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Long poem by cassie hellberg | Details |

over and over agin

sometimes i talk to myself, 
my mind is racing,
i dont know what to do...
so hard to explain.
depression isn't a stage
or a faze some kids go through
it shatters you...
i saw it all. 
she cried silent in her bed,
blood stains covered her favorite jeans,
her every shirt,
long sleeve ofcourse...
she suffered through it all with few people to call friend
and more to call enemy
even more to say where quite dissappointed....
FAT
her first name in school,
not started by a bully
or a mean rival,
but by her sister, 
and it echoed through her soul,
repeating in her mind... over and over again,
like the ripples of still water
when a pebble is dropped
flash frozen in time
repeating,
over and over again...
It was the first name they gave her,
millions where created over the years,
some unique
some repeating again, just as the first had..
gothic they called her,
emo, fat, ugly....worse things.
but in her mind, things where worse.
everything was repeating,
over and over again,
finally she believed it. 
she asked for help, from everyone
tried to explain to parents she wasnt well,
got called a psycho for asking to see a theripist,
not from a teacher,
not from a class mate,
but from her own father, who wouldn't, couldn't,
believe there could possibly be a thing wrong....
finally, crying, she confessed her bloody secret to a teacher.
rather then giving her time,
she is sent back to class crying her eyes out, as if she wherent going through enough...
she is sent to the principals office a few minutes later, after breaking down in class...
the princlipal says she needs help,
sends her and her dad for a risk evaluation,
her dads crying as she shows him her cuts...
they walk into a hospital room, 
it smells of chemicals and hand sanitizer,
the lady at the desk gives her a smile.
then she goes into a room with a lady,
her cheeks are sunken in and shes wearing way too much makeup,
the girl is gaging on her perfume,
and she looks really intimidating....
her dark brown hair looks dead and flat
even though its a bit wavy, 
and she wears somewhat of a mocking frown.
asks her all these questions,
is mommy beating her?
no
is daddy raping her?
no
is she doing drugs?
not alot
is anyone beating her?
pass...
did anyone molest her? 
pass....
oxcarbezapine, trazadone, citalipran, clinazapam, colonipan,
valium, lithium, more.......
and thats what they gave her,
more... 
some numbed the pain
some brought it out
tearing through her organs,
she became an addict by the time she was fourteen....
over dose after over dose
some for pleasure
some for pain,
gashes on her legs getting deeper,
this time she didnt tell a soul,
not even those she had come to call friends....
wakeup she screamed in her head over and over again
as she dropped weight like it was nothing....
you cant controll it she argued as things became worse. 
at age fourteen she attempted suicide,
she didnt quite succeed.
the medication took away her aappitite....
she liked it
she hated her body
hated herself
felt out of controll
found a new way to cope
as she shoved tooth brush after toothbrush down her throat
to keep her body from nuitrients...
as she whent weeks and weeks spitting food into napkins and making excuses 
I ate at my friends house....
spoken as a whisper
heard like a sentance
echoing in her mind over and over again,
along with that word, all the words,
FAT!!!!!!
ugy, anoying, stupid, fake, worthless, nothing...
one bite she would say
rocking back and forth
craving nothing but food
her body racked with hunger pain
one bite and there she was again
FAT!
over and over and over again
back to a toothbrush
this time she sees blood
she saw her ribs
she saw her bones,
it wasnt good enough,
she almost died, again....
choking on this deep dissappointment in herself,
gaging on everything they where pushing down her throat, 
their words, and their insults, their criticism.... their drugs
all shoved down her throat like candy
and just as she was was trained to do she swallowed despite the bad taste
or the hurt
or the fact that at the rate she was going she would be dead soon...
and you know why? 
because daddy yelled 
and couldnt accept what was happening
not because he wanted to hurt her
but because it hurt him,
and she let him believe,
because she could take the hurt if it meant he didnt have too.
because mommy didnt want to sit in her room all day
smoking weed
doing nothing,
practically having us raise ourselves,
she didnt mean to take anger, or frustration or hurt out on her daughter
she suffered everyday in her solitary confinement,
and from a young age she accepted her bedroom was the cage
 her mother had created for herself.
because sister didnt want to effect her the way she did
she was just frustrated
fed up with the way things where
scared, she needed someone to take her cruelty
and to help heal her pain...
because people in school
who where so cruel
had to have learned from somewhere
and she wasnt going to play into their games,
and they knew she was an easy target
because she would never attack someone so weak
and she accepted her suffering was a sacrafice
to help all these people....
to help her dad,
her mom,
her sister,
every person who was beaten abused or hurt
 and felt so weak at home they wanted to feel strong in the one safe place they had.
because depite the fact she had died inside,
and almost passed away on the out,
it was a saccrafice she was willing to make
so that no one else would have to feel that kind of pain,
and they all inflicted it and broke her down'untill there was nothing left but a shell
of somthing that could have been
and never had the chance
and why? 
because she would take it and wouldnt strike back,
because sometimes "just taking it"
isnt so much about the weakness not to do anything
but about the strangth not to hurt others the way they hurt you...


