Half a World Away
I saw you in my mind
Half a world away
I saw you in the photo      
Smiling, pointy ears attuned
A child of wonder
Crooked heartbeat      
Warming mine


I came to you a stranger
Half a world away
You came to me trusting         
No more soothing am-ma-ma
A child of wonder
Crooked heartbeat
Warming mine

Strolled through vacant hallways
Half a world away
We took the city’s bustle
The warmth of their embrace
A child of wonder
Crooked heartbeat
Warming mine

We climbed South China mountains
Half a world away
I held you to my chest and             
Whispered you my sacred vow
A child of wonder
Crooked heartbeat
Warming mine

Album: Half A World Away

An Irish Son's Lament

In Canadian wiles         
Where songs of Whiskey Jacks
Curl round lone black spruce
Calling me back
Feral Celtic urges, rummage through my mind
Sing me back home, to my father’s father’s land

I release a tight breath
And sip chokecherry wine
Silver backed and chin
Yesternight an innocent
My reflection now refracted, on ice-cased pine needles
Holding my account, my own silent review

On Cliffs of Moher
Hoarse call of Galway Bay
My kin’s bones they lie
Neath blackened peat bog
Wind burns my at cheek, stone fields answer in time
Laments, jigs and reels, reprise the motherland

In Canadian wiles
I look to my child’s child
Black curls, fair skin and eyes
The color of the sea
My leathered hand swallowing his,

my Irish heart doing the same

I release a silent prayer, and give him home

Fruitcake
Lying in bed/ thought swirling head  
Estuarine’s static cling
Red Georgia clay/ our own on display
On the front porch swing
Chopped candied fruit/ dried nuts to boot
And spirit soaked spices
Sharing the wealth/  no room for stealth
Leaving them to their devices

Birds flying south/ drive roundabout
Circling back and then
The lunar phase/ no more to graze
Is it migration time again
Is Arcadian / Circadian
Thrumming all through the night
I’ll hold your hand/ I understand
And I’ll savor every bite

Amplitude  Modulation                      
Late night static can’t erase the joys
More than standard deviation
Can you hear me through the noise?



Uneasy Peace

Long past the point of pain
Where we find uneasy peace
Whipped and wild from the past
Unrecognized to our own blood
Adrift in the layered languid longings
Finally we come home

Claps of thunder before rain
World still whirrs while I sit in my woe
Look and leer at laughing faces
I’m your huckleberry
It’s not necessarily noble
To wear the martyr’s royal robe

Holliday, to Wyatt Earp
Strain was more than he could bare
Wyatt Earp to Holliday
Doc, won’t you play Chopin                  
You’re my friend

In the aftermath of Ringo’s wind
The silence cuts clean the worn out thread
Air now clear, brusque to my raw lungs
I won’t cry for the things that are no more
But rest in the assured myth of truth
And reach out for your hand


Oak Ridge, Summer 1976    
Hey kid
Rolling along Hwy 68
Pass the Old Mill/ and up to the Linville gate
Hey kid
Did you know your jumbled path
Would curve like Alcorn Rd/ filled with joy and wrath?

Say kid
Trampling through those endless kudzu hills
In the woods where canopied creeks/ ran cool and still
Say kid
Could ol’ Tom Sawyer/ or Huckleberry Finn 
Fit in a more perfect skin?

Under the Oak Ridge moon
Summer nights would sway and swoon
And heavy honeysuckle perfume
Stirred your hearts tune
Under the Oak Ridge moon


My kid
Playing cupball behind the old grandstand
And climbing in old barns/ of brown leaves primed by hand
My kid
Could unaware crushes/ give you brief delight/ in the summer twilight?

Wait a minute kid
Hearing empty streets response and call
Of cicadas and tree frogs/ forming a choral wall
Wait a minute kid
Could you still feel the timbral song
Of brilliant stars at night?/ A million stars so bright.

Under the Oak Ridge moon         
Combing ditches for five cent bottles at Ginky’s store
Under the Oak Ridge moon              
Roaming Academy fields with dress blues galore
Under the Oak Ridge moon            
I wanna see you again as I saw you before
Under the Oak Ridge moon
I wanna see you again as I saw you before

Morning Star Rising
For so very long
No pictures on the wall
You were so very gone
How much further could we fall                
Now we’re writing a new song
Imperfect love stands tall
Foregoing the foregone
Loosing the last shreds of pall

Morning star rising
(Following her own path)
A thousand moons behind
We both pressed to be right
(But were both so very wrong)
Now I celebrate your sun

                      
For so very long
I watched you crawl
You were so very strong
Never prone to laze and loll

Now you stand amidst the throng
And take my distance call
We rediscover that all along
The moon will steady the nightfall


My Companion
In the early morning hour, she’s the heartbeat in my dreams
Sometimes kissing me awake, sometimes she screams
Voice so clear it haunts me, til I give her her just due
A lifetime conjoinment, she’s always seen me through

Trust is such a fluid creature, pathways so uneven
Seldom fickle is she, she rarely leaves me grieving

Word and tune together, Pan and wily shadow
Word and tune together, I will always follow
They will dance, we will dance too

She travels well, far and wide, she ages long and fine
She’s just at home with sweet iced tea, or the driest white wine
Never far from my mind, she’s burrowed in my soul
Companion to the final breath, from first breath my heart she stole

Hugh Willard

​​Singer-Songwriter, Author


Oceans

Aposentillo/ shadowed driftwood in amber light
I asked for a walk/ and you took my hand
Our journey begins/ amidst sun, salt and lace
While low flying, joyful sea gulls, they sing out our song


Watching the setting sun/ behind your brown eyes so fair
The Aegean wind/ blows gentle through your hair
Scaling cobblestone/ steps aside whitewashed churches
While the terrace of, Delos lions, they sing out our song

Making love in a cove/ deserted St. Lucian beach
At night we stroll back/ ‘neath dancing guardians
A brakeless moped/ breathless steep narrow roads
While playful and, gentle fruit bats, they sing out our song
Oceans
Our love cool and dark
Oceans
Our love warm and clear
Oceans
Our love deep as the currents
Our love steady as the tides
That kiss the shores, for all eternity

Timeless Cliffs of Moher/ flowers waving to Galway Bay
Ancient rock littered fields/ sheep slumber in kelly green
Like Killiney skies/ distant Hogan love endures
While sainted, castle ghosts, they sing out our song

Bracing North Sea wind/ whipping while we wrap our hearts
Tiny lighthouses/ whisper light along the Danish Straits
Viking virgin wood/ stand and honor our journey
While majestic, forested fjords, they sing out our song


The Scourge of the Other

The ties that bind, congealing blood of my tree                
Forsake my name, winds of change won’t buoy me

Cradles will rock, boughs will break in the land of the free               
Recall, reframe, no more a game

I’ll write new scripts, prepare the ancient crypts

No conformity, He is his only man   
No uniformity, He has his fabulous plan

Though he’s never been there before
A great new day, he knows the way          
City slicker, golden hair, boots and pockets
He headed south, then west toward the heartland                    
Jesus walked back, broken college, unwelcomed prophet       
Across that line, borders refined
No one forewarned her, black widow painted in the corner         

New crowned world leader,  His great temerity
Throngs of shrunken fearful, beaming alacrity
Though he’s never been there before
A great new day, he knows the way                      
Into the wild, prairie grass withered brown wicks                    
I’ll sign my fate,   I’ll sign yours too, make sure it sticks    
Out of the box,   where coarse leather strapped my back  I wouldn’t move, so you couldn’t move
Breathe in the cold,  I’ll singe my lungs forever more