life: acoustic & amplified

poetry, quotes & thoughts about life

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imagine it’s so

To make a prairie it takes a clover and one bee,

One clover, and a bee.

And revery.

The revery alone will do,

If bees are few.


To make a prairie by Emily Dickinson

It was the summer of lemons

being replaced by oranges. Lemons,

they said, had lost something

that lemons sometimes lose. Painters

piled Navels and Valencias, mixed red

into yellow for Still Life with Oranges;

the wooden bowl beautiful with lonely

cracks, organic with time and handling.

Evening, men and women squeezed

wedges from the larger fruit, a squall

over flounder. Mothers whisked sweeter

juice into oil, sherry vinegar, crush

of garlic. Seaside, we sprayed oysters

then peppered as usual. In the absence

of lemons, there was a thirsting to taste

water kindled with novelty, set ablaze by

unplumbed citrus. Slices like thin suns

were cut to fit the rim line, to space in

the circumference of goblets and jam

jars. It was then, drinking

what was more July than June,

that we returned to each other.


Summer of Lemons by Marjorie Thomsen

I imagine writing a poem

which slips into the hearts stream


with no great splash

just a graceful entry,

with a calm circling ripple

words plunging deeply upon entry

allowing the mud to settle gracefully around it.

I imaging writing a poem

which allows the heart to trust,

to open,

to flower in it’s own time

knowing, for sure,

it is dependable,


written to last

through the fiercest storms

though the world burn

and the mountains crumble

words so full of love

so beautiful

so eternal

they come to life

each time they are read,

or spoken

I imagine anyone who dares to read this poem of mine

cannot help but

find within themselves

clouds of peace

wrapped up in thick blankets of joy

and will forever know for sure

they are



Amy Lloyd

I think I need to get out more;

Out of the confines

Of my lonely dungeon

I hope humanity accepts

The Shadow that I am

Standing there

As the last breath

Of a slayed monster

I think it’s time

I stretched out my cripping fingers

To reach to the sunrise

And kill some time

Just thinking about tomorrow

Without knowing it may be here

I think it’s time

To go loco

And sound so cynical

To the world so serious

I think it’s time to breathe –

in and out of existence

And capture moments in time

I want to tune in

To the sounds that surround me

And flow carelessly

Like a drifting spill

On an unsuspecting land

I just want to rain in emotions

And still hold on to my thoughts

I think love is my downfall

Yet again, it is all we long for

I think it’s time to ask my soul

”Why are you so blind? ”

I guess I need someone to blame

But, all I find is myself

I need to dance with my thoughts

And find truth

Whatever it is out there

In the cosmos so deep

And debilitating state of rest

That puts me in a trance

And phases me in a trail

Where peace resides

I just need some time alone

All by myself

Just to become fully myself

Without doubt or any judgments

I think it’s time

For the rain to fall

And for us to dance

As iron sharpening iron

Let us sweat

Into the Nile of serenity

I just want to talk to myself;

The inner child trapped

By a grown up

Who has forgotten

That life was meant to be enjoyed,

And adored, and given

For it is a gift

I need to get rid of this seriousness

That longs to control

And structure all

As if it can play God

Losing its mind trying hopelessly

To find its ego –

Let me meditate


Meditation by Khalid Bin Al Kamaal



you are beloved

Slapped the man’s face, then slapped it again,

broke the plate, broke the glass, pushed the cat

from the couch with my feet. Let the baby

cry too long, then shook him,

let the man walk, let the girl down,

wouldn’t talk, then talked too long,

lied when there was no need

and stole what others had, and never

told the secret that kept me apart from them.

Years holding on to a rope

that wasn’t there, always sorry

righteous and wrong. Who would

follow that young woman down the narrow hallway?

Who would call her name until she turns?


What I Did Wrong by Marie Howe


I see you lamenting over your old life and how it appears from the outside that you haven’t accomplished much. However, you don’t see all the wonderful and necessary changes I have made on the inside. I allowed the visible house of your life to crumble so that I could fix and repair the foundation that it stood upon. You didn’t see all the cracks and damage done to the old foundation of your life, but I did.

