Long poem by
Mario DE PAZ | Details |
The day was going off, and the brown air
To the terrestrial animals gave rest
For their labors; and only me was there
Just ready to withstand the war at best
Both of the journey and of the torment,
Which by my mind will be rightly expressed.
O muse, o high genius, help my intent;
O mind which tried to write the things I saw
Here of noblesse you will show the extent.
I then began: ”Poet , that guide me and draw,
Look at my virtue if it has the power,
Before I try the high step with no flaw.
You affirm that Silvio’s father not this hour,
While he was living, to immortal place
Just went, and was with senses free to scour.
But, if of any evil the adverse base
Favored him, accounting the high effect
Which had to come from him, it was the case
Well worthy looking to any mind perfect;
So he was of alma Rome and its domain
In the empyrean heaven father elect:
Both city and man, for real truth sustain,
Were then chosen: Rome as the saint ground
Where of Peter’s successor must remain.
This going for praising him made it sound,
Things were achieved which allowed after then
His victory and the Pope’s mantle round.
Later on went the elected Bard just when
Had to give strength to the true belief
Which is the principle to salvage men.
But me, why should I come? Who gives motif?
I’m not Aeneas, and nor Paul I am;
On this is mine and others’ disbelief.
Because, if to come there I do not stem,
I fear that coming will prove I’m insane
You’re sage; that I don’t reason you should pram”
And as who wants what then has to restrain
Following new thoughts with proposal change
So that all things have to begin again,
Similarly I did it in that obscure range
Because, by thinking, I rapidly succeeded
In the way which at start was to derange.
“If your words I have correctly heeded”,
Answered the shadow of that noble man,
“Your mind to dastardliness has ceded;
Which many times man hardly overran
So that diverts him from any honored deed,
As when see vicious beasts wrongly you can.
From this alarm in order to be freed,
I’ll tell you why I came and what I heard
In the prime question to follow your need.
I was within the ones suspended herd,
When nice and blessed woman called out me,
Such as to ask hers commands I preferred.
Much more than stars hers eyes were bright to see;
Then to talk she started gentle and low,
With angelic voice, in hers language free:
“O gracious soul from Mantua shiny glow,
Whose worldwide fame power to stand has still
And long time shall last as the world will go,
The friend of mine, and not of venture skill,
In the desert space is hardly entrapped
So that he is giving up for scare thrill;
And I fear for him to be already flapped,
That the rescue from mine might be too late,
As far of him from heavens I have kept.
Now you must go there, and with your speech straight
And giving him what needed to survive,
Help him, I will be free of anguish weight.
I am Beatrice and your step I drive;
I come from where I want be back again;
Love, making me speaking, made me revive.
When I will be in front of my Lord main
Often I shall praise to him your valid soul”
She then got silent, and I had to explain:
“O woman full of virtue , who is sole
To fill for human beings any empty space
Of heaven, which of less rim has its bowl,
I like so much whatever is your trace
That obey, if it were, it would be late;
You have only to open me your case.
But tell me the reason why you took the rate
To descend down here in this dark center
From the wide site which you dearly wait”
“Since your knowledge wants so deep to enter,
Will tell you in brief” , she answered then,
“Why I don’t fear to bring here my mentor.
We can be afraid of things but only when
Show to be aggressive to others much;
If not, don’t fear, they cannot hurt the men.
I am a Lord’s construction, thanks God ,such,
As your wretchedness cannot now me hurt
Nor flame of this hot burning can me touch.
Heavenly woman to tears must convert
This very hard task where you I send,
Compelling her a judgment to divert.
She pleaded Lucia helpful commend
And told her: - Now your faithful man help needs
From you, and him I warmly recommend-
Lucia, opposing any misdeeds,
Moved, and rapid came where I was
With ancient Rachele already sitting.
She told:- Beatrice, true God’s laud and luz,
Why don’t you help the one who loved much you,
The vulgar herd so leaving for this cause?
Aren’t you hearing his painful tears undue,
Neither you see with death how hard his fight
Goes on the flood on which sea never flew?
Nobody in the world was rapid quite
To have a gain or a risk to escape
As I was, after such words I heard right,
I came down here from my blessed agape
Trusting your honest speaking good indeed
Honoring you and those who caught your shape-.
After these words to me wanted to cede
Hers shiny eyes than moved weeping with tears
Which pulled me to come with greater speed.
And I came here then following hers cares:
I took you off from facing up that beast
Which you to climb the hill impeded airs.
So: what happens? Why, why aren’t you released,
Why such cowardice in your heart admit,
Why your courage and baldness are not pieced,
As on three blessed women you can commit
Who care take of you in the heaven court,
And so much good I’m talking to transmit?
Like little flowers in the night chill fort
Are bent and closed, after white sun light,
Suddenly all open their stems are sort,
Similar I did with my tired virtue slight,
And so good boldness in my heart then came,
That I started speaking as I was all right:
“Oh indeed piteous and helpful dame!
And you that soon accepted hers request
With the true words which proffered in my name!
You have my heart with such desire stressed
So much to join you according your talk,
That my previous purpose I reassessed.
Since we have the same will, then start to walk:
You leader, you lord and you master main”.
So I told; when pace started to unlock,
The path I entered savage and arcane.
Long poem by
Mario DE PAZ | Details |
So bridge to bridge, of other things speaking
Of which my comedy does not take care,
We walked; and reached the top, when seeking
For watching the next slit, then we stopped there
Malebolge to see and crying vain;
And I saw it strikingly with no glare.
As the Venician dockyard attain
On winter boiling the tenacious pitch
To caulk their worn out wooden boats again,
Since these can’t navigate – differ by which
Has been renewed in wood and oakum has
In panels after trips with fixing rich;
Or who cares the prow, who the poop whereas
Someone oars builds, other wraps shrouds around;
Who mizzen and main sails mends as well as -:
So, not by fire but by divine bound,
Was boiling there down a quite thick mud,
Which soiled the bank everywhere on round.
I could see it, but in I saw no dud
Else than bubbles which for the boil came out,
And all swell, and deflate as a tide flood.
While there down my eyes tried closely to scout
My guide, telling “Look at there, look at there!”,
Pulled me to himself from my place of stake-out.
