This heart is yours…

•November 4, 2008 • 6 Comments


…inspired by this Kyknoord illustration, offered as a visual prompt at “readwritepoem”.



This Heart is Yours

this heart is yours

this damaged heart

this brittle
aching heart

in your cold cruel hands

then cast aside

I’ve no use for this ruined heart

I plucked it from my chest

I seek a warm and vital heart

now begins my quest

• • •

rob kistner © 2008


Relentless Repetition

•October 23, 2008 • 3 Comments



Relentless Repetition

hostage to a hopeless din
of relentless repetition

held captive
in confusion’s grip

trapped in a whirl
of brute cacophony

stuttered stammered curses

the chatter wells
inside my head
unbearably insistent

to squelch the jibberish

puppet does not listen

• • •

rob kistner © 2008


written in response to a prompt from


•August 8, 2008 • 16 Comments



inquiries of heart

from summer red lover’s lips

float like butterflies

• • •

rob kistner © 2008


Too Long In The Shadow

•July 23, 2008 • 9 Comments


Too Long in the Shadow



smothered by big oil
our blue planet is dying
trapped in greed’s shadow

future is mortgaged
to petrochemical lust
fatal addiction

mankind is drowning
in a flood of fossil fuel
swept t’ward extinction




3D color rendering at top depicts a piece entitled: “Too Long in the Shadow”
by: rob kistner © 2008

Detail displayed below the depiction is 1/4 scale of actual size
Original artwork is 24″Tall x 30″Wide

• • •


Dark Dock

•July 7, 2008 • 7 Comments


Dark Dock

the lone light

hanging heavy
in the night dew
from the bow ring

searches its beam
‘cross the chop water
for the dark dock

for home

• • •

rob kistner © 2008



•June 27, 2008 • 6 Comments





green leaves on blue pond

float in golden summer sun

red bird softly sings



• • •

rob kistner © 2008


Curious Elf

•June 27, 2008 • 9 Comments



Curious Elf

an angel-eyed velvet-clad curious elf
was sitting alone on a leaf by himself
quite lost and he didn’t see anyone else
he was scared and cried in the woods by himself

I want to be home with my fam’ly of elves
6 sisters 5 brothers – in all I’m the twelfth
this is no a place for an angel-eyed elf
and damp woods are not very good for my health

sometimes it’s hard being a curious elf
curiosity is why I wandered off by myself
and I’m not big enough to get home without help
please somebody come find this small frightened elf

so if you’re no bigger than a wee little elf
don’t go wandering off in the woods by yourself
take somebody else and your cell phone as well
so you don’t get lost like this curious elf

cause it’s scary being lost all alone by yourself

• • •

rob kistner © 2008



•June 19, 2008 • 22 Comments




young orchid fresh-bloomed
engorged with succulence
bursting with life’s urgency
vibrantly seductive

dewy lips of supple petal
lay open in offered sweet delight
velvet pistil of gentle blush
enwrapped in throat of fiery hue

this vision of tender ecstasy
entices with a lilting sway
a fragrance to intoxicate
wafting from the luscious folds

breathing in the rich bouquet
all senses stirred and tantalized
my eyes embrace this visage rare
pleasured in the heady moment

captive by such vital beauty
consumed, one savors slowly
exquisitely delicious
this tender bud, full bloomed

• • •

rob kistner © 2008


photo above of: Phrag Eric Young orchid — composite by: rob kistner © 2008

• • •


Bohemian Nightfall

•June 6, 2008 • 17 Comments



Bohemian Nightfall

when night fell on bohemia
the streets were set ablaze
in black light
in strobe light

it was tie-dyed psychedelia
when night fell on bohemia

jack and neal were on the road
ridin’ with the fire-whores
of angst and indignation
like combustin’ carnal fireballs
when night fell on bohemia

allen was howlin’
pal’n with corso
and long’n for peter

hunter, groin deep
in the brain-drug flesh festival
…hunter was fearful
and loathing it all
when night fell on bohemia

bill, stark naked
was lunchin’ with the devil
jelly-rollin’ in a demon’s fire
when night fell on bohemia

gary headed for cold mountain
to watch it all from sourdough
electric bob went subterranean

