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And after the last Galactic War, those from the stars came and gods became. They indulged in the pleasures of the Earth. They created and mated. Over time they got bored and got innovative. They created hybrids to work for them and adore them. This hybrid had a confused consciousness. Once this hybrid was one (whole) but because he was too god-like and powerful, he had to be separated. Male and female were born. Because this separation caused a void in each and a longing for freedom, laws were made and temples built. And the world as we'd have it would be As It Is In Heaven. There were different civilizations of lords and they contended with each other as to what the best way to rule man was. So each sect had its belief system. However this didn't build a bridge to close the gap between male and female. These laws of Conduct and Engagement became integrated into what is called the Game. If you were a man you had to court a woman in order to have her company but because of intense ****** activity and interbreeding you had to marry before having ****** *******. The women were encouraged to make the men trail, suffer and earn to have ***. This was effective to the lords for man would concentrate on the illusion of the game rather than the divine art, mystery, sophistication and connective power of ***. So *** outside of marriage was ridiculed, the participants scorned.

There were brawls and arguments about who had the right to court which woman. The highest honour was laying with a goddess or god; as it gave you all knowledge and ability - This was forbidden by other gods as it would amplify the mobility and authority of man. It was decided then that those of the genetic line of the dominant gods of the time or the empire with the largest influence had a birth-right to marry the fairest women. It was at this point that kingship was born, the MacGods of pure blood. They would then be the intermediary between man and the gods. They would see that the game is carried out  as well as other affairs. This new style of relationship conduct caused much conflict, hate and intolerance. And as the ages went with man defending himself with passive oppression; as division was succeeding with language, culture and tribes... Those who were in resistance sought to restore or imprint the liberty of humankind; they were known as the Rebellious Liberals. In those days if a man fornicated without being married he was hanged. These acts of tyranny and Authoritarian dictatorship led to man hating the gods; yes man hated his selfish parents. So the wars against the gods began. And the kings sought to protect the dynasty of the gods. The gods that were conquered hid in the underground, others fled into other galaxies and planets and colonized there. The beauty of love had endured a grotesque wound. Man helpless continued to submit to the rules of the game. As the world fell from 4-D to 3-D man was taught that he would communicate with his ancestors in the afterlife for guidance, as well as when asleep and in trance states.

However the game survived under kings, although peoples separated and new tribes were formed; men held on to rituals and believed it was the will of a god or another. This consciousness tore the heart of the Earth and the insecurities of self expanded, an incessant feeling of fear and an imbalance of self-love. This led to many looking to and aspiring to kings... Over the ages the glamorous have had an upper hand to court and lay fairladies. The indoctrinating dogma that is religion sprout patriarchal homes.

This bred insubordination and woman became the place of weeping. The ages passed and men grew arrogant, women bitter and helpless. The institutions of the game, marriage and religion were now attacking the love they claimed to protect. The world grew careless and bitter, male and female drifting so far apart as though they were never one. Consequent to this there were poets and liberals, there were also charlatans who were lackeys for the game. The male charlatans giving advice to men, the female charlatans giving advice to women. So psychotic ideologies were passed from father to son, mother to daughter - father to daughter, mother to son. A new age sprung with the evolution of man, or rather devolution of man as mystics would have it, this was the age of Banking. Not that there weren't enough troubles. Now money grew itself an ego, an ego to be protected, protected by the very descendants of the gods-MacGods, they were the gatekeepers. It was expected that bank-robbers would be heroes and the new face of man. All this in effort to uplift a self long wounded. It wouldn't be long that gangsters would be overthrown and police the new heroes... But a crazy world it was as both faces would grow to be corrupt with no one investigating the source.

The source now devised Feminism, this would bring justice to women on the face of it but rather vengeance to men. Men would wear a new garment of infants and senseless idiots. What happened to the justice? There was no justice.

Women would replace the face of old obnoxious, selfish and abusive men. With better jobs, equal opportunities, better insurance; the sky was the limit for women. Men faced a new threat either than themselves or the threatening boundaries of the game (which leave you a public fool if you don't follow, a player if you do) - and players were cool - the threat was the wounded vengeful woman who was now given the power to run the game. Judicial systems protected woman, Education systems, Banking Systems, Insurance Systems and Media and Industry; all protected woman. The game promised self-esteem if its rules were followed but it only led to folly, sorrow and despair. As women have wide coffers, power they can bear and power was given to her by the source. Justice became vengeance, impatience became resentment, being broke meant loneliness. Institutions of poetry, art, fiction and even the white magical arts were under attack. The new god was money and everyone would be made to bow, his guitar would be love, esteem, health, cognition and consciousness; and masterfully play he did.

It was now up to the few descendants of the liberals to uplift the consciousness of the world once more... That there be love, peace, harmony, hope, equality and human liberty. The 144000 Pleiadian Warriors led by the General Immanuel who fought for humanity promised to return in a burning, blinding and stormy white cloud. Hovering in a ship of space (spaceship). And the liberals and poets of old from the ashes would rise and the Game of the Lords meet its demise. One again we shall be, whole and eternal.
Various sources or references inspired this story... In effect love is its destined glory
Evelyn Genao May 2018
I loved you, at first,
more than anything.
Nothing else mattered,
If I could be by your side,
I would’ve protected you from a n y t h i n g.

I can still feel it,
your lips touching mine.
Without meaning,
absence of feelings,
And is it wrong I miss them?
It was the only attention I was ever given.

I saw it, your eyes drifting to others,
never straying to mine,
never filled with the same spark.
Always dull.
Lifeless.

You would say it,
those three words and I could only listen
as you say it to the others.
Not to me. Never to me.
They always got your love,
and warm smiles,
while you gave me your screams of disdain.
Telling me I should feel lucky.

My orders:
never to be near you,
holding hands was forbidden,  
we did not know each other, not publicly.
They would get the wrong idea.
“She means nothing,” You would say.
Forcing me into a corner,
As your (pleaseithurtsithurts) collar leaves me
b r e a t h l e s s.

It was all a game.
Of how fast I could love you (whatwasithinking),
of how much I could bleed (Goditwaseverywhere)
of how long before I couldn’t take it (saveme,please,anyone)
You were the king,
and I, your faithful pawn,
Just a piece on your board.

Your touches, never warm, never tender
What an artist you were,
Always defacing your canvas with your brushes,
Aren’t you talented?
Is this what love is?
I take it back, please,
I don't want this anymore.  
I just wanna forget (getitoutgetitout).

It’s okay, you don’t have to love me no one ever does.”
I saw a prompt and this poem came to mind. I hope you love it and be sure to comment what you think. Check out my other works!!
1
I celebrate myself, and sing myself,
And what I assume you shall assume,
For every atom belonging to me as good belongs to you.

I loafe and invite my soul,
I lean and loafe at my ease observing a spear of summer grass.

My tongue, every atom of my blood, form’d from this soil, this air,
Born here of parents born here from parents the same, and their
parents the same,
I, now thirty-seven years old in perfect health begin,
Hoping to cease not till death.

Creeds and schools in abeyance,
Retiring back a while sufficed at what they are, but never forgotten,
I harbor for good or bad, I permit to speak at every hazard,
Nature without check with original energy.

2
Houses and rooms are full of perfumes, the shelves are crowded with
perfumes,
I breathe the fragrance myself and know it and like it,
The distillation would intoxicate me also, but I shall not let it.

The atmosphere is not a perfume, it has no taste of the
distillation, it is odorless,
It is for my mouth forever, I am in love with it,
I will go to the bank by the wood and become undisguised and naked,
I am mad for it to be in contact with me.

The smoke of my own breath,
Echoes, ripples, buzz’d whispers, love-root, silk-thread, crotch and
vine,
My respiration and inspiration, the beating of my heart, the passing
of blood and air through my lungs,
The sniff of green leaves and dry leaves, and of the shore and
dark-color’d sea-rocks, and of hay in the barn,

The sound of the belch’d words of my voice loos’d to the eddies of
the wind,
A few light kisses, a few embraces, a reaching around of arms,
The play of shine and shade on the trees as the supple boughs wag,
The delight alone or in the rush of the streets, or along the fields
and hill-sides,
The feeling of health, the full-noon trill, the song of me rising
from bed and meeting the sun.

Have you reckon’d a thousand acres much? have you reckon’d the
earth much?
Have you practis’d so long to learn to read?
Have you felt so proud to get at the meaning of poems?

Stop this day and night with me and you shall possess the origin of
all poems,
You shall possess the good of the earth and sun, (there are millions
of suns left,)
You shall no longer take things at second or third hand, nor look
through the eyes of the dead, nor feed on the spectres in
books,
You shall not look through my eyes either, nor take things from me,
You shall listen to all sides and filter them from your self.

3
I have heard what the talkers were talking, the talk of the
beginning and the end,
But I do not talk of the beginning or the end.

There was never any more inception than there is now,
Nor any more youth or age than there is now,
And will never be any more perfection than there is now,
Nor any more heaven or hell than there is now.

Urge and urge and urge,
Always the procreant urge of the world.

Out of the dimness opposite equals advance, always substance and
increase, always ***,
Always a knit of identity, always distinction, always a breed of
life.
To elaborate is no avail, learn’d and unlearn’d feel that it is so.

Sure as the most certain sure, plumb in the uprights, well
entretied, braced in the beams,
Stout as a horse, affectionate, haughty, electrical,
I and this mystery here we stand.

Clear and sweet is my soul, and clear and sweet is all that is not
my soul.

Lack one lacks both, and the unseen is proved by the seen,
Till that becomes unseen and receives proof in its turn.

Showing the best and dividing it from the worst age vexes age,
Knowing the perfect fitness and equanimity of things, while they
discuss I am silent, and go bathe and admire myself.

Welcome is every ***** and attribute of me, and of any man hearty
and clean,
Not an inch nor a particle of an inch is vile, and none shall be
less familiar than the rest.

I am satisfied - I see, dance, laugh, sing;
As the hugging and loving bed-fellow sleeps at my side through the
night, and withdraws at the peep of the day with stealthy
tread,
Leaving me baskets cover’d with white towels swelling the house with
their plenty,
Shall I postpone my acceptation and realization and scream at my
eyes,
That they turn from gazing after and down the road,
And forthwith cipher and show me to a cent,
Exactly the value of one and exactly the value of two, and which is
ahead?

4
Trippers and askers surround me,
People I meet, the effect upon me of my early life or the ward and
city I live in, or the nation,
The latest dates, discoveries, inventions, societies, authors old
and new,
My dinner, dress, associates, looks, compliments, dues,
The real or fancied indifference of some man or woman I love,
The sickness of one of my folks or of myself, or ill-doing or loss
or lack of money, or depressions or exaltations,
Battles, the horrors of fratricidal war, the fever of doubtful news,
the fitful events;
These come to me days and nights and go from me again,
But they are not the Me myself.

Apart from the pulling and hauling stands what I am,
Stands amused, complacent, compassionating, idle, unitary,
Looks down, is *****, or bends an arm on an impalpable certain rest,
Looking with side-curved head curious what will come next,
Both in and out of the game and watching and wondering at it.

Backward I see in my own days where I sweated through fog with
linguists and contenders,
I have no mockings or arguments, I witness and wait.

5
I believe in you my soul, the other I am must not abase itself to
you,
And you must not be abased to the other.

Loafe with me on the grass, loose the stop from your throat,
Not words, not music or rhyme I want, not custom or lecture, not
even the best,
Only the lull I like, the hum of your valved voice.

I mind how once we lay such a transparent summer morning,
How you settled your head athwart my hips and gently turn’d over
upon me,
And parted the shirt from my *****-bone, and plunged your tongue
to my bare-stript heart,
And reach’d till you felt my beard, and reach’d till you held my
feet.

Swiftly arose and spread around me the peace and knowledge that pass
all the argument of the earth,
And I know that the hand of God is the promise of my own,
And I know that the spirit of God is the brother of my own,
And that all the men ever born are also my brothers, and the women
my sisters and lovers,
And that a kelson of the creation is love,
And limitless are leaves stiff or drooping in the fields,
And brown ants in the little wells beneath them,
And mossy scabs of the worm fence, heap’d stones, elder, mullein and
poke-****.

6
A child said What is the grass? fetching it to me with full hands;
How could I answer the child? I do not know what it is any more
than he.

I guess it must be the flag of my disposition, out of hopeful green
stuff woven.

Or I guess it is the handkerchief of the Lord,
A scented gift and remembrancer designedly dropt,
Bearing the owner’s name someway in the corners, that we may see
and remark, and say Whose?

Or I guess the grass is itself a child, the produced babe of the
vegetation.

Or I guess it is a uniform hieroglyphic,
And it means, Sprouting alike in broad zones and narrow zones,
Growing among black folks as among white,
Kanuck, Tuckahoe, Congressman, Cuff, I give them the same, I
receive them the same.

And now it seems to me the beautiful uncut hair of graves.

Tenderly will I use you curling grass,
It may be you transpire from the ******* of young men,
It may be if I had known them I would have loved them,
It may be you are from old people, or from offspring taken soon out
of their mothers’ laps,
And here you are the mothers’ laps.

This grass is very dark to be from the white heads of old mothers,
Darker than the colorless beards of old men,
Dark to come from under the faint red roofs of mouths.

O I perceive after all so many uttering tongues,
And I perceive they do not come from the roofs of mouths for
nothing.

I wish I could translate the hints about the dead young men and
women,
And the hints about old men and mothers, and the offspring taken
soon out of their laps.

What do you think has become of the young and old men?
And what do you think has become of the women and children?

They are alive and well somewhere,
The smallest sprout shows there is really no death,
And if ever there was it led forward life, and does not wait at the
end to arrest it,
And ceas’d the moment life appear’d.

All goes onward and outward, nothing collapses,
And to die is different from what any one supposed, and luckier.

7
Has any one supposed it lucky to be born?
I hasten to inform him or her it is just as lucky to die, and I know
it.

I pass death with the dying and birth with the new-wash’d babe, and
am not contain’d between my hat and boots,
And peruse manifold objects, no two alike and every one good,
The earth good and the stars good, and their adjuncts all good.

I am not an earth nor an adjunct of an earth,
I am the mate and companion of people, all just as immortal and
fathomless as myself,
(They do not know how immortal, but I know.)

