Submit your work, meet writers and drop the ads. Become a member
Cedric McClester Jan 2017
By: Cedric McClester

Women swarmed the streets
Of Washington and the USA
Putting the President on notice
That they don’t intend to play
And he can’t take away
Everything that they’ve gained
To make America great again
Had better be explained

Women swarmed the streets
Some called it ***** power
Their numbers were increasing
Each and every hour
Even over seas
Their voices could be heard
So trying to keep them down
At that point was absurd

Women swarmed the streets
They came from everywhere
And every ethnic group
Was represented there
In all stripes and colors
Of the rainbow see
Expressing their desire
To have him let them be

Women swarmed the streets
It’s not to be believed
How their numbers kept increasing
Who in the world conceived
That two women from Hawaii
Would have been the trigger
For a demonstration and march
That just got bigger and bigger










Cedric McClester, Copyright © 2017.  All rights reserved.
Keith Collard Jun 2013
The Quest for the Damsel Fish  by Keith Collard

Author's  Atmosphere

On the bow of the boat, with the cold cloud of the dismal day brushing your back conjuring goose bumped flesh you hold an anchor.  For the first time, you can pick this silver anchor up with only one hand and hold it over your head. It resembles the Morning Star, a brutal medieval weapon that bludgeons and impales its victims.  Drop it into the dark world beyond the security of your boat--watch the anchor descend.
        Watch this silver anchor--this Morning Star--descend away from the boat and you, it becomes swarmed over with darkness.  It forms a ******-metallic grin at first as it sinks, then the sinking silver anchor takes its last shape at its last visible glimpse.  It is so small now as if it could be hung from a necklace.  It is a silver sword.  
Peering over the side of the boat, the depths collectively look like the mouth of a Cannibalistic Crab, throwing the shadows of its mandibles over everything that sinks down into it--black mandibles that have joints with the same angle of a Reaper's Scythe.  

I am scared looking at this sinking phantasm.  I see something from my youth down there in this dark cold Atlantic.  I see the silver Morning Star again, now in golden armor.  I remember a magnificent kingdom, in a saltwater fish tank I had once and never had again.  A tropical paradise that I see again as I stare down into the depths.  This fish tank was so beautiful with the most beautiful inhabitants who I miss.  Before I could lift the silver anchor--the Morning Star--over my head with only one hand, turning gold in that morning sun-- I was a boy who sat indian style, cross legged--peering into this brilliant spectacle of light I thought awesome.  I thought all the darkness of home and the world was kept at bay by this kingdom of light...

Chapter  1 Begins the Story

The Grey Skies of Mass is the Name of This Chapter.

                                                      ­­                        
    
 Air, in bubbles--it was a world beauty of darkness revealed in slashes of light from dashing fluorescent bulbs overhead this fish tank.
Silver swords of fluorescent energy daring to the bottom, every slash revealing every color of the zodiac--from the Gold of Scorpio to the purple of Libra combining into the jade of the Gemini. 
In the center, like a dark Stonehenge were rocks. The exterior rocks had tropical colors like that of cotton candy, but the interior shadows of the rocks that was the Stonehenge, did not possess one photon of light. The silver messengers of the florescent energy from above would tire and die at their base.  The shadows of the Stonehenge rocks would stand over them as they died.

 
          When the boy named Sake climbed the rickety wood stairs of the house, he did so in fear of making noise, as if to not wake each step.
   Until he could see the glowing aura of his fish tank then he would start down that eerie hall, With pictures of ghosts and ghosts of pictures staring down at him as he walked down that rickety hallway of this towering old colonial home.  He hurried to the glowing tank to escape the black and white gazing picture frames.
                    The faint gurgling, bubbling of the saltwater tank became stronger in his ear, and that sound guided him from the last haunt of the hallway-- the empty room that was perpendicular to  his room.   He only looked to his bright tank as soon as he entered the hallway from the creaky wooden steps.  Then he proceeded to sit in front of this great tropical fish tank in Indian style with his legs folded over one another as children so often would sit.
  The sun was setting.  The reflections from the tank were beginning to send ripples down the dark walls. Increasing  wave after wave reflecting down his dark walls.  He thought they to be seagulls flapping into the darkness until they were overcome as he was listening to the bubbling water of his tank.
                " Hello my fish, hello Angel, hello Tang, hello  Hoomah, hello Clown and hello Damsel … and hello to you Crab...even though I do not like you," he said in half jest not looking at the crab in the entrance of the rocks.  The rocks were the color of cotton candy, but the interior shadows did not possess a photon of luminescence.  All other shadows not caused by the rocks--but by bright swaying ornament--were like the glaze on a candy apple--dark but delicious.  Besides the crab's layer in the rock jumble at the center of the tank which was a Stonehenge within a Stonehenge--the tank was a world of bright inviting light.
                The crab was in its routine,  motionless in the entrance to his foyer, with his scythe-like claws in the air, in expectation of catching one of the bright fish someday.  For that reason the boy tried to remove the crab in the past, but even though the boy was fast with his hand, the optical illusion of the tank would always send his hand where the crab no longer was.  He did not know how to use two hands to rid the crab in the future by trapping and destroying the Cannibal Crab ;  his father, on a weekend visit, gave the Crab to the boy to put into the bright world of the saltwater tank, which Sake quickly regretted.  His father promised him that the Crab would not be able to catch any of the fish he said " ...***** only eat anything that has fallen to the bottom or each other..."

         A scream from the living room downstairs ran up the rickety wood and down the long hall and startled the boy.  His mother sent her shrieks out to grab the boy, allowing her to not have to waste any time nor calorie on her son; for she would tire from the stairs, but her screams would not, allowing her to stay curled up on the couch.  If she was not screaming for Sake, she was talking as loud as screams on the phone with her girlfriends.  The decibels from her laugh was torture for all in the silent house.   A haughty laugh in a gossipy conversation, that overpowered the sound of the bright tropical fish tank in Sake's room that was above and far opposite her in the living room.
               " Sake you have to get a paper-route to pay for the tank, the electricity bill is outrageous," she said while not taking her eyes off the TV and her legs curled up beside her.  He would glad fully get a paper-route even if it was for a made up reason.  He turned to go, and looked back at his mother, and a shudder ran through him with a new thought:  someday her appearance will match her voice.  

              Upon reaching his tank,  Hoomah was trying to get his attention as always.  Taking up pebbles in his big pouty pursed lips and spitting them out of his lips like a weak musket.  The Hoomah was a very silly fish, it looked like one of Sake’s aunts, with too much make up on, slightly overweight, and hovering on two little fins that looked incapable of keeping it afloat, but they did.  The fins reminded him of the legs of his aunt--skinny under not so skinny.’

               The Tang was doing his usual aquanautics , darting and sailing was his trick.  He was fast, the fastest with his bright yellow triangular sail cutting the water.  Next was the aggressive Clown fish, the boy thought she was always aggresive because she didn't have an anemone to sleep on.  The Clown was strong and sleek with an orange jaw and body that was built like a tigress.
  Sake thought something tragic about the body if the  orange Clown and the three silver traces that clawed her body as decoration -they reminded him of the incandescent orange glow of a street lamp being viewed through the rainy back windshield of a car.   The Clown fish was a distraction that craved attention.
The Clown would chase around some of the other fish and jump out of the water to catch the boy's eye. 
                 Next is the Queen Angel fish, she is the queen of the tank, she sits in back all alone, waving like a marvelous banner, iridescent purple and golden jade.  Her forehead slopes back in a French braid style that streams over her back like a kings standard waving before battle, but her standard is of a house of beauty, and that of royal purple.

                    Lastly is the Damsel Fish, the smallest and most vulnerable in the tank.  She has royal purple also, rivaling the queen. Her eyes are lashed but not lidded like the Hoomah.  Her eyes are elliptical, and perhaps the most human, or in the boy’s opinion, she is the most lady like, the Hoomah and the Queen Angel come to her defence if she is chased around by the Clown.  Her eyes penetrate the boys, to the point of him looking away.  

                      Before the tank, in its place in the corner was a painting, an oil painting of another type of Clown donning a hat with orange partial make-up on his face (only around eyes nose and mouth there was ghost white paint) and it  had two tears coming down from its right eye.  The Clown painting was given to him by his mother, it seems he could not be rid of them, but Sake at first was taken in by the brightness of the Clown, and the smooth salacious wet look of the painting. it looked dripping, or submerged, like another alternate reality.  The wet surreal glaze of the painting seemed a portal, especially the orange glow of the Clown's skin without make-up.  .  If he tried to remember of times  before the Clown painting that preceded the Clown fish, he thought of the orange saffron twilight of sunset, and watching it from the high window from his room in the towering house.  How that light changed everything that it touched, from the tree tops and the clouds, to even the dark hallway leading up to his room.  The painting and the Clown fish did not feel the same as those distant memories of sunset, especially the summer sunset when his mother would put him to bed long before the sun had set.  
Sake did not voice opposition to the Clown.
Then he was once again trapped by the Clown.  
            The boy was extremely afraid of this painting that replaced the sunsets , being confined alone with it by all those early bedtimes.
Sake once asked his mother if he could take it down, whereas she said " No."  That clown would follow him into his dreams, always he would be down the hill from the tall house on the hill, trying to walk back to the house, but to walk away or run in a dream was like walking underwater or in black space, and he would make no distance as the ground opened up and the clown came out of the ground hugging him with the pryless grip of eight arms.  He would then wake up amid screams and a tearful hatted clown staring somberly down at him from the wall where it was hung.  Night made him fear the Clown painting more;  that ghost white make-up decorating around the eyes and mouth seeming to form another painting in entirety.  He could only look at the painting after a while when the lights were on, and the wet looking painting was mostly orange from the skin, neck, and forearms of the hat wearing clown.  But the painting is gone now, and the magnificent light display of the tank is there now.  

                Sake pulled out the fish food, all the fish bestirred in anticipation of being fed.  The only time they would all come together; and that was to mumble the bits of falling flakes: a chomp from the Clown, a pucker from the Hoomah, the fast mumble of the Tang, and the dainty chew of the Damsel.  The Queen Angelfish would stay near the bottom, and kiss a flake over and over.   She would not deign herself to go into a friendly frenzy like the other fish; she stayed calm, yet alluring like a flag dancing rhythmically in the breeze, but never repeating the same move as the wind never repeats the same breeze.  She is the only fish to change colors.  When the grey skies of Mass emit through every portal in the house at the height of its bleakness, her colors would turn more fantastic, perhaps why she is queen.

                 He put his finger in the top of the watery world; the warmth was felt all the way up his arm.  After feeding, his favorite thing to do was to trace his finger on the top of the warm water and have the Damsel follow it. She loved it, it was her only time to dance, for the Clown would descend down in somewhat fear ( or annoyance) of the boys finger, and the Damsel and he would dance.  The boy, thought that extraordinary.

                     Sake bedded down that night, to his usual watery world of his room.  The reflective waves running down the walls like seagulls of light, with the rhythmic gurgling sound and it's occasional splash of the Clown, or the Hoomah swooping into the pebbly bottom to scoop up some pebbles for spitting making the sound "ccchhhhh" --cachinging  like a distant underwater register.  The tank’s nocturne sound was therapeutic to the boy.

                      Among waking up, and being greeted by his sparkling treasure tank--that was always of the faintest light in the morning due to the grey skies of Mass coming through every portal to lessen the tropical spectrum-- the boy would render his salutations " Good morning my Hoomah.....good morning Tang, my Damsel, and your majesty Queen Angel.....and so forth.  Until the scream would come to get him, and he would walk briskly past the empty room and the looming family pictures of strangers.  His mother put him to work that day, to "pay for the fish tank" but really to buy her a new cocktail dress for her nightly forays.  The boy did not care, the tank was his sun, emitting through the bleak skies of Mass, and even if the tank was reduced to a haze by the overcast of his life, it only added a log to the fire that was the tropical world at night, in turn making him welcome the dismal day.
                  On a day, when the overcast was so thick, he felt he could not picture his rectangular orb waiting for him at night. He had trouble remembering what houses to deliver the paper.  He delivered to the same house three times.  Newspapers seemed to disappear in his hands, due to their color relation to the sky.   Leaves were falling from the trees—butterfly like—he went to catch one, he missed--a first. For Sake could walk through dense thorned brambles and avoid every barb, as a knight in combat or someone’s whose heart felt the painful sting of the barb before.  He would stand under a tree in late fall, and roll around to avoid every falling leaf, and pierce them to the ground deftly with a stick fashioned as a sword.  He could slither between snow flakes, almost like a fish nimbly avoiding small flakes.  
                  After he finished his paper-route , he went to his usual spot under an oak tree to fence with falling leaves.  As the other boys walked by and poked fun he would stall his imagination, and look to the brown landscape of the dry fall.  The crisp brown leaves of the trees were sword shapes to him.  He held the battle ax shape of the oak leaf over his eye held up by the stick it was pierced through, and spied the woodline through the sinus of the oak leaf lobe.  The brown white speckled scenery, were all trying to hide behind eachother by blending in bleakfully; he pretended the leaf was Hector’s helmet from the Illiad—donned over his eyes.
“ Whatchya doing Sake?” asked a young girl named Summer.  Sake only mumbled something nervously and stood there.  And a pretty Summer passed on after Sake once again denied himself of her pretty company.  He looked to the woodline again, a mist was now concealing the tall apical trees.  It now looked like the brown woodland was not trying to retreat behind eachother in fall concealment, but trying to emerge forth out of the greyness to say "save us."

“ Damgf” he uttered, and could not even grasp a word correctly.  His head lifted to the sky repeatedly, there was no orb, and the shadows were looming larger than ever; fractioned shadows from tree branches were forming scythes all over the ground.
             He entered the large shadow that was his front door, into the house that rose high into the sky, with the simplicity of Stonehenge.  He climbed the rickety petrified stairs and went down the hall.  Grey light had spotlighted every frame on the wall.  He looked into the empty room, nothingness, then his room, the tank seemed at its faintest, and it was nearing twilight.  He walked past the tank to look out the w
raine cooper Jul 2015
i wanted to tell you i loved you,
but the butterflies in my stomach swarmed my throat, and all the words got caught in their wings
©rainecooper
So happy this was picked for the daily! Thank you all so much for your kind words and support of my writing. I appreciate it, truly.
Frankie Gestone Mar 2013
He woke up in a rapid sweat, darkness surrounding him, his soaked pillow was pressing up on his neck as he could feel the uncomfortable stabbing cold run right threw his whole body. His mouth was dry and his body was in great pain. He lay there practically naked, but not just physically, also emotionally. It was like a catatonic state where the person’s body is paused in reality, but the actual person is far away and isolated even from himself. He wondered why he was so comfortable being uncomfortable and remaining frozen in time.  He saw nothing but the subtle moonlight that peaked through the blinds of his window. A point of existence, he feels nothing because all he has ever felt has drowned him. His numbness was being accepted and he embraced that if he remained this way, he would never have to feel hurt or heartbreak again. It’s better this way, he confirmed.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Then there he was right in the middle of a storm. In so many ways, he realized where he was ending was where he originally began. All the imprints from all he ever knew came back all at once to watch him finally leave all he ever knew from this life. And in the last moments, he found himself with her. He held her hand, while she held his, and the hands of their family and friends. The world was so dark and cold. The wind became much more rapid and an enormous bright light from it came within just miles of them. He kept looking up at the dark black and gray clouds over them, never as frightened as he was now. His focus was on the great strength of the wind. Whatever melancholic thoughts he had of his life, he would not give up hope. Maybe he was just hopelessly hopeful, but holding each other tightly might, in some miraculous way, save them. Then suddenly a deep peace began to sustain his very being. He remembered whose hand he was holding- the only woman to ever understand every level of his being. He looked down at her big, precious eyes pouring out tears. Their eyes locked, as she had been watching him the entire time. No words needed to be said from one another. They knew exactly what they felt and meant. For the first time in his life, everything was all okay. All was beautiful. The whole situation was beautiful, not tragic. In that moment, he understood this was where he was meant to be. This was where he wanted to be, for only in such a life altering moment does one comprehend the very nature of love and life. To just glance into her eyes and see the same person staring back in suspense, while all he ever knew was being born, growing, and dying simultaneously in complete acceptance. They began to fade and disappeared into the light.
Terry O'Leary Feb 2014
THE MEETING

Alone one night neath lantern light, I trudged a weary mile.
Forlorn, I went with shoulders bent (the storms around me howled)
until I met a Silhouette behind a sultry smile –
She gazed with eyes that mesmerize (Her body caped and cowled)
and stayed my way with question fey, ‘Why don’t you while awhile?’

