This post's title comes from the response of an 11 year old child.  I had the absolute distinct honor and privilege to be a presenter, for a second year, at a "Health and Wellness Conference" at an elementary school here in Vancouver.  My presentation is titled: "The Beauty Within: A Journey of Self-Discovery."  I had three forty-five minute sessions in the morning and a one hour session in the afternoon.  The groups were grades six and seven with thirty plus participants in each group.  My sessions consist of music, poetry, and storytelling.  I was assigned two helpers through out the day- two students who would assist me in setting up and be there at all times for further assistance and support, do a formal introduction of myself, and the "Thank-you!" at the end of each session.  This is one of many presentations that I've done in the past few weeks, months, in the elementary schools, high schools, and the Native Education College which had me back for a second visit in late May.  

 

Each session takes a natural path of its own; my preparation most times (fasting...) and prayer.  I do practice my songs very often, acoustically, and practice all the time singing to my CD.  Truthfully, I never know which direction a presentation is going to take in terms of storytelling, until I am in that moment.  One thing has proven itself sure, every session is different, very passionate and very powerful.  The stories can be very intimate and personal and the descriptions extremely vivid.  The responses from people, young and old alike- too, are quite powerful.  One teacher said, "Godwin.  When you do your storytelling, it's like you go to a different place; as if you are translated to a different time:  the way that you speak, move, and express yourself- the words that you use.  It's very obvious, as you're telling your stories, you're re-living the event all over again.  You're right there...in those moments.  That's what makes it so powerful, so effective.  As you shared the story of your encounter with your father- its as if I were right there with you.  I felt everything you felt; I experienced everything you experienced.  I cried with you.  And when you made restitution with him two years later- wow! Powerful. I cried even more. It's such a powerful image."

 

This is me- the absolute and true contents of my heart: all that I am, all that I was, and where I am today.  The tragedy, the healing, the love, the forgiveness, and the peace.

 

This is why I pray before I sing, before I present...I want to give you the truth: complete honesty, complete humility.  I want you to see inside my heart, inside my spirit, and into my soul.  I want you to know that no matter how dark the day may be, or how deep the deathly blackness of the clouds- when there's not a glimmer of light in the sky and the thunder rolls deafeningly loud and the lightning's flashing with the rain pouring ice-cold:  "There will come a brighter day! The sun will shine again and all will be well.  Nothing is too great that you can not make it through it; nothing is too great that you won't smile, laugh, experience health, hope, healing, peace, and love again.  Nothing is too great that you'll not reach your brighter day!  You will make it through- you will be well again.  Life will get better."

 

People laugh with me; people cry with me.  People are encouraged, helped, and inspired.  I've been through the darkness, I bring you the light!

 

Here's a response from one of my helpers at the "Health and Wellness Conference".

 

"Godwin is a VSB Aboriginal Counselor.  On "Health and Wellness Day" he came to my elementary school to tell us stories and to sing for us.  I was the one chosen to help him and introduce him to every class that came to our session.  I am 11 and people say we young people don't care about this stuff but while I was listening to his music and stories I kept bursting into tears.  Godwin has had such a tragic life and has dealt through it so well and it's all in the song.  The songs have both the 'love and the tragedy'."

 

Thank you my friend! Such deep words from a young heart!

 

Did I feel like a Rock Star?  Oh yeah!  Especially when singing to the CD and the response/reaction from the staff and students was, shall I say..."Rocking!!!!!"

 

In the words of George Dawson: "Life is so good.  I do believe it's getting better."

 

Lovingly, from my heart to yours...

 

Godwin.

 

Photo:  My home community, Kincolith, in North Western British Columbia.

 

 

 

 

The First Kiss

 

I can feel the touch of your hand in mine-

our eyes locked face to face.

Imagining the softness of your kiss-

magnificent, wonderful embrace.

 

Our hearts beat fast hands tenderly shake-

as I move in closer to you.

The world stands still without a sound-

anticipating what I'm going to do.

 

Softly I whisper in heart felt sigh-

readying for our lips to meet.

You move in closer hands yet in mine-

our hearts a singular beat.

 

Our eyes are closed our lips they touch-

there's no greater moment in time:

then the day we kissed and love exploded...

and I knew for sure you're mine.

 

Godwin H. Barton

 

Always believing in the absolute "Beauty and Power of Love."  I know love will come again, more powerful than before. Waiting for you- with greatest expectation.  Honesty is the greatest virtue of my heart...expounded fully in love.

