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© Carl Martin Johnson, All rights reserved

I Am Captain

By Carl Martin Johnson

I am captain of this ship, my Life.
I must guide her through the storm,
Steer her through the dangers rife,
Trim her sails to best perform.

By Heaven’s stars I’ll navigate,
Finding my way o’er uncharted seas,
Prow hard into the waves of Fate,
As I favoring currents seize.

I will voyage forth with daring,
Far beyond the sight of shore.
For my safety have no caring,
Dauntless ‘gainst the typhoon’s roar.

I will discover this world’s wonder,
Search all for wisdom’s signs,
Defy lightning bolts and thunder,
In my hunt for God’s design.

The day the wind that filled my sails
Has stilled and is no more,
I will stand at the ship’s deck rails
And view the Final Shore.

Wherever my voyage ends,
It is I who had the helm.
On my soul’s courage it depends,
How I’ve explored God’s realm.

When at last my sails are furled,
When I’ve reached Life’s destination,
I’ll know my own place in the world,
The reason for my creation.


By Carl Martin Johnson

There are places in my mind
No one else will ever see.
Memories existence leaves behind
That belong only to me.

Bits of my life there are stored,
Some dramatic, some mundane.
An involuntary hoard,
Packed close into my brain.

I visit them when I’m lonely,
These rooms that hold my life.
If for a moment only,
I escape the world’s harsh strife.

I relive times I hold dear,
In the sanctum of this shrine.
They are preserved there, warm and clear.
And they are only mine.


By Carl Martin Johnson

There is panther in her walk.
Men and boys all make way.
She has a predator’s smooth stalk.
Beware if you’re her prey.

Should you catch her feline eye,
She may want you for an hour.
She will make a strong man cry.
His heart she will devour.

Her dark beauty serves her well.
Her sharp claws can hold you tight.
In her heart jungle spirits dwell,
And transform her in the night.

Many men she’s swallowed whole,
Left not a single bone.
She can digest a human soul.
You’d best leave her alone.

Only a man like me can tame her.
Dull her fangs and trim her claws.
No other man could claim her.
I am stronger than jungle laws.

But a panther she remains.
For a pet I have no need.
I will be the one who reigns,
Yet her passion will be freed.


By Carl Martin Johnson

We are made of starstuff,
From the Big Bang long ago.
Through the cosmos flows that farstuff
And ignites us with its glow.

Reach inside and you will find it.
It’s the coating on your soul.
Your life is right behind it.
Starstuff keeps you whole.

Close your eyes and you will feel it,
Feel the precious tingling heat.
Let your silent thoughts reveal it,
Priming your heart from beat to beat.

Starstuff is the Divine Dust,
Sent Mankind to capture.
Starstuff is Pure Being’s lust.
Starstuff is our Rapture.


By Carl Martin Johnson

Tell me that you love me.
I don’t care if it’s not true.
Say you’re always thinking of me,
Whether or not you ever do.

If it’s not me on your mind,
I don’t want to know.
Life can be unkind,
But that’s too cruel a blow.

Yet I can feel you’ve gone.
I wish that I knew why.
I suppose I should move on.
It will do no good to cry.

So, tell me just once more.
Leave a memory I can cherish.
Say again what you once swore,
Those words for me will never perish.


By Carl Martin Johnson

Drip down on me sundrops.
Drip down into my eyes.
Roll down over cloudtops.
Fall golden from the skies.

I want to see what you see,
Bathe my vision in your light.
I want to set my sight free
To view in daylight through the night.

Drip down on me sundrops.
My mouth is open wide.
To taste your sunshine lollipops,
And drink deep your radiant tide.

Fill my mouth with sunny flavor,
Honeyed dew upon my lips.
Every luscious bit I’ll savor,
In bold gulps and gentle sips.

Drip down on me sundrops.
With your energy fill my heart.
Every time my timid will stops
It will give me a new start.

