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The Bleeding

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Below is the poem entitled The Bleeding which was written by poet John Heck. Please feel free to comment on this poem. However, please remember, PoetrySoup is a place of encouragement and growth.

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The Bleeding

I flung my bloodied bathrobe onto a dusty mahogany bureau and roared: “Did we frighten
the scarecrows tonight, my love? Whose catch was it anyway? Yours or mine? We invited 10
guests to our dungeon this evening. Ten unfortunates who needed to be bled! Ten minus nine
equals one. Why does this one? Why does this last invalid remain? He’s your responsibility!” 

I apologize. You see, my wife and I like to play games. Clever games played without
civilized anecdotes. Virginia Woolf-esque games; ordinary puzzles not usually toyed with at
tight-lipped Connecticut Sunday social club gatherings. Scrabble? Clue? The Game of Life?
No. Monopoly. Excuse me, monopolize. "Where do we go from here, cupcake? The scheme of
ignorance is arguably apparent. You bait them with your soiled undies and I lure them in with
feigned smiles and gin-laden breath. That was our Holy Grail, pumpkin! Our pact. Yes? So
why are you deliberately side-stepping the strategy?” Martha was not amused. She coughed,
groped a crumpled Marlboro, slowly slugged down the dregs of her scotch and bellowed: “I know
the game, lovey! I shake the dice! Light my cigarette, lover. The disappointed usually do.” 

“So what? Hey, George…look, they burned, braised and boiled us. They lied. They deceived. 
One whore! One lawyer! One philanthropist! Two misogynists! They tried to destroy us, right?
Then what? WHAT? I married you. Sure, they all deserved the cleavers and the nooses and
the revenge. But, they needed the invite! It’s part of the game! My game! They were weak and
useless and expendable. Everyone's a LIAR! Everyday a little death?” We both stared at
each other with contempt. “I’m not liking this game anymore, buttercup; now make yourself
useful and pass me the ice bucket.” 

“And why isn’t the last one eating daisies, my love? The tall one. The sort of handsome
chap. Ten were invited in and indeed ten shall exit.” Martha silently poured herself
another scotch. She laughed wildly as she fumbled into the pocket of her bathrobe. 
“George…ten entered and ten will exit! That was our plan?” A single gunshot. One more. 
Martha spits and yawns. “You didn’t look at the clues, George. Did you fail to read the rules? 
One man’s whore is another woman’s philanthropist. Everyone’s a liar…like two peas in a pod. 
You skipped over the boundaries, George. I kept my promise. 
Ten entered. Ten exited. I never said who or how. It was my playground, George! 
It was always my charade! Clue? Game over, sweetheart. GAME OVER!”  

Copyright © John Heck

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  1. Date: 4/28/2011 3:02:00 PM
    This is like a short story about a game of Clue. I think this is one of your greatest works! The characters are delightful and you play cat and mouse with them so well. gwendolen

  1. Date: 4/11/2011 1:42:00 AM
    This is for me! Yes! ~JS Lambert

  1. Date: 2/28/2011 1:13:00 AM
    Great Job! This tale had me reading as fast as I could from the first sentence, excellent description and tempo.

  1. Date: 2/25/2011 1:16:00 PM
    A grim tale indeed. Soup mail

  1. Date: 2/9/2011 4:33:00 PM
    Congratulations on winning in the contest. Very descriptive. No wonder it garnered first place.

  1. Date: 1/30/2011 11:47:00 AM
    thankxx John for enjoying and choosing my entry "Plea for Love" for your Dear John contest as one of your winners ... much appreciated ... my hubby and I are in Hawaii this weekend to see the Pro Bowl football game and have some fun in the Sun.. am working on trying to extend a few more days... wish me luck luv..thankxxx...

  1. Date: 1/23/2011 3:39:00 PM
    Congratulations on your win..Sara

  1. Date: 1/20/2011 11:17:00 AM
    Wow! And to think I would've missed this! It's been ages since I read any of your writes..a bit dark for me but still I kind of enjoyed reading it...As always, impressive and enjoyable. Thanks for your help, John.. 'twas really appreciated! Always, Annalise

  1. Date: 1/19/2011 5:15:00 AM
    Congrats - scary place your mind !

  1. Date: 1/18/2011 2:01:00 PM
    Congratulations on your honored first place win with this wonderfully written prose. I enjoyed the read. Again, great job! Caryl

  1. Date: 1/18/2011 8:37:00 AM
    Congrats John on your wonderful first place win in Catie's Dark Prose contest with this spectacular and sensational write my friend.. enjoy your top spot with luv..

  1. Date: 1/17/2011 5:30:00 AM
    Absolutely brilliant as always, John. So nice to hear from you, and thank you so much for your kind comments; they mean so much to me. I, like you, don't visited the soup much these days...busy writing a screenplay. Wishing you great success in all your endeavours in the New Year . Warm hugs to you my friend. Elaine

  1. Date: 1/15/2011 2:09:00 PM
    Congratulations on the first place in the contest, John

  1. Date: 1/15/2011 10:15:00 AM
    Congratulations to you for your 1st Place win John in Catie Lindsey's contest "Dark Prose". Love, Carol

  1. Date: 1/15/2011 4:20:00 AM
    'Wow' fantastical stuff - congrats on your win - well deserved - Gosh! Liz

  1. Date: 1/14/2011 7:38:00 PM
    You just might have material good enough to write scripts for television shows here! No wonder this was chosen as the best in the contest!

  1. Date: 1/14/2011 7:11:00 PM
    GOOD story, John. Those women will do ya in every time! Congrats on your wonderful win. The story was thoroughly entertaining! Luv, Andrea

  1. Date: 1/14/2011 6:13:00 PM
    I'm watching Richard and Liz pulling hair, and spouting off at each other all over again!!! Excellent, and clever, and only you could do....terrific, and well deserving to be at Number UN0 !!! So nice to see you back , John!!

  1. Date: 1/14/2011 4:16:00 PM
    Congratulations on taking first place in Catie's contest, John! Best wishes, Carolyn

  1. Date: 1/14/2011 3:54:00 PM
    brilliant John, I guess George could have been much fun than we know .. Nice little story.. Sweet Martha, putting up with it.. the game~ sounds interesting.. now wheres the apple tree.. kidding.. enjoyed your entry. Good luck,..p.d.