ready or not

my destiny is entangled
with the seething magma
deep beneath yellowstone park

infrequent geysers are spouting often
foretelling the impending eruption

it is nothing personal,
but mass devastation must occur
in order to make room for the new

our prized possessions
buried in lava and ash
swept away in a flash
no more nation
no more identities
no salvation of the faithful few

maybe a handful will survive
the long worldwide winter
and calamity
that will ensue

all is provided abundantly
almost too comfortably yet
complete destruction absolutely
will return be assured

we all know how stuck we are
how nothing will change
until we’re knocked to our knees

the new will always arrive
ready or not
regardless of whether
we say yes or please

©John Greenleaf-Maple – text and art 20180503

because you found this

please know that it is not by accident
your eye was drawn by luminous intent
to arrive at this message
which wishes to say
that your particular way of being
in this world today your presence
will bring love to some person
who needs to feel within their soul
the perfection of their inherent worth
or in the miraculous nature of serendipity
perhaps it is you who needs to receive
love today yet again through synchronicity
and a strange but true divine reciprocity
the gift is given to those who give
shared love brings hope to all in need
within a short while you’ll see what I mean
kindly accept this intention and proceed

©John Greenleaf-Maple – text and art 20180503


i was thinking about kindness
relaxed in steaming hot water
before tomorrow’s departure
and compassion the picture
of this attractive young woman
who fell in love with Dad
and Johnnie, Debbie, Lori and Bonnie
all at once we were
immediately adopted
by Anita JoAnne everyone called her JoAnne those around her
always felt welcomed by that name

the suicide of Coralie Rose began to heal
we were about 7, 5, 4 & 3
but what a miracle this mother
gave everything she had
decorated for every holiday
made ever changing creations
delicious and nutritious cuisine
and i can’t think of an instance
where she treated us as anything
other than completely worthy
of love and encouragement
she ice skated with us
on our little frozen pond
in still undeveloped partially
wooded Wyandotte County, Kansas
fell once taking our picture
with a little plastic Kodak
and had to have five stitches
above her right eye
inflicted by the smashed camera

she learned to fly had a
commercial instrument rating

she knew how manage a short runway
Dad was her instructor and made certain
she could recover from anything
every year she raced
in The Powder Puff Derby
women competing in navigation
and piloting skills
over several days
she was a formidable
always gracious and capable contender

their years of soaring together
were the absolute best i think
weather and navigation maps were
standard table fare we all
knew the cloud types and could estimate
distance to ceiling by sight

we were illumined by flight
the characteristics of positive lift
flowing above the wing pulled it
into the sky there was overcast
at 5000 feet but above
nothing but calm crisp bright blue air
all of the learning became lost in it
here the horizon became unlimited
we banked into the wind
left stick and aileron
a little throttle
the sunlit compass ball
tumbling toward our new heading

©John Greenleaf-Maple – text and art 20180422


your beloved presence
fills my heart
as we hug again
familiar comfort
in our shared nest

your journey of shifting sand
meets my trail of unyielding roots
and unconditional acceptance
sweeps us into its arms
a dizzying tangle like
eagles plunging earthward
rapt in evolutionary bliss

yet now still miraculously
we are together above and below
swooping through the lucid light
allowing what will grow
to develop in the one universal
natural warm rhythm

the landscape streams by
with highly detailed clarity
every possibility rapidly unfolds

©John Greenleaf-Maple – text and art 20180422

a sense of us

i have no sense
that i can err
for all of me
is held within this

i float absorb gills
become more human
in a vast amniotic sea

may you be filled with joy,
blessed mother,
for your joy is my joy
i feel it to the depths
of my soft developing bones

and also in yours
your strong limbs
mine still forming
so inseparably are we joined
your body is also completely me

never can i speak of this
your disbelief in a wordless world
is what i see when i travel deep
within your labyrinthine mind

once like the me that is we
now you dine on a banquet
of thoughts feelings so complex
there is a preverbal problem
with translation
a large unknown separation
floats beyond in blinding light

assured absent of any words
of perfect trusting innocence
i am securely held and nurtured
in this unerring all of me

yet i can sense time approaching
and the incalculable distance
thoughts traveled to believe in you
soon i too will fight for air and forget

©John Greenleaf-Maple – text and art 20180420

witnessing the birth of the world

shadow inches over the lip
of this press into grass
where a deer has been sleeping

some moments stand out most clearly
in the orange slant of sunrise
light is red shifted more air

has been journeyed through
before it lights up the stage
suddenly blazing with possibility

we wake from a bed of fragrant stems
amble down to the glittering creek
drink golden chilled mist laden with light

this is the single awakening of all
a shared instance arising like a sigh
verdant hills coalescing languidly into place

©John Greenleaf-Maple – text and art 20180414


i dream you into focus
a flurry of rain soaked wings
shadows that dissolve into mist
your light is seeping in

soon this dusting of snow
will evaporate sunward
new birds are arriving daily
already some hatchlings
have died in the lawn
our dogs delight
in rolling upon their carcasses
a strong canine predatory instinct

they fetch us the stench of death
still i see somewhat peripherally
at the edge of sense
an almost directly known presence
the atmosphere is growing full
our sun sets the horizon ablazing
on a truly grandiose scale

there is a direct bodily response
energy swirls about the heart
ah, and the warm glow just knows
it is kindred to the stars
and that all light every source
emanates outward from within

in a long stretch of silence
no words can convey
the certainty of this
is known without reason
all of the thinking
dropped casually to the floor
the sensual touch of the world silkily arises
in this indrawn breath
the world is still arriving

©John Greenleaf-Maple – text and art 20180408