Long poem by Carl Halling | Details | . You can read it on PoetrySoup.com' st_url='http://www.poetrysoup.com/poem/snapshots_from_a_childs_west_london_651174' st_title='Snapshots from a Child's West London'>

Snapshots from a Child's West London

I remember my cherished Wolf Cub pack, 
How I loved those Wednesday evenings, 
The games, the pomp and seriousness of the camps, 
The different coloured scarves, sweaters and hair 
During the mass meetings, 
The solemnity of my enrolment, 
Being helped up a tree by an older boy, 
Baloo, or Kim, or someone, 
To win my Athletics badge, 
Winning my first star, my two year badge, 
And my swimming badge 
With its frog symbol, the kindness of the older boys.
                                                                    
I remember a child's West London.
                                                                    
One Saturday afternoon, after a football match
During which I dirtied my boots 
By standing around as a sub in the mud, 
And my elbow by tripping over a loose shoelace, 
An older boy offered to take me home. 
We walked along streets, 
Through subways crammed with rowdies, 
White or West Indian, in black gym shoes. 
"Shuddup!" my friend would cheerfully yell, 
And they did.
"We go' a ge' yer 'oame, ain' we mite, ay?"
"Yes. Where exactly are you taking me?" I asked.
                                                                    
"The bus stop at Chiswick 'Oigh Stree' 
Is the best plice, oi reck'n."
"Yes, but not on Chiswick High Street,"
I said, starting to sniff.
"You be oroight theah, me lil' mite."
I was not convinced. 
The uncertainty of my ever getting home 
Caused me to start to bawl,
And I was still hollering 
As we mounted the bus. 
I remember the sudden turning of heads. 
It must have been quite astonishing 
                                                                    
For a peaceful busload of passengers 
To have their everyday lives 
Suddenly intruded upon 
By a group of distressed looking Wolf Cubs, 
One of whom, the smallest,
Was howling red-faced with anguish 
For some undetermined reason. 
After some moments, my friend, 
His brow furrowed with regret, 
As if he had done me some wrong, said:
"I'm gonna drop you off 
Where your dad put you on."
                                                                    
Within seconds, the clouds dispersed, 
And my damp cheeks beamed. 
Then, I spied a street I recognised
From the bus window, and got up, 
Grinning with all my might:
"This'll do," I said. 
"Wai', Carl," cried my friend, 
Are you shoa vis is 'oroigh'?"
"Yup!" I said. I was still grinning
As I spied my friend's anxious face 
In the glinting window of the bus 
As it moved down the street.
                                                                    
I remember a child's West London.
                                                                    
One Wednesday evening, 
When the Pops was being broadcast 
Instead of on Thursday, 
I was rather reluctant to go to Cubs, 
And was more than usually uncooperative 
With my father as he tried 
To help me find my cap, 
Which had disappeared.
Frustrated, he put on his coat 
And quietly opened the door. 
I stepped outside into the icy atmosphere 
Wearing only a pair of underpants,
                                                                    
And to my horror, he got into his black Citroen 
And drove off. I darted down Esmond Road,  
Crying and shouting. 
My tearful howling was heard by Margaret, 
19 year old daughter of Mrs Helena Jacobs, 
Whom my mother used to help 
With the care and entertainment 
Of Thalidomide children. 
Helena Jacobs expended so much energy 
On feeling for others,  
That when my mother tried to get in touch 
In the mid '70s, she seemed exhausted, 
                                                                    
And quite understandably, 
For Mrs O'Keefe, her cleaning lady 
And friend for the main part 
Of her married life
Had recently been killed in a road accident. 
I remember that kind 
And beautiful Irish lady, 
Her charm, happiness and sweetness, 
She was the salt of the earth. 
She threatened to ca-rrown me
When I went away to school...
If I wrote her not.
                                                                    
Margaret picked me up
And carried me back to my house. 
I put on my uniform 
As soon as she had gone home, 
Left a note for my Pa, 
And went myself to Cubs. 
When Pa arrived to pick me up, 
The whole ridiculous story 
Was told to Akela, 
Baloo and Kim, 
Much, much, much to my shame.
                                                                    
I remember a child's West London.
                                                                    
The year was 1963, the year of the Beatles, 
Of singing yeah, yeah, yeah in the car, 
Of twisting in the playground, 
Of "I'm a Beatlemaniac, are you?"
That year, I was very prejudiced 
Against an American boy, Raymond, 
Who later became my friend. 
I used to attack him for no reason, 
Like a dog, just to assert my superiority. 
One day, he gave me a rabbit punch in the stomach 
And I made such a fuss that my little girlfriend, Nina,
Wanted to escort me to the safety of our teacher, 
                                                                    
Hugging me, and kissing me intermittently 
On my forehead, eyes, nose, cheeks. 
She forced me to see her:
"Carl didn't do a thing," said Nina, 
"And Raymond came up and gave him 
Four rabbit punches in the stomach."
Raymond was not penalized, 
For Mademoiselle knew 
What a little demon I was, 
No matter how hurt 
And innocent I looked, 
Tearful, with my tail between my legs.
                                                                    
I remember a child's West London.


