No title

Broken I am

A man crouched upon tired knee

Brought down by Duty and Ethics and Morals.

I sit removed as an inner part

Of this desiccated husk sucked dry of will

And of beauty

And of magic,

A lingering awareness surveying the ruin of self-doubt

And of strain

And of years poured into creations steeped in falsehood

And in emptiness

Broken monuments to the egos of men whose value my own exceeded beyond measure,

Though I am no longer who I was

But only the he who I have become.

In the still times there is no silence,

Nor do those songs and fantasies play out on the stage of my perception.

Now there is a gnawing doom that consumes my thought,

An unending torrent of failure.

Do not look for me here.

I am gone away.

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Naked Snow

Alone I stand,

shaking.

Alone.

 

Insanity runs.

Insanity sweet and perfect.

None of you can touch me now.

 

Thew snow falls shallow,

yet the cold of the Earth affect me.

I twist,

I throttle,

Naked and alone –

my arms stretch out to my sides.

 

Run. Run away.

Run from the insanity that is within.

 

I am naked and alone in this snow,

and none of you

shall ever touch me.


Imprisoned

An old creak as the doors of the morning rattle from the sweet cover of unconscious dream.

The painful light of being bears down on me,

urging and pressing and warring.

In waking there is no repose,

Duty latches onto my first thought –

a schizophrenic voice,

maleficent and sharp.

There is no soft glow of morning here,

no quiet solitude before the dawn to prepare.

Here no sailors press the shoes of luck before the day begins,

for the night has been a brief pause only,

and yesterday’s burdens beat the dust of responsibility from their coattails

and into my sputtering,

coughing lungs.

Now the cold light drips down on me,

artificial and frigid,

it stings my eyes even as it reminds me that nature lies afar

just outside my reach,

just outside my sight.

I rot in this cage of the mind,

watching as each precious moment of being is traded for a morsel

and mortgaged for another sack of chores,

always waiting

always bearing down and pressing crushingdehumanizingdamningkilling.

There is no escape.

I have no metaphor,

no poetic analogy.

I am trapped.

This is Hell.


disgust

I see you there,

a glint in the periphery,

a flicker against the inane reality.

I see you there,

and I spit,

I have cursed my own blood,

discarded my own brother,

what do you think you hold

that I could ever value?

Be honored.

Celebrate,

for I see you there

and take note of the insignificance that is your life,

the banalities that are your thoughts,

blank unrecognition of truth,

blatant disregard for reality,

bold disdain for completeness.

I curse again,

claw at the scratch of the stench of your clothing,

vomit at the hint of your person.

Like the hiss of an angry cat,

I draw my shackles up against the social law

that protects the weakness that grows in your loins

and dilutes the strength of evolution,

stain upon the cloth of humanity.

Be gone.

Depart.

There should be no place for you here,

and I curse the ones that build

for you a house of woebegotten love,

misplaced

and displaced,

granting mercy to a mote

that should not be,

an unfortunate glitch

in the code of humanity.

I shiver and move on,

disgusted at the thought

of the taste of your mind.


union

It’s still there,
the ever-present roiling,
the ever gnawing
burning
devouring
consumption.
Oh, but I grow so weary,
I am spent
with so little left for tomorrow,
for being,
for myself.
Wave after wave after wave,
I flail beneath the encompassing crush.
Inhale.
It is so close,
a sweet reprieve through quiet bliss,
a mouthful of water,
a quick, merciful gulp of burning resolution,
it is so near,
my fingers touch that place,
chill and warmth and pain and acceptance.
With a sigh,
a breathy whisper I am gone,
forgotten and unknowing,
to sleep in undisturbed,
unknowing silence.

Stop.

Start again.

And here we are.
A meandering path from innocence to…
well,
to somewhere else.
Through torment and joy and fear and triumph,
to arrive at a place both ephemeral and permanent.
I am,
but I am becoming.
I am,
and I am not yet.
I am so weary of the trek,
and I no longer know how to justify the race,
how to envision the prize.

So,
I do nothing.
I think nothing.
I delay and obfuscate and deny.
Time is a healer,
and I cry into Her bosom,
waiting for healing,
waithing for health.


Solitude 

With a sudden thump,

Heavy with finality,

The formless hand of time tosses another trowelful of soft,

Loamy earth atop a small box

Whose contents are forevermore hidden

To the eyes of consciousness. 

The gentle breath of forgetfulness stirs the soft wisps of moist steam

That curl in faint tendrils from the gash

In the rich,

Brown,

Soil. 