Every kind for itself and its own, for me mine male and female,
For me those that have been boys and that love women,
For me the man that is proud and feels how it stings to be slighted,
For me the sweet-heart and the old maid, for me mothers and the
mothers of mothers,
For me lips that have smiled, eyes that have shed tears,
For me children and the begetters of children.

Undrape! you are not guilty to me, nor stale nor discarded,
I see through the broadcloth and gingham whether or no,
And am around, tenacious, acquisitive, tireless, and cannot be
shaken away.

8
The little one sleeps in its cradle,
I lift the gauze and look a long time, and silently brush away flies
with my hand.

The youngster and the red-faced girl turn aside up the bushy hill,
I peeringly view them from the top.

The suicide sprawls on the ****** floor of the bedroom,
I witness the corpse with its dabbled hair, I note where the pistol
has fallen.

The blab of the pave, tires of carts, sluff of boot-soles, talk of
the promenaders,
The heavy omnibus, the driver with his interrogating thumb, the
clank of the shod horses on the granite floor,
The snow-sleighs, clinking, shouted jokes, pelts of snow-*****,
The hurrahs for popular favorites, the fury of rous’d mobs,
The flap of the curtain’d litter, a sick man inside borne to the
hospital,
The meeting of enemies, the sudden oath, the blows and fall,
The excited crowd, the policeman with his star quickly working his
passage to the centre of the crowd,
The impassive stones that receive and return so many echoes,
What groans of over-fed or half-starv’d who fall sunstruck or in
fits,
What exclamations of women taken suddenly who hurry home and
give birth to babes,
What living and buried speech is always vibrating here, what howls
restrain’d by decorum,
Arrests of criminals, slights, adulterous offers made, acceptances,
rejections with convex lips,
I mind them or the show or resonance of them-I come and I depart.

9
The big doors of the country barn stand open and ready,
The dried grass of the harvest-time loads the slow-drawn wagon,
The clear light plays on the brown gray and green intertinged,
The armfuls are pack’d to the sagging mow.

I am there, I help, I came stretch’d atop of the load,
I felt its soft jolts, one leg reclined on the other,
I jump from the cross-beams and seize the clover and timothy,
And roll head over heels and tangle my hair full of wisps.

10
Alone far in the wilds and mountains I hunt,
Wandering amazed at my own lightness and glee,
In the late afternoon choosing a safe spot to pass the night,
Kindling a fire and broiling the fresh-****’d game,
Falling asleep on the gather’d leaves with my dog and gun by my
side.

The Yankee clipper is under her sky-sails, she cuts the sparkle
and scud,
My eyes settle the land, I bend at her prow or shout joyously from
the deck.

The boatmen and clam-diggers arose early and stopt for me,
I tuck’d my trowser-ends in my boots and went and had a good time;
You should have been with us that day round the chowder-kettle.

I saw the marriage of the trapper in the open air in the far west,
the bride was a red girl,
Her father and his friends sat near cross-legged and dumbly smoking,
they had moccasins to their feet and large thick blankets
hanging from their shoulders,
On a bank lounged the trapper, he was drest mostly in skins, his
luxuriant beard and curls protected his neck, he held his bride
by the hand,
She had long eyelashes, her head was bare, her coarse straight locks
descended upon her voluptuous limbs and reach’d to her
feet.

The runaway slave came to my house and stopt outside,
I heard his motions crackling the twigs of the woodpile,
Through the swung half-door of the kitchen I saw him limpsy and
weak,
And went where he sat on a log and led him in and assured him,
And brought water and fill’d a tub for his sweated body and bruis’d
feet,
And gave him a room that enter’d from my own, and gave him some
coarse clean clothes,
And remember perfectly well his revolving eyes and his awkwardness,
And remember putting piasters on the galls of his neck and ankles;
He staid with me a week before he was recuperated and pass’d north,
I had him sit next me at table, my fire-lock lean’d in the corner.

11
Twenty-eight young men bathe by the shore,
Twenty-eight young men and all so friendly;
Twenty-eight years of womanly life and all so lonesome.

She owns the fine house by the rise of the bank,
She hides handsome and richly drest aft the blinds of the window.

Which of the young men does she like the best?
Ah the homeliest of them is beautiful to her.

Where are you off to, lady? for I see you,
You splash in the water there, yet stay stock still in your room.

Dancing and laughing along the beach came the twenty-ninth
bather,
The rest did not see her, but she saw them and loved them.

The beards of the young men glisten’d with wet, it ran from their
long hair,
Little streams pass’d all over their bodies.

An unseen hand also pass’d over their bodies,
It descended tremblingly from their temples and ribs.

The young men float on their backs, their white bellies bulge to the
sun, they do not ask who seizes fast to them,
They do not know who puffs and declines with pendant and bending
arch,
They do not think whom they ***** with spray.

12
The butcher-boy puts off his killing-clothes, or sharpens his knife
at the stall in the market,
I loiter enjoying his repartee and his shuffle and break-down.

Blacksmiths with grimed and hairy chests environ the anvil,
Each has his main-sledge, they are all out, there is a great heat in
the fire.

From the cinder-strew’d threshold I follow their movements,
The lithe sheer of their waists plays even with their massive arms,
Overhand the hammers swing, overhand so slow, overhand so sure,
They do not hasten, each man hits in his place.

13
The ***** holds firmly the reins of his four horses, the block swags
underneath on its tied-over chain,
The ***** that drives the long dray of the stone-yard, steady and
tall he stands pois’d on one leg on the string-piece,
His blue shirt exposes his ample neck and breast and loosens over
his hip-band,
His glance is calm and commanding, he tosses the slouch of his hat
away from his forehead,
The sun falls on his crispy hair and mustache, falls on the black of
his polish’d and perfect limbs.

I behold the picturesque giant and love him, and I do not stop
there,
I go with the team also.

In me the caresser of life wherever moving, backward as well as
forward sluing,
To niches aside and junior bending, not a person or object missing,
Absorbing all to myself and for this song.

Oxen that rattle the yoke and chain or halt in the leafy shade, what
is that you express in your eyes?
It seems to me more than all the print I have read in my life.

My tread scares the wood-drake and wood-duck on my distant and
day-long ramble,
They rise together, they slowly circle around.

I believe in those wing’d purposes,
And acknowledge red, yellow, white, playing within me,
And consider green and violet and the tufted crown i
Julieta Aurelio Jul 2015
There's this mask I wear
The glue is so tight
Hiding me, hiding all
All you don't see, unless you get really near
That I'm not alright
My eyes are dark and deep enough for you to stand in
My wrists are ******, so are my thighs
My heart is shaky
And I've got non stop anxiety
But from far you see this mask
You hear my loud laugh
And see me hold my tummy in pain from giggling at my own joke
You swear I have recovered
When actually my late night tears help me keep the mask on
I may not look injured
Nor hollow
Or in pain
Just with this smile on my face
Of this mask that I wear
I hurt unheard and unseen,
Impatient for good days.

If my heart was transparent
A lot wouldn't be the same
Anyways, I'm already used to building these walls around my heart.
It's protected, I guess. From the outside world yet within me the storm never calms.
Tears wet these pillows
All night through sometimes wishing that morning must never come
Holding the grudge against myself
While smiling to all standing right in front of me.
Asking is this how life suppose to be.
Limping with anger yet holding the last thought of laughter
One hell of life we living.
You see...
This mask doesn't show things in 3D
That's why I love rainy days
Coz my tears are never recognized
Sadness engulf my soul while hoping that one day I will be able to remove the glue on this mask I wear.
Duo with @DrewThePoet (twitter)
I know you loved me because
You taught me the solace in solitude
Acting as a protector from
The parts of you that were
Waiting under your skin
To leave me broken
Listen to me
before you regret,
because if you do,
you've already the fret.

Listen to me
and let trust take it's time
as trusting to quick
is a severe crime.

Listen to me
and look at the signs
as betrayal is cruel
and runs long through your veins.

Listen to me
it could save your life:
Never pull back nor
let someone take your wife!

Listen to me
and before you get hurt
stop being gentle
and let others eat dirt.

Listen to me
as this is made as a gift
to let you survive
a life (not) worth to be lived.
Betrayal is hard, but can be avoided if you stop trusting blindly, raise your awareness and stop ignoring facts. However raise it to high and you might end with a life long paranoia tough....
Dorothy A Oct 2013
Everything faded to black. He had a hard time remembering just what the hell happened. He wasn't sure of downing some random pills from of the medicine cabinet-- his first attempt to end it all. Making sure he would not recover-- if the pills didn't do the job-- he had already devised the set up of the noose in his bedroom. Definitely, he didn't recall anyone cutting the rope, forcing him down to the floor.

Lacie joked with him. "Dude, you've got nine lives! You must really be a ****, fricking cat in disguise! That's why you'll eat those nasty tuna fish sandwiches they serve in the nuthouse! "

Chris grinned at her.  He had to agree. To refer to it as the psych ward at the hospital made it seem like more of a jail term, but calling it "the nuthouse" lightened up the severity of the situation. As grave and nearly tragic as everything  had become, it was kind of laughable to him.  He supposed he had more chances than a cat's fabled life. It all seemed so crazy that it must be funny.

Well, what could he say? He had flirted with death, but unwillingly managed to escape its grip. "Pathetic..."--he commented. "I don't not even know how to die well..."

Chris  eventually realized that he had been rushed to the hospital, but wished it wasn't true. Since then, everything was either a total blur or a bizarre state of mind . Even waking up in his room was like a remotely vague memory, almost like a long ago dream that might not really have happened.

Maybe, he was somewhat aware that his sister was screaming in shock and horror at the sight of him, shouting out downstairs to her boyfriend to help her. But the walls were turning red, a glowing scarlet- red, with an added fiery orange and yellowish-gold-- all joined together in pulsating embers. He was quickly losing consciousness. It was like some, bad acid trip. Not that Chris knew this firsthand, but it sure was like something he saw on TV or at the movies.

And now he was the star of the horror show.

Did he die?  Death was what he planned on, so waking up was not a relief, or a reality back into motion--just the opposite. It was as if being awake was the real nightmare, a delusional time when everything was not true, and was only an scary, offbeat version of the life of Chris Cartier.

The bad acid trip continued. He recalled hospital staff rushing about him, seeming like real people-- sort of. Then they morphed into fish in scrubs. From overhead, an IV was dripping into his arm. Tubes were shoved down his throat. His vital signs were displayed on a screen that made beeps and sounds, increasing the chaos and adding to the mayhem to his mind. Soon, the vital signs machine started talking to him that he was a "very bad boy" and other such scoldings.

He was thoroughly freaked out. If he was still alive, he'd rather be dead.

He wanted to run. One of the fish pushed him back down and muttered out undecipherable utterances-- like underwater gibberish . Then that fish used its slimy fins to inject him with a needle in his arm. The other fish circled around him like fish out of water--with opening and closing mouths-- as if gasping for air.

As they surrounded him as rubber monkeys shot out from the walls and bounced all over the room. On top of all this madness, the florescent lights above were flickering on and off, in sync to the wild music, like the drum beats of a distant jungle. It was one bizarre tangle of events, a freaky, crazy, out-of-control ride in which reality could not be distinguished from the animation and mass confusion. It was one overpowering ride that he would much rather forget.

When Chris got out of critical condition, he found out that he could still not go home. That would take a few weeks more. Dr. What-The-Hell's-His-Name assured him that he needed to start on the path to his psychological healing--just as grave as the physical--right here in a safe place.

It didn't seem so safe to him.

The enemy wasn't what was out there in the world, but the big, bad wolf was actually him. He had to be protected from the true culprit--himself-- and that was a mind-blowing concept. Just what did he get himself into?   

He never had been a patient in a hospital before. In all his twenty-six years, he didn't so much as even have his tonsils out. Feeling now like a prisoner,, he was still scared out of his mind-- as if it was day one all over again. When was he going to get out of here? Chris began to fear that they would never let him out. No professional had a definitive answer, as only time would tell of his improvement.

Man, why couldn't he just be dead?

His parents visited almost everyday, but it was of no reassurance to him. His mother always left in tears, and his father was lost for words. This was nothing new. When it concerned their troubled son, they felt inadequate to help him. The best his dad could say was, "Hey, Chris, we're pullin' for ya". That was of no comfort, whatsoever, like he was some fighter in a boxing ring that his old man had a bet placed on . His mom always clung to him as she said goodbye, like she needed the hug more than he did, saying to Chris through her sobs , "Miss you....love you". Her emotional state just unsettled him to the core, and he was worried for her more than for himself.    

At best, his outlook was grim. But then he met Lacie Weiss, and things started looking up.

Lacie was one of the quietest psych patients in the ward, always sticking to herself. But then he found himself sitting right next to her in group therapy, and they hit it off. He had no idea that she had a fun side. She usually looked apathetic and quietly defiant to society, a nonconformist in the form of a Goth, with edgy, dyed black hair, dark eye make-up and some ****** piercings of the eyebrow, tongue and nose. Her look was quite in contrast to his light blue eyes and sandy-brown hair. Chris never was into Gothic, viewing those who were as spooky creeps.  

It was obvious that Chris was scared and confused. Now although trying to seem tough and stoic, Lacie seemed so little, almost fragile, yet obviously trying to hide her broken self together. Petite and somewhat girlish in appearance, she was barely 5 feet tall. Chris was 5 feet 11 and a half inches, close enough to the six foot stature that he wanted to be. Only a half inch less really didn't cut it for him, though, even though his slim build gave the impression of a lankier guy. He would have loved to be as tall as the basketball players he so emulated. But such was life. He was never used to having the advantages.  

At first, Lacie never opened up, not to a single soul. Like Chris, she certainly acted like she didn't need this place, and nobody was going to help her--or be allowed to help her. As stony and impenetrable as she tried to be, group therapy it was hard to disappear in. Everyone was held accountable for opening up, and the leader was going to see to it.  No way, though, did Lacie want to crack or look weak in her turtle shell composure, in her self-preservation mode. So it was agony for her.

She first spoke to him, whispering loudly to him, onc,e in the group circle "This is all *******!"

Hanging with Chris was the one salvation that she had in this miserable experience. They both could relate more than he ever realized. They both really liked motorcycles and basketball. He had his own Harley, and it was something he loved to work on and go on long rides with it, his own brand of therapy.  In spite of how she looked, Lacie was also actually close to his age. He was twenty-six. and she was twenty-two.

They first broke the ice with casual introductions. "No, the name is not pronounced like Carter", he corrected her about his last name. "It is like Cart-EE-AY...... It's French".

