Poems -complete  


The Chapel-2, Camerino, La Marche

The Road to Santiago

 By J.K. Hannula


[ i.]   So many years, so long ago,

Much time hast passed with patient flow;

When then wast seen the sacred glow:

Campostella, San Tiago.


[ii.]  La Campostella, long  a field;

Bright 'field of stars'; not night's dark shield,

 Lone field of stars where Faithfuls  kneeled,

A field where hearts & souls are healed;

A place to ancient man revealed

In layer-by-layer, like onion peeled,

Mystic history darkly veiled;

The holy to this wisdom yield,

And in our prophets' verse 'tis sealed;

'Tis also place where Fate's card's deal’d.


[iii.]  In San Tiago Saint James rests,

So long ago in holy vests;

Passed well the Saint God's many tests;

Endured he well the holy fests;

Unanswered prayers & dark behests

And frequent plagues of locusts-pests.


[iv.]   The Road to San Tiago's said

To be both road of faith & dread

For both the living & long dead

-Depends it not on what thee read?


[[v.]  ‘Tis a long road for faithful pilgrims

And not for those with doubts, killed-whims;

Also road for poets, artists

And Bishops, sheep & Martinists.


[vi.]  Begins our journey near a fort

In ancient Saint Jean Pieds-de-Port

On France's side of Pyrenees,

A region of snowfields & trees,

Granite canyons, winds & breezes,

Springtime thaws & autumn freezes.

Ends the road in San Tiago,

Its ending deemed from long ago:

Long before Shakespeare's Orthello.

Where, was’t Turk baths -& bordello.


[vii.]  Tho' artists, we, long road's divine,

A road that's lined with stone & sign,

Oft winding road like bale of twine

To curvy hillsides, rarely line

(Or figures-eight or cat-tails-nine);

Thru' mythic mountains, groves of pine;

Fields of heather, sage, columbine:

Red quilts of vineyards; autumn's wine,

The color of its dark carmine;

And sunbaked pools of stone & brine

With golden sand bars textured fine.

-A place for painting the Divine.

'Tis not a road for all; 'tis thine?

With all thine love, my dear -'tis mine.


[viii.]  'Tis “Road of Stars” as prophets say,

That winds beneath The Milky Way

So far above yon azure bay

-And many paintings -know them, nay?

-Like paintings by Gustav Courbet,

Brunel, Cezanne or old Vernet

-Or prose by Ernest Hemingway

That can be seen or read today.


[ix.]  We walk the road with many friends,

Some former, future; now (amends);

(But we know not just whom god sends);

The twisting, turning road that bends,

The Holy Road that He defends;

And where the sheep the shepherd tends,

A Shepherd whom our lost soul mends

-An ancient road that never ends.


[x.]  We sit beneath an ancient pine

With Bacchus here, a glass of wine;

With luscious grape & words that rhyme;

With brush in hand, the scene is mine;

Quick strokes of paint -the scene is thine;

'Tis heaven's way to savor thyme.


[xi.]  A tabled rock is on my left;

I shape its form with my hand, deft;

Oh tabled rock, pines next to thee;

Ye wear their cloak with majesty.

Oh, to paint thy noblest form

Though o'er thine head a thunderstorm.

Oh, to paint thine silhouette

-‘Tis many years since we first met.


[xii.]  The ancient trail both twists & turns;

While on the trail we take right branch;

Gnarled old pines show lightening burns;

On top of tabled rock: gods' ranch.


[xiii.]  Dear Joan of Arc, with thee I walk;

We eat, pray, sleep & oft times talk

And listen to the Raven's knock

'Neath birds of prey & dark nighthawk

At open door devoid of lock.

-From here to old Gibraltar's Rock.


[xiv.] God-sent to walk with woman-saint

And rest we oft'; thee pose -I paint

A saint with halo, lovely smile;

Thine beauty, love, dost me beguile.

Stop we, age-long -or for a while

Aside a cross or old sundial

On out-wash plain or barren isle

Where acts of man were just -or vile.


[xv.]  Rest us beneath this forlorn tree,

So I can paint thine figure, thee,

A painting for the Holy See,

So They can see that thou'st were free

-Before thine fate ('tis history).