Rain falls. 

Now gentle,

Now torrential,

And the ground forgets the scar

Beneath the choking weeds of regret.  

In a whisper of time,

All is forgotten to dust

And loss. 


Mute Gloom – unfinished

Like a pervasive fog,

a bleak, white chill seeps into me,

into my bones and up into the small chamber of light

where meditators play,

damping the tiny flame

that sometimes there dances.

Memories stir,

quickly tamped down into a gnawing ache –

I wish not to remember,

yet I know not to forget –

some lessons are harder than others.

 


Peace

There in the swirling torrent,

at the eye of the rage and chaos,

in the core there is a stillness,

an unremembrance of the gnats and knives

carried in the wind.

Round and round and round,

flashing lights illuminate white-capped crests

as the very surface bends to that calm,

to that void wherein there is no whirl,

no time,

no thing.

Implosion of sound as forward becomes down becomes around again,

the distance from peace ages and lengthens

as the sea is wrapped and twisted further around the eye.

Above, the clouds lurch,

drunken spirals they vomit the cold, biting rain,

spew hail,

belch thunder.

There is no sun beyond the cloud,

no night sky reigned with star,

there is nothing but the maelstrom,

crashing and gnawing at that silent core,

drawing everything down to the silent end.


Excerpt from “Crumb’s Plan”

The man in black strode to the table.  A small handkerchief appeared from a fold within is shirt, and the man swabbed the inside of each of the mugs.  He took a small blade from his belt and sliced a wax seal from the cork of the bottle.  Then he carefully poured some liquid into each cup and set the bottle down on the table.

Eck sensed a command in the posture of the man, and made his way to the table.  The man nodded and smiled, and handed a cup to Eck.  He then turned and took the other back to the small candle against the far wall.

“I am called Pak.  This is not who I am, only how I am called here.”  He said in a clear voice.  He looked down at his cup and took a small sip.  With his face still down, he looked up at Eck from behind his eyebrows and nodded.  “We have our drink, now,” he said in command.  Even the hint of his smile had evaporated.

Eck bent his head and sniffed at the dark liquid in the mug.  He smelled the bite of alcohol, tempered with a slight tone of honey, and some herbs he couldn’t place.  Gingerly, he took a sip from the mug.  The drink burned as he swallowed, lighting his throat with a fire.  Eck sputtered and coughing, bringing derisive laughter from Jeb and Bill.  Eck’s tongue and teeth had a strange feeling to them, as if they were coated with a numbing substance.  The sides of his tongue tingled, and he could feel his sinuses open.  He blinked several times and gathered his breath.  Eck took another sip, as much to ease his tension in the silence as to appease Pak.

With on a slight turn of his head, Pak addressed the two thugs sitting at the table, “The time is now that the two should not be here.  I will to be speaking with this man alone now.”

“Oy,” began Jeb before Bill could stop him.  “You said we’s gonna get our turn at ‘im.”  Jeb rose to face the dark figure lurking near the back wall.  His shoulders swayed noticeably – he had obviously been drinking for some time.  Bill reached out and grabbed Jeb by the forearm.  With a twist, Jeb threw off Bill’s steadying hand and took a few steps towards Pak.

Pak tilted his head like an animal examining an unfamiliar plant.  His face showed no sign of anger, no sign of emotion at all.  With a slight furrowing of his brow, he made a small sign with the fingers of his left hand.

Jeb fell to his knees, the blow shaking the small table before Bill.  He arched his back and threw his head back in agony.  With his arms held out near either side of his thighs, Jeb screamed a silent scream.  Pak took another sip from his mug and walked over towards Bill and Jeb.

Bill tried to stand, but only succeeded in clumsily falling backwards from his chair towards Eck and the fireplace.  The bottle on the table fell, and the drink inside spilled onto the floor, covering Jeb’s knees.


Flight exerpt

Scott drew in a long, slow breath, drinking in the icy air like a thin, black dew. His nose was numb from the cold. He closed his eyes against the looming darkness, and let his mind run loose over his calculations. Scott tossed and spun figures in his mind, creating, destroying, and recreating landscapes of possible speeds and trajectories for his small ship. In this local valley of spacetime, days out from the Arturu Gate, only a halo of cool starlight reached the ship from the pinpoints spread across the static blanket of strange, dark energy. The Edge coasted through a smooth river of darkness nearly as deep outside its hull as inside.


Mick On Everything

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And here I am, Judith Clarke, writer.

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