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Michael P Smith Mar 2013
As I was comforted by the crisp air
Felt its peace flow through my hair
A sparkling emerald, rarely seen
Emulated sun in buoyant green
Calmed by reclined rays, cool & fair.

I scoped the kiddies play & run
I felt my spirit join their fun
Serenity basks a gleeful scene
As I was comforted.

A bad forecast is due, but none came
This soothing day remains the same
Hints of rough shows pastel view
Acrid trials, of maraud, loses through
A final twinge, still did not pierce
As I was comforted.

©Michael P. Smith
Madeline Thetard Apr 2018
Today I told someone hello.
2. They didn't say it back.
3. Today I smiled at someone in the hall.
4. They didn't smile back.
5. Today I looked in the mirror to see if I was invisible.
6. Turns out I'm not invisible -- then why can't anyone see me?
7. Today I made a fake Instagram account under a trendy name from the 1960s to see whether I knew any people who had real Instagram accounts.
8. All of the accounts were private save for one.
9. Today I forced myself to be happy for a particular past crush who posted lots of pictures on Instagram with his new girlfriend. Hurrah.
10. Today I looked at everyone's smiling faces and wondered why I wasn't smiling with them.
11. Today I wondered why some people are complete idiots.
12. Today I wondered why my skin tone - white as milk - should make people believe that I can't handle spice, or make people believe that I am stupid.
1. Today I told someone hello.
2. They didn't say it back.
13. Today I comforted someone who said she had no love life.
14. I didn't have the courage to tell her that I've never had a love life and probably never will.
15. Today I told someone I write poetry and they laughed at me.
16. Today I cried in front of a mirror while singing a made-up song that wasn't even sad.
17. Today I told people I was fine when I really was not.
5. Today I looked in the mirror to see if I was invisible.
18. I wish I was invisible.
19. If I were invisible maybe it wouldn't hurt so much 'cause I know I'm here but people refuse to see it.
20. Can I please just be invisible?
1. Today I told someone hello.
2. They didn't say it back.
Not in a fantastic mood right now.
Frankie Gestone Mar 2013
He woke up in a rapid sweat, darkness surrounding him, his soaked pillow was pressing up on his neck as he could feel the uncomfortable stabbing cold run right threw his whole body. His mouth was dry and his body was in great pain. He lay there practically naked, but not just physically, also emotionally. It was like a catatonic state where the person’s body is paused in reality, but the actual person is far away and isolated even from himself. He wondered why he was so comfortable being uncomfortable and remaining frozen in time.  He saw nothing but the subtle moonlight that peaked through the blinds of his window. A point of existence, he feels nothing because all he has ever felt has drowned him. His numbness was being accepted and he embraced that if he remained this way, he would never have to feel hurt or heartbreak again. It’s better this way, he confirmed.

Eventually he got up out of his bed, walked outside to a nearby empty field. He looked up at the infinite night sky and contemplated the moon, the stars, and the endless space that sustained all of its existence. A tear fell down his cheek as he remembered the beautiful wonder of life and the universe; his realization that he is just a small spec of dust compared to all that is and all that is wonderful. Whatever happened to that universal happiness he used to feel? The feelings of the unseen, the cosmos, the mysteries that remain unsolved were all love. He then felt ancient and brand new at the same time-always being around all that is, but recently born into the unknown. The silence of the night swarmed him, and he suddenly embraced all the things he could not accept. The lullaby of the wind put him to sleep.

When he awoke, it was twilight. The sky was a lighter, deep blue and the sun in the far distance was rising in a fiery halo of mixed red, orange, and yellow colors, and the early morning clouds were clear and transparent. He heard the sound of a train horn in the far distance. He followed the sound with his ears as the sound became slightly louder and louder. Then, suddenly he could see the light of the early morning train.

The train had stopped as he approached it, and he hopped on with no hesitation or looking back. This runaway train was going to take him to where he needs to be, and he blindly and faithfully accepted that his fate was out of his hands now. No more heartbreak, no more reminders of the past, and most importantly no more drowning in his tears. As the train proceeded to move forward, he could feel fresh air gently touch his face, and all that he saw and ever knew were now flashing lights disappearing into eternity.

It was hours into the late morning when the train made its first stop. He listened to the train conductor speak out over the intercom, almost incoherently, say, “This is Brightstone Park. Next stop will be Riverhead.” A nostalgic feeling suddenly came over him as he could remember that his very first kiss was in Brightstone Park with Jessica Garzi. That was not his first true love, but his very first heartbreak. Riverhead was a forbidden memory, as he knew a classmate who had committed suicide off the Riverhead Bridge. He had not returned there in five years because of his haunting memories that would always come back to remind him just how cold and frightening the world really is.

While lost in thought, he felt a rough, sand paper-like wet feeling on his forearm. He looked down and it was a black cat, but not all black. The paws were all white like socks, and the chest and stomach were snow white. The loud prominent purr was a very peculiar reminder of a cat he once owned. Her name was Midnight. She was not the friendliest cat to strangers, but she loved him, especially when he massaged her paws. This cat was practically identical to Midnight. Midnight was put down three years ago though. As he began petting the cat’s back, it ran away and jumped off the moving train. He looked out in a hurry, but it was gone. It was just like everything else he loved. There for one moment, then gone the next. The strange thought that has one wondering if anything had actually existed that is now no more. A person, or a thing, could mean everything to you, but once they slip away, they become like the wind: occasionally brushing up against you, but never revealing its form.

On the train he began to wonder how he got where he was, and in general how the smallest decisions he made lead to bigger events and all in all, everything was all connected. There are no isolated events, or isolated people- it is all proven fact and science. Everything depends on each other to survive. The trees depend on the sun to keep themselves alive; we give off carbon dioxide to the trees and in return, we receive the oxygen we need from the leaves of the trees. He thought about the potential of a seed-for example, a tomato seed. Within that tiny seed is unlimited potential of life: The seed may produce one plant of several tomatoes, and within all those tomatoes are countless other seeds. This is all from one seed. Then, one may take a couple of seeds from a picked tomato and plant them throughout the yard creating a garden. That original seed came from another tomato seed inside a tomato on a plant, and that seed came from another seed. When did this cycle of reproduction begin and when does it end? Is it just another form of the infinite? When a person eats a tomato from that original seed, he receives certain essential vitamins his body needs for surviving and sustaining good health. This good health will effect his offspring and so on and so on. When he defecates, that will all return to the earth for potential fertilizer used for other tomato seeds. This is the same when he returns to the earth again. His dust will fertilize the same world that he came from, for all things come from it just to inevitably return to it.

He continued to think about how matter is never created nor destroyed and the same for energy. Nothing ever truly dies; the form changes into something new, like how water becomes a cloud and the cloud becomes water. Though this comforted him, he noticed that a few feet away from him was a former coworker and friend, Natasha Karev. She always infatuated him and they became close friends, but he always wished it had continued and gone even further than it did. One night, only a couple of years ago, they were at a friend’s party. Both were drinking, but not so heavily. That night they bonded and got so close, that she admitted she loved him. He was never quite sure how real that “I love you” was, but it was burned inside his heart ever since. That night there were moments she would tell him how much she wanted to make love to another guy at the party, Kevin, but was afraid to approach him. She told him she desperately wanted to lose her virginity that night to somebody because she was eighteen and only getting older. This was like a sharp knife slowly penetrating into his heart. He remained speechless for quite a few minutes. Finally he decided to go up in a bedroom alone. To his surprise, she followed him up and kissed him. He felt her clothed body up and down, and she touched areas not many have touched before. She told him she wanted to have *** and that she wanted him to rob her of her virginity. He was speechless, but extremely excited. Then, abruptly, she told him she could not because everything was happening way too soon. Why couldn’t she just make up her mind? He sat frustrated in the darkness, again, all alone. After that night, they spoke and remained close, yet that night was never mentioned again. It was as if it had never happened. After about two years of an on and off friendship, they just went their own ways. There were no fights or disagreements. Life just separated them.

“You’re just a figment inside somebody’s dream. So far from reality, you are a dream within a dream within a dream.” Startled by this soft voice, he quickly turned around to see Natasha smiling at him. “Ha-ha! I knew I could scare you. Were you abused as a kid, or something?” No words could come out at that moment, but he hugged her tightly. She explained to him that she is getting off at the next stop to meet a friend. He was sure he wanted to follow her and see where life would take him. She reminisced and told him how she had been away inside her own cave for several months, but is now very happy to meet up with everyone she had lost contact with.

The next stop arrived, but he did not catch the name of the stop he was getting off. As he got off with several others, both he and Natasha met up with her friend, Valeria, who he found quite cute. She resembled Natasha a bit in that they both had ***** blonde hair and blue eyes. They walked right into a giant street fair with a crowd of people looking at the foods and desserts, the trendy clothes, cheap jewelry, and children play rides.

As he looked around, he began seeing many familiar faces. He saw Kevin, a childhood and grammar school mate there with another co-worker of his, Jenny. Jenny was a Colombian beauty in his eyes and who was a flirt and tease to him, but never actually gave him any time alone. Incidentally, he knew both of them at different times in his life and had no idea they knew of each other. Kevin stopped contacting him during high school without any arguments or disloyalties that would tear a friendship apart. Keeping his head down, he walked a few feet to discover another childhood best friend, Jack, who was with a mutual childhood friend, Melanie. Melanie was a best friend of his and also a first childhood crush who also had a crush on him. He thought it was odd because even though Melanie and Jack were also best friends, Melanie never liked Jack in a special boy/girl way. He felt a moment of heartbreak, but quickly turned away and kept walking. A little further up the road, he saw two more childhood friends, Chris and Jimmy, who as children did not get along that well and only hung out with each other in the company of him. How peculiar it was suddenly seeing them together after ten years, and as seemingly best of friends.

That was not all. Things were getting stranger and stranger. It was like all the people who had made an imprint on his life were now coming together around him. He saw his two therapists, one he had gone to as a teenager and the other as a young adult, stand next to each other selling prescription drug samples. Both stared at him with a blank face, but with a prominent smile. He could barely nod at them. Natasha directed them to a local bar. Inside the bar was huge and also had a second floor. He noticed the music playing in the background was, Nocturne In E Flat Major, Op.9 No.2, by Polish born Romantic composer, Frederic Chopin. He became fixated on the elegant eighth note, left hand arpeggios, and the sweet and peaceful fast moving seven, eleven, twenty, and twenty-two notes from the right hand. If he thought about the most beautiful song ever written and all that is wonderful in one, this was the song.

They all took a seat and began looking at people and laughing at their behavior. Everyone was wearing masks. Social masks. They observed how different people act when they are in social gatherings, and how if you carefully study their body language, it will become clear that what they are saying and trying to put out is not what is actually being expressed through the body. One young man was frantically shaking his right leg as he tried to flirt confidently with a young woman he had just recently met. His face began to turn noticeably red, in an embarrassed flush, and he was making sudden hand gestures and quick eye blinking. She, on the other hand, pretended to be interested in what he was saying; yet her eyes would often look around the room and her body was a good distance from him with her arms folded.

Then as they were all laughing, he abruptly stopped and looked ahead to see two drunken women making out two tables away from them. As his eyes focused in on them, he realized they were two of his former crushes, Claire and Veronica, who he had no idea knew of each other because in fact, they were from different time periods of his life. He began seeing former teachers and professors from each stage of his school career, laughing hysterically with one another. Some of his most inspiring teachers and professors were gathered with other teachers and professors he despised. A young, tattooed hipster woman entered the scenery with a little Cairn Terrier that had an uncanny resemblance to his recently passed dog, Petey, who was put to sleep when he was away on a vacation, unexpectedly. His sorrow began to overwhelm him for not being able to say good-bye and see him for a proper last time. Everything about the dog’s high energy, playfulness, and watchdog attitude was exactly like Petey. A tear ran and fell off his cheek from his left eye right into the hand of Natasha. He looked up at her and she said, “Your tears are my tears. For what pain you withhold, I take and share with you.” She then wiped her right eye with the hand that held his tear. Natasha’s friend began to speak slowly into his left ear in Russian. Though he could not understand a word she was saying, it sounded just like a poem based on the pattern and rhythm’s consistency. It made him feel free of melancholy, but then thought of Angela Antonaci entered his mind.

He thought that the last painful experience ended with the break up of his closest best friend ever to play a part in his life. She was his girlfriend for the last three and a half years. They had known each other for ten years before they broke up their entire relationship. She was thirteen and he was fifteen when they first met in a park. She was always all over him like a little schoolgirl and he would often get frustrated with her obsession over him, for he believed he was no big deal. She was the first person to ever make him feel special and important, and even though he would resent her likeness towards him, he could never keep his eyes off of her or stop himself from always coming to her when he felt lonely. After about seven years, he realized he was in love with her. He had always been in love with her from the first time they met eyes. His long road had always lead back to her home in life. Every time he tried forgetting her and moving on, they would meet again. That person people search their entire lives for, he had found.

He rose out of his seat and briefly said goodbye to Natasha and her friend and went upstairs. He wanted time to be alone and walk around until he suddenly saw Jessica walking towards him. He stopped and waited for her to say hello, but she walked right by him, as if he had never existed. He felt a little insulted, yet relieved as any awkwardness that would arise was avoided. Looking ahead, he saw Angela’s two best friends, Kate and Julie, with her high school crush, John. John was playing an acoustic guitar on a lounge chair, singing to the two friends, almost enticing them with his eyes and voice. His jealousy overcame him, as Angela had been infatuated with him on and off even though he had played with her feelings throughout high school and college. John would tell her he loved her and make her believe he was a romantic, then when she fell into his words, he would leave her and keep a distance for long periods of time, leaving her in despair.

The conclusion occurred to him that maybe she was nearby. He searched throughout the entire bar not finding any other clues that she was around. When he went downstairs, he saw Natasha and her friend asleep, as well as most of the bar, except for the bartender. It was like everyone just passed out from the alcohol or possibly inhaled some type of knockout drug. The bartender was watching the news forecast of a tornado watch and dangerous thunderstorms. The bartender looked at him and said, “It’s better if you stay in here. It’s dangerous out there. I recommend you don’t go out!” He just listened, but decided to leave to the outside anyway.

