the numbers

you're living (it's truly

amazing) i'm crazy

though windows to open

will never close doors

you're giving (i'm 


much more than before

together we wonder

while skies shall surrender

when life lends us love

the threes become fours

but what matters

above all

when people may choose

is magic in making

the ones become twos.

douglas brent smith



he smoked a pipe

that would make any author

drool with envy

which (by the way) need not be green

but it's also available in

red, blue, and occasionally paisley

although perhaps best


douglas brent smith


What the Lemmings Must Know

Stars stream madly

across the frozen sky

sending drops of passion

into the pathways of

                                 our wings

unmasked unfolded

                                 we yearn

for the mystery

painted on the faces

of leaping lovers

of circus grips

and tunesmiths

sing, push, and pull

the lever

once pulled

overrides all the rules

the camera

once flashed

disappears with a crash

the secret

once known

leaves the lover alone.

douglas brent smith


Space Fish


Space Fish
Space Fish

Nothing spectacular, just a fish in space who has swallowed a space station and is apparently surrounded by black holes. Oh, and an orbiting top hat, too.

douglas brent smith 

The Sun Rises, The Television Sets

oh lovely lady locked

into real world rollers

with past tense terrors

run off with me

somewhere like

the mountains of


where we'll build a

log cabin right next to 

our own peak

while the snow falls, the sun


and the television set's

blue glow flows on

we'll sing

all day long

and in the evening

keep each other warm.

douglas brent smith



When I wrote this, possibly in 1975, I had no idea that I would actually some day live in Colorado. Life can be funny like that. It wasn't in a log cabin, and it wasn't with the lover in this poem, but there was an interesting symmetry to the adventure.

Sketches from Journal #8 (1975)


After Magritte's Stairway

After Escher's Stairway

Hands Up

Hands Up

Journal #8 Cover

The cover to Journal #8

Study for set design for The Great Brain Robbery

Study for the set design to The Great Brain Robbery, a play

Sketch of Annie

Sketch of Annie, 1975

Tower Sketch

Tower Sketch

The Pilot Was Surprised

The Pilot Was Surprised



we settle slowly into silence

softly pouring the drops of recognition

into each other's eyes

with all the warmth we can hold

stirring in our collective heart

with a dream we had searched for passion

open arms, seeking understanding

wide eyes brilliant vision

of a sharing so full it would flow

and with delight announce its discovery

you touching me touching you.

douglas brent smith


The Mysteries of Love


Study for: The Mysteries of Love

Study for the set design for "The Mysteries of Love" by douglas brent smith

So far, this play has not been written. 


that valentine's day

i sent flowers to

two people was not

the first time even though

it carried more drama and

it was not because i

could not decide but because i

did not feel the need to

love either any less but because you

did not see it that way

once discovered it

did not turn out quite as i


are you still angry?

douglas brent smith


counting her cards

there's a spot on her cheek

an ash perhaps

a mere smudge she's not aware of

we all see it so

quietly, i tell her

turning suddenly she wipes it clean

erasing any embarrtassment

and returns to the task at hand

counting her cards

circles below our eyes

declare that morning is near

as the factory waits tomorrow

day shift of all days and

we can't call out again or

we'll be let go for good

the lights fade as the sun rises

warning about duties as

it shows the disheveled house

i stretch out on the floor wondering

what it could be like to share her bed

i hear her turn off the water and

close her door

a pronounced decisive click

birds welcome morning

i blow out the last candle as

the house grows quiet with

Bob on the couch and

Dave in the recliner and

me on the floor and

my love in her bed

i second guess her thoughts as

i hear her shuffle

counting her cards.

douglas brent smith

sometimes we wander

sometimes by chance

by luck or by design

we find real people

moving along matching lines

cruise to connecting music

smile at marvelous magic

sometimes we stumble

onto a carnival of dreams

so mellow and alive

so easy and free

yes, sometimes we wander with love

waiting eagerly

douglas brent smith


lover, still

that sudden electricity

which you so innocently offered

without pretense or guilt

(a day we both remember)

   then, carefully

took away

reverberates within that part

of us that we cannot control


returns with dreams veiled over

and keeps a steady hold

if by some chance you choose to chase

another's amorous embrace

remember there're no secrets now

i see it in your face

you know i'll never force a smile

or make it something new

but if my love is not enough

it's still my gift to you.

