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Who
Who
      threw the silver dollar up into the tree?

                                                    I didn’t said the little
lady who sews and grows every day paler-paler she sits sewing and grow-
ing and that’s the truth,
who threw

            the ripe melon into the tree?you
                                                got me said the smoke who
runs the elevator but I bet two bits come seven come eleven mm make
the world safe for democracy it never fails and that’s a fact;

who threw the

bunch of violets
                    into the tree?I dunno said the silver dog,    with ripe
eyes and wagged his tail that’s the god’s own

and the moon kissed the little lady on her paler-paler face and said
never mind,you’ll find
                           But the moon creeped into the pink hand of the
smoke that shook the ivories
                                and she said said She Win and you won’t be
sorry   And The Moon camelalong-along to the waggy silver dog
and the moon came
and the Moon said into his Ripe Eyes
                                          and the moon
                                                          Smiled

                                                          ,so
All in green went my love riding
on a great horse of gold
into the silver dawn.

four lean hounds crouched low and smiling
the merry deer ran before.

Fleeter be they than dappled dreams
the swift sweet deer
the red rare deer.

Horn at hip went my love riding
riding the echo down
into the silver dawn.

four lean hounds crouched low and smiling
the level meadows ran before.

Softer be they than slippered sleep
the lean lithe deer
the fleet flown deer.

Four fleet does at a gold valley
the famished arrows sang before.

Bow at belt went my love riding
riding the mountain down into the silver dawn.

four lean hounds crouched low and smiling
the sheer peaks ran before.

Paler be they than daunting death
the sleek slim deer
the tall tense deer.

Four tall stags at a green mountain
the lucky hunter sang before.

All in green went my love riding
on a great horse of gold
into the silver dawn.

four lean hounds crouched low and smiling
my heart fell dead before.
Janette Jul 2012
Moonlight touches indigo,
As I create you once again in
This space, a swathe of cool air
Somewhere between night's breath
And the golden light of dawn...




Naivety wanders through rush-light,
A whisper waiting on a wilderness edge,
A green-eyed moon
Burning hours, like thin fire,
Curves my flesh...yet I am paler than sorrel...




An esoteric beauty, seducing immortal;
A litany of rose colour jewels
Surging, softly spreading
Like feathers, trailing your skin
Breaching the passage of hunger...




I lay upon fevered enchantment
Spilled in murmurs, wrapped and trembling
In the worship of your hands,
Tongue and lips
Whispering passion alive
Melting your flesh to quiver...




I taste the wild honey, captured by
Lips that ache with silent cries,
The sleepless dust, a crystalline prism,
Suspended upon dark velvet
Following the ghost of US.......
I prepare my body for the ultimate sacrifice.....drawing me into love....as I make peace with my self.....preparing this shell, that it may accurately reflect my soul....preparing my soul that it may accurately reflect the love of yours....for we are all.....love lover and beloved.... J
r Apr 2014
Solitude found a friend in me
Winter stole the rest
Wondering where my heart might be
While soul is sinking west

A paler shade of night comes 'round
Moon forgets to rise
An empty lamp of light surrounds
A view of starless skies

With eyes shut wide to lonesome light
Dreams escape my thoughts
Silence awakens fear of flight
A journey all for nought.

r ~ 4/16/14
\•/\
   |
  / \
I sat all morning in the college sick bay
Counting bells knelling classes to a close.
At two o'clock our neighbors drove me home.

In the porch I met my father crying--
He had always taken funerals in his stride--
And Big Jim Evans saying it was a hard blow.

The baby cooed and laughed and rocked the pram
When I came in, and I was embarrassed
By old men standing up to shake my hand

And tell me they were "sorry for my trouble,"
Whispers informed strangers I was the eldest,
Away at school, as my mother held my hand

In hers and coughed out angry tearless sighs.
At ten o'clock the ambulance arrived
With the corpse, stanched and bandaged by the nurses.

Next morning I went up into the room. Snowdrops
And candles soothed the bedside; I saw him
For the first time in six weeks. Paler now,

Wearing a poppy bruise on his left temple,
He lay in the four foot box as in his cot.
No gaudy scars, the bumper knocked him clear.

A four foot box, a foot for every year.
ivory Aug 2010
There is this woman with stringy brown hair
Blue polka-dotted shirt, the same one
Head droops down
The weight of melancholy stampedes her to near-death.

She hardly holds herself up straight
She barely looks me in the eyes, she is shamed
Every time, she is paler and paler
Every time, gets the same comfort treat, maybe this will help this time
Maybe,
This time.

Chocolate peanut butter flavor with hot fudge and whipped cream
I am the only one who notices her slight shaking..
Fiending? Needing?

$4.61, please
I am the only one who notices the scars on her arms.

"Thank you, have a good day."

And I am frightened that one of them will soon be her last.

I am frightened because I want to save everyone
But I can't.

It's like throwing starfish into the sea, one by one
Still seeing the shore still filled with them.

Everyone around me is drowning and they pull my hair down with them.
© AlyssiaAnderson

Awkward reactions encouraged.
I.
Fair Isabel, poor simple Isabel!
Lorenzo, a young palmer in Love's eye!
They could not in the self-same mansion dwell
Without some stir of heart, some malady;
They could not sit at meals but feel how well
It soothed each to be the other by;
They could not, sure, beneath the same roof sleep
But to each other dream, and nightly weep.

II.
With every morn their love grew tenderer,
With every eve deeper and tenderer still;
He might not in house, field, or garden stir,
But her full shape would all his seeing fill;
And his continual voice was pleasanter
To her, than noise of trees or hidden rill;
Her lute-string gave an echo of his name,
She spoilt her half-done broidery with the same.

III.
He knew whose gentle hand was at the latch,
Before the door had given her to his eyes;
And from her chamber-window he would catch
Her beauty farther than the falcon spies;
And constant as her vespers would he watch,
Because her face was turn'd to the same skies;
And with sick longing all the night outwear,
To hear her morning-step upon the stair.

IV.
A whole long month of May in this sad plight
Made their cheeks paler by the break of June:
"To morrow will I bow to my delight,
"To-morrow will I ask my lady's boon."--
"O may I never see another night,
"Lorenzo, if thy lips breathe not love's tune."--
So spake they to their pillows; but, alas,
Honeyless days and days did he let pass;

V.
Until sweet Isabella's untouch'd cheek
Fell sick within the rose's just domain,
Fell thin as a young mother's, who doth seek
By every lull to cool her infant's pain:
"How ill she is," said he, "I may not speak,
"And yet I will, and tell my love all plain:
"If looks speak love-laws, I will drink her tears,
"And at the least 'twill startle off her cares."

VI.
So said he one fair morning, and all day
His heart beat awfully against his side;
And to his heart he inwardly did pray
For power to speak; but still the ruddy tide
Stifled his voice, and puls'd resolve away--
Fever'd his high conceit of such a bride,
Yet brought him to the meekness of a child:
Alas! when passion is both meek and wild!

VII.
So once more he had wak'd and anguished
A dreary night of love and misery,
If Isabel's quick eye had not been wed
To every symbol on his forehead high;
She saw it waxing very pale and dead,
And straight all flush'd; so, lisped tenderly,
"Lorenzo!"--here she ceas'd her timid quest,
But in her tone and look he read the rest.

VIII.
"O Isabella, I can half perceive
"That I may speak my grief into thine ear;
"If thou didst ever any thing believe,
"Believe how I love thee, believe how near
"My soul is to its doom: I would not grieve
"Thy hand by unwelcome pressing, would not fear
"Thine eyes by gazing; but I cannot live
"Another night, and not my passion shrive.

IX.
"Love! thou art leading me from wintry cold,
"Lady! thou leadest me to summer clime,
"And I must taste the blossoms that unfold
"In its ripe warmth this gracious morning time."
So said, his erewhile timid lips grew bold,
And poesied with hers in dewy rhyme:
Great bliss was with them, and great happiness
Grew, like a ***** flower in June's caress.

X.
Parting they seem'd to tread upon the air,
Twin roses by the zephyr blown apart
Only to meet again more close, and share
The inward fragrance of each other's heart.
She, to her chamber gone, a ditty fair
Sang, of delicious love and honey'd dart;
He with light steps went up a western hill,
And bade the sun farewell, and joy'd his fill.

XI.
All close they met again, before the dusk
Had taken from the stars its pleasant veil,
All close they met, all eves, before the dusk
Had taken from the stars its pleasant veil,
Close in a bower of hyacinth and musk,
Unknown of any, free from whispering tale.
Ah! better had it been for ever so,
Than idle ears should pleasure in their woe.

XII.
Were they unhappy then?--It cannot be--
Too many tears for lovers have been shed,
Too many sighs give we to them in fee,
Too much of pity after they are dead,
Too many doleful stories do we see,
Whose matter in bright gold were best be read;
Except in such a page where Theseus' spouse
Over the pathless waves towards him bows.

XIII.
But, for the general award of love,
The little sweet doth **** much bitterness;
Though Dido silent is in under-grove,
And Isabella's was a great distress,
Though young Lorenzo in warm Indian clove
Was not embalm'd, this truth is not the less--
Even bees, the little almsmen of spring-bowers,
Know there is richest juice in poison-flowers.

XIV.
With her two brothers this fair lady dwelt,
Enriched from ancestral merchandize,
And for them many a weary hand did swelt
In torched mines and noisy factories,
And many once proud-quiver'd ***** did melt
In blood from stinging whip;--with hollow eyes
Many all day in dazzling river stood,
To take the rich-ored driftings of the flood.

XV.
For them the Ceylon diver held his breath,
And went all naked to the hungry shark;
For them his ears gush'd blood; for them in death
The seal on the cold ice with piteous bark
Lay full of darts; for them alone did seethe
A thousand men in troubles wide and dark:
Half-ignorant, they turn'd an easy wheel,
That set sharp racks at work, to pinch and peel.

XVI.
Why were they proud? Because their marble founts
Gush'd with more pride than do a wretch's tears?--
Why were they proud? Because fair orange-mounts
Were of more soft ascent than lazar stairs?--
Why were they proud? Because red-lin'd accounts
Were richer than the songs of Grecian years?--
Why were they proud? again we ask aloud,
Why in the name of Glory were they proud?

XVII.
Yet were these Florentines as self-retired
In hungry pride and gainful cowardice,
As two close Hebrews in that land inspired,
Paled in and vineyarded from beggar-spies,
The hawks of ship-mast forests--the untired
And pannier'd mules for ducats and old lies--
Quick cat's-paws on the generous stray-away,--
Great wits in Spanish, Tuscan, and Malay.

XVIII.
How was it these same ledger-men could spy
Fair Isabella in her downy nest?
How could they find out in Lorenzo's eye
A straying from his toil? Hot Egypt's pest
Into their vision covetous and sly!
How could these money-bags see east and west?--
Yet so they did--and every dealer fair
Must see behind, as doth the hunted hare.

XIX.
O eloquent and famed Boccaccio!
Of thee we now should ask forgiving boon,
And of thy spicy myrtles as they blow,
And of thy roses amorous of the moon,
And of thy lilies, that do paler grow
Now they can no more hear thy ghittern's tune,
For venturing syllables that ill beseem
The quiet glooms of such a piteous theme.

**.
Grant thou a pardon here, and then the tale
Shall move on soberly, as it is meet;
There is no other crime, no mad assail
To make old prose in modern rhyme more sweet:
But it is done--succeed the verse or fail--
To honour thee, and thy gone spirit greet;
To stead thee as a verse in English tongue,
An echo of thee in the north-wind sung.

XXI.
These brethren having found by many signs
What love Lorenzo for their sister had,
And how she lov'd him too, each unconfines
His bitter thoughts to other, well nigh mad
That he, the servant of their trade designs,
Should in their sister's love be blithe and glad,
When 'twas their plan to coax her by degrees
To some high noble and his olive-trees.

XXII.
And many a jealous conference had they,
And many times they bit their lips alone,
Before they fix'd upon a surest way
To make the youngster for his crime atone;
And at the last, these men of cruel clay
Cut Mercy with a sharp knife to the bone;
For they resolved in some forest dim
To **** Lorenzo, and there bury him.

XXIII.
So on a pleasant morning, as he leant
Into the sun-rise, o'er the balustrade
Of the garden-terrace, towards him they bent
Their footing through the dews; and to him said,
"You seem there in the quiet of content,
"Lorenzo, and we are most loth to invade
"Calm speculation; but if you are wise,
"Bestride your steed while cold is in the skies.

XXIV.
"To-day we purpose, ay, this hour we mount
"To spur three leagues towards the Apennine;
"Come down, we pray thee, ere the hot sun count
"His dewy rosary on the eglantine."
Lorenzo, courteously as he was wont,
Bow'd a fair greeting to these serpents' whine;
And went in haste, to get in readiness,
With belt, and spur, and bracing huntsman's dress.

XXV.
And as he to the court-yard pass'd along,
Each third step did he pause, and listen'd oft
If he could hear his lady's matin-song,
Or the light whisper of her footstep soft;
And as he thus over his passion hung,
He heard a laugh full musical aloft;
When, looking up, he saw her features bright
Smile through an in-door lattice, all delight.

XXVI.
"Love, Isabel!" said he, "I was in pain
"Lest I should miss to bid thee a good morrow:
"Ah! what if I should lose thee, when so fain
"I am to stifle all the heavy sorrow
"Of a poor three hours' absence? but we'll gain
"Out of the amorous dark what day doth borrow.
"Good bye! I'll soon be back."--"Good bye!" said she:--
And as he went she chanted merrily.

XXVII.
So the two brothers and their ******'d man
Rode past fair Florence, to where Arno's stream
Gurgles through straiten'd banks, and still doth fan
Itself with dancing bulrush, and the bream
Keeps head against the freshets. Sick and wan
The brothers' faces in the ford did seem,
Lorenzo's flush with love.--They pass'd the water
Into a forest quiet for the slaughter.

XXVIII.
There was Lorenzo slain and buried in,
There in that forest did his great love cease;
Ah! when a soul doth thus its freedom win,
It aches in loneliness--is ill at peace
As the break-covert blood-hounds of such sin:
They dipp'd their swords in the water, and did tease
Their horses homeward, with convulsed spur,
Each richer by his being a murderer.

XXIX.
They told their sister how, with sudden speed,
Lorenzo had ta'en ship for foreign lands,
Because of some great urgency and need
In their affairs, requiring trusty hands.
Poor Girl! put on thy stifling widow's ****,
And 'scape at once from Hope's accursed bands;
To-day thou wilt not see him, nor to-morrow,
And the next day will be a day of sorrow.

***.
She weeps alone for pleasures not to be;
Sorely she wept until the night came on,
And then, instead of love, O misery!
She brooded o'er the luxury alone:
His image in the dusk she seem'd to see,
And to the silence made a gentle moan,
Spreading her perfect arms upon the air,
And on her couch low murmuring, "Where? O where?"

XXXI.
But Selfishness, Love's cousin, held not long
Its fiery vigil in her single breast;
She fretted for the golden hour, and hung
Upon the time with feverish unrest--
Not long--for soon into her heart a throng
Of higher occupants, a richer zest,
Came tragic; passion not to be subdued,
And sorrow for her love in travels rude.

XXXII.
In the mid days of autumn, on their eves
The breath of Winter comes from far away,
And the sick west continually bereaves
Of some gold tinge, and plays a roundelay
Of death among the bushes and the leaves,
To make all bare before he dares to stray
From his north cavern. So sweet Isabel
By gradual decay from beauty fell,

XXXIII.
Because Lorenzo came not. Oftentimes
She ask'd her brothers, with an eye all pale,
Striving to be itself, what dungeon climes
Could keep him off so long? They spake a tale
Time after time, to quiet her. Their crimes
Came on them, like a smoke from Hinnom's vale;
And every night in dreams they groan'd aloud,
To see their sister in her snowy shroud.

XXXIV.
And she had died in drowsy ignorance,
But for a thing more deadly dark than all;
It came like a fierce potion, drunk by chance,
Which saves a sick man from the feather'd pall
For some few gasping moments; like a lance,
Waking an Indian from his cloudy hall
With cruel pierce, and bringing him again
Sense of the gnawing fire at heart and brain.

XXXV.
It was a vision.--In the drowsy gloom,
The dull of midnight, at her couch's foot
Lorenzo stood, and wept: the forest tomb
Had marr'd his glossy hair which once could shoot
Lustre into the sun, and put cold doom
Upon his lips, and taken the soft lute
From his lorn voice, and past his loamed ears
Had made a miry channel for his tears.