Long poem by Goutam Hazra | Details |

Scent of Paddy Flower

Scent Of Paddy Flower

                                   By Goutam Hazra

           1
Reminiscence

My father told me 
first time 
I was just a boy then,
“Follow the scent of paddy flower
move with the wind it carries,
surely you will go to heaven.”

I remember
he would catch 
fistful of wind
bring near to my face
and wonder,
“Isn’t it godly!”

Magically, opened his hand
but I never felt
what scent he meant.
            
             2
Days of kind rain

“Son, see the misty wind
rushing all over the paddy field
comes every year
to drink the scent of paddy flower.”

Mere as a boy
I could see only
tides of a green plane
touching my little finger
and racing far… too far.
I would ask  
“Where have they gone?”
Smiled my father 
and said
“Did not you listen,
they are going to heaven,
call the goddess then,
‘come goddess dear’
we all are ready with paddy flower.”




Curious was my face,
“Papa, then?”

“Goddess will arrive smiling
her feet will be here
there
everywhere.
Seeing a pot in her hand
all those paddy flowers
delighted, will open their mouth more wider
and life will be poured…”

“Where these flowers come from?”

Remained my father smiling
speaking all his mind
looking high at sky
asked me to see there
spoke he again.

“Rain, rain, kind monsoon rain
on the first day of its shower
kind rain would ask me to come here
with bagful of paddy seeds,
‘let seeds be spread all over,
let its eternal relation with soil
be the fertilizer’
when all said is done
waiting rain 
starts showering its kind
make visible hiding life in the abyss of seed.
Happy wind changes color
being green all around
waits for the day
when the wind would smell the scent of paddy flower.”

Days passed by,
kind rain was still in waiting
sometimes hidden beyond horizon
or simply making sun blind with its smoky face
and whenever wind said,
‘Dry I’m now’
quenched the thirst.

Someday wind played naughty with sun
asked kind rain to make it misty
and with brushes of sun rays 
painted a rainbow on the face of east sky.


Wait was over
green field blossomed with flowers
and wind said,
“Fill in my heart
with scent of flower
I shall bring life…”

Happy was my father’s voice
“Rain, rain, kind monsoon rain
said so
green wind brining life 
did so
scent of paddy flower
is made so.
Bare footed be here
print your soul
in the dust of this soil
kind rain will come
green wind being there
life will be yours 
beautiful
simple
with the scent of paddy flower.”
           
             3
Cruel entropy

How old was I then
nine or ten
my father looked up
up to the sky
again and again
for a month long
only to see 
change of sky’s color
from the color of a summer day to a long humid night.
Dry wind cried at last
over my father’s sweating body
“Rain, rain O kind rain, where have you gone.”

One day sudden
kind rain came again.
Cried to my father
“Why no green wind came this year
from ocean 
to bring me here.
Desert wind why
dry my breath
seeds you have sown
how could I then
enliven with my rain.”

Question 
many question
my father had asked the rain.

Short-lived, hurried rain could spell its last breath,
“I am not that rain 
as was your friend,
I am the curse of dying forest
I am the ghost of all pollution
I am born out of acid weather…”

Who knew, it left for where?

My father cried 
As kind rain left him alone
hiding in a dry wind’s bone.

My father was still
going every morning
asking the soil
in vain
if soil could alone
make the paddy flowers to be born.

Year passed by,
came back the time, 
for green wind to bring kind rain.

Rain came one day.

But why
as a cloudburst
treacherous
roaring always
pouring unwanted
like an unkind monster
flooded misery
in the life of a simple farmer?
           
            4
Relinquishment

Dumb remained my father
for days together
sad was his voice at last,
“Run away, son, run away from here,
sky rain wind
river village land;
thread of this garland
who cuts it
go, stop now there hand.”

Draught and flood,
uncertainty of life 
changed my mind 
as of a farmer’s son.
Books, studies and education
reasons, truth and compassion
might have had fulfilled my father’s mission.

But… 
Does not this civilization
converts us 
as the products to do more production.
Run, run and run 
run ahead of time
let be it, at the cost of inhaling killer tension,
stress taking  over your life.
Insomnia, cholesterol or cynicism
is our success’s companion? 
‘A’ is shaped as ‘B’
and ‘B’ is sold as ‘C’.
Modification
innovation
sophistication
but I found the basic
what it remain
as life’s supreme conviction 
‘simply a fist full of paddy
and its grain’.

             5
Scent of life

So here, I am again
standing in front of this green plane
searching for the shadow of my father.
Green wind surrounds my existence
I can see the dance of those bunches.
My mind whispers to my ear
echoes those words of my father, 
“Bare footed be here
print your soul
in the dust of this soil
rain will come
green wind being there
life will be yours 
beautiful
simple
with the scent of paddy flower.”

I never felt so,
what I smell now 
is the scent of paddy flower.




