He walked three blocks through the heavy rain and strong winds. He took a moment to stop and look at the black and gray clouds above him. As he looked across the street, he saw her. She was with her mother, sister, and mutual friends of theirs, Chrystal and Mike. He also saw behind them, his own mother and sister. He ran across the street to her and she shockingly with excitement screamed, “Hey!!! Oh my God!! Please stay with us. I missed you so much. You have no idea. We have to get to a shelter away from this storm. Hold my hand…” Smiling, he kept walking with them. They walked for twenty minutes and entered a giant field. After ten minutes of walking restlessly through the field, they all stopped to catch their breath. Angela’s mom ordered everyone to hold one another’s hand. An enormous gust of wind pushed them all to the grassy ground. He began to shake violently as he felt the touch of death nearby. He wondered if this would be the end, as he felt unaccomplished and left with so much left unsaid to her. Thoughts raced through his mind like a speeding highway about how to get to safety. Unable to control and remain focused on one rational thought at a time, he blacked out for a minute.

Then there he was right in the middle of a storm. In so many ways, he realized where he was ending was where he originally began. All the imprints from all he ever knew came back all at once to watch him finally leave all he ever knew from this life. And in the last moments, he found himself with her. He held her hand, while she held his, and the hands of their family and friends. The world was so dark and cold. The wind became much more rapid and an enormous bright light from it came within just miles of them. He kept looking up at the dark black and gray clouds over them, never as frightened as he was now. His focus was on the great strength of the wind. Whatever melancholic thoughts he had of his life, he would not give up hope. Maybe he was just hopelessly hopeful, but holding each other tightly might, in some miraculous way, save them. Then suddenly a deep peace began to sustain his very being. He remembered whose hand he was holding- the only woman to ever understand every level of his being. He looked down at her big, precious eyes pouring out tears. Their eyes locked, as she had been watching him the entire time. No words needed to be said from one another. They knew exactly what they felt and meant. For the first time in his life, everything was all okay. All was beautiful. The whole situation was beautiful, not tragic. In that moment, he understood this was where he was meant to be. This was where he wanted to be, for only in such a life altering moment does one comprehend the very nature of love and life. To just glance into her eyes and see the same person staring back in suspense, while all he ever knew was being born, growing, and dying simultaneously in complete acceptance. They began to fade and disappeared into the light.
One that is ever kind said yesterday:
'Your well-beloved's hair has threads of grey,
And little shadows come about her eyes;
Time can but make it easier to be wise
Though now it seems impossible, and so
All that you need is patience.'
Heart cries, 'No,
I have not a crumb of comfort, not a grain.
Time can but make her beauty over again:
Because of that great nobleness of hers
The fire that stirs about her, when she stirs,
Burns but more clearly. O she had not these ways
When all the wild Summer was in her gaze.'

Heart! O heart! if she'd but turn her head,
You'd know the folly of being comforted.
John Stevens Nov 2014
Sunshine comes in many forms.
    -  -  -  -  -  -
That which comes up in the morning
and goes down at night.
And little girls who
are Grandma's De-light.
    -  -  -  -  -  -
She rises in the morning
sometimes cloudy,
sometimes bright,
but always Grandma's De-light.
    -  -  -  -  -  -
Sometimes she rains tears
torrential they may pour
but comforted by the voice
of the One who loves her so.
    -  -  -  -  -  -
Sometimes she shines bright
the warmth of hugs and smiles.
Love overflowing in the heart,
it's all Grandma's De-light.
    -  -  -  -  -  -
Love is forever and always
whether its stormy or bright.
Love covers all situations
For all is Grandma's De-light.
    -  -  -  -  -  -
Sunshine's  Eyes and Smiles
Light up the world around her.
Creating more smiles in their eyes
when first they did find her
    -  -  -  -  -  -
When Grandma's day is gloomy
Sunshine arrives with much to say
with happy stories, hugs and smiles
to brighten up the cloudiest day.
    -  -  -  -  -  -
When Sunshine goes to bed
it usually can be said
Sunshine's eyes cease to gleam
when energy's gone, time to dream.
    -  -  -  -  -  -
Eyes close and all is well
in Sunshine Land I do tell.
Grandma's De-light in peaceful sleep
The day is over, it will keep.
    -  -  -  -  -  -
She is after all
Grandma's Sunshine.

11-01-2014 (c)
John Stevens
Written by request of Grandma
Sunshine is five.
Going on fifteen.
Jennifer French Oct 2012
I know at night
Searching for your warmth,
You're always in arms reach,
but it feels so far.
You're an eternity away,
yet under the same sheet.
I simply roll closer,
Arms searching for skin.
Though it is dark,
Your silhouette is clear.
Briefly I hesitate,
Am I a comfort to you,
As you have become to me?
My arms close the gap.
Your skin it too warm,
My hands are too cold.
You sigh softly, content.
Our legs instinctively intertwine.
Then your hand closes around mine.
When did this become familiar?
Before I can really think,
I'm comforted by your touch.
Your breathing, so steady,
Matched by your heartbeat.
Then, without my consent,
Without my conscious present,
I begin dreaming.
Benji James Apr 2018
VERSE ONE
She's bleeding from her lip
From every time he hit
Can't believe that she
Just turned up on my doorstep
Looking like this
And all that I can think
Is how much I want to **** him
Better help her in
Come on let's get you cleaned up
Tell me what happened
Tell me everything he did
Firstly let me clean the bloodstains
from beneath your lips
Wipe the smudged mascara
from beneath your eyes
Seeing you hurt like this
Hurts me deep inside
Gotta be strong for you
Make sure you're comforted
Reassure you everything is gonna be alright
Meanwhile, body temperatures raising
As anger boils deep within
All these thoughts come flooding in

PRE CHORUS
I'm not sure I can keep
All of this rage caged
Killer instincts kicking in
And all I want is revenge on him
For treating you like this
Gotta stay calm,
Keep this girls mind at ease
Help her rest and heal
And as I wipe the blood from your lips
ever so gently
As I wipe the tears from your eyes
You look deep into mine
with every ounce of strength,
she had left she said
please don't go after him
even after all he did

CHORUS
And as she takes my hand she says
You're different
All I need is for you to be there
I just need someone who really cares
Someone to wipe away these tears
You're the one guy who tames my fears
I don't need any more protection
then you already give
And I don't want you to end up like him
Even though the love I have for him
Runs deep, I see his faults
But I know his needs
And he is such a big part of my heart
His my addiction, my drug
Don't expect you to understand
I see the mess this is, I can't stop my love for him

VERSE TWO
All these words, I soak them in
All these thoughts
are running up and down my mind
How could she not let me step in
This hurting could stop right here
I'm giving her everything,
She just wants me to sit back
Watch from the sidelines
While she takes on this fight
Why won't she let me stand at her side?
And all of this confusion envelops in me
I'm losing focus, Push this to the back of my head
Need to take care of her here and now
Because she needs you here most
I carry her into the bed tuck her in
As I crash back on the couch
All of the things she said to me replay

PRE CHORUS
I'm not sure I can keep
All of this rage caged
Killer instincts kicking in
And all I want is revenge on him
For treating you like this
Gotta stay calm,
Keep this girls mind at ease
Help her rest and heal
And as I wipe the blood from your lips
ever so gently
As I wipe the tears from your eyes
You look deep into mine
with every ounce of strength,
she had left she said
please don't go after him
even after all he did

CHORUS
And as she takes my hand she says
You're different
All I need is for you to be there
I just need someone who really cares
Someone to wipe away these tears
You're the one guy who tames my fears
I don't need any more protection
then you already give
And I don't want you to end up like him
Even though the love I have for him
Runs deep, I see his faults
But I know his needs
And he is such a big part of my heart
His my addiction, my drug
Don't expect you to understand
I see the mess this is, I can't stop my love for him

VERSE THREE
As I wake the next morn
I go to the bedroom to check on her
I see an empty bed well made
on the bedside desk, a neat note laid
Saying thank you for everything you did
Repairing and mending me back to health
I couldn't have a better friend
Sorry I left before you awoke
Just had to get home
Just want you to know
I'm thankful and grateful for all that you are
You'll always be the brightest shining star
Guiding and watching me from afar
And as cheesy as it sounds
It brings a smile to my face
And for a slight moment concern leaves my conscience
But I hold out hope everything is gonna be okay
That's when images of last night run before my eyes

PRE CHORUS
I'm not sure I can keep
All of this rage caged
Killer instincts kicking in
And all I want is revenge on him
For treating you like this
Gotta stay calm,
Keep this girls mind at ease
Help her rest and heal
And as I wipe the blood from your lips
ever so gently
As I wipe the tears from your eyes
You look deep into mine
with every ounce of strength,
she had left she said
please don't go after him
even after all he did

CHORUS
And as she takes my hand she says
You're different
All I need is for you to be there
I just need someone who really cares
Someone to wipe away these tears
You're the one guy who tames my fears
I don't need any more protection
then you already give
And I don't want you to end up like him
Even though the love I have for him
Runs deep, I see his faults
But I know his needs
And he is such a big part of my heart
His my addiction, my drug
Don't expect you to understand
I see the mess this is, I can't stop my love for him

VERSE FOUR
Another night, another microwave meal
It's been a while since she last came over
Must be working out,
the counselling must be helping them now
And for once in my life I'm relieved
Knowing she's happy calms my mind
I watch the clock tick time passes by
through montaged scenes
This feels like a happy ending to this story
And photographs of you and I
Are packed in a box
I only open it up from time to time
Childhood memories captured in polaroid frames
I like reminiscing about all those good times
Everything was different then
Together just you and I
Hanging every day and every night
until you moved on with your life
that is just a perfect memory captured in my mind

PRE CHORUS
All of this rage is caged
Calm and content I've stayed
The revenge I wanted on him
Has been forgotten
Even after all he did
I'm calm, breathing and relaxed
My minds at ease
We're both rested and healed
The bloodstained cloths
that cleansed your lips are cleaned
ever so gently you're easing my emotions
As I wipe the tears from my eyes
I think of the way you always look into mine
with every ounce of strength,
You've made me a better man
She was right in what she said
even after all he did

CHORUS
Still feel the tender touch of your hand
And I remember every word she said
You're different
All I need is for you to be there
I just need someone who really cares
Someone to wipe away these tears
You're the one guy who tames my fears
I don't need any more protection
then you already give
And I don't want you to end up like him
Even though the love I have for him
Runs deep, I see his faults
But I know his needs
And he is such a big part of my heart
His my addiction, my drug
Don't expect you to understand
I see the mess this is, I can't stop my love for him
And all I can think is how lucky he is
To have a girl like you

VERSE FIVE
As I sit on my couch watching tv
It's been months since she last seen me
When I hear a soft knock at the door
I open it up to see you sitting on the pavement
outside of my front door
she is leaning against the brick wall
Head in her hands, crying
Tears constantly streaming down her cheeks
Bruised arms, black eyes
She looked at me and said
I'm bleeding from my lip
From when he hit
That sentence just tore me to bits
Gotta be strong, Take care of her first
Then I'll hunt him down and make him hurt
Shes covered in scratches, puffy eyes
He really lost control this time
And I'm about to lose mine
I pick her up and bring her in
Pull out the first aid kit,
A warm washer to clean her up
Every dab soft and tender to the touch
I won't hurt you like him ever
I'm the one who will make this all better

PRE CHORUS
I'm not sure I can keep
All of this rage caged
Killer instincts kicking in
And all I want is revenge on him
For treating you like this
Gotta stay calm,
Keep this girls mind at ease
Help her rest and heal
And as I wipe the blood from your lips
ever so gently
As I wipe the tears from your eyes
You look deep into mine
with every ounce of strength,
she had left she said
please don't go after him
even after all he did

CHORUS
And as she takes my hand she says
You're different
All I need is for you to be there
I just need someone who really cares
Someone to wipe away these tears
You're the one guy who tames my fears
I don't need any more protection
then you already give
And I don't want you to end up like him
Even though the love I have for him
Runs deep, I see his faults
But I know his needs
And he is such a big part of my heart
His my addiction, my drug
Don't expect you to understand
I see the mess this is, I can't stop my love for him

VERSE SIX
That time those words don't cut it
Now the hunters become the hunted
I tuck her into bed to sleep
stay with her until she falls into dreams
I watch her smile and breathe as she lays peacefully asleep
I go around to her house just when he walks out
I strike him hard and fast, I made him bleed so much blood
All the pain he put her through I made sure he felt that too
I couldn't keep that rage caged
had to let it out and get revenge
One day she will understand
I did what was best for her
I won't ever let her hurt
He got a few shots in
But nothing compared to what I did to him
Stitches in my hand and brow
I left him hospitalised
I'll never forget the look she gave
when she found out

PRE CHORUS
I tried to explain
I couldn't keep this rage caged
Killer instincts kicked in
And I got my revenge on him
For treating you like this
Didn't stay calm
Didn't keep her mind at ease
Help her rest and heal
I wiped the blood from her lips
I wiped the tears from your eyes
What he did to you killed me inside
with every ounce of strength,
And everything I am
I went after him
after all, he did

CHORUS
This time she didn't take my hand
And I knew I wasn't going to be a fan
of what she had to say
I regret putting my trust and faith in you
You aren't different
All I needed was for you to be there
I just needed someone who really cared
Someone to wipe away these tears
You were the one guy who tamed my fears
I didn't need any more protection
that you hadn't already given
I didn't want you to be like him
Violence never solved anything
I was ready to leave him for you
You went against everything I said
My love and admiration for you ran deep,
I see your faults
I know your needs
But now you have betrayed me
You were such a big part of my heart
You could have been my addiction, my drug
I was hoping you would listen and understand
Not go after him like you did
I can see the mess this is, my hearts been shattered
Beyond repair, I never want to see you again
Those lines run on repeat through my head.

©2018 Written By Benji James
Carmelo Antone Feb 2012
Regrettably recording these words,
I’m not a poet or else this would probably flow,
Though I could care less if you don’t want to hear what I have to say

Because I’m comforted by a chance to reason the existence of a soul,
So I could care less if you don’t need to be told that, I’m human and oh so vulnerable
What more can I ask for?

Able to feel the consequence of lusting for something more,
I’m lucky enough to have escaped the 21st century womb,
And avoid the convenience of a couple cuddling with a contraceptive

Understanding that I might just get one chance to say,
I’ve wanted to make the most of my time
Since I’m physically deprived,
What more can we ask for?