XXXVI.
Strange sound it was, when the pale shadow spake;
For there was striving, in its piteous tongue,
To speak as when on earth it was awake,
And Isabella on its music hung:
Languor there was in it, and tremulous shake,
As in a palsied Druid's harp unstrung;
And through it moan'd a ghostly under-song,
Like hoarse night-gusts sepulchral briars among.

XXXVII.
Its eyes, though wild, were still all dewy bright
With love, and kept all phantom fear aloof
From the poor girl by magic of their light,
The while it did unthread the horrid woof
Of the late darken'd time,--the murderous spite
Of pride and avarice,--the dark pine roof
In the forest,--and the sodden turfed dell,
Where, without any word, from stabs he fell.

XXXVIII.
Saying moreover, "Isabel, my sweet!
"Red whortle-berries droop above my head,
"And a large flint-stone weighs upon my feet;
"Around me beeches and high chestnuts shed
"Their leaves and prickly nuts; a sheep-fold bleat
"Comes from beyond the river to my bed:
"Go, shed one tear upon my heather-bloom,
"And it shall comfort me within the tomb.

XXXIX.
"I am a shadow now, alas! alas!
"Upon the skirts of human-nature dwelling
"Alone: I chant alone the holy mass,
"While little sounds of life are round me knelling,
"And glossy bees at noon do fieldward pass,
"And many a chapel bell the hour is telling,
"Paining me through: those sounds grow strange to me,
"And thou art distant in Humanity.

XL.
"I know what was, I feel full well what is,
"And I should rage, if spirits could go mad;
"Though I forget the taste of earthly bliss,
"That paleness warms my grave, as though I had
"A Seraph chosen from the bright abyss
"To be my spouse: thy paleness makes me glad;
"Thy beauty grows upon me, and I feel
"A greater love through all my essence steal."

XLI.
The Spirit mourn'd "Adieu!"--dissolv'd, and left
The atom darkness in a slow turmoil;
As when of healthful midnight sleep bereft,
Thinking on rugged hours and fruitless toil,
We put our eyes into a pillowy cleft,
And see the spangly gloom froth up and boil:
It made sad Isabella's eyelids ache,
And in the dawn she started up awake;

XLII.
"Ha! ha!" said she, "I knew not this hard life,
"I thought the worst was simple misery;
"I thought some Fate with pleasure or with strife
"Portion'd us--happy days, or else to die;
"But there is crime--a brother's ****** knife!
"Sweet Spirit, thou hast school'd my infancy:
"I'll visit thee for this, and kiss thine eyes,
"And greet thee morn and even in the skies."

XLIII.
When the full morning came, she had devised
How she might secret to the forest hie;
How she might find the clay, so dearly prized,
And sing to it one latest lullaby;
How her short absence might be unsurmised,
While she the inmost of the dream would try.
Resolv'd, she took with her an aged nurse,
And went into that dismal forest-hearse.

XLIV.
See, as they creep along the river side,
How she doth whisper to that aged Dame,
And, after looking round the champaign wide,
Shows her a knife.--"What feverous hectic flame
"Burns in thee, child?--What good can thee betide,
"That thou should'st smile again?"--The evening came,
And they had found Lorenzo's earthy bed;
The flint was there, the berries at his head.

XLV.
Who hath not loiter'd in a green church-yard,
And let his spirit, like a demon-mole,
Work through the clayey soil and gravel hard,
To see skull, coffin'd bones, and funeral stole;
Pitying each form that hungry Death hath marr'd,
And filling it once more with human soul?
Ah! this is holiday to what was felt
When Isabella by Lorenzo knelt.

XLVI.
She gaz'd into the fresh-thrown mould, as though
One glance did fully all its secrets tell;
Clearly she saw, as other eyes would know
Pale limbs at bottom of a crystal well;
Upon the murderous spot she seem'd to grow,
Like to a native lily of the dell:
Then with her knife, all sudden, she began
To dig more fervently than misers can.

XLVII.
Soon she turn'd up a soiled glove, whereon
Her silk had play'd in purple phantasies,
She kiss'd it with a lip more chill than stone,
And put it in her *****, where it dries
And freezes utterly unto the bone
Those dainties made to still an infant's cries:
Then 'gan she work again; nor stay'd her care,
But to throw back at times her vei
Kalena Leone Oct 2012
The lights swimming in my head look like shimmering fish. I’m underwater. The pressure and the sand are so inviting. To just stay down here and watch the way my fingernails turn into an even paler pink. like my cheeks. when I first fall in love. And my name changes. I’m no longer Kalena. I’ll be whoever you want me to be, baby. Anything at all. If you want me happy I’ll leave the stories at home. Home. She’s bipolar and I’m depressed and in love and no one else is. My creases where I carry you are sore from all of your emotion. I’m consumed by your pumping heart and electric nervous system. The one that doesn't come in effect, when I’m around; when I touch you. The rock I sat on today was misted by my thoughts on how you won’t ever see me how I see you than how misted it was by the actual water. My stomach is winding and alls I want to do is shove you inside of me and bite your neck. To this beat. I want you to smile because I make you so **** happy. I’ll give you everything. Everything. I just miss laying on someone’s heart beating life into them. And wishing and praying you’re another thing beating the life in their entire being. I want your finger tips and valves. watch thousands of you bloom. watch that look boys give to pretty girls falling over your face with every birth. So I won’t ever worry about you dying. About losing you. Because I’ll just plant you when I need eyelashes to kiss. Or fingernails to chew and paint. Maybe I’ll just live through you. Call you my tree of life. Tree of life. I don’t even like trees all that much.
oh no Jun 2014
1.

It’s just the sound of breathing all together. Soft. Breathing air and water and blood. Nobody’s worried because nothing has happened. Soft lips gentle and closed eyes pure, untouched, unopened like new shoes. Head alone and empty, waiting to be bruised.

2.

The eyes are open and we’re holding hands. All of us. My quarks against your prose and your ghosts. You’re looking at me like you love me. Not even like you want to **** me. Just like you love me. Like I’m yours. Like I’m somebody’s. We don’t speak. We’re still holding hands with everybody else. On the floor there are broken teeth and ripped out ****** stitches but I’m not looking at them. Neither are you. Neither is anybody else. It’s all soft hands. Hips. Collar bones. Lips.


3.

The heat of your hand against mine. Fusion. You are not a ghost. They are. I am not either. We’re looking down. They’re not. We’re enlightened. They’re not. There is no roof and the teeth and blood aren’t real. They are only reflections of the stars. We do not speak except to each other.

4.

Teeth and stitches and bleeding hands and my blood is in your veins but you’re a closed circuit. I’m getting paler, but I don’t notice, because I am your dialysis, your transfusion. I’ll let you feel for me because I can’t feel my hands. You don’t expect it but you don’t tell me not to. Even if I die you will still hold me upright. My hands bleeding into your hands and open wounds in the wood floor. The glass floor unbroken because the teeth and blood are still just the stars. It’s okay because I know I’m saving you and I know you will save me. Cross stitch my lips so I can’t ruin it. Sew me up like a doll. It’s not your fault.

5.

Condensation into cold hands. Water droplets in their eyes as everyone else comes back again. Turns out I was just ignoring them. My blood in your veins. You’re not holding me up anymore, I’m clinging to your shoulder. Let go. You’re walking away and I’m following you and you don’t ask me to and you don’t wait for me so I step on the teeth beneath my bloodless feet. Even though they are only stars they hurt. Even though I am only a ghost I still run out of breath. Make me your Aphrodite. Yours before anyone else’s. Be mine before your lover’s.

6.

Now it’s all knees and elbows and raw hands on the wooden floor. Your blood my blood everyone else’s blood on my face. You let go of me. My blood in your veins, my cut up hands on the ground. Everyone else has better blood, more heart and less metal, and they all love you. Their blood, their flesh, their threads in your barely broken hands and you’re smiling. I haven’t seen you smile in a long time. I can’t feel my feet or my hands and in my head there is a swirl of stars except now they are only teeth and ripped-out stitches. Cut my face. Leave the stitches in. It’s not my place to speak. Look at me like you love me.

7.

There is blood on the ceiling too and you still think it’s the northern lights. My face is wet with someone else’s blood. Stitches. Teeth. Back and forth rocking on the floor. Cover me in your life. Your blood, my blood, your blood. I have no right to it. Grabbing teeth from the floor with numb hands and chewing them. Swallowing bone. Knock out my teeth and I’ll hold theirs in my mouth instead. I’m licking the blood from the puddles on the floor and dreaming of bullets to find more blood. In rivers, in sheets, drowning me softly. Dreaming of bullets and bullets and metal and blood. There is no more blood in me except in my stomach. Look away. Stab out my eyes. Cut out the stitches and put the metal in my mouth so I can sleep.

8.

I’ll wait among your absent lover’s things, something for you when the rest are gone. My stomach is hot and I’m not hungry. Blood in my lungs and I don’t want to keep breathing it. Dead nerves seizing in my spine. All I smell is blood and I think that’s a sign of brain cancer. Cancerous hands and teeth and bones and eyes. Bullets for the tumors in the grey matter. Metal and blood and skin and nerves and metal. Just one of your absent lover’s things.

9.

I’m too tired. The teeth are stars again. So are the bullets. Metal and bone. Let me eat this galaxy. Watch me.

10.

Teeth and bullets and stars. My empty head and our ****** hands. Teeth and bullets and stars.
tbh this is probably my favorite thing I've ever written
“I cannot but remember such things were,
  And were most dear to me.”
  ‘Macbeth’

  [”That were most precious to me.”
  ‘Macbeth’, act iv, sc. 3.]


When slow Disease, with all her host of Pains,
Chills the warm tide, which flows along the veins;
When Health, affrighted, spreads her rosy wing,
And flies with every changing gale of spring;
Not to the aching frame alone confin’d,
Unyielding pangs assail the drooping mind:
What grisly forms, the spectre-train of woe,
Bid shuddering Nature shrink beneath the blow,
With Resignation wage relentless strife,
While Hope retires appall’d, and clings to life.
Yet less the pang when, through the tedious hour,
Remembrance sheds around her genial power,
Calls back the vanish’d days to rapture given,
When Love was bliss, and Beauty form’d our heaven;
Or, dear to youth, pourtrays each childish scene,
Those fairy bowers, where all in turn have been.
As when, through clouds that pour the summer storm,
The orb of day unveils his distant form,
Gilds with faint beams the crystal dews of rain
And dimly twinkles o’er the watery plain;
Thus, while the future dark and cheerless gleams,
The Sun of Memory, glowing through my dreams,
Though sunk the radiance of his former blaze,
To scenes far distant points his paler rays,
Still rules my senses with unbounded sway,
The past confounding with the present day.

Oft does my heart indulge the rising thought,
Which still recurs, unlook’d for and unsought;
My soul to Fancy’s fond suggestion yields,
And roams romantic o’er her airy fields.
Scenes of my youth, develop’d, crowd to view,
To which I long have bade a last adieu!
Seats of delight, inspiring youthful themes;
Friends lost to me, for aye, except in dreams;
Some, who in marble prematurely sleep,
Whose forms I now remember, but to weep;
Some, who yet urge the same scholastic course
Of early science, future fame the source;
Who, still contending in the studious race,
In quick rotation, fill the senior place!
These, with a thousand visions, now unite,
To dazzle, though they please, my aching sight.

IDA! blest spot, where Science holds her reign,
How joyous, once, I join’d thy youthful train!
Bright, in idea, gleams thy lofty spire,
Again, I mingle with thy playful quire;
Our tricks of mischief, every childish game,
Unchang’d by time or distance, seem the same;
Through winding paths, along the glade I trace
The social smile of every welcome face;
My wonted haunts, my scenes of joy or woe,
Each early boyish friend, or youthful foe,
Our feuds dissolv’d, but not my friendship past,—
I bless the former, and forgive the last.
Hours of my youth! when, nurtur’d in my breast,
To Love a stranger, Friendship made me blest,—
Friendship, the dear peculiar bond of youth,
When every artless ***** throbs with truth;
Untaught by worldly wisdom how to feign,
And check each impulse with prudential rein;
When, all we feel, our honest souls disclose,
In love to friends, in open hate to foes;
No varnish’d tales the lips of youth repeat,
No dear-bought knowledge purchased by deceit;
Hypocrisy, the gift of lengthen’d years,
Matured by age, the garb of Prudence wears:
When, now, the Boy is ripen’d into Man,
His careful Sire chalks forth some wary plan;
Instructs his Son from Candour’s path to shrink,
Smoothly to speak, and cautiously to think;
Still to assent, and never to deny—
A patron’s praise can well reward the lie:
And who, when Fortune’s warning voice is heard,
Would lose his opening prospects for a word?
Although, against that word, his heart rebel,
And Truth, indignant, all his ***** swell.

  Away with themes like this! not mine the task,
From flattering friends to tear the hateful mask;
Let keener bards delight in Satire’s sting,
My Fancy soars not on Detraction’s wing:
Once, and but once, she aim’d a deadly blow,
To hurl Defiance on a secret Foe;
But when that foe, from feeling or from shame,
The cause unknown, yet still to me the same,
Warn’d by some friendly hint, perchance, retir’d,
With this submission all her rage expired.
From dreaded pangs that feeble Foe to save,
She hush’d her young resentment, and forgave.
Or, if my Muse a Pedant’s portrait drew,
POMPOSUS’ virtues are but known to few:
I never fear’d the young usurper’s nod,
And he who wields must, sometimes, feel the rod.
If since on Granta’s failings, known to all
Who share the converse of a college hall,
She sometimes trifled in a lighter strain,
’Tis past, and thus she will not sin again:
Soon must her early song for ever cease,
And, all may rail, when I shall rest in peace.

  Here, first remember’d be the joyous band,
Who hail’d me chief, obedient to command;
Who join’d with me, in every boyish sport,
Their first adviser, and their last resort;
Nor shrunk beneath the upstart pedant’s frown,
Or all the sable glories of his gown;
Who, thus, transplanted from his father’s school,
Unfit to govern, ignorant of rule—
Succeeded him, whom all unite to praise,
The dear preceptor of my early days,
PROBUS, the pride of science, and the boast—
To IDA now, alas! for ever lost!
With him, for years, we search’d the classic page,
And fear’d the Master, though we lov’d the Sage:
Retir’d at last, his small yet peaceful seat
From learning’s labour is the blest retreat.
POMPOSUS fills his magisterial chair;
POMPOSUS governs,—but, my Muse, forbear:
Contempt, in silence, be the pedant’s lot,
His name and precepts be alike forgot;
No more his mention shall my verse degrade,—
To him my tribute is already paid.

  High, through those elms with hoary branches crown’d
Fair IDA’S bower adorns the landscape round;
There Science, from her favour’d seat, surveys
The vale where rural Nature claims her praise;
To her awhile resigns her youthful train,
Who move in joy, and dance along the plain;
In scatter’d groups, each favour’d haunt pursue,
Repeat old pastimes, and discover new;
Flush’d with his rays, beneath the noontide Sun,
In rival bands, between the wickets run,
Drive o’er the sward the ball with active force,
Or chase with nimble feet its rapid course.
But these with slower steps direct their way,
Where Brent’s cool waves in limpid currents stray,
While yonder few search out some green retreat,
And arbours shade them from the summer heat:
Others, again, a pert and lively crew,
Some rough and thoughtless stranger plac’d in view,
With frolic quaint their antic jests expose,
And tease the grumbling rustic as he goes;
Nor rest with this, but many a passing fray
Tradition treasures for a future day:
“’Twas here the gather’d swains for vengeance fought,
And here we earn’d the conquest dearly bought:
Here have we fled before superior might,
And here renew’d the wild tumultuous fight.”
While thus our souls with early passions swell,
In lingering tones resounds the distant bell;
Th’ allotted hour of daily sport is o’er,
And Learning beckons from her temple’s door.
No splendid tablets grace her simple hall,
But ruder records fill the dusky wall:
There, deeply carv’d, behold! each Tyro’s name
Secures its owner’s academic fame;
Here mingling view the names of Sire and Son,
The one long grav’d, the other just begun:
These shall survive alike when Son and Sire,
Beneath one common stroke of fate expire;
Perhaps, their last memorial these alone,
Denied, in death, a monumental stone,
Whilst to the gale in mournful cadence wave
The sighing weeds, that hide their nameless grave.
And, here, my name, and many an early friend’s,
Along the wall in lengthen’d line extends.
Though, still, our deeds amuse the youthful race,
Who tread our steps, and fill our former place,
Who young obeyed their lords in silent awe,
Whose nod commanded, and whose voice was law;
And now, in turn, possess the reins of power,
To rule, the little Tyrants of an hour;
Though sometimes, with the Tales of ancient day,
They pass the dreary Winter’s eve away;
“And, thus, our former rulers stemm’d the tide,
And, thus, they dealt the combat, side by side;
Just in this place, the mouldering walls they scaled,
Nor bolts, nor bars, against their strength avail’d;
Here PROBUS came, the rising fray to quell,
And, here, he falter’d forth his last farewell;
And, here, one night abroad they dared to roam,
While bold POMPOSUS bravely staid at home;”
While thus they speak, the hour must soon arrive,
When names of these, like ours, alone survive:
Yet a few years, one general wreck will whelm
The faint remembrance of our fairy realm.

