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Tommy Randell Mar 2017
3 Walking the path
2 Is not being the path
1 Ready Aim Fire!
Lawrence Hall Apr 25
Maybe the Prisoner was Already Dead

     “...he stepped slightly aside to avoid a puddle on the path.”

                               -George Orwell, “A Hanging”

Evening. Maybe he was already dead
Dead long before the State boys strapped him down
And a functionary started an I.V. drip
Left arm? Or right? In a cinder-block room

Fluorescent lights

With windowed faces posted on both sides
Testaments to the protocols of death
The liturgy of falling away because
He and the lads murdered a helpless man

Fluorescent lights

He breathed. And then he didn’t. His bowels let go
And did they put a Band-Aid on the wound?

Fluorescent lights

But now

Let’s go outside and feel the wind

                                                           ­      We live
Your ‘umble scrivener’s site is:
Reactionarydrivel.blogspot.com.
It’s not at all reactionary, tho’ it might be drivel.

Lawrence Hall’s vanity publications are available on amazon.com as Kindle and on bits of dead tree:  The Road to Magdalena, Paleo-Hippies at Work and Play, Lady with a Dead Turtle, Don’t Forget Your Shoes and Grapes, Coffee and a Dead Alligator to Go, and Dispatches from the Colonial Office.
Steve Page Mar 5
Settle down please.
Today you will be trained in Level 1 crucifixion.

First, the nail. Please pass the bag along once you have taken one nail each.

You can rely on these nails.
Each one is forged by hand, hammered out and shaped with skill.
'You can nail it with one nail,' as they say.

Nails can be used to fasten almost anything to wood. Choosing the right nail for the job can make a big difference in hold power. As there is no need to conceal the nail head and we require maximum holding power, we have chosen common nails for the job. When the nail is temporary and will be pulled out again, as with crucifixion work, we have found that a double-headed or duplex nail is the best choice. However, due to cut backs, we have reverted to the common flat headed nail.

Experience and common practice calls for driving the nail through the thinner limb into the thicker timber. For maximum holding power, the length of the nail is such that it passes almost, but not quite, through the thicker timber. 

Take a careful look at the illustrations provided. As depicted, for best results lay the condemned on the crossbeam and bind the arms in place on the timber before nailing. I refer you to your ropes and knots training last week.

One nail is sufficient for each upper limb if placed between the forearm bones above the wrist. You will find that some limbs will have been subject to a break beforehand. If this is the case, we advise that you use additional rope to bind the limb to the cross beam and that you select a site for the nail further up the arm if necessary.

Now you are ready to secure the feet. Place the feet together one over the other. Hold them in place while a colleague drives one nail through both feet. Please hold them steady and resist any attempt by the condemned to frustrate your task. Keep steady pressure on the feet while your colleague hammers the nail home.

Before lifting the crixiform into the hollow, ensure each nail has been driven in securely. Once you and your supervisor are satisfied, lift the cruciform in one swift movement ensuring the base slides neatly into the hollow. Two or possibly three of you are needed for this.

This is the greatest test for your handiwork. The impact of the timber landing at the base of the hollow will cause the body to jar under its own weight and place additional strain on the nail. In the event that a nail comes lose, you are advised to lift the cruxiform out and to use a second nail on the unsecured limb.

In most cases this will not be necessary and the condemned will hang securely long enough to allow the body to die, even if this takes several days.

Once death has been confirmed using the accepted method, lift the cruxiform down, remove the nails and inspect them for damage. If deemed reusable, rinse and dry them before storage.

If there are no questions you will now each be assigned to an experienced colleague to assist with a crucifixion. If at any time you feel that you are likely to *****, please use the bucket provided. There's no shame in this, the first time can be quite shocking; there is usually more blood flow than you initially expect. However, you will soon learn how to complete the exercise with skill and professionalism. I have complete faith in you.

