City LightsAs the city lights
fade beneath our scarlet wings,
I pluck them from the sky
and add them to the gemstones
adorning my fingers.
They soon lose their lustre,
in a blanket of dark,
as we wing onwards
until these darts of bright
are lost to my tired eyes.
You Can Go Your Own WayThere was the ancient record-playerYou Can Go Your Own Way7 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
that hunched majestically in the corner
of the living room, its feet tangled
in the mustard-colored shag rug
that deadened the songs of
Ralph McTell, Gordon Lightfoot,
and Fleetwood Mac.
My parents were true Brits then,
missing home, wishing it was raining,
astounded by their overly friendly neighbours.
We smashed those songs
on the winterpavement outside
on our way to California,
my parents, no longer flowerdressed
and bearded, said records were obsolete.
Then came the pearl-colored boombox,
to play my fathers smuggled Beatles CDs,
between snatches and crackles of pop music,
the aerial forever in movement,
friend to coat hangers and duct tape.
the first time I heard Simon and Garfunkel
their CDs I hid on the bus ride to school,
and filled its silver mouth with
Third Eye Blind and Savage Garden instead,
laughed along as someone used it to play
Sir Mix-a-Lot through speakers
in the backseat.
Lake WindermereWe are sometime tourists,Lake Windermere7 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
in open topped buses
tie-dyed amongst Mercedes.
smelling of campfire smoke,
our pockets filled with menthol cigarettes,
and skipping stones.
We find ourselves
basking in the glow of laughter
under the dripdrip
of cave music.
Beers and sticky chocolate bars
fill our tattered canvas bags,
alongside leather flip flops,
discarded for bare footed expeditions
and daisy chains.
DianeI want to curl myself around you fetus-likeDiane7 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
a sad approximation of your lost child
Ill lead him from the turtle depths
to show you his eyes his ears hes healthy
living, grooving somewhere
Ill pull him from the bloody deep
hold him in your palms your womb
Ill try to show you its alright to live
(though you know well enough yourself)
take you to the difference where the heart beats
our woman hands entangled I will try to hold you
knot us together with faerie strings
of cerise gold hair
Youve forgotten him but I remember
Im waiting for you to speak.
Day 10tryst (a secret romantic rendezvous at twilight in Paris on a hill)Day 108 years ago in Other More Like This
two small suns
burning on the hill
pear dribbling on the grass
ow. mind my hair
In case of emergencyI saw the roots of prairie grassesIn case of emergency7 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Like carrion beetles in their yellowing shells
Nibbling angrily, at the concrete beneath my feet,
At wood sheared to fence posts near the road.
The very earth they rejected, drawing what peace they could.
When did stained glass become the standard?
I have forged narrow mountain paths and stumbled over
Bottle caps secreted between the mica flakes and quartz.
In this city, in the sectors most pregnant with age,
Trees testify shamelessly into the sky.
Clandestine, one coils his reach toward
A flimsy cable, twisted and strung precariously
From corpse to shabby corpse, on and on.
Graceful and altogether stoic, another refuses to wince
As the merciless force of a school bus violates its skirts.
All the monstrous lizards reduced to macabre exhibits,
I fault them for dying. With cold blooded savages
Of the biological nature, the world was better off.
Save the best for last is never the real philosophy.
Find me the soul that cares for what happens to its carca
dear.dear.dear.7 years ago in Other More Like This
i'd like to start by apologizing because i haven't been entirely truthful with you.
you see, there are so many things i wish i could tell you.
so many things i wish i could share with you; ideas i'd love to plant in your head and watch grow.
places i'd like to go with you, things i'd love to learn about you.
so many things i wish i could tell you, but can't.
i want to believe i can tell you.
more than you know i want to believe it.
i dream about telling you.
roll the idea around in my head.
fall asleep to it.
plan, right down to every last breath, exactly how i would tell you.
but i don't.
i never can, and i never will.
it's just one of those secrets i'll never get to tell.
sometimes it makes me sad.
sometimes i just think i'm crazy.
sometimes i think it's exactly what you'd want to hear.
and other times, i think it'd just frighten you.
sometimes i wonder if you'd even understand it.
i know there's a good reason i can never tell you any of this.
it's not that what i have
The Long Shot A flame licked at the end of a cigarette. The silver lighter clicked shut, and Old Man Morrison sat back in his chair. His hair was grey, his face lined with years and miles, his eyes wrinkled and keen. He took a drag from his cigarette, pulled it from his mouth with a deft motion of his fingers, blew the smoke out in a cloud before his face.The Long Shot6 years ago in Science Fiction More Like This
"So you're the deserter, then," he prompted. "How'd you get that name, huh? Run out on some of your friends in the war?"
