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 Mar 2016
Nathaniel Brenner
Often times I wish to go,
To flee far from these city lights.
Often times I wish to roam,
Lay on my back, these starry nights.

And so I do, for this is freedom,
The choice is yours and mine.
As heat dies and streetlights hum,
The sun will cease to shine.

Retreat now, no, not flee,
The city fades to but a speck.
Tires hum, and every tree,
Blurs past while on this trek.

Highway turns to country road,
Asphalt gives way to gravel.
It matters not what is below,
Nor which way is traveled.

North, south, east, or west,
They all lead to perfect places.
Into the darkness, heaven's chest,
Away from familiar spaces.

The engine stops, darkness stares,
Reaching this destination.
The night sounds fill the air,
Sparking fascination.

Moonlit sights fill it all,
With gentle shadows cast.
Beauty found as darkness falls,
Heartbeats thumping fast.

Fireflies dance in the fields,
As beauty multiplies.
But this not all the darkness yields,
You have yet to see the skies.

Lay a blanket out on the bed,
Less you begin to float away.
Let silence calm the weary head,
There is little left to say.

Upon your back, just gaze up,
There is nothing more to do.
A night here is just enough,
Let it speak to you.

Infinity stretches on,
Unfathomable to our being.
So many stars here and beyond,
Far past our own seeing.

A million dots on heaven's floor,
They twinkle and they shine.
Oh so many, many more,
Impossible to define.

Events come back into perspective,
Quarrels seem so small.
For here there is but one directive,
To live and love it all.

Beyond the beauty, something waits,
I know not for you, but I.
Passing through the iron gates,
Finding depth within the sky.

Insignificance, boldly stark,
Does it not make you quake?
We are but specks in the dark,
Fearing each benign mistake.

We run about, timing life,
What is this breakneck pace?
A marble filled with toils of strife,
Careening off through space.

Staring up to infinity,
Does it not seem insane?
Man's ego, what such fallacy,
Cringing once again.

Introspection yields such truth,
But tires out the mind.
Innocence is not just of youth,
It is only hard to find.

This is where peace is found,
Where fear and nerves find rest.
This the place where silence resounds,
Where hearts find an open nest.

Snap back to the moment,
Feel again the here and now.
Watch slowly, peaceful movements,
As each star takes a bow.

The moonlight greets you as a friend,
Starlight endowed in your eyes.
And though you know it soon must end,
These are not the final goodbyes.

Roll up the dewdrop blanket,
Stow it back away.
It is time to collect the bet,
To face it all but never sway.

One last look up to heaven,
As the night time music plays.
Incredible nights, such gifts given,
Just perfect to star gaze.

For Brittany
 Mar 2016
Nathaniel Brenner
I know you are there, somewhere.
I believe you must exist.
All my life I've dreamed of you,
All my life I've hit and missed.

Goals each come easy to me,
Never failing to score my desires.
Yet love has come and gone with years,
Continuous cycle of sparks and fires.

Working hard to become myself,
To be someone worth needing or wanting.
I knew that if I loved myself first,
You might see someone worth loving.

Through all the worlds that I have achieved,
I've learned I don't do it for myself.
The hours in iron, in the books, on the field,
They weren't for me, but for someone else.

They were all for you, for you,
Whose name I do not yet know.
Everything I have built or achieved,
Was only just for show.

It was to make me the person I am today,
The man now armed to love.
It was to show me who I needed finding,
To build character worth dreaming of.

I know my campaign to soon bear fruit,
For how can I, or you, so quickly fail?
We've made it this far, we've tried so hard,
Both taking the less beaten trail.

Every mouth we have kissed,
Every lover held in the night,
Each has only been practice, for you and I,
Each that we might get it right.

So come to me my love,
My anticipation weighs heavy.
I've practiced years for you, and only you,
Come and find me ready.
 Mar 2016
Nathaniel Brenner
She shuts the door
Flips the switch
Calls my name
Tosses the covers
Hair in my face
Scent in my nose
Lips still on my tongue
Moving her hips beside me
Stirring the heart inside me
Eyes shutting reluctantly

Never a greater peace
Than when she falls asleep
Held tightly in my arms
 Feb 2016
Nathaniel Brenner
I've broken my rules, and unto what end?
The past I regret, I've failed to ammend.
Unto darkness, that the unknown.
Unto the path, still yet alone.

