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Christos Rigakos Mar 2013
it charged at me, this muscled bull enraged--
its flaring nostrils snarling, snorting breath,
a steam--unleashed from some unnoticed cage,
and trampled hap-strewn bookbags to their death,

along the closest aisle 'tween students' desks,
while on its beeline path straight toward me,
she, by some scalding fury magic hexed,
transformed into this vile monstrosity,

with hands-turned-talons grabbing clump of hair,
my side-yanked skull and body followed suit,
i tilted right and toppled with my chair,
'pon impact with the floor i faced her boot,

hot breath screamed to my face and singed my eyes,
obscenities, growled expletive assaults
so pummeled ears while spittle mixed my cries,
lambasting accusations showed my faults,

for i had done some very taboo thing,
was loud or spoke some word unwittingly,
and so was hung to die upon a string,
while lashings of her rage whipped welts on me,

after my execution was complete,
she buried me, my grave a league so deep
in homework, i was crushed before her feet,
and made a slave for all the year to keep.

(C)2013, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Oct 2012
there is a place i want to see
          which no man yet has seen
a city built around a tree
          where it has always been
where animals feed off the fruits
and no man's dared to step his boots
          where flirting sun in sky just smiles and preens

a city built around a tree
          which no man yet has seen?
how could a city none could see
          be built and always been?
who built it if it wasn't man?
could animals, and if they can
          would they also build zoos for you and me?

(C)2012, Christos Rigakos
Two septet stanzas of ABABCCB rhyme scheme which follow the structure of Eros & Psyche, except for the meter of 4-3-4-3-4-4-5.
Christos Rigakos Apr 2012
across the street
a clearance sale
at the antique shop
i wonder if they carry
my old lover's heart

(C)2002, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Oct 2012
A day will come when they'll collect my soul,
as they have done with all those before me,
to pass me through the forty different tolls.

To analyze my character's life role,
with words and deeds in burning third degree,
a day will come when they'll collect my soul.

My guardian, with good deeds in a bowl,
will show the toll booth keepers all of me,
to pass me through the forty different tolls.

Have I ordained to fill my empty bowl,
that I may pass through tolls efficiently?
A day will come when they'll collect my soul,

the day when I'll have reached my life's last goal,
but will they find a purity in me,
to pass me through the forty different tolls?

It won't suffice that I've a gaping hole,
with mourning's sufferings that I can't flee.
A day will come when they'll collect my soul,
to pass me through the forty different tolls.

(C)2009, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Oct 2014
B** egan the day with only half a face,
E xiled from normalcy with half-dead look.
L eft chewing on the right side without taste.
L eft side will not be moved except to droop.
S tress wakes the hypochondriac in me!
P er chance it was a stroke?  The Doc said, No.
A ll signs point to a common malady,
L eaving inflicted many out the know.
S urvival is assured, but some will find,
Y outh’s strengths have now been ordered left behind.

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
Iambic pentameter, quatrains and royal couplet.
Christos Rigakos Apr 2012
after the chocolates
only emptiness fills
this heart-shaped box
since you left I wonder
why mine keeps beating

(C)2001, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Apr 2012
all night
eluding my capture
holds me captive
in the morning

(C)2001, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Dec 2019
All who have come into our lives and left,
     have taken us with them and we of them.
     Though these are parts of which we are bereft,
     they've left within the imprints of a gem.
So priceless are the memories of when
     They crossed our five bridges to leave their mark
     Upon our hearts, adorning time called Then,
     That one mere thought of Then inflicts a spark:
A subtle rain, or storm of lightning arc,
     Across the carpet clouds in skies of mind,
     Flash long-gone faces smiling, glint or stark--
     These gem imprints in imprints left behind.
Although we are long broken, set apart,
In memories we'll always be one heart.

(C)2019, Christos Rigakos
Spenserian Sonnet
Christos Rigakos Mar 2014
An often wish, that time were stored somewhere,
Accessible to all, yet more to me,
A day relivable in all its flair,
To hear, to feel, to taste, to smell, to see.

Full sense-infused, the recreation'd be,
As real as present moment ever would,
A place and time to any time I'd flee,
To when and where I'd flee if flee I could.

If possible the question would be, should?
Should I relive a scene that's long since past,
Whose ground is gone upon which once I stood,
Whose sky has fled and clouds have long since cast?