"Yep", she replied. "Like mine is the same way, but as German as brats and sauerkraut,  Ja dummkopf?"

Chris gave her a weird look. She continued, "My mom's dad was from Germany, and I got my mom's name. Ya don't say it how it looks. You would say Weiss like Vice, but I couldn't give a **** how anybody says it. Nobody gets it right and original, anyhow." Her dark brown eyes flashed at him as she said, " But I think I like Chris Cutie, myself, better than Cartier.....cutie it is for me. Huh, cutie pie? "

Chris laughed hard. She was pretty coy for a die-hard Goth. She batted her eyes playfully at him and winked."You're worth being in here for, ya know", he told her, blushing, still laughing at her silly remarks.

She studied his face in response, all laughing aside. Suddenly, her mood turned solemn.  "I'll bet".

They began hanging out in the commons, walking down the halls for exercise, and swapping stories of their plights. Chris quickly found that she Lacie wasn't so steely and unapproachable as the day he first saw her.  And she discovered that he was more than a pretty boy.

"My parents weren't home when I tried", he told her one time after lunch was done. They were sitting in a corner, trying to be as private as possible. "Twenty-six years old...and I still live with them. Yeah, that's my life. I got a twin brother, and he's moved out and doing alright for himself. My sister's younger, is going to college. Wants to be a doctor".

Lacy didn't have any siblings to compare herself to. "Must be cool to have a twin", Lacie said. "I always wondered how that would be to have two of me running around! Scary, huh, dude?"

Chris shook his head. "No, it's nothing like that. Jake and I aren't identical. We are just a two-for-one deal...I mean  is that my parents got two babies in one, huge-*** pregnancy. Jake and me don't even act like twins. Half the time, I don't want to be around him."

No, it wasn't like his cousins, Adam and Alan, who were identical friends, mirror images, and best of friends. Chris never identified with that kind of brotherly relationship. He and Jake never dressed alike, or knew what the other one was thinking. And Chris felt that his brother always felt superior to him. He was the popular one. He was the ambitious one who landed a great job in computers, as a system analyst.  To add to Chris's feelings of inferiority, his little sister, Kate, had surpassed him, too. She was acing most of her classes, and boarding away at college. She was well on her way to becoming a doctor.    

"So if your mom and dad weren't around...who saved you?" Lacie asked. She stared into his eyes with such a probing stare that Chris almost clammed up. Just thinking about that day was overpowering.

"Uh...my sister and her boyfriend were hanging out in the basement. She was home from college, and I didn't know it. My parents were out-of-town. Our dog, Buster, was acting funny. He knew something was up..."

Chris stopped abruptly, but went on. "Kate, my sister, explained to me that she saw me in my room, getting up on a step ladder. She says she yelled at me to stop. I don't remember...but I guess..I guess I was going to do it anyway, and she wouldn't be able to stop me....stop me from...so I hurried up and jumped off before she could stop me."  

Lacie could almost picture it, as if she was there with him. She said, "But she did stop it. She saved you."

"Yeah", he agreed. "Buster started it all...barking, alerting my sister to come upstairs from the basement, and upstairs by my room...." All of a sudden, he felt so weird, like he was having an out-of-body experience.

"Hey, it's OK", Lacie reassured him. "It's over now. You aren't there anymore".

Chris started to cry, but tried not to. "If it weren't for Brian, Kate's boyfriend....she would not of had the strength to hold me up by herself, and cut the rope, too. I must have been like dead weight, and Brian grabbed a kitchen knife and told her to stay cool about it. Yeah, sure, like that could have been possible ! She was trying to keep the rope slack, while trying to save my sorry ****...and she was scared, shitless! "

Lacie opened up, too, relating her tragic past. She had an unbelievable tale, one hell of a ride herself.  It was amazing how detached she was when relating it, though. "Well" actually I got to fess up" "I'm not really an only child....I mean I am...but not really. I know that sounds weird---hey--but I am weird. Oddly unusual is the story of my life-- even before day one. "

Chris had no idea what she was talking about. "What are ya' trying to say?"

She added another surprising bombshell. "Also,  I have a two-year-old boy. His name is Danny. He don't see his dad--ever. The guy's a waste of space. Anyway, my mom has him. She can afford him more, and can do a better job raising him than me. Well, she does OK money-wise. Anyhow, my mom deserves him because she lost everything. And I mean EVERYTHING! Her whole fricking family practically wiped out!"

The shock that Chris had on his face-- his widened, blue eyes and open mouth were expected.   Most people had a hard time believing her.

She explained, calmly, "I mean she nearly died--way before I was born--in a car accident. And her two, little boys were with her in the backseat...and they died that day. "

Chris looked pale. "That is so awful!" he said, hoarsely, barely able to say it.

"Yeah", she continued. "Not a **** thing she could do about it, too. She was like in a million pieces. I know a part of her died right there and then, too. I just know it.  You know, dude, my mom was once really, really coasting along, just doing fine. A typical wife and mother-- a bit older than me now-- life was good. Her little boys were just cute, little toddlers--like Danny. I found out from my grandma that she was  pregnant, too, just a month or two. Nobody could have imagined it coming. She was just driving--doing nothing wrong-- when some idiot broadsided her.  I don't know if it was a guy or a lady, if they were jacked up on ***** or drugs, but they were speeding like a demon out of Hell. Her husband was at work and wasn't around."  

The boys were Benjamin and Gerard, but Lacie couldn't remember their names, for her mom could barely mention them without breaking down. It was an unbearable loss.

Chris was so horrified, amazed that Lacie related this like it was someone else's story. She was almost too cavalier about it.

"And they died ?!" he asked.

"Yeah....*****, don't it? Pure, pure agony. Downright Hell on earth. My mom had to learn to walk again. It took about year, I think."

"Oh, no! What about the baby she was supposed to have?"

"Miscarriage. Worse yet, the **** doctor told her she'd never be able to have kids again. She lost everything, man! Her husband couldn't handle it and left her. **** on top of ****, on top of more ****, on top of more. If it wasn't for her parents, and her sister's help, she would never have made it.

"But she had given birth to you, right? Or were you adopted?"

"Yeah, she gave birth to me. I was her miracle baby, and she didn't give a rat's rear end if my dad wanted me or not. He'd send her money, once in a while, but he wasn't really into either of us. Who cares though? She didn't give a **** what he thought. I was her baby. Truth is, before I came, she ended up slitting her wrists--just like me. What was the use? At first, there was nothing to live for. But now she has Danny.

"And you!" Chris quickly pointed out.

"Dude, are you kidding me? I have been NOTHING but grief for her, a real pain in her ***!"

Unlike her deceased, half-brothers, Lacie grew up before her mother's eyes, from a shy girl to a ******* rebel. Since the age of twelve, she would sneak drinks from her mom's liqueur cabinet. Eventually, she smoked *** and tried ******* and ******. Dropping out of the eleventh grade, she soon away from home, living with friends or boyfriends ever since.  Thankfully, she wasn't doing drugs when she conceived Danny. And her drinking wasn't as prevalent as it was in her teen years of partying and binge drinking. That didn't mean that her drinking problems magically disappeared, or that she was cured. Immediately, though, when she knew she was pregnant, she refused to touch a bottle, but it was just a white knuckle process that was effective momentarily--a band aid on a more serious wound. And going months without a drop of alcohol didn't deaden her urges--quite the opposite--as it only made her crave what she could not have. Often, her fears caught up with her--of especially becoming
Amara Oct 2012
This is a story I created for my 5 year old niece.

During the old times, things were not as they are now.  Dangerous monsters lurked around every corner doing the ***** deeds of the gods. The innocents had no protection. Only their own wits could keep them living another day.
Such was so for Elephant, he was one of the most intelligent of all the animals in the forest. He was large and grey, wizened with age. He had dark eyes, full of knowing. He had a strong face, with a large round nose. He was the guard of the forest, a scholar, and he could even read, unlike so many of his predecessors. He protected the innocent animals from the evil ones who meant them harm. The gods envied his intellect. They were afraid that it surpassed their own.  They wanted the innocents to be consumed by their minions, the dangerous monsters that lurked around the outside of the protection circle.
They devised a plan to destroy Elephant once and for all. They got their scariest, meanest, largest, most determined beast to do their bidding. The Mushika, some called him “The Mouse”. The Mushika had never been seen before, he had only been a whiff of a rumor found in children’s stories. He was said to be as large as the biggest trees, as mean as all of the god’s combined, and as powerful as the forest itself.
The god’s were able to convince the Mushika to do their bidding, by promising to make him even larger, meaner, and more powerful than he already was. He agreed and began his journey towards the innocents’ home where Elephant stood ready to protect and defend.
Elephant could feel it in the wind that something was coming. He read the leaves on the water to be sure. He knew that danger was almost on them and prepared for battle. He stood quietly, his eyes slowly moving from trunk to trunk. The wind blew slightly, ruffling his long ears. Then, THUMP. THUMP. THUMP. It seemed as if the whole forest quaked. Far away, trees began to fall to the left and to the right. Slowly, it got closer and closer. Until the Elephant could see a looming white beast with red eyes, a pink nose, round ears, a long pink tail, and a massive body.
He roared, “Elephant, I have a bone to pick with you!!” Elephant’s face was calm as he stepped forward. The Mouse lunged stepping on the Elephant’s trunk. Elephant howled in pain, jerking and tossing away from the Mushika’s massive foot. The Mushika persisted, realizing that he had made Elephant utterly defenseless. He opened his giant mouth, full of sharp teeth, about to swallow Elephant whole.
Elephant’s eyes filled with fear, then sharp determination. He mustered all of his strength together and made one final, gigantic tug. His round nose stretched and stretched and stretched, then popped out from underneath the mouse’s foot. He realized he was free, and wasn’t focused on how his nose had become elongated. He shoved with all of his might against the Mushika who was very startled sending him back against the trees. The Mushika had been knocked out.
Elephant called out to the innocents, “Family! We must flee now before this mouse wakes up. We must go where not even the God’s can find us!” All of the innocents came out of their huts.
One of the children, Giraffe, asked, “What happened to your nose?”
Elephant replied, “It has been stretched out, but do not worry. I am fine. We must go now!”
So all of the animals packed their things and went to a hiding place. Elephant realized he could grip things with his new nose. He picked up a giant rock and began to crack the ground away from the rest of the forest. It broke off and floated away, millions of galaxies away. They decided to call this place Earth. So that was how Earth became.
Later on, when the Mushika woke up, the gods were waiting for him. “You have failed your mission, therefore you must be punished,” they said in unison. The mouse quivered as they began chanting strange words. Slowly his size diminished to the size of an apple. He squeaked, no longer able to roar. The god’s laughed, snapping their fingers. The Mushika was suddenly on Earth, where his dreadful enemy was. The Mushika had been stripped of his mighty name and put into unfamiliar territory with no allies. Forever to be called Mouse, never to be able to defend himself again.
Elephant knew that Mouse had been punished for loosing their battle, yet he was still terrified that he would change back into that horrible beast. He feared Mouse the rest of his life, and told all of his family to fear him as well. This story explains why the elephant’s trunk is so long, why mice are so small, and why such a large animal as the elephant is scared of such a small animal as the mouse.
Cyril Blythe Sep 2012
I followed him down the trail until we got to the mouth of the mines. The life and energy of the surrounding maples and birches seemed to come to a still and then die as we walked closer, closer. The air was cold and dark and damp and smelt of mold and moths. Delvos stepped into the darkness anyways.
“Well, girl, you coming or aren’t you?”
I could see his yellowed tobacco teeth form into a slimy smile as I stepped out of the sun. It was still inside. The canary chirped.
“This tunnel is just the mouth to over two hundred others exactly like it. Stay close. Last thing I need this month is National Geographic on my *** for losing one of their puppet girls.”
“Delvos, ****. I have two masters degrees.” He rolled his eyes.
“Spare me.” He trotted off around the corner to the left, whistling.
“I survived alone in the jungles of Bolivia alone for two months chasing an Azara’s Spinetail. I climbed the tallest mountain in Nepal shooting Satyr Tragopans along the cliff faces. In Peru I…” Suddenly I felt the weight of the darkness. In my blinding anger I lost track of his lantern. I stopped, my heartbeat picked up, and I tried to remind myself of what I did in Peru.
I followed a Diurnal Peruvian Pygmy-Owl across the gravel tops of the Andes Mountains, no light but the Southern Cross and waning moon above. I am not scared of darkness. I am not scared of darkness.
I stopped to listen. Somewhere in front of me the canary chirped.

When I first got the job in Vermont I couldn’t have been more frustrated. Mining canaries? Never had I ever ‘chased’ a more mundane bird. Nonetheless, when Jack Reynolds sends you on a shoot you don’t say no, so I packed up my camera bag and hoped on the next plane out of Washington.
“His name is John Delvos.” Jack said. He handed me the manila case envelope. “He’s lived in rural Vermont his entire life. Apparently his family bred the canaries for the miners of the Sheldon Quarry since the early twenties. When the accident happened the whole town basically shut down. There were no canaries in the mines the day the gas killed the miners. His mother died in a fire of some sort shortly after. The town blamed the Delvos family and ran them into the woods. His father built a cabin and once his father died, Delvos continued to breed the birds. He ships them to other mining towns across the country now. We want to run a piece about the inhumanity of breeding animals to die so humans won’t.” I stood in silence in front of his deep mahogany desk, suddenly aware of the lack of make-up on my face. He smiled, “You’re leaving on Tuesday.”
“Yes sir.”
“Don’t look so smug, Lila. This may not be the most exotic bird you’ve shot but the humanity of this piece has the potential to be a cover story. Get the shots, write the story.”

“Do you understand the darkness now, Ms. Rivers? Your prestigious masters degrees don’t mean **** down here.” Delvos reappeared behind the crack of his match in a side tunnel not twenty yards in front of me. He relit the oily lantern and turned his back without another word. I reluctantly followed deeper into the damp darkness.
“Why were there no canaries in the mine on, you know, that day?” The shadows of the lantern flickered against the iron canary cage chained on his hip and the yellow bird hopped inside.
“I was nine, Ms. Rivers. I didn’t understand much at the time.” We turned right into the next tunnel and our shoes crunched on jagged stones. All the stones were black.
“But surely you understand now?”
The canary chirped.