Though timorous (with slow address and gestures pantomimed)
Her voice was gracing echoes chasing waves in evening’s tide.
The churchyard groaned, an ***** moaned, the bells of midnight chimed
while wanton winds awoke and dinned, and mistrals multiplied.
The Persian moon, like stray balloon, arose and blithely climbed.

The Silhouette (a pale brunette) arched eyebrows meant to please,
and down the lanes, on windowpanes, the shadows danced and sighed.
A meadowlark within the dark, somewhere behind the breeze,
ennobled Her with wisps of myrrh while deigning to confide
to nightingales veiled whispered tales of human vanities.

She doffed her cloak before She spoke with sighs of sorrow sung
(like mandolins, as night begins, when mourning day’s demise)
and spun Her tale of grim travail and tears She'd shed when young.
As jagged volts of thunderbolts lit up the dismal skies,
a velvet fog embraced a bog in coils of curling tongues.

Through summer vales and winter gales Her secret thoughts were voiced.
Midst storms so cruel (neath lightning’s jewel that glistered on the ridge)
She reminisced, She touched... we kissed... Her lips were wet and moist...
A lighthouse dimmed, while moonbeams skimmed across a distant bridge
to avenues where residues of shallow shades rejoiced.

                        HER TRAGIC TALE

“Midst sweet perfume of youthful bloom, the lonely spirit braves
and often cries and sometimes dies in quest of her amour.”

While starry-eyed, a ship I spied, a’ sail upon the waves –
the galleon docked, the gannets flocked, the Captain swept ashore
where, debonair with gypsy flair, he led his salty knaves.

In passing by, he caught my eye - I tried to hide a blush,
but ambiance of innocence left fervour’s flames revealed.
His gaze (defined by eyes that shined) beheld my cheek a’ flush.
I bowed my head while caution fled, I felt my fate was sealed
- a bird in spring with fledgling wing - he’d snared a  falling thrush.

He said ‘Hello’ - I answered ‘No’ and yet before he’d gone
said I, ‘I’ll wait at Heaven’s Gate not far beyond the Pale’.
At dusk he came neath moon aflame, and left before the dawn
just humming tunes between the dunes that lined the sandy trail
beside a pond where morning yawned, where swam an ebon swan.

We met again, and once again, and once again, again
entangled in a love called sin, in whirls of make-believe.
While in my arms, with voice that charms, said he ‘I must explain -
the tide awaits in distant straits and I must take my leave’.
Then tempests stormed as passions swarmed through ardor’s hurricane.

‘Forsake your home and we may roam’ he smiled as if to tease
and still naive, said I ‘I’ll leave, in silver buckled shoes’.
He took the helm in search of realms, and quickly quit the quays -
with tearful eyes, I bade goodbyes to fare-thee-well adieus
and sailed above a wave of love across the seven seas.

We swept one morn around Cape Thorne while bound for Bullion Bay.
With naught to reck, I strolled on deck, a baby at my breast,
while flurries blew and seagulls flew within the ocean’s spray.
Our ship soon moored, we went ashore and off to Fortune’s Quest -
with gold doubloons which shone like moons, he gambled through the day.

‘The deuce is wild’ he thinly smiled; another card was drawn -
he’d staked and raised with eyes half glazed, was dealt a dismal three.
With betting tight throughout the night, the final ace long gone,
meant all was lost, at what a cost; alas, the prize was me.
To my dismay he slunk away and left me doomed at dawn.

A buccaneer with ring in ear sneered ‘now, my dear, you’re mine’.
He held my wrists to thwart my fists and then... my honor stained.
On sullied swash, the sky awash with bitter tears of brine,
I broke his clutch with nothing much of me that still remained:
a residue when he was through, left clinging to a vine.

In morning dew, the good folk knew, and spurned me in my plight.
The preacher man pronounced a ban and wouldn’t condescend,
ignored my pleas on bended knees and prayers by candlelight.
While cast aside, my baby died... my world was at an end.
Until this day, I’ve made my way beneath the shades of night.


                        AT HEAVEN’S GATES

To set Her free from destiny was far from my design,
but, though unplanned, I touched Her hand to give Her peace of mind.
She told me then, and then again, that providence Divine
had cast a curse, and even worse: despised by all mankind,
She walked alone, unseen, unknown, Her soul incarnadine.

To break this spell of living hell, of loneliness enshrined,
and end Her days within the haze, a sole redeeming deed
would give reprieve and maybe leave our destinies entwined -
Her final quest be put to rest if only I agreed,
but no surcease nor perfect peace nor hope if I declined.

The shadows, shawled in silence, crawled, the night Her fate was sealed
as vespers tolled across the wold beneath the muted fog.
The heavens cracked and sorrow slacked as chimes of children pealed
while in the hills (where midnight chills) there wailed a daemon dog -
with no delay I lead the way, the path to Potter’s Field.

Her weathered face was lined with Grace, Her eyes shone emerald green.
With me as guide She stepped inside to grieve and mourn Her loss,
and thereupon, though pale and wan, the night took on a sheen.
With weary eyes as Her disguise, She placed a wooden cross
upon a mound (unhallowed ground) and whispered ‘Sibylline...’.

A falling star flared in the far and burst, a bolide flame -
beneath the light, the Final Rite no longer hid undone.
And kneeling there in silent prayer, we seemed to share the shame
but could atone if left alone, forevermore as one.
Before we both could breathe an oath, I asked Her once Her name.

Through lips, pale red, She simply said ‘Some called me Abigail’,
and neath a birch where white doves perch, I took Her for my bride,
beheld Her smile a little while, but all to no avail...
Her cloak and cape, and shrivelled shape lie empty at my side...
for now She waits at Heaven’s Gates, not far beyond the Pale.
Oh~ how it hurts
To in-mind and absorb
My birthed place
No future I see's

A long years wait
It cuts and bleed me
Denied by unreasonable cause
How painful my present be

He waltz with pride
Dances in the eyes of many
Yet, the state is indebtedness
Into thy mother house

So, when our days uncertain
And our young generation is at stake
Let us swarmed ~ be  bold together
For this noble cause & future sake.
written in past, present, and future

note: sorry for some mistake... now it was finished....
Christos Rigakos Jun 2012
a thousand what-ifs swarmed before my eyes,
and stung me as if I had rocked beehives,
the woulda-coulda-shouldas, if-only-I's,
all buzzed their screams, that he'd be still alive,

yet I had done all that I knew to do,
the breaths of life I gave him, much too late,
the EMT's three-quarter hour, their crew,
could not revive my father from his fate,

his heart had fibrillated, lifeless eyes,
were blind to all, his ears heard not our screams,
upon my breath his breathing finalized,
he fell to sleep the sleep where are no dreams,

now on that couch where father there reposed,
not we nor our dear cat to rest there goes

(C)2012, Christos Rigakos
English (Shakespearean) Sonnet

Rest in Peace, dearest Father,
2/1/1943 to 5/11/2012
What little sunshine being recognised

Out of a storm flames approaching disorder

Building vast contradictions without impediment

Widespread in antiquity with alluring interpretations

Constituting mutilated transformations whose opposing

Lies stinking and fly swarmed, rotting at our feet
Iska Oct 2017
There was a boy who owned the world,
or so he thought... til he met "The Girl"
this Girl swept in like a storm,
and made chaos look like a beautiful art form.
but, like all storms, disaster swarmed.
and the prince stood by, braving the storm.
But when the winds died down
and the clouds cleared away,
it reviled the other princes,
who also stood by her side.
here to save the day.
they looked to the boy
with mocking smiles
and together the all chimed;
"don't you worry your pretty head,
little prince,
one day your kingdom will fall,
and you will realize,
your castle was but sand all along."
then they turned to the Girl
whom they wanted to pin down like a butterfly,
to claim the right to say "she's Mine."
and they said "its time to choose.
which one of us could you bare to loose."
so she chose the one,
who made her laugh,
who made her cry.
who demanded the truth,
who never believed the lie.
who she wasn't afraid of ruining,
of tearing apart.
because he was like her.
the poison to her toxic heart.
the chaos to her mischief.
the fitting piece to her jigsaw life.
So she crowned him,
and made him her king.
this choice broke the little princes heart.
and her storm ripped his world apart.
there's a girl standing on a cross road,
wishing upon a star she'll never hold.
she told you not to fall,
she warned you that it would never end well,
yet still.....
you fell.
Akemi Mar 2014
I heard you blister
You swarmed as the daylight broke
Cross distant lands, tattered
Tumultuous, flayed
Burrowing deep into rot

You’ve beaten the broken
You’ve flayed the dead silence
Into a gutter-mouthed cry
Of humanities darkest

Raging a storm
So long
You’ve swallowed hell and heaven whole

Nothing is left anymore

When you spit out the darkness
You bare your soul
And I can see
Hate has swallowed you whole
3:49pm, February 27th 2014

A.
Some people just will not forgive. They become bitter, cruel beings, forming closed-minded prejudices. They do not learn from their own mistakes, but blame others for their pains.
It's distressing.
Paul Butters Jul 2015
Forests of coral adorn the rocky ocean floor,
Sheltered here in this sky-blue lagoon.
See the golden sand, shining through the still waters,
Fringed by plumes of palm.
The warming sun is smiling,
Flanked by fluffy white clouds.
Gulls are calling
Over the whispering sea.
A tropical paradise
Punctuated only
By impromptu showers.
Those colourful corals
Swarmed with teeming fish
Of every hue.
This is the place
To be.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Our life’s wheel revolves around things way beyond just money, food, and shelter. It is about the moments you spend with your loved ones, friends and family that will be forever carved in your heart. We can never know when our life here on earth will be over. So let us cherish every bit of it. And for me, even if we skip breakfasts and eat only noodles for supper, I have realized in these last fleeting moments that my life has always
been on the top of the wheel after all.
Jake Espinoza Sep 2012
Write something about nothing, call it poetry.
Quiet jet-engine speed turmoil indecision on the topic.
Silent bodies, screaming minds, communication desired and avoided
Chance glances, glimpses. Hoofing it.
Write poetry about nothing, call it something, but only in whispers to yourself, pretend to hope to be heard, have interest feigned or genuine directed your way.
        Confusion. Mingled strings of internal conversation.
        Misdirected. I can’t think crooked, focalisation se présente sideways. Self-expression in non-poetic terms seems likely. Saw girls, one on Detroit street, summer clothes and quiet face, scampered inside from the yard littered. Saw her again in the street next to a minor catastrophe, passed her by and looked.
        Let’s take a second to breathe, introduce a silence to the mind so that everything that comes can be better heard. So much background noise, minor thoughts mingle into static, almost impossible to interpret the bemused psychobabble. Empty it out, slow down, relax, and maybe you’ll begin to recognize coherent thoughts; organize the jumble of words fighting to be understood all out of order and as yet meaningless. Thoughts keep revolving, recycling; the girl, she reminded you of Melissa. Same style, a girl whose mood is always a grateful summer to your wintry perspective. Refreshing reminder, easy on the eyes. This girl’s likeness and your friend the poet, separated; his utensils. The paintbrushes he flourished about to create were not wooden and sable but liquid and smoke. That small ******* secret voice suggesting unwholesome things, acts unbefitting of brotherly conduct. He is my true brother, my family; an extension of my own soul. I went to treatment, they broke me down, whittled away at my rough hewn surface to make sculpture, a replica of others, manufactured to meet requirements and specifications deemed necessary for target successes. This talk of will, sacrificing my own, force-fed trust and mantras begetting themselves in circular fashion, turning in sync with the earth’s rotation upon its axis in its course of necessary revolution.
        Expended effort and time saved or served, goals impossible until forgotten, let go empty space ellipsis let god. Self-supplanted in unpredictable incomprehensible present, trying to avoid thoughts of crumpled papers in paper bags serving as receptacles for things undesired or abandoned or too truthful, I’m forgetting what it is to hide from myself which makes it possible to disappear. Tune in to the present, your train of thought – a queue – crowding, crowds rushed and frantic me first says everyone impatiently awaiting their turn for attention. Starved but forgotten proper nutrition. Self-criticism equating to self-analysis – spontaneity – uncontrollable, unforeseeable in the present aromatic mixture of mason jars swarmed with colored lights beautiful dim in darkness in which beer was swilled, time spent in unkempt kitchens nervous, standing walking evading settlement peace or rest, this is excitable discomfort, anything to slow down or feel a surrogate thereof. Forgotten words remembered, past rooms beautiful dim in darkness, proper illumination – see everything just right, not too brightly though not too dark. Living in this room for now, seeing as though immersed, submerged in memory of smiling faces easy laughter, cold-eyes Vera and well-at-ease. There is a wealth of self-acceptance. These people, their faces shine contentment, comfort, and mine is manufactured. I’ve become a factory where everything is sought after and nothing is attained because my goals are intangible, comprehensible but beyond aid, sorry, it’s just the way you are, maybe you’ll know one day, but we can’t help. We don’t waste our time with questions of absurdity, we live in this present moment, and that’s how we do it – no plans until plans come. No thoughts until thoughts come. Easy transitions in conversations, we don’t think of how to be ourselves, we just do it because we slow down, we know we are breathing, and it is not in our nature to forget it. It is not in our nature to live in our heads, to flail in a swell of questions less dense than water, we attend. We simply are.
        This is contentment. This is their seamless skin where mine corresponds to scars and rabid suspicious scratches dug deep. They were content with their surfaces; I was convinced of malice subcutaneous hence the scars and blood breathing open air. It is this suspicion that draws a line, places me on one side, them on another; it is this curiosity intrinsic and ironically unquestioned that digs the trenches in shape of graves. This fatal imaginary need for understanding where there is nothing to be understood. Questions are my poison, self-manufacturing, self-sufficient destruction, coming hot off the assembly line in my skull. Questions incubating further questions error: implement infinite loop, killall. Find the bug, recompile, run. Sit still, learn from the wind and atmosphere you’ve learned to sense which makes you an outsider only because you wanted this somehow. Uncertainty, confused reflection, arbitrary comments; coincidences, conspiracy, breakpoint. Programs running in smooth operation.
        Radiohead blaring, self-conscious self-care, these people enjoy themselves with unconscious grace, they let themselves be and immediately I tear my mind in two to understand what they understand without understanding. It is the nature of love and music that displays the closest correlation. These people are my idealized notion of grace, rendered more so by speed of processing, depth of analysis so that they appear not only graceful creatures, but with grace amplified as if observing them in slow-motion. So much contingent on understanding, contingency notwithstanding if I was comfortable with ignorance, if questions did not occur. These people are appropriate; balanced, no need for brutal introspection, no need to stir up sand composing the sea bed. These people, they understand certain things I cannot as of yet. They understand, they know without knowing that things are the way they are because things are the way they are and that’s ok, we’re ok, and everything is and will always be ok as long as we know well enough to leave well enough alone. We are each other, serving compliments to sainthood.
        ...let go, and be one with us, for love is in our hearts.
It took a few lines to get into it. Also, this is meant to be read aloud, somewhat intensely.
Amara Feb 2013
You must create something elaborate
Twirling your fingers around like ribbons
Weaving together magic and wonder
Gliding gracefully, this is your stage
You are alone in the light, with yourself
Wearing robes of imagination & frivolity
Sliding across, dancing a beautiful dance
You're not paying attention, swallowed by your mind
You don't notice what is slowly creeping from behind
Dark robed figures inching up towards your back
So many, with masks of clay and paper mache
Painted ****** red and black
With hollow eyes and hunched over spines
Each with a grisly word painted on their chests
Each reads something different, something awful
You have to keep yourself busy or you begin to crumble
So you don't notice what they say, you don't see them


