Poem: “Back to the future”

When I look at the two of you it is apparent

(at least to me)

that one of you is looking forward and

one is looking back.


The one that is outgoing and gregarious

looks hopefully to the uncertainty of the future and

the one that is introverted and retrospective

looks longingly for the comfort of the past.


At eight I look forward to seeing the

type of adult you will turn into

(twenty years from now)

And at eleven I often wonder what

type of adult you would have been

(twenty years ago).


The lead-by-example stargazer and

the take-it-all-in old soul

and what is funny is that although you seem to have

a grasp on these eras

neither of you has been there


copyright 2012 Steven Harz

Poem: “Sunset”

When he was younger he would have

focused on the beers

and the cleavage

but now as they sat on the

cool april pool deck

overlooking the narragansett bay

and took in the

pink and yellow and orange

haze of the sun vanishing

behind masts and sails and wisps

he focused


on the woman and the bond

and the blessing

copyright 2012 Steven Harz

Poem: “Paperweight”

Because on Saturday night I am in bed and

fall asleep 



Because on Sunday morning I sit in a pew and

wait for help



Because on Monday I sit at my desk and

try to work



Because each day I formulate love letters to you

on pretty paper



I have decided that for the time being my Bible

will become a


copyright 2012 Steven Harz

10 second love story: “Two senses”

From my book of poetry and short fiction titled “Song’s you can’t dance to” – now available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

While you were here

(and were mine)

my mind was deaf and blind

(or numb)

and everything you said and did

was silent and invisible

But now that you are gone

(have left)

your missing voice is

the loudest thing that I hear

(in my head)

and your absent actions

are more vivid than ever

And I cannot wait

(but will have to)

for you to change your mind

(if ever you do)

so that my mind

can once again

be silent

(but no longer numb)

and my eyes will no longer be shrouded

by my self-imposed blindness

copyright 2012 Steven Harz

Poem: “Unknown battle”

My written words are in

an unknown battle

with your unspoken thoughts

and since neither are audible

or discernible to the other

or to us

the fight will silently rage

into the darkness

until we are deafened

by the peace

that could have been

if you liked this please check out my book of poetry and short fiction, “Songs you can’t dance to” – available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble.  Thanks!

copyright 2012 Steven Harz

Poem: “Chronicle”

I am not glad that

you are gone

(have left)

but I am thankful

that while you were here

I chronicled our love

on my flesh

but my art is not that of


dragons and skulls

or daggers

(though this may be next)

but of hearts and crosses and birds

and Bible verses

(Psalm 30:5)

that in their own unique way

provide both joy and pain

(each uniquely invoking tears)

in the morning mirror

copyright 2012 Steven Harz

Poem: Written History

There is a box

in your basement or attic

(or in last week’s trash)

overfilled with letters that I’d written

too you and about us

and these memories and poems

and prayers

are one half of our written history.

Beneath my bed is a similar box

filled with your writing

and lip prints and smells

(I keep the box closed to hold them in)

detailing what then was love but now are lies

although I know that you meant it all


And since history is written by the winner

(or so I’ve been told)

and you left and I’m here

and alone

I am on the losing end

but the box beneath me

will continue to hold me up

because in actuality I am victorious

for having been given you

for a period of time that is vivid now

(but will fade over time).

And just as the memories begin to lilt

the box will come out and the lid will be opened

and the words and lips and perfumed pages

will become you twisted with me and I hope

you will be aware of me then.

©Steven Harz, 2012

From my book “Songs you can’t dance to” – available at Amazon:

Excerpt from “Tin Boy”

For a moment he returned to the years when her costumes consisted of white nurses’ capes, red riding hoods, and soft blue eyes – her smile that night was the same as then, minus braces, and dimples now outshone freckles.  With only a handful of houses to go and his football helmet in his pillowcase he thought of walking her to school in the morning.  He contemplated reaching for her hand but was late, because as his eyes glanced upwards – toward a dipper or God – his cheek was met with her lips and no wonder she was dressed as Dorothy because she helped him realize his heart.

copyright 2012 Steven Harz

Excerpt from ‘blessed’

they had to be quiet for a while and let it all soak in because as they say and silence is golden. now if he drove really fast and used the tappan zee bridge as a ramp they would be in orbit in no time and wouldn’t that be better than here and even though for a moment he thought it really might happen it didn’t and they were passed by a minivan with a mom and some kids and a license place that said ‘im-blesd’.