Forever onward, to never cease,
This the curse that married me.
The manic state, the flooded mind,
Always near, not far behind.

Into the darkness, thunderous woes,
My soul beneath the fire flows.
Blackened flames, obsidian sparks,
Creating scars, burning marks.

Faster, faster, forever on!
The rushing wind my only song.
Burning pains, poisons bled,
This persecution, bathed in red.

Hounded and chased, like a game,
The demons inside feed on the pain.
Running, running, will it end?
Begotten fury, I can't pretend.

The pounding, the pressure,
Both apart and together,
Maddening, insufferable agony,
Each new second, brand new tragedy.

Faster, faster, to ease the dying,
This the punishment, this the trying.
The last, the last, it begins to near,
The end, the end, so ever dear!

The agony, vile torment,
Torture never better spent.
The collapse, the collision,
The ****** rules and decision.

The ending finally, finally here,
Nothing before evoked such fear.
Through the darkness, the unknown,
Through it all, tormented alone.
 Feb 2016
Nathaniel Brenner
Her eyes they twinkle,
Sparkle and shine.
Dark, light, dark again,
Such perfect design.

Her laugh runs free,
Like a mountain stream,
So smooth and surreal,
As though a dream.

With hair that flows,
Such gentle grace,
It retains its glory,
When out of place.

A smile that shines,
So incredibly bright.
It flashes and grins,
Lighting the night.

Her physical beauty,
Perfection it may be,
Is not the only beauty,
That one can see.

Her heart, her heart.
Words cannot describe.
So cold, so warm,
So many things inside.

So good and so golden,
Such warmth and invitation.
Intricate and delicate,
A web of fascination.

Her inner beauty,
Beyond compare.
Leaves other girls,
With such despair.

They look upon her,
In all her glory,
Crying out,
In all their fury.

But she bears the weight,
With poise and grace.
A perfect woman,
Beyond distaste.

She bends the knee,
Without asking.
Men line up behind her,
Glory basking.

But they in vain,
For her heart lies elsewhere.
I'll never understand,
Just how it got there.

It lies with me,
In my gentle hands.
It warms my soul,
And hears my plans.

How she loves me,
I'll never know.
Perhaps predestined,
From long long ago.

But she is my gift,
All the beauty that I have.
She is my joy,
That which makes me laugh.

I love her dearly,
Moreso than my life.
I love her even more,
Than she loved the knife.

Her scars don't haunt us,
The opposite is true.
The blood she spilled reminds me,
Her strength sees her through.

My heart belongs with her,
Her image fills my dreams.
In my imagination of the future,
She stars in every scene.

She is more than perfection,
Her beauty beyond sublime.
Her heart all I've dreamt of,
I've already given her mine.
 Mar 2015
Nathaniel Brenner
5** Years
1825 Days
43800 Hours
2628000 Minutes
157680000 Seconds

Of my life.

That is how much you took from me.
The time I spent dying.
That is how much I gave for you.
The time I spent trying.

That is how long that I have dreamed.
The time I spent away.
That is how long it took me to understand.
The time I spent delayed.

Forever doesn't seem so long,
Once the water finally clears.
The filth all swept down the drain,
With imaginary tears.

The story of the hero,
Though mournful to behold,
Does bring to light a glorious end,
The one I soon will hold.

Five long, sad, years,
Spent in something like misery.
They shaped the person I've become,
They defined the who of me.

They cured me of all weakness,
Of hope and love and light.
They broke me down and built me up.
Inspiring confidence to flight.

Nearly two thousand days,
Not one did miss a thought of you.
Such emotion did they inspire!
But alas I made it through.

I know those days to be over,
For you are left behind.
Twenty four hours passed,
Not a hint of you on my mind.

Forty thousand hours,
What a joke that number seems.
Yet over ten thousand,
Spent seeing you in my dreams.

Now hours are spent alive,
Full bodied and whole.
None spent lost in hopeless dreams,
Warm bodies against the cold.

