Into the LightThe moon tonight is, simply, a white note
adrift, spinning. It patiently tracks the breeze
on the edge of genesis, floating in motes
of static. On the surface, it seems at ease.
Light filters through oak leaves and coats
its thrall, the summer heat's slow weave
through the river's margins to the throat
of the sea. Small fish leap up to tease
the moon tonight. Simply, this white note
rotates its body like thread released
from reel, alters its position over nodes
Soul of a WriterI see a blank page, and I feel a spark inside my heart. The spark ignites my mind, raising its ever-glowing embers to a slowly building flame. The cold white blankness of the page angers me.Soul of a Writer3 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
Wasted potential, that's what it is. Any space of white could be used. I stare into its emptiness and my mind begins to turn its gears. My hand itches for a pen.
I am a writer and my soul is fire. This page shall feel my flame.
I need to bring heat to the paper and that is what the words are. Hot. The black ink smolders on the white of the paper. The words charge from my mind, down my arm and on to the page.
They are the army of my soul, warriors of fire and ink. They enforce my will upon the cold of the paper; bringing the stories in my mind to life on the page, and the more ink on the page, the more fire for my mind. The warriors of words fight back the emptiness, charging into it and slashing away with flaming swords lighting the page aflame.
It is a soul-powered machine, constructing my linguis
Talking to YourselfWind drove snow over the trees with such force they seemed to step into the distance. The whiteness in the air covered everything until it was as faded as an old scent trail after a rainstorm. The snow was already deep enough to suck in a man’s leg past the knee if he wasn’t wearing snowshoes, but the figure trudging through it was no longer a man.Talking to Yourself3 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
Prankster wendigo had given up on snowshoes long ago in favor of simpler footwear. The straps challenged the clumsy fingers of his stolen human body, and he could never figure out how to move in them without tripping. He lurched onward with the tenacity of a wolverine gnawing through an inch of deer skull to get the gooey treat in the center. The pain in his stomach howled to his feet. He gave little thought to their control. His mind was focused on making the most of sensory information diminished by the storm. Sounds and smells were difficult to pinpoint. He almost felt as if the wind were a rival, come to mask the trails of pr
It starts with a flash-bang and a Majulahi.It starts with a flash-bang and a Majulah3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
June's hauled her here again and
she's tapping at my classroom window,
A gazillion tiny fingers rapping in succession
(When she said "invitation" I didn't realise she meant
soaking half the country, the spike in umbrella prices has
nothing to do with me)
What's worse than an impatient child
is one with the whole atmosphere as her battering ram
when she tries to say something the urgency brims over
and one million exclamation marks
is beginning to sound like static frazzling
out on the pavements
She is without choice: when Cloud mother tips her out
she must go, and go she will
caught in an obtuse cycle, fought over by heat and
gravity wanting to claim her as territory
thrown about in their wiggly intersections she
falls, rises, and falls again.
Her talent is splitting herself up,
a single place, and then everywhere at once.
She has mastered the skill to the point
that she is a fractal in the air
even before she hits the ground.
She is a cell in a body 66 percent water.
She is a s
cosmic background radiationThey say that the big bang was not an actual "bang". It was really just static. Static, like the interference of radio waves. Of course, the universe did not happen instantaneously. The big bang took 760,000 years to happen. 760,000 years of static, and bang, the universe happened.cosmic background radiation5 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
I get myself together and actually go out. I go to see the New York Philharmonic perform the works of John Cage at Lincoln Center. I walk out during the second movement of 4'33". There's a very small difference between life and death. I walk home, my chin pulled down against my neck. I hum a constant note, providing myself with my own tinnitus.
I focus on this note. I cross Broadway where the walkers cluster on the curbside, awaiting the turn of the traffic light. People talking and the bioacoustic noises of their bodies moving. I walk against the signal. The tires of taxis scrape against the road. I go west on 65th Street, past Brooks Brothers and the slimy sliding of the revolving door, past vans parallel
The SiegeThe first mile is always the easiest.The Siege4 years ago in Traditional Fixed Forms More Like This
—Kyle Lynn to me, circa 2006
Tell that to the ghosts,
men soaked in sand and blood spray,
storming the shores of Normandy.
First Infantry's sprint through coastal
trenches, up bluffs, under ruptured drays.
Tell that to the ghosts
huddled in half-channeled holes,
a captain's dash through shrapnel, gray
storm on the shores of Normandy.
A German boy adrift in the compost
of his legs, his elbows' grand flail.
Tell that to the ghosts
ripped in four by mortars posted
over Omaha. Dawn's evenly keeled decay
storming the shores of Normandy.
How quickly the lung forgets to oust
its breath. Be wary of the sea's affray.
Tell that to the ghosts
storming the shores of Normandy.
On my way homeBy Romy LaraOn my way home3 years ago in Stories & Vignettes More Like This
I exit the studio, sighing at the sight of the sun quietly hiding behind the trees and buildings. Turn to the right and keep walking. Cars are passing by, people in black suits get out from the nearest buildings; none of them care about their surroundings. I lift up my head and notice in big steel-letters the name of the company that owns that peculiar orange building in the corner of the street. It's the first time I see it. The sky is painted blue with some dabs of gray, just as if somehow the color of the concrete street had been absorbed by the clouds.
