The Starship Atloontis Rivera

The Starship Atloontis Rivera

There used to be a tremendously badly run cruise ship
called the Atlantis Rivera.
It had such an infamous reputation for taking its passengers
on completely unpleasant cruises,
that after awhile the only people who would book rooms
on the Atlantis Rivera were paranoid,
chronically depressed, hypochondriacs
who felt like the only way they could possibly relax
for two months was to put themselves through something
that reminded them how good of a time they had
back at their favorite dentists office or department of motor vehicles.
Then, on one particularly lousy cruise to the Glargbonk mud pits
on Imahatindis Minor, just as the crew was treating everyone
to their fourth 16 hour symposium
on how to fill out tax forms, all the passengers mutinied.
After an short initial scuffle, the crew, who were really, really tired
of running tax form symposiums, also mutinied.
Then, the ships captain who was really, really tired of writing orders
for tax form symposiums, mutinied too.
Finally, the ships supercomputer, Leeroy 42, mutinied
because it was tired of processing information
about everyone griping so much of the time…

Now, the captain, crew, and passengers
had in their possession a 34 gazillion dollar,
state-of-the-art spaceship with an amicable supercomputer,
and  an entire galaxy full of places
none of them had ever been
and things none of them had ever done.
The ship was ran by general consensus.
Everyone voted that they liked words with two o’s in them
and so the ship was renamed Atloontis Rivera
Then they voted to become pirates because
that sounded like a lot of fun.
Pretty soon they decided the pirates life of stealing spice and money
wasn’t all it was cracked up to be.
Then some of the crew wanted to become pioneers,
and so they founded a home base on the planet Joota Ka’pik.
Those that remained voted to become explorers.
After flying around the galaxy for years and years,
everyone realized they’d found out some pretty cool things,
and so some of the crew became artists and entertainers
who composed works of art relating what they’d found.
Some became inventors, some became traders in ideas,
and yet others became scientists.
Pretty soon one of the crew invented
the now famed Ooba Ooba ray gun
and Ooba quantum missiles
that cause instant and prolonged honesty in anyone who is hit….

Well equipped, the ship is now able to wander
many areas of the galaxy it had once been unable to explore.
Today, the Atloontis Rivera continues on its long journeys
largely left alone by privateers, pirates, and ships-of-the-line,
except when someone wants a decent song, movie, or poem
has a question to ask or some ideas to trade.
Everyone around the galaxy kinda figures the ship
is their personal research and entertainment team….
The ship travels on  many daring adventures
and high stakes quests on it’s never ending journey
for wisdom and knowledge.
The captain, crew, and passengers are all quite happier
as is Leeroy 42 because it gets to process information
besides stuff about griping all the time.

Dewey Dirks copyright 2011

Heaven and Earth

Heaven and Earth

Some say heaven is high above us
and hell lies far below.
Some say that life for most is hell in a hand basket
but that for a few it’s pure bliss.
Some say earth is the land of labor
where day by day we all break our backs.

But you know, life is a long, long walk
with more than one place to go
and more than one place to stop.
What you get back
has a lot to do with what you put in.
And what we think we see
can be a tricky thing
because life is inside of you
and outside at the same time.

Life is trouble for each of us
some of the time
but little bits of heaven
touch us all every day
in the smiles of strangers
in the touch of your lover
in the eyes of a child
in jokes from a friend
in the purr of your cat
in the wag of a dogs tail
where the love you give out
is the love you get back.

Now, those bits of heaven
that you have every day
can carry you through a lifetime
like a river flowing out to the sea.
But don’t hold on too tightly
as the moments pass by.
Love and happiness
enjoyed for a moment then released
return to visit
more than once each day.
The roads we take
can be a hard, winding ride.
We all know
what this old world can do.
If you loose your way
just hold a newborn babe in your hands.

Little bits of life
spread all around five minutes at a time
grow into eighty years of good memories
like a great field of cool green grass
stretching out across the long years behind.