  Dear honest race! though now we meet no more,
One last long look on what we were before—
Our first kind greetings, and our last adieu—
Drew tears from eyes unus’d to weep with you.
Through splendid circles, Fashion’s gaudy world,
Where Folly’s glaring standard waves unfurl’d,
I plung’d to drown in noise my fond regret,
And all I sought or hop’d was to forget:
Vain wish! if, chance, some well-remember’d face,
Some old companion of my early race,
Advanc’d to claim his friend with honest joy,
My eyes, my heart, proclaim’d me still a boy;
The glittering scene, the fluttering groups around,
Were quite forgotten when my friend was found;
The smiles of Beauty, (for, alas! I’ve known
What ’tis to bend before Love’s mighty throne;)
The smiles of Beauty, though those smiles were dear,
Could hardly charm me, when that friend was near:
My thoughts bewilder’d in the fond surprise,
The woods of IDA danc’d before my eyes;
I saw the sprightly wand’rers pour along,
I saw, and join’d again the joyous throng;
Panting, again I trac’d her lofty grove,
And Friendship’s feelings triumph’d over Love.

  Yet, why should I alone with such delight
Retrace the circuit of my former flight?
Is there no cause beyond the common claim,
Endear’d to all in childhood’s very name?
Ah! sure some stronger impulse vibrates here,
Which whispers friendship will be doubly dear
To one, who thus for kindred hearts must roam,
And seek abroad, the love denied at home.
Those hearts, dear IDA, have I found in thee,
A home, a world, a paradise to me.
Stern Death forbade my orphan youth to share
The tender guidance of a Father’s care;
Can Rank, or e’en a Guardian’s name supply
The love, which glistens in a Father’s eye?
For this, can Wealth, or Title’s sound atone,
Made, by a Parent’s early loss, my own?
What Brother springs a Brother’s love to seek?
What Sister’s gentle kiss has prest my cheek?
For me, how dull the vacant moments rise,
To no fond ***** link’d by kindred ties!
Oft, in the progress of some fleeting dream,
Fraternal smiles, collected round me seem;
While still the visions to my heart are prest,
The voice of Love will murmur in my rest:
I hear—I wake—and in the sound rejoice!
I hear again,—but, ah! no Brother’s voice.
A Hermit, ’midst of crowds, I fain must stray
Alone, though thousand pilgrims fill the way;
While these a thousand kindred wreaths entwine,
I cannot call one single blossom mine:
What then remains? in solitude to groan,
To mix in friendship, or to sigh alone?
Thus, must I cling to some endearing hand,
And none more dear, than IDA’S social band.

  Alonzo! best and dearest of my friends,
Thy name ennobles him, who thus commends:
From this fond tribute thou canst gain no praise;
The praise is his, who now that tribute pays.
Oh! in the promise of thy early youth,
If Hope anticipate the words of Truth!
Some loftier bard shall sing thy glorious name,
To build his own, upon thy deathless fame:
Friend of my heart, and foremost of the list
Of those with whom I lived supremely blest;
Oft have we drain’d the font of ancient lore,
Though drinking deeply, thirsting still the more;
Yet, when Confinement’s lingering hour was done,
Our sports, our studies, and our souls were one:
Together we impell’d the flying ball,
Together waited in our tutor’s hall;
Together join’d in cricket’s manly toil,
Or shar’d the produce of the river’s spoil;
Or plunging from the green declining shore,
Our pliant limbs the buoyant billows bore:
In every element, unchang’d, the same,
All, all that brothers should be, but the name.

  Nor, yet, are you forgot, my jocund Boy!
DAVUS, the harbinger of childish joy;
For ever foremost in the ranks of fun,
The laughing herald of the harmless pun;
Yet, with a breast of such materials made,
Anxious to please, of pleasing half afraid;
Candid and liberal, with a heart of steel
In Danger’s path, though not untaught to feel.
Still, I remember, in the factious strife,
The rustic’s musket aim’d against my life:
High pois’d in air the massy weapon hung,
A cry of horror burst from every tongue:
Whilst I, in combat with another foe,
Fought on, unconscious of th’ impending blow;
Your arm, brave Boy, arrested his career—
Forward you sprung, insensible to fear;
Disarm’d, and baffled by your conquering hand,
The grovelling Savage roll’d upon the sand:
An act like this, can simple thanks repay?
Or all the labours of a grateful lay?
Oh no! whene’er my breast forgets the deed,
That instant, DAVUS, it deserves to bleed.

  LYCUS! on me thy claims are justly great:
Thy milder virtues could my Muse relate,
To thee, alone, unrivall’d, would belong
The feeble efforts of my lengthen’d song.
Well canst thou boast, to lead in senates fit,
A Spartan firmness, with Athenian wit:
Though yet, in embryo, these perfections shine,
LYCUS! thy father’s fame will soon be thine.
Where Learning nurtures the superior mind,
What may we hope, from genius thus refin’d;
When Time, at length, matures thy growing years,
How wilt thou tower, above thy fellow peers!
Prudence and sense, a spirit bold and free,
With Honour’s soul, united beam in thee.

Shall fair EURYALUS, pass by unsung?
From ancient lineage, not unworthy, sprung:
What, though one sad dissension bade us part,
That name is yet embalm’d within my heart,
Yet, at the mention, does that heart rebound,
And palpitate, responsive to the sound;
Envy dissolved our ties, and not our will:
We once were friends,—I’ll think, we are so still.
A form unmatch’d in Nature’s partial mould,
A heart untainted, we, in thee, behold:
Yet, not the Senate’s thunder thou shall wield,
Nor seek for glory, in the tented field:
To minds of ruder texture, these be given—
Thy soul shall nearer soar its native heaven.
Haply, in polish’d courts might be thy seat,
But, that thy tongue could never forge deceit:
The courtier’s supple bow, and sneering smile,
The flow of compliment, the slippery wile,
Would make that breast, with indignation, burn,
And, all the glittering snares, to tempt thee, spurn.
Domestic happiness will stamp thy fate;
Sacred to love, unclouded e’er by hate;
The world admire thee, and thy friends adore;—
Ambition’s slave, alone, would toil for more.

  Now last, but nearest, of the social band,
See honest, open, generous CLEON stand;
With scarce one speck, to cloud the pleasing scene,
No vice degrades that purest soul serene.
On the same day, our studious race begun,
On the same day, our studious race was run;
Thus, side by side, we pass’d our first career,
Thus, side by side, we strove for many a year:
At last, concluded our scholastic life,
We neither conquer’d in the classic strife:
As Speakers, each supports an equal name,
And crowds allow to both a partial fame:
To soothe a youthful Rival’s early pride,
Though Cleon’s candour would the palm divide,
Yet Candour’s self compels me now to own,
Justice awards it to my Friend alone.

  Oh! Friends regretted, Scenes for ever dear,
Remembrance hails you with her warmest tear!
Drooping, she bends o’er pensive Fancy’s urn,
To trace the hours, which never can return;
Yet, with the retrospection loves to dwell,
And soothe the sorrows of her last farewell!
Yet greets the triumph of my boyish mind,
As infant laurels round my head were twin’d;
When PROBUS’ praise repaid my lyric song,
Or plac’d me higher in the studious throng;
Or when my first harangue receiv’d applause,
His sage instruction the primeval cause,
What gratitude, to him, my soul possest,
While hope of dawning honours fill’d my breast!
For all my humble fame, to him alone,
The praise is due, who made that fame my own.
Oh! could I soar above these feeble lays,
These young effusions of my early days,
To him my Muse her noblest strain would give,
The song might perish, but the theme might live.
Yet, why for him the needless verse essay?
His honour’d name requires no vain display:
By every son of grateful IDA blest,
It finds an ech
Jwala Kay Aug 2012
I REMEMBER.
It was not like any other moment.
I was standing in my ward.
The ever dark and cold closure.
My dampened single-bed room.
My four-walled medium.
While, it was outside, so calm and still
Must be hibernating.
But poor creature, it waited
Waited, just a handspan
away from my window pane.
And my bolted glass window
did not welcome it.
And so it waited, settled
Closely watching another soul like itself.

I stood more like a rock
Staring at that pallid one.
Communicating in dead-muteness.
A despirited eye-contact.
In a moment or so, I slash
Slash my burdened eyebrows
O'er my wet eyeballs.
Apologizing for my plight
Of unexplainable helplessness.
And it waited there, calm and still,
Hearing my unspoken Testimony.

Thus we waited staring at each other
And between us was the adamant
Glass Window - slumbering soullessly!

It was darker than me.
But was getting paler and paler.
And I stood at the same spot
Staring and blinking
Waiting for it to flutter away.
Afterall, unlike me,
It had a huge space to fly.
And I know that, for I've stared,
Out of the window before,
The whole world.
But it stayed there
As if, afraid of flying, like me.

Hands swept across the clocks
And It turned paler to a fairer one
Stained with frozen crimson red veins.
And by twilight
the fair creature broke its penance.
Got blown by the breeze
And laid on the soft snow
On the concrete floor.
Then there was voidness.
Nothing to stare at.
No more soul to share my story.

I stood there, calm and still
But this time a tear rolled down
From my sunken eyes.
And then I closed my eyes
in prayer and wished
for the courage to
Shatter the glass window
And jump out
To become a gravestone
For my li'l pal's corpse.
A moment before receiving NED.
Mateuš Conrad Sep 2018
well... feminism has had its three waves
of revisionism -

    and there i'm sitting on
the windowsill,
   smoking out of my window -

watching the moon sloth the sky like
an demonic snail -

in the misty haze of a large patch
of cumulonimbus -
    right up there at around 50,000 feet...

thinking to myself?
   why are there two orbs of varying
light concentration
penetrating the sky
   and embedding the moon
in an eerie aura?

never mind -
   i still don't know what the chemical
formula for timber is,
or what sort of material is on
the moon that allows it to reflect
light from the other side
of the Greenwich Mean Time...

last time i heard: can a rock surface
reflect light?

          well then... ah... never mind...

but feminism has had its three waves
of instigation and two subsequent
waves of revisionism -

so it made me think:
   why not a second wave of fascism?
a revisionist wave...
    well... as far as i am concerned
the Italians were much paler -
   in their intentions than the Germans...

fascism 2.0 -
and the sort of fascism that would allow
me to be men...
    drunks, foul mouthed, you name it...
athletic, not-giving-a-**** losers of
sorts, among the glam of whatever else
it is that a man is...

working on the idea,
i had to think of a list -

   hmm...

          who then?
ah!

      Stanley Kowalski
   (from a streetcar named desire)...
John Wayne
  (notably from true grit)
    Charlton Heston
(from the planet of the apes)
   Tony Curtis...
              Hemingway,
Bukowski,
               Ezra Pound...
     Clark Gable
    Gregory Peck
                   the list is seemingly
endless -
   at least in the portrayal of
said characters...
ah... ****!
   Kevin Spacey as
Lester Burnham to boot!
            ah... double ****:
Denzel Washington as
Troy Maxson...
    because apparently "being"
a "poet" is little more than
the lesser stature
of a garbage man...
             unless of course:
you fiddle into a cosmopolitan
fixture.

    oh... and certainly an appreciation
for a traditional Turkish barber
shop...

something very much akin / borrowed
from America circa 1950s...
   and an unabashed sensibility
concerning good tailoring -
   but then also the prophetic
vagabond look from time to time...

just a vague idea -
    but something along these lines -
but then again, what a silly idea -
what is racial purity in
21st century England?
   some sort of vague notion
       of an even vaguer dream?

but i guess the notion of
individualistic purity:
   the purity of the individual is related
more to: who can and who won't
be swayed by alien opinions -
2nd or 3rd party -

        which includes this opinion...

i'd subscribe to put the idea on
the following zenith:

              grammatical cleanliness -
linguistic order -
            a literary tact -
   something along these lines -

after all: the 20th century is not the end
of a theory -
given 20th century communism this,
while 21st century socialism that...
ideas prevail...
   evolve - or devolve - regress
or make alternative progress -

               also given:
    there already is a fascist movement
elsewhere, other than in England -
where: it would be completely
impractical -
                  
                       prime tenet would also
be, what it already shows:
   non-expansionism of a culture
or a people -
                           more akin to
American isolationism under
                                                  F.D.R.:
i­ have a strange sentiment
for that president.
thea Oct 2013
She sits at the dinner table
Flattened lips
Tightly-****** hands
Neutral face
She is disgusted
As she lifts the spoon to her mouth
Immediate remorse fills her body as the taste buds get the first feel of the warm food
She is disgusted
As she continues to eat, she can see the food  turning into fat traveling to her cheeks
and to her jaw and to her arms and to her shoulders and to her chest and to her stomach
covering the bones that she wants to pierce through her skin
She can see it travel to her thighs, largening in size, making them touch, covering the huge gap that she wants situated in the middle
She is disgusted
She gets paler and paler with every chew and every swallow
And so to escape this torture, she lies and tells her uncle and aunt that her stomach is upset
and she feels sick
But she wasn't lying
Because her stomach was truly upset because it did not want to be filled
It wanted to stay tiny
It wanted to stay beautiful
It wanted to be more beautiful
She goes straight to the bathroom and locks the door
Washes her hands before sticking ******* down her throat
Removes them once she feels the disgust rising through her esophagus
Closes her eyes as her upset stomach throws away everything unwanted
She is disgusted
She secures the lock in her bedroom
Thinking maybe it will keep the demons away
Or at least long enough for a second of sanity
But they are too gruesomely evil because the disgust that was once in her throat has now traveled to her wrists
She criticizes how her wrist bone isn't showing enough
Disgust travels to her chest
how her ribs aren't piercing enough
Disgust travels to her hips
how her hip bones aren't showing enough
Disgust travels to her thighs
how the space between isn't big enough
Disgust travels to her fingertips
Tension building up in her palms
The demons' silence turn into screams
She gives in
Picks up the knife
and writes an new poem on her body
I
am
*disgusted
Algernon Jan 2012
I would hate if global warming worsened!
Think of the disaster!
All our favorite candy bars
would only melt much faster!
We'd have to buy more sunscreen
get paler everyday
and keep on re-applying,
'*** our sweat drips it away,
Inside is the new outside,
a heater is just unheard,
why would you MAKE a fire?
It'll all sound so absurd,
Our children will read about polar bears,
like our fictional Harry Potter,
all the while the world is drowning,
and its getting hotter and hotter,
hot chocolate? What a thing of a the past!
Drought? What's that mean?
Lady Libertys underwater,
and all meaning inbetween.
*this poem isn't suppose to be very serious. I imagine it being read in a very over the top sort of way. I think of Dr.Suess to be honest (with the over the top rhyming and such). It's like a joke on global warming. Not that global warming is funny. I should just stop....
He is more than a hero
he is a god in my eyes--
the man who is allowed
to sit beside you -- he

who listens intimately
to the sweet murmur of
your voice, the enticing

laughter that makes my own
heart beat fast. If I meet
you suddenly, I can'

speak -- my tongue is broken;
a thin flame runs under
my skin; seeing nothing,

hearing only my own ears
drumming, I drip with sweat;
trembling shakes my body

and I turn paler than
dry grass. At such times
death isn't far from me
Frail the white rose and frail are
Her hands that gave
Whose soul is sere and paler
Than time's wan wave.

Rosefrail and fair -- yet frailest
A wonder wild
In gentle eyes thou veilest,
My blueveined child.
JR Morse Sep 2013
.                                                                ­                                                 .
.                                                            ­                                                     .
this swifter's grift -
lifting loosely
fitted accoutrement

lourden fruit
carelessly held
silkened, gimlet lit
shamelessly rivened
to a paler shade
of need.

solitude's
enchanting seed
may confer
a grander banquet’s call
but, this tug of
grandiloquent oblige
and politesse . . .

master and slave consort
black and scarlet
swift of tongue and fingertip
unbound so neatly
and leather blind



tell me muse of the anger flesh on fire
is there really dignity in defeat
that eludes the victor

tell me muse of the truth in nature
ill-graced tail-lamp broken
is destiny all ways ordained in contradiction

tell me muse do hearts all times submit
to the beacon call
shyness long forgotten
narrative so harshly written

as ne'er before
with an insistence
ageless yearnings bellow  
as glazened shadow


if reason sleeps
there will be no learning
no refuge
only to each
for their crimes
a four-chambered riddle



All Rights Reserved
James R. Morse, NYC  2013.
"The higher we fly, the smaller we appear to those who cannot."
flyingpenguins Mar 2014
My eyes open to the onslaught of brightness. The lighting in my bathroom was far too bright, though I found myself indifferent to the scenery of my location as my attention was stolen by the mirror facing me.

