Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Untitled

I breathed in the sound of the words. The rich overture wound through my senses like they were merely different octaves, not different sensory dimensions. I didn't hear the words, I became the words, and the emotion that was them.

With her lilting voice, the reader paused, and looked straight at me. She couldn't see me, but with I drinking in the words, a vacuum was forming for the rest of her audience. Her eyes fluttered, then resumed scanning the page. The story was a close match, perfect in all its ways, to her style, and my emotions were captive to it. My lungs shuddered, as they do when I'm cold instead of my teeth, and my shoulders.

The rest of the audience didn't notice the pause, on par with the tone of the story, but neither did they feel the cold lack of emotions in her voice, as I filled myself on them and left none to the others.

This was how I read, when alone, to myself, absorbing the story, and even my imagination agreed with her tone, as particular as it was. Here, she was duplicating it, and I could not help but take it all in.

~

Her voice stayed with me for days, weeks, and it haunted my dreams. I woke in the morning with the rhythm of her reading caught in my head like a catchy lyric. I stirred in my sleep when she permeated the threshold of my subconscious.

Monday, November 30, 2009

The House

Sarah crept up the stairs of her new house – her parents were out shopping for staples before beginning the work of rehabilitating – unhappy but intent on trying to make the most of it. Her younger brother was still out on the front yard, wrestling with the neighbor kid who'd brought the housewarming casserole, which served to remind her parents that the kitchen was lacking and that part of their luggage hadn't arrived yet. They were supposed to be weeding. Sarah scolded them inside her head, before shaking it and adding condescendingly, "They're just kids." She didn't often enjoy the company of her younger brother, but sometimes he was alright to be around.

The main stairs creaked a lot, but with parents in the business of rehabilitating, she was adept at remembering where and how loudly it complained of her weight, and would place her foot somewhere else next time in order to find the quietest route. In time, usually halfway into the remodeling, she'd be able to fly up those stairs with only the faintest of steps. At this, her parents would joke about her really flying, as if she hadn't touched the stairs at all. Her brother would then try, hungry for the same attentions, but he had neither the patience, the memory, nor the conscious control of how his weight was distributed. Eventually he'd give up and simply try to leap up as many stars as he could in one step in every step, stomping every time, almost as if the British were coming and it was his job to "spread the alarm to every Middlesex village and farm." Reading history – to the delight of her teachers and parents and disgust of her classmates – was also something she liked to do.

She'd reached the top by now and was leaning gingerly on the railing, down from the battlements of her new world below. She found the master bedroom, dismissed it for now with an annoyed flick of her hand, the Queen of Living Accommodations seeking suitable quarters, and continued to the next largest bedroom. Sarah crept along its floor, pacing cornrows for the creaks and was soon taking measured leaps and made-up dance steps through the invisible maze to the closet.

The door opened soundlessly, slowly, and smoothly at her touch and a smile crept back onto her face. She examined it, happy with its depth and size, and laid down to wait for somebody to find her, hopefully her brother so she could scare him.

~

Sarah sat up, stretched, and dusted herself off, realizing that she'd fallen asleep but unaware of how long she'd dozed. She crawled on her hands and knees out of the closet and heard the floor creak, stop for several feet, then creak again. The closet was barely bright enough for her to see, but she could tell that there was a square area in the floor that didn't creak, which didn't make sense. She figured out about where it was, then ran out of the room, half-heartedly dancing across her new territory, the floor complaining only scantily.
She heard the sounds of her family as she approached the stairs and, as she silently descended them, caught the delicious aroma of warm food in the air.

When she reached the kitchen, she found her father sitting at the head of their new antique dinner table, an old blueprint spread out in front of him. Her mother stood at the counter pulling plates of the casserole out of a cheap but brand new microwave that made the few lights flicker as it heated their dinner.

"I picked out my bedroom," Sarah announced to the room. Her father looked up and her mother turned to look at her, both smiling, while her brother moaned, disappointed that, once again, he didn't get first choice.
"Right on time, as usual. Good work, Sarah!" Her father offered, knowing she'd take good care of the room, and very likely help him in the rehabbing.

Sarah let her mind wander and wonder about her closet for that evening, and did not return to it until the next morning. Between her mother, brother, and herself, her belongings and her brother's to their respective rooms. He got to choose his own as well, though certainly not allowed to master suite.

