Monday, September 29, 2014

Something My So Called Friend Had Done

It appears the older I get, the less likely I'm to view friendship the way I use too. I use to believe policemen were like the good guys in old westerns. You know, the guys who wore the ten gallon hats and rode around all day on a big, white, horse.

In one instance, the good guy wore a mask that only revealed his eyes. And that six-shooter of his, well, it appeared to be made of something akin to pure silver.

If you don't know who I'm talking about, just know he was a loner.  They called him the Lone Ranger. He did have one friend though. He was an Indian named Tonto. And Tonto, he was faithful and loyal.

I'm not a loner. Rest assured I know a lot of people. There are very few I can call loyal, let alone, a friend. I say this because; it appears the older I get, the less likely I'm to view friendship the way I use too.

You see, I've never been a lawman, never wore a ten gallon hat, or rode around on a big, white, horse. I've never worn a black mask that revealed only my eyes, never owned a six-shooter appearing to be made of something akin to pure silver. However, I have been a friend, a loyal friend.

It was not long ago that a friend, someone I thought to be a loyal friend, ended what I thought to be our friendship. He set fire to the bridge representing equal access to our respective worlds. While I was watering and nurturing our friendship, he was letting it wilt like a water deprived blossom set to bloom in the soft light of a golden sun. This is something my so-called friend had done. 

He was not a lawman. He was someone who portrayed himself to be my friend, someone supposedly tried and true, and someone who pawned himself off the way a so called loyal friend would do. This is something my so-called friend had done.

Yeah, he wore the invisible ten gallon hat, the one that typified truth, justice, and the American way. Metaphorically speaking, his six-shooter was silver. It shot silver bullets laden with misgivings masquerading as 'trust what I say. I will never lie to you, neither will I the ever deceive you.'

His big, white, horse, represented the patronage and adage recited by Will Smith in the movie Bad Boys "We ride together, we die together." Yes, it was "We ride together." But as sure as hell, 'we ain't dying together.' It was only when his lies betrayed him, that his mask was removed from him, and his lying eyes revealed him. This is something my so-called friend had done.

Word to anyone who thinks they've got a friend who’s tried and true, someone loyal to you. Take heed from someone like me; this is what becomes of a friendship undone. This something my so-called friend had done.

© 2014 emmett wheatfall
All Rights Reserved

Friday, April 4, 2014

That Kid Named Kevin

It's new growth | he says |
a strange mass | he says |
conspiring-coalescing-gathering like
the coming of a winter's storm | an
eruption of Mount Pinatubo | the
intense flush of a hot flash |
forging its way upon my bones | my bones
my bones | my bones |

This ancient enemy of humanity |
with its emptiness-it own vanity-inhumanity
forced upon my humanity |
cursing and coursing its way upon the highway
of my skeletal frame |
steady | invading | always invading like an eddy |
never abating | it is death man-
it's death-it's death |

It's haunting | the diagnosis-the prognosis |
the oasis of fear-like fire-like fire-like fire |
could the test results be a liar-an outlier-
is it the buyer of my-sick-soul |

I'm mired in the hillsides of my emotions |
I'm dying man-I'm dying-in my mind I'm dying |
my body agrees with me | everybody agrees |
my family agrees with me | we all agree |
I'm dying man-I'm not lying-no-I'm not lying |

Its cancer | cancer | don't--say--it's-- | cancer

You flesh eater | you scavenger-avenger-
minister of fright-of fear-- | you've been here
since the beginning |since the beginning of mankind |
taking names | placing stick crosses on berms |
decorated with blossoms | they are the lost |
mother-father-sister-brother | I too am
that kid named Kevin | whose now--in--Heaven | I am a Kevin |
if only I could hope for Heaven | if not |
don't let me fall afar | just let me rest-in-peace |
among heaven’s twinkling stars |

But love | oh love! | lift me-sift me-
whisk me away | upbraid me-berated me-to hope |
to hope--hope |

I want to live-and to give | to receive and believe |
in you-in me-the world of make believe | to make peace |
the capacity to be heal | so I can feel | I can continue to |
love man--love | I want to live | I want to love |

I--don't--want--to--die |

© 2014 emmett wheatfall
All Rights Reserved

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Red Lettered Words

We want more wine the wedding party said.
"My time has not yet come." These are the red
lettered words of Jesus, so named the Christ,
the King of all the Jews--living and dead.