 

Greetings!  I, along with many other presenters offering various workshops and entertainment, just completed two days of festivities at the University of British Columbia's, Museum of Anthropology's "First Annual First Peoples Festival".  April 23rd. and 24th.  The event was an absolute success and was planned in conjunction with the Vancouver School Board and the Museum of Anthropology.  It was a few months in the making and came to fruition beautifully. 

As I always do before speaking, I open with a song or two depending on the time frame...this always settles the audience and brings everyone together in a perfect cohesiveness.  With every audience what captivates me as I am singing while playing my guitar- is how they are mesmerized by the sounds of the acoustic guitar as they sit in absolute stillness, semi-entranced- staring, at my hands as I strum and sing.  Its as if they are translated to a different dimension; to a different time.  I love this! Many others just sit and stare right into my eyes as I sing.  Through it all, it is obvious that there is a deep appreciation for the song and the music they are hearing.   They sit, they stare...their eyes following my every strum- with many others sitting in absolute submissiveness as their ears seem heightened to capture every sound.  I absolutely love this!  This is why I enjoy so much what I do...the reason that I sing, the reason that I share: because of you!

It was two amazing days! Two days of absolute success...and something I look forward to again in the future. 

I say this rather humbly and with a heart of extreme gratitude: the main facilitator and organizer couldn't thank me enough for my participation and kept emphasizing the many "great comments" she kept on receiving on my performance.  

Everyone did an amazing job!  Congratulations to every presenter and thank you all for the wonderful work that you did!

Sincerely,

Godwin. 

 

Greetings!

 

This is a part of my story that was published in "Chicken Soup for the Recovering Soul" 2004.  It is one chapter of the autobiography I am working on.  The story is of an event that occurred in my life in 1988 (twenty four years ago) and still impacts me greatly today as I ponder the things that might have been said during this interaction.  I have absolutely no remembrance of the words that were spoken that night but the feeling, energy, and emotion associated with that time are not only of hope, expectation, and renewal... but a great sense of anticipation that I have been left here for a specific purpose and an exact time- that there is something very specific that I've yet to accomplish.  The feeling?  That it's not only pertinent to my life but also to the life's of others.  Many occurrences in my life have me believing this: stalking and standing over the eagle in the wild (something that is NOT humanly possible but by the Grace of God and prayer...I did it); the dates in my bibles; and the many mysterious, and sometimes magical events supernaturally and spiritually that I have been graced to be a part of- the things that I hear, the things that I feel, and the things that I see.  Since this time, continuously I examine my life and the tremendous changes and challenges that I have been through.  I'm thankful now more than ever for every heart-ache, brokenness, grief, sorrow, and pain; also, to every beautiful song, I've learned to dance in my victories.

 

Hebrews 13: 1,2. (King James)

LET brotherly love continue.  Be not forgetful to entertain strangers:  for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.

 

The Mind is its own place, and in itself can make a heaven of hell, a hell of heaven.

John Milton, Paradise Lost

 

     Dinner was at a local Greek restaurant to be followed by dancing at one of Chilliwack's more popular nightclubs.  It was a time filled with great food, laughter, teasing and recollections of the school week.  Fully satisfied, some would leave for home while the rest of us made our way to the club.  Bright, colorful lights flashed and strobes pierced the semi-dark room filled with people having a good time listening to a good cover of "Twilight Zone," a song originally done by Golden Earring.  The music was loud and the party was just beginning.  My hands helplessly reached for the concoction capable of turning man to animal.

 

     Looking to my girlfriend, I asked jokingly, "Hey, baby! Do you mind if I get drunk tonight?"  Knowing that we lived just a couple of blocks from the club Phyllis replied, laughing, "Sure.  Why not!  I don't have too far to carry you home!"  Over the music I shouted, "Right on!  You're my kind of girl."  The night of drinking, laughter and dancing would take its toll.  As if I didn't have enough to drink, or wasn't drunk enough already, I always had to finish with a zombie or two, a very potent drink of various types of alcohol and a bit of mix.  My laughter was now diminishing and the apparent heaviness of my heart was showing on my face.

 

     "Are you okay?" Phyllis asked.

 

     Looking like the zombie I had just drank, I replied, "Yeah.  I'm fine.  And you?"  Rubbing my thigh lightly as she always had, Phyllis said, "It's okay.  Everything will be alright."  Her eyes looked right into mine as if she could see right through me, reading my mind, seeing my soul.  Feeling her love and knowing that I couldn't hide anything from her, tears began to fill my eyes.

 

"Had enough to drink?  Want to go home?" she asked.  Hesitantly I answered, motivated by the thoughts of the damage I'd now begun to do in my drunkenness, not feeling too safe inside myself, "Sure.  Let's go home."