when night fell on bohemia
ken and tim
gathered up the faithful
on the magic bus
and stole off with the future

like pranksters

ever further

• • •

rob kistner © 2008


collage above entitled: “Bohemian Nightfall” — by: rob kistner © 2008

• • •


Not Since Then

•May 23, 2008 • 18 Comments


recorded author’s reading available below


Not Since Then

this turn down our country lane
I could make it in my sleep

so familiar

I anticipate every bend
and dip

they are welcome as a friend

like the sound of my tires
as they trundle ‘cross
the narrow wooden bridge
that fords the feisty brook

and coming round, I see
the corridor of faithful old-growth Doug’s
stepping back for me
inviting my return

guarding my safe passage
they sway — as if to celebrate
that I am back again

now — it’s left up our gravel drive
the pebble and crushed rock
crunch and clatter in stony rustle
as I traverse our hill

swing onto our concrete carport
pause – and key the engine off

all is silent – save the tick and popping
as the engine cools

this is my favorite moment
just before I open the door
to step up and approach the house
approach you

this moment of anticipation

knowing you are waiting, bathed and fragrant,
warm and soft – dressed in something that will whisper
welcome home my love —
I’ve missed you

then I take you in my arms, fall into your loving eyes
pull your willing body close
to wrap ‘round you, and drink you in – intoxicated

these moments melt into sweet love making
that continues until exhaustion

we both love when I return, from a business trip

but tonight
I do not key the engine off
I do not reach for the handle
do not open the door

I simply sit

you are no longer waiting – not in quite sometime
not since you lost your battle brave
not since I held you, that final time
your body still warm and soft

not since then

now my business trips are longer
my returns
fewer – and farther between.

• • •

rob kistner © 2008



To hear “Not Since Then” read by the author, CLICK HERE
note: Doug’s are Douglas Firs



•May 16, 2008 • 5 Comments



they rise

of the clever human

they vibrate
with the rush
and chaos
of synapse
and sinew

they hum
networked urgency


‘we can’
beyond the reach
of ‘should we’

in stainless
and such

a halogen blaze
of neon fire

they surge
with the impulse
of power
and greed


here and there
by art
true creative touch

short fallen

they are erected
and festooned

in varying shape
and differing size
they flank
in concrete corridors

that criss
and cross

and ring

that buzz

and stink

they regiment
the like-minded
that submit

huddled within

college’d clones
and inspected
in their daily dealings

haughty monoliths
that intimidate
and amaze
with cold

they are
ego’s folly

for they do not
touch the soul

nor offer solace
to the human core
that seeks
the folded petal’s mystery

that marvels
at the smallness
of a changing frond

at the might
of gnarled bark

the magic
of budding branch

they do not
touch the spirit
by wind and water

by song of birds
or swoop of hawks

by the yelp
or bark
or bleat of beasts

they cannot
reach the soul
that needs
to know and see
a salmon’s trek

the dolphin’s arc

an open sky

the roll of unobstructed clouds
or fall of stars

they have nothing
for the soul
that needs to hear
the crack of thunder
resound for miles
across the plain
then off the mountain’s face

they fail
the human core
that needs
the fresh embrace of rain

the crisp and quiet
drift of snow

the hues and sway
of living fields

They leave the spirit cold
that needs
to watch the orchard’s blossoms
bloom to fruit

see forests
thick beyond horizons

or feel
the lift of cresting surf


there are no human constructs
that satisfy
this need to know
evolving natural wonders

that inspire

the heart

that liberate
the soul
to leave one
truly filled

with awe

• • •

rob kistner © 2008



•May 13, 2008 • 6 Comments


A darker reality of Mother’s Day.