Not sure what will happen when these lids seal eyes that were once bloodshot,
I’m so scared of what lies after a life,
My molecularly defected design,

So I must reconcile with the fact that,
My chance to survive without a heart and mind,
Depends on how I use this time,
As we look for the divine our intelligence derived,

Glad to possibly experience the consequence of stepping out of line,
So I could care less if you think I’m a detriment to society
Since I desire to exist beyond the confines of what can be physically defined,

Happy to discover that the divine was not stamped on the penny or the dime
I’m now comforted by the consequences of being materialistically maimed,
Because I didn't find spirituality through Sunday sips of wine

Almost six feet down and comforted by our unknowns,
Maybe you’ll remember me if you made sense of this,
Because I’ve been counting the days before I’ll realize,
If I made the most of my existence
Poem taken from student portfolio
Colt Jul 2013
for Those who eat ramen by choice, or not.*

I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by disillusionment,
lacking egotistical sold, dragging themselves through the hip streets at dawn
looking for a socially self-aggrandizing fix.
Poets, as they sit in desks and discuss discourse
about discourse about discourse about discourse,
who fear that thinking itself was buried with Vonnegut,
who are lost in forests of brick walls,
inviting, because they block the wind of dying fall,
who swim in cesspools filled with academic sewage, yearning for freedom,
for truth, as they always have,
mining their minds for images, and searching for words to describe
-a reality which is virtual at its core and each act, another chore./
-a scene of life which reflects all that is poignant and sacred.
Poets seek musicians while musicians seek poets.
and the dog chases its tail, endlessly
and the dog chases its tail, endlessly
and the dog chases its tail, endlessly

These poets who search aimlessly for the feeling of feeling,
who are overwhelmed with meaning to the point where meaning
has no meaning in itself.
Who claim this poem as their own and continuously write themselves into it.
It is those who suffer in truth that live the poetic.
Those who sit in front of space heaters eating peanut butter sandwiches in winter,
who sweat unknowingly in summer, comforted in each’s odor.
Those who open Macbooks while squatting in empty flats.
Signing up, logging in and zoning out, forever disengaged.
Those who type prophecy on keypads and let keyboards gather dust-
stratification, signs of long nights spent in century-old homes still not renovated,
ceilings sinking at the sides while those above pogo to punk rock long dead,
or grind genitals to old soul, simulating all that is sensual.
Those who play archaeologist to their own layers of makeup, grimed on the sink.
Those who share their food with the roaches and the mooches who all have keys,
who use the books as shelves to hold ceramic mugs, stained with a single drip-drop,
who, with arms crossed, watch bands in basements play noise.
Those who replaced their nu-metal records with folk but kept the unkempt beards.
Those who drink stale beer on stranger’s rooftops.
Those who live with bags under eyes, themselves asleep, lacking a body,
sleeping naked together to stay warm,
sleeping naked together to stay sane,
sleeping naked together to stay touched.

Those who leave coffee in unplugged automatic pots, decaying rapidly.
Those who eat pizza for breakfast, cold or microwaved, as an act of ultimate indulgence.
Those who prance about in un-matching socks
from hardwood floors to vinyl floors to tile floors, all under the same popcorn ceiling,
dancing to the sound of rhythmic silence.
Those who fight with lovers about acts, but never once mention the act of love itself.
Those who don flannel plaid in springtime color, constructing Williamsburg,
who consider gentrification a new form of landed gentry,
who live in poverty as if it were a novelty,
capitalist martyrs sacrificing employment to hide being non-hirable,
who shop in online surplus department stores for unique vintage.
Those who, who, who hoot like the owls framed on their walls, eyes wide but beaks small.
Those who are oppressed by nonexistent kings ruling in imaginary suits.
Those who crave something new, not tired-as the form of this very poem-
something which is not-yet auto-tuned.
Those who, faux-hawked and shredded, rock and bop to Bowie doing Lou
on Sunday Morning from Station to Station shooting ******,
who walk swiftly with denim skin on their legs and refuse socks.
Those who, in their rightest mind, are the wrongest-minded.
Those who can reject privilege only because they are privileged,
who, in their uniform whiteness, denounce racism,
who, in their uniform straightness, claim immune to homophobia
who, with their ***** ***** in a row, claim to be feminists.

And those who search for revolution in a time when rebellion is conformity.
Listening to the  pounding sound of blog-protesters typing n o w.
who, in claiming to accept, don’t accept the unaccepting,
who got veggies tattooed on their sides while snapping bacon in their teeth,
who ironically infiltrated asylums and performed madness until the shocks came
and they were maddened, for good, eaten alive by volts resounding
ka-ching, ka-ching, ka-ching.
Who sleep naked together to be together but end up being alone,
exchanges from lips that move in pretentious drone,
and the dog chases its tail, endlessly.
When the abnormal is normal and the whole structure is inverted and
heaven is here and flames under the soil are no longer hell burning for soles of the
Converse, Adidas, and Nike sneakers on the bicycle pedals of poets who ride at night,
listening to the sound of owls that question:
who?
whoo?
whooo?
A MAN that had six mortal wounds, a man
Violent and famous, strode among the dead;
Eyes stared out of the branches and were gone.

Then certain Shrouds that muttered head to head
Came and were gone.  He leant upon a tree
As though to meditate on wounds and blood.

A Shroud that seemed to have authority
Among those bird-like things came, and let fall
A bundle of linen.  Shrouds by two and thrce

Came creeping up because the man was still.
And thereupon that linen-carrier said:
"Your life can grow much sweeter if you will

"Obey our ancient rule and make a shroud;
Mainly because of what we only know
The rattle of those arms makes us afraid.

"We thread the needles' eyes, and all we do
All must together do.' That done, the man
Took up the nearest and began to sew.

"Now must we sing and sing the best we can,
But first you must be told our character:
Convicted cowards all, by kindred slain

"Or driven from home and left to dic in fear.'
They sang, but had nor human tunes nor words,
Though all was done in common as before;

They had changed their thtoats and had the throats of
birds.
Matt May 2015
I hope to breast feed
Like a hungry baby

To be comforted and consoled
By a loving woman

As I **** the warm milk from her breast
What a delicious treat
Mmmmm I'm hungry
Sally A Bayan Nov 2013
same setting from a year ago...
i am not sure why, but
before the clock strikes twelve midnight,
my eyes would surely open
no matter what.
coffee in bed right now,
with a few cookies to munch....
my bifocals, where are they?
i need them now...i could vaguely see
something crawls on the carpet,
making rounds, circling my bed...
oh, no, it is hopping towards my comforter...
I stretch a leg beneath the pillows
something moves very near my toes.
i withdraw my leg, alarmed,
as it quickly disappears...
...then reappears!  now stationary...
this is starting to annoy me...
I poke it with a pencil,
fear no longer present,
now, with my bifocals found.
but it hops.....and hops...
and hops into hiding
down.....down.....below,
somewhere inside my comforter.
In lieu of me, it is now the  comforted.
it is taking too long to come out.
.....something i realized just now.....
could it be possible, could it remember...
i was kind enough not to use a swatter before....
why, i feel like i am being welcomed!
we are playing hide-and-seek,
a welcome dance it is!
here and now, just like before
from last  autumn,
we are finally reunited,
my cricket friend and i....

  S a l l y
  Copyright  2013
     Rosalia Rosario A. Bayan
Jimmy King Jun 2014
If we were the kind of friends who unironically
raised our glasses in toasts,
I would give one to the generation too comforted by the ease
of a honeybee in the plaintively nonexistent mind
of a tulip

To the generation, or at least its subset
that wrongly feels representative, who stumble drunkenly
or maybe just tiredly out of tents
to **** in the view of their friends, who are still at the fire
because the tent was too cold

To those who did raise their glasses in a toast
on New Year’s Eve at what felt, with the ball drop
not screening in luddite protest, enough like midnight.
Beginning with “dear friends” and a couple laughs;
concluding with “now let’s get ****** up” and
a couple more

To those who proceeded
as directed, clinking their shot-glasses
and swigging them back. If only because
they were not tulips.
Amber Rush Nov 2015
First I would like to thank everyone for being here today to pay his or her respects to my grandfather Robert Sohm. He would be pleased to see so many of his friends and family here today. Whether you knew him as a husband, father, grandfather, or friend, you probably had the same level of appreciation for him that I did.I would sincerely like to thank all of you on behalf of our family.  While we know that Grandpa is deeply deserving of the love you’ve shown, the outpouring of support we’ve received in recent months, weeks, and days has been truly overwhelming

He  lived a full life and had four amazing children and Seven grandchildren one being myself

His wife Pat is a great women. My Grandpa and Grandma were the ideal team.  I’ve often thought of them as the original power couple.  They were inseparable, and took care of each other for 50 years.
She is a huge part of our family and I hope she knows that we will always be here for her. Sometimes I’d wonder how either of them would ever manage should one go before the other, but over the past few days I’ve come to realize and appreciate that many of you will help take care of my Grandma through the tough times to come.  I know she is in good hands.
I know I'm not alone when I say we are always here for you and we love you
and respect you so much. If you ever need anything please do not forget that.

My Grandpa might not be a super hero, but he's my hero.
He's a soldier who had to conquer many battles in his life.
He's a fighter and someone who loved with all of his heart.
He's the "claw", and a best bud
Someone who may not function like everybody else but is able to bluntly tell it like it is and go the extra long mile to get stuff done one handedly
I wanted him to be the one who walked me down the aisle on my big day.
God has made other arrangements for him.
It's hard loosing someone who's your fatherly figure,

He was a caring person but he knew how to stand up for what he believed in and I think everyone here has a good memory of grandpa that they could share. I think we have all had a piece of us taken away but we can rest easy knowing he is in a much better place. My grandpa was a great man. When I think about him the words that come to mind are: my best bud , the claw, caring, humorous,  storyteller, and family man. These are just a few words that come to mind, but it is impossible to summarize how great a person he was in words.

He was a shoulder to lean on, a friend to rely on, and a rock for our whole family. I think about family values and how they aren’t the most important thing to people anymore. My family has always been close and always stuck together. My grandpa's pride and joy was his family.

My earliest memories of time spent with my grandfather are living at and visiting his house when me and my sister were kids. We would hide in the back room and wait for him then sneak out when we thought the coast was clear and he would come chase us pretending to be the claw.

He might have been stern with us, but Grandpa loved us kids. Family brought joy to his life — and he brought joy to us, in his own, sometimes grumpy, way.

We say that he has gone to a better place — but Grandpa will never truly be gone. He is always with each of us who loved him. It is not for us to think of him as if he was lost from our lives, but rather that we continue forth with him as our companion, celebrating and honoring his life. So I’ll think of him with every class that I take because I knew how much he wanted to see me graduate. Remember how he use to always say how someone wasn't so bright, always making sure I have a jacket when it's cold  yet be the one outside on the deck tanning when it's hot and him betting for football games. I'll always remember how much he loved going to Vegas and seeing his favorite saxophone player Carl. I will Be comforted in the memory of his smile… He’ll be in the small things and the quiet moments, forever by my side. I will miss my Grandpa, and will always be grateful for the time and warm memories I have of him.


We little knew that day,
God was going to call your name.
In life we loved you dearly,
In death, we do the same.

It broke our hearts to lose you.
You did not go alone.
For part of us went with you,
The day God called you home.

You left us beautiful memories,
Your love is still our guide.
And although we cannot see you,
You are always at our side.

Our family chain is broken,
And nothing seems the same,
But as God calls us one by one,
The chain will link again.

Where you were once my sunshine you are now my stars
Sam Manfre May 2019
Strangely comforted by nature;
to be silent with what always is.

I fear dawn is about to fall.

Comforted by the fisherman at sea.
Symmetrical lights sway above the shoreline.
Tiptoeing along the tide,
effortless fun.
Fun just by being.
I smoked into the night.
Or maybe the night was looking at me;
whispering gaze beckoning me to search the vast bay water.
What could bob to the surface for a foolish wanderer.

I took the face the moon offered on a cratered platter,
and walked home
lusting over new horizons
I am quite excited for calm, comforting summer nights
Lizzy Aug 2014
Your tall body has always enticed me
Your long arms have kept me safe
Your scruffy beard makes me smile
And your smile makes me melt
Your hands hold mine and make me feel loved
And wipe away the tears

Enough of these superficial reasons
Your love has comforted me
Your humor has made me laugh
(Until I snort)
Your words have made smile
And cry
But always out of love
Your generosity
Has never left me empty handed
No matter how much I beg you
To keep your money for yourself
Your caring heart reminds me
I'm not alone

Somehow you stopped the shaking trembling in my anxious thoughts
You brought me back to reality
You stopped me from dying
You stopped me from hurting myself
You stopped me from starving
From expelling the contents of my stomach
But most of all you gave me hope
A reason to carry on

A reason to fight my mind
To tell the mirror it's a liar
To throw my blades away
And eat whatever I want
A reason to keep living
And to love myself

I know you don't feel good enough
But look at all this evidence
Change the criteria in your head
The requirement of "good enough"
Should only contain one thing
You

All you have to be is you
To be good enough for me
Because I ******* love you
Lawrence Hall Nov 2018
The dead-bolts on the interior doors
Against the nephews most securely locked
(One is destructive; the other explores)
Ignored by their mother (usually crocked)

The brother-in-law babbles about his bowels
And surgeries over the festive spread
Ignoring his wife’s disapproving scowls
Detailing each grim therapy and med

The puppies are safely penned inside
Because of an incident with a crowbar
And a nephew who kicked and screamed and cried -
He wasn’t allowed to **** the dogs or bash the car

His mother comforted him in his tears
And glowered at me for telling him no
And comforted herself with a few more beers
Her special child is sensitive, you know

The brother-in-law’s colonoscopy
With lurid adjectives of graphic doom
Comes with the pie and more iced tea
His miseries circulate around the room

Then from the living room an expensive crash
“Not me!” “Not me!” More screams and denials and cries
An old family vase – it’s now just trash
“You shouldn’t have glass around,” their mother sighs

The brother-in-law offers to show his scars
He finds his shirt buttons, makes his move
We other men escape outside for cigars
Cigars!? The women uniformly disapprove

One nephew leaps upon a garden seat
And jumps and yells until it falls apart
Their mother says her boy is cute and sweet
“Are you all right, my dear little heart?”

The brother-in-law holds his tummy and groans
And tells us all about his flatulence
And just which foods lead to what moans
(Perhaps he should practice some abstinence)

The women come outside to cough and choke
With practiced puritan disapproval and sneers
About the satanic scent of tobacco smoke
The world’s best mother chugs a few more beers

The brother-in-law explains why he can’t drink
It’s about his digestion (be surprised)
And we shouldn’t smoke; if only we’d think
And we (got a match?) are properly chastised

Then at the end of this mandatory day
Of mandatory Hallmark merriment
All of them finally go the (space) away
And how did the mailbox get broken and bent?