When I first got to Sheldon and began asking about the location of the Delvos’ cabin you would have thought I was asking where the first gate to hell was located. Mothers would smile and say, “Sorry, Miss, I can’t say,” and hurriedly flock their children in the opposite direction. After two hours of polite refusals I gave up. I spent the rest of the first day photographing the town square. It was quaint; old stone barbershops surrounded by oaks and black squirrels, a western themed whiskey bar, and a few greasy spoon restaurants interspersed in-between. I booked a room in the Walking Horse Motel for Wednesday night, determined to get a good nights sleep and defeat this towns fear of John Delvos tomorrow.
My room was a tiny one bed square with no TV. Surprise, surprise. At least I had my camera and computer to entertain myself. I reached into the side of my camera bag and pulled out my Turkish Golds and Macaw-beak yellow BIC. I stepped out onto the dirt in front of my door and lit up. I looked up and the stars stole all the oxygen surrounding me. They were dancing and smiling above me and I forgot Delvos, Jack, and all of Sheldon except it’s sky. Puffing away, I stepped farther and farther from my door and deeper into the darkness of night. The father into the darkness the more dizzying the stars dancing became.
“Ma’am? Everything okay?”
Startled, I dropped my cigarette on the ground and the ember fell off.
“I’m sorry, sir. I was just, um, the stars…” I snuffed out the orange glow in the dirt with my boot and extended my hand, “Lila Waters, and you are?”
“Ian Benet. I haven’t seen you around here before, Ms. Waters, are you new to town?”
“I’m here for work. I’m a bird photographer and journalist for National Geographic. I’m looking for John Delvos but I’m starting to think he’s going to be harder to track than a Magpie Robin.”
The stars tiptoed in their tiny circles above in the silence. Then, they disappeared with a spark as Ian lit up his wooden pipe. It was a light colored wood, stained with rich brown tobacco and ash. He passed me his matches, smiling.
“What do you want with that old *******? Don’t tell me National Geographic is interested in the Delvos canaries.”
I lit up another stick and took a drag. “Shocking, right?”
“Actually, it’s about time their story is told.” Benet walked to the wooden bench to our left and patted the seat beside him. I walked over. “The Delvos canaries saved hundreds of Sheldonian lives over the years. But the day a crew went into the mines without one, my father came out of the ground as cold as when we put him back into it in his coffin.”
I sat in silence, unsure what to say. “Mr. Benet, I’m so sorry…”
“Please, just Ian. My father was the last Mr. Benet.”
We sat on the wooden bench, heat leaving our bodies to warm the dead wood beneath our legs. I shivered; the stars dance suddenly colder and more violent.
“Delvos canaries are martyrs, Ms. Waters. This whole town indebted to those tiny yellow birds, but nobody cares to remember that anymore.”
“Can you tell me where I can find Mr. Delvos and his, erm, martyrs?” The ember of my second cigarette was close to my pinching fingertips.
“Follow me.” Ian stood up and walked to the edge of the woods in front of us. We crunched the cold dust beneath our feet, making me aware of how silent it was. Ian stopped at a large elm and pointed, “See that yellow notch?” Sure enough, there was a notch cut and dyed yellow at his finger’s end. “If you follow true north from this tree into the woods you’ll find this notch about every fifty yards or so. Follow the yellow and it’ll spit you out onto the Delvos property.”
“Thank you, Ian. I really can’t begin to tell you how thankful I am to find out where to find this elusive Mr. Delvos and his canaries.”
“You don’t have to,” he knocked the ash out of his pipe against the tree, “Just do those birds justice in your article. Remember, martyrs. Tell old Delvos Ian Benet sends his regards.” He turned and walked back to the motel and I stood and watched in silence. It was then I realized I hadn’t heard a single bird since I got to Sheldon. The stars dance was manic above me as I walked back to my room and shut the door.

The canary chirped and Delvos stopped.
“This is a good place to break out fast. Sit.”
I sat obediently, squirming around until the rocks formed a more comfortable nest around my bony hips. We left for the mines as the stars were fading in the vermillion Vermont sky this morning and had been walking for what seemed like an eternity. I was definitely ready to eat. He handed me a gallon Ziploc bag from his backpack filled with raisins, nuts, various dried fruits, and a stiff piece of bread. I attacked the food like a raven.
“I was the reason no canaries entered the mines that day, Ms. Waters.” Delvos broke a piece of his bread off and wrapped it around a dried piece of apricot, or maybe apple. I was suddenly aware of my every motion and swallowed, loudly. I crinkled into my Ziploc and crunched on the pecans I dug out, waiting.
“Aren’t you going to ask why?”
“I’m not a parrot, Mr. Delvos, I don’t answer expectedly on command. You’ll tell me if you want.” I hurriedly stuffed a fistful of dried pears into my mouth.
Delvos chuckled and my nerves eased, “You’ve got steel in you, Ms. Rivers, I’ll give you that much.”
I nodded and continued cramming pears in my mouth.
“I was only nine. The canaries were my pets, all of them. I hated when Dad would send them into the mines to die for men I couldn’t give two ***** about. It was my birthday and I asked for an afternoon of freedom with my pets and Dad obliged. I was in the aviary with pocketfuls of sunflower-seeds. Whenever I threw a handful into the air above me, the air came to life with flickering yellow brushes and songs of joy. It was the happiest I have ever been, wholly surrounded and protected by my friends. Around twelve thirty that afternoon the Sheriff pulled up, lights ablaze. The blue and red lights stilled my yellow sky to green again and that’s when I heard the shouting. He cuffed my Dad on the hood of the car and Mom was crying and pushing her fists into the sheriff’s chest. I didn’t understand at all. The Sheriff ended up putting Mom in the car too and they all left me in the aviary. I sat there until around four that afternoon before they sent anyone to come get me.”
Delvos took a small bite of his bread and chewed a moment. “No matter how many handfuls of seeds I threw in the air after that, the birds wouldn’t stir. They wouldn’t even sing. I think they knew what was happening.”
I was at a loss for words so of course I blurted, “I didn’t see an aviary at your house…”
Delvos laughed. “Someone burnt down the house I was raised in the next week while we were sleeping. Mom died that night. The whole dark was burning with screams and my yellow canaries were orange and hot against the black sky. That’s the only night I’ve seen black canaries and the only night I’ve heard them scream.”
I swallowed some mixed nuts and they rubbed against my dry throat.
“They never caught the person. A week later Dad took the remainder of the birds and we marched into the woods. We worked for months clearing the land and rebuilding our lives. We spent most of the time in silence, except for the canary cries. When the house was finally built and the birds little coops were as well, Dad finally talked. The only thing he could say was ‘Canaries are not the same as a Phoenix, John. Not the same at all.”
The canary chirped, still only visible by the lanterns flame. Not fully yellow, I realized, here in the mines, but not fully orange either.

When I first walked onto John Delvos’ property on Thursday morning he was scattering feed into the bird coops in the front of his cabin. Everything was made of wood and still wet with the morning’s dew.
“Mr. Delvos?” He spun around, startled, and walked up to me a little too fast.
“Why are you here? Who are you?”
“My name is Lila Waters, sir, I am a photographer and journalist for National Geographic Magazine and we are going to run an article on your canaries.”
“Not interested”
“Please, sir, can I ask you just a few quick questions as take a couple pictures of your, erm, martyrs?”
His eyes narrowed and he walked up to me, studying my face with an intense, glowering gaze. He spit a mouthful of dip onto the ground without breaking eye contact. I shifted my camera bag’s weight to the other shoulder.
“Who told you to call them that?”
“I met Ian Benet last night, he told me how important your birds are to this community, sir. He sends his regards.”
Delvos laughed and motioned for me to follow as he turned his back. “You can take pictures but I have to approve which ones you publish. That’s my rule.”
“Sir, it’s really not up to me, you see, my boss, Jack Reynolds, is one of the CEO’s for the magazine and he...”
“Those are my rules, Ms. Waters.” He turned and picked back up the bucket of seed and began to walk back to the birds. “You want to interview me then we do it in the mine. Be back here at four thirty in the morning.”
“Sir…?”
“Get some sleep, Ms. Waters. You’ll want to be rested for the mine.” He turned, walked up his wooden stairs, and closed the door to his cabin.
I was left alone in the woods and spent the next hour snapping pictures of the little, yellow canaries in their cages. I took a couple pictures of his house and the surrounding trees, packed up my camera and trekked back to my motel.

“You finished yet?” Delvos stood up and the memory of his green and brown wooded homestead fled from my memory as the mine again consumed my consciousness. Dark, quiet, and stagnant. I closed the Ziploc and stuffed the bag, mainly filled with the raisins I sifted through, into my pocket.
Delvos grunted and the canary flapped in its cage as he stood again and, swinging the lantern, rounded another corner. The path we were on began to take a noticeable ***** downward and the moisture on the walls and air multiplied.
The canary chirped.
The lantern flickered against the moist, black stones, sleek and piled in the corners we past. The path stopped ahead at a wall of solid black and brown Earth.
The canary chirped twice.
It smelt of clay and mildew and Delvos said, “Go on, touch it.”
I reached my hand out, camera uselessly hanging like a bat over my shoulder. The rock was cold and hard. It felt dead.
The Canary was flitting its wings in the cage now, chirping every few seconds.
“This is the last tunnel they were digging when the gas under our feet broke free from hell and killed those men.”
Delvos hoisted the lantern above our heads, illuminating the surrounding gloom. All was completely still and even my own vapor seemed to fall out of my mouth and simply die. The canary was dancing a frantic jig, now, similar to the mating dance of the Great Frigate Bird I shot in the Amazon jungle. As I watched the canary and listened to its small wings beat against the cold metal cage I begin to feel dizzy. The bird’s cries had transformed into a scream colder than fire and somehow more fierce.
The ability to fly is what always made me jealous of birds as a child, but as my temple throbbed and the canary danced I realized I was amiss. Screaming, yellow feathers whipped and the entire inside of the cage was instantaneously filled. It was beautiful until the very end. Dizzying, really.
Defeated, the canary sank to the floor, one beaten wing hanging out of the iron bars at a most unnatural angle. Its claws were opening and closing, grasping the tainted cave air, or, perhaps, trying to push it away. Delvos unclipped the cage and sat it on the floor in the space between us, lantern still held swaying above his head. The bird was aflame now, the silent red blood absorbing into the apologetic, yellow feathers. Orange, a living fire. I pulled out my camera as I sat on the ground beside the cage. I took a few shots, the camera’s clicks louder than the feeble chirps sounding out of the canary’s tattered, yellow beak. My head was spinning. Its coal-black eyes reflected the lantern’s flame above. I could see its tiny, red tongue in the bottom of its mouth.
Opening.
Closing.
Opening, wider, too wide, then,
Silence.


I felt dizzy. I remember feeling the darkness surround me; it felt warm.

“I vaguely remember Delvos helping me to my feet, but leaving the mine was a complete haze.” I told the panel back in D.C., “It wasn’t until we had crossed the stream on the way back to the cabin that I began to feel myself again. Even then, I felt like I was living a dream. When we got back to the cabin the sight of the lively yellow canaries in their coops made me cry. Delvos brought me a bottle of water and told me I needed to hit the trail because the sun set early in the winter, so I le
by
Alexander K Opicho

(Eldoret, Kenya;aopicho@yahoo.com)

When I grow up I will seek permission
From my parents, my mother before my father
To travel to Russia the European land of dystopia
that has never known democracy in any tincture
I will beckon the tsar of Russia to open for me
Their classical cipher that Bogy visoky tsa dalyko
I will ask the daughters of Russia to oblivionize my dark skin
***** skin and make love to me the real pre-democratic love
Love that calls for ambers that will claw the fire of revolution,
I will ask my love from the land of Siberia to show me cradle of Rand
The European manger on which Ayn Rand was born during the Leninist census
I will exhume her umbilical cord plus the placenta to link me up
To her dystopian mind that germinated the vice
For shrugging the atlas for we the living ones,
In a full dint of my ***** libido I will ask her
With my African temerarious manner I will bother her
To show me the bronze statues of Alexander Pushkin
I hear it is at ******* of the city of Moscow; Petersburg
I will talk to my brother Pushkin, my fellow African born in Ethiopia
In the family of Godunov only taken to Europe in a slave raid
Ask the Frenchman Henri Troyat who stood with his ***** erected
As he watched an Ethiopian father fertilizing an Ethiopian mother
And child who was born was Dystopian Alexander Pushkin,
I will carry his remains; the bones, the skull and the skeleton in oily
Sisal threads made bag on my broad African shoulders back to Africa
I will re-bury him in the city of Omurate in southern Ethiopia at the buttocks
Of the fish venting beautiful summer waters of Lake Turkana,
I will ask Alexander Pushkin when in a sag on my back to sing for me
His famous poems in praise of thighs of women;

(I loved you: and, it may be, from my soul
The former love has never gone away,
But let it not recall to you my dole;
I wish not sadden you in any way.

I loved you silently, without hope, fully,
In diffidence, in jealousy, in pain;
I loved you so tenderly and truly,
As let you else be loved by any man.
I loved you because of your smooth thighs
They put my heart on fire like amber in gasoline)

I will leave the bronze statue of Alexander Pushkin in Moscow
For Lenin to look at, he will assign Mayakovski to guard it
Day and night as he sings for it the cacotopian
Poems of a slap in the face of public taste;

(I know the power of words, I know words' tocsin.
They're not the kind applauded by the boxes.
From words like these coffins burst from the earth
and on their own four oaken legs stride forth.
It happens they reject you, unpublished, unprinted.
But saddle-girths tightening words gallop ahead.
See how the centuries ring and trains crawl
to lick poetry's calloused hands.
I know the power of words. Seeming trifles that fall
like petals beneath the heel-taps of dance.
But man with his soul, his lips, his bones.)

I will come along to African city of Omurate
With the pedagogue of the thespic poet
The teacher of the poets, the teacher who taught
Alexander Sergeyvich Pushkin; I know his name
The name is Nikolai Vasileyvitch Gogol
I will caution him to carry only two books
From which he will teach the re-Africanized Pushkin
The first book is the Cloak and second book will be
The voluminous dead souls that have two sharp children of Russian dystopia;
The cactopia of Nosdrezv in his sadistic cult of betrayal
And utopia of Chichikov in his paranoid ownership of dead souls
Of the Russian peasants, muzhiks and serfs,
I will caution him not to carry the government inspector incognito
We don’t want the inspector general in the African city of Omurate
He will leave it behind for Lenin to read because he needs to know
What is to be done.
I don’t like the extreme badness of owning the dead souls
Let me run away to the city of Paris, where romance and poetry
Are utopian commanders of the dystopian orchestra
In which Victor Marie Hugo is haunted by
The ghost of Jean Val Jean; Le Miserable,
I will implore Hugo to take me to the Corsican Island
And chant for me one **** song of the French revolution;


       (  take heed of this small child of earth;
He is great; he hath in him God most high.
Children before their fleshly birth
Are lights alive in the blue sky.
  