Then I moved as man who acts to late bear
To see events which avoid is better
And who is strongly undermined by scare,
But, when he sees, to escape can’t fetter:
And I saw a devil black behind us
Running up the rock faster than ever.
Ouch how his aspect seemed to be vicious!
And how ruthless appeared his act to be,
With open wings and so light on feet thus!
His shoulders, which were superb as was he,
With both his hips encumbered a damned then,
And he of feet held muscles with no plea.
From far he shouted: “Malebranche again
This one of Saint Zita’s elders I throw!
Submerge him, since I go back to catch men
In that land where they much abundant grow:
But Bonturo, all barterers are there;
To yes, for money, they transform a no”.
Down he threw him, and on the hard rock bare
Turned round; and mastiff loosened was never
In so much hurry a thief to ensnare.
That dived, emerging upset however;
But devils who of the bridge had the top,
Screamed: “Here Holy Face can’t endeavor!
Here swimming like in Serchio is a flop!
But, if you do not want the bites of ours
Have care for any emergence to stop”
Then beat him with many whips and bars,
Told: “For you is better that covered dance
So that, if you can, to steal empowers.
Not different from cooks who so enhance
Their aides in middle of caldron to dip
Meat with hooks, to avoid floatage advance.
The good master “In order that you skip
That you are here”, told, “you must crouch low
After a stone, so a screen you can grip;
And for offense to me any could throw,
Don't be afraid, already I learned,
Since the last time spent here I could know”.
Then he surpassed the bridge quite unconcerned;
And when he had arrived at the sixth bank,
Important was that all fear he had spurned.
With the same fury and with the same swank
Dogs come out against a coming poor man
Who help asks at once when he fears be yank,
Those so came out behind the bridge and ran,
Against him then directing their claws all;
But he shouted: “None of yours do harm can!
Before your hook could my body appall
Should one of yours come forward now and hear,
And then the clawing me should not befall”.
All screamed: “Malacoda must go, it’s clear!”,
So one then moved on – and the others stood –
And came close telling: “Why are you here?”
“Do you think, Malacoda, that I could
Show me when here”, my master replied,
If I had not to your attacks screen good,
Without divine will and lucky fate guide?
Allow us go, since is in heaven set
That I show to other this savage side”.
At this his pride was so hardly unset,
That he let the hook to fall to his feet,
And told the others: “with no hurt we let”.
And then my duke to me: “Oh you that seat
Well crouched down here between the bridge stones
Safely now with me can the way complete”.
By which I moved to him fast to unknowns;
And devils came on forward then them all,
So I feared the treaty fault in my bones;
Same way I saw the soldiers, I recall,
Come out from Caprona after the pact,
Seeing many enemies to appall.
I got me close with all my body packed
To my duke, the eyes well fixed with no turn
Toward their appearance making me racked.
They moved down their hooks and then “His back stern”,
Telling each other, “we ought to touch?”,
And answered: “Yes, I would do, no concern”.
But the devil who spoke that way such
Before with my duke, turned back very fast
And told: “Scarmiglione, to stop you must clutch!”.
Then told us: “Beyond you cannot go past
This rock, because it is completely gone
Just to the bottom the sixth arc at last.
And if going on you like as was drawn,
You now should go just up this cavern through;
Nearby you find a rock with new way dawn.
Yesterday, five hours more among now flew,
Twelve hundred and sixty six years ago
This way was broken while before was true.
To that end I send of my guys a row
To inspect if someone from pitch gets out;
Go with them, no bad behavior will show”.
Alichino, and Calcabrine come about”,
He started, “and Cagnazzo also you;
And Barbariccia will drive all-out.
Libicocco and Draghignazzo come through
Graffiacane and Ciriatto fanged hard
And Farfarello and Rubicante mad too.
Around the boiling lime you have to guard;
These ones must be safe until the next rock
Which as a whole over stands the sinners yard”
“Ouch, master, what is I see to unlock?”,
I told, “I pray, with no escort let go,
If you know how, I prefer alone walk.
If you are wise as normally I saw,
Do not you see that their teeth harshly gnash
And with their lashes bad intention show?.
And he to me: “I want you don’t abash;
Let them to gnash as much as they are sod,
Because they do so for the sores who splash”.
They turned along the left embankment odd;
But each first had his tongue to strict pass
Between teeth, toward their duke, as nod
And he had done loud trumpet of his ass.
Long poem by
Gary Bateman | Details |
Rosalia - The Evil Witch of the Harz, Part Four
Rosalia’s Date with Destiny and the Power of Light and Goodness
It is said that the Almighty Lord God works in very mysterious ways . . .
meaning that even an all-powerful witch like Rosalia had her Achilles’ heel, and could lose her sheen of invincibility in certain instances which date back to the earliest clashes between Good and Evil at the outset of mankind.
With her perfect cover working in a local village Inn near the Brocken, Rosalia could plan, plot and scheme her witchcraft activities at will
when meeting unsuspecting villagers and outside visitors alike—
giving her near-unlimited control in shaping the very course of events.
Fate would have it, however, that one event would challenge and alter Rosalia’s perfect cover forever . . .
One day a young girl—named Aurelia, who was barely 15 years old,
visited local village relatives while traveling near the Brocken.
Aurelia, who was quite intelligent and mature for her age was also a
close relative of the regional church Monseigneur, Wolfgang Augustus Hardenberg, and she was part of a traditional German catholic family.
Aurelia was a rare child indeed, endowed with “Heavenly Eyes”
from her eternal soul at birth which gave her a unique, unusual gift
of sensing and seeing the true nature of the men, women, and children
as they came into contact with her . . . without them realizing it.
Aurelia, with this fantastic gift, was truly one of God’s children,
and the antithesis of Rosalia and the incarnate evil she represented.
Aurelia’s family was fully aware of God’s favor on their daughter
and all of the goodness and light she shared with them in the family.
Aurelia was also quick study; she was endowed with an unusual ability to absorb, understand and remember vast amounts of information and detail.
And while attending religious schools, she demonstrated an exceptional proclivity early on for learning and mastering classical foreign languages.
