Trust from Distrust

sad woman1


building trust

out of the ruins

from the walls of distrust

her history

pain, shame, betrayals

emotion-filled quarry

stolen innocence

a thousand slashes upon her soul

older kin, once thought to be a prince

brick and mortar

hiding tears, embracing chaos

dwelling in darkness with its false sense of order

kids bearing kids

societal tricks, better learn quick

construct the walls, lock the lids

each new love lost

taking chance on romance

but built on distrust; oh, what a high cost

walls grow thicker

settles for joyless marriages

walls now symbols of “no love” sticker

till new love arrives

soul-mate man with heart in hand

says, “tear down walls and love survives”

she takes a chance

willing to bare all

still blocks out the world

but naked to her love

supported by his strength

she learns to stand tall

couple 1

© JW Thomas




Poverty serves up depression and despair instead of delight.

It brings lethargy to body and soul that longs for life.

It drops doubt into every dream with the ability to

distort reality into nightmarish proportions.

It envelopes and smothers every ray of light

with an oppressive shroud of darkness.

It transforms fresh air

into the polluted toxins of tainted existence.

It causes a metamorphosis

from lasting love to unsatisfying lust.

It fails to nurture and nourish well-being,

but perpetually feeds addiction.

It steals faith from the faithful,

infects decency with depravity,

and turns the hopeful into the hopeless.

However, it is a human construct.

It is only able to do what humans allow it to do.

Humans are responsible for it.

Humans can fix it.

Humans must discover their lost humanity.

Human or inhuman?

That is the question.

© JW Thomas


Ms. Sophie’s lesson

was interrupted

when Patty

sitting in front of me

soaked her panties,

the chair,

the floor

I had no thought

of being mean

Totally surprised

by the urine stream

Spontaneous laugh

attention drawn

creating outbursts

in the class

Almost wet myself

Action I now deplore

I was only seven then

But damn it felt good to laugh

a rarity at my house

Similar to Patty

my body craved a release

a different kind

So pent-up inside was my need

once I began

I couldn’t stop

It was contagious

The class infected

Aching sides

Teary eyes



Rolling in the aisles

Only two

without laughter and smiles


turned preacher

sermonizing our sin

And Patty

turned to stone

in wet panties

on a wet seat

above a damp floor

so alone

How could she know

our laughter

was no longer

about her?

She merely provided

the spark

We were tinder

ready to burn

Kids in a community

with nothing to smile about

nothing to laugh about

except each other


supplied the punch-line

We… were the joke

© JW Thomas

If I Told You


If I told you I dreamed life into being would you see possibility?

If I told you I fell from the sky when Poacher slew Eagle would you understand the feather hat band?

If I told you I gave a hero’s name to a coward in the guise of an imposter do you think the truth is better left unspoken?

If I told you I fathered my father as he fathered his, yet my son fathered no one, can you tell me how I came to be?

If I told you a hunter shot an arrow through my heart on the day that I was prey; pray tell me, please, how this buck loved the hunter ever-more?

If I told you I was noble with royal ancestry and blue-blood in my veins, could you understand the blessing of living in poverty from my birth?

If I told you I had an introspective talk with Bear, while Coyote conversed with Hare, and Crow played paddy-feathers with Hawk, could you tell me which was worthy to remember?

If I told you I carved totems of the ancient ones while blindfolded in the bowels of Mother Earth, can you guess my connection to you?

If I told you I’ve saved lives and gave life, will it cleanse me for those I’ve killed? And if I told you life is death and death is life, can you reason beyond the madness?

If I told you I am coming home, will you die for me? And on the day that I depart, do you promise to live again?

If I told you I’ve lied the truth and built truth out of lies, can we agree I’m an honest man?

If I told you that I love you, would you see me now anew and know you hold the key to all I’ve said?



© JW Thomas

Wisdom of wounds

Per Imp #180001

The innocence of beauty

and the wisdom of wounds

can be a powerful combination

when harmoniously balanced.

Yet beauty’s teaching will always be

inferior to the wisdom of wounds.

Beauty is fleeting.

The wisdom of wounds endure.

The wise learn from their wounds:

yet fools see the same wound multiply,

since wounds, untreated,


Per Imp #70001

However, only a masochist seeks pain.

Like a society worshipping youth

and beauty above experience and wisdom

forever doomed to repeat

its self-inflicted wounds.

How many of tomorrow’s pains

could we be spared if we’d only

learn from the wounds of today?

There truly is…

wisdom in wounds.

Per Imp #110001

© JW Thomas

Fashionable or not

Per Imp #20001


Fashionable or not,

faith in beauty remains as fickle

as the ever-changing fads it inspires.

After all, fashion is merely another person’s

opinion of how you should look or act.

Find what makes you happy

and ditch the rest.

Outside or inside,

if your reflection isn’t perfection

you’ve got no right to judge.

And what good is a high IQ

to anyone dumb enough to judge others

by the way they look?

Condemnation of another person’s

imperfections has always been

a sign of simpletons.

Per Imp #140001

No matter how richly they’re adorned.

To those unable to see the beauty here,

come back when you mature.

To iterate; it’s overlooking imperfections

which draws us closer to perfection.

Especially since no one honestly relates

to Madison Avenue:

scars are the “Real Thing”.

Our differences make us special: unique.

Not our similarities, but our differences

which perfectly distinguish us.

Hate me for my differences

and you hate yourself.

Condemn me for my imperfections

and you condemn yourself.

Only by accepting me

can you truly accept yourself.

Per Imp #40001

© JW Thomas


My maternal ancestors

faced ages of treachery,

rape, sodomy,

child abuse, lechery

Historic encounters

with hunters,



soldiers galore:

settling the imagined score

A gaggle

of political pawns



treating us to treaties

for our own good

They gifted us with beads,



a litany of lies,

our introduction

to the reservation

These tales


and around

and never stop

When does forgiveness begin?

Fear of forgiveness

is a sign

of seeing ourselves

within the actions

of our enemy

Before they came

we did the same

to other tribes,

sometimes our own,

so enemy actions

are kin to me

Time to let go,

long past time,

those who don’t

don’t grow

Worst offenders

are gone,

time to forgive

and move on

If we cannot forgive the dead

we cannot forgive the living

If we cannot forgive our enemies

we cannot forgive ourselves


© JW Thomas