© Carl Martin Johnson, All rights reserved

 
 

WORLDS
By Carl Martin Johnson

This world holds only lightly.
There are others, large and small.
If I do not hang on tightly,
I will spin up, or perhaps fall.

I think that I belong here,
But I cannot be sure.
Even though the pull is strong here.
It is not completely pure.

I should visit worlds beyond.
Universes parallel.
To see if I am more fond
Of another place to dwell.

I am a human soul.
There are no chains on me.
I want a world that makes me whole.
Wherever that world may be.

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LIFEDROPS
By Carl Martin Johnson

Sounds of lifedrops falling
Like rain on a soft white cloud.
Each one a world enthralling.
Each soul with love endowed.

Tender whispers drift away,
Carrying memories into the sky.
Colorburst bouquet
Of lives as they pass by.

It is not my ears that hear them.
They are not physical at all.
Though strange, I do not fear them.
I will heed their beckoning call.

I shall add soon to the chorus.
Unite my own with their Great Soul.
We all have this before us.
Only then are we truly whole.

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RENDEZVOUS
By Carl Martin Johnson

I have a rendezvous with fate.
It is soon, so I must hurry.
I will not be late
Dear Destiny, don’t worry.

I know much may be demanded,
But I can stand the test.
I will do as I’m commanded.
I am ready for the quest.

Life courses through my veins,
Setting fire to my blood.
A stallion pulling at my reins,
Diving into the raging flood.

My heart throbs, anticipating
This challenge I will face.
I will soon be celebrating
Being the winner of the race.

At long last I will see
My value on this earth.
If what I am to be
Merits my mother’s pain of birth.

I hear the howling now.
The wolf is closing in.
I will fight hard, this I vow.
And I know that I will win.

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THE FOUNDLING
By Carl Martin Johnson

Don’t cry, my little man.
I was a foundling, too.
You are part of the world’s big plan.
You’ll be a prince before you’re through.

This tree I’ve found you under
Will be a monument someday.
The people ‘round will wonder
At the virtues you display.

Perhaps a goddess lay you here
In the beauty of this glen.
Or a nymph who wanted to keep you near
The fairies and other kin.

I will take you home and raise you,
Though I’m gray and wife long gone.
I’ll be there to correct and praise you,
A shoulder you can lean on.

My sons, who all died brave
Implored the gods to give me you.
So, I will your young life save,
But you are saving this old heart, too.

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THE DOOR
By Carl Martin Johnson

The door was open; I came in.
It was a warm and happy room.
But I soon found, to my chagrin,
I could not leave; I’d sealed my doom.

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WE LONELY PEOPLE
By Carl Martin Johnson

We wander grey in sunlight,
Our smile a hidden frown.
Inside us it is black night,
The sun forever down.

You talk to us, but we don’t hear.
Our ears are clogged with sadness.
We keep the world out, and the fear
Of sinking into madness.

If you look into our eyes you’ll see
An emptiness we treasure.
Ghosts dancing to a melody
Devoid of any pleasure.

What is it that thus holds us?
What freezes so our soul?
Will the darkness that enfolds us
Ever lift to make us whole?

You will not notice if you meet us.
We hide our anguish well.
Perhaps your love will help complete us,
Your friendship save us from this hell.

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RETURN OF THE WARRIOR
By Carl Martin Johnson

The warrior limped back blooded.
Alive, but trampled hard.
His mind and heart were flooded
With the dead he’d tried to guard.

What needed doing he had done.
Evil men he had defeated.
But the victory was hard won.
Many friends grim death had greeted.

Now he had returned,
Alive to fight again one day,
When his heart once more burned
To send villains on their way.

Until then he would rest,
Thanking God that he fought well,
Knowing he had done his best
Against the damned cohorts of Hell.

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MOMMA WENT TO HEAVEN
By Carl Martin Johnson

Momma went to Heaven today.
She said angels were there waiting.
She told me it’s okay to pray,
But I should be celebrating.