But the brother-in-law pauses at the garden gate
“Say, did I tell you about my new pills…?”
And so dear solitude again must wait
While darkness slowly falls upon the hills
Rockie Oct 2014
If I don't wake up today,
Put me to sleep tomorrow,
If I'm asleep today,
Lay down my sorrow for those who care,
If I never wake up,
Remember my voice as I hummed,
As I comforted,
As I lay you down to rest.
False Poets Feb 2018
Human Observations (the woman pees)

if you walk the world with pen and paper
or eclectic electronic devices,
sure as the sunrise espied,
the pen will quick leak
when wearing white
and so will too the
righteous words
righteously,
thereafter

when you can't sleep and you must
slam your sweaty fist into pillow
know that the pillow is
silent thinking, dude,
you really ain't
got a hope, a
prayer

fallen asleep in the soaking tub
a thousand and one times,
ain't never drowned like
the warning ones say I
will do but only when
restless in my rustling
no-safety night sleep
in my lumpy bed,
where I’ve already
dream-drowned
a million
times

the woman pees, safe and secure,
comforted by the knowledge
that we have bathrooms
separate, her toilet,
man *** free, tho
we just finished
making sweaty,
fluid swapping
***


she does not, won't put on makeup
in her pj's to take out the garbage,
that is why she keeps loverman,
so handy, nearby, shamelessly
firm, unwavering, good god,
great for one "disposable"
use per night

when you tell your child that you love them,
and they do not reply at all, it isn't that they
don't love ya back, 'tis only that they haven't
learned to love themselves
something well that just
cannot be
taught.

the more trinkets I buy her,
more she screams stop,
but never not once
has she said, here,
take it
back

if you don't believe in Faeries and Elusives,
try, for then you have a middling chance
of getting the missing, disappearing
whole sock hiding
in her ******,
back, intact

If must look up the time where your
love is currently hiding/residing,
then the probability is more than
1.000, that you no longer love
her enough, or
she, you,
not at
all

you know it is time to shut down,
hang up the pen and close the
iPad cover, surrender,
give up the poetry gig
4 real when you start
to prefer an
autocorrect
suggestion

~
More to follow.
someday.
11/24/13
When I am old, and comforted,
  And done with this desire,
With Memory to share my bed
  And Peace to share my fire,

I'll comb my hair in scalloped bands
  Beneath my laundered cap,
And watch my cool and fragile hands
  Lie light upon my lap.

And I will have a sprigged gown
  With lace to kiss my throat;
I'll draw my curtain to the town,
  And hum a purring note.

And I'll forget the way of tears,
  And rock, and stir my tea.
But oh, I wish those blessed years
  Were further than they be!
It is full winter now:  the trees are bare,
Save where the cattle huddle from the cold
Beneath the pine, for it doth never wear
The autumn’s gaudy livery whose gold
Her jealous brother pilfers, but is true
To the green doublet; bitter is the wind, as though it blew

From Saturn’s cave; a few thin wisps of hay
Lie on the sharp black hedges, where the wain
Dragged the sweet pillage of a summer’s day
From the low meadows up the narrow lane;
Upon the half-thawed snow the bleating sheep
Press close against the hurdles, and the shivering house-dogs creep

From the shut stable to the frozen stream
And back again disconsolate, and miss
The bawling shepherds and the noisy team;
And overhead in circling listlessness
The cawing rooks whirl round the frosted stack,
Or crowd the dripping boughs; and in the fen the ice-pools crack

Where the gaunt bittern stalks among the reeds
And ***** his wings, and stretches back his neck,
And hoots to see the moon; across the meads
Limps the poor frightened hare, a little speck;
And a stray seamew with its fretful cry
Flits like a sudden drift of snow against the dull grey sky.

Full winter:  and the ***** goodman brings
His load of ******* from the chilly byre,
And stamps his feet upon the hearth, and flings
The sappy billets on the waning fire,
And laughs to see the sudden lightening scare
His children at their play, and yet,—the spring is in the air;

Already the slim crocus stirs the snow,
And soon yon blanched fields will bloom again
With nodding cowslips for some lad to mow,
For with the first warm kisses of the rain
The winter’s icy sorrow breaks to tears,
And the brown thrushes mate, and with bright eyes the rabbit peers

From the dark warren where the fir-cones lie,
And treads one snowdrop under foot, and runs
Over the mossy knoll, and blackbirds fly
Across our path at evening, and the suns
Stay longer with us; ah! how good to see
Grass-girdled spring in all her joy of laughing greenery

Dance through the hedges till the early rose,
(That sweet repentance of the thorny briar!)
Burst from its sheathed emerald and disclose
The little quivering disk of golden fire
Which the bees know so well, for with it come
Pale boy’s-love, sops-in-wine, and daffadillies all in bloom.

Then up and down the field the sower goes,
While close behind the laughing younker scares
With shrilly whoop the black and thievish crows,
And then the chestnut-tree its glory wears,
And on the grass the creamy blossom falls
In odorous excess, and faint half-whispered madrigals

Steal from the bluebells’ nodding carillons
Each breezy morn, and then white jessamine,
That star of its own heaven, snap-dragons
With lolling crimson tongues, and eglantine
In dusty velvets clad usurp the bed
And woodland empery, and when the lingering rose hath shed

Red leaf by leaf its folded panoply,
And pansies closed their purple-lidded eyes,
Chrysanthemums from gilded argosy
Unload their gaudy scentless merchandise,
And violets getting overbold withdraw
From their shy nooks, and scarlet berries dot the leafless haw.

O happy field! and O thrice happy tree!
Soon will your queen in daisy-flowered smock
And crown of flower-de-luce trip down the lea,
Soon will the lazy shepherds drive their flock
Back to the pasture by the pool, and soon
Through the green leaves will float the hum of murmuring bees at noon.

Soon will the glade be bright with bellamour,
The flower which wantons love, and those sweet nuns
Vale-lilies in their snowy vestiture
Will tell their beaded pearls, and carnations
With mitred dusky leaves will scent the wind,
And straggling traveller’s-joy each hedge with yellow stars will bind.

Dear bride of Nature and most bounteous spring,
That canst give increase to the sweet-breath’d kine,
And to the kid its little horns, and bring
The soft and silky blossoms to the vine,
Where is that old nepenthe which of yore
Man got from poppy root and glossy-berried mandragore!

There was a time when any common bird
Could make me sing in unison, a time
When all the strings of boyish life were stirred
To quick response or more melodious rhyme
By every forest idyll;—do I change?
Or rather doth some evil thing through thy fair pleasaunce range?

Nay, nay, thou art the same:  ’tis I who seek
To vex with sighs thy simple solitude,
And because fruitless tears bedew my cheek
Would have thee weep with me in brotherhood;
Fool! shall each wronged and restless spirit dare
To taint such wine with the salt poison of own despair!

Thou art the same:  ’tis I whose wretched soul
Takes discontent to be its paramour,
And gives its kingdom to the rude control
Of what should be its servitor,—for sure
Wisdom is somewhere, though the stormy sea
Contain it not, and the huge deep answer ‘’Tis not in me.’

To burn with one clear flame, to stand *****
In natural honour, not to bend the knee
In profitless prostrations whose effect
Is by itself condemned, what alchemy
Can teach me this? what herb Medea brewed
Will bring the unexultant peace of essence not subdued?

The minor chord which ends the harmony,
And for its answering brother waits in vain
Sobbing for incompleted melody,
Dies a swan’s death; but I the heir of pain,
A silent Memnon with blank lidless eyes,
Wait for the light and music of those suns which never rise.

The quenched-out torch, the lonely cypress-gloom,
The little dust stored in the narrow urn,
The gentle XAIPE of the Attic tomb,—
Were not these better far than to return
To my old fitful restless malady,
Or spend my days within the voiceless cave of misery?

Nay! for perchance that poppy-crowned god
Is like the watcher by a sick man’s bed
Who talks of sleep but gives it not; his rod
Hath lost its virtue, and, when all is said,
Death is too rude, too obvious a key
To solve one single secret in a life’s philosophy.

And Love! that noble madness, whose august
And inextinguishable might can slay
The soul with honeyed drugs,—alas! I must
From such sweet ruin play the runaway,
Although too constant memory never can
Forget the arched splendour of those brows Olympian

Which for a little season made my youth
So soft a swoon of exquisite indolence
That all the chiding of more prudent Truth
Seemed the thin voice of jealousy,—O hence
Thou huntress deadlier than Artemis!
Go seek some other quarry! for of thy too perilous bliss.

My lips have drunk enough,—no more, no more,—
Though Love himself should turn his gilded prow
Back to the troubled waters of this shore
Where I am wrecked and stranded, even now
The chariot wheels of passion sweep too near,
Hence!  Hence!  I pass unto a life more barren, more austere.

More barren—ay, those arms will never lean
Down through the trellised vines and draw my soul
In sweet reluctance through the tangled green;
Some other head must wear that aureole,
For I am hers who loves not any man
Whose white and stainless ***** bears the sign Gorgonian.

Let Venus go and chuck her dainty page,
And kiss his mouth, and toss his curly hair,
With net and spear and hunting equipage
Let young Adonis to his tryst repair,
But me her fond and subtle-fashioned spell
Delights no more, though I could win her dearest citadel.

Ay, though I were that laughing shepherd boy
Who from Mount Ida saw the little cloud
Pass over Tenedos and lofty Troy
And knew the coming of the Queen, and bowed
In wonder at her feet, not for the sake
Of a new Helen would I bid her hand the apple take.

Then rise supreme Athena argent-limbed!
And, if my lips be musicless, inspire
At least my life:  was not thy glory hymned
By One who gave to thee his sword and lyre
Like AEschylos at well-fought Marathon,
And died to show that Milton’s England still could bear a son!

And yet I cannot tread the Portico
And live without desire, fear and pain,
Or nurture that wise calm which long ago
The grave Athenian master taught to men,
Self-poised, self-centred, and self-comforted,
To watch the world’s vain phantasies go by with unbowed head.

Alas! that serene brow, those eloquent lips,
Those eyes that mirrored all eternity,
Rest in their own Colonos, an eclipse
Hath come on Wisdom, and Mnemosyne
Is childless; in the night which she had made
For lofty secure flight Athena’s owl itself hath strayed.

Nor much with Science do I care to climb,
Although by strange and subtle witchery
She drew the moon from heaven:  the Muse Time
Unrolls her gorgeous-coloured tapestry
To no less eager eyes; often indeed
In the great epic of Polymnia’s scroll I love to read

How Asia sent her myriad hosts to war
Against a little town, and panoplied
In gilded mail with jewelled scimitar,
White-shielded, purple-crested, rode the Mede
Between the waving poplars and the sea
Which men call Artemisium, till he saw Thermopylae

Its steep ravine spanned by a narrow wall,
And on the nearer side a little brood
Of careless lions holding festival!
And stood amazed at such hardihood,
And pitched his tent upon the reedy shore,
And stayed two days to wonder, and then crept at midnight o’er

Some unfrequented height, and coming down
The autumn forests treacherously slew
What Sparta held most dear and was the crown
Of far Eurotas, and passed on, nor knew
How God had staked an evil net for him
In the small bay at Salamis,—and yet, the page grows dim,

Its cadenced Greek delights me not, I feel
With such a goodly time too out of tune
To love it much:  for like the Dial’s wheel
That from its blinded darkness strikes the noon
Yet never sees the sun, so do my eyes
Restlessly follow that which from my cheated vision flies.

O for one grand unselfish simple life
To teach us what is Wisdom! speak ye hills
Of lone Helvellyn, for this note of strife
Shunned your untroubled crags and crystal rills,
Where is that Spirit which living blamelessly
Yet dared to kiss the smitten mouth of his own century!

Speak ye Rydalian laurels! where is he
Whose gentle head ye sheltered, that pure soul
Whose gracious days of uncrowned majesty
Through lowliest conduct touched the lofty goal
Where love and duty mingle!  Him at least
The most high Laws were glad of, he had sat at Wisdom’s feast;

But we are Learning’s changelings, know by rote
The clarion watchword of each Grecian school
And follow none, the flawless sword which smote
The pagan Hydra is an effete tool
Which we ourselves have blunted, what man now
Shall scale the august ancient heights and to old Reverence bow?

One such indeed I saw, but, Ichabod!
Gone is that last dear son of Italy,
Who being man died for the sake of God,
And whose unrisen bones sleep peacefully,
O guard him, guard him well, my Giotto’s tower,
Thou marble lily of the lily town! let not the lour

Of the rude tempest vex his slumber, or
The Arno with its tawny troubled gold
O’er-leap its marge, no mightier conqueror
Clomb the high Capitol in the days of old
When Rome was indeed Rome, for Liberty
Walked like a bride beside him, at which sight pale Mystery

Fled shrieking to her farthest sombrest cell
With an old man who grabbled rusty keys,
Fled shuddering, for that immemorial knell
With which oblivion buries dynasties
Swept like a wounded eagle on the blast,
As to the holy heart of Rome the great triumvir passed.

He knew the holiest heart and heights of Rome,
He drave the base wolf from the lion’s lair,
And now lies dead by that empyreal dome
Which overtops Valdarno hung in air
By Brunelleschi—O Melpomene
Breathe through thy melancholy pipe thy sweetest threnody!

Breathe through the tragic stops such melodies
That Joy’s self may grow jealous, and the Nine
Forget awhile their discreet emperies,
Mourning for him who on Rome’s lordliest shrine
Lit for men’s lives the light of Marathon,
And bare to sun-forgotten fields the fire of the sun!

O guard him, guard him well, my Giotto’s tower!
Let some young Florentine each eventide
Bring coronals of that enchanted flower
Which the dim woods of Vallombrosa hide,
And deck the marble tomb wherein he lies
Whose soul is as some mighty orb unseen of mortal eyes;

Some mighty orb whose cycled wanderings,
Being tempest-driven to the farthest rim
Where Chaos meets Creation and the wings
Of the eternal chanting Cherubim
Are pavilioned on Nothing, passed away
Into a moonless void,—and yet, though he is dust and clay,

He is not dead, the immemorial Fates
Forbid it, and the closing shears refrain.
Lift up your heads ye everlasting gates!
Ye argent clarions, sound a loftier strain
For the vile thing he hated lurks within
Its sombre house, alone with God and memories of sin.