Behind me there's a couple discussing something about a house. She doesn't sound happy. And he's just getting mad. She shouts and speeds up, him trying to catch up with her, but it's futile. She is a very good runner despite her heels. The man glances at me. I toy with the white cable of my earphones and pretend I didn't hear anything. I pass him. He just stands there. I wonder what would he do now. But I have no time to
Machine-Part SincerityShe once said to me,Machine-Part Sincerity3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
"Come. You be a gear right here,
and I'll be a pulley over there.
Together, we'll both obey
the lever's dream."
I lied to her when I said,
"I want nothing more."
grassy field with rustgrassy field with rustgrassy field with rust3 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
I'd heard about the old car, three miles out of town and all alone. I just had to see it. It was time. School was over for the summer, my friends were at camp, and I was bored. I set out Thursday morning for a hike, following directions that Uncle Will had given me. As the heat was still growing with the climb of the sun, I found the field and wandered around looking, and looking some more, trying not to be distracted by bees buzzing in the flowers, and butterflies and baby mice. Then it was there, just a bit upslope from the bottom of a natural swale, and just below the sky at the top of the bank. A 1959 Cadillac convertible, but not like the old music videos showed.
This one was part buried in grass gone to seed and turned almost white golden with the dry heat. The tires were collapsed cracked pieces and there wasn't a trace of pink paint anywhere. Rust owned it, and it held on so tight that holes were showing in what used
The Lost PianistThe Lost PianistThe Lost Pianist3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Tears reminisce mahogany boxed memories,
Of ecstatic crescendos and tearful diminuendos.
For deep in eternal sadness lies the lost pianist,
Who once dreamt of glorious symphonies.
As he caresses the goddess of the piano,
She moans of rhythmic joy and pleasure,
Executing works that rival the Siren's song,
Echoing the lost voices of her past masters.
But in time's command, their hearts went astray.
Each lying in their own pool of heartfelt miseries.
While he walks asunder, away from melodic Eden,
She beckons to him, yearning to be loved.
Her sorrowful notes whisper his name,
When he contemplates sweet nostalgia.
They swore to eternity to unite in bliss.
A promise that surpasses a mere forevermore.<i>
a memoryI remembered the afternoon I called you,a memory4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
curled on my bed with someone's good book
in my palm, nestled softly in the waning light
and under my gently roaming fingers
the baby moved not to my hand-touch,
but inside, an insistent flutter,
not like the swiftly beating heart
on the doctor's monitor, not like the slow
appearance of a plus-sign on a drugstore test.
I called you, my gently rolling daughter's
mother's mother. I called you like the woman
standing at my back while I held the kite string
on a pushy spring day, the diagonal shape so
far above us I could only feel the jerk of the
cord around my fingers, holding us to earth.
Automatici.Automatic3 years ago in Stories & Vignettes More Like This
"So where are you from?" The boy leans toward me, questions swimming in his eyes. I smile.
"Oh, I'm from Boston."
"No, I mean, where are you from?" My smile falters as I realize where this is going. It's an all-too familiar conversation, one I've been having since I was old enough to reply.
"Do you mean where was I born?"
"I was born in China."
"Do you speak Chinese?"
"Does your family speak Chinese?"
He looks befuddled. I sigh.
"Oh!" I see the light bulb over his head go off in a shower of sparks. "Do you know who your real parents are? Like, your real parents?" My temper flares. I stifle the urge to throw something.
"You mean my biological parents?"
"Oh." There's an awkward pause. I have learned to wait it out, to prepare my next automated response.
"When were you adopted?"
"When I was a year old."
"Did you live in an orphanage?"
"Like in Annie?"
Rolling my eyes seems appropriate.
"No, not l
EurydiceHis voice enveloped me, and I becameEurydice3 years ago in Traditional Fixed Forms More Like This
Myself again--I heard it in the song:
A mordent on a note he held too long;
A stutter in his voice. I heard my name
In these and felt a happiness the same
As when I saw him first. Oh, I had longed
To hear him sing again, but this last song--
It was so beautiful. And it remains
The best of human works, though none shall hear
Its sorrowed notes; the lyre's meand'ring tune
Through vast arpeggios and Death's expanse
Except the dead. It will not disappear
'Till all the world's destroyed, and hell's exhumed--
Such music must be worth a backwards glance.