Millions of minutes you ruled my heart,
You who governed my desire.
I laugh aloud at the thoughts,
Of the weakness you inspired.

Looking back at me, I can see,
Each moment spent a mistake.
But as is the nature of such things,
Those again I'll never make.

A hundred million seconds.
That is how long I loved you.
Up until the very last,
I knew it to be true.

Like forbidden fruit on sweetest vine,
I truly wished to partake.
But through the years, days, hours, minutes, seconds,
You were my biggest mistake.
 Mar 2015
Nathaniel Brenner
"Hey loverboy," she says. I don't respond.*

A rough draft excerpt from my story, Fictional Truth.

“Hey loverboy,” she says. I don’t respond. I enjoy ignoring her for a moment after I come out of a day dream.

“Hey. Jake. Snap out of it boy. Time to come back to earth,” she says with her usual tone of pleased annoyance. This time I leave the world inside my head and return to reality. Slowly turning my head to the right, I can see those deep blue eyes gazing up. I never get tired of her eyes.

“Come on, you said you’d help me here.”

“Sorry,” I say with a half grin and my best attempt at contrition. I look down to the papers in her lap. Right, math. I was helping her with calculus. She was really very good at math. We were in the same class, but she was two years younger than me after skipping two grades in elementary school.

“This one you just take the derivative of your function and plug in these two values.” I can remember these things effortlessly now, which was a huge accomplishment for someone who doesn't particularly like math.

“See, this is why I keep you around,” she says, those rosy lips that I so adored pulled into a little smirk. She reaches up and kisses me. She always seems to find an excuse to kiss me. “You can go back to daydreaming now.” Indeed I do, retreating back to the dreamscape inside my head. This time I think back to when I met Clara.

I had just arrived on campus, a bright eyed college freshman. There I was, lost in a sea of beautiful women. Small private schools had never been kind to me in that regard. Everything on campus was a wonder. Nobody from my high school had come here and I was very much alone but I didn't mind, I had outgrown most of my high school friends long ago. It was long past time for me to expand my horizons.

I found myself standing in front of a massive glass building. I wasn't past checking my reflection in the glass windows. Had to make sure my hair still looked as good as it did when I arrived. Who knew when I might run in to? Opening the doors I caught a waft of the bookstore smell, unlike anything I expected. At home the bookstores were small, with dusty leather covers that begged to be handled and old people that smelled like coffee. This was completely different. The odor of panicked freshman and newly bound textbooks permeated the air. I decided right then I wouldn't be spending much time there.

There was a long line extending towards the back of the building. Not knowing better, I assumed it was the line I was supposed to be in and slowly made my way to the rear. This would take forever. I pulled out my phone and started on another game of Angry Birds. I had been killing evil pigs for almost five minutes when I began to feel like I was being watched. Sure enough I glanced up to see a large pair of deep blue eyes looking at me.

“You know, some psychologists say that technology is making us less social,” said the girl looking up at me. I couldn't respond. She had straight black hair pulled behind her in a long ponytail. She had a small, perfectly formed nose with what seemed like a sea of freckles on it. Even more freckles danced on her cheeks. She was several inches shorter than me, maybe 5’9” and had on tight jean shorts and a black tank top that exposed only the most tantalizing amount of cleavage.

“So I’m just starting to feel a little uncomfortable with you ******* me with your eyes like that,” she said with the smirk on her face that I would soon come to know.

“Sorry,” I said, a tiny grin tugging at the corner of my mouth, “You surprised me a bit.”

“I’m Clara. This is the point in conversation where you tell me your name.” I liked her already. She had confidence and wit that was both abrasive and attractive.

“I’m Jake, pleased to meet you.” ****, I was smooth, like a wagon over rocks. “Are you a freshman too?”

“Yep. Just got here. I don’t think this line is moving.” I really liked the way little dimples appeared at the corners of her mouth even when she frowned slightly.

“It really doesn't seem to be. At least I have pleasant company,” I said. Oh man I was so smooth! I was really proud of myself right there. Flirting was hard with pretty girls, they seemed to throw me off balance.

“Well, that was the least offensive flirting I've heard all day,” she replied. Good gosh this girl was straightforward. “It’s a good thing you’re cute or I might not have accepted that.” Cute. Okay, I could work with cute. “So you’re in psychology 1000?” she asked.

