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J.A. Aarntzen

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Featured Book
The Tangled Skein (Alistair Kinnon)
by Hugh McCracken

The loose ends of murder take crusading cop Martin Nicols thousands of miles from his home beat … and into a steaming hotbed of child vice, inhuman torture and death.  
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Lion At My Throat
by J.A. Aarntzen
Saturday, June 06, 2009
Rated "G" by the Author.
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I have watched many documentaries on television and I have always been struck by the relationship between predator and prey once the prey has fallen and slowly awaits its death from the patient predator that holds it. This poem is dedicated to Edsel who has departed us and never lived to fulfill his wish of going to Africa.


Lion At My Throat

 
Lion at my throat
Waiting
Quietly
Patiently
For me to die
Should've been my goat
Sitting here
Waiting
For its lungs
To clear
Oh, I should've
Made other plans
Than to cross
This desolate land
 
Lion at my throat
Seeing eye to eye
With me
It tells me
That I've given it hope
For its young
To survive
Somehow
That makes me
Feel good
Yet, I should've
Went the other way
And live
For another day
 
Lion at my throat
Basking
In the savannah
Sun
Flies upon its coat
Buzz at my head
Annoying my nose
And ruining
My final moments
In this incarnation
Oh, I should've
Stayed in bed
And then
I'd kept my head
 
Lion at my throat
Keeping constant
Pressure
In its jaw
Without a note
Sounding
To cause me fright
Leaving me
Calm
Without alarm
Oh, I should’ve
Tended to chores
Instead of
Heeding its roar
 
Lion at my throat
The muscles
In my chest
Feel its claws
Twitching
Soon they’ll tote
A worthy meal
To the young ones
Hiding
In the grasses
Oh, I should’ve
Taken flight
And not feel
Its nasty bite
 
Lion at my throat
Its tawny form
Grows dim
In my eyes
And I sense a boat
That has
Come for me
A shadow
Stands at its till
And waves welcome
Oh, I should’ve
Stayed at home
And not allow
My spirit to roam

 

Storyteller on the Lake

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Reviewed by Peter Kautsky 7/2/2009
but we never stay at home. enjoyed this
Reviewed by Bennett Kremen 6/7/2009
Lions don't usually get us. But it's great how you've use d this fierce symbol to express the profound sorrows of regret.

Bennett Kremen
Reviewed by Karen Vanderlaan 6/7/2009
a really stunning and surprisingly beautiful write!
Reviewed by Edwin Hurdle 6/6/2009
Excellent and well written poem,take care

EDWIN
Reviewed by Gianetta Ellis 6/6/2009
This poem brings many feelings to the surface. It reminds me of a conversation I had once about "highest purpose." When I was very young, I was picking fruit with someone. I casually mentioned that I felt a little pang of guilt for plucking the fruit at its most beautiful after it had taken so long to get to this point in its life. The person with me suggested something that has influenced me to this day. He said the fruit wanted to be plucked and eaten. He explained that each of us, including all life, has a high purpose and the fruit's highest purpose was to be plucked and eaten that it might nourish life, whether it be mine, a bird's, a deer's....
I see that notion woven to this piece.

Further, the relationship between predator and prey has always intrigued me as well, but I am more taken by those rare instances where the predator's relationship with its would-be prey somehow transforms and the predator becomes caregiver rather than killer. So many theories as to why...

Wonderful poem, Joe.
Reviewed by Amber Moonstone 6/6/2009
This poem took me on quite a journey, J. A. I could feel the sense of giving in to the inevitable, accepting choices made that drew me to that fate..What a journey indeed. I like your format here also. Great writing sir!

Much peace, love, and light,
Amber "V"
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