“Life without a friend, is like death without a witness’. – Spanish Proverb

Sunday, January 11, 1975

“What are you drawing”, I ask him, bending my neck over to get a better view of the pencil scrawl, Davis is working on. “Just our lives at the end”, he grins pulling the piece of paper away and holding it up to his chest, where I can’t see it. “How does it go”, I ask him trying to sound a bit miffed at not being able to see it. “Well,” he says slowly before laying his artwork out before me. “It’s like we are the last owls, all the other owls are gone, and we are late for the sky”. One of us must fly and see what the other side looks like. “What happens to the one of us that stays”, I ask looking at the picture that shows an owl in a mirror. “The one who stays”, he says slowly, now no longer grinning. “The one who stays, looks for the reflection, to show him the way to go”.

He flew into the Western sky, one companion true to the other, knowing one would become a Yeibichai, knowing one would be left alone without a brother. The heavy sound of knocking, the forceful wind, in fight, the traces of burning wings, the death on high that makes me shutter. Oh you, just you, have crossed somewhere, left me to live without a rudder. Flew you alone, late for the sky this world has cha cha changed, oh how I stutter. Those sounds of ghost, the holy host, left you to go my wings can’t flutter. My world has changed too many times, I shriek I cry, so empty now, one owl alone, oh how I shudder.

On, phantom tides, the darkened queen has come. She picks your name, while I sit by. She calls you her bird of prey. Oh, is it that you are me? On that dresser of hers sits a mirrored reverie. One in which she pitches your name, the feathers fall it’s never a game. She mixes a cup, and life fills her up, but still there is destiny, the two of us fly eternally. For if I were to look into the mirror, see the high desert flowing all so clear. Know I am the last owl, and the hour is late. Experience the shadow of your fate, then I will see the pattern of the sky, know every reason for why, and then I will fly, so high, then I will fly so high, even though I am late for the sky.

“I think it will be me, that flies first”, Davis says. He’s grinning again, and it seems if I look close enough, he does indeed, seem to have a light down of feathers. “Don’t go to early”, I say, not feeling like grinning myself, for the hour is early, much too soon to be speaking of such things. “Yeah”, he says, “still, still, it has to happen someday”.

Davis Begay flew from this world on November 22, 2021. He was late for the sky. He was my dearest friend, and blood brother. I shall miss him so much. I think he would want me to find the reflection, he drew all those many years ago, and chart my own flight someday. For where he is there is only sky, and in it owls fly both day and night. – 01-11-22 – דָנִיֵּאל

In Marriage by the Witch’s Gate

“Stars, hide your fires; Let not light see my black and deep desires”. – William Shakespeare

My love, my love your all I ever see.

My heart beats in my ear, my eye will not see shadow, or color near. Oh, thought you have left me, tongue you cannot cry or speak. For I am a lost, consumed by faire fire and light, devoured by the craft of those sounds that cannot speak. And I must know you….

By the witch’s gate, in the sea of reeds, breath of female love, gives me mystery.  Oh, you are the stars of Babylon, with your eyes so green, mother to our magic children, born from matter drawn from we. On the salty tides, with a crown of leaves. On the grace that brings a shutter, let me fall upon one knee. Let me go forth now, pronounce my love of all of thee. By the oath of love, I bring my seed in thee, until this life has passed, then on eternally. By thy olive hand, waves a mystery, under this canopy of stars, starts the life that we will be. By the sworn oath, by the earned destiny. By the growing clouds and circles, trouble cometh, bare it all with me. By the witch’s gate, I marry thee. By the witch’s gate, let sovereign be.

By a song of praise, inside a seal of stone and weed. Comes now a silent witness of a world unseen. Be it he or she, we bend ourselves to thee. Something gifted by hosts of angels, finds a place in we. Forge it a gift to me, I give it back a seed. Know you now my treasure, better than breathe in me. That November moon, seen by a swamp tree, has a bite gone, from its periphery. Bended bands on hands show imperfectibly. So is our life defined, dark messengers cry to blessed be. By the witch’s gate, I marry thee. By the witch’s gate, let sovereign be.

Shadows move, to clear the fog away, some humidity decides to stay. Open now far heavens guide us here by the witch’s gate. Our lives together bound by only what we take. Oh, this fire does clear the gloom, takes us on toward better to a different moon. Clearer than, man-made prophecy. My love, my love your all I ever see. Praise the ties that bind us, mother from her wound. What we weave. By the witch’s gate, I marry thee. By the witch’s gate, let sovereign be.

My heart beats in my ear, my eye will not see shadow, or color near. Oh, thought you have left me, tongue you cannot cry or speak. For I am a lost, consumed by faire fire and light, devoured by the craft of those sounds that cannot speak. And I must know you by the witch’s gate.