~

The following morning, with the early sunlight shining blindingly into her bedroom windows, she returned to exploring. Starting with a mop and a bucket of water, scavenged from their belongings by her father, she set to work. The dust had settled heavily in the little-used rooms and corners of the house, and she grew to learn its secrets nearly as well as her father when he attempted to fill in the holes and missing pages in the plans.

From the parlor, sitting room, and dining room, she mopped to the closet under the stairs and the stairs themselves before turning to the upstairs in the early afternoon and after a quick lunch. Her brother had long since grown restless and turned to the outside to explore, once again with the neighbor boy. She wondered for the briefest of moments if their tussle the day before resolved anything, boys with their hierarchy and pecking order, before sweeping that too out of her mind and into the murky waters of the bucket. Sarah retrieved fresh water before returning to work.

Leaving her bedroom and closet for last, she dusted the stairs, railing, battlements, bathroom, still another spare bedroom and the master suite. When she reached her brother's bedroom, she took extra care to do a sloppy job and rushed to her own room. Here now, she returned to the meticulous precision and exploration as she had shown in the rest of the house. When she approached her closet, she set the mop aside, A quick dig through her carefully labeled boxes of belongings turned up a battery-powered, electric lantern and (she) placed it in a freshly cleaned spot on the floor just inside the closet's doorway. Sarah carried the bucket and mop closer carefully and cleared the floor of dust.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Voiceless Wisdom


I know when you hold your head,
when this place feels least like home,
I know when you're lost in the crowd
where you've never felt so alone.

I know that bounce in your step,
the barely disguised twitch of glee,
I know your heart races when she smiles,
the one who sets you free.

I know when you're just feeling nothing,
not happy, not sad, not hurt,
I know when nothing matters, anymore,
and even your depression lies inert.

I know all the people I watch,
read the mes in the crowds I see,
feel your tingles, triumphs, tells,
as if written plainly on your sleeve.

I know more beauty is out there,
when so few care to look,
I know it because I've seen it,
hope in every shadowy nook.

I know I can't tell you the words
that would make you praise the day,
nothing comes when I open my mouth,
and it's not really my place to say.

Instead, I write your melodies,
paint the portraitures inside your head,
try to help the ways I can,
and you write yourself instead.

They say it's unimaginable beauty,
that comes when I hold a pen,
but it's only what you share with me
when you think inside your head.

--
This character will be featured in a collaborative universe on DreamCollectivelier starting November 1,

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Somewhere

this wooden box they tipped you in
not worthy of this place,
belong somewhere stronger than this,
somewhere to crease your face.

no hole to hold you in,
no wood or a'bronzed vase,
you belong where we laughed,
where a smile creased your face.

fly with me, I'll pull you in,
to our single sacred place,
the box that holds the whole world out,
and where we all loved your face.



one last breath and
one last blink.
one last whisper,
one last wink,
and one last I love you and good night.

one last promise and
one last prayer.
one last silence,
one last stare,
and one last crossing town racing midnight.



tomorrow doesn't matter
if we don't survive today,
and while I hold you,
you can't go away.

it's easy to die
to die for your sake,
but to live... to live...
the price is too great.

it's easy to make a promise,
it's hard to keep the vow,
we had a final, sudden goodbye,
and that's the thing I regret now.

don't get out of my car, next time;
and don't let me say goodbye.
don't let me let you dissolve away,
and don't let me refuse to cry.



the melody has faded,
but the words are out there
. . . . . .somewhere,
the music has fallen,
instruments rotted and sullen,
but someone is still singing...
. . . . . . . .somewhere.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Harpies Have Feelings Too (Mature)

Mature Content
--

all the little secrets,
not secrets just things
that signify singularity,
different feathers, same-looking wings.

inhaling cry when it hurts,
pleasure mixing with the pain;
murmured gasps going outward:
soft and soothing and so tame.

and when the oh-two
changes volume in my veins,
breathing gets louder, steadier,
breathing with my brain.

the superego doesn't shame me,
the id cheers it on,
the ego does the griping,
the body is not one.

the body hungers for it,
the mind desires flesh,
the spirit hides its eyes,
the being isn't meshed.

all the little pieces,
all part of one thing,
that signify a whole:
different feathers, all one wing.

caring is always so costly,
and the bill always paid in full,
not something we can mortgage,
else we'd lose the heavy pull

of our desperately gained,
fearfully guarded wings.
though we'd keep each other aloft
if one of us lost such things.

all the little pieces,
all each the same fam'ly,
despite our singularity,
we all wear our wings.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Gruel

I hate to watch them push you,
you hate it when they stare,
but I hate to see you more
dependent on someone else's care.

