the baby sleeps.
is cold earth.
the road less traveledtwo roads--one fairer--in the trees crossed;
i knew to the good path i should keep
but good caution, to the wind, was tossed,
and before i knew it, i was lost--
the woods around me are dark and deep.
i thought myself so bold and clever
to tread where snakes and wolves have played;
why did i try this cursed endeavor?
i'll be trapped in these woods forever--
ah, here at last i've found a small glade.
now some beasts in the brush are hissing
i'm sure to end up some monster's feast!
i should be home, my sweetheart kissing,
but no one even knows i'm missing--
leave off your growling, you fearsome beast!
and now the creeping night is nearing,
for all around me the light has grayed;
the shadows slip into the clearing
and in them, faces, cruelly sneering--
oh, on the good road, i should have stayed!
52 hertzi know that somewhere out there
is a creature called
"the world's loneliest whale."
this whale sings its own unique song,
forever on a frequency far removed
from the rest of its kind,
and thus this nautical wonder is fated
to wander the wide, swallowing seas
i know that for over two decades
this bereft behemoth
has broken the billowing tides
with what may be a burning ballad
or a patient prayer,
or an earnest question that may never
know an answer.
i know that somewhere out there
it keeps on singing.
close callmonths old, only,
tiny metatarsals flexing
with every hacking rasp,
brackish lungs like seaweed
swimming in my chest,
an osseous hand upon me
in a convoluted attempt
to burn infant-me
from the inside-out.
struggling against immolation
for each finicky breath,
my flush, demonstrative face
folded in agony
as air became an ever-more
until it ceased
machines marked the whirl
of artificial respiration as
doctors draped themselves
in careful neutrality
and uneasy nurses
patted my parents' pale hands.
they could not have known
that one day
this would all be
just ink upon a page.
for unseeing eyesladen with sky
and painted mockingbirds
on loveless branches
folding in our slender limbs
and ducking under our own
voices, fidgety and frail
against the wall of night.
between the dipping blades
and drawn shoulders
we learned to craft our words
a drumming rain
that carved canyons
in open hearts and
drew the sunshine to
our supping lips.
keen-eyed, we watched
remembering the weight
of unseeing eyes
and scalding remarks
and we learned to slip
the noose-knots and slide
through the soul-cracks
build kingdoms under
with lyrical uncertainty
and tender determination
we built a pyre of peace
in the shadows
and watched it blaze
the truth across our
as new leaves still curled
and stretching hands
unfurled in suppliance
we lifted our heads
in broken laughter,
for this light is our burden,
and even a whisper
can shatter silence
and bring the blind
she was the best thingand she fell in waves
across the sandstorm of his mind
her slow-sweet smile
shrugging into his pores,
water for a dying man.
she was a wildflower
in his desert
dark-petaled hair blowing over
her pale face
head and hands dipping
to drip through
the cracked earth.
red tongue rolling
in the dust-caked detritus
her words drew down the moon
a silver cat's eye sliver
in the deep indigo block of night
and she tucked it in his
bringing stillness to the churning fury
of his heart.
for a time
he held her in the sickle curve
of his sinner's smile
for every grain of sand
that slipped through their hands
until the day
he pushed her away.
go back to the bayou, baby
where the green things grow
'cause if you stay here
your roots will turn to ash.
and he turned from
the falling-down tumble of her tears
and her fervent begging
and he paid for her passage home
with the crystal moon
and when she was gone
he walked on
in the quiet black of night
raven feathersand her words fell like summer rain
velvet on the skin
and i said
sing me a song, Sister
about the wild, wild woods
draped around your shoulders.
and her laugh was the sigh of rustling leaves
as she looked at me and sang
never dwell in a place
where your heart has no home.
which was not what i asked for
in the calm quiet layered
with the scent of wet earth
i chased dragonflies
lured by the sparkle of their wings
on the water
and was drowning
before i could remember to take a breath.
and she sang,
some people earn their freedom
some people earn their chains
which will you be?
and i dragged myself up
from the mud and the muck
leaving in my wake
fragments of my heart
like shards of glass in the sunlight.
and i wondered how i might
without wounding myself further.
she wove a torque of reeds
around the slender column of her lily neck
a quick cut is better than a slow one
but both hurt, nonetheless.
i shrugged into my new s
guess she'll be lonelyin her garden
where the wild peals
of broken laughter
dip into dissonance
she steals petals
back from the wind
they are snails
for her platter.
on the heel of her palm
the crisp scent
of crushed herbs and
that puff their chests
like peacocks strutting
an eggshell sky.
she sings a wordless song
and the bluebells
whispering their own lyrics
somewhere a brown-eyed boy
is waiting for you
waiting for the stretch
of your soft hands
to churn his heart
like the dark earth.
but she is waiting
for a song that doesn't end
with the rising sun
so she collects the bobbing
and tucks them
in a gingham pocket.
there is no rush
except for the wind
on her warm, sunlit face.
