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The Door is LockedMy shoes squeak loudly against the tile floor upon entering as I passed before a glass door, letting it automatically part way to allow me entrance inside the building. I remove my hat out out respect and squeak all the way down to a desk, one that has become more and more familiar to me recently. The burning reminder of why I’m here haunts me as I recite my name and an additional one to the warm receptionist, who could already guess who why I was here by now, but asked because its her job. I push past my feelings, some of them I feel like I’m numb to by now, as I sit and wait patiently for my turn.Time seemingly drags on, and the more people that get seen, the less people occupy the waiting room and the more my anxiety spikes, pushing back the growing urge to bust down the door and lead myself instead. The path I need to take was memorized, I have no need for an escort. But instead, I force my attention instead to the magazine I currently gripped onto, its pages wrinkling with the force. What was inside never interested me at all, I only grabbed it to give the false sense to others and myself that I’ve actually been reading and not ready to burst at the seam at any moment.After what seemed like a long silence, a door groans, echoing loudly, grabbing my attention enough for me to look up and realize that the room was empty of all patients. Except me. I glance to the direction of where the sound came from to find an older man who was quietly waiting for me, wearing a gentle smile--the doctor. Now that my turn has finally come, a new wave of anxiety floods through. My legs have suddenly gone weak when forcing myself up, realizing now how uncomfortable the chair is, and I fight to control my shaking hands when placing the magazine down. I take a deep breath as I reach the doctors side, returning a grin that I was sure was showing the calm facade slipping. We walk silently through the halls, and as he lead me, a thousand questions burning in my throat. They threatened to slip out, but I assured myself that all will be answered in due time. I am shown to a small room, seemingly mirroring the same room every patient in this facility has. I take another seat, suddenly irritated on how long this seemed to be taking. I wanted more than anything to just cut right to the chase and right down to business. Instead, I shake off the thoughts, focusing my whole being on listening to what the professional has to say.The man takes his seat across the room, giving me a crude smile, one that I wasn’t in the mood for returning. He clears his throat when he realizing my hard gaze and quickly drops the smile, looking down at the file spread across the desk.“We believe we have made a good amount of progress with her these last couple of weeks,” He started. My heart caught in my throat, feeling almost relieved at his words already. I wrung my hands vigorously together on my lap, finding the right words. “Does this mean she is well enough to return home?” One of the questions fighting their way up my throat was permitted to leave. I paused, scared of the answer to the next one. “Can she resume a normal life again?”A small slip of a small flashed the doctors face, bringing to life the wrinkles and creases in his aged face. “I think she is ready.” Is the only thing he said. A vague answer that barely answered either one of my questions, leaving me irritated with the man but feeling hopeful by his assurance. “Would you like to see her?” His question made my heart flutter in my chest. This was the whole reason why I have been here all these past months. All the times I came through the doors in this facility was to come see her, only to be disappointed by them telling me “She’s not ready to see you yet.” I jumped to my feet a little too eagerly where I almost toppled the chair backwards. The doctor let out a little chuckle as he knew the answer without me needing to tell him, proceeding to grab together the papers that I assume is her case file and walked out the door without a word. I tailed behind. I was led once more deeper into this facility, now straying off the familiar path that I walked so many times before. Every step I took I could feel longing and eagerness filling my soul with the chance to see her. My lonely heart ached for her being at my side once more. Something that I’ve lost for these long months. After all the tragedy we have both went through recently, she can return to being his rock to lean on and love. Things can go back to the way they used to. After a few moments of waiting, the doctor told me to remain where I stood, and I obeyed as he seemingly left to fetch my wife, I hoped. I closed my eyes, took a few deep breaths, conflicting emotions of grief and eagerness swarming over me.On cue, I opened my eyes as I heard footsteps approaching my direction and finally looked into the face of my wife--and I felt my whole world drop right below my feet as my heart sank.Lustrous, bouncy, blond curls gave way to greasy, straggly thin blonde strands, the color a dull, sad version of what it used to be. Alert, chestnut-colored eyes now revealed to be glossed over with dark circles underneath. Plump, rosy cheeks were now thin, sunken in, betraying her true age with just a glance. And her once healthy, curvaceous body now showed just a thin, weak version of who she used to be, looking so fragile like she could snap at the slightest touch.A smile graced her features, but it no longer held the vibrant life she once had, just leaving behind a strained and tired recognition of who I am.Streaks of tears made their way down my face as guilt pierced my chest, almost collapsing to the floor on my knees. “As you wished,” The doctor's voice breaking me from the sore sight, appearing behind the ghost of my wife. “ she no longer has any recollection or memories of the terrible night that plagued her.” I could only just stare at my wife as he rattled on, wondering what they had put her through.“It took a while, as she put up quite a fight, but she finally let us do it. The door to her memories are closed, never to return.” A even bigger smile spread across his lips, and it took all the restraint I had in me to not slug him in the face. He continued, “In fact, we took it upon ourselves and went even one step further to eradicate any unpleasantness by erasing the boy from her memory all together.” The implications of the doctors words and the sight before me made my head spin. I suddenly couldn’t breath and I vaguely realized that I was hyperventilating. Hot tears streaked my face once more as I embraced my wife tightly, a few small sobs escaping my throat as she stood stiffly in my arms.