Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Leaves of Absence

The grass is crimson as the sun's curve dips
Below the  Earth's -- the crimson purpling
An instant after the sun falls, the drops
Of light enough to see the shadows spring
Into a fading black. The cardinal ships
Its final song to cue the crickets sing.

The wind whistles the grass -- you cannot see
The waves of regularity that sweep
Across the surface our eyes make, agree
Is there, although it's only what we reap
From flowers, leaves that move independently
Beneath the wind that grows as dark grows deep.

The old forest fades black in the new moon --
It disappears before the prairie lands --
And we are left with sounds -- a fat racoon
That chirps and rustles, dips its little hands
Into the stream, a tiny splash -- a loon
Disturbs the night -- the frogs call their demands.

And all of this will fade as our eyes hide
Behind their lids and our brains close each ear
As we fall into rhythmic breathing, slide
Into a consciousness too many fear
To bring into the sun. They will reside
In darkness, fearing it will reappear.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

To the Demons

Our Master asked for me to write this note
That we should concentrate on those who gloat
That they are wiser than all men and so
Deserve to lord it over others. Grow
Their power, let them feed the envious
And fill their bellies with that poison puss
So they will gladly give their powers over
While cursing what would feed the divine clover.
We must empower parasites who feed
The envious -- together they'll indeed
Destroy the good that grows on Earth. A plus
If you convince them hate is virtuous,
So long as envy is the driver. Hate
Is always what we aim to make -- debate
Replaced by accusations and the lie
Each honest disagreement would deny
You of your dignity, your right to what
You've chosen to believe is true. The cut
Of challenge we'll make look so deep, they'll fear
The slightest disagreement -- they'll give ear
To none who would correct what's wrong in life --
Or even little things -- they'll feel such strife
At any challenge, they'll demand that all,
Including they themselves, be made to fall
In line with those they deep their betters. Ditch
Descending on the pastors, priests -- no, switch
To lifting demagogues who preach that sin
Is virtue, theft is giving -- all to win
A vote. Yes, do take note that power grants
Us ease in what we do. Prudes drop their pants
In lust when power comes their way. Let's trust
That power does corrupt, that all men lust
For power to corrupt their souls to Hell
And we will surely see our numbers swell.
Just have our preachers preach that coveting
Is virtue, wealth is stolen -- that will bring
The world to us, and Hell will dwell on Earth.
Persuade men that a gang of thieves is worth
Their love and worship -- men of demon stock
Should be considered as the solid rock
On which society should build itself.
Now, do not think that we are going to shelf
The great reforms we made with Screwtape. No!
Those petty things are genius! Although slow,
The little things will eat away with time --
We do not have to concentrate on crime
To lure a person far from God. We tease
And make it so there's nothing that can please,
No matter how good they may have it. Lust
For more and covet, envy, lose all trust,
And slowly break the bonds that make men good --
Help them destroy their culture, neighborhood,
Society by making them mistake
These things for government -- for goodness' sake! --
It is pathetic how these can
Go wrong, be led astray since time began
For them. I think with this we found a god
For them -- a god of men to whom they'll nod
And bow before. They'll think they have a Father --
They will -- who rapes then treats them as a bother.
Do this and it's our Master you'll most please.
Sincerely yours, sirs, Mephistopheles.

Monday, September 28, 2015

The Sociopath

He's charming, arrogant, and thinks
The rules do not apply to him, denies
Authority. And so each woman drinks
The soullessness that lies behind his eyes.

He could have been a C.E.O. and crashed
His corporation since his superficial
Charms could have lifted him until he cashed
His winnings and was paid for his dismissal.

He could have been a politician, ran
For Congress, won persuading everyone
He wanted what was best for them, he'd ban
For power for himself and just for fun.

Instead, he raped and murdered in each state --
That this was different is up for debate.

Friday, September 25, 2015

To the Prospective Poet

I want you to learn how to say
What can't be said,
The things that linger night and stay
Within your head
And will not turn themselves to words,
those can't-be-caged translucent birds
You deeply dread.

I promise you there's nothing worse
Than looking deep
To sing a song, to make a verse --
You'll want to weep
As you drag words out of your well,
Ascending out of your own Hell,
Whose steps are steep.

