My photo
Withering Cedars, Georgia, United States
My name is Tim Morris. I currently dwell in Northwest Georgia on my estate, Withering Cedars, nestled at the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains, with my lovely wife and two beautiful daughters, where I teach high school American literature. I have been writing poetry for the majority of my life. I write about what I see around me. When asked, I describe my style as "realist romantic surrealism". The environment, sex, jazz, religion, politics, family, etc., are the subjects on which I tend to focus. When I am not writing, I play the banjo, didgeridoo, or drums or wander aimlessly shooting odd objects with my camera.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

"night #6"

crickets wring their song
through night's heat
squeezing crooked harmonies
around desperate trees.

aside from that
the air is still...
and hot...
and weak...
ripping at the 
that was staggered breath.

crawls through my veins... --
the stars quite simply
too close...

"alone and..."

in the stillness
there interposed
a fly
on the wall
opposite my bed;
a wall empty
and white
screaming of
and i imagine
broken & bent
in his eyes
a multitude
in that void
in the vacant
that is that fly
with exhaustion
wanting nothing more
than sleep...



broken & twisted,
light hangs
from naked fingers
like promises
from a politician.

the storm
has shuffled on
leaving the sun
a little breath
before my rum
chases him
through the trees.

i don't like him,
the sun;

he's too damn happy...

crow haiku

your shadow is swift,
falling drunkard through thunder,
a mere grazing touch.

*     *     *

walking through the grass,
awkward obsidian clown,
worms laugh at your gait.

*     *     *

black simplicity,
strutting murder in the air,
and then the silence...

*     *     *

voices carry death
and dip below horizon...
ice creaks in sweet rum.

*     *     *

in the noon day sun
your iridescent feathers -
oil on virgin snow.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

"maybe he wasn't even there..."

but i think
he was…

wooden man
in the kudzu

left to rot
in the rain


him standing
like that

choking what
would be breath

i admire

his dexterity…

his absurd serenity…

his inability
to cry…

tears kissing
my lips…

the rain…

falling like shrapnel…

the wounded
not yet conscious

to the roots

loosening their grip

on the soil…

Friday, May 13, 2011

"a call to arms"

in the quiet, still heat…

in the sobering darkness…

let’s get stupid drunk
on each other’s flesh.

let’s wallow naked
in midnight grass
drenched in moonlight
and breath.

let’s carve poetry
across the sky
with our tongues
cursing the puritans
and their damned
dry, shriveled genitalia.

let’s coyote fuck
under the stars,
washed in the wine
if immaculacy.

let’s drink this night dry-
its heat –
its quiet –
and pour ourselves
into morning,
refreshed against
horizon’s holocaust,

flesh against flesh…

soul against soul…

and savor what we have
before sobriety
marches once again.

"i'm a man!"

pissing in the shower
makes me feel like
a man.
i don’t hunt –
i don’t football –
i don’t transmission –
but relieving myself
while cleansing
is barbaric…


as long as i have
my rose scented body wash
to cover the stink.


i am no mere
regarding the exploration
of the landscape
that is your body.
i am a barbarian,
primitive and savage,
taking what i want
with no regard for others;
with no questions answered
nor asked;
with no crack nor crevice
leaving it steaming
in the moonlight
with the fires of conquest.

"street view"

no air was moving.

i caught a glimpse
of white cotton
as she adjusted
her shorts.


rain dropped
somberly across the pavement.

i imagined her
fingering the hem
of those panties,
pulling them aside,
allowing me a quick glimpse
of the pink delicate,
and no more.

that’d be enough.

(of course i’m
a dirty old man.
the crows have been
singing that for years,
you’ve simply never allowed
yourself to listen.)

about the time
my last beer arrived,
her boyfriend drove up
and pulled her, laughing,
across his lap.

a Buddha smile
crept onto my lips
as i watched them
speed away
in the rain,
the image of soft cotton
breathing new life
into the decrepit soul
of this pen.       

"oh how sweet"

being a poet
from the south
i feel obligated to
write about
and its aromatic
and i would, too,
if it didn’t attract
the damned spiders
that web my car
each night,
trapping me
in a heebie-jeebie dance
every morning
as the sun
strains against the trees,
wanting desperately
to kiss the moon
between her delicate
white thighs.