Our memories whose present time has left,
Are lessons learned when of them we're bereft.

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
Spenserean Sonnet
Christos Rigakos Apr 2012
but tap-tapping
raindrops on window-sill.
Night sky's rumbling thunder in the

(C)2002, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Apr 2012
dearest lover
from my lonely longing
words of wishful rememberance

i command you
with desperate words aflame
like coals smoldering within me

or be consumed
i will and burn ablaze
for heat as this cannot be held

my screams whisper
my moans twist up in smoke
in memory alone you smile

(C)2002, Christos Rigakos
Cinquain Sequence
Christos Rigakos May 2012
A simple thing, no simpler than this:
the rising, falling of a breathing chest.
When gone, nothing is missed as much as this.

Another simple thing added to this:
the rise-fall thumping of a beating chest.
A simple thing, no simpler than this.

One day he laid, displayed, without a hiss,
his movements stilled, in frozen final rest.
When gone, nothing is missed as much as this.

I stared intently, watching for just this:
a hiccup or a twitch, a laugh in jest.
A simple thing, no simpler than this.

The days we played and laughed in sunny bliss,
I never once took notice of his chest.
When gone, nothing is missed as much as this.

And since the lid closed shut, this much I miss:
a simple kiss, a hug, the warmth of breast.
A simple thing, no simpler than this:
When gone, nothing is missed as much as this.

(C)2008, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Dec 2013
i walked along a strange and darkened place
the citizens of which abused themselves
a man who chewed his lip and ate his face
then laid inside a coffin's wooden shelves

aside his neighbors' corpses and their pets
and sang his song long after all his bones
were eaten clean, aligned in metric sets
beside the graveyard's glistened stones

the humid air, pneumonia in lungs
leaked out from nostrils as i ran away
slow motion through molasses climbing rungs
my fear of here and sanity left frayed

a woman over-hunched, upon my "hi",
like pill-bug touched had curled into herself
her head in **** and hissed her grumbled sigh
accused that I had killed the mighty elf

a girl who stabbed her migraine with a knife,
whose teeth were aspirins, dripped from bleeding gums
and claimed her husband was her lawful wife
was following his trail of stale breadcrumbs

town criers cried for Argentina, sobbed
"Evita was evicted from our hearts!"
then rushed upon me these un-living mobs
to eat my chest in torn and ****** parts

chihuahua babies swarmed my ankles hard
and bit with rubber teeth and razor gums
i fell and crushed them like a house of cards
they barked like children yelping in their slums

i bled to death from gaping hollow wounds
and flowed my soul into a sewer grate
under the darkened place's shining moon
an angry molten lava stream of hate.

(C)2013, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Apr 2012
as you pour the wine
while staring at me
it overflows
this heart of mine
with uncontainable love

(C)2007, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos May 2012
At Death's door all are banging,
"Let him out! Give him back!"
But Death pretends he's not at home,
until the knocking ceases.

(C)2008, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Oct 2012
A teardrop from a woman's eye,
contains a magic so immense,
to shake the stars out from the sky.

A man may unceasingly try
yet fail to match one as intense--
a teardrop from a woman's eye.

It matters not if truth or lie,
once one among the men is sensed
it shakes the stars out from the sky,

and men will rage forth low or high
to save the damsel from distress.
A teardrop from a woman's eye,

which can be conjured with a lie,
un-twines sinews of muscled men,
and shakes the stars out from the sky.

Her greatest weapon is to cry
and warriors will jump the fence.
A teardrop from a woman's eye
can shake the stars out from the sky.

(C)2008, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Jun 2012
a thousand what-ifs swarmed before my eyes,
and stung me as if I had rocked beehives,
the woulda-coulda-shouldas, if-only-I's,
all buzzed their screams, that he'd be still alive,

yet I had done all that I knew to do,
the breaths of life I gave him, much too late,
the EMT's three-quarter hour, their crew,
could not revive my father from his fate,

his heart had fibrillated, lifeless eyes,
were blind to all, his ears heard not our screams,
upon my breath his breathing finalized,
he fell to sleep the sleep where are no dreams,

now on that couch where father there reposed,
not we nor our dear cat to rest there goes