“I’m so sorry, Jennifer.” I blubbered out, the sobs intensifying. I thought I was doing the right thing for her, but this wasn’t what I wanted.The sad state of my wife revealed that she fought a long and hard battle through this. Was it my fault? Memories of Timothy flashed through my mind and then switched to the night that changed Jennifer: a gruesome image of a blood splattered sheet covering his body as she crumbled to pieces. After that night, she never was able to function normally, haunted constantly by her son in her dreams and waking state. All I wanted was to take away the memories of that one night from her, but keep the memory of our son alive for us to remember the good times with him. But I see now this was all a mistake. Through clouded eyes, I glanced at the doctor and bit my tongue as I released Jennifer. Placing a hand on the small of her back, I led my wife away, away from all the torture an inexplicable things they did to her and towards a happier place. I curled my hands into fists as I shot a look full of menace at the doctor, leaving the ward, rage and determination pumping through my veins. If Jennifer can’t remember Timothy anymore, then so be it. I will carry his life through me alone. Maybe it will be better this way....
Summer BonfiresYou think you know how this story goes. You think you know who I am. You think you know what I did, and what was done to me. You think you know how this story goes. And you are wrong. My village loved their witch. Not feared, not hated, not even tolerated out of a need for the works and wonders I could perform, but loved. I never wanted, never went without while others filled their bellies, but I sat with them at their tables, took their children on my knee, hauled water at their well and sang with them at their firesides long into the dark while the wolves howled their hunger in the woods beyond the walls. I was the one who called the hunter. Not some jealous priest or spurned lover - their priest knew well I was no threat to him, and I took no lovers of my own kind or otherwise - but my own hand on the pen and my own words in ink upon the page. I told him no tales, wove no webs to trap him, but called him simply by his profession and his will, and bound him to seek out the witch who dwelled just a little off from the old ruins on the hill, where once, so local legend said, the Kindly Ones had kept their hunting lodge.And he came, black-feathered and behatted, eyes bright, burning with his holy fire. He came to my village, seeking whom he might devour, and my people closed their arms and their mouths and their doors and sent him on his way, for they loved their witch and would not give me up to the fires. My poor, poor people. They did not understand why I had called him. Could not understand, because they had not seen what I had seen, had not heard what I had heard. But when I called to them, one by one, they came to my house on the hill and promised that, when next he came to my village, they would let him take me to the green. Let him prick me, test me, call me what I was and what I am. That they would help him gather wood, pile it high and deep around that tall stake where once the maypole stood. That they would not stop him, when he lit the flames. They wept, my people. They asked me why, why I wanted this, why I had to make them help. And I could not tell them, for it was not theirs to know, and my tongue cleaved to the roof of my mouth when I tried. But they did as I had asked, and as they had promised. And when he came back, the fire in his eyes burning brighter than ever, and asked again if any had heard tell of a witch, they let him come to me. Let him lead me, though I walked with my head held high, to the village green. Let him test his suppositions, name me ‘witch’ for all to hear (as though they had not known!). And they wept, as they gathered up the wood for my pyre. I held my head up high, as he lit the flames. I held my head up high, and opened my mouth, and sang. The ropes around my hands fell away. The ropes around my body shrivelled back. The ropes around my feet dropped down into the fire that roared up around me, and I threw back my head and laughed amongst the ashes and the smoke. And, as my people looked up in wonder to see me unharmed in the midst of the inferno, I stepped out onto the tongues of flame that brought themselves higher to meet me, and I danced. I danced, and laughed, and sang, for my people were saved. I danced my joy, my pain, my sacrifice for their sake, and right there on the green, right there in the middle of their village, I sang my people into coats of fur and feathers, hides and hair that grew up over their wondering forms and startled faces. I sang them into safety, and every note I sang burned away another part of all that ever made me human, all that ever held what-I-am and who-I-am in any other shape than mine. And, when I was done, there was only the hunter, white-faced and staring as he stood on the green in the middle of the village with the woods so wild and free growing in and out the doors and windows and the furred and feathered denizens of the forest who had been the folk scattered into the safety of the sudden upswell of the wild.He stared at me, and knew not what to do. So I stepped down from the fire, with the ashes still hot on my paws-that-still-were-feet, and I kissed him once upon the brow, and left a mark that burned him when I did. For I wanted him to remember, when the sickness that I had seen had passed through this place and all villages that were not mine had withered and died and gone to wildness all by bitter loss, where mine was safe and gone by love. And as he put out his hand, to touch me or to hold me or to halt me, I knew not which, the last of all that made me human burned away, and I slipped free his grasp and bounded out and over the last remains of the pyre, my own shape slipped about me like an old familiar cloak. They still tell the story, or so I hear. But either he was not so much afraid as to forget all his prejudices, or it twisted in the telling, for I hear they call my sacrifice now a curse. Some curse, to save my village from that fate. But let it be so called a thousand times, for I and all my people know the truth of it....
Concrete Poetry and Visual Lit
Vulture by Lycaenyx
Mirage by KimberlyJolanda
On being human by JustACapharnaum
Calling all dreamers by WorldBuilding
Foreign Language Lit
First Chapter Library
Chaptered Stories
The Heart of The Forest 2.05 by TheShadowsCrew
Non-Fiction - Educational and Factual