"dear freddy"

remember that eye you lost
in grade school?
i know where it is.
i saw it just the other day
when i dropped my daughter
off at her classroom.
it’s under a bell jar
in the trophy case
behind three gold for spelling
and a silver for juggling.
old man meeks
saw me looking
as he pushed
his mop bucket
up the hall.
i’m not certain,
but i think
he recognized me.
i’m going back tonight
with my dog
and a jug of rum.
between the three of us
we should be able
to save your eye.
if meeks is lurking about,
and i have it in hand,
i’ll swallow it
for safe keeping.
you’ve waited for thirty years,
what’s two more days, right?
see you soon.

"a stitch in time"

i gave elsie,
the girl who stands
on the corner
with the voodoo dolls,
six dollars and a quarter
to stab my wife
in the back.
her chiropractor recommended
but she doesn’t trust
the chinese
and their stinky tofu,
so i thought this
the next best thing.
i’m not yet sure if it’s working,
but it’s only been
three days.
i’ll give it a few more.
i have to convince her
to clip her nails again
and deny knowledge
of the holes
in her favorite pair
of socks.
i swear,
the things i go through
to insure the comfort
of the ones i love.


i’ve tried to hone
my edge
but can’t.
i’m not one of those
with razor-tongued,
i’m more han shan
than hip-hop.
my place is inebriated
with the moon,
spinning tales of
confusion through
the trees,
not balanced
before a mike
sending vitriol
through the grandstands,
pouring salt
into the coffee.
i’m just a drunken
of a poet
happy when a line
lies right
on the page,
and i’m ok
with that.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

"during a spring rain"

open window…
     april night…
frog song…
     simple serenade…
gentle rain…

     thunder roll…
cool breeze…
     naked skin…
stutter breath…
     pleasing pain…

singular essence…
     firm duality…
whispered incantations…
     silly laughter…
without restrain…

Monday, April 25, 2011

"a problem"

i caught a glimpse
of buddha
and the christ
sharing a bottle
of plum wine
at a corner table
in nick’s
on the corner of
5th and main.
they were laughing,
refilling each
other’s glasses
with the sweet honey
of truth.
some shook their heads
in disgust
at the spectacle,
but most
simply ignored them
letting the walls crumble
at our feet.

Sunday, April 24, 2011


thursday a.m.

fog a droning reflection
of reality

a lone dogwood

among the pines
diminutive and bright

in canopy
of shadow

buddha's tears
under bodhi tree

the christ's sweat
in gesthemane.

"epiphany, a.m., monday"

the precise clarity
and melodious orange
of a jazz sunrise
after spring storms
is the sweet analgesia
needed to compete
with the ugly sobriety
attributed to consciousness
and the responsibilities
that come with being
a productive member
of society.

that is why i prefer
the rain;
it, juxtaposed
with a fifth of rum,
do more for my soul
than trees dancing
on the horizon
or matching socks.

"all i have to offer"

i can't dance
or change the oil
in your car.

i'm no good
with numbers.

spiders frighten me.

what i do have
are words
and a keen ability
to use them
to erect scaffolding
to the moon;

to sew broken souls
into a blanket
of warmest gold;

to twist you
through a needle's eye,
leaving you dripping,
begging for more.

they're yours,
if you want them.

i'll even dress them up nice
with clean collars
and such,
but i refuse
to make them
wear a tie.

"with just a little effort"

the possibilities
for insanity
are boundless.

a dimly lit
after rum

a paint chip
floating on the surface
of your iced tea.

look into the mirror
and imagine jesus christ
walking across your eyelashes

or skeletons
picking their way
through your skin

or simply sit
on your sofa
some saturday afternoon

and think of pathways
to the asylum.

the silence
will squeeze your ears
'til they bleed

and the sound
of you own voice
muttering lines of poetry

will blind you
with the dazzling
light of incoherence.

the possibilities
for insanity
are boundless.

all you need
to do
is try.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

"it's funny how things work"

the painter
searches her canvas
for one drop,
it matters not
how minute,
of soul cleansing ecstasy.
she swirls her brush
in a palette
of hope,
jumping from blue
to black to green,
and spreads her
into fissures of a pre-pocked
the pain of revelation
searing her eyes,
her lips,
the tips of fingers
on her right hand.