In the reflection stood a healthy, albeit not a very attractive girl.

Her hair straw-like, with dull brown eyes that took most of the attention from her plain face. Her nose was crooked, stubby, and popped off of her face like an eagle's beak. Lips so thin and pale that one would never remark upon them. The hair that adorned her face was strewn up in small clumps at the sides of her lips, giving the impression of neglect.

This reflection was me.

Placing my hands on either side of the sink that stood before me, my fingers curled around the cold surface of porcelain. However, my eyes could not take away from the reflection.

My hair was so dull. So dry.

My hand grabbed blindly at the brush that I somehow knew was resting on the sink adjacent from my curled fingers. Bringing the instrument to my hair, I let it run through.

As if creating a beautiful melody, the brush continued to play through my hair hypnotically. As though my hands were the instrument being manipulated, and the brush as the manipulator I could not stop brushing my hair.

The brush was the perfectionist, continuing to brush through the dry strands of straw that fell to my shoulders. It was trying to perfect. Trying to heal.

My hair gave rise, like yeast, with much prodding it seemed as though there was hope. Only to see that this spark of hope resulted in the wilting of a flower. My hair.

They fell. Like the fallen angels of heaven. They fell in many, and in poison.

The clumps of my hair continued to fall, though my brush continued to do what it was named for; brush.

It wouldn't stop. The brushing or the falling.

More and more hair continued to fall, I could feel the pile of it starting to tickle the toes of my feet. I felt the whisper of my fallen hair kiss my sides as they made their way down.

The reflection had no expression. Emotionless.

As though the apathy had affected it's body, the reflection grew pale. Paler. And even paler.

Her skin was translucent. I could see the veins that webbed under her skin. It was frightening, she frightened me.

Like a phantom, she was almost see-through. As though her very existence were in question, that if her skin was clear enough, she wouldn't matter to the world at all.

Blood flowed from her nose. Spilling onto any nearby surface, her arms, her blouse, the sink and the hands that continued to brush through her falling hair.

The blood and the departing hair were in sync. Every time a new burst of blood would flow, more hair would fall.

You could clearly see her scalp now, but my arms continued to maneuver the brush through her hair. The blood only poured now.

I couldn't stop, I couldn't clean it up. It was chaos, and I could do nothing about it.

I could feel some of the blood that splattered across the ground start to accumulate, it grew to a puddle of blood around my feet. Like a child on a rainy day, I step in place on the blood.

My steps quicken, as did the blood and the brushing.

It stops. The brushing stops, I rest the brush onto the side of the sink like an overheated engine. The reflection's hair is almost gone, all that's left are small tufts of hair that spot around her scalp.

The blood stops.

Her skin is paler than ever. What was so unbecoming of her appearance before was replaced by beauty. Pure unadulterated beauty.

She was as lovely as death. At this thought, the reflection smirks.

-

I wake up to an unfamiliar room. Everything was dark.

So unbelievably dark. I was afraid of the dark.

There was a floral smell in the air. It hung depressingly and tauntingly, an obvious attempt to take away from the darkness.

My breath quickened, making a beeping noise quicken as well. What was this place?

My mother would not be happy that I was in such a dark and gloomy place. It felt as though the very room would absorb my entire being. I was being eaten alive.

The beasts were in the darkness and they wanted my blood.

"What is this place?" I ask. "Where am I?"

"You're here, Flora," the beasts reply.

"How do you know my name?"

"You're here, Flora," they chorus.

The darkness is interrupted. Light streams through a rectangular hole in the wall.

It automatically illuminates the dark room, there are white roses on the stand next to me.

A beast walks through. This one is dressed in white.

"What is this place? Where am I?" I ask again.

The beast smiles sardonically, "Oh Flora," it answers condescendingly, "Don't you remember?"

I stare.

"You were diagnosed with cancer."
Ah, Coventry, thou art but dead now-to me;
Thy life is not alive, and thy winds are too cold
Thou art as filthy as dust can be, and eyes might see;
Thy hearts are too bold, and to greed-your soul hath been sold.
And I want not, to be pictured by thy odd art;
For than oddness itself, 'tis even paler, and more odd;
And 'tis not honest, and full of disputing fragments;
Gratuitous in its earnest, talkative in each of its sort.
Ah, Coventry, I shall go, and catch up-with the strings of my story,
Which thou hath destroyed for the sake of thy fake harmony;
And in my tears lie thy most fragrant joys, and delightful sleep,
Which thou findeth tantalising, but idyllic-and satisfactory.
Ah, Coventry, go away-from my sight, as I solve my misery;
T'is misery thou hath assigned to, and dissolved over me,
I bid thee now fluently blow away from my face;
With a spitefulness so rare, and not to anyone's care nor taste;
And doth not thou question me, no more, about my tasks-or simply, my serenity;
For thou hath fooled me, and testified not-to my littlest serendipity,
You who claimed then, to be one of my dearest friends;
And now whom I detest-cannot believe I trusted thee back then.
And my soul! My soul-hath been a tangled ball-in thy feeble hands;
Colourless like a stultified falsehood, blundering like a normal fiend.

For on thy stilted dreadfulness at night, I hath stepped;
For in front of thy heterogeneous eves, I hath bluntly slept.
I had tasted thy water, and still my tongue is not satisfied;
I had swum in thy pages, but still my blood is not glorified.
Among thy boughs-then I dared, to solidify my fingers;
But still I couldst not bring thee alive, nor comprehend thy winters.
Instead I was left teased, and as confused as I had used to be;
I couldst find not peace, nor any saluted vehemence, in thee.
Ah, I am exhausted; I am brilliantly, and sufficiently, exhausted!
I am like torture itself-and if I was a plant, I wouldst have no bough,
For my branches wouldst be sore and demented,
For my foliage wouldst be tentative and rough.
I hath been ratified only by thy rage and dishonour;
I hath been flirted only, with thy rude hours.
And my poems thou hath insolently rejected,
And my honest lies thou hath instantaneously abused.
Thou consoled me not, and instead went furtive by my wishes;
Thou returned not my casual affection, and crushed my hope for sincere kisses.
I hath solemnly ratified thee, and praised thy music by my ears,
Yet still I twitch-as my sober heart then grows filled with tears.
Ah, thou hath betrayed, betrayed me!
Thy grief is even enhanced now-look at the way thou glareth by my knee!
O, Coventry, how couldst thou betray me-just whenst my time shivered and stopped in thine,
Thou defiled me so firmly; and disgraced the ****** poetry bitterly in thy mind,
As though it wouldst be the sole nightmare thou couldst 'ver find!
Ah, Coventry! Thou art cruel, cruel, and forever cruel!
Thou hath disliked me-like I am a whole scoundrel;
Whenst I but wanted to show thee t'at my poetry was safe, and kept no fever at all;
But no other than an endorsement of thy merriment, and funny disguises for thy reposes.
Ah, how couldst be thou be so remorseful-how couldst thou cheat me, and pray fervently-for my fall!
And to thee, only greed is true-and its satisfaction is thy due virtue,
For in my subsequent poetry, still thou shalt turn away-and scorn me once more;
With menace and retorts simply too immune, and perhaps irksome loath-like never before.

Ah, but how far shall thy distaste for me ever go?
Thou who hath blurred me-'fore even seeing my dawn,
'Fore even lurching forward, to merely glance at my town.
Thou art but afar, and now shall never enter my heaven,
For victory is no longer my shadow, 'tis to which I shall return.
I am like a shame behind thy glossy red curtain,
I am a pit whom thou couldst only befall, and joylessly spurn.
But ah! Still I am blessed, within my imperfection-thou knoweth it not?
I am blessed by the airs-and wealthy Edens of the Almighty, thou seeth t'is not?
He who hath the care, and pride anew-to cut thy story short,
He who hath listened to my cores, and shall deliver me from thy resort.
T'us I shall be afraid not, of thy wobbly tunes-and thy greedy notes!
For humility is in my heart, though probably thou hath cursed me;
And bidden me to let my soul detach, and run astray,
Still I shall find my fertile love, and go away;
I shall bring him away-away from thy abrupt coldness-and headless dismay;
I shall nurse and love him again-like I hath done yesterday, and even today;
And in t'is, I shall carest not for what thou might say to me later-day after day.
For as far as I shall go, my poetry t'an shall entail me;
And thus follow the liveliness, and scrutiny-of my merritorious paths only,
And in the name of Him, shall love thee and rejoice in thee not;
But within my soul, it shall recklessly, but patiently-do them both;
'Tis my very goal it shall accomplish,
And for my very romance, shall it sketch up altogether-such a mature bliss.
I should dance, thereof-just like a reborn female swan;
And forget everything life might contain-including my birth, as though life wouldst just be a lot of fun.

But I shall be alive like my tenderness,
So is my love-he t'at hath brought forth my happiness,
I shall be dressed only in the finest clothes-and he my prince,
As the gem of my soul hath desired our holiness to be, ever since.
Yet still I hope thou wouldst be freed, and granted my virtue,
Though still I doubt about which-for thy fruits are weightless, and to forever remain untrue.
Such be the case, art thou entitled to my current screams,
And blanketed only by my most fearful dreams.
T'is is my curse-in which thou shalt be in danger, but must be obedient,
For curses canst be real-and mine considers thee not, as a faithful friend.
And obedience be not in thee-then thou shalt all be death,
Just like thou hath imprisoned my love, and deceived my breath!
Still-my honesty leads me away, and shall let me receive my triumph;
As so cravingly I hath endured-and tried to reach, in my poems!
Ah, Coventry, unlike the stars-indulged in their tasteful domes,
Even when I am free, in thee I shall never be as joyful-and thus thou, shalt never be my home.
vircapio gale Mar 2013
it was a strange and fragile Kombination--
a desperate, lonely Hunger,
frenetic Thrill to sate--
we didn't speak each other's native Tongues
but Tongues we shared
in what we found, of random Meals,
and Pocket Lexika to taste
hidden Idioms we strove to understand..
our Bodies splashing Wasser
in the murky Spree, ******* Fountain by Berliner Dom
licking Lips of Bier und Eis a ways away from Reichstag Bullet Holes
below the steel Spirale encased in Glas
transparent Government--a Show for Tourist Stroll..
our Smiles glinting, coated international, that Week agreed

"eine schwester-bruder liebe.."
temptation--and propriety--preserved--
pale lotion, paler skin to honey in the sun
aloft in hostel bunks we shared--
a cush historic castle, touristische nook
of maps and candy pockets, so geil..
gleeful us, to melt from moscau and new york
we shared the deutsch between us,
ein bisschen englisch,
a bit of russisch too for fun...
our soulwise checkpoint charlie held the lust at bay
despite lustgarten romps
and walks beneath the lindens, lane of sighs..
an awkward bridge of question-words we built to muse about the stars
and what we see with only strangers never seen again.
we named ourselves an instant familie...so you could snore on me,
and let me stroke your hair
without the guilt of infidelity
the freedom from, we traded in our blatant,
goodbye tears you shed, i kept inside to craft mnemonic gems
i share and savor in again












'
Bier und Eis: "beer and ice/ice cream"

http://flickrhivemind.net/Tags/reichstag,spirale/Interesting
Sometimes a jolt can stop you.
Like a phantom step that calls for you drive your heels to the ground,
Or a sentence in a book that yanks your gaze back to the beginning,
Heaving and lurching over.

Sometimes I stop,
To take in that I have stopped.
That it has been as few months that I could count on fingers,
The same that have scratched at my insides,
Heaving and lurching over.

Sometimes that same jolt can push you,
Like a static shock from a touch.
And that is why I do not claw, crave, beat or binge,
As I think of you most days, not out of love but as a warning.
For if the shock from your static unmoving self
Had not left me stung and stumbling,
Heaving and lurching,
I would not have ran forward.

*I have been cold inside and out.
I have been clawed and have grown talons in return.
And I was paler than my anaemic self,
Lacking in haemoglobin to burden with rasps of air,
Because my heart was weak and could not push blood to the surface.

But now that the colour has drained from my face,
I can blend into snow.
White, all but for red lipstick,
And apple in hand.
So I know when people have found me
They must have had to stop to look.
Mymai Yuan Sep 2010
It’s been a decade and a half that I haven’t returned back to my little home in that far away magical place. Fifteen years- exploring and travelling through the world. It was always my dream, ever since I was a young boy. Living this life is lonely. No one ever belongs to me, nor do I ever belong to anyone. Seeing a million things is marvelous, but it could be twice as marvelous with a companion to express the feelings over instead of my usual, battered black log book that never talked back but was filled with entries from all over the world. One day, I’ll publish it.

I guess the fact that I was always alone was the reason why the little home and my little mother that I use to take for granted became more and more part of me as I stayed away. The land, the gently curving hills and glassy lake grew clearer and clearer in my mind until sometimes, it was all I could see when I shut my eyes at night after a long day of work. Sometimes I would smell the soap on mothers’ skin acutely and played her voice in my head like a radio.
A blur of bright brown eyes.

I’ve been to almost every country in this world: Japan, France, America, Denmark, China and all the different continents… almost a hundred different countries. Each country held such a different (but slightly similar if they were in the same continent) flavor in the air and never failed to teach me one new thing. They all held such distinct character. Beholding the stunning sights and noticing the heart-wrenching small details of a new place was my passion. It captivated me, but the calm, steady love of my heart remained still.
Nothing touched me like the memory of home and my mother. Not the women who flickered through the chapter of my life, appearing in explosions of lust and never meaning more than ***, though some begged me to stay. My loneliness would sway my path of thinking for a short one or two week before I realized it wasn’t what I truly wanted.  
My lovers reminded me of cookie crumbs fallen from my mouth down onto my shirt- there for a brief, brief moment- sometimes picked up to nibble on or brushed away and forgotten.

Oh Love; Love never found me. Perhaps all the travel I did made it harder for Her to find me. I was never at a place for long. Perhaps She, Love, grew tired of trying to catch up with me as I crossed the seas and vast lands. Maybe She got lost one day in an Indian market with the exotic, fat fruits and glittering bangles- fading off into the air with the aroma of powerfully rich local dishes.
Or maybe I travelled away from Her, and She got left behind.

2 a.m.- On a train: the train is brand new and the metal is still yet glossy and innocent from hard rains, thick snow or fiery heat as the Southern part of my homeland is so prone to. The window is surprisingly see-through, unlike all the muddy windows covered in dust, grime, bird droppings and smashed insects (especially squished mosquitoes) I have looked out of in the past fifteen years. I think I’ll read a few chapters of that book about Cambodian culture to distract my impatient mind: sitting on this cold train that will take me home is all I can possibly think about. Hurry, you ******* train, hurry!
There is something about a train that calms me down and makes me feel all starry-eyed. It is the memory of the only girl I ever loved. A little girl I grew up with. Such thick dark brown hair, big round bright chocolate eyes and the loudest, most obnoxiously boyish laugh I have ever heard from a girl. Hmm, I recalled the small rounded chest and bottom.
We lived so far deep in the country side and one day, on an overnight school trip, the school we attended at took all hundred students on a trip to see the city for just a day. Flashes of her eating a creamy white ice cream sprinkled with tiny candies of the rainbow and standing in awe of the huge library made me smile to myself.
How when everyone was tired that night back on the train, even the teachers exhausted after an early morning and keeping a hundred thirteen-year-olds under control for a whole day, fell asleep. My eyelids were just drooping when she appeared- I smelled her first, sweet like honey with a tinge of something sour like orange or lemon peels. My senses have always been sensitive- especially sight and smell. She carefully peeled back the curtains around the bed, crept into my bunk and cuddled with me, curling her tough plump legs.
My mind flew in many wild ways- for as I said, my senses were sensitive and the curiosity and thrill of an inexperienced young boy did not help to make them any paler- and try as I might to quiet the thoughts, they leapt at her every movement.
I suppose it was her way of telling me she had fallen in love with me. Her cold monkey-feet pressed against me and whispering the night away: her tousled head as she kept sitting up to look out the window on the side to look at the stars. I sat up with her and held her against my chest. I remember wondering how my heart wasn’t bursting from the enormous love I felt for this creature in my lap, watching the dark silhouettes of trees rushing by and the black swaying fingers of rice patties illuminated by needle-point stars and a full, silver moon. The beautiful creature turned around, placed her icy finger tips on my hot neck, and gave a little sigh of relief before leaning in and kissing me.

