I'm Walt. And I'm Marie Elena.
This is the collaboration of two kindred spirits; partners in rhyme;
"the best friends we've never met."
All "Across the Lake. Eerily."

Saturday, April 30, 2011


Two Aprils ago, and soon to be three, she established herself as a poem devotee. So timid at first, and so easily veiled; just pleased to rub elbows with those who are hailed as poets … TRUE poets, whose pens fairly crooned. She smiled through April, yet never attuned, and just shy of ease, was she.

Two Aprils ago, with three closing in, she opened a door to see what lies therein. She’s never looked back; now relaxed and at home … still pleased to rub elbows, and eager to poem. For once seeds were planted, and buds were in bloom, enamored was she with poetic perfume.

Two Aprils ago, now closer to three, goodbyes were not needed … nor will they now be.

Marie Elena


The final April moon will soon take leave.
Contentedly, he navigates the sky.
He knows not that his passing makes us grieve,
Nor hears the tone of our collective sigh.

For thirty eves, the moon has cast his spell
Releasing inspiration from his core
Yet, now has come the time to say farewell,
As April’s moon will strum our hearts no more.

No gathering beneath his fetching smile,
Nor once-upon-a-timing ‘neath his glow.
Though next year, he will once again beguile;
Inspiring prose and verse to daily flow.

Our melancholy hearts will melt away,
For there will be a new moon come what May.

Marie Elena

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

HAIKU (For Uncle Jim)

You were a leader
Who never let followers
Feel less than partners

Marie Elena

Note:  Today's Writer's Digest Poetic Asides poetry prompt challenged us to write about leaders, followers, or both.  How can I hear the word "leader" without thinking of Uncle Jim?



"Talk to me some more.  You don't have to go.  You're the poetry man.  You make things all rhyme."

A "wish I'd written that," to honor Walt.

Marie Elena


"A street is no place to play"
you would say as you clasped her
hand, gentle in its unsurety.
Held in the purity of her heart,
she sees you as a leader.

"Look both ways" you would say,
"to be sure that it's okay"
And she stand toes-to-curb erect,
able to detect the proper moment
that she will follow her leader.

"Hold my hand" you assure her,
your tender flower with the enthusiasm
of a sponge; waiting to sop up all
that you pour before her. She looks up
and smiles. "You lead, Daddy."

Lessons learned at her father's hand,
the kind of man she wishes to grace her life,
when she is ready to become a wife.
Standing at the end of this magnificent aisle,
she'll take your hand. Walking together once again.

All in the name of her father's hand.


Monday, April 25, 2011


Sandstone giants creep downhill
Imperceptibly at will
Littering the valley floor,
Weighing half-a-ton or more.
Monsters float with silent grace,
Falling from their lofty place.

Would not wish to be on hand
When goliaths finally land.

Marie Elena
Photo by Marie Elena Good

Note:  This is a true phenomenon in Conkle’s Hollow Nature Preserve of the Hocking Hills of Ohio.  Sandstone rocks, weighing in the tons, detach from the bedrock wall of 200-feet, and slide absolutely imperceptibly downhill to the floor of the gorge.  The rock in the photo above is one such “Slump block.”

Sunday, April 24, 2011

MY GOD, MY GOD (A Kyrielle)

an empty tomb the stone rolled away huge and heavy yet rolled away by ...
Sheer loneliness, epitomized
In One so tortured, scorned, despised
When hanging there upon the tree
Cried “Why hast Thou forsaken Me?”

I loathe my sin that held Him there,
And offer up the sinner’s prayer.
Still, shaken, as I hear His plea,
“God, why hast Thou forsaken Me?”

I’ll not forget His sacrifice;
The blood He shed to pay the price;
Nor how He, when estranged from Thee;
Wailed, “Why hast Thou forsaken Me?”

Behold, this selfless, sinless Lamb
Dismissed the power of I AM.
He emptied Himself willingly,
and He has not forsaken me.

Marie Elena

Eternally grateful to my Redeemer.