For Susan. My love, my love your all I ever see. – 11.30.21 – דָנִיֵּאל


The Haunted Time

“If it’s not one thing, it’s your mother”. – Sigmund Freud

I have traversed time, flown across a great divide, hastened shadows of unknown kinds, to seek answers to questions in the haunted time. To find out why I dream of this house and you. To tear the curtain in the temple that keeps me blind. Mom I have come from the future in search of a find.

She is hidden in great darkness, a silhouette, no face, a gloom that attaches itself against my heart but not my soul or grace. A chill beyond that upstairs door, where no one can escape. A depression lost in crying on a toilet in disgrace. A something unpleasing, a matriarchal glaze, a father standing silent, chastened by her distaste. I climb the stairs in quietness, no expression on my face, the yellow carpet under me, knows I am out of place. I have come back now, called by your ghost of grasp and tow, trying to find the reasons why I was born and how. I have trapsed through time, my life shattered undefined, my heart lonelier than all past rhymes, to understand you. Another corner to the dream of tombs, the quickened of my heartbeat way too soon. For what if after all this time. I should find the answer was denied by that not known by you.

So suddenly now, with distant sounds of a lost heartache, I find you sitting in your own mistake, not knowing what to do. “Jesus must have come, and it’s too late”, I hear you wail, as tears of sorrow run down your face, I find myself transfixed by a bathroom door. Outside the wind shapes a different landscape, but you do not notice in your forsake, self-induced depression what are you crying for. The ghost of time in me, that child that lives in dread not seen, wants to please, not know you in that inward terror that you believe. I see you and me, worst of all I see what could be, what was selfish not given in those years. And I want to leave, transfer myself to a current age, but for just a moment I stand still caged.

The whisper near, drawn from a better sphere, known as good to some, known to me. The small still voice capturing time and belief, entering life and seed entering me. Something more than words has brought me here, back in time to understand my mother’s fears. For here in this haunted time, forever forward in ties that bind, I will love her and me. It is enough to set me free.

I have traversed time, flown across a great divide, hastened shadows of unknown kinds, to seek answers to questions in the haunted time. To find out why I dream of this house and you. To tear the curtain in the temple that keeps me blind. Mom I have come from the future in search of a find. – 10.13.21 – דָּנִיֵּאל

Yazzie & I (1977)

“On the death of a friend, we should consider that the fates through confidence have devolved on us the task of a double living, that we have henceforth to fulfill the promise of our friend’s life also, in our own, to the world.” – Henry David Thoreau

I met Yazzie when I was seven and she was six.  We rubbed noses in the alfalfa field out to the North of the Nenahnezad School and made secret promises to each other.  Some I will never reveal.  Through the years, we drifted apart and then back together again.  We were a mystery to each other.  We saw wonder in the world all around us.  In September of 1977 when I was sixteen and she was fifteen, we drove out near Burnham Mesa and danced under the stars to an Alice Cooper song.  It was our first and last date.

My old friend is gone so quick, without a touch, her breath has skipped.  A seal is broken; the spirits move fast, a famous journey on a distant path.  Oh, my partner, your lips brushing past, the four winds whirling, a picture still last.  My vision, my flame, my Navajo, that warmed me when the night was cold, took me, touched me while stars preformed a mass.  We danced so close, that we weaved a cocoon while our bodies touched inside our passions grew.  For you made me a ghost, I made one of you too, the sand on my back, while the world was you.  Made me a never, never, never, never man, whispering to me “be mine in thought, if only you can.”

For it was back then, so long ago, I became first boy on a sea of sand.  And I grew still inside of first girl so true, while the demons hid while the sky turned turquoise blue.  Her sheer layered dress, her falling hair, a pathway in time that charts a future shared.  Our souls so silent before the beauty we made, below the mesa, while destiny played.  For oh, my Yazzie, we are more than flesh, under stars that trail, that seek our breath.  For You and I, were I and you, a gasp in laughter, while worlds unglued.  A time together when where, was where. Indus crosses meridian, this now September, my Yazzie you are over there.

Just last night as I tried to sleep, my mind so anxious from a week so bleak.  I saw you passing just two stars to the right, headed beyond Mercury to a sun so bright.  Your gray hair streaming turning black by my sight, and you looked so young like you did that night.  And I played some Alice, and I played him loud, for just like back then you assured this old man, we were a constant somehow.

