Original Art, Photography, Music, Poetry and Prose

NOTICE: Copyright & License. All art, photography, music, poetry, and prose contained herein (hereafter referred to as the "works") are the original and sole work of James L. Simister, and Copyright ©1992-2005 by James L. Simister. Permission is hereby granted to you, the viewer, to view, copy, and use any of these works for your own personal, private use. Use of these works, or derivative works thereof, commercially or in publication, is forbidden without the express written consent of the author. All other rights are reserved.


One of my side hobbies (when I get away from the computer) is to take pictures. And I have plenty of photos to prove it. Here is just a sampling of some of my favorite vacation spots. All pictures were taken with a Pentax K-1000 SLR. Most pictures were taken using a Vivitar 28-210 f2.8-3.5 zoom lens; those from Hawaii were taken using the original Pentax 50mm f2.0 lens.

Delicate Arch  Delicate Arch, Arches National Park, UT. [reg - 41K] [full - 105K]
Sunrise on Kawaii  Sunrise on Kawaii Island, HI. [reg - 52K] [full - 134K]
Sunset on Upper Geyser Basin  Sunset on Upper Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park, WY. [reg - 53K]
Moon Over Trees Moon Over Trees, Black Sand Basin, Yellowstone National Park, WY. [reg - 94K]


A long time ago I got a fancy idea of composing music using my parents' Yamaha SY22 keyboard and TG55 tone generator. Since getting married, however, I haven't found the time to spend on a keyboard. Nor do I have such convenient access to the luxuries of my parents' sound system. Nevertheless, my father found some of my old compositions and was kind enough to convert them into MP3 music files for me. Enjoy.

Download Description
[MP3 - 3.8MB]  Islander on the Beach, from the Hawaiian Islander Collection.
[MP3 - 4.8MB]  Hawaiian Dreams, from the Hawaiian Islander Collection.


What better way to start out a set of compositions than with something based on emotions? After all, that's what either inspires or is the main content of almost any composition. This short thought came late one night as I was groping for understanding and meaning in my life. Well, okay, to be truthful, I was trying to figure out women... I should've learned! :)

Lost... lost... in a timeless eternity of neverending emotions, an infinite warp from reality to the unknown... Everything is shattered. Dwindling winds upon the sea, my sail no longer can sail... Dreams of yesteryear echo through the hollow clusters of my mind, and scatter.

Then I found my life was taking a turn. I found a girl who really cared about me!

Majestic towers soar through the sky and pierce the heavens, but a bright new sun rises across the snow-packed tips of the jagged rockies, flooding my soul with warmth and exhileration. The rays penetrate like needles of thunder, igniting the flame that once burned so dim. Sparkling flares of new dreams explode in my mind and crush the grasp of chaotic entropy.


I have to admit I'm a romantic. At least deep down inside, anyway. My guess is that most people will never see that side of me, except here of course. There is one, however, that has seen that side of me, and while she's around, I can't hide it, no matter how hard I try. She has been a constant inspiration to me, and always will be. I dedicate these poems to you, Amber. I love you!


I want so much to take you on a journey through the skies,
Across the roaring rivers, and the Rocky Mountain highs.
The seas will be no barrier for where we'll want to go
Because when we're together; no doubt, you'll surely know...

Oh how I want to see you, to catch your shining face,
To feel your arm around me, your loving, warm embrace.
Each second we're apart, my love for you must rise,
And when we're reunited, my love, you'll realize...

The time we spend together, we hold each other tight.
We tell each other everything, and talk all through the night.
The splendid movies we love to see, the many things we try
All come down to the simple fact, they all do testify...

The many things we say, the several things we do...
And every time we say "It's right", to me, I feel it's true.
Our paths seem far and distant now, but soon they will be one,
For there's nothing in this earthly world that can take our love undone.

I love you.

-- James L. Simister

The Promise of Love

Can you remember, not very long ago?
Several years have passed, it's true, do you recall it, though?
A time when things were pure and white, a time where all found love,
Where peace and joy were plentiful, in His Kingdom up above.
We sat down close together, where we opened our calls to life.
Would we be sent to lands far distant, midst famine, war and strife?
Or would we share that Promised Land, upon His blessed Earth,
Where everyone has right to choose, and gain their rightful mirth?

