POEM: Moans

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“Moans”

 
The long low rumble

of never-ending hunger

for flesh

for blood

for life

              stolen too soon

 

The cry from deep within

made without tears

just tears in the flesh

tears flesh from bone

                                          with outstretched arms

 

This voiceless voice

the only thing still mine

without words

without control

over a body no longer my own

                                                          I reach out

 

You hear the approach of a monster

You hear the sound of my hunger

You hear my shuffling lament

You hear my deathless prayer

                                                        raise your arm

                                                        and grant me sweet oblivion

 

***Thank you to my followers for your patience. I know it’s been three weeks instead of my usual two, but I’ve had some technical problems and other things crop up. I’ve also been writing and editing and submitting to different markets. I hope you enjoyed this bit of dark poetry. Keep following the blog, and have a lovely week!

***image courtesy of BigFoto.com

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POEM: Skeletal Remains

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“Skeletal Remains”

 

In visions of the dark night

I have dreamed of joy departed—

But a waking dream of life and light

Hath left me broken-hearted.

 

The sighing wind

gives breath to the darkness,

the stars lighting the ebony sky

like pinpricks of God’s grace

that pierce the blackened heavens

with dazzling white.

Who would dare disturb this quiet, wake those

that haunt deserted paths? Best

seek safety in the North Star, our pilot light

In visions of the dark night.

 

My eyelids close,

lids lowered against

the terrors that make me tremble and seek

solace beneath warm cotton covers.

The witching hour strikes–

a time too late for the faint-hearted

that quake and shake and turn away

from what they–what we–cannot bear to face:

the lonely dead, quiet and disregarded.

I have dreamed of joy departed—

 

What dreams may come

to those that can not face their fears?

Sheltering beneath shut lids

holds no solace for those

whose frightful visions follow them

beyond the veil of sleep: the blight

of a million cares and worries,

the looming spectre of loneliness

a demon–no longer safely tucked out of sight

But a waking dream of life and light.

 

The daytime hours

contain the demons that

haunt my nightly dreams.

I look within myself each dusk

–trapped between the sun’s escape

and the rising mercurial moon,– unguarded

yet I find imprisoned courage.

When shall I be released?

This time–too long before I meet my dear departed–

Hath left me broken-hearted.

 

*glosa of “A Dream”  by Edgar Allan Poe, written for the Day 9 prompt of #ReadWritePoetry courtesy of Cuyahoga Library, in honor of National Poetry Month

 

**image courtesy of BigFoto.com

 

Current Events: April is National Poetry Month!

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April was set aside as National Poetry Month by the Academy of American Poets to highlight poets, as well as encourage the reading and writing of poetry. Their extensive website has resources for anyone looking to celebrate poetry during the thirty days of April.

However, Ohio is triply blessed to be home to the Literary Cleveland writers’ group as well as two of the greatest library systems in the United States: Cleveland Library and Cuyahoga County Library. If you have not already signed up for Cuyahoga Library’s 30 Days of Poetry, please do so now; you will receive daily emails with a poem to read, a poetry prompt, and a poetry book recommendation.* You won’t regret it.

And if you don’t have plans yet for Saturday the eighth, Literary Cleveland is having another free poetry workshop. This one will be hosted by Damien Ware, a local activist with multiple degrees–as well as many public performances, open mics, and creative writing workshops under his belt. If you’d like to attend, the workshop takes place at the Cleveland Main Library from 10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Don’t forget to bring several copies of a poem you would like to work on.

Lastly, in the spirit of National Poetry Month, I would like to share a poem I wrote last April to one of the Cuyahoga Library’s daily prompts. I hope you enjoy it.

 

FOUR

This month’s showers

usher in Fools and flowers–

hightop Converse sneakers

crushing petals beneath scampering feet,

whoopee cushions and pranks

abound, thanks

to day one

anyone

can give themselves permission

to clown around.

 

And for those who, like me, are Shakespeare-obsessed,

though Touchstone or Bottom the Weaver might jest,

this twenty-third day celebrates best

the birth of the Bard who was foolishly blessed.

 

And another one is designated

to gaming, for those who appreciate it, not across a TV screen–

but with dice and boards, cards and caffeine,

strategy,  role-playing too.

No matter what your revenue,

Tabletop Day is celebrated–

among family and friends, it’s highly rated.

 

Set aside seven days

to honor libraries

a celebration

of book fairs, classes and classic

literature,  graphic

novels to check out

throughout

each community center;

just enter

and explore.

Can’t get there?  It’s fine. Online

there’s still more.

 

Yet thirty days of dedication

are given to poetry–versification,

meter and internal rhyme,

writing programs, slams,

and readings from every sunrise til sunset

ordinary people find the time

to access their inner poet.

 

A month of inspiration,

linguistic medication

for a world of weary souls.

If laughter,

perhaps inspired by those first Fools,

is the best cure for sickness,

witness

what a month of words and wisdom,

merriment and mirth,

can do to soothe

a world that aches for play

and poetry.