Deb Yazzie was a dear friend of mine from Childhood that left just the other day to travel to where there is no dark valley, just open sky and the best of an enduring mystery in Neverland. – 09.29.2021 – דָּנִיֵּאל


Portals (The End of Days)

“The irrevocable hand That opes the year’s fair gate, doth ope and shut the portals of our earthly destinies; We walk through blindfolded, and the noiseless doors close after us, forever. Pause, my soul, on these strange words for ever whose large sound breaks flood-like, drowning all the petty noise our human moans make on the shores of time. O Thou that openest, and no man shuts; That shut’st, and no man opens Thee we wait!” – Dinah Maria Mulack

“It is a bad time to think about wanting baby’s”, he said. “So much happening”. “So much darkness”, “so much hate”. “Still” she says, smiling, her lips drawing back to show her teeth. Still…

And the sun hid its face…

In the end of days, the sky fell forward, rolling toward us as summer set. For the fires from California, made our breathes so hard to get. In the cities along the front range, homeless came from not the west, brought their needles, sold their spirits, laid on concrete, the only place to find their rest. Dead was color, that of aura, that which circles an Eagles nest. No one spoke language, that word of people, all was transmitted in sign or texts. For what was summoned from those that ruled us an old man, whose mind forgets. A dangerous daemon of centuries stolen. Empires fallen on rich made bets. A turn of fortune, a once held glory, in darkened churches, those once used temples, where Jesus, forgot his wept. The end of days now, a turning seraph, a plague worth noting, in our minds kept. All thine the glory, in earth forgotten, a soul of total, is judged not worthy, not on a gross but on a net.

And the moon reddened its eye…

For all who tremble looking skyward, for those who hide their dry eyes in sand. That day has long been passed. Deemed completed, to sharpen weapons to cry reset. And oh, the vale is wide indeed, barren of spirit and growth of seed, one-wheel stops, while another one turns in need. The clock no longer measures the seasons, the long grass has turned into weeds. Flags of nations wave, while Rome burns on a pirate’s creed.

And the portal was ready to receive…

In the end of days, I hold out my hand through darkness and touch you where your legs recede. The whole world is silent, as into each other our soul’s weave. A cosmic duration, that conjures meaning. Then, now, and forever, I love you. For we conceive portals, the kind each lover needs, an answer to the question, of how to believe. And the world explodes around us, the old and what was new. For the door is falling open the signs upspoken, our souls a turquoise blue.

And the day was made of lightning for the night had been so long…

“It is a bad time to think about wanting baby’s”, he said. “So much happening”. “So much darkness”, “so much hate”. “Still” she says, smiling, her lips drawing back to show her teeth. Still… – 09.08.21 – דָנִיֵּאל


The Turquoise Soul (Dreaming)

“You’ve got to always go back in time if you want to move forward.” – Snoop Dogg

“You have a turquoise iiʼ sizíinii“, Grandma Blackhorse says. She is looking deep into the campfire. The flames reflect in her aged eyes and make them look like they are glowing. “Don’t scare the boy”, Ms. Woods says. She is to my back; I can hear the sound of the dough, flipping back and forth slapping her hands. “He’s not scared “, Grandma says, opening her mouth to show a toothless smile, “he is soon to dream”. “Stop it mother, it is not their way”, Ms. Woods says, her voice lower, sounding concentrated. She is no doubt worried about the consistency of the fry bread and hoping it does not burn. “May be not their way”, Grandma, laughs, “but it is his way”. “It is his way”.

A lighter blue just before sunrise, still it is dark at 4:00 AM. Falling deep into a slumber, as the chants begin and end. Three-sixteenths a time a sliver, into a higher desert wind, high above this firmament, this journey, into your ways do I descend. Not of this world, but of this people, between four mountains that ascend. Night has fallen on the Black Yeii; let the light of holy boy begin again. Round and round the worlds bend.

So it is that I am dreaming, of the beginning and the end. Of a soul that learns from mercy, born for water in the San Juan’s
end. Star gaze I into the heavens of a universe where life begins, five billion light years of glory, while right here now I am ten again. Black, yellow, white rotates again, while the turquoise eats my sin.

A safer place has never happened, why oh why can it not be. That every grey hair on this planet should be a child with me. Spinning it would seem in a turquoise destiny. Seeing this stone ship, that which flew, with fires and ash from a deep cold blue. Now it brings me here, from time immortal, cast down by a dream so clear. Everything happens in time, a constant in movement by design. Forwards, backwards, jumping over rhymes. The answer to the riddle is those who seek will find. Floating in a dream three-sixteenths at a time. In a desert near, may be like a child the answer comes so clear. Never fear, be free, dream with me.

“Come boy, come here”. Grandma Blackhorse is motioning me over to her side of the fire, using her nose to beckon. I look to see if Ms. Woods is paying attention, but she is busy hustling pots and pans over to the house to clean. “Boy I said come here”, Grandma has raised her tone. I shuffle over to her, hesitant but not afraid for Grandma is smiling again. Grandma is holding out something in her hand, and as I reach her side, she motions for me to take it. I look for just a moment into her eyes, those eyes that have seen time, and perhaps traveled it too. When I look down, my hand is holding a piece of rough-hewn turquoise. “You have a turquoise iiʼ sizíinii”, Grandma Blackhorse says. -08.27.21- דָנִיֵּאל

Authors Note: Grandma Blackhorse’s piece of Turquoise resides with this author’s soul and rock collection, as it will until the stars fall from the sky and I fly the Shiprock home.