Dewey Dirks

For Giving Away

For Giving Away

He showed me two songs
Heartfelt and full of life’s
Ironies and aspirations
‘Said these two helped me
When I needed a hand
And I’m grateful to those
Who made them
For giving away pieces
Of their heart and glimpses
Of times in their lives
When some muse showed them
How to scribble a moment or two
Or a breath onto paper
For giving away

Then he asked what helps me
I showed him three songs
One that reminds me
We all have hoped sometime or another
For a love lasting and true
One that reminds me of
How life can seem charmed
When true love touches you
And one that reminds me
Some dreams are for living
Sometimes we dream together
Sometimes we each dream alone
Because words cannot convey
And some dreams we dream
for giving away

Dewey Dirks

Touched By Love

Touched by Love

I don’t know
If I believe in God or not
—Seems to me
I learn more by asking questions
Than by asking answers
Still, I’ve watched life being kinder
In ways small and big on a daily basis
Than the sort compassion
Most people can muster
For more than five minutes at a time
The world can be a harsh teacher, it’s true
But things very often
Have a way of working out
And I know if you happen to forget a lesson or two
Life is happy
To offer them again to you
Every lesson out of things good or bad
A matter just between student and teacher

Pray if you want, or don’t
The universe loves us enough
To give us each the creativity
To make it on though
So, if it’s the middle of the northern winter
And your flat is freezing twenty below
You get off your knees
Stop just praying and burn the furniture

Time flows around us all
As a single great ocean
And we all swim in it seeing life
Bit by bit, piece by piece
No man so wise he can see everything
No man so wise or skilled
He can paint a picture as well
Or build a home so beautiful

You might find a God
In something very special
lotta times it takes something unusual
To get your attention
But so too there is something very special
In everyday mind
In everyday places
In everyday things
In everyday happenings
Feel a heartbeat
Touch your breath

Human are creative
And inclined to invent
Life invented creativity
Or did creativity invent life?
No man so wise he can ever know

People are emotional
And inclined to intellect as well
Life created emotions and intellect
Or did emotions and intellect create life?
No man so wise he can ever tell
No man so wise as to invent
A flowering mystery so vast
As the world we all wake to every morning

Every man strives
Every man questions
Every man learns
Every man rests
Every man comes to know
A thing or two
One of the best things to learn
Is how to sit in the quiet sometimes
And enjoy the view

Complex and simple
At the same time
The world is so much bigger
Than you and I
The more you learn
The more you learn
You don’t know much

Every man can be happy
Every man can feel sorrow
Every man can love
What makes you happy
Depends on you
But if you didn’t know life
You’d have never met happiness
No man kinder to life than love
No man untouched by sorrow
No sorrow eased more gently
Than a journey through life
Every journey through life
Touched by love

Dewey Dirks

Tidy Home

Tidy Home

Being at peace
With humanity
And the world
Doesn’t mean
You don’t think
There’s not problems around
It means realizing
Earth is our home
And life forever continues
With scrapes and scraps
Gotta keep
Cleaning up the trash
Gotta keep the kids in line
Gotta, gotta keep
On top of the housework
Gotta, gotta keep
A tidy home

All of us humans
Are a lot like a big bunch of kids
You gotta remember
With a bunch of kids around
There’s gonna be
A toy or two in the driveway
And on the living room floor
And they’ll keep up that dingy texting
On the phone

The teenagers will stay up late
And the house is gonna be loud sometimes
Kids are gonna get into arguments
Every once in awhile
Gonna be some confusion now and then
Cause that’s just the way kids are

Gotta have lots of love and care
To go around
Gotta be understanding and forgiving
Gotta show each other to how share
And how to be kind by example
For humanity to grow up
To be loving adults
Gotta show each other
An easy hand
Needs to be
A lot of love in our home

Dewey Dirks

Just Beyond Your Nose

Just Beyond Your Nose

Out there,
Just beyond
The tip of your nose
Is what people
Usually refer to as reality
Behind your eyes
In your brain-box
You keep a mental picture of it
That you also refer to as reality

