About Me

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Minnesota, United States
As I walk along in life, my muses dance with reflection inspiring me to release the thoughts and emotions of my pondering mind through poetry.

Prompt Poetry & Promotion page for The River

*plus the archive of my older poetry

Sunday, January 30, 2011

- Phases of Dialog-

As parents we watch
our children migrate through stages
cracking the shells of reason
losing their fluff of innocence
spreading their wings of sass.

We have bounds of patience
balanced with hair pulling tweaks
moments of calgon take me away.

We answer questions of why
why grass is green and stars twinkle
why cats have scratchy tongues.

Our children pass through doors
on the edge of boundary lines
testing our limits and facing
emotional complexity of self and
social hurdles of elementary survival.

We listen to their daily happenings
who’s not their BFF that week
what girl likes which boy now.

We patch fallen skies
ground sassy mouths
play ball until the sun goes down.

Watching our child grow bigger
we surprisingly miss the inquisitive
the annoying why of years past.

Our eyes open to the child of now
triggering sparks of awareness
we promise to listen more intently
not ready for a new phase of dialog
not ready for our child to fly.

© River Urke

Saturday, January 29, 2011

behind closed doors & Reality a Fucked Up Justice

These two poems are written for the survivors of sexual assault. They are written to address the violent crimes committed every second somewhere in the world. 

behind closed doors

little girls afraid of closed doors
uncles and dads,
brothers and family friends

young women living nightmares
pregnant by fathers
date raped and socially shunned

women cornered in daily fears
of husbands and dark streets
strangers and offers of a beer

legions of women and girls
victims of global crimes
violated in body and soul

some are left as empty shells
others run deep with denial
few for the most part are healed

scarred mothers make quiet promises
to baby girls and even boys
it ends with me-it won’t happen to you

they hope- they pray- they stay
forever vigilant
hushed behind closed doors.
1/11 River

Reality a Fucked Up Justice

On every corner around the globe, masses of women and children are survivors of horrendous acts. Violated in body and soul. 

These crimes, of the worst atrocity, are committed most commonly by family and friends. Strangers are next. 
surviving the crime is half their battle
the other half is a fucked up reality

We live in a man’s world where very few laws if any exist to protect woman and children, making it hard to fight for what is right.

Most often, a crime is blamed on the victim. Excuses are made for the perpetrators, ignoring their crimes, and closing the door leaving survivors bleeding once more.

finding their voice is risking what’s left
fighting for justice should be the next step

                                                                                                 River 1/11

version 2 is available with inquiry- goes deeper into the core root of sexual assault.


Societies hide the appalling numbers of woman and children behind closed doors. Stripping their voices out of fear or never calculating their numbers. These affect the statistics causing the number of victims to be known underestimated around the globe.

For statistics go to:

a reading of the poems

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Broken Wing

I look out the barred window holding my broken wing, dreaming of flying into the wind. They say I will heal better here then anywhere. I say a bird cannot be caged even in hopes she will get better.

We need to feel the wind
smell the earth
be touched by the light
I need to be home with my daughter!

Between their walls, they say I have the time to rest, to heal my broken wing. I say I will go mad in this cage with their oppressive views, their insistence of unreal problems, their pushing of meds. 

I take their tests of mind and body
walk the walk and talk the talk
I learn the ways to get free

The day arrives I get to fight for my freedom. We sit around the big table. Their attentions are focused towards my papers. Their words are tight with judgment.

My hairs rise with every false word they utter. I amazingly keep a straight face, crossing my fingers tighter with every lie, slowly working free of their web. Inch by Inch.

I can almost feel the wind
drifting across my face
flowing through my hair

I make promises to them I know I will never keep. Playing their game, maneuvering one-step ahead, wondering if they are aware of the bird they cage. A bird that will be free tomorrow no matter what happens no matter what they decide.

Did they look in my eyes and see fright? Did they realize my papers were not a match to me? All I know, I won the fight for my freedom.

I say Goodbye to the barred window, the wonderful nurses that cared for me, the narcotic I begged to get off, the doctors that hated my mouth, the ultra sound I learned to expect.

I get to go home to my daughter.