Aurelia too was a centuries’ old soul like Rosalia, but whereas Rosalia embraced the Dark Side, and was the very manifestation of evil and debauchery;
Aurelia embraced the Light and Goodness of the Almighty,
and was one of God’s angelic souls destined to do his bidding in the continuous titanic struggle against Lucifer and his Dark World minions;
she was truly a “Princess of the Light” and a “Precious Child of God.”
With this in mind . . .
On visiting the local village Inn with relatives one afternoon for lunch,
Aurelia immediately felt the presence of a specter of evil and foreboding.
And this specter was, of course, none other than . . . Rosalia.
Beyond her perceptible sensing and feeling of pure evil,
Aurelia was able to make momentary visual contact with Rosalia,
and with her God-given heavenly vision glanced the true image of Rosalia,
which filled her at once with undeniable dread, fright and revulsion
at the terrible visage cast by Rosalia among her unsuspecting relatives.
Aurelia was in luck since Rosalia felt no reason to suspect her, thus paying no attention to the young girl with her relatives.
Aurelia’s God-given power shielded her from Rosalia’s attention,
at least for now . . .
From the encounter at the village Inn, Aurelia knew that some of her relatives were already marked by the witch.
After the visit to the Inn, Aurelia immediately informed her unsuspecting parents of the evil incarnate she sensed and discovered at the Inn.
Time was fleeting and quick action would be required to corroborate this event. It was already Monday, and on the upcoming Saturday, which was All Hallows’ Eve on October 31st, Rosalia’s Coven was set to conduct The Black Witches’ Sabbath in celebration of the Devil himself. This evil Sabbath event was done twice a year with the one preceding All Hallows’ Eve occurring on April 30th on the Great Sabbath of Walpurgis Nacht.
The preparation of the Black Witches’ Sabbath would include black rituals and both human and animal sacrifices with the invocation of the Vespers’ Prayer Preparation for Black Mass, followed by a 24-hour period of preparation by the Coven for its next attack on the local villagers.
Riding horseback to the Cloister Marten in the Harz some 20 kilometers away, Aurelia’s father traveled there with two close trusted friends to inform Monseigneur Hardenberg of Aurelia’s unexpected discovery of the infamous and evil Black Witch of the Harz known as Rosalia.
On hearing of the discovery of Rosalia and her masquerade in human form,
the Monseigneur instinctively knew that immediate action was required,
and that the very lives of the villagers and their eternal souls were in the greatest of peril.
An immediate meeting with his council of priests at Cloister Marten was in order; there was now a chance that Rosalia and her Coven could be finally
destroyed forever. This chance event had been a long time coming and the Monseigneur knew that they must not fail.
The Monseigneur also knew that God’s avengers must act smartly . . .
Rosalia was a virulent evil force not to be taken lightly nor underestimated.
Many priests and their parishioners had already succumbed to the Devil
and his Dark World of eternal damnation, courtesy of Rosalia.
The Monseigneur would need Aurelia’s help in finding Rosalia’s Coven,
and he realized that he and his priests must prepare for the greatest test of their faith, as they contemplated their plan to destroy Rosalia and her spawn of evil.
The Monseigneur understood all too well that to face down Rosalia was almost the same as facing the very Devil himself.
The Monseigneur and his priests must be swift in their vengeance against Rosalia in the name of the Lord, and that a second chance may not be in the offing.
End of Part Four
Gary Bateman, Copyright © All Rights Reserved, Schoeningen, Germany (September 20, 2014)
Long poem by
Mario DE PAZ | Details |
Already I reached the place where heard the sound
Of falling water in the circle next
Suchlike the rumble done by hives around,
When three spirits together changed their treks,
Running, out of an horde just passing there
Under the rain and of their pains effects.
Came towards us, each one shouting despair:
“Stop here you who by behavior look
One not belonging to this depraved air”.
Alas, the sores I saw their bodies took,
Recent and oldest, just burned by flames!
Recalling now again by pain I’m shook.
To their shouts my guide then offered his aims;
Turned his face to me and “should stop by now”,
Told “Courteous be to this people’s claims.
And if there were not the strong fire’s blow
Along this place, then I would certainly tell
That you more with hurry then them move so”.
Restarted , as saw us resting, to dwell
The previous words; and when they reached us,
All three around us stood in circle well.
Similar to naked and anointed champs,
Warning their catching and their vantage too,
Before they start their fighting with hand clamps,
So moving around, each his face through
To me moved, so that backwards my neck
Moved respect to feet continuous soo.
And “If the squalor of this place you check
Puts us and our prayers in so a bad light”,
Started then one, “and our aspect of wreck,
Our fame your benignant soul induce might
To tell who you are, so alive your feet
That with much safe you move in this hell tight.
This one, whose footsteps I now step and meet,
Although going naked and completely bold,
You can’t believe the high grade he could seat:
Grandson he was of the Gualdrade good so told;
Guido Guerra his name, and in his life
Made many things with sense and with sword hold.
The one who on my back with sand has strife
Is Tegghiaio Aldobrandi, whose speech
In upper world should be considered rife.
And me, punished with them for the same breach,
Was Jacopo Rusticucci, and sure
My fierce wife made me this hard pain to reach.”
f I had been covered by fire spoor,
I would have thrown myself underneath them
I feel that pain to doctor could procure;
But since I could be burned more than the hem,
It happened that such fear won my good will
Which wanted then give help to fire stem.
Then I started: “Not mischief but grief still
Your condition painful fixed within me,
So hard that only later all can spill,
After this my guide sir had to decree
Such words which made me to be convinced deep
That people as you are, I had to see.
I am of your same country, and so steep
Your works and too your honored names indeed
For bosom listened with my ears to keep.
I’m leaving gall to catch up more sweet seed
Promised to me by my duke who is true
To get through center is before my need”.
“If for a quite long time your life gets through
Your limbs”, then answered me again that guy,
“And if your fame after you will shine too,
Kindness and worth their lost dwelling cry
In our town as usually goes now,
Or have gone totally away thereby;
Because Whilelm Borsiere, who complains how
With us a while and then goes there away,
Much chagrin now to us his words endow”.
“New come people and rapid earning way
Generated proud and undue excess,
Florence, in you, so only cry you may”.
