I was Beautiful, Wild.

I was born Nature’s Child.
Twisted tree roots rocked me
to sleep and peaceful dreams.
My roots reached deep and free.
I was beautiful, wild.

Soon enough, drawn away,
plastic and chrome, I fell
into the engine’s steam
and cooked crisp, thorough, well.
The meat of my heart? Gray.

A Transistor installed,
power… bewildering.
Efficient circuits,
calculate, filtering
life’s data, without pause.

The many years passed by.
Yearly hardware upgrades,
and a new processor,
revealed what I’d traded,
My microchip? Tiny.

I am the Plastic Man.
Processed, all high-speed parts,
but Soulless, Suffering.
Replace it! The Child’s Heart,
Wild — Child of the Mountain.

© CGT, 2017.

Reindeer and Candy Canes

Warm beneath the blankets, snug,

a red-cheeked child sleepless, hugged,

by Reindeer-dreams, Christmas Eve,

candy, cake, and naps, then eat!

Eat the wrapped peppermint canes,

then feed both dogs much the same.

They won’t tell, Santa won’t care,

his Reindeer eat the same fare.

But please, sweet child, go to sleep;

it takes nimbleness to creep.

Old Nick’s careful, but clumsy.

In the parents, he’s trusting

that the wee ones are sleeping,

an old accord worth keeping.

Give of your milk and cookies.

Yes, you. He’s also looking.

The tots are decent at birth;

they have stayed pure in their worth.

But are you, Old Moms and Dads,

worthy like the lass and lad?

© CGT, 2017.

Libby the Christmas Elf

Libby is an Elf,

but you’d never see her

sitting on a shelf.

Ms. Libby, you see,

is the Reindeers’ stabler,

a Busy Little Elfie…

Most busy, indeed.

Expertly brushy,

busy, but not careless,

Libby’s not rushy.


Last year,

the Christmas Marm,

Mrs. Claus,

saw Libby being rushy,

took it none too kindly,

and pinched Libby

on her tushy.

© CGT, 2017.

Ok, that cheered me up.

Last year’s Christmas poem: Cookies for Nick

Brick by Brick

Brick by brick,

I’ll build it thick.

Cold iron rods

to make it stick.

Not a wall…

even taller,

a red tower,

to see you all.

When you come,

knock thrice upon

the first red brick

to be at home.

© CGT, 2017.



Western Lights

I’ve been far too gloomy lately. Here’s something happy:

Baby, I’m tired of seeing this weight on you.
You look tired and I think I’ve seen enough
of the way you grind your bones to grow
the things that didn’t need to grow so much.

Pack that vinyl bag, because we’re moving on.
I’ll wear my old boots, brown and scuffed,
they look just like me – broken, eyelets gone,
worn-in, but not worn down, the Me you love.

Route 66, early in the fall, we finally made it.
Looking to find the Sunrise, Western Lights,
like a fireball in the sky, we watched it glowing.
This love between us glows just as bright.

Slapping our beat on the dash, air-cymbals
crashing in time to your whipping hair.
Shining eyes, red cheeks, and forever smiles,
we’re facing the Westward Sunrise’s glare.

© CGT, 2017.

10,659 days.

Today is your birthday.

You would be 73 years old;

born of the Silent Generation,

your life was filled with

pain and suffering.

I’m so sorry for that.

It’s enraging

to think you’ve been gone

10,659 days.

A bit more than 29 years,

29 years with no compass:

we’ve been lost.

I don’t have many pictures,

so I’m forgetting

your face.

But, Mother,

I still remember

the smell of your hair

when you hugged


43 years.

I’m now the same age

as when you chose to leave,

but that’s not my


Happy Birthday, Mom.

© CGT, 2017.

Nancy Thompson 23 yrs

If Heaven and Hell decide that both are satisfied

and illuminate the “NO”s on their vacancy signs

If there’s no one beside you when your soul embarks

Then I’ll follow you into the dark”

-Benjamin Gibbard

Vanish, No Trace

Skin-suit since birth.
Sinew-stitched. Snug.
For what it’s worth…
smothering hug.