My skin was covered in goose bumps.

Oranges are my favorite fruit.
I left her, my little home and mother at nineteen. The darling was mine till then. I wrote to her, but when she got around to replying I had already moved. And there my love became my once-loved.
The heart ache didn’t last too long. There was too much to see, I was young and full of cravings and impossible to satisfy hunger despite the countless number of women. I lived in the moment, the fiery moment of passion and life, and the memory of her were blown to wisps.
A ray of pink sunlight broke me from my thoughts and as I rushed back from the past to its future, I wondered in a haze whether she had married or not.

Five a.m. – the sun was up. The sky had streaks of dark blue, so dark it was almost black. A ****** red of a newly-cut wound ran through the sky, arm in arm with royal purple and a pink the color of a child’s lips.

Six a.m. - twenty-two or so students milled into the train chattering. The younger ones have neatly combed hair, slicked down with mousse and parted so aggressively the comb lines are visible cutting the hair in hard chunks with a paper-white hairline slicing through the scalp. The smallest one would be around thirteen and the oldest at eighteen. The oldest-looking one is very pretty with slanted gray eyes and chestnut hair- very matured for her age. A puff of powder to conceal any imperfection of her skin, and the first two buttons on her school blouse unbuttoned to hint at a cleavage of well-developed large *******. Her gaze darts over me frequently. She looks like a lover I had in Holland. I give her a small smile and she returns it, batting her lids to reveal matted dark lashes and shimmery pale blue eyelids like the wings of a butterfly. No child, only if I was much, much younger and had just left home as you will so soon.
A stench of too much perfume emits from the girl beside her. So much that I am momentarily diverted and glance up at her from my log book. I will be relieved when they leave. If there’s one thing I find extremely unattractive in a woman is an overload of perfume- it becomes a stench that is a reminder of gaudy prostitutes.

Six-thirty a.m. -  The train jolts to yet another stop and they clatter out but not before I heard the words, “That man on the train near us was rather handsome, wasn’t he?” I cannot help but chuckle.

Seven a.m. – the train has stopped at least five more stations. This is going to be a long trip. Rummaging in my packed bag for a pair of dark sunglasses I push them on, waiting for the fact that I haven’t slept all two weeks in excitement (and travelling at the speed of light half way around the world at the same time) to kick in and hit me unconscious with sleep.

Two p.m. - the dark glasses cannot block the glaring sunlight of the sunshiny afternoon. We have almost finished passing the city. The rows of buildings, large houses, one-story apartments are narrowing and shrinking in size. I know the railroad tracks have remained unchanged in destination and twenty-so years ago I took this exact same ride but everywhere is unrecognizable.  
I check my wristwatch once again even though I know the time: around nine more hours to go before it reaches the very end possible station and I take the long walk back to my little home.

Six p.m. - I talk amiably to passengers on the train. It is beautiful to hear my home dialect again. The words I speak have grown quite clumsy and my accent is rough. No matter, in two weeks time I’ll be fluent and chirping along with the same fluid accent as the old man beside me is.

Eleven-thirty p.m. – I am all alone on the train. The old man just got off at the station before. He shared a portion of his sandwich with me and a swig of beer from his water bottle (naughty old man), seeing as in my anticipation I forgot to buy any food for the day. A very interesting old man who was delighted to know I travelled just as he use to in his earlier days- quote to remember from him: “Too many people go on about this ******* of a ‘fixed’ home: Home isn’t where you live, son, it’s where they understand you. I’m telling you, that’s something so special in this crazy world.”
It is horrible to be sitting here alone counting down the minutes without a distraction but after all, it is near the last of stations and no one ever comes here anyways. There’s nothing here that could attract visitors. If I were a traveler nothing about this place would excite me very much. Yet for this first time in fifteen years, I’m not an outsider and this land promises me much. My hand shakes from fatigue- but mostly from eagerness. Little home, darling little home, I am coming!
It is a chilly, chilly winter night. My breath pants out in short white puffs. I wrap my scarf more securely around my neck, capturing the warmth as I step out from the warm train into the cold air outside. I can barely notice my environment on the way home except the path has remained unchanged. It is as if I am travelling back into time itself. After a while, the coldness turning the tip of my ears and nose pink is forgotten. All I know is each step is taking me closer and closer to home.

I finally see it. The small little house with a small brown door standing quietly alone next to other identical houses comes into my view. The little homes are clustered on the edge of a river bank, surrounding by dark green trees. The crisp rustling of the leaves in the winter breeze brings a melancholy happiness so great it makes my chest throb. I cup a tiny bit of snow from the ground in my mitten and taste it: oh the same sharp iciness on my tongue.

I wonder if she still lives in that one with the indented steps, the stairs worn out by the thundering saunter of her and her five brothers. They still haven’t bought a new flight of stairs?

The river’s surface is smooth and serene, its surface looking like molten silver rippling in the slight breeze. I remembered in the summer when we, the children, danced; splashing in the water and the elders watched lovingly.

Mother’s carefully watching eyes on me as I swam to and fro, my laughter mingling with everyone else’s. She was especially careful after that near-fateful day when I was six and foolishly went swimming in August without telling mother as she made us her special clear chicken broth. I had inhaled gallons of water before she fished me out, both of us soaking and sobbing. How wonderful it was to hold onto something warm and solid: something breathing, full of life, and I clutched onto her and she clutched onto me and my life.
Up the wooden steps… how surprised mother will be. The ghosts of memories come running to me, pounding their way towards me to greet me first as I open the wooden door with the key slung around my neck as always: mother with her hair curled in soft mocha *****, mother making an ice lollipop in the hot summers in her flower-printed summer dresses, mother swishing around the house cleaning in her blue apron, the hot fire with hot chocolate as we told stories, all the different cats we had purring in a soothing melody… Amalie and her laughing figure spread over the sofa chattering away, Amalie’s quick, hidden kisses in the corners when mother was out of the room or pretending not to look, Amalie’s long hands creeping towards mine… Amalie and mother gossiping together and mother declaring Amalie was the daughter she never had and mother eyeing me knowingly, expecting me to settle my ways and marry Amalie…

Oh little home, I am back, I am home.

I shall go lie on my feathery bed and in the morning I’ll wake up and have no idea where I am before the thought comes back to me that this morning- no, I am not somewhere around half the world away- but in my little hometown.
As sure as the sun will rise, Mother will wake up at her usual eight o’clock and I’ll be downstairs in our sunny-tiled kitchen making a bowl of porridge for her and me.
After her tears and hugs, we’ll sit down by the fire with hot chocolate despite it being early morning and the skies aren’t yet jet-black. I see in my mind’s eyes her dark eyes huge as I unravel my colorful carpet of stories and treasure box of tokens from all around the world.
Maybe after that I’ll ask her whatever became of Amalie…
I hear the tread of footsteps on the stair case. They are heavy sounds. Has mother gained much weight in her old age? She was always a lithe little woman when I was here.
A burly shape appears in the shadows.
For one ******* blindingly stupid moment I think it is mother much fattened in a fluffy night gown, her hair curled up in soft ***** yet again. Perhaps I saw what I wanted to believe despite my senses and instinct suddenly prickling up in one jolt through the spine.
And the shape emerges holding a bat and the outlines gains focus to become a bear-like man with dark brows furrowed and a mass of curls. He starts yelling at me and slashing his bat dangerously.
I raise my arms up in defense and the world swirls around me. From far away I hear my voice shaking in fear and fury, “Where is my mother!” I yell her name and I yell my name to let her know I am here. I am insane with fear for the safety of my mother. No, it cannot be that I come home on the day a demon decides to rob the house of a frail gentle angel. If he has killed her, I will- “WHAT HAVE YOU DONE TO HER?!”
“What?” he asks in a tone quiet from extreme bewilderment, his grip on the bat loosens and I am quick to see this and take advantage of it.
With an explosion of violent swears I leap onto him to throttle him to death. “MOTHER?! MOTHER! WHAT HAVE YOU ******* DONE TO MY MOTHER?! I’M GOING TO ******* **** YOU, YOU *******!”
A fast pattering of feet sound down the stairs and my mind registers them to be female before I am wrenched of the man and we are separated. I am about to clutch this woman safe from the hulking beast before I notice the skin on the hands pushing my panting chest away from killing the beast are too young to be mothers’. Her hair is a dark mahogany brown, not mild coffee like mothers’.
I stare at her, silent in shock. All the fight drains out of me.
Those eyes that were once so chocolate-brown and bright have lost their sparkle in her tiredness and appear almost… dull as she turns to me.
She says my name three times before I can reply. “Sit down here.”
It is strange that she has ordered me to sit down on my own sofa in my living room. Her frosty hands guide me. “Amalie… where is mother?” I manage to stutter, all the time keeping an eye on the monster of a man.
“Listen to me” she took a few shuddering breaths, “I’m sorry to tell you this way, I wished I could’ve told you any other way but this… your mother is dead. She died five years ago.”
She watched me with an exhausted expression, “In her will she left this house to you and me because she assumed one day-” she shot a cautious glance at the man who towered in the shadows next to her, nursing
Morgan Nov 2016
Tried to drown it
In razor blades
And crash diets,
Nicotine,
And self-induced *****

It swam back up to the surface
Angrier
And emptier
Than ever

I tried to
Occupy the space
With violent ***,
And tender kisses,
Fruit bowls,
And running shoes

It tore it all to shreds,
And growled at me,
Hungrier than ever

I tried to soften its edges
With poetry
And paint brushes
And some self-help book
From the sale bin
In target

It only got
More rigged,
I kept slicing
My fingertips wide open
On its corners

Like a shooting star
It would burst
& disperse
At night,

Breaking open like glass
And bleeding me dry
From the inside out

When I moved back into my sister's
She told me that she saw this coming...

Everyone always feels it inching closer,
But no one ever tells me to
Move out of the way
Until it's too late

You can't **** The Void
And you can't fill it either

You can only give it
New life

You can only plant flowers
In the center of it,

Where the earth is damp,
Dark, and frozen,

And you can hope that
On certain summer
Mornings
When you feel safe
And free
And welcome in your own body
The sunlight might make its way
Into your belly and
Nourish your flowers,

And that one day
You'll have collected enough
Sunshine
To say

The Void is no longer a
Graveyard
It's a
Garden
And I'm not
Afraid
(i'm no expert but i'm here if you need me)
J.
J.
Ah, J.
A love I hath excitedly longed to find,
A love t'at previously had no name.
J.
A love too thrilling for my sights to feel,
and perhaps th' only love t'at couldst make me thrilled;
A love so genuine and benevolent,
A love so talented and intelligent.
Ah, J.
A love t'at just recently landed on my mind;
And made all my lyrical days far more splendid;
A love t'at briefed, and altered me more and more;
A love so chilly and important, with subt'leness like never before.
Ah, J.
My very, very own J.
Perhaps my future king, my precious, but at times villainous-darling.
Oh, J.
And perhaps I am just not as virtuous as I might be,
But t'is poem shall still be about thee;
For thou art-within my minds, still awkwardly th' best one,
With a pair of oceanic eyes too dear; and a civil charm so fine.
J.
J, o my love.
If only thou knew-how oceans sparkles within thy eyes,
And 'tis only in thy eyes, t'at any of t'ese complications might not become eerie,
And then t'is destiny is true, as well as how truth is our destiny;
So t'at any precarious delicacy is still faint-perhaps, but not a lie.
Oh, J.
A bubble of excitement t'at my heart feelest;
But if consented not, shall be the wound no blood couldst heal;
Ah, J, if the heavens' rainbow wert fallen, t'an thou'd be purer;
Born as a sin as us all humans, thou art cleaner to my heart still, and canst but love me much better.
Ah, J.
If only thou knew-how madness floweth and barketh and drinketh from our spheres,
But even th' devil cannot spill its curse on our strangled love;
At least until everything is deaf-and we duly cannot hear,
As skies descend onto th' sore earth; and our dumb sins are t' be sent above.

J.
How pivotal thou art to me-if only yon foliage couldst understand;
If only t'ose winds were not rivals, but one-or at least wanted to be friends.
Ah, J, even only thy words filled my comical ******* to th' brim;
And as far as heavens' angels canst hear, I am no more in love with him.
Ah, J.
'Tis cause my verses are seeking thy name, and his not;
I may create th' words, but thou deviseth my plots;
Ah, and him, the bulk of egotism, and whose frank misery;
Are but too disastrous to me, and in possession of too much agony.
Oh, J.
Thus thou art th' only one who remaineth solemn;
Th' one to remain ecstatic, and as less aggressive as calmness;
But of the broad thoughts I used to think of him, I feel shame;
He is just some unborn trepidation at night-though on fine mornings, he is tame.
Ah, J.
Let me disclose th' egress of thy journey, and tellest me now-is which towards mine?
Ah, thee, thou who art so bounty, and deliciously fine;
And t'ese thoughts of thee-are often tasty, and oft'times generous;
'Ven when thou'rt mad, and thy chanting is vigorously serious.
Ah, J.
Thee, a soul of painless blood;
Whose disgrace hath been buried;
Whose vanities hath been laid off;
Whose miracles hath been lavished on.
Ah, J.
Thou art one bright portrayal of my merit;
I fell'n love with thee in a single bit.
Thou bore my tears, and scorned away my guilt;
And in th' swaying summertime, thou wert my protective shield.
Thus my, my very own J.
My gale-like, and unutterably luscious poem;
About whom my thoughts are jolly, but mindful and insensible;
Ah, J, I wish I were more frail, paler, and gullible;
Ah, but if only being so couldst make me more compatible.
Oh, J.
And compatible, compatible with thee alone;
Fleshly be thine whenst all is borne on thy own;
Be thy only trusted companion, and thy eloquently verified wife;
Be thine, and thine in wifery only, throughout and for th' rest of thy life.
J.
All Let me then guess but the tranquility of thy thoughts-hath thou gone mad?
Behind us are rainbows, and thus thy songs should not be sad;
But even though they were sad, I wouldst lend thee my heart;
So t'at no summer sunshine couldst further tear us apart.
J.
Ah, J, why are th' blue skies far too impatient in thy eyes?
Just as how thy deep scent is febrile in my air;
Thy gushes of breath are thick in my young weather;
As buoyant as yon summer itself; as voluptuous as lingering daisies.
J.
And t'is ****** scream, within my heart, needs indeed-t' be fulfilled;
And its vulnerability t'ere always, to be killed;
Ah, J, t'ere is 'finitely no poem as beautiful as thee;
T'ere is no writing yet as such, as trivial and distant-as my eyes canst see.
J.
Ah, J, darling, and my very fine darling; is chastity to thee virtuous?
About which my soul is hungered-and t'ereby curious;
But if 'tis so, I shall be merry-and ever meekly laborious;
I shall make it tender, and maketh it a reliant gift, to thee.
J.
Ah, J, and thou came to me one aft'rnoon, with a sweet muteness;
For to thee, poems are far more pivotal to a young poetess;
Yes, and far prettier t'an a beastly bunch of words;
Whose curse is whose sweetness itself-and whose whole sweetness is curse.
J.
Ah, J, so shall I be thy pure lady t'en?
For purity is a curse-and related not within t'ese walls;
Walls of discomfort-irresolute and at certain times foreign still;
Walls t'at shun us-and be ours not, due to t'eir own reserved castigations.
J.
Oh, querida, my random rainbow-but still my dearest querida;
My poetry in th' morning, and th' baffling flute, for my evening sonata;
And as it is sounded, I shall be thy private lonely prelude;
But th' one who maketh thee singular, and nevertheless, handsomely proud.
Ah, J.
And thy perfect red lips are th' stillettos of the sun;
Critical but radiant-all too agonising in t'eir inevitable shape;
So t'at kissing might be just too much fun;
And from which, o my love, t'ere is no such a famous escape.

J.
Ah, J, thou knoweth not-I am asleep only within thy remembrance;
As how I am awake only in thy life, and partake of my justice, in thy glory.
Ah, J, but if satire were the only choice we had, shalt thou be with me?
Ah, my J, for be it so-I shall never regret anything, I shall never say sorry.

J.
Ah, wherefore art thou now, my love? I am now cursed. My dreams are mad.
I am now crawling out of whose realms; I wanteth but'a stay no more in my bed.
Ah, J, but in my dream thou wert too miles and miles away, and indolently anonymous;
I hatest sleep t'ereof, for t'ey piercest me so tiringly, with a harm they deemest as humorous.