 

#

Thank you for your time. Go forth to read and write to your heart’s content, and remember that polite feedback is always welcome and appreciated!

 

*Since this is an email digest, I don’t believe you need to be an Ohioan to sign up for this free service. However, posts will naturally feature Ohio poets.

**image provided by kind permission of BigFoto.com

 

POEM: Akron Art Museum (on a snowy day)

 

“Akron Art Museum (on a snowy day)”

.

Braving winter weather,

I venture inside, am greeted by,

am heated by

the red warmth of an amazing maze

–the reason that day’s,

adventuring took place.

Patrons’ laughter wiggles,

giggles, and jiggles

Awakens my sleeping senses

dulled by the ice-cold latticework

of Jack Frost’s handiwork.

.

Permanent residents

enclosed in glass

call to me with cool colorfields,

tapestries of reclaimed materials,

and the youthful bloom of a long dead girl

–she is a poem in paint,

an oil-based sonnet

written to the memory of a sister

much missed.

.

Art not only beautiful,

but unique, original

and absurd. GROSS ANATOMIES

expose themselves to my sometimes

unwilling eyes: sad sculptures

of pieced together little girls,

grotesques of acts better hid from the world,

and the ridiculous image

of a child pooping cupcakes–

Who knew defecation could be that sweet

and funny? I laugh for five full minutes

before wiping tears from my eyes.

.

Turning the page I find

the common translated–

a cement truck’s dull exterior

becomes solidly superior

intricately cut

stainless steel,

the metal pieces sliced

into solid stitches

of lovely, silver-toned lace.

Tea party participants mutate

into alluringly ludicrous,

fantastic freaks

with abnormal proportions,

others are created with the beastly heads

of cats and sharks

or machine parts. My own head

swims with sensory overload.

.

Mind and heart filled to

overflowing, I fill

my other emptiness in the cafe.

Eating my fill, I watch

the falling snow

beyond the transparent walls;

each flake freezes to the glass

and frames the dusting sugar

like a thousand fairies

dying in the cold.

.

.

.

**This poem is a departure from my normal style, since I usually don’t concentrate on the rhymes quite so much. I wanted something that would sound fun read aloud, stressing the ends of each line. Any feedback would be appreciated, thanks!

POEM: New Year’s Eve

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“New Year’s Eve”

 

About as far from Earth Day

as you can get,

a time many choose to hydrate

with alcohol instead of h20

-if that is even possible-

and try to see the road ahead

more clearly

-apparently while driving drunk

(This is a metaphor of course I would never advocate drinking and driving, always use a designated driver, please don’t sue me).

Couples kiss when the ball drops

(speaking of metaphors)

at Midnight,

beneath a brilliant, hearty neon ad

for the sponsor of

Dick Clark’s Rockin’ New Year’s Eve.

 

Mimes, those urban pariahs, skulk along the sidelines

hoping to catch the cameras

even as they mock the celebrations

with their silence.

Arty? Perhaps,

but head over heels couples

-once stirred from their warm embraces-

apply the phrase literally

to the nearby mimes,

-the mockers of their mirth,

pretenders of their passion,

kissy-faced buffoons-

and throw them in the nearest waste receptacle

(a fitting resting place for those white-painted imitators)

where

the next day

in the bright light of dawn

they are extracted by local garbagemen

-and women

and removed with the rest of the refuse.

 

A lone reveler,

awakened, bleary-eyed,

by the sun’s brilliant beams,

yawns and quips,

“He had a little too much to drink, Ossifer!”

Then, seeming to shrug off the previous night’s intoxication,

looks at the yard

-the ripped streamers,

broken discarded bottles,

and dropped foodstuffs now feeding the local pigeons-

and bends to pick up his first bit of trash.

 

 

*image courtesy of BigFoto.com

** This is a repost from my old blog that I thought would be fun to share again today. It was written during April of 2015 for National Poetry month and inspired by one of the daily prompts posted by the Cuyahoga County Public Library system.

Friday Flash: “Remains”

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Just another horror
shuffles with
arms limp, lifeless
mute moans
fall on deaf ears.

I leisurely grab the crowbar,
its steel feels good in my hand,
strong,
solid.

Not like this thing,
one more monstrosity
shambling across
bloodstained dirt
–hungry for my flesh.
Its own hangs
like tattered clothing
off its broken and bruised bare body,
menacing in its nakedness.

The crowbar feels cool in my hand,
good,
strong,
solid,
right.

Not like this thing
that could kill me with the slightest scratch,
weak,
soft,
as far from right as possible
–as wrong as the absence of feeling
I feel
as I cut it down

–so ordinary, so commonplace,
like swatting a fly.

I am clothed from head to foot,
armored against this plague:
leathered skin,
taut muscles,
cool gaze,
hardened heart,
solid,
strong,

proof against pity.
The numbness in my soul
cancels all.

 

*Image courtesy of BigFoto.com

**poem written on 2016-07-13

***If you are in the Cleveland area this weekend, don’t forget about the free writers’ conference tomorrow! INKubator is being held at Cleveland Main LibraryRegistration is required for the classes, though there will be other activities such as an open mic event and a resource fair.