Please keep your nail, you'll need it later.
Easter ain't pretty.
幽玄 Jul 2018
Today or should I say what was left of yesterday, the most important time during the day when the moon is in a modestly transient display, I would consider taking my life. It is early evening, I couldn’t hold onto what I thought I could live for, giving into intolerance too easily, was like life for me was cracking in two and I was unable to cause cohesion for the diverging halves. only the effect remains unhinged and hidden inside me, without notice I go on missing from society. I’ve greatly deteriorated over the past few months which felt to me like decades in a room resembling winter. I often open the window only to my dismay that the air out is uncomfortably thick and moist, enough to suffocate my concentration for concern to what lies around instead I retract into this niche I resent completely spectating this limited view found underneath monochromatic inverted shades, for something that might not be much greater than I had wished it to be, I let these ideals of mine run wild in an attempt to let them be real momentarily, to burn out eventually unseen. Nothing should be able to live in such a way, I’m as stagnant as the trees that lie ahead near the streets. They witness every passerby freely sauntering trails laid out for the day, perhaps they, these beings, take it for granted not giving much attention to anything else besides the very goal that keeps them afloat and moving toward for execution to whatever it is they have their minds eye simply on. I’ve known all too well that it is pointless to do the same, I can’t squander what I have right in front of me over a simple goal, although I might not live in life’s given moments pleading for the very attention I sometimes don’t give in to, nothing ever goes unnoticed, these impressions are all that I could ever ask for, the smallest of gifts for me to cherish. Anyways I was only wandering my sight around outside looking for a movement I could possibly run to for help, giving my ears away for barber’s melody to play out loud. Nothing more showed up, only a bitter heat wave, the trees left unshaken from vacant winds. Washing over me was the penetrative structure I felt his sorrowful life flash ahead of me wondering how misunderstood he must’ve felt in such a time where everything was unrightfully wasted from a society that never knew how normalized repression began to feel, so they went about it by going along with the feel other than freely being expressive about internal conflicting issues. Maybe to one or none at all. He deserved better as did all the others. Maybe I’m wrong and only being reflective of myself. For what reason I don’t know. I was telling myself on the car ride somewhere else that I won’t disclose, for it doesn’t matter. I imagined everything I was to do, or should I say that I was accepting of what was to come next reciting in my head that all the dreaming and envisioning I had done up to this point was my life possibly lived, the love I couldn’t help to resist myself from attaining, the opportunity to save the world from collision from and through a great work that could possibly impregnate every sensible mind with a broad spectrum of what an extra day of the week might feel like, more time to spend freely from life’s never ending demand of what is to be expected by and from each and every one of you. I daydreamed of everything I missed during my lifetime so far, I should’ve traveled but didn’t, I’m not filled with fear but that of insecurity always wins the day. I slipped on by to memories that never had the chance to be made, only the threading lies there on a timeless lot gravitating toward evaporation. I left no more hope for myself because I’ve chosen to give it to the others who could actually implement change, those of whom I know I can entrust the life that I wasn’t living to. I made a choice, to disperse this existing body from and to a place where time is stilted upon my departure outside the fields wherever that may be, music guiding me out of the overriding blur beyond the wilt— my memory subsided inside this symphony somewhere that is made up of very early mornings and the light that follows afterward, kindly implying, that maybe, they never existed. I’m without anymore words, Thank you
I’ve decided to lay this one out exactly how I intended it to look; in its most free format, untouched from editing. maybe to expose the half crumbled city that lies in the way.  

I have this thing to get carried away into needless thoughts. 4 am is the time when self-reflecting occurs.

It goes deeper than all this, this is but a simple opening to more uncovered doors.

0202, is when I will be leaving
Tommy Randell May 13
When we first got together and
You taught me how to kiss
It was a shock to come to know
That pleasure has a fist.

We are not taught as children
Playful Tigers come with risks -
The tongue can be a dagger
As it pierces with a twist.

Did you know before we met
Or was I the catalyst?
Did I wake those demons in you
Like the monologue insists?

You rained on me like fire
So hot it made me hiss,
Then like a glacier in my arms
You pierced me with a twist.

All your stories made me trust you.
Your lust made me enlist
In your army of surrender
The perfect activist.

See me kneeling down before you
The execution fast and slick -
I want now nothing less from you
Than you pierce me with a twist.

Torturer and Victim
How has it come to this,
On a sunny day in heaven
The war of shame persists?

