These poems are by Josh Kogon. If he were not still in my class and awaiting a final grade, I would go to some length in praising his acute sensibilities and heightened moral conscience. Clearly, he has that sine qua non of the poet – a great ear. He is a “singer in the band” and his musical obsession shows through, but beyond that is the fine mixing of sound and sense that makes for real poetry. –B. Bauld

Lower your eyelids,
I'll tell you a tale.
Open your mind now,
And let this prevail.

A sunrise changes color, but it never fails to rise.
The moon may change its figure but its glowing never dies.

The trees are stripped in winter but new leaves will surely grow.
A kite may flutter to the ground, but swifter winds will blow.

Though downs are bound to happen, a sweeter up is near.
The things in life worth living for will never disappear.

So concentrate on what you love, your worries melt away.
It's there for everyone to have, not just those who pray

The Elders say a lifetime is a mountain made of stairs,
They whisper tales of glory in a world where no one shares.
They say to take each step you see to rise toward the top,
If you miss one or you skip one then for certain you will drop.

They say they've seen the worst of things, the answers very clear,
If you refuse to climb these steps your soul will dissapear.
No choice is left inside your mind, there is no other way,
The smiles hit their faces as their sheep learn to obey.

The stories say this stairway only rises from the ground,
It elevates you up to where at death you shall be found.
To some it seems the wisest choice, the sun will always shine,
But others, they need something unfamiliar yet divine.

These stairs designed to lift you, but no higher will you get,
They only take you farther down this road full of regret.
A staircase rises upward, yet these simply go around,
A never ending circle, an imaginary crown.

Amidst a clearing hiding in the forest,
No sounds upon the wind except the birds.
Escaping from the sovereignty that binds them,
A gathering to share their precious words.

The sun was hiding under the horizon,
The creatures of the night opened their ears.
The calmness blanketed the lonely forest,
To soak up wisdom falling in their tears.

The gatherers told stories hushed in whisper,
To each is to their own but understood.
No single one abash'd or slightly doubtful,
A comfort lived inside the dreary wood.

A sudden silence cast upon the brethren,
As each recalled the home from which they came.
More darkened than the furthest depth of shadow,
The grip upon their minds drove them insane.

Yet underneath the stars and constellations,
The hours never slow from growing late.
The gatherers find solace in the darkness,
All hiding from the world they've grown to hate

A wizard wandered slowly with no questions on his mind,
So comfortable within himself, the opposite of blind,
Had many little students who all craved to learn his ways -
A troop of tiny soldiers, a gang of little slaves

He sat them down and dressed them up, and then began to speak,
Then preached that without magic every day in life is weak.
And spoke of monstrous battles in which men would lose their lives -
The many ears all missed it as he promised their demise

The wise one mixed a potion and he blessed it with his soul.
He watched them as the children all became so very old.
He promised them that one day they would all be free of war,
But first they'd have to finish what they all knew was in store.

The aging time was rapid, children quickly became men,
But nothing really changed them, it was all inside their head.
They marched into the battle with a smile on their face -
They all would quickly perish, their entire little race.

A wizard wanders slowly with no questions on his mind,
So comfortable within himself, the opposite of blind.
Another battle on its way, the power that he craves -
He's searching for renewal, just another gang of slaves.

Toward the end of night time,
Dawn is crawling through the sky.
They hide amongst the flowers,
So you'll never hear them cry.

The silence makes it easy,
You can focus on the ground.
The dewy grass is full of tears,
Just waiting to be found.

The sadness can be morbid,
But they'll fill you full of smiles.
They may be masked by shadows,
But the mind still flies for miles.

We feed off their depression,
To escape our very own.
With help from lonely soldiers,
Our perception has been honed.