Frog trap contains a surprise

‘Possum sitting amid dog kibble

Take him to the Preserve of James Grey

Re-homing works well

As he struts into the wild woods


I go to the Boardwalk

Winding my way

Through scrubs and pine

Palm and bush

Hearing DeSoto and his men

Clanking in armor

Ninety-five degree summer

Humidity drenching their

Proud mustaches and beards


A narrow but magical boardwalk

Taking me from gulf to ocean

Spooling across the Bermuda Triangle

As I hear

Creaking oars and rusty motors

Of ghost ships and planes

Caught in the mysterious vortex


I walk until the boards

Under my feet

Pass haunted abbeys

Destroyed by the Eighth Henry

Who changed the face of religion

Merely because he could

Woe to the women

Witches, so was claimed

When it was really about sex

And male progeny

Although we now know

The XY chromosomes of males

Determine the gender

Not the XX of women


The Boardwalk continues

Across ranges of mountains

Quiescent volcanoes

Pyrenees, Vesuvius, Alps

Carpathians, Himalayas

And I hear Hannibal

Urging his men and elephants

Through rain and snow

They must conquer

As I must walk

To quell the need for change

The greed to live one’s desires


I pass above lands of dynastic tyranny

Exotic islands and animals

In a different hemisphere

And I meet no one

See no one

Only those ectoplasmic shapes

Hearing voices in the language of Babel

Burning oil rigs, and the echo of screams

As terrorism clashes with soldiers

Mere teens


Then suddenly the walk

Is spanning the Pacific

A word meaning peaceful

And I continue

As whales and dolphins

Fight the fish nets

Imprisoning them along with

Other food of the sea

Supply and demand

For a horribly over-populated land

The land called Earth

As organized religions

Insist on the outdated

Be fruitful and multiply

Stop it!

We’re already overly-fruitful!


I walk, so tired now

Breathing deeply

Wanting to feel

Negative ions that comfort me

As the Boardwalk approaches

The other smog-shrouded coast

Of my homeland


And I walk

And I breathe

And I smell

And I hear

The fear

Of the world

And oh

I just want to be alone


All this distills down to

A coarse social media acronym

Burned on my retinas

From overly-surfing

And I say it aloud:




© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: James E. Grey Preserve Boardwalk




*scroll down for a Joan Baez YouTube video*


A friend did send

An article about

Thracian deities

Thrace part of

Bulgaria, Turkey, and Greece

Just south of Romania

My father’s birthplace

My friend did send

When I complained

That her Celtic gods and goddesses

Were so much more interesting

Than the Romani ones

Of course, the Romani ones are from India

But there is the Eastern European part of my blood

That calls out to other deities


So being a Fire sign

I was interested in the Fire goddess

Later to become St. Marina

Daughter of Domna (Queen)

Who comes with her own folk song:

“Oh, Domna, Domna, Domna queen!

Domna queen and swallow!”

And the nerd in me

The wannabe folksinger in me

Can suddenly see

Can suddenly hear

The high trilling of none other

Than Joan Baez

Singing and strumming

“Dona, Dona, Dona, Dona”

A song claiming to be a Yiddish folksong

Even though the words

Match up with the Thracian mythology

Of a black sheep being sacrificed

To the Domna

And a swallow, like the swallows

Of San Juan Capistrano

Are elements echoed in the song

“On a wagon, bound for market

Is a calf with a mournful eye…”


“Why don’t you have wings to fly with

Like the swallow so proud and free?”

Most interesting of all

After the Eastern European countries shifted

Joan Baez performed her song in

The new country with

The old name of Czechoslovakia

Many of the people saying they were

Long-familiar with the myth


So I apologize to some of you

Wading through my nerdy piece of blogetry

But hoping that my fellow nerds

Will feel the delight

Of discovering cultural insight

Of history repeating itself

But in a lovely way

Not a doom but a boon

Of the beat going on…


© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: Swallow (Pinterest, no attribution)


https://youtu.be/BqzGZ5AaeSs   YouTube video, Joan Baez singing Dona, Dona, Dona (spelling changed to Donna somewhere along the years)



*Feel like I was a tree in a previous incarnation (and an amoeba, dog, and sundry other collections of cells)


