New poem not spooky enough for Halloween

My latest poetical composition does mention the creepy day coming up, but is not intended to scare. I hope you enjoy it!


Halloween approaches fast.

Sir Autumn has donned

His dazzling kilt—

His yellow mustache

Waves from the willow.

His balding cranium

Relinquishes its deadened tresses.

Soon a pallid blanket

Will envelop all that endures.

Fluffy clouds of mutation

Drift through the boughs.

While one is departing,

Another arrives.

Life and seasons

Nourish change.


For more of this kind of mild verse, get my upcoming book, I Walked My Dog This Morning. In the meantime, visit us at .

I walked my dog this morning

For me, writing poetry takes the right mood and inspiration. For about a week now I have felt a poem coming on. Like many, a lot of my inspiration comes from nature, and the early morning ability to think with a clear mind. As I have walked my little doggie, Brody, each morning, words would come to me. Today I put it all together in this poem which I want to dedicate to my friend, former Poet Laureate of Kentucky and two-time Pulitzer nominee, Lee Pennington. Not that my poety comes close to the grandeur of his, but because I respect him so much.



I took my dog for a walk this morning

‘Ere the advent of the sun.

Fall was heavy in the air

And the first hint of frost lay low on the lawn.

A lazy three-quarter moon

Hung tight against a treetop in the West.

Could this truly be the same shy moon

Which hid behind earth’s black shadow

Two mere nights ago?

My doggie paused to smell and mark his territory

Then pulled forcefully ahead.

By dawn’s encroaching glimmer

The ruddy and blanching leaves

Dotted the darkened greens about me

As onward we ambled around our suburban block.

A brown fringe of fallen foliage

Lined the edge of asphalt.

My small companion stopped and sniffed

Where yesterday had laid a silenced squirrel,

Its relative barking incessantly

From the quivering limbs above.

Some kind soul had scooped it up

And whisked it away from the view of passersby.

As we rounded the corner, morn’s soft rays

Arose in the East as a florescent vapor.

The roar of the mowers had been quelled for the season,                               

I mused, and I was glad.

We soon were home again—safe and warm.


Stanley J. St. Clair, 10-21-13 In honor of Lee Pennington

Moments that take our breath away

There’s a proverb that says, Life is not measured by the nember of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away. How true. With all of the ugliness we see on the news one might think that all is bleak–that no one cares–but that is not true. God cares for us all, and we are all in His hands.

If we paid less heed to media hype and spent more time on positive matters, we would see that there is much good to behold. So absorb yourself in your blessings today, not the evil which lurks in the dark corners of the minds of those who see no hope.

Think of the beauty of nature–the purple mountains’ majesty, the unconditional love of a mother for her child and that of the Creator for His creation. Read some inspiring poetry; watch an uplifting film.

The beauty, love and hope are out there for free. Inspiring poetry may be found in many places. One good source are books from St. Clair Publications like my Reflections on Life, Inspirational Poems of Encouragement by Philip C. Vinson and Apprentice on a Canadian poet and music teacher, Susan Flemming.

Lose yourself today in a moment which will take your breath away.

A poet and don’t know it

I am wrapping up phase one of my final phrase origin book. The original, On the Origin of the Cliches and Evolution of Idioms, continues to sell daily on Amazon both in America and also a number in the U.K. On the Origin of the Cliches, All New, Book II is also selling well.

The effort of the new book continues to consume much of my time. But the result is definitely worth it. I am now doing corrective formatting to agree with my new, larger page, smaller text version. It will approach 800 pages and is intended to be a trend-setter and standard-bearer for future books of its type. It will contain the phrases in my earlier books and many hundreds more. After this stage I shall begin first proofing, then two of my associates will also go over it carefully before I begin the final editing and proofing for publication, hopefully in late spring, 2013.

One of the entries is “Poet and don’t know it.” If you’ve ever made a rhyme without trying you may have had someone rattle off these witty words to you. Here is my entry for that phrase:

Poet and don’t know it

This sordonic statement is invoked when someone has apparently made an unintentional rhyme. It has been around in varying forms since the late-nineteenth century. The earliest known citation is from Niagara University’s (New York) Niagara Index, page 27, 1 October 1895:

“The author of that German poem, placed under our door must come to our office and identify himself with no less than three witnesses before we will pass judgement on its merits for publication.

“’We have a poet and don’t know it. If he had whiskers he’d be a go at.’”

The fact that the entire expression was in quotes leads to the opinion that it was already in use. Then in 1926 the following variation, which became more popular, appeared in Volume 20 of the Washington, DC, literary journal, Gargoyle Magazine as a part of a ‘Pat and Mike’ joke:

Pat: “You’re a poet and don’t know it, your feet show it; they’re Long- fellows.”

At St. Clair Publications we actually publish poets–the kind that KNOW IT and want to be read. Recently a friend made it known that she had a book of poetical prayers that she wanted to someday publish. We will be the ones with the honor of putting out her book.

If you have some poems that you believe are worthy of appearing in print, let me know and I will be happy to discuss it with you. I do have the option of accepting or rejecting anything, of course. We have guidelines and standards. Here’s wishing our readers a very merry holiday season.


The Heart of a Poet

Having the heart of a poet makes someone a bit different from the average person you meet on the street. Many of the greatest poets of all time were misunderstood by those around them, and often troubled.

From early youth I had an unquenchable thirst for good poetry. Some of my favorites were Poe, Hawthorne, and Kilmer. I not only enjoyed reading it, but had a strong urge to write it. My nineth grade English teacher spralled in my yearbook. ‘To the aspiring poet.’ To me I could have received no greater compliment.

We have published four books of poetry to date, and each is very different from the others. In August, 2008 I was in Halifax, Nova Scotia for a conferrence on Pre-Columbian voyages and met a most remarkable lady named Susan Flemming .She told me that she was a music teacher–and a poet! She had some poems that she wanted me to consider for publication. I told her that I would, and when I returned home we corresponded by email and phone. I found that she was indeed talented and published a book of her early work. I hope that later we can publish another. The book is called Apprentice on a Journey. In it, a short verse gives thoughts on poetry which took me aback:


 Poetry is concerned with the breath.

The part of us connected in the womb

to the universal sea.


Seer, to drag up from the depths of being.

To make known so one can forget.