     Life
         Poverty        Religion  
             Time                             Anxiety    
       Destitution                                         Fear  
           Loathing                                                        R­eality  
            Age                                         ­                                   Conscious  
         Bitterness        They circle around you             Critique  
          Past                        As you twirl               Loneliness  
      Depression                                    ­        Insanity  
          Hunger                              ­Intoxication  
   Emotion           Death  
        No Hope  

You never see it coming.
And you are swallowed whole
A
DARK
DOWNWARD
SPIRAL
BADUMP
BADUMP
BA­DUMP
The only sound
Your heart beating
AS THEY CLASP THEIR BLACK HANDS
AROUND IT & TUG YOU
DOWN
DOWN
DOWN
down
down
d
o
w
*n
© Amara Pendergraft 2013
Now the other gods and the armed warriors on the plain slept
soundly, but Jove was wakeful, for he was thinking how to do honour to
Achilles, and destroyed much people at the ships of the Achaeans. In
the end he deemed it would be best to send a lying dream to King
Agamemnon; so he called one to him and said to it, “Lying Dream, go to
the ships of the Achaeans, into the tent of Agamemnon, and say to
him word to word as I now bid you. Tell him to get the Achaeans
instantly under arms, for he shall take Troy. There are no longer
divided counsels among the gods; Juno has brought them to her own
mind, and woe betides the Trojans.”
  The dream went when it had heard its message, and soon reached the
ships of the Achaeans. It sought Agamemnon son of Atreus and found him
in his tent, wrapped in a profound slumber. It hovered over his head
in the likeness of Nestor, son of Neleus, whom Agamemnon honoured
above all his councillors, and said:-
  “You are sleeping, son of Atreus; one who has the welfare of his
host and so much other care upon his shoulders should dock his
sleep. Hear me at once, for I come as a messenger from Jove, who,
though he be not near, yet takes thought for you and pities you. He
bids you get the Achaeans instantly under arms, for you shall take
Troy. There are no longer divided counsels among the gods; Juno has
brought them over to her own mind, and woe betides the Trojans at
the hands of Jove. Remember this, and when you wake see that it does
not escape you.”
  The dream then left him, and he thought of things that were,
surely not to be accomplished. He thought that on that same day he was
to take the city of Priam, but he little knew what was in the mind
of Jove, who had many another hard-fought fight in store alike for
Danaans and Trojans. Then presently he woke, with the divine message
still ringing in his ears; so he sat upright, and put on his soft
shirt so fair and new, and over this his heavy cloak. He bound his
sandals on to his comely feet, and slung his silver-studded sword
about his shoulders; then he took the imperishable staff of his
father, and sallied forth to the ships of the Achaeans.
  The goddess Dawn now wended her way to vast Olympus that she might
herald day to Jove and to the other immortals, and Agamemnon sent
the criers round to call the people in assembly; so they called them
and the people gathered thereon. But first he summoned a meeting of
the elders at the ship of Nestor king of Pylos, and when they were
assembled he laid a cunning counsel before them.
  “My friends,” said he, “I have had a dream from heaven in the dead
of night, and its face and figure resembled none but Nestor’s. It
hovered over my head and said, ‘You are sleeping, son of Atreus; one
who has the welfare of his host and so much other care upon his
shoulders should dock his sleep. Hear me at once, for I am a messenger
from Jove, who, though he be not near, yet takes thought for you and
pities you. He bids you get the Achaeans instantly under arms, for you
shall take Troy. There are no longer divided counsels among the
gods; Juno has brought them over to her own mind, and woe betides
the Trojans at the hands of Jove. Remember this.’ The dream then
vanished and I awoke. Let us now, therefore, arm the sons of the
Achaeans. But it will be well that I should first sound them, and to
this end I will tell them to fly with their ships; but do you others
go about among the host and prevent their doing so.”
  He then sat down, and Nestor the prince of Pylos with all
sincerity and goodwill addressed them thus: “My friends,” said he,
“princes and councillors of the Argives, if any other man of the
Achaeans had told us of this dream we should have declared it false,
and would have had nothing to do with it. But he who has seen it is
the foremost man among us; we must therefore set about getting the
people under arms.”
  With this he led the way from the assembly, and the other sceptred
kings rose with him in obedience to the word of Agamemnon; but the
people pressed forward to hear. They swarmed like bees that sally from
some hollow cave and flit in countless throng among the spring
flowers, bunched in knots and clusters; even so did the mighty
multitude pour from ships and tents to the assembly, and range
themselves upon the wide-watered shore, while among them ran
Wildfire Rumour, messenger of Jove, urging them ever to the fore. Thus
they gathered in a pell-mell of mad confusion, and the earth groaned
under the ***** of men as the people sought their places. Nine heralds
went crying about among them to stay their tumult and bid them
listen to the kings, till at last they were got into their several
places and ceased their clamour. Then King Agamemnon rose, holding his
sceptre. This was the work of Vulcan, who gave it to Jove the son of
Saturn. Jove gave it to Mercury, slayer of Argus, guide and
guardian. King Mercury gave it to Pelops, the mighty charioteer, and
Pelops to Atreus, shepherd of his people. Atreus, when he died, left
it to Thyestes, rich in flocks, and Thyestes in his turn left it to be
borne by Agamemnon, that he might be lord of all Argos and of the
isles. Leaning, then, on his sceptre, he addressed the Argives.
  “My friends,” he said, “heroes, servants of Mars, the hand of heaven
has been laid heavily upon me. Cruel Jove gave me his solemn promise
that I should sack the city of Priam before returning, but he has
played me false, and is now bidding me go ingloriously back to Argos
with the loss of much people. Such is the will of Jove, who has laid
many a proud city in the dust, as he will yet lay others, for his
power is above all. It will be a sorry tale hereafter that an
Achaean host, at once so great and valiant, battled in vain against
men fewer in number than themselves; but as yet the end is not in
sight. Think that the Achaeans and Trojans have sworn to a solemn
covenant, and that they have each been numbered—the Trojans by the
roll of their householders, and we by companies of ten; think
further that each of our companies desired to have a Trojan
householder to pour out their wine; we are so greatly more in number
that full many a company would have to go without its cup-bearer.
But they have in the town allies from other places, and it is these
that hinder me from being able to sack the rich city of Ilius. Nine of
Jove years are gone; the timbers of our ships have rotted; their
tackling is sound no longer. Our wives and little ones at home look
anxiously for our coming, but the work that we came hither to do has
not been done. Now, therefore, let us all do as I say: let us sail
back to our own land, for we shall not take Troy.”
  With these words he moved the hearts of the multitude, so many of
them as knew not the cunning counsel of Agamemnon. They surged to
and fro like the waves of the Icarian Sea, when the east and south
winds break from heaven’s clouds to lash them; or as when the west
wind sweeps over a field of corn and the ears bow beneath the blast,
even so were they swayed as they flew with loud cries towards the
ships, and the dust from under their feet rose heavenward. They
cheered each other on to draw the ships into the sea; they cleared the
channels in front of them; they began taking away the stays from
underneath them, and the welkin rang with their glad cries, so eager
were they to return.
  Then surely the Argives would have returned after a fashion that was
not fated. But Juno said to Minerva, “Alas, daughter of
aegis-bearing Jove, unweariable, shall the Argives fly home to their
own land over the broad sea, and leave Priam and the Trojans the glory
of still keeping Helen, for whose sake so many of the Achaeans have
died at Troy, far from their homes? Go about at once among the host,
and speak fairly to them, man by man, that they draw not their ships
into the sea.”
  Minerva was not slack to do her bidding. Down she darted from the
topmost summits of Olympus, and in a moment she was at the ships of
the Achaeans. There she found Ulysses, peer of Jove in counsel,
standing alone. He had not as yet laid a hand upon his ship, for he
was grieved and sorry; so she went close up to him and said, “Ulysses,
noble son of Laertes, are you going to fling yourselves into your
ships and be off home to your own land in this way? Will you leave
Priam and the Trojans the glory of still keeping Helen, for whose sake
so many of the Achaeans have died at Troy, far from their homes? Go
about at once among the host, and speak fairly to them, man by man,
that they draw not their ships into the sea.”
  Ulysses knew the voice as that of the goddess: he flung his cloak
from him and set off to run. His servant Eurybates, a man of Ithaca,
who waited on him, took charge of the cloak, whereon Ulysses went
straight up to Agamemnon and received from him his ancestral,
imperishable staff. With this he went about among the ships of the
Achaeans.
  Whenever he met a king or chieftain, he stood by him and spoke him
fairly. “Sir,” said he, “this flight is cowardly and unworthy. Stand
to your post, and bid your people also keep their places. You do not
yet know the full mind of Agamemnon; he was sounding us, and ere
long will visit the Achaeans with his displeasure. We were not all
of us at the council to hear what he then said; see to it lest he be
angry and do us a mischief; for the pride of kings is great, and the
hand of Jove is with them.”
  But when he came across any common man who was making a noise, he
struck him with his staff and rebuked him, saying, “Sirrah, hold
your peace, and listen to better men than yourself. You are a coward
and no soldier; you are nobody either in fight or council; we cannot
all be kings; it is not well that there should be many masters; one
man must be supreme—one king to whom the son of scheming Saturn has
given the sceptre of sovereignty over you all.”
  Thus masterfully did he go about among the host, and the people
hurried back to the council from their tents and ships with a sound as
the thunder of surf when it comes crashing down upon the shore, and
all the sea is in an uproar.
  The rest now took their seats and kept to their own several
places, but Thersites still went on wagging his unbridled tongue—a
man of many words, and those unseemly; a monger of sedition, a
railer against all who were in authority, who cared not what he
said, so that he might set the Achaeans in a laugh. He was the ugliest
man of all those that came before Troy—bandy-legged, lame of one
foot, with his two shoulders rounded and hunched over his chest. His
head ran up to a point, but there was little hair on the top of it.
Achilles and Ulysses hated him worst of all, for it was with them that
he was most wont to wrangle; now, however, with a shrill squeaky voice
he began heaping his abuse on Agamemnon. The Achaeans were angry and
disgusted, yet none the less he kept on brawling and bawling at the
son of Atreus.
  “Agamemnon,” he cried, “what ails you now, and what more do you
want? Your tents are filled with bronze and with fair women, for
whenever we take a town we give you the pick of them. Would you have
yet more gold, which some Trojan is to give you as a ransom for his
son, when I or another Achaean has taken him prisoner? or is it some
young girl to hide and lie with? It is not well that you, the ruler of
the Achaeans, should bring them into such misery. Weakling cowards,
women rather than men, let us sail home, and leave this fellow here at
Troy to stew in his own meeds of honour, and discover whether we
were of any service to him or no. Achilles is a much better man than
he is, and see how he has treated him—robbing him of his prize and
keeping it himself. Achilles takes it meekly and shows no fight; if he
did, son of Atreus, you would never again insult him.”
  Thus railed Thersites, but Ulysses at once went up to him and
rebuked him sternly. “Check your glib tongue, Thersites,” said be,
“and babble not a word further. Chide not with princes when you have
none to back you. There is no viler creature come before Troy with the
sons of Atreus. Drop this chatter about kings, and neither revile them
nor keep harping about going home. We do not yet know how things are
going to be, nor whether the Achaeans are to return with good
success or evil. How dare you gibe at Agamemnon because the Danaans
have awarded him so many prizes? I tell you, therefore—and it shall
surely be—that if I again catch you talking such nonsense, I will
either forfeit my own head and be no more called father of Telemachus,
or I will take you, strip you stark naked, and whip you out of the
assembly till you go blubbering back to the ships.”
  On this he beat him with his staff about the back and shoulders till
he dropped and fell a-weeping. The golden sceptre raised a ****** weal
on his back, so he sat down frightened and in pain, looking foolish as
he wiped the tears from his eyes. The people were sorry for him, yet
they laughed heartily, and one would turn to his neighbour saying,
“Ulysses has done many a good thing ere now in fight and council,
but he never did the Argives a better turn than when he stopped this
fellow’s mouth from prating further. He will give the kings no more of
his insolence.”
  Thus said the people. Then Ulysses rose, sceptre in hand, and
Minerva in the likeness of a herald bade the people be still, that
those who were far off might hear him and consider his council. He
therefore with all sincerity and goodwill addressed them thus:-
  “King Agamemnon, the Achaeans are for making you a by-word among all
mankind. They forget the promise they made you when they set out
from Argos, that you should not return till you had sacked the town of
Troy, and, like children or widowed women, they murmur and would set
off homeward. True it is that they have had toil enough to be
disheartened. A man chafes at having to stay away from his wife even
for a single month, when he is on shipboard, at the mercy of wind
and sea, but it is now nine long years that we have been kept here;
I cannot, therefore, blame the Achaeans if they turn restive; still we
shall be shamed if we go home empty after so long a stay—therefore,
my friends, be patient yet a little longer that we may learn whether
the prophesyings of Calchas were false or true.
  “All who have not since perished must remember as though it were
yesterday or the day before, how the ships of the Achaeans were
detained in Aulis when we were on our way hither to make war on
Priam and the Trojans. We were ranged round about a fountain
offering hecatombs to the gods upon their holy altars, and there was a
fine plane-tree from beneath which there welled a stream of pure
water. Then we saw a prodigy; for Jove sent a fearful serpent out of
the ground, with blood-red stains upon its back, and it darted from
under the altar on to the plane-tree. Now there was a brood of young
sparrows, quite small, upon the topmost bough, peeping out from
under the leaves, eight in all, and their mother that hatched them
made nine. The serpent ate the poor cheeping things, while the old
bird flew about lamenting her little ones; but the serpent threw his
coils about her and caught her by the wing as she was screaming. Then,
when he had eaten both the sparrow and her young, the god who had sent
him made him become a sign; for the son of scheming Saturn turned
him into stone, and we stood there wondering at that which had come to
pass. Seeing, then, that such a fearful portent had broken in upon our
hecatombs, Calchas forthwith declared to us the oracles of heaven.
‘Why, Achaeans,’ said he, ‘are you thus speechless? Jove has sent us
this sign, long in coming, and long ere it be fulfilled, though its
fame shall last for ever. As the serpent ate the eight fledglings
and the sparrow that hatched them, which makes nine, so shall we fight
nine years at Troy, but in the tenth shall take the town.’ This was
what he said, and now it is all coming true. Stay here, therefore, all
of you, till we take the city of Priam.”
  On this the Argives raised a shout, till the ships rang again with
the uproar. Nestor, knight of Gere
Trauma

Blunt force trauma
a blow to my psyche from your hammer of hands who pounded into my mind making me fear your preconceived ideas of my undying faith to your never ever loving thoughts about my, then, innocence. so many times-

Time

How many times did I trust the snake who hung, from the oh sweet forbidden fruit who's aftertaste bit me every time?
Who's deep rooted poison made me a pile of decaying flash, leaving me with a smell that drew all vultures to my feet.

Vultures

Every ******* one swarmed my flesh, biting, marking me with their jagged teeth that covered the tip of every finger, that kept the skin bloodied and bright red for identification.

ID

The ID of the body I see in the mirror, Jane Doe to myself, and target to the man who mangled my soul even more that it's vessel. Who's voice rattled my bones and hands cracked the chest casing under my already blue and pruple skin he kissed with his knuckles just-
Just enough.

Enough

Enough of me he became and the red of my skin was no longer his favorite and I longed for my red to change hue and I checked its tone when I dipped into the rivers beneath my skin and all I did was make myself a prisoner to the body I painted different ****** shades to make him want me.

But my red turned fall and I was no longer a color he could see, but a place he had never been and my characteristics were as mysterious as the reasons I thought I deserved red.

Red

Blunt Force Trauma
slam poem
(added) Prologue: "we'll get the baron, i swear. the ratings will go through the roof..." nick spoke nervously into the phone he held in his good hand. the other rested at his side, burned beyond use. one of the commandos whispered in his ear. "sir, we have his location.... yes... yes sir..." he hung up the phone and turned to the commando, "scramble the troops, we're going hunting..."


