Lyric Poet

Poetry by Brent Futo

All poems copyright Brent Futo 1980-2005.

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"The Fool"

The Fool

The trumpets piped their message loud,
They pierced the crisp cool autumn air.
Impassioned chords aroused the crowds,
They stopped to listen everywhere.

"Ye all who are both fast and fleet,
Ye all with wills and bodies strong,
Prepare thy mounts and promptly meet
Upon His Majesty's great lawn!"

And thus was heard the King's decree,
By every shire and every house.
The peasant voices mused in sync,
"Which knight shall win this royal joust?"

A hundred glory-seeking swords
Arrived upon the battle lawn.
The cheers arose up from the hordes
When stood the King and cried, "Be on!"

The break of bone, the craft of crunch
The art of war, finess of fight--
This fearsome, forceful fall of flesh
Was hailed by all with great delight!

And when the dust abruptly died,
The sun revealed a mounted four.
"Brave knights do cease," the King then cried,
"I wish thy tongues to now explore!"

"Dismount thy beasts, approach my stand,
Thy fighting skills are matched by none.
This day I'll grant my daughter's hand,
But not until ye four are one!"

"Announce thyselves and sing thy fame,
For one indeed hath much to win.
The stakes are high this royal game,
Enough I've said, now ye begin".

"My name, my King, is Knight of Strength.
No man can stand my mighty blow.
My reputation's spread great length,
My lance is every other's woe!"

"I am the Duke of Intellect,
With mind much sharper than his lance.
Whilst other's swords with rage are wrecked,
My blows are guided not by chance".

"My name is Sir Experience,
The fight to I is but an art.
Whilst greater knights are taut and tense,
I pick such brains and bones apart!"

"No warrior's titles do I own,
My mind and body both are thin.
My knowledge is a seed ungrown,
Yet by my soul, this fight I'll win!"

Thus said, the word had run its course,
As each contestant climbed his steed.
Again the issue came to force,
Each seeking to uphold his creed.

The Strength, he was the first to fall,
The victim of a faster thought.
The Intellect was next made small
By one who knew how thinkers fought.

No more the four, but two instead
Collided, then the crowd's surprise
As silence fell, as though a death,
When one thin knight stood 'fore their eyes.

"Who art thou Sir, with name unknown?
I pray thee to reveal thy face.
Thy skill and valor thusly shown,
Thy riches now ye may embrace".

"I humbly do accept thy jewel,
Not as a knight, but as a squire.
The world refers to me as 'Fool'--
My name, however, is Desire!"


Sometimes in the Darkness

Sometimes in the darkness, I see things most clearly.
Sometimes when we're parted, I hold you most nearly.
Sometimes in dead silence, I hear lively voices.
Sometimes in confusion, I make the right choices.

Sometimes when I'm coldest,
Sometimes when I'm oldest,
Inexplicably, I'm warm--and boldest!

Sometimes when I'm crying lowly,
Sometimes when I'm dying slowly,
In my own mind, I'm flying--wholely!

Some say life is accidental.
I suspect it's mostly mental.

"Reading Blake on a Stormy Night"

Blake's "The Angel of the Revelation"

Sheltered, shuttered tight, high in my airee,
Whilst all around the howls of a thousand angry souls,
Toss about, toss without an inner peace,
Pressing through this mansard roof I sit beneath,
In quest of worldly moles.

"Latent resident, unembolt thy door,
And smell this breeze that drifts from the edges of the earth,
Thick as blood, laced with passion's very scent,
Flowing through celestial veins, transfusing breath
To every silent worth!"

"Fear not sacred wind, here in my airee,
Though grounded still, yet shall I arise and vaporize,
To enjoin wafting words, immersed in verse,
Floating down from frothing frowns of ancient bards,
Who fly these frantic skies!"

"Lonely Gift"


He wrote great verse,
Verse of love, of men and wives,
Verse the world assumed was born
Of his own charmed and visionary life.
He wrote great songs,
Songs of love, of passion's bliss,
Songs that lovers often mouthed,
Lips pursed to form, a first romantic kiss.
He wrote great prose,
Prose from which romance arose,
As his words entranced the heart
Pungent as rain and fragrant as a rose.
He wrote such things,
Yet knew them not, save in his dreams,
In his mind and in his heart.
Late at night, lonely tears would flow as streams.
A poet's soul
Writes and writhes in worlds unreal.
He'd trade his gift and all his words,
For a love, that is his, and truly real.

"Girl's Night Out"

Finally free...

Amidst the smokey sky and beer-stained velvet chairs,
She scurries from her perch and rises to the air.
Repressed and caged for years, by disapproving peers,
Her empty nest remains; she's overcome her fears.
The music calls her out, as she begins to fly,
She soars with every beat; the rhythm takes her high.
The music gives her wings, and frees her inner child.
She dances like a fiend--ecstatic, loose and wild.
She loses track of time and dances through the night.
She can't remember why they said this isn't right.
She doesn't even care who sees her on the floor.
She dances 'til she falls, then dances even more.
Monday morning comes, and she returns to work,
Falls back to the earth, and sits back on her perch.
But never will again, at any time or age,
Will she be a good girl, and sit still in her cage.

"When She Flies"

When She Flies

When she flies, eagles are envious of her wings,
Clouds are lower than her reach, sunlight is dimmer than her glow.
When she flies, spectators gather to watch her flight,
Awed and humbled by her grace, enraptured and slain by her show.
When she flies, all of her fantasies fly with her,
Fears and fetters fall earthbound, every restriction left behind.
When she flies, into her future, she sheds her past,
High above her former self, a new inner soul she will find.
When she flies, sometimes I fly with her, sometimes not,
Drafting in her placid wake, I am but grateful to be there.
When she flies, I thank the heavens for her new wings,
And pray maybe, in some way, I am a portion of her air.

Copyright Brent Futo 1980-2003.