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Cass was the youngest and most beautiful of 5 sisters. Cass was the most beautiful girl
in town. 1/2 Indian with a supple and strange body, a snake-like and fiery body with eyes
to go with it. Cass was fluid moving fire. She was like a spirit stuck into a form that
would not hold her. Her hair was black and long and silken and whirled about as did her
body. Her spirit was either very high or very low. There was no in between for Cass. Some
said she was crazy. The dull ones said that. The dull ones would never understand Cass. To
the men she was simply a *** machine and they didn't care whether she was crazy or not.
And Cass danced and flirted, kissed the men, but except for an instance or two, when it
came time to make it with Cass, Cass had somehow slipped away, eluded the men.
Her sisters accused her of misusing her beauty, of not using her mind enough, but Cass
had mind and spirit; she painted, she danced, she sang, she made things of clay, and when
people were hurt either in the spirit or the flesh, Cass felt a deep grieving for them.
Her mind was simply different; her mind was simply not practical. Her sisters were jealous
of her because she attracted their men, and they were angry because they felt she didn't
make the best use of them. She had a habit of being kind to the uglier ones; the so-called
handsome men revolted her- "No guts," she said, "no zap. They are riding on
their perfect little earlobes and well- shaped nostrils...all surface and no
insides..." She had a temper that came close to insanity, she had a temper that some
call insanity. Her father had died of alcohol and her mother had run off leaving the
girls alone. The girls went to a relative who placed them in a convent. The convent had
been an unhappy place, more for Cass than the sisters. The girls were jealous of Cass and
Cass fought most of them. She had razor marks all along her left arm from defending
herself in two fights. There was also a permanent scar along the left cheek but the scar
rather than lessening her beauty only seemed to highlight it. I met her at the West End
Bar several nights after her release from the convent. Being youngest, she was the last of
the sisters to be released. She simply came in and sat next to me. I was probably the
ugliest man in town and this might have had something to do with it.
"Drink?" I asked.
"Sure, why not?"
I don't suppose there was anything unusual in our conversation that night, it was
simply in the feeling Cass gave. She had chosen me and it was as simple as that. No
pressure. She liked her drinks and had a great number of them. She didn't seem quite of
age but they served he anyhow. Perhaps she had forged i.d., I don't know. Anyhow, each
time she came back from the restroom and sat down next to me, I did feel some pride. She
was not only the most beautiful woman in town but also one of the most beautiful I had
ever seen. I placed my arm about her waist and kissed her once.
"Do you think I'm pretty?" she asked.
"Yes, of course, but there's something else... there's more than your
looks..."
"People are always accusing me of being pretty. Do you really think I'm
pretty?"
"Pretty isn't the word, it hardly does you fair."
Cass reached into her handbag. I thought she was reaching for her handkerchief. She
came out with a long hatpin. Before I could stop her she had run this long hatpin through
her nose, sideways, just above the nostrils. I felt disgust and horror. She looked at me
and laughed, "Now do you think me pretty? What do you think now, man?" I pulled
the hatpin out and held my handkerchief over the bleeding. Several people, including the
bartender, had seen the act. The bartender came down:
"Look," he said to Cass, "you act up again and you're out. We don't need
your dramatics here."
"Oh, *******, man!" she said.
"Better keep her straight," the bartender said to me.
"She'll be all right," I said.
"It's my nose, I can do what I want with my nose."
"No," I said, "it hurts me."
"You mean it hurts you when I stick a pin in my nose?"
"Yes, it does, I mean it."
"All right, I won't do it again. Cheer up."
She kissed me, rather grinning through the kiss and holding the handkerchief to her
nose. We left for my place at closing time. I had some beer and we sat there talking. It
was then that I got the perception of her as a person full of kindness and caring. She
gave herself away without knowing it. At the same time she would leap back into areas of
wildness and incoherence. Schitzi. A beautiful and spiritual schitzi. Perhaps some man,
something, would ruin her forever. I hoped that it wouldn't be me. We went to bed and
after I turned out the lights Cass asked me,
"When do you want it? Now or in the morning?"
"In the morning," I said and turned my back.
In the morning I got up and made a couple of coffees, brought her one in bed. She
laughed.
"You're the first man who has turned it down at night."
"It's o.k.," I said, "we needn't do it at all."
"No, wait, I want to now. Let me freshen up a bit."
Cass went into the bathroom. She came out shortly, looking quite wonderful, her long
black hair glistening, her eyes and lips glistening, her glistening... She displayed her
body calmly, as a good thing. She got under the sheet.
"Come on, lover man."
I got in. She kissed with abandon but without haste. I let my hands run over her body,
through her hair. I mounted. It was hot, and tight. I began to stroke slowly, wanting to
make it last. Her eyes looked directly into mine.
"What's your name?" I asked.
"What the hell difference does it make?" she asked.
I laughed and went on ahead. Afterwards she dressed and I drove her back to the bar but
she was difficult to forget. I wasn't working and I slept until 2 p.m. then got up and
read the paper. I was in the bathtub when she came in with a large leaf- an elephant ear.
"I knew you'd be in the bathtub," she said, "so I brought you something
to cover that thing with, nature boy."
She threw the elephant leaf down on me in the bathtub.
"How did you know I'd be in the tub?"
"I knew."
Almost every day Cass arrived when I was in the tub. The times were different but she
seldom missed, and there was the elephant leaf. And then we'd make love. One or two nights
she phoned and I had to bail her out of jail for drunkenness and fighting.
"These sons of *******," she said, "just because they buy you a few
drinks they think they can get into your pants."
"Once you accept a drink you create your own trouble."
"I thought they were interested in me, not just my body."
"I'm interested in you and your body. I doubt, though, that most men can see
beyond your body."
I left town for 6 months, bummed around, came back. I had never forgotten Cass, but
we'd had some type of argument and I felt like moving anyhow, and when I got back i
figured she'd be gone, but I had been sitting in the West End Bar about 30 minutes when
she walked in and sat down next to me.
"Well, *******, I see you've come back."
I ordered her a drink. Then I looked at her. She had on a high- necked dress. I had
never seen her in one of those. And under each eye, driven in, were 2 pins with glass
heads. All you could see were the heads of the pins, but the pins were driven down into
her face.
"******* you, still trying to destroy your beauty, eh?"
"No, it's the fad, you fool."
"You're crazy."
"I've missed you," she said.
"Is there anybody else?"
"No there isn't anybody else. Just you. But I'm hustling. It costs ten bucks. But
you get it free."
"Pull those pins out."
"No, it's the fad."
"It's making me very unhappy."
"Are you sure?"
"Hell yes, I'm sure."
Cass slowly pulled the pins out and put them back in her purse.
"Why do you haggle your beauty?" I asked. "Why don't you just live with
it?"
"Because people think it's all I have. Beauty is nothing, beauty won't stay. You
don't know how lucky you are to be ugly, because if people like you you know it's for
something else."
"O.k.," I said, "I'm lucky."
"I don't mean you're ugly. People just think you're ugly. You have a fascinating
face."
"Thanks."
We had another drink.
"What are you doing?" she asked.
"Nothing. I can't get on to anything. No interest."
"Me neither. If you were a woman you could hustle."
"I don't think I could ever make contact with that many strangers, it's
wearing."
"You're right, it's wearing, everything is wearing."
We left together. People still stared at Cass on the streets. She was a beautiful
woman, perhaps more beautiful than ever. We made it to my place and I opened a bottle of
wine and we talked. With Cass and I, it always came easy. She talked a while and I would
listen and then i would talk. Our conversation simply went along without strain. We seemed
to discover secrets together. When we discovered a good one Cass would laugh that laugh-
only the way she could. It was like joy out of fire. Through the talking we kissed and
moved closer together. We became quite heated and decided to go to bed. It was then that
Cass took off her high -necked dress and I saw it- the ugly jagged scar across her throat.
It was large and thick.
"******* you, woman," I said from the bed, "******* you, what have you
done?
"I tried it with a broken bottle one night. Don't you like me any more? Am I still
beautiful?"
I pulled her down on the bed and kissed her. She pushed away and laughed, "Some
men pay me ten and I undress and they don't want to do it. I keep the ten. It's very
funny."
"Yes," I said, "I can't stop laughing... Cass, *****, I love you...stop
destroying yourself; you're the most alive woman I've ever met."
We kissed again. Cass was crying without sound. I could feel the tears. The long black
hair lay beside me like a flag of death. We enjoined and made slow and somber and
wonderful love. In the morning Cass was up making breakfast. She seemed quite calm and
happy. She was singing. I stayed in bed and enjoyed her happiness. Finally she came over
and shook me,
"Up, *******! Throw some cold water on your face and pecker and come enjoy the
feast!"
I drove her to the beach that day. It was a weekday and not yet summer so things were
splendidly deserted. Beach bums in rags slept on the lawns above the sand. Others sat on
stone benches sharing a lone bottle. The gulls whirled about, mindless yet distracted. Old
ladies in their 70's and 80's sat on the benches and discussed selling real estate left
behind by husbands long ago killed by the pace and stupidity of survival. For it all,
there was peace in the air and we walked about and stretched on the lawns and didn't say
much. It simply felt good being together. I bought a couple of sandwiches, some chips and
drinks and we sat on the sand eating. Then I held Cass and we slept together about an
hour. It was somehow better than *******. There was flowing together without tension.
When we awakened we drove back to my place and I cooked a dinner. After dinner I suggested
to Cass that we shack together. She waited a long time, looking at me, then she slowly
said, "No." I drove her back to the bar, bought her a drink and walked out. I
found a job as a parker in a factory the next day and the rest of the week went to
working. I was too tired to get about much but that Friday night I did get to the West End
Bar. I sat and waited for Cass. Hours went by . After I was fairly drunk the bartender
said to me, "I'm sorry about your girlfriend."
"What is it?" I asked.
"I'm sorry, didn't you know?"
"No."
"Suicide. She was buried yesterday."
"Buried?" I asked. It seemed as though she would walk through the doorway at
any moment. How could she be gone?
"Her sisters buried her."
"A suicide? Mind telling me how?"
"She cut her throat."
"I see. Give me another drink."
I drank until closing time. Cass was the most beautiful of 5 sisters, the most
beautiful in town. I managed to drive to my place and I kept thinking, I should have
insisted she stay with me instead of accepting that "no." Everything about her
had indicated that she had cared. I simply had been too offhand about it, lazy, too
unconcerned. I deserved my death and hers. I was a dog. No, why blame the dogs? I got up
and found a bottle of wine and drank from it heavily. Cass the most beautiful girl in town
was dead at 20. Outside somebody honked their automobile horn. They were very loud and
persistent. I sat the bottle down and screamed out: "******* YOU, YOU *******
,SHUT UP!" The night kept coming and there was nothing I could do.
EFFECTS OF CHILD ABUSE ON PERFORMANCE OF PRIMARY SCHOOL IN KAPYEMIT WARD, TURBO CONSTITUENCY, UASIN-GISHU COUNTY.





BY
ERICK NYAKUNDI
KIS/03013/14




A RESEARCH PROJECTSUBMITED TO THE SCHOOL OF ARTS AND SOCIAL SCIENCES, DEPARTMENT OF SOCIOLOGY AND PSYCHOLOGY IN THE PARTIAL FULFILMENT FOR THE AWARD OF THE DEGREE OF BACHELOR OF SOCIOLOGY



MAY, 2014

DECLARATION

I, the undersigned, declare that this project is my original work and that it has not been presented in any other university or institution for academic credit.

Signature...............................................­..... Date...................................
ERICK NYAKUNDI
KIS/03013/14






SUPERVISOR
This project has been submitted for examination with my approval as university supervisor
DR. W. O. ABUYA
Signature..................................................­.. Date....................................




DEDICATION
I dedicate this work to my Dad, Mom, my sister Lydia and my lovely brother Dun who contributed in one way or another to make this project to be successful.


















ACKNOWLEDGEMENT
I would like to thank all individuals who contributed and sacrificed their time towards completion of this project.
To my supervisor, for the guidance and support in the development of this research project, His advice and criticism made this project what it is.
Thanks to colleagues and friends for their suggestions, advice and encouragement. To all of you may God bless you abundantly for your tireless effort.