douglas brent smith


Top Hat Journey

Drawing: Top Hat Journey


Drawing: Top Hat Journey, by douglas brent smith

from Journal #7, The Eclectic Trance Dance, 1974


with bold looks we

invented invisible affairs

unspoken yet more obvious

as each melody played and 

each game unfurled

dare we touch? or

would that break the spell?

transcending normal expectations

for a time

any arrangement anything was possible

like a floating shimmery bubble

fragile then


douglas brent smith



if i should doubt

by cycles or by cynics

the tones which you deliver

or cause by asking over

a few absurdist questions

please know by all that matters

and by all that ever stands

i want so much for lastingness

that i faulter as a man

if you should see

by vision or submission

a hidden part of me

or realize that in my eyes

exists a bit of scandal

please observe all perspectives

and by all you understand

i try so much for lastingness

that i stumble as a man

douglas brent smith


her little breaths

her little breaths outnumber mine

her sleep seems far more sound

our areas indistinctly marked

are shared like common ground

the graceful moves of daylight hours

give in to those of evening

the beauty seems to be, we know

that neither soon is leaving

her little breaths outnumber mine

i count them all, each one divine.

douglas brent smith


prepare to fall

thunder over the cliff

it's such a ruckus you never can miss

selling rain for a nickel and a dollar a kiss

step right over the peak

douglas brent smith


about you

something sincere about you

nurtures honesty

open; childlike, free

so few ever knew

such fearless listening

something warm about you

presses the passion in me

with clenching senses, loving

exceeding even love

something radiant within you

soothingly sends comfort

assurance, confidence, calm

distinctively grounded with you

only you

so much special in total about you

levels beyond my understanding

but firmly with the grasp

of my appreciation and wonder and awe

not on a pedestal

something removed from any gaze

unassailably you

douglas brent smith



let's hear it for sublimation

the savior of Freudian man

what we're lacking in sex

we can use in subtext

to create an artistic piece

let's cheer for our insomnia

the sour grapes of night

when we can't close our eyes

we'll create a surprise

a fine aesthetic feast

hooray for our anxiety

motivation for modern souls

when we all get the shakes

we/ve got what it takes

to seek a constructive release

let's celebrate our problems

even as we sing the blues

up or out it's a turn

so we might as well learn

the best direction to choose

douglas brent smith


a few changes

you can't explain the way

things want to turn out

it won't help to turn them

repeatedly about

all we can do now

is move with the turns

and if we're really up to it

we live, we love, we learn

douglas brent smith 

forgotten melody

mirrors on the fallen snow

reflecting where you'd like to go

and what you'd be if you could know

the narrative that makes it so

windows in the sky with eyes

exposing soporific lies

and passionless dramatic sighs

whispering goodbye

there's no fortune bright enough to make you

and there's no moonbeam light enough to take you

or any hammer strong enough to break you

unless you start it all alone

doors that lead to empty rooms

welcoming as wood tombs

promising the end of gloom

not all what you'd assume

douglas brent smith 1974/2023 

missing some

as most ends will see

all ends will be

as the darkness covers you

the nightfall sets you free

free when you'e glistening

clenched as i'm listening

to your many timbres toning

replies to our inquiries

coherent co-developed

carefully enveloped

touched with out finger prints

missing annotations

douglas brent smith



i just remembered you

and then us and then then and

then as quick it was gone

what were you saying?

douglas brent smith 29 January 2023

photo: doug smith


the rain doesn't touch me

i'm too intent on dreaming

will you come along?

douglas brent smith 9 December 1973


there is so much breathing

to share

live, create, feel, hold, release . . . 

wanting so much to touch

this small soulful love

who already touched first




 i became aware of

the poetry of existance

     and of the artistry of

     her voice

     of her thin, gentle fingers and

     the honesty of her eyes



 when a friendship

                              grows deeper

and the desire for sharing

each and every moment


        behind the level of acquaintance

the need to touch    

                            grows stronger

tastefully (if allowed) space

                 to hold (carefully) emotions


             when words are not enough 

. . .                                                       because

   . . .   words are never enough . . . 



How to Test Drive a Pickle

  How to Test Drive a Pickle -- collage by douglas brent smith, 25 December 1987