Piles of Books

Poetry by Kurtis Ebeling

Published in Literary Magazines &/or Self-Published


I. Self-Published

Dialogue Between a Silhouette and a Voice 

(Published March 31, 2020 on Facebook)


Silhouette. I was a silhouette, as a child,
A shadow against untouched white canvas:
Instinctively seeing myself as other.
Bearing worlds of light from the start,
Before I realized few things are ageless
In a world of deathless, unvarying, color.


Voice. I thought I was a voice, as a child,
A sound dashing through imagined canyons:
A glimpse of truth behind organized fiction.
Always fleeting and always timid,
I was life before form, a patient phantom;
I was senseless sound, and agreed upon diction.


Silhouette. Still, I often exist as a shadow,
Timid and ineffectual, leaving no mark.
My mind would mistake memory for vision,
Personifying life as a figure I’d follow:
Life being the fire, and I its smoke
(Forgetting to notice my footsteps had rhythm).


Voice. Always aflutter, a ripple through wind:
Only a noise until heard as meaning.
I have spent much of my life devoid of form,
Thinking myself a ghostly intruder,
(Distant from life’s dust) my mind deceiving,
I thought then matter, as a coat, was worn.


Silhouette. We are the sum of all the light we’ve seen,
Equally dull and vivd, both bride and suitor.


Voice. We’ve never been just one thing:
Happy and livid, student and tutor. 


Silhouette. Everything from head to foot,
And heart between.


Voice. We are the wind and light 
in our hollow beings.

The Past Receding 

(Published April 3, 2020 on Facebook)

I am a past in the present
—a past unforgiving—
made of distant descendants
learned in deceiving.

There is light setting,
But elsewhere rising. 
There is time receding
And time advancing.

We float through and from being,
—into memory, into experience—
And matter, with seeing.
What’s light save appearance?

There is seeming in speaking:
in reaching for meaning.
These words are containing
All that defines their being.

Death doesn’t die.
Self isn’t single.
Truth telling and lying
in all words mingle.

Speaking is believing,
meaning is breathing,
that renders all walking
walking while dreaming.

We are the past receding
in a present advancing.


Coupled Love Poems

(Published at https://kurtisebeling24.wixsite.com/collectedmemoriesofj/love-or-the-thought-thereof)

An Honest Lie (I)


All it takes is an honest lie.

Love be not deaf nor blind,

Nor care much for truth;

Into vision, and into mind,

With the memory of youth,

An image upon another’s eye.


It takes just an honest lie

For the world to close in,

In a world drifting apart.

Under a blanket, often thin,

A world lost within the heart

Is made of the air: its own sky.


A garden spider is love,

Marching silently across

Leafy and silken threads.

Filament in love tossed

reach, and wind-threshed,

Siting upon air, rests above.


Their is more in one’s eyes

Of setting than of identity:

Nearly as certain as we die

Do we live dependently. 

Love is another honest lie;

We trust love as we do sight.


An Image (II)


Smiling eyes of a deeper blue 

remain uneasily above

an unmoved expression 

carved into soft marble;


Walking with Eurydice’s 

silent feet. 


As sweet a sight as a tree 

among concrete,

were her eyes whirling

Then briefly glancing;


A simple glare of light

in flight.


An image always renewed,

A fragment and dream,

Moves without direction

In landscapes advancing;


Walking with Eurydice’s 

silent feet


Yet there is nothing to see,

looking upon love.

Neither the sun of morning 

Nor a beauty that startles;


Less than a glare of light

in flight.


II. Published in Lit-Magazines & at Online Publications

Sonnet in Search of Sleep

published at eris&eros 


Not the trees compressing or stretching their spines

nor threshed leaves scratching concrete walkways,

nor a black, spring sky softly tapping flowing dirt


(Under blankets of shadow, irises turn inward

toward an intricate place still 


moving, subtly, between a shifting sky

and an earthy stem, with anchored nerves),


but a singer unconcerned with meaning.


Limbs are stretching in the dark, leaves are cast.

Twigs and needles are loosed from rooftop moss,

fall clumsily through fighting space, then float

in earth flowing, in thick rivers, downstream:


flurries and eddies frictionless in motion.

The mind reaches, but the roots remain.

Sleepwalking in Bright Daylight 

published at Transcend Literary Magazine (transcendlit.com)


Running wildly through my mind,

hares trampling grass and squirrels leaping

from thin limb to limb, 

would fade and slip with age 

then cower, nervously in hiding, 

at experience’s stalking eyes.

Sleep would create beautiful light

and wakefulness admire softer night

yet together they’d swing,

like quiet Winter and vibrant Spring or

wind that’d rise to fall in morning’s heat.


Wandering about a flourishing moor

every step leaves a mark, like memory,

but harsh concrete reality renders life

amnesic, cold like snow unbending.

Where dirt has potential for change,

concrete only cracks 

under perennial foot-traffic 

to be repaired and returned 

to its original state.

But a faithful love, a shadow 

under the noon sun, returns momentarily 

before taking its leave.


Lulled to sleep by weariness

and brought back to sight by necessity

light remains light and shadow shadow

eyes open or closed.

The vanity of consciousness

fades into silence

when falling into that water,

crowded by bending daffodils,

to lie in those shadows

and sink under their weight,

reach the bottom, then surface.

Light and Sound in D Minor

Published at Tempered Runes Press, in their first edition of Galdrar 


Sound, like light, dances as circus performers,

in colorful trances, when pushed into corners,

and moves all around an indefinite room

whose length is time and will become a tomb,

held at a distance by the mind’s attention

to a fleeting instance of quiet suspension—

between now and the next struck piano string

that sings without words, but contains blurred meaning.


The room, suddenly, is emptied except for the echoes
of strings sustaining sweetly, and softening flicking yellows;
it expands to the size of a canyon under rustling meadows,
and makes silence a companion, which gives time its billows.


Time is an unevenly expanding balloon,
a piano string waiting to bloom,


that pops with the swing of an arching hammer—
the room recedes; the dancers stammer.


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