But here's a promise: when you're done
And you have made
A poem, you will find you're one
With your deep shade
And your bright sun. The poet's tree
Can help you make yourself free
And never fade.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Fruit Bats

They flit up to their mother, mouths agape,
These little brothers begging for their treat
Then running off -- a game they play with grape
Or apple, peach or pear -- the fruit they eat
A favored sweet they beg for every hour --
Today they yell, "It's watermelon power!"

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Work-a-day Lives

You wake up at five-thirty, pee and walk the dog,
You're barely dressed, you wonder if it's going to rain,
Your neighborhood and mind and wife are in a fog,
Then shower, kids to schools, wife to work, you to train.
Three hours' prep for work before you start your work,
Then constant deadlines, constant rush that keeps your mind
From higher things (and lower things) -- you ask the clerk
If you have days, but you have used them up. The grind
Of what they rightly call this life that's not a life,
When all you want is to get kids in bed and sleep
To do it all again. Your weekends free for strife
That built all week. You always sow, but never reap.
So that you can give up the life of being crawlers,
Sometimes the only thing you need's a billion dollars.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Love Song for Anna

If I fell into your arms now
And fell for all your charms now
Would you love me til I die?
I could live well with the knowledge
That you cannot get in college
That you'll love me til I die.

If I cuddled you for hours
And danced with you in showers
Would you love me til I die?
I'm so happy that we're married
We're each other's til we're buried
Cause I'll love you til I die.

If I gave into your kisses
And gave you all your wishes
Would you love me til I die?
You're my beautiful, sweet lover --
Let me meet you under cover --
Let me love you til I die.

Monday, September 21, 2015


I must rebel! I want to make a Hell
Of anything you've got! No, don't demand
I ever stand for anything -- don't tell
Me how I must rebel. That will not stand!
I will rebel for ignorance, I will
Demand to never know. And wisdom can
All go to Hell. And beauty is just swill.
I will refuse to ever be a man!

Conformist! Rebels do not deign
To reject riches of the mind -- they find
Their purpose there -- they want to breathe the air
Of freedom education makes, to reign
Over themselves, unfasten every bind
Of ignorance whose weight they cannot bear!

Friday, September 18, 2015


I'm sitting here with no distractions
While thinking of the world in fractions
It's constant flowy wavy actions
Emerging into many factions
Made from and making all reactions
The only thing that's not? Inactions
I give you this with no retractions

Thursday, September 17, 2015

The Poet at Work

I have permission to be bored
And thus the visions flow
Imagine the imaginings
Of images that grow
When these constructal thoughts are loose
And flow at different speeds
So turbulence emerges hence
To different mental deeds

A poem here a story there
A dripping dew of thought
The strength of flowing moves a stone
Is giving when it ought
Connecting facts to new ideas
In fractal novelty
The lone controller at the helm
A cybernetic flea

Beloved I can think of you
The censor has gone home
Now butterflies with shimmer scales
The cosmos in my dome
Discovers ways to link and think
Enjoys the subtle sounds
It makes and takes the rhythmic strings
To force its boundless bounds

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Madison's Moralists

The crowd
In the cloud
Felt they were endowed
With virtue to deem what's allowed
Hypocrisy hacked them showed none had lived as they'd vowed

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Do Not


Monday, September 14, 2015

Daniel's Name

His name is Daniel, don't call him Dan
He is a baby, he's not a man
His pretty mommy's his biggest fan
His name is Daniel, don't call him Dan

His name is Jesus with a strong Hey
Don't call him Jesus with a strong Jay
He likes to eat and he likes to play
His name is Jesus with a strong Hey

His name is Camplin -- and that's Camp and Lin --
It's never Campbell or Gamblin --
To make this mistake's a sonic sin --
He name is Camplin -- that's Camp and Lin

Friday, September 11, 2015

A Proposition On the Battlefield

I hate to have to be so blunt,
But hidden, you have what I want --
You know I'll find it if I hunt
In cover like an army grunt.

Perhaps the military brass
Would frown upon my being crass,
But I know, hidden, in your grass
I'll find the place where I must pass.

I think you know that this is best --
And no, it's not how you are dressed --
But rather I feel very blessed
That I have found someplace to rest.

Perhaps you'll even get a kick
From me -- perhaps you'll even stick
With me. Now let me light this wick
To clearly see my lucky pick.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

The Dream of Order

The trees reflected in the window seem
To move more quickly than the trees in front of me.
The distance drives perspective to a stream
That flows in chaos under this slow dream.