TABLE OF CONTENTS
Contents Page
DECLARATION i
DEDICATION ii
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT iii
TABLE OF CONTENTS iv
LIST OF TABLES vii
LIST OF FIGURE viii
ABSTRACT ix
CHAPTER ONE 10
STUDY OVERVIEW AND STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM 10
1.1 Background of the Study 10
1.2 Research Questions 13
1.3 Research Objectives 13
1.4 Justification of the Study 13
1.5 Significance of the Study 14
1.6 Scope of the Study 15
1.6.1Assumptions of the Study 16
CHAPTER TWO 17
LITERATURE REVIEW 17
2.1 Introduction 17
2.2 Common Forms of Child Abuse 17
2.2.1 Child ****** Abuse 17
2.2.2 Physiological or Emotional Abuse 17
2.2.3 Physical Abuse 18
2.2.4 Child Neglect or Abandonment 18
2.2.4.1 Physical Neglect 19
2.2.4.2 Educational Neglect 19
2.2.4.3 Medical Neglect 19
2.2.5 Child Fatalities 20
2.3 How Child Abuse Affects Academic Performance 20
2.3.1 Child Abuse and Academic Performance 20
2.3.2 Child Abuse and School Image 23
2.3.3 Child Abuse and Dropout Rate 25
2.4 Strategies that Schools can Employ to Curb Child Abuse 26
2.4.1 Role of Public Regulation 26
2.4.1.1 Nurturing and Attachment 27
2.4.1.2 Social Connections 27
2.5 Theoretical Framework 27
2.5.1 Learning Theory 28
2.5.1.1 Relationship with the Study 28
2.5.2 Family Dysfunction Theory 29
2.5.2.1 Relationship with the Study 29
CHAPTER THREE 30
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODOLOGY 30
3.0 Introduction 30
3.1 Site Description 30
3.2 Research Design 30
3.3.1 Target Population 30
3.3.2 Sample Size and Sampling Procedure 31
3.4 Description of Research Instruments 32
3.4.1 Research Instrument 32
3.4.1.1 Questionnaire 32
3.5 Data Collection Procedure 32
3.5.1 Validity and Reliability of Research Instruments 33
3.5.1.1 Reliability of Research Instruments 33
3.5.1.2 Validity 33
3.6 Data Analysis and Presentation 33
CHAPTER FOUR 35
DATA PRESENTATION AND ANALYSIS 35
4.0 Introduction 35
4.1 Background Information 35
4.1.1 Age of the Respondents 35
4.1.2 *** of the Respondents 35
4.1.3 Education Level of the Respondents 36
4.1.4 Marital Status 36
4.2 Specific Information 37
4.2.1 Effects of Child Abuse on Academic Performance 37
4.2.2 How Child Abuse Affects Dropout Rate of Students in School 38
4.2.3 Proposed Strategies that Schools can Employ to Curb Child Abuse 41
CHAPTER FIVE 43
SUMMARY, CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS 43
5.0 Introduction 43
5.1 Summary of the findings 43
5.2 Discussion of the Findings 44
5.3 Conclusion 45
5.4 Recommendations 46
REFERENCES 47

LIST OF TABLES & FIGURES
Table 3.1 Target population 32
Table 3.1 Sample size 33
Table 4.1 Age of the Respondents 36
Table 4.2 *** of the Respondents 37
Table 4.3 Education Level of the Respondents 37
Table 4.4 Marital Status 38
Table 4.5 Effects of Child Abuse on Academic Performance 38
Table 4.6 How Child Abuse Affects Dropout Rate of Students in School 40
Figure 4.1 Views of the Pupils on Abuse 41
Table 4.7 Proposed Strategies that Schools can Employ to Curb Child Abuse 42





















ABSTRACT
Child abuse is the physical, ****** or emotional maltreatment or neglect of a child or children. The consequences of child maltreatment can be profound and may endure long after the abuse or neglect occurs. The purpose of the study was to investigate the effect of child abuse on school performance in Primary Schools in Kapyemit ward, Uasin-Gishu County. The objectives of the study were: To assess the impacts of child abuse on academic performance; to determine the effects of child abuse on schools image, to identify the impacts of child abuse on pupil drop out rate, to investigate the effects of child abuse on pupil transition rate. The study employed a survey study design. The study targeted 160 respondents which includes; 5 Head Teachers, 40 Teachers, 70 Pupils and 35 parents of which a sample size of 48 was obtained from using 30%. Purposive sampling technique was used in selecting the head teachers while simple random sampling technique will be used to select the teachers, Pupils and parents who formed the respondents of the study. Questionnaires and interview schedules were used as data collection instruments. Data was analyzed quantitatively and qualitatively and presented in form of tables, percentages and frequency. The study helped in the understanding of the effects of child abuse on the school performance, the realization of the roles parents and teachers play in the curbing of child abuse among pupils and raising awareness on the same.

CHAPTER ONE
STUDY OVERVIEW AND STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
1.1 Background of the Study
Child abuse is the physical, ****** or emotional maltreatment or neglect of a child or children. The consequences of child maltreatment can be profound and may endure long after the abuse or neglect occurs. The effects can appear in childhood, adolescence, or adulthood, and may affect various aspects of an individual's development (e.g., physical, cognitive, psychological, and behavioral). These effects range in consequence from minor physical injuries, low self-esteem, attention disorders, and poor peer relations to severe brain damage, extremely violent behavior, and death. In extreme cases, child abuse affects the performance of schools in the affected region (Daniel, 1978).
Performance refers to how students deal with their academic studies and how they cope with or accomplish different tasks given to them by their teachers. Performance is also the ability of a school to portray a good image which can influence the public (Decastro, 1978). There are several factors that influence the performance of a school at large, however, there is a critical factor that most researchers have avoided to discuss, and child abuse has been a crucial factor that has contributed to children’s dismal performance. Apart from children’s personal intelligence, child abuse is among then key factors contributing to poor performance of learners. Child abuse can lead to school dropping, emotional trauma or can even be fatal, hence destructing or even terminating the educational ambitions of a child. (Harris, 2005)
Worldwide, according to World Health Organization (WHO, 2000) approximately 40 million children are subjected to child abuse each year. According to Human Rights Watch (2001) about 30% of all severely disabled children relegated to special homes in the Ukraine died before they reached 18 years of age. UNICEF estimates that two million children died as a result of armed conflict during a recent 10-year period and that another six million were injured or disabled. In Canada, the U.S. and Mexico, over 6.5 million children annually are exposed to unwanted ****** materials over the internet; over 1.7 million of these report distress over exposure to these materials. In the United States, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Department for Children and Families (DCF) define child maltreatment as any act or series of acts of commission or omission by a parent or other caregiver that results in harm, potential for harm, or threat of harm to a child. Child abuse can occur in a child's home, or in the organizations, schools or communities the child interacts with. Each year, approximately one million children around the world are introduced into commercial ****** exploitation despite this problem; these developed countries have put measures to curb the vice. Rehabilitation schools have been formed and introduction of counseling centers as well. Despite the prevalence of child abuse in this developed nations they narrowly affect the academic performance since there are organizations put in place to curb the situation e.g. child associations, guidance and counseling institutions, and school based counseling programs (Giles, 2001)
Concern for victims of child abuse in Africa expressed by the African network of the International Society for The Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect (ISPCAN) which gave five main presentations of child abuse: child labor, street wandering, ****** abuse, child battering and abandonment (Elma, 1977). Child labor according to the international labor organization (ILO), about 10 million children less than 15years in Africa are in formal employment, working long hours with poor pay and are exposed to substantial health hazards. Wandering of children refers to children, usually unkempt and with delinquent propensities, living rough in town. The reasons for children taking to the street remain poorly understood particularly in relation to factors in the child rather than parental hostility and economic (Dubowitz, 2002)
****** abuse is another. For example, arranged under-age marriages are common in some parts of the continent and doubt was often expressed as to whether a young girl fully gave consent to being betrothed (Galdsone, 1965). Prevalence rates in Africa are very difficult to ascertain because of the fear of disclosure by victims and lack of proper documentation. Most of the girls by reasons of shame fear or surprisingly respect for their usually older perpetrators. Physical battering is also eminent. Physical abuse of children is widely claimed to berate in the third world; however, there are anecdotes from east Africa skeletal frame or localized body areas of all first attendees aged 0-12 years at this hospital during the four-year period 1 January 1987 to 31 December 1990 (Garbarino, 1975). Sixty-nine of these reports reveals evidence of multiple bone fractures wither without evidence of rib or skull fracture. Abandonment of children to roam around the streets in what we call street children is also eminent in Africa, though valid and adequate information on abandonment are difficult to obtain due mainly to failure of offending parents to show up out of guilt, shame, judicial repercussions or a combination of these. However, some euro-American missionaries identified inter alia breech birth. (Erickson, 2003)
Child protection measures in Kenya are currently not implemented effectively and fully (Galdstone, 1965). Compliance with such legislation would increase if the magnitude of the problem and better knowledge about the factors that put children at risk was available. Additionally, involving stakeholders, especially agencies charged with protection, as well as involving affected children, will highlight the issues and thereby promote adherence to protection policies. Kenyan children, child activists and children organizations are pinning their hopes on the implementation of the Children’s Act to improve the lot of the nation’s youth. The Act, which came into effect on 1 March 2002, puts in place full safeguards for the rights of the child. Its passage was a giant stride in harmonizing the national laws with international agreements which Kenya has signed such as the UN Conventions on the Rights of the Child (CRC, 2002)
There is hope that the new legislation will dramatically change the inattention, neglect and abuse towards child rights. The Act outlaws any form discrimination of children, and forbids Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), child prostitution, and child labor, among other forms of abuse. The Children’s Act has immensely improved the lives of many Kenyan children plagued with high illiteracy levels, frequent **** cases and child labor since it guarantees children the right to health and medical care, provision of which is the responsibility of the parents, the extended family and the government (Erickson, 2005).
Cases of child abuse in Uasin-Gishu region have been so eminent in the recent years ((Kenya Media Report, 2004). In the year 2010 and the year 2011, there was a program started to rehabilitate this behavior. This problem is clearly evident when you first arrive in Eldoret town, it is among the towns in the country with the highest number of abandoned children who keep on moving from one Centre to another seeking help from passersby. Parents have developed behaviors of abandoning their children and deliberately sending them to the town so that they can benefit from their borrowing. So to say this has led to child labor in this region. High profile cases of school dropouts have been recorded regarding the environs of this region. Young school children from different locations in Eldoret converge in town to persuade people to offer them financial assistance. Some attend school in numbered days and decide to spend some good number of days out of school.
The communities and societies around tend to assume this situation and term it as norm. A few who might seem concerned lack cooperation from the rest. This has adversely affected the performance of most of schools, hence leading to poor living standards of the people and a poisoned future of a young citizen. The problem has affected learners in regions like many areas in Uasin-Gishu County. It has really affected child development and affected their attendance and performance in school. Little intervention measures has been taken to advocate the holistic development of the children. It was to this reason that the researcher conducted the research in the named above region
1.2 Research Questions
The study was guided by the following questions;
1) What is the effect of child abuse on the academic performance of students in Kapyemit Ward?  
2) What are some of the proposed strategies that schools can employ to curb child abuse?
1.3 Research Objectives
The study was guided by the following research objectives;
1) To identify the effect of child abuse on the academic performance of students in Kapyemit Ward.
2) To identify proposed strategies that can be employed to help curb child abuse.
1.4 Justification of the Study
It is becoming increasingly difficult to separate child abuse prevention into separate categories. For instance, strategies on the societal level include increasing the “value” of children, increasing the economic self-sufficiency of families, discouraging corporal punishment and other forms of violence, making health care more accessible and affordable, expanding and improving coordination of social services, improving the identification and treatment of psychological problems and alcohol and drug abuse, providing more affordable child care and preventing the birth of unwanted children.
Very little analysis has been done to estimate the total cost of preventing child abuse and neglect or the long-term social costs of not preventing it. There is now a move to situate child abuse and neglect within the continuum of intervention which addresses multiple aspects of family behaviors. The efficacy of tackling portions of the problem of child abuse apart from broader societal needs is not known. And, perhaps prevention can only come in tandem with efforts to reduce poverty, improve health care and make children’s issues a national priority. However, despite these constraints, evaluations of prevention programs can be improved by coming to terms with definitions of key varia
howard brace Sep 2012
He'd been conceived in Flamborough, so his little sister assured him some eleven summers ago, which was a tad hard for Rocky to swallow, she was a whole eighteen months his junior and then some... and at that age, well... what did she know, she was only a kid, "on this very rock" River insisted, kicking her heels in delight, "next to this very rock pool" they were both sitting beside, "one sunny afternoon eleven years ago..." and that was how he came by the name of Rocky... she taunted as the rest of the colourful story unfolded... and that she had it all on the best possible authority... although the more she thought about it, had she meant concealed... she wasn't quite sure now, it was all so very confusing at her tender age but thought it sounded close enough not to matter too much and that she would just wait and see which way the wind blew.
        
     It was conceivably an ill wind that blew no one any good that day, especially if you were a boy and just happened to be sat by a rock pool next to your little sister...  Having just taken a well earned drink from a neighbouring rock pool, Sockeye the floppiest Springer Spaniel this side of the Pecos decided that he was going to dig a hole and that he would be digging it deep, then changed his mind mid-dig and decided to have a more down to earth back scratching wriggle instead... then promptly flopped over and slid into the hole... life was sweet.  Now covered from nose to tail with every species of deceased shore life usually found frequenting the high water mark Sockeye, in a blinding flash of canine inspiration judged it would be in everyone's best interest were he to have a really good shakedown which always appeared to go down well on these occasions... and give everyone a good peppering, just so they could see exactly what they'd been missing all their lives.  

     "A rock of all places, for goodness sakes..." and what's more, it was this rock, "Yuk..." he jumped up and wiped his palms on the back of his jeans in disgust, then onto his tee-shirt, then sat back down again and began exploring his left nostril in quiet contemplation before finally jambing his hands back into his pockets... what in Heaven's name had his parents been thinking of..? what on earth was his little sister talking about..? and more to the point, what in fact did conceived mean..?  these were the questions that were uppermost in Rocky's mind as he poked an exploratory stick into the rock pool...  a baby crab marooned by the tide scampered sideways beneath a large pebble and stuck one beady eye out at him... Rocky's sister, seemingly in a world of her own, much like the baby crab sat on the edge of the noteworthy rock kicking her heels, an innocent smile curled the corners of her mouth as she quietly hummed a little song of tuneful bliss to herself and considered what further mischief she could possibly pass her brother's way.

     Rocky tossed a piece of driftwood over his sisters shoulder at a nearby flock of seagulls, squabbling over what appeared to be a discarded bag of fish and chips... Sockeye, simply knowing that his little master wanted to play a game of fetch gambolled after the stick, his ears flying courageously in the still Summer air and burst, amid a melee of feathers into their midst, only to romp back moments later, the stick all but forgotten in the excitement but now proudly sporting the derelict bag of leftovers and the odd splash of guano, his tail lolloping magnificently from side to side... and for the moment at least, leaving the fratching seagulls wheeling noisily overhead and to go about their daily business without further interruption... as for Sockeye, it had been a no contest situation.