Fear Not the Politician--whose arthritic hands
can barely jot down 'laws'--
never mind seize your throat.
They are not gods--
they cannot snatch your first born,
cannot make it rain locusts,
cannot hurl deadly poxes upon our houses.
Instead, they hide behind mahogany desks and well-starched suits
behind incompetent guards unsuited for combat.
Their deceitful melodies
are cracked by their raspy voices
that grow creaky with age.
They cannot defeat us
for their bodies will crumple into dust
--just like ours.
Expatriate, Not ExileYou fools say I am exiled
unwelcome in your lush forests
unallowed to breathe in your gentle breezes
forbidden from drinking your nectarine waters.
Lush forests? Gentle breezes? Nectarine waters?
Ha! Where are these things?
Your lush forests are nothing more than barren desert,
your gentle breezes harsh, sand-bearing winds
and those nectarine waters you force-fed me were nothing but acid
meant to burn away my voice.
I refuse to join the ranks of 'heretics'
that stain your war-torn roads.
I am no exile
but an expatriate, a voyager
in search of new lands
where the water is ambrosia
the winds carry songs of peace
and the trees stretch into space
(like my dreams)
Seeking The Great PerhapsI go to seek the Great Perhaps
where persecution is like Latin--
and I can walk with my head held up high
for my flaws are no longer under a magnifying glass
for the whole world to see.
I go to seek the Great Perhaps
where 'true love' isn't a corny phrase
but actually exists
and one's looks, knowledge of books, whether or not she cooks
I go to seek the Great Perhaps
where 'mental illness' is not akin to 'crazy'
and people's eyes don't roam my body
for weapons that never were, never are, and never will be there.
And finally, I go to seek the Great Perhaps
a time, a place, a state of being
where I can venture beyond these walls
because I'll no longer be the thing that society hates.
Corrupted Mental FilesI wish for a mental hard drive
free of malicious thought-malware
and in which resides software with no need of troubleshooting.
Enough with the endless junk data
that interferes with the daily functioning of my Thinking.EXE!
Alas, no antivirus
has been able to rid me of this malware.
And thus the trojans and worms accumulate
slowing down my processing speed
as I try not to BSOD
while running throughout the day.
Hypoallergenic FacadeThey gaze upon my gorgeous visage, but I fear the moment that the makeup comes off.
If only insecurities were like flies,
Battle on the Castle's TopBattle on the Castle’s Top
Coating the castle walls with guts, gore, and gristle,
the beast leaves Death’s stench upon the destroyed bailey
and the hidden survivors fearful of its whistle
as the monster slithers past, its body quite scaly.
For this creature, flesh is meat and blood lemonade,
and nothing is tastier than a well-roasted fellow.
The dragon does not see its confidence as foolish masquerade,
so it rests, unguarded, calm, and mellow.
But one man is determined to ruin this illusion,
his sudden entrance shattering the foe’s euphoria,
the confusion bringing about a transfusion
of confidence as the dragon trembles with chorea.
When it’s slayed, it cries, “Unbelievable!”
For it did not see its defeat as something achievable.
It is ill-advised to belch out one’s woes at tea
or discuss one’s sorrow while gnawing on biscuits.
Because when you ask, “What’s wrong?”
you don’t actually want to know, do you?
How can I possibly expect someone who’s spent their life sipping ecstasy
to understand what it’s like to swallow pain?
For someone who’s been given a taste of heaven
to know what it’s like to burn their throat drinking hell?
For someone to possibly grasp what it’s like
to choke on misery that’s gone down the wrong tube?
To cough up words of vengeance
after consuming hatred and ignorance
because you’re stupidity-intolerant?
To vomit vitriol
because you’ve spent too long without the vital nutrients of affection?
And so we dance on eggshells
skirting around the issues
that you’re supposedly dying to know about.