Long poem by Poetryof Providence | Details |

APOLOGY

You spoke of Love in the kingdom to come
Where the works of hatred would be undone
you bid your disciples to follow whats true
to demonstrate its power in the actions they do
 
But I have seen injustice
      In the congregations of God
they have castigated children
with verbal tirades           they did flog

committed vicious slander
and the innocent             threw away
refused to hear their lack of justice
and those who tell the truth                they slay

But these actions are not hidden
from our King                 God has given throne
those of us who’ve seen it
our thoughts to him          have shown

His retribution will not linger
with his army he arrives
expose he will oppressors
those who                       cover deceit with lies
 
They profess to be disciples
of the Christ and Father Jah
but the errors                   of injustice
have trespassed the Love that’s law

Into the sanctuary
          I have sent this word
that like prayers of incense 
their cries and tears           be heard

At the house of God there’s punishment
until true mercy            we can learn
willing to          investigate the truth
and its advocates not spurn

You have practiced Law and Judgment
the child of God             you did not see
you interpreted the scriptures
and pronounced his children          unworthy

I have trouble understanding
those who lift             your eulogy
so easily destroy their kin
blame not themselves              as ungodly

Its always someone                 else’s fault
not the things you did or say
you couldn’t possibly            be the reason
that from the “truth” they walked away

When you stand before the throne of God
will they judge                  your actions clean
all the thoughts that you committed
will prove you kind                  or mean

I can only say to you 
I saw your                 justice taken away
my own afflictions and slander
paralyzed my voice             that day

Even now to late in time
their judgments I do fear
they’ve spent their time             convincing me
my perception is not             clear

But I have spent my time
considering             the instructions in your word
their placement in        my heart and mind
and my pen has proved I’ve heard

to those youths       I’m still connected
you’ve remained in mind and heart
I’ve considered what you experienced
and I know                it’s origins start

Not all of us              who worship truth
will condemn your walk away
those who expose their heartlessness
before the throne will pay

I only hope you              remember
those of us    who cherished you
If I could manipulate nature
none these things               would you go through

I want you to remember
that’s whats broken         and with flaw
have difficulty executing
the perfection of cosmic law

I hope to see you           in the future
when you’ve considered my             digress
what you’ve experienced in life
is very difficult               to digest

The things that connect us
are more            than human skin
together we are the children
of the parents               who gave us sin

This is my apology
for you         whom I could not defend
I was suffering my own afflictions
which prevented           my love to mend

I have failed far to many
and on others can           lay no blame
unlike the power that controls the cosmos
my limitations physics             name

My complaints here             I have spoken
but the threads of them            are true
they are laid before the throne of justice
and our God and Christ            will see them through

Choose to invest in excellence 
but these are traits          that you must learn
to humans they come            not natural
your inclinations             they will confirm

From your introduction             I have loved you
and to my thoughts have given voice
but your own road                    you must travel
and free will               is yours of choice

Only one thing          can fill whats hollow
a majestic gift       from Christ and God
that we “learn” to love each other
correct the inherited things          and flawed


Self justification (self rightousness) is a peculiar
trait among mankind ….and is significantly
emboldened when applying law and tradition
and distinctly visible among those who “practice”
religion , instead of “following the truth” like a
detective …….outside appearances can be so
deceiving, whats hidden and out of visions
range the guilty are not just catholic and protestant
those who abuse the truth have always sat
right among Gods own chosen people ….

 
Luke 17:1-4

COPYRIGHT © 2011 C. Michael Miller
via Duboff Law Group LLC


Long poem by Robert Candler | Details |

The Sooner Recruit

Fifty years, boy and man, I’ve been a Sooners fan;
And watched thousands of recruits try to make my Sooners Team.
Often, I’ve enviously wondered what it must be like
To be a touted Sooners recruit, living out his dream.

He’d had a great career through high school;
Made good grades, was a football star, played baseball too.
Coach said college recruiters were watching closely;
So, he tried his very best to make his dream come true.

You see, he’d played on the L’il Sooners as a kid;
Started getting serious about the game when he was only eight
Played with older, bigger boys and practiced hard;
Always told his friends, “To be a Sooner, ya gotta play great”.

Oh yes, his parents raised a football player;
And, even more important, a Sooners fan;
But he wanted more, to be a Sooner,
To feel the glory raining down from the stands. 

Now, the Sooners’ Head Coach is in his living room.
“Son, you’ve got talent.  We think you fit our scheme.
We’re offering you a scholarship, an opportunity
To be an important member of our great Sooners Team”.

His mother smiles her biggest smile.
His father nods proudly and pats him on the knee.
“Lord knows, son, it’s a dream come true.
Go be the very best Sooner you can be”.

He walks into the locker room,
Not quite sure what to expect;
But sure that to play for the Sooners
He will first have to earn respect.

He looks each man straight in the eye - 
Other recruits, trainers, assistants, and every coach.
“Be proud, but respectful”, his mother had said;
Your character, more than your performance, must be above reproach”.

His handshake is firm and he smiles.
“Only one chance for a first impression”, his father had said;
"Always put yourself in positive light, on and off the field.
That’s what it will take to play for the mighty Big Red”.

He meets so many other recruits, each one a high school star.
He’s played against a few and knows they share his dream.
And, to a man, each knows before any chance for Glory,
He first must prove worthy to play for this Sooners Team.