The man across the table from him was younger but no smoother, his face pocked and pitted with scars, dressed in leather and steel with wiring running through his braided hair. A small crescent of glittering metal implants shone around his left eye. He was half-smiling, his booted feet kicked up onto the table, a cigarette held clamped between his lips, the smoke drifting from the other
Angel's GamesThey say that this city was made by Angels, and sometimes I am almost inclined to agree.Angel's Games5 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
The graveyard is filled with them, weeping stone tears from blank eyes, hands spread wide in supplication, or clasped in grief. They fill this city. Watching from rooftops and doorways. Clinging to the corners of old buildings or sitting silent in hidden courtyards, guarding the ruined tumbles of houses no-one ever bothered to rebuild.
Stone angels watching over a city of dust and ashes. Choked with the burning of a thousand fires, the soot still clinging to the church-towers that ring out with the mournful pealing of bells.
Many wars have passed through this place, and I have no doubt there are many more to come. I have seen my fair share of sorrow here. I have watched as piece by piece the city is rebuilt, the wreckage gathered, the wound mended. Its people are as old and dark as the place itself. Distrustful, generous, proud, a mess of contradictions, and yet you find yourself expecting nothing
Arthur NobodyArthur works the night shift at a generically scummy bar so that he can sit all day in a coffee shop and write like the bohemian he can't really afford to be. This will not be a major contextual issue.Arthur Nobody9 years ago in Philosophy & Perspectives More Like This
He sits now as he does every day, abusing the good-natured "free refill" system, drinking enough caffeine to relieve the fact that he works all night and drinks (coffee) all day. Sleeping fits into the equation in patches without regularity. He sleeps when his body requires it, and his body sometimes requires it when he's in the middle of doing something else. He sleeps when on the bus and misses his stop, or dozes as he is about to drain a cup of coffee, allowing him to roll his eyes at the irony when he jerks back to consciousness, because his is a life of mundanity where falling asleep in a wacky situation, for example, at the wheel of a car, is unlikely, not least because he can't drive. Today, as ever, he has with him an el
SinfulOur nights are stolen:Sinful8 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
stripped at the door,
our scarred bodies
suspended between fleeting present and
I have loved you...---I have loved you...8 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
In another time, I may have been your late night
confessionary, a Parisian whore to your
gentle hands and overwhelming needs. I could see us
loving each other without knowing names.
We are at times both romantic enough, and tragic
enough, for that.
And if I was not full of sin enough
to beckon your fingers to my skin, perhaps I
was only a girl you met for
un café au lait. You laid
your hand over mine beneath autumnal arbres, and we
made small talk about the world. Perhaps;
we are masters at making love with strangers. And you
peu importe. Je sais que je t'ai touché, dune
stop the clocka sea of houses comes rolling instop the clock6 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
rusty roofs bending
shingles popping like fireworks
(expressing their independence, they die)
while you and I
(nothing more than genetic flotsam, now)
turn our eyes from a shattered-glass snowfall
and dream of the winters of our youth
this will be the end of days
this will be clouds folding into the earth
thunderstorms growling from foxholes
rain tumbling from rivers
as a clumsy conflagration stumbles into our skin
stealing our silhouettes
painting our ghosts on walls
(oh, had only we learned such passive resistance)
as you and I
(only numbers and figures, we know)
truly wear our hearts on our sleeves
when the world turns inside out
when sandcastles swirl into mountains
only to melt and flatten
until the rock has no wrinkles
when flowers shrink into their stems
like amateur stop-animation
when grass stalks and grandchildren
twist ever upward into smoke
and I no longer have any metaphors
for what the world made me love about yo
18 a day18 a day8 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
18 a day
one when I wake up,
one for the drive to
Is this a timely coincidence
or a manufactured recommendation?
