MY OWN SELLANRA (After Hamsun & O’Hara)

Des salutations et des adieux
Lunch Poems in my pocket
Dare I sneak Meditations in my laptop bag on the way to work?
Can I dial a 911 to rescue a self cut in two by preoccupations on the side of some minute form of sanity?

Whistling in the wind like Isak’s scythe
Cutting through some form of literary truth-seeking lyricism offering hope
Just another mardi matin or a something-else?

A little meditation in an emergency
An every day chameleon
A false yellow label folded into the pavement
Mashed by not-so-lonesome boots in a painting by Van Gogh

Like the fresh cut grasses on Isak’s land
My own Sellanra
Waiting to be raked
The promise of a machine in the days to come
Hiding secrets like Inger
Inside my little faux leather bag
Is it really so il faut savoir?

No heart on the sleeve on the way to another day of grinding
Fresh cut timbre
In the water-powered sawmill of Sellanra
For these new dialogues je sais par coeur
They’re buried so much deeper than that still-born
In that shallow grave by the river-stream

Running down through the property I may never fully own.

Handcrafted poetry by John M. Hines, February 2018



He left a bit of himself inside
Along with his shadow,
Umber-ish greys of yesterday

Peeking through the sublime mould of today
Like a scholar of the school of Structuralism

Pieces of concrete and the separate elements thereof:

Water, aggregate-rock, sand, gravel
And Portland cement

He’d become CONCRETE

And the

Shadowy dust landing on frames of Monet’s lilies
Rothko’s room of 9

Blown away by the lusts of patrons
For something more
Beyond the humma drumma of
Daily life cat call whistling
On Tottenham Road

Slacks set over the ankle
Sporting colourful
Socks painted over
Cloudy internal voices:

A memory to be returned to as the hours turned into days turned into months turned into

Handcrafted poetry by John M. Hines, September 1, 2017


Thoughts On: Reading Berryman

Connecticut shade wrapper stained
fingers wrapped around a pen
He was off and writing again
Reading Berryman’s dark Dream Songs
Sitting in the bright May sun

Ripples of truth sought on a watery bed
Of melted, azure glacial ice
And a fresh mix of
Yellow blood spilt on the pool deck

Seeking an aphorism
Amongst crushed crustaceans
Higher thought of deeper meaning understood
Rebirth of Renaissance
Reborn at midlife
And moving: On

Handcrafted poetry by John M. Hines, May, 2017.


Sunset: Haarlem

The sun melted behind the silhouettes of leafless trees
Colouring the canal a marmalade orange,
Sweet close to a day in Haarlem

Leaving me wondering:
What if the bridges in this little town rolled up or not each evening as presaged by the colours in the sky?

Original handcrafted poetry by John M. Hines, March, 2017, Haarlem, Netherlands


Reading Hemingway

A key unlocking
A parade of possibilities,
Unread books to be read
Well read books to be reread
Top shelf
Writers to know
Painters to peruse
Places to visit and possess

Poems to be penned
Short stories to be started
Novellas to effuse
Like the smoke of his
Nag champa
His morning ritual
Waking his deepest

Is how reading Hem’s
Moveable Feast
Moved him
Away from potentialities
To creation
To finding the key
To unlocking

To moving with ease
As the main character
In his widest dreams
Somnambulist no mas! No mas!



Photo taken this summer in NYC on the Chelsea HIgh Line. Sculpture created by artist Tony Matelli.

Handcrafted poetry by John M. Hines, November, 2016.
I’ve been reading, no feasting on Hemingway’s “A Moveable Feast”
this week; and am now submerging myself into his “The Complete Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway: FincaVigia” edition. Shall soon be tracing Hem’s steps in Paris.


I’ve only quickly read three little lines and three words of Whitman:
“Enough! Enough! Enough!”
On a Saturday morning
Scorching summer Sun Star already well up
Burning off the mists of foggy thought
REM rebound and a little bit of melatonin from a verdant bottle having done their work in the blackness of the night
Which brought a week of work to another end.

Weak from work clearing out
Words of Whitman leading the way,
“In the beginning was the Word
And the word was with God
And the word was God.”

Enough to set my soul souring with the possibilities of the day ahead
Without work
Without fuss
Without muss
Without a “To-Do List” leading the way
Like a day hiker oblivious to the dangers of thin air
High on life, high on something.

Simplicity of a writer’s solitude
Slipping through the cracks of thoughts and memory
Like the summer Sun star’s penetrating beams peeking in through the shutters
Soliciting the promise of a literary life,
Enough! Enough! Enough!

Handcrafted poetry by John M. Hines, September 17, 2016