I enter the world through their electric doors sensing my coming freedom. I pause in the sun feeling the touch I longed for inside, breathing in the smell of earth. I slowly walk to the car with a skip to my stumbled steps. My daughter is on one side and my good friend on the other. I stop and turn toward the rehab building glaring with my Eagle eyes.

Giggling, I flick off the building
“You’ll never see me again!” 
The rehab is a physical rehabilitation unit I was at after my last relapse from Multiple Sclerosis. 

posted for One Shot Wednesday week 31 at One Stop Poetry

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Path of Wrath- duel poetry

the molten steel
of this anger
flowed onto the plains
of his reason
scorching the fertile
ground of his thoughts
he falls to his knees
pain of the deepest slash
bleeds through tears
flooding him with despair
as his knees sink deep
into mother earth
he calls out for mercy
only to hear laughter
a sinister laugh of no other
then his wretched foe
the murderer of his love
sword in hand he took stance
facing empty air
the laughter reverberating
through the valley

cutting deeper into his moral soul

than any weapon could every do
he puts down his sword knowing
a battle will be his death
avenging his love is another way
he calls to his foe
you've murdered only one
of my two beloveds
i still have your wife's love
and she waits for me now
a flash of light explodes
knocking him down
tearing a hole in the earth
fuming with fury stands his foe
hands of attack they both roll
falling down to their deaths. 
by Charles Martin & River Urke 

This is the fifth poem Charlie/slpmartin and I have wrote together.  :)
Duel Poetry a prearranged poetry writing challenge  between two people to evolve a new poem where each writer must respond to the other writer’s lines  (4 -5 ) until both parties agree that the poem is complete.


Thursday, January 20, 2011

a river stone

he carries a stone in his pocket
a dull cream with speckles of black
irregular in shape
small enough
to lie in the center of his palm.

he carries a stone in his pocket
a treasure found on their first walk
absorbed in essence
her beauty
in the elements of its design.
                        River 1/11

A special treat posted this week:  A Path of Wrath the fifth duel poem  by Charles Martin and I   :)

posted for One Shoot Wednesday week 30 at One Stop Poetry ~go check it out

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

A Teton Sunset ~ Adventures in the Tetons – Part 2

A Teton Sunset

Sage fills the valley as cracking ground thunders
pointed peaks rise through clouds of colors

majestic beauties roam an ancient path
one buffalo follows two days past

golden wings soar on the mountain breeze
mating Hawks circle each other with ease

playful paws pounce amongst setting brush
silly coyotes taunt their dinner, no rush

mere dangling moments of twilights in time
magnificent sunset, a Teton rhyme.

This is the second poem of a series of my adventures living in the forests of Wyoming across from the Teton Mountains. I promised a piece to Sherry Blue Sky from Poets United. Sherry, I decided to write of the adventures in a series for there are so many things to express one mere poem cannot pull it off. For example,  one late night where beady eyes circled my camp and my dog stood her ground is a poem all in its self.

The first poem of the series My White Stallion

posted for One Shot Wednesday week 29 at One Stop Poetry
join the fun or stop by and read some great poetry

Friday, January 7, 2011

Humbled Roots

Her roots travel miles long
buried deep below her soles
wondrous unforgettable moments
next to grueling times of hell
paths of fading footprints tell
lessons are learned even at ninety.

Years drawn in lines upon her face
sagging boobs and slow steps
carry endless hidden strengths
rising from a passionate spirit
flashes of piercing youth
mingling with eyes of the wise.

“The wise wear purple,” she says laughing
sipping on her hardened water
swinging in her purple hat
telling joyful tales of years past
wearing a smile of freedom.
                              ©River 1/11    

posted for One Shot Wednesday week 28 at One Stop poetry

Thursday, January 6, 2011

cynical virus ~ Haiku

cynical virus
caught a hopeless romantic
love kicked its bad ass

Saturday, January 1, 2011

End the Silence

This poem is posted in connection with the 
January 2011 column piece for River's Ruminations
End the Silence  
 click to read

posted for One Shot Wednesday week 27 at One Stop Poetry
check out other poets and their works 

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