The Lost Book of Shadows


“And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don’t believe in magic will never find it.” – Roald Dahl

“How many pages do you think we have”, he says his blue eyes wide with interest. “More than enough to make this kind of a Bible”, I smile, holding up the three ring black binder to the star filled sky. “It’s a book of secrets alright”, he says nodding his head furiously up and down, his taped black framed glasses sliding down his nose. “We need to hide it where we both know where it is”, I say my smile disappearing, as the night air around us seems to chill. Much too cold for the end of May, I am thinking. “Yeah”, he says. “We need to make sure we don’t forget where we put it”.

What is done here upon this night, by this stream, my boyhood rite. What is done here beneath these bluffs, shape-shifting shadows, on midnight’s cusp. What is done here while stars fall fast, turning the moon from full to the past. Time travelers move beyond my dreams, splitting the heavens and all their seams. For what do I see this vision faire, something found relieved from its lair, a secret lost upon life’s whim, buried beneath and now I know when. Tousled hair on two boy’s blue, who buried a book of all they knew. Down the Coolidge Arroyo, and then a swim, in muddy cold water, that sucks you in. Twelve steps ahead on an island mound, and then another swim, with a prayer not to drown. Seven steps forward and nine to the right, to the dark overhang, where we stand with our book and two penlights.

What do we own but our own minds, what makes us ghost, when we do die? The answers to what lies within, the secret handshake, the hidden grin. Who killed Bobby, and who shot Jack, the answers might stay in this book so black. Does time hold us, or do we hold time? Are we here as a glimpse, or a reflection of our mind? And what of dragons, and what of arks, are both really hidden in our friendship in this dark. For in this book lies craft and Zen, love and character, spells and sin. For dreams have told us, visions we have had, that the past is our future, in a circle it will last. And the doomsday clock that we have numbers circled within, will end all time, when a new age says begin.

“Do you think we will remember where we hid that thing”? My teeth are chattering, I am cold and I smell like muddy river water. “You won’t”, he says his voice sounding more distant and light. “But I do”, he whispers, almost quietly, almost gone, almost a ray of early morning light, for it is a dream. It is a dream. – 05.24.2021 – דָנִיֵּאל

The Precious


Kaitlyn Swearingen

“The most precious on this earth is Love” – Lavinia Valeriana

“You are my “Peter Pan” she said, her bright blue eyes dancing reflecting the bright full moon that cast it’s magical beams through her bedroom window. “What are you then, “squirt”, I asked her trying to look as serious as possible. “I am your precious”, she said, her blue eyes turning into stars and planets and becoming a universe all-consuming.

In a world where time stood still, when all memory had gone to sleep. All our secrets held our hope, spinning circles, jumping rope. To the moon, you would cry with the fiercest look that made me smile. Such is this, and such is that, you drew the pictures, of our compact. Beyond two stars, second from right, magic perfected, when we took flight. In dimensions did we ride, upon the words of which we spoke, incantations so inspired by a story or a joke. Came we to another land in a box made for a boat, rowing water with our hands, until our laughter finally broke. Tis the season, which I fly, fight the witch was your reply. Make me precious throughout the land; I said I will for I am The Pan. Be they ghouls or evil cares, I will fight them upon a dare. Be my precious, my princess lord, as she knights me with a cardboard sword. Be my precious for all the years, never let this magic disappear.

So it went from night to night, when the dusk turned to moonlight. For the full moon went nowhere, stayed it steady within our lair. How full enchantment can make you grow, when your own seed has turned to gold. In a minute of childhood find, immortality in your mind. Not an interest or a care, when the moon is in your eye, throwing caution to the wind with my precious by my side. Thinking time will never end, thinking this time will never die.

Now the day came when time appeared, second hands from everywhere and on my scalp appeared a gray, and my precious went away. Such was this, and such was that, fading pictures of our compact. Still at times upon the phone, when I hear her voice so clear, just a bright note in atmosphere. How it takes me to a time, never ending how sublime. Moves me beyond two stars so near, second from the right, this way my dear. Succumbs me to a different land, knights me as “The Pan”. From the cradle to the grave how my precious saved the day. From the cradle to Neverland, full of wonder through times of sand, through the veil hand in hand. Through the veil hand in hand.