     After fourteen years of valiant endeavour his father... Red, so named for his vivid shock of wiry hair, was still engaged in man's eternal struggle to win his significant other half's approbation with the manful art of deck-chair assembly, beach barbeque and other significant gentlemanly pursuits, all while strutting his manly stuff, sporting top of the range beach wear in accordance with the social etiquette of the previous decade... his masculine paunch slumping gallantly atop his waistband...  

     After the same fourteen terms of domestic servitude and the same thirteen identically overlooked anniversary cards a certain someone had no intention of allowing another certain someone to forget so much as one of them... his better half, so she insisted would ride rough shod, administering her own brand of justice at every given opportunity, in much the same way you'd brandish a royal-flush on poker night... or better still, a loaded revolver... and that she personally carried the burden of every ill-fated card that Lady Luck had dealt strung about her neck like Adam's original sin on Judgement Day.  

     Red much preferred the shorter, more condensed name of Rock for his son, rather than the longer more protracted Rocky, as he struggled with the wood and canvas lounger badly trapping the mound of his thumb in the process, "Aaargh...!!!" plunging his throbbing hand deep into the cold, soothing rock-pool "aaah...!!!"   Still marooned by the tide, the baby crab stood poised and ready for action as it considered giving this latest intrusion a good offensive nip, then hang on spitefully as it gave Red the final withering once over with the same baleful eye it had successfully used earlier.

     Acknowledging her husbands misfortune with a perfunctory grunt as she rummaged in her beach-bag for the thermos, she refused to be drawn in where thumbs were concerned right now, after all with his DNA sequencing she was convinced he could probably grow a new one within the month... whilst Tina, well... she was just plain worn-out... but still rejoiced in telling anyone who cared to lend a sympathetic ear in her direction... and who in turn was more than happy to listen to the woes of others and went somewhere along the lines of... 'and had she heard any more of poor Mrs Dorey's lingering martyrdom recently..? you know, the downtrodden lady who lives in the next street but one... and how they would all miss her when she was gone... and how she couldn't wait...' and as rumour had it, neither could her husband...

      Feigning to be otherwise engaged, Tina... as her husband, now blowing frantically on his mangled thumb, stumbled backwards over the half erected lounger and with a spine jarring "Ooomph...!!!" landed squarely in Sockeye's subsiding earthworks... professed total disassociation with the entire fiasco as she plunged her nose even deeper into the overdue library book she'd purposely brought on holiday for just such an occasion, making it perfectly clear that she was a tourist and furthermore, planned to stick with the same itinerary once they returned home... and that while she was here, she did not under any circumstances wish to be disturbed, the notice was clearly displayed hanging from the door handle... but if anyone should, then whoever it was did so at their own peril... and she was keeping score... although a mangled thumb she luxuriated, with the same roguish smile curling the corners of her mouth as the one normally found playing around her daughter's... was equally as heart warming.

      All Tina wanted was one week of uninterrupted peace and quiet in Flamborough, preferably with a certain someone out from under her feet then spend what might pass for several undisturbed hours sitting quietly by the rock pool comparing notes on eye makeup and the feminine merits of pedicure with the little crab who, still marooned by the tide was now sat busily knitting four pairs of matching leg warmers in the cool, still water but that was only if that certain someone... a shrill  "AAaargh...!!!" somewhat more desperate than the first, ****** itself upon the as yet unaggressive afternoon as it gyrated across the warm Jurrasic rock and recoiled out to sea... "now where was I", twisting her book uppermost "oh yes..! someone was going to pay..." only now it was going to be sooner rather than later, but only if that certain someone didn't finish the seating arrangements before the Sun disappeared and drift into some backstreet tea-room before all the lemon cheesecake sold out, or was that she reflected, simply too much to ask.

     It was his Surname that Rock found so objectionable, or it had been right up until his little sister's enlightening disclosure, now it was both names Rocky disliked, it would have been far kinder had Rock Salmon been sandwiched between sliced bread and given to Sockeye... who's solemn duty, from the first mouthful to the very last, was to gaze up beseechingly from beneath the kitchen table  and devour anything that passed his way, even the postman had to be quick about his business or have his arm follow the mail through the letter box... then Sockeye would just smack his lips and help himself to seconds.  

     All Rocky's mum had thought about for the last fourteen years was seconds... every last solitary one of them since she'd suffered with an infection of matrimonial neurosis which had deprived her of common sense and her maiden name, from Chovey to that of Salmon and how with hindsight she should have taken an Aspirin instead, wedlock she asserted was everything the name claimed to be and was without doubt the worst move she'd ever made... and what's more was seen as a bad move in whoever's wedding album you just happened to be paying your condolences to.

     Rocky would never be so fortunate on that score, unlike his sister he was stuck with Salmon for good, his grandma-Ann by all accounts had been dead set against the union from word Go and saw his father as someone who would always be out of his depth in whatever rock pool he found himself in, swimming against the tide as it were, rather than going with the flow... and it appeared that Rocky, almost eleven years into a life sentence, was about to flounder in the same murky undertow as the rest of the Salmon family... only he couldn't swim.

     "There"! her husband exclaimed "all finished... better late than never eh', who fancies trying it"? his wife luxuriated over the words 'better late' and wondered whether her new earrings, her latest acquisition would complement formal mourning attire.  Red dusted off the palms of his hands with the certain knowledge of a job well done and cautiously took one step back, looking with justifiable pride at the outcome of his manly exertions of the last two hours, this was what holidays were all about he declared, one man pitted against insurmountable odds...  His wife meanwhile was getting to grips with more odds of her own than you could safely expect to shake a stick at... her husband being one of them.  

     Having gathered her offspring with the promise of verbal earache if they didn't... and finished packing the beach-bag, Tina finally located Sockeye peering out from the shade of an adjacent rock, wisps of feathers poked tellingly from the corners of his mouth, his tail beating mischievously on the shingle decided in one further blaze of canine brainstorming, as Tina attempted to slip his collar on that a game of tag would just about round the day off nicely... Tina then devoted the next ten minutes chasing him amid unrestrained salvo's of cheering from the rest of the family... then bid goodbye to the little crab who, still marooned by the tide waved a friendly pincer in return... and trusted that she wouldn't have too long to wait for the next rising tide back home, then she slid off the rock with a corrosive... "the deck-chair attendant would have shown you" she snapped "and don't forget the deposit when you take them back" then double checking that she landed squarely on his foot she marched past, her floral sun hat jammed resolutely on her head at what she considered a jaunty angle with her equally jaunty, angular children scrambling in hot pursuit, back in the direction of their lodgings.  

     "Woof "..? said a bewildered Sockeye, bringing everyone to an abrupt halt... and with paws the size of place-mats, he wasn't going anywhere he didn't want to... he hunkered down with a look of hurtful accusation on his face, "oh yes you are my lad"! said his mistress "I've met your sort before" and knew exactly where to place the toe of her dainty size-5 as Sockeye, digging his heals in even further created swathes of canine furrows up the beach, leaving her husband the unwitting holder and in sole possession of the overlooked guest-house keys... and somewhat resigned to clean up his own masculinity and dismantle the recently assembled, now redundant deck-chairs by himself... as for Tina, well... she'd had quite enough excitement for one day thank you very much.

     Morning register was always the worst he thought, as they trooped back along the shingle beach, Rocky making surprisingly good furrows of his own... but the rest of the class loved it and saw it as the highlight of each day... Rocky's form teacher, despite showing a brave face was always hard pressed to avoid bursting into hysterics every time she worked her way down the register to the letter 'S' and would attempt to bypass it altogether, jumping from 'R' to 'T' and just prayed that no one else had noticed, but it hadn't taken the class very long to point out her oversight and... "please Miss" they'd all chant "we haven't had Salmon all week" and while the rest of the class were having convulsive fits, Rocky would elbow the lad sat at the next desk in the ribs... and promptly get one hundred lines for his trouble... thank goodness it was school holidays.  Why couldn't they have been given respectable names like Seymour Legge, Rock wondered, who sat over by the window or perhaps the teachers pet, Anna Prentice or even, Robyn Banks at a pinch, but definitely not what they'd been given and certainly not Salmon, they were the most hilarious names he could imagine and if someone was looking down on them right now he thought... then they had a very unique sense of humour indeed and Rock said so... "why" his little sister asked sweetly, "what's wrong with River Salmon".

                                                      ­                         ...   ...   ...*

a work in progress*                                                        ­                                                              240­6
Gwen Johnson Feb 2016
What would you highlight
In a book of your life
What's most important
Most exciting
Most inspiring
What reminds you everything's alright
And
Would you ever think to highlight my name?
CHAPTER ONE

My geographic movements during the past year could be called “A Tale of Two Couches.” So as June draws to a close, I assume the position here again on Couch California. I am back in Hemet, the place the smug among us call Hemetucky--as if there was nothing a couple of Mint Juleps and a **** of Blue Grass wouldn’t cure. It is the year of our Lord, 2014: so far an interesting year for women. There was a woman who wore socks to bed. There was always my long-time, here today-gone tomorrow, long time companion, currently teaching somewhere remote on the Big Rez, a southwestern Navajo concentration camp near the 4 Corners.  Next, there’s my current object of affection, that fine and frisky lady from The Bronx by way of Bernalillo--currently at home in Laguna Beach, Orange County. Trixie: my main squeeze at the moment.

And now, completely out of the ******* blue this afternoon, my cell phone rings and it’s ******* Juanita--my all-time favorite woman, Juanita Mi Favorita de La Quinta--a Coachella Valley town and desert wadi, extending its lucrative winter tourist season to become a significant, year-round retirement venue and a robust service economy feeding off it.  Juanita arrived there in the late 80s, in middle of her early forties.  She was unemployed, homeless, just a suitcase to her name and a two-year old toddler in tow. Her parents were there, as was her Aunt Peggy.  Juanita was always Peggy’s favorite niece, her favorite child, actually, Peggy herself being childless, never married.  Aunt Peggy put her maternal instincts to work on Juanita Rodriguez, her Sister Rosalia’s second favorite twin daughter.

Maria, Rosalia’s first favorite daughter, Juanita’s twin sister—MARIA: lives in Newport Beach and acts as an extra in many commercial ads shot in southern California and elsewhere, an irony never without sting for Juanita. “Que lastima!” Poor Juanita: as her would-be Hollywood Movie star aspirations disintegrated over the years, along with her unrealized lower expectations to be TV star, and even those semi-glamorous modeling gigs at trade shows and fairs—the elephant’s graveyard of the acting profession—failed to materialize, and now her celebrity habitat shrunken even further, to that sporadic but consistent mockery of stardom, I refer to any would-be thespian’s ignominious one-celled visual protozoan: The Extra Call List.  And—*******-- what happens next? Juanita’s sister Maria starts getting these parts, starts getting hired by filling out a ******* postcard, starts getting paid to look good in the background. *******: no professional education or instruction, no agent, and no need to **** off both the producer, the producer’s cousin Morey, the director and the director’s wife’s huge Golden retriever, Genghis--actually a mighty handsome animal--or needing to spill $4K on that Derma-brasion, Juanita inflicted on herself last year.

Juanita, as you already know, was the second favorite daughter and the second favorite twin of the family. She became the third favorite child in her three-child family upon the arrival of her slick baby brother Nico-- the Golden Child, who grew up to be a glib Merrill-Lynch stockbroker, office and residence, Beverly Hills 90112.  (Enter forcefully into the narrative, His Nibs himself, Sir Nicodemus of Hollywood, Juanita and Maria’s baby brother Nico. He speaks: “Excuse me, stockbroker my ***, as it says in a 11 point Rockwell Boldfont, right here on my gold-leaf embossed business card: Senior Large Capital Investment Counselor.”)

No, Juanita had a hard time just treading water in that Cleveland shark tank. And though she lacked nothing in the cuteness department, she had this one fatal flaw, namely, the gift of ***** and sass and a reflex to speak truth to power. Juanita: rejected by Rosalia as a threat to her hegemony as Boss of the Girl’s Club, was cast adrift on a tempestuous childhood cruel Montserrat sea, out there on the briny deep . . .  
                

                                      



High Seas: where many a tuna has a Sorry Charlie moment: “Star-Kist don’t want no tuna with good taste; Star-Kist wants a tuna that tastes good.”

Finally, Juanita is rescued, taken aboard the Good/Soul Aunt Peggy—that wayward bark Elisabeta Rodriguez, home-ported in Southside, Chicago, Illinois—the rescue at sea performed in classy, rather low-key manner; no Andrea Doria drama, but understated:

{Camera One, Helicopter above, zooms over turbulent ocean surface. Peggy, an oasis of calm, aboard the raft Kon Tiki with Thor Heyerdahl and his crew, floats by, whispering, “Going my way, Honey? Climb aboard. Have a homemade oatmeal cookie and a small glass tumbler of Jack Daniels.” Okay, no, that’s not fair. Sure Aunt Peggy drank, but never got round to offering you a drink until you were well into your 30s. Let’s just say she offered you a warm glass of milk, the mother’s milk deprived you by your mother, her sister Rosalia. Dear Aunt Peggy: a seasoned survivor herself, flawed by early childhood deafness and grotesque speech.  Yet, she had refused to settle for life in an asylum. She made a go at life.  She learned; she prospered; she flourished. And when the time came, she was there for you in the Coachella Desert, there for her feisty niece Juanita Ann.  Aunt Peggy: a loving spirit personified, became Juanita’s special confidant and counselor, her personal cheer squad of one. Juanita, of course, a former cheerleader herself--an early hint of greatness to be sure, a highlight, perhaps the highlight of her life, shown off every Halloween, still celebrated at American high schools each Fall. She is the Principal’s secretary at a huge suburban high school in Indio. Each Halloween, if the date falls on a school day, Juanita arrives for work wearing that scrupulously preserved, vintage 1966 cheerleader uniform, looking real foxy still, snug now in all the right places. Eternal Truth: Juanita has always and will always be good looking. Life with Juanita is perpetual “ooh la-la.”

