Ryan James


Counting Dragons.


Counting Dragons.



Exhaustion set in and I float through the patterns of sleep.

I covet the black counting dragons not sheep.

I carve dreams into mud and watch the great mother weep

as she sweeps todays insults of unresolved streets.

Intentionally I reach for nothing

to feel the wind between my fingers.

I play on soundless pockets of air

and chaos gives way to my silent symphony.

You and I are much the same.

Binding our identities to opened garden gates

so bees may have their freedom to roam.

This is written in my bones.

Gargantuan this whisper in this web of time

“He only cried when I ate him.” said the spider about the fly.

Who else knew of their love

and like all love it's blood is fierce.

Living in the moments between the ticking of the clock

light piercing through the pin hole camera's.

My life this new lens.

I am the stone swollen from the river around which light bends.

You and I are holy now.

These are our new feet.

We must remember the histories of blades of grass

to find ourselves here,


You are home.


You are home.




Lit from within I bask in the unsubtle glow of mornings smile.

You move like the whispers of flowers

and I dive deep into your blue.

Caught in the cyclical gravity of your hands

shuddering as they hold my back.

Your spine, the calligraphy of my sun.

In between the pages of my day

I feel your sway drawing me in.

One memory away I covet your softness.

Long I waited to share this space

to study the landscape of your face

and carve it into my sacred.

Your heart an alter for the divine

and I listen as you sleep on my chest.

What dreams will you allow me to explore next?

Let us write our scriptures

on the pillows and sheets

spend weeks pressing thumbs

and making oaths worthy of pinky swears.

I wake to find you here once again.

You are the ink and my pen.

I built a life inside that smile of yours

and I am happy here.

You walk like a poem I have yet to write

and I poem I have always known.

You are home.


She kisses my face.


She kisses my face.




Oh, how I love you.

Walking on the gentle exhale of natures light

thoughts delight in the sun's gentle reflection

on dew covered leaves.

I lean gently with the trees

into the wind.

She kisses my face.

Too often we forget the resistance of grace.

Life made easy is to choose ease.

Life made dark is to choose darkness.

We sit alongside our own river and streams

and play with the nature of the stars.

To find meaning is a fools errand

to be happy meaning exists

is a gentle shift in wrists leaning skyward.

These are our times

we wrote them before we knew of pens.

We can erase but never start again.

Oh how I love you.

I seek you in the rain

as she cleans what's in front of me

so I may follow fully, consciously

not knowing where to go

but knowing she has paved the way.

I arrive at the beginning

and then the next

when I realise clarity is only knowing

that I have life left ot live,

she kisses my face.







The movement of light that is your casual palm

tracing through the bubbling thoughts

and golden hair.

Breathing in the line where the sun meets your face.

You are a poem manifest

and I want nothing more than to watch you breathe.

The lingering taste of coffee beans on your lips

you have become the equation

of my deepest exhale.

I kiss your sleeping eyelids

and follow their gaze to the softness of your chest.

I want nothing other than this place.

Death is but a blurred line between art and faith.

I know of the subtle rumbling of clouds

and write your name in the space where God herself has danced.

I long to walk my index finger

across the lifelines on your hands.

Your language my diary,

your laugh, an answer to my prayer

I twirl ribbons in circles to mark this space.

The rich caramel of your back

uncrumpled paper

and on it I write, “Will you stay?”.

The smile that has become the world in which I live,

is beyond any answer I need.

Southern winds.


Southern Winds.




You are the action of wonder

and the unyielding light,

kept in the whispering flowers of storytellers.

I hold you to me

and find mountains where lips smile.

Loving you has changed me,

Loving you has made me

the man I always wanted to be.

I inhale so deeply I don't want to blink,

just sink into the holding of hands

and watch unmade and unwanted plans

fall into the shape of this love.

This love, once reticent.

This love, the taste of rain.

This love, a morning sun.

This love, falling sands

through fingers outstretched in hands facing skyward.

Your eyes are a blessing

and your sleep an unawakened robin

perched in the safety of green leaves.

I love your magic.

Can we be anything more than the next step we take?

With you I want to find out.

And grow into the shape of trees

willing to bow to southern winds.


Gentle rain.


Gentle rain.



In anticipation of gentle rain

in the wanting of dry mouths.

Bare feet brave hot sands


Why fear the sun when we are made of light?

It takes one more drop of water in the ocean

to break every damn

and flood every city.

It takes one more act of love

to heal every fear

and remind hearts that they are mighty.

Do not underestimate

the pitter patter of gentle feet

and the beating of wings.

Delicate feathers when banded together

take flight.

Lay with the meek

and on subtle exhales

we become life's calligraphy.

Are you brave enough to bow?

Are you strong enough to fall?

A river is a million unrecognised acts of courage

and life so bright it cannot be unseen.

All of this

we are

when we learn to breathe.


Angels in chalk.


Angels in Chalk.




The truth of all freedoms is a break in the rain

and I wait patiently for the next wave to teach me.

Life has a centre and I tether to it every idea that weighs me down.

I am the keeper of my own secrets

and yours too.

Behind that which is forceful I remain patient

knowing that one day you will join me.

I draw angels in chalk where devils play

and melt into sandcastles to hide the notes passed

where desks used to stand.

But now the schools are empty.

Children play by the rules of the guillotine

and ideas are coveted until they can be encased in silver.