"N-no... not this again..."  Baronyx muttered in his sleep. "I wont... i wont do it..." it was the same nightmare that had plagued him for years. he was what the Two-legs called an Exotic, one of the few hundred dragons left in the world, and a showpeice for the high paying two-legs.
Baronyx had been captured once and forced into slavery as a circus act and performer for many years before he escaped and burned an entire city with his fiery wrath, killing some ten thousand two-legs in his path and sending a message, "don't cage a dragon..." ever since he had been plagued with nightmares of his experiences while enslaved. "stop... No!" he ****** awake and roared in fear. the full moon's light shone on his sapphire scales and temporarily blinded him until his green slit-eyes adjusted. his mate, a green scaled dragoness named Lyra licked his cheek and put a comforting claw around on his shoulder, "its the dreams again, isnt it ***?" Baronyx nodded and stared outside of their cave den.
He glanced over his shoulder at his daughter, Tali, her young yellow scales getting a tinge of green. Baronyx sighed and said, "she's growing so fast... she'll have your scales..."
Lyra looked as well, "and she'll have your eyes, baron." they watched their child sleep a moment longer before Baronyx stood and stepped outside the den. "i'll be right back." lyra nodded and lay back down with her eyes closed. he spread his wings and with a powerful downstroke took flight. Baronyx closed his eyes and glided into the wind currents and to the cliffside where he went to clear his mind and sort out his thoughts. his claws clicked across the hard rock as he landed and tapped rhythmically as he walked to the edge of the cliff and hung his claws off the side. a wild wolf howled in the distance somewhere behind him. something in the air was different tonight and Baronyx felt uneasy. he lay his head down and snoozed for a while, oblivious of what was happening at his den.
- - -
Tali screamed as
Two-legs with metal-spitters swarmed the den and threw heavy nets over her and her mother. "ma! ma! whats going on?!"
"tali! just stay calm.. just stay calm." Lyra roared in protest as the two legs brought lightning-sticks and began prodding at them. "don't you dare touch my daughter you *******!" she shouted even though she knew they wouldnt understand her. to her surprise though, one two leg stepped forward and said, "we won't touch you or your daughter if you tell us where the Baron is."
"i'll never tell you, monster."
the white man chuckled, "from my point of view, you're the monster. and you'll be a wonderful addition to the show..."
- - -
Baronyx heard tali's scream echo In the dark forest surrounding the cliffside. "No!" his roar resonated farther than tali's scream.
at the den a few moments before, the two-legs had caged Tali and Lyra and had set about stabbing at lyra with the shock-prods hoping to draw Baronyx back to the cave. Lyra kept her cries quiet and had refused to satisfy their wishes. the two-leg in charge snarled. "Enough... last chance, dragon. Tell me where he is!"
lyra growled at him, "i'll tell you nothing, worm."
"fine, suit yourself." the man turned his back to her. "lets see if you're daughter has the same resolve, shall we?"
"no! don't touch her!"
"i'm afraid its quite too late for that, dragon."
"tali i'm sorry!"
he turned to Tali and jabbed her in the side with a shock ****. tali groaned and gritted her teeth but did not scream for the man.
she growled at him said, "that tickled." tali grinned at the man with her sharp fangs fully exposed.
the man glared for a moment and then smiled cruelly.
"temporary pain doesnt have an effect on you... maybe something more... permenant will bring him to me. bring the iron!"
two-legs carried a white hot brand in the shape of a greek Omega. the man pointed to tali and said, "on her throat. make it burn."
more two-legs had muzzled lyra to keep her from screaming. the iron cut into tali's scales and burned into the flesh underneath, forcing tali to scream as loud as she could, even after the iron had been taken away. she collapsed on the ground and the tears spilled over her eyes as she continued to scream.
they heard a roar passing over them all as Baronyx rushed back to the den.
"well done, everyone. the prize is near. get your guns ready but DO NOT FIRE!"
* *
baronyx flew faster than he ever had before. he growled  as he swooped down toward his den and saw the two-legs. he screeched in protest as cables wrapped around his wings and limbs. forcing him hard into the ground. "Nick you *******!"
the white man grinned, "so we finally meet
Again, baron. and you have a nice little family i can use to my advantage now."
baronyx looked at tali and Lyra and loosed a mournful moan deep in his throat. "what do you want, nick?"
the man stepped forward and replied, "i want you, back in my show, just like old times. or i'll torture your mate AND this lovely little child of yours. sound like a deal?"
baronyx shut his eyes and nodded as a tear trailed down his cheek. "just know... when i get out, everything will burn... just like old times..."
(add on 1)
The white man and the other two-legs shackled Baronyx and his family with heavy chains and electric collars that would shock them randomly. they were put on a train car headed east and the collars were taken off. Baronyx immediately examined Tali's neck, the brand already scarring over in a whitish pink Omega. tali's voice was hoarse and tears came to her eyes. she buried her head into her father's chest. "i'm so sorry tali, lyra... this is my fault.." the family embraced as they knew there would likely be very little contact with each other after the train stopped.
the train traveled a little while longer and the family shakily said  their goodbyes as the air brakes hissed violently. the doors shrieked open and they were met by Nick. immediately. baronyx pounced on top of him and roared. they stared eye to eye for a moment before they heard the clicking of the two-legs metal spitters. baronyx kept his eyes on Nick and said quietly, "touch her again... touch EITHER of them... and
I swear, no amount of metal spitters or electricity will stop me from hunting you down and tearing off your head."
as baronyx stepped back, nick stood up and replied, "i won't harm either of them, hell, i'll give them whatever they want, as long as you do as you are told, Baronyx."
baronyx thought this over and after a few moments said, "i have one more condition, i want full access to them. whenever i choose."
nick chuckled a bit, "we'll see... we'll see... it all depends on how you perform."
baronyx nodded. "then lets get this over with..." the white man beckoned some two-legs to lead Tali and Lyra to the cages inside the massive pavilion that stood before them. two of the men brought the brand again and put the Omega on Baronyx's throat much like they had done with tali. he gritted his teeth and let the tears come but did not cry out or roar. when the pain had subsided, he asked nick, "when do i start?"
nick looked up at him with a sinister twinkle in his eyes, "right now."
*
Nick and a handful of two-legs escorted baronyx back onto the train, but not the same traincar. this one was blue and had ornate gold lettering on each side. once baronyx was inside, a string of lights came on and he saw his old armor plates each polished and the dents pounded out. he took his helm and stared into his reflection.  "i swore i'd never touch this stuff again..."
an intercom system beeped above him and nick's voice filled the car. "Baron, you have five minutes to suit up. the game starts as soon as we arrive."
baronyx sighed and donned the cold armor one peice at a time. he looked into the mirror on the wall and turned away in disgust.
"for tali and lyra..." there were a few peices left, the ones he never wanted to see again, they were sharp talons that fit over his claws. in the show, he had to use these to **** his opponent. nick's voice came over the intercom again, "arriving at the arena now, the press is fired up for your return, baron. DON'T disappoint them."
Baronyx growled and said a silent prayer for his family. the train screeched to a halt and the door opened. baronyx stepped out onto a black carpet and was assaulted by blinding camera flashes and the deafening roar of the crowding two-legs. over the crowd, an announcer shouted, "Its the Baron! he's back and looks better than ever!"
baronyx kept walking until nick stopped him for the game briefing. "you'll be going up against a group of wyverns, so you should have no problem killing them." the wyverns far outnumbered the dragons, wyverns being the dragons' slightly smaller, less intelligent cousins.
nick began walking away when baronyx asked, "what do they get if i win?"
nick turned, "they?"
baronyx bared his fangs. "my family. what do they get in return for my win?"
nick thought this over for a moment before replying, "they will eat, sleep, and live in their own hovel. and depending on your performance i'll let you stay with them."
baronyx growled, "then lets get this over with."
*
Baronyx was led to the arena doors and he waited patiently for his introduction and call to the game. he looked around at the all too familiar sights, the fight screens, the scoreboard, and the dim light that would signal his entry into the arena. it would be a few minutes before the match and in the meantime, he thought of all his old strategies and gameplans. "i wonder if tali and lyra will be watching..."
nick came out of the shadows and said, "remember, their future depends on what happens next."
the light turned green and the doors opened, spilling light into the room. when baronyx's eyes adjusted, he saw the all too familiar sight of the ****** arena, mangled corpses being dragged away from the last battle. "the baron! he'll be going up against seven wyverns from the northwest territories." baronyx roared as loud as he could as he stormed into the arena. the wyverns on the other side cowered for a moment before charging him. the first one lunged at him and was caught in his
Claws. baronyx looked into the wyverns eyes and saw the fear, the terror of a beast facing his own demise. "for them..." baronyx tore the wyvern's throat out with his claws and threw the body at the next assailant, bowling him over.
the next wyvern was impaled by baronyx's tail and tossed aside to bleed out on the ground while he set about killing the others in various other ways. when the bodies stopped twitching, baronyx's armor was coated in blood. the crowd was silent and he became worried. he looked to the trainer's balcony and spotted nick, who gave a subtle nod of approval. baronyx looked at the timer: one minute seventeen seconds. it was a new record, the shortest match in history. the crowd roared and applauded long after he was led out of the arena. "an amazing, record setting performance by the returning champion, the Baron!"
baronyx was met by the press' cameras outside the arena. Nick's two-legs stripped the ****** armor and allowed him some room to move around.
The camera flashes continued to blind baronyx but his mind was elsewhere. nick finally showed up to answer the press's questions, while baronyx glared at the group of reporters. after an hour of questions and his agitation reached its breaking point, baronyx growled at the reporters, silencing them. when they didn't move, he bared his fangs and roared, forcing them to make hasty retreats and fleeing the conference. once they were gone, nick turned to baronyx and sighed, "thanks. i thought they'd never leave..."
baronyx stared down at him. "we had a deal."
"so we did. and for that breathtaking performance, you will stay with your family in their hovel."
baronyx started walking towards the train, "then i have to go."
*
Based off of a poem i wrote earlier.
Mike West Aug 2012
The boy haden't bathed in over a month
His **** crack was itching and burning
His underpants were soaked in slimy, wet muck
And his toes a thick jam were churning
His armpits stank worse than a fat pigs raw ***
His breath smelled like rancid fish
His hair was so oily, matted to his head
His own mother wouldn't give him a kiss
"Enough!" he cried as a passing fly died
When he raised his arm to exclaim.
"I must bathe right away! I am long overdue!"
"I sure hope the washcloths are brave."
"To the bathroom man!" He shouted as he ran
And his underpants sloppily squished
"I will remove this filth and brush my green teeth"
"And my mother I will kiss!"
"The closet's ahead!" He said as he sped.
And he stopped there to get some stuff.
Some soap, some shampoo and a towel or two.
But he knew that it wasn't enough.
Look though he might, to his horror and fright,
Not a single washcloth could he find.
Then panic set in 'cause the stink of his skin
Was driving him out of his mind.
He looked yet again but to his chagrin
The washcloth shelf was bare.
The washcloths had run off
For they would not wash
So filthy a boy on a dare
"Oh what will I do!" "Boo-hoo, boo-hoo!"
The boy cried as flies swarmed his head.
"I'd **** myself but I already smell"
"Far worse than anything dead!"
Then one washcloth came back
Holding it's nose and a sack
Of bath salts that smelled like dill.
It said to the boy "Go pickle yourself!"
"And give me a nausea pill!"
So the boy rejoiced and filled the tub
With water, hot as he could stand.
And using the bath salts, he jumped right in
And the pickling began.
He lathered the washcloth with water and soap
And scrubbed with all of his might.
Away he washed all of the filth
'Til none was left in sight.
He washed his hair and brushed his teeth
And dried and dressed himself well.
And the washcloth exclaimed as it hung on the tub
"Holy crap! that was pure hell!"
So the boy now clean ran to be seen
By his mother he loved so much.
And she gave him a kiss and said "This is pure bliss!"
"I can kiss you and keep down my lunch!"
The moral I'll tell you and true I will be
So no one will say that I lied.
Don't wait a whole month to take a bath
Or you washcloths may run and hide.
THE PROLOGUE.

The Sompnour in his stirrups high he stood,
Upon this Friar his hearte was so wood,                        furious
That like an aspen leaf he quoke* for ire:             quaked, trembled
"Lordings," quoth he, "but one thing I desire;
I you beseech, that of your courtesy,
Since ye have heard this false Friar lie,
As suffer me I may my tale tell
This Friar boasteth that he knoweth hell,
And, God it wot, that is but little wonder,
Friars and fiends be but little asunder.
For, pardie, ye have often time heard tell,
How that a friar ravish'd was to hell
In spirit ones by a visioun,
And, as an angel led him up and down,
To shew him all the paines that there were,
In all the place saw he not a frere;
Of other folk he saw enough in woe.
Unto the angel spake the friar tho;
                               then
'Now, Sir,' quoth he, 'have friars such a grace,
That none of them shall come into this place?'
'Yes' quoth the angel; 'many a millioun:'
And unto Satanas he led him down.
'And now hath Satanas,' said he, 'a tail
Broader than of a carrack is the sail.
Hold up thy tail, thou Satanas,' quoth he,
'Shew forth thine erse, and let the friar see
Where is the nest of friars in this place.'
And *less than half a furlong way of space
            immediately
Right so as bees swarmen out of a hive,
Out of the devil's erse there gan to drive
A twenty thousand friars on a rout.                       in a crowd
And throughout hell they swarmed all about,
And came again, as fast as they may gon,
And in his erse they creeped every one:
He clapt his tail again, and lay full still.
This friar, when he looked had his fill
Upon the torments of that sorry place,
His spirit God restored of his grace
Into his body again, and he awoke;
But natheless for feare yet he quoke,
So was the devil's erse aye in his mind;
That is his heritage, of very kind                by his very nature
God save you alle, save this cursed Frere;
My prologue will I end in this mannere.

Notes to the Prologue to the Sompnour's Tale

1. Carrack: A great ship of burden used by the Portuguese; the
name is from the Italian, "cargare," to load

2. In less than half a furlong way of space: immediately;
literally, in less time than it takes to walk half a furlong (110
yards).

THE TALE.

Lordings, there is in Yorkshire, as I guess,
A marshy country called Holderness,
In which there went a limitour about
To preach, and eke to beg, it is no doubt.
And so befell that on a day this frere
Had preached at a church in his mannere,
And specially, above every thing,
Excited he the people in his preaching
To trentals,  and to give, for Godde's sake,
Wherewith men mighte holy houses make,
There as divine service is honour'd,
Not there as it is wasted and devour'd,
Nor where it needeth not for to be given,
As to possessioners,  that may liven,
Thanked be God, in wealth and abundance.
"Trentals," said he, "deliver from penance
Their friendes' soules, as well old as young,
Yea, when that they be hastily y-sung, --
Not for to hold a priest jolly and gay,
He singeth not but one mass in a day.
"Deliver out," quoth he, "anon the souls.
Full hard it is, with flesh-hook or with owls                     *awls
To be y-clawed, or to burn or bake:
Now speed you hastily, for Christe's sake."
And when this friar had said all his intent,
With qui *** patre forth his way he went,
When folk in church had giv'n him what them lest;
              pleased
He went his way, no longer would he rest,
With scrip and tipped staff, *y-tucked high:
      with his robe tucked
In every house he gan to pore
and pry,                   up high* peer
And begged meal and cheese, or elles corn.
His fellow had a staff tipped with horn,
A pair of tables
all of ivory,                         writing tablets
And a pointel
y-polish'd fetisly,                  pencil *daintily
And wrote alway the names, as he stood;
Of all the folk that gave them any good,
Askaunce* that he woulde for them pray.                    see note
"Give us a bushel wheat, or malt, or rey,
                          rye
A Godde's kichel,
or a trip
of cheese,        little cake scrap
Or elles what you list, we may not chese;
                       choose
A Godde's halfpenny,  or a mass penny;
Or give us of your brawn, if ye have any;
A dagon
of your blanket, leve dame,                            remnant
Our sister dear, -- lo, here I write your name,--
Bacon or beef, or such thing as ye find."
A sturdy harlot
went them aye behind,                   manservant
That was their hoste's man, and bare a sack,
And what men gave them, laid it on his back
And when that he was out at door, anon
He *planed away
the names every one,                       rubbed out
That he before had written in his tables:
He served them with nifles* and with fables. --             silly tales

"Nay, there thou liest, thou Sompnour," quoth the Frere.
"Peace," quoth our Host, "for Christe's mother dear;
Tell forth thy tale, and spare it not at all."
"So thrive I," quoth this Sompnour, "so I shall." --

So long he went from house to house, till he
Came to a house, where he was wont to be
Refreshed more than in a hundred places
Sick lay the husband man, whose that the place is,
Bed-rid upon a couche low he lay:
"Deus hic,"* quoth he; "O Thomas friend, good day,"       God be here
Said this friar, all courteously and soft.
"Thomas," quoth he, "God yield it you, full oft       reward you for
Have I upon this bench fared full well,
Here have I eaten many a merry meal."
And from the bench he drove away the cat,
And laid adown his potent* and his hat,                       staff
And eke his scrip, and sat himself adown:
His fellow was y-walked into town
Forth with his knave,
into that hostelry                       servant
Where as he shope
him that night to lie.              shaped, purposed

"O deare master," quoth this sicke man,
"How have ye fared since that March began?
I saw you not this fortenight and more."
"God wot," quoth he, "labour'd have I full sore;
And specially for thy salvation
Have I said many a precious orison,
And for mine other friendes, God them bless.
I have this day been at your church at mess,
                      mass
And said sermon after my simple wit,
Not all after the text of Holy Writ;
For it is hard to you, as I suppose,
And therefore will I teach you aye the glose.
           gloss, comment
Glosing is a full glorious thing certain,
For letter slayeth, as we clerkes
sayn.                       scholars
There have I taught them to be charitable,
And spend their good where it is reasonable.
And there I saw our dame; where is she?"
"Yonder I trow that in the yard she be,"
Saide this man; "and she will come anon."
"Hey master, welcome be ye by Saint John,"
Saide this wife; "how fare ye heartily?"

