The gray

(Verse One)

Don’t cry to me of imagined slights

Don’t fill my ears with dramatic fights

You wear your crooked crown based on obfuscated lies

Terrified to pack up your own desecration’s prize




(Verse Two)

Wash your hands of every wish you made

Pack them in the old musty suitcase

Load it up and remember where you could have been lost

Break open the latches, rusty locks at what high cost?



Take a turn on reality’s wheel

Won’t you tell me how you feel

Even though it’s hard to let things go

Nobody wants tickets…to your show.


(Verse Three)

There is nothing to be done your bones

You must choose your adventure alone

Cascading fury of your self-righteous self-loathing

Stripping down naked of your emotional clothing


Take a turn on reality’s wheel

Won’t you tell me how you feel

Even though it’s hard to let things go

Nobody wants tickets…to your show.




Intricate Liar

A friend of mine is going through a very bad breakup with a person that didn’t respect boundaries, took what didn’t belong to him, and doesn’t understand why she is done. I wrote this for her.

Water Goddess (water color by Mare Martell)

Water Goddess
(water color by Mare Martell)

I could touch your body with fingers afire
I could ravage your soul, fulfill your desires
I could make you mine, your spirit acquired
But why attach myself to such an intricate liar?
I gave you my body with soul burning fire
I gave you my spirit to fulfill your desires
I made you my own, my trust you acquired
You proved me a fool, you intricate liar.
You had no right,
you had only wrong
What I don’t understand
is what took me so long
to see your stink
to cut through your lies
the hangman’s noose
like lover’s sighs
released the truth
freed my mind
I believed you the only one to set me afire
I allowed you to ravage my soul with blind desire
I relinquished my spirit to a godless choir
You were my everything, you intricate liar.

Now you can do more than like me! Patreon!

Mare Martell I now have bright red hair instead of blonde. (to be fair)

Mare Martell
I now have bright red hair instead of blonde. (to be fair)

If you like what I show you here, you can become a patron of Mare Martell.

Through Patreon, you get to choose how much, how often, whether you want to go per piece or monthly. You have control over what you give to me. In return, I’ve set up some possibly ridiculous rewards for your kind consideration. I’m new to this so the rewards may change for a bit at first, but have no fear my faithful companions, we will persevere and allow you and I to enjoy a symbiotic relationship.

I’m holding out my top hat, drop some dollars in it, won’t you?

After the Peter Mayer concert

Peter Mayer from Minnesota playing "Blue Boat Home"

Peter Mayer from Minnesota playing “Blue Boat Home”

Okay, so if you read the previous article, you know I REALLY love me some Peter Mayer. His music is considered folk but to me it’s just excellent. He performed back in February at our Sunday Service which was really incredible in and of itself, but his warmth really stood out in my mind. He really doesn’t get why people love that he plays guitar and sings. He loves that he can make a living at it, but it truly baffles him.

Tonight, while he was playing, he forgot some lyrics from one of the songs he was performing. He glitched. He apologized but kept going. I fell madly in love with him at that moment. Not the kind of love you give to a spouse or a best friend, but the kind of love that makes that moment stand out as truly significant. He was beautiful before as I’ve gushed and fan-girled, but that moment, a tiny error of perfection exploded his colors into rich sapphire blues, deep royal purples, and such incredible beauty of humanness that I got the leaking wellies.

I sat at the back of the sanctuary weeping with the knowledge that someone I listen to, someone I know only through music and a couple of random conversations, was absolutely human just like me. It was a profound moment as I heard him asking his Sister Hawk to teach him, his Brother Whale to teach him. As the concert continued he quoted Carl Sagan that we are “…starstuff contemplating the stars…” It meshed completely with what I tell the children when they don’t feel important. I tell them, “Oh but you are, my dear friend. We are all made of stardust and oceans. If we are all oceans, we fill the world with tears. If we are all stardust, we lose our shine. But if we balance between the both of them, there is no end to whom we can become.”

That moment of his human self felt like an emotional anchor snapped taut, that in that moment, I was breathing the same starstuff as my ancestors, of his, and of everyone in the room. It was incredibly moving to me. He was even gracious after the concert when I told him of how beautiful I felt that was. I gave him an Always Beautiful card I like to share with people who move my spirit. He accepted it. I don’t think I could have gotten any more happy than I felt at that moment. Thank you Universe for arranging the starstuff precisely right tonight.