“Nope, I took that during high school.” I replied. Why would she ask that?

“Well, you’re standing in the psychology book pickup line.” She said with a slightly puzzled look on her face. I definitely was not in psychology.

“Oh, Psychology! I, uh, I thought you said, uh, philanthropy. Nope, I’m definitely in the right line." Okay, that was a lie and I was at least 100% sure philanthropy was not a class. But hey, I was under pressure. She looked at me like I was slightly on drugs but moved on without hesitation.

We talked about various meaningless things while the line crept closer to the back of the store. The stunningly blue shade of her eyes made it very difficult to focus on conversation. When we got to the pickup window, she paid for her book and stepped to the side, watching me. I decided to bow out of buying a several hundred dollar book just to avoid looking like an idiot. I comforted myself with the fact that she might think it was funny.

“Soooo. I’m not really in philanthropy. Or psychology. I just didn't want to stop talking to you just yet.” I said with a sheepish grin. Luckily for me, she laughed.

“Alright then Mr. Jake, what books do you really need? Maybe we can go stand in line again.” I listed off several books that I needed for classes.

“Calculus. I need that one as well. Come on silly.” She turned her back and started walking. I followed right on her heels, a goofy grin plastered all over my face.

That was my first interaction with Clara. We spent the next two hours gathering all of our books, and at the end I carried her rather large pile back to her dorm room. I was promptly rewarded with her phone number and some cookies that her mom had packed.

“Hey. What about this one?” Clara’s voice comes from beside me. I lean over to look at the paper again.

“This time just take the anti-derivative of cosine and solve for x.”

“Oh right. That's the last one.”

“What do you want to do now?” I ask.

“How about we go to your room and see if we can make your roommate uncomfortable enough to leave?” She says with a mischievous grin, bringing those deep blue eyes nearer to mine. She always seems to find an excuse to kiss me.
A rough draft excerpt from my short story, Fictional Truth.
 Mar 2015
Nathaniel Brenner
To whisper "I love you" into her ear,
The greatest joy of my life.
Tickling hair as I lay near,
Brightest star in my night.

Here she stars on a stage,
Overwhelming the crowd.
Grace unmet in every age,
Their silent applause roars loud.

I long to be a part of her,
To revel in her soul.
My darker depths begin to stir,
When I relenquish my control.

I cannot help the way I am,
So in love and so alive.
She is the sun and I the sand,
Playing in the beach of life.

Her toes form in tiny curls,
When in her sleep she dreams.
I long to know the dreaming worlds,
When she lies softly beside me.

Where does she wander nightly,
When she drifts off into sleep?
Soft breathing, ever lightly,
Her mind delving deep.

To whisper "I love you" into her ear,
The purpose for which I exist.
To pull her closer, hold her near,
Nothing greater than this.
 Mar 2015
Nathaniel Brenner
Sometimes, rarely often,
I lie awake, awake at night.
I wonder, wander, ponder,
The theme of you and I.

Though my soul blooms sick,
With ever lasting, lasting doubt,
I try to find, fend, comprehend,
Just how I'll go without.

You and I, such doomed hope,
This play of such, such cruelty.
Fate molded, melded, welded,
I to you and you to me.

Through scenes of flawed perfection,
We dance, dance and sigh.
Still flitting, flaunting, wanting,
Our freedom and the sky.
 Mar 2015
Nathaniel Brenner
She sells herself to the highest bidder,
This is the auction for her body.
Flaunting curves of heavenly perfection,
Both her business and her hobby.

She likes to tease the boys,
But loves to torture the men.
Something mysterious, dark, sublime,
It never fails to draw them in.


She reads both tabloids and the classics,
This the debate for her mind.
Lost within the gossip but,
Desiring substance of greater kind.

She dreams of high society,
Found in her ancient texts,
But gets off to photos of celebrities,
And the rumors of who ***** next.


She sifts through knights and thieves,
This is the courtship of her heart.
She loves to play with the suitors,
Tearing them each apart.

They come in droves to ask her hand,
She toys with all kinds alike.
Bending knee or savage romance,
Unable to decide which she likes.