 

I awoke in the morning, sad, sick, sorry and extremely hungover, awaking again to the words that I dreaded hearing after a good night's drunk.

 

"You're not going to like yourself very much when you see what you've done."  Silence filled the air.  I was too ashamed to even look at Phyllis for those words only meant one thing.  Defeated, I slowly made my way to the living room, hoping in these few minutes the damage I'd done would somehow miraculously repair itself.  "Oh my God!  I did this?"

 

     Phyllis scared and very concerned asked, "You don't remember?"

 

     Fear gripped me as I envisioned the fury it must have taken to reap such destruction.  "No. Why?  Why did I do this?"

 

"We had just left Huggies.  You were quite drunk and I wanted to get you home.  You stopped in the parking lot across the way.  I looked at you.  Your eyes and your face were as if you had become a different person.  I asked if you were okay.  You said yes.  I told you to keep on walking- were were almost home."

 

"Not moving you started asking, 'Why?'  I asked what you were talking about, 'Why?' what?  You didn't answer, you just stared.  You started hollering, your fists were clenched and you ran angrily toward the house.  You kicked in the door.  By now you were cursing. 'Why!'"

 

     Fearfully I asked, "Where were the kids when all this was happening?"

 

     "I found a note on the table, they spent the night at a friend's place.  There was no one home but you and me,"  She explained.

 

     Not really wanting to know, I asked, "What happened next?"

 

     "You began smashing everything, punching and kicking the walls, that's where all the holes are from.  Walking over to the fireplace you knocked everything onto the floor.  You flipped the couches and the armchair as if they were paper weights, smashing the coffee table, and throwing the other table around.  You walked over to your weights and picked up your barbell and began repeatedly slamming it to the floor hollering and cursing."

 

     "And where were you while this was happening?"

 

     Phyllis replied, "Right here, next to you."

 

     In utter dismay at the vast devastation, I asked, "Weren't you afraid?"

 

     "No.  I began to pray.  You made your way into the dining room, crying, still asking 'Why?'  I just watched you.  I wasn't afraid."

 

     The tone of her voice changed as she said, "I really need to talk to you about something." 

 

     My spirit, already crushed, braced itself for the worst.

 

     "After doing all the damage, do you remember anything at all?" she asked.

 

     Puzzled, I answered, "Nothing.  Why?"

 

     Silently she stared at me, and then continued.  "From where I was sitting you were in full view- you didn't enter the kitchen, you stood in front of the doorway."  Pausing again, she looked at me questionably.  "You began to talk to someone..."

 

     Quickly I interrupted her.  "You said we were alone." 

 

     "Yes.  That's true, but as I watched you were motioning with your hands, very clearly talking to someone.  I couldn't understand what you were saying but I could hear you as clear as I hear you now.  You spoke with this person, or what ever it was, for about ten minutes.  Do you remember who, or what it was, and what it is that you talked about?"

 

     Even more perplexed I replied, "No.  Are you sure this is what really happened?"

 

     Assertively she retorted, "Come on now.  You know me.  Would I make something up like this or lie to you?"

 

     Phyllis was a woman of many years of sobriety, a woman of integrity.  She'd never play such a cruel trick on me.  She continued, "Whatever you two talked about, it must have been something good.  Afterward you changed completely.  You turned to me with an incredible look of peace back in your eyes and on your face."

 

     "You walked toward me, and of all the damage you had done, the only thing that you picked up was the calendar with the picture of Jesus on it.  You pinned it back onto the wall, then said, 'Let's go to bed sweetheart, I'm tired.'"

 

     Powerful emotions stir as I recall that night years ago and think about the places from which I have come, worlds of seemingly unrecoverable loss and immense pain.  Wondering how a hand of beauty, love and grace could reach into darkness so vile to rescue one such as I.  Tears, no longer of rage and anger, roll down my face in thankfulness for the life I have now found.  Sobriety; a life no longer dominated by drugs, alcohol, rage, pain.  Five years, each new day bringing with it the promise of something better, this can only be so as the words he spoke still echo somewhere deeply in my soul.

 

Sincerely, and from my heart to yours:  Godwin H. Barton.

 

Angel Warrior: Static.squidoo.com  "Go for it!  You are not alone!"

 

 

Cycles:  One More Time

 

Cycles:  an experience in life,

a lesson to be learned more profound than before;

through darkness to light, the opening of a door.

 

With each new turn came an entire new dimension to the experience;

spring, summer, winter, fall-

a new lesson to be learned in all.