a chinese flautist,
navigating a creek bed
six-thousand miles away,
wipes yellow acrylic
from the mouthpiece
before he begins to play.
confused, he looks
at his hand,
the tips of his fingers
tingling with electricity,
as he prepares his breath
for a song
penned in remembrance
of his sister,
a painter,
who passed one year ago

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

"the girl my wife would think a bitch" - sexual content

she could kill me
with those legs,
i thought
as i watched
a tight-ass blond
jog down the street
in nothing
but a sports bra
and a thong
dressed up as running shorts.

my mind reeled
at the idea
of asphyxiation
between those tanned,
salty bands of steel
dripping with girl juice
as i dip my tongue
into places
no other kind of workout
could touch.

an angry car horn
whipped me to consciousness...
the light was green
(i wondered how long) -

the girl my wife
would think a bitch
had turned right
and was now two more blocks
out of reach...

that's o.k. --
the pizza
on the seat next to mine
was beginning to get cold

haikus - sexual content

poems inspired after reading e.e. cummings' newest collection, erotic poems.

my flesh starved for yours --
total absorption - no breath --
i eat you alive...

your lips devour me
inch by meticulous inch...
eyes strong with intent...

Wednesday, March 30, 2011


i drive more slowly
passed cemeteries
these days
to look at the mirrors
littering the ground.

i know...
you see granite and marble
broken with history
and tears,

but all i see
is my reflection,
scattered and lost,
searching the fractured
for a hint of reassurance.

i've been frightened
of flesh and bone and breath.

i've been colder than normal,
and the pains in my gut...

i digress...

i'm boring you...

poetry is for living,
even as i hear
death cracking her
feeble knuckles
just out of the corners
of my eyes,
a shadow dancer
teasing me with a blown kiss...

my reflection
spins drunkenly
as clouds creep slowly
across treetops,
sowing fallow earth
with their bitter elixirs -

urine on the communion table -

napalm in the nursery -

and my reflection,
broken and twisted,
     laughs and dances,
          pleads and weeps,
     cowers and sinks
in the rancid mud
of illusory graves -

dysphoria in the cracked reality
of a mourning sun.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

My newest tattoo...

Here's my new ink.  It's an owl that Sophie, my youngest daughter drew a few years ago.  Sophie literally means "wisdom", so it's fitting she went through a phase of drawing owls.  It is on my inner right calf opposite a sun drawn by my oldest daughter, Abigail, whose name means "father's joy" (the sun is a symbol of joy).  The two are my own little yin/yang - day/night, light/dark.  I am balanced.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

"it's at night when we feed"

darkness - a twisted blanket --

whiskey and a blow-job
in raw light
of a waxing moon --

subtle serenade of cricket song
broken sporadically by soft rustle
of ground leaves --

[coyote circling perimeter
curious as scent
of lust and lush melt on the wind
ride into night]

a hint of semen on her lips
when she kisses me
whiskey fire
tongue on tongue --

now lying naked and drunk
in the grass
chasing stars across the sky --

poetry creeps
through shadow
and chews at our soul.

"the severity of the modern mind"

i had just sat down
for dinner
when the phone rang.

“to which god do you pray?”
asked the voice
on the other side.
“i guess to the one
with the best offer,”
i replied.

“excuse me?”

“well, pearly gates and eternal life
are swell and all,
but that one with all
the virgins waiting on you
sounds very tempting.”

“o.k., but you do underst…”

“you know how they
could make that more
take twelve or fourteen
of those virgins,
slap bikinis on ‘em,
put ‘em on the beach,
or in front of a tractor,
and make a calendar!
now that would get ‘em
more business!”

“excuse me?”

“and their pitchmen…
have you seen ‘em?
they’re either skinny, dirty
pink-o hippies with sandals and beards
or fat chinamen smiling like
they snuck out a fart in church!”

“sir, i must…”

“you know who they should get?
matt damon.
now there’s an american hero
for ya!
good lookin’ too.
i’d vote for him!”

“uh, thank you for your time, sir.”

we both hung up.

“who was it?” my wife asked,
dropping a pork chop bone
to her plate.