She lies awake unable to sleep,
This is the battle for her soul.
Which is it that she will be?
Her actions take their toll.

She dreams of fields bathed in white,
Innocence pure and plain.
But she loves the dark and dangerous,
Longing to surrender herself again.
Social commentary on the conflicted, from physical to spiritual.
 Mar 2015
Nathaniel Brenner
Something there, beneath her skin,
Begged me to come nearer.
I've never been able to quite decide,
What it was that made me want her.

Perhaps it was the way the wind,
Would toy with her golden hair.
The curls and twirls of all her beauty,
Envy not lost on the summer air.

Maybe even it was the sound,
Of her laughter across the room.
So light and lively, full of life,
Never fails to set the mood.

Then again, that flashing smile,
And the way she giggled at me.
It might have been something within,
Always trying to set me free.

I suppose it might have been the hush,
That would take a room by surprise.
People would stop for just a moment,
The moment she stepped inside.

Looking back, I know now,
That I might never know the cause.
For all the kisses spent and smiles lost,
I am glad I knew her for who she was.
 Mar 2015
Nathaniel Brenner
I want to be with you,
See you
Hear you
Smell you
Touch you
Taste you
I want to feel you, in my heart, beside me.
I want to know what you’re thinking,
Please tell me your dreams.
I want to hear every small idea that pops into your beautiful mind.

I’m not good at this, I know I’m not.
I never claimed to be.
This is the point I lose my footing,
The place I fail to see.
This is where I need some help,
I need you beside me.

I miss the laughter, my God, it hurts.
To think that I might miss a smile.
Please come back, I miss you dearly,
I haven’t slept in a while.

I’m sorry if I pressured you,
If I stressed way too much.
I never meant to push you away,
Or to squeeze you in my clutch.

I only wanted to be with you,
To try and brighten your every day.
I regret every time I never told you,
Every chance I failed to say…

I love you.
I love you.
If only you could see that it is true.
I’ve never felt this way before,
It’s only been with you.

I’m sorry if that was scary,
If I came on far too strong.
I know it to be a flaw in me,
I let passion string me along.

It feels like drowning without you,
I struggle with every breath.
Please come back, my oxygen,
Your love saved me, I confess.

I don’t know what I can do,
I wish I knew how to fight.
I don’t want to push you,
But you are all I see at night.

I long to look into your eyes,
And see something more than distaste.
I need to hear your voice again,
Watch my heart laid waste.

I’ve asked nothing of you but patience,
I’ll ask nothing more of you still.
I’m drowning here without you,
Come back to me if you will.
 Mar 2015
Nathaniel Brenner
It was first time in a long time,
That nothing held me back.
Years had passed it seemed,
Since I had no strings attached.

Strings I then cast off,
Constrained by no thing or one.
Never again to miss a chance,
No responsibility but fun.

I live life like I wish,
Finally, truly free.
Happiness in letting go,
In living just for me.

I surround myself with like people,
Enlightened, cheery, loud.
We run around and love our lives,
Not worry nor doubt is found.

Some call us irresponsible,
But only those unlike us.
They haven't learned their full potential,
They look with old disgust.

But they can't begin to hold us back,
When we are flying free of all.
We have no past, no future here,
Only the present in which to fall.

Occasionally we lose a member,
One whose weakness drags them down.
Sometimes it is unrequited love,
Sometimes they guilt for those around.

But we fly on, on,
I don't see it ever ending.
We have now surpassed it all,
Our will is never bending.

Occasionally we find others,
Who share our enlightened state.
We frolic and we play and laugh,
Engage in lively debate.

We are not on a path to failure,
Please don't get me wrong.
We still ensure our own successes,
We just don't worry about it long.

What is the point of living life,
With faulty hopes and dreams?
Why not let go and live for yourself,
Define what this life means?

This is where I found my peace,
My full love and happiness.
No strings attached is my best way,
I've never loved more than this.

Without fail we will go on,
Loving life to its fullest.
Quietly aiding those drowning in demons,
Showing them why life exists.

Until my bones are but dust,
And my heart fails to beat,
I will free myself from the dirt,
And live as I want to be.
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