"They have no wine" says the mother of Christ.
"My time has not yet come." These are the red
lettered words of Jesus, as in the eyes
and ears of them who wrote what Jesus said.

To the servants, "Do what he says" alright.
"These jars with water do fill" Jesus said.
"Do fill them. Fill them to the brim, rim height.
My time has not come yet." These are the red

lettered words of Jesus, as in the eyes
of them who tasted water turned to wine.

Copyright 2012 emmett wheatfall
All Rights Reserved

Friday, March 9, 2012

Mirror Mirror On the Wall

Unto his followers Jesus once said, “Love your neighbor as yourself.” Of his two great commandments this was the second.

But what if I have no concept of self? By the way, how can I? I am not my own creator. I am not the maker of my own self. Neither am I a self-made man.

Unto what can I look to catch a glimpse of myself?

What? A mirror?

Okay. Mirror mirror on the wall? Who am I, and what am I called?


Ah, right! Mirrors don’t speak. They only reflect the exterior of me, that material silhouette of me, that external imagine representing the essence of me. If I have no concept of myself, how am I going to obey Christ’s command to “love your neighbor as yourself?”

And who is my neighbor anyway, the guy next door? The woman seated at the table across from me in the coffee shop? The colleague whose office is adjacent to mine?

How can I love a neighbor with a love for which I do not have for myself, given the fact I have no concept of myself?

What? Jesus loves me?

Does Jesus love himself? How has he loved himself?

He loved himself enough to endure the horrible death of the cross? He loved himself enough to embrace the rejection of the world he created for himself? He loved himself enough to take upon himself the burden of having his followers pervert, corrupt, distort, exploit his message of hope, redemption, and salvation? He loved me enough to call me to follow him?

He’s loved me enough to give me his sense of self. And now, with him in me and I in him, I am able to fulfill his second commandment “to love my neighbor,” that guy next door, the woman seated at the table across from me in the coffee shop, the colleague whose office is adjacent to mine “as myself.”

Copyright 2012 emmett wheatfall
All Rights Reserved

Monday, January 16, 2012

Will You Remember Me


Will you remember me

When I've turned old and gray

Will you remember me

When I have no spoken word to say


Will you remember me

When my life has come and gone

Will you remember me

When my heart and my soul they move on

Will you




Will you remember me

And all the poems I've let live

Will you remember me

When I have nothing more to give


Will you remember me

When I no longer known my name

Will you remember me

When to the wind they scatter my remains


Will you remember me

Cause I'll remember you

The smiles on yours faces

My many trips to Backspace

How the lights were brought low

The starting time of every show

I ask you

Will you



Cause I'll

remember you


I'll remember

Robin Bateman

Chris Leja

Rachel Rosen

Laura Ruth Dalby


I'll remember

Tyler Atwood

Emily Cousins

Brit Shostak

My man Johnny No Bueno

Deshaun Dowdy

Eriean Bradley


And I'll remember

Oh yeah



Doc Luben

And Josh Luben

Bill Stanford

Leah Noble Davidson

Mike McGee

Jill Greenseth

Randy Darris

Mo Cheng


Will you remember me

And all the poems I've let live

Will you remember me

When I have nothing more to give

Will you remember me

When I no longer known my name

Will you remember me

When to the wind they scatter my remains

Will you remember me

Cause I'll remember you

Will you remember me

Will you




Will You Remember Me

(Poem) Copyright 2012 emmett wheatfall

(Music) Our Love by Brian Culbertson Album: Come On Up

All Rights Reserved

This poem is dedicated to Portland Poetry Slam. It is best

serve when accompanied by Our Love by Brian Culbertson.

Friday, October 21, 2011

dVerse Commentary 2

Hello. It’s me—emmett. What a privilege it is to write commentary about “Craft” for the dVerse Poets community. I’m overwhelmed by the affirmation and response I received from my first commentary. Thank you!

