The Division

Instincts hasten into position
The men of the Second Infantry Division.
With God and country in high regard,
They man the guns upon the guard.
Ordnance booming with malign intent,
“Pro Aris et Focis” they represent.
Shelling torrents howl grisly songs,
Pounding the earth ‘til form begone.
By foe and fire are stout hearts tested;
Inside the crucible are mistakes bested.
Stalled by rush and sniper fire,
The Second fights with outcome dire.

by Garret Woo

1/8/2019

Prompted Poem, A Hero Is…

A hero is born not from the laurels
Of glory but from
crafters’ modest hands.
Observe the maker in steady silence,
Weaving native branches from ancient lands.
The wreath prepared with flexible patience
Is fitted on the brows of another
To celebrate the maker’s creation
Through their representation by others.

by Garret Woo

1/26/2019

In response to a prompt by Cubby

Secret Lantern

By pictured form or written word,
I plot my thoughts upon the map;
Digitized by growing eyes,
Their hidden meanings I unwrap.
The secret lantern shows the way,
It illuminates the path;
Its glowing vessel set ablaze,
To animate my craft.

by Garret Woo

1/6/2019

Prompted Poem, Green Leaves

Blue shaded hills with green leaves of clovers,
Occurrences scarce with natural form.
The heavens play the role of the sower;
Blue shaded hills with green leaves of clovers.
Nature orders they grow a bit lower
With flexible stems to outlast the storms.
Blue shaded hills with green leaves of clovers,
Occurrences scarce with natural form.

by Garret Woo

1/21/2019

A triolet in response to a prompt by Cubby

Angels and Demons

I’m caught in the middle between angels and demons
And in their persuasions lost.
Some tell me “this” the others “that”
And I’m left counting the cost.
A blessing, some would say I have,
To dapple among both worlds.
Instead, I walk a twisted path of uncertainty and swirls.

by Garret Woo

c. 2004

The Leader

Six thousand eyes upon you there,
Standing on the platform square.
Fractured light by marble columns
Moves solemnly across the stairs.
It warms the mantle above the commons,
Below whose vaults you do prepare.
The noise makes room for silence,
Which quickly do you seize.
The crowds are finally quiet;
The time has come to lead:

“Let those of you who know me
Validate my deeds.
To those whose eyes I stand before:
Open them and see.”

Into the day are your words carried
To captive ears by silver tongue.
The verdant palm branch has been readied,
And the Eagle’s banner hung.

by Garret Woo

1/5/2019

Someday, someday

Have you ever seen a person where
Their beauty, oh so fine and fair,
Commandeers your very eyes
And the freedom of will to them denies?

It pains me so to see you standing there
With beauty that I cannot bare.
And so I give one final glance
By aching heart without romance
To leave you there just as you may.
I remind myself: “Someday, someday.”

by Garret Woo

c. 2004

Prompted Poem, If I Had…

If I had the power of creation,
Strength borrowed from
godly err,
I’d bring the light into the darkness
And through its lens compare
Either giving mankind to harshness
Or leaving my choices bare.

by Garret Woo

1/15/2019

In response to a prompt by Cubby

Liberation

Liberation, free at last,
My chains have ceased to be.
Born again through eyes renewed as if I’d found the key.
Eight O’clock, the hand hits four
To cue a different time.
The past has past and present is,
While the future precedes the line.
Come what may as the seasons change
And give to me a Love.
To see, to hold, to be as one
Until we rise above.

by Garret Woo

c. 2004

Words to Live By

I. Losing something reveals its worth to you.
-Don’t take things for granted.

II. The unspoken word cannot be twisted.
-Think before you speak; you no longer own the words that leave your mouth.

III. You have control over how you react to uncontrollable situations.
-Although much easier said than done, you can choose how an insult affects you.

IV. You only have control over the present.
-You cannot act five minutes ago and five minutes from now you might not be able to act. You can, however, act right now.

V. Whatever the situation, it could be worse.
-If all you can do is blink your eyes, imagine only being able to blink one.

VI. Perfection stands in the way of progress.
-The potter cannot spin a masterpiece with clean hands.

VII. Time does not discriminate what it changes.
-You will age and die like everything before you.

VIII. So much can be lost in such little time.
-Cherish all that brings you happiness; it can be taken away from you suddenly.

IX. Money is not happiness
-Happiness is a relative state of inner contentedness which cannot be bought with money or achieved with drugs.

X. As good exists so too does evil.
-As there are storms so there is calm.

XI. The vastness of the universe provides perspective.
-Consider the size of the earth in the solar system, then the galaxy that holds it, and further, the universe that it is a collection of.

XII. Humility is nobler than pride.
-It is easier to call out a fault than to learn from it.

XIII. Desire is the is the seed of conflict.
-The farther you remove yourself from desire the farther your move from conflict.

XIV. In the end, you will have forgotten much; in the end, much will have forgotten you.
-Live life excitingly and don’t dwell on things you cannot change, like the past.

by Garret Woo

2018-2019

Smile

The courage to speak I sought to find
As your words danced throughout my mind.
On the corner, standing there,
We met suddenly in the thoroughfare.
With you, the march of time grew still
Like sunset upon the window sill.
Held breathless by your magic smile,
I stood there speechless for a while.
Then time took you away from me;
Again your smile I’d never see.
Your memory is all I need
If only it be bittersweet.

by Garret Woo

1/4/2019

Why I Write

The short answer is happiness. I find satisfaction in being creative in any way; whether that be writing poetry, making music or taking photos. Sharing them with others helps me improve which, in turn, makes me even happier.

I write to record memories and states of mind. If I don’t lose what I’ve written, something I’ve done before, it helps me relive moments of my past that I might otherwise have forgotten.

It’s also simply a good way to exercise your mind. Combing my brain for words, challenging myself for metaphors and meaningful bits of wisdom to convey seems a worthy effort.

I tend to gravitate towards stricter rhyme and meter. Differently, poetry that is more free-flowing, looser and adventurous is definitely something I can work on. Themes of history, conflict and time often seem to establish themselves.

Finally, sometimes I find that being creative grants valuable perspective on the world. After all, you’re thinking critically, scanning for possibilities and being observant.

by Garret Woo

1/10/2019

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