Deep within I’ll store your glow.
I’ll keep it there to share.
To all who are feeling low,
I will spread your joyful care.



SUNBEAM  (Short)
By Carl Martin Johnson


I climbed a sunbeam into the sky
To find out where I was and why.
But when I saw where I had been
I climbed right back down again.



By Carl Martin Johnson

I will take your breath away.
I will leave you wild and gasping.
You will, I’m certain, beg me stay,
Reaching out and grasping.

I will come back if you entreat me,
To the passion of your charms.
Rise up if you will meet me.
I will not deny your arms.

I see your eyes are wide
With the love that we have made,
Like a newly-bedded bride,
Your inhibitions all allayed.

Once again we will return
To joyous abandon pure,
Letting our bodies burn,
Hot as we dare endure.

Close your eyes now and breathe deep.
You will need it to survive.
But your dream will need no sleep.
You’ll rejoice to be alive.


By Carl Martin Johnson

The eyes were wide with fear.
It was still, frozen in place.
I stood so very near
I could see the terror in its face.

I had never fired my gun.
I had only just turned ten.
I thought the hunt would be great fun,
The only boy among the men.

The rabbit was too close to miss.
My shotgun would spread wide.
But I knew I could not do this,
No matter how I tried.

The grownups were right behind me.
I dreadfully feared their scorn.
I prayed hardness would find me,
My emotions were so torn.

Then a blast the quiet split.
I jumped, was frightened bad.
Only a bush ahead was hit.
I turned to see the shooter was my Dad.

The rabbit had quickly gone.
Dad had saved my reputation.
From that day on
He ranked high in my estimation.

He gave me a knowing smile,
Cursing dramatically his poor aim.
The others laughed a while.
Dad faked a hunter’s shame.

Ever since that day
I avoid killing when I can.
I shun firearms in every way,
Except when hunting man.


By Carl Martin Johnson


Sing to me of the hero,
Of him who laid down his life,
Of the debt to him that we owe,
And to his orphan and his wife.


Tell me how he forged ahead,
His own safety of no concern.
That he would win or sure be dead.
Our victory he would earn.


How the bullets tore him,
Yet he kept charging on,
Scattering the enemy before him
Until they all were gone.


How he stooped for a comrade,
Though himself bled nearly dry.
His pain was driving him half-mad,
But he would not let his brother die.


How in that very last second,
When he drew his final breath,
In his mind his young wife beckoned
To ease him into death.


Sing of him and all the others,
Those who died that we may live.
Brave and honored band of brothers,
They gave all a man can give.




By Carl Martin Johnson


I am lightning, just a flash
An instant in the sky.
Gone by the time you hear my crash.
I quickly live and quickly die.


My blazing light will blind you
If I strike too near.
I seek only to remind you,
Not to cause you fear.


I illuminate magic places.
Look carefully and see
The darkness’ hidden faces
Whose knowing sets you free.


I am the bridge between dimensions
Jump on me, pay the toll.
Throw off your apprehensions.
I will not take your soul.


Yet, your spirit, it must pay,
Though not more than you can bear.
It’s worth the pain to be shown the way
To rebirth for those who dare.




By Carl Martin Johnson


I touch all creation.
The whole world touches me.
I feel the full sensation
Of what it is to BE.


The grass my feet caresses
Holds the earth which feeds the tree,
Where rest the birds that heaven blesses
To swim the sky for us to see.


‘Round the earth in chain reaction
I fondle all existence,
In ecstatic interaction,
Undeterred by time or distance.


But it’s my soul that’s true connected,
At all times and to all things,
Every spirit so projected
That all hear when one sings.


We mingle and unite,
Together one, yet each unique.
All born of the same Light.
All agreed on what we seek.




By Carl Martin Johnson


The Mountain reigns, imperial,
Over the desert all around,
Its presence live, ethereal,
A king with snowy crown.


Wild beasts guard his rocky slopes.
Only the brave will risk ascending.
The trek requires courageous hopes,
And fortitude unending.


