Members Profile

Brian Johnston
Brian Johnston Bay Area / United States, Male, 72
Profession :
Farmer, Video Game/Programer, Physicist
Education :
Physics, Music (Piano & Voice) , English
3,155 Points

Brian Johnston's last comments on poems and poets

  • POEM: Thank God For Misery by Lora Colon (1/29/2015 12:46:00 AM)

    There is part of me that suspects this poem is 'tongue in cheek' and probably meant as a parody of my poetry's insistence that God's intention for pain is that it be growth producing. Sometimes I honestly feel that almost everything you write is for me and I swear I am truly honored if this is so (though i know it is unlikely) . Your last two lines truly made me laugh but if you meant them seriously I do apologize. I have no intent to offend. I am very near sighted after all. Maybe my glasses are too thick? Ha. The idea though that we might feel 'angst' if we were to move from joy to heaven is truly an idea I never considered? Kudos Lora, a spot on Saturday Night Live surely is waiting for you! : -) Kind of like Mom yelling 'Out of popcorn? ... Don't worry there is more coming! ' causing the kids watching TV at our house on Friday Night's Shock Night, to sob hysterically at the news! Ha!

    I personally am such a contrarian that if I were living in Paradise and God suddenly announced that he was packing it in and the end was here, I think my mind would immediately begin to wonder what real paradise might look like and if God in fact had a surprise coming to HIM?

    I am confused though. Are there not different kinds of beauty that exist separate from each other like poetry in different languages perhaps or different number systems? And does beautiful sadness not exist as well as tragic beauty. Just how is joy (just a feeling) in any way superior to sadness (also a feeling) ? Sometimes one is appropriate and sometimes the other one is. Is God not allowed to morn the death of His son on the cross? Does it make any sense that just because Christ's death was a way that God expressed His love for us that His joy in the completion of His plan would not make Him incredibly sad as well?

    Does hope need to produce results to be valuable or meaningful, longing for heaven mean that are we defeated? I think not! Yet this is a wonderful poem that invites us all to think, to ponder our relationship to God if any, and perhaps come away from the experience humbled in a new way, realizing that the God we picture in our imaginations, is way, way, way too small.

  • POEM: Thank God For Misery by Lora Colon (1/29/2015)

    Hooray! At least someone's poem is more boring than mine! Of course in fairness Mandolyn has probably not read my poem yet. Take heart Brier Edwards, it may yet be a close contest! Of course I blame the Contest Master for his choice of titles. Ha! Which means poop head that your loss is still potentially a double header (whatever that means) . Am I the last person on earth to take this contest seriously? Stay tuned Mouseketeers!

  • POEM: The Day Is Over by Lora Colon (1/28/2015 1:09:00 AM)

    And A New Day Is Coming

    How many dear souls have stood on that ledge
    Each of them wondering what happens next,
    Thinking the silence is their only friend
    And filled with cold fear that this is the end.

    But his love never brought Grace to your life,
    Only your qualities brought him to you,
    Though you may fault all these memories now,
    Your memory's also part of him too.

    With so many memories how can love die,
    Though both lover’s expectations may cry?
    If you're in his reverie why such deep sigh,
    Only in your mind did he say good-bye?
    So why all this anguish embracing a lie?

    No lover's entitled to ever own Love,
    As it is with beer, one can only Love rent,
    And purchase with Yeats this year’s carnival pass
    And marvel with William where love pitched its tent.

    Hold on to the melodies that he once played
    By now you should know it is your music too,
    Though nightfall may whisper that gold too can rust,
    With sunlight and rain, mustard seeds break that crust.

    Brian Johnston
    January 27,2015

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Brian Johnston's comments on forums

  • Brian Johnston (10/9/2014 12:45:00 PM) Post reply

    Well, having tried to teach you things before and failed miserably each time, once more I leap into the breach... HA!

    breach |breCH|
    1 an act of breaking or failing to observe a law, agreement, or code of conduct: a breach of confidence | I sued for breach of contract.
    • a break in relations: a sudden breach between father and son.
    2 a gap in a wall, barrier, or defense, esp. one made by an attacking army.
    3 the vacant space between Brier Edwina's ears, any gigantic lacking of something that may or may not have ever existed...

    You know Bri this is kind of fun (for the writer though possibly never for the reader!) Ha!

    As it turns out when I did a SEARCH FOR 'God's Kind of Poetry' on Poemhunter I found exactly 7 poems that had that title on Poemhunter. It clearly doesn't work however on embedded text in an actual poem that contains the same words. Hope that stating the obvious has finally helped you in some way! Now at least you know how much I care. : -)

    PS: Don't know why you have so much trouble being funny?It seems easy to me! But maybe the trick is for you to 'be all there?'

  • Brian Johnston (5/30/2014 10:04:00 AM) Post reply | Read 1 reply

    There has been another passing of note besides the poet Maya Angelou who, though grievously wounded by life, bounced back to assert her place in Poetry's Hall of Fame and in the hearts of us all. The poet Beauteous Victory, who graced Poemhunter with her passion and her pain has also vanished from our lives, but far more grievously. We do not know her real name, can not commiserate personally with her anymore, or speak to her shared heart by writing poems to her poems. The only part of her that lives now on Poemhunter for any of us now are the 3 poems that she shared with Neethu Panicker and myself that she was not able to erase, and did not ask us to take down.

    Beauteous Victory too was a black woman with great heart, a poet who achieved the upper echelons of Poemhunter's popularity poll. Though we may never know her fate, her voice abides in our hearts. She is now and will be missed. She is now and will be still loved for many years by her friends on Poemhunter.

  • Brian Johnston (5/24/2014 6:07:00 AM) Post reply

    Advice To Young Poets (Rev 1)

    It never is an easy ride
    And I don’t mean to deride,
    But your imaginative sense,
    Far exceeds experience.

