MINE TO DISCOVER

I hover high above the promenade.
It is odd I hadn’t thought this
before. A Peace Tower bore
a gift of miles for me to view.

The sky was bright.
A bit of a chill but I was alright
to view this Ottawa city
on this August morn.

I was not born here,
but it is clear I could belong here.
An international capital
of great expanse,

I am in a trance, mesmerized;
beauty and tradition mark her
and sparks her allure.
I am sure I could belong here.

Allegiance is strong here,
Canadian seat replete
with history’s retelling,
pride swelling deeply for this place,

genteel and as real as I can tell,
a nice place to dwell as well
as visit. Is it the True North beckoning?
I am reckoning that this is

The start of another great foreign affair.
My daughter will soon be there
to take up a life as a wife.
And between us two, it is true.

I could belong here.

(c) Walter J Wojtanik

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BLOOMS OF LOVE

…and all at once, the rain had ceased.
The length of sunshine has increased.
When did my daughters grow so quickly?
Why has it left me feeling sickly

when the warmth of Spring emerges?
Comfort in this season’s surges.
Little girls become young women
and all the changes from within –

blossoms having rooted now bloom,
fragrant flowers fill up the room.
Decorating each life they touch,
truly knowing they mean so much.

Life’s bouquet gathered together,
flourishing in all kinds of weather,
Grown in love to know what life means;
ever-growing, evergreen!

© Walter J. Wojtanik

 

WHAT’S IN A NAME?

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Roses smell sweet, and their beauty
is their sworn duty to nature.
In any nomenclature, their stature blooms
filling every room with their fragrant fare.

Shall I call a woman a rose?
By any other name she would be as
sweet and beautiful, a dutiful inspiration
in any nomenclature. A flower amongst thorns.

Well worn on a well-worn sleeve, she leaves
an impression, that says her heart, the blush
of a rose, has chosen you to be her gardener.
And you are blessed to hold her bloom.

Her perfume, like the rose, flows to your nostrils,
filling you with her heavenly scent, for she was
heaven sent. She was meant to be nurtured
and cared for, and what’s more, to be admired

and loved. Above all else, she will grace your life
brightening your days as long as she stays in view.
Just like roses too, a women is most beautiful.
A woman is a rose. What’s in a name?

© Walter J. Wojtanik – 2017

QKJ #15 – A Plant With Thorns

OH, CAPTAIN!

ROBIN WILLIAMS 1951-2014
ROBIN WILLIAMS
1951-2014

Your journey has ended,
by your hand and much too soon.
You, the buffoon, the clown, the genius
bringing joy to the world.
But, for what it’s worth, who gave you mirth?
Your torment was an illness,
your illness was your privacy.
In the shadows of a mind so sharp,
that spark of madness run amok.
You had been stuck for a while
and the smile you wore tore your heart
to shreds. We laughed at your brand,
and demanded more of you
but, you had given enough.
It is tough that you didn’t save
some for yourself. We took you
seriously when your dramatics
gripped us. It ripped us as well,
your living hell of which you would tell,
of powders and pills and rivulets
of distilled potions, notions of answers
left un-questioned; too many to mention.
You’ve gone back to the egg.
You have been silenced like Ellen James.
Long did you stand as the grown-up Pan.
You have sucked the marrow out of this life.
There is no Doubt (the) fire has gone out.
It makes us want to shout,
Oh Captain, My Captain!
Thank you for your gift,
we’ve enjoyed it while it lasted.
And in our hearts you will live within a smile.
What dreams may come, you will greet us.
You will meet us with a joke in tow.
We know your journey has ended.
The Genie has been freed.
The Buffoon. The Clown.
The Genius indeed. Oh, Captain,
Bon Voyage!

© Walter J Wojtanik, 2014

TIMEPIECE

“Tarnished and dented; a bauble from a bygone day”

Tarnished and dented; a bauble of a bygone day.
In a wooden cigar box; keepsakes both, with
little more function than that. The stem fused
to the casing, the workings have retired. But,

it has inspired me to find the link. The contents
of the box play like a road map; clues to unravel
the mystery that is my history. The key, worn and
encrusted with years of dirt and oils from feeble fingers.

It lingers in my hand for a moment, its uncertainty secured.
Papers, folded and bound with a frail rubber band
line the bottom of the box. A visa document,
possibly a first issue wrapped in a tissue to protect

what it meant to an old Polish immigrant determined
to become all that America had to offer. Naturalization
documents, meant to pronounce his acceptance
of a lifestyle long sought, and their acceptance of him

as one of the free and brave. The camera buried amongst
the treasures, bellows cracked and torn, a forlorn
instrument with which a part of his life had been preserved.
It all deserved a better fate, but it is too late to shed

a single tear from your eyes for its demise. The puzzle
is splayed before you, the detective of your past.
A torn swatch of a fabric, hues faded but shades
of blue and red and white pressed between pages.

