Category Archives: Family

Eyes

Such soul exposed through smiling eyes,
such depth of love to feel,
draws the heart to knowing that
in God we’re one, we’re real.

Tied to common ether,
bound to common cause,
yet separate paths do guide us,
that through our steps we pause –
grow ego to our selfish state,
refuse to hear the core’s return,
live a life of striving
that not till late we learn
that we are but universal,
spirits in the flesh,
our lives are just transversal
arcs of what we’re meant to learn and catch.

Yet eyes are tied to soulful depths
where truth of what we are is shown,
thus, to us and then from us,
it is our love that’s known.

I see the world around me,
I smile in sweet relief,
that knowing who these souls are
brings my eyes to sparkle deep.

I feel their energy take me,
as I capture fleeting thoughts
of my brother’s eyes and kindest smile
as if by him I’m taught.
I reflect then on my mother
and her loving eyes and caring,
till moved, I feel I must do more,
more I should be sharing
with those who need it most,
with those who long for kindest eyes,
and so reflect from both of them
in smiles to my passersby.

4 Comments

Filed under Family, Memory, Perpective, Poetry

Summer’s Slow Reprise

Enraptured in this summer’s slow
I walk the neighborhood’s quiet streets,
as all the subtle sights I know
stand poised where sun and dusk do meet.

The work day’s done, yet daylight clings,
but denies a shadow with dusk in sight,
holds time in quiet gratitude
and grants the gift of a summer’s night.

The air is still, the streets lay quiet,
my footsteps slow and measured,
sweet scent of lawns just cut and trimmed
enhance this moment’s treasure.

Children in the park fulfill
their dreams through baseball’s pastime,
while sprinklers on the schoolyard grounds
set the rhythm of this rhyme.

A dog’s bark echoes through this mix
of summer’s fullest ether,
as all these moments conspire to this,
a summer’s slow still sweeter.

As I walk the sidewalk cracks,
my memory carries me to summers past,
where at this moment Mom would call
and I’d run home to plead a last
few minutes time to run and play,
to feel the summer’s dusk roll in,
to laugh with friends until the night
had called us all to home again.

I recall my Uncle’s ancient house
on ancient narrow streets,
where it seemed all time stood still
at this summer’s slow stretched through the heat
and through the call of katydids
on streets named Maple, Elm and Oak –
with Dad and him on the steps I’d sit
while they drew it in through cigar smoke.

This summer’s slow brings gratitude
for days and years and life gone by,
and blesses quiet solitude
in a simple walk and opened eye –

so grants me gifts I can’t deny,
in a magic I give thanks for.

4 Comments

Filed under Family, Memory, Perpective, Poetry, Universal Soul

My Stone Wall

Smooth and mixed, the stones betray
the purpose of each course I laid,
that mortar’s strength to hold them fast
denies my hope to see them last
in square to where each one I stayed.

Mortar cracked and crumbled clings
to stones once plucked from mountain streams,
each in purpose so selected,
that as my work neared done, reflected
the lane to which my heart would sing.

Years that dressed my lane to home
witnessed living thrusts since gone,
captured echoes of a purpose,
pushed from God to here, to surface
what this life and soul has known…

Triumph in a child’s eye.
Approving nod of passersby.
Winter nights in season’s mirth.
Awe and bliss in children’s births.
Fractured heart when stress had won.
Undoing of a wayward son.
Broken stride in parent’s deaths.
Splintered family and such regrets.
Falling from the strength to cope,
when whispers came in certain hope,
as lives careened between the walls
and hands repaired the fists in halls,
when tragedy begged into the room
to paint the road in front with gloom,
as fast this last hand grasped for life,
witnessed strength to break with strife.
Saw the hope that changed this heart.
Saw what fed and fueled the parts
of broken paths and shaken schemes.
Saw such love fold into dreams
and grant a smiling eye …
and all the years gone by…

My lane in stone wall’s soft repose
extends a peace that no one knows, but I.
It’s stoic stance is earned so well,
tho’ cracked and stained, not one stone fell,
that now in quiet solitude
has earned my histories gratitude,
and assuring nods from passersby.

Leave a comment

Filed under Family, History, Memory, Poetry, Universal Soul

Brooks 23

The day, in somber grey, yet clear and cold, a January gift, forms a shadowed curtain of question, of what’s uncertain around me and those now standing here. Cold winter’s breeze, broken sun and sienna shadows – coats and scarves and dresses blow, flapping black, midst watery eyes and reddened noses. They wait… we wait… to humbly let us in, by our own stiffened procession, past memory cards, photos, guest register and pen.

In the distance beyond the foyer, his image pronounced largely midst flowers, lights and the wall, past the glass curtain set there. So many, so full, yet behind me the line is eternal, of those here to pay their respect, to trade a sorrowful heart for a memory, trade to hope from regret.
I wonder if I’ve grown calloused, my emotions are real and on my sleeve, but this pain is nothing new to me. So many I’ve given back, so many, so close…

