.

Then white light poured around me.
Drowning the witching spell.
I gave thanks the moon had found me,
And sent the demon back to Hell.

The night played its music once again.
The air was sweet and warm.
The moon was full, as it had been.
I was safe from harm.

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RIDE A STAR WITH ME
By Carl Martin Johnson

Ride with me on a shooting star.
Away where we can glow.
Let us become what we are,
And let the whole world know.

We are stardust you and I.
Together we are golden.
Let us light up the sky.
We are to none beholden.

The world will look up and see
What magic love can bring.
We will show them, you and me,
What songs the stars can sing.

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ANGEL BIRTH
By Carl Martin Johnson

I was born of God’s breath and a tear
From an Archangel’s eye
His love brought me here.
Now I will never die.

I am an angel newly born.
I am spirit pure.
None will my death ever mourn.
I will forever endure.

I am a creature made of love.
God filled me with his rapture.
I am his child, a being of
All His light my soul can capture.

I have no eyes, but I can see.
No fuel, and yet fire.
I am what I am meant to be.
It is all that I desire.

I am happy, but I know
I have a purpose in God’s plan.
To guard that charge I must now go.
The reason I was born is… Man.

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TARRY NOT
By Carl Martin Johnson

In the forest tarry not long.
Tarry not long near Wolf’s lair.
For the howl he cries is not song,
But incantation of despair.

His yellow eyes will see you.
His nostrils sniff your smell.
Then nothing alive can free you
From this beast was whelped in hell.

Your sins will feed his craving.
Your guilt will quench his thirst.
He will savage you, mad and raving.
Of all ends, this is the worst.

This beast grows rabid and lean
In the forest of your soul.
Lying in wait for evil deeds to be seen,
And the Devil’s nod to devour you whole.

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STEALING YOU
By Carl Martin Johnson

It is true you are not mine,
But I will love you without sorrow.
Let our bodies intertwine,
For there may be no tomorrow.

 

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A SOLDIER’S DREAM
By Carl Martin Johnson

When I sleep I’m in a new world
One I’ve painted in my dreams
On the canvas I have unfurled
My own rainbows and moonbeams.

I escape this world of strife.
I rest my weary heart.
I have a different life,
Where no evil plays a part.

In my dream realm I am king.
I am merciful and kind.
Only happiness I bring
To everyone I find.

When I wake I am at war.
I am bloody, filled with hate.
My kind are what we are.
The gods leave us to our fate.

I pray one sweet night near,
When my eyes close and I sleep,
I will embrace my dreamland dear,
And there my soul will keep.

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ANGEL PASSING
By Carl Martin Johnson

I sensed someone standing near.
Just a feeling, nothing more.
Not enough to cause me fear,
More like a shadow beneath the door.

The air took on a chill.
Not much, but drew a shiver.
I felt drawn gently against my will,
As if by a current in a slow-flowing river.

I glimpsed a thing formless.
Yet it was not my eye that saw.
Somehow I knew it to be harmless,
But not subject to Nature’s law.

I knew that it was leaving.
It was only passing through.
Oddly, I was grieving
For this thing I never knew.

And I realized, amazed
That I would miss it very much.
Then something loving my cheek grazed.
It was an angel’s touch.

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THE MOON’S HOWL
By Carl Martin Johnson

The wolves ran silent, shining.
It was the moon that howled.
I walked among them, lonely, pining
While around me forest beasts prowled.

She had gone and left me dead.
Dead inside, an empty soul.
No emotion, save black dread
That this grief would swallow me whole.

Now I walk this path at night,
Sharp-teethed jaws all held at bay.
They all shrink from the sight
Of a man banished from the day.

Until death reunites us,
I must bear her absence’ curse.
Or the darkness that awaits us
Is, compared to death, far worse.

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GHOSTS
By Carl Martin Johnson

The ghosts stand behind me,
Those who came before.
They circle back to find me,
Show me the opened door.

At night they whisper to me,
And sometimes in the day.
Their thoughts and words pursue me,
Urge me on the way.

To build on what they started,
They tell what’s been done.
These ghosts, the dear departed
Tell of victory to be won.

They say I must carry on the quest
Of they who came before.
Nor dead nor living can ever rest,
Because we know there is more.

We must find the Holy Grail,
The reason for our being.
In this we cannot fail,
For it is all our ghosts who need freeing.

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THE LIE
By Carl Martin Johnson

I could see your heart was breaking
When I told you love was through.
Although my own was aching,
I had to think of you.

This time I won’t return.
There is no chance at all.
Now my sole concern
Is that you not mourn me when I fall.

Our time has been too brief,
But at least I had your love.
I cannot inflict death’s grief
Upon a soul I am so unworthy of.

So I spoke the oath you heard,
To force our love to part.
The lie was in my words.
The truth was in my heart.

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TIRED SOUL
By Carl Martin Johnson

My soul is tired and troubled.
The world has worn me thin.
Each day my woes seem doubled.
I pray for any small win.

I drag my heart from dawn
Through days of hurt and pain,
Until all feeling is gone,
And I take shelter in night again.

