Saturday, January 31, 2015


Gentle Reader,

What you’ll find below is an upside-down anthology of sorts: a journal of my frequent morning musings from January 2008 till now, in reverse order.

Much of what I write here is verse in traditional rhymed iambic pentameters, old fashioned in form but contemporary in topics and idiom. It asks to be read aloud so that the effects of rhyme and meter may be felt.

Sometimes I write brief prose essays, but even my verses are essays, or attempts, pursuing a line of thought to some conclusion, though more sonorously than those in prose: discursive verses, I call them.

In either case, you’re the reader over my shoulder as I write, which makes my writing different than when I have no audience in mind but only a vague urge to express. So I thank you for whatever attention you give my words and thoughts and feelings because you might so easily attend to something else, and you soon will.

To beguile you to linger longer, though, I’ve coupled most of my compositions with a photo or image I’ve taken or borrowed, which often corresponds with my words of that day.

Thank you for visiting here.  I hope you enjoy your stay and are moved to come back soon.

—Alan Nordstrom

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            There’s nothing supernatural I believe;
            What’s natural is mystery enough,
            Which science has the best means to conceive,
            Calling outrageous superstition’s bluff.

            It’s supposition that begins the quest
            For certain knowledge ultimately proved,
            As careful methodology will attest,
            Once skewed hypotheses have been removed.

            And yet there’s much that never may be known
            About which we may wonder endlessly
            Though not illuminate that twilight zone
            For all our vaunted ingenuity.

                One question causing human brains to stall
                Is this: Is there a purpose to it all?



                        The news is filled with violence and gore,
                        And nothing tops the headlines like a war.
                        Is this in us a habit to deplore,
                        Or just the way the media aim to score?

Friday, January 30, 2015


          A sonnet keeps a train of thought on track,
          And once it builds a hardy head of steam
          And images come billowing from its stack,
          Then lines emerge in a continuous stream.

          Each quatrain’s freighted with a novel thought
          Driving the poem farther down the line
          Toward a terminus still vaguely sought
          That on arrival manifests design.

          The route is fixed, as if by destiny,
          And it’s the duty of the sonneteer
          To stay on track toward discovery
          Until that fated destination’s clear.

               A sonnet’s less invented than revealed
               Along a track, not in an open field.


Thursday, January 29, 2015


                    If something’s priceless then it’s worth a lot,
                    But something worthless certainly is not—
                    What can it be, if price and worth are one,
                    That makes this match a false comparison?
                         Yet it is often said that one may know
                         The price of everything but worth forego.


Wednesday, January 28, 2015


            Of all the things we truly need to know,             
            For our own happiness and others’ too,            
            To keep us in a blissful state of flow,            
            There’s one thing that’s preeminently true:

            Which is to recognize all humankind            
            Are kin and share the same essential need            
            For ecstasy, toward which we’re all inclined,            
            Transcending envy, selfishness and greed. 

               The peace that follows reaching such a state                
               Is something only kindness can create.


Tuesday, January 27, 2015


           We were implicit in the grand Big Bang
           From which the blooming universe arose,
           And were there heavenly angels there, they sang
           Of coming glories, we may well suppose—

           How out of nothing: everything would come,       
           Developing a cosmic edifice       
          And ultimately us, who seek to plumb       
          The depths of mystery creating this.

          There may be consciousness far more advanced      
          In the awesome infinity of space       
          That patient evolution has enhanced      
          And elevated to a greater grace,

             Still, it would be more prudent to presume
            Our prime imperative’s avoiding doom.