Your compliments are scissors,
Your caress is salt and grit -
Right there from my mirror
You stare, piercing with a twist.
Skaidrum Dec 2015
...
['ärbədər']
ar·bi·ter <noun>
Winter's favorite judge.
Trial is held with the witness.

⌭ ⌭ ⌭

⍤  Trustworthy ⍤
"Do you know what month it is?"
December growls in seven octaves
"Growls?"
In demon tongue
"About who?"
The she wolf of porcelain night
"The She-wolf...?"
Can't you hear it?
"Hear what?"
The ashes on the walls
"What ashes?"
Sinful choices that need to be cleansed
"Why do they need to be cleansed?"
They drunk my last cup of gold

⍤  Confession ⍤
"What happened to the wolf?"
She chased the seventh house of Cancer
"Cancer?"
The traitorous stars in heaven
"Why?"
She loved him more
"Who?"
The man who could talk the sun into setting
"So she left you?"
Among the valley of mirrors and chess
"Mirrors and chess?"
So I could see I was a pawn

⍤ Treason ⍤
"Did you lover her?"
Down to the wreckage in my bones
"I don't understand."
My soul has fallen ill
"Are you sick?"
Of that blue sink
"What blue sink?"
Look over there, in the corner
"What about it?"
My reflection on blood is quite frightening this evening

⍤  Rectify ⍤
"Do you understand why you're here?"
Father winter needed a suicidal witness
"How did you know?"
The oaken spider prophesized it
"A spider...?"
On the lips of candor and death he spoke
"What was his prophecy?"
Three treasures summon the ill-spirited wolf
"What do you mean?"
One bite from the golden fruit is tragedy
"What tragedy?"
Two drinks from the fountain of youth is treason
"You're not answering me."
Do you know what the third treasure was?
"Enlighten me."
The last breath of the moon

⍤ Final Judgment ⍤
"Do you regret anything?"
The pity screaming from those volcanic eyes
"Pity..."
Her apologies left marks on my willow tree
"Are you ready to accept her punishment for her?"
Yes, I owe her a favor
"Any last words, Alunakira?"
Tell her to never forget
"Forget what?"
How the truth killed me

⌭ ⌭ ⌭

Execution; Successful.
Mark the wolf's sin as resolved.

['ärbədər']
ar·bi·ter <noun>
...
© Copywrite Skaidrum
Donnie Ray Dec 2017
what if there was no war,
no uncanny screaming of the aghast,
no blasphemy of the past ,
nobody had to breathe their last,
No ******* ten years old,
with a vestbomb as their told,
to wear it
As 'their allah  sees it,
how young and bold they are.
No shedding of the tears,
from the eyes that waits ,
for their father and brothers,
and fears that last ,
No blood that shall gear from their mass.
What if there was no soldier to die ,
only You and I,
Together end this solemn execution of the nicer soul,
and be bold enough to give them hope,
draping them in brightest colors of life
and solicit the world to be in it.
What if...............nevermind
These are hoax with no light,
They probably are somewhere in the dark,
For there they would always bark
#war #poetry #world #people
LWZ Jan 21
The grip is tight without remorse
Suppressing memories of my execution
Betrayal sharp as a knife
The unease of a battle I never was aware of
Secrets so sick they stench of rotting flesh

Forgiveness is an elixir
A medicine for the pain
Abandon thyself absolutely
To achieve a place of tranquility

Self is all I have
Self will last indefinitely
Self betrayal is thick
Like mud on the bayou
Like oil on water
An eye for an eye
Betrayal ends with betrayal
Victor D López Dec 2018
Unsung Heroes

Although I stand on the shoulders of giants,
I fail to see much farther than the bridge of my nose.
The fault in mine. The shame is mine.
For I am unworthy of you, my beloved dead.

Emilio (Maternal Grandfather)
Your crime was literacy,
And the possession of a social conscience,
That made you yearn to see your beloved Spain remain free,
And prevented you from suffering fascists lightly.

You did not bear arms,
For you abhorred all violence,
You did not incite rebellion, though you
Rebelled against the foreign and domestic enemies of freedom.

As best I can tell you were an idealist who,
In a time of darkness,
Clung passionately to the belief,
In the perfectibility of the human spirit.

You would not abide the lies the regional papers carried,
And translated news from American and British newspapers,
About the gathering storm,
Sharing the truth freely with all who would listen.