bastard’s lament



thrown away

though whole
and useful

no matter

labeled mistake

left behind

by the side
of life’s road

to endure
the harsh weather
of abandonment

sentenced for life

to suffer confusion

the sorrow
of the unwanted


guilty only
of the crime
of inconvenience

• • •

rob kistner © 2008


This Jounery

•May 10, 2008 • 6 Comments


This Journey

this journey
has been fraught
with wonder
and tears

it’s carried me
‘cross boundaries
mass of lands
‘cross time
and space

it’s shown me

good & evil

the best
the least
the unfortunate

it’s brought me pleasures
and fortune

to claim them back
with no remorse

I’ve known satisfaction
a woman’s love
a child’s passing

it’s been true
and faithful


to turn away
my heart

it’s been fact
and fantasy

I’ve been

I’ve been

as a man
of standing

left behind
to cry

I’ve traveled
I’ve traveled

I’ve stumbled
weighed with grief

I’ve lead
and followed
lost my way
regained direction
then disappeared

I’ve walked hand in hand
with fear
and death

stared down

to be consumed

then arose
to once again
go forth
without a clue
my destination

with no regard
the fated outcome
nor consideration
of my plight

long ago
I lost my worry
having learned
it’s of no use

I’ve realized
our difference

at the core
we’re all
the same

this realm
we entered
all alone
and here we’ll leave
alone again

all of this
is of no matter

foolish so
to dwell upon

of no concern
of no regard
most certainly
not worth the measure

in reflection
one sees too late

it was
this journey
that was the treasure

• • •

rob kistner © 2008


Faithful (a haiku)

•May 9, 2008 • 8 Comments




time is a tyrant
it will chill the spring blue jay
yet still I am true

• • •

rob kistner © 2008


Earth (celebrate Earth Day 2008)

•April 21, 2008 • 37 Comments




Gaia Suite

• • •

The Balance

mother gaia
you embrace us

carry us safely

as we hurtle
thousands of miles
every hour
of every day

through infinite space

you provide for us
our every need

sustain our bodies
with your abundance

nurture our spirits
with your beauty
and endless wonders

your need is simple

that we live in balance
with your rhythms

with our fellow travelers
on this amazing journey

that we know gratitude

humble stewards
of your countless gifts

for millennium
upon millennium
we lived
in harmony



but we’ve grown arrogant

we believe
we have dominion
over you

over all in your realm

in pursuit of intellect
we lost our sense

our equilibrium

lost our way

even as we watch you suffer
we cling to our ego

to our destructive delusion
of supremacy

we do not see
do not understand

please forgive us

be patient

do not forsake us
we can learn

we must learn

love for you
is still strong
among your wayward children

this voice of love
cries out

please listen

it resonates
more loudly
with the passing of time

precious mother gaia

grant us time
to again find our way
our humility
our center

the balance

• • •




Gaia Weeps


man seeks dominion

frail balance has been disturbed

gaia is weeping

• • •




Gaia Yields


seeds push seeking sun

sky is pulling with spring rain

gaia yields new life

• • •




• • •

rob kistner © 2008


artwork at top entitled “Gaia•Evo (earth evolving)” by: rob kistner © 1997
artwork at bottom entitled “Gaia Yields” by: rob ksitner © 2007

• • •


True Work

•April 17, 2008 • 45 Comments




True Work

I bend my back
then straighten at the waist

hunkered ‘neath the weight
I lift clean the load
the warehouseman’s refrain
always on my mind

back straight
lift with the legs

the first test — no result

I try a second
then a third

on and on
day after day
long hours in the lab

the formula must be perfect
only perfect will save lives

drywall must be flush
and plumb
also square and seamless

I set each sheet
with the level and the bob

then pause
to wipe my sweating brow

I curse my keyboard

do battle with fatigue

I coax the vision
to commit to screen
the first draft of my design

to then modify
and refine

until — the ultimate creation

these — and countless others

elements of the work I do
or did
or may yet do

and I am you
and you are me
and we are all together
in this constant labor
for our daily bread

but – this is not our true work

to bend to lift someone in need
to help carry their burden
until they again stand steady

to seek the components of peace
to formulate the dialog
that fosters understanding

to measure well my tolerance
to stand squarely flush
with truth and level justice

to visualize a free world
to create enduring possibility
for universal love

this — is the true work
in the final sweep
‘round the face of time

• • •

rob kistner © 2008


collage above entitled: “Soul Currency” — by: rob kistner © 2007

• • •



•April 11, 2008 • 13 Comments

This is a rewrite of a rewrite of poem I first wrote in the Fall of 1997, inspired by the wonderfully consistent Pacific Ocean kiting winds so prevalent on the Oregon Coast.




