Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Chisholm Trail

(Click picture to enlarge)

Photo Credit - Linda Koopmans 2014 

Footsteps of old
washed away,
yet their legacy endures
under fallen trees.

Muted colors of spring
cast shadows over what once existed
as someone's work, home

Discarded leaves try to hide
a path leading to that fragile

Man and beast trod down
this lonely trail,
pioneering a way for today’s

all soaked into soil
rich with memory.

An unused path
no longer needed for
yet necessary for
peace of mind.

Yes, footsteps of old
remain hidden,
but each day reveals
creation anew
as we walk along
a trail of wondrous

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Meet Maja!

Meet Maja, a new 3d character I am using in Daz Studio. I have big plans for her, as she will be featured in much of my art going forward.

Monday, April 21, 2014

A Rose

Pale light shimmered in warm air.

I trudged on through life
even though it seemed
night was falling.

I tried to find happiness
to buy contentment.
Peace of mind was sinking
with the setting sun.

Mirages sprang up,
showing their last gasp effort
at fooling me into thinking
I'd found what I sought.

Alas, I wasn't fooled.
Though I played in their sandbox,
my castle was never built.
An endless wave of destruction
swept away foundations built on


I walked on.
I fell, but got back up.

I came to a fence,
an area designed
to keep me out.
Thorn bushes grew within this space,
menacing and rude...
there was no way around.

Scratched and bleeding,
I made it to the center...
a clearing.

And there.

There she stood
shy yet resplendent in her beauty.
Her petals refused to open,
outer leaves cloaked her
in an intimate embrace
designed to protect.
This flower, so full of
she withdrew from shadows
caused by the setting sun,
trying to hide

from me.

In the darkening glow
of falling night,
I beheld her color.

Blood red.

I wanted to taste her color,
it was fine wine,
a nectar created by God Himself.
And I knew...

I knew this flower was
to be mine.

I saw her blooming,
caused by my
gentle caress,
my loving words,
my breath of life.

Yet nothing was true
naught was sure
with darkness falling.

And then...

She awoke. Her bloodred petals
and cast their light
all around us.

Darkness fled, to be replaced
by a wonderful song
of love
of passion
of intimate closeness.

Among a field of thorns
I found an exquisite flower.
A rose, as red as
life-giving blood.

And we lived.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Anxiety / Release Collaboration

Hello again, dear reader

Today marks the release of the final poem in the Anxiety series. This poem, entitled 'Off My Feet' is the piece I submitted to Heather Burns and Nicky Mortlock for the Anxiety / Release collaboration.

'Off My Feet' is the 8th attempt on the given theme, and in my humble opinion, it is the strongest. I believe that the words are the culmination of the previous 7 attempts. Out of all the poems and words I wrote for this collaboration, this one is the most personal. I can honestly say that there are many things in this piece that reflect me. Maybe you didn't know that about me. Maybe you can't see which parts I am referring to. Do you see me as confident, as being able to stand against the wind? Yes dear reader, this poem is deeply reflective.

It took 7 attempts to come up with what I wanted to present to the world. It took 7 attempts to write about me. Although the previous pieces have elements of myself, none so much as this one is like looking in the mirror. 

This is another poem that reduced me to tears. The weight of emotion and self-reflection was simply unbearable at that particular moment. I know that a good number of you will not be able to understand this, and I am very cognizant of that. But I needed to reveal is the first time I have bared myself in this manner. 

Please, dear reader...don't judge me. If you don't get it, read the Anxiety series of poems (and the introductions) and try to understand. At the very least (and this I have asked before), please try to appreciate the words. Appreciate the emotional journey the poems take you on, acknowledge the power and passion of the message that I am trying to convey, and please be sensitive to the fact that people we know exist in the world I have written. 

As always, dear reader, I encourage interaction. I love feedback, positive or negative. I am deeply grateful for the time you have taken to read my work, and I encourage you to read this series of poems (starting with ''Thanks for the Ride'') and ending in this piece.