 

They say that pain walls in a wounded man,

subconsciously seeking shelter;

experience after experience, joy after pain-

from copper, to silver, to gold in the smelter.

 

Wishing to be a child releasing laughter in the rain-

only one way to go, again walk through the pain.

Character, wisdom, knowledge and strength-

seek only to be thy attributes, event after event.

 

They say that in each life a little rain must fall-

yet from showers to thunderstorms...

I've been through it all.

 

The light may have diminished, time after time-

sometimes extinguishing, lying here dying.

Through it all though mine eyes did not see-

the surge of my spirit would gain the victory.

 

Though you look at me seeing me only in the flesh-

abolish not beauty, for such is the reward of my test.

In time by example many a heart will be won-

I can only pray for patience as the steps I take one by one.

 

Cycles:  an experience in life,

a lesson to be learned more profound than before:

a room filled with beauty...no longer hidden beyond the door.

 

Godwin H. Barton

 

Photo:  River at the back of my home community- Kincolith, in Northwestern B.C.

 

 

Greetings! Several of my posts on my original blog were removed, archived, and my readers could not access these posts.  I tried re-posting the posts several times but was unable to.  This post originally appeared on Sunday, April 18, 2004.  It's of a magnificent happening in my life pertaining to three dates which I was given over a few year period.  This is the fourth time I'm attempting to create this post on this site.  The other three times, when I completed the entry and clicked post, the entire post disappeared and each time it is the accumulation of at least three hours work.  Sometimes I wonder, there are forces out there that work against us especially when there are great stories to be shared.  Stories that inspire:  bring hope, courage, and strength.  This is one of those stories.  However, since I've been on my computer now for the past six or more hours doing this, that, and the other thing- I think I'll attempt to create this post in segments and continue the work in the coming days.  Stay tuned, I promise you- this is a good one.

 

It's Sunday morning and I made a "conscious decision" not to go to church.  I'm sitting here at home and I'm mulling over the significance of the church.  I've been a regular attender and have attended one church in particular now for a little over two years.  I'm now at a stand still.  I'm contemplating with-drawing, for a period of time, from the church.  This not for any reason in particular, right now it just seems to be the right thing to do.  Yes church is a place of congregating as the bible instructs us:  "Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the matter of some is..." (Hebrews 10:25 KJV).  Note, although we are encouraged to gather together as "brethren" (brothers and sisters in Christ), there is no mention here of the church building itself.

 

I'm a man of sobriety now "By the Grace of God" for over five years; totally drug and alcohol free and each day just keeps getting better (today, thirteen years).  As I've reflected on my sobriety and how it came about- much of the work happened away from the church.  The reason you might ask?  In a lot of my earlier church experiences I left each time more broken than I was when I went in.  This not only from sermons that had me feeling greater hopelessness because I could not live up to "that standard," but, also from "well intentioned ministers" who, while I acknowledge that they too are only human, pushed to shape me into a "man after their own image."  Sermons of hell, fire, and brimstone didn't serve to heal too well either, the pain I knew was inside me.  I needed to experience love.

 

I'm not a man perfect by any means.  I still say and do things I shouldn't say or do; just ask my wife, she'll tell you everything, truthfully.  (My wife and I are now legally separated, for almost four years and are legally divorcing.  It's unfortunate that our marriage didn't work out but today, we do keep in touch and are really great friends.)  In a moment of conflict she said to me:  "If you're an example of what a Christian is like, then I don't want to set foot inside a church again!"  She was right!  Not to excuse my behavior, but, I hold no shame in this because I know that I'm a work in progress.

 

Philippians 1:6 says:  "Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ."  The living bible puts it this way:  "And I am sure that God who began the good work within you will keep right on helping you grow in his grace until his task within you is finally finished on that day, when Jesus Christ returns."  In light of my short-comings, defects of character...and sin, I am encouraged:  I am a work in progress!  And, God's word is final!  The bible does state that all have sinned and come short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23).  Understand, this is not a ticket to sin, or, in our Christian walk to go on sinning.  It simply means that in our lives there will be times of great weakness when our fleshly, carnal desires will over-power our willingness to do the right- and we'll find ourselves again in something that totally contradicts all that we believe.  I know it's an unpleasant feeling when we compromise our beliefs and values, but remind yourself:  "I am a work in progress!"  Change will come!  I promise you...it will!  The evidence of this?  The many times I tried to clean up my life but failed- and found myself again in the fiery, strangling tentacles of drugs and alcohol.  Change came, when I least expected it; however, through great pain.