In my first commentary I promised to explain why I do not capitalize the first letter in my first and last name. I don’t as a way to remind myself I need to get better. While I have enjoyed much success, once I achieve “sufficient noteworthiness” as a poet, I’ll capitalize both letters. What does “sufficient noteworthiness” look like? Trust me, you’ll let me know. J

Now—regarding craft. I came across a great word today. It’s the word “Conflation.” It’s an unusual word, a word I don’t imagine many of us use in our day to day conversations. I know I don’t. Here is its definition as defined by my favorite and frequently used online dictionary site. It means “To bring together: meld or fuse; to combine (two variant texts, for example) into one whole. I kid you not, boy did this thought intrigue me, and so I wrote and titled my current poem “Conflation.” Visit my blog for an intriguing read—something that’s quite personal, but liberating having written about both.

In order to stretch our capabilities as poets I would imagine this could be a novel idea for some, maybe something trifling for others. Nonetheless, it’s the topic of my commentary today under the auspices of “Craft.”

At times we poets can be too linear in our writing. The symmetry leads in a direct line to a specific destination, often predictable even when abstract or metaphoric. Using conflation is a great way to break out of the rut.

Listen, as a writing prompt here is what I’m asking you to do. Write a poem that is constructed using conflation. This means the poem must possess at least two different, wholly unrelated themes package together in stanzas. To challenge you further, the two or more thematic aspects of the poem must be revealing about yourself.

Also, for this writing prompt you are not permitted to use end-rhymes. I find to many times poets used contrived end-rhymes. By this I mean, just tagging at the end of the line a word that rhymes, and is one used so often I want to hurl.

I plan to write about “Enjambment” for my next commentary, so this request is a precursor to where I want to go next with my dVerse commentary about craft.

I look forward to reading as many of your works as I can. Happy writing!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

dVerse Commenary I

A few years ago I found occasion to purchase a brand new suit from a leading retail clothier. This maker of fine linen, fashioned into fashionable apparel is known all over America for their quality men’s suits. To own one is like having a fine feather neatly placed in an Englishman’s hat.

Unfortunately, as I was dressing to attend a very important event, the left pant leg came apart at the seam running the interior of my left leg. As you can image, this came as quite the surprise. Of course I was angry, not at the price of the suit, nor my misfortune, but the poor “craftsmanship.” Yes, craftsmanship.

Hi. My name is emmett wheatfall. I will explain why I write my name lowercase in a future commentary.

In the coming months I will be writing brief commentary on the “Craft of Poetry” for members of the dVerse community of poets. I know, what qualifies me to write commentary on this topic. I’ll let you the reader come to your own conclusion about my qualifications. You can learn about me at That way I don’t have to be pretentious. I always tell people “…eat the fish and throw away the bone.” If what I write edifies you, then great. If not, great. In any case, I look forward to sharing with you “my thoughts and perspective” on the craft of poetry.

If poets want to be recognized for their poetics, then craft must receive earnest attention. Everyone who reads a poem will critic it, whether academically or based on personal preference. Every reader is a critic.

Even the untrained eye will apply some form of judgment as to whether or not they view the poem as either good or bad. That’s just reality. Many of you who are poets will attest this fact. So, if you want to be a good poet you must pay attention to craft as an important element of being a poet.

What is craft? Trust me; I will not bore you with Webster’s definition. Personally, I define craft as “The earnest attention given to preparing one’s self for excellence through mastery of form, technique, and rudiments readily identifiable in an art or vocation.”

Evidence this definition is workable and applicable can be seen in some of the greatest living literary writers, performers, and athletes of our day. Coming to mind are such greats as Derek Walcott, Robert Pinsky, and Carol Ann Duffy; Meryl Streep, Aretha Franklin, and Robert Downey Jr., Michael Jordon, Wayne Gretsky, and David Beckham to name of few. Everyone one of them devoted themselves to craft. They have at one time or another been the best at what they do, having mastered form, technique, and the rudiments of their vocation.

In the coming months I will address craft more specifically to poetry. Until then, have fun writing great poetry.

Copyright 2011 emmett wheatfall
All Rights Reserved