When I was young, I
could still smell them,
had a passion for them!
yet now they're as nameless
as a careless night, a plastic
sword unsheathed too many times
Colorless monotony, greeting
the holiest of Holies
the whole(st) of all ends
the element of death is a deterrent
for some, freedom for others
Like jumping out of an airplane
with a half-witted parachute
he doesn't quite get the same rush anymore
from (a) high
School Nativity PlaySchool Nativity Play12 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
Miss Williams! Miss Williams!
You'd really best come quick!
The wise men keep on arguing,
And Joseph's just been sick!
The star somehow got broken,
We don't know yet who did it,
Some say that it was Lizzie -
I think it was Ned Pitt.
The girls were playing with Jesus,
And his head somehow came off…
And the boy that sings the solo,
Just got a nasty cough.
The wise men are still bickering,
Over which of them is most wise,
And one really seems to think,
That he's God in disguise.
The shepherds have just lost their sheep,
And don't know what to do –
I don't suppose that you'd know where
To find a random ewe?
Betsy says her tooth's come out,
And that she wants her mum;
And by now Joseph is looking
Really rather glum…
The audience are coming in,
But we're really in a state,
Do you think they'll mind too much
If we're about an hour late?
The scenery's fallen down again –
I just thought that you should know,
And, Miss Williams, you'll never guess…
Miss Williams? Where'd you go?
A Ghost For Every SeasonIn the spring, amid the tall grass, the swamp grassA Ghost For Every Season5 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
on the outskirts of a wood
he takes her paint smeared fingers,
sepia, crimson, vermilion branding
the ivory white palette of her hands,
and presses each one to the curl of his mouth;
sucking and biting and longing for sustenance from the
ochre, copper, violet streaking her blue-veined skin.
She smiles with eyes that match the sky
and gives him all her strength.
In the summer, under the green leafed canopy
she laces flowers in her hair,
dances across the umber of the
forest floor, braids and ribbons streaming.
He watches her with folded arms, flicking ash idly,
until she twirls to him collapsing against
his chest in a flurry of flesh and chiffon.
He blesses her graces
with kisses of wonder.
In the autumn by the dirt path on the leaf- strewn ground
he plucks the last of the deep indigo blackberries
from the brambles and brings them to her lips,
places them upon her expectant tongue.
And when the wind begins to blow too cold
he wraps her
Haikuwrimo February 200928thHaikuwrimo February 20096 years ago in Haiku & Eastern More Like This
along the forest path -
gravestones in a clearing
low tide -
stones piled upon
silent breeze -
a moorhen passing through
the norfolk reeds
winter heathland -
pieces of sky
break in the traffic -
ducks flapping past
in a line
Hythe canal -
a duck's wake scattering
the trees' reflections
on the playing fields
clear night sky -
a car's engine
thick fog -
dew droplets catch
the faint sunlight
and pine -
a crow in flight
grey dawn -
a wave crashes
into cool air
with snow on the ground
and now without it -
a pigeon's coo
morning sun -
of cleaved wood
dawn shadows -
a grass blade
(featured in Riverbed Haiku Spring 2009)
waning light -
How To Spell 'Love'String my vertebrae togetherHow To Spell 'Love'5 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
And personally adjust
Each subtle curve.
Steal the words I finally said
Though they may be more than you deserve.
My "love" and your "love"
Are just a few letters off.
Outline my clavicle valleys
In shadows cast by candle light.
Let the folds of my ear
Bend the currents of your breath,
Laden with monochrome words.
Honesty and lies
Come only in black and white.