copyright 2012 Steven Harz

Excerpt from flash fiction story ‘advent on a one year delay’

sunday was jeans and sneakers and gloves and parkas which not only came in handy on the trails but also later in the theater because can you believe how cold it was in there? i didn’t care though because it gave me a reason to sit closer to you and feel your head against my arm and your breath against my ear and gradually as the story unfolded on the screen before us move my hand into yours and the squeeze that you gave it when it finally arrived is something I can still feel twelve months later.

copyright 2012 Steven Harz

Resignation – a poem by Nikki Giovanni

This is my all-time favorite poem:  http://betweenpoems.tumblr.com/post/18957683579/resignation-nikki-giovanni

I love you
because the Earth turns around the sun
because the North wind blows north
because the Pope is Catholic
and most Rabbis Jewish
because winters flow into springs
and the air clears after a storm
because only my love for you
despite the charms or gravity
keeps me from falling off this Earth
into another dimension

I love you
because it is the natural order of things

I love you
like the habit I picked up in college
of sleeping through lectures
or saying I’m sorry
when I get stopped for speeding
because I drink a glass of water
in the morning
and chain-smoke cigarettes
all through the day
because I take my coffee Black
and my milk with chocolate
because you keep my feet warm
though my life a mess
I love you
because I don’t want it
any other way

I am helpless
in my love for you

It makes me so happy
to hear you call my name
I am amazed you can resist
locking me in an echo chamber
where your voice reverberates
through the four walls
sending me into spasmatic ecstasy
I love you
because it’s been so good
for so long
that if I didn’t love you
I’d have to be born again
and that is not a theological statement
I am pitiful in my love for you<

The Dells tell me Love
is so simple
the thought though of you
sends indescribably delicious multitudinous
thrills throughout and through-in my body
I love you
because no two snow flakes are alike
and it is possible
if you stand tippy-toe
to walk between the raindrops
I love you
because I am afraid of the dark
and can’t sleep in the light
because I rub my eyes
when I wake up in the morning
and find you there
because you with all your magic powers were
determined that
I should love you
because there was nothing for you but that
I would love you

I love you
because you made me
want to love you
more than I love my privacy
my freedom my commitments
and responsibilities
I love you ‘cause I changed my life
to love you
because you saw me one Friday
afternoon and decided that I would
love you
I love you I love you I love you




Excerpt from “Working on Mysteries”

His heart rate increased, and the sweat of his palms mixed with the condensation of the beer can that he hurriedly placed on a macramé coaster. When he stood and turned she was directly in front of him. When they inched toward each other first their thighs met, and then just above – causing her to smile, or something like it. Finally, as she put her arms around his neck and pulled him in she softly rubbed her breasts against him. Their noses and then foreheads were last to meet, just as their eyes closed and his thumbs hooked into her back belt loops.

copyright 2012 Steven Harz

Excerpt from “Gold”

With leaves of the seventies crunching under boots of today he wanders through his mind considering the blessing of kids, family, friends – and her. Yesterday’s rake joined forces with today’s blower and earbuds replaced singing to himself, and the song that bridged then to now, and despair to hope, rose up as the leaves fell down. While he tried to conjure an image of what her golden hair and blue eyes must have looked like thirty years ago James channeled Glen and whispered something about needing more than wanting.

copyright 2012 Steven Harz

Excerpt from “context”

i might tell you how much I enjoy being

with you as if you couldn’t tell

(i am that transparent)

but it would be without true meaning

i should let you know how each of your kisses

paralyze me for a beautiful brief instant

(which is why I have to pull away and reset)

but it would not really matter

i could describe the pain in my chest

when we are apart

(that is sometimes accompanied by tears)

but what would be the point

copyright 2012 Steven Harz

Excerpt from, “A dent and the other half of a smile”

(This story, in its entirety, is contained in my book of poetry and short fiction titled, “Songs you can’t dance to” – available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble by searching ‘steven harz’)

He doesn’t recall how they’d actually met – Sunday school or second grade or summers at the swim club – all he remembered was that she had always been there. From play dates to puppy love it seemed as if she was always as close as an arm’s length or the length of the twisty cord that attached the phone to the kitchen wall.

Plaid pleated jumpers with knee socks, and tough skins and flannel shirts, they would accompany each other to the roller rink and junior high dances. His mom would drop them off and hers would collect them up after the last dance or the final skate. In the backseat of the Fairlane, skates lashed together and strewn on the floor of the car, he’d slide his leg across the vinyl seat to make contact with her bare knee and he wouldn’t look at her but he knew she was looking at him – bringing a small smile to the side of his face that was facing away from her and towards the window and the lights of the town just outside the glass.

From my book of poetry and short fiction titled, “Song’s you can’t dance to” – available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble (search ‘steven harz’)

copyright 2012 Steven Harz