“You are my “Peter Pan” she said, her bright blue eyes dancing reflecting the bright full moon that cast it’s magical beams through her bedroom window. “What are you then, “squirt”, I asked her trying to look as serious as possible. “I am your precious”, she said, her blue eyes turning into stars and planets and becoming a universe all-consuming.

For my own immortal precious Kaitlyn. -04.02.21 – דָנִיֵּאל

The Jerusalem Theory


“We contain the shapes of trees and the movement of rivers and stars within us.” – Patrick Jasper Lee

His screams awaken me again. “You saw the holy city again”? The question slips from my just awakened mouth. I instantly regret the sound my question carries. “No daddy”, he says, his eyes filling with tears, “I am the holy city”. “I am the holy city”.

He awakes within his battles, turns an inward eye to see and it rolls an observation, of intuition around the holy city, which he conceived. For his mind, it is a treasure, built from time on eternity. An eschatology that confounds a modern world immersed in academic degrees.

He awakes within his battles, and fashions safe high walls. Thick in stone and drying mortar, higher towers to see it all. He circles round and round his sanctuary, placing angels four fathoms tall. His altar deeply buried in the center of the great all. He hums his body is the temple, he grasp the illusion of a call, an obtrusive whispering dragon woman, who says the time is his to call. For his mind is the eternal city, that withstands all carrion calls, underneath a canopy of G_Ds great favor, he watches dark large figures fall. Now center to this theory, of time, and what he sees, is the notion that his mind is a city in the Judean Mountains between the Mediterranean and deep Dead Sea. It’s a notion built in neurons and synapses we cannot believe, that the senses of an individual is in a world we just cannot see.

His nightmares are built in Babylon, by guile and snakes out of trees. The touching sounds of withered fingers scraping across a skin he cannot see. They want to hold him captive in a darkness ruled by grief, a unipolar world of chaos, the one inhabited by you and me. They want to tear down the walls of his Jerusalem to discover what it is he sees. They come as warriors clothed in confusion, not the peacemakers or helpers they claim to be. For in Babylon they do not understand the thoughts so different, or the visions they cannot see.

So, war comes against his city. In a rolling raging sea, armed with all of life’s armchair seers from the science of life that is brief. They call upon their allies from the Euphrates; bring your archers to shoot the breech. Let us understand this city’s weakness. Let it fall beneath our feet. Call down our god’s of human frailty, of science of no degree, let this be that, and that a lesson, not forgotten for all to see. Let us learn this place of mystery, let us in by self-decree. What we know from our own learning is what we worship as our deity.

In the end as all in final, in the end that comes so brief, there stands the ruins of Babylon, while Jerusalem can still be seen. In the end is still the mystery, the blessing of his thoughts to be, for the magic of his inward motion, is a city that holds its keep. Is a city that holds its keep.

He awakes within his battles, turns an inward eye to see and it rolls an observation of intuition around the holy city, which he conceived. For his mind, it is a treasure, built from time on eternity. An eschatology that confounds a modern world immersed in academic degrees. – 03.21.21 – דָנִיֵּאל

For the millions who fall on the spectrum in this alien world.

The Sandpainting


“They find joy in motion, which transforms their lives into unending odysseys. Their souls are brightly burning streaks of light across the universe—constantly traveling in an endless dance across space and time.” – Zita Steele

We are two chums in the high desert, out near the dump, near the dragon!  We are here to paint the sand to seal our destiny, and to travel far away, on this long dark night. On this long dark night.

From the center out, we brushed our way through, colors of the earth and sun, with our own different hues. A painting under constellations that gave us clues. While first man talked, first woman brought us through, to the other side, on this long dark night. On this long dark night.