Never Never Land

“So come with me, where dreams are born, and time is never planned. Just think of happy things, and your heart will fly on wings, forever, in Never Never Land!” – James M. Barrie

Nothing had ever forbade me to dream of that home I searched for, that place in childhood where I felt safe. Still it seemed to elude me in my nightly visions, for to go there would require a balance. A threading of the needle between lack of, and want to. The summoning of the spirit of will. A belief in divination. The conquering of great adversities to find “Never Never Land” and to own within my own nature, that I was “The Pan”.

3:00 AM August 7, 2021

Left alone it would seem in ferocious weather on a roughhewn stone, in a violent sea. Dreams in phases am I young man, or am I in want, an old man deceived. What would I say has brought me this mystery, brought me this sword that cuts flesh from bone. Sold me naked in a world not my own. What would I say surrounds me in darkness, comforts me more than a warm bed at home. Standing still, I feel so disabled, lightning comes and I am alone. I am so alone.

The dragons have risen to lighten my darkness, come to demand a payment a toll. Deals made in ignorance, while I was younger, have put a strain on my inward soul. Questions unanswered, one and another, why do we search to find what stories have told. Too many thoughts lost in reflection, time owes no man what he cannot hold. Still I say it bold, a legend of fancy, a legacy behold. I am The Pan.

For what is the discomfort here? In my own thoughts, a judgment made clear. Flaws ingrained by my own instigated fear. Aged frowning daemons attack. To what I would not wish for myself to go back. To find my comfort in what I do lack. Wrapped in darkness within my soul. Not to see this storm in phantoms unfold. Not to see the rocks that I must climb, lines on my face, say I am out of my time. Tick tock, tick tock, I should have ran. Still my better ghost remind me in this late hour. I am The Pan.

So on to my hunt, with old bones creaking, tame the dragon my childhood is seeking. To find the tunnels, to enter the arch, know the secret that carries the ark. A covenant of mystery I see, an ancient rite brought to me. Count the numbers ahead, they fall from the skies and enter my head. Enter the sea the spirits forbade. The sky is spinning, my best plans unmade. Enter the doorways ahead. The seal is broken and time is unwed. For I will go on, straight to the castle, the light just ahead. To find the final truth, in G_D’s plan. An old man young in “Never Never Land”. I am The Pan. I am The Pan. – 08.12.2021- דָּנִיֵּאל‎ 

Here & There (You Love Me)

“Maybe I’m amazed at the way you pulled me out of time. You hung me on the line. Maybe I’m amazed at the way I really need you.” – Paul McCartney

“Maybe I’m Amazed” ….

Paul McCartney was singing as I wrote your name on my hand, And I could feel the ink seeping into my soul like a flame, taking my heart to a place I could not understand. Still, it was clear to me that here and there you loved me, and here and there I would never leave you.

I am just wandering the cosmos, when we meet, a sad bogus boy, with a spark of destiny, that only someone different can help me reach. I am looking for you to be like me, while you are looking for me to be me. For you see I have been many places, through doorways and values of times. I have seen the beginning and the lie that ends all time. Still nothing in all of those places, has been like here and there and how you have loved me. No nothing has been like this very moment in this stillness and how you love me.

I whitewashed the shadows, the link to the divine. I hid beneath memories that reached to the sky. I said I was a secret, that really was a lie. Still here and there you loved me. I drove to Albuquerque with a search a hope to find. Seven cities of Cibola of a mystic kind. I dug so many tunnels, I forgot which one was a mine. Your feet in my shoes while I am drunk in summertime. Still here and there you loved me. For G_D gives to me a mystery, a path that follows my own. A pleasure, a pain, a universe I cannot define. A placeholder you call our home. It carries an air of some kindness, sometimes a hatred so deep. Still, what I would see as challenge, is still something I would complete. With you here and there, still I love you. Still here and there you love me.

I was a whole lot more than he was, you were a bit more than her. Time was turning, spinning more than sand. The end of an age was coming. My age, my time. And when the night was silent, the ghost no longer in my head, I looked at you sleeping, touched your neck, with my wet lips. And it was okay. For while outside lightning split the sky and made glass in the sand. Bad angels fell from my sky, things I saw went away. Naked monsters no longer entwined. Here and there I loved you. Here and there you loved me.

Paul McCartney was singing as I wrote your name on my hand, And I could feel the ink seeping into my soul like a flame, taking my heart to a place I could not understand. Still, it was clear to me that here and there you loved me, and here and there I would never leave you…..

For Susan– 06.14.21 – דָּנִיֵּאל‎ 

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 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.