A Bad Dream

It’s 6:55, we’re about to close.

The sales floor’s dead,

We’re ready to lock the door.

Tired and weary I count off the minutes.

 

7:00 rolls by, the door is locked,

Stragglers are ushered away

to the front, to the front,

We are closing come back tomorrow.

 

One by one we ring them through

Out the door I send them,

Begone, Begone!

I will be home soon.

 

I go to mop the floor and what do I find?

A group, a coven hidden behind

A display, tittering, chattering

I tell them to go away!

 

One by one we ring them through

Out the door I send them,

Be gone, we are done for today,

I will be home soon.

 

I go out back to gather the trash

And hidden amidst the refuse I find

A family of four who lost their way

By no means can I allow them to remain.

 

I guide them out towards the front

And what do I find

Yet more customers trundling about!

How could I have missed so many?

 

One by one we ring them through

Out the door I send them

Get out! We are done for today!

I wish to be home soon!

 

With so many people left

We cannot cash out

The day will not end

Until the last of them go home.

 

Round and round I gather them up

Ring them out

And send them home

Like roaches more seem to crawl in!

 

Fed up with the madness I retire to the break room

I abandon management to the masses!

I strike at the keypad my numbers

An error occurred please try again!

 

Again and again, I strike the keys

My fingers seem to not work

I’m unable to stroke the right ones

Unable to punch out, to leave.

 

I take to the front and let myself out

I go to my car, keys planted in the ignition

I turn and I turn

Yet I only hear sputters!

 

I leave, surrounded by people

Who, like pilgrims pile into the store

The clock is ticking, 8’oclock passes

All I want to do is go home!

 

I return, I ring them all out

One by one, I send them all home

Never ending, never ceasing

The line grows longer.

 

One by one I ring them out

Out the door I send them

Get the fuck out! You cannot stay!

I will wake up soon!

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Imagination

 

We as a race now we have a tendency,

we have an instinct,

a drive, a desire,

To preserve a legacy,

to give it all meaning arbitrarily.

 

In the beginning, we didn’t have

business, corporation,

economics, or politics,

Art or literature,

we were cavemen scraping by.

 

Fear, that eternal tyrant

it pushes us to improve

to comfort, make easy, efficient

We built organizations and bureaucracy

to give us a better legacy.

 

What we need to remember though

Is this all just imaginary

Our legacy has created arrogance

over things that don’t exist.

Money, laws, intangible things.

 

We need to remember this is all a story

A book with a beginning and end

Made by the imagination,

To make things interesting,

To make things enjoyable.

 

Now however it seems

these institutions, these fairy tales

they betray us, dreams

turned to nightmares,

Keeping us awake at night.

 

Our imagination’s been stunted

perverted by men who think its real

That the creation is better

than creation itself.

Or maybe they don’t know how to create?

 

It’s a stigma,

a hurdle,

that there’s this everlasting dogma

of the “real world” and “growing up”

but they don’t understand.

 

We left the “real world”

when we left our caves

We seem to forget that it’s not

The laws of man that run the universe,

but the laws of nature acting through us.

 

 

 

The Marching Dead

Through windswept streets,

In the callous embrace of winter

I stumble, hobble and creep

Through the long-abandoned streets.

 

I can feel only the hunger,

Insatiable, terrible

Driving my pale flesh forwards

Towards an unknown goal.

 

I am not the only,

We march in hordes

All with the same grotesque goal,

To eat, survive another day.

 

We are homeless,

Driven out by our

Once friends and family

Whom we tried to devour.

 

It’s been far too long

Since my last feast

My flesh is rotting, peeling

I can feel it slip from the bone.

 

In the beginning there was plenty

Of living flesh for us to eat,

Prey for us to hunt,

Now only skeletons remain.

 

My mouth pines for

The metallic taste of blood

The succulence of the body,

The wholeness of the soul.

 

Occasionally I remember those days

Long before our affliction claimed us,

Long before the Hunger set in,

When we were Human too.

 

I remember when I could speak

When I could sleep

When I could dream,

Before the Death March began.

 

Moaning in hunger,

Moaning in pain,

The dead march eternally

Until they rot away.

Empathy

There’s a common misconception,

A foolish recollection,

An indignant assertion,

That all souls who are born,

Are born perfect, white spheres.

 

But some souls are born lopsided,

Misshapen and bent,

Some are stained

Black, Blue, and Red.

This I assert is the truth.

 

The liars will say their chant,

That it’s all your fault,

That you played in filth,

That you fell and crashed,

That you need to live in consequence.

 

Sometimes you believe them,

Those damned jackals.