You gave speeches, and wrote speeches delivered by others, in support of a doomed
Republic collapsing under the weight of its own incompetence and corruption.
You were warned by friends of your imminent arrest and offered passage back to the U.S. or to
Buenos Aires where so many of your friends had already found refuge.

But they would not get your wife and nine children out,
And you refused to leave them to their fate.
They came for you, as always, in the middle of the night,
These cowards with stern faces hiding behind machine guns.

They took you prisoner, not for the first time, to the Castillo de San Anton,
A fortress by a most beautiful, tranquil bay,
Where they tore out your nails, one by one, and those their
Gentlest caresses while they asked you for names.

You endured, God knows what there, for months,
And were sentenced to be shot as a traitor at La Plaza de María Pita.
But the Republic had friends, even among the officers of the fascist forces,
And one of them opened your cell door on the eve of your execution.

You had contracted tuberculosis by then, yet, according to grandmother, you
Managed to swim miles across the bay in a moonless night, to safety in the home of
Another patriot who risked his life and the lives of his family to hide you in
His root cellar and made a trip of many miles on foot to find your wife.

He found your home and told your wife of your unexpected reprieve,
And asked her to send some clothing and some shoes to replace your ***** rags.
You eldest daughter, Maria, insisted on accompanying the stranger back on foot, taking
Clothing and what provisions she could quickly gather and carry to you.

From time to time you accepted the hospitality of an overnight stay
In the attic or hay loft of a
Republican sympathizer as these were not hard to
Find in the fiercely independent
Galicia under the yoke of one of its own. But mostly you lived in the woods, with active guerrillas for years.

You lived with all the comforts of a hunted animal with others who would not yield,
Your only crime consisted of being on the wrong side of a lost cause.
I hope it brought you some comfort to know you were on the right side of history.
It brought none to your wife and none to your youngest children.

As you paid the long penance for your conscience, once a month or so, after some
Time passed, you visited your wife and children. You were introduced to the little ones
As an uncle from afar. They did not know the bearded wild man who paid these visits
In the middle of the night and left wearing dad’s old, clean clothes.

The older ones, Maria, Josefa, Juan and Toñita, all in their teens, told the little ones
That their “uncle” brought news of their dad. The younger children, still wearing the
Frayed cloaks of their innocence, accepted this, not questioning why he stayed in
Mom’s room all night and was gone before they awoke the next morning.

Your grief at playing the part of a stranger in your own home, of not embracing your
Children on whom you doted, one and all, for their protection and yours, as there were
No shortage of fascists who tried to ply them with pastries and candy,
Seeking to use their innocence as a weapon against you.

Your parents were relatively wealthy business owners who farmed the sea but
Disowned you—perhaps for your politics, perhaps for choosing to emigrate and
Refusing to join the family business, or perhaps for marrying for love in New York City
A hard working girl beneath your social station in their eyes.

You lived just long enough to see Spain delivered from war,
Though not freed of her chains.
You were spared the war’s aftermath.
Your wife and children were not.

No books record your name. Most of those who knew you are dead.
Yet flowers have long perpetually appeared on your simple above-ground burial site in
Sada that holds your ashes, and those of your eldest son, Juan, and second-
Eldest daughter, Toñita, who died much younger than even you.

Your wife has joined you there, in a place where
Honor, goodness, decency, principle and a pure,
Broken heart,
Now rest in peace.
You can hear my reading of this poem and some sample sonnets from my Of Pain and Ecstasy collection in a simple YouTube book trailer by visiting https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5FXkhtOltEc&t=6s
Onoma Jan 29
gaming words

stupefied by their

pictorial inaction.

frozen as breakthrough

veriables  for

existing.

driving poets to

execution dates too

close to death to be

carried out.

one touch on the back

and front of whimsy.

could very well ****

white noise.

a rare kind of intimacy.
they think im the problem.
I always knew I was.
I just hurt
more than others

and I hurt that
the execution was set
before I even got to the courtroom.

so the witness stand felt like the gallows.

and I held on to my pride.
and swallowed it whole.
how Hassidic girls get married.
Wade Redfearn Sep 2018
The first settlers to the area called the Lumber River Drowning Creek. The river got its name for its dark, swift-moving waters. In 1809, the North Carolina state legislature changed the name of Drowning Creek to the Lumber River. The headwaters are still referred to as Drowning Creek.