In our light bitter world of wrong
They come; God gives us them awhile.
His speech is in their stammering tongue,
And his forgiveness in their smile.
  
Their sweet light rests upon our eyes.
Alas! their right to joy is plain.
If they are hungry Paradise
Weeps, and, if cold, Heaven thrills with pain.
  
The want that saps their sinless flower
Speaks judgment on sin's ministers.
Man holds an angel in his power.
Ah! deep in Heaven what thunder stirs,
  
When God seeks out these tender things
Whom in the shadow where we sleep
He sends us clothed about with wings,
And finds them ragged babes that we)

 From the Corsican I won’t go back to Paris
Because Napoleon Bonaparte and the proletariat
Has already taken over the municipal of Paris
I will dodge this city and maneuver my ways
Through Alsace and Lorraine
The Miginko islands of Europe
And cross the boundaries in to bundeslander
Into Germany, I will go to Berlin and beg the Gestapo
The State police not to shoot me as I climb the Berlin wall
I will balance dramatically on the top of Berlin wall
Like Eshu the Nigerian god of fate
With East Germany on my right; Die ossie
And West Germany on my left; Die wessie
Then like Jesus balancing and walking
On the waters of Lake Galilee
I will balance on Berlin wall
And call one of my faithful followers from Germany
The strong hearted Friedrich von Schiller
To climb the Berlin wall with me
So that we can sing his dystopic Cassandra as a duet
We shall sing and balance on the wall of Berlin
Schiller’s beauteous song of Cassandra;

(Mirth the halls of Troy was filling,
Ere its lofty ramparts fell;
From the golden lute so thrilling
Hymns of joy were heard to swell.
From the sad and tearful slaughter
All had laid their arms aside,
For Pelides Priam's daughter
Claimed then as his own fair bride.

Laurel branches with them bearing,
Troop on troop in bright array
To the temples were repairing,
Owning Thymbrius' sovereign sway.
Through the streets, with frantic measure,
Danced the bacchanal mad round,
And, amid the radiant pleasure,
Only one sad breast was found.

Joyless in the midst of gladness,
None to heed her, none to love,
Roamed Cassandra, plunged in sadness,
To Apollo's laurel grove.
To its dark and deep recesses
Swift the sorrowing priestess hied,
And from off her flowing tresses
Tore the sacred band, and cried:

"All around with joy is beaming,
Ev'ry heart is happy now,
And my sire is fondly dreaming,
Wreathed with flowers my sister's brow
I alone am doomed to wailing,
That sweet vision flies from me;
In my mind, these walls assailing,
Fierce destruction I can see."

"Though a torch I see all-glowing,
Yet 'tis not in *****'s hand;
Smoke across the skies is blowing,
Yet 'tis from no votive brand.
Yonder see I feasts entrancing,
But in my prophetic soul,
Hear I now the God advancing,
Who will steep in tears the bowl!"

"And they blame my lamentation,
And they laugh my grief to scorn;
To the haunts of desolation
I must bear my woes forlorn.
All who happy are, now shun me,
And my tears with laughter see;
Heavy lies thy hand upon me,
Cruel Pythian deity!"

"Thy divine decrees foretelling,
Wherefore hast thou thrown me here,
Where the ever-blind are dwelling,
With a mind, alas, too clear?
Wherefore hast thou power thus given,
What must needs occur to know?
Wrought must be the will of Heaven--
Onward come the hour of woe!"

"When impending fate strikes terror,
Why remove the covering?
Life we have alone in error,
Knowledge with it death must bring.
Take away this prescience tearful,
Take this sight of woe from me;
Of thy truths, alas! how fearful
'Tis the mouthpiece frail to be!"

"Veil my mind once more in slumbers
Let me heedlessly rejoice;
Never have I sung glad numbers
Since I've been thy chosen voice.
Knowledge of the future giving,
Thou hast stolen the present day,
Stolen the moment's joyous living,--
Take thy false gift, then, away!"

"Ne'er with bridal train around me,
Have I wreathed my radiant brow,
Since to serve thy fane I bound me--
Bound me with a solemn vow.
Evermore in grief I languish--
All my youth in tears was spent;
And with thoughts of bitter anguish
My too-feeling heart is rent."

"Joyously my friends are playing,
All around are blest and glad,
In the paths of pleasure straying,--
My poor heart alone is sad.
Spring in vain unfolds each treasure,
Filling all the earth with bliss;
Who in life can e'er take pleasure,
When is seen its dark abyss?"

"With her heart in vision burning,
Truly blest is Polyxene,
As a bride to clasp him yearning.
Him, the noblest, best Hellene!
And her breast with rapture swelling,
All its bliss can scarcely know;
E'en the Gods in heavenly dwelling
Envying not, when dreaming so."

"He to whom my heart is plighted
Stood before my ravished eye,
And his look, by passion lighted,
Toward me turned imploringly.
With the loved one, oh, how gladly
Homeward would I take my flight
But a Stygian shadow sadly
Steps between us every night."

"Cruel Proserpine is sending
All her spectres pale to me;
Ever on my steps attending
Those dread shadowy forms I see.
Though I seek, in mirth and laughter
Refuge from that ghastly train,
Still I see them hastening after,--
Ne'er shall I know joy again."

"And I see the death-steel glancing,
And the eye of ****** glare;
On, with hasty strides advancing,
Terror haunts me everywhere.
Vain I seek alleviation;--
Knowing, seeing, suffering all,
I must wait the consummation,
In a foreign land must fall."

While her solemn words are ringing,
Hark! a dull and wailing tone
From the temple's gate upspringing,--
Dead lies Thetis' mighty son!
Eris shakes her snake-locks hated,
Swiftly flies each deity,
And o'er Ilion's walls ill-fated
Thunder-clouds loom heavily!)

When the Gestapoes get impatient
We shall not climb down to walk on earth
Because by this time  of utopia
Thespis and Muse the gods of poetry
Would have given us the wings to fly
To fly high over England, I and schiller
We shall not land any where in London
Nor perch to any of the English tree
Wales, Scotland, Ireland and Thales
We shall not land there in these lands
The waters of river Thames we shall not drink
We shall fly higher over England
The queen of England we shall not commune
For she is my lender; has lend me the language
English language in which I am chanting
My dystopic songs, poor me! What a cacotopia!
If she takes her language away from
I will remain poetically dead
In the Universe of art and culture
I will form a huge palimpsest of African poetry
Friedrich son of schiller please understand me
Let us not land in England lest I loose
My borrowed tools of worker back to the owner,
But instead let us fly higher in to the azure
The zenith of the sky where the eagles never dare
And call the English bard
through  our high shrilled eagle’s contralto
William Shakespeare to come up
In the English sky; to our treat of poetic blitzkrieg
Please dear schiller we shall tell the bard of London
To come up with his three Luftwaffe
These will be; the deer he stole from the rich farmer
Once when he was a lad in the rural house of john the father,
Second in order is the Hamlet the price of Denmark
Thirdly is  his beautiful song of the **** of lucrece,
We shall ask the bard to return back the deer to the owner
Three of ourselves shall enjoy together dystopia in Hamlet
And ask Shakespeare to sing for us his song
In which he saw a man **** Lucrece; the **** of Lucrece;

( From the besieged Ardea all in post,
Borne by the trustless wings of false desire,
Lust-breathed Tarquin leaves the Roman host,
And to Collatium bears the lightless fire
Which, in pale embers hid, lurks to aspire
  And girdle with embracing flames the waist
  Of Collatine's fair love, Lucrece the chaste.

Haply that name of chaste unhapp'ly set
This bateless edge on his keen appetite;
When Collatine unwisely did not let
To praise the clear unmatched red and white
Which triumph'd in that sky of his delight,
  Where mortal stars, as bright as heaven's beauties,
  With pure aspects did him peculiar duties.

For he the night before, in Tarquin's tent,
Unlock'd the treasure of his happy state;
What priceless wealth the heavens had him lent
In the possession of his beauteous mate;
Reckoning his fortune at such high-proud rate,
  That kings might be espoused to more fame,
  But king nor peer to such a peerless dame.

O happiness enjoy'd but of a few!
And, if possess'd, as soon decay'd and done
As is the morning's silver-melting dew
Against the golden splendour of the sun!
An expir'd date, cancell'd ere well begun:
  Honour and beauty, in the owner's arms,
  Are weakly fortress'd from a world of harms.

Beauty itself doth of itself persuade
The eyes of men without an orator;
What needeth then apologies be made,
To set forth that which is so singular?
Or why is Collatine the publisher
  Of that rich jewel he should keep unknown
  From thievish ears, because it is his own?

Perchance his boast of Lucrece' sovereignty
Suggested this proud issue of a king;
For by our ears our hearts oft tainted be:
Perchance that envy of so rich a thing,
Braving compare, disdainfully did sting
  His high-pitch'd thoughts, that meaner men should vaunt
  That golden hap which their superiors want)

  
I and Schiller we shall be the audience
When Shakespeare will echo
The enemies of beauty as
It is weakly protected in the arms of Othello.

I and Schiller we don’t know places in Greece
But Shakespeare’s mother comes from Greece
And Shakespeare’s wife comes from Athens
Shakespeare thus knows Greece like Pericles,
We shall not land anywhere on the way
But straight we shall be let
By Shakespeare to Greece
Into the inner chamber of calypso
Lest the Cyclopes eat us whole meal
We want to redeem Homer from the
Love detention camp of calypso
Where he has dallied nine years in the wilderness
Wilderness of love without reaching home
I will ask Homer to introduce me
To Muse, Clio and Thespis
The three spiritualities of poetry
That gave Homer powers to graft the epics
Of Iliad and Odyssey centerpieces of Greece dystopia
I will ask Homer to chant and sing for us the epical
Songs of love, Grecian cradle of utopia
Where Cyclopes thrive on heavyweight cacotopia
Please dear Homer kindly sing for us;
(Thus through the livelong day to the going down of the sun we
feasted our fill on meat and drink, but when the sun went down and
it came on dark, we camped upon the beach. When the child of
morning, rosy-fingered Dawn, appeared, I bade my men on board and
loose the hawsers. Then they took their places and smote the grey
sea with their oars; so we sailed on with sorrow in our hearts, but
glad to have escaped death though we had lost our comrades)
                                  
From Greece to Africa the short route  is via India
The sub continent of India where humanity
Flocks like the oceans of women and men
The land in which Romesh Tulsi
Grafted Ramayana and Mahabharata
The handbook of slavery and caste prejudice
The land in which Gujarat Indian tongue
In the cheeks of Rabidranathe Tagore
Was awarded a Poetical honour
By Alfred Nobel minus any Nemesis
From the land of Scandinavia,
I will implore Tagore to sing for me
The poem which made Nobel to give him a prize
I will ask Tagore to sing in English
The cacotopia and utopia that made India
An oversized dystopia that man has ever seen,
Tagore sing please Tagore sing for me your beggarly heat;

(When the heart is hard and parched up,
come upon me with a shower of mercy.

When grace is lost from life,
come with a burst of song.

When tumultuous work raises its din on all sides shutting me out from
beyond, come to me, my lord of silence, with thy peace and rest.

When my beggarly heart sits crouched, shut up in a corner,
break open the door, my king, and come with the ceremony of a king.

When desire blinds the mind with delusion and dust, O thou holy one,
thou wakeful, come with thy light and thy thunder)



The heart of beggar must be
A hard heart for it to glorify in the art of begging,

I don’t like begging
This is knot my heart suffered
From my childhood experience
I saw my mother
pixels Feb 2013
my sheets are a noose
every night i swing
swing my life away

my pillow is an ocean
every night i drown
in my own tears and hopes

the pills
the people
the harsh sunlight

during the day
i am protected
i can smile without worry

the Monster is asleep

pretty pills protect princesses

but my terror grows
as the sun sinks low
the sky bright red
like the blood the Monster sheds

i wait until morning
before my eyes close

in my tears i drown
in my dreams i die

screams wake me
oh, those are mine
i'm sorry
didn't mean to wake you
no, i'm fine
just a nightmare

just a nightmare

*The Monster eats pretty princesses when they close their eyes.
Nightmares are horrible, especially when you're the starring victim and villian.
Driving up the highway
When I saw it in the mist
Like a pure and tender ******
Still waiting to be kissed
A village all forgotten
Somehow time had missed
You could see it from the highway
slightly hazy in the mist

Had time forgotten this poor place
Left in limbo for all days
Was it just a trick of light and sun
Manufactured through the haze
Were the folks here ****** to stay
Out of reach but in our gaze
Or were they truly here by choice
Living old, forgotten ways

Brigadoon did spring to mind
but, in truth I thought this good
Be something better than that curse
This village protected by the wood
I pulled on to the shoulder
And tried to see as best I could
This simple town or vision
That had not aged as it should

I saw no point of entry
No way to get there from my place
It was perfect, untouched, special
A village bathed in grace
Folks kept driving past me
Up the highway at such pace
They would never see this village
In the mist as fine as lace

The village may be magic
It may be something in between
In truth all I can tell you
What I saw, not what I mean
It's a village, plain and simple
in the woods, all shades of green
Un-kissed, and yet so perfect
stuck in stasis, in between
Perched upon a corporate throne,

We march into the great unknown

As wasted words of gossip drone

And steel replaces brick and stone.
Soon you find yourself alone

In crowded streets with a global phone,

Doing a random strangers bidding.



A means to an end they say,

As poor men die while rich men play,

When honest work brings modest pay,

And doesn't last 'em through the day

Though profiteers in moral grey 

Flood the airwaves to in turn say,

"Our wealth simply paves  the way,

Tomorrow is your salvation day,

You want peace? Then war is only fitting."



Look and you will see

Money buys democracy,

The Citizens United, see?

If we knew the truth, would we agree?

Those answers are not  going to be

Yes or no but more likely

Maybe, perhaps, or possibly,

Because in reality,

Right and wrong are just kidding.



