Commencing Winter with three poems

How the bells rung

(inspired by Whitman’s The Learn’d Astronomer)

How the bells rung,
How the town brayed, awaiting the verdict
How the men and maidens in checkered hats looked longingly upwards
Towards the haggard priest,
where he stood with a beard knotted in clumps of dirt
Wavering in stature and squinting in sight,
he peered off into the crowd, his target realized
And with the extrusion of a finger,
the town’s weekly degenerate, hanged.

The Red Hall

(inspired by Poe’s The Conqueror Worm)

Dusk has just settled upon us,
in that timeless hour before night,
In the halls of insidious lust
Where the only warmth is light
The dancers eyes stared cold
in that performance of the night
their colours shining red and gold
like an exotic bird ready for flight

Their lips trembled with unheard sorrow,
While they swayed as if pregnant with williwaws
Those eager to cavort from night till morrow
Reached to them with unkempt paws
The showman hops out of the penumbral wings,
Wearing a crow’s mask with an ebony maw
“Listen to how our finest bird sings,
“Now sing bird, sing, till your lungs are raw”

With one pirouette each they turned their backs to the crowd,
All but one,
Whose dress was grey and plain and head was bowed
Then her song begun,
It started as a mere ring down the deepest caverns of her being
But as the noise rung,
Our eyes became unseeing
All light was to the void flung

Darkness had the world swallowed,
And her song turned to a screech,
A violent cacophony from a creature hollowed
Echoing a dirge, a requiem and a harbinger’s preach
It was cry of a billion buried souls strong
A primal cry, the quintessence of every tragedy told,
Every lash, curse and pierce they endured,
A dimension where suffering was manifold

When we came to, the hall was forsaken,
Only we were left,
Wheezing and shaken,
Pale faces of blood bereft,
And as our muscles atrophied,
We heard caws from overhead,
Predators preparing to fulfill their needs,
As those birds pecked us raw and left us for dead.

Vagabond

(inspired by Dante’s Vitae Nuova)

Pity is a vagabond forgotten
Love’s abandoned child by Misery’s seed begotten
A weight on the heart so heavy
that it plummets it down to the void
That made me so unready
to cute loose those creatures you cursed
to whom desperate habits you coerced
tainting our friendships for the very worst.

There can be no public flagellation
For you, no display of vindication
Each of us chokes on your bitter poison
As you turn souls pathetic who were proud first

You suck the strength out of spines
shattering the stature of the tall
making the beholder weak too,
turning friends and lovers into desperate dogs:
that night I walked away into a world of smog,
when she begged me to say my farewell was not true.

--

--

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store