a poem by
ROBERT PENICK | Court Administrator + Poet


“Procession” resulted from my ruminations on the life cycle. I saw a landscape of people, moving right (birth) to left (death). Each carried something, one essential thing on their journey. The poem is simply the sight of each of us, carrying that single most important trait through this world as we pass.

WHAT was it shining so brightly in their hands?
Perhaps passion? Perhaps hope?
Perhaps it was different for each soul;
One a Crucifix, another a cudgel,
a third with a bouquet of fire.
Yet another carried a snifter of kindness
and one more a bottle of night.

They flowed in an unbroken line
topping the hill to the East then
crossing the plains to disappear
past the purple hills in the West.
Some were cheerful, full of mirth.
Some wore tragic masks.
Some very few were penitent.

Thus, they made their passage,
each with his own separate light.

Enjoy more of Robert’s work at his website,
Image Credit:
Robert Penick
My work has appeared in over 100 different literary journals, including The Hudson Review, North American Review, and Plainsongs. I live in Louisville, KY, USA, with my free-range box turtle, Sheldon. After retiring from my job as a court administrator, I truly thought that I'd be devoting eight hour days to writing, but have been battling the ubiquitous internet addiction that is sapping our souls and intellect. Been doing this for going on forty years now, just started a tiny new annual: Ristau: A Journal of Being. More of my work can be found at