You asked Me to rebuild you; to make you over, and to renew a right spirit within you. So, I shut everything down and put you on My potter’s wheel. I took you into My hands and went deep into every cracked and marred area of your life and made you over. Oh, I know at times it didn’t feel like anything was changing, and when things changed, they appeared to be worse. Becoming a precious jewel sometimes is painful and always cost a great price, and it’s been paid.

Now, you stand ready for Me to build upon the new foundation that’s been created in your life. You’ve gone through so much. I made changes, and I have imparted much in you. I realize the evil one has been tempting you to focus upon the rubble of your old life. However, it’s been covered by the blood of the Lamb. All the old damage has been repaired, and you will love what I’ve done.

I want you to stop and look down; see the new foundation you are now standing upon, and don’t entertain the lies that say I don’t care about you or want to bless you. Surely, you should know by now how much I love and care for you. Therefore, stand strong on the new foundation; keep your faith and focus on Me and don’t doubt My love for you. I have made you over, and you now stand on a glorious new foundation. You’re standing on the Rock of your salvation.

Chosen One Ministries

a love note for when you awaken. I’ll just leave it on the table this Sabbath morning.

If you’ve got a minute

I know it’s unfashionable,

out of the box,

even disturbing at times

to admit


I love that you pray;

that I know your children’s names,

the way you sweep leaves off the back step

every afternoon,

use the tall thin glass with the yellow swirls

put sea salts in the old claw footed tub

walk your gigantic dog in the evening.

I love that you trust me

that the Mystery makes you crazy mad

-and no one wants to be saved

they just want

to stand next to you

while Rome burns.

While Rumi pauses,

poets select

artists carve out

writer’s buy new pens,

things sparkle-

I love that

what seems destroyable

is non-destructible

and the first thought in your mind

when you open your eyes

is the sigh of

“Oh Most Holy God”

and the heart expands

bearing witness to

raising cane

walking down hospital halls

reading stories to toddlers

playing in a sandbox

trying on shoes, and you can’t stand trying on shoes;

reciting Hafiz while you walk in the woods.

making amends

humming something about dragonflies

and watering baby pine trees.

Refusing to walk

anything but

the call…

Thank you

for fighting the whole way

so I would call you,


some stories end

some go on

for all of



Rev. Donna Knutson

thank you, dear heart,

for being so brave,

for your courage to stay open,

for giving, and receiving, love,

for taking me into battles

and winning wars with your ferocious strength

for valiantly defending your fragile tenderness

for loving your own terrible beauty

for revealing your deepest darkness to the light of discovery

and laying open your wounds to the healing air

for being willing to walk into heartbreak again and again,

with you knowing what you know.

For, even when you are shaking afraid,

you always shout,



‘Let’s dance’


‘I gotta have more cowbell…’

Thank you for your life-giving work,

your refusal to quit,

your firm belief in me and my lifestyle!

For your forgiveness for all my sins,

you respect for my confessions,

and your admiration for when I get it right!

I adore you

I honor you

I cherish and bless

your amazing work

in my chest,

in my world,

in my relationships,

and in my wanderings.

I give you the gift of the best me,

in every moment we have together,

the brightest shining light,

I can be

we do good work, girl,

you got the beat,

Oh, skip it, Let’s roll!

Yours forever true,



feeling the love

To live life at the center – to incarnate at the center,

so that one’s limbs move with that fire;

to project ourselves into space;

this is theatre, flight, daily deed…

we practice

an alchemy which draws its fire at that center.


-Mary Caroline Richards

as the day of your birth arrives


stirring me awake

the future precedes you


worlds being invented

because of you

I watch this creation


musical matter

Melodious Curvature


I watch you hatching

wild and magical


removing the worn out

broken shell of your protection


no longer useful

.defensive strategy

no longer needed


fearless as your truest self


your new number so very well

as the holy yellow light of you

shines from every doorway


the tilt of your head

those shades you’re wearing

just a shade


in that good and healthy style

only those of true


can carry on their shoulders

My deepest soul


arches towards you

to feel your glow.


to hear these whispers.