This friar riseth up full courteously,
And her embraceth *in his armes narrow,
                        closely
And kiss'th her sweet, and chirketh as a sparrow
With his lippes: "Dame," quoth he, "right well,
As he that is your servant every deal.
                            whit
Thanked be God, that gave you soul and life,
Yet saw I not this day so fair a wife
In all the churche, God so save me,"
"Yea, God amend defaultes, Sir," quoth she;
"Algates
welcome be ye, by my fay."                             always
"Grand mercy, Dame; that have I found alway.
But of your greate goodness, by your leave,
I woulde pray you that ye not you grieve,
I will with Thomas speak *a little throw:
              a little while
These curates be so negligent and slow
To ***** tenderly a conscience.
In shrift* and preaching is my diligence                     confession
And study in Peter's wordes and in Paul's;
I walk and fishe Christian menne's souls,
To yield our Lord Jesus his proper rent;
To spread his word is alle mine intent."
"Now by your faith, O deare Sir," quoth she,
"Chide him right well, for sainte charity.
He is aye angry as is a pismire,
                                   ant
Though that he have all that he can desire,
Though I him wrie
at night, and make him warm,                   cover
And ov'r him lay my leg and eke mine arm,
He groaneth as our boar that lies in sty:
Other disport of him right none have I,
I may not please him in no manner case."
"O Thomas, *je vous dis,
Thomas, Thomas,                   I tell you
This maketh the fiend, this must be amended.     is the devil's work
Ire is a thing that high God hath defended,                  forbidden
And thereof will I speak a word or two."
"Now, master," quoth the wife, "ere that I go,
What will ye dine? I will go thereabout."
"Now, Dame," quoth he, "je vous dis sans doute,
Had I not of a capon but the liver,
And of your white bread not but a shiver,                   *thin slice
And after that a roasted pigge's head,
(But I would that for me no beast were dead,)
Then had I with you homely suffisance.
I am a man of little sustenance.
My spirit hath its fost'ring in the Bible.
My body is aye so ready and penible
                        painstaking
To wake,
that my stomach is destroy'd.                           watch
I pray you, Dame, that ye be not annoy'd,
Though I so friendly you my counsel shew;
By God, I would have told it but to few."
"Now, Sir," quoth she, "but one word ere I go;
My child is dead within these weeke's two,
Soon after that ye went out of this town."

"His death saw I by revelatioun,"
Said this friar, "at home in our dortour.
               dormitory
I dare well say, that less than half an hour
Mter his death, I saw him borne to bliss
In mine vision, so God me wiss.
                                 direct
So did our sexton, and our fermerere,
                 infirmary-keeper
That have been true friars fifty year, --
They may now, God be thanked of his love,
Make their jubilee, and walk above.
And up I rose, and all our convent eke,
With many a teare trilling on my cheek,
Withoute noise or clattering of bells,
Te Deum was our song, and nothing else,
Save that to Christ I bade an orison,
Thanking him of my revelation.
For, Sir and Dame, truste me right well,
Our orisons be more effectuel,
And more we see of Christe's secret things,
Than *borel folk,
although that they be kings.             laymen
We live in povert', and in abstinence,
And borel folk in riches and dispence
Of meat and drink, and in their foul delight.
We have this worlde's lust* all in despight
      * pleasure *contempt
Lazar and Dives lived diversely,
And diverse guerdon
hadde they thereby.                         reward
Whoso will pray, he must fast and be clean,
And fat his soul, and keep his body lean
We fare as saith th' apostle; cloth
and food                  clothing
Suffice us, although they be not full good.
The cleanness and the fasting of us freres
Maketh that Christ accepteth our prayeres.
Lo, Moses forty days and forty night
Fasted, ere that the high God full of might
Spake with him in the mountain of Sinai:
With empty womb
of fasting many a day                          stomach
Received he the lawe, that was writ
With Godde's finger; and Eli, well ye wit,
                    know
In Mount Horeb, ere he had any speech
With highe God, that is our live's leech,
            *physician, healer
He fasted long, and was in contemplance.
Aaron, that had the temple in governance,
And eke the other priestes every one,
Into the temple when they shoulde gon
To praye for the people, and do service,
They woulde drinken in no manner wise
No drinke, which that might them drunken make,
But t
An Isle rose up from the ocean swell
On the seventeenth of June,
It was totally unexpected by
The M.V. Cameroon,
She’d sailed with seven passengers
And some cargo in the hold,
They all kept well to their cabins for
The deck was more than cold.

The Captain up on the bridge had checked
His maps before they sailed,
Had marked his course dead reckoning
Though the gyro compass failed,
They’d been at sea for eleven days
So he took a fix on the stars,
Then left the wheel to the Bosun while
He searched for the coffee jar.

The ship ground up on a coral reef
At two in the morning, sharp,
The night was black as a midden since
The clouds had hidden the stars,
The hull bit deep in the coral as
It drove ahead with its way,
Grinding slowly to come to halt
Just in from a new-formed bay.

‘There isn’t supposed to be land out here,’
The Bosun cried to Lars,
The Captain said, ‘I fixed a point,
Dead reckoning by the stars!
There shouldn’t be land in a hundred miles,’
But the ship was high and dry,
‘It must have come up from the ocean floor,’
The Bosun said, ‘but why?’

The passengers spilled out onto the deck
With cries and shouts in the gloom,
‘What have you done, the ship’s a wreck,’
Said the Banker, Gordon Bloom.
The sisters, Jan and Margaret Young
Burst out in sobs and tears,
‘How are you going to float it off?
We might be here for years!’

At daylight they could see the extent
Of the distant lava flow,
‘Lucky we’re not on the other side
Or we’d all be dead, you know.’
The tide came in and the tide went out
But the ship was high and dry,
As clouds of steam from the lava flow
Poured out, and into the sky.

‘We’re not gonna starve,’ said Andy Hill
As he peered down onto the reef,
As thousands of ***** and lobsters crawled
‘There’s plenty of them to eat.’
They lowered him down on a rope, along
With the engineer, Bob Teck,
Where they gathered the lobsters up by hand
And tossed them, up on the deck.

The evening meal was a feast that night,
They ate and they drank their fill,
‘Too much,’ said Oliver Aston-Barr
‘I think I’m going to be ill.’
But Jennifer Deane, Costumier
Had an appetite for four,
She ate the scraps that the others left
And was calling out for more.

The following morning all was still
Til Jennifer Deane came out,
She roused them all with a frightened scream,
And then continued to shout:
‘I’ve got some horrible bug inside
And I’ve lost my sense of taste,
It must have come from the lobsters, for
It’s eaten half of my face!’

The lobsters must have been undercooked
For the symptoms would appal,
A necrotizing flesh eater
Had started on them all,
The flesh was eaten from Andy’s hand
And the leg of Gordon Bloom,
While the sisters Jan and Margaret Young
Lay screaming in their room.

The sickness took them rapidly,
For Jennifer Deane had died,
They had no place to bury her
So threw her over the side,
The ***** then swarmed and attacked her there,
Ate all of her flesh away,
There was little left of Jennifer Deane
Before the end of the day.

Each time that one of them died, the rest
Would fling them over the side,
The bodies had piled up higher out there
Than those alive, inside,
Til finally, Oliver Aston-Barr
Was last to die, on the bridge,
Of the Motor Vessel Cameroon,
Upthrust on a lava ridge.

A winter storm was to float it off,
It drifted out with the tide,
A rusted hulk with ‘The Cameroon’
Paint peeling, off from the side.
An ancient freighter, crossing its path
Drove past it, steel on steel,
And that’s when the helmsman held his breath,
‘There’s a skeleton at the wheel!’

David Lewis Paget
I.

  When to the common rest that crowns our days,
  Called in the noon of life, the good man goes,
  Or full of years, and ripe in wisdom, lays
  His silver temples in their last repose;
  When, o'er the buds of youth, the death-wind blows,
  And blights the fairest; when our bitter tears
  Stream, as the eyes of those that love us close,
  We think on what they were, with many fears
Lest goodness die with them, and leave the coming years:

II.

  And therefore, to our hearts, the days gone by,--
  When lived the honoured sage whose death we wept,
  And the soft virtues beamed from many an eye,
  And beat in many a heart that long has slept,--
  Like spots of earth where angel-feet have stepped--
  Are holy; and high-dreaming bards have told
  Of times when worth was crowned, and faith was kept,
  Ere friendship grew a snare, or love waxed cold--
Those pure and happy times--the golden days of old.

III.

  Peace to the just man's memory,--let it grow
  Greener with years, and blossom through the flight
  Of ages; let the mimic canvas show
  His calm benevolent features; let the light
  Stream on his deeds of love, that shunned the sight
  Of all but heaven, and in the book of fame,
  The glorious record of his virtues write,
  And hold it up to men, and bid them claim
A palm like his, and catch from him the hallowed flame.

IV.

  But oh, despair not of their fate who rise
  To dwell upon the earth when we withdraw!
  Lo! the same shaft by which the righteous dies,
  Strikes through the wretch that scoffed at mercy's law,
  And trode his brethren down, and felt no awe
  Of Him who will avenge them. Stainless worth,
  Such as the sternest age of virtue saw,
  Ripens, meanwhile, till time shall call it forth
From the low modest shade, to light and bless the earth.

V.

  Has Nature, in her calm, majestic march
  Faltered with age at last? does the bright sun
  Grow dim in heaven? or, in their far blue arch,
  Sparkle the crowd of stars, when day is done,
  Less brightly? when the dew-lipped Spring comes on,
  Breathes she with airs less soft, or scents the sky
  With flowers less fair than when her reign begun?
  Does prodigal Autumn, to our age, deny
The plenty that once swelled beneath his sober eye?

VI.

  Look on this beautiful world, and read the truth
  In her fair page; see, every season brings
  New change, to her, of everlasting youth;
  Still the green soil, with joyous living things,
  Swarms, the wide air is full of joyous wings,
  And myriads, still, are happy in the sleep
  Of ocean's azure gulfs, and where he flings
  The restless surge. Eternal Love doth keep
In his complacent arms, the earth, the air, the deep.

VII.

  Will then the merciful One, who stamped our race
  With his own image, and who gave them sway
  O'er earth, and the glad dwellers on her face,
  Now that our swarming nations far away
  Are spread, where'er the moist earth drinks the day,
  Forget the ancient care that taught and nursed
  His latest offspring? will he quench the ray
  Infused by his own forming smile at first,
And leave a work so fair all blighted and accursed?

VIII.

  Oh, no! a thousand cheerful omens give
  Hope of yet happier days, whose dawn is nigh.
  He who has tamed the elements, shall not live
  The slave of his own passions; he whose eye
  Unwinds the eternal dances of the sky,
  And in the abyss of brightness dares to span
  The sun's broad circle, rising yet more high,
  In God's magnificent works his will shall scan--
And love and peace shall make their paradise with man.

IX.

  Sit at the feet of history--through the night
  Of years the steps of virtue she shall trace,
  And show the earlier ages, where her sight
  Can pierce the eternal shadows o'er their face;--
  When, from the genial cradle of our race,
  Went forth the tribes of men, their pleasant lot
  To choose, where palm-groves cooled their dwelling-place,
  Or freshening rivers ran; and there forgot
The truth of heaven, and kneeled to gods that heard them not.

X.

  Then waited not the murderer for the night,
  But smote his brother down in the bright day,
  And he who felt the wrong, and had the might,
  His own avenger, girt himself to slay;
  Beside the path the unburied carcass lay;
  The shepherd, by the fountains of the glen,
  Fled, while the robber swept his flock away,
  And slew his babes. The sick, untended then,
Languished in the damp shade, and died afar from men.

XI.

  But misery brought in love--in passion's strife
  Man gave his heart to mercy, pleading long,
  And sought out gentle deeds to gladden life;
  The weak, against the sons of spoil and wrong,
  Banded, and watched their hamlets, and grew strong.
  States rose, and, in the shadow of their might,
  The timid rested. To the reverent throng,
  Grave and time-wrinkled men, with locks all white,
Gave laws, and judged their strifes, and taught the way of right;

XII.

  Till bolder spirits seized the rule, and nailed
  On men the yoke that man should never bear,
  And drove them forth to battle. Lo! unveiled
  The scene of those stern ages! What is there!
  A boundless sea of blood, and the wild air
  Moans with the crimson surges that entomb
  Cities and bannered armies; forms that wear
  The kingly circlet rise, amid the gloom,
O'er the dark wave, and straight are swallowed in its womb.

XIII.

  Those ages have no memory--but they left
  A record in the desert--columns strown
  On the waste sands, and statues fallen and cleft,
  Heaped like a host in battle overthrown;
  Vast ruins, where the mountain's ribs of stone
  Were hewn into a city; streets that spread
  In the dark earth, where never breath has blown
  Of heaven's sweet air, nor foot of man dares tread
The long and perilous ways--the Cities of the Dead:

XIV.

  And tombs of monarchs to the clouds up-piled--
  They perished--but the eternal tombs remain--
  And the black precipice, abrupt and wild,
  Pierced by long toil and hollowed to a fane;--
  Huge piers and frowning forms of gods sustain
  The everlasting arches, dark and wide,
  Like the night-heaven, when clouds are black with rain.
  But idly skill was tasked, and strength was plied,
All was the work of slaves to swell a despot's pride.

XV.

  And Virtue cannot dwell with slaves, nor reign
  O'er those who cower to take a tyrant's yoke;
  She left the down-trod nations in disdain,
  And flew to Greece, when Liberty awoke,
  New-born, amid those glorious vales, and broke
  Sceptre and chain with her fair youthful hands:
  As rocks are shivered in the thunder-stroke.
  And lo! in full-grown strength, an empire stands
Of leagued and rival states, the wonder of the lands.

XVI.

  Oh, Greece! thy flourishing cities were a spoil
  Unto each other; thy hard hand oppressed
  And crushed the helpless; thou didst make thy soil
  Drunk with the blood of those that loved thee best;
  And thou didst drive, from thy unnatural breast,
  Thy just and brave to die in distant climes;
  Earth shuddered at thy deeds, and sighed for rest
  From thine abominations; after times,
That yet shall read thy tale, will tremble at thy crimes.

XVII.