(C)2012, Christos Rigakos
English (Shakespearean) Sonnet

Rest in Peace, dearest Father,
2/1/1943 to 5/11/2012
Christos Rigakos Jul 2012
at the head
of the casket
receded hairline

(C)2012, Christos Rigakos

Rest in Peace, dad.
Christos Rigakos Aug 2012
autumn wind
the hand grasps
devoid of it
death is as elusive

(C)2007, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Jul 2012
the good old baritone advises her,
his sopranino daughter tweets disjoint,
arpeggio his point, her counterpoint
a syncopated rhythm of meter,

her high pitched protestations in her pleas,
and low-pitched grumbling sighings alternate,
as puntal, contrapuntal altercate,
to musically the rolling of her eyes,

his stern yet soft soprano wife defers,
while yielding to her baritone's movement,
conducting, though, the orchestrated theme,

as tenor, alto sons  caesur' occurs,
her soothing background voice reveals eschewment,
with daughter's movement stuck 'tween measures' beams

(C)2012, Christos Rigakos
Italian (Petrarchan) Sonnet
Christos Rigakos Apr 2012
behold your mother bent over with age,
who washes still your clothes over the tub,
and he whose joints now more frequent he rubs,
behold your father as your mirror gauge,
          for what he is, that also you will be,
          and how he leaves, you likewise will, so see

her old curved spine slight twisted won't deter,
the mighty worker from her daily chore,
of caring for the child-like man she bore,
for love, her duties she will not defer,
          for still she will admonish what is right,
          until she leaves your unattentive sight,

the once invincible and wise father,
now frail with muscles atrophied and weak,
persists beyond your stubborness to speak,
whose sage advice, to heed you will not bother,
          oh dear, with aging horns yet still a fawn,
          at whose feet will you sit when he is gone?

remember well your parents while they are,
while wrinkled trembling arms may still embrace,
to whisper in the ear and kiss your face,
before their mouths and ears will be too far,
          for one day you will find yourself alone,
          until your aging flesh departs from bone

(C)2012, Christos Rigakos
Heroic Sestet Narrative

A little wise advice to myself.  I'm not the best son.  Maybe if I keep reading, it will sink in.
Christos Rigakos Apr 2012
in warmth
we dress inside
a darkened dressing room
not caring for the fashion trend
this womb

in dark
and cold undress
ourselves to lie, to sleep,
not knowing of a fasion trend
this tomb

(C)2002, Christos Rigakos
Cinquain Sequence
Christos Rigakos May 2012
I dreamed, a city filled with roads,
where each road carried just one car,
and stretched past houses and abodes,
so far to east and west so far,

I dreamed, my brother drove his car,
it broke down, he got out and then,
he walked towards the morning star,
never to be seen again.

I dreamed, the years had passed away,
abandoned car now under sand,
I pine for it, yet understand,
its driver's in a different land.

(C)2008, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Aug 2012
brother's old pictures
in every room
his absence
father has escaped
into the television

(C)2007, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Apr 2012
in the casket

(C)2009, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Apr 2013
Like cotton puffs of white the clouds float by on cyan skies,
the lamb fur hassock of the angels praying in the skies.

Their occupancy hidden but for subtle clues for eyes,
a shadow in the cloud reveals an angel in the skies.

Their bows are permanent, their heads fall once but do not rise,
the stillness of the clouds betray the angels in the skies.

Their motionless prostration is their very best disguise,
creating doubt upon the earth of angels in the skies.

What of the consciousness of those in tombs we all surmise
have fled to scenes beyond the eyes among the clouds of skies?

Where are the shadows of their seats?  Despite our many tries,
we see none in their names we find cloud-written in the skies.

I call to those who've left too soon, their names among my cries.
Their answers whisper in the hiss of rain from cloudy skies.

(C)2013, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Aug 2012
cloud writing
across the sky
i seek his face

(C)2007, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Aug 2012
i grab an iron scythe and bolt a metal ball
unto its handle's bottom, roughly sharpening
its time-worn rusted blade between two flat-side stones,

a leather wrist strap hung below in case it falls
out of the swinging hand, to grasp what's happening
when metal slices human flesh down to the bone,

my questions, each with force that deeply penetrates
will breach her shield and nick her armor slicing wide
to move through flesh, expose the hidden living blood,

and all that's cryptic in her heart, although she hates
confessions, she will moan thus cleansing all inside
till secret truth has quick deluged in filthy flood

(C)2012, Christos Rigakos
Just an experiment with an "abc abc def def" rhyme scheme in iambic hexameter.
Christos Rigakos Apr 2020
One's lofty dreams, ambitious goals, what not;
     One's self-esteem, self-worth, self-praise and such:
Delusions of a stumbling drunken sot!
     Esteemed values whose worth weighs not so much.
One's intimates, loves, friends become a crutch;
     Of comforts, safety, food, concerns and care
Held tightly, are released from one's own touch,
     When oxygen is scarce and breath is rare,
Corona's taught us very well the worth of air!