Still what avails it that she sought her cave
That murderous mother of red harlotries?
At Munich on the marble architrave
The Grecian boys die smiling, but the seas
Which wash AEgina fret in loneliness
Not mirroring their beauty; so our lives grow colourless

For lack of our ideals, if one star
Flame torch-like in the heavens the unjust
Swift daylight kills it, and no trump of war
Can wake to passionate voice the silent dust
Which was Mazzini once! rich Niobe
For all her stony sorrows hath her sons; but Italy,

What Easter Day shall make her children rise,
Who were not Gods yet suffered? what sure feet
Shall find their grave-clothes folded? what clear eyes
Shall see them ******?  O it were meet
To roll the stone from off the sepulchre
And kiss the bleeding roses of their wounds, in love of her,

Our Italy! our mother visible!
Most blessed among nations and most sad,
For whose dear sake the young Calabrian fell
That day at Aspromonte and was glad
That in an age when God was bought and sold
One man could die for Liberty! but we, burnt out and cold,

See Honour smitten on the cheek and gyves
Bind the sweet feet of Mercy:  Poverty
Creeps through our sunless lanes and with sharp knives
Cuts the warm throats of children stealthily,
And no word said:- O we are wretched men
Unworthy of our great inheritance! where is the pen

Of austere Milton? where the mighty sword
Which slew its master righteously? the years
Have lost their ancient leader, and no word
Breaks from the voiceless tripod on our ears:
While as a ruined mother in some spasm
Bears a base child and loathes it, so our best enthusiasm

Genders unlawful children, Anarchy
Freedom’s own Judas, the vile prodigal
Licence who steals the gold of Liberty
And yet has nothing, Ignorance the real
One Fraticide since Cain, Envy the asp
That stings itself to anguish, Avarice whose palsied grasp

Is in its extent stiffened, moneyed Greed
For whose dull appetite men waste away
Amid the whirr of wheels and are the seed
Of things which slay their sower, these each day
Sees rife in England, and the gentle feet
Of Beauty tread no more the stones of each unlovely street.

What even Cromwell spared is desecrated
By **** and worm, left to the stormy play
Of wind and beating snow, or renovated
By more destructful hands:  Time’s worst decay
Will wreathe its ruins with some loveliness,
But these new Vandals can but make a rain-proof barrenness.

Where is that Art which bade the Angels sing
Through Lincoln’s lofty choir, till the air
Seems from such marble harmonies to ring
With sweeter song than common lips can dare
To draw from actual reed? ah! where is now
The cunning hand which made the flowering hawthorn branches bow

For Southwell’s arch, and carved the House of One
Who loved the lilies of the field with all
Our dearest English flowers? the same sun
Rises for us:  the seasons natural
Weave the same tapestry of green and grey:
The unchanged hills are with us:  but that Spirit hath passed away.

And yet perchance it may be better so,
For Tyranny is an incestuous Queen,
****** her brother is her bedfellow,
And the Plague chambers with her:  in obscene
And ****** paths her treacherous feet are set;
Better the empty desert and a soul inviolate!

For gentle brotherhood, the harmony
Of living in the healthful air, the swift
Clean beauty of strong limbs when men are free
And women chaste, these are the things which lift
Our souls up more than even Agnolo’s
Gaunt blinded Sibyl poring o’er the scroll of human woes,

Or Titian’s little maiden on the stair
White as her own sweet lily and as tall,
Or Mona Lisa smiling through her hair,—
Ah! somehow life is bigger after all
Than any painted angel, could we see
The God that is within us!  The old Greek serenity

Which curbs the passion of that
Azurel Sep 2018
Here I stood with ***** crystals beneath my feet and waited for the sky to turn golden.
Here I laughed into the echoing tunnel under my home as wet earth dripped on my skin.
Here I learned about parenthood among feathers and little eggs and ungodly morning crows.
Here I gloated about the manhood which sprouted from under my arms and in my mischievous thoughts.
Here I waited till dark to meet him in secret all the while dreading the sound of tires on gravel.
Here I buzzed with excitement as the boys had their lazy Sunday afternoon.
Here his freckles came close to mine as he softly said "you're so beautiful" with Bruno Mars playing in the background.
Here I said I would never grow up.
Here I comforted her with my pain because I had to be brave.
Here I forgot that being called "muddy children who act like savages " was considered an insult.
Here I cried into the stars for reasons I didn't understand.
Here I walked on hands and feet with happy little scratches and silent giggles.
Here only the sound of our beating hearts and delicate pride could be heard as I held him close.
Here I sang at the top of my favorite tree and waited for the words to hurt him as much as he hurt me.
Here the glow of a flashlight illuminated our tent as I asked her if she liked me like that.
Here a little piece of me was left sitting on a branch waiting to capture the next magical heart.
Here I wrote "I love you" on a mango leaf only to realize that he spelled love differently.
Here I sat beneath bright green trees and pondered my not-so-complicated life.
Here my words came out blurry and my stomach swayed like a sail boat out on a windy morning.
Here my hands went numb as I raced to the end of his life.
Here I visit through pictures and messy journals to remember the little things that are now so so big.
Here I left muddy footprints now covered with grass, but here they will stay.
Little poem about my childhood life on a farm.
NitaAnn Nov 2013
It’s funny…because no one ‘gets it’.
And the coping techniques that are ‘offered’
Well, they’re like putting a band-aid over a wound that needs a tourniquet!

“The little girl is suffering a loss and grief that she will need your permission,
patience and love to help her with.”

That’s what Dear Therapist says.

“Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.”
Matthew 5:4… that’s what the Bible says.

“I need to “grieve” and “mourn” that which I never had?”
That’s what Nita asks.

Really?
Is this mourning?
Is this what mourning feels like?
A hole in the middle of your gut that gets
Wider and wider each time you try to plug it up?
The bleeding that continues no matter how much pressure you apply?
Is mourning talking about what happened to you?

What comes next, after the mourning period?
Is it “closure”?
And what does that mean, exactly, ‘closure’?
Is closure when you’re supposed to realize that all this
Is just something you should ‘get over’?
Like losing ½ your money in the stock market, or staining a favorite white shirt?

Is this the period of time where I pretend it’s ”business as usual”?
Or is this the time I should “pour out my grief”
“release my anger” and “face my emptiness”
Then feel comforted because you care?
Or maybe this is the time where I call upon the aid of my friends and family
For support, a shoulder to cry on
Someone to walk along side me down this road of pain and anguish.
Sit with me while I grieve the fact that I will never have a childhood,
And that deep down at the very core of my being,
I will always have a feeling of emptiness…
Yet I should rest easy because I shall be comforted…
And somehow find peace with that?
I don’t understand why I can’t do that!
Why I instead I feel myself dissolving.

I sit in your office, my eyes filled with tears,
As I reach for another tissue I actually pretend that you really care.
Maybe in some strange way that makes me feel better
That somehow  to think you actually understand
How hopeless it all feels so much of the time.

You know, when you grow up
unloved and unwanted and abused
You become almost super human.
You develop this ability to disappear
Even when it looks like you’re still there, present, in your body.
You can scream but nobody hears a sound escaping from your mouth.
You are invisible and you can fly far away from your body.
You are the thing who was born normal…
But that was so long ago you don’t even remember what it was like.
You don’t remember, you only remember “this”.

The band-aid doesn’t work,
The blood is continues to seep through
I continue to bleed and to grow weaker each moment.
But it doesn’t matter.
It doesn’t matter…just bleed out, Nita.
You know the rules.

Just bleed out.
Sibyl Vane Mar 2014
"She will dance with me,"
He murmured to himself,
"If I bring her a white rose,
Pure as a snowflake,
And sweet as a summer day."

Sitting there in the garden,
His blue eyes fell shut
As the wind ran her fingers
Through his dark hair.
His lips parted in a sigh,
Enjoying the warm afternoon sun
And the thoughts of the one he loves.

"His is the song I've sung
My entire life,"
Chirped the little nightingale,
"Without knowing it,
I have told his story a thousand times
To the moon and the stars
That light the night sky.
I've sung of hope and joy
And True Love and
Happily Ever Afters
To the trees and the flowers
That in this garden grow."

But the young man cried,
"But I have no rose to give her!"
He covered his face with his hands
And cried.
His whole body shook
As the hope for real love,
The kind that many people
Spend their whole lives looking for
In all the wrong places,
Flew away in the wind.
"She'll never realize I am the one for her,
If I cannot find a white rose
And ask her to dance,"
He cried.

The little nightingale's heart was touched
By the young lover.
She cried out her song for him,
For all the lost loves in the world.
He, she determined, was not going to be one of them.
The nightingale decided that
She would find him a rose,
With which he could woo the girl he so loved.

She flew on delicate wings to the rose bush
That grew beside the fountain.
"If you would give me a pure white rose,
I will sing you my sweetest song
All the nights of my life."
But the rose bush answered,
"I have only yellow roses,
Bright as lemons and sunshine,
And sweet as springtime honey.
Ask my brother who climbs the arbor,
He may give you what you desire."

So the sweet nightingale flew to the rose vine
That was tangled on the arbor.
"If you would give me a pure white rose,
I will sing you my sweetest song
All the nights of my life."
But the rose vine replied,
"I have only pink roses,
Pink as a maiden's blush
On the day she weds her beau.
Ask my brother who grows
Under the young man's window.
He may give you what you desire."

So the nightingale flew to the rose bush
That grew under the young man's window.
"If you would give me a pure white rose,
I will sing you my sweetest song
All the nights of my life."
To which the rose bush replied,
"I have only red roses,
Dark and rich as faerie wine,
Red as the blood of your heart,
Sweeter than stolen kisses under the moon.
But I can give you a white rose."
Filled with hope and joy,
The nightingale replied,
"I will give anything for a white rose,
What must I do?"
The rose bush shook its petals sadly.
"The way is too awful.
I cannot tell you."
The nightingale knew the value of love;
She would do anything for the rose.
"There is a way, little bird.
By moonlight you must come close
And press you breast against my thorns.
Love is sharp and you must not be afraid.
You must sing your sweetest song all night,
And press closer to me,
Until my thorn pierces your heart
And all your heart-blood runs out.
It is the only way."

The nightingale thought about this.
"What price would not be paid for love?
How much greater is the love of this young man
Than the life of a little bird?
This I will gladly do,
For true love's sake."

So the nightingale flew across the garden,
Where the lover had not yet dried
The tears from his eyes.
His cheeks were stained
Pink with his sadness,
His eyes shimmered with tears yet unreleased.
She sang to him to be hopeful,
To believe in his love,
And that all will be well.
The blue-eyed young man
Smiled at the nightingale,
For her song was beautiful,
Though he did not understand.

The nightingale flew about the garden,
Enjoying the beauty of life.
She sang to the oak trees and the daffodils,
And they wept that they would not hear her song again.
They were comforted that she would be silenced for love,
For love has no price too great.

The earth ate the last rays of the sun
And the moon shone
Wan and pallid in the night sky.
She, too, was sad to hear only this one last song
From the nightingale.

Then the bird flew to the red rose bush
And pressed her breast against the thorn.
She sang her sweetest song.
It was so beautiful that all the dead lovers of the world
Shuddered in their graves
With the reminder of the love in life,
The wind joined her voice with the nightingale's
And carried her song to the ends of the the earth,
To the darkest caves where Echo returned it,
To the ocean's waves that kept the time,
To the peaceful moors where the grass danced along,
To the sleeping child to give her sweet dreams.

"Closer, closer!"
Urged the rose bush,
"I must taste your heart's blood
Before dawn,
Or the rose will not be done."

So the nightingale pressed closer still to the thorn
As the rose bush spun the most beautiful rose
It had ever spun.
But red! A red red rose it was.
"Closer still!"
Cried the rose bush,
And the nightingale pressed closer until her heart was pricked.
A bolt of pain struck the nightingale
And her song rang out through the garden,
Her melody, sweet with love and anguish,
Reached the ears of the young man.
He sat up in his bed,
And was so moved by the nightingale's song,
He stayed awake to listen.

As the nightingale's heart-blood poured onto the rose,
The reddest rose washed white as a freshly fallen snow,
Her tears mingled with the blood,
For only blood can wash out blood,
And only tears can heal.
And so the red rose became white,
As dewdrops and starlight,
As the nightingale's voice grew faint.
And she fell to the ground as the first breath of dawn
Shone gray on the horizon.

The whole garden heaved a sigh
As the nightingale's song was done.
A chorus of flowers and crickets and wind
Sang their mournful song
For the little nightingale
Who gave her life for love.

When the sun had risen in the sky,
The young man walked out into the garden
And saw the white rose.
Carefully he cut it, admiring its beauty.
He did not notice the nightingale,
Laying dead on the ground.

He gazed at the rose in awe,
And inhaled its damask perfume.
It smelled of starlight and sweet dreams,
Of mothers' lullabies and midnight kisses,
Of laughter and heartache,
Of True Love and tender death.

"This is the rose for my beloved,"
He said to himself,
And he prepared himself for the ball.

That night, when the sun had set again,
He met his fair lady, whom he so dearly loved.
"This rose is for you, so that you will dance with me."
He handed her the rose, the white rose with no thorns.
She took it gently, breathing in its scent.

"Dear boy, I will dance with you tonight."

He took her hand and led her out onto the floor.
They danced and danced
All through the evening,
More than rules of decency allow.
She smiled and laughed and fell in love.

When the evening closed
And it was time to go home,
She held the white rose close to her heart
And breathed in its sweet perfume.
Her heart was happy
And faintly, a nightingale's song
Seemed to whisper in her ear.
She grabbed the young man by the hand,
The man whom she loved.

"I will dance with you all the nights of my life,
If you so desire," she whispered.
"My darling, I desire no more," the young man smiled,
His blue eyes sparkling in the lamplight.

For love is a silly thing.
It is not half so useful as logic,
But it is twice so important.
True Love tells only things
That are the most true.
It tells of joy and comfort,
But also of sacrifice and pain.
And in this age,
Though to be practical is everything,
Love is the most important of all.
This was inspired by Oscar Wilde's short story, The Rose and the Nightingale, and a couple lines were taken from the Ballad of Reading Gaol, among other works by Wilde. I didn't like how his story ended, so I changed it. It's a story of love and sacrifice now, instead of being a picture of the modern day. It's hope.
Nomutsa Oliver Feb 2012
Suddenly, an undefined calmness is pronounced,
Can’t really explain but it’s so nourishing,
The hurt and the pain all washed away,
The disease, instructed to be at ease,
Feel peace itself, flowing in the veins,
A true rebirth of tranquility,
With no doubt nor fear, whatsoever,
Pure sound mind with no running thoughts,
Feels like being embraced by something so awesome,
Can’t help it but smile to oneself,
The sleep at night becomes burden less,
Feels like a sickness healed by a sent word,
Feels like a new father to the orphan,
Feels like walking in the midst of angels,
Feels like flowing with the living waters,
Feels like it had stopped storming,
The belly filled with utterances of gratitude,
In the name of amazing comfort,
Comforted by the comforter…
* Comforter - Holy Ghost *
Lady Ravenhill Jul 2019
Today is my Mother, Donna’s, birthday. She would have been 66 years old today. I would have called her from North Carolina to see how she was, where she was going out to celebrate, what she ordered for dinner with Dad and just catch up on things. I would tell her about my art work and my husband’s newest antics. I would ask about family, and the house, and her eagels she loved so much. She would tell me about the newest natural remedy she had learned about and new music she was listening too. But of course, I can not call her today, as there are no phones in heaven. But I can talk about her today here with my family. As we few, who loved her most, are gathered here today to remember not just her last year but to celebrate her life, and our love for her, here in this charming restaurant. One that she would have likely chosen herself, if not for her birthday today, than for her upcoming wedding anniversary this month to my father, Tony, on which they would have been married for 34 years.

