Sunday, May 3, 2015

Poem of an Open Highway rewrite of Walt Whitman's "Song of the Open Road" - by Bob Atkinson

Poem of an Open Highway
rewrite of Walt Whitman's "Song of the Open Road" - by Bob Atkinson

walking with my head held high
on paths uncompromising
not tethered or handicapped
fronted by wide open skies

on soft dirt trails going where I go
my arrival reverses plainly
departures for my flow
my living not ungainly

I feel good fortune naturally
feeds me endlessly
being finds my fruit of life
fallen to my hand from tree

I sob not for myself
delay not what I do
I need no institutions
to mix into my good brew

followed books of others
conversation not aligned
objecting to what another says
becomes no goal of mine

wander around in earnestness
creating not a value strong
left my golden tethers
to find purpose for my song

this world accepted for itself
stars properly arranged
I see them in the night sky
homes of life I'd see as strange

I feel that heavy rucksack
of hardships I have seen
of people wanting good lives
those living room big screens

bonds me to their travails
cannot cut those ties
have seen the disillusioned
scream for their pain and mine

on this road of victory
I see but not all seen
my vision substitutes for
an open ended scheme

my glasses filtered by experience
what have seen through darkened eyes
tells my brain to expect
more than has been applied

some who think this world
has for them not given up
as much as they should have found
giving's better than getting stuff

those who break hard rules
those with body incomplete
those who read not letters
find in life not fragmented pieces

in birth begins a journey
as life begins a quest
rush of motor to a clinic
brings adventure via test

beggar on a street corner
finds themself solution safe
because of tasting chemicals
they find purpose much erased

escape from reality
immersion within their peers
rules of order deformed for them
so they might persevere

finds not good place in their minds
finds nothing they could love
yet, belief in good fortune
tells them only of push and shove

sports auto makes a noise
which lingers for a time
what could have been if comfort
won not their goals of mind

that dandy with his hat of feather
those two who kiss so sweet
the man who brings green produce
to market once again from seed

the dead out on green lawns
with headstones denoting times
when they forced their intellect
on those who had the time

those arriving in our neighborhood
to bring possessions dear
some going back to country
city sounds ringing in their ears

we see each other not as we
go past with these strange dreams
many hopes of life begin to grow
when we manage to be free

(to be continued)

walking with my head held high
on paths uncompromising
not tethered or handicapped
fronted by wide open skies

on soft dirt trails going where I go
my arrival reverses plainly
departures for my flow
my living not ungainly

I feel good fortune naturally
feeds me endlessly
being finds my fruit of life
fallen to my hand from tree

I sob not for myself
delay not what I do
I need no institutions
to mix into my good brew

followed books of others
conversation not aligned
objecting to what another says
becomes no goal of mine

wander around in earnestness
creating not a value strong
left my golden tethers
to find purpose for my song

this world accepted for itself
stars properly arranged
I see them in the night sky
homes of life I'd see as strange

I feel that heavy rucksack
of hardships I have seen
of people wanting good lives
those living room big screens

bonds me to their travails
cannot cut those ties
have seen the disillusioned
scream for their pain and mine

on this road of victory
I see but not all seen
my vision substitutes for
an open ended scheme

my glasses filtered by experience
what have seen through darkened eyes
tells my brain to expect
more than has been applied

some who think this world
has for them not given up
as much as they should have found
giving's better than getting stuff

those who break hard rules
those with body incomplete
those who read not letters
find in life not fragmented pieces

in birth begins a journey
as life begins a quest
rush of motor to a clinic
brings adventure via test

beggar on a street corner
finds themself solution safe
because of tasting chemicals
they find purpose much erased

escape from reality
immersion within their peers
rules of order deformed for them
so they might persevere

finds not good place in their minds
finds nothing they could love
yet, belief in good fortune
tells them only of push and shove

sports auto makes a noise
which lingers for a time
what could have been if comfort
won not their goals of mind

that dandy with his hat of feather
those two who kiss so sweet
the man who brings green produce
to market once again from seed

the dead out on green lawns
with headstones denoting times
when they forced their intellect
on those who had the time

those arriving in our neighborhood
to bring possessions dear
some going back to country
city sounds ringing in their ears

we see each other not as we
go past with these strange dreams
many hopes of life begin to grow
when we manage to be free
Part II

shrill sounds of man, not nature
 fill me up with sultry dread
for with this I feel no laughter
when I get out of bed

shaking off my latest dream
never to come true
I find myself oozing wants
not purposed nor amused

here at dawn of day
or sometimes afternoon
I wish those entanglements
would quickly change my mood

but in this time, like before
my complex life fades
into a background of fears
no courage do I pace

just await my fate
while sipping roasted brew
as all do at this quiet moment
of contemplation's due

know I've been luckier than some
and less so than another
but this comforts me not a bit
as I ponder feelings of my brothers

can we see ourselves as one
or one of a number large
will we last another while
or lose this important charge

will someone I don't know
who speaks a language strange
tie his shoes in morning's sun
at this locale and stage

or will my thoughts rise to top
and certify his mind
to think like me with notions free
not in conflict with these lies

or can his intuition
force me to face real facts
I know not truly where I am
am I on some dead end tracks?

where something large to carry
people, cargo seems inert
when stopping to discard those
who came out from brown dirt

and made something of themselves
while in a struggle to survive
they thought their thoughts of reality
but couldn't answer why

why they languished in  a world
where nothing seemed sincere
only love brought them home
as they carried on with fear
(to be continued)

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