a whispered zephyr
tosses my hair
brushes soft my cheek

hope gently stirs

a promise of breeze
begins to freshen

it wafts
and builds

gathers strength

heartbeat quickens

spirals anew

the building currents
draw taut the line

an urgent tug

the moment arrives

my kite fills
then billows

it stands and dances

sculpted tight
against the frame

caught full
by this mounting breeze
it lifts with grace

rises with purpose

with deft hand
and careful eye
I guide it
safely airborne

it ascends

carried skyward
on friendly drafts

by winds of good fortune

this day my kite
has taken flight

bold aloft
in the clear bright sky

with a constant wind
my kite

fragile as a dream

soars strong
and steady

a sudden gust

my kite is tossed

but a nimble touch
keeps it skyward

should winds
like fortune

and the sky grow still

my kite
like fate
will falter

like life

makes no guarantee

but such is the thrill of kiting

• • •

rob kistner © 2008


collage above entitled: “Soaring” — by: rob kistner © 2007

• • •



•April 10, 2008 • 19 Comments




he lifts himself

so quietly

from beneath
the sheets

soiled with neglect

makes his way

past the shallow-breathed
that lay milky-eyed
in a heap

on the floor

save a twitch of the head

which head
now harbors demons

where nocturne angels
of sweet release
laid down lush
upon her

in fevered embrace

lustfully conjured
by last night’s
spoon and lance

still skewered
in the soured vein

this wreckage
is his mother

he stops
but for a glance

verifying life

then moves on
head down

he angles
to the bathroom
to the scum-brown bowl
to wash his face

a face

lit sallow
by the yellowed bulb

that hangs bare
and lonely

of knowing

of sadness

that stare
into the mirror

broken as his heart

in the dank
foodless morning
of this ruined
single room

he gathers up his books

steps lightly
through the door

down the damaged stairs

into the hostile streets

with a childhood
of strangled dreams

he ducks and dodges
in and out of shadows

his prayer

to once again
avoid the evil

that lurks and slinks
among the garbage
and graffiti

of these crumbled
brickened canyons

seductive as a smile

as a snake

evil which

if diligence should fail

will consume
his youthful soul

deliberately he continues

until at last
he finds his way
into the building

into the classroom

into his desk

into the only hope

to which
this innocent dare cling

• • •

rob kistner © 7/3/05




Powerful photo at top is of the Hope Street Wall graffiti in Philadelphia
captured by: Eugene Martin

Wonderful mural at bottom also from Philadelphia, on a school at 27th & Cecil B. Moore
captured by: Shackamaxonbaby



• • •


Finish Line

•April 4, 2008 • 27 Comments


“you’re forever on my mind”



Finish Line

(In loving memory of my son, Aaron Kistner: 11/4/76 – 7/3/95)

It is my favorite picture of you son,
the one I treasure most
since your passing.

A simple snapshot,
taken at the airport,
upon your return
from having run the New York City Marathon.

A gentle, triumphant smile,
eyes beaming behind those ‘cool’ shades,
jacket sleeves rolled in casual hip-ness,
bag thrown carefree over your shoulder,
medal dangling proudly from your strong neck.

The victor: gentle, cool, hip, carefree, proud, and strong,
– fiercely handsome!

How profound this captured moment proved to be.

Taken just before the finish line of your 18 years,
it said it all.

Your race is run,
your bag is packed,
your reward’s in hand.

Fly my sweet angel – fly!

• • •

rob kistner © 7/3/05


Aaron Robert Kistner, 18th birthday, returning from NYC Marathon
Shortly before he was killed
photo edited by: rob kistner © 2008

• • •


On the Edge

•March 28, 2008 • 16 Comments




On the Edge

It has all come to this. No turning back now, no room for doubt, no fear –– no place for mistakes. Years of preparation, visualizing my dream, of tenacious conditioning, practice, of sacrifice, of hope –– is finally culminating in this one moment in time.