So, I am on the couch that afternoon, reading more of Gramsci’s prison notebooks, specifically the philosophy he calls “Praxis.”  Completely out of the ******* blue, Juanita calls me on a RESTRICTED phone, as I said, Juanita, a torch I’ve kept burning for years, flaring up like a refinery flame--oil still very much in the present energy mix--hope springing eternal as they say, and instantly my mission in life is rekindling our lost love. Juanita’s conceived her mission prior to her phone call:  using me to keep her son from being whacked by the local Eme--the Mexican Mafia—that ethnic-pride social club that the RICO-squad-- using family tree socio-grams and other expensively-printed graphics, the one RICO keeps trying to convince us is some sort of organized crime conspiracy. The Mexican Mafia: like everything else practical and utilitarian in this world: THAT’S ITALIAN! And, if you are starting to sense a bit of ethnic chauvinism on, between & below the lines, you are barking up the right tree.
                                                           ­     
      
                                                            
(AUTHOR’S POST-SCRIPT EDIT: And, an ad for dog food right here? Not the best choice of sponsors, perhaps, at the moment. Juanita was far off from the ****** ***** that start looking not half-bad at 2:30 in the glazy morning, not anywhere near those beasts you find lingering in the airport bars you usually frequent near closing time on Saturday nights. No, I remind you that Juanita was all “ooh la-la.” In my next printing—and my Lord, there have been so many, haven’t there, Paulie “Eat-a-Bag-of-****” Muldoon? I will change out the Alpo ad, plugging in a spot for Aunt Jemima pancake syrup or Betty Crocker whipped cream, you know, something more apropos.)

Juanita, I really must hand it to you. You showed the greatest staying power, year after year as I moved further and further away from La Quinta, California. Juanita: you embraced what was good in me, ignored my flaws and strengthened me with your love for so many years. As far as you and Peggy, I guess it was a case of the “apple not falling far from the tree” one of many endearing Midwestern metaphors you taught me.  Peggy taught you, taught you to be kind and then you taught me. No matter what bizarre venue I pulled out of my ***, you showed above-average staying power, continued to visit me wherever I went, Casa Grande & Buckeye, Arizona, Appalachia, West Virginia, and even Italy, when I thought I’d try Europe again after so many years.  With each move, each time, Juanita renewed her commitment to the relationship. Meanwhile, I continued to test her, quantifying her dedication, undermining her sense of mission to disprove my worldview on the expendability of women. Surely, you know that one: the unreliability of women, women who disappear without saying goodbye. That old deeply etched conviction to never get attached to a woman, any woman, based on the empirical fact that women have been known to suddenly die, a fact seared into my still tender metal by the surprise death of my mother on 11 January 1962.

1962. It was already an insecure world, to wit:  The Cuban Missile Crisis. Nikita Khrushchev, in his time both Dr. No and Dr. Evil, namely the Premier whom we Baby Boomers saw as Boogey Man of All Time (Although Putin is showing potential, lately)—the Kennedy ****** (what else could you call it?). All these events scary, whether or not I got the chronology right . . . I remained on high alert for any threat to my delicate adolescent psyche.  My mother-Rosa Teresa Sekaquaptewa-died at 2 o’clock in the morning, screaming in agony while apologizing to my father for not having his dinner on the table when he walked in from work that prior afternoon. She’d already been in bed since noon, attended by two of my aunts--both my father’s sisters--who loved their Hopi sister-in-law, Rosa.  Also present was Lafcadio Smirnoff, M.D.--last of the house call medicine men--a dapper, mustachioed, swarthy gentleman, misdiagnosing her abdominal pain as a 24-hour virus, while she bled out internally for at least eight more hours, her whimpers alternated with screams, well into the wee hours of the morning.

I was upstairs in that dormer bedroom listening to her die. An hour later, Father Numb-nuts of Our Lady of Lourdes Parish teleported in, beaming directly into my bedroom from the parish rectory.  Father Seamus Numb-nuts, an illuminated Burning Bush . . . not quite the bush I ‘d conjured at other times, so many times alone with Gwen Wong, ******* Playmate of the Year, 1961, one of Hefner’s hot centerfolds. No, give me a ******* break, you momo! Whacking off is the last thing on a libidinous, adolescent guinea’s brain when his mama is being tortured and killed by God. Even Alexander Portnoy, Philip Roth’s early avatar would have drawn the wanking line at that unforgettable moment.

No, perhaps what I’d had in mind was The Burning Bush Golf Course where so much of Fletcher Kneble’s political mischief and government shenanigans got cooked up. You remember his books, some of the Cold War’s finest: Seven Days in May, Vanished, etc.

Or better yet, perhaps the greatest political slogan of the 20th century: “STAY OUT THE BUSHES!” Thank you, Jesse. “Thank you, Reverend Jackson,” I slip into my Excellence in Broadcasting mode, my very own private Limbaugh. Announcing my on- air arrival is El Rushbo’s unmistakable, totally recognizable bass line bumper, courtesy of Chrissie Hynde’s Pretenders band mate, guitarist Tony Butler: Dum, dum, dum-dum, Da-dum, dum-dum-dum-dum-da-dum-dum. Single, “My City Was Gone” by The Pretenders
Rush Limbaugh Song– YouTube www.youtube.com/watch?v=SScW9r0y3c4

I become Reverend Jackson. I emerge from the vapors, an obscure abyss of deep family pangs and disappointments, ever-diminishing public relevance and fade to black (no pun intended) and media oblivion. The only thing left is that line:  “STAY OUT THE BUSHES!” You will always own that line, Jesse--true political genius (to wit: Rainbow Coalition) Jackson that you are, despite El Rush-Bo’s virulent anti-Black animus, his predilection to mock you, Al Sharpton, Corey Booker, Barack “Hussein” Obama, and any other professional ***** in America. Isn’t it time someone came right out and tagged Mr. Limbaugh as the Father Coughlin of our time.

Meanwhile back in The Bronx, enter another man of the cloth:  It’s Seamus Numb-nuts, making one of his many well-documented spectral visitations, his splendiferous miracles and wonders. How much longer will the Vatican ignore this humble Bronx priest, this epitome of Sainthood; this reverent man, lacking only the stigmata for a unanimous consent vote? Quote the Numb-nuts: “God Works in Mysterious Ways.” An old standard to be sure, but a lovely, all-purpose bromide for explaining why evil exists in our world. Needless to say, I was underwhelmed; I lost God at that moment, consequently shooting myself in the foot--metaphorically-speaking-condemning myself to an unshielded life, life OUT THE BUSHES!  I went forth into the world without God, without that handy divine crutch, that Andy Devine metaphor for when one’s legs grow weary: a puff of smoke, a reverb twang and a nasty frog croaking “Hi-ya, Kids. Hi-ya, Hi-ya. Hi-ya.”

   Andy's Gang - Pasta Fazooli vs. Froggy the Gremlin - YouTube
► 3:55► 3:55
www.youtube.com/watch?v=H35odPm7b3w Aug 8, 2012 - Uploaded by jmgilsinger
Froggy the Gremlin -Tuba ... Andy Devine (Aug 24, 1952)

Life for me became lonely and purposeless. And probably explains my susceptibility to military discipline and a subsequent career in clandestine government service. In 1968--the very day I turned nineteen, September 25th of that year—that fateful day when I should have shot myself in the foot—literally not metaphorically--earning that coveted 4-F physical rejection, a draft deferment to be desired, that 4-F classification of unfitness for duty, a necessary loophole in U.S. conscript service law.  The Draft: last used during that great commonwealth Cold War purge, that culling out of the unwashed, uneducated children of immigrants, that cut-rate, discount, lower socio-economic ***** bank—the only bank where after you make a deposit, you lose interest, to wit: most Black, Hispanic and Poor White Trash parents.  We were cannon fodder, many of us got to be planted at Arlington and other holy American shrines, still wrapped in black or olive drab leak-proof body bags, doing our generational bit to strengthen the gene pool left behind. A debt, some would say, we owed the country and, given the sorry state of the global wicket, increasingly an obligation to the species. And if I had to predict an outcome, Fascism in America will arrive riding the white horse of the environmental, anti-nuclear Bolsheviks. One could argue that Communism has moved so far left on the political spectrum that it’s now the far right.  Concoct a legislative policy goal, accomplish it legally as the bill becomes Law, signed by the President, endorsed and blessed by The U.S. Supreme Court, the highest court in the land.

To wit: “Three generations of imbeciles is enough?” declared Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr., an Associate Supreme Court Justice at the time, buttressing a majority argument harnessing the power of U.S. law as a legal means of purifying the race.  When euthanasia failed to win over American hearts and mind, the Federal Government played the war card again and again. Vietnam: undeclared and therefore unconstitutional--except for that Gulf of Tonkin ******* resolution. Vietnam: a cost-plus eugenics project, if ever there was one, although responsive, of course, to the needs of the Military-Industrial Complex.  ******* Ike: he warned us against Fascism in America. As usual, we ignored the man in charge.

Eugenics? Why didn’t the government just put all the retards on the stand, as John Frankenheimer did in Judgment at Nuremberg, a crafty Maximilian Schell humiliating a feeble-minded Montgomery Clift?  Why not, make everyone face a public tribunal, forcing all of us to testify in court, exposing our many substandard and borderline substandard cerebral deficits?  Why not force everyone to demonstrate just how ******* dumb we are, using some clever intelligence test, something l
Sally A Bayan Jun 2018
* * *
* *
*

Faces of friends, of people i met earlier
are  glittering stars on this late evening's
dark blue sky...their smiles are tattooed
in my mind...they're  hunched, going
lower by the days...slowed down by years.
it must be hard and painful...the arching,
the drooping of the neck, the curving spine,
they endure all, 'til each day's end...they rise
each new dawn...do what they still can do,
lest they stagnate in their aging ponds,
diminish to a state, where food, pills, or
forgotten information are forced on them,
......like drugs, injected into the veins

........................
these wee hours bring back the years...
they  have been good...never mind the
hard times...there were, there are good ones
life is a long, wide stream of changing hues,
flowing on and on....my water bears the
colors each new day brings...gray, at times
with sadness and gloom....other days,
blacked by despair...some summers, red,
roseate with glee, or green with life and
hope...blue, when trust is spilling, and
the tranquil sea and sky overwhelm,
with a promise of stability..........white,
when accepting......the unacceptable...
........................
the amber grains and i, are alike
ripened enough to be plucked
be pulled out from an existence...the
signs are known...shown...yet, i wait
for when it is due to happen...and while
waiting, the stalks sway, play and dance  
and enjoy the sun and wind...and i,
while i still can...walk, jump, climb hills
and valleys in this mammoth space
of land and water.............called life
...................
the sounds of my days, i still hear,
i am a lute, a harp, a cello...playing
off-key.....out of tune at times,
my strings are my graying hair,
i still can't stop dying the gray
i still want to highlight the dark,
but, one day, all these will cease...
............
one night, my face will be in one of those
many stars...glittering on a dark blue sky
sending a smile, to my loved ones...
...................
there is no other way, but forward
all are headed....towards an end...


Sally



© Rosalia Rosario A. Bayan
      June 26, 2018
...ahhh, the rains...do make us reflect longer on life...
Mike Hauser Apr 2014
this girl is the perfect tomorrow
the better thoughts of yesterday
the soft spot that's right
between day and night
highlight of the mystery

she is the tapping into time
which brings about the here and now
she is what is felt by most
that never let go
she is all that is allowed

she is both the salt and sweet
the need, wanting desire
the whisper of the truth
when it grabs hold of you
the center of the fire

she is the late into the day
the slight hint that's on the breeze
the meaning in sound
when no ones around
highlight of the mystery
Grace Pickard Apr 2014
You are the city
I am trying to get back into nature. Your bright lights beckon me back-
But your pollution is killing me
City officials refuse to address the problem
Even when I write up a
petition and policy
to highlight the issues- I am ignored. There are natural bright lights in nature
- the ones I miss-
life with fresh air is positivity.
It's my fault I allowed the city
to become polluted.
Gracie Pickard April 19,2014
judy smith Apr 2015
The Pakistan Fashion Design Council in collaboration with Sunsilk presented the fourth and final day of the eighth PFDC Sunsilk Fashion Week. Indeed the 8th PFDC Sunsilk Fashion Week marked the twelfth fashion week platform initiated by the Pakistan Fashion Design Council [with eight weeks of prêt-à-porter and four of bridal fashion] and was a direct manifestation of the Council’s commitment to sustainability and discipline within the business of fashion and the facilitation of Pakistan’s retail industry. Indeed #PSFW15 endeavoured to define and present trends for 2015, focusing specifically on fashion for the regions’ long hot summer months. Day-4 featured High-Street Fashion shows by the House of Arsalan Iqbal, Erum Khan, Chinyere and Hassan Riaz and designer prêt-à-porter shows by Sana Safinaz, Republic by Omar Farooq, Syeda Amera, Huma & Amir Adnan, Sania Maskatiya and HSY.