To those who fret the plagues we face,
Yet believe we can change this place,
Who stifle doubts about the Human Race,
And yearn to be together in this chase,
With subdued pride and envy, in every case,

Seeking common goals to found the base,

May we lay the evil plots to waste,

For evils clients who once stood are now sitting.



The time is now, make a stand
,
Pull our heads out of the sand

Call their bluff with a hidden hand

Of virtue they don’t quite understand,
Defy procedure’s they have planned
,
Unite across the lines that brand,

Refuse all prejudice, none may be accepted.



Some know for they already looked

And the flow of money keeps them booked,

Takes but once to have them hooked,

Setting the table with food uncooked

For others whose foundations shook

Are pitted against the small time crook

Hoping only that we be protected

.

Hark the sounds of rebellious cries

For those that call, they realize

All that lives sure enough dies
But when displeased we close our eyes

To the masters of disguise

Who think their profit justifies

The invisible hand growing in size

While their strings attached go uncorrected



They kept us quiet all the while

Waiting with numbers dialed

To put the innocent to trial

Lining up in single file

To be cast into the same old pile

None willing to lay down their tile,

Casting shadows upon their guile,

The double agent mercantile,

Lobbying candidates to endorse.



All I ask, is to what do we base belief?

Dying children get no relief

Oil poisons the coral reef

Prophecy of the fallen chief

Given a thought but a bit too brief
Together a tree, alone but a leaf
Although it is all who feel the grief

Of our actions consequential course



Corrupted elites discuss our goals

So we continue to dig our holes

To depths that darken souls

Rigging markets to decide our roles

Assumptions made so that greed controls

They draw their graphs till the pencil dulls

Then add a factor, see how that goes

Without even the slightest feeling of remorse



Growth is sacred, but is it moral?

Strengthen reason yet we quarrel

Over falsities of ***** oral

Arrangements like that of floral

Remedies but not doctoral

Blood of fallen lives pastoral

Remind that we’re all mortal

But all thereafter bear the force.



So please tell me at what cost?

In a moments past our objectives lost

Compassion was our hand now tossed

Lines we’ve drawn, lines we’ve crossed

How much dirt can be washed

From our conscience we exhaust

Before shattering glass of fate we sloshed?

Working from the scattered pieces back to the source



It is us who blindly lead the strut

We are the source and nothing but

Whose center point is one giant rut

Where false desires cracked and cut

And the selfish feed an endless gut,

When our culture begins to split and jut,

We might finally ask... It was all for what?
Inspired by the great Bob Dylan. I refer you to the song “It’s Alright Ma’”
Mary Gay Kearns Jun 2018
I took the left path where hydrangeas grew and sleepy primroses under woods, edged shady trees.
The empty stream ran quietly dry
With grass cuttings piling high.
If one peeped, one would find tiny creatures
To cast a sparkle here and there, a delight.
So on tip-toe, with sandels bent
Up high I reached to take
The plastic fairy as she twirled a pirouette
In a theatre made by chance.
Reflected in a silver mirror intwinned with ivy branch
A mottled foal tends his dreams and Chrismas robin chirps.

My brother took the right hand path where the trees grew fruit
Ripe berries from the gooseberry bush bulged their prickles.
Dangling from hawthorn now a cowboy with a hat
Looking for his fellow Indian with the yellow back sack.
Sheep gather in a hollow, dark, protected from the sun
And Mr toad, now lost of paint, has turned a bit glum.

And so we leave our woodland friends and travel up the *****
Winding round the rose bed and goldfish where they float.
Then up we climb, the middle route, to jump the pruned clipped
Hedge.
The lawn divided in two halves, a contemporary taste.

Now we're nearly at that place where if one was to turn
Could see down across the land
To the sea and sand.
Of all the beauties that I've known
Nothing beats this Island home.

Love Mary x




My grandfather’s retirement bungalow was in Totland Isle of Wight.
It was named Innisfail meaning ‘Isle of Ireland’.
Behind, the garden led down to magical and delightful to children who came as visitors. My grandfather would prepare this woodland with some suitable surprises.
The garden and woodland deserved its own name and in retrospect
Is now named ‘Innislandia’ to suggest a separate, mysterious land.
Beyond the real world.
In the poem A Country Lane on page 8 the latched gate is the back gate to my grandparent’s garden and bungalow in Totland as above.
John Garbutt wrote the following piece on the meaning of the name 'Innisfail'.

My belief that the place-name came from Scotland was abandoned
on finding the gaelic origins of the name.
‘Inis’ or ‘Innis' mean ‘island’, while ‘fail’ is the word for
Ireland itself. ‘Innisfail’ means Ireland. But not just
geographically: the Ireland of tradition, customs, legends
and folk music, the Ireland of belonging.
So the explanation why the Irish ‘Innisfail’ was adopted as the name
of a town in Alberta, Canada, and a town in Australia,
can only be that migrants took the name, well  over a century ago
to their new homelands, though present-day Canadians
and Australians won’t have that same feeling about it.

------------------------------------------------------------­---------
The bungalow was designed by John Westbrook, who was an architect, as a wedding present for his father and Gwen Westbrook.
I do believe he also designed the very large and beautiful gardens.
It is there still on the Alan Bay Road. Love Mary xxxx
Tornado’s kicking up dust,
Leaving broken pieces of promises and futures shattered on the ground,
With no one left to pick them up but the people who are broken themselves.

Just when I thought there was no reason to keep on moving forward you came around,
Showing me that maybe I’m not so broken, that maybe the cracks in my exterior are just the challenges I’ve overcome. That the scars on my heart like gaping trenches are only battle wounds that will heal again.

You make me feel beautiful, like maybe my smile is the reason for the sun to shine in the morning, like maybe for once someone sees  in me something that I’ve yet to because I’m too stubborn to see the beauty that’s in the mirror. Look harder you told me once.

They say that to love another person you need to love yourself, but I loved you first. And although I see the dreams that could have been ours in your eyes
I pushed away because the moment I let the walls around my heart crumble like the first hit on demolition day, the moment I let you tear down all of the years I spent hating myself for never being what they wanted me to be, the moment I let you in I shied away.

You can’t love someone who’s uncomfortable in their own skin,
Who wishes everyday that they could start again and although my head is blowing up with the what ifs from yesterday and the possibilities of tomorrow, and although all I could see was grey you were there.

Were you always there?
Waiting on your steed to rescue you from the disaster that I’ve allowed myself to become, an entanglement of empty promises and sadness known all too well.
Tell me, were you hiding there among the stars I counted every night before I slept wishing that one day I’d meet you because
I think you were.

So when you turned to me and said “Who’s going to take care of you when I’m gone”
It felt like bullets ripping their way into the cavity of where my heart used to be and I realize.

I REALIZE that for the first time in my life I’m going to have to fight off the monsters under my bed by myself. That the painful words that get shot my way like arrows from an archers bow will have to be bounced away by the invisible force field I’ve built around my heart, impenetrable with no point of entry to let anyone else  because too much damage has already been caused by the people who I HAD let in.  

This heart is protected
Protected from the tornado’s kicking up dust leaving broken dreams and promises shattered on the ground with no one left to pick them up but the ones who are broken themselves
So when she looks at me and asks “Who’s going to take care of you when I’m gone?”
I look into the eyes that have become my answers in all of the confusion and I respond “I Will”.

I knew then that goodbye wasn’t far away but for one day I wanted to pretend that it wasn’t on its way. That instead of counting down the days until you left, I was counting the moments that you stayed.

I looked at the stars tonight and I counted them twice, once while looking in the sky once while looking into your eyes. And as the tears build up behind my eyes like storm clouds building for days I smile and tell you” I support you’ . I never thought I’d be the one to shoot the arrow.

The storm clouds should have been enough to make you stay but they weren’t and by the time I worked up the nerve to whisper “don’t go” you’ve gone.

**Tornado is my middle name.
I got inspiration for this because of Shane Koyczan who is an amazing Slam Poet.
Lizzy Jun 2016
People will often say
That those who have trouble
Letting others in
Are "guarded".

And maybe that's true
In most cases.
They wear an emotional
Suit of armor
And build imaginary walls
Around their hearts.

I also have trouble
Letting people get close.
But I would not,
In any circumstances,
Say that I am "guarded".

To call someone "guarded"
Insists that they are protected,
Safe from harm.
That's where the word loses its
Relevance to me.

I am not protected.
Not in the slightest.
I wear no suit of armor
And have no walls
Around my heart.

I'm as vulnerable as a baby deer
Who's lost it's mother
And broke it's leg.
I am susceptible
To any and all types of injury.

I am not safe from harm
Or impervious to heartbreak.
In fact,
I'm fragile.
My heart is brittle
And will break as easily as glass.

I have trouble letting people in,
But I am by no means "guarded".
I have trouble letting people in
Because I am extremely unguarded.

I am not protected or safe,
But I am evasive.
Which is probably
The smartest thing to be,
For people like me.

I run from danger
And emotional intimacy
Because I know
I'm too frail
To handle being mistreated
Or left alone.

After letting myself fall
Over and over again,
I've learned that love
Is not worth the pain
It inevitably causes.

I am done risking
My delicate soul
To feel close to someone.
At least for now,
I don't want to love
Or be loved by anyone.

For now,
I'm still recovering.
I'm still learning how to live
With myself and without the
Infatuation of someone
Who will most likely end up
Being nothing but a memory.

I won't correct you
If you call me "guarded".
But those who do not wish
To be emotionally close
Are not always so hardened.
Sometimes they're soft
And scared of the world around them.
Andrew Fisher Mar 2014
I want to be wanted.
I want to be worth wanting.
To be desired, sought after, prized.
I want to be protected.
Not shielded, but jealously kept.
Not abused either... Just held.

I want someone to love me.
Umi Mar 2018
Growth prevaded by a soil of emotions, rain of memories engraving the seed for a flower awaiting to bloom, the gift of life in a moving motion of time, forming and structuring the inner beauty of one,
Over years the spring of this beauty blossoms depending on the deeds, deepest wishes such as kindness and intuitions majestically,
A righteous soul will truly stand proud in the sun, alike a helianthus,
A trecious persons flower will be dead, as if it was drought, burnt in the heat of summer, the sweet aroma of life will still fill the air,
Caught in endless change of a devils distorted, desperate working,
The servants have the chance to either change for the better or to be ruined in their transient existence, fading into the dust they came of,
Beauty cast in the heart remains forever with enough care and work,
So this flower shall never rot, as long as it is protected with a desire and will to do good, to be gentle and truthful, thoughtful and wise,
Compassion, greatness and deep loving concern are a fertilizer,
Spread this kindness and you may have planted the seed for another beautiful child of the earth; A precious flower

~ Umi
Ariel Baptista Jun 2014
Bike basket full of blackberries

As I ride back

Bleeding fingers

Scraped wrists

Dark juice in the corners of my lips

It was beautiful how they clung to one another

How the protected each other

How they shared.their.thorns.

Was it wicked of me to have picked them?

Or should I have picked more?

Dark tears in the corners of my eyes

Torn thighs

Broken nails

As I ride back

Bike basket full of blackberries
Thom Jamieson Aug 2018
He dreamed he was loved.
A love guarded fiercely, with passion.
A love that was not unconditional.
Not the blank slate love of a child
or an animal so programmed by instinct.
This love was willful and earned.
Having glimpsed an injured brilliance
beneath the flab and sweat and stench she weaned it to health.
Making it stronger, and brighter,
and more prominent with each passing day; until it erupted.
And he was transformed.
to embody that brilliance.
And she protected that embodiment.
Letting nothing call it to question.
She cared for him as he never could for himself.
She soothed and softened
and loved the deep furrow from his brow.
And her passion overwhelmed him.

And he wanted for nothing.

And when he opened his eyes
To **** and filth
with only the kiss of concrete
and the banter of horns
and obscenities
and footsteps.
******* FOOTSTEPS.
Heels pittering purposefully to mask exhausted uncertainty
Brogues, and wingtips clicking; with a cocky juvenile illusion of importance.
Boots plodding heavily under the weight of duty,
to build, and fix, and secure for the others.
And through a fog laid thick and throbbing
by poisons chased dutifully the night before;
he felt her fierce love for a fleeting moment
Guarding, and loving his shining brilliance
until it erupted from him;
With bile and blood, **** and regret
coldly rejected by his concrete companion.
And she was gone once again.
I almost never write in the third person but thought I would give it a try (part of my narcissism therapy ;) )  Feedback welcome  (also part of it...:))
tonight we gather
to mark a
commencement day

four decades on
from a late June
afternoon

exchanging
embraces and
bon voyage wishes

departing a grand
chandeliered Rivoli
embarcadero

bound
to glorious
destinations

our bold sails
welling with
youthful
exuberance
in pursuit of
dreams
and intrepid
endeavors

our life
journeys
are blessed
with rich
abundance,
the grace of
challenge and
the gift of days

this evening
as we reconnect
to share the joys
and wisdom gleaned
from well lived lives
we will also celebrate
in multicolored splendor
the lives of classmates
who have commenced
journeys to other
destinations

though their
earthly sojourn
is complete
passed friends
remain alive
in our memory

surely the spirits
of the beloved
will walk this
room tonight

forever young
their quiet presence
will gently touch
tender hearts

they’ll appear
as they once looked
on their finest day

and as we relive
the bits of our lives
we shared with
one another

we may feel
the grasp of a
warm hand
as we once did
during that
snowy evening
west end walk

we’ll dance with them again
around Tamblyn Field bonfires
gyrating in a shared
ecstatic ebullience

we’ll applaud most likely
to succeed lives
most beautiful smiles
and crack up
to the hilarity of
class clown jokes

we’ll taste the kiss
of an after dark
Lincoln Park
rendezvous

groove to the
rock steady
beat of a
bad company tune  

we’ll submerge again
in a Yellow Submarine
to embark on an epic
Greenwich Village
journey

we’ll roll down
the shore on old
Thunder Road
windows open
hair blowin
radio blastin

we’ll taste the sweet sip
of Cherry Cokes
and Root Beer floats
at Roadrunners

chasing lost love salty tears
spilled over ***** upperclass home boys
and the soft blush sentiment of a
first French kiss

wouldn't it be nice
to swoon to the
fantasy and
winsome yearnings
of favorite
summer songs

filling our head’s
with mind
blowing collages
starring
team mates
drama club
second takes
heady chess club
checkmates

we’ll marvel at the disruption of
premillennial breakthrough science projects
created by pocket protected slide ruling
entrepreneurial math wizards

we'll recall droll gossip
by drab hall lockers
dim gym showers
awkward dances
Yippie people power

patriotic assemblies
cool sharp dressers
right on brother
Que Pasa lil sista

rock and roll album covers
Simon and Garfunkel poetics
Go Go Boots kickin
FM radio psychedelics

Midnight Confessions
emphatically blared
from the cafeteria jukebox
Civil Rights, Earth Day
and righteous
anti war activism

tribes of hoods, Ra’s,
jocks, artistes and tie dye hippies
everything is groovy
lets get a sandwich at Ernie’s

first carnal explorations
Moody Blue Tuesday trysts
man could she speak German
boy do I dig her dress

we did hard time together
at split session detention centers
ate chocolate chip cookies
cracked up to Mr. Thomas’s
Ides of March tragedy

took first tokes and
sips of Boones Farm
we partied hard
and did no harm

admired academic brainiacs
and the civic commitment
of student govie reps
shut down the gubmint
was never a threat 

basketball rumbles
Bulldog football
**** Ludwig soccer teams
nimble cheerleaders

leggy majorettes
kick *** marching band fanfares
compelling masquer presentments
Park Avenue wayfarers

they were
crew mates
on The Soul Boat
rode shotgun
to Midnight Rambler
Doobie Concerts

cruised hard in
the Root Hog
Rat Raced Louie
in tiny white Pintos

we booked
many a mile
with our lost
friends

on the road to
this evening

authoring
volumes of
fabled odysseys
and fantastic
recollections

their stories
are our stories
telling our stories
keeps them alive

some may say
gone too soon
but the measure of
a well lived life
is not counted
in days, nor
accomplishments

but how one has loved
and how much one was loved

quietly there
always with us
forever to be
a wholesome
part of us

as the brothers
from Cooley High
would say

lets tip a sip
for the brothers
and sisters who
ain’t here….