Send Me the Raintoday, they're all talking about the fires.Send Me the Rain3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
the people on TV, the voices on the radio,
the mouths that open and whisper
and softly touch tongues. even the sky is
revealing black plumes of smoke,
flaunting shameless and seductive curves.
the rain's been too dry and the lightning
isn't wet enough, panic is
rising out of control in this
burning city. that's
we have a crisis on
our hands- the balloons are
running out of air and even
the experts don't really know why,
and on top of those sinking rubber toys
my soul is losing moisture
faster than the crackling grass under the duress of flame.
i'm starting to see the subtle luscious contours
i might not exactly be news-worthy
but if i catch, then
the forest might too.
i'm considered a reasonable loss, however.
they heard it might storm tomorrow. and everybody knows
that means they'll be safe-
because they all talk about it.
it almost stormed-
the sky spat and then
thought better of it,
Harvest MoonYou remind me of the harvest moonHarvest Moon4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
tugging the shore from beneath my feet, of
rowing out to sea in winter with empty nets
till spring, of catching every breath
in crystals on the same forgotten docks,
Where gravity knots my tendons into rope,
my teeth into chalk and ash, and my eyes
into searchlights scanning the horizon
for the first ship that leads to you.
to Yellow Plumto Yellow Plum (in blueto Yellow Plum4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
afternoon's slit of sun slips
between thick curtains
& woos you to ripeness.
it chooses you
not for flecks of honey-russet
held low in your seam of shadows,
nor your symmetry & swell;
you slink in shade, sink
behind green pear & clementine
& cannot hide
from each spear of light
against these lips
a tea-stain stone
the trashbin floor.
Happy HollowLook:Happy Hollow4 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
I found him in Happy Hollow, the woods that's on the outskirts of the city. He was a little ways off the path me and my sister, Nahla, take to school, 'cept Nahla was sick that day so it was just me by myself. It's not the fastest way to get to school, but we can't go through Northampton or else the bullies that live there will throw dirt clods at us. After I found him I took him to this old shed out there. It's got a hole in the roof but I figured the little guy'd be safe there on account of it's a good ways away from the Northampton houses; plus you can't hardly see it through all the leaves and branches and stuff. His fur was real white and real soft, just like snow 'cept it wasn't cold. It was warm and fuzzy so it made you wanna squeeze him real tight. I liked playing with his ears cuz they was all floppy, 'cept when you made a weird noise, then they'd stick straight up and he'd tilt his head sideways and look at you funny. He had a long bushy tail and sharp little baby teeth
tree, fiddler crabIt took days to hollow out the soft partstree, fiddler crab3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
of the trunk, dig out the tree-flesh and sap,
polish the raw wood so that when he sat,
there would be no splinters. He carved his name
into the side, like a blessing, a declaration
of good fortune, and stowed his forest inside.
AirYou do not have to be empty.Air3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Go, now, to the high places, the thin spires
of mountains and skyscrapers
the roof of your house, tipped with snow,
and fill yourself up with the air.
Drink it in, taste it, roll it around
on your tongue, feel it settle
in the caverns of your lungs. Feel the dust
and the ice crystals and the scraps of newspaper
brush your lips, and fill yourself with them, too.
Fill yourself up with the moonlight, the frost,
the dusky rose of the rising sun,
the night, the morning, the calls of birds,
the sillhouettes of telephone poles,
the shadows of people and clouds and alley cats
that dance across the pavement.
Fill yourself with the feel of your lover's hands,
the smell of the cold wind (mint and forests)
the taste of afternoon tea, the sight
of birds pinwheeling in the snow.
You do not have to be empty.
The Reaper's LootOf war, of war this day I write,The Reaper's Loot3 years ago in Urban & Spoken Word More Like This
Of battle and blood that is shed in the night,
Of cries and screams of blood and pain,
I wish this night to become day's light.
The pain, the pain of the killing pursuit,
The scars etched upon berserker brutes,
The hate and fear of fire and lead,
I see the fruit of the reaper's loot.
Oh fire, oh fire and destruction's start,
Oh copper and lead seeking the foes' hearts,
Oh flesh and bone you sought to rend,
And as their souls depart,
The devil sees your new art.
Tallmy words are green tonightTall5 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
written in the air in a neon glow
standing on the corner in the snow
reciting poetry from memory
i feel very tall
there is power in words
and tonight i'm in control
looming large and strong and
and feeling very tall
have i had too much? no,
just enough to clearly see
my shoulders are straight, my
head held high
speaking green words
and very, very tall
October EyesSuch gentle colors drip across your freckled shoulder blades.October Eyes3 years ago in Traditional Fixed Forms More Like This
A quilt of puddled watercolors soaked in auburn shades.
Spun of golden rivulets and rinsed in autumn skies,
So many endless currents swimming through your lonesome eyes.
Brushing under fingertips and over shattered songs,
Unraveling like morning glaze against my paling palms.
With beauty like October hills and hollow as the skies,
The water drops against the earth will be our lullaby.
Va'eiraThis was a lesson in just how quiet it can beVa'eira4 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
when you don't make enough noise.
Me, holding a toy gun to a stranger's head
"Remember when things stopped being ridiculous?"
You, eating dandelions in a midnight field
"About the same time things stopped making sense."
A boy in church camp carved a small crucifix
for his arts and crafts project. He won the blue
ribbon and a brand new Bible. The next morning
I found it hanging over our cabin door.
A toad was nailed to the cross.
Sometimes we wake up early enough to hide the evil from our world.