He knows a few will fail to meet the coaches’ expectations.
For some, the scout team will be their fate.
Many will suit up, but rarely play.
Only the very best will ever dare to be great.

Coach says, “If every man learns and executes when called on,
Then this team, we Sooners, will win a lot of games;
But, win or lose, if you play hard and give your very best,
You’ll never have to hang your heads in shame”.

“But gentlemen, with or without you, this team will win.
Every season, the Sooners strive to win it All.
So, listen, work hard, and prepare yourselves.  Each game is war...
And you must be ready when Victory calls”.

Through grueling practices, he finds himself.
As he walks to class, his closest friends are aches and pains;
But, just the other day, Coach helped him up, smiled, and patted his helmet.
“You’re doin’ fine, son.  Keep pushin’.  Remember, no pain, no gain”.

He sees his name on the "open scrimmage" roster for the very first time.
It’s a moment he’ll never forget, another milestone in his dream.
He calls his Mom and Dad, knowing they’ll tell his family and his friends.
He hopes they’ll actually see him play, proof he’s made the Team.

As he suits up for the last pre-season open scrimmage,
He wonders if the coaches would really let a freshman play at all;
But Coach puts him in for eight plays against the first team;
He makes two great open-field tackles and intercepts the ball.

He barely hears the roar of the crowd, as the whole defense “gives him five”.
He’s so excited, he forgets to ask if he can keep that ball.
Fans are buzzing, “Did you see that hit”!?  “Who is that kid”!?
“Will he red shirt or will Coach let him play this fall”? 

He sees his name in the Sunday paper, hears it on local sports.
He’s happy, but he doesn’t let it go to his head.
He keeps his focus and uses it as motivation.
After all, he wants to start one day for the mighty Big Red.

Yes, we’ll hear more of this young recruit.
Perhaps, one day he’ll be the hero of the game.
A seasoned veteran, maybe All Conference or even All American,
Who’s tasted Victory many times and helped glorify the Sooners’ name.

Oh yes, there have been so many who’ve aspired;
But many fewer who’ve actually made our Sooners Team.
They are our heroes, each and every one;
For it’s through their accomplishments, we fans can live the dream.

Billy Vessels, Steve Owens, Billy Sims, and Jason White,
The Selmons, Little Joe, the Boz, Josh Heupel, and “Q”
They, and so many others, were once touted Sooners recruits;
Who set a higher mark and built the Tradition that is OU.

So, c’mon! c’mon! all you great young football players!
Dedicate your talents to OU’s Team and OU’s Fans.
Make Oklahoma’s Owen Field your Field of Dreams,
And feel the Glory raining down from the stands. 


Long poem by Anthony Slausen | Details |

Rouging of the Lamb

        Sweet Mother of pearl
struck a ruby eyed reef 
then quickly sank into the deep,
just shy of the cay of life. 
Don't remember much about her,
those that did have long since blown away,
daddy  never had much to say... about the sinking.
Ancient pictures tempered fawn curiosities..
whispered to me that she had sunset red hair
a mother of pearl smile..
diamond chips set deep in lonely eyes...that's about it
    
 Soon after the sediment of death settled,
         "wrecking ball mom"
swung into the salty blue mix... 
Daddy must have been moon rock lonely
because he only waifed the soft, silky pretty
not the pyrite hearted 
soul licked
by cold, cold fires....
     A much to young, to cuddle a half orphan, kind of bride.
In public her voice cooed ,
"I'll buoy your little sinking heart,
with a million butterfly kisses
chocolate chip all your wishes"...
but in private
she plotted, with steely strap, to carve a granite man 
from a wandering lamb,
who never really needed carving 
only a little gentle kneading
on the potters wheel of life and love.
     I spent a healthy wedge of childhood 
treading a rolling ocean of dorsal fin coldness:
cutting a backyard full of weeds 
with a pair of rusty hand shears,
rescuing favorite toys from the garbage can
staring into plates of things I didn't like to eat.
like asparagus my least favorite "anti-treat".
Everyone would drift into the living room
to frolic away the evening
but I was chained to her electric chair... 
gazing into a saucer filled with green devil spears..
At times I sat so long the food would harden 
into the face of  mother of  pearl, 
her sweetness trapped between rows of bitter things.. 
a gone forever kind of look in our mutual deadened eye.
    Most of the time wrecking ball mom won the food battles. 
Rarely did the boy under the sink come out on top.
One night I'm sparring with the devil spears... again,
deciding on a whim, to slide them under the table, 
into the willing jaws of my beagle friend.
Chalk one up for the half orphan...right?....Not so fast.
The next day I shuffle home from school...
wrecking ball mom is frothing in the doorway,
wants to show me something..
She quickly leads me under the kitchen table
and to my ,deep green, horror..
there lay a small forest of day old asparagus..
Seems this is the one thing my best friend didn't care for.
This is when I was first introduced to 
wrecking ball's wicked handiwork,
that would often rouge the face and back, 
but cunning enough not to crease or crack the lamb.
wham...wham... 
I saw "hitting stars" for the first time,
wham.... wham.. 
I swear a cluster of explosions went off inside my head..
Carving a man out of a paper lamb 
was a long and painful sort of task.
In a way I felt lucky because, for a moment, 
I thought she was going to rub my nose into the regurgitation, 
Just like the time she rubbed the nose of my best friend for pissing up her new bride carpet.
By the way, daddy (the swing shifter) was oblivious to these rougings ...
its ok daddy your fully forgiven for wearing that rose colored hard hat,
we all must wear it at some point in time-to deflect the offal of life.
       Anyhow, that was many years ago...
doesn't really matter anymore,
I've outlived a few best friends.
the wrecking ball's backhanding and black belting days are over. 
She's silver headed and soft as a plate of over cooked veggies...
Every time I visit, I fantasize about rouging her...
wham- wham
until she sees that same pack of hitting stars...
wham- wham until she cracks...
You know, carve an old step bride 
into an under the sink child.
rub that nose in yesterday's piss in honor of my best dead friend.
Unveil those wrinkled whips disguised as mommy hands,
for the whole rosy eyed world to finally see.
but that fantasy will forever go unfulfilled...god willing..
So instead I offer her an atlantic ocean-cold hug instead.
just like any good, semi-forgiving step man would do.
        
