Offenses too many but guiltless I stand proud
"What are the charges?" the Judge asked
"Blunt force Humor"
"Grievous bodily sarcasm"
"Displaying his stream of consciousness in a public place"
"Abusing his love of all lines alliterative; allowing all else to languor listlessly while alienating livid lines of literary lechers."
"And how do you plea?"
"I plea with glee;
For I am a simple Simon who's sick of your sermons
And Plea is for pleasure; that's good enough for me."
"I'll not change my tune even if you throw away the key
I'll read your book the one you threw, through and through and through and then….
I'll use it to complete my bookcase of selfless defense
An art passed on down through the sages to we happy few"
"We've heard enough of your tribble and tripe
Prepare for our black disposition.
Oh lowly fakir and fraud
You will be put down like the low beast you are"
"I pass gas on your sentence and instead choose the chai
Marble MythI find you amidst dust and alabasterMarble Myth7 years ago in Traditional Fixed Forms More Like This
where you stand in smooth, marble pride.
Your skin is stiff and plastered
against all my caresses. You hide
the rhythm of the stone in your chest
but my straining ear heard its beat
while my own lilting heart knew unrest.
The divine Art of Venus I will not entreat,
for it was not my hands that carved
your body. Still, like Pygmalion playing
lover to his ivory girl, I am starved
for flesh to yield to my fingers, praying
that my own art, not divine or of stone,
can still make your heart revealed
to me. Let it be my own art alone
that will make such cold marble yield.
This CityWe meet in this city unerased by time.This City7 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
My eyes do not know your face
anymore, but the memories of you
are still draped across my skin.
Long ago I've breathed the warmth of you
and felt the weight of you in my bones.
I've never brushed off the dust
of this place where you left me.
Foreign cities I have known since then.
My feet have touched frozen sidewalks
and waltzed to street fiddlers' melodic sorrows.
I've drank wine by fountains and ruins
while telling strangers my story.
I laughed away the tragedies
of past heartbreaks. I knew then
that I still ached for you.
I saw a fat man with no neck belt arias
from a balcony where once Juliet
might have sighed, and wished
she could erase her own name.
If I could have taken your name
from my mind, I would not
have been wandering all this time
through city after city.
Facing you, there are no words to say
and no arias to sing, only the regrets
of this city lie between us as I sweep away
the dust of all my travels.
Haiku: LinguisticsI am a verb, flushedHaiku: Linguistics6 years ago in Urban & Spoken Word More Like This
Hot, wet - naked on the tip
of your tongue; do me.
Inside Every Fat WomanAnd one day there was a mass breakout of thin women.Inside Every Fat Woman7 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
In shops, on street corners,
Yes it was hard work, but no pain no gain.
Skirts were shorter, tops were tighter,
Nights were longer, voices were louder,
Men were shallower, but more frequent.
Confident? Yes, but
What had they done with my fat friends?
These werent the same women.
They talked of my friends as jailers,
Jailers who were fat, and nothing else, keeping them at bay.
My friends were never smug,
They were never loud or abrasive,
They didnt believe that looks were all and,
Most important, they never put me down.
A couple of months of rigid dieting will soon put you right.
You know what they say:
Inside every fat woman is a thin woman trying to get out.
Their most attractive features
(Their hearts, their souls, their loyalty) had gone, and yet
They were better liked, by some.
I cant believe one of those skinny bitches is trying to get out of me.
Im fat, and good, and kind, and si
but it also meansIt's mundane,but it also means7 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
the soda aisle
and my wandering, walking up
then down. I frown to distract.
And buy the soda you love
because you might, you
might be here to have it. Though
with I need a drink.
I don't need a drink.
The same strength, faux-weak
ness that I will always have,
and tell myself I learned from you.
I buy it, afraid I won't like the taste,
or maybe I will and it'll be there
for a few days squishing along inside me.
It's just fucking soda, but it also means
I still love you.
