Apotheosis: Prometheus Re-BoundI thought I saw each day flow by,
from final rest to birthing cry:
the total sum of deeds undone
are bleached beneath the blazing sun
and offered up to passers-by.
The crows will claw, the seagulls cry,
the terns will carry tidbits high,
the pterodactyls catch and run
I thought I saw.
But vivisect or vivify,
the price will never be as high
as back when I had purchased one
brand-new, and clearly underdone;
to Zeus in gratitude, I'll testify:
"I thought I saw."
FebruumA bitter chill is carried on the wind:Februum6 years ago in Traditional Fixed Forms More Like This
it hasn't anything to do with cold,
but all the same, reminds me how thin-skinned
I am, in terms of being pigeonholed
by those who place more value on themselves
(and all the propaganda they've been told)
than on the truth. Were I the one who delves
into the reasons why, I might unearth
a viscid blend: of fragile sense of selves
exaggerating their own sense of worth,
amalgamated with hypocrisy
and left to stew on High. That such a dearth
of charity and common courtesy
could be directed at my unassum-
ing person, marks a huge discrepancy
between all those I wish I could, and whom
I actually can trust not to betray
my confidence; but do I dare presume
so much? Perhaps I'd better not portray
myself as quite so innocent in this
fiasco, this exquisite disarray:
if I've solicited the Judas kiss,
I'll forfeit all complaints about the pill
I have to swallow; self-analysis
might help me vanquish February's chill.
BrackishAfter the wet season, beforeBrackish4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
the midsummer night's drought,
I flight for the floodplains, where
the northern downpour bleeds out
and sweeps its love to the mouth
of my lungs. I sleep in the crux
of an oxbow, let my dreams flux
and flow fractured, deltaic. For this
is the way I piece myself apart,
a resolution, my absolution
in a new avulsion.
During the day, I move south
towards the river mouth, picking
pebbles, coral fangs from the riverbed.
A loose tooth is a common truth
in these parts. Bones are febrile,
eyelashes are made of chalk, salt.
Tears turn brackish. They cake
and crack on the flats of my hands.
This is my Pangaea,
this swollen geography,
this slacken land.
The point of no return.
Here, all else ends.
By dusk I meet the saltmarsh
and dehusk, grow halophytic
in the nightlight. I pull out
my hair, my fingernails, and
fill the gaps in my spine
with reed rhythms, saline.
The final rite: turning flesh to grass.
Tomorrow, morning mist
will drag the whitewash back,
ashes to ash.
Religion Free DVD PlayerAs an avowed atheist, I've always despised overt religious subtext in my movies. So when I ran across a back-alley electronics shop offering "Religion Free DVD Players", I snatched one up faster than a Southern Baptist preacher could call out, "Hallelujah!"Religion Free DVD Player3 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
Set-up was a breeze, thank Nobody. So the first movie I popped in was one of my favorites, The Wizard of Oz.
Well, by the time the angelic Glinda introduces herself to saintly little Dorothy in front of the Munchkin choir, I was already beginning to suspect that something might be off. And it only got worse, as her ragtag band of pilgrims undergoes their yellow-brick hajj to the Emerald Mosque: complete with the decadent drug-fueled temptation to abandon the journey; the air assault by, and subsequent ritual stoning of, Satan's winged minions; the circling of the Ka'aba while searching for its concealed entrance; the ultimate purification of Evil with a convenient bucket of holy water; the climactic meeti
The Painter And The VeteranHe wanted to pull out the painThe Painter And The Veteran3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
with a syringe, as if it were
black jelly that had accumulated
underneath his skin. This was
how morning welcomed him.
On saturday nights, he was
the kind of man who went around town
painting murals with a can. They
were gorgeous, especially when city
employees melted them with hose-water.
In America you can find dollar bills
stuck deep in the cracks between
sidewalks; you can find people stuck
deep in the cracks between
You can also find people inside
said buildings, inside beds,
and only one
night, the painter was approached
by a hairy young man with combat
boots who claimed to have fought in
Vietnam. The veteran put a grimy
paw on the painter's shoulder and
asked if he knew why airplanes
had so many windows.