They’ll never understand,

What it’s like to have your soul.

The pain and ridicule that comes with it.

 

I know that it’s not your fault.

I know that your soul is imperfect

And that’s okay

Because I know better.

I know that it’s not your fault.

 

Come here, come close!

Take a look at my soul,

See how crumpled and sharp it is

See how the red, taints its pearly white.

Come close, come listen!

 

Although it is true,

That ours will never be perfect.

They’re not so rigid,

Like clay, they can be caressed

Into beautiful shapes.

 

All you need is a pair

Of empathetic hands

To help you massage out the folds,

Undo the wrinkles,

Rub out the stains.

 

We are stronger when we open the door.

For I guarantee that those

Who mock and blame

They too have misshapen souls

Of which they hide shamefully.

 

Little do they know

Of the salve, the poultice

That is that one simple word,

Empathy,

Sometimes it’s all you need.

Panic!

Running through a distant forest

Whose paths bear an ancient curse,

You know its watching you

Waiting in the brush, you run.

 

You hear a twig snap

And soon your feet thunder

Hurry, hurry down the path

Lock the door, don’t let it in!

 

From inside your old cabin,

You hear its creeping claws

Patrolling the walls

Crawling on the roof!

 

Cowering and helpless

You can feel its hunger

Its stomach growling

You hear its gnashing fangs.

 

You feel your blood go volcanic

Your innards start to boil

In agony, you languish

Don’t let the monster in!

 

Don’t Panic!

Feel it crawl beneath your skin

Don’t Panic!

The creature’s trapped outside!

 

Its voice mimics the familiar

Spinning webs, weaving lies

A bad impression, don’t believe it

Don’t let this creature lure you out!

 

Then it happens, a little gap in the boards

A pale claw,

writhing, crawling, creeping,

It’s gross flesh reaching for you.

 

Don’t Panic!

The creature’s hunting you!

Don’t Panic!

Trapped, you must bear the night!

 

With all you have you take a board

And bat away its spindly limb.

Surprised it recoils

A pain it rarely feels.

 

A scratching at the window

You see it’s loathsome form,

A mouthful of crooked, knife-like teeth,

Dim eyes watching you.

 

Don’t panic!

You can’t let it in!

Don’t panic!

Keep the walls solid between you!

 

You freeze and so very still

You watch its slobbering maw

As it hisses, eyes searching

Don’t act, don’t move, don’t panic!

 

Don’t Panic!

Don’t let it lure you out!

Don’t Panic!

In your shelter, it cannot follow!

 

Moments turn into days

Hours into years

Empires rise and blow away

The gray monster waits for you.

 

Yet its hunger

Pangs of gluttony overwhelm it

Depraved it snarls impatient

Dismounting it routs.

 

Back into the forest,

To hunt another like you

One more vulnerable without a cabin

Safe, for now.

 

You are free to walk these paths

But always keep your cabin within sight

In case it gets hungry again

and you must survive another painful evening.

Castaway

The water once swallowed me while out at sea

A wave chewed up my shallop and crew

Spitting out only I.

Condemning me to a barren deserted land.

 

Now I sleep upon the shores of this isle

The sand is my cot

And the stones my pillow

A single old tree giving me shelter.

 

One might think I wish

To leave this castaway Hell

Yet perhaps its all the best

For a debtor, a poor man like me.

 

Though vessels may pass

I extinguish all flames

Leaving no trace

Of my stirring indignity.

 

Water washes all around me

Yet I can only drink of the frequent rains

The tears of the world

As they erode my sandbar.

 

Never will I have to

Face the widows of my crew

No accusations, no hardships

It’s just easier for sure.

 

From the old tree, I eat bitter fruits

Nourishing myself with their resentful seed.

Tangy, fleshy and gross

An aftertaste of rot.

 

Never will they find me though

For that, I must rejoice

Without a ship, or a crew once ashore

They’ll cast me into binds.

 

It is here that I make my last stand

Here my bones will be bleached

Upon its sandy shores

Where no man can mourn me.

 

The isle may be lonely

But perhaps that’s for the best

Without work, pay or debt

Finally, my tired soul may rest.

Uriel

I am the Angel of Wisdom,

Keeper of every stubborn truth,

Councilor of Heaven and Earth,

Uriel is my name.

 

Once my brothers depended on me

It times of duress, times of terror.

They would come calling

“Brother Uriel, Brother Uriel!”

 

Yet my pupil, Brother Michael

Has come to believe he has outgrown me

That my council is an antiquity

That he has a lifetime’s knowledge in his youth.

