NPM: The Naming of Things

The naming of things

is the chief aim of writing

To articulate the ineffable

feelings and thoughts of the secret soul

To gaze into the inscrutable workings

of the mind and heart

and to describe whatever is detected there

This is the essence of expression

The “why” behind the struggle

to put pen to paper

even when the words don’t flow easily

To put a name to something nameless

so I know what to call myself


NPM: A Heart Like Mine

All I want is to sit and  

Listen to your heartbeat 

Steady and true

There never was a steadier heartbeat

Never a surer strength

Never so certain an embrace 


My heart is a stumbling, faltering thing

Fickle and restless

Unfaithful, wandering nomad

Can it settle down with yours?

Can it keep your steady pace?

Your constancy?

Could they possibly align?

For yours is not a heart like mine

NPM: Through the Fire

As wax held in the fire’s heat
Let holiness and my heart meet
For in that purifying flame
My heart will never be the same
It will grow warm and soft and tame
To take the imprint of Your Name
Let me be tempered in this blaze
And make me pleasing to your gaze
For everything that I desire
Is gained by passing through the fire


Autumn’s Torch

My eyes have grown dark of late.
The world I once saw was bright and hopeful and lovely,
but it has become washed over with shades of grey.
I know the world has not changed,
but rather my eyes and the mind that perceives it:
a heart that is muted, dull, heavy,
and nearly blind to beauty.
And just as the last luster seems lost from my vision,
Autumn arrives, torch in hand,
and sets the trees ablaze.
They flame, they burn… for me.
They blaze so brightly, so vividly
that I am forced to remember the world I once knew,
forced to see it, still here, still stunning.
A sky so vibrantly blue,
a sun that paints the horizon with its dying light.
In this last profusion of color before the coming of the night,
the grey is washed from my eyes with tears of gratitude.


Know Thyself

“Know thyself,” the Ancients said
as if it could be done
I lie here in a stranger’s bed
and dream within a stranger’s head
The battle’s just begun

And as I dream, it seems to me
It would be just as well
To know the bottom of the sea
Know all of every mystery,
Heaven’s heights, the depths of Hell

I look into the mirror’s glass
And see a stranger’s eyes
Where doubts and dreams and shadows pass
Too swift to count, too full, too fast
Each blazes as it dies

Impossible to know my way
When I change constantly
Her mouth speaks words I’d never say
Her heart is quick to go astray
She is so strange to me


NPWM Day 29: Walls

The first line of this poem is borrowed from Robert Frost’s “Mending Wall.”


Something there is that doesn’t love a wall,

but it is not the human heart.

No, our hearts build walls

without conscious thought or hesitation.

In a desperate bid for 


we throw up defenses

miles high,

meters thick.

After its first taste of pain,

the heart reacts the same way

again and again,

to keep others out,

to stay safe and untouched.

Walls within walls,

and behind them,

corridors and halls

ever twisting,


and somewhere inside


a fluttering, frightened heart.

And yet,

from its refuge,

its self-imposed prison,

it gazes out,

hoping that someone worthy

will scale the walls

and search the halls.

It longs with such desperation

for someone to seek it,

see it, need it,

know it.

The walls it crafted over years

suddenly become confining, isolating.

And protection is not so important now.

If only it could feel again


Something there is that doesn’t love a wall,

and perhaps that something

is the heart, after all.


NPWM Day 25: Heart of Stone

Can you miss something you’ve never known?

Is it possible that this heart of stone

yearns to be a heart of flesh?

Even though the languid stream of years

pushes me further from that unjaded youth

and forces me to face the truth:

that I am growing older

and harder

and guarded,

even so,

can you relearn what you’ve once known?

Can you soften a heart of stone?