(C)2020, Christos Rigakos
Spenserian Stanza
Christos Rigakos Apr 2012
coughing up
not able to
his breathing tube

(C)2012, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Dec 2012
dear man, you did one wrong, don't celebrate,
you'll hear again about it till this date,

dear man you did two wrongs, get set to flee,
she'll cry about your wrongs, they will be three,

you did three wrongs, start looking for the door,
when next you spat, she'll bring to you all four,

and lord forbid your four come back as five,
this pattern promulgates while you're alive,

when five wrongs then return to you as six,
you'll wish for tickets down the river Styx,

and six will show as seven different things,
and ten, eleven, only diamond rings

appease the wrath of woman but do fret,
for pachyderms and females don't forget,

your flaws will always exponential grow,
and this a man must always need to know.

(C)2012, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Jun 2012
dear wife of former marriage will you be
entrenched forever in your hidden spite,
against your former husband tauntingly
in flaunting other men who are more right,

when each succeeding man, like one before,
has failed as per his character so wrong,
who rush so passionately through your door,
and exit likewise at your final gong,

while all the while the husband whom you left,
so steadfast here remains the best of them,
yet suffers silently of wife bereft,
a prince among a crowd of pauper men,

open your eyes and see what you once knew,
i hold the only heart that loved you true

(C)2012, Christos Rigakos
English (Shakespearean) Sonnet
Christos Rigakos Aug 2012
without you  here   or    even     near      inhaling's       easier        for         me.

(C)2012, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Mar 2012
eight months we loved and fought with equal rage
upon the net's equator spinning round
we baked our flesh in sun of summer's age
and died on winter's snow filled concrete ground

this, every day a battle to the death
we slaughtered one another to the grave
then making love, restoring life with breath
we'd soar back to the skies embraced and saved

each day has been a lifetime full of life
lived fully in our love den's angry place
ineffable our love in passion's strife
so many resurrections in one space

and now too tired to raise again the sword
we rest with silenced love and not a word

(C)2012, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Nov 2014
Eight years have not diminished buried pain,
nor dulled the temperature of love beheld.
We proudly wear your dark and crimson stain--
our mark of love, remembrance long held.

We miss that flesh, dismantled long ago,
that lived to fill our world so vibrantly,
which held on till by slumber had to go--
its vibrant spirit from it had to flee.

And now we hush a moment, welling tears,
remembering your life, recalling death,
to honor your own silence of eight years,
that so began with your own final breath.

The silence of your void rings in the ear,
the only sound of you remaining here.

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
English (Shakespearean) Sonnet
Christos Rigakos Sep 2012
empty bench
beside a grave

(C)2012, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Apr 2012
with brother
in the grave
my spirit
without him an empty shell
now roams the earth

(C)2007, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Oct 2012
father's face
buried in his hands
the weight of grief

(C)1999, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Apr 2012
line my bare shelves,
barely--line my bare walls,
collecting emptiness to fill
my house.

(C)2002, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Jul 2012
with iron bolts rust-fastened to her copper face,
her brass eyes only move her pupils elsewhere far,
resolved and steel-willed she has left my side, her place,
her gaze and love for me now hang upon a star,

cold metal forged within her furnace blasted high,
a permanent visage no more will feign to move,
her thoughts aloft so far, the sight of her so nigh,
she's stopped the stopwatch of my time to prove,

amazing how the human flesh can turn to steel,
how fascinating transmutations quickly peak,
how one so loving woman quick unlearns to feel,
how one who knew no silence quick unlearns to speak,

unraveled slow to tatters, now we've come undone,
i sleep the moonless night that's lost its living sun

(C)2012, Christos Rigakos
English (Shakespearean) Sonnet in iambic hexameter
Christos Rigakos Apr 2012
fluttering wings
suddenly a bare branch
left shaking
my heart soars to the skies
with the thought of you

(C)2007, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Nov 2019
For every soul my soul does meet,
     they are a soulmate on their way.
I am the sole pressed under feet,
     replaced when fully worn away.
We are both sole-mates, they and I,
     most symbiotic, as you see.
And when they leave I carry nigh,
     the scent of memories of we.