I promised you, you promised me, we'd meet there underneath that tree.
I said to you, you said to me, "I love you dear, do you love me?"
I held you close, you hugged me tight, oh how I dreaded to leave that night,
For the reply came clear in unity, "Yes, I love you most abundantly!"

No matter what the printing read, I simply had no fear.
There is a way, we'll meet someday, if we'll His laws adhere.
"Eternal Life ye shall obtain," His covenant so true,
I promised Him to do His will, and return back home with you.
The plan was set, our last good-byes were said midst tears of cheerful cries.
"Together we will be again," as I searched deep into your eyes.
Great love I felt, no other kind, so long I've sought that love divine!
But it comes to me in purity, whene'er your lips touch mine.

I promised you, you promised me, we'd meet there underneath that tree.
I said to you, you said to me, "I love you dear, do you love me?"
I held you close, you hugged me tight, oh how I dreaded to leave that night,
For the reply came clear in unity, "Yes, I love you most abundantly!"

-- James L. Simister

As I was serving a two-year mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, I was standing in front of my laptop computer one afternoon (it was perched on the top of a dresser, since space in the apartment was scarse), writing my family here in Salt Lake City. I paused for a moment, and my mind started to reflect on a great prophet who lived long ago, and whose name was Moroni, son of Mormon. The people of the time had rejected the words of the prophets, and become quite an evil race. One group of people, calling themselves Lamanites, were at war with the other group, the Nephites. Neither nation adhered to the teachings or principles of the Gospel of Jesus Christ; there were but few people who were righteous. One, however, was Moroni, who lived to witness the complete destruction of his nation, the Nephites. He was hunted and sought after for years, but managed to escape and relate to us the tale. With him, he took the writings of the prophets and the revelations of the Lord to His people, and preserved them to come forth in these latter days. We have them today as The Book of Mormon, Another Testament of Jesus Christ. Moroni's story, and many others found in The Book of Mormon, inspired this poem, which I incorporated into my letter.

Moroni's Plea

I stand as a warrior; on Cumorah I reign,
A leader of thousands, but none will remain.
I've seen their betrayal, their souls filled with pride,
The world is their captor, their God they've denied!

What's lacking, I question, what more could I write?
The prophets have stated, Let Christ be your light!
Yet they set at naught the counsel of Him
Who gave up His life, that ours be not grim.

They fight without honor; no victory to claim!
Even those who had once believed on Christ's name.
From a glorious nation with praise in God's sight,
To a faithless generation and iniquitous plight.

The future may hold keys to a new dispensation,
Though here His kingdom left with complete desolation
But the offer remains for all who will hearken:
Have faith and repent - thy path shall not darken!

Yet alone I remain and witness this fate
Of a nation whose heart has turned into hate.
The battle is over, my brethren defeated,
A promise to all when God's laws they've mistreated.

I wander withersoever I can,
Protecting these writings; preserving God's plan.
I elude enemy sight, for these mighty words must
Speak forth out of the ground - a voice whispering from the dust.

My hope turns to thee, if you may only read
The words of these men; as a prophet I plead!
Your chance remains if you but submit
To our glorious Father, every strength, every wit.

I seal this record, my testimony true,
That Christ is our Savior, He loves me and you.
Oh come, my dear brother, my sister, my friend,
To the feast of our Savior, that hath not an end.

I exhort you to remember the things which Christ taught,
For the time speedily cometh; ye shall know I lie not.
For ye shall see me at the great bar of Jehovah,
And you'll see I was that prophet that stood on Cumorah.

-- James L. Simister

I really started writing poetry in my high school years, much to the dismay of my English instructors. You know how they always have those sections in their class sometime during the year where their poor students end up writing and critiquing poetry? I never did like that time of year. It's a wonder I even liked poetry after their classes! However, one teacher caught my interest when she assigned the class to write an original work of parody on a well-known poem or song. Here's what I produced with the song "Somewhere Out There" in mind:

Something In There

Something in there
Among my microchips.
Some bit's gettin' dumped out,
And giving me the slips.
Something in there
Something's sparking through air
That shorts out my computer,
And that small something in there.