She worked hard for me down here.
She kept me safe and warm.
She taught me to have no fear,
To be brave In the face of harm.

She is gone, but I’ll be fine.
I learned her lessons well.
The strength she had now is mine.
She stumbled, but never fell.

I’m a big girl, almost grown.
And she stayed long as she could.
If I have a daughter of my own,
God make me half as good.

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IT’S COMING
By Carl Martin Johnson

It’s coming, I can feel it,
The reason I am here.
Something somewhere will reveal it.
There is a sign that will appear.

The atmosphere is tingling.
Fire in the air I breathe.
All the portents intermingling.
The ground beneath begins to seethe.

I could not avoid it if I wanted.
It’s an explosion deep inside.
For some time I have felt haunted.
Now I embrace the looming tide.

Will mankind mark my work?
A few perhaps, not all.
But I will know I did not shirk.
I stood ready for the call.

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THE WING
By Carl Martin Johnson

A golden wing lay on the ground.
It’s flying days were done.
More than bone and feathers found.
Vision of a race that had been run.

He had swooped down to make his kill.
What he needed, nothing more.
When he had feasted to his fill,
He left the rest at nature’s door.

Sometimes God rode on his back,
Fitting steed for a Great King,
To see if there was need or lack
Of the Divine Song to sing.

Then Man looked up to see his grace,
And knew it must be true:
If the bird could fly up to God’s Face,
He must be godlike, too.

So mankind bowed down and prayed.
Gave feast days to celebrate.
But the signs of worship that Man made
Decided the great bird’s fate.

His feathers prized as sacred things,
He was hunted, though adored.
Arrows hurled toward his wings
In the heaven, where he soared.

He found it was a dangerous throne
To sit that mankind lauds.
For by all things divine it’s known
Man destroys his gods.

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THE CRIES OF A DYING STAR
By Carl Martin Johnson

I see your light tumbling at me,
Roaring down through eons of time,
A journey begun before life which begat me.
You bright cosmic creature sublime.

You were born when my world had no form.
Before our life existed at all.
When what is now cold space was warm,
Before Adam and Eve had their fall.

In youth, you were the great Queen,
The loveliest in all the sky.
Nor yet has there ever been
Any sight more in love with the eye.

Now all who once bowed before you,
Twinkle faintly in sorrow.
Heavenly bodies who still adore you
Know you will be gone by tomorrow.

The anguished cry that spills from your core,
A wail not from pain, but regret,
Says your light will soon be no more,
And you do not wish to leave this plane yet.

You feel your blaze bleeding dim.
The energy flowing back to the Source.
Where, though you are now waning grim,
Your soul will be set a new course.

Your light will strike my world for years.
It will fly to us long after your death.
It will carry with it your tears,
And the cinnamon of a night star’s last breath.

When your final beam burns into Man’s eyes,
Only then will you truly have died.
Then no more will we feel your cries,
But will guard your pure starlight inside.

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BADLANDS
By Carl Martin Johnson

The badlands suck dry a human soul.
The are barren, unforgiving.
Those men who escape whole
Are no longer full of living

He had run until he dropped
His pursuers far behind, he thought
This was the first time he had stopped
Since the battle had been fought.

His canteen was dry
After two days on the run.
He knew he would soon die
Under this infernal sun.

The night came and he slept
Until awakened by a warning sound.
He grabbed the rifle that he’d kept,
Rising quietly to look around.

The stars gave reluctant light,
Yet enough for him to see
That he was in a desperate plight.
Over the rock camped three enemy.

He lay still until the dawn,
Praying they would go,
Afraid to risk moving on.
Any sound would let them know.

Suddenly he jerked upright,
Eyes wide at fiery pangs.
Twisting off in the soft twilight
Was the wielder of the fangs.

He had no time to nurse it.
The enemy had weapons drawn.
He could only curse it,
Knowing that his life was gone.