Oh, we all know thine destiny!


[xvi.]  'Tis in the fifteenth century;

Strong is church-penitentiary

When kings & priests had much at stake

Defending lies & notions, fake

When, truth through glowing embers rake'd

Cruel winds of war’s hot fires truth bake'd.

Oh, Joan of Arc, 'tis sad heartache.

-How could thine justice He forsake?


[xvii.]  Thine soul's above, in God's lorry

Or on yonder river's dory.

For Mankind, I say “we're sorry”.

'Tis the past -let's write true story.


[xviii.]  Joan of Arc, most lovely lady

'Neath the ancient pine so shady;

Heaven’s here; not hell of Hade

Where lives half-year, Persephone.


[ixx]  Oh sit thee, Joan, on limestone rock

Within-among thine sheep in flock

In fields of grain & corn-on-stock,

Whil'st beats the sound of Cronos' clock

And dawn's sharp crow of nearby cock

That cannot long thine fate it block.


[xx.] Dear Joan of Arc, take thee this rose

And raise it to thine courtly nose,

Red rose with sheen of mourning dew

That gathered from the midnight's blue,

A dew that shimmers twilight's glows

That dances in among thine clothes

And pirouettes to thine thin toes

-That to mankind thine charms expose:

'Tis tender scene that Venus knows

-Hold thee thine rose; hold thee thine pose.


[xxi.]  Although we walk at Heaven's pace

Along the Road, 'tis Time we race;

Carpe diem; I paint thine face

That's cloaked with veil of linen lace;

Thine forehead's fair, thine eyes are brown

In thine gold veil & draping gown

That highlights thee on hallowed ground.

Thine heart's a harp, symphonic sound;

Thine grace within these moments bound

Within my brush, strokes freely found,

Slow satin strokes with paint brush, round.

Whil'st thee rest on ancient mound.


[xxii.]  I love thee, dear, Saint Joan of Arc;

Thine voice is soft like bird-song's lark

As sung thru' boughs in Eden's park;

Thine mournful lark is arrow's mark

Through slander, lies & Bishops' nark

Like nearby gray wolfs' howl & bark,

Or Inquisitioner’s remark

-Thou'st ray of light in dungeon's dark.


[xxiii.]  Make thee a wish upon a star

O'er Campostella -oh, so far!

Yon Milky Way, Three Kings or czar;

Will'st hear thine wish & not it bar.

Thine wish both truth & soulful love;

Not birds of prey but turtle-dove

In fire-bush not high above

-A Lie or truth? Push-comes-to-shove.


[xxiv.]  We enter Dark Night of man's Soul

That's lighted by burnt embers-coal

So deep within man's earthen bowl:

Diamonds, rubies, crystals, whole

What's buried in volcanic hole:

Blanched bones of mammoths, bison's foal;

-In all of this- just what's god's role,

And through it all -just what's mans' goal?


[xxv.]  Continue we along the Road

Where, ancient man on horseback rode;

Follow we the ancient's code,

'Long veins of gold & silver's node

Whil'st carry we art's joyful load

Thru' mountains, valleys; mans' abode;

We soon shall reap as we haft sow'd;

Sow we love's seeds where nothing's owed.


[xxvi.]  'Round the curve lies ancient village

Beat by sun & soldiers’ pillage,

Edged by umber fields in tillage

And sparsely clad with foliage

And silence-lacking verbiage.

-Just what, think thee, is yon mill's age?


xxvii.]  Enter, we, in village center

On the only road to enter;

A village on a road's dead-end

Where there's eternity to spend.


[xxviii.]  In village center lays a pool,

Medieval pool drips water cool,

That waters horse & faithful mule

Of pilgrims, knights or peasants; fool:

Those held within a bishop's rule

-In His kingdom’s cross & jewel.


xxix.]  Shall now we press along the way

Or dine here at this inn-cafe'

Or find a chapel cool to pray

-What do thee think; what do thee say?

As fades the light of this hot day.

Depends it not on where we lay?

-Hast either choice a price to pay

So pay we now heart's price; defray?


[xxx.]  Here 'tis another bridge to cross,

Beneath which lies both fish & moss;

In sleepy creek gold coin I toss;

'Tis for our dream -and not a loss.


