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All around is the symphony of nature, we all need but to listen
What sweet song bird beckons his love
What silvery fish leaps to waters above
What tear shaped dew befalls the grass
What sustained wood of golden brass
What insect call of buzz and hum
What water beating a rock like a drum

All around is the symphony of nature, we all need but to listen
What cold breeze sweeps the land
What shaped the stone with windy hand
The reds and whites of mountains rise
What raptors soaring hunt with cries
What arid wind provide the breeze
What sweet fruit fall from mesquite trees

All around is the symphony of nature, we all need but to listen
What emerald fur coats the ground
What colourful buds blossom to be found
What grazing goat or elk does call
What primordial leviathan does the lake trawl
What chittering tree folk bound and play
What beautiful land inspires dreams of fae

All around is the symphony of nature, we all need but to listen
What black scars paint across the land
What dark smog clouds the sky
What metallic beasts speed across the ground
What obelisks of the new age rise and fall
What plastics change tides of the sea

Why do we take this gift and burn it
Why do we scrape holes in her skin
We grow and expand and grow and expand
Why are we deaf to the symphony
When the beasts leave the land it will be by our hand
When the birds leave the sky it will be by our ambition
When the fish leave the sea it will be by our greed
I have travelled around the globe and have seen so many natural wonders, but no matter how far out I venture, I can still find detritus, trash and litter.
There are highways on the cliff tops
On the short grass amongst the bog pools
Made by rainwater and salt sea spray

Much used they run through
Crowberry and low grown heather
A world wide web of lines

Picking our the dry ground
The high ground by a hares breath
Flattened by the passing of pounding paws
What will we do
When the birds fall from the sky,
Their stomachs full of lids,
And beaks wrapped in bags?

What will we do
When the whales wash up,
Their bodies start to rot
And the bottles spill out?

Where will we be
When the wildfires burn,
Turning towns to ash
And the future to rubble?

Where will we be
When the trees are bare,
Turning forests to stumps
And no air to breathe?

Who will save us
When we go to war,
The bodies pile up
And the skies are stained yellow?

Who will save us
When we fall to disease,
We neglect our health
And we're naive to death?
Noah is a boy of eight years with almond brown eyes and soft black hair, and he loves dragons and elephants. Right now, he and his dad Frank are sitting around their living room coffee table, a snowstorm whipping through the darkness outside the windows...

“I'm here too,” a dragon says, lurking in a corner of the room in attacking position. “I am the Bewilderbeast and I'm from the children's show ‘Dragons’ – my body is as big as ten stacked oxen, and my wings are covered with sharp black spikes. My tail is gigantic and deadly. And by the way, I have blood-red eyes.”

Now an elephant speaks up and trumpets: "Törööö! I am Benjamin. You may think I’m big and scary, but I am gentle. I love sugar cubes more than anything: eating them is my passion. How yummy! Otherwise, I'm the quiet type: I avoid quarrels and wouldn’t even hurt a fly.

Noah and Frank want to play Uno (a card game). Frank shuffles the cards, putting the neat stack on the table while reaching for a freshly opened beer bottle. He takes it and empties it in one go.
Noah follows his father's drinking movement, quietly observing.

When Frank has finished, Benjamin asks: "You know what, Noah?"
"What?" Noah wants to know.
"Oh," Benjamin growls.
"Did you just say something?" Frank asks.
"No, I was just thinking out loud," his son answers, as the Bewilderbeast grumbles to him:
"I hate it when Frank drinks."

Then the great dragon snorts until embers like fireflies come out of his throat. They swarm around the living room and settle everywhere like glowing neon-yellow dust.

"Don't like dirt on the table," Noah complains.
"You're right, Noah. The cards are well-shuffled and I'm quite able to do so", Frank says after opening his second bottle. He drinks it half empty and hums, "Playing cards is great fun, you know. When I was little younger than you are now, I used to thrill and entertain everyone with my card tricks at my grandmother's wonderful birthday party."

While Frank talks, Noah secretly mimics him.
"Ha! That was something," Frank adds, running his fingers through his hair and licking his lips. "If only they hadn't always drunk so much. That bothered me as a child. I often lost myself in my thoughts, thinking about how to build the biggest house of cards in the world, while grandma and grandpa danced and bumped into each other causing hearty roars of laughter."

Reflexively, Frank grabs the half-full beer bottle and drinks it up.
"After the party, they lay drunk on the carpet," Noah says quietly.
Frank doesn't seem to hear that and adds: "In the end they were laying on the carpet, drunk. Oh yes, good people, but they couldn't help their drinking."

Noah repeats in a whisper: "But they couldn't help their drinking."
Frank doesn't take notice; he gazes at the empty beer bottle. His thighs bob up and down and again. Frank licks his lips. "You know what, Noah?" he says. "You deal the cards. You know, eight for each player, and no cheating."  