I could dwell forever in gray areas
my name.my name ismy name.6 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
alyssa, and maybe it means
hold your breath or
chase the stars. maybe it is
that awkward shyness
of saying hello to someone
for the first time
or the warm feeling
from hugs and held hands.
maybe it means
maybe my wishes will come true,
someday or maybe
it is the sound of the wind
caressing leaves and the lullabies
of wind chimes, or maybe
it is the voice inside your head;
the shade of moonlight and
maybe 'alyssa' is a synonym
for hopeful and dreaming and
'full of life'. maybe it is the rush
in your ears while running,
the challenge of catching your breath again;
the music of wishing and the thrill
or maybe my name is just
and maybe it only means
the alarm clock paradox -colabyou stripped your sweater tothe alarm clock paradox -colab5 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
show me your freckles,
and oh how i'd love to peel them off,
because you're no swan, lovely--
not with those small brown accidents
kissing your every inch of
when they should be
kissing every inch of mine.
formed a coalition
to sign a petition
to ban you from
the sky, but i
what else could i wish on?
when you're alone, you'll always
lust for the bedroom door
to lock you in forevermore,
to lock me out forevermore;
that way you're safe to be the
sweet nothing that you see--
the ghostling in the mirror.
you're still just one
of those dirty little things,
and it scares you to tears.
i promised not to be a
liar, when you
promised to make me love you
(remember how i said
i could never love you?
well, i was lying)
you should know, darling,
a liar always lies.
you should know, darling,
this is not a lie.
and you should know, darling,
there's no difference between
dishonesty and disinterest.
so just forget to remember me
LetterDear,Letter7 years ago in Urban & Spoken Word More Like This
You are my dearest, and closest, and most amazing friend I could ever ask for, and yet, all I want is to ask for more. I will never be able to thank you enough for sticking with me when things were at their worst; when I was at my darkest, and I couldn't see any way out, you were there. You treated me with the utmost kindness, love and compassion, and I have been only able to show you so little. Doing the best I can will never be enough, and never has been. You taught me to love myself, but to know when to fix and change when I need it.
For a time, I was the type of person who showed my "love and compassion" to people through gentle talk, kind, but shallow gestures, and perhaps even the few occasional genuine words, but you have helped me come to see that I must actually take sincere action and care when I want to show others that I truly love them--as a friend or how I like you; which is to say, even more.
I have been so misguided by this world, and so useless to those
Trystlook:Tryst5 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
your hands are bigger than mine
& i am constantly bemused by it
but your hands are busy now,
making big gestures and holding pretty girls
who wear lots of makeup
and mine hold pencils and cups of coffee
and can't reach that far.
i don't pretend to be anything special:
we are simply mundane people
who have found ways to bedazzle a crowd.
but your fingers dance down my back,
across my waist, and on my thighs
and for a little while, i am your piano
you strum me like a violin
and i am music for one person
i have been piously religious and i have been apathetic.
you have been sincerely empathetic and you have been tyrannical.
we're walking contradictions,
and our best talent is lying,
but to everyone else we are entertainers.
i could have made all of this up
but i didn't have to.
i love the boyish, almost sophomoric smile you wear
when i'm not wearing anything
the first time i undressed myself for you
and how unkempt my hair becomes
it was two sundays ago when i was
driving away from
RaskolOur son and his wife sleep in separate rooms. They are painted the same colour and bear identical scars but are separated by a hall so long that by the time I walk from one end to the other, I am too tired to compare and know what is different.Raskol7 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
That is the convenience of an oversized house, I think, that we did not have in our small one-room apartmentthey never have to see each others faces. You remember the nights when we were given no choice but to lie next to each other, against the hard corner, when we were seething in each others anger. How wonderful it might have been to stare at a blank wall, letting the heat of our hands seep into the plaster until we forgot each other, and how to be angry.
I never told you the fear I had inside my heart every time we tore apart and came back together again, that we would forget how closely we fit, or that in the short intervals when we were apart, a piece of the puzzle would come loose against us like a grain of sand, until w
12.Jan.10Leaving the bus stop, alone at twilight, I want to wave farewell to the backs of the strangers heading home. A failed date today, a rumbling muffler chokes - white breath, a young couple hurries past to catch the night train.12.Jan.105 years ago in Haiku & Eastern More Like This
I commiserate with my cell phone's inbox; (three new messages, all junk) and watch a mother pull two children from the faces they are drawing on a parked car's windshield. Warm fingers leave behind two jaunty smiles in the frost. On the sidewalk stretching home, a sweet smell drifts from far away, and a man stubs out his cigarette, stone cold in an instant.
words clutter fogged panes
a passing sleeve erases
a love note