Sunday, February 21, 2021

Long Cold Night

Naught is sharper than Winter's wicked blade,
Whet upon dagger's teeth cerulean,
And tempered tough against the midnight shade,
To test one's tempest heart-fires truly on.
To wrest one's comfort, cozy and certain,
From blast and bluster, piercing and stinging;
Demands a fierce flame too bright to curtain
Away, and sets one's very blood singing!
Vigorous, powerful, life is so bright,
Its precocious beauty inflames the soul;
Saturates the spirit with living light;
And excites the heart its song to extol.
The music, the flame, and the life alight,
Defend this soul from the long cold night.

Mick McKellar
February 2021


The light of life and music of the soul are my prayers against the long cold night.

Mick

Saturday, January 16, 2021

Let The Giant Sleep

A giant sleeps in hearts and minds,
Of people in our land;
Awakening when prudence finds,
That danger is at hand.

We cherish our autonomy,
(An independent lot)
Our wealth and our sovereignty;
We keep the things we've got.

Our freedom and our liberty,
Are often on parade.
We like to stand, alone and free:
An icon, strong and staid.

But, threaten our democracy,
With violence and strife,
Then menace us with anarchy,
And take innocent life,

Harm the helpless, hurt a child,
Intimidate the poor;
Take images of all defiled,
And share it more and more;

And you may stir the giant's ire,
His vengeance and his wrath.
Beware his purpose and his fire.
Beware his righteous path.

Americans, at heart, are fair,
And when misfortunes smite,
They care, they help, they give, they share,
Until what's wrong is right.

But, if that danger's an attack
On what they think is right,
They'll quickly take the battle back,
With all their righteous might.

So, hold your protest peacefully,
And share your thoughts so deep;
Retire your mob, mute the bully,
And let the giant sleep.

Mick McKellar
January 2021


There is a sleeping giant within the people of the United States of America. It awakened on December 7, 1941, with a roar heard around the world. It stirred again on September 11, 2001, and I swear the Earth shifted slightly in her orbit. The giant is wondrous and terrible to behold, and it cannot be controlled.

Mick

Sunday, January 10, 2021

Cultish Behavior

To hide a secret, keep it in plain sight.
Inside a truth is where you hide a lie.
A deed de noir, if bathed in brightest light,
Leaves the palest of shadows few will spy.

An untruth, whispered, will seldom go far,
But if shouted often, becomes a fact.
An average schmuck can become a star,
If you make grand claims, then lie and distract.

Find something that folks are afraid to lose;
Claim the government's taking it away.
Tell them it is critical that they choose
To follow your schmuck, who will save the day.

A few will follow because they're afraid.
A few will follow because they are mad.
Anger and hatred and words loudly said,
Will give them direction they've never had.

But a schmuck is a schmuck, the truth will out,
And an angry mob may be the result.
Frustrated fanatics who scream and shout,
Are the fractured remains of a failed cult.

Though you scatter the fire, some embers glow,
Some remnants burn out, and others anneal.
Some embers are large, so their fire can grow,
But most are shattered, needing time to heal.

But mark my words -- This is wisdom, hard earned:
If you are not careful, you can get burned.

Mick McKellar
January 2021


Building a cult can be relatively easy if you follow a few simple rules and your timing is good. However, if your leader is a schmuck, incompetent, or just unlucky; a failed cult can be a dangerous thing.

Mick

Thursday, January 07, 2021

The Cost of Conflict

Shallow cries of war and vengeance
Echo and wail, through canyons
Of glass, stone, and steel.
Gaslight tales and smoke,
Obscure and obfuscate
The weathered and withered eyes
Of angry old men.

Will the threshing floor chafe,
When the sledge elects the grain
And rejects the chaff?
Will the chaff arise and
Falsely claim it is grain?
Shall the harvest make war upon itself
In resentment, in grief, and in rage?

Life will suffer.
Grain will be spoilt.
And the wounded will reign,
While the children mourn
For their dead fathers.

Mick McKellar
January 2021

 

Saturday, January 02, 2021

In the Bones of My Soul

When bright bursts of love enkindle my mind,
And my hesitant bonds have lost control,
My essence subsumes ev'ry thought I find;
I feel the fire in the bones of my soul.
When chill winds of freedom caress my heart,
And warm bonds of friendship my cries extol,
My bonds to my shadows are burst apart;
I savor joy in the bones of my soul.
When the quiet hours of a sleepless night
And slumber elude, minutes take their toll.
When sweet visions of fancy take their flight,
Gratitude gleams in the bones of my soul.
The architecture of my love is whole,
When I feel loved in the bones of my soul.

Mick McKellar
January 2021


It is good to feel loved deep in the fiber of your being.

Mick

Sunday, December 27, 2020

Working in Winter

Limed and frosty, his beard breaks the iced air.
Hollow and cranky, his voice steams and booms.
The knife edge of sunshine that slices fair,
Razors the shadows in dark, frosty rooms.
Early mornings are hard in the Winter,
Even when sun-dogs cavort in the sky.
Probing and sharp, each draft is a hinter
Of the chill companions that outside lie.
Sunbrowned from hours spent in the white glare,
Covered in layers, to keep life inside
Far from the gelid atmosphere's air;
Granting a body's warmth someplace to hide.
Such are the protocols and daily chores,
Of one who spends long days working outdoors.

Mick McKellar
December 2020


I have vague memories of working on projects that involved spending entire days out in the glare of sun on snow and cold creeping in every gap in my clothing.  

Mick

Wednesday, December 23, 2020

An Old Man’s Carol

An old man lay awake in his warm bed,
And wondered why it was he wasn't dead;
Pond’ring many a possibility,
To justify his own longevity.
As long awake and struggling, he lay there,
A passing Christmas angel heard his prayer.
"Dear God, I feel so useless!" was his thought,
He feared he'd lived much longer than he ought.
"My life is backwards from what it should be;
I'm always sick, can't help my family:
My loved ones, my responsibility.
Instead they have to help take care of me!"

The angel heard his heartfelt lonely prayer,
A carol on the crystal morning air;
And swiftly flew to aid a soul distressed,
Console a spirit hurting and depressed.
He hovered till the old man’s eyes had closed,
Until his breathing slowed, he softly dozed.
Then soft as baby’s breath, a bright sunbeam,
He stood revealed inside the old man’s dream.
“Hail, ancient one!” he cried, and then he laughed.
His merriment, ice crystals on a draft
That washed a spirit free of regret’s stain,
And made one feel alive and loved again.
The old man felt like he was but a boy,
Awash with love and peace and Christmas joy.

The old man’s eyes shone bright with happy tears,
His soul felt buoyant, free of leaden years.
His brown eyes locked with angel silver blue,
And instantly, with certainty, he knew
That long ago a baby came to Earth,
That God’s Son was the infant in that birth,
That stories of a heavenly home were true,
And he would go there when his life was through.
Until that time, he had one simple chore:
Return his loved ones’ love with even more.
The angel kissed his brow and flew away.
The old man woke and smiled -- Twas Christmas Day!

Mick McKellar
December 2020


My friend, the Christmas angel, is back and helping old codgers like yours truly to remember the meaning of Christmas and to find the joy of this happy season.

Mick