God bless
Godspeed
enjoy the evening
vaya con dios mis amigos

Music Selection:
Pat Metheny
Mas Alla


RHS 74
Class Reunion
Elks Club
Rutherford
11/29/14
Lefty , I can't imagine how he got his name
Always did things backwards . . . so . . . . .
I was not surprised when he up and went away

Never said why , when , or where he had to go
Now he is growing old where as they say
"Only God Knows"

What are clouds anyway ?
Water vapor in the sky ?
I think it is so much more

I think they are recycled tears
Of every broken heart that ever be
Falling to a desert below

My cactus flower
Blooming in the night
So none will see

She keeps her love close
Protected by her needles

I sit and watch her bloom
And before the sun has begun
I leave looking for lefty

And the reasons I quit
Are the excuses I choose

Between the desert and the sea
Where the cause will be
Clouds keep winking at me

The circle is broken into pieces
I speak in deserts of sand
Drown in seas of lingering waves of pain

And I have no clue where lefty went
Only remember a cactus flower blooming
Without the thorns between the two
A story of a crumbling circle of love and friends and on a journey to nowhere .
chylee plunkett Nov 2012
This is a poem of a girl. A girl who is so cliché, that she needs to write angst-filled poetry to keep herself conscious and her thoughts free, but is too hipster to believe it. A girl who is too freckled to be fair, too fleshy to be flirty, too conspicuous to be classy, too prominent to be petite, but too small to be seen. A girl who’s piercing blue eyes absorbs everything and regurgitates emotions like a tampered slots machine—excessi vely and noisily. This is a poem of a girl who is so over-stimulated with color, texture, love, and life that the numbness in her head is a pink eraser. A girl who was brought up to have opinions and dreams as long as they kept her on the path to perfection, poise, and parenting. A girl who is experienced enough to know the difference between sorrow and guilt, manipulation and cowardice, hysteria and hyperventilation but is too naïve to know why certain boys are a bluish green, why math is a bafflement, and why ground up chili peppers in dark chocolate ice cream isn’t everyone’s favorite food. This is a poem of a girl who salivates at the mere thought of classical music, couture fashion, and feminine heels. A girl who breathes in culture like a caterpillar inhales hookah smoke. A girl who Alis volat propriis (flies with her own wings) but ultimately plummets to nosus decipio (Let’s just cheat) because her humanity held down her Heredity. A girl who thrives on music of every variety: as long as it can paint out her emotions in front of her. This is a poem of a girl who is so acerbically witty and harsh that she could unarm Napoleon but is so vehemently protecting that Mother Theresa herself would be awed. A girl with an attention span of a fish, short-term memory like sea foam, thoughts that outnumber armadas, and a bad habit of dehydration. This is a poem of a girl who talks but shouldn’t, speaks but doesn’t, and who is so badly burnt by the enticement of affection that her wallflower camouflage is now charred ashes around her stubby toes. A girl who has such infatuation that she could pin Lust against the wall and make Passion jealous. A girl who wears red lipstick because she knows it will keep a man’s gaze for 8.2 more seconds than with chapstick and the 50’s will never grow old. A girl too nervous and traditional to make the first move, but too strategic and over-analytical to lie back and forget. A girl who loathes the word mamihlapinatapai because it describes her every circumstance since the day she befriended the purple-brown boy who thought her personality tasted of Raspberry ice cream and to this day she still can’t pronounce it. This is a poem of a girl who needs a bed so crowded and protected with blankets and pillows that her monsters can’t penetrate her mazed-up mind. A girl who drinks tea with her lips, and philosophy with her soul. A girl who can’t spell the alphabet backwards but can make great mnemonic devices. A girl who can’t tie ends together because she doesn’t want to leave anything unsaid but whose tangents are kite-strings. A girl whose sentences are distracting fences in front of her literal eyes but doors for her mind’s eyes. A girl who has Synesthesia but keeps it quiet because of the condescending kids in kindergarten who called her a freak, and a liar. This is a poem of a girl who thinks about Death and whether he is a snatching thief or just the ferryman. A girl who dances with her eyes shut, her heart open and her toe-socks on. A girl who will clean her room at 2 am because she can’t handle the sight and the night is too lively for sleeping anyways. A girl who wears her heart not only on her sleeve, but on her chest, open as a blushing book playing poker with hockey players and still winning a game. A girl who’s emotions are kept in a Tupperware box and left in the refrigerator but if you shake it hard enough the lid just might pop open
I always thought women who follow a mans every word must be some sort of weak woman.  Where is her own power?  Where is her own thought and beliefs in this follow the leader deal.  Why would anyone follow another like that?
I wonder no more.  I know.
I have more power, not less.  I follow everything he tells me to do for several reasons.  The first is respect.  I have the utmost respect for this man.  I know that everything he does he does to keep me protected and safe.  Therefore I listen word for word what he asks of me, what he TELLS me to do.
When someone is so protective one can see it as *******, possessiveness or simply as love and protection.
How one sees this is depending on what you believe.
I believe his every more is for MY benefit.  I know everything he does he does for me.  I know he wants me happy, smiling and constantly touching.  
I do not resist.  I do not fight this.  It makes me VERY happy.  I am protected and loved.  I am the most safe I have ever felt.
I am not a possession.  I am most definitely not treated like one.
I am cared for more now than I have ever been in more ways than I thought possible.  I feel so very protected.  I am HIS responsibility.
He takes that as seriously as possible.  With a huge smile no less.
Nat Lipstadt Oct 2015
be ever gentle to thy words
treat them, your tools, well,
cleansing and protecting,
wrapping them in cloths of chamois and moleskin
that they may be well conditioned and
pour forth with a temperament clear and viscous,
reflecting their high honors and a noble lineage,
they are well-intentioned to exist far longer
than your meager temporal life,
upon this ever hasty, ever perpetual, orbit

give them all respect, their fair due,
they are treasure immeasurable,
for which you have been granted guardianship,
custody received from others to be gifted onwards,
yours, but for the duration

so oft we trifle words,
expel them from the country of our body,
without passport and earnestness,
as if they were the cheapest of footnote filler,
day tourists, to be treated as leavings,
refuse for daily discardation,
barely noting their fast comings and faster disappearance,
but leaving not, a mark of distinction

more truffle than trifle,
find them in the dark forest of your life,
use them sparingly, just for soaring,
take them from the roots of your trees,
shave them with a paring knife,
counts them in bites and measure them in grams,
even in grains,
for words are the seasoning of our lives,
agent provacateurs that can modify the moment,
bringing out to the fore
the flavor of the underlying

speak them slow and distinct,
for they arrive slow to you,
a trickling of refugees for your sheltering,
harbor them as full companions,
protected by natural law,
provision them well,
prepared and ever ready for a quick departure,
moor them at the embarcadero,
for the next restless leg of endlessness,
which they themselves will inform you
will last longer than eternity,
long after there are no humans to speak them
Oct. 6, 2015
4:30am
Manhattan Island
Becky Jo Gibson Aug 2016
protected I sit alone
lacking the comfort of love
no one to soothe my isolation
surviving an angry crowd
i want to scream out loud
where is my equal
someone strong in spirit
able to find love under the pain
pain from slights of countless people
love not gone
just covered up tight
out in the open
what others see
not the real me
pain that has a life of it's own
taking my laughter
eating away at my joy
leaving me protected and alone
Down in the bayou where the mangroves grow
There's talk of black voodoo, like Marie Leveau
The Swamp Witch, is legend, she has magic so black
That those who have seen her, have never come back
There;s tales of the noises that come from the dark
Of werewolves and zombies as rough as the bark
The mangroves are sentinels, to where the magic resides
Where even a longboat has no room to glide
Bodies go missing from the graveyards most nights
And there's always a fog shading the fireflies lights
The Swamp Witch is ruler and Queen of this world
Where souls are all taken and spines can be curled
They say that she came here from Canadian lands
She was a metis they say, from the Western Tar Sands
A mystic by nature, a dark witch by blood
She lives deep in the swamp, protected by gators and mud
The gators respect her, they do as she bids
They keep watch on the waters, they're her reptillian kids
She keeps zombies as gendarmes, collecting bodies to turn
Just how black is her magic, no one can discern
The Swamp Witch is legend, she is as old as all time
The air in the bayou is as thick as the slime
The cajuns say voodoo is the core of her heart
They avoid fishing where the mangrove trees start
The Swamp Witch, a legend ? or is she truly the Queen
She's the Louisiana Witch, no one survives once she's seen.....
Thinking
Thinking
My head can't stop thinking
My scars are healing
I'm no longer bleeding
Beating
Beating
My hearts quickly beating
My heart is beating
And I can't stop thinking
You
You
You're the thoughts on my mind
You're the beating in my heart
Without you I'm blind
Wait
Wait
Slow down
Take a breath
Stop thinking so much
Make this moment last
This moment right here
My heart--it warms
Lying down
You safe in my arms
A protected protector
Saved from my mind's hell
I'll do anything to protect you
As you protect me from myself.
Temple Shepherd Mar 2014
It seems I was
born with a flawed mind
and an inferior anatomy.

I was raised to be a daisy
soft and dainty
abandoned in the polar air to be
protected
by the starving dirt that
pins us to the earth.

Now I wait to be tossed fertilizer
…every once and a while.
In the meantime my innocent petals are plucked
and my stem grows grungy.

I watch horrified.
Flowers being ripped from their roots
purely out of admiration for their beauty
sacrificing the vibrant life that once painted its scales.

I am forced to grasp tightly onto soil
that will never be stable.
Clifford Smith Aug 2015
Dear father in Heaven,
Father I come before you as I am
I come before you as a SINNER
Asking for FORGIVENESS
In the name of JESUS,
As I reach to you father
I ask that you reach out to me
In the name of JESUS,
Father you know all about me
You know all about my troubles
You said you wouldn't put
More on me than I can bare
I know YOUR WORD
Doesn't come back void,
So father I WILL
Lay down my BURDENS
And bring my problems to you
In the name of JESUS,
Father I THANK YOU
For sending your only begotten SON
To die on the CROSS for my MY SINS
And for that I am grateful
And I THANK YOU
In the name of JESUS,
You made me in YOUR IMAGE
And I know the way I have
Been going about isn't
Pleasing IN YOUR SIGHT
But yet you still give me chances
And I THANK YOU
In the name of JESUS,
You are with me even when
I'm not with myself
And I THANK YOU
In the name of JESUS,
You do have my heart
I do want eternal life in Heaven
I do want to walk with you
I do accept you as MY SAVIOR
I am Thankful for your HOLY SPIRIT
I do THANK YOU for my kids
I do THANK YOU for my family
I do THANK YOU for life itself
I do THANK YOU for my love ones
I do THANK YOU for the lovely woman you sent me
Most importantly...
I THANK YOU for YOU
In the name of JESUS,
Father I ask you to
Heal my mind
Heal my heart
Heal my body
Heal my kids and their mothers
Heal my SPIRIT
Heal my SOUL
Heal my SPIRITUAL MIND
Heal my troubled ways
Heal my finances
Heal ALL my love ones
In the name of JESUS,
Father I bless your name
In the name of JESUS,
Father I ask you to
Watch over my kids
Their mother's
And their household's
And keep them safe and protected
And COVERED IN YOUR BLOOD
In the name of JESUS,
Father I ask you to
Watch over my love ones
And their household's
And keep them safe and protected
And COVERED IN YOUR BLOOD
In the name of JESUS,
Father I ask you to
Watch over me and my household
And keep us safe and protected
And COVERED IN YOUR BLOOD
In the name of JESUS,
Father I ask you to
Watch over others
As this world continues to unfold
In the name of JESUS,
Father as I end this prayer
I not only want to THANK YOU
For my good days
I want to also THANK YOU
For the worst days I have had
In the name of JESUS,
Father as I close my eyes
I ask that you watch over me
And that NO WEAPON
Formed against me SHALL PROSPER
In the name of JESUS,
In JESUS name I pray
In the name of
THE FATHER
THE SON
AND of THE HOLY SPIRIT
Amen.
Instead of just saying my prayers,  I figured I'd share my prayers and hope it makes someone else drop to their knees and THANK GOD.
Mateuš Conrad Oct 2018
.oh man, a spoiled mood, so rare, but so invigorating at the same, it's like you get so mad that you're only waiting for the cooling period, the cooling period is always so... armchair analogous... some people turn to a gym sauna, but nothing compares to letting off steam from, the tabernacle, i.e. your heart.