So I screamed with lift up face to express;
And the three guys, who took it as reply,
Then looked each other as to truth give stress.
“If all times costs so little to imply”,
All replied, “satisfaction to others,
You can be happy when some speaks of thy!
But, if you survive this place which bothers
Getting back the nice stars again to see,
When it will be worth tell “had togethers”,
Then make people to speak of us be free”.
After that broke the circle, and to escape
Wings resembled their slender legs to be.
Not the time of a word to tell with gape
When they had gone then vanishing away;
For my master decided to leave as scape.
I followed him, and after little way,
The sound of water was so close to us,
That it was hard to hear a word to say.
As that river which carries out his course
Before Monviso and to east then flows ,
Of the Appennine just on the left coasts,
Whose upper name is Acquacheta, close
To the final drop in the lower bed,
And at Forlì another name it shows,
Over Saint Benedict rumbles its spread
From Alps then falling in a chasm steep
Where even thousand rivers could be shed;
So, down an abyss just immense and deep,
That roaring colored water we there found,
A sound for ears hard a short time to keep.
I had a rope encircled me around,
And with it never at no time I thought
To catch the spotted panther as the hound.
After out of my chest I had it brought,
As had commanded the good duke to me,
And then I gave it him wrapped as he sought.
So then he turned to the right hand to see,
And far away from the bank with strong force
He threw the rope then down in the gorge free.
“To some new action I should give the course”
I told to me, “when next gesture is done
By master with his eye of message source”
Ow so much cautious must be men with one
Who even not seeing the works and how,
Still in the minds can see and wisely stun!
He told me: “Early will come here now
What I am waiting for and that you dream;
It is time he arrives and shows to thou”
Always the truth which false happens to seem
Man must avoid to tell as much as can,
Even without fault people reproach deem;
But here I can’t be mute; for the span
Of this comedy, reader, I now swear,
If it hasn't to be void of grace plan,
That I saw in that heavy and dark air
Swimming a figure just coming straight up,
Wonderful for any heart with no scare,
As goes back a diver after the drop
The entangled anchor sometimes to free
From rocks or other in the sea to grip,
Who up moves with momentum foot and knee.
Long poem by
Mario DE PAZ | Details |
“Through me you enter the city of woe
Trough me you enter the eternal pain
Through me you go to people lost below.
Justice inspired my highest factor reign;
I was created by act of divine,
Supreme wisdom and the first love as main.
Of all created things the first is mine
Unless eternal, and I eternal last.
Who enters here must any hope resign”.
These words in color of obscure contrast
I written saw on top of a big door;
So I: “Master, their meanings me harass”
And he to me, as guy with a shrewd core
“Here you must abandon any bad mind;
Of any cowardice must die the bore.
We reached the place I told you, so remind,
Where you shall see the people full of pain
Who good of intellect have lost behind”.
And when his hand on mine put to remain
With happy face, giving consolation,
Told me deep secrets in a fashion plain.
There sighing, tears, cries of desperation
Were filling all the air empty of light,
So I had to cry with desolation.
Strange sounds, screeches with horrible insight,
Painfulness words, furious rage tones,
High and hoarse voices, and sounds to incite
Were doing much noise, which there high intones
Throughout that turbid air for endless time,
As when swirl wind moves sand and little stones.
And since I had so wrong my own head prime,
I told: “Master, what is the noise I hear?
Which is the people here bummed in such grime?”.
And he to me: “This forlorn way of here
Assume the dreary souls of those men past
Who with no blot or laud a life had mere.
Among that evil choir are badly classed
Of angels who neither became barely rebels
Nor faithful to God, with selfishness vast.
Heaven to shun less beauty them dispels,
Nor can welcome them the deepest hell,
Since for no sinner are of glory wells”.
And I: “Master, what is so hardly fell
To make indeed them strongly to complain?”.
He answered: “Few words to you I will spell.
For these of death the prospect is in vain,
And their blind living is so badly low,
So that of any doom have envious brain.
Of their renown worldwide there is no show;
Compassion and true justice them despise:
Don’t care for them, look simply and go low”.
And I, looking, saw a flag of big size
Which run whirling around at such a speed,
That looked to me to stop unworthy guise;
And back was followed by a crowd indeed
Of people, which I would never believe
That so far a large amount was death’s deed.
After who he was I reached to conceive
I saw and knew the shadow of the one
Who mean refused his great role to receive.
At once my understanding was thus done
That it was the sect of those captives here,
Not pleasing God and his enemies none.
These evil-born who had never life clear,
Had naked bodies and strongly harassed too
By blowflies and wasps which were flying near.
So doing blood was streaming their cheeks through,
Which, mixed with tears, fell to ground at their feet
Where it was picked up by pesky worms not few.
And since I looked back for a view complete,
I saw people nearby a large stream;
So I told: ”Master, you now me repeat
So that I know who are and for what theme
They have to look ready forthwith to pass,
As I descry in this light lack extreme”
And he to me: “Clear will be things at last
When our steps walking we shall bring to rest
At the sad bank of Acheronte vast”.
With shameful eyes low looking at my chest,
Because I feared by speaking to bore him,
Silent to the river I was at best.
And came us towards of a boat aboard
An old man, white for his ancient hair,
Shouting: “ Woe unto you, oh souls abhorred!
You have no hope to see the heaven air
I come to bring you to the other bank
In the eternal dark, warm and cold scare.
And you right there, of living souls your rank,
Divide your path from these ones who are dead”.
But when he saw I was not moving flank,
Told me: “Different ways, and ports instead
You have to reach, not here, to freely pass
A lighter vessel conveniently will lead”.
My guide to him: “Charon, don’t you harass:
So is the will up there where is the sway
To reach the will, and put no more contrasts”
After the fleecy chicks calm had to stay
To the old pilot of the livid slew,
Who flames round his eyes had to display.
But those souls, which were weary and naked too,
Forthwith turned pale and started to chatter
When heard the meaning of words so askew.
Blasphemed God and their relatives latter,
The human beings, where, when and the seed
Of their seed pearl and of newborn scatter.
They then all joined and came compelled to cede,
Bitterly weeping, at the wicked bank
Deserved by any man of God’s fear freed.