I love it when you dress
up nice, pretty, and clean,
but the joy of others watching
is not a joy you glean.

You hate the shoes and clothes,
and most especially the rules,
but we cook the best up for you,
when to you, it tastes like gruel.

Monday, September 28, 2009

It's Not Skydiving

every two minutes, diving off a cliff,
listening to the rings, every single list;

every single time, parachute opens and I fly;
yet every time I dial in, I gasp before I dive.

--
This poem is not about skydiving.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Untitled

Sometimes, we're meant to get lost, to wander off the trail that we think we're supposed to be on, just to find the one we really should be on. Or perhaps, just to run into a certain stranger along the way, if not for own own sake, then for theirs.

Riding from my house to the Virgil Gilman Trail is no easy task, especially on green legs. I'd done a little biking this year, but no serious mileage, so I was just going to see how far I could get, before calling for a ride back home.

Every trip from my house starts with a decision: Do I start from the closest access point of the bike trail, or head downtown first. The get me the same place, but one is shorter and faster; the other, still has its own benefits. I chose downtown.

Weaving through the local streets, dodging traffic gives me a feel for how my legs are responding, how strong they think they are, but it does no good for finding my rhythm. That comes more slowly when I finally reach the trail. Normally, I bike north from Batavia, or if south, then on the east side of the river. This time I decided on the west side of the Fox.

I've been hearing for a couple of years that the old quarry-turned watering hole was closed down, but until now, I hadn't had reason or means to pass it by without trespassing. It looks weary, drained and empty, and I wonder what the city's plans are for it. I can't watch it pass too long, for there, the path below my tires is rough and uneven with roots beneath the concrete. Once clear of the quarry property, the trail calms down and I settle into a rhythm.

~

When the forest breaks away into the swampier land, where the river floods its overflow into, and the path meanders close to the river again, it looks all wild and untamed--exactly as it should be. By now I know I've left Batavia behind and am growing closer to Aurora, but right now, all that matters is all that I can see. This is true nature to me, not the tamed and constrained parks. Down in that wilderness, it was the trail trespassing, not the other way around.

Unfortunately, even civilization will creep in and and institute its will, approaching the I-88 bridge. I have a certain weakness for architecture, so I took the opportunity to stretch my legs. They feel good, but I haven't been pushing myself, merely coasting at a set rhythm.

I propped my bike up in a small clearing, opposite the housing and just before the construction fencing, drop my feet and bag to the ground, and dig out my camera.

A few shots, a short walk around my bicycle, and an easy drink of water later, and I'm on my way again, feeling like I'm pedaling uphill despite going downriver. Soon, I'd reentered the wilderness.

~

At Aurora, you have no choice but to ride through cityscape. The bike trail disappears for two and a half miles, before appearing where you least expect it, despite watching closely for it despite watching worryingly closely for it for the past half-mile.

Two and a half miles down North Lake Street, and I know I should be worried about the neighborhood, but I'm not. Everybody today has been nodding back or smiling when I pass their way and politely nod my own head. Even a motorcyclist done up in black leather honks and smiles as he speeds past. Some even say hi, but I just smile and conserve my breath; I know that I've gone too long without saying anything but whispered commentary to myself, and my voice will croak when it comes out, if it comes at all.

The Gilman Trail suddenly crossed beneath me, before I realize I've gone over a bridge, and I circle through a park before picking it up. Heading westward, it suddenly disappears, and my map is no help at all. At Rathbone Avenue and an obnoxiously white industrial park, I wander first the the right, but after a block or so, I decided to turn around and follow South Lake Street a bit, because it feels like the right direction. At the next intersection, I recognize Jericho Road, but think it's pointing the wrong way, so I turn left and head down Arnold. I cross the Fox, thinking I'm heading west and can't figure out how I got onto the wrong side of the river. A quick spin down onto the island thinking I've re-spotted the trail, and I pass another biker heading the opposite way.

"Is this the way to Montgomery?" he calls out.

I shrug, calling back, "No idea. I think I'm as lost as you are."

I pulled to the side of the path and pull out my map, before turning behind me and noticing he's at a park table I'd just passed with a map of his own. I walked my bike over and found his map to be the same as mine, just a different edition. We compared notes and landmarks, still having some difficulty.

