Duke LaRance

I was born and raised on the High Plains of Northern Montana, shaped by its hard, unforgiving magnificence.  I always knew that I was worth a read but it took me almost twenty years to find the right platform and audience.  I made a huge splash a year and a half ago on some private Facebook poetry sites, garnering awards there, as well as several honors in short order at allpoetry.com.  Honestly, I hoped I had a couple pieces worthy of publication in the last issue of Impspired, however it came as a total shock to learn that my works were in the top ten category for having been read.  I owe a huge gratitude of thanks to so many, including, but not limited to Impspired, those who have stood behind me for numerous lunar cycles, my public and private FB poetry sites.  I toiled in obscurity and flew under the radar for those long twenty years.  A book?  No, this is exactly where I want to be!  Thank you so much! ~ duke larance ~ July 2, 2022

Autumn Lurks

Autumn lurks in the mountains
Stealing down the foothills
Toward the unsuspecting
Valley green
Make your way
Up the river
Colors explode
Hues of orange, yellow, red
Smattering of brown and rust
Climbing farther colors more vivid
More vivid with every step
Intoxicated by splendor
Here we go ridin’
Up the Canyon
Just to Watch the Sun Go Down
Fiery through the smoke
The world beyond Paradise
Reduced to embers

Kindred Spirits

Kindred Spirits, Disparate Paths
Intersected by Fate determined
At the Beginning of Time
 
How was each to know
About the other until Fate intervened 
At the Beginning of Time?
 
An intersection of trails
That my Love saw approaching
As I stood, seemingly a face in the crowd
 
Kindred Spirits, Disparate Paths
You called out to me, overwhelming me
As I stood out, no longer a face in the crowd
 
My Kindred Spirit, although Disparate Paths
Were taken, our Love was created 
In an explosion at the Beginning of Time
 
My Love, you have healed a tattered man
A tattered man, wandering aimlessly
In what he thought was his Twilight
 
My Love, you have summoned Mother Sun
You have revealed her brilliant colors to me
You have set my world on fire

Masks

every time I gaze admiringly into the mirror 
I see a mask, I know it has to be a mask 
for I have completely forgotten my true visage 
perhaps that visage I once thought true 
was only a mask I no longer recognize 
perhaps memory loss is mercy
 
 whether a mask or me sometimes 
I see a glad clown only a real bozo 
sometimes I see a sad clown weeping bitter tears 
sometimes I see a bad clown a painted-up Henry Hyde 
so many masks my head spins images swirling 
oh, give me the bliss and blessing of mindlessness
let me wander aimlessly in a burned-out wasteland 
I have seen too many masks let me chose one eternal 
to gaze ever admiringly into that looking glass 
why my dear Hyde – you are the perfect model of a man

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