 

As for the church building itself, the "Temple of God" I reflect on three bibles that were given to me.  The first, the Living Bible, Paraphrased, given to me by my sister Sharon and her family and dated February 17, 1982.  The second, The Holy Bible, King James Version, given to me by my sister Addie and her family and dated February 19, 1982.  It wasn't until I moved to Vancouver that the significance of these dates would take on a deeper meaning.  At a prayer meeting, an out-reach program for this particular church I was now attending, I was given a third bible:  The Holy Bible, New International Version.  This given to me by my niece Zelda and her family and dated February 18, 1988.

 

The perfect, chronological order of these dates did not occur to me immediately.  One afternoon I decided to do some reading.  I grabbed all three bibles, and opening the front cover of each, I placed them before me.  I was amazed to see the exact alignment of all three dates:  February 17, 18, 19.  The third date, the 18th., coming six years later.  I sat thinking this is too real to be a coincidence knowing that God does not toy with, or tease his children.

 

The anxious, energetic, ambitious (obnoxious?) young Christian that I was, I began to get all spiritual!  I thought, "It's time to pray!  I have to find out what this all means!  I have to read more, pray more, go to church, fellowship!  If I want my answer, I really have to watch how I live!"  "HELLO!!! HAVE YOU NOT HEARD ABOUT GRACE?!"  There was nothing that I could have done to ensure that I would have gotten the answer.  In the wisdom of my brother Steven most recently pertaining to the number "222" and its continuing occurrence in my life (another- can only be explained supernatural goings-on event):  "Be patient.  God will reveal it to you in his time."

 

I fasted:  I just ended up stuffing my face!  I prayed:  then thought about how repulsed God must be by my vain repetitions!  I fellow-shipped:  but the answer did not "pop!" out of the mouth of any one around me in this "great prophecy!"  I gave up!  Yup, I gave up.  In the least, I could still read- which is what I decided to do this beautiful, April morning, some two years later.  I'm glad that I didn't continue fasting, by now I'd surely have been a bone rack, or dead!  (Come to think of it, given the extra weight that I carry and have never been able to lose- it follows me every where- this would not have been a bad idea!).

 

Just as in the days of  my youth when I would awaken with my father at 5:30 in the morning, together, to do morning devotions- I awoke, and felt this compelling need to read and pray.  I went to the corner table stand and grabbed my Living Bible.  Sitting next to the kitchen window, randomly, I opened the bible and placed it before me.  I looked up and starred at the sun for awhile.  It was such a gorgeous, April morning.  I began to read- and there it was before me- flashing right in my face, the date:  February 18.  It is the completion date of the rebuilding of God's Holy Temple in Jerusalem.

 

King Darius had issued a decree concerning the rebuilding of the temple (Ezra 6: 13-15).  It reads:

 

"Governor Tattenai, Shethar-bozenai, and their companions complied at once with the command of King Darius.  So the Jewish leaders continued with their work, and they were greatly encouraged by the preaching of the prophets Haggai and Zechariah (sons of Iddo).  The temple was finally finished, as had been commanded by God and decreed by Cyrus, Darius, and Artaxerxes, kings of Persia.  The completion date was February 18 in the sixth year of the reign of King Darius."

 

I was in awe, inspired, and hopeful!  Compassion ran through me like a hot knife through butter.  Finally, the significance of February 18th.  Thinking on the "Temple" I was lead to the book of Corinthians.

 

I Corinthians 3: 16,17 states:  "Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and the spirit of God dwelleth within you?  If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are."  I knew God was speaking to me about my body, his temple; my life, the brokenness of it and the necessity for healing.  As I imagined the destruction of the initial temple in Jerusalem, I began to think about the destruction of my life:  all of the heart-ache, pain, sorrow, and grief.  The realities of my existence were presented before me on a platter and I could no longer deny these.

 

My hurt began to surface.  I sought God with greater devotion, commitment, sincerity, and desire.  There were more quiet times.  If he was showing me my pain, I knew that he wanted it...but first, I had to go through it:  to re-live it, to feel it.  Serenity enveloped me as I thought some more on the completion of God's Temple.  Finally, a chance at "wholeness," a chance again, to be well.  I was over-whelmed by God and his exactness.  I was over-whelmed by his ability to shoot at the target and hit it directly in the bull's eye.  I didn't know for sure what was going to happen; all I knew is that I was crying more.  I began to experience the places of Psalm 51: 17:  "The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise."  Feeling my pain was o.k. as long as I was in God's care.