The painter didn't
of them had flown
The veteran slurred with distinction that
before windows were on planes,
they were closed-off
plastic flying tubes. But,
one day every p
Nerd Humor(An Open Source Poem)Nerd Humor9 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
I'd compiled a REALbasic poem
in which a Python
with a bad Lisp
concocted a Scheme
to swap a dull Ruby
for a shiny new Perl
from the king Cobol
while making Smalltalk
over a cup of Java
before knocking him out with a SNOBOL
My prof gave it a C++
ImaginagerieThe chickens are locked in the closet;Imaginagerie5 years ago in Traditional Fixed Forms More Like This
the dinosaur's under the bed.
The toad has just jumped from the windowsill
and landed on top of my head.
The ferrets are out planting flowers;
the peacock's new plumage is torn.
The unicorn used my last dishtowel
to polish its glimmering horn.
The reindeer have raided the pantry;
the dolphin won't fit in the tub.
The lemmings ate all of my lemon drops,
then played hide-and-seek with the cub.
The donkey's been braying all morning;
the cheetah's been chasing her tail.
The pony just peed on the welcome mat,
while the kangaroo chewed all my mail.
Oh, for a real-world puppy,
perhaps a kitten or two...
My daydreams are running all wildly,
just like my invisible zoo!
Six-Syllable LifeI'd read;Six-Syllable Life4 years ago in Stories & Vignettes More Like This
Death, Judgment, RebirthLast Time in the ICUDeath, Judgment, Rebirth1 year ago in Free Verse More Like This
Shadow rats, beady red eyes focused hungrily
Stay still too long and they’ll swarm
Sharp little teeth rending flesh
They know the sick and weak
They can wait
Tenth floor ICU, down with the disease again
He’s resting quietly, the nurse says
She looks like a huge black rat
Does she know what’s happening?
Closing the door
She walks away
Sweet childhood dreams are interrupted
Rats gnawing away at the edges
Toothy little kisses all over
Cleaning, cleansing scurry
Down to the bone
Sentenced to Live
Firelight, poker-faced patchwork man reading aloud
An old but vaguely familiar tome, his tone is somber
Was I one of the wicked? Weren’t we all?
Who can say that they were good?
Sentenced to live yet another life
I cry; I’ve had enough living
I want to sleep forever, leave my shell behind
To crumble to dust, useless, I won’t need it
Every door opens to the same world
Is this hell, then? The onl
The IntentionWho am I to draw up from this weary mindThe Intention4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
and proclaim its labors to be clever or novel?
I am a stranger in a world of ash and dust.
Every song has been sung and faded;
Every poet's pen runs dry.
Every lover, every enemy, every heart begging repose
Has fulfilled its time in this space
And poured out its entirety for generations to come
(or at least this was the intention;
we are often lost in translation).
So, who am I to produce a creation borne of experiences worn and cliché?
Who are we--
each and every one, so anomalous to have this time to live--
Who are we to entwine our sorrows with sorrows long forgotten?
Who are we to dip our pen in the pain
poured from a late lover's heart,
Or fold ourselves intimately into the arms
of those who knew our lives
Before we came into this world?
The Cello's LamentThey call me brute.The Cello's Lament3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
I'm permitted to chant,
but they won't let me Sing.
They've confused non-agility for
my belly enfolds the earth;
my throat trills at the stars;
my eyes embrace the cays
of the sea.
I am an omnivore,
yet they will only feed me leaves.
SynesthesiaI fell in love with a pianist's hands.Synesthesia4 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
They danced across my skin in minuets, his fingers tripping cadenzas up and down my spine. He brushed sonatas through my hair and across my shoulders, pianissimo. I trembled beneath his trills. The primal, earnest rage of Bach swelled in hot crescendos along my throat, beneath my ribs, guided by his hands --- Mozart, coolly logical, raised goosebumps down my arms --- Chopin soothed the fire and finally calmed my hammering heart.