There's nothing -- no one nowhere knows the fee
For what it takes to learn there's little that we need --
But who will referee reality
And understand the dreams that make us free?

Our minds are made of neurons' dreams -- each scene
They're imaging is their imagining. They leave
Imagined leaves upon their branches, clean
Of chaos, making everything to mean.

The cell's the dreams some molecules will weave,
Like jazz emerging from musicians' common beat,
Discovered in the fragments they retrieve --
Whatever's left behind, they won't bereave.

The train's sharp jerk makes reverie retreat
and I'll remember only what my mind will deem
Worth writing the neurons so this meat
I am can dream until I am complete.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015


(For the 10 anniversary of my asking Anna to marry me.)

With this diamond, simple sparkling crystal,
Glance at linear eternity,
Bound upon this metal ring, its circle
Endless in its curve -- both making growth,
Growth of love as they bind you to me,
Flesh to flesh -- this shows the love that binds.
With this ring I ask that you please rob
Me of all my liberty, and let
Me take  all your liberty as well,
So we each can live and love with greater
Freedom than we each of us know.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

My Son's School Bean

The plastic planter
Grows a bean -- three leaves, three months
Of drought -- life persists

Monday, September 7, 2015


Should I oppress myself and live in chains,
Shackled to walls worn slick with drip and slime?
Why should my soul be slipped into the stocks,
And why should I cut out my tongue and mime?

And why should you insist to keep the key
That keeps me in the dungeon, safe away
From proper people and good company?
Why take the whip to me, begin to flay?

The red upon the metal cuffs are stains
Of rust and blood. My struggles are as clocks,
As regular and circular as time --
It's up to you if I should ever flee.

What kind of love would keep their love at bay
And never let their being out to play?

Friday, September 4, 2015

Prima Nocta

A crescent of blood sitting low in the sky
Alone in the darkness, too dim to deny
That the evening is heating the darkness tonight
So the demons are rising and death can take flight.

You demons are coming, I knew all along
that death was as certain as your lies were strong.
And the earth will now shatter in popular fear
So the people will crumble from what they revere.

The lies that they love are now living from lust
That greens our insides and soon molds all our trust
So we covet the good until we make it rot
In the fear that there's someone who has what we've not.

You demons are dreaming, but we'll make it real --
We'll murder and rape until we all reveal
That we do not need demons, that you are all dead.
Your last blood is now trickling off of our bed.

You lunatics promise the night will be day --
You promise that evil is tamed, it will play
And bring joy to the weakest and justice to all.
It's the promise the serpent made once -- in the Fall.

Our God is our Devil, we've merged them into
Utopian visions where virtue's run through
And left bleeding beside the night road to be found
By the good to revive and provide a new ground.

The sun will soon rise and we'll seek out new shade,
Where truth is then hidden -- the light that it's made
Will illuminate all of the grasslands. We'll see
That the farms all enslave and the natural makes free.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Watching the Window Washers

The window washers white against the gold
Skyscraper, twenty stories up, the sun
At morning hides behind the skyline. Cold
Is months away -- the heat has just begun.

The ropes are bending in the breeze that builds
Between the buildings, building energy
In complex bottlenecks. They're making tildes
Above the Spanish spoken silently

To those of us who walk the sidewalks, heads
Down, looking at our cell phones, brisk to work
In offices. What delicate long threads
For lives to need -- for cleaner, boss, or clerk.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

The Will to Beauty

The weakest like to exercise their power --
Abusers all lash out from lack of power.

The artist makes the world anew, makes life
Worth its experience -- that is his power.

Amoebas stretch their pseudopods to move
And eat -- a feat of their own will to power.

Beloved, I will always love you -- feel
My love in touch and kindness, love's true power.

Behold the rose's slow-unfolding flower --
Become entranced by its strong fragrant power.

Your brain is rhythmed by this poem's rhythm
And rhyme -- such patterns are a poem's power.

My readers get my best in lines like these --
It's here where I, Troy Camplin, find my power.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

A Blessed Rage for Orders

The human mind must always seek out orders
 In which to live and men bark out their orders.

The shells are lined up, all by size and colors
So that they make a set of spiraled orders.

You cannot love the government and hate
Police whose jobs are following those orders.

The hurricanes transform the skies from seas
Into their awful, dissipative orders.

Sweet tragedy performs sublimity
To show the transformation of all orders.

Behold the lines that Troy has crafted -- I,
The poet of sublime emergent orders.