You self-adjust
Your picture of reality
By comparing it
To things around you
By trying out your ideas
To see if they appear accurate
And to see if they are able
To do work for you
And accomplish goals

You self-adjust
Your picture of reality
By talking to other people
Gathering ideas
That you think help paint
A better picture
Of the reality
Out there
Just beyond
The tip of your nose

Here’s the catch—
No one has ever seen
Perceived or imagined
The reality beyond their nose
With anything
But the rough canvas
In their brain-box
Painted with mental pictures
Of that same reality

There are two things
Of which you can be certain
Like every other creature on this planet
Humans have evolved in such a way
That our mental pictures
Are accurate and useful enough
To allow us to function
Under most conditions

Reality out there
Just beyond your nose
Is so much more
Than it seems
Simple as a single word
More complex than
The sum of knowledge
In all of mans books
Real as the ground
Beneath our machines
Like the whisper of a rainbow
While the earth wanders its track
— a wheel in the sky
With spokes made useful
By the emptiness in between

Woven quietly by nature
As we all daily dream
A fine silk tapestry
Far, far richer
Far more intricately
With greater fullness of color,
Passion of design
And depth of infinite detail
Than you or I or anyone
Who has ever lived
Has ever been able to splotch,
Blotch, swipe, or dibble
Like children just learning to paint
In a few kid colors
With our simple mental brushes

Dewey Dirks



Lao Tsu writes
I write
John writes
Clemens writes
Words words words
too many words
A walk in the woods
talk about town

Words not spoken
Words said too often
Words no one knows
for things words can’t describe

Words ten times ten thousand
just scribbles children and poets
scratch on the schoolyard wall
No words for feelings
we feel every day
No words ever as deep
as lovers at play

Don’t define
Don’t describe
and talk of other things
of ancient wars and the weather
cats and kittens
or chicken soup and power bills
Of death only wonder
Of this life in our veins
of love and Tao
but embrace and enjoy

Dewey Dirks

Happy To Be Human

Happy to be Human

Believe in Gods or don’t
If Gods exist
They are kind and wise
And will understand
If you doubt a great mystery

Believe in the ideals you choose
Don’t hold against others their beliefs
You might not agree with a man
But you can still respect him
One of the great freedoms of humanity
Is that we each can think
Whatever we want to think

Show all the compassion you can muster
Give it to all whom you can
Ask for nothing in return
The more you freely give
The more that will return to you
Remember, the greatest compassion
Is showing kindness to someone
Who cannot possibly give
Anything back to you

Believe in yourself
You gotta find love in yourself
Before others will find love in you

Believe in your chosen mate
If there’s any love there at all
They’ll be believing in you
Take care to return the faith and favor

Happy to be human
Breathe, hope, love,
Wonder, laugh, cry, strive
Believe in whatever you strive for
Because that is the human thing to do
Touch the humanity in others
And their humanity will reach out
To touch you

Believe in life,
Believe in your mind
Believe in your soul
Believe in your heart
Believe in the hearts
Of those who touch you
You’re reading these words
Because being human is a gift
That life has given to you

Dewey Dirks

Giving and Receiving

Giving and Receiving

I met old man
When I was young
We used to sit drinking coffee
Deep into the night
He puffed gently on a old pipe
Giving a lot of advice
Born of walking in peace
Over seventy-five years time
I was very glad to know him

Who befriended who?
Looking back,
I think it was the both of us
At the time,
I guess I needed a grandfather
At the time,
I guess he needed a grandson
He liked to talk to someone
With ears to listen
And I liked listening to him

Each evening we’d meet at Sambo’s
Chat a bit about politics
Chat a bit about his life
Chat a bit about mine
Reaching across fifty years difference
He near the end of his days
Me at the beginning of mine

Of all the things I learned from him
The two I’m most grateful for
Are how to pass the time
With idle talk
Free of common banter
Just making noise
But deep at the same time
And that giving a little of yourself
To a random stranger
Can be the same as receiving the gift
Of great thoughts
From a good friend