 

Now my brothers desire his council,

The fiery, righteous, mercurial words

Of a new and energetic firebrand,

Weaving saccharine prophecies.

 

The mistakes of youth, new and exciting

create tears, wrinkles, and scars.

Pride and Zeal,

Prevent their mending.

 

I try to involve myself

Speak without being spoken to

I invoke my wisdom

Heard only by the deaf.

 

I feel a great sadness,

A terrible depression

Overwhelm my old soul

I scream, wanting only to be heard.

 

I am afraid dear brothers

That even though I am divine

That I will die, or worse

Be forgotten like the gods of old.

 

I fear what they’ll do without me

These young siblings of mine,

What reckless endeavors will they embrace

Without I, their guide?

The Pirate’s Curse

A pirate’s life was supposed to be simple

We’d plunder, pillage, and steal!

Countless wenches, untold riches

But all I do is drink!

 

I joined the crew years ago

With pride and passion in my chest

Across the seas to foreign lands

All cause I wasn’t cut out for the navy!

 

Found ancient treasures

Boarded French vessels

Evaded deadly traps

But now all I do is drink!

 

We live in a little hole

On a barren rocky Island

Here we keep our treasure trove

Its that is our only home.

 

The ocean is vast and full of salt

The winds and waves conspire against us

I’ve pulled a hundred splinters from my flesh!

All the while I drink and drink!

 

One time we skirted the shore

And before the port a dreadful sight!

Strung up by golden ropes

They sway in the ocean’s breeze!

 

We return home and take our shares

Hide them somewhere dark and cold

In the shade, gold will never glow

But beer tastes quite the same!

 

Afterall what is the point

Of coin that’s never spent?

What good are all my travels

With no audience to tell my tales?

 

Never will I see my home again,

Never will I be betrothed

What legacy can I leave

From a life such as this?

Paid in Innocence

Upon their high towers,

Speaking phony, plastic words,

Unoriginal, meaningless condolences,

The blasphemers continue in their ways.

 

The innocent, once righteous, once vigorous,

Now lay prostrate, pale and cold.

As families and friends weep

A deluge of salt and hopelessness.

 

They sit upon their high tower

I watch them every day,

Cold, rigid and conceited,

Their bellies fat with their blood.

 

They act as golden idols

Demanding sacrifices from their flock

A sweet savor unto them,

In exchange for the fraying threads of paranoia.

 

They lap up the blood in the streets,

Tasting the sweet and tangy iron

They dare speak through browning teeth

Of sympathy, of condolences.

 

Up in their towers, they need not

Feel the sear of tears

Nor do they live the terror

Of everyday folk.

 

Yet I cannot help but bear my teeth

At the thought of this one simple truth,

As I imagine the day I scale their gilded dwellings,

And finally, creep into their chambers.

 

Their flesh will become pale and cold,

They shall lay prostrate beneath the earth,

A feast for the worms who reclaim,

Their wasted flesh.

 

I will take great pleasure when I appear,

In the dead of the night

I, the eternal truth of all mankind,

Shall take deliverance unto my hands.

 

The desperate pleas of their spirit

Will be a salve for my weary soul.

As I drag them to the deepest pit of Hell

To be the playthings of devils and demons.

 

They will try to bargain with me

Yet their wealth means nothing,

Their paper, their jewels,

Are worthless to our kind.

 

I will throw them into the jaws of Lucifer,

For as Brutus, Cassius and Judas,

Treason is their name,

Belial their epitaph.

 

It is the only reason I continue my task

Filthy, and loathsome as it is

For without Death

Tyranny would be allowed to reign forevermore.

The Gray

I have an affliction,

A terrible infection,

Without a reasonable cure.

 

It crawls beneath my skin,

Like sludge, it oozes through my veins,

Chemical madness, the gray.

 

My vision goes first.

The colors bleed together

Into a primordial haze.

 

Then it dances around my sight

Vibrating, pulsating,

Buzzing like an insect in my brain.

 

Where lights once shone,

The gray takes over

Eroding the day.

 

Dulling my senses,

Like a wicked narcotic

It opens all of the doors.

 

Sedated I am unable to fight

The abominations it lets in

Undulating and gross they crawl.

 

They decry my ideals

Scratch at my wisdom

Wear me away.

 

They force me to my knees

To worship their god

That Demon, the Gray.

 

My faith is waning,

I know that even they

cannot keep me devoted for long.

 

Its grasp always wears,

The chemicals metabolize in my systems

Until they are inert.

 

Color returns to my sight

The disease in remission for now.

I want and pine for a cure.

 

I pray this doesn’t become

Malignant or terminal,

Outside of its grasp, I will fight.