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This Week's Features

Hello all! I bring to you this week's roundups :love: Please give these pieces a read, and share some love! :la: Thank you for your patience in waiting! The last week or so has been a bit hectic :no: 

In case you didn't see our update from last time: We will be renewing Super Group Status (Once I've secured work from home employment). So don't mind the drab appearance in the meantime :P

And one last thing...:paranoid: If you recall, I did a poll a bit ago asking if you all would be interested in some kind of NaPo collaboration event. Enough people expressed interest, so I am here to announce that we WILL be doing a fun NaPo Collab event with NaPoWriMo 

So you're probably wondering how this is going to go? Let me explain!

NaPoWriMo Collaboration: 

For those who are not familiar, NaPoWriMo stands for National Poetry Writing Month. It is a writing-marathon event held yearly in April where you are tasked with writing 30 poems in 30 days! We have a group on dA specifically for this event that is ran by yours truly :lol: So, how does that relate to us over here? Well, I want to promote and celebrate poetry (and NaPo) in general by adding to our Weekly Round-Ups.

So! Any member of this group who submits a piece (or pieces) for NaPoWriMo 2020, will automatically have those pieces be included in the weekly round-ups for the entire month of April. How will that work?

1) You will need to join the group NaPoWriMo for the month of April (or for as long as you are wanting to post deviations) So if you only wanna submit a few pieces, and then leave -- you're more than welcome to do it that way :) Just ensure that you've sent us the deviations first before doing so lol 

2) You will need to say in your writers/artists comments section that the piece is for NaPoWriMo 2020 and what Poem/Day it is. Just putting the icon (:iconnapowrimo:) also works. Most people do something like this:

:iconnapowrimo: Day 6. etc

Each Week, for every week in April, I will have a section in the Weekly Round Ups dedicated to those who are submitting to Napo. You can choose up to 3 pieces each week to have included in that section :omg: Note, this is not to take the place of Weekly Round-Ups, those will still be happening. These will just be included in those journals to showcase people who are participating :) 

To have your NaPo pieces be included, you will need to note THIS group (not NaPoWriMo) with your 3 pieces that you want included. It doesn't have to be 3, or always 3. Just a max of three each week. Below are the deadline dates you will have needed to have noted us by to be included for that Weeks NaPo specific Round-Up:

:bulletblack: April 7th
:bulletblack: April 14th
:bulletblack: April 21st
:bulletblack: April 28th 

I hope to see some of you guys posting over there. NaPo is a really fun event, and it would be cool to show everyone what you all are writing :love: If you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask here or note me personally if you need more assistance. :heart:

Now! Onward to the Round-up :) 

Will There Be Singing? by GentlemanAnachronism

For though the world lies sunk in blackest night
While still we live, and still we sing, there's light

A great piece that gives a glimmer of hope despite current events. It is both honest and uplifting, something we all need these days. 

. by Tiger--eyes

maybe you can only
be an ocean
for one person

A lot of this piece hits at different emotions and makes me think when you've been reduced to a shallower version of yourself. Or when you WERE whole, once -- for one person. Until you were stretched thin. There is a lot to unpack in this one, but it is well worth the read. 

Volcano by Lycaenyx

Fate made her ruthless,
but the wreckage made her remarkable.

This piece gets right to the heart of the matter, even in so few words. 

Community News 
:bulletpink: Contest Alert!! The Hilarity Prose Contest begins soon!! You have until April 15th to register, and the deadline for submitting is April 30th! There are an insane amount of prizes being offered: points, critiques, features, and more! See here for details: The Hilarity Prose Contest :heart:
:bulletpink: Latest Lit DDs! Lit DDs March 17th-24th from CRLiterature :eager: 

What was your favorite of the round-up this week? Let us know below. We'll see you again next week :salute:

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Evometheus6082 Featured By Owner Mar 30, 2021  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter…

We are looking for animators and writers
PoeticEden Featured By Owner Dec 3, 2020  Hobbyist Writer
*sigh* out of all the groups on DA, this one was the one to introduce me to the lit community and get me excited to read/share poetry. Really is a shame that it's wasting away.
No hate intended btw. Just genuinely sad about my favorite corner of DA.
xlntwtch Featured By Owner Sep 23, 2020   Writer
Is anyone home here? I have two pieces up for consideration that have been there since August 29. Now it's Sept. 23. Am I not waiting long enough? Just thought I'd check. I like this group and wouldn't want to disappear. Thank you!
Twin-Earth Featured By Owner Jun 23, 2020  Hobbyist General Artist
Glad to know this group is still active. It’s one of the most organized groups on here. 
NightLigt Featured By Owner May 8, 2020  Hobbyist Writer
We still active?
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