Speaking about the PFDC Sunsilk Fashion Week platform, Chairperson of the PFDC, Sehyr Saigol said: “With the 12th iteration of our critically acclaimed fashion weeks, the PFDC is always working to streamline our prêt-à-porter platform to make the PSFW experience more beneficial for all stakeholders in terms of show experience, exposure and ultimately, retail value. To that end, each year we look inward to find the best possible formats and categories to benefit the very trade and business of fashion. In this vein, we introduced 3 separate categories for Luxury/Prêt, High Street and Textile at PFDC Sunsilk Fashion Week, giving each entirely separate show space, times, audience exposure and viewing power. Our High Street fashion brands had been given a standalone show time on two separate days as early evening shows and Textile brands a separate dedicated day for Voile shows on Day 3 of PSFW 2015, a measured step to further highlight Pakistan’s textile prowess and high street fashion strength which are of significant importance to national and international fashion markets. As per past tradition, we continue to work closely with all our emerging designers and mainstream brands to help hone their collections for the runway through mentorship by senior PFDC Council members and with retail support through the PFDC’s own stores and network. We are grateful for the committed support of our sponsors and partners which provides us the stimulus to further enhance our fashion week platforms and put forth the best face of Pakistani fashion on a consistent basis.”

“The Sunsilk girl is an achiever, with an air of enthusiasm and positivity. Great hair can give her the extra dose of confidence so with Sunsilk by her side, she is empowered to take on life. Fashion is very close to this aspirational Pakistani girl making the PFDC Sunsilk Fashion Week a highly valued platform for us. We recognize PFDC’s efforts to promote the fashion industry and experienced and upcoming talent alike. Sunsilk has been a part of this fantastic journey for 6 consecutive years and continues to shape aspirations, taking contemporary fashion directly to the homes of consumers and encouraging them to script their own stories of success” said Asanga Ranasinghe, VP Home and Personal Care for Unilever Pakistan.

On the concluding day of #PSFW15, the Chairperson of the PFDC Mrs. Sehyr Saigol also made a special announcement on behalf of the Council and its Board Members, where she shared the Council’s plans to establish Pakistan’s first ever craft based Design District, a multi-purpose specialized facility that would assist in developing and enhancing the arts and crafts industries, which are an integral part of Pakistan’s rich cultural legacy. In addition to being a centre for skill improvement and capacity building, the Design District would also house a first of its kind Textile Museum.

The official spokesperson of the PFDC, Sara Shahid of Sublime by Sara also announced the official dates for the Council’s next fashion week, PFDC L’Oréal Paris Bridal Week 2015 which is scheduled to be held from 15th September to 17th September 2015.

Indeed the success of PFDC Sunsilk Fashion Week continued to prompt private sector associates to grow in their engagement of the platform to launch new marketing campaigns and promotional activities. To this end, the PFDC’s evolving partnership with Sunsilk grew exponentially this year whereby in addition to their title patronage; Sunsilk also took over the coveted PFDC Sunsilk Fashion Week red carpet and the Green Room/Backstage, as sponsors. This extension of their support is indeed a manifestation of the brand’s belief in and commitment to the platform. Also in continuation of their support for the platform, Fed Ex – GSP Pakistan Gerry’s International returned to PSFW as the official logistics partner, offering the PFDC a special arrangement for international designer consignments.

PFDC Sunsilk Fashion Week 2015 was styled by the creative teams at Nabila’s and NGENTS. Light design, set design, sound engineering, video packaging, choreography and show production from concept to construction was by HSY Events, front stage management by Maheen Kardar Ali, backstage management by Product 021, Sara Shahid of Sublime by Sara as the official spokesperson for the PFDC, logistics and operations by Eleventh Experience and photography by Faisal Farooqui and the team at Dragonfly, Hum TV/Hum Sitaray as the Official Media Partners, CityFM89 as the Official Radio Partners with all media management by Lotus Client Management & Public Relations.

High-Street Fashion Shows

The House of Arsalan Iqbal

The afternoon High-Street Fashion Shows on the final day of PFDC Sunsilk Fashion Week 2015 were opened by leading fashion brand The House of Arsalan Iqbal, who showcased a collection titled ‘Devolution Chic’. Inspired by street art across the world by various artists, European high-street trends and technique of quilting, Arsalan Iqbal garnered personal portfolios of graffitists from myriad urban cityscapes such as London, New York, Tokyo, Barcelona and Cape Town, juxtaposed with some unique in-house created patterns including those of Pac-man, calligraphic flourishes and aqua and tangerine bands and circlets. Based in chiffon, the ensembles were molded into voluminous structured silhouettes including draped tunics, edgy jumpsuits and wide palazzos dovetailed with off-white and ecru charmeuse silk jackets created with a revolutionary quilting process. Along with menswear pieces, the collection also included in-house footwear and jewellery made in collaboration with pioneering Karachi-based street artist SANKI.

Erum Khan

Designer Erum Khan followed next and made her PFDC Sunsilk Fashion Week debut with ‘The Untainted Shine’. The collection took its inspiration from the sparkle of twinkling stars, a walk on pearl dew in the morning and the enchanted glow which is produced when “a magic wand” is waved around the body, making it glow in a pearlescent white and exhibiting a jewel themed lustre on the body. With neat and straight structured cuts, Erum had used fabrics such as organza combined with silk, 3D flowers, patch work and antique katdanna in a collection which was based in a white colour palette. Trends highlighted in the collection were high waist skirts to button up pants and sheer long dresses. Acclaimed Pakistani musician Goher Mumtaz and his wife Anam Ahmed walked the ramp as the designer’s celebrity showstoppers.

Chinyere

Following Erum Khan, fashion brand Chinyere showcased its Spring/Summer 2015 High-Street collection ‘Mizaj-e-Shahana’ at PFDC Sunsilk Fashion Week 2015. An ode to the era of the Mughal royalty and their imperial aesthetic, the collection comprised of modern silhouettes and traditional embellishments with organza skirts paired with cropped tops, angarkha-peplum tops with embellished cigarette pants, sheer knee-length jackets paired with structured digital printed bustier-jumpsuits, diaphanous wrap-around boot-cuts and embellished boxy sleeves with soft A-line silhouettes. Chinyere also showcased ten menswear pieces comprising of waistcoats, jodhpurs, knee-length sherwanis paired with gossamer sheer kurtas. The colours used had been divided into a collection of distinctive Mughalesque pastels and jewel tones. The pastels included the classic marble ivory-on-ivory, the bold black, saffron, gold and ivory. The colour segments also included metallic gold and grey sections, with accents of bronze and black. The jewel tones included jade, emerald, ruby and sapphire.

Hassan Riaz

The concluding High-Street fashion show of PFDC Sunsilk Fashion Week 2015 was presented by Hassan Riaz who showcased his ‘Contained Shadows’ collection. Inspired by the diverse facets of the human soul that explore both the dark and light sides of human nature, taking into account yearnings, desires, and anxieties that make us distinctly human, Hassan had based the collection in summer twill, organza and summer denim in shades of blue and white with a gold accent to reflect upon his inspirations. ‘Contained Shadows’ made use of structured and drifting silhouettes, cage crinolines with corsets and bustiers with distinct trends featuring cropped tops, nautical accents, experiments with transparency and patchworks of metal mixed & matched with flowers.

Designer Showcases

Sana Safinaz

PFDC Sunsilk Fashion Week 2015’s evening [rêt shows on the fourth and final day was opened by premier designer label Sana Safinaz. Sana Safinaz’s PFDC Sunsilk Fashion Week collection was inspired by monochromatic structured looks with pops of color. The collection was based in luxe fabrics such as kattan, silks, fine silk organza and dutches satin in a colour palette majorly based in black and white with strong vibrant pop infusions.
Key trends being highlighted were the oversized T, constructions-clean lines, simplicity of cuts and effective embellishments.

Republic by Omar Farooq

Following Sana Safinaz, acclaimed menswear brand Republic By Omar Farooqshowcased a collection titled ‘Que Sera, Sera!’ (whatever will be, will be!). Omar Farooq had used a variety of luxe fabrics such as suede, linen, chiffon, cotton, cotton silk and wool silk. A collection for all seasons, the ensembles built upon the label’s signature aesthetics while providing a new take on contemporary menswear. Acclaimed media personality Fawad Khan walked the ramp as the brand’s celebrity showstopper.

Syeda Amera

The third Prêt show of the final day of PFDC Sunsilk Fashion Week 2015 was presented by designer Syeda Amera who made her ramp debut with ‘The World of Sea’. Inspired by love for the enchanting underwater, the collection was based in premium quality organza, jersey, nets and silks with delicate cuts and embellishments consisting of beads, sequins and feathers to reflect the collection’s aquatic theme. ‘The World of Sea’ featured a palette of aqua marine, scupa blue, powder pink, grey blue, tequila sunrise yellow, orange and lagoon green with trends that employed skirt layering, frills and ruffles and flared pants.

Huma & Amir Adnan

Following Syeda Amera, Huma & Amir Adnan showcased a joint collection for the first time at a fashion exhibition. Both Huma and Amir feel that as a couple they share their lives and draw synergies and their collection ‘Symphony’ was an epitome of how two people can revolve around the same concept in harmony, while maintaining their individual distinction. Showcasing both menswear and women’s wear at PSFW 2015, Huma and Amir had used a mix of fabrics, textures and embellishments with a complex collection of weaves, prints and embroideries in silk, linen, cotton and microfiber. The color palette included midnight blue, emerald green, wet earth, aubergine, ivory, old paper, turmeric, leaf and magenta. Key trends highlighted in the collection were long shirts, double layered shirts, printed vests and jackets, textured pants, colored shoes for men and layers of multi-textured fabrics, tighter silhouette, vests and jackets for women.

Sania Maskatiya

Designer Sania Maskatiya showcased the penultimate Luxury/Prêt collection of the evening at PFDC Sunsilk Fashion Week 2015. This S/S ’15, Sania Maskatiya took audiences on a fashion journey to ‘Paristan’ – a place of fairytale whimsy at PFDC Sunsilk Fashion Week. With a colour palette ranging from the softest shades of daybreak to the deepest hues of nightfall, ‘Paristan’ was a collection of playful, dreamlike prêt ensembles. Featuring luxury fabrics like silk, organza, charmeuse and crepe, the pieces followed the brand’s signature silhouettes, both structured and fluid. Beads and sequins embellished varied hemlines and multiple layering, all set against captivating scenes of mirth and magic. Motifs ranged from the sublime to nonsensical; friendly mice and naughty elves, clocks and teapots, flowering fields and star-filled skies, princesses and ponies.

HSY

Day-4’s finale was presented by acclaimed couturier HSY who showcased a collection titled ‘INK’; a collection inspired by Asia and specifically HSY’s journeys to The Land of the Rising Sun. INK represented the essence of Langkawi, Indonesia, Nagasaki, and Yunnan with natural and indigenous yarns, hand-woven to perfection. The collection featured the traditional dyeing techniques of Shibori from Nagasaki, Batik from Indonesia, and Gara from Sierra Leone infused with mackintosh, saffron, aubergine, eggshell, rosette, indigo and ochre. Created with the scorching sub continental summer in mind, INK channelled versatile hemlines to suit a diversity of younger, older, working men, women and homemakers alike.Read more here:www.marieaustralia.com/long-formal-dresses | www.marieaustralia.com/formal-dresses-brisbane
Shofi Ahmed Dec 2018
My narrow cave is zero colour
a thousand winds that blow over
only blow away kohls yet to see an eye.

The sunrise beams out in the morning's hush
as do the sun basks in the swift uplifting rush.
Ah, only to miss out again like yesterday,
there was a cave it tried to highlight.

Then lost me in the dark found a Moon
heavily tilted yet over a shady turf.
Every star eying upon it knows that
tomorrow again, this will host the sunrise!
Nat Lipstadt Jun 2014
Lord:

no bequest requested.
no grant, no teach,
no need or greed asked
just a hey listen up,
if your attention is elsewhere

this is an
all-on-my-own
prayer that
my eyes only utter,
my tongue,
self-silenced,
can only watch
and must approve

in fact,
this is more
of a post
than a prayer,
updating you
on the state
of what we Earth temporaries
call the heart, mind, soul
and even our,
your-designed
crafted carrier,
my body

Mine enemies call me
cursed, embittered,
they are right - but fools,
they are
so much more than wrong,
for in this they err grievous,
for they cannot see their own
bile provisioning their end

ask for no interference
from the sidelines
neither from the
sapphire mother sky
that raised me up gloriously
this morning

nor the emerald earth
that this day
both gives and gets
common bounty
gives me sustenance,
as much spiritual
as grained cereal delights

lest you think this
just one more
me-centric rants,
let us recall this prayer,
is his very own,
prayer of gratitude

woman's head
rests on my chest,
her blonde highlights,
highlight our bed
and our
life

take and tuck her tresses
from eyes and forehead,
gentle them into place,
behind her ear,
and my hand journeys on
to the skin,
flesh of her backbone,
where my fingers
spread wide,
five messengers unique,
advising all of the 120 provinces of her
heart, mind, soul and body,
she is my beloved,
and I pray,
I am hers

learning still to
live with my means,
such as they are,
sometime mean,
sometimes extraordinaire

even this skill,
to express

is a gratitude
that though
comes and goes
like summer breezes
that as now we pray,
cools my AM coffee
while studying the
patterned mystery
of the bay's
Ave Maria waves
from that
dock-by-his-name

where my heart, mind, soul
drink wet inspiration
from the still-oak-tree'd-strong-surfaced waters,
the blue glue of
our common delighted,
uncommon existence

this skill,
at this moment mine,
to share and
not to keep,
for have I not,
been blessed,
by comrades-in-arms
that kneel beside me,
asking, imploring
to be stronger yet,
for their sakes,
for them!
I pray for
best they-can-muster
sustenance of peace
of heart, mind, soul
and body

here now,
my shills,
my failing skills
cannot help express
in new ways,
a gratitude
that has a shapeless shape,
no measurement app enabled
for their comfort,
our comfort,
best grasped as
an unbounded divinity,
how so I wish I could pray for them better


focus this prayer
on the good ones,
who so greatly honor us
with a greater-than-a-creator,
gift glorious of
friendship

this walnut crack'd shell,
this container ship of
heart, mind, soul,
here there,
a few leaks sprung,
no nicotine patches
to cover

this dented car,
this dented body,
new dent every day
from only-you-know-where
still gets me there,

but
other than taking care better,
it plods along and houses
the rearrangement of this prayer's words,
and that is what is called
plenty good enough,
self-sufficient

prayers that are too long
go to the back of line,
so here we be,
but here we do not wait!


for prayers of gratitude
are instantaneous fulfilled,
and thus granted even before
they are completed
the love I feel for all of the people, friends and poets in my life that give me
their best, their perspective...they know who they are..
7:32am on the dock by the bay, another blessing for which I don't have the words but keep on trying...they are..see below...
PostScript -  the pleasure of your affection for this writ, palpable and heart pounding but it only reflects the spirit that working wordsmiths share in loving camaraderie so deep in the hidden roots of this place. For which I swear I will never to cease to write upon this favorite optic topic a loving challenge...very humbly do I thank you
Sy Lilang Jun 2014
Nakasisilaw* sa Kapitolyo
Sa sentro ng siyudad
Tatak ng probinsyang pabo.

