Month: August 2014

winter river flowing

cover for winter river flowing published by presa press

cover for winter river flowing published by presa press

i am extremely pleased with my latest book winter river flowing, a collection of splake poems from 1967 to 2014.

the literary kudos and congratulations for this publication should go to eric greinke and roseanne rizema – the editor and the creative genius of “presa press” – located in rockford, michigan. in a september, 2013 e-mail message eric strong suggested a splake “deathbed edition.” he said such a collection of my “greatest works” would allow readers the opportunity to see the full range of my writings. winter river flowing contains both long and short poems. it also demonstrates the change from my more traditional writing style to a more spartan poetic dimension.

it was my pleasure working with eric. our relationship – the creative give and take between poet and editor – made me feel like old papa hem working with the scribner’s press editor maxwell perkins,

the book’s title, winter river flowing reflects upon my status as a gray-bearded versemaker. in the winter river waters run slower and yet still reach their destination. now, late in my life the mornings when i engage the elusive damn dame lady muse, my imagination is also slower, but it is still determined to succeed.


excerpts from winter river flowing

the following are a few of the shorter poems found in the pages of the recent PRESA PRESS publication of splake poems.


rx for a tired presence (1979)


climate where air is fresh, surroundings quiet

some rain and sunshine

fewer people more animals and birds

forest leaves for footsteps’ carpet

moonshadows for a roof

travel by foot moving slowly

worms if trout are biting




cybernetic chapbook (1997)


roman-numbered copyright i.d., contact library of congress

computer network, key book to credit card account,

“seal of approval” happy endings, registered, sanitized,

authentic, with special ISBN birthright, closing credits,

while lone “road weary” beat-boho poet passes out

wrinkled sheets of poetry,

street corner graybeard giving away pieces of his heart.




long white musings (2006)


winter evening darkness

frosty breath steaming

old man on nightly hike

graybeard poet

deep in December tides

swamper bootsteps crunching

arctic long white

misty dreams

pretty girl lover

never found

april motorcycle fevers

vincent “black lightning”

brit cc’s jazzing cojones

fading distant light

grizzled bardic survivor

youth wives hospital stays

hated millstone career

alcoholic suicide dance

avoiding seductive nothingness

garden gold

television vegetable

soon back home

art gallery sanctuary

alone in nighttime quiet

sipping warm bitter ale

soft incense aroma

muse light whispers

words becoming music

early tomorrow waking

wild tiger

roaring in his skull




holy holy holy (2013)


chartres stained glass

bleeding jesus body

like faded body art

old beatnik tattoo




feeding a poem (2014)


just relax

deep long breaths

forget your job

all your schooling

posturing professors

ibids and op cits

close your eyes

keep quiet

look inside

long dark shadows

brain-skull cavity

imagine edith piaf

barefoot in the rain

softly singing

another sad song