After Frank has jumped up and left the living room, the Bewilderbeast hisses: "Frank is no good, because he only talks about himself, about his childhood. But what about you, Noah? That ****** me off," he roars ravingly. He spits fire again, this time without regard for Noah, forcing him to take cover under Benjamin's belly, beside his knobby legs.

The ruby-red eyes of the Bewilderbeast cut the living room's twilight with their brilliance and he spits out one fire salvo after the other, just as a flamethrower does...

"Please stop!" Noah is shouting, but the dragon only responds "Forget it. Everything here must burn. We have to erase your father's memory, only then he will learn to love you. You also hate the living room, don't you? – because Frank drinks here all the time."

"Don't let him fool you,” Benjamin is humming. "The wild beast spits fire, that's all very well, but breaking things... That," Benjamin yawningly mumbles "he can't do."  

Then the fire subsides, while Noah crouches between Benjamin's legs, eyes wide open. Frank comes back, another beer bottle in his right hand, drinking. When he sees Noah curled up, he snorts with laughter and spits the beer in his mouth on his son. Noah does not seem to register this. Frightened, he stares at the Bewilderbeast who, in a resting position with one red eye open, is waiting for the next attack.  

"Oh boy, beer's e'rywhere!" Frank slurs as he slams the beer bottle on the table and bends down to Noah to take him into his arms.
Frank runs into the bathroom to grab a towel, and comes back, carefully rubbing Noah's hair dry.
"Ew," grumbles Noah. "I hate that."
Frank looks at Noah uncomprehendingly: "The hair have to be rubbed off. Don't they?"
"Don't believe him", the Bewilderbeast hisses. "He's lying to you, Noah."

At the same time, Benjamin is saying to Noah: "You see, Frank loves you. He's rubbing your hair off. And he feels bad about the spilled beer."
Noah's face is white as a sheet. "Stop it, stop it, stop it," he whispers and covers his ears.

Frank looks at his son with concern. He lets the towel down and slowly takes Noah's hands off his ears, brushes a wet hair, which sticks to Noah's forehead, from his face.
"Can't look at you when you're in this state", Frank says gently. Without hesitation, he pokes Noah in the stomach with his fingers and tickles him so that Noah breaks out, first tentatively, into laughter.

He tries with all his strength to shake off his father's hand, but it doesn't work, although Frank has to make funny movements to tickle him any further. The two become entangled with one another and cannot stop the laughter.
But then Noah stops laughing and asks: "Daddy, why do you drink beer?"
Frank doesn't seem to have expected such a direct question. He pauses for a moment and answers: "Because it tastes good. Why do men drink?"

Noah shrugs his shoulders. "I'm not a man yet. But if it's good, why do you drink so fast? I always think you don't like the beer."
"Well," Frank grumbles, "I don't drink that fast. What makes you think that? It’s a matter I would have to deal with more closely, it needs to be weighed up and thought through thoroughly before jumping to conclusions."

The Bewilderbeast whispers furtively: "He's lying, Noah. Do not believe a word he says."
Benjamin says: "Frank is addicted to beer. But he doesn't want to hurt you."

This time Noah keeps calm. And he goes on to ask the next question: "Do you like it or not?"
Frank's eyes roam the room like he's looking for something. The Bewilderbeast snorts quietly; Benjamin, being in a good mood, is eating a handful of sugar cubes.
"Well, you know Noah – I like beer. But I used to drink it much slower."

Noah looks at Frank seriously and sadly. You mean when Mom was still alive.
Frank answers with his eyes. And nods, hardly noticeable.
Father and son remain silent. "You see," Benjamin says: "You and dad are connected by something: By the death of your mother Ruth."

The Bewilderbeast says: "Frank drinks the beer because he can't stand your grief, Noah. And he loves Ruth much more than he loves you. He wishes you had died instead of her."
"Can we turn on the music, daddy?"
"Which song?"
"Tears In Heaven," Noah answers. "You know, by Eric..."
"Clapton." Frank replies. Then he gets up and goes into the next room to play the song on YouTube.
"Is the sound bar turned on, Noah?"

Noah checks and notices countless glittering lights buzzing around the speaker block, sparkling like stars in the Milky Way. Noah is magically attracted by this sight, stares at the lights with his mouth wide open and reaches out his index finger...
"Noah!" Frank shouts. "Is the system on or off?"
"No," Noah answers. "The stars are no longer there".
"What? Don't be stupid," Frank grouses as he returns to the living room. He pushes Noah aside. "Let me check it out." Frank bends down to the sound bar, fiddling with the wiring. "No wonder, Noah. The optical cable broke. Did you do that?"
Noah looks at Frank, meaningful and meaningless. "You know what, dad... Why don't we play cards instead?"