Three p.m. on a Sunday.
Anxiously hungry, I stay dry, out of the pool’s cold water,
taking the light, dripping into my pages.
A city with a white face blank as a bust
peers over my shoulder.
Wildflowers on the roads. Planes circle from west,
come down steeply and out of sight.
A pinkness rises in my breast and arms:
wet as the drowned, my eyes sting with sweat.
Over the useless chimneys a bank of cloud piles up.
There is something terrible in the sky, but it keeps breaking.
Another is dead. Fentanyl. Sister of a friend, rarely seen.
A hand reaches everywhere to pass over eyes and mouths.
A glowing wound opens in heaven.
A mirror out of doors draws a gyre of oak seeds no one watches,
in the clear pool now sunless and black as a cypress swamp.

Bitter water freezes the muscles and I am far from shore.
I paddle in the shallows, near the wooden jail.
The water reflects a taut rope,
feet hanging in the breeze singing mercy
at the site of the last public hanging in the state.
A part-white fugitive with an extorted confession,
loved by the poor, dumb enough to get himself captured,
lonely on this side of authority: a world he has never lived in
foisting itself on the world he has -
only now, to steal his drunken life, then gone again.

1871 - Henderson Oxendine, one of the notorious gang of outlaws who for some time have infested Robeson County, N. C., committing ****** and robbery, and otherwise setting defiance to the laws, was hung at Lumberton, on Friday last in the presence of a large assemblage. His execution took place a very few days after his conviction, and his death occurred almost without a struggle.

Today, the town square collapses as if scorched
by the whiskey he drank that morning to still himself,
folds itself up like Amazing Grace is finished.
A plinth is laid
in the shadow of his feet, sticky with pine,
here where the water sickens with roots.
Where the canoe overturned. Where the broken oar floated and fell.
Where the snake lives, and teethes on bark,
waiting for another uncle.

Where the tobacco waves near drying barns rusted like horseshoes
and cotton studs the ground like the cropped hair of the buried.
Where schoolchildren take the afternoon
to trim the kudzu growing between the bodies of slaves.
Where appetite is met with flood and fat
and a clinic for the heart.
Where barges took chips of tar to port,
for money that no one ever saw.

Tar sticks the heel but isn’t courage.
Tar seals the hulls -
binds the planks -
builds the road.
Tar, fiery on the tongue, heavy as bad blood in the family -
dead to glue the dead together to secure the living.
Tar on the roofs, pouring heat.
Tar is a dark brown or black viscous liquid of hydrocarbons and free carbon,
obtained from a wide variety of organic materials
through destructive distillation.
Tar in the lungs will one day go as hard as a five-cent candy.

Liberty Food Mart
Cheapest Prices on Cigarettes
Parliament $22.50/carton
Marlboro $27.50/carton

The white-bibbed slaughterhouse Hmong hunch down the steps
of an old school bus with no air conditioner,
rush into the cool of the supermarket.
They pick clean the vegetables, flee with woven bags bulging.
What were they promised?
Air conditioning.
And what did they receive?
Chickenshit on the wind; a dead river they can't understand
with a name it gained from killing.

Truth:
A man was flung onto a fencepost and died in a front yard down the street.
A girl with a grudge in her eyes slipped a razorblade from her teeth and ended recess.
I once saw an Indian murdered for stealing a twelve-foot ladder.
The red line indicating heart disease grows higher and higher.
The red line indicating cardiovascular mortality grows higher and higher.
The red line indicating motor vehicle deaths grows higher and higher.
I burn with the desire to leave.

The stories make us full baskets of dark. No death troubles me.
Not the girl's blood, inert, tickled by opiates,
not the masked arson of the law;
not the smell of drywall as it rots,
or the door of the safe falling from its hinges,
or the chassis of cars, airborne over the rise by the planetarium,
three classmates plunging wide-eyed in the river’s icy arc –
absent from prom, still struggling to free themselves from their seatbelts -
the gunsmoke at the home invasion,
the tenement bisected by flood,
the cattle lowing, gelded
by agriculture students on a field trip.