    Of course you must learn how to fight,
    Gird your pen for unmanned flight,
    By never making yourself wrong,
    Though your youth sullies the song.

    Youth’s insights are sometimes shallow,
    Tend fields that should stay fallow,
    But plant your grain and pray for rain,
    Do not exaggerate pain.

    Remaining true to you today,
    Welcome muse, chips fall as may,
    Though muse may always be your guide,
    The color’s yours to decide.

    A skeleton the muse gives you!
    Living poems come to view,
    With flesh, with heart poet donates,
    No life served on silver plates.

    A clever title serves your need,
    (And reluctant muse can feed)
    Often gets the juices flowing
    When no sure path is showing.

    A dream can sometimes give release
    To deep feelings seeking peace,
    When you're at war with what you know,
    Offer insight where to go.

    Try to stay close to what you love,
    Don’t waste time on what’s above.
    Know it’s just you that you’re selling,
    Make peace with fears you’re quelling.

    And no, not once forgo the chance
    With living poems to dance
    With humble, breathless savoir-faire,
    Please escort her from her chair.

    Brian Johnston
    May 4 2014

    Please visit the Poet's Notes section of many of my poems for even more comments
    on how I approach writing poetry.


    Poet's Mouth

    I feel sure mine’s a true case of ‘Poet’s Mouth’
    My fans certainly are precocious,
    My goodness, oh they think I’m divine
    They are all itching to be my Valentine.

    I feel sure mine’s a true case of ‘Poet’s Mouth’
    My words like rare jewels are so precious,
    My rhythms like wild bats fly so free
    Folk’s hearts skip a beat when they listen to me.

    I feel sure mine’s a true case of ‘Poet’s Mouth’
    My thoughts like fresh snow truly pristine,
    My rhymes like holy water quite pure
    This confluence shining because I’m demure.

    I feel sure mine’s a true case of ‘Poet’s Mouth’
    My insights are really infectious,
    My verse filled with poetic debris,
    If I wrote free verse they could weaponize me.

    I feel sure mine’s a true case of ‘Poet’s Mouth’
    For high honor I’m certainly fit…..
    How perfect if the first could be me….
    Winner of the Golden Globes (of poetry!)

    Brian Johnston
    March 23,2014

    Please visit the Poet's Notes section of many of my poems for even more comments
    on how I approach writing poetry.


    Impossibly High Standards (Revised)

    Just to be present is a blessed event,
    Arguments about form are just chatter,
    The hour it arrives always filled with portent,
    No competing high purpose will matter.

    For writing a poem’s like creating life,
    An honor to just assist in its birth,
    To battle with muse, fight with clarity’s knife,
    What could there be more important on earth?

    The paper we write on is like Holy Ground,
    Our ink honors life, its fragrance like myrrh,
    To grind mental gears is a world shaking sound,
    Images form, suggest God’s passing blur.

    As rainbows crown rain that brings life to the plain,
    So does new poetry honor its source,
    Heals the soul, mends the heart, abolishes pain,
    Moves emotion along God’s refined course.

    Poems that all of our emptiness purges,
    Poems like river banks guide our essence,
    Until, at long last, humanity merges
    With the vast sea of God's exuberance.

    Brian Johnston
    April 30,2014

    Please visit the Poet's Notes section of many of my poems for even more comments
    on how I approach writing poetry.


    An Appeal To (As Yet) Undiscovered Poets

    Undiscovered poets hear me, to PH draw near,
    This just might be a good chance for your views to ring clear.

    An email address you need to get up and running,
    Huge monkeys it‘s said could really write something stunning.

    So grab paper and pen, come as soon as you canna,
    But don’t forget please sir to bring several banana.

    Enough monkey typewriters might just supplant Shakespeare,
    Given enough time (and assuming plenty of beer.)

    We don’t have all day but trust me. I have a good hunch,
    With banana enough friend we don't think about lunch.

    So let’s all hop to it just see man what we can do,
    If monkey shenanigans truly carry us though.

    Show literary typos the ace in our pocket,
    By lighting the fuse to our post(English) grad rocket.

    Brian Johnston
    May 7,2014

    This Poem requires its own special vocabulary explanation (see below)
    Brian’s bastardized Jamaican English explained….
    ...'PH' - PoemHunter (you know man, the site you be on right now)
    …‘Huge’ – a synonym for ‘a great many’ or ‘a large number of’….
    …’canna’ – a synonym for ‘are able to, ’ or slang for ‘smoke a joint, ’ dare I say it
    .................'cannabis! ' (Serendipitous luck I assure you. I'm not that smart.)
    …’banana’ - the plural form of banana. Hey it's my poem!
    …’supplant’ - a synonym for ‘prove to be better than’ as in ‘my pot’s better than
    .......................your pot’….
    ….’beer’ – an alcoholic beverage you always think you can drink more of….
    …’shenanigans’ – an Irish?word that means ‘horse play’ or ‘sculduggery’….
    …’typos’ – a new hip word comparing Poetry snobs to a misspelled word….
    …’ace in the pocket’ – a way to cheat when playing the card game Poker….
    …’post(English) grad rocket’ - a new poetry craze that English majors can’t crack! ....

    Visit my site for even more comments on writing particular poems and discussion
    of what makes a good poem good. In particular I recommend several letters
    between one of the top poets on the site Tapan Pradman and myself posted under the title of
    'Open Letter #A: To All PoemHunter Poets.' I hope to offer more of these letters in the future.

    But truly the real gifts of this site are the new friends you are sure to find. You may make
    enemies too (in spite of good intentions.) Save the grain, let the chaff blow away in the wind.
    If you have heart and talent you won't need the angry ones who have an axe to grind in any case.

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