Now, I'm heart deep 
in the meloncholy mist of fatherhood..
To this day, I won't touch asparagus
and 
never never 
rouge the lamb- 





Long poem by Ray Dillard | Details |

When We Were Young

When We Were Young He left for work each morning, Wearing steel-toed boots and a tin hat. He took long strides that were three times The length of mine. In one hand he carried a lunch pail and a thermos. The other hand was empty, Like his wallet. Bye-Bye Daddy! He returned each day with the smell of oil Embedded in his clothes. Down the grease and gravel road We watched him as he strode. We ran to meet him with the football in our arms. “Won’t you kick it for us Daddy?” “Would you kick it for us,,,please?” He’d take the ball and punt it in a long, high spiral. By the time we could go get it, He disappeared to take his shower. In the house, Mama was cooking. Daddy liked to eat at five. A roustabout worked hard And he had quite an appetite. Once, we took turns wearing His greasy boots and bright tin hat. Mama took our picture. It pleased him to think that Someday we’d fill those monster boots. For now, we looked like clowns. We all laughed. On Sunday we’d go to church Where Dad taught teens the golden rule. He tried to be an example They could follow. He didn’t claim to be the perfect Christian. He was however, The model we all followed. On Sunday afternoon, dad went to the package store To buy a cold six-pack. When he came back we’d meet Him at the door with hope The sack held something more. If we were lucky, and he had the money, The sack might hide a Sunday Treat. Each night after we’d all been fed And showered, we watched TV. Sometimes we’d run hot water for Dad To soak his feet. We scratched his back and massaged his head with Baker’s Best. Then, off to bed. Nighty Night Mama! Nighty Night, Daddy! Sometimes a hug, sometimes a shout We went to our room and Turned the lights out, Pretending we were ready to sleep. We played roller derby and hid under the covers Hoping the big, bad wolf Would never find us! We told stories and laughed and giggled. Then one would poot and We were all in trouble. Daddy would say, “I’m bringing the belt!” Then he’d give it a jiggle. He kept it close to the bed In case it was needed. When morning came, we hurried to dress. Mama was in the kitchen. Scrambled eggs and sausage waited. Bacon, when we were lucky. Toast and milk were staples. Sometimes we ate wheat puffs, Malt-o-Meal or rice. We walked to catch the school bus No matter what the weather. Sun, rain, sleet or snow Out the door to the bus we’d go. No! It wasn’t uphill both directions! It wasn’t always fun, But, I did live to write about it! We wore wet clothes until they dried And still made A’s on every assignment. We walked on ice and sleet so slick The cattle slipped and fell. Then we’d laugh and fall. Somehow we survived. We lived through it all. On Friday night’s we’d sing, “Our boys will shine tonight, Our boys will shine.” We could see the football lights from the house And couldn’t wait for the game. The Warriors didn’t always win, But, we never missed a game. “When the sun comes up, ‘Til the moon goes down.” “Our boys will shine.” Saturday was wash day. We loaded up the car and went to the laundry. Sometimes we went to Grandma Bessie’s to wash. One load at a time, it took all day. We had to be quiet so we didn’t wake Uncle James. Once, Ralph rolled my hand in the ringer! That woke James up! I remember Mama… Always cooking, Always sweeping, Always washing dishes, Always cleaning the laundry, Always helping with homework, Always counseling, and Always pregnant! She taught us how to work When she bought a sack of nails And showed us how to drive them straight. She made us pull the bent nails And straighten them So we didn’t waste a one. We drove the sack that day And had a lot of fun. Mama taught us discipline And patience As well as dedication And love. She expected nothing in return. Her fortune Was our love, when we were young. Now years have past And Dad is gone, He leaves five men to carry on: “Stand tall, stride long and Dance to no one else’s song.” Mom, the Matriarch left alone, Rules a vacant, empty home. She waits to teach one final lesson And all the while remembers… When We Were Young.


