(when campfire strummers get bored and think we can compose)

G/You whispered my Am/name

C/And every favorite D/song

G/Heard throughout my D/life

(Am/Heard throughout C/my D/life)


G/Played in /suc  Am/cession

C/As time tattooed its D/image

G/On our breathless D/skin

(Am/On our breath  C/less D/skin)

 (G/On our breathless A/On our breathless Am/On our breathless G/skin)


G/In tune with my Am/pulse

C/A musical D/memory

G/Love’s exhal D/ation

(Am/Love’s exhal C/a  D/tion)


G/How I adore  Am/you

C/As we two slowly  dance D/through

G/Vast circles C/of  D//time

(Am/Vast circles C/of D/time)

(G/Dance through A/Dance through  Am/Dance through vast circles of  G/time)


© 2015, 2016 (words & chords) Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

 IMAGE: MAN AND WOMAN DANCING (Pinterest, no artist named)


(just for fun…)


Playing an instrument

Twittering like the birds

Don’t know the notes

Just mouthing the words


(G, C, D, A minor–Good enough for a gig at the diner)


Like an unknown language

I’m in a vacuum

What did I play

I’m floundering in a flume


(G, C, D, A minor–Country-style song, what a whiner)



Chords are so lovely

Can play, sing and compose

Yet something is missing

Like wandering in shadows



(G, C, D, A minor–Blues song about a love-sick piner)


So time to use my brain

I want to know what to say

Gonna learn the mystery

Of reading notes today


(G, C, D, A minor—Need a good song, nothing could be finer)


© 2016 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

image: my tenor ukulele


(The USA should have a Boxing Day for all our laborers who had to work yesterday)


Like a troublesome jigsaw puzzle

Life may be similar

But too large to see

The big picture

So I just enjoy

Fitting together little pieces

And forget about life itself


Here’s a segment of history:

Joe Hill’s execution in 1915

Interested me

In 1965

And again in 2015

Decades of belting out

“I Dreamed I Saw Joe Hill”

Now, able to magically play it

On my ukulele

(Only four chords, of course)

As the aging voice

Sings the song


So okay, history…

Thought he was


A union organizer

For the copper miners

Executed for a crime

He says he didn’t commit

I won’t belabor that

I wasn’t there

But we know

Thanks to History

How that goes for protestors

Who need to be “disappeared”


Anyway, bored one night

Followed his virtual path


He was a poet and songwriter

(Why didn’t I know that?)

So then I find the I.W.W Songs

You know, the Wobblies

The Little Red Book


And because of my Medicare woes,

Boringly detailed in a previous poem,

Because of that, I

Find myself emerging from the

Underground maze

A place I hid in for years

In silence

Smiling, nodding, tippity-tapping

In order to keep the jobs

Hiding the big secret

That I’ve always been angry

About the injustice of any government

Toward the working poor

Like me

Despite a college degree

In mid-life

Yet always a bottom feeder, salary-wise


So I pull myself out of the underground

Into the open, wild flower field of truth

And I find a song in the Little Red Book

Written by Joe Hill

“Rebel Girl”

Be still my heart

A song written for me

And you who are poor

Despite working more and more

And I know

I’ll always be a rebel girl

Above or underground


All right, I’m getting on with my “thesis”

How the synergy of one topic

One little puzzle piece


I call it


Music, Biography, History, Poetry, Politics

And full-circle to Music

Rebel Girl is back

It’s the 60s, at least in my inner life, again

And yes, for all you readers who

Hung in there with my tiradic poem

This personal dovetail is part of the big picture of

My life

But also yours…

(c) 2015 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)




G           C             G (G7)

Yes, her hands may be hardened from labor,

C             Cm     G

And her dress may not be very fine;

G          C       G

But a heart in her bosom is beating

A7                       D (D7)

That is true to her class and her kind.





ACT OF CREATION (composed my first ukulele song for one of my poems)

ukulele 1

The scent of music

Unlike the yeast of bread

That sets the stomach growling

Unlike the taste of honey

That brings celebration to the taste buds

Unlike the soothing herbs

That heal from a cup of health

The scent of music

Unique, all-powerful

Breathing life into the

Simplest poems

Fueling words and thoughts

As strings are pressed

Against the frets

Strummed and plucked

Music is the missing ingredient

Supplement to a healthier life

It is more than

Bread, honey, water-drenched herbs

It is the creator of joy and sadness

It is a backdrop to vitality

Enriching our inner life

Enlarging our spirit

Music is life…

© 2015 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)