(C)2019, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Sep 2012
for months we grew in knowledge and in love,
through loving--leaving--loving, holding still,
always both snarling wolves and cooing doves,
both love and anger rendered my heart ill,

i bid her fond farewell but for a spell,
to clear the mind and cleanse the ailing heart,
i asked, please wait, yet if you can't, be well,
and find a good man, make a brand new start,

i watch her from my secret distant place,
her growing closeness to a man i chose,
my blessing sits half-twisted in my face,
both wishing well and not, to what now grows,

though bluntly wrong for me i so adore,
the one i've loved for months behind my door

(C)2012, Christos Rigakos
English (Shakespearean) Sonnet
Christos Rigakos Apr 2012
Full moon--
lone traveler
in a boat of white cloud,
drifts across the silent dark
night sky.

(C)2002, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Apr 2014
The congressman from Mars whose many gaffes
Led to his drop in ratings at the poll,
And whose awful decisions marred his role,
Had found his explanation drowned in laughs.

And following his footsteps and his paths
The congressman from Venus bared his soul,
Explained why his career has borne its toll,
By drawing on his skin some stats and graphs.

Because I'm green, the Martian dared to tell
Constituents, that's why I'm hated so!
Because I'm purple, the Venusian cried

Unto an Earth whose races blended well
To shades of black, and who have learned to know
That gaffes behind a color can not hide.

(C)2014, Christos Rigakos
Italian (Petrarchan) Sonnet
Christos Rigakos Jul 2012
here lies a name etched into marble stone,
a date of birth, a date of death as well,
a history that now has left its bone,
with nothing more to do, nothing to tell,

inductive reasoning may well infer
the tiny puzzle pieces into one
mere picture, full or partial, one interred
human, or not, you may as well be done,

i've lived an uneventful hidden life,
no accolades, nor sitting mute ovations,
but struggled unsuccessfuly in strife,
a lifetime night, with rare lightning occasions,

so now get up and walk along your way,
make room for other puzzled minds to fray

(C)2012, Christos Rigakos
English (Shakespearean) Sonnet
Christos Rigakos Jan 2013
He claimed to harness energy, not found,
imagined, but not measured from the ground,

and from the positive of cells now known,
like energies our knowledge in has grown,

The energies, all positive, that flow,
so do, unblocked by furniture for show,

and by the absence of the negative,
slow-shooed by candle color, scent it gives,

This he believed and now more so believes,
unmeasured energy that comes and leaves,

is in all things and is all things in form,
for every form is energy in dorm,

and now he looks at everyone the same,
as patterned energies upon a plane.

(C)2013, Christos Rigakos
Rhyming Couplets
Christos Rigakos Apr 2012
he lays upon a hammock in the garden,
to watch the sun slow travel 'cross the sky,
weighed down by love long gone, profanely ardent,
apollo's fiery chariot drags his eye,

and when the sun god's sunk into the bay,
the glow of hope for her return now cooled,
his eyes then close upon the fruitless day,
his prayers to apollo overruled,

in dreams, there hades beckons him to come,
a room has been prepared that he may stay,
enjoy a painless state existing numb,
where no more he will rue the light of day,

yet he, who can not live without her breath,
likewise can not depart from her in death

(C)2012, Christos Rigakos
English (Shakespearean) Sonnet
Christos Rigakos Dec 2019
her ***** turned an arid grave
     when she removed her heart
into her lover's hand to save
     before his downward cart
and now they live vicariously
within her loving memory
     her husband far removed and set apart

(C)2019, Christos Rigakos
Christos Rigakos Oct 2012
her marble bones, cemented to her skin,
her warmth, imagined, from this porcelain,
encased a heart, if any, in its shell,
which beat for me as far as i could tell,
yet beat for some as well towards the end,
though in the end i couldn't tell apart,
the sounds of stone and non-existent heart.

(C)2006, Christos Rigakos
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