[xxxi.]  Shall we pray in yonder chapel?

Next to which a tree of apple

That now casts the sunlight's dapple:

An old church with legend, Papal.


[xxxii.]  'Tis a church with frail bell tower;

Next to which white sheep flocks cower;

With loss of chime also its power

With its pealing that’s gone sour.

Shall we rest beneath that bower?

With green hedge & poppy flower:

Lacks it Judgment’s scornful glower

-'Tis peaceful, lovely place for our....


[xxxiii.]  Embroidered Milky Way above

Creates enchanting place to love

Among red poppies & foxglove;

Sage, rosemary, wildflowers, mauve.


[xxxiv.]  And now we lay us down to sleep

Surrounded by thine flock of sheep;

With Heaven's blanket sky -blue deep

Say we our prayers with grateful weep

And pray to God our souls to keep

As in deep pool of love we leap.


[xxxv.]  Make thee a wish upon yon star

That sets above yon mountains far

That precedes next day's light (solar).

And why should we this moment mar

For a decree of Moral Czar?

Release the genie from the jar?

Are we not just what we are?

-Goes well the day: 'tis good; on-par.


[xxxvi.]  Orion's stars in Belt are queued

In Heaven's loft of stars, imbued.

Thine silken skin is olive-hued;

Thine fears & inhibitions' slewed.

Believe thee, Joan, that we are lewd

For laying here au natural nude?


xxxvii.] In mine verse I pose thee nude-

Will they think it's something skewed?

How beauty can be misconstrued!

Depends it not on mans' dark mood?


[xxxviii.]  For body, soul & heart 'tis food;

‘Tis sens'al time of plenitude;

Heart's culinary interlude.

Oh, thine deep passion thee exude!

To thine soft form mine eyes are glued;

'Tis my deep state of love; not rude.


[xxix.]  And in mine art thine virtue’s queued

The virtues in thee well imbued;

Soft colors from my palette hued;

Will'st thine soft form my heart elude?

Or spend my life in solitude?

I think naught a life so lewd! 


[xL.] Stars shine on thee like golden flecks;

I stroke thine long & stately neck's

Soft skin down to thine molded pecs

And thine firm stomach's shape, convex;

And whilst I feel thine body's flex.

I ask thee, Joan D'Arc: Oh, what's next?


[xLi.]  ‘Tis a night of dawning passion;

'Tis deep love not current fashion;

Is it something one should ration?

-'Fore one turns to body, ashen?



[xLii.]  'Fore us lies old Campostella;

'Long has been walk from Estella,

The ancient fort in old Saint Jean,

The mythic road that's oft forlorn,

Subject to praise; object to scorn

Where, wast our sacred journey born.


[xLiii.]  In San Tiago lies his grave,

Much like a chapel's vaulted nave

Or ancient grotto, painted cave,

An apogee of Heaven's wave

That's formed this way for souls to save

-'Tis sacred road that Saint James gave.


[xLv.]  'Tis journey of the soul & heart

And spirit -source of mythic art.

I loved thee, Joan of Arc, from start

Forever; now, as we depart;

We'll meet again in Milky Way

-In rosy dawn of far-off day.

Jkh c. 2010


Manhattan Streets

[ i ]

Where, golden corn the Pilgrims milled

And long ago the Dutchmen tilled,

The Dutchmen whom Mohicans killed;

More recently, where lawyers billed

For greedy deeds of Wall Street, chilled

-And so from where this nation's thrilled.


[ ii ]

'Tis the place of art & passion,

Conception of the latest style;

Marketing the season's fashion;

And hence, where time-away-we-while.


[ iii ]

Oh, seems to me a flash in time,

And not unlike a word in rhyme,

Or distant bell's long fading chime,

The gesture of a passing mime;

Or then -thee turning on a dime

Whil'st we laugh'd & drank & dined:

A shot of bourbon; glass of wine

Whilst on this verse we didst opine.


[ iv ]

The corner turns, tis Astor Place

That’s New York's other, better face;

Unlike pasts years -when in disgrace

For its behavior, lifestyle, base:

Our destiny at leisure's pace.