In my dreams I beg for strength
To carry on as long as it takes,
Even if all my life’s full length
Is only more and more heartaches.

To this fate I will not bow.
I will struggle to survive.
I will forge ahead somehow,
As long as I remain alive.

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WHEN GREAT NATIONS DIE
By Carl Martin Johnson

Nations, like men, are mortal.
They have beginnings, they have ends.
Eventually they cross the portal.
Then it is too late to make amends.

I fear this is my country’s fate,
Though born of noble ambition.
Now class warfare, jealousy and hate
Have undermined a great tradition.

Our wounds are self-inflicted.
Our cancer bred within.
Our Founders could not have predicted
We would destroy what we have been.

We have become weak and greedy,
Like others on this Earth.
Who will rise to defend Mankind
When we have lost our worth?

Do we end “not with a bang, but a whimper”
As one of our great poets has said?
Will our leaders smile and simper
While our nation’s character lies dead?

No! We must fight, my brother!
Our song must still be sung!
For in this world there is no other
Who will see Freedom’s bell is rung.

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CROSSWINDS
By Carl Martin Johnson

You were a gentle breeze.
I was a hurricane.
I tried so hard to please,
But I only caused you pain.

You were a delicate rose,
Petals pink, full of perfume.
Why was it me you chose,
Whose touch would wilt your bloom?

In the tempest of our affair,
You were cast into wild sea.
I should have warned you to beware
Of loving a man like me.

Now you’ve run into the storm
To escape my savage embrace.
Though I never meant you harm,
You feared the passion in my face.

I have a warrior’s heart,
Violent, untamed and rough.
I ripped your heart apart.
I was not soft enough.

I cannot pull you back.
You have vanished in the wind.
My love was an attack,
A war I lost in the end.

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LIFE FIGHT
By Carl Martin Johnson

This is not the first time Life has hit me.
But I stayed on my feet before.
This time Life was really out to get me.
This time he knocked me to the floor.

If he thinks I will just lie here,
He has made a big mistake.
I sure as hell won’t die here.
I may bend, but I won’t break.

My face is bloody, it is true.
I am scraped, some teeth knocked loose.
Yet, Life, I still spit at you.
I’ve grown hard from your abuse.

Don’t think that you have won
Although I lie here at your feet.
I am not yet undone.
I feel anger, not defeat.

I will win this hard-fought duel
Because one thing I know is true:
I am a man who knows Life’s rule:
“ You eat Life, or Life eats you!”

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SUNBEAM (Long Version)
By Carl Martin Johnson

I climbed a sunbeam to the sky.
I was curious to know
Just where I was and why,
And in which direction I should go.

I stood upon a friendly cloud,
Looking far as I could see.
And shouted out, clear and loud
“What am I? Just who is “Me”?

I waited long in vain
For even a hint of a reply.
I called out once again
To the earth and to the sky.

Silence was my answer,
Moving softly o’er my skin.
Like a yellow butterfly dancer
When the child’s ballet begins.

A rainbow rolled quite near,
A colorful inverted smile.
I let drop a single tear,
Kneeled and worshipped it awhile.

Then I rose to my feet.
I stood there all alone.
If there was no God to greet,
I would make one of my own.

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SHE BATHES IN MOONLIGHT
By Carl Martin Johnson

Her body is bathed in moonlight,
Glowing silver on her skin.
I watch her naked in the black night,
And take pleasure in my sin.

She drips stardrops from her breasts.
They roll streaming down her thighs.
Past the flesh where womanhood rests,
Setting fire to my eyes.

That sweet nectar I long to sip,
To satisfy my thirst.
On my tongue I would have it drip,
Swallowing greedily until I burst.

Does she know that I am spying?
Does she feel my gaze’s touch?
Does she sense here in lust I’m lying?
Does she want me just as much?

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LONE AMBUSH
By Carl Martin Johnson

The jungle is never silent,
Unless danger is lurking near.
Quiet signals action violent,
And should give rise to fear.

I wait amidst the evening din
For stillness to alert me,
So my attack can begin
Before my enemy can hurt me.

The darkness will conceal me
Until it’s time to fight.
Then my firing will reveal me,
Streaking tracers in the night.

My quarry will pass soon.
I wonder what they’re thinking.
Do they see that crescent moon?
The stars up there blinking?

The forest just went still.
The living things gone mute.
They are coming, and I will kill,
If they don’t spot me before I shoot.

The night approaches when I am the prey.
A hunter waiting in the dark for me.
Then it is a bloody price I’ll pay
For the warrior I choose to be.

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THE MEMORY
By Carl Martin Johnson

The memory shone dim,
Like an old coin in a stream.
It lay just at consciousness’ rim
Like the aftertaste of a dream.

I felt it call out to me,
Although I could not quite see.
I was certain that it knew me,
Yet it remained a mystery.

Why then was it teasing?
Why not let me see its face?
Is there something there unpleasing
That it’s trying to erase?

It will come nearer if I wait.
It knows it belongs to me.
To be recalled is a memory’s fate,
And it is my memory.
 
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