The Drum

I still remember the sky was a deep sapphire that afternoon when the dead drone of the drum began,

their coffers were far from empty but they were still hungry for power and dollars, their only Gods

not a hint of regret laid across the lips of lady liberty but it did her people, they are good people, mostly, simple people

the propaganda machine had spewed its stinking filth for years leaving us so numb we were willing to believe anything, but this time was different

divisions were melting away, our world was shrinking and people were thinking, yearning badly for a lasting peace so the powers that be brought us only war

after all it's never been their sons or daughters who get the blood on their hands, only the simple people are sent to inflict the wounds and collect the scars that will cause hate and pain to rip through generations, like a tsunami

our deepest level of trouble were the false flags of fear, their hypnotic switches causing one to doubt what they know to be true

 

in their hearts, this is all they need, easy belief of these kinds of lies have always been the weeds in our garden

but the peace has always been there within us, we see the shine of it from the corners of our eyes deep down like a gold nugget flashing, nestled in the smooth rock of the river bed

to uncover it, we need

less logic and more ramble but we must learn this quickly

before our world lies

smoldering in shambles,

this time there will be no second chances, no Phoenix rising, not this time

through all of this they failed to realize that this is just the sort of thing that turns peaceful souls into revolutionaries,

our righteous and beautiful voices

may just shout them down in unison, most of us, we are just

simple people after all,

simple folks who want the chance to succeed or fail, fill our lungs with clean fresh air, and slay our demons one by one, have ourselves a bit of fun

but in the distance I hear the dreaded drum, the dead drone of the drum.

War Drum

~Eric Vance Walton~

 

Deep Pockets, Empty Souls

So many little stories unfold  all around us we must smile

and try to enjoy

our brief journey, the intricacies 

of which we 

know nothing 

about, really we must dig deep

to find our greatest joy

and relish each moment

in its wonder only then we will know

this isn't just a world of 

deep pockets 

and empty souls. ~Eric Vance Walton~

Fire

May the itch of wanting 

to know what's

around each bend

always nag you

may your bearings

you never fail

to find,

and a pleasant calm

drift over you 

and usher tranquil sleep

each night 'till rise and shine

may your soul

always be 

at peace

when life takes 

you far from home,

may you follow 

in the footsteps 

of your Father

in whichever 

world you choose 

to roam

may you be wise enough

not be saddened

by the embers' fading glow,

but have the wit 

to build your own fire 

whenever cold winds blow. ~Eric Vance Walton~

Still the Bell Tolls

Once we had broad shoulders and callused hands,

we were craftsmen

and held in high esteem

those who made things, 

ingenuity ran in our blood once we were young, 

full of enthusiasm

we convinced ourselves 

that our way was better,

we sold the world the fabric 

of our idealism to weave

their own magic carpet  now we are lost,

we are listless

our eyes dead from worry,

our souls scarred by greed

we have all that we want

but not enough of what we need,

still the bell tolls giving all we think 

we have to give

and then we give more

to serve our corporate Lords

I fear that we will never

be able to replace 

what they've subtracted

nor fully decipher 

what's been redacted,

still the bell tolls the foundation 

of our empire quivers,

but the Lords are 

too brazen to shiver 

as we awaken

hungry in our cells,

still the bell tolls we are catching fire

some call it revolution 

but it's only evolution 

to a higher consciousness

it's time for change

let's come together

and let the bell toll. ~Eric Vance Walton~

The Greatest Gift

  When there are no more jobs for these hands, no more ideas  streaming from my mind

I wish to be remembered as a cultural chameleon, a humble drifter, sensitive to the beauty of this world

these days, they are borrowed, but the memories are ours to keep

the greatest gift of the mortal is living a life so brave that you find your tribe, and grow old with those know your soul so well, they can see the world through your eyes.

~Eric Vance Walton~

What If?

What if all that we've been taught is wrong?   What if we live in a world

where vanity is a kind of virtue? A place where confidence and

self-love are the first steps

in opening up your heart

to the miracle that exists

within you. What if reality, as we know

it isn't truth at all but its antithesis? Comprised of falsehoods 

that serve all but the greater good, 

bars to keep us imprisoned 

so that we may never know 

the true power of our souls. ~Eric Vance Walton~

A Writer's Life

Shaky with apprehensions, poorer this year than the last,

existing in the place between

what will be and what has passed

 

it’s an author’s life for me

I have given the benefit of every doubt,

and during fevers of eloquence,

found myself electrified absolutely

by the lightning bolt of muse

 

this current flowing through me,

greater than any currency

it has given me friends that span oceans wide

there are no borders here, no blind pride

we are bound by our love of words,

and have found an all embracing tenderness

that shows us

there should be no other way.