Sari't sari ang trayanggulong baligtad
Nasa ere silang kumukumpas
At tila ba may spotlight sa norte paroon
"City of the Living God,"
Inukit sa tabla ng di kilalang manlililok.

Minsan ding naging "City in the Forest,"
Sabi pa sa balita'y "Safest place in the Philippines"
Bagkus ang pagmimina'y tuloy pa rin
Lalo na sa Rio Tuba na ramdam ang Climate Change.

Dagdagan pa ng pamimihasa ng PALECO
Hihiramin nang saglit ang kakaunting ilaw at hangin
Nang di maglao'y mapa-"OO" ang lahat
Sa mungkahi nilang planta ng pagbabago.

Bulag sila't barado ang isip
Kikitilin ang hanapbuhay ng mga residente
Walang kamalay-malay ang iilan
Ito'y mitsa na pala ng pagdarahop.

Hahalayin ang tigang na lupa
Bubungkalin raw ang kinabukasan
Bagkus ang pawis ay sa atin
Tayo'y alila ng karatig-bansa
Dayuhan sa sariling bayan.

Titirik sila sa espasyo
Bisig ng tabing-dagat na buhangi'y sutla
Inosente nga sa Salvage Zone
Paano pa kaya pag naimplementa na?

Likido ang bawat anino sa semento
Tumatakbo't tumatagpo sa iba't ibang direksyon
Hindi makapuswit ang mga sasakyan
Maging ang simpleng harurot
Ng munting bisekleta ni Juan.

Doon ko nasilayan ang magigiting na pulis
Taas-noong suot ang uniporme
At iilang traffic enforcer
Na wala sa linyang puti.

Tila bawat uri ng katauha'y nasa parada
Kung hindi man,
Sa iilang personang lumalabas-pasok sa eksena
Kukuha ng larawan, akala mo eksperto
Hindi naman pala
Ayos, selfie pala ang gusto
Dekorasyon ang mga artistang Netibo.

Bawat munisipyo'y may nagsisilbing pambato
Makukulay ang mga sasakya't pudpod ng disenyo
Na sa kahit sa palamuti'y maitaas ang munisipyo
Buhat sa pagkabiktima ng gobyernong manloloko.

Highlight nga ang Street Dancing
Aba't ang layo ng kanilang lakarin
At sa bawat kanto'y sasabay
Sa saliw ng Remix na musikang inihain.

Nalugmok ang puso ko
Bagamat ito'y nararapat na saya ang dulot
Ito'y nagsisilbing maskara na lamang
Nakasanayan, naging tradisyon
Ang kulturang laging may bahid ng eleksyon.

Nakaririmarim ang iilang nasa trono
Pinalibutan ng berdeng hardin ang sentro
Bulong ng Supplier doble pala ang presyo
Aba't sige nga, saan nila ibubulsa?
Kung ang kanila'y umaapaw pa.

Bagamat ang lahat ay nasa bilog
Paikut-ikot tayo sa animong sitwasyon
Tanging takbuhan nati'y ang Maykapal
Na hanggang sa huli'y magwawasto ng bawat kamalian.

Sa probinsyang kinalalagyan
Ito'y nag-aalab na espada ng lipunan
Bawat isa'y responsable't may pananagutan
Tamang dedikasyon sa sandigang bayan.

Walang masama sa pagiging alarma
Maging aktibo ka, kabataan
Ikaw ang pag-asa ng Perlas ng Silanganan
Abutin mo yaong pangarap at manindigan
Hindi pansarili, bagkus pag sa tuktok na'y
Gawin ang tanging tama
Na naaayon sa batas ng higit na Nakatataas.

(6/29/14 @xirlleelang)
ethan Aug 2018
when i was a freshman one of my friends told me that there was a girl who was talking about me
asking why i was pretending to be straight and that everyone could tell that i was gay
my friends and i laughed it off like children and i quipped “i’m not pretending anything, just ask anyone and they’ll know”

now, i think of the rainbow socks, the only thing i own with a rainbow on it, being shoved down to the bottom of my sock drawer as if it would pop out at any minute and proclaim it’s existence if it were any higher. now, i think of the rainbow highlight that i applies in the bathroom at midnight, pausing every now and again to make sure i was alone. Now, i think of the pride nail art that i scrubbed off my nails minutes after i painted it on. now, i think of the last word in a poem that i wrote and turned in, scared i was being too obvious with the word they.

now, i think of the horrible creature sitting in my chest that simultaneously begs to never tell my secrets and to also scream them from the roof tops. i think of the sludge that lives in me and climbs up my throat, whispering safety into my ear while also ripping apart everything it touches. i think of the pain i feel whenever i say that i’m gay, because it makes things easier if the works sees me as a girl who loves other girls.

before thinking of this poem i had sat back and wondered how many bottles it would take of the various prescription medicines that my parents kept in the kitchen cabinet to **** me. when i remembered the name they would put on the tombstone i stopped and walked away. i remember the time where i couldn’t walk away and i had reached in and grabbed a full bottle of ibuprofen and i took a single one, hoping that my screaming head could be sated by the feeling of a single pill crawling down my throat.

i had a dream last night about someone called addison.
they looked me in the eyes and before i even knew what they looked like their physical form flickered until they were a bright shining star in a vaguely human form.

they sat next to me as we floated in a void on a picnic blanket and they put their arm around my shoulder which felt like a hug from someone i used to know but had forgotten
i stared at their glasses that looked too much like mine as they flickered in and out of existence and they told me i was not where i was supposed to be.

i didnt ask them where but they heard it anyways as if breaking into my thoughts. they answered that they could not tell me and when i thought why they said they didn’t want to spoil the fun of a brighter future for them and me.

i woke up with the taste of lavender on my tongue and the desire to change my name.
i’m not sure who i want to be
the opening fold of sunlight
dawns with delight
o'er the bush land
tis a scene grand

bright rays of radiance do beam  
on hills and stream
shining of glints
lovely the tints  

the sun doth light up the countryside
with its preside
dazzling of sight
is its highlight
Carter Ginter Aug 2018
Dear Kailey,

Polyamory was not our downfall
I changed as a person
Much quicker than I anticipated
So I can imagine it felt
Catastrophic to you
Polyamory was not our problem
But it did highlight the ones we had
The reason I left you
Primarily was due to codependency
But more than that
It was your inability to compromise
I told you I needed space
You said you needed me
And that was the end of that conversation
When we tried to create boundaries
To help our adjustment to poly
What you gave me were rules
And when I tried to alter them slightly
You told me I was not compromising
I made my own mistakes too
Neither of us are perfect
And I'm not writing this to hurt you
This is for me alone
Because I've been blaming only myself
Since that night your parents took you home
Because you were blaming me
Or too harshly blaming yourself
It's not as black-and-white as that
This is not an attempt at
Relinquishing myself of blame
This is a bare acknowledgement
For me
That I am not bad
Even if I've done bad things
And I am not responsible
Solely
For your pain
I am sorry for my part in it
But I cannot
And will not
Let this responsibility weigh me down alone
Because I matter too
And it wasn't easy for me either
But it's OK
To love and care for someone
Without being in relationship with them
This series is extremely important to me. It has drastically helped with closure over past unhealthy relationships. They were all unhealthy I'm largely different ways and I did not write these to take away my own fault in the breakups, but I wrote this to rid myself of the unnecessary guilt I have been carrying around because of things that these exes have said to me or the ways in which they treated me. This project is about self-love. Not about hatred or wishing ill will upon others, because I wish them nothing but happiness. This is for me.
Kalena Leone Oct 2012
“every time i feel my stomach convulse it’s a new wave of tears
take vitamins, she says
you should just eat, she says
you got skinnier, another says
“eat! eat! haven’t you been eating!? and this bandaid! quit cutting yourself, kalena”
and for a moment i think it’s truth
i think it’s honest
i shout “i do eat! they’re just cat scratches”
and if she would have lifted up that bandaid
she would have learned it was honest
it was truth
but it was melted away flesh that she would have found, not torn
but melted
and in the highlight of this moment i see all of my dreams come true
finally, someone notices!
finally, someone cares!
but yet she’s willing to stop eating. to make sure that i do.
my little thing. an entire 98 pounds, not by choice.
so unhealthy, so sick. all the time. so **** tired.
she would stop eating for me.
and though it doesn’t help, the thought is comforting. it should be disturbing.
it is. in the way that if she stopped eating…
she would lose weight.
and then i would fight harder and harder until my rib bones were sticking out so far they were larger than my chest.
emaciated.
bony fingers that boys don’t want to hold and girls don’t want to kiss.
hair that slides out with the slightest tug.
no one wants that.
except me, of course.
i want that.
i want to weigh 85 pounds.
i want to die.
i want to be so high on the emptiness that i die.
i faint. and they cannot wake me up.
eternal sleep. forever peace. and the best part of all?
I would be horrifically tiny in even the smallest coffin. “
Sad Girl Oct 2014
I hope i'm fooling everybody
With my fake gimmick of a cover up
And I hope it doesn't highlight my lack of beauty
But the only thing i fear it highlights is the lie that drips from my fake
*"I don't give a ****."
Crimsyy Oct 2016
If I had to pick a highlight of this year...

It'd be you.

I feel like I should have picked
someone closer,
someone you might call family,
a friend perhaps,

But I can't.

When my heart has been crackling,
burning by the fire that my soul ignited,
when the home in my bones
felt more like hell,
the living room became frail,
and my bed sheets became
soaked in tears,
you kept my thoughts sober.

You witnessed my intensity,
you witnessed my extremes,
you witnessed the fires
I failed to calm
when I kept bringing the burn
instead of the cold,
you've witnessed me
desiring to put my life
on permanent hold.

And still you remained..
You did not mind being
drenched in my rain,
And for that, there are no rhymes
that can thankyou.

- Crimsyy♡
judy smith Aug 2016
TO PUT the art and talent of Mindanaoan fashion design into the spotlight, Kagay’anon fashion designers put their hands together to organize the 5th Mindanao Fashion Summit at the Limketkai Center Rotunda from August 4 to 6, every 4 p.m.

“Being a core event of the Higalaay festival, the opening salvo, the Mindanao Fashion Summit can really highlight fashion designers here in Cagayan de Oro and also in different points of Mindanao to let everyone see what they can do in the world of fashion design especially now that there are only so few opportunities for these designers to show off their works to the public. This is why we have the Mindanao fashion Summit because Kagay-anon designers believe that even if they join national fashion shows like the Philippine Fashion week, most of them still aren't getting the right encouragement as a fashion designer.” said Robbie Pamisa, the overall organizer of the event.

The Fashion Summit is a three-day event composed of seven sub-categories such as the Mindanaoan collection, the Menswear collection, and the Ororama orange collection for the first day, the Guest Designers’ collection, the Fashion Institute of the Philippines collection and the Loop Lifestyle Fashion Show for the second day, and the Holiday Grand collection for the third day which will serve as the culmination of the fashion event.

Mindanaoan Fashion designers from Cagayan de Oro as well as Davao, Butuan, Iligan, and Bukidnon have come to showcase their talents. Some of the fashion geniuses of the event include Alma Mae Roa, Angela Soriano, Ann Semblante, Benjie Manuel, Boogie Musni Rivera, Gil Macaibay III, John Mark Magellan’s, Joshua Guibone, Juniel Doring, Kiko Domo, Mark Christopher Yaranon, and Mavy Cooper de Leon.

One of the highlights of the event is the Oro Fashion Designers’ Guild and the Designers Assembly featuring a collection of clothes using Mindanao material such as the Mindanao silk. Sponsors such as Ororama and The Loop Towers will also be showcasing their products in the fashion event.

“Even student fashion designers from the Fashion Institute of the Philippines have been encouraged to participate so that they will be able to experience how a fashion show works. This is also a way for us to fulfill our mission to be another avenue for fashion designers to show what they have,” Paisa said.Read more at:http://www.marieaustralia.com/short-formal-dresses | www.marieaustralia.com/long-formal-dresses
Brittany Wynn Apr 2015
Her face, flawless and filtered, flows over
my chest, ribs, stomach, hips, fitting the curved
mounds of my body, and even within simplicity
of thread and dye, I sense her presence as her face
hangs from my frame, a statement louder than pillow-lips,
Nancy Sinatra-hair and a glamorous 60’s ***** face.