J.
Ah, sweet darling, and in our dreams, t'ere is no strain, nor piety;
Even thou-in th' last one, despised my pyramids-and my chaste poetry;
Ah, querida, I am but afraid our loneliness shall be gone 'fore long;
For its temporariness is not sick, and canst work its way along, with a belief so strong.

J.
Ah, love, but t'is loveliness itself-is indeed tyrannous,
And its frigid poetry is randomly perilous,
As how th' daydreams it bringeth forth-which are luminous,
But as love is innocent, by one second canst all turn perilous!
J.
Ah, J, thus our story is brilliant, and in any volume real' magnificent,
With curves palatable, but with some greyness too fair-and too pleasant!
Ah, J, if passion dost exist, and thus maketh it all real;
And at once I shall understand thee; and listen only, to how we both feelest.

Ah, J.
My very, very own little J.
My dearest J.
The harbour of my ultimate love.
My most cordial, and serene spring of affection.
My most veritable nirvana, my vivid curiosity-and shades of frankness.
My dream at heart, and my sustainable ferocious haste.
Th' love in which my ever fear shall subside,
And be overwhelmed by its unfearing light.
J.
Oh, J, my glossy, exuberant darling.
And as more winds sway, and amongst the green grass outside,
I canst but feel thy eyes here watching;
Thy eyes t'at widely grinneth, and flirtest with my poetry itself;
Thy eyes t'at forever invitest, yet are all more daring than myself;
Ah, J, even though t'is love may be a secret scene,
But I hath felt, even vulnerably, not any provoking passion so keen-
For though they couldst my flowed veins hear,
They were still delicately unseen-with a serenity t'at was ne'er here.
AE Wilson May 2014
We are imperfect products
placed in the midst
of an imperfect society,
a vicious cycle of perseverance
and failure:
constructed,
broken,
fixed,
and fixed again.

Airbrushed and painted
to perfection:
pale skin
flushed cheeks
slim legs
and a smooth mindset.
Opinionated only
on the matter of
superficial products –
glamorizing and embellishing.

Deteriorating enamel –
cracks in a varnished frame.
A scratched surface,
damaged to the core,
polished and glazed over.
Skin made paler,
cheeks more flushed,
skin and bones,
and a mind wiped clean.

Unachievable expectations
and inevitable failure
are enough to b r e a k
even the toughest material

d
o
w
n.
Andrew T Hannah Jun 2013
For knowing we must suffer

How ironic that our knowledge is the source of our struggle

Ignorance is bliss

Knowledge is suffering

The more I know, the blacker the void becomes

The more I know the more inevitable that end seems

Certain apocalypse closing in...Life’s flame flickers, sputters, fights to burn...then dies

For the oxygen is thicker than the cadence that the flame is accustomed to

And the wrath of god is our own sick self-torture

Encasing our minds in a torrent of glass and nails

Nihilism scorches what faith once warmed

Blackened, numb, dead, bleeding no more

Leaving nothing but the simple signs of lost hope

And broken dreams

Which ride on a cavalry of lame horses, clutching swords long broken

Dead eyes stare from cracked helmets, bones rise from sunken skin

They have become nothing more than a shadow of their own misfortune

A sick punchline to a humorless joke

Aimless they stumble to our side but at the snarls of hell's misery they recoil

Broken by adversity, their will as dead as ours, they are not our allies

They are a greater enemy then either heaven or hell can create

For they are our own brokenness, we gaze into their eyes and see what we have lost

We see doors long shut, dreams long shredded by ****** razors of truth

For they are our past.

Our past with no future.

For what future do these dead things hold

The promise of decay, of despair, of a fight long ago lost

Marching in to save us these soldiers tie our noose

And suspend us from the bridge of tyranny that our minds have created, using ropes long since broken by the strain of living

Hope, not what we cling to, but nostalgia for as our eyes glaze over, as lips turn blue, we see a faint light of what once was

We see before the knowing, before the insidious whispers of torture began

We see and desire, but may not have

For desire is the truest form of torture

Also the most sinister

For we are in hell and we hunger, hunger and thirst

With cracked lips and swollen tongues, the water slips from us before we drink

With contempt we struggle on with no hope for our lives, only for the pain to end soon

Death, in its comforting embrace, for no longer shall our eyes open to see the fading colors of life

No longer shall we know sin and desire

Nor the cruel touch of a scornful lover or the heart ache of regret

For through death, all life has purpose

No longer shall we know broken, twisted parodies of heroes nor love

We look to the black abyss, not the void of hopelessness, and we leap

And like the dream we fall but never land, in the arms of flight, of ethereal endings

The darkness collides with the light of knowledge leaving the black an even paler gray then that even of a cadaver's skin

The gray of apathy, of nothingness, of a vacuum that draws from our mouths the very souls we were foolish enough to try to save

Bleaching all hope of dying till there is not left but a sliver of an arrogant belief that our suffering would end so easily.

Lifeless yet feeling, blind yet seeing we plummet till there is no time left to fall.

What we know, all knowledge was our own ignorance of eternity, our fight for it, our fight against it

As death consumes, as the final suffering begins, we are drawn to the things we never knew, the things we could not know, things that draw us to heaven and yet drag us to hell

The very existence of our soul creates a greater torture than any we have ever encountered, creating bile in our mouths thicker than the blood pouring from our hearts

It separates from our lifeless bodies, from our twisted minds, and it is as though we are ***** and robbed of the thing that tethered us to any possibility of hope

Like a silver bullet it flies from us but we are helpless to catch it as crushing agony fills our lungs with black, clotted blood

Creating a sad excuse of a person out of our flesh and sending it wallowing in our midst

Flashing our memories and hopes into the mind’s eye of something that can only be compared to blackest of dreamers

The very discontent of hope

And the believer of agony

This monster, this twisted parody of ourselves, this demon of the shadow

We shudder and recoil, for the sight burns our newly closed eyes

Its venom poisons our veins and we lay writhing on the floor, vomiting black bile of revulsion

Finally we look up to see that these monsters are who we really are

They are our truest form, our twisted belief in humanity laid out to mock us in the cruelest of ways, with the truth

Shivers fill our bodies as we realize that this is the hell we have feared, a never ending satire of our very existence

This, this and not fire, this and not brimstone

This is hell, the purest form of knowledge of the ugliness of what we are

This understanding creates an unbearable agony far beyond any imagined by the creators of the underworld

Tearing at out minds like a thousand hooks, glowing red hot with the heat of burning souls, twisted to form the torture of millions

Sending pain through every channel imaginable in the human form including those that are yet to exist

So this is the truth, to be sent to hell before we even know of life

For life is just a parody of hell, a weak heaven to prepare us for the ****** chaos to follow

The irony of living is nothing compared to the irony dying

We seek heaven in life, we seek a soul that never existed, that humanity with its gleaming metal scythe ripped from us before we even knew it existed

Creating a maelstrom of regret and hollow pain unfathomable by human minds until the cold hands of death close around their existence

And they lay there, as all must in time, choking on their own blood, tears welling up as they realize what their life has come to

The pleasures they once sought are no more, the rosy cheeks are now a skeletal pallor

Their hands are broken and their shoulders hunched as the weight of the black closes around them

This is death, an end to all means, an end to mortality

Yet the beginning of pain and suffering

Nothing in life means anything and the knowledge imbues us with inexorable despair

Unable to breathe for our metal chains of torture

Which drag us down into the marshes of chaos

Their locks are made so not even the strongest of steel can rupture them, leaving us hopeless and stranded on an island of our own thoughts as the black water closes around us

Filling our mouths with the taste of sickness and the feel of slime running down our throats

Glacial hands tear at us, leaving ice where our hearts once were, where our skin once was, the cold a fiery burn upon our flesh

We cry out for love, our last hope, our last ray of light remembered

To realize that we are alone

Love is no more than hedonistic vice and no soul but our own is here in this ****** place

Sending us reeling into madness, spiraling ever deeper into the realm of insanity

Our hearts are gone; our minds left with not but their own company, starving for more than one thought...a thought other than escape

Yet it cannot come

For we have brought this on ourselves
Peter Balkus Sep 2016
Getting thinner and thinner
and skinner and *****
and gloomier and weaker,
unhappier and paler,
depressed more and crazier
and messed, death-obsessed
and stripped to the ribs 
and scarer and thinner
and lighter and paler,
less pretty, enslaved and
less happy, not happy,
Auschwitz-like, so horrid
self-killing, deploring,
and faker, unhappier
and skinner and broken
and scarer and scarer
and thinner and thinner
and thinner and thinner
and ghostler,
and death-like,
fibre-glassed,
dead thin,
dead,
inside and out.
Alexander Coy Apr 2016
I don't know how it happened.

It started like any other day.

I was rolling the dough in between my fingers.

I was making something. What was it?

I don't remember.

Ma said to get the tortillas ready;

Grandpa, Grandma, Aunts, Uncles,
Nephews, Nieces, and Cousins would
be here any minute now.

The dough, it was the flesh of the dead
in between my filthy fingers. I was
killing something; the space between
me and that thing was only a million
or so molecules...

Between two materials.

I made a break for the restroom.

Clumps of it's carcass were squeezed
in between my brown knuckles. I spoke a few
words. The language wasn't mine.
And yet, I used it to settle bets.
I used it to talk my brother off that ledge.
I gave my lovers the best of days
with no regrets.

How silly it is to watch the tongue click,
click, and click against the teeth!

I washed my hands, but didn't use the soap.

I spoke a few more words, but felt
more like a ghost. I got paler,
and paler,
and

paler,

with each O

I made with my rub red lips.

Snap out if it, I said.

But why, in English?

And that's when the storm came.

A rumble of incessant taps against the door.

It was like my head was in the wrong part of
the clouds. Where lightning screeches like
an eagle on the prowl; where the rain
pours down; pregnant with the intent
to destroy; with the intent to push
the dead infant out.

I never made it past that night.

I don't know who is who
anymore without Mother
or Aunt
or Niece, or Cousin
there to tell me who

speaks to me with such tenderness.

As though I weren't the only

planet outside the stars.
639

My Portion is Defeat—today—
A paler luck than Victory—
Less Paeans—fewer Bells—
The Drums don’t follow Me—with tunes—
Defeat—a somewhat slower—means—
More Arduous than *****—

’Tis populous with Bone and stain—
And Men too straight to stoop again—,
And Piles of solid Moan—
And Chips of Blank—in Boyish Eyes—
And scraps of Prayer—
And Death’s surprise,
Stamped visible—in Stone—

There’s somewhat prouder, over there—
The Trumpets tell it to the Air—
How different Victory
To Him who has it—and the One
Who to have had it, would have been
Contender—to die—
Carter Ginter Jul 2017
I'm sorry it has taken so long
For me to recognize your light
Yet I'd be lying to say that
I'm blind to the darkness you reflect
Off of each curve and thicker
Piece of skin with the images of
My past pain swimming across the surface

Although I've hidden the old scars behind New ones
filled with ink, the stains
Never truly lift from my pale limbs
Leaving paler veins that bulge through the art
But I hold no shame for those choices

My bleeding scars reflect a beautiful life
Within the death I felt looming too closely as
I was forced to be an adult in a child's body
As I begged for death and was given life with
All the prospects of becoming whole
Only after endless trials of trauma

Whether by blade, glass, and metal
Or starvation, pressure, and pills
I tried to paint the picture of a dreamland life
Across the human limbs that I blamed for my pain
Due to my distorted perspective of perfection
Because the shapes never fit together
And the moment I reached "enough"
It always became too little

Not small enough, not flat enough
Not worthy of love
Too masculine, too feminine
It always seemed wrong
But now I know that
My body is not the enemy

Through the dysphoria
My body still breathes
And I am no less human
Even if my reflection does not reach my skewed standards of decency

Because perfect does not exist
Because the shame I've been dealt
Is not my responsibility to carry
I can learn to love my body
Without skipping meals and
Without the sweet relief of pain
Because I am only human
And our bodies are all beautiful
Because they're ours
Inspired by conversations today
I

The Princess sings:

I am the princess up in the tower
And I dream the whole day thro’
Of a knight who shall come with a silver spear
And a waving plume of blue.

I am the princess up in the tower,
And I dream my dreams by day,
But sometimes I wake, and my eyes are wet,
When the dusk is deep and gray.

For the peasant lovers go by beneath,
I hear them laugh and kiss,
And I forget my day-dream knight,
And long for a love like this.

  II

The Minstrel sings:

I lie beside the princess’ tower,
So close she cannot see my face,
And watch her dreaming all day long,
And bending with a lily’s grace.

Her cheeks are paler than the moon
That sails along a sunny sky,
And yet her silent mouth is red
Where tender words and kisses lie.

I am a minstrel with a harp,
For love of her my songs are sweet,
And yet I dare not lift the voice
That lies so far beneath her feet.

  III

The Knight sings:

O princess cease your dreams awhile
And look adown your tower’s gray side—
The princess gazes far away,
Nor hears nor heeds the words I cried.

Perchance my heart was overbold,
God made her dreams too pure to break,
She sees the angels in the air
Fly to and fro for Mary’s sake.

Farewell, I mount and go my way,
—But oh her hair the sun sifts thro’—
The tilts and tourneys wait my spear,
I am the Knight of the Plume of Blue.
anne p murray Apr 2013
Ever since I was a little girl, I yearned to be good at something,  anything, but I never quite knew how to go about it. I was never shown  by my parents that I was worthwhile.

There is something I need to share, I was alive and that is about all that there is to say about it. At  least that's something huh? I guess one could say with a weakened  voice, 'perhaps it was better than nothing'??

I sit here in  my writing room and I begin to write on this piece of paper (my computer is my paper now) something seems to be in need of writing, my thoughts  are circling within me. I want to write them all down.

I have felt this  way before, especially when I was in love and wanted to put things down on paper, so they wouldn't be lost and forgotten. There is this sort  of hush in the air and the stirrings feel like a gentle breeze coming over me. Like silent leaves falling. It seems strange that I notice  these things. It's as if they have special meaning for me.

Many afternoons I would sit wondering what would become of me. Would I turn  into an old woman in an old wrapper dress with curlers in my hair? But I tell myself this saying “The coward dies a thousand deaths, the brave  only once”. I knew I had to give up the feelings that people didn’t like me. I must! I had to **** my fear of people and life, before it killed  me.

“The world is a world into which you were meant to be  in”. I heard this soft, quiet voice say to me. It was if I was speaking to an invisible child, very strange, yet beautiful.  I wanted to be soft; yet brave. To be a part of the sacred, beautiful things in life. To glisten with imagination. To see the beauty in a wild deer. To learn  of all the ancient ways of life. To learn the feelings of safety; of constant love, so I wouldn't feel like I’m in a boat on dark rivers without a paddle.  To be able to see the magic of animals carrying  their tiny young in a forest. scented land. Silent, yet so alive,  sitting in the underbrush looking out at the moon and stars.

There is a part of me that wanted to be wild too, like the animals protecting their young. Something so tender, yet untamed.  But really, I know that wild animals are also helpless too, just like I was as a child, like we all are as children; so dependent on others for love and care.

I  didn't want to remain like that scared child. I wanted to be a lady warrior, glistening with love and life shining down upon me. To be able to soar on wings of an eagle... brave and free. To be able to see the world as a beautiful place, but still know of its dangers without feeling  like I couldn't navigate in a storm.

These secrets I kept within myself; hanging onto them like a leaf that hangs in a tree. It  seems possible to me that perhaps all people at some time feel this way. You can tell by looking at some people that the world remains like a stone to them, with closed doors. I wanted to be an open door; a flower, not a stone. I was afraid it would not be like that for me. Perhaps  after my child self would grow old, then everything would harden and  become small; like my small, closed, childhood doors. Like it was back then.

So I'm thinking that perhaps I would have a hard time remembering  all these things. I wanted to write about them, so my life could still show and have moments of wonder.

I've been sitting here, listening to a  livening seed within me. A slightly, fermenting seed that still wants to be alive. Alive with its own movements and filled with wonder. Like an  orchard blooming, with each new blossom different and alive with energy.

Why should I feel this excitement as an older, grown woman now? Yet I can still be excited. My orchard wants to bloom soundlessly into a fruitful  tree. I don't want it all to go away from me. My light will someday be falling upon darkness and there will come a time when the doors will not open again. The sprouting of new blossoms will cease and the movements  and wonderous openings will be gone. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~­~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

WOW...when did this happen? I have now become that older women in the old, wrapper dress, so I try to write my thoughts down on slips of paper. Trying to  preserve this time for myself, so that afterwards when everything is  gone, I can remember who and what I really was, who I became.