.happy birthday to m.e.


Amy Lloyd

If you were a teardrop

Rolling down the face of eternity

I would catch you in my cradle made of light

And sing to you a song of gentle reassurance

If your heart burst with a thousand golden sunbeams

I would be your majestic field of sunflowers

Basking in your precious light in blissful contentment,

Marvelling in awestruck wonderment as I behold your magnificence.

If the seven oceans crashed and thundered

In the illusion of this world’s turmoil

I would be your quiet reflection

That brings still waters.

If all your hopes we spun into the misty web

Swaying in the eaves of the heavenly temple

I would be the sapphire dragonfly of transformation

That is willingly caught in your silken strands of truth.

I am waiting for you here on the summit of the White Mountain

Watching your beautiful journey

You are the joyful dance

I sprinkle your fertile garden with droplets of love from the great ocean.


I am here by Julian Mann

Neither a lofty degree of intelligence nor imagination nor both together go to the making of genius. Love, love, love, that is the soul of genius.

~Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

the eagle flies on Friday


When you have been

at war with yourself

for so many years that

you have forgotten why,

when you have been driving

for hours and only

gradually begin to realize

that you have lost the way,

when you have cut

hastily into the fabric,

when you have signed

papers in distraction,

when it has been centuries

since you watched the sun set

or the rain fall, and the clouds,

drifting overhead, pass as flat

as anything on a postcard;

when, in the midst of these

everyday nightmares, you

understand that you could

wake up,

you could turn

and go back

to the last thing you

remember doing

with your whole heart:

that passionate kiss,

the brilliant drop of love

rolling along the tongue of a green leaf,

then you wake,

you stumble from your cave,

blinking in the sun,

naming every shadow

as it slips.


From Out the Cave by Joyce Sutphen

When the war is over

we will be proud of course the air will be

Good for breathing at last

The water will have been improved the salmon

And the silence of heaven will migrate more perfectly

The dead will think the living are worth it we will know

Who we are

And we will all enlist again


When the War is Over by W.S. Merwin

The ocean spilled

into my coffee cup

which then overflowed

into my day

violent waves swallowing me whole

Catching co-workers in it’s salty mass

All I could do was repeat the phrase…

Just breathe…just breathe…

follow directions…

In / out…in / out…in /

and then the most violent moments of the storm came to take me

and finally subsided…

Me, left empty and wrung dry,

swimming into a deep pool of peace and surrender

I intake lots of clear, fresh and pure

of the substance poured in such quantities,

through the windows of my soul

over this day.

I grant myself rest and time.

and say to my pastor-friend, Jana,

as another Southern Belle once said,

Tomorrow is another day.

as life begins to begin



Amy Lloyd


tell me everything

Writing is a religious act: it is an ordering, a reforming, a relearning and reloving of people and the world as they are and as they might be. A shaping which does not pass away like a day of typing or a day of teaching. The writing lasts: it goes about on its own in the world. People read it: react to it as to a person, a philosophy, a religion, a flower: they like it, or do not. It helps them, or it does not. It feels to intensify living: you give more, probe, ask, look, learn, and shape this: you get more: monsters, answers, color and form, knowledge. You do it for itself first. If it brings in money, how nice. You do not do it first for money. Money isn’t why you sit down at the typewriter. Not that you don’t want it. It is only too lovely when a profession pays for your bread and butter. With writing, it is maybe, maybe-not. How to live with such insecurity? With what is worst, the occasional lack or loss of faith in the writing itself? How to live with these things?

The worst thing, worse than all of them, would be to live with not writing. So how to live with the lesser devils and keep them lesser?


– Sylvia Plath

I fit words together,

hoping they mean something.