DespairYou cannot be the Eve in my garden.Despair8 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
I do not desire your peddling of
apples and signifiers
as the darkness is choking out the moon
and this bridge leads only to Cain.
I am dreaming in symbols again,
and the madness of pills
is not honey enough for this desert.
This bread is not enough,
fed by cloven hands,
dust in my parched mouth.
Leave me alone!
Already the pounding of battle drums
fill my dull(ed) spaces
and all I can hear
is the falling name of Adam.
True StoryMy proudest day yet, and to top it allTrue Story7 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
you wrote your first poem.
As I drove, you told me our car was
a beautiful white horse
without a name.
And to think, you do not even know that song
or that this is a desert.
We slipped on slick oiled streets,
and you soothed my nerves with a gentle,
and the tires gripped.
I pulled up beside a sedan
turned dapple grey by the weather
and we stepped out onto a badly drained lot.
You closed your poem, saying simply,
"The rain turned into glass."
Love at First SightJosie simply could not comprehend how anyone could believe in love at first sight. Actually, she could get quite animated about the issue, especially if some unwitting friend dared to say that was how she met Andrew.Love at First Sight7 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
It was lust at first sight, okay? LUST! I fancied him! He fancied me! We did not love each other until we knew each other! You cant love somebody just on the way they look - I mean, God, how shallow is that?
It was because of her temper that Andrew wasnt quite sure whether he really did love Josie for a while, even after she had been in love with him for weeks. But he got there eventually.
They had just made love in an inexpensive holiday cottage in the Cotswolds when Andrew said, I am going to prove to you that love at first sight can happen.
Josie got a little bit hysterical. Andrew!
CloseShe only let him start it in the first place because it was taboo. If their families werent so close that they wouldnt like it, she never would have touched him. She had what might be called a strong sexual appetite. Until it started, she hadnt known that his basic animal instincts were just as strong. He was supposed to be like family to her. Hed sit and talk easily to her parents about his family and his education, just like he had always done as a child. But he wasnt a child anymore, and neither was she, and no one seemed to realise. That was what made the whole thing so damn irresistible.Close7 years ago in General More Like This
It wasnt incest, not a bit of it, but it almost felt that way. She enjoyed the secret meetings, lying to her parents, saying she was seeing a friend and then going to him. Usually they stripped noisily in the dark, only catching faint glimpses of each others
A Lesson in StonesA Lesson in StonesA Lesson in Stones6 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
After the boys mother died, the man drove the boy to a place on the banks of the Wallkill River to skip stones. At this spot, the riverbank was low to the edge of the water and not steep. The boy turned nine three weeks before and the boys mother died two weeks before that. The man knew she was going to, and it is likely the boy also knew. They did not talk about it. Now it was just him and the boy. The man felt a deep welling up inside of him. He did not know what to call it, but it connected with the water. Fear, maybe.
Its important to look for stones that are flat and circular, Eli told the boy. This one here is a good example.
The stone sat at the edge of the embankment. It had a silver luster and part of it rested where the gentle waves of the river could barely kiss it. Where the water
could touch it, the stone was a darker gray.
When you throw the stone against the river, use your wrist, he told the boy.
The boy looked at his father and nodd
Februarythe wind blows coldFebruary6 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
through widowed fields
seducing sighs from
deep deserted grasses
sparrows shiver among
dreaming of whispered
in famished breezes,
in jonquils spearing
upward into sun
of snow thawing
in rising heat
and hungry promises
are kept among
as your wind
and my grasses
teach the world
After DarkAfter DarkAfter Dark6 years ago in Haiku & Eastern More Like This
Our bodies are like
Modernity of the Ancients IThe Modernity of the Ancients (I).Modernity of the Ancients I7 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
When you walk through the forgotten places, Diana,
where happy creatures once dwelt,
how swiftly the marbled sky cracks,
how bitterly your tears fall upon
the silent hills untroubled by the hunt.
Is it so hard to remember, Apollo?
