A fear of flying

Something lost

Squirrels are courageous creatures

Making leaps of faith twenty times a day

Hurling their bodies out into the void

Branch to branch


Though, a fledgling bird is no less so

Throwing itself at the sky

Until it stays aloft

I miss the days when people

Were so brave.

Words and image are mine.

Copyright 2021

The next chapter

For those still interested, I have started a website specifically for my images. It’s called Red String Photography. It features a wide selection of the photographs I have produced over the past 7 years.

Though I have posted very little to Runaway American Dream over the past 2 years, I’ve been far from inactive. The images on my new site are a taste of where my interests have taken me.

I hope you’ll take a few moments to check it out and, as always, I welcome your feedback.



Talkin’ ’bout my Generation

Too old for this gig

Your floppy hair falling

Across your furrowed brow

Your feedback sustain

A disdain

For a less angsty life

Your naive enthusiasm

For 90s bands

Who were

In love with 80s bands

From whom you stole

Your striped tee

All these things

Painfully affected

Are achingly familiar to me

You cast a pensive eye over the crowd

From beneath that floppy fringe

Wondering if We’re as bored as you

(We are).


Drop me in the water

I find
That life has lived me
More often than I have lived
The years have sped too quickly by
For my uncertain feet
To find good purchase
Rendered mute when words were needed
Numbed by feelings
Hurt by kindness
Life can be cruel
But it’s what we have to work with I suppose.

Words and image are mine, 2020.

Every day is like Sunday




Time passes strangely in the days of Corona


Pacing their carpeted cages

Pale, listless ghosts

Scroll news feeds ceaselessly as

Acellular microorganisms

Permeate every fevered thought


Belligerent banner-wavers march

Sowing infection vectors

Late Spring graves from April blooms

Their defiant snake coiled and hissing

Don’t cough on me


While the (casino) king prevaricates

And Governors prognosticate

The bored masses masticate

And fitfully masturbate

Their night terrors


This novel thing divides us

Like some cancerous mutation

We shed empathy like virus

Growing wary of outsiders

And argue with deniers

Whom we hate now more than death.







Words and image are my own.



10. Little girl I want to marry you.

While I gather my thoughts on current events, I figured I’d reblog this early post, a reminder of what this blog was originally about. Nice to see how certain I was – sitting there on the other side of the world – that this Jersey girl was my future wife.

Runaway American Dream

For the ones who had a notion
A notion deep inside
That it ain’t no sin to be glad you’re alive
I wanna find one face that ain’t looking through me
I wanna find one place
I wanna spit in the face of these Badlands.

~ Springsteen, Badlands.


So why her, what does she have that’s so special? What makes it all worth the long separations, the heartache, and the not inconsiderable expense?

These are questions I’ve honestly never bothered to ask myself, not – as you may think – for fear of what might lay coiled within the answers, but because those answers have always been self-evident. No one else has ever made me feel this way and no one else has ever taken the time to really know me.

I’ve experienced loving relationships, but no other love has come as close to me – the real…

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Wave of Mutilation




Waves crash


Somehow, the houses seem closer together now

While people draw further apart

We husbands and wives sit alone-together

In shrinking rooms

Nursing our vulnerabilities

Pensively viewing events

Through windows without walls


Curtains are drawn closed

Against a world beyond our control

Doorknobs bleached for good measure

We scurry to our mailbox for dispatches or cheques

And eat our boredom ‘til our pants get too tight


Every mind is an abacus now

Calculating exponentialities

And checking the odds like touts at the track

We watch the goalposts receding

Towards the distant horizon

Counting down as the numbers rise

Feeling like time is dragging too fast

Sleeping later each day

To avoid the feeling

We’re not in Kansas anymore


We are small and


Oh, wave of displacement

Pass us by


We are small

And do no harm

Oh, wave of retribution

Pass us by


What day is this?







Words and image are my own.

My spine is the Bass line

A personal fave from a few years ago.

Runaway American Dream


I was thinking about bass players the other day. It seems to me, they don’t get anywhere near the recognition they deserve. It’s not surprising I suppose, they lack the flash of lead guitarists or the charisma of vocalists. Even the drummer is more front and center as a rule. Sure, some bassists also front; Sting, Suzi Quatro, Phil Lynott, but they are celebrated more for their fronting personas than their playing.

No, I’m thinking of a different breed; the ones who stand solidly to the side and just do their damned job; the rhythmic, throbbing engine room of any band. And a thankless job it is too sometimes. I’ve actually known people who can’t distinguish a bass line in the music they’re listening to – just can’t pick it out – and to those people, I generally say You’d certainly notice it if it wasn’t there.


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White Winter Hymnal


Is he back? Who knows? It’s been a long (and eventful) absence. I may be speaking to dead air by now. Every now and then I’ve dropped in to see how you are all getting on but the urge to write anything creative has been.. absent. And so the blog has languished and probably been forgotten, it might be for the best. Do I have anything left to say? Did I ever have anything to say?

That’s not for me to judge.

Frankly, I’m working too damned hard these days in truly menial labour to care all that much.

One piece of news may be of interest to some of you, we’re leaving Jersey. Yes, our time here has come to an end. As of the very near future, we’ll be calling Lancaster PA home. I’m excited by the prospect. Lancaster UK is actually where my family originates on my grandmother’s side and there are many symbolic connections to be found in this very pretty city in the heart of Amish country.

Perhaps the move will inspire some posts.

In the meantime, here’s a piece I wrote standing on a train platform after a night spent unloading a truck full of Christmas crap.



Cold early morning in Bridgewater


Down the tracks, under the overpass

A doe crosses

Proud silhouette in the backlit white cloud

Of her steaming breath


All unaware

As the train from New York

Appears silently in the distance

Made insubstantial

By the haze of morning’s mist

The deer declines to shift from the trackside

Nosing her way through the glistening weeds

I wait for the blast from the driver’s horn

But the train bears down with mesmeric rhythms

More seductive than startling

The deer if she has noticed

Remains unharried


Then, as anticipation hangs in the chill

That horn blares

And the deer



Bounded by grace


The train speaks its language of power

The deer remains eloquently silent

I stand in awe

Of the unrepeatable moment.


Words and image are my own.






Short memory





To the broken goes the crown


It circles unerringly

Ready to drop like an arrow

Or God’s hammer

This shifting of allegiances

This disregard for past loyalties

When did we become Mercury?

Slick and slippery

When did the flow of poison gather momentum?

I have no answer

When the pillars we stand upon

Begin to melt, warp, crack, and tumble

We all fall together into flame

A heap of flailing limbs and lashing teeth

In a tangle from which no one rises

A hill of discontent crowned with

The ruins of resentment.






Words and image are my own.