  Yet there was that within thee which has saved
  Thy glory, and redeemed thy blotted name;
  The story of thy better deeds, engraved
  On fame's unmouldering pillar, puts to shame
  Our chiller virtue; the high art to tame
  The whirlwind of the passions was thine own;
  And the pure ray, that from thy ***** came,
  Far over many a land and age has shone,
And mingles with the light that beams from God's own throne;

XVIII.

  And Rome--thy sterner, younger sister, she
  Who awed the world with her imperial frown--
  Rome drew the spirit of her race from thee,--
  The rival of thy shame and thy renown.
  Yet her degenerate children sold the crown
  Of earth's wide kingdoms to a line of slaves;
  Guilt reigned, and we with guilt, and plagues came down,
  Till the north broke its floodgates, and the waves
Whelmed the degraded race, and weltered o'er their graves.

XIX.

  Vainly that ray of brightness from above,
  That shone around the Galilean lake,
  The light of hope, the leading star of love,
  Struggled, the darkness of that day to break;
  Even its own faithless guardians strove to slake,
  In fogs of earth, the pure immortal flame;
  And priestly hands, for Jesus' blessed sake,
  Were red with blood, and charity became,
In that stern war of forms, a mockery and a name.

**.

  They triumphed, and less ****** rites were kept
  Within the quiet of the convent cell:
  The well-fed inmates pattered prayer, and slept,
  And sinned, and liked their easy penance well.
  Where pleasant was the spot for men to dwell,
  Amid its fair broad lands the abbey lay,
  Sheltering dark ****** that were shame to tell,
  And cowled and barefoot beggars swarmed the way,
All in their convent weeds, of black, and white, and gray.

XXI.

  Oh, sweetly the returning muses' strain
  Swelled over that famed stream, whose gentle tide
  In their bright lap the Etrurian vales detain,
  Sweet, as when winter storms have ceased to chide,
  And all the new-leaved woods, resounding wide,
  Send out wild hymns upon the scented air.
  Lo! to the smiling Arno's classic side
  The emulous nations of the west repair,
And kindle their quenched urns, and drink fresh spirit there.

XXII.

  Still, Heaven deferred the hour ordained to rend
  From saintly rottenness the sacred stole;
  And cowl and worshipped shrine could still defend
  The wretch with felon stains upon his soul;
  And crimes were set to sale, and hard his dole
  Who could not bribe a passage to the skies;
  And vice, beneath the mitre's kind control,
  Sinned gaily on, and grew to giant size,
Shielded by priestly power, and watched by priestly eyes.

XXIII.

  At last the earthquake came--the shock, that hurled
  To dust, in many fragments dashed and strown,
  The throne, whose roots were in another world,
  And whose far-stretching shadow awed our own.
  From many a proud monastic pile, o'erthrown,
  Fear-struck, the hooded inmates rushed and fled;
  The web, that for a thousand years had grown
  O'er prostrate Europe, in that day of dread
Crumbled and fell, as fire dissolves the flaxen thread.

XXIV.

  The spirit of that day is still awake,
  And spreads himself, and shall not sleep again;
  But through the idle mesh of power shall break
  Like billows o'er the Asian monarch's chain;
  Till men are filled with him, and feel how vain,
  Instead of the pure heart and innocent hands,
  Are all the proud and pompous modes to gain
  The smile of heaven;--till a new age expands
Its white and holy wings above the peaceful lands.

XXV.

  For look again on the past years;--behold,
  How like the nightmare's dreams have flown away
  Horrible forms of worship, that, of old,
  Held, o'er the shuddering realms, unquestioned sway:
  See crimes, that feared not once the eye of day,
  Rooted from men, without a name or place:
  See nations blotted out from earth, to pay
  The forfeit of deep guilt;--with glad embrace
The fair disburdened lands welcome a nobler race.

XXVI.

  Thus error's monstrous shapes from earth are driven;
  They fade, they fly--but truth survives their flight;
  Earth has no shades to quench that beam of heaven;
  Each ray that shone, in early time, to light
  The faltering footsteps in the path of right,
  Each gleam of clearer brightness shed to aid
  In man's maturer day his bolder sight,
  All blended, like the rainbow's radiant braid,
Pour yet, and still shall pour, the blaze that cannot fade.

XXVII.

  Late, from this western shore, that morning chased
  The deep and ancient night, that threw its shroud
  O'er the green land of groves, the beautiful waste,
  Nurse of full streams, and lifter-up of proud
  Sky-mingling mountains that o'erlook the cloud.
  Erewhile, where yon gay spires their brightness rear,
  Trees waved, and the brown hunter's shouts were loud
  Amid the forest; and the bounding deer
Fled at the glancing plume, and the gaunt wolf yelled near;

XXVIII.

  And where his willing waves yon bright blue bay
  Sends up, to kiss his decorated brim,
  And cradles, in his soft embrace, the gay
  Young group of grassy islands born of him,
  And crowding nigh, or in the distance dim,
  Lifts the white throng of sails, that bear or bring
  The commerce of the world;--with tawny limb,
  And belt and beads in sunlight glistening,
The savage urged his skiff like wild bird on the wing.

XXIX.

  Then all this youthful paradise around,
  And all the broad and boundless mainland, lay
  Cooled by the interminable wood, that frowned
  O'er mount and vale, where never summer ray
  Glanced, till the strong tornado broke his way
  Through the gray giants of the sylvan wild;
  Yet many a sheltered glade, with blossoms gay,
  Beneath the showery sky and sunshine mild,
Within the shaggy arms of that dark forest smiled.

***.

  There stood the Indian hamlet, there the lake
  Spread its blue sheet that flashed with many an oar,
  Where the brown otter plunged him from the brake,
  And the deer drank: as the light gale flew o'er,
  The twinkling maize-field rustled on the shore;
  And while that spot, so wild, and lone, and fair,
  A look of glad and guiltless beauty wore,
  And peace was on the earth and in the air,
The warrior lit the pile, and bound his captive there:

XXXI.

  Not unavenged--the foeman, from the wood,
  Beheld the deed, and when the midnight shade
  Was stillest, gorged his battle-axe with blood;
  All died--the wailing babe--the shrieking maid--
  And in the flood of fire that scathed the glade,
  The roofs went down; but deep the silence grew,
  When on the dewy woods the day-beam played;
  No more the cabin smokes rose wreathed and blue,
And ever, by their lake, lay moored the light canoe.

XXXII.

  Look now abroad--another race has filled
  These populous borders
GROWLTIGER was a Bravo Cat, who lived upon a barge;
In fact he was the roughest cat that ever roamed at large.
From Gravesend up to Oxford he pursued his evil aims,
Rejoicing in his title of “The Terror of the Thames.”

His manners and appearance did not calculate to please;
His coat was torn and seedy, he was baggy at the knees;
One ear was somewhat missing, no need to tell you why,
And he scowled upon a hostile world from one forbidding eye.

The cottagers of Rotherhithe knew something of his fame,
At Hammersmith and Putney people shuddered at his name.
They would fortify the hen-house, lock up the silly goose,
When the rumour ran along the shore: GROWLTIGER’S ON THE LOOSE!

Woe to the weak canary, that fluttered from its cage;
Woe to the pampered Pekinese, that faced Growltiger’s rage.
Woe to the bristly Bandicoot, that lurks on foreign ships,
And woe to any Cat with whom Growltiger came to grips!

But most to Cats of foreign race his hatred had been vowed;
To Cats of foreign name and race no quarter was allowed.
The Persian and the Siamese regarded him with fear—
Because it was a Siamese had mauled his missing ear.

Now on a peaceful summer night, all nature seemed at play,
The tender moon was shining bright, the barge at Molesey lay.
All in the balmy moonlight it lay rocking on the tide—
And Growltiger was disposed to show his sentimental side.

His bucko mate, GRUMBUSKIN, long since had disappeared,
For to the Bell at Hampton he had gone to wet his beard;
And his bosun, TUMBLEBRUTUS, he too had stol’n away-
In the yard behind the Lion he was prowling for his prey.

In the forepeak of the vessel Growltiger sate alone,
Concentrating his attention on the Lady GRIDDLEBONE.
And his raffish crew were sleeping in their barrels and their bunks—
As the Siamese came creeping in their sampans and their junks.

Growltiger had no eye or ear for aught but Griddlebone,
And the Lady seemed enraptured by his manly baritone,
Disposed to relaxation, and awaiting no surprise—
But the moonlight shone reflected from a thousand bright blue eyes.

And closer still and closer the sampans circled round,
And yet from all the enemy there was not heard a sound.
The lovers sang their last duet, in danger of their lives—
For the foe was armed with toasting forks and cruel carving knives.
Then GILBERT gave the signal to his fierce Mongolian horde;
With a frightful burst of fireworks the Chinks they swarmed aboard.
Abandoning their sampans, and their pullaways and junks,
They battened down the hatches on the crew within their bunks.

Then Griddlebone she gave a screech, for she was badly skeered;
I am sorry to admit it, but she quickly disappeared.
She probably escaped with ease, I’m sure she was not drowned—
But a serried ring of flashing steel Growltiger did surround.

The ruthless foe pressed forward, in stubborn rank on rank;
Growltiger to his vast surprise was forced to walk the plank.
He who a hundred victims had driven to that drop,
At the end of all his crimes was forced to go ker-flip, ker-flop.

Oh there was joy in Wapping when the news flew through the land;
At Maidenhead and Henley there was dancing on the strand.
Rats were roasted whole at Brentford, and at Victoria Dock,
And a day of celebration was commanded in Bangkok.
Natalie Mar 2018
Words, words, worms! My mind is swarmed
With them. Ants file in through the sticky
Canals, chattering, stamping their little black feet.
They use me. I am their harboring medium,
A visitor in my own head.
Black, empty mouths flutter and dance and signal
Amongst themselves, crowding my skull,
A murmuration of phrases and guttural sounds.

I mustn't tell fully what they say.

They draw forth black and bubbling swamps,
Wicked crows, the yawping millions, pecking,
Pecking, gouging with yammering beaks
At every smooth, young innocent.

There is death in this tumult of words.

Let it not take me.
Audrey Bautz Mar 2013
I remember the frost that morning,
- painting the window in a satin-white.
How it burned my throat when I inhaled;
the distant scent of someone’s open-fire,
- curling through the atmosphere a thick fragrance of Maple.
The trees dressed in winter’s coat of freshly lain snow.
The sky was hanging low in the mountains as I looked ahead.
I even heard the soft landing of snowdrops
- From the surrounding branches.

My skin felt rough and tight
- as I walked further on,
My nose feeling of someone else’s.
I could feel the pangs of old age hit me
- like a time-bomb.
But it was no use returning,
I only had to march on. Crunch, crunch,
below my snow-boots,
When at last I realized I had reached a gravel road.

The dawn awoke behind the somber mists of clouds.
I could just catch a glimpse of sun-rays within a break.
Oh, how glorious
she bathed me in a pool of warmth
before dispersing at once,
alone again in my frozen world;
Though, I never faltered
and continued to walk down the snowy path.
Crunch, crunch, continued my boots,
my arms swinging right after the other,
Front-to-back, front-to-back.
I scaled the peak of the hill,
(the hill I’d spend all my days upon as a child)
covered in a thick layer of snow;
Its’ features all too familiar to hide.
It aged with me through a life of joy and pain
as though an old friend. And now I stood
- in the place no longer welcoming like it used to be.
My heart filled with a void that I could not process,
- could not or would not.
And the sad scene of my past
only plunged deeper into my consciousness
- pulling from its’ depth a Charles Dickens’s quote.
It is as follows:
“Happy, happy Christmas that can win us back to the delusions of our childhood days, recall to the old man the pleasures of his youth and transport the traveler back to his own fireside and quiet home.”
And deep within a melancholic-faze,
I departed from the distant view of my home.
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
The bag I carried seemed to grow with each step
and after what I only could have guessed was hours in,
I found myself stooped over a rock
- rummaging the contents of my pack.
I leaned back beneath a frozen Willow and munched on an apple.
Gazing out at the flourishing scene God had bestowed me; the trees mid-thought,
and I wondered what they must have been thinking
- when at that moment, winter’s angry hand
- broke the silent beauty of autumn and shook the trees bare;
their life strewn upon the ground
- and replaced by a thick layer of ice.
But what of the brushes or flowers?
Were they not too silenced, frozen in time?
A thousand questions buzzed through the hemispheres of my brain.

When the clouds would split
- the sunshine would pour in heaping rays of gold in my walk,
- just as she ripened through the morning hours.  
The snow had stopped falling and the stillness of the land comforted me;
Only my thoughts and the random flutter of birds broke the silence.
The snow surrendered beneath my feet,
crunch, crunch,
- gravel shooting high into the air.
My legs carried me aimlessly unbeknownst of the destination.
And overtime, the cold seemed to eat away through my suit, wrapping tightly around my joints;
the pain was more than my aged body would let me bear
- with my heart pumping bitterly through the frozen hemisphere.
The very thought of the beautiful landscape which beheld my gaze,
having ever play a part in bitter sorrow of those even most fortunate,
- boggled the very life of me. And Mother Nature seemed not quite finished,
as she whipped a brisk chill breeze through the bristly oaks.
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Sun was my only comfort and I longed for its’ presence.
It danced around the complexities of my synapses with a cruelness,
- Its image just as vibrant in thought, as it would have been before me;
- As though, someone, had pulled the earth closer to the sun.
And the excruciating thought only made the ice colder,
- snow deeper, and wind harder.
I felt tiny needle-like ****** where my skin was bare
- and a cruel pressure as though a force was splitting my flesh in two.
Then, that blinding flash flooding my sight;
I couldn’t see my feet. So strong and powerful,
- I thought I had unknowingly fallen into the center of the earth.
Though my eyes adjusted before any real panic set in, becoming clear.
I looked up and marveled in the exposing warmth;
God smiled upon my weak, aging soul, one last time.
Colors in majestic tones and lifetimes apart
- overlapped the silk shimmer of afternoon sunlight.
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Two o’clock and I trudged through the thick snow
- as adamant and determined as the moment I first set foot outside.
My moist hair protruded from beneath my hat,
- a result from the sporadic snowfall.
The trees echoed with the call of birds; their beautiful songs
- bellowed clear and shook the boughs in harmonious celebration.
I felt as though a surge of relentless joy lifted me from the heartache of the walk.
I, was a part of something bigger than I could ever imagine,
- the unity of blood and soul, the bond of humanity and their heritage.
I could see my Ancestors pillaging the forest floors for scraps of food
- walking this very path. Such dream was mine,
to walk hand-in-hand with my family again,
- to rejoice at the sight of snow rather than cringe.
To hear the floorboards creak from the mass of human pressure
- rather than the creeping age of the foundation;
- to hear the echo of my sweetheart down the hall.
There was nothing left to show for a lifetime of love
- but a broken heart and memories, all of which haunted me.
I became so distracted from my journey that I hadn’t realized
- how far off course I was. I gazed at the empty, bare trees,
- for the first time unfamiliar with their presence.
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Hours passed and I could feel the wind grow heavy and frequent.
The sky showed no sign of improvement, but only seemed to increase in clouds.
I pulled my coat to me tighter and tucked my hands beneath my arms.
It was not long after, that I found a suitable place to rest.
I gathered all the sticks nearby and cleaned a shallow area of snow.
The wood burned slowly as the surrounding snow liquefied at light-speed.
Its’ immense heat covered my frozen-self in a blanket of warmth
- and I felt the bulk of the journey fall over me.
My eyelids became as heavy as cement blocks.
I decided to compromise this by giving in
- and falling deep into unconsciousness.
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
It was not too clear at first
- the hazy grounds in which I found myself.
There wasn’t snow but that of soft spring grass
- and I was no longer aching from frostbite.
I smelled an overwhelming ample of spring blossoms
- accompanying the gentle breezes. The sunlight sat upon my cheek,
- no cloud in sight. Birds swarmed the open sky
- rejoicing the beautiful weather. What was this place? Where was I?  
There were the plumped-fields encircling the full oak trees,
- the wonderful sun showering the land in a ravishing golden light.
“There you are! I’ve been waiting for you.”
The voice startled me in its’ familiarity.
I opened my mouth to speak but no words came.  
“I’ve missed you so much!” It continued.      
Still not a single syllable could I form.
I looked all around,
- but no source could be found as to the whereabouts of the voice.
I forced myself up and stood at a loss.
Searching every corner, every shaded area but returned with no results.
Crunch, crunch, sounded the pitter patter of feet;
I looked around frantically but just as the voice, I remained alone in the field.
Only the crunch, increased, in speed and numbers;
I closed my eyes tightly and covered my ears
- until it was only the pounding of my heart that broke the silence.
A harsh, cold wind began to blow violently against my face
- and my hands stung with the feeling of my skin being pulled from my fingernails.
I strained to open my eyes and then
- found nothing but the thick suffocation of darkness.
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Charred-wood remained beneath the remnants of smoke;
Its base still grasping a hint of light within the pile.
My face felt exposed and raw to the chill,
- burning with the intensity of a bonfire.
My fingers beyond that, to the point of numbness;
I couldn’t even feel my lips. I had lost control of my nerves;
I felt a madness possess my senses
and I struggled to contain as much rationality as possible.
I reached into my coat pocket for my matchbox
and with one strike of the flint,
- a tiny brilliant flame danced in direction with the wind.
And the light as though a disease,
- spread rapidly to the remaining wood. My environment became clear
- and I gazed up noticing the presence of the moon.
What time was it?
A sudden grumble arose from within the darkness
and I, continuing to fall in and out of unconsciousness.
But it wasn’t until I nearly dozed off
- that I recognized a most foreign presence; I was no longer alone.
A fierce set of eyes had been watching me; inching closer and closer.
They stared with the intensity of a 1000 hungry eyes
- coming closer until at last I caught a glimpse more of my visitor.
Her fur displayed sheen like that of the ocean at dawn;
Her eyes radiated a beautiful emerald hue.
She refrained from baring her teeth, though I knew why she was there.
I leaned up and between my chattering-teeth I spoke:
“I know why you’re here,”
The words did not come without consequence
for my lips split wide open from the sudden ****.
“. . . But it's not your job . . . not today!”
She studied my indigent-state, as grasped my coat to me tighter.
She sat down where she stood gazing with a longing.
her full-coat folding over her joints as she sunk further into the snow
- resting her head upon her paws, slowly closing her eyes.
And soon I followed suit, closing mine, and drifting off. ©
This is the first chapter in my poetry book called, "The Howl of the Wolf."
Harry J Baxter Jan 2014
"No.
No you absolutely can not go to the store to buy some beer
you! you are too young
just stay inside and watch some TV
beer is for losers
no go and make your dad another G&T;
during the commercial break"