To witness that here, where the grass once bore
the frolicking feet of muses divine,
everything now lies dormant,
decayed by time and the cold hands of neglect?
Once the smell of incense clung like ivy
to temples whose altars lay drowning
in the blood of proud beasts
slaughtered to appease you.
The gifts and hushed prayers of the pious worshipped and adored.
Now the stench of the ages lingers like a lover
over broken relics and rust covered trinkets.
Ink bleeds into parchment and paint blooms across canvas,
the bold words and dreamscapes of the fanciful
both celebrate and lament.
Write Better: Read MoreWe didn't believe it, either, but you really can learn a lot from reading a book! If you've ever wanted some worthwhile advice from someone other than your high school English teacher, this is the place to look. The authors below are experts in their fields, well-respected and admired by accomplished writers from all over the world, and we're bringing you a list of their most prized and collectively-effective books. (Tried-and-tested by our worthy administrators, no less!)Write Better: Read More7 years ago in Reviews & Guides More Like This
So what're you waiting for? Learn how to make every word count!
Reading Resource List for the Aspiring Writer
Writing Reminders: Tools, Tips, and Techniques (Jim Burke)
Writing Tools: 50 Essential Strategies for Every Writer (Roy Peter Clark)
Writing without Teachers (Peter Elbow)
Writing With Power: Techniques for Mastering the Writing Process (Peter Elbow)
Polyphonic IronySaid the whale,Polyphonic Irony7 years ago in Open More Like This
We speak what no one hears
Before it swam away. And wouldnt you
Like to be a whale so you could float
In a body impossible enough in its largeness
That it can float silently, like a bird
On a hush of air. And wouldnt you?
So you could sing for reasons no one knows
And in such a mournful way that the song
Sounds like a memory. Like a lost mitten
From your childhood, and is beautiful.
Sing a memory, and wouldnt you?
of your grandfather with his plastic
eggs and pockets of change.
Or that kiss with someone now long married
With laughter, and the lightness of children.
And all of these songs can only be sung
After the thing of it has passed, after
there is no more worth in the thing than
the whirr of the wind through the trees
precisely because each song holds onto
A piece of your soul, and counts
How many summersaults in a row
your soul, like the whale, can do
For YouI want to be the godFor You7 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
who breathed life into you,
whose form you stole.
I want to be the mother
who kept you secret
till you ripped
through the womb spilling
Make me your lover
and I will burn beneath
your body each night.
Let me be the earth
with your ashes.
I want to be the poet
to paint you with words.
samsarasamsara9 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
a spotted moth
around in circles
the porch light
clouded by glass
a winged seed
blood red maples
spring from the crash site
of a downed helicopter
Losing Track of One's ShadowWitnesses saw a 41-year-old man kill himself by letting a train strike him on Madison's near east side. Police said the man died around 3:30 p.m.Losing Track of One's Shadow6 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
What brings a man to hurl himself against a train:
The moment when he can no longer decipher his shadow.
It was early November, and the light made the afternoon sinister, when the man, unnamed, walked over to the tracks that head in and out of the city, and he stood on those tracks, unflinching and related to stone. He stood for a good while until he heard the whistle a couple miles out. And still, he stood upright. His shadow was not visible when the train plowed through him, over him. There is no doubt that, at the point of contact, he was already a ghost.
Let me tell you once and for all, to set the story straight; Nothing Sparked It. It had all been planned from the very beginning, before I was born, before the train knew it was a train, and so the order of th
Love of Damage Redraft(see comments)Love of Damage Redraft7 years ago in Traditional Fixed Forms More Like This
I like to go to bed a map of pain.
Minor knocks, a walking private collection.
I like to sport raked skin, at least one bruise,
preferably black, but lemon is fine too.
And when I go to bed, something is missing
if my back's not an easel to some small etching.
It's a hero complex - if I'm a map of pain,
just slightly fucked up, then all's gone to plan -
I've risked death but scraped through semi-intact,
minor knocks accounting for each close shave.