The air contains skin and mud.
The galvanized barns, long empty, cough up
their dust of rotten feed, dry tobacco.
Men kneel in the tilled rows,
to pick up nails off the ground
still splashed with the blood of their makers.

You Never Sausage a Place
(You’re Always a ****** at Pedro’s!)
South of the Border – Fireworks, Motel & Rides
Exit 9: 10mi.

Drunkards in Dickies will tell you the roads are straight enough
that the drive home will not bend away from them.
Look in the woods to see by lamplight
two girls filling each other's mouths with smoke.
Hear a friendly command:
boys loosening a tire, stuck in the gut of a dog.
Turn on the radio between towns of two thousand
and hear the tiny voice of an AM preacher,
sharing the airwaves of country dark
with some chords plucked from a guitar.
Taste this water thick with tannin
and tell me that trees do not feel pain.
I would be a mausoleum for these thousands
if I only had the room.

I sealed myself against the flood.
Bodies knock against my eaves:
a clutch of cats drowned in a crawlspace,
an old woman bereft with a vase of pennies,
her dead son in her living room costumed as the black Jesus,
the ***** oil of a Chinese restaurant
dancing on top of black water.
A flow gauge spins its tin wheel
endlessly above the bloated dead,
and I will pretend not to be sick at dinner.

Misery now, a struggle ahead for Robeson County after flooding from Hurricane Matthew
LUMBERTON
After years of things leaving Robeson County – manufacturing plants, jobs, payrolls, people – something finally came in, and what was it but more misery?

I said a prayer to the city:
make me a figure in a figure,
solvent, owed and owing.
Take my jute sacks of wristbones,
my sheaves and sheaves of fealty,
the smell of the forest from my feet.
Weigh me only by my purse.
A slim woman with a college degree,
a rented room without the black wings
of palmetto roaches fleeing the damp:
I saw the calm white towers and subscribed.
No ingrate, I saved a space for the lost.
They filled it once, twice, and kept on,
eating greasy flesh straight from the bone,
craning their heads to ask a prayer for them instead.

Downtown later in the easy dark,
three college boys in foam cowboy hats shout in poor Spanish.
They press into the night and the night presses into them.
They will go home when they have to.
Under the bridge lit in violet,
a folding chair is draped in a ***** blanket.
A grubby pair of tennis shoes lay beneath, no feet inside.
Iced tea seeps from a chewed cup.
I pass a bar lit like Christmas.
A mute and pretty face full of indoor light
makes a promise I see through a window.
I pay obscene rents to find out if it is true,
in this nation tied together with gallows-rope,
thumbing its codex of virtues.
Considering this just recently got rejected and I'm free to publish it, and also considering that the town this poem describes is subject once again to a deluge whose damage promises to be worse than before, it seemed like a suitable time to post it. If you've enjoyed it, please think about making a small donation to the North Carolina Disaster Relief Fund at the URL below:
https://governor.nc.gov/donate-florence-recovery
Hunter Taylor Mar 27
kings and queens brought to our knees waiting on execution
masses blindly cheering on thirsty for retribution
i believe in some kind of god but not for what he has done
but because the demons in my head prove to me there is one

dopamine and serotonin has turned me into an addict
starving from withdraws when I used to live so lavish
a chemical imbalance is enough to keep me awake
and the thoughts running through my head cause me to shake
Dawnstar Feb 5
On that bleak frontier, thousands suffered
For the Emperor's cruel project;
Men with hollow stomachs making endless mounds
To fashion his recreation hall.
The monster was alike to its creation:
Heartless in the handling of generals.
When Li Guang, an expert strategist,
Fell into the hands of barbarians,
He played possum and seized a horse,
Riding for nine miles to rejoin his men,
Spitting arrows at his pursuers.
After bringing his troop safely home,
He was recommended for execution.
...Woe befalls he who settles there,
Where exhausted horses go to pace,
Where the crows are the only ones eating.
Should the rice harvest fail, a soldier will go
To the red northern gate and die unmourned.
The fruits of the south are sweet in all seasons,
But the fruit of the Long Wall is ruin and death.
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