Charon demon, has ember’s eyes with swank,
Moving to them, is now collecting all;
With paddle beats whoever sits or sank.
As leaves which faded drop down during fall
One after the other, until the bough
Sees all his spoils fallen to ground to stall
So the wrong seeds that Adam could endow
Themselves throw from beach one by one,
His nod follow as a bird to call now.
So they above the obscure wave just run,
And before they the other bank descend
Another new swarm on this side is done.
“My dear son”, then told me the master friend,
“The wretches ones who die in God’s disgrace
From any country here come to their end;
The river crossing are ready to face,
Because divine justice now them spurs
So that their fear deep desire must displace.
Here no a good spirit ever occurs;
So, then if Charon is to complain with you,
You ought to catch well what his speech incurs”.
And when he ceased, the land obscure to view
Trembled so loud, that owing to my freight
My mind of lather still perceives the dew.
The tearful ground created a wind rate,
Which suddenly flashed a vermilion light
Winning my senses knocking down my state;
And I fell down as man who sleeps at night.
Long poem by
Mario DE PAZ | Details |
That color vileness painted on my face
When coming back my duke to me I saw
His new squeezing inside much more took place.
He heedful stopped as man hearing to draw;
Because his eye could not reach much far more
Through the black air and too for the fog flaw.
“At end we have to win this battle bore”,
Started him, ”Unless…. Someone offered aid.
Oh how late is other reaching this shore!”.
I saw clearly well how he had to fade
His speech at start when he reminded then on,
Telling different words respect he made;
But not less frightening gave his speech gone,
Because I bethought the truncated say
Probably the worst unwilled sentence con.
“In this hard bottom of the mournful tray
Never is who descends from the first grade,
Which only for his pain no hope must pay?”.
I asked this question; and he “I’m afraid
It’s quite rare”, responded, “That among us
Be somebody who my same journey made.
It’s true that here I had one time to pass,
Conspired by that Eritòn cruel indeed
Who retrieved the spirits to their corpus.
It was recent that my flesh was naked freed,
When she allowed me enter through that wall
A Giuda’s circle’s soul to keep had need.
That’s the lowest and darkest place of all,
And the furthest one from the turning sky;
I know well the path; thus do not appall.
This swamp whose stench around is very high
Encircles the mournful town all around
Where to go without wrath now we can’t try”
And told me more, but memory I confound;
Because my eye attracted full my mind
Toward the tower burning top then bound,
Where toward one point were fastly aligned
Three hellish furies fully with blood stained,
Who had members and acts female defined,
And with greenest hydras looked like were chained;
Small snakes and sidewinders they had as hair,
So that their fierce temples were hard constrained.
And he, who well recognized their despair
Of the eternal weeping the wild queen,
“Look”, he told me, ”The wild Erinni scare.
This is Megera whose song is grim obscene;
Aletto is the one crying on the right hand;
Tesifon is in the middle”; and hushed serene.
With nails each one hers breast there wildly panned;
They stroke themselves by hands emitting cries,
So high that alarmed I held the poet grand.
“Medusa will make him of stone in guise”,
All of them were telling while looking down;
“Teseo’s assault we did not yet chastise”.
“Turn back your face and cover it facedown;
Because if Gorgon shows and then you see,
You could never go back to upper town”.
So spoke my master; and exactly he
Turned me back, and did not hold my hands,
Before that with his hands I covered me.
Oh you who have a mind which understands,
Admire the doctrine which is hidden here
Under the veiling of strange verses stands.
And was just coming up with waves’ smear
A din of noisy sound, so full of scare
That both sides were then trembling as for fear,
Not so different from strongly blowing air
Vehemently coming from opposite heats,
Which hits the wood and no defense aware
Breaks the branches, strongly strikes and out beats;
Full of powder goes on and full of pride,
Wild animals and shepherds to flee hits.
He moved to me and told: ”Your sight now guide
Up there toward that very old dirt grime
And look closely where that smoke is more wide.”
As frogs which seeing forward on time
The adverse snake in water away flee
Until each one is hidden in the slime,
I saw more than thousand souls very stray
To escape from one front to them whose pace
Was moving on the Stix in dry foot way.
He removed that sticky air from his face,
Roughly moving oft ahead his left hand;
And only looked jaded of that disgrace.
I perceived that from heavens he was planned,
And I turned to the master; and he made sign
To keep me quiet and bow to his command.
Oh how much to disdain looked to incline!
He reached the door and with a little rod
Opened it, which made no flak to resign.
“Oh by heavens expelled, folks dirty sod”
He started on the horrendous threshold then,
“From where does come this hubris of your squad?
Why do you kick against that will, you men,
To which nobody can cut off the end,
And many times hurted you in this fen?
What does it profit against fate contend?
Your Cerberus, if you remember, still
Now has goiter and chin to amend”
He then moved his pace toward the road ill,
And didn’t speak to us, as to appear
A man who aims to perform a strict will
More urgent than the one of people here;
And then we moved on feet above that ground,
Safer after the saint words and no fear.
We entered there freely and with no bound;
And I, having desire of looking more
The condition that fort tightens around,
As I was in, my eye turned to explore:
And I see everywhere a country wide,
Full of pain and of vicious torment sore.
As at Arli, where Rhone stagnant is tied,
As at Pola, to the Carnaro close
Which Italy ends and wets its coast side,
The graves make ragged all the site at most
So there in everywhere and part just made,
Except a bitter way was shown by those;
Because between the graves high flames stayed,
So that they were in full completely lit,
That fused iron would not require more grade.
Were all open the covers of any pit,
And so much mournful laments then came out,
That plain was dreary people to emit.
And I: “Master, of people tell me about
Who, buried in those arks now we there see,
With mournful sighing we can hear to shout?
And he: “Here the heresy-arks must be
With followers, of any sect, and much
More than you think in tombs are with no plea.
Similar is buried with being such,
And their penalties are hot more or less”
And when he turned right to go in touch,
We passed through the borders of that sad mess.
Long poem by
Trisha Sugarek | Details |
The Ash Can ©
I got the call on Sunday night. I was traveling on business. When I looked at the caller ID
I wondered why my husband’s boss would be calling me. I was unprepared for what
he told me and my legs turned to water when he said that my husband was dead.