Photo Source: http://www.pubsub.com/AM-Music-News-China-Snubs-Dylan-Beck-Hits-INXS-The-Thermals-Separate-Rolling-Stone-6HIlDYEzn7VS

Friday, April 22, 2011


Forty pieces of silver has it's allure.
For sure, it could have bought enough
to feed a few and briefly ease their suffering.
But what you were offering was worth so much more.
I see that now. Too late, too late.
You always talked about your Father's will,
but nobody asked me what I wanted.
I wanted to stay and finish my meal.
I wanted to die in the oldness of my age.
I wanted you to be my Brother throughout.
And what I've found out won't change things.
Instead, we fought. I abandoned you.
I betrayed you. Sold you for some pocket change.
And in the end, you were beaten and broken.
Without words spoken, our eyes met and
every opportunity for a second chance
died, nailed to that tree. But I did not see.
Not then; not now. Blood money leaves
a nasty stain on beloved hearts.
I would have changed if I could,
but my fate was predicated,
and vermin like me are easily convinced.
In the end, we're all left hanging.
Does forgiveness come at the end of one's rope?


Wednesday, April 20, 2011


I write of love for my family, friends, and home. Yet, ink halts the flow of emotion to page when I attempt to write of my love for you. The deep sentiment I feel translates tritely to the page, while my soul yearns to write lyrics for the love song my heart endlessly hums. Listen, then, to the silent lyrics penned in tender eyes and gentle touch, for it is there that my heart’s song is rendered.

Happy 20th Anniversary to Keith, the love of my life. 

Marie Elena

Monday, April 18, 2011


Congratulations to my poetic partner Marie Elena Good for her poem "Crossroads", a top 10 finish in the Poetic Asides Sonnet Challenge. Her beauty in words lies in the Sonnet and Haiku forms. Great job Lady!
Also, kudos to Bruce Niedt for taking the top spot. Very Well done, Jim would be very proud!



Sunday, April 17, 2011


From here I can see it all,
why can't they?
It was they that brought me here
to hang and suffer,
to act as their buffer
from here to the here after.
From here I can see it all.

From here I can see my friends cower
they lower their eyes
and despise all who do me harm,
something warm flows into mine.
Blood as a testament,
an unrelenting reminder from my Father,
I search to find her. My Mother,

from here I can see her,
sad and heart-broken and salvation
is one small token in response.
My brother John beside her,
comforting and consoling,
extolling praises on Him who had sent me.
She is his now. Here is your Mother.

From here I can see the soldiers and rabble
gambling over my cloak and robe,
no compassion is theirs, but they are still heirs
to this sacrifice in which they are complicit.
They proffer their rancid vinegar
to quench my thirst. I offer my blood
the flowing water of eternal love.

From here I can see the elders and supposed
people of wisdom and scripture
witnesses to my demise. Forgiveness I offer
for their ignorance. Hypocrites all.
Their stature falls with every second
I am aloft. Their stance does not soften
but they will be haunted often by this.

From here I can see the criminals who
suffer the same fate, it is too late for them.
One does not feel remorse and his course is clear.
The other will share a paradise straight from here.
I will assure you he will. And still
my blood will cleanse him as well.
It is hard to tell who deserved this fate more.

From here I can see the skies darken.
I harken to my Father, "Eli, Eli"
but his will I do. Thunder rumbles and
the rain tumbles from these black cloud.
I cry out loud as I am near death.
They see me as a man hanging from a tree,
but from here, I can see the big picture.


Friday, April 15, 2011


Cool it with the Charles noise,
I'm just one of Ella and Larry's three boys.
Call me Buddy, everyone does,
I don't know why; they tell me "Just because"

     I found my voice by the age of five,
     recorded songs from before I was alive.
     Music lived in me; it filled me, obsessed me,
     I'd even say that "demon" possessed me.

Along the way they screwed up my name,
yet in their mistake, I found my fame.
Finding my piece of pie in the American Dream,
when I gulped and hiccupped onto the scene.

     Rock and Roll was in its early stage,
     but I knew it would be the rage,
     I assembled a band, that was the ticket,
     and with me to lead, we were the Crickets.

Oh Boy, what a time! A thrill of my life,
It's so easy to get into this life.
The drums were the heartbeat, and I knew what to do,
If you love Rock and Roll, I'm gonna love you too.

     It's great to rave on with these words of love,
     Below it was blue days, black nights up above.
     But, something touched this brown eyed handsome man.
     If you saw her smile, maybe baby, you'd understand.

I found true love ways, in Maria Elena's smile,
she gave me my heart, it gave me my style.
Love at first sight, I asked "think it over",
she said "Yes". I was rolling in clover.