I hear the winds whistle in the shell of my headgear, the snow crunch crisp and fresh underfoot as I step off the aerial tram and stride to the starting gate. My skis, waxed to perfection, are thrown over my right shoulder, both poles gripped in my left hand. I vibrate with nerves and pure, refined energy.

As I make the short walk I reflect, “over 90 miles per hour for 90 seconds, airborne –– hurtling down the mountain like a rocket, freefalling just at the edge of control, at the edge of disaster… at the edge of euphoria! I love this! I can do this, just don’t catch an edge!” I push that brief slip of negativity out of my head, and begin to visualize, while repeating, “tuck tight, knees flexed, eyes down the mountain, fearless… fly!”

I sit to tighten my boots and affix my skis. I hear the chatter of coaches and officials, the mantra-like self-talk of my competitors –– and the clamor of the crowds that collect along the course, gathered exuberantly dense at the bottom.

I begin to slowly tune all that into a background monotone buzz, then a quiet hum, squelching –– until finally, I tune it out altogether. I focus, dialing myself into my personal space, my place of vivid concentration, intense presence –– my zone.

Here I wait until my coach comes to lead me to the starting gate, where I check in with the race officials, and queue up. It seems just a blink of an eye and he comes, and I go –– go to what I believe will be victory, my time of destiny. I am ready!

Standing behind the next racer poised to start, I acutely envision the entire course, racing section by section, successfully making and re-making the run in my head –– the same one I’ve made many times in practice. I imagine the gate fly open, see myself push off, thrusting with all my might into that first steep drop, accelerating fiercely into the first turn, building a torrid pace, knifing down the mountain –– as if an apparition, a vapor, a blur… gone 90/90!

At last, alone in the gate, I see the mountain stretch out below me, the crystalline white falling and twisting –– down, down. This is it, it’s here; my dance with fate –– but this is no gamble. I am so totally ready for this –– ready to roar down the icy slope, surge across the finish line… ready to fly!

The starting tone begins to pulse. My mind links into the cadence, my body feels the rhythm. My vision grows sharp, my senses keen, my surroundings –– vibrant. Time is folding into slow motion, honing down to the long-awaited instant, the critical split-second. My legs are wound springs, my arms and shoulders are powerful pistons, my heart –– a thunderous locomotive. The brink is reached, then crossed. The gate swings away as I launch –– in one mighty explosion…

• • •

rob kistner © 2008


collage above entitled: “On the Edge” — by: rob kistner © 2008

• • •


Suite: Phantasmagoria

•March 27, 2008 • 31 Comments


A brief suite of fantasy images inspired by Philip K. Dick’s scifi novel: “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?”





I’ve watched
golden Fire Clouds
hanging in pale green skies
over the azure seas of Toluras

heard the haunting call
of the coral-winged Lellurt
soaring Droon’s violet skies
over teal Darpin Bay

seen the copper leaves
of Parmus fronds
flashing from indigo mountains
in the crystal mists of Gemin

been seduced by saffron Remmors
a’swim with siren song
translucent in the amber waters
of emerald Topiarus

I have beheld exquisite beauty
of otherworldly delight
but nothing to please my eyes and ears
as you, here, tonight

• • •

rob kistner © 2008


fantasy artwork above entitled: “Time Window”
featuring elements from justin and rob kistner
final composite created by by: rob kistner © 2007

• • •


Dark History

•March 25, 2008 • 4 Comments




Dark History

money binds the soul
tangled with dark history
wise men understood

. . .

rob kistner © 2008



•March 23, 2008 • 22 Comments





rounding a bend
brushing through
waist-high fern
I crest a knoll

and stop


in the warm light
of sunset

by the woodland canopy
high above

below me

a pristine ribbon
of silver-blue waters

marbled golden
with the last rays
of sunlight

that reach
into this
splendid canyon

cut by time
and current
in the great rock
of the earth


I marvel at the power
the beauty

at the determination
of the mighty river
that sculpts
this majestic work

it tumbles
in timeless clarity
over boulder and falls

ever onward

its enchanted voice
calls me
to its banks

I stand
immersed in its energy

by its duet
with the wind

that plays the boughs
of the towering pines

as it soars
down the lofty climbs

brushes my face

tosses my hair

and dances past me
round a bend

in perfect harmony

…I am transformed…

• • •




photographed near my home in the Cascade Mountain foothills

top photo entitled: “Sunlight on Clackamas River”
bottom photo entitled: “Moon Over Clackamas River”

• • •

rob kistner © 2008


Distant Farewell

•March 18, 2008 • 57 Comments




Distant Farewell

“I’ve watched
golden fire clouds,
hanging in pale green skies,
over the azure seas of Toluras”

“I’ve seen the copper leaves
of the parmus fronds
flashing from indigo mountains
in the crystal mists of Gemin.”

