A Midnight Ballad


I think I now have a new perspective on the lack of photographs relating to the apparent sightings of Bigfoot, the Sasquatch and Eastern Coywolves.

Just now, a bit past midnight, I was walking our pup and meandered down a desolate and dimly lit lane.

There, watching the shooting stars disappear into crisp cold air, a loud yelping in the marsh to my North shattered all of night’s silence.

Instinctively, as is habit, I retrieved my harmonica began to play a soft ballad from the mountains.

If it was intended to calm the creatures, it did not.

The yelps became barks and then, in my limited hearing … growls!

While playing the C note with my right hand, deftly I retrieved a LED Tac light from my left pocket …

The subtle rhythm of the harmonica rose at once to a powerful crescendo that echoed across the marshland as my light met six brilliant eyes just beyond the reeds.

Fixated, the ballad played on, while a pair of eyes moved slowly to the right, their left, yet their heads most alertly right, never losing the luminous of the light.

One however, was unmoved and glared straight to me – eyes set a foot above the other two and therein possessing a fuse of burning orange and yellow and glinting green.

With ballads end in winter’s breath, a long silence separated our gaze … then at the moment I felt a connection, there was a blink, then two and three.

Invisible, vanished . . . ghosts.

All described here roughly transpired in three plus minutes and thus, in my marvel of our Lord’s creations, I took not a single picture.


Sent from 🚂 📞 . . .

© All rights reserved 2018



In dawn’s bitter cold and most blinding wind, a vast cloud thus shrouds the land in grey and there invades and blankets all these rural lands.  

 To the far edges of the fields, there howl a hundred Coywolves, each in cascading echo that carries upward with the swift West wind.   

The Puppy walks with a most tenacious step, looking to his right and far off to his left.  With each measured step towards the altar in the vast open field, his ears and tail drop towards an awaiting acceptance.

Upon the splash of Holy water to his bowed head, there does all howling cease, the clouds part and the winds suddenly dissipate. 

  It is then that the warmth of the sun is revealed. 

  So it was. 





                           END OF THE LINE


On the penultimate stop, where the tracks thin in the vast darkness of the cold northern border, a man steps aboard in a swirl of misting rain and snow – wearing a swagger that carries his wide brimmed hat and rattle snake boots to the empty seats of four.  Before sitting, he looks aft and smiles to the darkened empty car and gently removes his guitar from his back.   

As the train moans through the steep ascents and accelerates through the coniferous forest valleys, the man begins to strum.  The soft acoustic rhythm that is carried above the rattling of the frozen tracks awakens however, none who sleep.    It is the words from his soulful lips, in those next many miles that left a lasting image and so did resonate….

‘Oh my dear and so precious one 

know here and hear me now 

how His was the hand

that caught me when I fell 

Seemed forever just to say

that all would be well 

all would be well

all would be well

The Lord’s plan my darling it didn’t have to be mine 

such was just the way with the mighty Divine

All the way to the end of the line 

to the end of the line

the end of the line

end of the line


In the end his battle, well

that couldn’t be won

His body riddled

weary and worn

an inner strength

still did exist

refused and could never be torn

All the way to the end of the line 

to the end of the line

the end of the line

end of the line


These years now well

they’ve come and past so damn fast

I can’t sometimes even barely look back 

Just doing my best

to stay on close to the track

All the way to the end of the line 

to the end of the line


So within these strong weathered hands, 

born upon this vast and toiled land

I hold these leathered reins


Oh Lord you know

there’s a strength to be found 

in these veins

All the way to the end of the line 

to the end of the line


Come now then my son

come on and take my hand

come take my hand

Let’s keep riding on through our given night 

and cross that river to a higher ground 

Leave these here dry’n tears

never to be found

Let a cold rain cleanse this pain 

forever from our souls

exhaust its very existence

from our sight

All the way to the end of the line 

to the end of the line


Come this dawn’s awakened arrival 

we shall

we shall again once say

we knew

we knew

that all would be well 

all would be well


Darling my dear 

and so precious one 

know right here

hear me now

that this ain’t no end of the line 

Son, this ain’t the end of the line 

this ain’t no end of the line

ain’t the end of the line.’