Wanting them to make sense.

Allowing them emotion.

Willing to give them freely.

Creating a monument,

for a moment in time,

to share with the world.

These words become something tangible.

A thing,

a gift,

a piece of art.

A part of me,

stays with them.

Little pieces of me,

like shapes in a puzzle,


a picture,

a flower,

a song.

Small particles of my soul,

like a rose bud,

opening in my hand,

mesmerizes with it’s




I write words on a page,

and feel love

spreading outward,

as the flowering happens,

as this thought blooms.

As words become thoughts about…

As the pieces become beautiful…

As the poem is born,

of water,


star dust

and becomes…

a small piece of me,

left behind on pages,

for others to find,

sharing a small moment,

never to be lost,

because it has been




Gratitude makes room for new




as they find their new home




Waiting for more




to flow and enter in.

There is always more,

and more than enough.

The heart that gives gathers,

but never tries to hold anything hostage.



pretty much everything,

about life,

only works when we allow it,

all of it,

every sacred cow,

every spec of mud,

to be free


Amy Lloyd

word play

Branford Point Sunrise by Timothy Siebold (facebook / Branford Photography)

You cast no shadow.

I noticed,

The day after forever.

Standing taller than life

Through your grief and strife,

I saw you,

And you cast no shadow.

Like any man my age,

The ghost of a younger self

Makes war against the sage.

My passion waned but not contained;

My wisdom larger than it had been

Was stretched and nearly at an end;

I saw you had no shadow,

And I didn’t comprehend.

I looked, I saw,

But there was no shadow.

I felt you were near

by the warmth in my skin.

I wanted to be more than I ever had been.

The smile in your eyes,

Made me want to know more.

And every day of learning,

Brought me through another door.

Every word that you spoke,

Every truth you intoned,

The gleaming person forged in tests

Of strength and character

Will, purpose, and ambition

Brought my desire to new peaks.

Still, you cast no shadow.

The gilt, gold hair

I could not believe was there

Oh I reached to touch,

Expecting nothing but air.

My fingers tasted fire,

And I knew it then.

The flames that I felt burning,

Also burned within you.

My resistance was through

The fight I waged was done,

I was standing to the right of the Sun.


TO THE RIGHT OF THE SUN by Charles Cooper

Buy his book Open Wounds and Fairytales here…


I am too much

I am a force of nature

I am powerful beyond measure

I am the unlimited potential of love

I am ever expanding spirit

I am extravagantly sensual

I am supreme intense sensitivity

I am fire that consumes

I am light that blinds and reveals

I am burning desire

I am a collector of moments and memories

I am an untamed being of wild riotous feeling

I am passionate hunger

I am raging waterfalls

I am the deepest ocean

I am whiskey in a teapot

I am the whitest bull you've ever seen

I am flesh and bones and harmonious aging

I am all eyes and lips and never-ending kisses,

leading ever onward to never-ending touch

I am the moon-surge of wanting to know and be known

I am too bloody stubborn

and too many words

I am music, all music

everyday, all the time

I know it's a lot

all that I am

I am just at the very beginning

of knowing myself


Amy Lloyd

preparation takes time

to tell the truth…

I’m tired

Too tired to keep waiting

Too tired to eat

Too tired to hold back my tears

to tell the truth…

Im tired

too tired to make decisions

too tired to drive or carry or not complain

too tired to think straight

to tell the truth…

Im tired

too tired to care so much

too tired to be so nice

too tired to be so frugal

too tired to re-write it

too tired to take my time

too tired to give a damn at moment


Amy Lloyd

COURAGE is a word that tempts us to think outwardly, to run bravely against opposing fire, to do something under besieging circumstance, and perhaps, above all, to be seen to do it in public, to show courage; to be celebrated in story, rewarded with medals, given the accolade, but a look at its linguistic origins is to look in a more interior direction and toward its original template, the old Norman French, Coeur, or heart.