Feeling thirsty?
Want to be liked and respected?
want to be fun?
life of the party?
want to be swarmed by a slew of half naked vaginas with legs?
then get yourself a Bud

"Why can't you be happy with what you have?
you know we never had much growing up
and look at us now
a pair of reasonably comfortable adults
don't you want to be reasonably comfortable?
can't you just be yourself?"

Hey you! Yeah you!
what the hell are you just sitting there for?
It's a Friday night why aren't you out partying?
no invitation. ****. Wait I know why -
What's that you are wearing?
you don't know!?
you need some Polo
and some Nike, just do it
throw in some brooks brothers
don't you want people to think better of you
don't be THAT guy in cargo shorts
unless you like ******* alone at night
and here's some Beats by Dre headphones
so you can hear us better
Now I no it's pricey, but don't you want to be happy?
we've got your happiness right here
and it will only cost you
your parents' credit card

"We just don't know what's wrong with you
why are you in such a rut?
get out of bed, go and do something
we got you what you asked for
why can't you be satisfied?
a lenovo 2 in 1?
what the hell is a Lenovo 2 in 1?
A laptop and a tablet?
Why?
Oh, you just have to have one
well I'm sorry, but money has been tight
maybe you should get a job
your birthday is right around the corner..."

Look at this cool guy
Look at how great his life is
you want this. We know you do
what you'll need is some more swag
just a little bit
and some cough syrup, expensive liquor and some ***
plus you'll want some *******
how else can you party this hard?
Maybe get a gun, or a knife
no. Definitely get a gun. A big one
that way nobody will say anything to **** your buzz
carry that big stick and walk tall cool dude
oh yeah, here's a secret for you
keep it to yourself alright?
women really like being treated like ****
we told them to

"What's that?
a gun? For what?
oh so now you're going to **** yourself?
well I'm sorry but we don't do that in this family
you'll just have to be ground into submission like everybody else
what makes you so special, huh?
why do you get to punch out early
shut up, keep your head down, do your job, buy some ****, have a family
then get your kids started with all the **** you buy.
brand name baby clothes and such.
now be a good boy
and pay your taxes
but shush, the TV is on"
It was a Saturday afternoon
The legion branch was full
The band was playing some old twangy country song
The front four tables were singing along
Up at the bar
A steady line up of Nevada players
hoping for another jackpot
to cover another few beers
And to make the afternoon last
Nothing worse, than having to milk
a weak draft for an hour
Until the men came back from horseshoes
About three o'clock
the branch livened up as Jimi McGonagle arrived
grandson of the past president
and general all about me, *******
He was strutting around
showing off his new tattoo
No different than his other
thirty or so, but it was new
and it was Jimi McGonagle
so everyone wanted to see
He was proud he now had eight peacocks
All up one leg....there's a joke here
But, even I won't go that far....
The crowd swarmed around him
But, in the back corner
The table....I mean THE TABLE...
didn't move a muscle
In fact out of the three individuals at THE TABLE
Two continued with their dart game
while the third just chuckled, let out a loud
HARUMPH
and went back to his screwdriver
with the quickly melting ice cubes
famous at all legions for helping water down the drinks
Jimi, heard the HARUMPH and looked back
The old man took a slug from the glass
and HARUMPHED louder
Jimi, perplexed, came over to see what was the matter
"Don't like my tattoos Mr. Stein?"
HARUMPH..."they're fine, if you like that kind of thing"
said the old man, knocking back his glass again
"Gives me eight peacocks on my leg now" said Jimi
Again, no response from me on the possible joke here
"cost me almost $700 bucks to get this one done"
"HARUMPH" said the old man....
"What is wrong with you Mr. Stein?"
"Don't like it?"
"Like I said...."
"I know, I know"....said Jimi
"Got any ink?" asked Jimi
"Yep" answered the old man, as a fresh glass arrived
He took a slug...
"So?"...said Jimi, "Is it any better than my peacock?..
"Maybe..maybe not"...said the old man
"It just depends"
The crowd had moved away and was dropping back to the bar area
"Can I see it?" asked Jimi..."What is it?"
"'tain't much to speak of...but I'll show you"....
"Just quit strutting around and sit....and I'll have another screwdriver"...
Jimi sat, and the old man looked him in the eye
"Don't have much colour, like your'n do...don't have any at all"...
"But, a tat's a tat, and you want to see it"...."You sure?"
Jimi nodded, ordered the drink for the old man
"HARUMPH"...said Mr. Stein
He unbuttoned his shirt cuff on the left side
and rolled it up, with his big, beefy, work worn hands
"There she be" he said
"Where", said Jimi
"There'n, on my wrist....just there"
"All I see is a number, an old, worn number"
"That'd be her" said Mr. Stein...."It's all I got, and it's all I need"
"What is it?" asked Jimi
"It's who I am...who I was reduced to"
"It's my curse, and my strength"...
"I was 17 when I got this in Hammelburg, Germany"....
"It was 1943 and we were rounded up"
"and sent to the camps...we were some of the last jews"
"they missed us in the first go round"
"gave me this...don't need another one"
"It's me...this number....it's me"
"Yours are nice...colourful....but are they you?"
"Mine is me"...
"You can see...I have ink....only one....don't want anymore"
"Can I sit a while?" asked Jimi
"Sure, son"...."you can tell me 'bout them silly peacocks"
"Bartender....two screwdrivers"
...and so developed a new and deep friendship....
Perusing through the earth brown in your eyes
Your abysmal feelings lurk underneath your placid disguise

You gaze back into mine and plaster on your best smitten smirk
All I want to do is quell your inner demons with a kissing berserk

But like a whisper, I cant place my finger on it
Whatever is making your insides feel so unfit

Let me caress
to suppress  all your body's ****** distress

Just crack open
Escape that inner dystopian

The superfluous light in my soul wants to spill in
so that destructive darkness can dissipate into fin

Fill in your void
I implore,"don't feel destroyed"

My heart's warmest sentiments
Dance with your mouth's jubilant upward movements

Im swarmed by the rosy love you cast on to me like a spell
I wish too that you have this frenzy feelings of fantastic to dwell

I beseech you
To save you is my virtue

You're one of the few
Whom I see in my future... 'tis true
I PAINTED on the roof of a skyscraper.
I painted a long while and called it a day's work.
The people on a corner swarmed and the traffic cop's whistle never let up all afternoon.
They were the same as bugs, many bugs on their way-
Those people on the go or at a standstill;
And the traffic cop a spot of blue, a splinter of brass,
Where the black tides ran around him
And he kept the street. I painted a long while
And called it a day's work.
It faces west, and round the back and sides
High beeches, bending, hang a veil of boughs,
And sweep against the roof. Wild honeysucks
Climb on the walls, and seem to sprout a wish
(If we may fancy wish of trees and plants)
To overtop the apple trees hard-by.

Red roses, lilacs, variegated box
Are there in plenty, and such hardy flowers
As flourish best untrained. Adjoining these
Are herbs and esculents; and farther still
A field; then cottages with trees, and last
The distant hills and sky.

Behind, the scene is wilder. Heath and furze
Are everything that seems to grow and thrive
Upon the uneven ground. A stunted thorn
Stands here and there, indeed; and from a pit
An oak uprises, Springing from a seed
Dropped by some bird a hundred years ago.

In days bygone—
Long gone—my father’s mother, who is now
Blest with the blest, would take me out to walk.
At such a time I once inquired of her
How looked the spot when first she settled here.
The answer I remember. ‘Fifty years
Have passed since then, my child, and change has marked
The face of all things. Yonder garden-plots
And orchards were uncultivated slopes
O’ergrown with bramble bushes, furze and thorn:
That road a narrow path shut in by ferns,
Which, almost trees, obscured the passers-by.

Our house stood quite alone, and those tall firs
And beeches were not planted. Snakes and efts
Swarmed in the summer days, and nightly bats
Would fly about our bedrooms. Heathcroppers
Lived on the hills, and were our only friends;
So wild it was when we first settled here.’
Jack Torrance Aug 2018
Someone call the Doctor,
because something’s amiss.
The darkness descended,
and there’s just the abyss.

Tell him, that maybe,
a paradox formed.
That up, is now right,
and that demons have swarmed.

Tell him, please tell him,
that we need the blue box.
We need his courage,
to turn back the clock.

I know the moment,
the exact time it went wrong,
but I can’t do it alone,
I’ve done that too long.

If we just had the Doctor,
we could set things to right.
We could change that moment,
and bring back the light.

I know he’s not coming,
and that he’s not real.
It’s just wishful writing,
to push back my fears.

A hero, a savior,
someone who knows all.
Someone who isn’t me,
that could stop the slow fall.

A blue box, a Doctor,
a moment in time.
A villain, so empty,
writing silly rhymes.

A paradox, truly,
that doesn’t make sense.
Can a villain turn hero,
if he shows recompense?

I guess we shall see,
but I won’t hold my breath.
I’ll wait for the Doctor,
or I’ll just wait for Death.
sheeba balan kpp Jan 2015
Eucalyptus filled air
Sheets of warm and cold air
Early tasmac drinkers
Weary eyed dads
Bye bye -ing mommies
Dung splattering cows
whipped pedigree dogs
Scared insects
Proud birds
Flowers with an attitude
The pig
A hero
Swarmed stinking
Dirtiest of them all
And a early morning feast
Charming brown eyed street dogs
Question marked trees
Washed pavements
Drooling men
Betel chewing glaring women
Girls in floral blouses sweeping
Sh -sh -sh -sh -sh
Autos rrrrrr
Shock absorbing nike shoes krr krr krrr krr
A cigarette ****
A sad memory
Pushed aside
By the brush of a hand
pushed to a remote corner
Hidden
another memory
a recent one
with a scaredy cat
Which i want to share and party with
Was vivid

Ornamented ladies
lighting lamps to a dead god
Guarded by vain priests
Obesience
and giving life
for people
Lost in hope and fear
A parallel existence

Corporates blaring into phones
Fit men playing tennis
Small sturdy grass
Petite flowers
Swaying and dancing
Everlasting
Everlasting ?
Is it a will or maybe or a should be ?
early morning walks in new upcoming areas like hsr and marathahalli which were until recently villages and are now turning into small IT towns
Andrew Parker Dec 2013
Follicle Poem
December 6, 2013

A mental relapse occurs.
I see hands plowing through my head of hair
They continue to grasp at the roots,
as if attempting to expose a truth hidden underneath.
But what secrets could bequeath a hair follicle?
Well, one might tell a tale.

Scared of the dark, a 6 year old Wynn laid awake in bed.
He prolonged the inevitable destitution of a dream state.
No longer wanting to accept a reoccurring nightmare,
he took to a dreary exercise of staying awake in the dark.
One hair follicle today may tell of how,
on that night it did not rise in a panicked state.
Wynn had finally conquered his fear of the dark.

"Something felt different today," said Follicle #567.
A new shampoo.
But more than that, strange scissors.
"Who is this new person cutting Wynn's hair now?"
remarked one hair follicle,
"I wonder what happened to the usual lady?"
She had passed away.

An emerging chest hair observed the extended family has grown recently.
"Darker relatives who look different and live in other regions of the world.
Who are they and why do they get treated differently?
Nobody has heard of the ***** region in the southern hemisphere,
or armpit land where our hair family members supposedly smell weird."
The perspective of a follicle in puberty.

"The loud sound of electricity and gears grinding scares me.
There is a storm which ravishes our lands.
First, a foamy cloud surrounds us.
Next, comes a sharp stinging sensation,
not a pleasant feeling to be set free from your roots.
A tidal wave crashes, washing away my follicle friends and family forever.
Then, the lightning strikes - dooming us all."
A ****** follicle's worst fear.

"We are a persevering bunch.
We cling to our conventions and grow, grow, grow.
But recently Wynn has done something new.
We thought he was feeding us honey,
so treacherous.
Sticky goop and stiff paper will be the end of us all.
Nobody wants to admit follicles are second-class citizens to smooth skin."
Waxing prematurely takes the lives of several million follicles annually.

"A rebel group of follicles known as the 'In-Growns' are up to no good.
They scheme with the pimples, plotting when and where to strike next.
I worry about Wynn - wish he could know we aren't all so ill-intentioned."
Follicle culture is derived from parenting, not just biology or anatomical location.

"The last of my kind, I have been contaminated with chemicals.
My color changed to blue.
I've heard the ancient legends about follicles once turned blonde.
We need to appease the summer sun god.
The others have all shriveled up or been brutally betrayed by the locals.
In hiding, we worry the scissor insurgents will discover our locations.
All I wanted was the freedom to express myself,
to be seen for who I really am - not just some color."
Follicles experience discrimination for numerous reasons.

"Drugs.
I can feeeel them in my DNA.
Something about me has changed and I like it.
Living life on the wild side these days.
I don't shower and don't care if I am greasy.
Every other follicle’s fears are irrational.
I'm gonna spread the word and grow out a bit.
Because that's what they expect of me, isn't it?
I mean, what good could come out of a drugged up follicle,
other than more waste of scalp space?"
Follicles who use drugs recreationally receive negative labels and harsh stigma.

"The wavy goodness from a gel rub,
is the highlight of the week.
We are fine, fresh, and fierce, ready to set the standard for follicle fashion.
If you are one of those lower class follicles,
who can't afford gel.
No worries - some might trickle down...
Just kidding!
Spray supports our monopoly on hair care products."
Fashionable follicles are extra sassy and have socio-economic privilege.