Long poem by Verlena S. Walker | Details |

QUANDARY

Opening the window for a breeze… Dogs are barking!  My mind is only on me.  Relaxing…  As my story of the day unfolds, someone knocks.  Startling me, I hurry to the front door.  There stands an image of long-ago.  We hug and I let him in.  I begin to remember how deeply in love I was with this man.  But our destinies had to part and I left with my heart.  We talked for hours.  No intimacy transpired between us because we knew our lives was not fair to us and therefore, we did not desire any closeness.  Just reminiscence of tragedy we had went through for healing purposes on this three-year Anniversary.

***

What happen?  You may ask.  This is the tale as is.

***

His mother desired to be me.  So she set out to steal my identity.  In darkness she laid in our bed waiting on Ted.  A man entered the room and she presumed her man had come home.  Voicing that she was there, my stalker shot her three times in the head.  The bullets were for me.  In irony, she had really stolen my identity.  He shot himself as well ending my dilemma.

The police came on the screen afraid that it was me.  Ted and I played it off.  He had told me his ordeal with his mother as a teenager.  He was the star athlete at our high school.  His mother was unstable and desired him for her sex tool.  She will explain that this would keep them close but he could not tell anyone.  His grandmother, on his father side, had filled Ted in on his mother family history of incest.  Ted figured he did not want any part of that mess.  So he asked his father could he live with him but he also keep in contact with his mother because of his sister and brother.  His father said yes to Ted and asked his other kids did they want to live with him as well.  It so happen that his sister was close to their mother and his brother was also.  So they said no.

Ted graduated from high school as valedictorian of his class and his body was explosive.  Ted was fine as he could be.  He now could communicate with his mother without her approaching him for sex.  He had not told his father of this instead he kept this to himself.  Nevertheless, his mother, in secret, still desired her son.

Ted and I started dating in high school.  I was familiar with his family through us living in the same metropolitan city; however, not in the same community.  We end up going to the same university in the city we lived in and our relationship flourished.

We moved into our apartment while we were in college and his mother use to come over.  And now, three years later, we remember the tragedy.  Ted cries out to me and I answered.  We are bonded by our relationship but not by marriage.  He has successfully conquered his demons and mine's disappear on that night of my stalker death.

Ted mother was wealthy and I knew that she only was nice to  me because of Ted.  The police discovered she had paid my stalker to pursue me as his prey.  Ted has been told this as well and he stated that is why his mother is dead in which he says quietly to himself, “This ends this horrid tale.”

[Queasy Queen Beings and they do not know anything of it. Ted is Queasy Queen’s son and he has her powers. He would have acquired his mother’s powers without help, which would have been through incest before forty (40). However, incest did not happen between Ted and his mother, Queasy Queen; therefore, he will acquire her powers at the age of forty (40) via other means.  His sister and brother have theirs but did not divulge because there mother had explain theirs to them when she bestowed.  Telling Ted’s sister, Harmony, at ten (10) years of age what she was doing as she assisted her in getting dressed. she kissed her neck. Telling Ted’s brother, Destine, at fifteen (15) years of age, when he was leaving why she kissed him.  Incest was only for Ted because he was the oldest and her first born.  His grandmother on his father side knew nothing of this because she was human and disagreed with incest openly.  More so, this was unheard of through entities of the government.]


Long poem by Katie Pukash | Details |

She Hulk

When I was a child I only ever wanted to be strong.
I wanted to be able to compete with the boys
and when I foot raced them at recess I won every time.
They called me ‘She Hulk’ because of my muscular frame
and from the way I only ever wore soccer t-shirts and sweat pants.
After that nickname was implanted into my brain like a growing weed,
I’ve only ever wanted to be feminine.
I started wearing skirts and dresses 
and in middle school they shrieked at the site of my makeup and done up hair.
But that weed inside of my mind only grew, and grew, and grew
until I became a mixed drink cocktail
with one part anorexic and two parts lonely,
because I thought that the definition of feminine began with the word frail.
No one ever realizes how greatly words affect us,
how a simple nickname can turn a pretty girl into a skeleton.
I stood at five foot two weighing seventy nine pounds,
so cold and frozen,
yet I still considered myself a ‘She Hulk.’
You could see my ribcage through my t-shirt
and my spinal cord protruded loudly through my weathered skin,
as if somehow my bones were dirty knives
just trying to cut through the flesh of judgment.
As I grew older I became the girl that was never enough.
Not good enough to speak poetry.
Not good enough to lay paint on a canvas.
Not good enough.
Not tall enough.
Not big enough boobs for them.
Not primped to perfection.
Not undeniably straight.
Not smart enough.
Not dumb enough.
Not ditsy enough.
Not cool enough or fun enough.
And I began to believe, too, that I wasn’t enough.
I never told my mother that I had been in madly in love with a girl.
I never told anyone about the night we first kissed 
because I was too vulnerable for the judgment.
And parents always justify saying that ‘kids will be kids’
But when we are kids our brains are still growing
and the smallest of seeds that get planted will one day bloom
into one giant regret,
will one day affect the choices that we make,
will one day influence us about the clothes that we wear,
will one day shape us into the person who we thought we would never be.
I only ever wanted to be strong,
and as a child I thought strength was only about being able
to lift a bar stool above your head.
I thought that strength was only about being able
to beat the boys in bare foot running races.
I was told that strength was something only
a man could have.
But as I’ve grown older I’ve realized that strength
isn’t about muscle at all,
but it’s about weakness,
and the ability to overcome the social anxiousness.
It’s about carrying around a lifetime of baggage
on your broken back
because the ones that kicked you when you were down
are going to be the ones that were  ultimately wrong.
I thought that the definition of woman 
began with the word disappointment.
And I became a mixed drink cocktail
with one part freedom
and two parts Sailor Jerry
because every girl needs a stiff drink once and awhile.
We are not disappointments.
We will never be the ones who gave up on hope.
We will never be the ones who gave up on each other,
or god,
or our mothers.
We will always be enough;
enough for the ones who shunned us 
enough for the ones that cursed us
enough for the ones the hurt us
and destroyed us
and beat us when we were covered in bruises.
But you see, bruises fade
and the scars of our flesh are only stories
things we have overcame
and there are things out there that we will overcome.
When I was a child, I only ever wanted to be strong.
I hid my vulnerability.
I hid the parts of me that were true.
I never told my mother about my girlfriend
because I was afraid she wouldn’t understand,
kind of like all those people who never understood 
just how much words effect us. 
I can’t say that I can beat the boys at foot races anymore,
because, well, I smoke cigarettes now.
And I can’t say that the nickname of my childhood didn’t affect me.
But I take that name now and embrace it.
Because I am strong.
I am the ‘she hulk’.
I am a mixed drink cocktail
with three parts greatful.