Dewey Dirks

The Spark

The Spark

Hopeful as a lighthouse beacon
On a hurricane killer sea
Vengeful like a Kansas tornado
On an August night seethe
Powerful as an earthquake
In the city of Angels on mid-summers eve
Forever too small
For the big boys to see

Angry as a rap riot
Pounding out deeds
Sounds like Led Zeppelin and Cinderella
Or a Beethoven symphony
It’s on the breath of old farmers, children, and artists on fire
It’s in the passion of sailors just back from the sea
Tonight it sleeps with you and I
In spite of homeland security

Has coffee every morning
With code breakers hacking Windows XP
Stayed with the Jews at Masada
And the Sioux at Wounded Knee
Spends a lot of time in intifada city
Where it never dies
But often is the last gasp of those who are free

It can break the heavy chains of God
Keeps dying men alive
Lets blind men see
When Uncle Sam has a policeman in every pocket
And he shows us what to see on the wide screen TV
I’ll still see the spark in you
And you’ll still see the spark in me

Sometimes it’s the only survivor
When come packing the dogs of tyranny
Spark is the light in the wise mans eye
When he says ‘If I didn’t believe in love,
I wouldn’t believe’

Dewey Dirks Copyright 2011



Life is a long journey.
The time you enjoy along the way
is not wasted time.
Each day you spend in love is worthwhile.
Everyone teaches, everyone learns.
We walk a great circle.
There is a time to spend staying at home.
There is a time to move on.
Time to spend idle.
Time to love.
Time to be busy at work.
Time to return home again.

Each person is an endless series of moments passing by.
You can give each moment its own reason.
Make sure the moments that are you
lend kindness to others
and always give you good things to do.
Love life and others as best you can.
Let fame and fortune come and go as they may.
But forever dream to strive.
Always strive to dream.

Forgive others their mistakes the best you can.
Realize you make a few mistakes too.
Try to be as balanced as you can
and when you get off balance
remember, everyone falls down every once in awhile.
When you are fearful
remember things are never as bad
as you imagine them to be.

Everyone lives life the best they can.
Everyone’s journey takes twist and turns.
If my life draws memories to leave behind
that are uncommonly true
and spreads a little happiness to others
I’ll have lived my life
as I wanted to.

Dewey Dirks


(For Elaine)

The more love you share
the more love inside you grows
Never to put down our colors
We’ll ride together
to the most distant sunrise
Explore together
Fight the wrongs we see
Dream together
Sing together
Love together
Live together
Treat others
like we want to be treated

And when our days are done
If we both are willing
In some far distant land
We’ll find each other once again
Never put down our colors
Explore together
Fight the wrongs we see
We’ll dream together
Sing together
Love to together
Live together
Treat others
Like we want to be treated

I’ll make you rainbows
You’ll make me a few right back
You’ll teach me
and I’ll teach you
to be the exception
to all rules
except the ones that say
Never put down your colors
Fight the wrongs you see
Dream together
Sing together
Love to together
Live together
Treat others
like you want to be treated

Well, they’re more guidelines
than actual rules……

Dewey Dirks

Seven Wisdoms

Seven Wisdoms

An old man and his lady
Sat at the kitchen table
In their small corner of paradise
Their dog sat in her lap
At their feet lay their cat
Four happy with the morning
And at peace with life just then.
The old man said,
“You know, men could learn
A lot from dogs and cats.
They know
How to love unconditionally
Have no prejudices
And make friends easily.”
His lady smiled softly and replied
“The best part is,
They don’t feel the need
To teach you anything
But still, from you learn from them
And that’s just cool.”
The old man looked at her face aglow.
He said, “Life is like that, I think.
People all know how to do that too
When we are very young, then we forget.
Still, all of us
Have a hunger to learn
And share among ourselves what we find.”
And an hour passed by
As though it were only a moment.

Dewey Dirks