A bullet tore into him
As he raised his rifle to fire.
The hot lead burned right through him.
Mortal wound had it been higher.

He squeezed the trigger as he fell.
There was one enemy less.
The other two let out a yell,
Charging at him in distress.

Over the rocks the others flew.
They tore the rifle from his hand.
Then the pistol that he drew
Blew another of them to the sand.

The last knocked the gun away
And kicked the runner in the face.
But when he poised his bayonet to slay,
A knife had taken the pistol’s place.

The long blade slid past the short,
Steel kissing steel, promising death.
The dagger slipped under the enemy’s heart.
The runner smelled pain on his breath.

The attacker slid to the ground,
Propped against the boulder at his back.
His look of horror was profound,
His vision growing black.

The runner found his gun
And aimed it at his foe.
But he saw the killing had been done.
There was no need for another blow.

One horse was tethered still.
The runner limped over to its reins.
He thought to ride away until
He recalled the venom in his veins.

He circled back around the rock,
Looked at the young enemy’s wound.
For a moment he took stock.
The boy might survive if helped soon.

The horse was lame and the badlands deep.
The rattler’s poison surging to his heart.
One of them his life would keep
One of their souls would sure depart.

They did not speak, no common tongue.
Yet they both understood.
The runner was old, his enemy young.
Who would have time to do most good?

For an eternity their eyes embraced.
They were closer then than brothers.
A changed future now both men faced.
Fate both their father, but spawn of different mothers.

The runner lifted the younger man,
Secured him on the mount
Sent him off to find God’s plan,
To keep drinking from Life’s fount.

Then he sat and watched the rising sun.
The last that would ever warm him.
Soon, when the serpent’s poison won,
Nothing in this life could harm him.

The badlands would claim a kill today,
But no victory complete.
One life had ridden on its way.
Man was too hard to beat.

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SIREN SONG
By Carl Martin Johnson

In the depths of night I hear you,
Calling silently my name.
Luring me ever near you
Like a moth to the candle’s flame.

I would come if I were able,
Were you more than just a dream.
Not a siren in a fable,
Living only in moonbeam.

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MOON KISS
By Carl Martin Johnson

The moon bent down to kiss me,
To take me in her arms,
To tell me she would miss me
Should I ever leave her charms.

She promised she’d watch over me
When dark night blacks the earth.
With her cool light cover me
Until a new day gives sunshine birth.

And if she sees my tears falling,
For sins that I have done,
She will send her soft glow calling
Until the healing has begun.

When my time has come to change,
She will lift me with her beams,
Keeping me from feeling strange
As I melt into moondreams.

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DRIPPING SUNDROPS
By Carl Martin Johnson

I feel the sunlight drip into me,
Dropping golden from the sky.
It flows, sweet nectar, to renew me,
Kissing sadness swift goodbye.

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LIFE’S WATER
By Carl Martin Johnson

I drink Life’s water slowly.
I savor every drop.
I know that it is something holy,
And that someday it may stop.

I stand naked in the cool shower.
Its comforting rain cleansing my fears.
My heart absorbing thrilling powers,
Feeling washed in divine tears.

Through my arteries lifeblood streaming,
Pumping through me cosmic force
Making real what was only dreaming.
Clarifying life’s true course.

I am caught in the water’s current,
Carried out to the Eternal Sea.
Things now in my soul that weren’t.
The water growing a better me.

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THE BOAR
By Carl Martin Johnson

I ride the red-eyed Boar.
Holding tightly to his back.
Charging down Hades’ floor.
Racing hard to the attack.

My enemies are hiding,
But they will soon appear.
I feel their spirits gliding,
Sliding past me, coming near.

It was I who gave them birth,
Nurtured them, made them strong.
Made them feel their worth,
Though their worthiness is wrong.

They are creatures of my sin,
Monsters of my vice.
They are my close kin,
Demons of my device.

Their crimes must be answered for,
If I am ever to be free.
Else I will ride the Devil’s Boar
Into Eternity.

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