The Poetry and Art of J.L. Stanley

“My ancestors pioneered the Appalachians, were early settlers in the Dakota Territories and travelled the Oregon trail. Their voices and dreams flow in me and have made me who I am.”

Traveling with her family through Asia, the Middle East, Northern Africa, Europe and the UK by the age of 16 as well as having lived in West Virginia, Australia, California and New York State, J. L. Stanley seems indeed to have a bit of her ancestor’s pioneer blood coarsing through her active feet and talented hands.

She attended UC Berkeley and studied french, archeology and art but left after the death of her sister and embarked to re-examine what she had always felt as the invisible core; that all things have a soul or being.
While wandering Amsterdam’s Van Gogh Museum an intense karmic fire was rekindled by the reflection of the tragic master’s paintings upon her open soul which led to the purchase of a notebook soon to be inked with her deepest thoughts and words becoming vibrantly ablaze with her heartful art, poetry and stories. –Visit her website to read more of her journey, many wonderful poems and view her colored pencil art and watercolor creations:

Visit Labyrinth Poems – J.L. Stanley

Snowy afternoon in Amsterdam

I walked through the months
And the years of his desperate
Yearning to draw,
And I felt in those fearless,
Stumbling strokes
Traced again and again,
The obsession of line and light
A lonely man trying to draw
His way into the heart of beauty
His path now captured
His longing frozen
In solid Dutch frames
All carefully annotated,
Yet never fully known.

© J.L.Stanley

Catechism for a Witch’s Child

When they ask to see your gods
your book of prayers
show them lines
drawn delicately with veins
on the underside of a bird’s wing
tell them you believe
in giant sycamores mottled
and stark against a winter sky
and in nights so frozen
stars crack open spilling
streams of molten ice to earth
and tell them how you drink
a holy wine of honeysuckle
on a warm spring day
and of the softness
of your mother who never taught you
death was life’s reward
but who believed in the earth
and the sun
and a million, million light years
of being

©  1986 J.L.Stanley

Visit Labyrinth Poems – J.L. Stanley