He shouted out to a runner passing by, and asked which way was north. The runner pointed out the direction I had thought was south, and asked where we were heading.

I said I was trying to go west on the Gilman Trail, and he gave me directions, circling back in the direction I'd come. I'd been on the correct side of the river all along.

We thanked the runner, and the biker thanks me, us both getting our bearings from the one set of directions.

Before we part ways, he asks me a question.

"Did you go to Batavia High School?"

I did, and say so.

"I thought you looked familiar. I think I was a few classes behind you, though."

I ask his graduating year.

"Two thousand five."

Me too.

"I'm Andrew Olsen."

Andrew Edmonds, though I wonder I should have said Ace.

"Nice to see you and thanks for the help. I didn't expect you to come back and help me compare maps. Have a good ride."

You too.

We parted way, opposite directions, each aided and with new memories despite losing our way.

~

I ended up back on Rathbone and the bleached industrial park, and this time called for directions.
Turns out I should have either continued up Rathbone farther than I did, or turned right onto Jericho instead of left onto Arnold, and I went that way now; and from there onto Terry where I picked up the Virgil Gilman Trail.

I followed it westward a ways, over Orchard Rd and through the VL Gilman park, and still further, before the ache in my legs grew too great and I couldn't find a new rhythm.

I called for a ride, turned and returned to the VL Gilman park, and laid in the parking spot closest to Prairie and Orchard, and waited.

~

So I wonder. Getting lost is a car is often a panic-inducing experience, but as I've read and felt and kept reading, when you're part of the world as you are on a bike, getting lost is nothing less than a new adventure.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

This Is


dream for the future
reach for the light
shout to the heavens
    your will, your fight.

stretch wide your wings
embrace this very flight,
war with your foes
    make this the final night.

you can't live on wishes,
or subsist on sunlight,
you can't always win,
    but you can stand and fight.

I don't think of first,
my dreams never last,
I'm closing in on second,
    but he's far beyond my class.

I don't think of winning,
I'll never breach the stars,
I'm just a voice, it is my choice,
    to reach--instead--your hearts.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Work

count the steps and count the lines,
ready the steps to call in time,
keep to the rhythm, keep to the pace,
know you're doing good in this place.

shelve the volumes, soak in the words,
keep repeating the ones you haven't heard,
work through the project, work through the pain,
and remember it won't always be the same.

write down words as they get into line,
before they shatter and fall out of mind,
keep on til past your hands cramp and ache,
they're reason enough to stay awake.

mould the shapes and hold the mold,
keeping willing til even the aches grow old,
keep to the pace, ignore the passing time,
and you and your work will get along fine.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Do of Don't, Don't Just Offer Suggestions

please stop telling me the details
all things i don't want to hear
i'm doing my best--my darnedest best
your advice best plain disappear.

i don't see you standing
i don't see your offering hand
i don't see you holding--or refraining from condemning
when her worst comes in to land

it happened the first time
and it keeps happening again
if you think you can do better--be better
YOU can be her boyfriend.

Spill Your Insides


tip on over the bottles
let out what's left inside
can't eat them all, can't drink them all
can't heal the abyss so wide.

wave on over your wand
give that bastard a swing
won't make me sleep, can't make me sleep
your magic won't do a thing.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Rebirth of A Monster (Mature)

Mature Content
--

given your shadow and sharp rubber claws
crossed with that audience and lack applause,
hide in the fog that filters out dusk
and hiss at the whiff of approaching musk.

if you breach the cage and break the bars,
come at me on your all-fours,
unsheathe those white and sharpened claws;
blood hitting the floor is the only applause.

"he's a monster, she's a monster," wound up inside,
if she comes out, he won't embrace your hide;
he won't hold you back, he won't hold you still,
disregards his care and forgets his will.

she's a monster, I'm a monster, and a friend,
if she comes out, I'll hold you past session's end.
I'll hold you back, keep you safe, whole, and still;
though she struggle and fight, can't break my will.

"when you're a fucking monster" it feels lonely too,
"not even the other monsters will be there for you."
and yet, right there, I surprised even you,
for there waits Achilles, hoping to help too.