“oh, just someone doing a survey
about who we’d like to see
run for president next time.
do we have any more
mash potatoes?”

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

My new book, Songs of the Smudge Monkeys, is now available!!

"Sometimes, It's the Only Word"

I was printing a poem when the paper jammed.  Notice the one word not messed up.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

"it's snack time"

my daughter
gifted me
a crow feather
long and black
and bent
in a slight "s"
we surmised
it ripped
from his wing
by a hawk
mad dash
through the
into shadow
and then
as if on cue
red-tail alighted
on a bough
across the street
and we
sitting in grass
amid winter bees
and broken weeds
watched it
mouse or mole
too slow
ot too engrossed
two wings
as murder
watched cautiously
from diminutive
of january green
and i
that feather
bicep and rib
took my daughter
by the hand
and retreated
for cookies
and purple soda


the complexity
of a ladybug
is far more intriguing
than the simplicity
of a jet plane.

*     *     *     *     *

     oyster shells in a dessert
          are far more beautiful
               than sand in a sea.

*     *     *     *     *


"it's simple...you"

i need to devour your essence -

moonlight offers
a taste of ornate wine
sprinkled across your flesh -
                  i want to rest my head
on the cusp
of your pubic mound -

i need to absorb your breath -

moonlight offers
a taste or ornate wine
causing your soul to thresh -
                  i want to whisper poetry
where your torso
meets your thigh -

to fall away with you
through life -


to melt into you
in death -


a fire...
             burns its way...
                                                        the starlit sky -

Sunday, February 13, 2011

ALA Round 1 - 2/12/11

I attended Round One of the ALA "paint battles" held at Doo Gallery last night.  Here are a few photos of the event...

Friday, February 11, 2011

I am the featured poet in Target Audience Magazine.  Click the link below and then the link for the Winter 2011 issue at the left to read the article.


Thursday, February 3, 2011

The local media covered a night of poetry and music hosted by my friends, Bruce Gibson & Steve Moss, and me at Foxtale Book Shoppe in Woodstock, GA on Jan. 28.  Please click the link below to read the article.


Sunday, January 30, 2011

Photos from around the yard

Some iron work surrounding our bird feeder

Believe it or not, this is a spider (two?) in water at the bottom of the tube that holds our porch umbrella.

"You talkin' to me?"

Sunday, January 23, 2011

"drug of choice"

my daddy
never took a drink
in his life
but was,
constantly drunk.
and like any addict
worth his ilk,
drug his children along
on his hazy, besotted ride.

the whispered hallelujahs,
the ghostly images
hiding in the stained glass
(of course no one
ever saw them
but me),
the inebriated hymns
sprayed with slurred speech
all haunt me
to this day.

no matter the substance,
is still abuse.

camp meetings
were the worst.
one-hundred fifty
punch-drunk believers
drinking scripture
in the middle
of nowhere --
the devil lurking
among the crickets
just passed the tent flaps --
were enough
to scare any fifth-grader
into the arms
of a sweaty lush
dying to plunge him
beneath an icy lake.

to my surprise,
i survived
(finding rehab
in the bottle,
the word,
and the moon)...
but i still watch
my daddy,
and hundreds of thousands
just like him
drive aimlessly
in circles,
and appreciate 
what he tried to do
for me,
but his
just wasn't
my drug
of choice.

Friday, January 21, 2011

"Coping With Winter From Dusk 'til Dawn"

i caught a sliver
of dusk
trying to escape
between branches
of oak and elm,
wrapped it around
my finger,
and slid it into 
a bottle of wine.

it burned at first,
but as evening
waxed into night,
and the contents
of my jug waned,
the luscious juice
ran like honey
across my tongue --
sedative and soporific
in the blue-gray clumsiness
of a three-day
georgia snow.

there's little more
to do on days like this
than drink, screw,
and chase the sunset 
across the hills
with hatchet
or lead pipe
while james carter
scorches the brain bone
with precipitous turns
of ambrosial blessedness.

in the end,
when my bottle
lays empty on the carpet
and my woman lies naked
across the bed,
i'll remember
that sliver of dusk...
the heat it induced...
the ecstasy it injected
through my veins...
and sleep soundly,
confident that dawn
will eventually attempt
another escape
between branches
of oak and elm.