My mother was a warm, compassionate and vibrant woman, who always went out of her way to help and make others feel comfortable, no matter what. She had an air of peace and grace about her which endeared her to everyone who came in contact with her. She was a proud and dignified woman who had a passion for life and family, and an even greater passion in her Lord, Jesus Christ. When I asked her if she could possibly pick a favorite scripture, she hardly paused before answering, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:13): a more fitting matto for her life, I could not have ever have chosen. God was her rock and her strength that made her the wonderful woman, mother, wife and sister we all knew and loved until her last day on this earth, Thursday July 4th, 2019.

Donna Susan Duffy was born on this day, July 9th, 1953. She grew up in a small town in Pensylivaina with her parents, Gerome and Susan Duffy and her big brother, Jerry. Although they did not have much, they were always provided for whether by her hard working parents or when in need, through answered prayers. She told me on more than one occasion that she to climb a hill made of coal, both ways, to and from school every day. And just the other day, Uncle Jerry told me about when she was only 5 or 6 years old, their house so small that Donna was still sleeping in a crib in the hallway because there were not enough rooms. When the rent was going up and they had to move, God provided opportunity for her family and they were able to purchase a home for only $3,000 with room for everyone.

Although they did not have much, her mother, Grandma Sue to us, made sure they had what they needed, working even harder after their father Gerome passed away, to provide for her family both physically and spiritually. Instilling in her children the importance of saving, and the value of a deep relationship with God which followed Donna through her life time. On more than one occasion, Mom told me how grateful she was for the piano lessons that her mother made sure were paid, for despite the cost and their circumstances. Something that would become one of the most valuable things in her life: Donna fell in love with the piano and with music.  Her natural talent and passion were obvious to all. As a teen she played in the church in front of the whole congregation and for the choir. Chosen over other pianists older and more experienced than her, especially for her calm and soothing style at the keys that was so unique and beautiful.

Donna married young and left her simple life in Pennsylvania to travel the world as a military spouse. First with airforce and then the navy, she traveled the world with her family and her faith. Growing up I could not get enough of the tales, from both of my parents, about the places they lived around the world during these times: The midnight sun in Iceland, gecos falling from the cealing into the mashed potatoes in Guam, giant Texas chruches, and the perfect 72 degree, San Dego weather.

Of course, I do not know the whole story of Donna’s life and by the time Mom was telling me these things she had stopped her world traveling and settled here, Rochester, Minnesota, in the Great White North. Here is where I lived my mother’s story first hand, with the beautiful, caring, and devoted wife and mother, that was the example of what I wanted to be.

Donna was our rock at home for our family. A Homemaker seems too simple a title for the for all she did for us. She never stopped looking out for us all, Making sure Dad had freshly ironed shirts for the office and buying his favorite foods even when she didn’t like them: like Kraft Mac and Cheese, or braunschweiger. Making sure the pantry was full of Charlie's favorite things (SpaghettiOs and Dr. Pepper) when he was visiting us for the summer. Or stocking up on beauty products for us girls. Mom’s Avon lady of 25 years told me that Mom would open most calls with items she thought we would like lotions and chapstick, and little things she could surprise us with. She showed us in so many ways and how to care for and love others before ourselves.

She was our support, our person, our confidant. As a teen I could go to her with almost anything. She had a standing 9pm phone calls with her brother for the last 10 years. She would have fun little shopping trips and multi hour chitchats with Kelly when Jeremy was out of town. And after us girls moved out she went on regular mini road trips together with her dearhusband on the weekends in his newest and coolest cars. She took great joy in being there for and enjoying time with family.

She was a dedicated piano teacher for all these years in Minnesota, out of our home in the evenings, to numerous children over the years, holding recitals with her students as well as playing for herself and in paise and worship to God. Her private time was often at the piano in her own musical tribute to her Lord lifting her love to heaven in song. She tried to teach my sister and I several times, but neither of us took to it like her. I often wish I had tried harder to devote myself to my mother’s art so I could share in that part of her. Now more than ever. But we did learn so many other wonderful things from her. She taught us to be kind and fair, she taught us to follow our passion, and supported our every dream. And she brought us up in with faith in the Lord. Even when we did not attend church regularly, she would ensure that we had God’s Word in our lives, with bible study and youth groups and her beautiful music.

She taught me how to sew and crochet which I take great joy in today. She told me on several occasions that I must take after her mother, as the passion for crafts must have skipped a generation. Mom taught me etiquette and silks that most others my age are ignorant. I proudly brag to my peers that my mother taught me how to hem a skirt, how to get the stain out of your husband's shirt and how to grow cucumbers in the garden, how to bake a cake from scratch. She also taught us to like healthy foods setting us up for a lifetime of health and a love of good cuisine. I love telling my friends how she got us to like Brussels Sprouts as children by serving them with cheese-wiz.

Of course, daughters are said to become their mothers, often in jest, and some may even fear becoming their mom.  But I can honestly say I have always been proud when I sense my mother's influence in me or when I feel one of her mannerisms come through me. Now, I will be sure to treasure those moments even more.

In our sadness at her leaving this world, I am comforted knowing I don't have to wonder how she would respond, and how she would try to help us through. She would point me to the Word, Point us to God. Perhaps she would quote Psalms 34:18 and say “The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit”  Or for my fear of what I will do without her here for council, perhaps she would quote Isaiah 41:10 “Do not fear, for I am with you:, do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you, I will help you with my righteous right hand”. We can lean on her still as she leaned on the Word of God.

My mother, Donna - Our mother. Your wife. Your sister. Your grandmother. Donna, would have been just 66 today. And although it is difficult to be thinking of celebrating anything at this time, so close to her leaving us for heaven, it is precisely in reliving how she lived that will comfort us now. Matthew 5:4 says “Blessed are those who mourn; for they will be comforted.”  Although we now feel the sharp sting of her absence, and the sorrow of what feels like a life cut short. We can be comforted in how she lived it: with faith and love and trust in God above all. She lived with unconditional love for her family and she lived for God. With whom she is celebrating her rebirth in her heavenly form next to Jesus, eternally in joy and in peace.
Eulogy for my mother who passed on July 4th, 2019 - Service on her Birthday July 9th 2019, By Nadia Bruce @LadyRavenhill
Memorial Dinner - Hubbell House, Manterville MN
Allan Pangilinan Mar 2015
And so I told them they can tell me,
That sharing wouldn't be a problem.
Assured them that whatever be,
I will be here for them.

I said many things, big and small,
Comforted one and all.
For if someone will break down and fall,
I'll be responsible for their lost soul.

Be this, be that,
Be whatever you want.
The problem's nowhere's at,
Just let it lie flat.

One thing I forgot though,
Is listen to what I was saying.
Apparently, my words are my foe,
And to them I am losing.

A slap to oneself,
A blow to one's ego.
Never be shy to cry for help,
Yourself do not forego.
Lawren Jun 2012
An imaginary but desirable sense of control
Created by the bully in my head
Screaming at me, pressuring me, hurting me
Encapsulating my mind as a second meninges.
Impossible to separate my true thoughts
From what it tells me,
My conscious mind is tied to a cinder block
And left to drown in its enticingly rough waves.

My physical being constantly changing with the tide
Unpredictable but regular,
Shallow but deep.
****** into its infinite black hole,
I am left feeling disgusted and ashamed
Of all that is me.

No longer am I able to decide the way in which
My needs are met-if in fact they are met.
As though I have DID, I am constantly bouncing
From alter to alter
Body to body.

Blinded from looking directly into its sun,
I am warmed and comforted by its rays
While reassured that my doubts are unwarranted.
If ever defied, it scolds and whips me,
Like a master to his slave,
A father to his child.

The welts and cuts, gratefully rip into my
Skin, muscle and bone –
Punishment for my wrongdoings and self.
I, immediately silenced
Remove myself from society,
Restricting contact, nourishment and emotions
To nil.

It is not until someone notices
The beginnings of an eternal invisibility,
That I am released and
Able to breathe in
The salty air of life.
Larry Potter Sep 2013
They say, in the wheel of life, you'll spend half your years rising to the top and the other half tumbling to the bottom. I guess they got it all wrong. I believe life is a crooked tire that can never roll up and down. Pretty sure, it is nailed to the ground where weeds could grow to entangle it forever. Until now, what they keep trying to say remains a puzzle to me. Perhaps I can never understand what they mean. Or maybe I just won’t. Why? Because from the moment our eyes opened for the world, we’re already stuck down below and I’m afraid we’re trapped here in this limbo for all eternity.

We’re just simple people living an ordinary life. Like every family who seeks refuge from the storm, we do have a place we call home although it’s not much of an architectural delight. However, for some reasons, I find our roof appealing like a real work of art. Patches of cardboard embellish the underside while a combination of tarpaulin and ad posters works in harmony to provide an extended shelter. On bright mornings, we’ll wake from the sunbeams piercing through its many gaps. On rainy days, however, the sound of raindrops falling from the gaps down to our water containers serves as our wake up call.

To jumpstart ourselves for another day’s challenge, we could either eat breakfast (if there were any), or just sing our skipping meals away and spend the rest of the day with sacks of scraps and rubbishes on our back hoping to make a good deal with Mr. Gomez, the junk shop proprietor. He reminded me so much of my father but without the alcohol problem and violence, though. During nighttime, we bring with us our drum to sing carols on the lonely streets. If our feet become too weary to walk, that’s the time we head home. We rush all together, eager to count the coins we’ve collected that night. We make sure to put a plastic cap underneath two of our table’s feet so that it won’t lean uncontrollably and spill the tiers of ten, five and one peso coins we’ve dedicatedly piled over. Then the next part does the trick. A portion of our collection for the night goes straight down a big jar and joins in the many others which fill more than half of the container. The remaining part is used to buy supper to save our hungry tummies from
shrinking again. However, during slack nights when drivers and busy people decided to become miserly, we’re fortunate enough to have a pack of noodles for supper. But if we ran out of luck, we just set our untidy beds ready and drown our raging stomachs to sleep. I know there’s not pretty much but this is where our lives revolve. And as they say, life must go on no matter what.

Together with the three most important persons of my life, I continue the journey for a better living. Along the way, we try to search for the good things out of life’s bitter truths. We never let misery **** our hopes and dreams. Instead, we work harder and tougher. Take Islay, for example. She’s cheerful,
clever, aggressive, talented, a model of hard work. She’s got most of everything. Well, except for height, probably. I wanted to be a doctor so I could help the needy. Islay dreams of becoming an elementary teacher. She said she really likes kids and teaching them would surely be a more exciting thing to do.

Then there’s Nova. Her looks may require you a little more time to think and consider, but she has a good heart. However, she gets a little, uhhm, what term do we use for an unsociable person? That’s it! She’s a bit of a Killjoy!

Islay and Nova caroled a store swarmed with drunkards. It was always Islay who’ll find every creative idea and propose it convincingly to Nova, who in turn hesitates and rejects it but then ultimately respects it in the end. Islay always has the winning edge. Maybe that’s one of her abilities. Her convincing power deserves a credit to the list.

The two didn’t mind the ***** that welcomed them. Inside her mind, Nova asked herself how many people could waste their money on a doze of liquid or spirit that can poison their mind and bring them to imminent danger. If only they have given it to the poor and needy, they could have saved a lot of lives instead of ruining their own.

But Aling Nena, the wicked storeowner, unleashed her witchy wrath to the two. She looked at them with eyes of contempt, of prejudice and disgust. She accused the two as jinxes and blamed them for the
store’s unprofitable end. If only she could look at herself and discover a chest of shimmering blame, she might shrink into shame. Islay and Nova ran off not because they were afraid of Aling Nena or the drunken men but because of what Aling Nena said to them. They cannot defend themselves from such
an attack. How could they when they were surrounded with eyes of ridicule?

And of course, there’s my dearest sister, Juaning. We’ve only got each other since our mother’s death. It has been months already. Juaning was still 15 when mama left us. She’s 16 now. It’s been quite a while and I know she misses mama a lot like I do.

And so they fought life’s bitter realities. They begged and implored to the unconcerned passers-by, almost falling to their weak knees for one very important thing - to live. But even if the three of them were sitting, lying, and rolling down the cold pavement, these people with more graces just pass by without even sparing a glance of concern. Wouldn’t it be happier if they shared their God-given blessings? But as the day continues, they have to endure the hunger, the contempt. Because other than filling their
hungry stomach, they have a sibling, a friend to support.

That’s my part of the story. It has been months now since I caught a serious illness which bound me
to this bed, flat on one’s back, weak, inutile, and useless. Every time they come home, I wish I was with them to taste the sweet and feel the pain, not just a good listener to their stories of survival and moments of friendship. Someday, I’ll become strong again, and this curse of a disease shall be gone.

I woke up to the longing for water. I’ve never been this thirsty before. I called out their names but my voice just echoed deep in the four dark walls of our crooked house. With no one to help me, I summoned my strength and decided to get a glass of water by myself. But my legs aren’t as strong as my will. And as I attempted to stand, they betrayed me. I collapsed and plodded down the floor. Luckily Islay came and helped me get back to bed. She scolded me for being careless. I cried. I can’t help it. I pitied myself all
over again.

The cold evening wasn’t a problem for Islay. Seeing me cry like that crushes her heart. I know, as a friend and a part of our family, she wishes the best for me. And that’s why she’s still out there in the middle of the night, working late to earn more for our better future. She ignored the chills and the exasperation. She knows she has to work harder and she’s more than determined for it.

But something happened to me while she’s away from home. I cannot move my body, not even my mouth. Tears just fell from my weary eyes. And before it’s too late, Juaning caught me unresponsive and paralyzed. My sister cried for help. Nova sprinted to get the jar. Juaning told her what to do. And wasting no time, Nova rushed to the nearby pharmacy to get me some medicine, and most probably to save my life.

But Nova’s effort was in vain. Prescription drugs cannot be bought that easily. The pharmacist closed down the only lining of hope for me. The security guard felt pity on Nova and he suggested her an alternative decision that will change our lives forever.

Islay was still busy serenading the busy streets with her chants of joy and sweet hums. But the clouds become unwelcoming. And by the sound of the thunder, big droplets of rain started pouring down the highway. She ran as fast as she could and sat on a corner where she thought of something deeply. She hugged the drum that she was carrying for five hours or so and tried to remain calm in the presence of the bad weather.