 

I continued to go to church, to fellowship, and to fast.  I continued to read.  This time, the experience was different than before- something was happening.

 

Greater sadness filled me as I had no choice now but to face head on, the greater truths of my life.  I was sad, hurt, lonely, angry, bitter, and broken.  I now felt more than ever, the death of my mother when I was six.  The severe, merciless beating I took at the hands of my father immediately after her death; a beating that should have been enough to kill any six year old child.  I began to feel again the loneliness of separation from family- to the terror, torture, isolation, and pain, of the Indian Residential School.  So much for a six year old to endure; followed, and punctuated by the death of my father when I was ten.  I began to experience again the years of abandonment, hunger, and sleeping out in the cold.  The inescapable yearning for my mother's, loving touch.  Sleeping under other people's houses or the church next door for fear of going home only to be beaten.  Stealing food from other people's porches so that I could feed my brother and myself; taking blankets from their clothes lines that we might have warmth in the night.  So much heart-ache; so much pain.  Too much for one soul to carry. 

 

This, although I didn't know it then, would be a perfect platter of sacrifice to a loving, kind, generous, and compassionate God.  I continue in my healing journey today.  Gradually, I am becoming whole and my temple is being restored.

 

As for all these "things" I only used to deal with using drugs and alcohol, I now had to find a more productive way.  Hospital visits, suicidal tendencies, and encounters with the police were enough to tell me that something was terribly wrong.  Self-destructive behavior, at times self-mutilating behavior, were strong indications that I needed help.  The pain hurt so much- the natural inclination was to increase the pain.  Pain became the norm.  There was no hope.

 

I needed a place where I could sometimes swear, and be angry, even violently- and not be judged.  I needed a place where I could sometimes shout, rant, and rave, and not be condemned for my actions.  I needed a place to cry, and not be made to feel shame.  The church could not do this for me.  Sad to say, in those more integral years, it only compounded my pain.  I walked away knowing that if God cared enough to send me the dates in my bibles and speak to me about inner-healing, he cared enough to heal me regardless of where this healing would take place:  in a church, or some where else.  The cuts ran deep and the healing would not happen over night.  It took years to accumulate; it may take years to unravel.

 

As to the question of attending church, I am glad that I made my way back.  Church is a good place to be.  For the time being however, I think "I'll just be still and know that he is God."  To make the time to work on my manuscript  that I started three years ago (now eleven!).  I have a story to share, and someone out there needs to hear it.

 

Sincerely, from my heart to yours...

 

Godwin. 

 

Photo:  Taken atop a castle that a Hungarian artist built for the love of his life- his wife.  Szekesvehavar, Hungary.

 

Post Script: It's been eight years since I first created this post.  In my life there has been much growth, much challenge: I've known further defeat, devastation, and was visited again by death many times of beautiful family members- especially the two best friends of mine:  my brother Fred and sister Linda- my next oldest siblings who truly were the greatest people/friends in my life.  Their deaths- a million swords to my soul, a cutting of my heart to a trillion pieces- a crushing of my spirit like I had never felt before.  Their deaths, back to back, five months apart.  No greater loss have I ever felt than to loose the two best friends of mine.  The loss of my marriage- an agreed upon and planned separation; no matter how much you try to prepare for, and plan for something like this, how much you talk about it and talk it through with your wife who is now no longer going to be with you- it is still devastatingly painful.  I'll never forget the night that I moved.  I was parked in my car outside our place, going in to get another load of my belongings.  I couldn't take it, I picked up my cell phone and called one of my older brothers- I could do nothing but cry: I never imagined, given the amount of love that I had for her, that it would come to this.  My cry, my deep, soul agonizing cry.  I could not even speak a word to my brother and all he could do was cry with me.  Finally, we were able to pray.  I wiped my tears, though my eyes were blood shot and glossy- I faced my wife as if everything were OK.  I knew that she knew, but the pain was too great to talk about.  She too, looked like she were ready to fall to a million pieces on the floor.  We knew where we were at and where we were going, we knew this was the best thing we could do for each other.  It was not easy.  In spite of all the loss, through it all, I've known the great sweetness of victory.  I've learned again to turn tragedy into triumph and loss to gain.  I've learned to put one foot in front of the other- and to walk again.  I'm learning to fly... 

 

 

 

Greetings!

