Monday 7 February 2022

Five Poems by James Miller


New Year’s Eve


Having been away

from this island for a year,

I watch new night

with the eyes of a child.




the stars seem to follow

the wind and its secret.


I used to want to know it.

I wanted to hear

the story of the moon

falling in love

with the dark sea.


And so I do again

now in the night. 


For this must be how love begins.

Alone, but willing to be moved,

trusting the secret of beauty.


So, story of my life,

start again to know your home,

to sing back to these waves.


For what is to come

begins with a breath of stars,

the moon as she kisses the sea.

Stormy Night


There is still an island,

a sand that knows my feet,

a wind that calls my voice.

And to be far away

is just part of the current,

part of returning home.

I tell myself this

alone by the window

with just my books

and the memory of waves.

For what the world cannot read

is the poem before its breath,

my words until they arrive.

Will they have a lover’s kiss?

My words in the salty wind?

I trust they will

the way I trust thunder

calling me to dream tonight.

Yes, let nature have its way

in me, even if

I leave here with nothing but a song.

For the rain is music,

the lightening a dance.

I will follow the storm home

until island winds find me. 





Warmth is often a distant thought,

but tonight it is near

the way fires are never far

from willing hands.

I have painted my fingers red

in homage of your absence,

red like a warrior’s blood.

Of course, the paint is music,

a dancing drum of fate

where we might meet again.

For I see you whenever I see smoke

out there in the woods.

Black and free like your hair,

a trail to my deepest dreams.

So let my words

sink into you

like ink, like heat,

until they become

all your skin,

all your dreams.

All of this in time. 



Moon Sheen on the Lake


This lake could be from sky’s womb

to make my small presence here

a birth from the moon

and from all the songs

that lovers share at midnight.

But I am alone now

with no one to hold

in this sweet hour.



there is the moon and my longing.

There is the moon

who is also alone.

And perhaps this is what I need?

Not a lover, but kind nature—

the beauty of what has always been

all in this soft hour.


For what is my song

if not that of the wanderer

who is constantly reborn

by finding what he needs?

Dear moon of tonight,

moon of tomorrow,

please find me again

in some place by the water.

From the USA, James Miller is the author of Shell Songs. His most recent publications have been in The Lyric and the Martha's Vineyard Times. He lives in Delaware where he won the state award for an emerging poet.  

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