After half an hour, Nova came back with a pouch of medicine on her shaking hand. She handed it carefully to Juaning whose faith and hope were hanging to the tiny bottle of miracle.

Days gone by and my condition wasn’t going any better. It turned out that my medicine was consumed to the last drop. Still I remained immobile and my hands are going number by the days. Slowly I was losing hope. I wish they weren’t mad at me. I’m trying my best to live on. That’s why I’m still here. But Nova shared something worth listening to. She revealed how and where she got the medicine.

It was from a quack doctor on a stall put up on the corner of Rizal Avenue. She said he was well versed and very convincing. And that she spent all of our savings for a bottle of deception. But we can do nothing about it. We did not have formal education. We were fortunate enough to meet kind children on
the streets who would try to teach us something they have learned from school. We would attempt to read newspapers and the description in the carton boxes we spread beneath the Badelles overpass.

Nova cried in guilt and shame. Islay was still angry at her, and it can be understood. My sister, Juaning, comforted Nova with a promise that everything will get better in time.

December 27. It was my birthday. And more than anything else, what I wish is for the four of us to be happy. Nothing in this life is more important than seeing everyone you love smile with absolute
happiness. Juaning never forgot her job and that’s to buy me a cake. Every year, they will try to surprise me with every creative possible way. But that’s how their surprises become predictable with my age.

They sang me a birthday song. But this time, they were the ones waiting for a surprise. As my sister was about to hand me the cake waiting for me to blow the candle, she noticed something she was least expecting for. My lips are pale and my eyes are shut from the light of the world. I caught my last breath and before I gave it away, I left a smile on my face that can never be changed forever. That is how I want them to remember me. Not that heck of a frown clown whose audiences are stricken with sadness.

They say, in the wheel of life, sometimes, you'll spend half of your years rising to the top and the other half tumbling to the
bottom. Maybe they were right. It was then that I’ve come to understand what they were trying to say.

Our life’s wheel revolves around things way beyond just money, food, and shelter. It is about the moments you spend with your loved ones, friends and family that will be forever carved in your heart. We can never know when our life here on earth will be over. So let us cherish every bit of it. And for me, even if we skip breakfasts and eat only noodles for supper, I have realized in these last fleeting moments that my life has always
been on the top of the wheel after all.
Deb Jones May 2018
I thought I forgave you.
I told you I did.

I meant it at the time.
Or thought I spoke the truth.

How casually you mentioned it
In the dark, drinking a beer.

“Remember when we were kids
You said “That’s how kids are”

“Besides” you said.
“It was only touching”

That continued even when
You were home after boot camp

I felt hot in the dark
I thought I had been stamped

Signed, sealed. Validated.
But it wasn’t enough.

You took something that shaped me.
And made it sound like crumbs.

Casually brushed away.
In an adult voice filled with scorn

Minimized.
Justified?

You were 15.
I was 10

Then I was 14
And you were 19

A beautiful boy- man
Loved and admired by all

I know you tried with our sisters.
They all told you no.

I never thought to say no.
Always pretending I was asleep.

Because of your shame
You hated me. I was a pariah.

You didn’t have the willpower
To stop yourself

See, brother of mine.
See how you shaped me?

Now I am an adult
And one of the hats I wear

Is as a **** Crisis counselor
Holding hands in the Emergency Room

During the **** kit examination

Of girls and women
That were ***** or molested in various ways

Various ways.....
With different words to describe what happened

Even different body parts.
How do we treat a young girl

That doesn’t even know
The word ******?

Who thinks that she was ***** where she pees.

For myself?
I did forgive you.

I put a letter in your coffin
You were Thirty-three
I was Twenty-eight

Faulty pistol, bled out,
Two hour wait for the ambulance.

Your head cradled by a woman
Who soothed and comforted you

Surrounded by our father
And dozens of your friends

I forgave you finally.
Completely.

I never stopped loving you.
Is that worth saying?

Why does death feel like
We have to whitewash the truth
Sarah Sep 2018
Growing up there was chaos reshaping the love;
it was the cycle that gave us our dynamic.
A single thing acted like a looming shadow as it circled our warm home.
It would **** them one by one into its cold smog.
I grew used to its presence;
making me numb to its touch.
I had to settle the rest of their souls by ridding them of the darkness.
I was young but I understood pain;
I saw it in their eyes,
heard it behind a smile,
and felt it with the lingering touch -
longing to be comforted.
Eventually, the shadow turn to light.
The pain dissolved,
but I still remember every situation I made right -
the memories of the darkness still live inside me.
Written 08/16/2018
Blood Word Mar 2012
I once struck a man in anger, with a small statuette.
I dropped it to the floor as he fell, too, and watched the blood flow from his head.
Though as I gazed at the pool of crimson and began to realize what I had done,
I felt a snap and saw a vision:

I saw every drop of his blood.
It was inside his body, flowing, coursing, full of life and giving life.
He grew to raise a family, love his wife, and love his kids.
He helped his coworkers and encouraged them.
He donated to charities, and those charities helped many.
Some of those many improved their lives and helped many more.
As his sons, daughters, wife, and coworkers also were given life by him and gave life,
I saw his blood flow into their veins and spread, infecting countless others with love.
Houses filled with light and laughter
Streets were peopled by happy beings.
A woman comforted a girl in the loss of a friend, holding the sobbing face to her caring chest.
A poor man gave his only coat to a cold orphan boy on the curb, smiling through weathered lips.
I saw all this life,
And it was an ocean.

A flash of light and sound, and I saw another vision:

I saw every drop of his blood.
It was outside his body, flowing, coursing, void of life and stealing life.
As it touched me, I joined it as blood, boiling and bubbling with hate.
As our blood ran down the busy metropolis street of life, it would touch people it came across.
When it did so, they would melt also into a mass of red, splashing outward, and infecting others.
Everyone touched would gasp and turn to scarlet, turning the shop-lined street into a river of blood.
Countless lives were consumed in this manner.
At one point, I finally pooled at the bottom of the street, and stared back from where I came.
The street was now dark and desolate, the bustling life gone.
The shops empty, the skies grey, the ground littered.
A finch plucked strands from a red-stained straw hat, to make a bed of death.
A mangy alley dog lapped up the blood that still coated the street, becoming only more hideous.
And all was quiet, and I was utterly alone, but for the screams of their blood in my ears.
I saw all this death,
And it was an ocean.

A jolt, and I opened my eyes.
I found myself staring at the blood running from the man’s head in front of me.
A few seconds later and I realized again what I had done.
But I realized something else as well.
I tore my shirt and tightly wrapped his head in the cloth.
I lifted him up and took him to the hospital.
There I sat and awaited my punishment.
And took joy in life.
I finished part 2 before the first part, so I'm posting it now. Part 1 is still in the works.

This poem was written March 15, 2012.
The room was dank and dreary
The past hung in the air
There was a scent of mildew
A smell of history was there
The paint was old and faded
With stains all dark and brown
The wallpaper too was dated
And it needed to come down
It was a home for 50 years
That stood so strong and proud
It comforted all of our fears
Far from the madding crowd
We stripped away the paper first
Each layer a strip in time
It showed the old room at her worst
It really seemed a crime
To tear it down, and think of when
Each layer was first  applied
The walls that seemed so tall again
I just stood there and cried
I thought about the birthdays
Celebrated in this room
Of getting covered all in glaze
That we cleaned  off with a broom
The roses were much redder
Than I remembered them to be
In fact it now looked better
Than it did when I was three
I remembered Mother loved this
And of how it made her smile
And she gave Father a light kiss
After toiling all the while
The next layer though was not as nice
"Twas beige and a sort of lime
It made the room feel cold like ice
It spoke of another, somber time
I looked at the wall and I noticed the lines
Marking our heights as we grew
This was on a paper all covered in vines
Mom loved this one, we knew
It seemed  surreal that Mom was not here
To see these passages pass
But we knew in our hearts that she was stil near
As we looked at paper covered with Bass
That was from when Unlcle Jim came to stay
And our folks gave up their room
To help out a brother who I still love to this day
One who can always help  brighten my gloom
They changed the wall just for him
To make it seem more like it was his
They put their life on hold for Jim
And the wallpaper choice was his
The years pass by more quickly now
The paper doesn't change too much
Jim moved out and that is how
The paper changed just a touch
Mom got sick and Dad quit work
He did the room in flowers for our mom
It was at this time we noticed the rooms quirk
One of those things that made you go hmmm
Far up in one corner behind a section of curtain
Dad had left a small square showing the years
worth of papers we were certain
It was to help mom with her tears
Now as we finished we looked to the man
Sitting alone in the old corner chair
He smiled at us as best as he can
But I don't think he knew we were there
I handed him some paper and I looked in his eyes
He stared clear on through me
And then he started to cry
This was the last of this paper he'd see
Dad and the house now have gone into dust
The years get short and  have tapered
But to go back in time I know all I must
Do, is look at my small square of paper.
PART I

’Tis the middle of night by the castle clock
And the owls have awakened the crowing ****;
Tu-whit!—Tu-whoo!
And hark, again! the crowing ****,
How drowsily it crew.
Sir Leoline, the Baron rich,
Hath a toothless mastiff, which
From her kennel beneath the rock
Maketh answer to the clock,
Four for the quarters, and twelve for the hour;
Ever and aye, by shine and shower,
Sixteen short howls, not over loud;
Some say, she sees my lady’s shroud.

Is the night chilly and dark?
The night is chilly, but not dark.
The thin gray cloud is spread on high,
It covers but not hides the sky.
The moon is behind, and at the full;
And yet she looks both small and dull.
The night is chill, the cloud is gray:
‘T is a month before the month of May,
And the Spring comes slowly up this way.
The lovely lady, Christabel,
Whom her father loves so well,
What makes her in the wood so late,
A furlong from the castle gate?
She had dreams all yesternight
Of her own betrothed knight;
And she in the midnight wood will pray
For the weal of her lover that’s far away.

She stole along, she nothing spoke,
The sighs she heaved were soft and low,
And naught was green upon the oak,
But moss and rarest mistletoe:
She kneels beneath the huge oak tree,
And in silence prayeth she.

The lady sprang up suddenly,
The lovely lady, Christabel!
It moaned as near, as near can be,
But what it is she cannot tell.—
On the other side it seems to be,
Of the huge, broad-breasted, old oak tree.
The night is chill; the forest bare;
Is it the wind that moaneth bleak?
There is not wind enough in the air
To move away the ringlet curl
From the lovely lady’s cheek—
There is not wind enough to twirl
The one red leaf, the last of its clan,
That dances as often as dance it can,
Hanging so light, and hanging so high,
On the topmost twig that looks up at the sky.

Hush, beating heart of Christabel!
Jesu, Maria, shield her well!
She folded her arms beneath her cloak,
And stole to the other side of the oak.
What sees she there?

There she sees a damsel bright,
Dressed in a silken robe of white,
That shadowy in the moonlight shone:
The neck that made that white robe wan,
Her stately neck, and arms were bare;
Her blue-veined feet unsandaled were;
And wildly glittered here and there
The gems entangled in her hair.
I guess, ‘t was frightful there to see
A lady so richly clad as she—
Beautiful exceedingly!

‘Mary mother, save me now!’
Said Christabel, ‘and who art thou?’

The lady strange made answer meet,
And her voice was faint and sweet:—
‘Have pity on my sore distress,
I scarce can speak for weariness:
Stretch forth thy hand, and have no fear!’
Said Christabel, ‘How camest thou here?’
And the lady, whose voice was faint and sweet,
Did thus pursue her answer meet:—
‘My sire is of a noble line,
And my name is Geraldine:
Five warriors seized me yestermorn,
Me, even me, a maid forlorn:
They choked my cries with force and fright,
And tied me on a palfrey white.
The palfrey was as fleet as wind,
And they rode furiously behind.
They spurred amain, their steeds were white:
And once we crossed the shade of night.
As sure as Heaven shall rescue me,
I have no thought what men they be;
Nor do I know how long it is
(For I have lain entranced, I wis)
Since one, the tallest of the five,
Took me from the palfrey’s back,
A weary woman, scarce alive.
Some muttered words his comrades spoke:
He placed me underneath this oak;
He swore they would return with haste;
Whither they went I cannot tell—
I thought I heard, some minutes past,
Sounds as of a castle bell.
Stretch forth thy hand,’ thus ended she,
‘And help a wretched maid to flee.’

Then Christabel stretched forth her hand,
And comforted fair Geraldine:
‘O well, bright dame, may you command
The service of Sir Leoline;
And gladly our stout chivalry
Will he send forth, and friends withal,
To guide and guard you safe and free
Home to your noble father’s hall.’

She rose: and forth with steps they passed
That strove to be, and were not, fast.
Her gracious stars the lady blest,
And thus spake on sweet Christabel:
‘All our household are at rest,
The hall is silent as the cell;
Sir Leoline is weak in health,
And may not well awakened be,
But we will move as if in stealth;
And I beseech your courtesy,
This night, to share your couch with me.’

They crossed the moat, and Christabel
Took the key that fitted well;
A little door she opened straight,
All in the middle of the gate;
The gate that was ironed within and without,
Where an army in battle array had marched out.
The lady sank, belike through pain,
And Christabel with might and main
Lifted her up, a weary weight,
Over the threshold of the gate:
Then the lady rose again,
And moved, as she were not in pain.

So, free from danger, free from fear,
They crossed the court: right glad they were.
And Christabel devoutly cried
To the Lady by her side;
‘Praise we the ****** all divine,
Who hath rescued thee from thy distress!’
‘Alas, alas!’ said Geraldine,
‘I cannot speak for weariness.’
So, free from danger, free from fear,
They crossed the court: right glad they were.

Outside her kennel the mastiff old
Lay fast asleep, in moonshine cold.
The mastiff old did not awake,
Yet she an angry moan did make.
And what can ail the mastiff *****?
Never till now she uttered yell
Beneath the eye of Christabel.
Perhaps it is the owlet’s scritch:
For what can aid the mastiff *****?

They passed the hall, that echoes still,
Pass as lightly as you will.
The brands were flat, the brands were dying,
Amid their own white ashes lying;
But when the lady passed, there came
A tongue of light, a fit of flame;
And Christabel saw the lady’s eye,
And nothing else saw she thereby,
Save the boss of the shield of Sir Leoline tall,
Which hung in a murky old niche in the wall.
‘O softly tread,’ said Christabel,
‘My father seldom sleepeth well.’
Sweet Christabel her feet doth bare,
And, jealous of the listening air,
They steal their way from stair to stair,
Now in glimmer, and now in gloom,
And now they pass the Baron’s room,
As still as death, with stifled breath!
And now have reached her chamber door;
And now doth Geraldine press down
The rushes of the chamber floor.

