Joseph Farley, US




Free Verse


The people in your life
are so much furniture.
You move them around
from room to room
mixing and matching
and hiding away
all you claim
to hold dear
while you dance
through their lives
and out the door
and over the hill
while the sun sets low
and the shadows grow
around the empty rooms
youíve left behind.



In The Dark Hours

The sun is plunging
But Iím not there.
People are walking
without a care,
but Iím where you are,
in sunlight or shade,
Iím there beside you
Chasing clouds away.
When it rains
Iím your umbrella.
When it snows
I keep you warm,
And when the sun glows
Hot on your skin
Iíll be your cool water
And everything.
I wonít let the dark dream
Take you away,
Cause with me here
I want you to stay.
Iíll be your sunshine.
Iíll be your shade.
Iíll keep you happy
On the cloudiest day.



Greenhouse Winter

Snow drips from the roof
half liquid half solid,
ploop in the driveway.
The snow does not last
the way I used to.
A quick thaw
is to be expected,
taxing roofs and
drainage systems.
It does not seem
like winter
with one day cold
and the next
sixty degrees.
I look out
from my window
and do not see
only rows of houses
and circling cars,
maybe a cardinal
fluttering red
against white
near a stand of trees,
a flickering hope
of future springs.



Twas The Day Before The Night

All work stops
though weíre on the clock.
Itís the day before Christmas
and no boss dares
to expect much
unless heís in retail.

Secretaries sneak out
down the fire escape,
return with packages
and wrapping paper
and hide themselves away
in the file room.

The boss of bosses
is nowhere to be seen.
Last I heard he was
drinking eggnog
and wondering out loud
why there was no mistletoe.

The HR director
pulled him aside
and explained the realities
of the modern workplace.

After that he was gone
with a loud ďHo Ho HoĒ,
having sprinkled desks
with bonus checks
small but appreciated.

Thereís a strip club
not far from here.
Some say the big man
has gone caroling there.
It does not matter where,

heís not around
and that gives us
a holiday green light
to act like weíre not
in an office,
but back in school.

Let the moment be merry.
It will not last.
It will disappear
with the passing year,
so we must take it
while we can,
but please
not rears or breasts
on the photocopier.



School of Rock

a seismic tremor
through the air
rattles the eardrums
as you stare
at the boy
who would be a man
up on stage
playing guitar
as loud and fast
as he can.

the ampsí roar
blocks out the shouts
of teen age girls
and doting mothers.
All you feel
is the floor boards
vibrating up your leg
and filling your heart
with something
that may be pride.



Visiting The Dead In Winter

a white cross
on a white hill
surrounded by

the sun refracts
off ice and snow
covering lumps
at regular

the arch
of the iron gate
points skyward

no movement


tired crows
from barren
tree branches

circle and land
slip back
to quiet




Out of the Box

reality is
four walls
and a ceiling

a box
from which
there is
no escape

are a key
to unlock
a secret door

and discover
vast expanses
of endless wonder

Out of the Box

reality is
four walls
and a ceiling

a box
from which
there is
no escape

are a key
to unlock
a secret door

and discover
vast expanses
of endless wonder

life in a box
is not for me
I need
to be free

so choose
over walls
pressing in







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