I fell in love with a pianist's hands, listening from the back of the coffee shop while my lungs fought for breath, making wishes until he was gone.
The Gravedigger"I better get an epic funeral."The Gravedigger3 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
Fragments1. Your clockwork appendages were cold to the touch, the industrial complex you called your mind was grating gear against gear where the unoiled works kept clacking away; your heart was a tick-tocking machine that counted the hours while the corrosion settled in.Fragments4 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
2. "You know what you need?
"You need an adventure. Let's go have one."
3. I wanted to hold the thunder in glass jars and write long letters on faded parchment; instead I applied to retail stores to fuel my obsessions for the easily consumed and quickly forgotten.
4. He turned at the sound of my camera snapping, just in time for me to capture the expression on his face curious, unguarded.
5. I believe I'm hollow inside I believe everything that comes out of my mouth is nothing more than the brontide of all the stones I've swallowed.
6. She didn't want to say anything if she interrupted now, his epiphany would be lost and they really needed to get the wormhole working.
All the same, the hatchet in her
A Soldier's WishlistDear Santa,A Soldier's Wishlist3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
It's been a while since I wrote;
just give me a moment to clear my throat.
I'm a little out of practice
so forgive me if I seem quite callous.
I've got some complaints you've heard before,
but let me leave those at the door.
I watched the NORAD radar blip
but never got my Battleship.
Haven't believed since I was nine
but sitting here on the front line
I've got a wish not just for me
but for the men in my cavalry.
If it can't fit into a sack,
if such a load would break your back,
then I'd settle for a smoke and ticket home
but while I'm writing here alone
here's the list I never sent;
peace on earth, goodwill towards men.
What Am I?I lurk in the corners of your mind,What Am I?4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Slithering through the undergrowth of ideas
Forsaken and tossed to the abyss,
Emerging from the shadowy depths
When you want me least.
You scowl at me and call me
For my tortuous forms of amusement.
I follow the law of thermodynamics:
I can neither create nor destroy.
How else can I entertain myself but
Inflict such pain on hapless
Beings such as yourself?
The best is letting little bits of
False hope is always cruelest.
As you lie there in agony
Unable to wrench yourself from my grip,
Remember who is the fickle one
And who always keeps their promises.
Hate she who has forsaken you, not me,
For I may cease taunting you for a while
Or simply take a nap.
But unlike the unreliable one
You pay tribute to,
I shall follow you even into the grave.
Zindigi Life Monsoons Ch 1When Pavarti died, the sunlight went with her. Any fledgling rays that had once, cautiously, shined down on a family so desperately in need of light, left nothing but the dust of Mumbai roads clinging to the windows. It was hastily snuffed out, like the lazy wisps of a tobacco beedi, purchased by a seedy rickshaw driver at cheap roadside stalls.Zindigi Life Monsoons Ch 14 years ago in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
We were the meager funeral procession, my father and I, the now oldest child, and we watched the two disinterested day laborers unfeelingly carry her remains to the cemetery of an abandoned church. The smug sunlight languidly settled into a distant horizon. Even as the blazing humidity diminished, sweat continued to trickle down my shoulders. The dusty white kurta pants were slowly coming apart from the makeshift knot I had tied.
Absently, I ruminated about the thick black plaits that used to run down my sister's back, how the perishing temperatures before the monsoon storms would make cotton salwaar kameez she wore to work stick to her body by
Sestina: Dick and WangRichard, whose nickname is Dick,Sestina: Dick and Wang4 years ago in Traditional Fixed Forms More Like This
set out to make wieners.
He approached the cock
and grabbed the metal rod
to kill it when--Ding-dong!
the doorbell rang. It was Wang.
Wang Long, who insisted on Wang,
called out: "You there, Dick?"
He didn't reply. The rooster clucked. Ding-dong!
the doorbell sang. Dick needed to make wieners.