[ v ]

Café Pacè, olde East Village,

St. Mark's Place where druggies pillage,

Most engaged in latest thrill-age:

Wall Street's ever-scheming bill-age.


[ vi ]

Oh, what think thee of me -or thine?

(Or, what think me of thee -or mine?):

A cosmic chance or God's design,

Genetic source -perhaps enzyme,

A toss of dice or astro-sign?

The topic, dear -'tis grave? Benign?


[ vii ]

Oh, matters not, please pose for me

So I can duly worship thee.

Oh, sit thee on mine pedestal;

The evening's end we canst forestall,

But our dear hearts we can enthrall

 - And from this bed watch sunset fall.


[ viii ]

Oh, from my place I view thine grace

And grasp me firmly loaded brush;

Thine classic form & mythic face

'Tis spread on canvas, colors lush.

My twirling brush paints linen lace,

Thine coal-dark eyes; mascara's blush.

I paint thee at a quickened pace;

Whil'st thee now rest on pillows plush.


[ ix ]

      Parched page of time turns quite slowly:

This on top -to that most lowly;

That profane -to that most holy.

Why say this; 'tis for thee solely?  


[ x ]

Mistral winds & tattered pages,

Since long Past in rusted cages;

Loving mornings; evening rages;

- Hanging fruit or love's high wages?


[ xi ]

Oh dear Susannah -know thee this

When, during time of passion, bliss:

Then, candles, art -a tender kiss;

What thee forgo -oh, thee may miss!


[ xii ]

A Golden Season for all things,

'Tis something-nothing on Time's wings.

In mountain valles -the source of springs;

Lie fertile fields of barons, Kings

And shady walls where green moss clings;

Where, distant bells from chapel rings:

With leaded dongs & ding-a-lings

With which the choir a hymnal sings;

And love-tipped arrows Cupid flings

- Let's see what fate tomorrow brings.


For all things a Golden season:

Acts of valor; deeds of treason

Healing of an un-healed lesion:

A never ending lifetime session.


[ xiii ]

For all things there is an arrow,

Its breathless flight both straight & narrow:

Legionnaire, true heart or sparrow

(Not unlike Death's hoisted gallow);

To the heart, to love's dear marrow,

Striking heart or oaken barrow;

Channel's deep but coves quite shallow;

Like a mirror pale & sallow;

Or wick in candle's melted tallow-

-Love's fecund fields most oft lie fallow.


For all things an arrow flies,

And for all things its path belies

An arrow that two hearts doth ties

When passion’s lit or passion dies

‘Tis when the breath both gasps or sighs

-To all of life its flight applies.


[ xiv ]

“We may never pass this way again”:

'Tis so well known from poets' pen,

And scribed on walls of Mankind's den,

The ancient source of wisdom, ken;

From River Ganges, source of Zen,

One lined by long-stalked rush & fen,

Lush habitat of ibis, wren;

From Babylon to Theme's Big Ben,

Or Noah's Arc with fauna, men.

Oh, will we pass this way again?

Oh, Susanna - lover, friend......


[ xv ]

And so we stroll East Village streets,

Its markets filled with fruits & meats;

Erotica, red wines & sweets

(As we pass by True Loves -& cheats)

And artists, writers; dull effetes

On sidewalk benches, cafe seats

Where corner poets recite Keats,

The darkened prose of William Yeats

And watch the clowns' amusing feats.


[ xvi ]

Oh, turn thee –there, to Union Square!

'Tis like a park; an artists' lair,

A place for music; summer fair;

Skid Row's dregs; the city's mayor;

Sculptress, doctor; old soothsayer.

‘Tis New York's culture, layer-by- layer

-Like Hudson's dense, polluted air.

Does anyone around here care?


[ xvii ]

Oh, sit for me on that-there bench!

My thirst for art thine features quench;

On my brush thine colors drench

Like Ingres' paintings: classic French.


[ xviii ]

Drop thy halter; turn thy shoulder;

What could be more graceful, bolder?

-As yon statue: Zeus didst mold her.

What think thee the artist told her

-After posing, did he hold her?

Of this pose what could be older?


[ xix ]

Oh, shall we stroll First Avenue?

