Literary Yard

Search for meaning

By: RC deWinter


even now
especially now
we do the safe thing,
the smart thing,
the done thing…
most do, anyway

well, i’m here to tell you
i didn’t

i followed my heart
chased my dream
(do what you love!)
jumping fences
swimming oceans
running down dark alleys
that twisted in
unexpected directions

i lived my dream
until the stardust wore off
and when i came back
to the herd
it closed ranks

now night closes in
there’s no money
no family
no love

sometimes there is no reward
for following one’s heart
but the knowing that you did
and sweet memories on the tongue



on the empty days
the grey ones
when all the magic
has been sucked from the world
leaving only pasteboard and lint
not even the song of the sea
or the ancient light of stars
can deliver me

there is no succor
no earthly place can restore
the glamour that nourishes my soul

on the empty days
the grey ones
i retreat
tiptoeing away from the present
and lose myself
in the greenly fragrant forest of memory
a cathedral of interactive reality
where i create the paths i walk

there are no clocks
no calendars
chronology does not exist

i am free to choose the pieces of the past
that please me most
for in this world
all the heartache has been sucked away
i breathe air full of smiles
birds sing in the voices of the loved long gone
nurturing my soul with mindmagic
until it is restored

and i can return
to do what i am called to do
in the living land



It’s a sunny, wintry morning.
Snow sparkles on the front lawn,
a beaded bedspread burying
whatever’s waiting underneath to resurrect.

I think about that image; it’s a metaphor
for how I feel on the days when I wake up
feeling good, bright and sparkly like the snow,
twenty years younger rather than
twenty years older than I am.

Eventually, though, the way things are
with me and the world, it melts away.
I shed those glass beads like dandruff.
What’s waiting to resurrect underneath
is not always the skin one wants to wear.

You may never notice.
I’m accomplished dissembler,
well able to magic the veneer needed
for the moment.

But reality bubbles through my blood
and is not forgot.
I carry the despair with me and, later,
put it in the pen.



i suffer from the inverse of sad
i slip so easily into woolly fog
safe behind grayness
i revel in bucketing rain
washed clean in skywater

unlike those who live for sunny days
in which to blossom
too many days of bluesky sun
and i begin to wither
a plant deprived
of its essential nourishment

i used to wonder why
of sun beating on my head
is such an uncomfortable trial
but now i think i have parsed it out
perhaps i love those wet gray days
because in the rain
no one can see your tears


RC deWinter’s poetry is widely anthologized, notably in New York City Haiku (NY Times, 2/2017), easing the edges: a collection of everyday miracles, (Patrick Heath Public Library of Boerne, 11/2021) The Connecticut Shakespeare Festival Anthology (River Bend Bookshop Press, 12/2021), in print: 2River, Event, Gargoyle Magazine, the minnesota review, Night Picnic Journal, Plainsongs, Prairie Schooner, Southword, The Frogmore Papers, The Ogham Stone, York Literary Review among many others and appears in numerous online literary journals. 

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