Baby, this ain’t no end of the line 

this ain’t the end of the line

ain’t no end of the line

ain’t the end of the line. . . ’


 Sent from Rail 📞 . . .


© All rights reserved 2018




In my travels, some have asked:  ‘why do you fish when often there are no fish?     Why do you walk those long trails of sand to fish all the skinny waters and vast swollen estuaries, only to fail?’

To which I pause, reflect and reply:

Fail?  No, not fail.   For standing before a shimmering sea with ones back to the land, all existence tends to fade into a timeless moment that knows no past nor future – just the time in your hand.   It is above all others, the nourishment of the soul and it is time on the water.”


Sent from 🚂 📞 . . .

© All rights reserved 2018



     They enter and have sat separately on opposing sides of the aisle,  yet clearly they are together.  He is taller than she.  He wears a beige ball cap on top of his shaved skull advertising NYC – likely bought on 34th and 7th.   She carries a light duffel over her right shoulder atop a grey sweatshirt and wears tiny red sneakers.  Her manner is thoughtfully efficient and I suppose this is by intent.  Once situated, she adjusts her dark glasses and readjusts her short raven black hair.  

     She is upset.  

     If this is seen at all by the man now seated in the opposite aisle wearing what appears to be a kasaya type robe, it is only by the windows reflection as he stoically stares  out.   

     The miles pass as the Eastbound accelerates onward and with each passing minute with less tasks to attend to, her frustration builds.   He meanwhile continues to nonchalantly stare out his window.   

     By the third stop with the car filling up, she looks sharply his way, slowly back up to the ceiling, then quickly grabs her duffel and takes the seat next to him.  
His head adjusts slightly left to avoid the peripheral and stares absently upon an unseen passing land. 

     After a long spell she leans in and begins to speak in his direction.   I surmise her words are of some northern Mandarin dialect, of which I understand little but on occasion, have pretended to speak with fluency.   It is now more the inflection of her voice, her turn of the shoulders and gestures of the hands that assist my observation and summarizes my deductions.  
She speaks in the measured tone of one thoughtful, sympathetic and while apologetic, quite practiced at driving her point home.   

     I am impressed.  

     He is respectful not to ignore her and neither raises a hand to stop nor refuse his ear.   He nods often and when he shakes his head and stares left out the window murmuring words I cannot hear in a language foreign, she pauses for reflection.  

     Back and forth does this transpire that I am unaware of several voice mails missed.   When I have looked back, he has turned to her and his eyes are moist with emotion.   She reaches to his hand and when clasped, he leans in and they warmly embrace as the train slowly pulls into the station.  


Sent from 🚂 📞 . . .


© All rights reserved 2018

Arrival From Departure


in the footless halls of air

all became clear

though mist and fog

muddled the slog

a streaking star at once illuminated

the half light and albeit brief

gave towards sight

of everlasting relief

with cupped hands and strained neck

each stroke furthered distance from the wreck

darkness given way to grey

such must be the way

onward upward onward

tumbling over thin crisp air

departure from all despair

vertigo lost in the sanctity of time

punching through into

the brilliance of the Divine


Sent from 🚂 📞 . . .


© All rights reserved 2018



He walks at a labored pace and those that pass him on this busy platform do so with neither a glance nor a nod. 

His clammy palms subconsciously hold grip to a leather briefcase, to prevent its slip.

His damp shirt beneath his blazer, selected just hours before with dawns awakened optimism, now restricts his gait and thus disguises his youth.   

                                    He has been bitten.  


Eight tiny legs, one very small bite …  yet possessing one heck of a powerful punch.    

Sliding into his seat, the conductor twice assists him in finding his ticket and at once brings him water.   

The dreams while the Northeast Regional carves through Summer’s splendid land are medieval, violent and punctuated with the glorious. 

Stepping off the rail, his fever’s first wave having just passed, he sucks the cool salt air deep into his lungs while giving the conductor a fatigued wave as he steps into the light.