Courage is the measure of our heartfelt participation with life, with another, with a community, a work; a future. To be courageous is not necessarily to go anywhere or do anything except to make conscious those things we already feel deeply and then to live through the unending vulnerabilities of those consequences.

To be courageous is to seat our feelings deeply in the body and in the world: to live up to and into the necessities of relationships that often already exist, with things we find we already care deeply about: with a person, a future, a possibility in society, or with an unknown that begs us on and always has begged us on. To be courageous is to stay close to the way we are made.

The French philosopher Camus used to tell himself quietly to live to the point of tears, not as a call for maudlin sentimentality, but as an invitation to the deep privilege of belonging and the way belonging affects us, shapes us and breaks our heart at a fundamental level. It is a fundamental dynamic of human incarnation to be moved by what we feel, as if surprised by the actuality and privilege of love and affection and its possible loss. Courage is what love looks like when tested by the simple everyday necessities of being alive.

From the inside, it can at first feel like confusion, only slowly do we learn what we really care about, and allow our outer life to be realigned in that gravitational pull; with maturity that robust vulnerability comes to feel like the only necessary way forward, the only real invitation and the surest, safest ground from which to step.

On the inside we come to know who and what and how we love and what we can do to deepen that love; only from the outside and only by looking back, does it look like courage.


Excerpted From CONSOLATIONS:

The Solace, Nourishment and Underlying Meaning

of Everyday Words

© 2015 David Whyte and Many Rivers Press

I am struggling…

to hold on to my sagacity,

to what I call my kind side,

never thought that would be a challenge.

I find more expletives in my mind now

than I have ever done before.

Thank God, they still haven’t taken to spilling

over my lips.

I couldn’t abide that. I don’t like swearing.

I mourn, each day I mourn,

for lives, for causes, for lost time…

Can you feel the earth heave in pain?

Forget making sense of all that is going on out there,

I simply do not have the capacity for it.

I will lose what softness is left to me.

Sounds selfish, I know, I am sorry,

but my family lives there, in that softness,

and the tiny share of goodness that is alloted me.

The trees live there, and the flowers,

the bees, and the birds, let’s not forget the squirrels

whom I adore, and the silent deer that

glide so gracefully, silently through the yard,

keeping to the shadows and their contemplative silence.

The hugs live there, too,

the ones that you wait for all day,

the after work ones, and the after school ones,

slightly tired, yet happy to be home ones.

I live for those hugs. Don’t we all?

And the conversations at the dinner table?

The catching up, what did you do? And you?

Where are we growing and loving and being…

Were we kind today, were we mindful..

this is where I want to begin each day

and to end it.

This is what I must guard, and hold on to

if I am to survive and make and create and live.

This is what I can give my child, to give to all the lives

he will touch.

This is my mantra, my elixir, my breath…

and in the wake of this hurtling planet,

I am going to hold on tight to this plan, to this idea,

to this love, like a child holding on to it’s mother’s skirts

and hope that it is enough,

this holding on.


Rama Ink

We often remain exiles, left outside the rich world of the soul, simply because we are not ready. Our task is to refine our hearts and minds. There is so much blessing and beauty near us that is destined for us, and yet it cannot enter our lives because we are not ready to receive it. The handle is on the inside of the door; only we can open it. Our lack of readiness is often caused by blindness, fear, and lack of self-appreciation. When we are ready, we will be blessed.


John O’Donohue

Excerpt from ANAM CARA

pray a little

In the morning as the storm begins to blow away

the clear sky appears for a moment and it seems to me

that there has been something simpler than I could ever believe

simpler than I could have begun to find words for

not patient not even waiting no more hidden

than the air itself that became part of me for a while

with every breath and remained with me unnoticed

something that was here unnamed unknown in the days

and the nights not separate from them

not separate from them as they came and were gone

it must have been here neither early nor late then

by what name can I address it now holding out my thanks


Just Now by W S Merwin

Can I be honest?