--
Some lines borrowed from "Venomous" by Christopher Krovatin

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

To Oblivion and Back Again (Not A Hobbit's Tale)

There wasn't any decent music playing on the radio, and, coming up on Breckenridge, soon there wasn't any music--or anything--at all. Don't bother with hitting Scan on your radio, it just loops around and around, not even finding static.

My girlfriend was driving, so she tossed her hand out toward the glove-box. "Just grab a CD, any CD. I need to listen to something."

I flipped through the case and grabbed a disc at random. After several fourteen-hour days of driving, you come to know each others music preferences and collections all too well. Without taking my eyes off the mountainous horizon around us, I popped in a disc.

~

The CD player clicked. Whirred unhappily, and then clicked again.

My girlfriend glanced at me as I looked down at the player. "What did you put in?"

"I don't know. Just grabbed at random." I reached out to the eject button, but as the tips of my fingers brushed the grey plastic, the player decided to accept it. I shrugged and pulled my hand away.

A few seconds later, the disc started playing, and it was no sound that should have been in her collection.

"What did you put in there?"

"One of your discs."

"Not mine. I have nothing that sounds like this. Where'd the case go?"

I reach for the case, fallen between my legs to the floor. Upon opening it, I flip to the only empty slot, as the noise coming from the speakers crescendos. At that terrible moment, I recognize it.

"Oh no..."

"What is it?"

"I know this music. I know what disc that was. Shit! Stop the car!"

She pulls over at the next shoulder, the cliff-side pressing close to her side and the drop on just the other side of the road.

I glance out the window to a shape out the corner of my eye. A light brown figure, wrapped in brown leather belts and iron buckles races through the woods below us, flashing glimpses between trees. "No... this can't be happening..."

"Ace, stop whining and tell me what's going on!"

My hands shaking and voice cracking, I show her the empty slot.

"So? What was there? I don't remem-"

"I do."

"Then what?!"

"Your Elder Scrolls install disc."

The form races up the cliff below us, disappearing from view momentarily until it leaps when it reaches the road, landing on the cliff-face above the car. Dust and stone rain down as it scrambles for purchase. A loud clunk on the roof seconds later tells me she didn't make it. The thing... she rolls down the windshield and hood and lays still.

"You have got to be kidding me!"

"Sorry, Kiki. How was I supposed to know your CD player was magical?"

~

We climbed out and rolled her over gently, but she was already gone. I glanced up to where she'd fallen from, and it wasn't very high above the car at all.

"This is bad."

"What, Ace?"

"That fall shouldn't have killed her."

"Then why is she..."

"It only finished her off. Something was after her." I walked carefully to the edge of the road and cliff, scanning for movement. "It's probably still out there. We need to be careful."

My girlfriend nodded. "Okay, Yeah. ...Ace, do you think we're still approaching Breckenridge?"

"I don't know, love. I don't know if she was brought to our world, we were brought to hers, or they're meshed and merged somehow." Easing away from the cliff, I held her. "I'm so sorry."

"You didn't know. You couldn't know. Neither of us knew."

"I know, but I still feel bad. ...You don't happen to have a 'World As We Know It' install disc, do you?"

She laughed, smiling, and shook her head. "Do you think we should... you know,..." she gestured to the body's equipment.

"Arm ourselves?" I think that's an excellent idea. As unfortunate as it is, she won't be needing them and we probably will."

Kiki mumbled a few words and I bowed my head, and then we got to work. The girl was a little taller than my girlfriend but we took all but her slip and underclothes, if not to wear, then to sell if necessary. It was a horrible concept to think of but our clothes weren't made for this world.

~

I built a cairn for her, after Kiki helped me move the body off the road. The sun was setting, so we decided to stay in the car until morning. It wasn't terribly comfortable, but it was safer than staying outside in the unknown.

--
Continue reading...

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Dearly Departed Daughter

up the main stair and 'cross the room,
all faded wallpaper still a-bloom.
find the catch to pull or press
to the backstairs of her current address.

the steps all rotted but walls intact
climb the walls into the back,
betwixt the attic and uppermost floor:
there's her long unopened bedroom door.

"you were my mother, too long ago,
and since rebirth, I've felt your glow;
to be so in life while I live in death,
cherish the feeling of you warm pleasant breath."

