Lyric Poet

Poetry by Brent Futo

Copyright Brent Futo 1980-2003.

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"Soul Snatcher"

Soul Snatcher

Her soul was snatched at twenty-five.
I stayed behind, a body live,
A ship at sea without a wind,
A girl who lost her only friend.
She raced through life, the one who died,
I lived to slowly die inside,
And trusted no one from that day,
The day God snatched her soul away.
Why her?  So young, so strong, so fair
(Though chemo stole her long blonde hair).
Why couldn't she have lived instead?
It seems the wrong girl wound-up dead.
And how ironic is this fate,
That God would make His first mistake,
And snatch the flesh from her strong soul,
And leave my weakened spirit whole?

"Father's Prayer"

Father's Prayer

I cannot hold you to my breast,
And offer you the drink of life,
Yet my womb--a spirit one--
Shall nourish you throughout your life.

I cannot always keep you in
The clenching shelter of my arms,
And hide from you the sacred treasures,
Buried deep in pain and harm.

I cannot draw a waking breath,
But with my hopes in each exhale.
Yet more intoxicating air
Is watching you chase your own grail.

I cannot carry you for long,
Or walk with you when old legs fail;
But I shall teach you how to fly,
Without this earthly shell or sail.

I can't bequeth you more than this
(All else I paint will flake and fall):
I'll love myself as I love you,
And love your mother most of all.

"Bedtime Prayer"

Mt. Vesuvius before it destroyed a civilization

Vesuvius, Vesuvius,
Pray still thy evil lavan laughter.
Retract thy molten magma fingers,
Snuff out this stench of death that lingers,
Slip on thy whitest icy glove,
And let us dream this night of love.

Vesuvius, Vesuvius,
Beneath thy watch, in bedtime chambers,
We'll cleave in all-consuming passion,
A death-defying lover's ration,
As though the morning should not come,
To rouse us with its rising hum.

Vesuvius, Vesuvius,
Should not thee stay such execution,
And choose to ooze beyond our sashes,
Herculean forms and ashes
We pray shall rest in huddled grace,
With faith, not fear, on every face,
That clutch not selves, nor gold, nor charms,
But sleep-filled infants' precious arms.

Vesuvius, Vesuvius,
Thy threats shall but develop us!
Vesuvius, Vesuvius,
Thy earthen hell shall not envelop us!

"Someday, as the Wren Sings"

Someday, as the Wren Sings

As the wren sings,
In the highest cool and misty
Mountain morning frost,
Foggy pillows--
Airborn willows--
Shall enwrap and float away
Darkness-drowning, dewy days.

As the clouds lift,
And the sunlight finally finds me,
Deep within this haze,
Warming showers--
Healing powers--
Shall at last be free to fall
On my spirit, not my wall.

"The Front"

The Front

Whether or not the weather is hot,
The facades are the same for the bearers of brunt.
Though the souls may be bruised, and the wrapings quite used
The word will be warm when it comes from the front.

The north winds that blow bring the numbness of snow,
To the ones underneath bound in brown earthen blight.
But the vision above, of the winter's white glove,
Is the picture of heavenly placid delight.

Blessed jet stream of hope, on your promise we cope,
As we stiffly await the arrival of spring,
In the form of a breath, born of winter's own death,
To revive sinking spirits and uplift weary wings!

If it's true that the warm front precipitates cold,
And youthful smiles always hasten the old,
How still can a man or a woman regret,
Refuting pain others would rather forget,
In a world where insiders spend the least time inside,
And the least-sought possessions are courage and pride?

"A Fine Day to Die"

A Fine Day to Die

In a cathedral, a Dubliner grew
From but an infant, to boy whom Christ knew,
Who shunned his own will, to serve only Him
Who vowed to return to rule once again.
"'Tis a fine day to die, God,
'Tis a fine day indeed".

In same cathedral, this lad now a man
Stood with his woman, and took her small hand,
And uttered these words, "'til death do us part,"
And with one gold ring, encircled her heart.
"'Tis a fine day to die, lass,
'Tis a fine day indeed".

In a great castle, this man now of means
Knelt down in reverence, before his great king,
And pledged all his lands, his servants to fight--
He knelt as a knave, then rose as a knight.
"'Tis a fine day to die, lord,
'Tis a fine day indeed".

When came the battle, he surveyed his foe--
Thrice his own army, the outcome was known.
He took up his cross, his ring and his sword.
And turned to his boys, and shouted these words,
"'Tis a fine day to die, lads!
'Tis a fine day indeed!"

Now no cathedral, just graveyard instead,
Where Dubliners flock to honor their dead,
A tombstone implores, to whom may pass by
To live not for self, but for sacrifice:
"'Twas a fine day to die here,
'Twas a fine day indeed".

"To The Parents of a Special Friend"

Mother and Kids

I lie here in the midnight silence,
Pondering this sweet resplendent night.
I offer up a prayer to heaven,
But have two more, on earth, whom I must cite.
Two people whom I've never queried,
Spoken with, or even ever known--
The parents of a certain siren,
Who sprang forth from their safe and settled home.
I thank you both for care-free childhoods,
Given those who hatched within that nest,
Learning well how precious gifts are--
And that a child,of all God's gifts, is best.
I thank you for installing sweetness,
In your house, in all who dwelled within,
And building grace, and finding reverence,
That only God and love and hope can send.
I thank you for her inward beauty,
Born of two who've loved throughout the years--
The inate offspring of a marriage,
That nurtures her today, and calms her fears.
I'm grateful for her loving nature,
Based on faith, respect, and love of self--
The end result, she also loves those,
Worthy of such love, perhaps myself.
You'll ask her how I know such secrets,
Having only seen her best and worst--
In simple terms, I love your daughter,
In no small part, because you loved her first.

Copyright Brent Futo 1980-2003.