More Photos

Holding Hands - A Sculpture

Weeping Buddha

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Photo Expedition in Acworth, GA

Old Bell Clanger

Cool Old Shack

Old Window - Color

Old Window - Sepia

Friday, January 14, 2011

"down the road"

*for Suzanne

i had forgotten
how lovely
you look
in my hat;
your hair
a maniacal
auburn nest
grasping for air.

sitting on the sofa,
watching you,
snow burying our lawn,
i remember that time,
long ago,
when i played stieglitz
to your o’keeffe,
shooting you
in an abandoned ruin
off some street,
downtown mobile.

you wandered among
fallen bricks,
naked from the waist up;
your impish tits
not yet evolved
into the motherly breasts
on which i now
lay my head.

(one of those portraits,
you with hands on hips,
head held high
in a silent, defiant
showdown with god,
still hangs on the wall
above my chest-of-drawers.)

we drove to your place,
walked into the orchard,
and made love in the grass –
the scent of apple blossoms
sweet on the wind.

sometime soon,
you, i, and that hat
can take a road trip
to some forgotten urban ruins,
or an abandoned orchard,
camera in hand,
and give me something else
to remember
another sixteen years
down the road.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011


bunkered and secluded
in rare georgia snow,
nerves frozen,
on edge,
i long to be
a singapore blacksmith
slinging steel
on the bow of a
cherry-wood junk
moored in the moonlight's
drunken smile.

i would feed my fire
with whiskey and wine
as sweet chinese harlots
dance naked
on the beach.

i would hone my blades
with poetry;
sharpen their edges
with the divine,
and at sunrise
weigh anchor,
hoist the sails,
and attack the horizon
with violent, insatiable

but alas,
i sit at my window
like squinty-eyed carruth,
with a half-empty bottle
and coltrane,
watching the sun
jump from the ice
in a taunting, stunning

"immediate thoughts at the window"


pure and uninhibited,
drifts elegantly
from branch to ground.
as i watch
from window
cool air
grazes nakedness,
dancing on thighs,
working toward
bouncing among daffodils
locked away
in consciousness,
awaiting coming sun
that breathes breath
across billowing horizon...


now dressed,
intensity has faded,
purity buried
behind a facade
of cruel buildings
and automobiles.
temptation to undress
and lie naked
on the floor,
cool air kissing
my perfection,
is strong,
but i will wait
until tonight
when the breath
of another can join me
beneath lilting hand
of a winter moon.

Monday, January 10, 2011

It's snowing in Georgia!!

Here's my oldest, Abigail.

This is Sophie.

Withering Cedars under siege.

Our ever-vigilant gargoyle.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

"a quiet, insignificant gesture"

in the rain,
the rain,
yes, again, the rain,
i drove,
in gray, tremulous rain,
to find plum wine
with which to warm
my belly and my soul,
and in the rain,
headlights dancing
on the bumper before me,
a smudge monkey
peered from the dust,
its long arms reaching
for the curb...
and freedom...
but only for an instant,
before it sank again,
covered by the intensity
and animosity
of the rain.

my wine awaits.

i have no time
to mourn.

"digging the mine"

morning star
gather in my shadow
push me toward farthest heaven
angel with gin-soaked wings

for my wife who made a comment a few weeks ago that I "used to write her poetry all the time."

Monday, January 3, 2011


holy sage smudged breasts
blessed beneath old shadow trees...


"revelation of the pelican"

dive, dive -
insignificant words
dive below
the surface; 
chasing a mud-skipper -
an albatross.

dancing on the street
are all one needs
from time to time
to shake the dust
from the cobwebs
and tighten the toes
for dancing.

dive, dive
no more today.
skim the fat
from the surface
and chew on life
for a while.


"on seeing a vagabond crossing hwy 92"

interstate prophet,
your staff
is crooked and lean.

release the witness
you hold in your hand
from her bottle
and sail
among the cars
on wings won
among bones
in shadows of the cross.

your message,
scattered along the curb,
tangled and broken,
won't get far
without your breath.

pick it up
and swallow.

your words, too pure
to fall,
must hang from the trees
and the door posts -
mud, damnation,
and all.