Frank seems unhappy and is stepping fidgety from one leg to the other, takes the beer bottle off the table and realizes in frustration that it's empty. "**** it," Frank scolds, but then he looks at Noah and blushes.
"I've got an idea!" Noah suddenly exclaims. "Let's make a deal, dad. You get yourself a beer."
"And then?" Frank asks skeptically.
"Tonight, you drink it slowly. Are you scared?"
"Scared?" Frank asks while he hurries off.

Shortly afterwards he returns, holding an open beer bottle in his hand from which nothing has been drunk yet. He puts the bottle on his lips, drinks the first two sips quickly, pauses, puts the bottle on the table, and rubs his stomach.
"But now I have to go to the toilet, oh my."

By this time, Benjamin is already asleep, a sugar cube is stuck between the tip of his trunk and the floor.
Noah smiles. When his father has left the living room, Noah says, without looking, to the Bewilderbeast: "You see – Daddy loves me. Otherwise he wouldn't drink more slowly. It's that simple, isn't it?"
No answer.

Noah turns around to look. Where the Bewilderbeast huddled, there is now a small dragon figure. Carefully, Noah sneaks up to it, and when he feels that there is no danger coming from the figure, he holds it to his ear and whispers: "Daddy loves me, doesn't he?"
Today is a good day.

I do thank the gifted and smart poet Wren for his gracious support in editing this short story. Check out his work on hellopoetry, he is amazing.
Iwan Glyn May 15
Rustling winds of spring,
spread through,
half open oak branches,

Shrew peeps her button nose
throwing a tidy pile of earth,

Near the crystal falls,
Spring rain darts through

Before amber nectar eyes,
like a vale of intrigue ,

Hovering; a blue ***,
Chirpes questions

Sparks of a teale flame,
Pearl along aimlessly,

Through crowded doors,
and empty rooms,.

A rooster awoke;
today's flower,

Bellowing of frightened hollows,
along frictional caves,

Rattling off its distractions,
Ever more engaged,

Healing with its new sound,
Shrew meets the blue ***,

Pecked into the old oak -
Blue ***; Today is the day

Shrew; to finish enchanting.
Rey Lynch May 15
Predators pretend to be preys

We are wolves in human clothing too

Emotions and instinct hold the power

Rationality slips through the fingers

Fighting to rise

Building success on other's demise

Our greedy nature

There aren't hands left untainted

Doomed species
SpiralDancer May 14
If you go down
in the woods

Dont go alone
Dont go alone
Better stay home today

Dont expect them to play fair
It's criminally legal

If there's a hunter
then there is hunted

If you go down
in the woods

Stay on the path
Stay on the path
It's best to stay home today

You dont stand a chance
run as fast as you can
You wont see
the end of the day

If you go down
in the woods

Cover your ears
look straight ahead
Better stay home today
Living in the countryside is lovely, until you see the hunt...
Mikey Kania May 14
how long since i got some sleep

golem and his guard dog
keep me awake all night long
in loops, like an endless song

the butcher is getting ready
night of the slaughtered sheep
i want to free that creature

stay awake longer than the butcher!
golem is throwing letters at me
guard dog's protecting the sheep

the butcher high on steroids
memories of my last night in peace
war zone 2020 i can't get no sleep

2020 war zone: please let it be
it's all about that you feel me
i will knee down in front of you

drink my fear o brother
**** the blood from your fingers
let's save the sheep and get some rest

how long since i got some sleep
Today is a ****** day.
Gabrielle Apr 28
Hey little friend,
Do you wanna play?
I could eat your homework
Then we could hang out all day

We could go to the park
Or chase birds at the beach
I promise I won’t bark
Or pull on the leash

Hey little friend,
We could lie in the sun
You seem kinda tired
There’s other things we can do for fun

Like stealing dinner off the bench,
Or hiding someone’s shoe
Even then it’s just as good
As staying up on tough nights with you

Hey little friend, what’s going on?
I don’t see you so much anymore
And somethings changed about your face,
It’s not like it was before

I bring you toys and treats and shoes
I run and chase and hide
But it’s not nearly as good now
Without you by my side

Hey little friend, you’re getting smaller
And more and more every day
No matter how hard I try
It seems you keep shrinking away

Could I eat your tumour?
Little friend, I’m out of things to do
I’m not sure how I’d get it though
Without hurting you

I haven’t seen you for a while now
The home is empty and hollow
Like the caves we used to play in
Or the tennis ball we used to follow

The sun has come and gone
Too many times to count
And I am getting much too old
To run and play a large amount

Hey little friend,
When you come back
Maybe we could just hug
I would really like that

And then we could play just one more time
The world would be our own
And though I cannot speak you’d know
I’m happy that you’re home
A poem about loss from the perspective of a pet dog.
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