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To My Neighbor

I lift you higher,
lift you out
of your body cells
stuffed with anxiety
of your past -
an evil load that smells.

I'll fill each cell
with love and joy
that makes the
angels dance.
You'll glide through earthly
filth and stench -
a spiritual trance.

From your youth filled eyes,
your hands
and feet,
a holy peace shall flow,
so you and I
be filled with grace -
let us be still
and know.

William Hermanns


Seelentränen sind Gedichte,
rot mit Herzblut aufgeschrieben,
tiefem Menschenleid zum Ruhm,

Lies sie still in reinem Lichte,
frei von Trieben:
Du betrittst ein Heiligtum.

Wilhelm Hermanns

William Hermanns


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William Hermanns

Poem of William Hermanns

Poem List


     The Road That Has No Turn

I walk a road,
a long, long road
that has no turn.
Where does it go?
I yearn to know.
The more I yearn the more I bleed.
It is my road.
No footprints take my lead.

I am alone, bereft.
Why do I not quit?
I am buffeted right and left,
punched in the back,
struck in the face.
Speak, what have I done to you?

The why has no name,
the road has no end,
the must has no shame:
I have to walk on.

The winds whip and scourge.
The trees rake the sky,
limbs fall on my head.
Rage bulks black clouds,
a raven shrieks and scoffs.
I walk with a. child's good will.
What a chill.
Speak, what have I done to you.

My heart is a cup,
now full of gall.
Once it was full of joy,
when I began to walk,
so full of talk
with birds and clouds and trees.
How grim, my good intentions freeze.

I feel an urge not to give up.
How strange this urge, this force.
Who urges me on?
Whose will has to be done?
Who has put the load
on my feeble back,
and makes me walk
that long, long road?
Am I a crying fool
or must's pitiable tool?
No one is there
to roll the stone
from the tomb of mystery.

Is fate hired
to wear out man?
I am tired and worn.
Why was I born?

Did I come here
to dry out my tear?
What a plot against hope.
Karma and fate,
a conspiracy of the dead past
against the living now.
They give me a hairshirt
in which to wrap my smile.

To live is to be,
and to be is to radiate,
and to radiate is power.
Fate and Karma, daughters of anxiety,
have no answer to give to life.

Smile or not smile, I have to walk on.
Strange the strength to endure!
I yearn to know its source.
Is it guilt, remorse,
or is reward beyond the lure?

Where do I find a name
for my who and what and why?
Go on I must.

Who am I: a part of this inclement road?
If I am extended in things,
then things may rule me,
and I lose my birthright.
I am no longer who I am.

I walk this road
as mysterious as I Am.
The road tops layers
old as creation.
Where is its bedrock?
Each layer a tomb
of what had breath.
Each layer a womb
filled with crumbs of life.
The rock was molten
and becomes rock again.
Each layer breathes in and out,
has a living lung,
which expels heat
from the depths miles up
to the mountain top.

I am not the road.
Yet the road and I, what a likeness.
My depth is unfathomable.
Spiritual layers stretch
from the beginning of the unknown
to what is visible of me.
Where does the warmth of love,
the heat of my emotions,
have its bedrock?
Where is their source?
My consciousness runs infinite miles
from the deaths of creation up
to fuse with this body,
which my mother gave a name.
Soon this partner will have white hair,
then leaves me to rest.
What did I lose with my body?
Who and what is my total I?
Have I to go on fragmented;
or does the experience in my flesh
complete me on the plane of new existence?
Will this then: be my true I Am?
In the beginning was the mystery;
but will the end of my road
unveil the source of my I Am?

Is the true I Am not to be known?
Is the true I Am not I,
but the brother who does care for me,
or am I my own adversary?
What has defiled
my faith to be split,
what has beguiled
my smile to have quit?
In the beginning was the word,
and the word was doubt.

Doubt and fear are death's close friends.
Come self-love, let us reason together:
you have posed a million questions,
but one so hat as mother's stove
you tip-toed carefully about.
She also had a little glass,
the minute bound to sand.
You held it often in your hand.-

What is soul?
I turn and turn my thinking.
No answer. So be it.

I am who I will be.
Not yesterday, not tomorrow.
I Am is infinite. So be it.
Soul or I Am or conscience
be three in one,
or one in three;
all is mystery.
I am in yesterday
and in tomorrow.
I am the same
without a name:
mystery is nameless.

Is mystery a comfort to my loneliness?
Is it a comfort to give mystery a name?
To speculate in names ?
Names fashioned to wishful thinking
do not fill the void.

I walk alone,
walk on dust and stone.
Soon they will cover me;
I return to the womb.
I am not dust nor stone;
I am mystery.

What a tragedy
to err through the labyrinth of being
and find no exit.
Spirit, where are you?
Come comfort me.

The heat in the earth,
which sends to the mountain fire,
courses in my veins.
And the ocean deep
shares its darkness with my sleep.
The volcano and the iceberg,
do they know of my love?
The Spirit who made them
made me, too, and knows.
He thinks with my thought, sees with my eyes,
hears with my ears, and feels what I feel.
Words, words: soul — spirit — I Am ...
Words remain strangers to my fulfillment.
Who am I ?

Something speaks within me.
I don't hear words, but feel their meaning:
"I am the Spirit.
I made the road for you.
While you walk,
gather here a little, there a little.
All serves to unfold
your being in the flesh.
All serves to make you
aware of who you are.
You are the I Am."

The Spirit weeps my tears,
smiles my smile,
chooses my flesh on earth
for a while.

                                  William Hermanns    [P028]

Note:  Stanford 4/20/1976

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William Hermanns


Published Books

 - Click cover image

 for it's webpage:

    Einstein and the Poet - In Search of the Cosmic Man by William Hermanns -  cover
Available at Amazon

Order Kindle e-book

Order Paperback


   The Holocaust - from a Survivor of Verdun by William Hermanns - cover
Inquire on out of print books



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Einstein and the Poet - In Search of the Cosmic Man by William Hermanns -  cover The Holocaust - from a Survivor of Verdun by William Hermanns - cover


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