Monthly Archives: September 2018

Rachel

Curled up in the backseat of the car, hidden in a pull off from the highway, high up in the mountains, having been driven by the demons that come out at night.

Through the windshield, through the gap between the front seats, she can see the sun rising. Warm orange and red pushing away the darkness and the distant stars.

Throughout the night, as the demons slashed and bit her, she desperately prayed, as the darkness closed in, as she thought of the gun in the glove compartment.

She prayed, broken and weeping, deep into the night, the howling demons and cruel claws so deep into her, telling her to get that gun, and it would all be over forever.

Just before dawn, like a fever breaking, the demons fell away, and a light and warmth and peace filled. At the lowest place hope had come. God was holding her close.

And she fell asleep as the sun, whole and bright rose up in a clear blue sky. Untroubled, she dreamed. Tears dried and her heart could start to mend. She’d be whole again.

Brother

I love him like my own flesh and blood, and I hate him just as fiercely.

He is breaking my heart.

The one I thought my brother.

He holds himself above my fears, my rage, my bitterness.

He holds himself above the broken and ground under, to pious he is for earthly concerns.

The demons sharpen their knives for him as for us, but he is above politics.

He says God doesn’t control us, but I say shouldn’t God punish what is done in his name.

I care not Orthodoxy when it’s wielded like a hammer.

He loves me, but he will not fight for me, will not wipe away tears.

Curses the thugs in my eyes, but the bury or mourn the mountains of corpses in his own.

He is wiser. He cares not about earthly things.

I turn away, return to my own kind.

Love is not enough.

Protector

Diana, did you walk with her, down that lonely road?

Through the woods that lonely road did go.

Did the wild things, your eyes and ears, see my daughter walk alone?

 

My daughter is 17. A child of those woods. A child of nature.

A child devoted to you, Diana, to the wilds and the winds.

My daughter is a maiden and unbetrothed, yours to protect.

 

It is dark and late and she is not yet home.

Your face, the moon, does not show in the sky.

Someone heard a cry. Someone said a truck sped away.

 

Diana, are you hunting for her? Are the wild things eyes upon them?

Protector of maidens, will my daughter come back to me?

Will that wicked boy be turned to a stag to be ripped apart by wolves?

 

Diana, do you really watch over girls?

 

 

Touch

Constance can touch ghosts.

The lost spirit lies its head in her lap.

He’d taken his own life.

He was still trapped with his pain.

 

Constance stroked the spirit.

She sang spells over him.

The spirit shook, cried out.

The lonely house bled out secrets.

 

Eventually the spirit was still.

The ectoplasm of sorrows was spent.

He faded, and slipped underground.

Free to pass on to another life.

 

The aura was gone from the room,

But tears ran down Constance’s face.

The sorrows clung to her, like the

Earthy, rotten smell of the house.

 

Constance can touch ghosts.

But the ghosts touch her,

And their loss swirls into her.

Losing light to light the way.

Black Hair

Black hair, over a sharp face. A teenage girl, but a hard shape.

Shepherdess before the war, slim and straight, plainness of the fields.

I help her get dressed, armored for battle, me who is soft and pale.

 

She pushes her sword into the dirt, a makeshift cross.

She prays before the battle, in the soft morning light, in quiet forest.

An angel of simple grace, beatific in hardness.

 

I follow beside her white warhorse, as the sun makes all sweet again.

Her white armor glinting, an ashen cross of providence on her forehead.

She is grace and faith, and I serve her, who is lost and bitter.

Mermaids That Remain

The train horn blows, awakening me. Amtrak to Philadelphia, rumbling and cursing down the tracks, a tamed dragon.

I dreamed of the sea, even though though it is now filthy and slick. It still stretches forever. Mermaids that remain still sing.

Philadelphia by train, cramped and sleepless, would still be going to the sea. What is remains in mountains broken and humbled, on venom left in the taking?

I close my eyes, try to sleep again. The venom that took the mountains stings my dreams, taken even that escape.

The Cigarette and The Process

Elle lay on the roof of her house, smoking, looking up at the stars.

Late into the night, restless, agitated, and trying to find a soothing, a calm.

The stars had given her hope and longing, yet they shone on emptiness.

The cigarette and the process gave her a focus, but the starlight lost its secrets.

 

A bright, silver slash in the darkness, as a falling star fell to earth, humbled.

Elle wondered if it was an angel coming to our aid from heaven, as hope faded

Or if it was a wicked angel, coming down to stoke the coming flames.

Maybe it all depended on the hour, the day of the week, or what prayers came.

 

Elle thought of the one who loved her. She thought of notions of happiness.

The war was coming, and what was happiness, when bloodshed came?

What was her hopes and dreams, as a third of the stars were swiped down?

No calmness beneath the endless stars. Her world and her mind burned her.

Hurting Angels

St Joan’s, after the war has taken everything. I sleep on the pews. I stay out of sight.

The cold nights. The dim moon. The statue of Joan looks so sad. So let down by us all.

 

I pray at the altar. I see perfect light. I hear angels singing. I hear whispers of things to be done.

I pray at altar. I am at peace. I am afraid. I am promised the way. Home is not yet for me.

 

The war rages. I hear gunshots and shouts, sometimes. There are fires in the dark.

The angels are telling me to go. I am to light the sky again. I am to show the warmth of heaven.

 

First light. A gray ashen snow fell in the night. My steps are silent. The world is still.

North to the forests. To empty highways. To all the lost and hunted. God is with us, the hurting angels.

 

The grey sky breaks. And even in winter the sun is warm on my face. Drips of water. A still wind.

I am afraid. I am at peace. I am following the angels. I am out into the world.

Stars Wiped Away

She drove all night, heading north, to the border and forests and the dark, dark nights.

My Bloody Valentine played on and endless loop, cocooning her in sound, the AC blasting; she was cold and calm.

She hoped in those ancient forests, in those long and dark nights, no demons would find her again.

Pulled over, parked at a closed gas station, she felt eyes upon her, did not know if they were friend or foe.

She kept looking up at the sky, to make sure a third of the stars had not been swept away.

On a Thursday, at the first rising light, she came to the little cabin, the place to hide.

Sleep through the day, for the sun is your enemy, even if the monsters come out in the dark.

It was her, and the typewriter, and all the shapes she put on the page, to purge the demon venom in her blood.

Creation the spell she could cast, the magic that was hers, the protection from the demons hunting her.

Ours Alone

I show Chelsea a poem I wrote.

 

A young woman standing by a blue sea stretching out forever.

Her man sailed away to a war, and she watches the sea, waiting for him.

She grows old, waiting for him

 

I imagined the young woman’s long golden hair.

I imagined the young woman’s simple blue dress.

I imagined the sadness in her clear blue eyes, always watching the horizon.

Then I wrote it all down.

 

Chelsea reads the poem, and she sees all these things.

But the golden hair she sees, and the simple blue dress, and sorrowful eyes

Are all made by her imagination in her own way.

She doesn’t see what I saw.

 

I show Chelsea the poem, and we share something,

Intimate vision, a piece of my heart, a shard of my inner eye

And the emotions of the broken and betraying world I find.

But either of the visions in our minds, is ours alone.