We are the generation of gold

hold envy to midas

prostituting our kiss for whatever we can get in return.

When hearts are bartered

and integrity leveraged we blur the boundaries

between service and gratification.

Self worth hostage to a list of notifications.

But I cannot give up as exhausted as I nearly stand

chalk in hand barely one step ahead of the teachers eraser.

Draw your angels where you rest your head

and hope that they keep reminding you

to draw them again after the downpour.  

Coffee Cup.

Coffee cup



My life is at the bottom of a coffee cup,

and thoughts are all I have left to paint.

Peace inside the pressure that is the weight upon my shoulders,

Over and over I run the race with myself.

Not enough.

No matter what I turn my hand to.

I wash them both in the rivers and let myself fall through.

Mountains upon mountains

Fire is my climb,

The burn marks healed of passion


Written into my spine.


As I lay in a day without sun I wonder

is there light at all?

Embers of a forgotten life

dance in shadows on my wall.

They form faces that talk to me,

and feel like my only friends

that exist in the absence of light

with words I write with my own pen.

Again I remember the temple

A castle I have built

With gold leaking from fingertips

like the ink that I once spilt

upon the poem that I wrote

that I meant to give to you.

But shy is a heart that is bruised

when opaque is the colour of you.

Viking to bear.


Viking to bear.



Thought deep in the sanctity of restless sleep

I joyously wrestle with a talkative night

chatter bites at a mind unkept

and brings to the drawing board all the experiences

I have swept under the lining of a life that looks managed.

You can't build a castle on a foundation that's damaged.

You are born of Kings

the evolution of a scripture

adding your own colour to a badly drawn picture

Unravelling old truths in my heart I know

inner peace is the soil on which integrity grows.

I wash blood of my own streets

Protect earths's forgotten daughter

trying to find God in the stillness of water

The rivers, the oceans, the movement of grass

time passes quickly

the soul lives in a glass house.

It can see what you do.

Which of the paths you decide to choose.

Judgement is a voice inside your own head

it can blur the lines

create moral distortion

kindness is a fire of biblical proportion

So burn the boundaries of governments, mass corporate

feel the heat of your passion as your conscience turns pulpit

Make mighty your shoulders

write music beyond stave

don't let your actions become a mass grave

What will your litter of breadcrumbs say?

Can you stay stand fast to your moral compass?

Does your inner world run rich with fondness

for all life, from Viking to bear.

A fistful of compassion will take you there.

Nine Rivers.


Nine Rivers.



Divide the nine rivers

that run barefoot through battered trees.

Grass stains on bruised knees

ingrained in the ways of hurting the self.

Storms in the place of thoughts

that rocked the sleep

gave birth to sullen eyes

worn by children born to kill indifference.

We are those that choose left or fight.

Unrecognisable as our scriptures take fight

in the form of tears soaked into beards.

How dare the bare chested cry.



Lose yourself as winds beat fierce.

Breaking glass crushed by hands

as we forget to bow gently to the sands of time.

Forget rhyme. Forget rhythm.

We are the current of all the flows

nodding politely as we wave goodbye

to the grace of angels.

For we have convinced ourselves

that we have become them.

Numbed them out.

Fogetting what it was like to lay on your back

watch the skies

as psalms written in clouds

tell you that the future is already here.

For my Love.


I fall into the rhythms of your breathing

and your eyes are every poem I've ever written.

Your shoulder is a pillow on which my dreams evolve

to a place where can both live within them.

You are the hands that gently smoothe the worries on my brow

You are the words that help me fall asleep at night,

You are the soothing chatter of a day that's winding down

Your heart is the home in which I find my waking light.

The keeper of my secrets

The hands that hold my back

The renegade cuddler that any moment could attack.

You are the builder of my home,

the beating of my heart,

the beginning of every journey

the place of every start.

You are the stars and gentle smile,

the rivers and the wind

a living piece of art

the tingling on my skin.

My dreams have taken shape

my life has done so too

All in the delicious moment

of falling in love with you.

In the blink of an eye so many years have flown

and Im grateful yours are the arms

in which our love has grown.



Love you,



Ryan x




Tasted wanting flesh

Hot breath

Hands tracing yearning skin

And I give myself to him

Silver licked

Wicked bite

Locked arms

Eyes tight

Sharing breath pattern

Under incense

Lantern gently knowing

Lightly glowing

And weaving

Its dark finger down your back.


Body heat and gin,

Eyes are closed

Feet shall win

Yield to Lover, and I did

Bodies move in time again.

I cannot wait beloved

This pink mark shall by my sign

I shall sing to you in poems

With the sea not far behind

The motion of the river

As our bodies under slept

You are everything, beloved

And my favourite secret yet.

Oh My Love

For my beloved,


 Oh My Love

Oh my love, my sacred journey

You and I are this space

Love is not contained in flesh

Or moments of your sleeping breath

Oh my love, I'm not enough

To think upon this moment

To live upon the rolling, unrelenting

movement of this.

Oh my love, unto you I am

My heart the silent owl

Through you the seas heaving rush

gives life and I am no more than a grain of sand.

Oh my love, my light, my heart

My furious incantation to life

Remind me I was once trees

and salt and water and fire

Oh my love, my endless fascination

your beauty thoroughly explored

softly reverent of milk like skin

I am finally at peace.

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