One by one we turn to two, dark filled Ravens by a cobalt blue, folding dragons our wings non flew, an ark from heaven, my friend me and you. Desert stories while young men sleep. We paint the colored sand from deep, to deep, drawing lines between our times, closing out the devil and the evil eye, on this long dark night. On this long dark night. Bended shoulders to what may come, the better we are, when we count as a sum, first the planet and then the sun, drawing a labyrinth where we may run. When time has ended and the world has stopped, we will step through the doorway, where our painting plots. To a new galaxy, a different moon. We will draw our new lives to escape our doom, while there is still time, and the sand is cold, on this long dark night. On this long dark night.

The mesa vultures, and the scorpions too, came and surrounded us while we drew. All dead creatures of things to come from the twenty-first century, when time is done. Dark angels, and soulless men, depraved demons in the craft of sin. All the past and the future too, hovered nearby but could not come through. Our seal of lines, on this long dark night. On this long dark night. First the pollen and then the corn meal, the San Juan sand, and the gypsum to heal, the universe of layers within us we seal in a turquoise bind. His brown eyes open, mine open too, we chant then we sing of the bridge on through, to the other side. To the other side. Boys translucent to the dead of night, a new moon existent, it will be all right, on this long dark night. On this long dark night.

From the center out, we brushed our way through, colors of the earth and sun, with our own different hues. A painting under constellations that gave us clues. While first man talked, first woman brought us through to the other side, on this long dark night. On this long dark night.

We are two chums in the high desert, out near the dump, near the dragon!  We are here to paint the sand to seal our destiny, and to travel far away, on this long dark night. On this long dark night. – 10.18.2020 – דָנִיֵּאל

The Ghost in an Old Man’s Heart


The secrets that lost boys keep birth ghost” – DS

Here in lies the power, the place that G_D has made. Here in dwells the temple, and it is a ghost that both loves and hates in the greatest silence! For it can cast, and it can spell, it can retrieve and deceive. It separates, and hides, and when it is ready it reveals itself. Into the silence. Into the silence.

I heard many words last night upon my bed. They were legion from sources seen and unseen. Strange expressions that built themselves like influences upon my heart. Sounds and strange syllables, lilted tongues of angels or daemons, one or more, one thousand in a reflection growing louder from each shadow around my room. Together they forced me into the silence. And I saw myself young, and found myself old, and though I felt cold, there was some comfort for indeed I saw I had never been alone.

For there were ghost with me in spring and fall.  Under cold winter moons, and summer storms of awe, and they chanted, chanted that I should heed their call. And they said so many things I could not take it all. Out of sky and earth and fire from my birth, till the day I heard a final song. And they sang inside my head in the silence of it all. For I saw them as a child, in the tumbleweeds that the wind would hold and blow, and I felt them kiss my lovers, with their familiar touch and glow. Yes, I felt them shake inside me when my anger did not let go. In the silence were these ghosts, as an old man where do they go. Oh, the power of all that is me, how much of it do they now know. Oh, the power of all that is me, how much of it do they now know.

Oh, the silence that awaits me, where the angels would have me go, the knowledge that leaves me, as these daemons fold. These ghost that have been with me, knowing what they know. It is not in my defense that they hold what they know, it is the power of recognition of letting this secret go. Oh, ghost that has become legion, how your fears have grown. Now here into silence I watch you go. Now here into silence I watch you go.

Here in lies the power, the place that G_D has made. Here in dwells the temple, and it is a ghost that both loves and hates in the greatest silence! For it can cast, and it can spell, it can retrieve and deceive. It separates, and hides, and when it is ready it reveals itself. Into the silence. Into the silence.

For the molested that turned into lost boys, that turned into old men with ghost. It is time to take those ghosts into the silence. – 09.10.20 – דָּנִיֵּאל

 

Jason’s Ghost (Until Then)


“To a real best friend remember the truth! Hardy spy in the sky. (We did fly)” – Jason Waite (autograph 1974 yearbook)

Early morning my friend, eternal sails upon that desert wind, and I’m moving off with you again. Below just a topographical change, a deep, deep vale where we hid our change. From boys to better men. You come shooting up from Flame hill again. So, let’s begin. Let’s begin.