 

World Poetry Day -“Beginning in 1931”

Today’s poem was written in honor of my father, Charles Moore.*

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“Beginning in 1931”

 

My father was born a month after

Leonard Nimoy.

While one was known

for his role as a stoic Vulcan

adventuring among the stars with his

less than stoic comrades,

the other was born in New York State

growing up during the Depression

on a small farm

with chickens.

 

My father is not a Vulcan.

 

I remember my grandparent’s farm

had chickens specifically

when my father was growing up

-not because I was there,

-how could I be?

but because he told me how he hated to kill them.

On Sundays, that was his job,

and it always made him feel bad.

 

I remember my grandmother telling me

how her and my grandfather

had scrimped and saved to buy a top

so he would have a toy

Christmas day.

He played with the cardboard box.

 

I don’t know if Spock

ever played with a box

instead of a toy top

when he was growing up on Vulcan,

but Leonard Nimoy might have

 

-probably not on Vulcan though.

 

My father once told me that

he went on a field trip

where he saw a living cow

with a clear plastic side

so you could see her organs

which inspired him to want to be

a veterinarian.

 

Instead, when he grew older

he lived in Mexico for awhile,

became fluent in Spanish,

studied art,

and painted an abstract mural

on his apartment wall.

 

I saw a picture of it,

the photograph’s colors

faded with time,

but the image

of 3-dimensional blocks and cubes

retreating into the distance

is clear in my mind.

 

It’s shocking to realize

your parents had entire lives

before you were born,

other interests

besides the ones

you grew up with.

Maybe I was just that self-centered.

 

Spock’s art was music,

but I doubt he lived in Mexico.

 

I don’t know if Leonard Nimoy ever lived there.

 

When I was a teenager

my father took art classes,

sketching figures in charcoal.

I used to look in his book.

It was amazing.

How did I NOT know he was that good?

It fueled my own interest in art

-though I never approached his expertise.

 

Almost every day,

as I was growing up,

I watched Leonard Nimoy

play Spock

-an odd thing to do since Vulcans never play.

It was my favorite show.

 

My father did other things

that just seemed like DAD things to do.

How could I know if they were

without a basis of comparison?

He worked for himself

at a business he built up over decades.

 

Also-

every week

Chamber of Commerce

Kiwanis

Knights of Columbus

charity events

 

Every Sunday we went to church.

The part I looked forward to most

as a child

was afterwards.

We always had donuts

from the snack stand

on the patio behind the building.

I usually got something chocolate.

My parents hung out and talked to friends,

happy and laughing,

before we piled in the car

and drove to my grandmother’s mobile home.

 

The drive took hours,

but we made it every Sunday

until she eventually moved in with us.

I gauged travel time

based on whether or not

we had passed the sign for Monkey Jungle

or Ripley’s Believe It or Not

 

They usually didn’t take the hint

during those drives,

but they did take me during vacations.

 

My favorite memory though

was a trip to Disney,

Not the one where

we turned back home.

An asthma attack

brought on by excitement

had dashed my hopes of Mickey and Pirates,

but the one

when I awoke in the back of the station wagon,

toothbrush packed,

tucked in like a bed,

with no clue why I was there.

“We’re at Disney World!” they said.

They’d had to sneak me there

so that I wouldn’t be too excited before I arrived.

I loved them so much for that.

 

On another trip

I was less fond of leaving early to go to

Busch Gardens.

In fairness,

I went to Disney several times during my childhood.

 

I don’t know if Leonard Nimoy ever went to Disney,

but Spock went to a vacation planet

where people’s desires became real

-though they didn’t know that at the time…

 

Now my father plays harmonica,

something he did as a young man

but had dropped as I was growing up

only to pick it up again later.

He plays “gigs”

at restaurants with his harmonica group.

I have a tape of him playing.

He’s also written harmonica articles

for magazines

and repaired them for other people.

 

Leonard Nimoy sang the Ballad of Bilbo Baggins,

but I don’t know if he ever played harmonica.

I think Spock played the Vulcan Lyre… or was it a Harp?

 

My father has always been funny.

He’s done standup routines for his clubs.

He’s made me laugh so hard

tears ran down my face.

 

I’ll bet Leonard Nimoy has made people laugh,

but Spock can’t show his emotions.

Poor Spock.

 

Leonard Nimoy is gone now

and sorely missed by those that knew him

and those that only knew of him.

 

My father is still here.

I call him and my mother once a week.

I’m grateful that my plan does not bill for

long distance.

He’s still married to my mother,

works around the house,

conducts business from home,

socializes with his friends,

and participates in church.

 

I doubt Spock has ever attended a Mass,

though my father has almost every Sunday.

 

They all got their start,

one fictional and two non,

a month apart

in 1931.

 

 

 

 

 

*The poem was written and published on my old blog last April. He passed away last week, so I am reposting it, dedicated to his memory.