There is a time in the spring of our lives when we shine. When we bear new, live fruit every day. There is also the time in our lives when autumn comes and our leaves begin to fall. But we can still be jewels in this  world.

So I say to myself;  "Lie in the sun with the child playing in your heart shining like a jewel. "Dream and sing, you pagan", I say to myself. Be wise in  your vitals. Stand still like a fat blossoming tree. Rise up like a stalk of corn throbbing, glistening green and yellow in the heat. Lie down like a mare, watching her baby colt's dancing feet as they learn how to stand up on their new, awkward legs. Sleep peacefully at night, knowing earth will bring new blossoms to its bounty. Walk delicately, yet strong as a wheat stalk, at its full time... bending towards the earth waiting for the farmer to reap his effort of plantings. Let your life swell upwards toward the sky so you become like a vase, an open vessel. Let the child within you rise like a dolphin swimming within your heart."

I look at myself in the mirror now. My legs a bit heavier. My face with a few more wrinkles then yesterday.My hips are fuller and my stomach is not as flat as it used to be. Some days I look older then tomorrow's sunset and some days I shine a little bit brighter, like today’s sunrise. It’s all part of nature’s plan. (sigh)

Children are playing outside and girls are walking with young men in the town square. All that doesn't seem so far away in my memories, yet those times are over for me. I am like that leaf hanging onto the tree, but  the seed is still alive within.

I walk a little slower now. I hate the feel of clothes against my skin, I want to leave them off, but the sight of me naked isn’t as pretty as it used to be. Yes, I have  ripened into an older age of life. It's hard to write it all down.  Sometimes denial is precious, but so unreal.

I once knew how it felt  to be a woman who was going to have a child, it's like how a tree feels  when its about to bear its fruit.

Now, my leaves hang from my tree, some of them have fallen, some are ready to fall. I put my hand upon my fallen leaves, their soft surface still surprises me. I can  still feel my tree of life swirling with sap. Sap that's still alive, with  rich roots still surging their power in me, wanting to break through  into another new life.

I walk the streets of my life alone  with the buds of my childhood left behind. And even though I walk alone  under the dark, umbrella of trees, there are many lights shining down on me. There is a hunger and a deep rebellion to march forward. My tree comes  from a far seed, still bending in the wind. My child to, comes from a  far seed blowing across the plains of time in a faraway place.

My inner child's still budding secretly from within, bidding me to carry on. Although, it is much quieter now. The movement of my tree I can still feel, still hear. Its delicate sounds of living moves gracefully within  myself…silently reaching upward.

My leaves twirl and swirl, delicately falling to the ground. My tree within it's roots in an gentle, swaying breeze, moving slowly it's stem of life. Like a stream, clear and strong flowing into the ground.

My trunk may be unseen to some, but it’s spiraling upwards in powerful energy, it's just moving up in a slower motion now. It’s stems twirling fragilely, until they fall once and for all, to be  reconnected with the Universe in all its splendor.

It's a far  more gentle breeze that speaks to my tree now, and as I sit here in the afternoon sun of my life, it seems a very, very strange thing that a tree might come to mean more to one than any of my husbands did. It seems a bit of an embarrassing to acknowledge... but it is so true.

Now as I sit here in my paler, pastel sun, my tree speaks to me with its words of comfort; with its many  soft, fallen leaves of wisdom...speaking to and through the heart of my soul. I finally learned to listen; to listen to the whisperings of my tree speaking to me from within.

How can I describe what I feel is being said by my tree? It speaks to me of love, sharing, kindness and wisdom; of acceptance and self-worth. None of my three husbands really spoke things of that nature to me. None of them spoke to my heart like my tree does.  

There is a much wiser woman in me now, I can hear her breathing. She speaks to me with kindness, acceptance and wisdom. She looks me thru' the mirrors of my soul and says. "I  hear you're going to have a new child, don't worry she will be the same color as the blossoms and the green leaves you once used to bear, she is still playing in the park. She is still alive, waiting to blossom once again.”  

I am writing this on a piece of paper now (like I said, my computer is my paper now). I have walked through my heart and spirit with substantially heavy boots. Large, heavy boots... with my tree bent over and with my leaves falling over into my soul. The light still shines in my eyes with misty expectations.

I sit in my room watching the trees from my window. They are standing,  yet bending willowy and gracefully with the breeze. Some of its leaves have curled,  but its trunk stands steady in the earth, like a stream flowing  smoothly, with a few rumbles of current here and there. So I say, let our trees blossom and spread their roots all over our hearts and souls, now and forever more.
Like flowers sequestered from the sun
  And wind of summer, day by day
I dwindled paler, whilst my hair
    Showed the first tinge of grey.

"Oh, what is life, that we should live?
  Or what is death, that we must die?
A bursting bubble is our life:
    I also, what am I?"

"What is your grief? now tell me, sweet,
  That I may grieve," my sister said;
And stayed a white embroidering hand
    And raised a golden head:

Her tresses showed a richer mass,
  Her eyes looked softer than my own,
Her figure had a statelier height,
    Her voice a tenderer tone.

"Some must be second and not first;
  All cannot be the first of all:
Is not this, too, but vanity?
  I stumble like to fall.

"So yesterday I read the acts
  Of Hector and each clangorous king
With wrathful great AEacides:--
    Old Homer leaves a sting."

The comely face looked up again,
  The deft hand lingered on the thread
"Sweet, tell me what is Homer's sting,
    Old Homer's sting?" she said.

"He stirs my sluggish pulse like wine,
  He melts me like the wind of spice,
Strong as strong Ajax' red right hand,
    And grand like Juno's eyes.

"I cannot melt the sons of men,
  I cannot fire and tempest-toss:--
Besides, those days were golden days,
    Whilst these are days of dross."

She laughed a feminine low laugh,
  Yet did not stay her dexterous hand:
"Now tell me of those days," she said,
    "When time ran golden sand."

"Then men were men of might and right,
  Sheer might, at least, and weighty swords;
Then men in open blood and fire
    Bore witness to their words,--

"Crest-rearing kings with whistling spears;
  But if these shivered in the shock
They wrenched up hundred-rooted trees,
    Or hurled the effacing rock.

"Then hand to hand, then foot to foot,
  Stern to the death-grip grappling then,
Who ever thought of gunpowder
    Amongst these men of men?

"They knew whose hand struck home the death,
  They knew who broke but would not bend,
Could venerate an equal foe
    And scorn a laggard friend.

"Calm in the utmost stress of doom,
  Devout toward adverse powers above,
They hated with intenser hate
    And loved with fuller love.

"Then heavenly beauty could allay
  As heavenly beauty stirred the strife:
By them a slave was worshipped more
    Than is by us a wife."

She laughed again, my sister laughed;
  Made answer o'er the laboured cloth:
"I rather would be one of us
    Than wife, or slave, or both."

"Oh better then be slave or wife
  Than fritter now blank life away:
Then night had holiness of night,
    And day was sacred day.

"The princess laboured at her loom,
  Mistress and handmaiden alike;
Beneath their needles grew the field
    With warriors armed to strike.

"Or, look again, dim Dian's face
  Gleamed perfect through the attendant night:
Were such not better than those holes
    Amid that waste of white?

"A shame it is, our aimless life;
  I rather from my heart would feed
From silver dish in gilded stall
    With wheat and wine the steed--

"The faithful steed that bore my lord
  In safety through the hostile land,
The faithful steed that arched his neck
    To ****** with my hand."

Her needle erred; a moment's pause,
  A moment's patience, all was well.
Then she: "But just suppose the horse,
    Suppose the rider fell?

"Then captive in an alien house,
  Hungering on exile's bitter bread,--
They happy, they who won the lot
    Of sacrifice," she said.

Speaking she faltered, while her look
  Showed forth her passion like a glass:
With hand suspended, kindling eye,
    Flushed cheek, how fair she was!

"Ah well, be those the days of dross;
  This, if you will, the age of gold:
Yet had those days a spark of warmth,
    While these are somewhat cold--

"Are somewhat mean and cold and slow,
  Are stunted from heroic growth:
We gain but little when we prove
    The worthlessness of both."

"But life is in our hands," she said;
  "In our own hands for gain or loss:
Shall not the Sevenfold Sacred Fire
    Suffice to purge our dross?

"Too short a century of dreams,
  One day of work sufficient length:
Why should not you, why should not I,
    Attain heroic strength?

"Our life is given us as a blank,
  Ourselves must make it blest or curst:
Who dooms me I shall only be
    The second, not the first?

"Learn from old Homer, if you will,
  Such wisdom as his books have said:
In one the acts of Ajax shine,
    In one of Diomed.

"Honoured all heroes whose high deeds
  Through life, through death, enlarge their span
Only Achilles in his rage
    And sloth is less than man."

"Achilles only less than man?
  He less than man who, half a god,
Discomfited all Greece with rest,
    Cowed Ilion with a nod?

"He offered vengeance, lifelong grief
  To one dear ghost, uncounted price:
Beasts, Trojans, adverse gods, himself,
    Heaped up the sacrifice.

"Self-immolated to his friend,
  Shrined in world's wonder, Homer's page,
Is this the man, the less than men
    Of this degenerate age?"

"Gross from his acorns, tusky boar
  Does memorable acts like his;
So for her snared offended young
    Bleeds the swart lioness."

But here she paused; our eyes had met,
  And I was whitening with the jeer;
She rose: "I went too far," she said;
    Spoke low: "Forgive me, dear.

"To me our days seem pleasant days,
  Our home a haven of pure content;
Forgive me if I said too much,
    So much more than I meant.

"Homer, though greater than his gods,
  With rough-hewn virtues was sufficed
And rough-hewn men: but what are such
    To us who learn of Christ?"

The much-moved pathos of her voice,
  Her almost tearful eyes, her cheek
Grown pale, confessed the strength of love
    Which only made her speak.

For mild she was, of few soft words,
  Most gentle, easy to be led,
Content to listen when I spoke,
    And reverence what I said:

I elder sister by six years;
  Not half so glad, or wise, or good:
Her words rebuked my secret self
    And shamed me where I stood.

She never guessed her words reproved
  A silent envy nursed within,
A selfish, souring discontent
    Pride-born, the devil's sin.

I smiled, half bitter, half in jest:
  "The wisest man of all the wise
Left for his summary of life
    'Vanity of vanities.'

"Beneath the sun there's nothing new:
  Men flow, men ebb, mankind flows on:
If I am wearied of my life,
    Why, so was Solomon.

"Vanity of vanities he preached
  Of all he found, of all he sought:
Vanity of vanities, the gist
    Of all the words he taught.

"This in the wisdom of the world,
  In Homer's page, in all, we find:
As the sea is not filled, so yearns
    Man's universal mind.

"This Homer felt, who gave his men
  With glory but a transient state:
His very Jove could not reverse
    Irrevocable fate.

"Uncertain all their lot save this--
  Who wins must lose, who lives must die:
All trodden out into the dark
    Alike, all vanity."

She scarcely answered when I paused,
  But rather to herself said: "One
Is here," low-voiced and loving, "Yea,
    Greater than Solomon."

So both were silent, she and I:
  She laid her work aside, and went
Into the garden-walks, like spring,
    All gracious with content:

A little graver than her wont,
  Because her words had fretted me;
Not warbling quite her merriest tune
    Bird-like from tree to tree.

I chose a book to read and dream:
  Yet half the while with furtive eyes
Marked how she made her choice of flowers
    Intuitively wise,

And ranged them with instinctive taste
  Which all my books had failed to teach;
Fresh rose herself, and daintier
    Than blossom of the peach.

By birthright higher than myself,
  Though nestling of the self-same nest:
No fault of hers, no fault of mine,
    But stubborn to digest.

I watched her, till my book unmarked
  Slid noiseless to the velvet floor;
Till all the opulent summer-world
    Looked poorer than before.

Just then her busy fingers ceased,
  Her fluttered colour went and came:
I knew whose step was on the walk,
    Whose voice would name her name.

       * * * * *

Well, twenty years have passed since then:
  My sister now, a stately wife
Still fair, looks back in peace and sees
    The longer half of life--

The longer half of prosperous life,
  With little grief, or fear, or fret:
She, loved and loving long ago,
    Is loved and loving yet.

A husband honourable, brave,
  Is her main wealth in all the world:
And next to him one like herself,
    One daughter golden-curled:

Fair image of her own fair youth,
  As beautiful and as serene,
With almost such another love
    As her own love has been.

Yet, though of world-wide charity,
  And in her home most tender dove,
Her treasure and her heart are stored
    In the home-land of love.

She thrives, God's blessed husbandry;
  Most like a vine which full of fruit
Doth cling and lean and climb toward heaven,
    While earth still binds its root.

I sit and watch my sister's face:
  How little altered since the hours
When she, a kind, light-hearted girl,
    Gathered her garden flowers:

Her song just mellowed by regret
  For having teased me with her talk;
Then all-forgetful as she heard
    One step upon the walk.

While I? I sat alone and watched;
  My lot in life, to live alone
In mine own world of interests,
    Much felt, but little shown.

Not to be first: how hard to learn
  That lifelong lesson of the past;
Line graven on line and stroke on stroke:
    But, thank God, learned at last.

So now in patience I possess
  My soul year after tedious year,
Content to take the lowest place,
    The place assigned me here.

Yet sometimes, when I feel my strength
  Most weak, and life most burdensome,
I lift mine eyes up to the hills
    From whence my help shall come:

Yea, sometimes still I lift my heart
  To the Archangelic trumpet-burst,
When all deep secrets shall be shown,
    And many last be first.
Mymai Yuan Sep 2010
All my life I’ve watched them dance,
Swing and dip and sway
Rustle and nod, so fresh and sweet

The young ladies skirts are
All decorated with beautiful, delicate lace-like veins
Threaded through carefully,
Or sprawled decoratively

Some ladies are full and round
Frail and graceful
Or pointed and elegant
But all dance divinely.

Their skirts are
Sprayed with a pinch of cologne
Some smell too strong,
Are barely there
Or smell perfectly lovely
Yet all are carried off with the melody of the wind.

Stick-like creatures climb up and down
Our dance floor,
Picking one of us off our dance floor
And leave us lying on an eerily still ground.

I’m just a skinny bud
Pale-green, like all other buds
Yet I’m shamefully paler and skinnier
I notice a pale white spot beside me

Some time has passed.
The early-budding young dancers
And their pink flowers have wilted
To a strange orange color
Turning brown
Before falling to the still ground

It’s become my time.
My thin, curled frame has changed
Fanning out and my skirts darkening an enviable green
A deep, rich green with its edges colorless
So the sunlight can
Tint it a merry gold
The lace-like veins are fine and soft
Stitched to make an almost symmetrical pattern

The white spot beside me has blossomed to be
My pretty, pink flower
Soft against my skin
With a sweet, alluring fragrance
Enveloping my pointy-edged but round frame

It’s become my time
To dance as the wind conducts
Never-ceasing

The melody of the wind whispers
We lean gently, softly
The music caresses me
Sunrays glowing

The tune of the wind picks up
We rustle and nod
The music embraces me
Sunshine kissing

The beat of the wind crescendos
We dip and sway
The music rushes around my waist
Increasing the velocity of my dancing

The chorus of the wind starts
We swing and twirl
Our dance floor swings to and fro
The music whips my skirts
The last rays of sunshine start to leave us.

The orchestra of the wind erupts
We joyfully prance and wildly flutter
The dance floor shudders violently
The echoes of the thundering cymbals excite us
Far-away spotlights of silvery purple pierce the dark sky
Fat, watery droplets pour
Trembling on our skin

The music holds me a welcome prisoner
All I can do is dance, dance, dance.
The Sun has disappeared from the sky
But is in our hearts right now

The fat droplets hang on the tip of my dress
And the sun glow them rainbow
Making me sparkle and shine
As I dance to my hearts content.
Rustling, whistling, dipping, swaying and swinging
My beautiful green dress

When all around us is dark,
And they’re no parties tonight,
We yawn and tuck in our skirts
While the dance floor rocks us to sleep.

When we wake we dance again.
This dance never seems to end
As the sun says hello,
And the sun says goodbye.

I see the pale-green buds watching us enviously
Watching me, with my rosy-petal jewel
As I watch the azure-blue patches of ceiling

Many sunsets and sunrises have past.
The whipping of my skirts are loosening
The energy of my hips are fading
My green skirt is getting old, ever so old
Its fringes turning an odd yellow-orange
Dancing has become wearisome
The dress slowly turns an ugly brown, with specks of yellow-green
My flower-jewel has turned brown,
And flown away with the music in the wind
Many of my friends have fallen from our dance floor
To rest finally in a beautiful sleep
We’ve all danced for too long and are tired
But I keep holding tight.
I have but one last dance to do.

