Archive for March, 2010



A scent is wafting on

The winds of my mind,

Faint and distant:

Memories of a sun-filled

Summer day long past.

Silver colored lichen rocks,

Clear tumbling streams,

And I in the middle,

In the company of

My thoughts.

Elation buoys me in

The purity of all

Elements surrounding me.

God shows His face in

Every perfect part.

I am at rest in

The serenity of

His arms and

I am assured of

His presence

Hal C. Clark

Summer 2007

I love sitting out on a pleasant summer day, soaking in nature through all my senses, being free of all man-made noises and objects. I have had only one true solo experience, high in the Colorado Rocky Mountains, hearing no human sounds, seeing no man-made structures. It is an experience that will stay with me for the rest of my life. I couldn’t bring myself to write anything about that trip, but this poem was written sitting beside the Poudre River, sitting near a group of pines, soaking up the warmth of the sunshine.

Some people feel the need to be around others at all times, but my heaven is blissfully peaceful and quiet. I like to exist only as an observer and see nature as if I weren’t there, as if I had no effect on my surroundings. Impossible? Sure, but I can dream, can’t I?

I am thankful there are still a few natural areas around the United States. I hope and pray we can save a few for my grandkids in case they, like me, look for serenity.




Fly away Sam.

Let your spirit soar and

Explore the wondrous world you once knew.

Your spirit is free,

But your memory lives in me.

Sam was a neutered male Siamese cat who once lived with us. He came to us fully grown, long and leggy, having a personality I instantly admired.

We had a female Siamese already in the house and she guarded her house with a passion. She would hiss and growl when Sam walked by and he would simply look at her as if to say “Who put their galoshes in your lemonade” and walk on. That was typical of his attitude. He ignored conflict if he had any choice about it for as long as he lived with us.

The female eventually moved with my daughter to an apartment and Sam stayed with us and he was a delight to have around. But there came a day when he was less active and wasn’t eating. The diagnosis came back: feline leukemia.

I didn’t want to let him go. His illness came at a time of transition in my own life, and this was my first real conflict with death. This was a conflict I couldn’t avoid. I tried to give him the medication and get some fluids and nutrients down him, but with less and less success. He seemed to look at me and ask “Why are you tormenting me?” He didn’t understand that I was trying to help.

We came to a point where it was obvious death would win. It was pointless to continue distressing him, so I took him to put him to rest. It was one of the hardest things I have ever had to do. I hated losing to this disease.

After we buried him, I just couldn’t let it go. All the conflict was still inside, churning through my mind. From somewhere came the small verse above and I was thankful for it. It gave me a sense of continuity, a partial victory.

Over the years, I lost track of the poem in my notes and couldn’t remember all the words until last night. In the middle of the night, I woke with all the words in my head just as I had written them so many years before. I got up and wrote them down. Why did they come back to me? I don’t know, but I felt I should share the story. Maybe someone else will identify with this story and be helped. I invite and welcome your comments. Please share.

Hal C Clark, March 2010

Who Are We

Who Are We?


I often sit and watch life happen

From the other side of a glass wall,

Putting words to expressions I see

On faces of those lives I study,

A casual observer

Wondering who they are

And why they are.

I sit in a closet surrounded by darkness,

Hiding from this world’s life,

Seeking the safety of solitude,

Existing alone within myself.

I am at peace,

Separated from my cares,

And lift the world from my shoulders.

Hal C. Clark

October, 2006

How much do we tell others about who we really are? What part of ourselves do we hide from the world? When we write fiction, do we write about that secret part of ourselves?

When I write fiction, I look forward to being anybody I want to be. Male or female, young or old, in the present, past or future, I can make my choices. I can put my characters in any situation and decide how they will react, how they will solve the problems.

Some people say fiction is, to some extent, autobiographical. Does that mean we may reveal something about ourselves when we write fiction? How would anyone know what part is really us and what part is entirely made up?

I don’t have any really dark secrets in my past, but there are happenings, thoughts, and ideas I wouldn’t share with anyone but family, and a few I would share only with my wife. If we are honest, I think we all have a few things we would never share with anyone.

I like to observe people and make up stories about them based on appearance, clothing, and body language. Who are they, what is their family structure, occupation, what are their likes and dislikes? Importantly, how do they feel about themselves? If we look closely, they tell us a lot about themselves.

Unfortunately, there are a few people who are experts at hiding who they really are, and they are the scariest true life characters. The shooters at Columbine High School had everyone fooled. There have been a couple of kidnapping cases in recent years where the kidnappers lived in ordinary neighborhoods with their victims without detection. There are many women, victims of abuse, who never saw the abusive nature of their husbands before marriage.

So, you may be revealing something about yourself through your appearance, habits, and body language, or even what you write about or read about, but it probably won’t be anything really important. What are your ideas on people and what they say about themselves?

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