I was a young adult tree

When chopped down

We all silently screamed

But somehow

Lying dying

I noticed that some were missed

My friend Adonis was one

A proud, Bosnian Pine

And now, scrolling through FB

In my newest incarnation

I recognize him

Being celebrated as the oldest living tree

In Europe

From the Pindus Mountains in northern Greece

And my previous life flashes through my mind

Back to times before the axmen came

And murdered us for nothing

Leaving us there to rot

While they picked some berries

From our leafy hair

Or snapped off twigs to build a fire


Before that

We all stood in the Spring dawn as the sap rose

From the roots to the tips of branches

We all stood in the Summer nights

Softly singing our tree songs

Only heard by the forest fauna

Who smiled and slept in our roots

And branches

We all stood in the Autumn afternoons

Hearing the crackling of our red and brown leaves

As hunters moved through the forest

We trees trying to shelter our smaller friends

Fated to be dinner for these men

We all stood in the Winter mornings

Grateful for the snow that kept us warm

Holding in the moisture where we burrowed into the Earth


I did not last long

But happy to read that Adonis is still the Guardian

Of flora and fauna and lost souls who wander

Through the paths

Lovers who shelter in his leaves

Adonis who was a seedling in Byzantium

Adonis as an Ottoman at the age of 500 Earth years

Adonis as a witness when Nazi Germany

Occupied Greece

I wonder if Adonis

Can live another thousand years

And if not

Who will he be

Reincarnated like me

Imagine all the knowledge

And wisdom

Contained in his brain

Manifested into one

Who this time can run

When the axmen

Inevitably come



© 2016 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE:  Adonis, via Dr. Oliver Konter, Mainz



(scroll down for the Youngbloods video)


Obsessed all day

Must rid myself of the thoughts

About a social media incident

Wikipedia (and I must add

That although I earn $200

Over the poverty line

I yearly donate to them

Because knowledge is power)

So, okay, Wikipedia posted

A picture of a five-year-old girl

With an infant

Stating she was the youngest

To ever give birth

In 1933 Peru

And she was still living

So me, without coffee

–It hadn’t quite perked—

Flipped out

A no-no during Mercury Retrograde

But I commented angrily

That she was obviously raped

And demanded that Wikipedia

Pull the picture

Because the poor child

Now older than me

Could probably see

This entry

Wikipedia refused, not quite citing

The Free Speech Amendment

But the comments from others began

Some were sympathetic and joined in

Asking for deletion of the entry

But OMG, the comments of hate

Calling me names

Posting pregnancy pictures of this baby

And saying I deserved to suffer and look at her


From whom?  How do I label them?

Perverts? Crazies?

This raged on for too long and I deleted my comment

But of course I obsessed

But of course I feel devastated

But of course I wished myself

To be black and white and tiny

As I desperately clawed at the edges

Of a History book cover

Beads and flowers

Framing my face

Skipping through the pages

Searching for photographs

To slip into

Where peace signs and

Words like “Love”

Adorn the pages

Where I rightfully belong

Way back in time

Pressed between the leaves

In order not to wonder

Where  love of humanity has gone

Or did it ever exist

WTF were we thinking…?


© 2016 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)


YouTube video The Youngbloods, Get Together  https://youtu.be/9R8ynRhwvtY

IMAGE: CS & Tarot camping




She shines,she gleams,this lady kind, filling lost men”s dreams
watching from her ivory tower as the winds drown out their screams
she knows her light shines on them bright,hidden in the night
she knows her mantras, knows her spells,knows their souls by sight

She grieves at this,she thieves with this,she knows by intuitions
she mourns her lost, her hidden costs,behind her dark sky smiles
she”s careful to with her witches brews, her cauldron filled with guile she”s beyond her words, her bonds,her lusts. Magic bows to style

Her druids watch,their nights long lost,for this is when she rules
when hunters hunt,and killers stalk, and timelessness is cruel
what can they do, how do they move,they must protect their queen
they stay awake when others sleep, lost in their serene dreams

The Romans came,to conquer all,they ruled their known world
their latin tounge,spoke words to none,just orders made for rule
they had no choice, cloaked druids walked,under a different moon
when once they danced,uncloaked by chance,to a different tune

Their kingdom lost, usurped by choice,they watch her from afar
this killing moon,spun by Kindly Ones,from their lives was barred
when once they danced,under her light,leaving all to chance
now they sit, so silently,and never more will they once dance

They blame her not, they know her cost, they suffer in her light
It”s neither right, it”s neither wrong,it”s just their endless plight
she shines above, she rides the winds, the stars shine in her hair
below her druid sits in the dark, his life once full, now bare.

(c) 2016 Gary Smith