He rides the ship called Argo, the one that we fought for when we played. A tragedy born in the Ojo Amarillo, below where the Skinwalkers they lay. The character of boyhood brought from dreams of once upon a time until then. He smiles, he looks beyond what once was a friend. The clock burns into early morning seconds, well past three A.M. He summons spring. “School” he says, “will soon be out”. “Forever, and ever will never end, but until then”. For time has brought us this night, my friend. With stars cold diamonds, and hidden omegas beneath a galaxy’s far end. The mystery of the boys we have been. The rare spun change of when or then. The daemons laugh with us again, while our footprints appear, they walk without end. The flame, that sears our emotions again. On that hill, so long ago, where our souls began, again and again and again.

He swoons without blood or bone, the “San Juan River” is in his eyes like home. The color changes always. From muddy water to blue, blue, gray. His touch a cold, cold spell, he says there is another clue, by the river ruins. In the ruined Kiva where we planted staves, we swore we would fight wars on another day. So much in these words has yet to play. Oh, my friend is it another day, he smiles in the starlit darkness, and says “maybe okay”. “Maybe okay”. He rises like an Argonaut, a hero from a play. Final act of literal prose that blows goodbye with the high desert wind. By the table in the school library your face it disappears behind the ending chapter where our journey began. It could be the last time we see each other but until then. Until then.

Early morning my friend, eternal sails upon that desert wind, and I’m moving off with you again. Below just a topographical change, a deep, deep vale where we hid our change. From boys to better men. You come shooting up from Flame hill again. For now, it is the end. The end, but until then. – 05.03.2020 – דָּנִיֵּאל

The Perfect Place (Absentia)


“Once there was a way to get back homeward” – Paul McCartney

“There’s a place I like to hide, a doorway I run through in the night”-Chris DeGarmo

“Is this the perfect place”, he asks, his cheeks glowing a perfect dry cold red. He looks the mixture between a loveable afternoon with A.A. Milne, and the darkest shadow of Dickens. “It is my perfect place”, I tell him, my breath blowing a long icy cigar looking shape. “I come here often”, I say, thinking my voice sounds younger, more adventurous here. I sound a better kind of honest. “Am I the first to come with you”, he asks, his bright eyes reflecting the red winter moon so close to where we stand. “You have always been here Ryan”, I say, my voice almost a murmur. “Always been here”, I whisper again, “as have I”.

In Absentia…

The grains of sand drop from the sky; falling in unison, they fill our eyes. Above the valley past eventide, the blessings come on a ghostly ride. We pray to G_D, G_D prays to us, in quantum travels on angel dust. From these twin peaks, we watch time tied, to a perfect place, as numbers fly by. There are tunnels here and dragons too, what is one wild-eyed boy when two will do. From a map inside drawn by eternal clues, one that talks to me now it talks to you. In absentia from a present gone, to a fourth wall fallen, without a magic wand. Oh, eternal womb that speeds us thus, to this great place in the two of us, to see these hosts of treasured years, these paths I once walked without present fears.

“Where might we go from here”, he ask the red moon of the desert sky descending, to halo his face. “There are rivers and ruins here”, I say, “and adventures”, he asks, a slight smile starting to form. It is as if for the first time he can taste. “Yes, I say, “Adventures too”. “Then in this perfect place I will find me”, he says, his voice suddenly filled with confidence. “Indeed”, I reply, “in absentia” great spirits we will certainly be.

In Absentia…

The gust blows, turning by, resolving time. We go two stars to the left what do we find? Standing there in Neverland, quickened in our newer minds like my own Dad. We wander the desert in directions I have known. A porous man, a psalmist, a child now a man. Our footsteps translucent as wind spills the sand. By dragons skeletal within our hands, we form a genesis that turns our mind and in turn makes us a man. Back to a place in time where my son can become what is me. A better version born of G_D in this holy desert sea. The better place to question all of what is she. The perfect place to be. The perfect place to be.