Me and Peter Mayer after the show.

Me and Peter Mayer after the show.

Again, if you want to learn more about him, visit his webpage at or look him up on YouTube and you’ll hear why I’m such a fan of such a perfectly kind human being.

Peter Mayer Concert!

I am so excited to go see Peter Mayer tonight. Well, technically I’m working the concert, but that still means I get to benefit by hearing him play live. His lyrics are so rich with imagery, peace, and a feeling of passionate comfort with his spirit.

Peter Mayer is performing in Oak Ridge, TN tonight! WOOT!

Peter Mayer is performing in Oak Ridge, TN tonight! WOOT!

When he was here in February, I got to talk to him. I asked him if his lyrics came easily to him. He looked at me as if I’d grown another head. He said it was the hardest part of what he does. He works and reworks the lyrics until they breathe on their own. He was not condescending as he spoke. I described how it feels when I get the poem spark, where the lyrics sing on their own. He spoke warmly with me. I was an instant fan.

I’m sharing two videos with you. One is where the lyrics are so perfect, it made sense to me. If it doesn’t for you, that’s okay, but I hope you’ll give it a listen.

My favorite song by him:

To learn more about this incredibly gifted performer and lyricist, visit his web page so you never have to be out of the know again.

NaPoWriMo: This Poem Has a Mission

I started out strong with a gleam in my eye

Thirty days? Hell yeah, let’s go do or die!

I put pen to paper pushing letters to sort

I looked around crazy, I giggled to snort

Then I found something I didn’t live any more

How can I write about circling vultures of negative lore?

I don’t think that way I tell you for shore (heh)

I’m afraid to look back that it might find me once more.

Then I had to prepare for a day long performance

It was a test of my will, of strength, and endurance

But I fell down with bruised bloodied knees

Magaly Guerrero forgave and reassured me

I set out with a gleam in my eye

Thirty days, Hell yeah! Let me give it a try. NaPoWriMo

Born to be ME!

I just read this article: RIGHT HERE. In fact, I’ve read several in the past week that were lists of this or that empowerment, strength, courage, etc. With each new one I read, I find myself thinking either I’m naive, or I am this, or I am becoming this already, or even I’ve surpassed this.

Now, I know I’m far from perfect because I know what goes on in my head and am sometimes quite surprised about what comes out of my mouth, but my curiosity lies in my blind spots. Am I seeing myself clearly? Am I measuring my self-value and self-worth accurately and if so, against what scale am I placing the measuring stick? Am I comparing myself to others? Am I looking at my previous bodies of work and realizing how far I’ve come?

I spent three months this past winter, holed up and sleeping. I called it my hibernation, but I was trying to come to terms with the loss of my identity as a mother to a boy I love deeply but whom I couldn’t protect any longer. I hid in my own thoughts, avoided contact with people unless they darkened my doorstep. I went through daily motions without passion or conviction. I spent a lot of time contemplating my own identity.

Before the boy came to live with me, I was wild, scattered, driven to succeed at nothing and everything at the same time. I lacked focus, direction, but most of all, I was missing a sense of responsibility as an anchor. I was adrift without anchor.

After he came to live with me, I gladly gave up so much of who I was that I turned into a fierce Mother Bear who defended her cub so viciously that nobody could harm him. He opened my eyes to just how much sacrifice a mother makes for her offspring. It was during this time that I realized the damage I’d caused my own mother. THIS happened.

But then, like a thief in the night, he vanished without even a goodbye. I realized, as I visited an old friend tonight, how much that still hurt, but I discovered something far more valuable.

As I was telling the story of his childish and shady betrayal, I let it go. I looked at the last six weeks of my life and realized that his leaving gave me yet another gift. It allowed me to reevaluate who I wanted to be now that I’m “grown up” (I still can’t say that with a straight face.)

I said, in my daily conversations with my ceiling, “I am a writer.” And poems, stories, articles, and slogans came gushing out of me as if in a torrent of violent overflow. Lyrics fell from my fingertips as if a different entity had taken up my pen for me. Words dripped from my pencil which allowed me to assemble my work into a Kindle BOOK. I felt astonishment, but considered it a stroke of lucky happiness, finally.