     I went on the road, she stayed home expecting,
     her sad Spanish eyes were surely reflecting
     the raining in her heart, she appeared to be coping,
     while she sat by the phone crying, waiting, hoping.

Clearlake was rocking, the music insane,
a late winter storm as we boarded the plane.
"I hope your plane crashes", Waylon Jennings would say,
In my bright Holly smile I said, "That'll be the day!"

     "And the three men I admire the most,
     the Father, Son and the Holy Ghost,
     well, they caught the last train for the coast,
     the day the music died." ~ Don McLean (American Pie)


Thursday, April 14, 2011


cradling tenderly
a cherished friend’s aching heart
in hands that can’t hold

Marie Elena

My friend, I'm at a loss. I did not make it to FB, PA, or Across the Lake yesterday. On FB this morning, I saw that many of the dear souls at PA were posting words of comfort on your wall. I visited PA to see what was happening.

There is nothing harder than watching in vain as your child struggles with pain that is unfair, out of your control, and inconsolable. My heart is with you and your wife, Andrea, and the family of this lost soul. May he be at rest now in the arms of Jesus.

Your heart is aching for your sweet Andrea, her classmate, lost family, and lost love … it is too much. God give you strength and comfort, Walt. And may He remind me throughout today to hold you all in prayer.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011


Poetic justice presented as a nudge,
an effort to budge me from my malaise.
It's been one of those days
but in times as these, I find it pleases
me to think of the friendship we've amassed.
Marie Elena Good, a perfect monicker for one
so open of heart, and giving of warmth; an angel.
Set before me for the reasons only He knows,
but she truly grows on me daily. It is safe
to imagine that the gift of Marie becomes one
that continues to give; her nature and upbringing
dictate it. We can debate it as much as we want,
but I can't claim my laurels without thanking
Him who made me, and she who made me continue.
Supportive, comforting, but with a swift kick
when the need demands. The hands that hold
family and friends so dear, the hands that hold
her darling Sophia, stretch across the lake,
eerily touching the heart and soul of one
usually in control. We do no more, no less.
The "Best Friend I ALMOST met".
I thank God for the reason. And I thank Marie
for three seasons of poetic prodding,
always nodding in her Good way.


Tuesday, April 5, 2011


I know you; we've met
in the darkened shadows,
where you cower, and reign

your power and terror upon
the ones I love; or have loved.
A black fisted glove clenched in victory.

A thief in the night,
strikes as horribly in mid-afternoon,
or April Sunday mornings, without warning;

a plague most verulent. Never repentant,
nor indiscriminant, an ignorant disease
bringing to their knees, all hopes and futures planned.

Your wish and command stands defiant,
and reliant on the grief and sorrow of those
that will someday follow, by your "hand" or

some other insidious grip. No radiance
or chemical drip can clip your wings for long;
your grasp is strong. Buying time, but never enough.

Many things left to say, but tough!
As lives in the balance dangle to mangle
and devastate; a wicked fate. A silent coma,

from this carcinoma. The victor.
Life's restrictor. Never paints a flattering picture.
Inglorious bastard.


Monday, April 4, 2011


an island out-
post hosting a
beacon bright;
scanning the night,
offering sight 
to wayward
He stands on 
watch, keeping 
the lamp sweep-
ing the water.Buoys 
bob in the darkness,
harkening the bells 
with the swell of each 
wave. Deep bellow-
ing horns cut the evening
fog, leaving a long echo 
from harbor to shore. A 
solitary ex-sailor never fails 
to offer security; a sentinel 
sure and silent. Alone in the night, a beacon bright.

Sunday, April 3, 2011


Robert Lee Brewer of The Writer's Digest Poetic Asides interviewed 2010 Poet Laureate, Walt Wojtanik.  I couldn't be more proud! Way to go, Walt! Click here to read the entire interview.

Marie Elena

Saturday, April 2, 2011



I have come to America.
We are huddled here, masses
of peoples from many places.
Polish, German, Irish, Italian.
Swedish, Nordic, Austrian, Czech...
Slowly, we are processed to be free.
Men, women and children; both strong and infirm.
Some are detained; but I am lucky.
The lady of liberty says,
"Welcome to America, Jozef".
I am free.

Your son,