And even though I know how very hard it is to find
It helps to know I might be usin' my own brilliant mind.
And when the snaps begin to sing a lonesome lullaby
I can't begin to tell you just how bad I fancy why.

Something in there
If only I could fix
Then it would be better
Something in there,
Where I know
The tricks.

And even though I know how very hard it is to find
It helps to know I might be usin' my own brilliant mind.
And when the snaps begin to sing a lonesome lullaby
I can't begin to tell you just how bad I want to die.

Something in there
If only I could fix (only I could fix)
Then it would be better
Something in there,
Where I know
The tricks.

-- James L. Simister

Another interesting idea flowed from my fingertips the night before two poems were due in my AP English class. I always seem to do my best work at about 3:00AM...

Writing Poetry

The words cannot flow from my mind
To this blank, white page
Nor from my wandering fingertips
To my cathode cage.

A mental block has taken seat
Between me and poetry,
Weights are tugging at my eyes,
Can't I plead insanity?

Electric bills are soaring high
My brain has turned to dust,
The keyboard has a soggy dent,
And quickly starts to rust.

Consciousness is fading fast
And hope is nearly dead,
It's time to finally give it up
And crawl into my bed.

-- James L. Simister

Within a few blocks of my house lies City Creek Canyon, a place my family and I would frequent throughout each summer. Nestled a few miles into the canyon are several picnic areas, hiking trails, springs and streams, and splendid beauty one would never imagine could exist so close to a major metropolis. My love for the outdoors helped spark the theme for this poem, but spring break was just around the corner, and I'm sure it shared a role in picking the theme as well.

Rescue Me

Brilliant leaves shine from the trees
As I wander down the canyon,
Grazing on cheerful, vibrant colors
One's eyes can't help but fall on.
God's works pierce through that hidden veil
In the simple, tiny flowers,
From golden grass and yellow buds
To majestic mountain towers.

Across the oceans, upon the waves,
Down canyon mountains, inside of caves,
My heart cries out, please rescue me
From my city life.

Bright sunlight splashes on my face,
Crystal water in the stream,
Evergreens standing tall and strong
Adding to my dazzling dream.
Snaky trails and paths I take
Carry me where I crave to be.
Where northern lights dance in the sky,
Where God might hear my plea.

Across the oceans, upon the waves,
Down canyon mountains, inside of caves,
My heart cries out, please rescue me!
From my city life.
Oh, my heart cries out, please rescue us
From our city life.

-- James L. Simister

It may not quite look like it, but this poem was really inspired by a trip to Hawaii several years prior to it's writing. I was looking over a few of my old photographs from '88 and possibly my best shot ever reminded me of the tropical trees, sandy beaches, and most of all, the sand crabs that would scurry to and fro at dusk. Along with these reminders were scattered an array of images from a boating/hiking trip I had taken recently with my family and my brother-in-law's family, up in the Uintah mountains of Utah. There, pine trees are the commodity along the shores of a lake, with crisp mountain air enhancing the feeling of pure serenity. Both of these locations exemplify where I like to be (or at least where I take myself in spirit if I can't be there in person) as I search for various answers in life. No, the answers don't come from the location, but from the heart, no matter where we might be.

For the life of me, I can't figure out what inspired this poem or when I wrote it, but it's worth sticking in here. You might have noticed by now that the majority of my poems have a spiritual theme or overtone. The gospel of Jesus Christ is an important part of my life, and I thank my Heavenly Father daily for the many gifts and blessings He has given me. Perhaps this poem can remind both you and I to always remember Him, and let the God of Glory, our Heavenly King, lead us back home.

The People

The Ten Commandments came to us
Through the voice of God,
But the people chose not the hearken;
Not to hold on to the rod.

Instead they built a golden calf
And knelt to it to pray,
To covet, worship, idolize,
All against God's way.

But God gave them Commandment Two,
And condemned each one by hand
To never set a single foot
Upon the Promised Land.

-- James L. Simister

More poems may come as I find them on my various disks...