Your AddictionIf you were to have
I want it to be
I want to be
I want to be
the one thing
I want you to
being with you.
nothing like that…
I want to be something
or at least
think you need
to make life
to be your drug.
I want to be
I want to be so
into your being…
like you are
the caffeine that
wakes me up,
and makes it all
even at 8 am.
I want to be your
the one you take
when life is
the one you take
I want to be
I want to be
Until We Meet AgainEveryone wants to
go out with a
or in a
blaze of glory…
but that has
but it’s an
a larger part doesn’t
in final goodbyes.
no such thing
I prefer to say,
until we meet
even if just
we touch each other.
and we converse with them
We see them
over and over
and they become
if they were
Even just a
but we don’t
if not longer.
instead of saying
leave it an
with the promise,
Bridge of DreamsDuring your
a bridge of
your mind doesn’t
it can create.
explore the long
forgotten land of
of creatures with
and a forked
lost shores of
to a far off
with two moons
this bridge of
This wondrous bridge
via blue black
lies in front
every time your
and your mind
Bridge of Dreams.
Writer's BlockWords dance in
tickle my tongue,
between the head
and the hand
Nothing is getting
The words can’t
past the dam,
and are clogging
the river of
All these ideas,
and a true
d e s i r e
and bring to life
what’s in my head…
and everything is
g t n
e t i g
j m l
u b e d,
I breathe my craft…
not creating is not
I’m drowning in my own
river of creativity.
so I can break the
b r e a t h e.
Sleep, My LoveLay down your sweet, and weary head.
It’s time for you to go to bed.
Close your heavy, exhausted eyes –
let your soul rest as the day dies.
You have done all that you have said.
Let your worries fade away, dead
into Night’s dark, silent bed.
You don’t need their deceptive lies.
Let peace reign as you rest your eyes.
Lay down your head.
Sleep now, my world worn beloved,
come use my bosom as your bed.
Listen to my voice as it tried
to sooth your sleepy, weary cries.
I’ll sing you to sleep, beloved,
lay down your head.
Love TornI’ve always been
to pieces by
It wants to
do what we’ve
always wanted to…
but I can’t
I have to
those I love most
will be OK.
They’ll be able
and that they’ll be
I worry about
my heart worries
but it wants,
and I don’t think
I can do that
I want them to
come with me.
I want to
e v e r y t h i n g
I’ve been dreaming.
I know they won’t
be as excited,
but I want to
share my dreams
My dreams are
a part of
I want to
this piece of
but do they want
to come with me?
to see my dreams?
to follow me?
makes me hold,
and do nothing more
If I knew these
then I could,
pursue my dreams
Dawn and SunIf you are
bright and glorious
in its glowing
then I am
on the horizon.
While you are
shining molten golden light,
I shimmer a liquid
rose gold hues.
I’m not as
as you can be,
but I can be
all the same.
You reign over the sky
from the first moment
of the day,
whilst I last but a few
because of you.
For without a Sun,
there would be
If the Sun
to bathe the world
the Dawn would
never be born.
My myriad of
without my Sun.
You light my world,
and I’m brighter
because of you.
You paint me gold,
and wrap me in
w a r m t h…
so warm and safe.
There is no Dawn
without its Sun,
are my Sun…
Warming UpFrozen water pelting roads
striking with vigor at passersby for the moment
Liquid water massages streets
rubbing gently pedestrians all day long
Gaseous water suffocates boulevards
filling lungs of amblers drowning them forever
The Monkey In The MirrorAs I stand before the mirror
with a suit and tie
looking back at me
is a monkey wearing a turban
As I stand before the mirror
with a diamond ring in my hand
looking back at me
the monkey holds another's hand
As I stand before the mirror
I feel the weight of my wallet
looking back at me
the other monkey steals the first's banana
As I stand before the mirror
with bunches of tool behind me
looking back at me
the second monkey covered with dust
I bolt through the door
leaving the monkeys behind
WingsI strap the wings on tight and start to run uphill
and when I reach the edge I leap into the air
and as I soar above I flap my new found wings
I shoot high into space much faster than a rocket
The sun is up ahead I'm blinded by the light
but fascinated still I keep the course the same
and as I'm close enough to touch the scorching ball
my waxen wings melt down and I begin to fall
Manic Mondayas the sun sets I come to rest
the day is done at last
too long it always is
too tired am I
and as I slump I'm burned up
I'm ash and soot and tomorrow I will rise again
Wavesit's never been enough
there's only one more thing
if I am to enjoy
my somewhat plain living
to sail amongst the waves
as people say goodbye
the love then I will feel
and be prepared to die.