In Absentia…

“You have always been here Ryan”, I say, my voice almost a murmur. “Always been here”, I whisper again, “as have I”. – 02.13.2020 -דָנִיֵּאל

 

Beneath the Leaves (Ever Dream)


“The world is full of obvious things which nobody by any chance ever observes.” – Arthur Conan Doyle

“Would you do it with me”*, lift the wood that brings mystery; fall forever with me, through the portal where phantoms scribe magic free. Feel your breath leaving air, your body writhing in an orgasmic sea. Trace the hand that you see, draw its lines around your heart comfortably. Be damned to be, would you ever dream with me? Beneath the leaves.

My Dad used to say that what comes before us has always been behind us, and that which places itself at our side has always been around us. My Dad used to say that gates that swing inwards are willing to be pushed outwards, and all doorways into heaven, were beneath the leaves, when we went to an ever dream. My Dad used to say…

We discover the door near the river. It is 0.3 miles past the Fruitland Trading Post, pretty much where “Brigham Young Jr’sHouse would have been. We sweep away the dead leaves that hide the door in the ground. Their wrinkled husk make a scratching sound as we sweep them from the dark rotting wood of the door to the surrounding dead grass. “Shouldn’t be leaves here”, Jason say’s. “Yep, yep”, I say, “Shouldn’t be leaves here”. “Not a tree in sight”, Jason says, a hint of a grimace on his face. “Nope”, I agree, a little vexed myself not a tree in sight. “No way to get this thing open that I can see”, I say to Jason a little relief in the tone of my voice. The truth is, sundown is near, and there is a chill in the air, that fits right well with the nip that is beginning to well up and down my backbone. “I think we owe it to ourselves to try and get it open”, Jason says. “There might be money or something valuable under there”, he says. “There might be something”, I agree…

My Dad used to say that the mystery in life is life itself, and that which is a pattern leads not to G_D but leads to mediocrity. My Dad used to say, that which leads the head must lie beneath, that which is deep. That which calls unto deep. My Dad used to say would you go with me, go beneath the leaves after an ever dream. My Dad used to say…

We brace our cold knuckles against the grain of the heavy wood, the splinters digging deep into our fingers. We kneel opposite of each other. Jason to the top of the door, I to the bottom. From the heavens, we no doubt look like cherubim’s our small frames bent in labor, looking for the covenant. Fulfilling the covenant. The evening shadows move over us quickly enveloping our effort. “I think its moving”, Jason says, his breathing heavy with exertion. “Yep, yep, I say, trying to concentrate on our effort, my fear of the unknown replaced suddenly by the thrill of adventure, for the door is opening. The door is opening. The door is opening.

My Dad used to say, that there is nothing unseen, that has not been seen by someone, yet those who say they see do not, and those who say nothing, see. My Dad used to say, all doorways into heaven were beneath the leaves, when we went after an ever dream. My Dad used to say…

Authors Note: The two boys were real, the leaves over the door were real. The door in the ground was real. The opening of the door was real. What was discovered was real as well. It was all as my Dad used to say… 11.06.2019 – דָּנִיֵּאל

* Would you do it with me – Nightwish

Innocence (Hedges & Fireflies)

I know a bank whereon the wild thyme blows. Where oxlips and the nodding violet grows. Quite canopied over with luscious woodbine. With sweet muskroses and with eglantine. There sleeps Titania sometime of the night. Lulled in these flowers with dances and delights.” – Shakespeare

“But I know a place where we can go and wash away these sins.”- Henley & Hornsby

Titania watches him with interest before the dawn breaks, a round of leaves within her mussed hair. She thinks to let him go might be a good thing, but she cannot. He has come to her on a mid-summers night, at the end of his innocence and he is alone.

Oh his childhood, cries his childhood, stolen by the name of ruin. Hips withdrawing, pants still falling, injustice by these fates not bloomed. Oh his childhood, cries his childhood, finite too soon. Find the hedges for your hiding for the nighttime is coming soon.

