Saturday, July 30, 2016


Gentle Reader,

What you’ll find below is an upside-down anthology of sorts: a journal of my frequent morning musings from January 2008 till now, in reverse order.

Much of what I write here is verse in traditional rhymed iambic pentameters, old fashioned in form but contemporary in topics and idiom. It asks to be read aloud so that the effects of rhyme and meter may be felt.

Sometimes I write brief prose essays, but even my verses are essays, or attempts, pursuing a line of thought to some conclusion, though more sonorously than those in prose: discursive verses, I call them.

In either case, you’re the reader over my shoulder as I write, which makes my writing different than when I have no audience in mind but only a vague urge to express. So I thank you for whatever attention you give my words and thoughts and feelings because you might so easily attend to something else, and you soon will.

To beguile you to linger longer, though, I’ve coupled most of my compositions with a photo or image I’ve taken or borrowed, which often corresponds with my words of that day.

Thank you for visiting here.  I hope you enjoy your stay and are moved to come back soon.

—Alan Nordstrom



for Bernie

                    You’ve finished at  the mall.  You’re walking back
                    Across the parking lot to where your truck
                    Is parked, the one with the tall flatbed rack,
                    And as you near you see—“Hey!  What the f**k?!”

                    The heavy tool you’d stashed back there—is gone!
                    “I can’t believe it!  Some bastard ripped me off—
                    And how’d he lift it out?  It weighs a ton
                    Set like an anchor in the flatbed trough?”

                   A thing like that can change your whole worldview
                   By darkening your faith in humankind
                   And make you reassess the things you do
                   Your attitude toward others realigned.

                        Don’t let that happen, though.  He’ll suffer soon:
                        A hernia, perhaps, for that baboon.


Thursday, July 28, 2016


                   I write to find out what is on my mind:
                   I don’t know what I think until I see
                   What I’ve to say and where my thought’s inclined,
                   Until which, it remains a mystery—
                   Especially so when I compose a verse,
                   Engaged with finding rhymes and hitting beats
                   Which somehow make my memory disburse
                   A happy phrase as good, perhaps, as Keats’,
                   And, if a sonnet, then it heads for home
                   Too late to bring up any new concern,
                   No room to let imagination roam
                         Because we’re at the couplet now and must
                         Make do with one last rhythmic, rhyming thrust.



                    This Earth’s experiment with humankind
                    To see if we can grow into our name,
                    As doubly sapient as we’re designed
                    To be, transcending our first mythic shame,
                    Has not succeeded yet, but must do soon,
                    For though we have performed amazing feats
                    Of science, even soaring to the Moon,
                    We’re seeking still where science with wisdom meets.
                    Noetic Science is our grandest goal,
                    Inquiry into cosmic purposes
                    Which, till we know, our species can’t grow whole,
                    No matter what a mere materialist says.
                        A science that is less than ultimate
                        Will never satisfy our human wit.


Monday, July 25, 2016


                    Throughout the universe there surely are
                    Other planets flourishing with life,
                    Each one circling a vibrant star
                    Creating organisms made for strife,
                    And then contending for a vital niche
                    In the arena of its biosphere,
                    Some languishing and others growing rich—
                    Though in due time all doomed to disappear.
                    So it will be, in time, on planet Earth
                    Though not, I hope, until we humans have
                    Expressed the double sapience of our worth
                    For which we’re named and learned to nav-
                   igate the treacherous ocean that we sail
                   Making our cosmic consciousness prevail.


Saturday, July 23, 2016


                    Why All This came about, I cannot say.
                    The laws all cosmic matter must obey,
                    The mystery persists of to what end.

                    For all we know, we are the Cosmos’ goal,
                    Assuming there’s a Universal Mind,
                    And consequently may infer our role,
                    That purpose for which humans are designed.

                   As Homo sapiens sapiens we claim
                   We’re doubly wise: at least we know we know,
                   But is astute self-consciousness the same
                   As wisdom?  Is there further we can grow?

                       I say we have no purpose that’s above
                       Our kindly inclination to show love.


Wednesday, July 20, 2016


                     My mind’s adrift in the poetosphere
                     Just waiting for some topic to appear
                     With energy enough to fill a page
                     With imagery and thought that will engage
                     My auditors and captivate their minds
                    Through sound and sense effects of many kind

                    Yet better than poetic folderol,
                    A topic to appeal or to appall
                    Is requisite—some ultimate concern
                    Or mystic revelation one may learn,
                    And yet, it’s clear by now, some other verse
                    Than this will have its mission to disburse
                    Such wisdom to the world, some new insight
                    That works to set our whirling world aright.