The Full Moon

May 13, 2013

With his back to the door,
seated, shrunken on the floor
in dim yellow light
and deep obsidian fright,
he listens to the heavy thuds
thumping hesitantly, unsteadily closer—
at odds with the beat of his heart
racing faster and harder.
The final footstep falls
just inches away from where he sits
and the door pushes against his back,
and as it opens he shuffles forwards.

And now he is running,
without looking back,
knowing too well what he’ll see.
In the distance he sees the full moon
that has brought the beast here,
and he runs towards the pale disc,
claws thrashing at his back.

Our brave adventurer runs on,
amongst the carcasses of those that went before,
those that could not outrun the beast,
could not evade its long arms,
but our hero is determined.
Ahead he sees salvation:
a black hole in the ground,
surrounded by gnarled, heavy roots.
If he can make it inside,
he’s sure the beast will not be able to follow.

The lion-hearted champion holds his breath—
he knows that timing is everything;
he steels himself, siezes his chance
and dives headlong towards the burrow,
not knowing what might lie therein
but sure nothing can be worse
than the beast on his tail.
He’s almost safe, almost escaped,
but he shrieks as he feels the thick roots
curling around his ankles.
Alive with evil—carniverous—they pull,
and he cannot resist their strength.

He is dragged from the tunnel,
arms outstretched towards hope,
losing his grasp more by the second.
Backwards he is hauled,
nothing more to be done,
and then the beast twists his body
to look at him.
He clamps his eyes shut,
to look is to give the beast what it wants,
and though he knows he has lost,
he refuses to give himself up.

He hears that dreadful sound,
the thing he fears the most,
as the beast unsheathes its blade.
And though he doesn’t understand it,
though it makes no sense,
he knows what is coming.
He whimpers as the beast impales him,
trying to control himself,
to hide his weakness.
He wants to fight it, even tries,
but he is just a boy,
and the beast is too strong.

Eventually, the poison-tipped blade is drawn from him,
but the damage is done,
its blight left inside his body,
and he wants to cry for his mother,
but he knows better than that.
He knows the beast will listen for his cries,
and seek her too, if it hears.
All he can do is stay silent,
and prepare for the next full moon.

He is just a boy,
but one day he will be strong—
One day he will win.

Riding Seahorses

April 21, 2013

He stands, silent, still, staring out,
twin moons looking back;
their light bounces off the crests of waves
and the swell of clouds, spectral in the night sky.
Behind him, the dark swallows up the world,
perching him here on the edge of the earth,
waves crashing before him,
licking at his bare feet likes flames
from the depths of hell.
He doesn’t make a sound, he just listens.
Listens and watches.
He isn’t afraid – it’s more than fear;
he respects the sea.
Such formidable power,
the strength to create and to destroy,
to shape a world,
to take a life.
He remembers his sister –
how she loved the sea –
her tousled hair, her freckled cheeks, her tireless grin,
the terrible silence that replaced her.
He imagines her stricken, fighting the currents,
falling forever – down to the darkest part of this black world.
He imagines her cries stifled by salty, unsatiable breaths.
He imagines the light leaving her eyes, her body still.
He imagines her swimming with mermaids and riding seahorses.
He smiles.
How she loved the sea.

Storm

December 24, 2012

Sitting here, beneath this aging oak,
– they told me as a child not to do that –
I look out at the rain.
My improvised shelter is no great shakes;
giant drops drum at my scalp
and run, chillingly down my back.
One, two, three, four.
Close.
I can’t tell where I’m wet
and which parts are just cold;
all I know is
my rain-coat wasn’t made for this.
Raining so heavy,
all around me looks a strange shade of grey;
the water beats the ground,
splashes growing larger as the level rises.
One, two.
Getting closer.
People lucky enough to be in cars
race past, forging through the floods,
great sheets of water cascading around them,
sending ripples –
no, waves, towards the curb and me.
Thunder deafening now, right above me,
flash and bang hand-in-hand,
nothing to count,
heart of the storm,
nature’s rage all around me.
Twice I think it’s about to subside;
twice its fury redoubles,
as though it’s telling me personally,
it will calm down when it’s good and ready.
It. He. Whatever your take,
there’s real power in the skies,
crashes and flares
shaking the earth,
shaking souls,
striking fear.
My tree sways, groans, lists, screams;
my stomach lurches beneath it
– they told me as a child not to do that.

Signature

Lullaby (Unfinished?)