He hefted the rod
and swung at the cock
but missed and hit the table. Bam! The cock
squawked and ran. "What was that?" said Wang.
Dick replied, "Nothing!" and raised his rod
to swing again. Bam! Another miss. Bam! Dick
really needed to make wieners.
Wang hit the button: Ding-dong!
it rang again. Ding-dong!
it sang again and the cock
ran again to avoid becoming wieners.
Dick sighed and in the background, Wang
asked if he was alright. Dick
sighed again and let go of the rod
which fell with a loud clatter. The rod
rolled on the floor. Ding-dong!
the doorbell went and Dick
walked to the door and opened it. The co
the art ofit was too late;the art of4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
far too late,
by the time my gaze found his
across the dim and drunken
tangle of a scene.
his eyes were dark, the color
of burning wood and
dust in a foreign country, the
kind of eyes my mother taught
me to fear, and rightly so;
i could already feel his
handprints welling in a
malady of black and
five-o-clock blue just
beneath my skin, bruises
deeper than bone
as i pushed my way
A Place in Wonderland 'Wonderland exists'A Place in Wonderland3 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
She stared at the words scribbled onto the page, her mouth pursed in concentration. Her pencil gently tapped her lower lip as she rolled the words through her head again and again. Then she decided, and with but a single second's hesitation she erased the words and flipped her pencil to start anew.
'There is a place beyond the logical world that we all know and see every day. It is a place where dreams spring to life and animals talk readily back to you as if you have just walked into a fable. It is a place where fears are strong and horrors can still happen and blood can still be split. But it is also a place of joy, of wild abandon in the simple fact that everything that once was is now the complete opposite. The sky under your feet and the Earth above you.'
The girl paused in her writing, tilting her head up to the sky. Her blue eyes suddenly gaining depths that were not seen in the shade of the dark green leaves of the tree that she sat under.
Dark MotherBleed your colors to the ground,Dark Mother4 years ago in Traditional Fixed Forms More Like This
let them swirl in the vortex of your breath.
The gathering chill escaped from your lungs
whispers the green earth into death.
Dark Mother, keep the spirits
you hold within your hands.
Souls eternally bidden,
soaked and seeped into the land.
Dark Mother, keep your fury
quivering deep within the ground.
Harm us not, but let us hear
the power of that sound.
The wheel is turning, always turning
as the sun falls from the sky.
Mother can you tell me,
oh can't you tell me why?
Dark Mother, stir your cauldron
deep living waters of rebirth.
Wash clean this wretched wreckage
we have wreaked upon the earth.
Dark Mother, shall we reap
all that we have sown?
When spring returns will you be there?
to light our path toward home?
The wheel is turning, always turning
as the seasons slowly die.
Mother can you tell me,
oh can't you tell me why?
Will you exhale a merciful breath,
to warm our world once more?
Or stop the wheel from turning,
leave us trappe
Trouser, SnakeA natty pair of trousers came uponTrouser, Snake8 years ago in Traditional Fixed Forms More Like This
A gracile set of stockings, quite by chance.
"Milady, say the word and I'll begone,
But firstly I must ask if thou wouldst dance."
"Of course, milord; but only if romance
And not a one-time fling dost thou propose."
"Thou hast my promise," acquiesced the pants,
Even as he sidled toward the hose.
In a manner unbefitting gallant clothes
He sought to lay himself upon her silk;
"Stop, cad!" she cried, "So thou'rt one of those!
My mother said to watch out for thy ilk."
Much wiser heads have voiced it best and first:
Those Worsted wools have always been the worst.
AlcoholicYou saw GodAlcoholic5 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
swaying in your vodka smeared dreams
living in a picket fence Suburbia,
how things have changed.
You saw everything
in the rhythm of your shot glass.
Love was never guaranteed.
Binge, obsession is a taste
I can't rid myself of.
I never see God in my Smirnoff,
but it hits cold and terrifying
just like how I remember you
so I keep drinking
until it tastes like hate.