The moon shines dim in the open air,
And not a moonbeam enters here.
But they without its light can see
The chamber carved so curiously,
Carved with figures strange and sweet,
All made out of the carver’s brain,
For a lady’s chamber meet:
The lamp with twofold silver chain
Is fastened to an angel’s feet.
The silver lamp burns dead and dim;
But Christabel the lamp will trim.
She trimmed the lamp, and made it bright,
And left it swinging to and fro,
While Geraldine, in wretched plight,
Sank down upon the floor below.
‘O weary lady, Geraldine,
I pray you, drink this cordial wine!
It is a wine of virtuous powers;
My mother made it of wild flowers.’

‘And will your mother pity me,
Who am a maiden most forlorn?’
Christabel answered—’Woe is me!
She died the hour that I was born.
I have heard the gray-haired friar tell,
How on her death-bed she did say,
That she should hear the castle-bell
Strike twelve upon my wedding-day.
O mother dear! that thou wert here!’
‘I would,’ said Geraldine, ’she were!’

But soon, with altered voice, said she—
‘Off, wandering mother! Peak and pine!
I have power to bid thee flee.’
Alas! what ails poor Geraldine?
Why stares she with unsettled eye?
Can she the bodiless dead espy?
And why with hollow voice cries she,
‘Off, woman, off! this hour is mine—
Though thou her guardian spirit be,
Off, woman. off! ‘t is given to me.’

Then Christabel knelt by the lady’s side,
And raised to heaven her eyes so blue—
‘Alas!’ said she, ‘this ghastly ride—
Dear lady! it hath wildered you!’
The lady wiped her moist cold brow,
And faintly said, ‘’T is over now!’
Again the wild-flower wine she drank:
Her fair large eyes ‘gan glitter bright,
And from the floor, whereon she sank,
The lofty lady stood upright:
She was most beautiful to see,
Like a lady of a far countree.

And thus the lofty lady spake—
‘All they, who live in the upper sky,
Do love you, holy Christabel!
And you love them, and for their sake,
And for the good which me befell,
Even I in my degree will try,
Fair maiden, to requite you well.
But now unrobe yourself; for I
Must pray, ere yet in bed I lie.’

Quoth Christabel, ‘So let it be!’
And as the lady bade, did she.
Her gentle limbs did she undress
And lay down in her loveliness.

But through her brain, of weal and woe,
So many thoughts moved to and fro,
That vain it were her lids to close;
So half-way from the bed she rose,
And on her elbow did recline.
To look at the lady Geraldine.
Beneath the lamp the lady bowed,
And slowly rolled her eyes around;
Then drawing in her breath aloud,
Like one that shuddered, she unbound
The cincture from beneath her breast:
Her silken robe, and inner vest,
Dropped to her feet, and full in view,
Behold! her ***** and half her side—
A sight to dream of, not to tell!
O shield her! shield sweet Christabel!

Yet Geraldine nor speaks nor stirs:
Ah! what a stricken look was hers!
Deep from within she seems half-way
To lift some weight with sick assay,
And eyes the maid and seeks delay;
Then suddenly, as one defied,
Collects herself in scorn and pride,
And lay down by the maiden’s side!—
And in her arms the maid she took,
Ah, well-a-day!
And with low voice and doleful look
These words did say:

‘In the touch of this ***** there worketh a spell,
Which is lord of thy utterance, Christabel!
Thou knowest to-night, and wilt know to-morrow,
This mark of my shame, this seal of my sorrow;
But vainly thou warrest,
For this is alone in
Thy power to declare,
That in the dim forest
Thou heard’st a low moaning,
And found’st a bright lady, surpassingly fair:
And didst bring her home with thee, in love and in charity,
To shield her and shelter her from the damp air.’

It was a lovely sight to see
The lady Christabel, when she
Was praying at the old oak tree.
Amid the jagged shadows
Of mossy leafless boughs,
Kneeling in the moonlight,
To make her gentle vows;
Her slender palms together prest,
Heaving sometimes on her breast;
Her face resigned to bliss or bale—
Her face, oh, call it fair not pale,
And both blue eyes more bright than clear.
Each about to have a tear.
With open eyes (ah, woe is me!)
Asleep, and dreaming fearfully,
Fearfully dreaming, yet, I wis,
Dreaming that alone, which is—
O sorrow and shame! Can this be she,
The lady, who knelt at the old oak tree?
And lo! the worker of these harms,
That holds the maiden in her arms,
Seems to slumber still and mild,
As a mother with her child.

A star hath set, a star hath risen,
O Geraldine! since arms of thine
Have been the lovely lady’s prison.
O Geraldine! one hour was thine—
Thou’st had thy will! By tarn and rill,
The night-birds all that hour were still.
But now they are jubilant anew,
From cliff and tower, tu-whoo! tu-whoo!
Tu-whoo! tu-whoo! from wood and fell!

And see! the lady Christabel
Gathers herself from out her trance;
Her limbs relax, her countenance
Grows sad and soft; the smooth thin lids
Close o’er her eyes; and tears she sheds—
Large tears that leave the lashes bright!
And oft the while she seems to smile
As infants at a sudden light!
Yea, she doth smile, and she doth weep,
Like a youthful hermitess,
Beauteous in a wilderness,
Who, praying always, prays in sleep.
And, if she move unquietly,
Perchance, ‘t is but the blood so free
Comes back and tingles in her feet.
No doubt, she hath a vision sweet.
What if her guardian spirit ‘t were,
What if she knew her mother near?
But this she knows, in joys and woes,
That saints will aid if men will call:
For the blue sky bends over all.

PART II

Each matin bell, the Baron saith,
Knells us back to a world of death.
These words Sir Leoline first said,
When he rose and found his lady dead:
These words Sir Leoline will say
Many a morn to his dying day!

And hence the custom and law began
That still at dawn the sacristan,
Who duly pulls the heavy bell,
Five and forty beads must tell
Between each stroke—a warning knell,
Which not a soul can choose but hear
From Bratha Head to Wyndermere.
Saith Bracy the bard, ‘So let it knell!
And let the drowsy sacristan
Still count as slowly as he can!’
There is no lack of such, I ween,
As well fill up the space between.
In Langdale Pike and Witch’s Lair,
And Dungeon-ghyll so foully rent,
With ropes of rock and bells of air
Three sinful sextons’ ghosts are pent,
Who all give back, one after t’ other,
The death-note to their living brother;
And oft too, by the knell offended,
Just as their one! two! three! is ended,
The devil mocks the doleful tale
With a merry peal from Borrowdale.

The air is still! through mist and cloud
That merry peal comes ringing loud;
And Geraldine shakes off her dread,
And rises lightly from the bed;
Puts on her silken vestments white,
And tricks her hair in lovely plight,
And nothing doubting of her spell
Awakens the lady Christabel.
‘Sleep you, sweet lady Christabel?
I trust that you have rested well.’

And Christabel awoke and spied
The same who lay down by her side—
O rather say, the same whom she
Raised up beneath the old oak tree!
Nay, fairer yet! and yet more fair!
For she belike hath drunken deep
Of all the blessedness of sleep!
And while she spake, her looks, her air,
Such gentle thankfulness declare,
That (so it seemed) her girded vests
Grew tight beneath her heaving *******.
‘Sure I have sinned!’ said Christabel,
‘Now heaven be praised if all be well!’
And in low faltering tones, yet sweet,
Did she the lofty lady greet
With such perplexity of mind
As dreams too lively leave behind.

So quickly she rose, and quickly arrayed
Her maiden limbs, and having prayed
That He, who on the cross did groan,
Might wash away her sins unknown,
She forthwith led fair Geraldine
To meet her sire, Sir Leoline.
The lovely maid and the lady tall
Are pacing both into the hall,
And pacing on through page and groom,
Enter the Baron’s presence-room.

The Baron rose, and while he prest
His gentle daughter to his breast,
With cheerful wonder in his eyes
The lady Geraldine espies,
And gave such welcome to the same,
As might beseem so bright a dame!

But when he heard the lady’s tale,
And when she told her father’s name,
Why waxed Sir Leoline so pale,
Murmuring o’er the name again,
Lord Roland de Vaux of Tryermaine?
Alas! they had been friends in youth;
But whispering tongues can poison truth;
And constancy lives in realms above;
And life is thorny; and youth is vain;
And to be wroth with one we love
Doth work like madness in the brain.
And thus it chanced, as I divine,
With Roland and Sir Leoline.
Each spake words of high disdain
And insult to his heart’s best brother:
They parted—ne’er to meet again!
But never either found another
To free the hollow heart from paining—
They stood aloof, the scars remaining,
Like cliffs which had been rent asunder;
A dreary sea now flows between.
But neither heat, nor frost, nor thunder,
Shall wholly do away, I ween,
The marks of that which once hath been.
Sir Leoline, a moment’s space,
Stood gazing on the damsel’s face:
And the youthful Lord of Tryermaine
Came back upon his heart again.

O then the Baron forgot his age,
His noble heart swelled high with rage;
He swore by the wounds in Jesu’s side
He would proclaim it far and wide,
With trump and solemn heraldry,
That they, who thus had wronged the dame
Were base as spotted infamy!
‘And if they dare deny the same,
My herald shall appoint a week,
And let the recreant traitors seek
My tourney court—that there and then
I may dislodge their reptile souls
From the bodies and forms of men!’
He spake: his eye in lightning rolls!
For the lady was ruthlessly seized; and he kenned
In the beautiful lady the child of his friend!

And now the tears were on his face,
And fondly in his arms he took
Fair Geraldine who met the embrace,
Prolonging it with joyous look.
Which when she viewed, a vision fell
Upon the soul of Christabel,
The vision of fear, the touch and pain!
She shrunk and shuddered, and saw again—
(Ah, woe is me! Was it for thee,
Thou gentle maid! such sights to see?)
Again she saw that ***** old,
Again she felt that ***** cold,
And drew in her breath with a hissing sound:
Whereat the Knight turned wildly round,
And nothing saw, but his own sweet maid
With eyes upraised, as one that prayed.

The touch, the sight, had passed away,
And in its stead that vision blest,
Which comfort
From the moment we met on that eventful night,
I've felt something for her unlike I've felt for any other soul.
Her hair was curled, her makeup was neat.
She was beautiful.
She smiled at me a special smile,
And it was that smile I would become accustom to.
She was surrounded by a crowd of exceptional people.
They were a kind of wild and raunchy people I hadn't been exposed to.
Amongst them, she shined like a diamond,
As if she was God and they were all descendants of Lucifer.

I soon became aware that her and I could relate.
Sometimes outcasted by others, we bonded in our strife.
We led similar lives and connected strongly with each other in a friendly, nonromantic way.
Whilst her fellow souls were overflowing with disorder,
We held each other and comforted each other from the unsafe conditions of teenage darkness.
She was misunderstood and so was I.
We were meant to live much simpler lives,
But in our struggle to prosper in what we thought was divine,
We made our lives much more complicated.

She watched me as I drove those familiar roads,
And listened as I talked of my blues.
She empathized with me.
We always got along the best.
Faced with a plethora of teenage hardships,
We always found our way back to sanity.
We always found our way back to each other.
She was everything to me,
And to this day, she still shines like a diamond.
Now, her smile is more than just a smile.
It's a pathway to serenity.
Kiernan Norman Nov 2013
He was born defeated.
For eight months he sat at the delta to the world,
stargazing in amniotic fluid.
Sharing oxygen with another passing,
it back and forth like a gas mask in a chemical war.
how familiar he would become with the chemical war.
he did not propel into life the way everyone expected,
like the first, iron soldier to  dive
from a helicopter into the bush; all displaced rage
and camo flags waving behind him.
he was made to wait. made to drown just a little bit.
made to appear to the world a little blue.
no gas mask this time. just some weak lungs
and a bald head. not raven-dark and tumultuous like his six-minute predecessor,
but quiet, sullen and sentenced to a week in an incubator;
teaching him how to be alive.
maybe that was the first time he got mad. he more or less stayed mad for 17 years.
Found comfort in Peter Pan, a boy with no future- no past,
and juiced up men performing soap operas for a living;
sweating on their audience and quick to blow
a folding chair in to the enemies face.
The same pit-stomach drop of a terrible math grade,
And of realizing an idea if terrible halfway through completion-
Dazed at on knees at3am, half of the bedroom carpet ripped out
With a carving knife.
He beat up his other, left her trembling behind doors that didn't lock for years.
Full weight pressed against cheap wood, hoping this time it wouldn't open,
and leaving in the wake a girl-child, of 20 years-
terrified of testosterone and emotions.
There was the comfort in war movies; men with purpose, and the quirky
anime of a culture not his own.
Darker pagan books dotted pubescence. They sat like coffee mugs
filled with sludgy water, a place to dip paintbrushes in when it was time to start over.
Drugs come in folds. dealt like cards over the years- grappling for anything.
Their names ring out first like a memoir, then like a psych ward.
He would probably snort dirt if an escape from hardwood floored, leave spun
world in which he lived.
the place where dead batteries rolled around in for years in drawers and
tape never came off of wallpaper.
and the other one- the one who cut him off and turned
him blue at the very beginning; she's frozen too.
she stumbles through cities and ghettos and ancient worlds,
hoping to find something, anything that gives her a purpose.
Back to strong wind on 6th Avenue between classes,
Eyes sting and water against it but comforted by the smell of snow and
Bus exhaust. In that moment doing a good job. Being a trooper.
Swiping IDs that show a real, accounted for person underneath
The Goodwill feather-down coat and expensive Arabic textbook,
But in the quiet hours still grasping at straws,
at braids that don't quite work and flowers tangled
in hair that won't quite stay in place.
Singing with a voice a little too novice,
too rough. Looking dumb in sunglasses and boots.
She starts and quits things a lot.
gets exhausted. predisposed for enormous depression.
greek-tragady like.
****-yourself-to-spare-the-gods-your-being like.
finds glimpses of life in things, mainly when submerged in a daze of not-getting carded and  incense. Hair falls over pages of books, hanging one handed on an R to Queens,
or collecting cigarette butts from the side of the road
in the prairies of Dakota-land, helping kids collect enough tobacco
for their drunk fathers and zombie mothers to roll and smoke for the night.
She’s turning around in circles in grocery stores
Picking up food-stamp broccoli and sliced cheese in Harlem,
Going everywhere with sleep in her eyes and
wondering how others manage to exist.
but who is a killer from the start supposed to be?

— The End —