Tag Archives: struggle

Soulful Cure


Soulful Cure

Guide me past the fog and
low valleys into the sunlight that
should be my life.

Mix your elixir and give it to me
Quick, let it flow into my thoughts
and down my throat and suffuse
my body and mind with a healing
balm of bliss.

For my soul aches just a little
and I wish it to stop.

I want to move from this dark crossroad
sitting under this dead tree while these
brown leaves fall around me.

I will ride with you oh wise shaman if you
have that soulful cure that I seek.

I will trust in your wisdom
as you trust in my fortitude
to see things right.

Then can I finally go to my dreams
knowing that I truly sleep

by Philip Wardlow 2017

Take Courage in Oz


Take Courage in OZ ~

You have a brain
bespectacled girl.
You have a heart
as the tears flow.

You are on the road
even though
the yellow bricks
are all  faded and

You are on the road.

Take courage
as the forest for the
grow up and around,

Dark arms reaching,

Its all they are,
menacing arms

Its all they ever are.

Take courage in the night
for the moon lights
your path.

The lions, tigers and bears
are friends

For who could resist your charms.
Oh my!

Who could indeed?
And if they did.
Well what kind of friend
would they ever truly

Take courage  in Oz
for you walk the same land
as them.

By Philip Wardlow


I have seen them,
the brave ones
with head down
rushing in
challenging the
world, waiting for it
to slap them down
they ride the sharp edge of insanity
until it either finally
lifts them high
or cuts so deep
to the bone they
bleed out
blood coagulating
at their feet
and either die
or get sewn up,
and given a bottle
of red in transfusion
from another
who says
go ahead take mine
I don’t need it
I’ve got plenty
yet they do need it.
But the world
is better for it
in the end.
The brave ones.
head down
riding the sharp edge of insanity.
so I begin
my ride.


By Philip Wardlow 2017

Something has Died

I feel the husk of its dead shell
rubbing against my innards.
No piece of it breathes
yet it prods.
Reminding me it’s always
Just sitting.
Drained and desiccated,
where once
it was full
to overflowing,
now nothing
but decay
a void filled
only with
black matter.
A negative life if you will
The blackest of
Gouge out my eyes, then tape them
over times ten and
throw me in a capped well
type of black.
Something has died
in me
And I don’t know what.
But I want it back.
So I go in search.

by Philip Wardlow 2017


The Needle lifts up


Round and round and round and round and round
the needle gliding effortlessly
dragging over the unseen bumps
in a well worn groove
where it can’t climb out.

Of its own accord,
the needle lifts,
and shifts
back to the start and begins again
its shitty little song.
You might think robotic seeming in its prescribed nature,
but there is oh
so much less thought behind it’s action
For it’s been simply
fit together with
molded parts long ago
just so
to enable this
action over and over.

This spinning piece of compressed black vinyl
on edge, dips and wobbles
to mine eye.
Warped beyond belief.
Perhaps once laid out in the sun
or caught in the hot backseat
I never did take good care of them.

So as the needle lifts up yet again,
I remove the old record from its place
Hold it delicately in hand
Then gripping tightly
Swiftly bring it down to
meet the wooden corner edge.

I pick up the broken bits,
deposit every last piece
in the trash.
Then remove the plastic wrap
from a newly minted song
never heard
and carefully put it down
to spin.

Lifting the needle up
off its cradle
I kiss it softly to the

To hear something fresh.

by Philip Wardlow 2017

The Me you See


The me you see, is just a pale umbra of whom I’m supposed to be.

I’ve come to  a wall and I can’t make the jump,

I try and I try and just bounce the hell off.

But what I really don’t know is that I’m just a toad in the road

and it’s just a small curb on a street.

It’s a cliff so sheer and high that it’s a trick to belie the eye.

I tell myself one more jump…kerplunk!

My little toad head hurts like hell from all the bashing

against the wall.

If I can just find that perfect crack to start me on my crawl to wind my way up.

But that would require luck…fuck!

Where the hell am I going to get any of that?

So I’m a toad.

Not a frog a princess can kiss

to relieve me of this predicament.

Sorry, no frog underneath this frog-like veneer miss.

But I will be the prince of toads one day.

Fuck the frog I say!

So I look for that crack in the wall,

no matter how small,

to eventually make my way

up and over.

To that other me

that I don’t yet see,

The Prince of Toads,

in all of his bumpy

brown glory.


by Philip Wardlow 2017

Like a Crazy Ass Bullet


I was shot into this world like a crazy

ass bullet

Pinging and zinging off the solid metal


of life

Piercing and punching through

the flesh of the ones in solitude

who never knew me as I sped on,

cutting them in two, blood spilling,

entrails trailing on gleaming metal

warped by sinew and bone

for even a bullet can’t go unscathed

as it passes through you, you, and you.

Gravity is taking me, braking me

pulling me down….

The curve of the Earth is finally coming to meet

me on this hallowed muddy blue ball of a  ground

where I’ll be littered in with all the rest

that never found the target of their


Piles and piles of metal collect

in a mountain too high to climb. 

Shit, I wasn’t hoping for the bullseye

Just a piece, the very edge…

to clip it,

to show em all I could

fly fairly straight

even if fired from a gun

called Fate

by an unsteady hand.



by Philip Wardlow 2017


My appetite



She comes home

and does what she wants.

Does what? We don’t know.

She wont say.

But it’s not much,

because she’s cut off and closed away.

Far and in-between the what-if

of her.

She is a melancholy angry mess

I can’t put my thumb on her

and she’d break it if I tried.

But I do, because I can, and she lets me pry;

however reluctantly,

because that’s all I have ever done.

I speak the truth, because lies are boring vicious things.

Even though the truth is often painful

as a motherfucker,

it’s freeing,

casual and a sweetness

rolled into a ball and

swallowed down

that speaks to my


Which always



By Philip Wardlow 2016