‘A heart attack? An accident?’ I asked. ‘No’, he said, ‘John committed suicide.
They found him in your garage this morning.’ I heard someone screaming and
wished that they would stop so I could hear the rest. His voice was very far away
and the woman just kept screaming. ‘Shut up! Shut up!’ I need to hear. I clapped my
hand over my mouth when I suddenly realized it was me who was screaming.
I don’t remember hanging up or getting on the plane. (beat) Yes, John and I were having
problems and we had been separated for about three months but nothing was official.
After thirty years of marriage I never believed that we couldn’t weather this and share
the rest of our lives together. This was just a phase he was going through…some sort
of mid-life crisis. This had to be some horrible mistake, a case of mistaken identity.
My John would never do this, leave me like this. (beat)
I stumbled into our home around nine the next morning. The house looked like a woman
hadn’t lived there for months. Dirty dishes in the sink, groceries half put away, empty
beer cans and a full ashtray by John’s chair. Seeking comfort I walked over to his chair.
Out of the corner of my eye, I caught a glimpse of a reflection in the mirror over the
fireplace. Some wild looking woman with mascara smudges under her eyes and smeared
lipstick looked out at me. I walked closer to inspect this stranger in my house.
She looked old and used up. Who was she? What had life dealt her to look so worn out?
Oh, God, it was me. Staring out with those eyes bleeding hot, raw pain. (beat) I curled
up in John’s chair and closed my eyes. Was this all I had left of my husband? This slightly shabby piece of furniture that still smelled of him? How could I tell our children? Could I bear to go into the garage? What would I find?
I knew that they had taken his body away but what had they left there for me to see?
Maybe something there would prove that this was truly a mistake. I rose to my feet and
walked into the kitchen and through the laundry room to the garage door. (beat)
I slowly opened it and was knocked back by the remaining stink of gas fumes.
John’s car sat in its parking spot, the garden hose hanging from the back window like
some obscene snake. I gagged and pressed the button to open the garage door.
The passenger side window was open so I could look inside without having to touch the car. And what I saw on the seat told it all. There was John’s cell phone, an empty bottle of Vodka and a bottle of Excedrin. (beat) And something else…a second cell phone…what in the world? I was only allowed five seconds of blissful denial before it all came crashing down on me. The second phone…the secret phone that men who cheat keep to talk to their lovers. All those protestations he offered during the time that we were apart. ‘No, there was no one else’, ‘I just need to find myself’, ‘I don’t want a divorce’, ‘I just need some time’. ‘I love you; I’m just not in love with you.’ Lies, all lies! How could I have been so stupid? Then I notice a crumpled manila envelope on the floor of the car. Anger driven, I opened the door and picked up the envelope and the two cell phones and went back into the house. Sitting in John’s chair once again, I smoothed out the envelope and read what was written there.
‘Ricky, tell Sherry I love her. Tell Sherry I can’t live without her. Tell Sherry not to cry
for me. Sherry, I’ll love you forever. I’m sorry.....John-Boy.’ Who the hell was Sherry?
Did my husband of three decades kill himself over some tramp? Some other woman
whom he barely knew? I picked up the second cell phone and scanned the history of calls.
Where was area code 864? As I set the phone down my eye caught the partial title of
a book lying on the rug under the table. Picking it up, I read: ‘How To Keep A Long
Distance Relationship Exciting and New.’ I opened it to the first few pages and found an
inscription, ‘To my tiny dancer, until we meet again. Love forever, your John-Boy.’
My God, John, how could you? How could you do this to us? I yelled as I threw the
book across the room; will this hellish nightmare never end? (beat) I picked up the
cell phone and scrolled down the history; Sherry Hoffman, Sherry Hoffman, Sherry Hoffman, Sherry Hoffman. No other woman, huh, John? South Carolina…hence the long distance relationship…you’re such a fool, I told myself. There was voice mail saved and I listened to the most current ones. Those messages told a story of a married woman who had a son and a new grandchild.
Another sad, pedestrian story of a restless woman trapped in a loveless marriage but
unwilling to leave. The daughter-in-law apparently would not let Sherry see the child.
It seemed that John, in a misplaced attempt to help, called Sherry’s son to insist that
he let Sherry see her grand-baby.
Only to succeed in blowing up that family. The final message was not so sweet and
sexy from his lover. Sherry had dumped my husband. (beat) I didn’t know whether
to laugh or cry. I seemed to be trapped in a crazed, unbelievable soap opera. But what
is it that they say about truth being stranger than fiction? I sighed. John had always
wanted to rescue anyone in trouble…even when they didn’t ask for help. He had crossed
the line calling that woman’s son. Oh, John, what were you thinking?, I asked the empty
room. Didn’t you know? You were her dirty little secret.... (more)
(from my book, Monologues 4 Women)
Long poem by
Jack Clark | Details |
When I was young, and adventure routine,
With excitement and newness still unforeseen
I was eager to spread my wings to the world
And seek more adventures as those wings unfurled
Within my long travels I happened to meet
Two other men, with friendships replete
One was named Beckett, the other one Flynn
And better friends there never have been.
We’d been together, ‘t was our sixth year,
And still our adventures made us cohere
To every madness – to every rave …
Until we decided to enter: The Cave.
With our ropes and lanterns and other such gear
It was into The Cave we then disappeared.
The light from our lanterns speared into the dark
We spoke very little - made no remark.
We found a small dry spot and then we assessed
This was a place we could stop now to rest.
I set down my lantern, and took off my hat,
When Beckett said: “Hey. Did you just hear that?”
I moved not a muscle, and my ears went to strain.
All I could hear were cave droplets, like rain.
Then … from The Cave’s bowels came a loud din
I continued to listen – then heard it again.
We looked at each other, but said not a word
Confused and startled by what we’d just heard
It wasn’t a moan, it wasn’t a gasp
But more rather like a guttural rasp
Then from The Cave’s deepened black hole
Came again sounds from a source with no soul
The sound was menacing, and one I despise,
I watched the fear grow within my friends’ eyes.
Instinctively then, we three moved as one
In that instant – our re-ascent had begun
I had been last in the line coming down
But first in line in this turnaround.