--
This is based on someone else's dreams, not my own.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Staring


don't look at that poor man
   dressed to go out and sitting alone
      past the point of looking around
         and he'll just fade away.
don't look at that poor lad
   pounding the pavement and out of work
      past the point of just going home
         where "lazy" he hears all day.
don't look at that poor boy
   dribbling his ball no more
      past practicing and trying
         and no team to let him play.

don't stare, don't look, don't gaze,
   just slide past like there's no one there
      they're not working and just no fair
         getting paid just sitting there.

hey! who's that man with tie flappin'
   stridin' like he's what's happ'nin'
      past seein' us, past hearin' us,
         for him always on holiday
hey! who's that lad in the fancy car
   built to go fast though he doesn't drive far
      past drivin' worryin' 'bout gas
         struck it rich, got his lucky day
hey! who's that boy and a star
   who ran so fast and got so far
      past hopin' and dreamin': it all came true
         and never wants to go on holiday.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Manido-Tewin: Spirit Home


wandering through the mountains,
hunting down my dreams,
dancing through the maze,
of blues and browns and greens,

caught between the veils,
of my human self and this,
reliving all the memories,
making new ones in the midst,

retiring to my furrself,
to refuel my spirit's health.
give the human time to repair,
repolishing my immaterial weath

Monday, August 3, 2009

Dance

 


prance across the treetops
until rooftops come into view,
detouring o'er the roadways
that burn fresh-made dew.

prance through the dreamlands
until the moon is heavenly high,
or blocked by stormclouds
that mask the starry sky.

prance in short white stockings
until your coat grows red as rust,
balanced by a tail as stocky
and wards off the rising dust.

prance like it's your nature,
as if you're born to fly,
barely holding in the dance
that lifts you in to the sky.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Sunday Morning

once upon a morning merry
woken by my sunshine-dearie
and haunted of my dreams no more
off to church she planned so clearly
running late but not so nearly
but for more than I can endure
Get up! Get up! she shouted clearly
worrying if I would wake still weary;
I followed instead of sleeping more.
I had to change out in the car
but if she waited, more late by far
and so she walked while I changed more.
yet for me she still waited,
and as for me, I ran unaided,
chains chiming and my legs still sore.

Hoping for Sly

22 July 2009

I'm sad, you know that Sly? It's weird to think this, but I'm kind of jealous that my girlfriend can hear her plushies talk back.

I know we just got you, a gift from my girlfriend, no less. Yes, the very same. I should give you time to get to know me better, and I, you, perhaps.

I hope you come to trust me, and show me you've got a voice too.

[He pauses for several very long moments, nearly a minute, before continuing.]

Oh well. Take all the time you need. Good night, Sly.

23 July 2009

Well, another day here and gone, Sly. I hope you had plenty of fun. I wonder what you do all day when I'm out, think about things, I imagine? Especially since I don't really have other plushies. Except for Ein up on the top shelf, who's in a plastic box. And Tsukasa and Mana of course, but it wouldn't surprise me if they kept mostly to themselves, whispering to each other if they talk at all.

There's Baby Grunty up there too. Maybe you two would get along, despite that I keep him up on that shelf, and I'm going to try to keep you closer, hoping you'll choose to whisper something in my ear.

[He yawns, widely, deeply, and for long enough to make his jaw ache.]

I was going to tell you something else too, but that'll have to wait for another night. Talk to you later, Sly.

24 July 2009

Hey, Sly.

I wrote it down this morning so I wouldn't forget. Well, both of them down actually. The question I had for you this morning and the thing I was going to tell you about the other night.

I hope it's you and not just me, but... well, I've been waking up in the mornings, and sometimes in the middles of the night, and in the past few nights, you've been there, on my bed still. Even if all my other blankets and such have fallen or been kicked to the floor. and I'm sorry if I've kicked you or rolled over onto you in my sleep. I didn't mean to, honest. It's just... not something I'm used to, sleeping with another animal on my bed. And Leo's never said anything, spending most of the time down on my feet as he does. Except when I'm feeling lonely.

Maybe that's why I'm hoping to hear you talk back. even if you only talk back to me. You know I'd never say anything. Well, maybe to Krys, but not if you asked me not to. I'm good at keeping secrets and being considerate to other people's feelings. And if you don't trust me me yet and all, I understand, I really do.

[He pauses, smiles, stroking and rubbing Sly.]

Sorry. I guess I never got to my question did I? And I hope me going off like that doesn't bother you. Just something I do when I'm alone--except for my plushies, of course--and got stuff on my mind.