The relapse ends.
My head suddenly feels heavy,
swarmed with the hair follicle chronicles.
And the hands running through my head of hair become inspired.
They begin to tell their tales of times passed in Wynn's life.

Perspective means everything.
Jesse Belcher Jul 2013
His days are filled with books and a beautiful view.
He reads all day, then watches the sunset, every day from his room.
All kinds of books that penetrates him to another world,
for as kind as he is; at school he tries to go unnoticed. Find a corner and curl.

Nobody knows this boy who has so much to offer.
He doesn't get a chance, 'cause the cool kids like to see him suffer.
He slowly peeks around the corner, to see if they're around.
He has to get to English, the bell just rang the final sound.

Almost there he see's the door,
picking up the pace he trips to the floor.
He hears laughing and see's them pointing at his falling body.
It's the same everyday. Is there someone real he thinks. anybody?

Late that evening just finishing his latest book,
he goes to his view just to take his evening look.
Something was different, there was beauty he couldn't see.
Definitely something different, there was odd colors' behind his red oak tree.

Adjusting his view to perhaps get a better peek,
he saw a beauty he couldn't explain. He tried to holler down, but couldn't speak.
She came out from behind the tree,
Who was she he thought, for he could not see.

Cautiously he walked outside,
usually reserved he didn't know why.
He saw her just staring like a woman with so much on her mind.
He wanted to speak to her: what would he say? Just be kind.

"Hello", he said, as he took a step closer.
She turned around, and it was over.
The boy never knew something so beautiful could be so close.
For after a romance novel, from his dreams they arose.

After her initial shock she said "Hi, you must be my new neighbor."
"I just moved here from Florida, I'm not use to the chill."
The boy mesmerized thought he took one too many pills.
He tried to talk, but it just wouldn't flow, and as she stared at him
he saw her face contort, and she started to go.

He said "wait don't leave. I'm just not use to people talking to me."
He was actually a handsome boy if they would take the time to see.
He said, "my name is Cole and I live in the white house just there."
He pointed to it and noticed she didn't look. Instead at him she stared.

Her gaze made him uncomfortable, for he thought it a prank,
but the more he looked the deeper he sank.
She said, "Cole, I like that name,
mine is Lila." Lila Verame."

He saw her shiver and recalled her comment about the chill,
so he took off his jacket, and placed in around her hoping the warmth she would feel.
"Thank you" she said as she looked in his eyes.
Cole said "your welcome, this should keep you dry."

Lila giggled and said, "what do you mean?"
"There is a storm coming. I can smell it. After awhile you sense things that don't have to be seen.
She never heard a boy talk like this,
she said "so after awhile living here, there'll be things I can sense?"

Cole puzzled, said "sorry if I talk a little strange."
Lila smiled and said "no I like it, from where I'm from it's a nice change."
In Florida it's all about how good one looks in bikini's.
It's nice down here to have you talk about the scenery.

Her green eyes sparkled as he talked like never before.
Lila laughed, smiled, and even seemed interesting all the more.
So many thoughts were exchanged before the first rain drop fell,
and as Cole walked Lila home, she knew there was more to him than anyone could tell.

Back in his room he pondered the day and thought; just wait til school.
I'll be a ghost; just made a made up fool.

Cole didn't sleep as he thought what would transpire.
It was a small school and she surely would burn like a candlelit fire.
Being new and so beautiful,
It was going to be interesting for sure. Very eventful.

Anxiously and nervous he looked in the mirror,
no matter what he did, he knew he would be inferior.

The steps leading inside came faster than he ever could remember,
God why couldn't we have had a huge snow storm like it does in December?

He stepped inside and sure enough,
there stood Lila with the boys who thought they were so tough.
He avoided contact hoping not to be seen.
especially from Lila. Lila Varame.

The day went on and not one class did he have with her.
Although sad, at least she wouldn't see all the trouble the cool guys stirred.

Finally at lunch, walking outside,
He found his spot. His spot to hide.
Today seemed different for more guys sat at the cool spot.
Then he saw why. Lila, they swarmed to her like flies do to the rot.

She seemed confused and not liking all the racket,
and then his eyes lit up, as he saw her with his jacket.
No it couldn't be. If only she knew how Cole got treated.
He wouldn't fight, for everyday he went home defeated.

Finding courage he never knew within,
he strolled the cool kids way confident and with a grin.
Lila saw him for the first time that day,
and the smile on her face couldn't be contained.

He stopped as he noticed her smile,
their eyes never leaving each other all the while.
No, no, no, this can't be.
I'm just Cole. Why would she be looking at me.

But she was looking at him and walking all the same,
and then he heard the cool kids laughing saying his name.
It's over he thought, now she will see,
here they come to humiliate me.

A fire started to burn deep inside,
no more he thought not this time.
As they made their way,
he stared in her eyes feeling something. No matter what he was going to stay.

They teased and goofed trying to make him feel alone,
but with Lila looking he stood like a marble stone.

Through all the jokes he stood staring at her.
"I've been looking for you," she said. "Please get me away from them nerds."

For the first time in his life Cole didn't go home and read a book,
he spent it with Lila, and in her hands his she took.

The boy, the nerd, got the most beautiful girl in school,
and deep down she was so kind too.
Days turned to weeks, weeks turned to months.
Cole was the new man in school. He was even blunt.

What if I told you that Cole and Lila found what some don't believe.
What if I told you they were soul mates. Is that something you could conceive?
Well in this book Cole found love and not through they eyes of a character in a book.
In the moment of opportunity. The opportunity he took.

He could have kept to his novels and his evening sunsets,
but he saw beauty and he took that chance.
Who would have know their love would have reacted.
who would have known, he'd find love by sharing his jacket.

Some people never get the chance,
to show their is more to them than what you think.
Just take the time open your ears,
or you could miss out on something special....faster than a blink...
I wanted to go so much further with this, but my back is killing me and I need to try and sleep.
lila Jun 2019
i look back at the girl i was
when it happened and
darling, you were so young
you didn’t deserve to be treated that way
or to have to grow up that fast
i wish i could’ve protected you and
told you that you were safe
and that you didn’t have to
destroy yourself
because you didn’t want to be in
the same body he touched

you thought you carried
your faults on your skin
so you tore it open

i was a body hollowed out
a skeleton with shattered bones
he ripped off my wings
and emptied me of all light
now all you’ll find
is black paint in careless streaks
across my weary heart
tired of beating

a ***** rotting thing
held a lighter to a match
not as smart as you might think
so i burned
and returned
to ash again

i remember this in little flashes
noises, smells, words
hit my brainstorm like lightning bolts
and take me right back to
a frightened little girl
blurred visuals projected
like a picture show i didn’t want to see
and i freeze
catatonia

my senses swarmed in radio static
and nothing around me is real anymore
not that the broken memories
of buried innocence in an unmarked grave
felt any more concrete
i can hear my panicked
heartbeat thumping like thunder
in my chest while thoughts
run wild through my mind
reverberating around my brain
until they whirred enough
to release cacophonous screams

is it too much to ask to forget
these little incendiary flashes
because they burn me from the inside
and turn me back to ashes
but memories don’t work like that
they don’t dissipate or shrink
no matter how hard you try

secrets turn to cement in my lungs
and i’m drowning in them
suffocating, coughing, wheezing
every time i try to speak
i choke because it’s not over
unless he says it is

to be polite
i keep this twisted sickness inside of me
but i long to cut myself open
and rip the tangled mess
of trauma from my chest
throw it down where everyone can see
because i’m so tired
of keeping this in for so long

i’ve only ripped myself open
to know it was real
because i’m just a terrified child
but the world doesn’t stop
the natural progression of
a child with secrets
to an adult with depression

no one cares
when they see someone like me
hunched over her own bleeding guts
splattered on the sidewalk
apologizing to pedestrians
about her own carnage
because she didn’t mean it
as a call for attention

but god, i wish they did
if only the world would stop for a moment
so i can collect these thoughts
and piece them together in way
i can explain why
i’m bleeding out in front of you
and ask for you
to reach out your hand
and rescue me
from this unrighteous ruining
and help me rise from these ashes
6/22
Cheyenne Yacono Feb 2017
(Tr)aveling w(i)th the younger I
With her on your back
She gazed at intricate diamonds of the dark.
Never facing an ounce of (um)brage.

With age, her knowledge flourished
Growing from the water of your trunk
Her brain was nourished with ex(p)erience
Following in your trail

Strengthening over time
She (ha)d no i(nt)erest on your back
Nor the night sky
Rather clouds and the outside
Away sh(E) wa(l)ked from your shadow
With your trunk raised high

Lions and crocodiles swarmed her on s(e)a and land
With no trunk or tusk
Adrenaline rushed
She shook in nerves til dusk

Continuing days with no shade
Skin cells accepting harsh sun rays
With the storm of your stom(p)s
She awaited your presence
(h)yen(a)s laughed as you came
Splattering blood on your name

You laid with your wheel
As she wailed with no trunk
She wept
For you sculpted her i(nt)o who (s)he was

Long, Long down the road.
Buying from an old bookstore
Finding a binder filled with the Royal Animals

Turning the first sheet
She noticed a stamp
Reminding her of her stuffed friends
Triumphant  *Elephants
A "*******" poem of a stuffed elephant who goes through life with this once little girl
Jeremy Duff Sep 2012
The old man sighed and jammed his freshly rolled, freshly lit cigarette into the ash tray.
"Too many cigarettes before bedtime oft' keep an' old man like me up all night."
The young man put out his cigarette as well, gently weeping inside over the wasted tobacco.
"Aye, a youngin' like myself as well."
The conversation had been going slightly south ever since the young man made the mistake of asking about his counterparts first wife. "She died," he had said "One of them December o' 2012 suicides that plagued the big cities such as this."
The young man remembered how he had looked out the window at this point a bit too nostalgically.
"She was crazy," he had added "I knew it the day I slipped the ring on and I know it now."
They dropped the subject and began talking about The War, coincidentally another touchy subject.
"Most of my friends died, and if you've read your history books you know it was not courage or chivalry that killed them but the ignorance and fear that our country breathed when drafting all the young men."
He had escaped with his life, which he believed was garbage. he told of how he had hid in the sewers while the long thought peaceful Canadian's swarmed over the East coast. While his friends died he ate rats. While the war machine chugged he was cowering.

"Aye, I see how you looked at that stoke, though."
"Pardon?" The young man had been deep in thought of the conversation they had been having.
"How old are you anyway?"
"19 on the 9th."
"And still not a whisker on your chin, aye?"
"Aye."

He told of many more battles. Some he fought in, others he cowered under.
"And one, that I cowered over. I passed out in the helicopter, do-it-please-yah."
He told of his second wife, a bit more fondly and romantically than his first wife.
She had passed away not 8 months before the young man visited him for the first time and that was 6 months past.

He showed scars, from the prison camps.
He rolled cigarettes from his poke pouch.
He admitted forgetting the face of his father.
Jaanam Jaswani Nov 2016
i must be some sort of permanently exhausted pigeon;
claws clinging to the telephone wire
drearily blinking my way through
the morning meeting of the aerial acrobatic society.

i am a seagull swarmed
amongst the chirpy conjecture
of these early birds;
and my soul caws an honesty,
a wail, a howl, the truth.

i am a tainted swan
grittily paddling myself through the marsh
we call this world,
a lone observer of the acrobats,
the stickiness of my feet keeping me
flightless.

and you are a swallow;
redbull wings migrate you to warmer climates.
you hear the seagulls
but listen to the pigeons.
you notice the swan
but her murky shallows are too icy
for your liking.

and you are a chicken;
blind beyond your own free-range vicinity.
you catch the pigeons as jet planes,
and the seagull's whisper is alien.
you don't know miss swan.
Jett Wells May 2011
Two minutes. Waiting.
My heart is ready to burst.
The lanes are naked, clean,
ready to be torn up by cleats
and sweat.

Hundreds of eyes blinking and
staring.
Chatter swarmed into a calm
storm underneath this dome.

Waiting is the hardest part.
The anticipation, building.
Struggling to breathe as I
strategize.

Faster here.
Ease up here.
Go for the ****.
Take him.
A vision.

It’s almost time. Everything
is clenched. Find my control.
Don’t go out too fast, find your
stride. Tail the leader.
Wait for the moment.

Step up onto the lanes.
Red and white.
My teammates looking on.
The stakes digging into my
Stomach.

Step up to your blocks.
My heart beats faster.
I want to throw up.
This is it.

On your mark.
My ankles shiver.
Adrenaline at full throttle.
I can’t lose. I can’t lose. Go.
K Balachandran Dec 2013
A lone tree, in all its glory stands
in the courtyard of my heart;
evergreen all these years,
proud of its songs heard as green waves
nourished by the sun in my sky.
Without that tree, I can't be
a comely girl once came
there  for an ecstatic  dance, then
sat below its shade with a smile
all through a day and night
then in the courtyard of my heart
she became a constant presence.
The wind's tunes sung paeans to her,
the verdant courtyard
was filled with sun and songs;
the tree's first spring it was.
A long season of flowering followed,
pink and white blossoms
with heavenly scent was abundant
all through the year on the tree's crown.
Like a moving cloud, honeybees
swarmed around singing songs of love,
joy of communion fallowed by the pain of parting,
the season of fragrant blooms soon came to an end
and with that she too left,
telling me that I'll be her true love always
whatever happens to us,
In that tree, the witness of our love
she tied an invisible ribbon that bound us too though to get loose,
that embraced me whenever wind played with it,
I and she were mere shells
presence of love, alive in the precincts, of the tree
that makes me alive, now and for ever.
ConnectHook Apr 2017
Six-armed things of Asiatic trances,
temple belles entwined in temple dances:
mantra in one hand, the other holds naan.
One holding chutney and the other, paan.
Two hands left (befitting of deity):
one offers curry, one incense.  Aseity
signifies self-contented wonderment.
(One wonders as well what that mantra meant...)

Note the third eye in the figure's forehead:
a spare one in case left or right go dead?
But really—how freakish these idols look:
a ******-pantheon from a nightmare book.
(Outdone only by the Aztecs for fright
along with demons born of tribal night.)

Cobra-crowned elephant-headed mutants
sickly-sweet incense, divine pollutants
mix in with the stench of bodies burning
alongside the filthy Ganges churning
flowing with ashes from funeral ghats
excrement, corpses of humans and rats
that swarmed humble hovels of Hindustan
where gods are mass-produced for fallen man.

Maidens in saris with red tinted lips;
glossy vulgarity, loose at the hips
now growing more arms; an insect vision
enough to make one gag on religion.
The ubiquitous trident looms, a sign:
the eternally present un-divine.
Instead, it ought to stick some sacred cow
in its bovine buttocks, and so allow
beef curry for a hungry avatar
craving fresh meat in his juggernaut car.

Turn from this antediluvian scene
in sincerity, ask: what does it mean?
Were you created in these gods' image?
Is anything real behind their visage?
Blue skin and sick smiles, anointed with ghee:
exotic... but wrong theologically.
Till lingams are yonis I'll spell it out;
these Aryan idols should merit your doubt.
Such weirdness deserves some analysis
(as did old Diana of Ephesus).

Would you tingle if such a god showed up
and offered to refill your soma cup,
sending siddhis up your spinal column
with you in full lotus, clueless, solemn.
Would you offer puja in their temple,
bedeck your soul in a robe to sample
veggie-masalas, chapatis and dal,
peruse the Upanishads, and enthrall
your mind with the mystic old Rig-Vedas
fall for idolatrous sin conveyed
as spiritual truth when it's just a big lie...
bow before a multi-armed freak?  Not I.
Not for all the visions in Satan's world.
Better to call B.S. than to be hurled
to hell for living and loving this lie
embracing monstrosities. By and by
the books will be opened. The Lord will judge.
Consider this your transcendental nudge
toward something less false, less fearfully fake
than the idols Antichrist nations make.
NaPoWriMo #15

TS Eliot
wrote highbrow literary
poetry (so-called)
JR Rhine Mar 2016
The vultures swarmed above me,
and I wondered if it was I
who lay before their narrowing gaze.

If they were fallen angels,
Lucifer's harbingers,

they'd have harvested on the soul
I'd left to decay.

— The End —