Pattern of old,
skin-cloth clippings.
Inspired, bold, this
ancestral thing.

“For your own Good!”
Protective Sheath.
“This Mask of Love!”
You die Beneath.

A life inside
another’s Face.
A lie inside.
Vanish, No Trace.

It’s not your Skin.
You are within.
Will you be found?

© CGT, 2017.

We spend too much time wearing masks. Some we choose, but more are provided (free of charge) by our culture. It’s unbearable at times.

Eleven Times

Folded eleven times,

on old yellowed scraps,

sing or say it in rhymes,

our lives writ and wrapped.


Hemp twine and faded ink,

trapping hopes, regretful

deeds, those unwitting things

that creased the folds in deep.


The Lost Message, it said:

“I am here for you;

ink-stained, my pages frayed,

I fear for you, too.”


In blue margin-scribblings,

crawling and crazed lines,

responses – hurtful things,

a contesting rhyme,


they said, “You? Here for me? 

You were here, it’s true,

but only for you, dear,

your fear is not new.”


The eleventh fold’s reason,

I am reminded,

spared me that blue-bleeding.

I’ll fold a twelfth time.

© CGT, 2017.

Painful are the realizations that come far too late. Are we parasites that grow inside the lives of others? Once mature, do we cast aside their sucked-dry carcasses only to tell ourselves,

“Look how beautiful I’ve become!”

Pay no attention to the lifeless husks behind you.



Game of Hearts

Oh, how I long for a day

where the game of hearts

is stayed. A pause in play,

to reflect on the ways

we failed from the start.

Look up from your pieces,

and realize their meaning:

all proxies for you. Ceaseless,

this game of mysteries,

illusions knit in tapestries,

telling bold tales and myths.

The game is fiction, a lie.

Let’s not play any longer,

besides, we’ve played wrongly.

Gather the cards and chips,

the markers and pewter ships,

fold the board, stow it

in a cedar chest, so that

when I meet you, truly,

after this Game of Hearts,

Love from Truth:

we’ll both know it.

© CGT, 2017.


It only took

a weird twist and jerk

to make it hurt.

So bad, the pain,

I feared the worst

of all things.

Not dead, but near,

misaligned, in tears,

my spirit-spine’s

gears grind.

To the west,

the specialists,

spiritual chiropractors

adjust Chakras

just fine.

© CGT, 2017.

The Old Swing

Alone. Prone. Floor of The Pit.

Dust of Ages, settles

on my face. Permeates it.

Sorrow tests my mettle


for how long, this Longest Time?

Searchers’ calls, long ended,

Pain phrased to rhythm and rhyme.

Soon? Twin-poles, unblended.


Familiar voice, “Not long!”

Euphoric tone, reminds…

The Old Swing? Always too strong.

Just brush the dust behind.


A rotten sun crests the edge,

the Pit’s dust glows brightly,

arise with a renewed Pledge,

Walk in-between, lightly.


The Climb? From minutes to hours,

On the edge, Drunkard’s Grin,

dust washed off by Sun’s Showers.

War for control, within.


“I can beat this thing!” I say.

Chemicals flood my Brain,

Lingering Dust stuck to Grey.

I Smile, Smile through the Pain.


Poles swing about, Eternal.

The stable place denied,

I can’t remember, at all,

A balance in my Life.

© CGT, 2016-2017.

Slight edits, but originally posted November 2016.

Salt, Tears, and Waves

Silent and alone, I sit

on this dark beach, deep-thinking.

Remembering a sinking

feeling of salt-wounds. Slits,


like gills, cuts, arterial

leaking, fishes called, feeding

on what had seeped. Still bleeding.

Listen! It brought me… the Call.


She’s there. Within the tide, She

calls to me, “Love, come inside,

and hear the silence. I, bride,

consummate and lay with me.”


I will join Her, but not yet.

It’s not time to go to those

damp linens for sodden bones,

where Salt, Tears, and Waves just met.


You, Sea Goddess, Siren-Thing,

Whisperer of the Waves, call

my name, so that through it all,

I will hear it as you Sing.

© CGT, 2017.

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