There were parts of me that didn’t believe

even the parts of me doing the hardest work

the parts of me always acting as though it were possible

the parts of me who couldn’t conceive of the how of it

the parts suspended in the storms fierce wind

hunkered down

eyes closed

Yes, I’ve prayed it…

a thousand times and counting

Lord I believe –

Help my unbelief!


Amy Lloyd

3 photos by Timothy Siebold Branford Supply Ponds

Look to this day:

For it is life, the very life of life.

In its brief course

Lie all the verities and realities of your existence.

The bliss of growth,

The glory of action,

The splendour of achievement

Are but experiences of time.

For yesterday is but a dream

And tomorrow is only a vision;

And today well-lived, makes

Yesterday a dream of happiness

And every tomorrow a vision of hope.

Look well therefore to this day;

Such is the salutation to the ever-new dawn!

Look To This Day by Kalidasa

Hey there, you’re not alone

– Costco

The pain, the problem, the struggle,
the wound, the weakness, the “disability”—
don’t let it go until you have found the blessing.

The thing you hate:
your hate is a way of hanging on—
because it still has something for you,
a new birth it is trying to give you.

The angel is usually not out there,

but within.

(Remember you’re not wrestling with tragedy,

you’re wrestling with God.

Though every loss is a lesson,

God does not assign pedagogical tragedy.)

The awful event, the terrible loss,

the insult or injustice you’ve suffered,

is not likely a blessing,

but there is one there.

Watch how you resist it,

and learn instead.

Don’t seek the fight; seek the blessing.

You can’t forget, move on, grow up,

you can’t get wise

until you have sought and gotten the blessing.

In that moment your suffering will re-name you

and walk away.

Let the crowd’s hunger be an opening for grace

and the loaves and fish will multiply.

Don’t let go

till you get the blessing.

Steve Garnaas-Holmes
Unfolding Light


lovely day

Sometimes when all the world seems gray and dun

And nothing beautiful, a voice will cry,

“Look out, look out! Angels are drawing nigh!”

Then my slow burdens leave me, one by one,

And swiftly does my heart arise and run

Even like a child, while loveliness goes by—

And common folk seem children of the sky,

And common things seem shapèd of the sun.

Oh, pitiful! that I who love them, must

So soon perceive their shining garments fade!

And slowly, slowly, from my eyes of trust

Their flaming banners sink into a shade!

While this earth’s sunshine seems the golden dust

Slow settling from that radiant cavalcade.


While Loveliness Goes by Anna Hempstead Branch

there is wonder

in the shape of things

much more than simple function in the form

magnificence in patterns

grace in the traced template

outlining perfection

or a the very least,

mind-boggling excellence

there is magic in design

simply exquisite how I love these things so much

my mind conjures up some of my time-lapsed favorites:

  • cotton candy clouds reorganizing in mid air

🔹ferns unfolding into majestic fans for kingly trees

🔸leaves dancing to the grounded drum beats of rain

♦️random pieces of life naturally shaped into hearts

🔹a thick glass 6 oz coke bottle, icy cold, being pulled from the clanging machine

🔸cupcakes with perfect frosting being deconstructed one finger swipe at a time

♦️the outline of a baby cheek sleeping on the shoulder of the young man in front of you

🔹Rama Desi’s yellow house, complete with intricately drawn chalk sidewalk dragons

🔸the most perfect button I’ve ever seen on a belly


my list must be a million miles long…
ever growing, changing, being continued
as my life changes with each breath I take

the fingers of my imagination slowly, lovingly exploring
touching each one…

…lingering on you…

my mind takes me into other worlds
cinema of beautiful shapes
wealth of living awareness
well beyond limits
the riches of the mystic
always ready whenever we pause for a moment
the details are the delight
we share these visions with each other
(sometimes calling them poems)
these words of this and that
we scribe to describe
to be seen and discovered
our selves
our beautiful universes
our homes
our neighbors
our friends
our families
our lovers
each lingering like sweet honey on the tongue
then continuing on at their own perfect pace

Amy Lloyd



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