 

~Eric Vance Walton~

The Way (we’re supposed to be) 

These days, it seems we engross ourselves 

in bucket lists,

and dream often

of the excitement 

of far off, distant places

 

we constantly seek escape 

from the mundane 

and dive deep 

into the blue glow 

of our screens

while ignoring our dreams

and the gift of life 

unfolding all around us sometimes our peace

lurks in the familiar, 

the energy we feel 

from the person across the table, 

in the micro-expressions,

the slightest twitch of an eyelid

or that certain sarcastic smile sometimes our answers 

are tucked away in the most 

comfortable of places,

where people know us deeply

but love us just the same

 

as I find myself 

in the full vigor 

of my middle years

I know in every 

cell of my being

that we must learn to 

love who we are,

to feel joy right

where we stand,

at this very moment.

 

and if we find 

we can’t do that, 

then something 

must drastically change. ~Eric Vance Walton~

Special Announcement

DEAR READERS: I’m excited to announce the pre-sales for my newest handmade poetry chapbook start now!  

EMANCIPATION is the second volume of my poetry chapbook series.  Artist Kristi Casey has outdone herself this time by creating a beautiful work of art that incorporates a technique called encaustic painting.  The chapbook is handmade, hand-bound, numbered, and autographed. Emancipation contains twenty-three original poems with the general theme of freedom. I’m so proud to share this project with you.

 

This book of original poetry will have a very limited print run of 75 copies for this handmade version. The dimensions of the book are 5” x 6” and the interior is printed on 24lb paper. Since it’s handmade, each copy will be slightly different in appearance.

 

PRICE:

$15.50 per copy (shipping included/U.S. domestic only); and

 

$14.00 per copy for those outside of the U.S. (plus a flat shipping fee of $10 for up to 5 copies shipped to the same address).

 

Reserve your chapbook(s) via PayPal (https://www.paypal.com) in 4 easy steps: 1. log onto your Paypal account;  2. choose, “Pay or Send Money”;  3. click, “Send money to friends or family; and 4. send the proper amount to, “ericvancewalton@gmail.com”.  Please don’t forget to include the shipping address in the notes.

 

If you’d rather pay by check please send me a private message with the number of copies you wish to purchase and your address and I’ll respond with the address to which you can send a personal check.

 

Here’s the book’s foreword:

 

“I went through a few days of deep thought before the title of this chapbook came to me. I was trying too hard and getting nowhere. I was attempting to force the natural creative flow and this never works. Suddenly, while walking our beagle, a common theme for all of the poems in this collection came to light.

 

Emancipation.

 

Take a moment to analyze your dreams and wishes. Isn’t a large component of each of them the desire to be free from something? This was the case with all of my dreams and wishes but I never realized it before. The process of writing teaches me something new almost every day.

 

I hope you enjoy and get lost in this collection. These twenty-three poems represent almost a year of my life. In them I hope you find joy, a seed of thought, or even inspiration for an emancipation of your very own!

 

With Gratitude,

 

~Eric Vance Walton~ “

 

This book of poetry would make a very thoughtful and unique Holiday Day gift. Although we can’t guarantee it, we will do our very best to have these to your doorstep by Christmas Day.

 

Again, the price is $15.50 per copy (shipping included/U.S. domestic only) and $14.00 per copy for those outside of the U.S.(plus a flat shipping fee of $10 for up to 5 copies shipped to the same address).

 

Thank you!

Contradiction 

Our consciousness  is the conjuror 

of many contradictions,

this world 

in which we live 

is a lavish stage

of grand illusion, each act is filled 

with sharp edges

and serene softness,

twisted knots,

and breathless beauty, reality is nothing 

but our soul's mirror,

it takes such courage 

to gaze into it,

and admit our thoughts

create everything we see but sometimes 

it's not bravery at all,

sometimes we're just tired 

of being broken and 

simply have no more 

tears left to cry.

~Eric Vance Walton~

The Curtain

As the curtain of darkness is drawn tight

and the incense smoke hangs still,

muse settles in

and I become its channel it’s quick to remind me

in its soft murmurs

that possibilities and hope

are still within the reach of my mind muse, my sweet amnesia,

makes me forget my wounds,

my worries and

the prickly ache of time passed once refocused in the moment

it’s easy to see my scars

make me who I am

but do not define me worries are only time wasted,

my muse is otherworldly

and Heaven sent,

it leaves me lifted, with the warmth of it

wrapped around me

I can brush the

the frigid throes of this world

from my shoulders again I can walk

with head raised,

proud of each facet of my soul,

happy in every cell of my being,

filled with the anticipation

of what might be. ~Eric Vance Walton~

Just Fly

Free me from this gravity, only long enough 

so that my mind may rest, 

my soul may soar, 

and this heart, 

for a moment,

might feel a splendid

absence of yearning

 