I see the buds still watching me enviously
Surprised, I notice they’ve gotten fatter.
When blinded by youth and happiness
It was hard to remember I was ever one of them
But I remember now, I do.
I remember so clearly now that my time has come
To pick up my skirts
And silently fall…
So I dance to them my story
As I have danced to you mine.
mymaimonkey
Incarnate devil in a talking snake,
The central plains of Asia in his garden,
In shaping-time the circle stung awake,
In shapes of sin forked out the bearded apple,
And God walked there who was a fiddling warden
And played down pardon from the heavens' hill.

When we were strangers to the guided seas,
A handmade moon half holy in a cloud,
The wisemen tell me that the garden gods
Twined good and evil on an eastern tree;
And when the moon rose windily it was
Black as the beast and paler than the cross.

We in our Eden knew the secret guardian
In sacred waters that no frost could harden,
And in the mighty mornings of the earth;
Hell in a horn of sulphur and the cloven myth,
All heaven in the midnight of the sun,
A serpent fiddled in the shaping-time.
Grace Jul 2016
Today, I saw a person in front of me, their eyes on something else
and I took a moment to inspect them,
and then I realised it was myself.

There they were, wearing the clothes I had put on in the morning,
wearing the face I recognise in pictures
and standing exactly where I was standing.
But, they were not me – in that moment, they were not.
How could I be that girl, that women standing there in that shop?

The body inside is not that one I saw in the mirror,
the one who was looking a different way.
Inside, I’m more, I’m smaller, I’m darker, I’m paler and
I dress for them each morning, choosing from the clothes
not bought for them exactly,
but forced to match them, to meet halfway.
I knew it then, with a glance at the mirror person, nothing pretty would be bought today.

And it wasn’t.
Some days, it’s dungarees.
Other days, it’s dresses.
Some days, it’s shorts and leggings.
It all depends on who I’m playing as and
I’m sure that’s all okay, but then they say describe yourself in three words.

How can I describe myself, this person  I do not know?

So I go for the easy option and choose them from a list:
Quiet
Creative
Studious
And I suppose, that’s one way of putting myself into three words;
one way of putting myself into an easy to understand formula.

But it doesn’t cover it.
Three words don’t cover it.

Because really, I think I’m just an observer inside my own imagination,
an observer inside my own life and all these other lives inside my head.
I’m just the implied narrator of this person in the mirror
and all these others, who come and go in different places.

But then the girl in the mirror reminds me that tomorrow is my birthday,
a day to celebrate the fact I exist outside of my head
and then she touches a shirt, made of itchy fabric
and there’s life outside the overwhelming inside,
a life where I need to describe myself in three words
and fit into those three words and into that one person,
looking at something else, not in the mirror.
Bailey B Apr 2010
Compiled of all the parts
No one wishes to have
Fiery ropes that refuse to rest
Spidery fingers that worry too much
Freckles etching countless constellations undiscovered
Eyelashes that a cactus wouldn't be proud of
Emerald eyes, woeful, or so I've been told,
that reflect all the unsung symphonies of the past
and of the yet to come
Long, awkward torso that curves in all the wrong places
Skin paler and mire transparent than the surface of a pond
Dancer's thighs with an octogenarian's knees
The smile of a Chinese ten-year-old
paired with the beak of a toucan.
That, at least, is good for something:
Sniffing out your lies and following them
through the thick blue veins that map
straight to my heart.
Graff1980 Nov 2017
American Nightmares
Prologue
The pale moon hangs, glowing in the blank sky, shining just enough light for the thick foliage and densely pack trees to be seen. Evening sounds silenced by the sloshing of rushing feet racing through the woods.  In the distance a beagle howls in frustration. Sniffing and wheezing as he tries to pick up a lost trail.
Deeper in the woods a lone figure races at a maddening pace, bumping into trees, scratching his flesh against their harsh bark; causing bleeding. The young man’s eyes water up from a mixture of sweat, pain, and fatigue. Fear permeates his entire being
A thin orange suit clings lazily to his sweaty bronze skin, almost mocking his emaciated frame, which is actually a couple sizes too small for the jumpsuit. The dark figure has been running for days. Hot on his heels, his pursuers persisted. He knows being caught would mean a far worse fate than what he escaped.
Another mile and his legs began to leaden. Each step becoming heavier than the last. The sharp sting of lactic acid burning his side. Breath becoming spasmodic. Eyes bulging, still he maintains a frantic pace.
Running full force until his left foot catches the edge of a dark brown rotten root rising from the earth. A cloud of dirt explodes from ground immersing him in a brown mist. Spittle and blood spew from the runner’s mouth as he coughs violently. His breath rushing away even as he tries to calm himself.
Crawling from the dirt he searches for some sort of purchase, finding none he rests his weary frame against the nearest oak. Then the waterworks really hit. The sound of moans escaped his busted and parched lips.
“I will make it home.” He repeats over and over, like a mantra.
His fingers feel the frame of the tree he is resting against. Hands begin falling and rising for some strange reason, until they settle at the base. There just inches away from his digits sits a patch of mushrooms. The forgotten pain of hunger returns, so without examining the fungus he plucks them up and swallows them whole. Then half crawling half stumbling he moves to the stream which lay a few yards from the tree.
Cupping his hands he fills his palm with water; then slurps it up, repeating the process again and again till he has drunk his fill. Next he splashes the cool liquid on his face, hair, pits, chest, and other portions of his body massaging the blood and dirt from his aching skin till he manages to cleanse the wounds all over his person. Closing his eyes, he finally succumbs to the exhaustion that has been ******* him.
A bulge of earth begins to rise pushing his limp frame away from the stream and pulls him back to the tree. Then branches and leaves coalesce around his body till he is safely hidden from plain sight.
He awakens; eyes dilated, and body shivering. While brushing away the brush he turns to the tree, stands up shakily, and then wipes away the rest of the leaves and dirt, not noticing the slowly growing dark spot on his orange jumpsuit.
Tears streaming he softly whispers “Hello tree my name is John.”






















Chapter 1

Tree, sweet Tree, I beg of you tell me. Why does America hate me? I did everything I was told to do. I went to school. I stayed away from white women, never made eye contact with white men, became a teacher, and took care of my people.
What the hell was all that for? I am going to end up another dead black man in the backwoods of some southern hick state! I got these stupid leg irons weighing me down, and hells hounds are riding my trail.
Stupid ******* animals!
Filthy ******* *******!
What is the ******* point? Huh?
My dad was a good man too. He followed the unwritten rules of the white man. Never stole anything or hurt anyone, mostly. Do you know what they did to him Tree? Well do you?
They tied him to a post, sliced chunks of flesh from his hard muscular frame while burning him alive. They burnt him alive, Tree.
My father was a strong and righteous man, a man who loved his wife and child. My mother, who was barely half his weight and a good foot shorter, she had the palest skin of any black woman I have ever met. Her hair was the perfect shade of earth with eyes a couple tints darker. Her nose was tiny and lips thin as any white woman’s. I’d imagine she was as white as any ***** could get. She had a voice that soothed my darkest pains and fears. At night when I went to bed she would sing to me.
Oh my darling
Brown skin angel
Don’t be frightened
I’ll be right here
Hold you tight and
Watch you sleep
Guard you tonight
While you sleep
Oh my darling
I’ll be here
To keep your heart
Safe my sweet dear
Everything will be alright

I remember when I came home that day. I saw my dad clutching the tiny limp frame of my mother, sobbing furiously. Her body looked paler than usual. I had never seen tears fall from my father’s face. I don’t think he even saw me come in. I just stood in the doorway. I stood there and waited for him to say something. I wanted to cry but I was so scared that I just held my breath instead.
Our neighbor came and took me to their house. Back then I did not know what had happened. It took me over seven years to find out what happened to my mother. Do you know what happened Tree?
A handful of white men came to our house and ***** my mother.
Sometimes in my nightmares, that horrible scene plays out. I hear the sound of rapping at our door; the yells of angry men echoing through the house. I see the wooden door bulge as it begins to crack under their onslaught. Then I watch as men with no faces explode into our house, sweeping my mother off her feet, ripping the clothes off her body as she scream in horror, I would wake up in a state of horror and sorrow, weeping.
I am haunted even now. I cannot begin to imagine the pain my father felt, but I do know what happened next, because I snuck out of our neighbor’s house to comfort my father. I watched as he left our home with rage and violence in his heart. In one hand he held a knife; it seemed to be a foot long, half handle half cold hard sharpened steel; in the other hand he carried a gun. I followed him from a safe distances, heard him scream for the men that had attacked my mother.
When the sheriff came to calm him down, dad was startled and turned around accidently cutting Mr. Brinkley with the blade. The sheriff and his deputies arrested my father. I was certain that everything would be okay. The sheriff was a decent man. I heard him talking calmly to my father. He told my dad that he understood what was going on.
That night white men came for my father. They hollered for justice, screaming “bring out that ******* ******.”
The sheriff tried to reason with the mob. He told them “This is between me and my prisoner.”
He tried to stop the mob with force, but there were at least fifty men. Probably more if you counted the people that kept joining up with the mob. The mob broke down the prison door, took my father from his small stone cell, all the while taunting him.  “You’re gonna fry ******.” From a distance and hidden in shadows I watched.
I saw an old lady spit on him. I watched as children raced around my father, dancing in and out of the procession, and tossed stones, from the side of the road, at my father. The mob drug him down to the town square. Tied him up, and lit a fire beneath him. The whole time my father’s head was hung in defeat. I swear he knew what was coming. It seemed that In the face of that onslaught all emotion had faded from his face. I guess he didn’t want to give them the pleasure of seeing him squirm.
As the flames started to consume his flesh, I saw the sheriff go for his gun. He raised his pistol and aimed for my father’s head, but the men in the mob wrestled the gun from his hand. Meanwhile my father had given into the horror and pain. He began to howl like an animal as the flames danced across his flesh crackling and pooping. He screamed for some sort of mercy, crying out for someone to shoot him.
I raced from the shadows, stealing a gun from some old white man. Then I shot my father in the head. Most of the men in the mob looked on dumbstruck. That gave me enough time to get away so I hightailed it out of there. I never went back for anything. I spent the rest of that night in the woods praying that what I had done was the right thing.
In the weeks and months to come I slept very little. When I did manage to fall asleep my dreams would cycle from the flaming horrors of my father’s death to the ****** of my mother.
Still, I managed to make something out of myself despite those sick atrocities. By working hard I finished school and became a teacher. A couple years after I started teaching I was arrested. They took me to jail; brought me up on some ******* charges. Part of me was certain I would end up being lynched, so when I was sentenced to a chain gang, man I was relieved.
Had I known what was gonna happen I would have preferred being lynched, at least then I would have been dead. Instead they worked me **** near to death, starving, and beating me like a slave. My brown skin has brought me nothing but grief. So tell me Tree, why does America hate me?











Interlude

“Tell me tree, why does America hate me?” John sputters.
A soft breeze caresses his skin.
“Why the hell am I talking to a tree?” He cries. “What is the point?”
The blood stain on John’s clothes still expanding, and his shivers become far worse.
“Tell me tree, what is the ******* point? America hates Negroes. I’m going to die out here. Say something.”
The air swirls around him, and a soft voice fills his head.
“Do you think you are alone in your suffering? Know now that you are not. My children suffer horrors too.  Listen carefully and I will tell you.
John turns to find the source; finding nothing he collapses, listening straining to hear the voice again.















Chapter 2

Dear John I am the spirit of the winds, mother to the natives. Do you think that yours is the only tongue to taste the bitter fruit of America’s wrath? My child let me tell you of the first people of America. Listen to the tragic tale of my children. Before the Europeans came many tribes roamed this land. They were human and as such had flaws of their own, but in many ways they were poetry in the form of flesh.
The men would hunt during the day. Anything they caught was considered a sacred gift. They would use all that they could from the body of the beast. They treated my mother’s brown dirt earth, flesh as sacred, and I loved them for that. Women held equal value and had equal say in their tribes. There were wars, of course, but mostly my children strived to live in harmony with the land.
Then white men came. My children welcomed them with open arms, helped them survive, and do you know how they were repaid that kindness? Once received and no longer needed, it was returned with treachery and violence. Bit by bit they pushed my children back. Pushing them off one parcel of land and then another, slaughtering tribes after tribe. Still my children survived.  When the white men could not **** all of my progeny, they came for the children. Some parents wept, some fought back, and some merely accepted it as inevitable.
I watched it all. I saw the men on horseback come for the children. The songs of lament tortured my heart. The tears of the children ripped at my very soul. I lashed out at the white men with all of nature’s fury, biting their flesh with my fierce and frosty winds. I sent the fiercest wind I had at my disposal. However, the children were still taken.
The children were dragged to schools far from their homes. They would cry out in their native tongues. I remember my sweet Rose. Yes, Rose was her name, John. She was as strong as the oak tree. Passion coursed through her veins faster and harder than the river’s water. She was born so tiny that the elder of the village was certain she would not make it. Yet, when she broke free of the womb coughing and sputtering, she cried with such a powerful voice that even I was taken aback. This tender babe had my attention. I swore I would watch over her.
The first seven summers of her life were spent in the loving care of her tribe. Her black hair grew almost down to her feet. Her eyes were brown, brimming with the unknown depth of her soul. She was unafraid, the pride of her father and joy of her mother, a creature to be cherished.
One fall morning as the orange sun was slowly ascending the soldiers came. Little Rose was wrenched her from her parents’ arms. Her father’s rage was stopped by a bullet that bled him dry. No one else would fight for this child, so I beat against the soldiers back. I struggled to wrench her from their arms and return her to her mother’s safe embrace.
The soldiers did not even recognize my fury. With that failure I watched Rose’s mother fell into despair. Her prayers of peace and love soon turned to prayers for vengeance and the return of her child. Many nights we wept together mourning the loss of father and daughter.
Rose’s mother could not join her child, so I tried to watch out for her. I followed the soldier to a tall white washed building that had been liberated from the southerners during the previous war. I heard the headmaster say “in order to save the child, we must **** the savage within.”
Day and night I raged against the solid white structure, slamming shutters and doors, pounding the roofs with torrential fury. Only stopping when I realized that the children were shuddering in fear of me.
At night Rose would sing the songs of her people. During the day she would stare in defiance as the teachers tried to make her speak the English tongue. She refused to yield, so they responded to her spirit with violence. The taste of soap saturated her mouth while the stinging welts marred her backside. Still my Rose remained strong. I was filled with pride. I had seen older children fall into silence and subservience.
Rose was a cut about the rest. Still, one can only fight for so long before the fire begins to wane. Each day some of her resilience would fade. I could not enter the building to comfort her, but when she was outside I would wrap her in my windy arms, cradling her spirit against mine. I would carry the whispered words of love her mother sent, and return Rose’s love to her mother. Had I known what was going on in that building maybe I could have blown harder, maybe I could have pelted the nuns and the preacher with sharp stones and hardwood.
As the glimmer of light faded even faster, I started catching the whispers of my children. Their dead bodies began to scar the sacred earth. One after another fell, faster and faster. I watch their flames die. What kind of wind was I that could not fly them away from harm?
One day while blustering away I caught the most horrid sight. I saw a sick man lay his hands on my Rose. She shivered in disgust as he groped her bare skin. He took such sick liberties. In my rage I waited and stewed, plotting and hoping he would come outside. My anger gave me more power than I had ever known. I flung him to and fro spinning him round and round, beating him down every time he tried to rise. I hurled stones and sticks at him. When I was spent, his face was dripping with blood, his lip busted and swollen. He ran like a coward.
Rose remained trapped in that house of horrors. More children died. Day after day Rose lost more of her language. Till one day she could not remember the songs of her people. I watched her sobbing while trying to recall the words as a nun slapped her in the face.
One night under the pale glow of moonlight Rose lit herself on fire. She became a burning flame to match her once radiant spirit. As she burned she screamed out for release. I tried to put out the flames with gusts of wind and heavy rain, but I was too late. Rose fell to ashes resting on the moist earth. Gathering what I could of her remains I sent her last words and ashes home to her tribe.
That night rang with lamentation of her people. Sobs of regret filled her mother’s body. As hard as tried I could not comfort Rose’s mother. She would not be consoled. On the coldest night of that year Rose’s mother walked from her abode, slipping off her clothes, she moved in silence. Every step adding to the numbness she longed

— The End —