Reconciliation Latercome here thy lovely meal
upon my waking hour
my sleep was bad I feel
my dreams were cold and sour
but now awake I am
I know she's not to blame
I'm ready for your grace
while cherishing your taste
the couch was mine tonight
for mad was I this day
and we had had a fight
and much I had to say
and her I ought to hear
but never mind all that
my lovely breakfast's here
so I'll ignore the spat
for all I need is here
magnanimous of mounds
my plates so full I fear
to spill it on the ground
must eat it all post haste
before it gets ice cold
won't miss a single taste
or it'll be growing mould
To Stay Or Not To Stay?Your home feels like mine I know it so well
your friends are mine, and so is your family
and when I am with you I am safe
when I am with you I am free
Like heroin you are to me keeping me numb
you pull me towards you begging for love
the closer I get the further I slip from life
you leave me stranded in a cold dark room alone
But I do love you. How can I not?
You're so full of life and love, kindness and beauty that never sleep.
What do I need of real life when it's made of sadness?
Why must I keep my distance when all that waits is loneliness?
Will loneliness be eternal? Only if I stay with you.
The joy you bring is short lived and cold.
Your warmth that shines from across seas cannot reach me
for I am drowning in a dark pool and you are closing the lid above.
What am I to do? My soul torn in half.
Neither can live without the other, for the body is one.
The two halves collide in an explosion of color so vivid and bright as imagination bleeds dry.
One half floats in vacuum of space wh
ChillBlackness comes. A gust of wind blows, chilling me to bone.
As death sets in, the night that came and passed, reverses flashing through my mind.
Rain stops, leaving scent of freshness behind, mingling with salty sea.
Early morning light beams through wisps of mist.
In dimmest light I make out freshly drawn art.
I am standing tall without garment or cover, free as the torrential rain beyond.
Yet I am a deviant of life, precluded, accidental.
As darkness ebbs away I lay my pencils to rest,
my creation is done yet I am curtailed.
Stars shine dimly through a shroud of rain, gushing into the night - an endless void.
My naked form sits against the wall, hand moving across paper turning white to black.
Pencil touches paper, eyes ahead looking back through glass.
Muscle glimmers, skin glows and curves gleam back off of a shiny doppelganger;
an exact replica but reversed, my missing half. Hand roams across clear blank white.
Every Common BushAnd here I stand on cliff's edge one last time.
Perhaps I leap; and yet perhaps I climb.
There's no more to be said for where I stand,
In solitude and guarded all around.
The very cosmos may well fill my hands
As I, the two-fold creature on the ground
Look up and see my choices through the storm
Not unaware that nature thrills my soul
As soul and matter touch, lovely and warm
Like trees aflame with God, remaining whole.
You cannot say the soul is all alone
And matter nothing; nor the other way.
For we with both must see and love the known,
Until in light of glory, we decay.
Soul TankaI remain empty
Words go in and come out: both.
But those that fall out
Are full of my very soul.
I cannot be replenished.
Poetry is SaneMy head splits open, crammed full as it is
With heaven I have squished in confined space.
I am all logic, understanding this:
That finite worlds are mine now to embrace.
But come the muses, here to give me earth;
To rescue me from living dissonance,
And in the great expanse of art give birth
To raucous joys and star-strewn infinites.
For ere I climb Parnassus, I am healed;
My mind may dwell in matter, but my soul?
It is not held for ransom, nor revealed
To mortal eyes. Logicians, take a stroll.
Comes next this ink packed full with potency
As I relinquish pain for poetry.
End of SummerI once beheld dreams as leaves
Green and full of life
Their veins clear against the sunlight
Never to see autumn
Never to let go
Never to crinkle.
But some I behold now as at end of summer
wondering if fall will come
Crushed to brown powder
And scattered to the wind--
some of them, yes.
But might I gather them into a pile
still shining with orange and red
and, piled high, full of the smell of earth
LEAP and believe
There's life in them yet.
Icarus Had I wings as he
Perhaps I would have chosen
Rather to die well
Flying, foolish, and sun-warmed
Than die hopeless, in the dark.
Brighter StillThe road is paved with light which welcomes dreamers
Out of deserts, into gardens
Only to remember
In the desert
The stars shone brighter still.