Long poem by Brian Johnston | Details |

Whistling In The Dark

(A Rave By A Poet)      

Remember when you were a child? 
Adults seemed then to be in control, 
Almost like Gods, with special powers
That almost always knew
When you'd been up to mischief.
‘Playing with matches again Brian? '
What a childish view of things! Right? 
And my punishment, how perfect that was! 
‘After you've finished lighting two boxes
Of wooden matches, one at a time, 
You can go to bed, without your supper! '
Probably the best punishment I ever got.
I really couldn't believe my luck
But I was more careful after that! 

Of course mom's punishment didn't stop me.
Do you remember match guns, 
Made from 2 wooden clothespins? 
Oh, my God, what fun those were! 
A little carving with a kitchen knife
Reversing the spring on the outside, 
And some electrical tape was all it took.
Really made me appreciate man's genius! 
Hiding behind parked cars (a block from home)        
And shooting flaming missiles in the dark
At unsuspecting passing cars
And then running like Hell
On a preplanned escape route
When the innocent victim screeched to a stop
Jumped out of his car to yell at long gone villains.
Honestly, the 4th of July couldn't beat this! 

Carrying out the garbage every night
Now that was a chore made in Hell, 
Though better than the night pots
Our forebears had to deal with.
Wow, thank God for outhouses
But especially modern sewage systems! 
At my house the trek to the garbage can
Was a long hike, especially for a kid.
We burned trash in those days, 
There was no garbage pick up, 
And the can was hidden in an alley way, 
You had to go through a gate to get to it.
A big elm tree (that I loved in the daylight)        
Blocked even starlight and made the yard dark.
I always was scared so I'd whistle to and back
Praying that if a monster got me Mom would know, 
My whistle wouldn't stop without reason, 
That there was a chance at least of rescue, 
I think I was too scared though to test it out, 
I needed to believe that Mom would hear.

How insensitive the child is to adult problems.
But really how's a child to know
The tyranny of feeding a family, 
Of trying to secure an unknown future, 
Without a crystal ball, only prayer really! 
(Though with luck, maybe some common sense.)        
Parents, really are children grown large, 
Carrying their demons in a sack on their backs, 
Taking them out on occasion to play with, 
Hoping against hope that that's all there is, 
That some special Hell doesn't await them! 
Meteor showers that exterminate all life, 
Dust bowls, global warming, ice ages, 
A new Yellowstone blast that buries our cropland, 
A Canary Island tsunami that wipes out the East Coast
(A 2,000 foot wall of water now 50 years overdue) , 
Magnetic storms that destroy all electronic progress
That we've made in just the last fifty years? 
The universe may seem big
But there's really no place to hide.

The public school system, what a joke! 
More like twelve years of day care.
A football coach teaching physics, 
Latin the only language choice? 
(Sure opened up the world for me!)        
The most important job of our lives
Getting married? Sex? Raising a family? 
Well our parents were screwed too, 
‘Pass it on, no pass backs, joke's on you kid! '
You want to fix the problems of the world? 
Make politicians work for no salary or benefits
Let them shower us with their love of country, 
Eat cafeteria food every day (no wine) , 
Random armed guards monitor their calls.
Let's make teaching the highest paid profession
With teacher's tenure voted on each year
(Each kid two votes, parents one vote for both parents, 
Put power where it belongs baby.)        
Well this may not in fact be a poem, 
But it has sure been cathartic.
Hope my venting at least struck some chords
And was not a complete waste of your time.
May God save us every one!

Brian Johnston
April 18,2014


Long Poems