there is so much more

to this life than we can see 

and these words are wings

that hold me aloft

long enough to remember worries and wants 

are beggars who keep us 

mired in mortality 

and ever shield us

from our truths  when life 

leaves us lost

we must only 

remember that  

inside each of us is 

all we will ever need call on the magic 

of your muse,

spread your wings,

and just fly. ~Eric Vance Walton~

Soul's Breath

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Soul's BreathThe sun's twisted spires

warm all but those who

are huddled deep within

the solemn shadow's grasp even then some find solace

by the mere sight

of its golden glow muse for me is like the sun

once it rises it heals,

shining in all the right places, fear and doubt huddle and squint,

nestled in their dark nooks, 

blinded by brightness this great internal sunrise

creates such lasting Peace

and contentment that you 

can no longer feel smothered by life

muse is the soul's breath,

nothing more, nothing less. ~Eric Vance Walton~

Madison Avenue Marionettes

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So spellbound we count

dollars in

our dreams

we chase dollars

while wearing

invisible collars and

strings from our limbs,

dance, dance

Madison Avenue

marionettes

marching to

someone else’s tune,

an ear worm

so cunning

that we swear and

be damned it’s

our own

follow the piper

right into

a self-imposed

prison cell

while all we really have,

this singular moment,

passes forever

from our distracted eyes

not enjoying nearly as

much as we oughta be

while the most

precious commodity

evaporates,

time, our time

become fluent in truth

an incongruent sleuth

you won’t fit their plan

but you’ll be a (wo)man

who still has time...

your time.

~ Eric Vance Walton ~

Walk Your Worries

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When you're feeling down,so worn and wound, walk your worries through the rhythm of this city

surrender deeply to its symphony, the whir of tires skimming across rough pavement, the piercing horns of hurried cabs

let the music of the city's many murmurs swallow you so completely that you lay down your burdens

swim in the soup of a million strangers, their soulful cries, lascivious laughs intermingled with the ghosts of countless dreams, painfully beautiful

let the city carry you on its broad shoulders through the coolness of this night and it will cleanse you by the time your feet tire your troubles will be few

this night seems to stretch on forever but in the end morning always comes too soon.

~Eric Vance Walton~

The Best Way

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Thousands of years  reside in each 

of our moments

we are the

derivative of all those 

who came before us

each smile 

they ever smiled,

each mile 

they ever traveled,

each idea 

they ever thought,

each tear 

they ever cried,

every struggle 

they ever fought

you are a link 

in this kinetic chain

that builds upon 

the story of humanity,

one experience at a time

face your fears

live your dreams

fulfill your curiosities

listen to your heart

be your best self

interject yourself

into the narrative of 

the Universe 

this might be 

the best way,

the only way 

to give a proper

thank you to 

the many who lived 

and died for 

you to enjoy 

this very breath.

~Eric Vance Walton~

A Thought Away

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Take me  to the deepest places,

the sacred places, 

not of show but of heart,

warm and filled with light

sing me the songs 

that travel with you 

not just of the stone 

that's in your shoe

When I feel your story 

a piece of you 

will walk with me

until you and I are dust 

and then well beyond 

to that great freedom

that we will learn 

was always just 

a thought away.

~Eric Vance Walton~

Spit Shine

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Old towels torn 

into even strips

and a dented

tin of Kiwi, black



you turn the 

silver key

and wherever you sit

becomes an

esoteric space,

an escape from

irrelevance 

and servitude



keep that towel

a' snappin,

spit shine



long ago a drill sergeant 

taught you the trick,

a sure way to heal 

the sickness you feel

so you may pass 

through the fright 

of any long, dark night 



keep that towel

a' snappin,

spit shine



so polish away 

the grime

into a pride

you can see 

your face in



you've done it 

all your life 

transformed

trash into treasure,

boys into men



hold high your head

defeat has taught 

you to know victory

rejection has taught you love

when the world doesn't 

always fit you like a glove



keep that towel

a' snappin,

spit shine.


~Eric Vance Walton~

Alarm Clock Dawn

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Focus is hazed 

as wing-tip 

dreams come calling


softly, persistently 

those starched seams of 

material obsession


trite expressions 

that seem to echo 

so endlessly


I've left it all behind, this time, 

left it all behind in my mind


the alarm clock dawn methodical 

in its wringing, starving, stealing time 

so stealthily that you hardly notice 

until one day you wake up faded, 

to a jaded, gaunt and hungry hue


I've left it all behind, this time,

left it all behind in my mind


So this is how it feels to be free? 

To be set adrift like some Coltrane riff 

when need's an endless song


can't tell you where I'll be tomorrow 

I may be drawn back into the yawn 

of the alarm clock dawn,


balance is my only hope 

to end up somewhere 

in the middle.


~Eric Vance Walton~