March 21, 2012

I’ll sing you a dream
if you’ll listen to me;
I’ll make it a good one,
just wait and see.
I’ll whisper a nightmare
into your ear
and send you to bed
with your greatest fears –
I’ll follow you down
into slumber so deep
and toy with your mind
as you restlessly sleep
and when you awake
in the pitch black of night –
cold sweats and shallow breath –
I’ll torture you from the shadows
with blood-chilling fright.

The Spider

June 15, 2011

I am the spider.
The watcher
the hunter.
I am the friend of the night
The bringer of fear
the layer of traps.
I am the waiter,
the catcher,
the killer.
I am the dispenser of poison
the silent stalker,
the loner.

Spiders

June 15, 2011

I’m not afraid of spiders.
Their many legs
long and hairy
don’t bother me.
In fact, they amaze me
with their hand-spun homes
and their formidable hunting techniques.

I’m not afraid of snakes.
Their fangs,
sharp and often venemous
do nothing to raise my pulse.
In fact, I’m in awe
at how long they can go without food,
how tightly they can squeeze their prey.

I’m not afraid of the dark.
The shadows,
that swallow everything,
can not overpower me.
On the contrary, I appreciate
the way darkness smothers light
the way it controls the world.

But you.
Your disarming smile,
that catches my breath,
brings me to my knees.
I’m terrified
by your piercing eyes,
your rough hands
and your charming lilt.

Awake

May 28, 2011

tick-tock, chiming clock,
midnight calls
tar-black backdrop falls
full moon lights the night
like day
you feel your consciousness begin to slip away
to be replaced
by fear’s embrace.
For when you sleep,
you cannot hear
it creeping up on you,
filling you with dark ideas,
thoughts that haunt you
when you wake,
that taunt and threaten to make
you do unspeakable things
that live in songs the devil sings.

you try to keep it all inside,
you feel like you cannot confide
in anyone, and so you hide it
’til it’s gone
or ’til you think it has, at least
but it will surely come again
to feast,
and bring along a stronger pain,
this beast,
like poison coursing through your veins
like screams inside your brain
that slice right through, contort, distort
your thoughts
’til all that’s left is fear.

you wish you could scratch out your eyes
but what you fear lies not
beneath the skies of this, the waking world
but in a place where peace curled up and died
a place you cannot hide.
The things you fear live within
and that unbridled din
is in
your mind.

xxi. Gone

April 14, 2011

fear in your gut,
can’t move, can’t run;
stake through your foot,
barrel of a gun;
stuck in a rut,
true love, no fun;
never made the cut,
now she’s gone.

xxxvii. The Game

February 27, 2011

He saw their love as little more,
Than an experiment.
A game to play,
That had no rules.
And so their story went:

He loved her just enough,
That she let him inside.
And when she did,
He set up camp,
Until the day she died.

The game of course, did not last long,
Though she would not give in.
But with no rules to speak of, he,
Was not a cheat,
And she could never win.

He teased her every way he could,
Told every lie he knew,
To make her think,
This thing was real,
Though not a dot was true.

The more he did to cause her pain,
The harder she would try,
To win his love,
And make him hers,
But he just watched her cry.

He didn’t feel a thing for her,
And when he saw her tears,
He felt no guilt,
No sense of sorrow, just,
Used them to find her fears.

And when he knew just what she feared,
He knew how to proceed;
With every move,
He hurt her more,
Indulged in his own greed.

But she, confused by what she felt,
Let him get closer every day,
She thought she might,
Get through to him,
And teach him not to play.

She thought that he could learn to love,
Of this, she felt so sure.
She thought that she,
Could make him change,
But this, of course, was just what he’d hoped for.

He let her make her futile moves;
He let her dig her hole,
For every time she tried,
She failed,
And every failure helped him take her soul.

When eventually he left,
She was a mere shell.
And yet she loved him still,
And therefore, could not see,
That he’d left her alone in hell.

For him, the game was done;
The final whistle blown;
For her it never stopped –
She never looked for more –
And when she died, his was the only love she’d ever known.

 

 

Inspired by the following lyric from Rilo Kiley’s Silver Lining:

“I never felt so wicked,
As when I willed our love to die”

xxxiv. First Love

February 18, 2011

Their love was tough for her;
It placed a burden on her soul.
She feared that people might find out,
And worry took its toll.

She said it mustn’t be revealed,
Their secret must be kept.
He said he couldn’t live that way.
She hid her face and wept.

She’d never been in love before,
And though she knew that this was it,
She couldn’t take the step it took,
To properly commit.

A part of her was truly his,
But it was locked away inside.
Her inability to open up,
Was why their love curled up and died.