I pondered to myself out loud, talking to the ceiling, but not really. “I am an artist.” BANG! ZAP! BOOM! (Really, that was the kids playing basketball outside!) I was informed of an art gallery requesting pieces for a set up based on Identity. I submitted a couple of pieces and I was on display a few Saturday’s later. When I say that, know that one of the pieces I was showing was a nude of myself. I really mean *I* was on display! I got asked to do a solo show on June 20th in Knoxville, TN AND to give two workshops. Then I got asked to donate for a great cause pride event called Art OUT, so I’m doing that too. I was quite pleased with the success of my declaration. I find myself throwing hours and hours into writing and art.

Harm None

Harm None; Watercolor/Mixed Media 8X10 $30 FOR SALE!

I spoke to my ceiling again (Yes, I know. Maybe my ceiling is magic, right? Only it happens when I’m not home too.) I said, “I really dig music. I should make some.” My friend, Professor Pudgytums in New York, sent me a pair of headphones (REALLY NICE ONES, THANK YOU!) and said, “Do it.” I made MUSIC. I’m working on a new song with the super talented Laura Davis. She calls me up and asks, “Hey, do you want to make music tomorrow?” Sure, why not. Every chance I get, I’m willing to go create.

This whole time, I’m thinking to myself. Are you sure? Are you really doing this? Are you having fun? Are you following your dreams? Are you living your passion? Are you accepting the…Let’s just say, I’m asking myself a lot of self-check questions in a day to see if I’m meeting my own personal standards and level of expected integrity for the day. Did I put in every bit of effort I could to make this world a bit better? A bit more beautiful? Okay then, carry on.

But with all the questions, I didn’t know if I had fallen off the cliff of self-identity, if I were pushed, or if I willingly had spread my wings to fly. I felt uncertainty and self-doubt start to creep in. I hate those more than I hate questions. Instead, my pastor, unbeknownst to him my questions and struggles, posted THIS LINK on his Facebook page.

“The smartest, most interesting, most dynamic, most impactful people … lived to figure it out. At some point in their lives, they realized that carefully crafted plans … often don’t hold up… Sometimes, the only way to discover who you are or what life you should lead is to do less planning and more living — to burst the double bubble of comfort and convention and just do stuff, even if you don’t know precisely where it’s going to lead, because you don’t know precisely where it’s going to lead.

This might sound risky — and you know what? It is. It’s really risky. But the greater risk is to choose false certainty over genuine ambiguity. The greater risk is to fear failure more than mediocrity. The greater risk is to pursue a path only because it’s the first path you decided to pursue.”Daniel H Pink

Quite frankly, I’m a bit scared to talk to my ceiling again because I’m beginning to think there is a power greater than me making sure I have the best life possible. In the meantime, I’ll just keep making art, writing, drawing, dancing, laughing, and drinking copious amounts of Kawphy because that’s what writer/artist/lyricists do and I am happy doing what makes my spirit sing with wild abandon.

We Stand United

We Stand (this link will take you to SoundCloud) is a song written by Laura Davis. I wrote the lyrics for it while she did all the hard stuff with the music and performing.

When we came up with the idea, we’d just attended the protest for #blacklivesmatter It was truly inspirational and empowering.

Love Thy Neighbor No Exceptions

She approached me after I wrote a poem and asked if I’d be interested in collaborating. Sure, I thought, why not. I asked what she wanted the lyrics to include and she was adamant about them declaring unity in the name of love. Done deals. And so, with pen in hand, I stared out the window, drank a LOT of coffee, and 15 minutes later, I had the first two verses set up. She pushed and verse three with the chorus came flooding through. I didn’t hear back from her for a while, maybe a month or so. After church a couple weeks ago, she asked if I wanted to hear our baby. DUH!

We went into the sanctuary, opened the grand piano, and she began to play. I admit freely that I stood there crying as if I were hearing angels singing the song of love for all my brothers and sisters in the heart of equality. We hugged like new parents cooing over our newborn anthem.

I recorded it this week in that same sanctuary using my phone, of all things, and my computer. But none caught better sound (no mics, mixing boards, autotune, or anything like that) than one particular video which, with my limited home studio, I brought this out to show you.

We Stand is performed by Laura Davis

Music is written by Laura Davis

Lyrics by Mare Martell