SECRETS KEPT AND HIDDEN

No one knows.
And the best kept secret remains as such.
How much is it worth to know things
that your heart can confirm,
but you can not communicate,
this declaration of fact lies hidden.
Distance spanned and water
under the bridge between then and now.
How do you live a life with this burden?
They couldn’t know; you gave no indications,
your stagnation and debilitating fear
brought you here with nary a lead.
But indeed, you have known.
You will carry it until you’ll have grown
feeble and cold, just an infarction from
the chill’s permanence; it hides in residence.
Do you declare to the world and hope the rooftops
can handle your exuberance,
your happy dance long buried?
This fact prompts you to wonder
that if under this guise you can reprise
what your heart conceals; the real feel of its mystery,
your history until now untold and you let the story unfold.
Touching secrets with probing fingers,
the memory lingers. You held the best vantage point
in the room to see all before you,
a chance at a glance always revealed.
Though you were in close proximity,
you chose to let fear dictate and seal your fate.
Never a clue did you expose. You chose to fade,
finding comfort in your invisibility. Indignantly,
you held your nerve and your secret this long.
It can’t be wrong to release your burden and breathe again.
No one knows.
You wonder if your existence evaded detection then.
You are certain that it does now.
Unseen for all these years, no one could know.
Your memories melt flowing onto a page
as you engage your feelings.
Poems written of your smitten past,
and at last you come clean.
I mean, really, it’s not as if these poems will ever be seen.

(C) Walter J Wojtanik – 2018

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FOREVER IMPERFECT AND UNCONDITIONAL

Traversing life, a path long and twisting.
Pitfalls and elevations filled with elation
and sorrow; each tomorrow unfulfilled
has not yet been given to bear.

It is there that the seed is planted. Sometimes
greed and selfishness become the power
that drives hearts and imparts the anguish
that becomes inevitable. A banquet table gone to waste

with nary a taste of life’s finest treasures.
Pleasures come with their share of pain
that burrows deeply, furrowing brows
and disavowing all promises once declared.

Forever becomes ‘right now’ and futures
are only nurtured in the last breath that is drawn.
Love is imperfection, a static direction
that does not follow dictates. It exasperates

and deflates, infiltrates this lighter-than-air existence.
It offers resistance to the natural order
of how it is thought to be. Never manipulated;
it can not be stipulated by demand

nor by expectation. Love is as love was meant to be.
Not possessed; only it can embrace.
It will not be molded; for it will just be…
forever imperfect and unconditional.

(C) Walter J. Wojtanik

Poetic Asides – Prompt #392: Forever

BROKEN MAN

Here he stands, a broken man,
a victim of his failure.
The surface presents a deep well,
a font of love and emotion.
But a broken man is a fissure,
 eventually exposing his
inadequacies and incompetence,
in any circumstance he enters.
A heart renter, not a giving soul,
(don’t tell a living soul he has flaws)
Where others stand in awe,
one hides in the shadow
of his mangled and miserable life.
She, a friend, who offered all,
a lover who gave all,
a holder of secrets kept
to the breakage of all hearts.
It starts with a seductive word,
it ends in despair with the truth
being heard and hurting, skirting
the root cause of his flaws.
Her beauty not-withstanding,
no glue can fix a broken man.

© Walter J Wojtanik – 2016

Poetic Asides November Chapbook Challenge – Day 20: Popular Saying

STAR WRITER

When evening calls and I am here
poised at my keypad rapt in worded wonder,
thoughts of you invade my thinking
giving me this inkling that we have connected
in ways we don’t understand. Here I am,
just a man you had known now fully grown
and dabbling in these poetic pursuits.
And you, the woman who is drawn to my words,
drawing the inspirations found hidden there.
I can thank my lucky stars in this fortuitous sky
that we seem to have teamed up to create magic
in sight and sound, looking to orbit this universe
we are constructing. Written in the stars,
knowing that this moment is ours.

© Walter J. Wojtanik – 2016

Poetic Asides April Poem-A-Day Challenge – Day #22: “STAR _____”

THE OUTSKIRTS

"Gas" by Edward Hopper
“Gas” by Edward Hopper

No one’s been by for years
and one of his biggest fears
was that he would die out here
alone, and no one would know.
The point of no return
sits a mile down the road
and the occasional lost traveler
would goad his excitement,
but leave him in a cloud of dust.
He must close down the station
and rejoin civilization.
His routine never changes.
He dusts off the pumps
encrusted with years of isolation
and failure. The readings are recorded
in a never ending string of naught.
A rumble in the distance arouses,
leaving him shaking in his trousers
only to be disappointed again.
The pumps stand sentinel,
grave markers for a dying breed.
He needs human contact
but all he attracts is dirt.
Lost in the outskirts.

© Copyright Walter J. Wojtanik – 2013

Response to MIZ QUICKLY’S IMPROMPTU POETRY – Day 10 (Alone, or at a Party) Ekphrastic 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

LAUREATE AT THE STAKE*

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.

BIOPSY

Symptoms came to the fore
knocking me to the floor. A knee
and a supplicant plea
were all that made me see the pain
wasn’t just in my brain,
but it did leave me drained and scared.
If I had only dared,
then I might have been spared this fate.
And it’s never too late
(or so they say). I wait for word,
but so far all I’ve heard’s
something a little bird told me.
Right now it’s wait and see
what this next biopsy will show.
The process is so slow
as far as these things go. Can’t wait
(I hope we’re not too late).

THE CALL

“Dad’s got cancer.”
Words as lifeless as I felt at that moment.
My sister, Daddy’s baby girl, her voice
shaken from its confidence.
And I in exile deteriorating in my own
self-absorbtion, choking on words so harsh.
And words so healing; a feeling of redemption
in my reply. Wiping an eye or two,
and through with my vitriol; back in control
of the emotions so frayed. Four months
were all that were afforded me. It awarded
me a chance to reconcile for the while he had.
Two Walts contrasted; reunited while Dad lasted.

OCTOBER SAVES

Fighting a battle often lost in the darkness
of a weary mind. There is no rest there.
Cursing the single candle lit to offer
its illumination; to infiltrate this
mental stagnation. Accursed slumber
why do you wage against my will?
Will you release me like the leaves
of October’s colorful flurry, left
to scatter in the cool winds from place
to place; a migration to discover the peace
that I crave. You have found me, October.
You have extended your lifeline in fine fashion,
a saving assist for one clamoring for control
over heart and soul,
over heart and mind.
I clutch your hand as I am flung over
the edge of reason. Your season is here.
You want me near, October, where I belong.
Anything else would be just wrong.