 

A few years ago, this poem was inspired by a lovely lady friend of mine.  We had, over a period of time become very, very close.  Sometimes we would talk and laugh for hours- just laying there together.  At other times we went for long drives on sunny afternoons, stopping at a park or interesting spot just to enjoy each others company.  There were evening and night walks along the beach, and standing on piers staring at the starry lit skies as we held each other in a gentle embrace.  We were intimate in friendship and conversation, but we never crossed that line (you know the one where there's no turning back? That one).  There were lunches, dinners, and times of absolute stillness where no words needed to be spoken: just being there, being the best of friends...and loving every minute of it.  However, there came the time we knew it would end- for many obvious reasons.  As we talked about the paths our lives were taking us, and there would be an inevitable separation, she was very hurt:  she began to cry, yet she was strong.  Maybe in a different place or a different time, things could have been different.  Before we parted she had this pretty amazing dream.  It gave us, especially her, the strength to move on.  The dream was of an eagle, flying through a storm.  The thunder was rolling, the lightning was flashing, and the rain was pouring- heavily, amidst some very powerful winds.  An eagle appeared, it did not go around the storm...fearlessly, it locked its wings- and flew directly into, and through the storm.  She told me this dream with tears in her eyes as I could only imagine the majesty and beauty of it all, and thinking of the magnificence of the eagle.  Our time ended.  Later a mutual friend of ours came to visit me and told me that my lady friend was taking our separation, an agreed upon decision, a lot harder than expected.  I thought about her dream, and in my spirit felt her cry, and seen her tears.  I began to write:


An Eagle Powerfully In Flight 

 

It's a necessary cut to span the sands of time-

once traveled roads, familiar valleys, many mountains to climb.

It's a journey many an individual will often fear to take-

as it seems once more, life is being put to the stake.

 

They say it's a step necessary to achieve a higher plane-

re-experiencing loss, touching on grief, sorrow and pain.

Your soul made bare and all experience brought to light-

it seems a permeating weakness, too long a dark night.

 

You wonder why in light of love things must be this way-

all you wanted was friendship, trust, and companionship to stay.

In these you'd learned again to laugh and too, that it's o.k. to cry-

sharing dreams, a gentle embrace, under a starry lit sky.

 

There's the sound of the ocean waves beating gently against the shore-

so too were the courage of your convictions, knocking on your heart's door.

Yet resist as we would try the more we would come to see-

there's much healing to be had, for both you and me.

 

The revelation of this knowledge led again to one becoming two-

separated in the physical, yet in heart and spirit, much time with you.

So as you journey toward wholeness being embraced by the light-

remember always the promise: "An Eagle Powerfully In Flight."

 

For V.  From Godwin.

 

I sent the poem, along with a pure white eagle feather to V.  According to our mutual friend, she cried when she read the poem and held the feather.  However, she did not feel worthy of the feather and returned it, saying, it was meant for me.  I have that feather, along with another one, black, attached to two roses- one red and one pink, now dried, hanging over the mantel of the fireplace.  Every time I look at it I think of her, and wish her well.

 


 

Greetings!

I just got through entering on my "Reviews" page, some letters that I received from students and staff from one of my presentations here in Vancouver.  I remember praying the morning of the presentation for some kind of miracle, sign, or wonder...for something to happen that was out of the ordinary.  As I began my presentation that afternoon, and everyone was in the room, seated, the classroom door was closed.  A few minutes into my presentation the door unlatched and opened slightly.  I ignored it thinking it was a student trying to find their way- I continued to speak.  Someone got up and closed the door.  A few minutes later the door unlatched again and opened slightly; again, a student got up and closed it.  It happened a third, then a fourth time.  I looked over to a student looking at me, I asked, "Is there someone there?"  She said, "No.  The door just keeps opening on its own."  I responded, "Oh, an unseen guest, or guests!"  I walked over to the door, opened it widely and said, "Welcome! We are very pleased to have you here.  Please, take a seat."  I closed the door securely and proceeded with my presentation- for the remaining hour and a half, the door didn't open again.

This is the beauty of life: the unexplainable and the mysterious- sometimes, even the magical!

 

Photo: Found online- creator not listed.

Greetings!

Today I celebrated my thirteenth year of sobriety: "By the Grace of God," one day at a time.  In the beginning, sometimes one second at a time, one minute at a time.  I remember two weeks into my sobriety a man made a bet with his friend, referring to me: "I'll bet you five dollars he'll never make it."  He didn't know I over-heard their conversation.  Here I sit, thirteen years later, drug and alcohol free: more than making it and many of my dreams coming true.  I paid no attention to his ignorance as I knew then, I was in it for me and no-one else; I had no hope or strength to offer to anyone...as I was yet this vessel amidst life's treacherous sea: battered, beaten, bruised, hurt, torn, bitter, and angry.  I was in search of love, peace, healing, and joy; somehow, this time, I knew I would find it.