The lamp on my hat pierced through the black
And I looked for our markers to lead us back
To save our strength, nothing was said
Again - that loud sound which filled me with dread.
Somewhere behind me, then snarls I heard
Loud and vicious, run together and blurred
Close … so close … the Beast was so near
Adrenalin rushed through me to react to my fear
‘T was then I was hit by an overpowering stench
My stomach turned and my bowels went to clench
The odor blew past me, and I knew t’was the breath
Of the Beast of The Cave – its’ stench of Death.
I was near running, but down on all fours
Sweat was streaming from all of my pores.
Then I heard those terrible screams
The ones I keep hearing in all of my dreams
It was Beckett I knew in his shocked agony
Midst the snarled snapping of jaws I can’t see
I heard bones cracking and squishing of flesh
And my fear within gave new strength afresh
My fingers were raw from grabbing the rock
But on moving forward my mind had its’ lock
My stomach still queasy from the stench of the beast
I knew it was finishing its’ beastly feast
I screamed: “Flynn! Catch up to me!”
But took not the time to look back and see
For the beasts’ crashing against The Cave’s face
Told me it neared – and was upping its’ pace
In less than an instant, Flynn was there too,
His face in my hat-light was of a strange hue
And as he helped me get back to my feet …
Flynn turned around – t’was the Beast there to meet.
The stench overwhelming, but the sight was much worse
There standing before us: The beastly curse
Of layered scales in shades of dark gray
The rest of its body concealed in umbrae
But its’ eyes … its’ eyes … I’ll never forget
Rheumatoid yellow, and deeply inset
Its’ reptilian lids blinked just one time
‘Fore its’ lips peeled back - revealing the slime,
Glistening yellow over dagger-like teeth
Then oozed from its’ mouth to fall there beneath.
The beast reared up, we then saw its’ claws
Sharp and deadly within its forepaws
Towering above us, no sound the beast made
On beams of our lights had his gaze stayed.
Unexpectedly Flynn then turned to face me
… With less blinding light, the beast could again see
Why Flynn had turned I never will know
For the beast bit him in two, at his torso
And I was looking at Flynn – direct in his face
When the beasts’ bite his life did erase.
I screamed, and instantly away did I run
Away from the beast, and dead companion
Through the price of Flynn’s life, more time had been bought
To reach The Cave’s entrance – the goal which I sought
I heard its’ clawed talons scraping the wall
And prayed I’d not again stumble and fall
Then, up ahead, a small opening I viewed
And I saw my chance, to hope there exude
Twelve feet … six feet … then it was three
But the beast and its’ stench was there behind me
I dove through the rock-opening, scraping my head
But better that injury than ending up dead
I was elated, and about to rejoice
I then heard a scream – it was my own voice!
In my leg erupted intense blinding pain
Looking down I saw the bloodstain
My leg, through the opening, still was stuck out
There was but split-seconds,’fore I’d lose it no doubt
I pulled my leg back, and in but a flash
My shoe was removed by a clawed talon slash
I crawled back from the opening, then I could see
My wound was deep, from ankle to knee
Then suddenly through the opening came
A clawed talon whose aim was to maim
I quickly withdrew out of its’ reach
As claws shot through the openings’ breech
The opening too small for continued rampage
And the beast began then to voice its’ outrage
Its deafening roars assaulted my ears
Echoed Cave chambers and to my mind did adhere
I began attending unto my grave wound
Knowing I now was no longer marooned.
Another two hours ‘fore I crawled out The Cave
And many more days ‘fore I’d shed the shockwave
Of what had transpired, and what I had seen
But my damaged leg was lost to gangrene.
Now sleep evades me, for my horrible dreams
Show beams of light, and unearthly screams
Of Beckett and Flynn and The Cave we were in
I know tonight, I’ll re-live it again.
So, now you’ve the story, you’ve heard the deed
I swear is the truth I’ve herein decreed
And Beckett and Flynn are enslaved in their grave
And I lost my leg to … The Beast of The Cave.
Long poem by
Isaiah Zerbst | Details |
The tears well up, and scarce could she not moan
When father, brother, husband, all have died.
She now has no possessions, neither home,
But travels to a distant, unknown land:
Once so secure, yet now compelled to roam;
Once rich in love, she treads through foreign sands.
Her weary feet move forward but by faith;
For all left to her name is mere belief:
Mind, heart so far away she seems a wraith-
Love, happiness- all taken by a thief.
When, sometime since, her heart had broke in two,
The path of life, once single, parted way;
Forsake she could, but this she would not do-
All else was gone- with mother she would stay:
"Intreat me not to leave thee," was her plea,
"For whither thou wilt go, there will I; pray
Forbid me not to follow after thee,
For where thou lodgest I would also stay:
"Thy people shall be mine, thy God my God;
And where thou liest, I will gladly lie
Beside thee, overhead the selfsame sod;
That even then thou mightest be closeby.
"And so they twain walk on, hand clasped in hand;
Both hold the only thing they yet possess:
The younger but a stranger in the land,
An enemy, a widow in distress.
She rose before the sun to find a place
Where she might gather barley ears and wheat;
A field where she might find some needed grace
To gather for their winter store of meat:
Then Boaz comes from Bethlehem, and see,
He tarries with the reapers of the wheat:
He comes to Ruth and says, "Hear'st not thou me?
Remain until the harvest is complete:
"Go not from hence, but in my fields abide,
And let thine eyes be on the field they reap;
Behold, these maidens thou may'st work beside,
And near the reapers thou may'st ever keep."
Then to her face she fell, and wond'ringly
Asked why to her, a stranger, was so kind;
And he replied that she unfailingly
Had cleaved unto her mother with one mind,
And left her father, mother, and the soil
Of her nativity, and kissed the dust
Of some strange land wherein she meant to toil;
Forsaking gods of Moab God to trust:
"The Lord," said he, "reward thee for thy deeds,
And recompense thy labour and thy love:
The God of Israel answer all thy needs,
And make his wings a shelter from above."
Then said the maid, "My lord, please let me find
Some grace and favour in thy blessed sight,
For that thou hast been friendly, spoken kind,
And I am but a stranger in the night."