He hid among the hedges, in a tunnel of which rabbits made, a long leaf filled burrow between the house and the gravel roadway. In his mind, he pictured safety, a sanctuary of play, and though he hid his body, his soul was on display. The world of summer was risen, with the night falling in, and somewhere there were angels. Watching in interest over his boyhood den. He looked through tiny windows at the darkness. A world so warm in gloom. He interlaced his fingers, and felt himself traveling further outside his self-induced cocoon. So, it was there in the twilight, far from his desert moon. He thought of all that had happened, an indiscretion born so soon.

For he hid among the hedges, in a tunnel made of thought, watching fireflies dance outside, for in truth they are more than spark. Near the point of total nighttime, when monsters bare their teeth. Silent shadows, silent wisdom, all is hidden beyond display. Not a sound in all creation, like the very first day. He lays himself still burdened lost in thoughts of the afternoon. Oh his childhood, cries his childhood, stolen by the name of ruin. Hips withdrawing, pants still falling, injustice by these fates not bloomed. Oh his childhood, cries his childhood, finite too soon. Find the hedges for your hiding for the nighttime is coming soon.

He hid among the hedges in a place of hideaway, watching fireflies go to heaven for a purpose in which they stayed. In the glooming, in the hedges, came the silence of the break. Just a moment there is reason, nothing happens by fair mistake. He wraps his arms in loneliness and watches his soul begin to fade. For the want of its own amusement, it hides away. Softly crying to the nighttime such a movement of a score. Led by mercy, thoughts emotions and the life we are purposed for. In the hedges, in the hedges, a place of no mistakes. In the hedges under fireflies, asleep as the dawn breaks. – 08.01.2019 – דָנִיֵּאל

The Dragon by the Dump


“No, I would not want to live in a world without dragons, as I would not want to live in a world without magic, for that is a world without mystery, and that is a world without faith.” – R.A. Salvatore

The night sky ripples in my dreams, a mixture of sun, moon and stars. Something stirs in my bloodstream, and awakens me to whom I am to become.

The spine went from west of the dump in a half circle, unapologetic in its bending latitude, king like, under sun, moon and stars. The jagged edges whispered to us as we climbed them by day and moved tilting inwardly as our feet touched them by night. Although the rains almost never touched our hidden sacred find, the winds often came ripping away the night clouds that formed a curtain on the summer sky. We ran, we walked and we sat upon the back of a dragon, and its form entered our bloodstream, creating all life that we would forever be.

It is summer; it is winter, always springtime or fall. Just a boy then, just a boy now, when I hear the dragon call. Draco rising in a north star, that constellation, oh stars of all. A voice a whisper, a sound that comforts, “I lift you up boy, forever tall”.

“The fires never go out”, my friend say’s from the shadows of the dragon’s tail. He signals towards the dump with his nose, but I know he is talking about the warmth beneath his feet. “They never shall”, I whisper not sure, if I am back then, or here now speaking in my sleep. The sky seems to ripple, perhaps the fathoms of the days heat being released, more likely it is gravity protesting the movement of great silent wings. “Is it a ghost”, I whisper, thinking it might be. “No” my friend whispers back, his voice beyond my reach. For a brief moment, a bit of time that is deep in me, I see us moving upwards upon the spine of a great sand filled sea. A dragon has entered our bloodstream, creating all life that we would forever need.

It is summer; it is winter, always springtime or fall. Just a boy then, just a boy now, when I hear the dragon call. Draco rising in a north star, that constellation, oh stars of all. A voice a whisper, a sound that comforts, “I lift you up boy, forever tall”.

The head of the dragon, resting so still, one eye glazed over, under moonlight, may be it is granite but still. Sometimes it was more than just a rock on that hill. Guarding that dump, that manmade swill. “Sometimes it was us”, I hear my friend whisper, and it gives me chills. For now as back then, I can still feel. The rush of the dragon, the knowing so real, there in my bloodstream, from then on until. From then on until. – 07.18.2019 – דָנִיֵּאל