Paths of Destiny©

The Original Works of "The Rose"




Elusive Wisdom

As I sit in this common area

Quietly waiting, listening

Straining to hear the mechanical tones

Sometimes unable to distinguish

Barely audible


Nothing better to do I observe

A study in humanity this collection

This diversity of society

Not uncommon

In their likeness

As I glance about my gaze falls

On a couple across the room

A shamefully obese man and a wisp of a woman

Methodically he rubs her shoulder

A near caress


And I wonder what he perhaps is feeling

Obvious affection laced with gratitude

As she languishes her head upon his immense chest

Eyes closed


As my attention strays about the room

I see an elderly gentleman

Slack-jawed, his gaze seeming to fall

On empty air


And I think perhaps he is aged beyond his years

Or perhaps his years have surpassed him

I sense he lives alone now

His presence here


A young man on crutches brushes by

And takes a seat opposite me

The scars of recent injury evident

Intelligent eyes


And look there, a young couple with twins

Nearly two years I'd say

Since she held his hand

Teeth clenched


An old woman sits nearby with newspaper in hand

Peering over her spectacles, straining

Her obvious years etched deeply

Legs crossed


And down the hall her life partner waits expectantly

The resignation evident in his gaze

Footsteps echoing as the physician returns

Haggard eyes


Heads turn as the main entrance gives way

And a weathered old gentleman hobbles in

His short shuffling steps a testament

Gnarled hands


Decades of toiling the fields

Raising a dozen offspring off the land

And bumper crops by irrigating

With his sweat

And tears

So many turn their eyes away

From the suffering masses

Not seeing the humanity before them

Their compassion


So taken with their own concerns

Never noticing a strangers silent gaze

Engrossed in their own existence

Wisdom eludes them

To the end...


The Rose 0828011025PM

© 2001 Virgil G. Richards



A Dreamer Dreams


A dreamer dreams

Of passions past

Of bygone loves

And memories cast

With wistful sigh

through parted lips

A dreamer dreams

A dreamer dreams

Of lost desire

And bathes his soul

In emerald fire

With distant gaze

As lost within

A dreamer dreams

A dreamer dreams

With vision clear

Of beauty once

Was held so near

As overwhelmed

Emotions stirred

A dreamer dreams...

The Rose 102920001000PM

© 2000/2001 Virgil G. Richards



I once stood before a wall of memories

Where many lives were lost

And I viewed the archived images

Unable to fathom the cost

And I felt a deep resentment

That such acts could be performed

That so much innocence must pay

For misguided opinions formed

And I wrestled with emotions

Welling up from deep within

As I walked with restless spirits

Of children, women, and men

And I wondered of the aftermath

Where heroes knelt and wept

Where fortitude was tested

And now memories are kept

And overcome I stumbled

In the glow of eternal flame

You shall not be forgotten

For in stone is etched your name…


Dedicated to the memory of the victims and families of the Oklahoma City bombing tragedy.


And on this 11th day of September, 2001

For the victims and fallen heroes and the families of today’s tragedy

We weep for you.

May God be with you


 The Rose 91120011100pm

© 2001 Virgil G. Richards


Too Soon We Forget

Too soon we forget

Few are the flags that wave now

As time dims our memory

The rage we once felt

And the anger fresh

Now stale and only fleeting

Only briefly do we pause

For news of faraway victories

Or defeats.


Too soon we forget

The thousands of souls

Those lost to hate

And the millions whose lives

Will never again be complete

The husbands and wives

The brothers and sisters

The fathers and mothers

The grandparents and cousins

And the children…


Too soon we forget

The horror and disbelief

As a nation stood silent

While freedom was shackled

Never will we be the same

Never will freedom

Have the same meaning

We have ceased to wonder

Too soon we forget…



The Rose 012720021030am

© 2002 Virgil G. Richards




Green begets gray

Blends into white

Shrouded mists

Of early morn

Stream clear and cold

Descendant of clouds

Capping peaks

Like the halos of Angels


An eagle in flight

Effortless, graceful

Soaring, dipping, swaying

In golden glow

Of morning sun

Rising in the east

Giver of life

And warmth

To a world

Few understand

And many

Take for granted


Green, blue, and gold

Nature's gift

To the eyes of man

The birth

Of another day


Endless and forever

Always ongoing

Never pausing

For man

Nor beast


Time told only

By fading

Light of day


Between dark

And light

Moon rising

As a nighttime sun


From still waters

Of mountain lakes

Peaceful, calm

Always giving

Never taking

And the morning



We begin again...

The Rose 

© 2003 Virgil G. Richards


Stave's Creed



Lean on me, for I am strong

I will aid you in your journey

I will lighten your load, and ease your step

When you stumble, I will catch you

When you fall, I will help you stand

When you're unsteady, I will steady you

And when you're tired, I will support you

I will not judge you, for we are friends

Together, we will share many great adventures


© 2002 Virgil G. Richards





Did you ever just sit?

And stare at the air,

Or let your mind wander?

Never going anywhere.

Have you seen the moon?

Though it’s not really there,

Seen the beauty of a room?

Though the room was bare.

Have you dreamed of a dream?

That may never come true,

Have you longed in your heart?

Have you ever been blue?

Have you ever been happy?

Or died in your mind,

Have you ever been saddened?

By words that were kind.

Have you ever been lonely?

But never alone,

Ever lived in a house?

But never a home?

Have you ever been scorned?

By the people you’ve known,

Or been loved by a child?

That wasn’t your own.

Have you ever been lost?

In a familiar place,

Or brought tears of joy?

To a stranger’s face.

Have you ever been humble?

Felt foolish pride,

Ever stood your ground?

Ever stepped aside?

Have you ever laughed?

Have you ever cried?

Ever been fulfilled,

And felt empty inside…



Ó2004 Virgil G. Richards





I need something, but I don't know what "IT" is.

"IT" should make me feel better, about myself, my existence, life in general.

"IT" should be something that lifts my spirit, eases my mind.

"IT" needs to be accessible, renewable, repeatable.

What is "IT"?

Is "IT" lying on green grass on a summer afternoon under a blue sky?

Is "IT" the sound of water lapping at my feet on a sandy shore?

Is "IT" sleeping in on a Saturday morning?

Is "IT" feeling joy in your heart? A deep breath of clean, fresh mountain air?

Is "IT" a beautiful sunrise or sunset? A warm summer rain?

Is "IT" a long lingering kiss, or a lover's touch?

Is "IT" a smell, or a taste, or a sensation?

Perhaps "IT" is the love or adoration of another.

Or the trust in a childs eyes.

Maybe "IT" is being warm on a cold winters night.

What if "IT" doesn't exist?

I fear I may never find "IT", "IT" is just out of reach.

"IT" is elusive. "IT" has no face. "IT" can't be photographed.

I can't research "IT". I can't touch "IT". I can't see "IT"

"IT" seems to be an imaginary manifestation of wants, and needs, and desires that can never be fulfilled.

"IT" is infinITe.

"IT" must be.

"IT" is everything.

"IT" is nothing.


©9/21/06 Virgil G. Richards



    Reflections Continued    For the Children    Memories    The Published Works    The Dark Side





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