“I have beheld exquisite beauty
in my rich, full life
but none so beautiful
as your eyes tonight”

Artheo whispers
his breath warms
the tender lobe
of my eager ear

he presses his lips
softly to mine
with gentle passion
bids me farewell

now three hours past
I linger in the bittersweetness

I can still taste him

now here I am
hurtling through space
standing on the aft deck

reliving the sensations

a sudden chill
shocks me sober

been here, done this
precisely this
in every detail


it’s my first time aboard

a foreboding grips me

I shiver as I watch
the jade-sapphire orb
grow smaller

less relevant

it now recedes

less visible
through the carbon-Lucite

zero-g frost
forms and obscures
this breathtaking view
of the lush planet

our home planet

a place
some now on board
will not again see
for fifteen years

if they are
counted among
the fortunate
who do return

we race
exceeding light-speed
toward a distant
call for help

unknown destiny
in uncharted space
with no idea
what we will encounter

the call made it certain
no good lay ahead

I am Sephias
going to Topiarus
to return
in a year’s time

I am distraught

the anxiety
of separation

intense pressure
permeates the crew
who go the distance
to the edge of space
to answer
the cry for help

it is contagious
I feel this too

I feel ungrounded
each time I choose
to leave my man
to go on mission

my soul mate

our love is deep

it has withstood
these essential

we understood
when I joined Far•Worlds
that separation
came with the program

but knowing this
makes it no easier

my anxiety
is heightened further
given this mission’s

at Far•Worlds Corp
we are involved
in new-resources

we’re scientists
not trained spacetroopers

our expertise
not military

this ship
the Thadius
is a space schooner
solar-wind powered

a research vessel
fast and agile

not suited
for space combat

the security force
we have on board
trained to defend
not to attack

they protect us
from known threats
on our journeys
through known space

this mission’s different

the unknown
makes this dangerous

the Dextorium
was an advance ship
sent to reconnoiter
9 months ago

the Dextorium
did in fact carry
a battle-trained
spacetrooper force

but it has now
fallen silent
for many months

not a word

to take my mind
off things disturbing
I drift to Artheo

to our last kiss

he manifest
a calm brave face
at our goodbye

but I knew better

now together
two centuries
rest assured
I know my man

as decorated Primests
of the Science-Sect Elite
we are privileged
with three birthing cycles

to improve the human strain

a 40-year
no-birthing period
our second
now nears its end

we will enter
our third
free-birthing cycle

we both welcome
the sabbatical
of twenty years
that it affords

we’ve begotten
in prior cycles
and love them both

we now dream
of this newest family
our near future
holds in store

this coming family
is most important
in our lives

Artheo’s and mine

state edicts dictate
3rd cycle families
caretake their honored fosters
as health declines

as we move closer
to our stand down
and cryogenic

this new family
will be our comfort
as our current life-phase
draws to a close

as I reflect
I am disrupted

a sudden chaos

panicked commotion
on the foredeck

there is great alarm

I rush forward
in time to see
a startling scene
begin to unfold


in front of our speeding ship

a menacing field
of strange devices

they begin to spread
with apparent logic
to form a grid
blocking our path

acting intelligent
with a single mind
as though a sentient
living thing

they are immense
and they are many
as they assemble
in net-like fashion

as far left and right
as one can see
they are there
from top to bottom

spread far too vast
to travel around
their advancing speed
we cannot outrun

as we approach
the steely web
their acceleration
becomes exponential

no doubt we’re on
a collision course

my senses jolt
I stagger back
in shock and awe

it is now quite clear
what fate befell
our advance party

and it appears – others

they’ve been, well…

they’ve been absorbed
by this horrific
electronic death-mesh

we are defenseless

we on the Thadius
can only stare
frightened — but spellbound

the crew’s emotions
now run the gamut
tears fill most eyes
as hell approaches

it’s then I see it
in the grey-green carbon
and cold blue steel
closing upon us

captured life-energies
of the Dextorium crew
and countless others
that have come before