Finally, one last piece remains. A photograph.
a dark and handsome young man; heavy jacket and
a fedora pulled down across the brow. Intermingled
with other similar folk unconcerned for their purpose.

But the subject stands tall. Proud. Posed to save
this moment in memory, and upon this daguerreotype
for long after. In the background, Lady Liberty stands strong.
In his hand an American flag clutched to his chest.

A chain from buttonhole to vest pockets and a key as a fob,
a cinch to keep his pride from bursting. It insinuates
the only part missing was the watch that sat tucked
close to his left hand. A trinket; a remembrance

of the father he had left behind in Igolomia, Poland
to claim his dream. It remains strong in your own heart
as the box that holds your Great-Grandfather’s declaration secure.
You are sure the timepiece marked his life as well as your own.

 

Presented at dVerse Poets Pub – OLN Week #104

POEM STARTING WITH A LINE FROM ROGER McGOUGH

The trouble with snowmen…
A snowman with “appendages”
is rather quite HOT,
until he gets hot
and then, he is not!

© Copyright Walter J. Wojtanik – 2013

First line taken from “The Trouble With Snowmen” by Roger McGough

Written for MIZ QUICKLY’S IMPROMPTU POETRY – Day 25 “Poem starting with a line…”

BAT OUT OF HELL

Gone are the days where we played
for hours and hours, skinning knees
and trampling flowers, thinking
our futures were an eternity away.

Not steeped in naivete, I’d say
we lived in the moment, and a moment
lasted a lifetime back then.
We made our friends (lost a few)

and you knew they had your back
when it was up against the wall.
All-in-all a great situation
passed down through generations.

We never noticed we were aging,
staging ourselves for our parent’s roles,
loving souls who supported and protected
and never rejected any idea as bad.

They had their flaws, but they were ours,
and that mantle came faster than we expected.
People passed; we were blessed to have been
in their realm of love. And above all that,

we were given the opportunity to grow in unity
and share life’s pleasures. And sorrows.
All our tomorrows are borrowed; gone too fast.
The death knell for a bat out of hell!

© Copyright Walter J. Wojtanik – 2013

Inspired by POETIC ASIDES – Day 17 (“Express” Poem)

UNITED

On the edge of reason, we watched and waited.
We hated being helpless, and I guess
we hated being the target of hate.
Many were functioning as they normally had,
but then every man, woman, mom and dad
had much to explain to minds that could not
comprehend. It had sent a strong message,
that we should be ever-vigilant and can’t
let down our guard. It is hard to preach trust
when the thrust of such extreme proportion
penetrates our collective spirit. They thought
they’d split it in two. It is true that we fight
amongst each other, like any “sister” and “brother”
but let another interfere and we’ll be here united
to fight it tooth and nail. We had stumbled, but did not fail.
May God continue to Bless America!

© – Walter J. Wojtanik – 2012

FEBRUARY 5, 1930

A daughter born; a daughter torn.
Life coming and going in an instant.
One daughter coming into the world;
my mother born into the “comfort”
of their hearth and home,
two doors down from where her grandmother
had passed away on the same day.
A sadness unparalleled, a living hell.
My mother, the infant cleaved to
my grandmother’s breast in the upper window,
watching my Great-grandmother’s funeral
process past them in silence to the church
up the street. Victory and defeat fleeting.
A daughter born; a daughter torn.
Life coming and going in an instant.

100% MY FATHER’S SON

He was Walt as I am Walt,
and his father was before him.
We shared so much, our ways
and such, as I carry on today.
He, a man quite good with wood
but didn’t say a lot.
Me, a man quite good with words,
but as with wood, quite not.
He taught me things,
he bought me things,
he wrought me with his demons.
And I was swell,
and I rebelled
and inherited his demons.
But, there was a man, despite his flaws
loved his family just because
we gave him joy. Every girl,
every boy, and Mom the glue
that mended us, nurtured and befriended us
and protected us ’til we knew better,
she’d make him a saint if we had let her.
But, Dad was rather quite assured
that mistakes he made would not be cured,
we learned to live within his world
until he up and left it. And now,
bereft it we hold onto all he gave.
I got his eyes, artistic style,
I got mom’s nose, her sighs, her smile,
I got his skill and sad addiction,
I embrace her warmth, his dereliction.
But all-in-all, one helluva guy
in his workshop in the sky.
I have his name, I have his fun,
100% my father’s son.