Dusk fell across the valley like a funeral shroud;
obliterating the light of day and hiding its wretched decay.
The hollow below held no trace of vegetation;
the furrowed land sat fallow and empty,
not even possessing the essential nutrients
to imply that the soil was once fertile.
The chain link fence held it in containment
as it rose above the barren void.
It gave the appearance that the Grand Master
had taken His pencil eraser and wiped
all that was beautiful and promising
off of His canvas. But it was a recipe
that had provided many great things.
One could be forgiven that the valley
lay disinterested in its plight.
The right Operator would return her
to its former productivity. Patience will grow.




In death, sadness. In life, joy.

A friend and family member was killed in an automobile accident on Wednesday. Walter Kujawinski was a simple man, mentally challenged and who battled schizophrenia and alcoholism in a world that didn’t understand his handicap. There is sadness in his passing, but he was a joy in life.

Written for SIX WORD SATURDAY 8/18/2012


I come to a complete halt.
Fifteen mile back-up and hours
in arrears.

Raleigh to Buffalo in eleven and a half,
that was the plan; designated and approved.
A noon departure, destined to render us home
near its midnight counterpart. My heart
wasn’t in for the drive, but I strive to follow
an itinerary that felt hollow and vacant.
Down the on-ramp to the highway,
I stay five mph above the limit making up
minutes; false victory in an age old story.
No glory on a Sunday afternoon. I swoon
as I watch the traffic thicken, and it sickens me
to see red brake lights illuminated,
making me irritated and disgusted.
I trusted my GPS to bring us home,
but I come to a complete halt.
Fifteen mile back-up and hours
in arrears. My greatest of fears
is realized. A desperate maneuver
from the center lane to find an exit.
Closer to “come from” than “near home”
we return to the accommodations to wait
for the early morning “night” to restart our flight
to the promise land and a warm familiar bed.
Can’t wait to rest my head. If I can only keep
my eyes from making me fall asleep.
A change of plans; not in my hands.

© Walter J. Wojtanik – 2012


She was a remnant from his past;
curvaceous, and petite. Adorned
in lace and a smile that would ricochet
through the alcoves of his heart.
Memories flooded his thoughts,
invisible intrusions to a time-worn heart.
His eyes narrow as he maps every step
they had taken in this life. Recollections
and emotions spin at warp speed.
As his days dwindle, she haunts him.

Written for THE SUNDAY WHIRL – Wordle #69



The nudge is in and I grin,
a poem writ to fit it, and to wit
giving food for thought.
I ought to be set to write it
as long as I sink my teeth and bite it.

I better hurry,
I’m running out of time;
I scurry to manipulate a muse
used to slow deliberate thinking.
But I have this sinking feeling
that I’m dealing with an evasive sonnet.
I better get on it to post on time.
I need to rhyme if I wish to be


© Walter J. Wojtanik – 2012



Strangers on the shores,
more than poetic piasans.
Thrown together by chance,
a serendipitous dance
across the Grand Hall.
The call for poetic writers,
fighters for the cause
for better or for verse.
Destined to become
best friends; partners
in rhyme and only time
will tell just how well we
will gel. But, we’ll continue
to support and nurture;
poetic futures looking bright,
right until we meet.

© Walter J. Wojtanik – 2012


My youngest never liked to camp,
the separation gave her cramps,
and the ground was “always rather damp”,
she told me, “I Don’t Wanna!”

All her friends went off to play,
but my daughter wouldn’t go away
and stayed alone day-after-day,
my Princess “I Don’t Wanna!”

“That place is way out in the woods,
they think Franks and Beans is real food,
and the Counselors are just no good!”
explained Miss “I Don’t Wanna!”

So, her camping skills were rather lame,
and it was such a stinking shame
to go forever by the name,
Andrea “I Don’t Wanna!”

© Walter J. Wojtanik -2012


Breath and heartbeat.
Every new day is an event.
Hell bent on staying the course
with this life-force surging,
and purging every last bit of
fear and confusion; these intrusions
on a battered mind.
The lessons finally learned:
What matters, matters –
all else pales in comparison
in this garrison of vitality.
The reality of seemingly endless days
finds ways to enliven; given
to make these gifts a cause
to rejoice; a loud voice
in the wilderness, thankful
for all that has transpired.
As tired as it feels,
a good deal of these days now
are spent in praise of Being.
Seeing the forest AND the trees,
with knees to ground to pray.
This magnificence in relation.
Every new day – an elation;
a life spent in celebration.

© Walter J. Wojtanik – 2012

*Note: After fifty-six years in fermentation, the wine is finally reaching its peak!


Sacrificed on the altar of reason,
pages ignite; an incendiary conflagration
of words and rhyme – metered and meted.

Ashes strewn, wind blown; sown upon
the fertility of a mind left wanting to be heard.
Every word burning like midnight oil to ravage

all this savage heart has toiled to achieve.
Like decayed leaves these poems smolder.
Line by line, they feed the fire; burning.

Learning that poetic purity is akin to obscurity,
remnants of thought filling the air
like sparks off to incite the masses and high grasses

in smoky simile; nothing is left unsaid.
Laureate at the stake burning, take the time to learn.
There is rhyme enough to burn.

© Walter J. Wojtanik – 2012

* Note:  On being selected the 2010 Poet Laureate for the April PAD at Writer’s Digest.com/Poetic Asides with Robert Lee Brewer. I seemed in a hurry to get there, and humbly find I still have much to learn and accomplish.