their vital essence
has been consumed
by this entangled nightmare
that now besets us

their images flicker
in and out of focus
trapped in the grid
held fast – and hopeless

empty looks
of complete surrender
bewildered faces
living ghosts

this thing is coming
this host of evil

I feel helpless
so confused
and so alone

its then I rush
to my solarcomm
to send a message
to Artheo

I begin
by sharing poetry
as is our custom

“I’ve heard the haunting call
of the coral winged Lellurt
in Droon’s violet skies
over teal Darpin Bay”

“right now,
I want to hear
your soothing voice
my precious love.”

“I would give the world
to hear your voice.”

I am speaking
in a tone controlled
yet laced with longing
and melancholy

“I love you my dearest
but something bad
is happening now
here where I am”

“there’s a chance…”
then I must pause
collect myself
to start again

“There is a chance,
I may not return
to you again,
to our sweet life”

here my voice quavers
and then it cracks
as I try to add,
“…or — to our children.”

grasping for courage
I go on

“if this is
to be my end
it falls to you
to raise them now”

“please let them see
they’re loved forever

protect them well
and keep them safe”

it’s now a struggle
to form the words
but filled with love
I press on

“remember my eggs.
they are safely stored
at the Off•World Corp’s
Reproductive Center.”

“my surrogate
has been selected
she is tested
and bonded pure”

“you must see
our new family born
Zenus and Rennar — born

please promise me!“

choking back
so many emotions
I now fight
to conclude the message

this is the last
I will ever send
to my beloved

these are the last words
he’ll hear me speak

“these children,
Zenus and Rennar,
will be the final connection
between you and I”

“remember forever
they are a part
of each of us
my darling one”

“he and she
will care for you
and see you through
your dimming years.”

“they will love you
as you’ll love them

give them my love
tell them about me.”

voice faltering badly
I rise to finish
and share with Artheo
my final words

“god, oh god,
how I want you
here in my arms
my one true love!”

with that,
my heart breaks
as I stare silently
into the screen

teardrops streaming
down my cheeks

12 hours later
the message arrives
on Artheo’s
commstation screen

he is gripped
by disbelief
at what he sees
at what he hears

consumed by horror
unable to move
he stands trembling

frozen by grief

as he sees
my message end
my image flickers
and then it fades

falls to his knees
without sound
silent for some time

with a growing mix
of fear and sorrow
on his ashen face

he throws back his head
thrusts up his arms
straight and stiff
fists clenched in anger

clenched so tightly
cut into palms
and bring forth blood

bloodied hands
whitened knuckles
stab at the stars

he keens and moans
then begins to wail

the guttural
heart-wrenching wail
of a man bereft



• • •

rob kistner © 2008


collage above entitled: “Face the Future” — by: rob kistner © 2008

• • •


The Ancient

•March 13, 2008 • 60 Comments




The Ancient


I watch
as generations

as empires

as wisdom

I’ve observed
of human folly

as they stumble
to a cold

from each other
from everything

serving the machine

perfecting violence
as they race
to ruination

aliens in eden

I see
the natural world

but still I stand
thrusting skyward

closer to heaven
than any living thing

a perpetual survivor
rooted in perpetuity

the constant sentinel

a witness to time


I watch
as generations
move forward

as civilization
painstakingly progresses

as knowledge
slowly unfolds

I’ve observed
of human endeavor

as they advance
to an extraordinary

less dependent
on conformity
on hive mentality

mastering the machine

enduring strife
as they strive
for the light

evolving beings

I see
the natural world

and still I stand
reaching skyward

closer to heaven
than any living thing

a perpetual presence
rooted in perpetuity

the constant sentinel

a witness to time

• • •

rob kistner © 2008


collage above entitled: “Time Witness” — by: rob kistner © 2008

• • •