Said the Most Hopeless in the Bunch


If words could describe, what the past thirteen years have been-

four thousand seven hundred and forty-five days, just where do I begin.

Treacherous pain of heart and soul, tears shed in a very dark place-

shattered spirit and brokenness, no strength to run this race.


Beaten mentally and emotionally, flesh bruised right to the bone-

vacant physically and spiritually, for sure there was no home.

Dreading the day and hating the sun, because black became the norm-

much more comfortable to feel great pain, amidst life's merciless storm.


Hope was becoming a four letter word, that could not so easily be erased-

the bitter drink that kept me going, I could no longer taste.

I took a step and eventually two, joining hands with others before-

marveling at their radiant smiles, as they sailed a brighter shore.


Stories shared through tears and sobs, were really no different than mine-

we've walked the walk, they've paved the path, they are the lights that shine.

"If I can do it, then so can you," said the most hopeless in the bunch;

"I used to drink three times a day: for breakfast, dinner, and lunch."


"The crutch I used was Mary Jane as I hobbled on my way...

now I don't even need these things, as I start another day."

The strength it came in that final moment, searching for a closing word:

"Cry your tears one day at a time..." rebuild is what I heard.


Thirteen years of baby steps have passed, as again I've learned to cry-

dusting off those feathery wings, to take a chance and fly.

Treacherous pain of heart and soul, has now been turned to strength-

so much healing, fun, and laughter: fought for at any length.


Sincerely...Godwin H. Barton

"You can do it! Yes you!"

 

Greetings Everyone!

I want to "Sincerely Thank each one of you!" who have very faithfully followed, and visited my blog on a regular basis. Your participation and feedback is very, very encouraging! From now on, I will use this, my website, as my regular blog.

As I do lead a very busy life with a full time job, exercise regime, and making time for friends and family- while the whole time staying "Artistically Creative," I've made a decision to post more regularly. I've written many more poems and have five more songs ready to go for recording. This all takes time and money...a lot of money! I also have a very amazing children's book completed and looking to get published, along with a book of poetry. I continue also to do presentations- as a musician, singer/song writer; author/poet; and professional story teller.

My producer, and "Liquid Tension Music" were most gracious in fully financing me for my first professional CD release to the exact amount of $6,500.00 hard cost, and an extensive amount more for miscellaneous. Now, it's up to me to make the money for the next round of recording, and to begin making the music videos that many of you are asking for. Here's where you come in. I beg, and plead to your kindness, and thank you for your already existing support: If you have not yet, can you please go to itunes, CD Baby, e-music, Amazon, or any other large number of sites and make a direct purchase of my CD, or individual songs. I promise you, by the amazing response to my music from everyone who has already purchased...you will not be disappointed. It is being loved by everyone, every where, and people can't seem to say enough great things about it. Also, can you please pass this information on to everyone on your social sites: facebook, twitter, My Space, and any others. Please, I have a dream; and together, we can make this happen. I am a very talented, gifted, and passionate poet, musician, and story teller. It brings me no greater joy than to share these gifts with the world. As I do my presentations in song- music, poetry, and story telling; literally, people are moved to tears, sometimes crying uncontrollably from the beginning to the end as my words pierce into their being- in the beginnings of healing, hope, and inspiration. I share with you my heart; I give to you my soul. I give you the stories- unscripted, unedited, and true. After a presentation, people can't hold me long enough in an embrace of extreme gratitude with a heart full of thankfulness. This is what I want to share with the world; the gift of life, the gift of hope, the gift of inspiration. My stories are many: from interactions with the realms of the supernatural and spiritual (yes, these things are real), and great, extraordinary experiences and events in daily living- to the guidance by dreams, and the realms of the prophetic. There are stories of struggle, destruction, death and annihilation; to hope, endurance, peace, beauty, and love. Then there are stories of pure enjoyment; of happiness. There must be a balance in all things.

I don't have the backing of major corporations or commerce; but I do have a producer who fully believes in me, and my musical talent, gifts, and abilities- so much so that he/they, were willing to place thousands on the line and hope for the best. Please, I, we, need your help.

I thank you again from the deepest parts of my heart, and my soul: you are all truly, truly wonderful.

The new songs too, are absolutely amazing; I know this, because the people who I have played them for already, are lit with excitement, with joy...and can hardly wait for the final, recorded versions.

Wishing you all a very "Merry Christmas and extremely prosperous New Year!"

Again, thank you!

Sincerely, and most lovingly...

Godwin H. Barton

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