Anyway, my question: I was wondering if that was you staying on my bed? Or if I just happned to miss knocking you off? Or if you've been dodging me? I'm sorry if I've knocked you in my sleep and such. I hope you know I really didn't mean to.

Wow, it's gotten late really fast and I didn't get to that other thing again. Hopefully tomorrow I'll not get off track and rambling again.

Of course, if you're really impatient and just want to know what it was, don't hesistate to speak up, alright?

[He smiles weakly at the fox.]

I thought not. Well, good night, Sly. If you sleep, I hope you sleep well.

25 July 2009

Hey there, Sly. Hope your day wasn't as boring as mine was. I wanted to get to that thing that I keep saying I want to share before I get too far off track and rambling again, okay?

So I've been reading Onion Girl, by Charles de Lint. I don't know if you've have a chance or incentive to glance at it while I'm out and when I've left it in my room.

I'm not going to get into what it's about, because that isn't the point, and I know I'll just get distracted again. But in the story, there's a girl who raises a tree. And she raises it, not by watering it, or pruning it, or anything like that. Instead she feeds it stories. It grows into a huge beautiful tree.

Being a fox, and as smart as I know you are, I'm sure you can see where I'm going with this. I hope just chatting and talking and sharing things with myself you'll grow too. Maybe not so much as growing bigger, but growing to trust me maybe? Growing to feel confident in me to share of yourself on some of these quiet, lonely nights. Or just what you do or think about all day. Or all night, or whichever it is. Anything you think about, if anything at all, I'd love to hear it.

[He smiles, more strongly tonight than on past nights, stroking Sly's soft fur.]

So that's what I'm going to do, Sly. I'm going to keep talking to you, as long as I can. Helping you grow. And maybe, some day, you'll say something back. Even if it's just something small, like "good night, Ace". I'd love to hear that.

Good night, Sly. I hope you sleep well.

Friday, July 24, 2009

The Gran'folks


walk in, with clocks all ticking,
chirping, chooing, hopping, clicking,
to a fam'ly great for picking,
    despite the creaking of the floor.

walk in, thinking you're uninvited,
and yet find smiles all a lighted,
a place to rest all despite it:
    gilded by spikes, chains, fur, and more.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Perspective, or Your Can't Have It Both Ways

broad spread wings to catch the breeze
harsh gusts or thermals rising
free of gravity that binds me down

lost 'tween clouds and clear blue sky
crows and groundsquirrels apprising
'neath I stomp, around and round

to have bones so hollow, so light
to know the dawn, unfiltered, bright
to be...alive... at peace, tonight.

legs so firm, steady and strong
a growling belly long since filled
break from this driving wind

given concentration, tools, mechanics made
a predator's security to sit still
and I enslaved to weather's whim

to visit worlds that are not here
to learn and grow beyond ones peers
to be...alive... and see so clear.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

The Battlefield

whether these walls
            be padded or brick
whether you conscience
            is clean or sick
whether it's love or
            hate or fear
they're running, we're running
            before the smoke can clear

my head is too full
         for these voices and games
my heart is too full
         for your lie-laden chains
my hands are too full
         to keep carrying your bags
my feet are too light
         to let me be dragged

you're pushing your luck
      and asking for pain
get away from the cracks,
      you have nothing to gain
you're missing something
      that I find in my friends
find it in yourself
      or find the end...

when the dust and debris
   finally settles and clears
watch who's standing
   and fallen, in tears
wait for the rain
   be it water or blood
fall to your knees
   disregard the mud

embrace the earth
embrace your life
give thanks for this
to suffer that strife
the gift was given
the present, today
take advantage of
this opportunity to stay.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Black Rd

driving down Black Road,
while sitting passenger side,
left lane, Joliet,
and who should come beside?

silver minivan and
two boys with long hair
coasting down the roadway,
gave me smirk not stare,

opened up a red
familiar cardboard box...
knew just what it was
and I'm not candy fox.

eating Pocky!
three sticks in his hand!
just the same as I,
when I eat them, when I can.

"got any to share?"
shout I across white stripes.
grin, laugh, "yeah, I think,
hold on" --he might've tried.

shake my head "just kidding"
share just smiles, waves, thumbs ip.
I made two friends in Joliet today--
snack food in common is enough.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Achilles (Mature)

Mature Content
--

I remember being bound. There was a knife in the car and when she changed, she found it. And she cut. It hurt terribly. When she scratched me there was no pleasure in it, and little enough pain. I grimaced, but that was all. He took hold of me, sped adrenaline through my system, and saved me. He got the knife somehow, and cut the rest of my body free of the straps. The remaining three.