Facial injuries are the icing on the caked
blood, and any walking prism of scabs
gets to feel them crack like sugar shells,
adding and adding to an acervate collection.
It's better if I go to bed with minor
injuries - it is like sex but cleaner.
It's better if some days I sport raked skin
or a bruise that is lemon or gentian,
since I wake up healed when I go to sleep dying
from backache, or blisters that hatch into scarring,
or a graze sustained when I scabbed, with minor
violence, some of my flatmate's dinn
Show and TellShow and TellShow and Tell8 years ago in Academic Essays More Like This
The idea behind what constitutes 'telling' is probably the most often confused by critics who are new to poetry.
The general notion of it has been around for centuries in all types of literature, but the approach to it was tightened considerably in the 1920s by those of the Modernist school of thought – most notably TE Hulme, HD and Ezra Pound who adapted many tenets of the French school of Symbolism into Imagism.
This leaves us with the current poetic climate, which shuns the idea of a pseudo-poet narrator (as favoured in lyrical poetry – Shelley's Ode to the West Wind, for example) in favour of less intrusive accounts.
The guidelines that it encourages are pretty logical, and mostly just serve to crystallize a critical paradigm present long before it was given this name. It's simply a matter of narrative viewpoint.
If I say 'The man is sad' I am intruding upon the narrative with my own opinion.
If I say 'The man is crying' then the reader makes up their own mind
Starling StarlingStarling7 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Starling fell into my garden
Like a desperate feather-bomb
A dark little Icarus
Shrieking for the nest-warm
I held it in my hand
Struggle-straggle bony form
Soft and skeletally warm
Breast still young with down
Fluff and flutter and scaly feet
Clasping at my finger
Tiny half bald feathered heat
Little blinking eyes stare up
Beak bobs, hunched shoulders
Life-weighted and yet so light
I remember the transformation
Between desperate and calm
I remember Starling
The tiny heart-hammer
Against my palm
Red DressThe store was not busy tonight.Red Dress6 years ago in General Fiction More Like This
Customers wandered in and out, solitary dancers to the muzak that floated down the aisles. Cady watched them with unfocused eyes - her job didn't take a lot of concentration.
"Good evening, ma'am, do you have Flybuys?" Hands moved automatically, packing groceries into plastic bags with unconscious precision. "That will be $11.90, thank you, have a good night. Good evening, sir, do you have Flybuys?"
Her eyes focussed with a snap - he hadn't handed over a card.
There weren't any groceries on the counter, either.
The man's face was unremarkable, the kind of face that had passed her a hundred times that night, forgotten before they reached the door. But, his eyes - they were remarkable, a golden brown that drank in the light and glinted hypnotically.
"Arcadia," He said, "Wake up."
"Good evening, sir, do you have Fly-" Cady's mouth gaped for a moment, and embarrassment burnt her cheeks. She was on the wrong side of the counter
StarvationStarvation6 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
I remember grandmother's hazy eyes
that day and how they'd wander off
into the distance, the memory of a crowded train
filled with the homesick and the watery-eyed
blowing smoke through every keyhole,
the constant tightening in her chest
that no one could explain but her:
She didn't know what to say.
She didn't know what to say
and it broke her heart
to think that war
might have stolen
his grasp away before
the words she
And when she passed,
every verb snaked down
the highways of her face
like a wanderer, wondering:
if only she had smiled
or shown more conviction
as he frowned
and waved goodbye,
if only she had said
I miss you too
when grandfather left,
would have been
different, maybe she
wouldn't have clenched
her fists so tight
right before the departure--
The last few foggy words
I wiped from her chin
once her body turned
too cold to breathe--
The PainI thought I would cry when you were gone, but i didnt.The Pain9 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
I thought I would die when you were gone, but i didnt.
But now I come to think of the times when we were happy, I cry.
I cry because I know that we were once happy together.
I cry because I know that I will never see you again.
And now the pain is settling in.