Yet in this crowd of caring souls I see the faces of children I know, now grown, now boldly standing in their own paths – young adults bound here, for this moment, this January afternoon, as one. I see Seth and Alex and Gabe and Chris and Matt and so many more… and Ben… I recall them young, unaware, unafraid, children with a safe home calling – warm, quiet, confident home… Yet today – they stand as men… together and yet alone. Each on their path, seeing the world from their own eyes, through their own life’s experiences. Together, facing a reality none ever expected they’d share. Their faces are long and somber – their youth denies them their age, and moments turn to eons before my eyes – they all look so tired, so old. In these expressions I see their pain, only relieved by the stories of memories shared… of the one now gone… laughter, tears, gasps and grappling for strength to pull them forward… they each see this from different eyes – yet all the same – collectively, as something more beautiful than the whole – it’s love I see – for each other, for life, for what they’ve lost, for the trials, the triumphs, the lessons learned from mistakes – but mostly for the hope that they share, a better strength and hope for tomorrow…

… names are called, and answered in roll… standing one by one, … but one … “Benjamin Scott Brooksmith”… again … again … The momentary silence between the calling crushes my will to endure and the tears come – and like a heaven sent thunder, bagpipes begin… “Amazing Grace” pounds like the beat of a heart in despair… The young men stand there, endure their own grief… some wavering, some grasping to stand steady, some with head hung long, and some tall and accepting… The pipes end and I feel weightless, off the cliff and over the edge – it is done…

We gathered to remember, to share our grief, to find consolation for our souls, to seek an understanding…

We found the strong echoes of love!

I found these children grown, baptized by life, confirmed in peace, and set free as a generation.
The cold day hasn’t changed outside… January sun betrayed by her bitter wind. Hugs and whispers… tears toward the door…

The walk back to my truck is empty – carved hollow by the blank echoes of footsteps – retracting to the fabric of life… moving on in time without choice. The moments have come and gone – only memories remain… … as I drive, it seems that all the world is empty and everyone I see grieves with me, and understands – The music playing seems to speak to my aching heart, my vision of those young faces… every lyric seems pointed in meaning – and the voice there dips in and out of the voices of my long passed brothers, father, mother…

.. the day is grey with January sun and cold… I fell tired, I feel old…

God bless them all –

God bless Ben.

J. Blue – 25-Jan-2010

In loving memory – 3 years later – the young men and women I know, have all risen to the calling of each of their lives, although two more left their midst in that time. I’m proud of them all. Love them all dearly.
J. Blue – 20-Jan-2013

Leave a comment

Filed under Family, Memory, Poetry

Voices

I have a voice, it’s mine I know,
distinct to me and for no other,
yet similar tones to mine are shared,
from my father to my brothers.
Yet, my voice in daily trappings
folds, through pitch relaxed or hard at work,
so bends its tone from strength to stress,
and there, behind my true voice lurks
with my heart, and’s rarely seen.

And as my heart, in truest passion,
exudes itself from me, to share
the values I hold close,
to bestow with loving care
upon the ones I so inspire,
or who inspire me,
my voice, does too, exude its truth
when released by heart, its tones to sing.

There within the timbre rings
the truthful tones of who I am,
and how my purpose crafted,
for unique in song
my voice is drawn,
through such, my soul is drafted
into the mix of heartfelt tones,
my diaphragm thus reaching,
to share my soul in spirited voice,
through cambered heights of preaching
strong the craft of God,
in soul felt song,
and there bestow
a voice that’s more of who I am,
and what my soul should show.

Leave a comment

Filed under Family, Poetry

Faithful Follower

Homer

Smile deep and dimples showing,
he is my dog, my best friend true…
In leaps and bounds twixt autumn’s grasses,
his honesty and love shows through!

At pond’s edge reeds he steps and nuzzles,
looking for a scent to chase,
then up again with tail a waggin’
brings life’s true smile upon my face.

He waits beside me, never falters,
while fingers write and smoke drifts on…
My faithful follower, my true companion,
he brings the harmony to this October song.

And now that cigar is burning fingers,
I’ll turn to him with anxious eyes,
“where now” his thoughtful smile will answer,
towards home we’ll walk, ‘neath autumn’s sky.

1 Comment

Filed under Family, Nature, Photography, Poetry

Soldier’s Prayer

In the Field –

I’ve joined the fight to do what’s right
in aid of land and liberty.
I’ve stood my soul from head to toe
to fight as men who’re free,
Through mountains insurmountable
and trials that no man should know,
I hold my creed to do what’s right
that through it all this truth will show –

“God bless the loved ones of my home,
relieve their worry and their fear.
Grant them peace in knowing
that we fight as free men here.

Protect my brothers beside me,
bless their step that they’ll not fall.
Grant compassion’s wisdom,
that they’ll do right when anger calls.

Find me in your vision,
grant me strength when I’m alone.
Guide my hand with wisdom
that I may carry truth back home.

Forgive injustice when it’s played,
grant me strength to forgive in same,
that if You call for me here,
honor may embrace my name.
– Amen”

Those at Home –

They joined the fight to do what’s right
for peace and liberty.
Tall they stand, hand in hand
to represent all men who’re free.
Through trials unimaginable
and fears I know I’ll never know,
I know they hold their creed as truth
and through their actions honor shows.

“God bless our soldiers far from home,
comfort their worry and their fear.
Grant them peace in knowing
that we hold them close, we hold them dear.

Protect the men beside them,
guide each step, one and all.
Grant compassion’s wisdom
that unjust anger never calls.

Keep them in your vision, Lord,
hold them close when they’re alone.
Guide their path with wisdom
that together they may return to home.

Grant their hearts forgiveness
when injustice makes its claim.
Watch over them, protect them –
This I ask in your good name
– Amen”

2 Comments

Filed under Family, History, Memory, Photography, Poetry