I Need Not FleeI fled him down the nights and down the days
But I ran unaware I would be caught.
For love is greater yet than rebel ways
And would that I had known t'was all for naught.
I am too loved to be left free to stray
And he the gracious one my freedom bought.
I need not flee as though a sinner scorned;
For rather, I am sought, loved, and reborn.
Softer SkiesBlue were the skies, realize, when disguised
As the rise of your grace to a happier place.
Stand in the face of the past. It won't last.
And tell those who ask, that you've come to be none.
CaitrionaI slide the blind up and your city breathes
below me, her daytime coat
(the steel and grit and human leavings)
hidden, she calls through the glass;
steeped in history, her glory is foreign
and familiar; a dichotomy built
on racial memory and fairy stories.
This land knows my feet as those of family
long gone; rejects and welcomes me
in equal measure and her peoples
live a thousand lives untold before me
like mine, at home. And here,
a car sweeps past, lights like arms
reach out and push, push, push,
until the velvet curtain slides away.
Somewhere, behind the glass, you,
I know, are out there; probably
you are lying awake, and you are there
beside a man who doesn't know how to love
without destroying: he is King Edward,
an empty coat reigning over your Scotland.
And through the miles I carry with me,
I speak to you in words you cannot hear
because you are out there awake at 4am,
and probably you haven't slept yet:
I can be your William Wallace,
I can sacrifice myself but I cannot save y
devotionwe don't play board games or
date, we simply rest, pressed
close, a back arched
softly into a stomach,
an inverted comma promising
always, she sleeps early,
my head rests, pressed
to the pillow; i breathe
everything she is, promising
small prices-- her hair
rests, pressed to the sheets,
my arms a circle she still
misunderstands, the flick
of her feet; promising
in his absence, the most devoted
lover; in his presence, the most
gracious friend, banished
to the edge of the bed; her head
still rests, pressed to us, promising
it takes a villagehathi struggles, the shaft
draws at her skin, swelling
with rainwater and sticky with mud.
hathi breathes, paddling
and scrambling, and nobody says
Darwinism, nobody says no.
we see only an infant.
we don't speak, we just move.
hathi tires and we are fist deep,
tunneling a new path,
an arrow to the jungle.
hathi breathes, heaves
herself aground, and nobody says
anything. we watch her leave.
our walls buckle.
like burnt beef, i'm overcookedthe body says,
'i am tired'. it whimpers
and dodges work,
from listless fingers;
the body turns a blessing
to a burden--
the already made cake
nestled in the belly
of our fridge, no longer
a delicious reason
for a night-time raid.
getting by is like a cashie's loansome people are built
to keep things inside: like mice
in the night, they steal nestings--
a small omission, an equivocation
and an obfuscation
to secure secrets in their breasts;
but i am a walking revelation--
truths burst from my frame
and scatter their seeds
over my loved ones
(that's why it's so hard not telling you
i am borrowing against a future
and the interest rates are higher
than the payoff)
mornings and numbersthe number of mornings
i have woken early
this week -- 7 -- sits stark
in the palm of my hands
a contrast against the number
of mornings i have woken
happy or content -- 0 --
and somewhere in the middle
the mornings the sun
forgot to shine -- 3 and a half:
there was one day he cried
as he swallowed down the last few mouthfuls
of comet stew, and six hours later
the moon tucked him into bed,
loving on suicide watcha spilling of cornflakes
skittering across the counter--
thoughts crunch over themselves,
words like tranquilliser; suicide;
hospital hospital hospital.
it's been three days since i took him in
handed the responsibility of his life
to the professionals,
and still, the fear follows me,
the way the razor would look
on his nightstand, missing
the one most vital piece
and it, fallen to the floor
the gasping of air at 2am
when i'm convinced he's tied himself
to the ceiling, a breathless kite
on a belt-string
the sudden bang of a backfire
raising my heart rate,
an easy overdose, pills slipping
from his fists down his throat,
all the ways i'm expecting to find his beautiful mess
no longer beautiful.
it's been three days and when i visit
his brain is fogged, medicated
into submission, and he is in there
somewhere, held captive
and screaming for freedom--
his eyes don't light up anymore.
and i'm too tired to move,
so i visit and i come home
and i fall into bed.
the cereal on the benc
Thanks to everyone here for participating in NaPo this year, and supporting NaPoWriMo. Hope to see you next year.
Coding by SimplySilent