Where, early morning 'tis but few;

And on car tops clings morning's dew,

A film of dew, transparent blue,

Where sunlight shines its prism's hue

-And soon to part like me & you.


[ j.k. Hannula 2010 c.]




The Monastery on the Hill

The Valles of Prades

(Landscape BA Flt #265)


Brought I not home the sky nor rivers

Nor, shadowed walls or light in slivers;

Left behind a light so faint,

Except its colors in my paint.


Oh, Valles of Prades, Roussillon;

How long has't been since thee gone?

How long must be my heart forlorn'd

When from its birthing has't been torn?

Like a babe's heart, newly born

Or a lamb's fleece newly shorn'd

That's cloaked in love & much adorn'd.

In the mist of new day's morn.


Ribbon'd lanes & distant hill,

Falcon's shriek, a piercing shrill;

A moment's silence, prey to kill;

Watch I the bird, my pulse not still.


Below me lies the Valles of Prades,

Massif  background: god's facades;

With brush in hand, I am in awe:

Valle's near-side, a canyon's maw.


Far off sound, the clocher's bells

Echoes off vine-yard'd dells.

My strokes of paint trace true the route

Of ribbon'd lane & canyon's chute.


As I paint I think of thee;

How long ago were you with me?

When, by my side you did paint;

A goddess-artist; like a saint;

'Twas what thee were; not what thee ain't;

You're now a dream; my vision's faint.


I hear thine laughter in the night;

My heart is full, this moment's right

-As thee stretch with much delight

Thine pose is loose; thine body's tight;

(Thine glow's so soft in candlelight

Draped in moonbeams rosy white).

When In my dream, so dim my sight,

An artist's dream devoid of plight

Much like an angel's soaring kite

That’s floating in our Heaven's might.


Scenes in verses:  (ancient bards);

Chant to kings & royal guards

(Brave Crusaders passed through Prades);

Tarot's deck: a house of cards.

A breath of time; a moment's lust

In the sunlight, wind's light gust

As I paint thine portrait, bust

Thine painting fades like memory's dust.


The day is ending; see it fade

In the valles & misty glade

Where swans swim & herons wade;

Day is covered (night's dark spade).

My history's grave:  there you are buried

And with my death, your figure's ferried.


Lost I in dreams -the scene's returning,

But in my heart there's still a yearning.

Re-live the time?  It cannot be!

Like soaring bird, you now are free.


And so I stand before the sight:

The Valles of Prades in fading light;

Lost not the moment ( t'was a feint ).

I caught the scene with brush & paint!


Time was checked by stroke of brush

Before t'was lost to heaven's dust.


Thou were a candle in the wind.

This, my dear, we can't rescind.

( 2010 )


Scan 41

The Prosecutor, pencil/wash, 6 x 4” (13 x 10cm).    $39

The Jury

By Jack Hannula


The time has come to now decide

(In autumn past a man had died)

About the facts -not all had lied

(Equivocated & denied)

Oh, “no, no, no…” most all replied

(But to the facts we must abide)

And set aside our bias, pride

(For ‘tis a case of homicide).


We weighed the facts; judged the fury

We the gods on this Grand Jury.


Dear Jurisprudence, you’re our god

Thine powers we do truly laud

On matters of both death & fraud

And for the facts we duly prod

For justice rendered we applaud

Before ‘tis lain that strip of sod.


Between his gasps & halted breath

(And nodding of his pallid head)

‘Tis mixed with crack, cocaine & meth

(And on his face a look of dread)

For ‘tis a case of sudden death

(For him now gone; for him now dead).


The man was shot with brandished gun

Not for defense but mawkish fun

Before- away! -he could have run

(Evade our Father; Holy Son)

Before all was, then -said & done

And sent to meet the Holy One.


The time has come to render fate

(‘Tis judgment day for them & me)

To ponder this, deliberate,

(He’s weeping now; he’s on his knee)

To weigh the facts; not obfuscate

(‘Tis life or death; oh, can you see?)

Consider locking of the Gate

(And throw away the tarnished key?)


jkh 2013 c.


Scan 31

Testimony B, pencil/wash, 6 x 4” (13 x 10cm).  $39

© Jack Hannula 2013