poem: Upon My Brother’s Shadow Do I Lean

Upon My Brother’s Shadow Do I Lean

by Joel Howard


I cried out for a better life

for you, and now you’re gone I

lie among tears tattered and worn,

as in grief one languishes in days newly gone,


yet soon a longing eye

is dare cast

to life’s ribbon yet unfurled,

where rest memories never built

and upon uncertainty

dreams echo raw loneliness,

‘til pain insists a return to

that shared past, where


valleys laden with the beckoning vision of silver and gold

sent us young aching for all that is regal and vaulted, as

olden rules and immovable legacy swore upon riches  –

that is the why, that is the how, that is the must  –

to attain an existence worthy,

tangible and tactile, as

upon money all

value rests;


later appeared that startling hour, oh

all is exposed, life’s underbelly

disformed with lies,

possessions announcing

themselves in silent mockery as

poisoned appendages lame from greed,


and tired

adages slide fast

to hollow and passing’s breath;


last, I see that

in your death I may now stand in tears whole,

for in such sorrow was revealed your song,

that I might sing to you my small while

as the syllables of your joy yet

nourish my being.









Speak now, my friend...