The fourth was her doing, taking my tendon with it. I offered my blessing to ah-SHEEL and jerked free.

~

I remember the car door opening, though whether it was me, him, or her, I do not know.

I know we were on the ground, and I got the knife away. He threw it into a tree, and we all three heard it slide into the wood. She wept for the blade, but fought on. One of us called 911, and all I know was that it wasn't her. Whoever it was shouted to the operator to tell the paramedics not to interfere, only to clean up afterward. I don't know if she did, but they didn't.

One of us disabled her. I don't know or remember how, or who, but he got a shirt knotted around my leg--my right leg--before the paramedics stepped in. They bound us both to the stretchers tightly and took us away.

~

I remember waking. He whispered soothing words in my head, and it took me a moment to remember why.
"Psycho?"

"Hush, Erv. You're going to be fine. Everything has been taken care of."

"What's going on?"

"You're in the hospital. You'll live."

"Why can't I move?"

"Nobody really knows what happened out there, besides the three of us. Maybe four. They bound you down. The same to her. You've also been heavily sedated." He paused, holding back, though knowing that I felt it. "I'm sorry, but they had to take it off."

"Take what off?"

"Your right leg. At the knee. I'm sorry. I know it was your favorite."

My body shook, and I realized I was sobbing. I struggled to open my eyes, but they were terribly heavy.

"Are you sure you want to do that? I know you can take it, and I'll always be right here for you. I'm not going anywhere."

"Yes."

The weight on my eyelids disappeared, and I lifted them. White pristene walls surrounded me, and a nurse bustled in, smiling down on me.

"You're not supposed to be waking yet, but I suppose that's alright. We've done what we could."

(He whispered in my mind: "I helped with that. They medicated for one, not two."

I only smiled inwardly, and he chuckled.)

"I know. Thank you."

She nodded, still smiling. "Anything I can do for you?"

"Can you help me sit up?"

"Are you sure? You're body's been through a lot."

"Yes, I can take it. Please."

She nodded again. "Alright," and helped me up, then left, patting the television remote onto the bed beside my hand.

"Are you still there, Psycho?"

"I am. I told you I'm not going anywhere. But please don't call me that. It's alright from before, when I had no name, but you called me that night, and I shall never forget it."

I started to ask, but that part came back to me. "ah-SHEEL. Achilles."

"Good boy. Knew you could do it. We'll hold back on the rest of the remembering for now, but when you're ready, I promise I'll tell you everything."

"Thank you."

Sunday, April 5, 2009

The First Time

Next time you're in the shower, soap up your body last. Go ahead and turn off the faucet, once you've got a good balance of lather and steam, to make bubbles in the ring of your hands. Slowly make them larger, until the bubble is ringed by your arms, hands, fingertips barely touching, and chest. Watch the bubble's surface, the reflection of yourself stretch and writhe.

Take a breath, lift your hands over your head, still keeping the ring and bubble intact, and dive into it. Sometimes it helps to soap up your nose too.

~

The first time, I closed my eyes. I still close them, the transition is rough enough without having to watch it.

The first time, I came out of the other side of the bubble under water. I still do sometimes, but my aim is getting better.

The first time, I had to lather up my whole head, slick back my hair, and dislocate my shoulders. It still hurts, but it's worth it.

The first time, I couldn't get back.

~

They say some people can cross just by holding their hands out in front of them, index fingers and thumbs forming a ring. Through that ring is all most people see, all they can see, all they want to see. Focus on the ring, until something steps into your peripheral vision. Step sideways and follow it, keeping your eyes on the ring of your index fingers and thumbs. Step sideways through the veil.

The first time, that's how I got back.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Lullaby for a Sweetheart (Mature)

Mature Content
--

stay and slumber
don't touch-and-go
drop the masks
cancel the show

lean with me
and curl in tight
maybe I'll just
spend the night

need no covers
nor no clothes
be wrapped in me
and hold me close

Saturday, January 10, 2009

A Lord of Chaos

the spikard on my finger,
all Shadows in my grasp,
so much power open
only living Trumps can catch.

kinged in the realm of Chaos,
uncle in Order and Amber,
aunt in Four Worlds' Keep,
father in pit and slumber.