On the Mountain’s summit wisdom sleeps.
If you kiss her she’ll awaken,
To whisper secrets that she keeps,
Magic journeys she has taken.


To embrace her you must be fully bold.
The Mountain respects no weak.
If your courage you can hold,
You will find what you seek.




By Carl Martin Johnson


Josemaria blinked against the bright sun
That burned the new morning sky.
He shifted the weight of his dead father’s gun
And thought “What a fine day to die.”


A crow shrieked salute as he left
The mud hut he would see no more.
His woman scowled as if he’d committed a theft
Then turned and went back through the door.


It would take all day to finish his walk,
So he strode forward with purpose and pride.
At long last his people were done with just talk.
No longer would the downtrodden hide.


His ancestors for generations
Had taken up arms for a side.
They were endless, these confrontations,
No matter the many who died.


His party would win this, he prayed.
Their leader would be just for a time.
Yet, the way human beings are made,
He would likely soon succumb to crime.


Josemaria sighed with resignation.
It was his fate to fight and be killed.
The revolution was no celebration,
But it must be what Heaven willed.



By Carl Martin Johnson


You were bathed in milky moonlight,
Your body proud in gown of lace.
With the temptation of your eyes bright,
You lured me to the chase.


How quickly you gave in to capture.
I know you wanted me to win.
You were as anxious as I for rapture,
The delicious beauty of our sin.


You guided my hands where they best pleased you,
Sweet music your sighs of ardor.
I excited and I teased you,
Moving swifter, moving harder.


You felt the hunger in my caress,
The hot stirring in my loins.
You shed your translucent dress,
To let our feverish bodies join.


I bent to kiss your breasts,
Mounds firm and tips erect,
Like dear Eros’ banquet guests,
Creamy and star-flecked.


My body, strong and hard,
Pressed into your inviting hips.
You released all of your guard,
That I might taste honey from your lips.


Now this world we have created,
Where love rules all our dreams.
Where you and I are celebrated,
Under starlight and moonbeams.




By Carl Martin Johnson


I’m looking out over a sea of red,
Washing onto an ochre shore.
It seems oceans I have bled.
Could my body hold any more?


If I were able to turn my head,
I’d see where I’ve been hit.
Where I’m pumping all this blood that’s spread.
Maybe slow it down a bit.


I really feel no pain at all,
But I know I’m badly hurt,
Lying limp here like a damn rag doll
In this stinking red-wet dirt.


I think I’ve lost my hearing.
Either that or the fight is done.
Now my mind is clearing,
I wonder if my side won.


I smell the coppery scent
Of my life juice flooding out.
My time here will soon be spent,
Of that I have no doubt.


Strange I’m not afraid.
I just feel alone.
Been a long time since I prayed.
I reckon that bird has flown.


I’m going to close my eyes.
I’m tired and need to sleep.
Could be this is how a man dies.
Well, does no good to weep.




By Carl Martin Johnson


Wake up now; I am leaving.
I’ve already stayed too long.
There is no use in our grieving.
We must both be strong.


What we’ve done we both wanted,
Fed by our passion and our love.
We will not let ourselves be haunted
From below or from above.


The bed is warm from our lovemaking.
The sheets are damp from our embrace.
There are those we are forsaking,
Yet I feel no disgrace.


I will go, but not my heart.
That is yours to keep.
We can never truly be apart.
What we have is much too deep.


Our secret will be kept,
In spite of how we feel,
And how we both have wept,
Because only together is life real.


One day I will stay.
It is you who are my fate.
I should have stayed away.
Now it is far too late.


You and I were meant to be.
We should have always been
You are the world to me.
Such love cannot be sin.


I Am Lightning
Secret Places In My Mind
Sunbeam (Short)
Take Your Breath Away
Josemaria's Walk
Tell Me That You Love Me
Drip Down Sundrops
Chasing You
The Rabbit
Wake Up Now
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