woke up at 10am, checked the time,
dived in for a snooze...
3 hours later, i thought i just lay there,
a strange sleep consumed me,
as if: half awake, half knocked out
by a Mike Tyson punch...

took the broken drill to the workshop,
walked in... immediate
claustrophilia emerged...
the scents of metal, oil
and cardboard...

    are men more prone to claustrophilia
and women more prone
to claustrophobia?

such a gentile lad behind the counter,
his father working beside me on
some other mechanical tool...
he said some wise words about
hands, and tools,
and what not...
can't exactly remember what he said,
but:

hands & tools were in it,
so... given that: hands are tools...
he wasn't far off from the truth...

such a gentile lad...
he even managed to catch up with me
in the off-lice
while i was wondering what beer
to buy (on this fine fine October
afternoon)
to get my details...
     gripped his shoulder gently
and said my thank you...

but last night was something else...
i rarely become mad while drunk,
but when i do:
pandemonium in my head...
the ego become a Minotaur
and subsequently the labyrinth expands...

phobias and philias -
fears and loves...

  while i was walking up to the workshop
with my broken drill,
i passed a Muslim family...

now... if i saw a pretty large spider crawling
unsuspected and with catching
it with a ****...
i'd have a reflex reaction,
an irrationally funny reflex reaction...
SO WHAT THE **** IS
ISLAMO"PHOBIA"?
apparently some people like to abuse
words...
   i passed the Muslim family casually...
what? they're just people,
the father was teaching his children
how to cross the road safely,
and his wife was watching
him with that motherhood glee
of contentment with regards
to how their father was engaging
her offspring...
  
   islamophobia?! what?!
come again... because i've just explained
what arachnophobia is...
a phobia is associated with
the reflexes... or rather... a reflex...
an irrational, funny (later) reflex...
      when i see a Muslim i don't react
to him / her like i would react
to a ******* spider of abnormal size
(abnormal... because it's not
a tarantula)...

but today i woke and felt i had to
concede to an apology,
yes, casual "racist" that i am,
i forgot to prefix the word ****,
i.e. ****-,
       because, just sometimes...
i can't be bothered to add the suffix
-stani...
                  simple...

   but there is a but...
my father was in a slight traffic collision...
and... i had to listen to him
ramble on and on about the details
as i filled out the police report...

when two cars collide...
you exchange insurance details...
so the insurance companies can
meddle in the matter...

but this ****- woman had some sort
of bodyguard who intimidated my father,
telling him: it was illegal to exchange
insurance details...
yes yes... accents: i call them diacritical
distinction coordinates...

              the point being:
what is she? some ******* Hindu deity,
a holy cow?!
        so she couldn't have had her sight
impaired by the Ninja outfit?!
a liberal journalist in a center right
newspaper (i think that the times
is center right, or, at least,
i like to think so)

                     wrote an article about
donning the niqab for one day...
and she herself claimed that her vision
was impaired... when, walking...
there...
           i'd ban niqabs for the purpose
of safe driving...
     no! there's no ******* compromise!

****...
        i just want to drink a beer,
and watch a cherry tree change color in
this glorious season...
         why does everything have to boil
down to the nitty-gritty,
the fiddly, the perpetuating nuance of
what is, and what isn't -
   that isn't always black & white?

- but i do remember why my parents emigrated
to England... well...
if they weren't ****** over by
some ****** lawyer... England was just
a step-over... over to Argentina and
hopefully to H'america...
    seems my mother had a fascination
with her grandfather...
a polyglot, who emigrated there...
   married some woman,
abandoned his son (my grandfather)
due to his brother's smear campaign
to inherit some land, yada yada yada...
but the Iron Curtain was lifted....
   major recession...
my hometown's steel industry collapsed,
plus the Communist Party connections
of my grandfather:
who joined the Party?
               for opportunistic reasons...
and to fulfill functions like sitting court
on a jury...
                        my hometown saw the demise
of the fall...
                    around 20,000 jobs lost,
if not more...
          
and yes, i know what illegal immigration
looks like,
   but i also know what legal immigration
looks like...
   i've seen the ping-pong...
i just hate it...
                    when some Somali with 10
kids gets a council house in west London...
and he's probably "illegal" too...
or, whatever Commonwealth ****-hole
he comes entitled with the status:
the former colonized.

but at the end of the day...
i just want to drink my beer man.
Taken by my hand,
warped and aged with time,
rings and rings of life, ingrained beneath my skin,
you hold me with ease,
and, I unravel with gravity, falling apart.
I bend and lean with the wind,
a slight breeze from you,
is enough to shake me from the ground,
to the sky,
and everything is naked,
and everything is the truth,
and i stand here, before you,
as you hold an axe in your hands.
Ready to fell me,
and take me apart.
My roots are old,
my heart is protected with years of warped timber,
my heart is protected as peach pit,
my heart is protected with poison ivy.
Yet in the spring i blossom,
In the summer i shine bright as the very sun,
And in the autumn i renew myself,
ready to ride the winter's harsh code.
You take me within your grasp,
I am a cold wind,
I am a summers breeze;
I am the very essence of life within you,
within me.
As you come to me, and take me,
And take me apart,
I am ready to go,
I am ready to be burnt by the fire,
and become the earth again.
So come at me,
but be warned I stand tall,
and built strong,
but beneath the outer layers,
I am truly a phenomenal piece of work,
given from the universe,
to you.
Bring your axe,
Bring your rough hands,
Bring your words.
I am rejuvenated by you.
who does not like the feeling
that we are all protected
by our guardian angels

however

as the ancient Greeks
    and after them
Benjamin Franklin & others
maintained

God helps those
who help themselves
Ron Tranmer Nov 2011
The flag of our nation, a flag under God.
To our flag we will always be true.
Stand proud, stand tall with hand over heart,
as we honor the red, white, and blue.

A symbol of freedom. A banner for all
who reside underneath it’s proud wave.
Though battered and torn, shattered and worn,
It flies, o’er the home of the brave.

Stand proud, stand tall, with hand over heart,
with respect for this flag we so love.
May this land always be, strong and free,
and protected by God from above.

We are a proud nation. One under God.
It was He who gave us this land.
Free we remain, to praise His great name.
Rise up, and for God make a stand.

Our flag has flown high over battlefields.
Covered caskets of daughters and sons.
Great is the cost, through lives that are lost.
We we’ll gratefully remember each one.

Stand proud, stand tall, with hand over heart,
with respect for this flag that we love.
May this land always be, strong and free,
and protected by God from above.
Warren-Johnson Nov 2017
Love  be not selfish
Love be not jealous
Love be not envious
Love be not rude
Love be not idle

Love be an emotion
Love be faithful
Love be forgiving
Love be a want
Love be a hope
Love be a need
Love be joy
Love be selfless
Love be true
Love be kind
Love be patient
Love be righteous
Love be respectful
Love be trusting

Love be a home filled with children's laughter.
Love is greeting a stranger with a sincere smile.
Love is treating others with care, taking a small moment in all our activities to consider the next person.

Looking at our world, if love was a species, surely it it would be a protected species.

So
Is love still alive ?
I'm sure yes
God created us in his image
God is love
So
Love was Our species (the human)
Love should be me
Love should be you
Love should be a nation
Love should be our race

What have we become?
a May 2015
the double-glaze and blackout curtains shield me
from the world's uncertainty.
the panes of glass so sure not to allow its overside to retreat and
seep its liquid coldness to reach me. it's neither
cold nor warm at the touch, unlike me.
i am protected by the double gaze and blackout curtains but
some force that differs from the one that is currently causing
the tree outside sway dangerously close to my perch is
causing my mind and body to be insulated
by a layer of ice.
goosebumps prickle and my arm and leg stubble
raise themselves.
but my mind does not provide for itself thermoregulatory
reflexes, i
must withstand the shiver of my memories.
The Mermaid (Part One)

The evening was cool
and the sky was so clear
And ripples of waves
were all I could hear

The moon shone bright
and stars twinkled on high
Then from out of nowhere
came so seductive a sigh

I looked out to sea
to whence this sound came
And my eyes did believe
they were playing a game

For as waves lapped around
a rock out at sea
I saw a beautiful vision
who was staring at me

Naked as love
she sat all alone
On that rising edifice
of black granite stone

Her body so wondrous
that I shook with such lust
But a smile so pure
that my thoughts were unjust

Her hair was entangled
with luscious green kelp
That protected her modesty
without man-made help

It hung down over *******
so excitingly full
And covered the parts
that are made to enthral

My mind quickly taken
by this girl of my dreams
But as I looked closer
all was not as it seems

For legs this beauty
was completely bereft
And a long fishy tail
was all she had left

Then with a smile
that made my heart still
She slipped into the water
and I saw she was real

For she dived like a dolphin
under azure sea
And all that was left
were the ripples and me



The End........or is it?



The Mermaid (Part Two)

The man with the tear soaked eyes walked along the beach for the thousandth time, his hands were shaking and his lips quivering in the cold, he constantly looked out to sea, where was she, would she ever return, would she mend his broken heart. He had but caught a fleeting glimpse of this beauty as she preened herself on that ancient granite rock, but a glimpse was all it had taken; he was completely besotted by this angel from the deep.
Even now, weeks after the event he could still see every tiny detail of his wondrous vision, the sparkling brown eyes that outshone the sun, and the kelp entangled hair that seemed to be alive with light and glistened with the reflection from the moon. Her heaving ******* that had caused the man in him to want her body for his own ****** pleasures, and that oh so innocent smile that had replaced the pure animal lust within him with a more protective desire to take her in his arms and cherish her.
He had not kept her appearance a secret, he had told everyone he had met, and he had talked and talked and talked. He wanted to tell everyone about his dream girl, his mermaid from the deep, his beautiful fish tailed siren. But would they listen to him? The answer was no, a resounding no. He was laughed at, ridiculed, pointed at and made out to be the village idiot, just because he wanted to share what he had seen. But he didn’t care, he would see her again, he knew he would see her again; he had to see her again, otherwise, well otherwise he would go crazy.
Another tear ran down his face as he once again looked at the vacant rock where his angel had once sat and realised that maybe they were right, maybe he was mad, just a demented old fool, someone that had let his dreams overtake reality. His heart wrenched tear fell to the sand and along with his hopes and dreams soaked into nothingness; He turned away and looked no more, he must preserve his sanity at all costs so he walked away and returned to the boredom of his sad uneventful life.
So he was not there an hour later when a ripple formed in the water as a dream like beauty pulled herself from the sea and perched on her favourite granite rock. She looked around, but he was not there, maybe it was her imagination but she was sure she had seen love in his eyes, maybe if she waited he would return, but no, she was being foolish, she slipped off the rock once more and plunged deep into the dark forbidding sea, back to reality she told herself, back in the water where nobody could see her tears.

The End
Not any character of the jungle,
At the time power was kept by the single
Lion kind, risked jumping into the lions’ jaws,
Against their rapacity raising paws:
The hares and hyenas they could strangle
And devour; in their minds best were their laws
Providing rights of the mighty
As common and full sovereignty.

The era was worsened by men-hunting,
Whose guns were used the wildlife menacing.
The weak of the forest saw that succumbed
The lions, who were the first shot at, welcomed
The hunters and their faces showed, smiling.
They were deceived when the first seen were harmed
Like the lions by the same haughty
Men set against their sovereignty.

Some lions who survived called the animals
For a meeting, and the men-criminals
Were the main topic of their discussion.
The lions warned, “Will wipe us away those men
If can’t stand together as animals,
Fight them and save lion, hypo, hare and wren…”
Mocked and heckled the assembly
That ne’er had enjoyed sovereignty.

Each one’s motion was that there was no need
Of obeying on the lions, who to feed
Their cubs with their flesh used to take pleasure.
They thought their forest had become seizure
Of the men for lack of unity; freed
It’d be with or ‘thout a lion as major:
They’d trust who would bring unity
And help them enjoy sovereignty.

There came a time and there came protectors
Of the animals to stop the hunters
From destroying on the environment.
They showed in killing there’s no contentment.
So the hunters ceased to be predators,
And the fauna had no more sentiment
Of hating the humanity
That brought them peace and sovereignty.

Some of them were kept in zoo
And the kingship of the lions they did boo.
Cows, rabbits, goats - were domesticated,
And more than ever they were protected.
Such treatment them gave of humans new view:
The protectors or authors of the deed
Looked like who’d brought brutality,
But in their hearts reigned sovereignty.

Later on the lions found that in the strong
Claws dwelt no good power, but can be for long
Which is applied to all comfort giving,
That a king marching in front of trembling
Souls, as if to hell angels would belong,
One day will see his strength brought to nothing,
But where freedom ain’t scarcity
Kings and subjects share sovereignty.

What the beasts failed to know was the keepers
Of the zoo were children of the poachers,
Who’d found unfair deed what their fathers did,
To take good care of them had decided
And did not want to be called game-seekers’
Generation. In the action could read
Great kindness and humanity
The beasts savoring sovereignty.

A former foe may become a good friend,
Who breaks off with the past and turns his hand
Into protector, support provider –
Like Human Rights Activists. No wonder
Where they are from, people’s torn hearts they mend.
A protector has ne’er been intruder
As long as for tranquility
He works and preserves sovereignty.

A sovereign nation is not like a house
With its closed doors, and inside, like a mouse,
A wife is beaten and loses her life
Without neighbours’ intervention as if
Not hearkening the victim, and the louse
Of man not stopping is to save the life.
Is a land where people’s safety
Is denied full of sovereignty?

If at The Hague someone is indicted,
It means not people he has protected,
Nor that he has well governed Liberia,
But ‘cause people’s hearts he has filled with fear
And a lot of trouble he’s invited.
After shedding blood there and here,
The lions who’ve made their claws *****
Should be there washed for sovereignty.

Wherever the lions rage it’s no matter:
Matters the will to keep the world better.
Some Devil’s advocates would call nations
Not in Syria to find indications
Of crimes as if is found a wife-beater
At Holy Land or brothels it opens.
In a place where reigns sanctity
Won’t dwell breakers of sovereignty.


A rot of conception of sovereignty
Reeks when gangrene holds sway o’er a country,
In which Democracy swings at cannons;
Debates are feared that aim ruling with brains;
Wear noose as necklace who would change carry,
And the song “Independence” is hangmen’s.
Where lions and lambs live with loyalty,
There is unshaken sovereignty.
This poem aims to think of what sovereignty is and especially of its true concept.
http://www.amazon.com/author/bonim007

— The End —