When paired with leggings and an artfully-distressed denim jacket,
I become a member of the “freshman generation of degenerate
beauty queens,” a hipster fallen to the circumstance of youth,
but I wear her face and the romance of it all reminds me:
we are not defined as Lolitas lost in the hood, or distant,
airy voices in a sea of crude jokes and half-baked skits

meant to highlight shortcomings of a person who doesn’t give
two *****. Lana fits me better than my ribbed, red
sweater and even amidst gods and monsters,
this T-shirt makes pretty last, and I am just as cool.
Nigel Morgan Nov 2013
Think of an imagined orchestra. But there is no resonance hereabouts, so the imagination gives next to nothing for your efforts, and even in surround-sound there’s so little to reflect the dimensions of the space your walking inhabits. Sea hardly counts, having its constant companionship with wind, and sand hills absorb the footfall. A shout dies here before the breath has left the lungs.

Listen, there is a vague twittering of wading birds flocked far out on the sand. The sea rolls and breaks a rhythmic swell into surf. There’s a little wind to rustle the ammophila and only the slight undefined noise of our bodies moving in this strip between land and sea. Nowhere here can sound be enclosed except within the self. There’s a kind of breathing going on, and much like our own, it has to be listened for with a keen attention.

There is such a confusion of shapes making detail difficult to gather in, even to focus upon, and to attempt an imagined orchestration – impossible. We’ll have to wait for the camera’s catch, its cargo to be brought to the back-lit screen. Once there it seems hardly a glimmer of what we thought we saw, what we ‘snapped’ in an instant. It’s too detached, too flat. So thankfully you sketch, and I feel the pen draw shapes into your fingers and their moving, willing hand. On your sketchbook’s page the image breathes and lives.

You can’t sketch music this way because the mark made buries itself in a network that seems to defy with its complexity any image set before you. Time’s like that. You end up with a long low pitch, pulsating; a grumbling sound rich in sliding harmonics. You see, landscape does not beget melody or even structure and form, only tiny, pebbled pockets of random sound. Here, there is no belonging of music. Only the built space can adequately house music’s home. We might ****** a few seconds of the sea’s turn and wash, a bird’s cry, the rub and clatter of boot on stone, and later bring it back to a timeline of digital audio and be ‘musical’ with it, or not.

Where we hold music to landscape is something we are told just happens to be so; it is the interpretation’s (and the interpreter’s) will and whim. It is an illusion. The Lark Ascends in a Norfolk field. We hear, but rarely see, this almost stationary bird high in the morning air. We can only imagine the lark’s eye view, but we know the story, the poem, the context, so our imagination learns to supply the rest.

What is taken then to be taken back? On this November beach, on this mild, windless afternoon,. Am I collecting, preparing, and easing the mind, un-complicating mental space, or unravelling past thoughts and former plans? I can then imagine sitting at a table, a table before a window, a window before a garden, and beyond the garden (through the window) there’s a distant vista of the sea where the sun glistens (it is early morning), and there too in the bright sky remains a vestige of a night’s drama of clouds. But today we shall not put music to picture from a camera’s contents, from any flat and lifeless image.

Instead there seem to be present thoughts alive in this ancient coastline, abandoned here the necessary industry of living, the once ceaseless business of daily life. Instead of the hand to mouth existence governed by the herring, the course strip farming below the castle, the herds of dark cattle, the possible pigs, some wandering sheep, seabirds and their eggs for the ***, the gathering of seaweed, the foraging for fuel: there is a closing down for winter because the visitors are few. We need the rest they say, to regroup, paint the ceilings, freshen up the shop, strengthen the fences, have time away from the relentlessness of accommodating and being accommodating. Only the smell of smoking the herring remains from the distant past – but now such kippering is for Fortnums.

We step out across and down and up the coastal strip: an afternoon and its following morning;  a few miles walking, nothing serious, but moving here and there, taking it in, as much as we can. We fill ourselves to the brim with what’s here and now. The past is never far away: in just living memory there was a subsistence life of the herring fishers and the itinerant fisher folk who followed the herring from Aberdeen to Plymouth. Now there are empty holiday lets, retirement properties and most who live here service the visitors. Prime cattle graze, birds are reserved, caravans park next to a floodlit hotel and its gourmet restaurant. There’s even a poet here somewhere - sitting on a rock like a siren with a lovely smile.

Colours: dull greens now, wind-washed-out browns, out and above the sea confusions of grey and black stone, floating skeins of orange sands and the haunting, restless skies. Far distant into the west hills are sculpted by low-flying clouds resting in the mild air. Wind turbines step out across the middle distance, but today their sails are stationary. As the bay curves a settlement of wooden huts, painted chalets then the grey steep roofed houses of stone, grey and hard against the sea.

Does music come out of all this? What appears? What sounds? What is sounding in me? There is nothing stationary here to hang on to because even on this mild day there is constant change. Look up, around, adjust the viewpoint. There’s another highlight from the sky’s palette reflecting in the estuary water, always too various and complex to remember.

Music comes out of nothing but what you build it upon. It holds the potential for going beyond arrangements of notes. Pieces become buildings, layers in thought. My only landscape music to date begins with a formal processional, a march, and a gradually broadening out of tonality the close-knit chromatic to the open-eared pentatonic. There’s a steady stream of pitches that do not repeat or recur or return on themselves, as so much music needs to do to appease our memory.

In this landscape there seem only sharp points of dissonance. I hear lonely, disembodied pitches, uncomfortable sounds that are pinned to the past. The land, its topography as a score grasping the exterior, lies in multi-dimensional space, sound in being, a joining of points where there is no correlation. There’s a map and directions and a flow of time: it starts here and ends there, and so little remains for the memory.

Yet, this location remains. We walked it and saw it fortunately for a brief time in an uninhabited state. We were alone with it. We looked at this land as it meets the sea, and I saw it as a map on which to place complexes of sound, intensities even,. But how to meet the musical utterance that claims connection? It is a layering of complexes between silences, between the steady step, the stop and view. There is perhaps a hierarchy of landscape objects: the curve of the bay, the sandhills’ sweep, the layerings of sand, and in the pools and channels of this slight river that divides this beach flocks of birds.

Music is such an intense structure, so bound together, invested with proportions so exact and yet weighed down by tone, the sounding, vibrating string, the column of air broken by the valve and key, the attack and release of the hammered string. But there is also the voice, and voices are able to sound and carry their own resonance . . .

. . . and he realised that was where these long drawn out thoughts, this short diary of reflection, had been leading. He would sit quietly in contemplation of it all and work towards a web of words. He would let their rhythms and sounds come together in a map, as a map of their precious, shared time moving between the land and the sea, the sea and the land.
poeticalamity Jun 2014
She once told me
she was terribly afraid of
the 889 blades of grass
in the park down her street,
of the 889 worn books
in her local library
of the 889 gum-covered steps
to her bus stops
of the 889 looks
she must make over her shoulder
of the 1 778 pairs of greedy eyes
stealing looks away from me.

I missed her when she sent me pictures
because I couldn't bear to look
at empty frames of empty eyes
(red dows no match red
unless it is the scarlet of blood on broken glass
after a year and two months of tranparency)
and also because the things that slipped into my phone
could only remind me of moments that could never be
and dreams
that would never come true.

I don't know what to say to her
without breaking her
(like the broken glass)
(the image still hasn't left my head)
but she inspires me toward metaphors
and the adromeda galaxy
isn't so far away anymore.

How can I stay by her side
when she triggers me to want to fall
but how can I ignore her call
when she is the only person I feel safe with
to coincide

I am afraid to tell her
(or myself)
how I feel
because in a cliche
I don't know how I feel myeslf
but dear, together, we are formidable
and apart --
I don't know about you,
but I catch myself on the dry spells --
we are fort minable

this song has been stuck in my hear
since it reminded me of you
and this could be another metaphor for something heartfelt
and not altogether original

But I want us to be
the figures in the painting
you said you saw us in
I want to be
that feminist duet
(even if I can't sing and you voice is that of the devil's)
I want to be
the cats in the picture
with the intertwined tails
or the flowers tangled up
on a vine
(I was going to send you that on
but I thought against it
because you were too beautiful to be compared
to a simple petrichor-scented bougainvillea)

So I will be
the 889 poetry books
you dog-ear and highlight
and secretly slightly plagiarize
and I will be
the 889 plants growing
in your backyard,
sparkling for you like replacement diamonds
after the rain
(and better yet I will be the forest
of 889 trees
looming not frighteningly but protectively
over you)
and I will be
the 889 strides
of golden brick road
to follow to your favorite coffee shop every day
and I will be
the 889 innocent peaks
at a delicate pinkie finger or a nose
(because a delicate rose such as you
cannot be seen all at once and truly appreciated)
and I will even be
the 1 778 pairs of eyes
stealing my own looks,
and hopefully you will not be afraid anymore.

I will split myself
into
6 228 parts
to make you feel comfortable
and if this is not a love poem
then it is an apology
and gratitude
and anger/resentment/not really/how could I resent you/you are everything

what I'm trying to say is,
we could go so many different ways,
and what's one more expression of love to you
after all you've been through.
She likes the lights in my room
They highlight everything I love about
Her.
The lights highlight where my lips
Have pressed & my teeth have marked.
She circumvents and understands
The lights when they come to hush.
The way that I touch her.
The way she lays back & enjoys
The thought of my hands
Revealing the parts of her that I cannot
See.
The ridges of her back my tongue
Walks & drowns in slowly.
Soft the way her body
Stretches & yawns (in ecstasy.)
She likes the lights in my room
But more so the way they cut off
When she walks in.
The light gives way the hint of attention.
Shadows fleet before my hand reaches
Hers
Becoming one with the way she yearns.
Her thigh gap at perfect ease
This craving a friend we both welcome
She wears this light for me
Until the switch undresses this yearning
She spreads & undresses for me
Everything I love about her
Sierra Scanlan Dec 2014
I wanted to be more
More than the way my eyebrows arch
More than the size of my *******
More than the length of my legs
More than what size jeans I wear
More than the color of my eyes
More than my body shape
I am more
I'm the music I listen to
And the songs that make me feel something
New
I'm my favorite books
And the lines I highlight just so I never forget
Them
I'm the times I've been hurt
But even more so I'm the times I picked myself back
Up
I'm my favorite movies
And the scenes that made me feel I was a character
Too
I'm not just the beauty you see
It's much deeper than that
I'm the love I give
But I never let myself be defined by the love I don't
Receive
Because the defintion of me isn't the people who refuse to love me
Nat Lipstadt May 2013
I sit in the sun room, I am shaded for the sun
is only newly risen, low slung, just above the horizon,
behind me, over my shoulder, early morn warm

Slivers of sun rays yellow highlight the wild green lawn,
freshly nourished by torrential rains of the prior eve

The wind gusts are residuals, memoirs of the hurricane
that came for a peripheral visit, your unwanted cousin Earl,
in town for the day, too bad your schedule
is fully booked, but he keeps raining on you,
staying on the phone for so long, that the goodbye,
go away, hang up relief is palpable

The oak trees are top heavy with leaves frothy like a new cappuccino,
the leaves resist the sun slivers, guarding the grass
from browning out, by knocking the rookie rays to and fro,
just for now, just for a few minutes more,
it is advantage trees, for they stand taller in the sky
than the youthful teenage yellow ball

I sit in the sun room buffered from nature's battles external,
by white lace curtains which are the hallmark
of all that is fine in Western Civilization,

and my thoughts drift to suicide.

I have sat in the sun room of my mind, unprotected.
with front row seats, first hand witness to a battle unceasing

Such that my investigations, my travails along the boundary line
between internal madness and infernal relief from mental pain
so crippling, is such that you recall begging for cancer or Aids

Such that my investigations, my travails along the sanity boundary
are substantive, modestly put, not inconsiderable

Point your finger at me, demanding like every
needy neurotic moderne, reassurance total,
proof negative in this instance, of relevant expertise!

Tell us you bona fides, what is your knowing in these matters?

Show us the wrist scars, evidential,
prove to us your "hands on" experiential!

True, true, I am without demonstrable proofs
of the first hand, my resume is absent of
razors and pills, poisons and daredevil spills,
guns, knives, utensils purposed for taking lives

Here are my truths, here are my sums

If the numerator is the minutes spent resisting the promised relief
of the East River currents from the crushing loneliness that
consumed my every waking second of every night of my years of despair
                           divided by
a denominator that is my unitary, solitary name,
then my fraction, my remainder, is greater than one,
the one step away from supposed salvation...

Yet, here I am sitting in the sun room buffered from
nature's battles by white lace curtains which are the hallmark
of all that is fine in Western Civilization

I am a survivor of mine own World War III,
carnaged battlefields, where white lace curtains,
were not buffers but dividers tween mis en scenes,
variegated veins of colored nightmares, reenactments of
death heroics worthy of Shakespeare

Did I lack for courage?
Was my fear/despair ratio insufficient?

These are questions for which the answers matter only to me,
tho the questions are fair ones, my unsolicited ******,
they are not the ones for which I herein write,
for they no longer have relevance, meaning or validity,
for yours truly

I write poetry by command, by request, good or bad,
this one is a bequest to myself, and also a sidecar for an old friend,
who asked in passing to write what I know of suicide,
unaware that the damage of hurricanes is not always
visible to the naked heart

These hands, that type these words are the resume of a life
resumed,
life line remains scarred, but after an inter-mission, after an inter-diction, an inter-re-invention
in a play where I was an actor who could not speak
but knew every line, I am now the approving audience too...

But I speak now and I say this:

There are natural toxins in us all,
if you wish to understand the whys, the reasons,
of the nearness of taking/giving away what belongs to you,
do your own sums, admit your own truths
query not the lives of others, approach the mirror...


If you want to understand suicide,
no need to phone a friend, ask the expert,
ask yourself, parse the curtains of the
sun room and admit, that you do understand,
that you once swung one leg over the roof,
gauged the currents speed and direction,
went deep sea fishing without rod or reel
and you recall it all too well, for you did the math
and here I am, tho the tug ne'er fully disappears,
here I am, here I am writing to you,
as I sit in the sun room.