Thank you, dear reader. Thanks for the Ride. 
The Anxiety / Release collaboration is finished. Immediately following this text you will find the link to the Artipeeps website where my poem, and Heather's interpretation of 'Off my Feet' can be found. 

Rod E. Kok
April 15, 2014

Anxiety / Release Collaboration ~ Rod & Heather

Friday, April 4, 2014


Hello dear reader

This is the 7th piece I wrote in the Anxiety collaboration. This piece was the chosen one, until I wrote another piece. If you have read all 6 poems in this series, you will see a progression from dark to not so dark. Each piece has emotion, lots of it. I have to admit that this one was the hardest to write, as the emotion hit me very hard. I was mentally spent after writing and editing this (although there was very little editing to be done). As I was in my 'writing state of mind', I cried. Yes, dear reader, some poetry does that to me. I was overwhelmed by emotion. I have not yet figured out if the tears were borne from the poem, or if the words flowed out as a reaction to where my head was at. Maybe it just doesn't matter.

This poem is the 2nd last one in this series. I hope you enjoy it. I hope you, in some little way, took a journey with me. Maybe my words have revealed something in us that we don't want people to see. Maybe you just simply can't relate to any of it. And there is always the risk that you laugh at me and my words. This is all fine. I have grown. I have learned. Smiled and cried, I've run the gamut of emotion in this series of poetry. Please enjoy.

Rod E. Kok
April 2014

I’m strong, I can stand
against the buffeting winds
that try push me down.

      (I’m weak, too easy I fall,
      giving in to the pressure
      that mounts from within.)

In the face of your discrimination,
I’m courageous
      (I fear your abuse)

Yes, I am strong.
Though my gnarled hands
bend with age,
my roots…

      (break, there is no
      vigor left in me) mind twists
that which should grow
into a solid foundation,
turning it into

      (groans of pain,
      mental anguish.
      Weakness takes over)

A tired thought dances
through dim light,
bringing some joy
into the
      (bleak. All I see are
      shadows. Mocking shadows.)

Once I believed I had it,
an inner strength to deal
with anything.

      (Like a mirage, my spirit
      couldn’t grasp what it needed.)

Now I envision…
no, I see what I truly am.

My hands are wringing,
I’m cold.

I am

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

My Reality, My Life

Hello dear reader

This is the 6th piece I wrote for the Anxiety / Release collaboration. When I wrote this, I thought it had a very strong chance at being my submission. I personally think this was the most powerful piece I wrote up to this point for the collaboration. I was (and am) very pleased with some of the imagery I came up with. I think my favorite line is 'You're not helping'. That line says so much to me, I still get shivers when I read it.

I hope you are enjoying this journey through darkness with me, as I guide you down a path of poems that are focused on Anxiety. I have received very little feedback (which is fine), so I am not sure how this series is being looked at. Nevertheless, dear reader, please read the work, even if you don't want to interact with me on it. Please understand the sweat, the tears and the raw emotion that is plugged into each piece. It truly is exhausting. As always, I thank you from the bottom of my heart for taking the time to read my work.

Rod E. Kok
April 2014

Past and future come together
in a maelstrom of emotions.
Swirling delusions
render my thoughts

My stomach knots,
knowing I need to face
you, and your torrid

Cold sweat beads on my body,
I shiver in the exact opposite
of anticipation.

Too much going on...
I can't deal with stress...
work, family, health.


Great expectations guide me down a road
travelled by those who judge.
Actions of yesterdays haunt me,
hide me from facing light.

You're not helping.

I cried out for support as I met
new friends, co- workers,

You laughed at my burden,
shared my unease with your friends.
They shared your laughter
while nobody dipped a toe
into the pool I was drowning in.

Past and future collide
forming the present.

I live in restlessness,
imagining the worst,
feeding off a dish of foreboding,
drinking from the cup of delusion.
This is my normal.
My reality.
My life