Memorial Day, 2011
hard to believe this poem will be 8 years old, soon enough; I well recall writing it and will return to the sunroom soon for inspiration and an afternoon nap.
Chloe Aug 2015
Where do you think you're going *****?
Stop, I need to tell you some things which,
May break your pretty silicon heart,
So buckle yourself up, I'm about to start.

You think that with your haughty smile,
You're better than all of us by a mile,
Sad to shatter your fantasy world,
Now it's time to watch reality unfurl.

My beauty and strength make your toes curl,
My unbreakable spirit makes you want to hurl,
You can crush me beneath your six-foot frame,
But just know that there'll never be any shame.

Honoured to be the topic of your day,
The highlight of the **** you say,
I'm sneezing from the stench, my eyelids they twitch,
The rumours you spout, make my ears itch.

Unhappy to see my smiling face?
Do your eyes burn, to behold my grace?
Exit to the left right out of my life,
Before I come after you with a ten-inch knife.
A little too many profanities for some of you, but this is inspired by my friend who recently had some people talk crap about her, and she wrote such a raw, angry poem that really spoke out. This is for the people who talk crap about others. Don't. It will be uncovered sooner or later.
Kara Jean Apr 2016
The long hours of the night highlight our inner insecurities
Relating to the change slowly disappearing in a clanking machine
My stomache burns
I didn't suggest to pay this, indebted to the alcohol
No filter to the lewd humorous words we speak
As we cruise away from the wild eyed life, bits of lint collect on the drivers glass
The mistakes and embarrassment blinds our minds
A push of a button, watching the grey fluff slide down the wind shield
Turning into a tumble ****, rolling down the loneliest highway
No commitment to the grief
The clouds smother the brown smudged mountains
A white submissive canvas, I see
My metaphoric future becomes one with the peeks
My heart weeps as they come back into view
The world once teaching me, is now background beauty
Where shall this car take me
Tom Meyer Apr 2014
Everything is broken. Broken clocks, broken doors, broken spirits. Struggling just to softly breathe your name without my voice breaking. Shredded letters, meaningless scripts to highlight just how much my life is a cleverly constructed piece of satire, poorly printed on a newspaper page that no one reads, tossed to the sidewalk and stomped into fibers that do nothing but pollute the already ***** puddles on the side of the street. The words upon that parchment, the ink within the pages, is insignificant. I am insignificant. I am a vagrant. I am a knot in a tree trunk, and when a tree falls in the forest, it screams. It silently screams to be held back up by it's brothers, by its friends, by its family, but none of them move. They let it fall and they watch it rot.
samara lael Mar 2019
why am i like this?
how do i scare everyone away?
i am your biggest fear, your phobia, the monster on the streets.
i paint my claws that i only ever hurt myself with.
my hair is a nest where nightmares hatch, & the mascara dries on my cheeks.
these eyes find the flaws, but they also see the scars and weep.
what? don’t you want to kiss me?  
or are my chapped lips too angsty?
do they say “crazy *itch” at you?  
do my endless questions also itch at your skin?
at least your skin seems comfortable.
but how dare i make this all about me, when we all go through the same.
right?

wrong.
because i am your drama queen.
i declare a set of rules, i keep records on what you say,
i write letters to your name & invest in you each day.
each day i put on my armour & climb the watch tower.
i see you on your horse.  
you are not the knight.  
but you shine regardless.
you earn the trust for you to enter the iron gates.
once you are in, the damage is done.  
it just takes your leave for me to feel the sword.
what hurts is that i tripped over it.  
my vulnerabilities were out  
in the open.
& you accidentally hurt me.
this, humans can’t promise not to do.

i am an addict.
i write my insecurities & my inabilities down,  
& my pride goes into poetry.
i do nothing about anything.
& i can’t.  
stop.
some would say it’s pathetic,  
how one can be so overwhelmed by the underwhelming,
how one can be so distraught by the daily doses of life.
if i accept it then i have given up my responsibility.
if i ignore it then it silently damages me & my capability.
if i address it i am holding on & i deny my viability.
whatever i do, it has won,  
& it has left me with nothing.

but that’s what a loser does.

sometimes i feel my feelings feel too much.
sometimes nothing makes sense.
sometimes it feels normal that nothing feels okay.
but that’s okay.
sometimes i stress about stressing about stress.
sometimes i hate my irrational abnormality.
sometimes i cry about my weakness.
but that has to be okay.

yes.
there isn’t a definitive answer to my questions.
there seems to be more struggles than strengths.
there isn’t a clear path, or a silver platter with a cure for me.
my clothes cover my cares like sugar coats the pills i swallow.
The pill being _.
but i make a choice.
a lot of the time it seems i don’t have one.
but i do.
sometimes i am influenced to make it,
but i do.
i do.
i always do.

always.

doctors and scientists are trying to find
the causes, effects, & answers.
i sleep & wait.
but instead we should be
talking
listening
trying
supporting
helping
fighting
& never ever letting go.

even if they prove it is part of my genetic makeup
i will wake up,
i will get up,
i will make up,
i will stay up,
&
i will help myself,
help others help myself,
help others help themselves,
& help others help others.
i will highlight my temples with wisdom & peace.
i will shadow my eyes with beauty & light.
i will paint my lips with humility & kindness.  

my genetics will not make up whether i give up or not.
they will not make up my mind,
or make up someone else’s.
my genetics are not choosing if i live or not.
suicide is not a choice.
suicide is not make-up.
suicide is not a gene.

& suicide  
will not take part  
in my genetic makeup.
Dead Rose One Feb 2015
"how can you be in bed so fast?
we just got home five minutes ago?"*

You got girlie stuff to do babe.

unlock the front door,
thirty steps
to our bed.

maybe stop to basketball shoot
***** clothes into a swish
of the hamper's netting

or,
maybe not.

turn off the overhead left handed in
a single motion, a highlight video,
both left foot socks
hid in the snow boots,
outside the front door.

you understand.

my unseen
girlie stuff,
requires me in state of ******,
while you be
prepping.

face washed, creamed,
hair n' tooth brushed,
other stuff,
unmentionable.

am doing
my thing...

my girlie stuff


starting a
poem interruptus
my pre-Coitus exercise,
just a new love poem
conception,
initiated,
doing my thing,
waiting on you
primped n'pumped,
décolletage clad,
to give me that
girlie stuff
closing stanza
shooshu Jan 2016
“the unraveling of
his highlight reel
was the fragrance of
flying backwards;
a place where
poetry wrote
itself into the
fragments of
his skull.”
|| shoo.shu ||
Ember Evanescent Nov 2014
I find when I am told
To only highlight the important parts
The entire thing ends up highlighted
Because I can’t tell what is vital
I can’t tell apart what I need to understand and what I can’t dwell on
So I end up spending all my time
On what isn’t important
And then time slips by
And when it really matters
I haven’t spent my time on the right stuff
Same as in life
I obsess of details that seem important
Until they are put to the test
And what others had to say about me
Was all I cared about back then
I didn’t feel worthy of life
And I genuinely wanted to die
But now I realize
I shouldn’t have dwelled on that
I shouldn’t have let their judgemental loathing for me
Consume me the way it did
And now I want to live
But I can never get back that time I lost
That time I wasted
On someone else’s ignorant opinion
I can’t take back the things I did
The things I thought
The pain I felt
But it was self-inflicted harm
And not by knives or scissor blades
But by my own highlighting
I hurt myself
Because I placed so much value
On what they thought of me
Highlighting all the wrong things
Because no matter how much they hated me
Regardless what level of derision lived in their thoughts about me
And disgust at my looks
and amused at my pathetic personality (as far as they were concerned)
It was all meaningless
But I let it matter
And that was my fault
No one else’s
I always seem
To highlight the meaningless

Repost if you Highlight the Meaningless
Please comment I love to read your thoughts on anything really :)
Repost if you Highlight the Meaningless
Please comment I love to read your thoughts on anything really :)
Broadway B Dec 2011
Final. Complete. Dismiss.
End of lies. End of cries. End of days.
Dazed. Crazed. Dismayed at the fact before it started
It ended.
Reprimand my emotions, why don’t you?
Watch me fall graciously, gracefully to the concrete
A gentle touch ignored
Words unacknowledged
Differences now similarities
Wishes not dreams…
Lost in a sea of worry and despair
Gazing into your eyes were the highlight
And now even in daylight
Just as at night
It’s dark. Empty. Your pools are now shallow.
The depths behind my words were ignored.

Final. Complete. Dismiss.
Our last kiss
My remaining wish
Broken.
No point in hoping.
Crying. I’m fine.
This china was built from a man’s hand.
Sculpted meant to last.
My fragile heart crushed in the fight.
As I tried with all my might.
Patiently I sat. I waited. I wanted. I tried.
And as the night went by, my joy died.
I cried.
You lied.

Final. Complete. Dismiss.
How can I miss something I never had?
Never dared to dream because it all seemed
too pointless.
In my eyes, I placed you above the rest.
You were my test.
No answer key.
Just you and me.
You had no conquest because there was nothing to contest.
What I should have done was confess.
Reveal instead of conceal
And perhaps these feelings wouldn’t/couldn’t exist and be real.
Foolish, I hid them.
Giving you parts of me in parts.
Writings. Words. Actions.
But you are smart.
If I were half the woman I deemed myself to be
You would see.
That with me
Is all that you’d need.
BUT

Finalized. Completed. Dismissed.
I am going to miss… you.
All the things I longed to do with you.
If only you
Were you true…to your heart.
That part…you seem to ignore.
People are so blind to what’s in store
That they rather just be comfortable…and take whatever comes to their door
Step.
Step on my feelings, why don’t you?
Can’t you see a real hurting is here?
I fear because you have your head so far up your rear
You don’t even stop to care.
I’m serious and sometimes I feel like you are so full of ****.
Less than what I envisioned. Less than what I imagined.
Not even legit.
And yet…
Gazing into your eyes were the highlight
And even now in daylight
Just as at night
It’s dark. Empty.
Poetry is my way of formulating
The decaying
Parts of myself.
Me lying there with myself spread wide
Isn’t a woman of pride but one wishing to hide.
Man, that part of me is for no one to take and I gave that to you.
I was so true to you.
Never tried to play you like a fool.
NO rushing.
NO nothing.
But all this time I was frontin.
What I should have done was confess.
Reveal instead of conceal
And perhaps these feelings wouldn’t/couldn’t exist and be real.
I am ******* frustrated. Irritated. Elated with infuriating disbarment
Over this….this gotta be some *******.
****, sweetest **** I ever meant.
And that’s real.
You know what? I finally feel like I know why I don’t feel the thrill anymore
I feel like I’ve been dropped and kicked down to the floor
Just like before
Trying to break free of old habits
But I’m sorry
That **** doesn’t exist.
Chances and fate.
Those two should be set up for a date
So the two of them can relate and conversate
Try to come up with a reason why a sister can’t date
A decent man to save her life
All this heartache and strife
It can’t be that hard.
Right?

Can’t be final.
Can’t be complete.
Can’t be dismiss.*

It can’t be….
It can’t…

It won’t be.
It will not.
Be.
tc Mar 2015
there’s a lullaby the wind chimes used to hum as i sat outside my house. i observed synodic epiphanies in the sky until all i could do was make a dot-to-dot of your face out of the stars that were almost as intangible as you are and as you always were.

i always found myself searching for traces of you everywhere. the sound of your voice as a symphonic ultrasound echoing from the wind chime to me, just for me. your effervescent hazel eyes (you always insisted they were brown but i’d studied them as a psychologist studies mental health) but you never came.

and trust me, i waited --
i waited for so much as a murmur or a rustled blade of grass when the world stood still and i waited in the morning, the afternoon and i waited all night.

i waited all **** night in nothing but a pair of leggings (you told me i looked “pretty sweet” in them once) and your jumper, the jumper you left at my house on may 16th. hummingbirds were the highlight of your morning and the highlight of my morning was always you.

you made scrambled eggs with milk and only a dash of pepper because too much gave you an itchy throat and then you took my hand and we slow danced along to the sound of the microwave; it was like a heavy duty drill begging to explode but we didn’t care.

i wore your jumper then the way i’m wearing it now, except i’ve tucked my hands into my sleeves because yours aren’t there to hold anymore.

i always found myself not only searching for traces of you everywhere but also searching for you in everybody i've ever met (and probably everybody i ever will meet). where’s that succulent sense of humour? where’s that desirable distaste for all humans besides me? you were intangible but somehow tangible to me and i mused over your ability to turn me from a servant into a queen but my gratitude overwhelmed me too much to question it, or you.

your name is euphonious;
i swirl it around my mouth like expensive champagne.
my stomach can tolerate neither.
Ryan O'Leary Jan 2019
Golden Valleys, Growing Naturally

                        <>

This is a Logo in Ireland, Dairygold™
is the company.

I would safely say, that there is hardly
an acre in rural Ireland devoid of some
form of artificial fertilisers, pesticides,
herbicides or fungicides.

(Ireland is riddled with consumer cancer)

If the Logo was written as follows,
a comma between Growing & Naturally
plus an exclamation mark ! which should
really be a question mark ? (in the absence
of the comma between Valleys & Growing)
                            i.e.
Golden Valleys, Growing, Naturally! or ?

               Then it might pass.

Let's see if we can force them to change
it and by doing so, it will highlight the
fraudulent practice of duping consumers
with blatant grammatical omissions and
the wordplay illusion by clever marketers.

(Well, perhaps not as clever as they thought)

ps.

I spent all morning, wondering should they
be a comma in the last paragraph, in the
afternoon, I removed it.  Oscar Wilde.

— The End —