Then Boaz said, "At mealtime here abide;
Rest in the shade, come, sit with us and dine:
So down she sat, a reaper on each side;
She ate her wheat and dipped her bread in wine.
Then Ruth arose, and to her work she leaves:
The master thus commands his servant men,
"Let this young maid glean e'en among the sheaves;
Rebuke her not, for she shall come again;
And let some handfuls fall onto the ground,
There let them lie for my sake and for hers
That she may glean and plenty may be found;
For reasons she has need of it are pure."
And as she worked, Ruth knew not what a sight
Of beauty and of diligence she made,
As in the golden field in sunset's light
She bowed her head and knelt as if she prayed.
It came to pass that in his fields she stayed
Until the end of barley harvest came,
When mother told the lovely little maid
To seek for his provision and his name.
She washed and dripped an oil filled with sweet
Perfumes of wild roses on her face:
She had not much; her beauty was complete
With but her finest clothes to seek his grace.
Her braided hair shone brighter than the gem
That never graced her soft and shapely form;
Her eyes, they sparkled brighter than the hem
Of gold and pearls that she had never worn:
Thus Ruth went down unto the threshing floor
Where Boaz winnowed barley till the night,
And peeked at him so shyly 'round the door;
She never let him leave her searching sight.
His workday done, the master ate and drank;
With happiness his heart was full when fed:
Then by a heap of wheat he went and sank
Into the furry robes that made his bed;
And Ruth, a while watching till he sleep
Kept vigil from a stone used as a seat,
Till when his eyes had closed and sleep was deep
She lifted up the cover from his feet
And softly laid her down and dreamed of brides
Until the watchman struck a dozen beats,
And being startled, Boaz woke and spied
A woman sleeping at his very feet:
"Who art thou?" queried he in sleepy voice;
"Thine handmaid, Ruth," was her unsure reply;
Then blessed he her for wise and kindly choice,
For passing poor and rich young fellows by.
"And now, my daughter, gladly shall I do
According to thy wishes, for all here
Consider thee as virtuous and true;
Howbeit, there is one to thee more near,
A kinsman who must duly have his say:
If he decline, then rest assured I will
Perform the part of kinsman." So she lay
Down at his feet, and both were quiet, still.
In grey of early morning she arose,
Before a face could be discernéd there;
To keep from what some people might suppose
And who might stand along the road to stare:
Then Boaz said, "Bring here the vail thou hast
Upon thy head and hold it in thy hand:
Six times the barley measure filled and passed
From heap to vail as much as she could stand.
Then Boaz went up to the city gate
To find the nearer kinsman, whom he sought,
To see if he would purchase the estate
Of Ruth, and she herself, but he could not;
So Boaz purchased all the widows' land;
The houses, barns, and fields, though overgrown;
And bought what pleased him most, Ruth's comely hand
To cherish and to make his very own:
Then Boaz went to find the handmaid, Ruth
And lift her from a servant to a wife;
To love her in all tenderness and truth
In every day God blessed them both with life.
[By Isaiah Zerbst. Published 9/7/14. Parts of poem have been removed due to soup's limitations.]
Long poem by
Mario DE PAZ | Details |
Simon wizard, you poor under his sway
That all things of God, which then of good will
Must be always brides, and you birds of prey
For gold and silver adulterate still,
Now it's time that the trumpet sounds for you,
Because you in third circle just stay ill.
We were already, at the tomb next new,
Clambered up to the tall rock at that place
Where is the center above the ditch cue.
O supreme wisdom, how great the art base,
Which in heavens, on earth and ill world show,
And how much justice your virtue can trace!
On the banks and on the bottom I saw
The stone very full with of holes a lot,
All of the same size and each well round though.
These seemed neither be of more nor less slot
Than those you found in my Saint John church nice,
Where the baptizers their faith office got;
One of those, few years ago imprecise,
I broke to help a guy just drowning there:
And this to testify truth and lie vice.
Out of the mouth of each hole leaned bare
Of a woeful sinner legs and feet too
To the belly, the rest down to the hair.
Both soles burned to all of them hitherto;
Their joints were strongly flickering so that,
They might be broken wacky as a screw.
Likewise the glowing of oily things fat
To move then up to reach the upper end,
So were there from the heels to tips just at.
“Who is that, master, who worries must send
Flickering than the others well much more”,
I told, “and whose flame has stronger its trend?”
And he: “If you like, we go to explore
Down there then to the lowest lying bank,
From him you can all about his sins score”
And I: “So I like , as you like and thank:
You are my lord, and you already know
That your will is mine, higher is your rank”
Then we arrived at the fourth bank below;
We turned at left hand and well down we got
Just to the narrow bottom riddled so.
Good master yet his side till end did not
Offer to me, and thus we reached this way
Where that one was crying with his foot hot
“Whichever you are, upside down then stay,
Mournful spirit who as a pole stuck are”,
I started, “If you can, your words display”
I stood like friar who confessing were
Perfidious killer, who, since stuck is,
Then asks him for death to stop his anger.
And he screamed: “Are you there erect faces,
Are you there erect , Bonifacius now?
For years about the writing he lied has.
If you then to be full of goods allow
For which you were never restrained from wile
To pretty woman, and then her torn sow?”.
I became as those ,who stay doubtful while,
Not understanding what herd as reply,
Almost confused, and no word is worthwhile.
Then Virgilio told: “To tell him try:
“That one I'm not, not the one you believe””;
And I replied to follow him thereby.
For this the soul his feet just ought to weave;
Then he, sighing and with a crying sound,
Told me: “So what you want from me achieve?
If to know my person you are so bound,
That you for this down the bank now have run,
Learn that I had the great mantle around;
Really I was of the she-bear son,
So greedy well my puppies to wind on,
That up and here my assets were done.
Behind my head are here the others won
Who me preceded in simony the sin,
To the crevices of the stones put con.
There I shall fall also when will come in
The one that I believed before you were,
When I first asked you with agitation.
But for more time fire my feet incur
And upside down longer I have been so,
Than he will be sticked with red feet spur;
Since after him then will come with worse woe,
From west, a minister with any law,
Such as is correct that he on me grow.
Novel Jason will be, of whom read raw
In Maccabees; and as to that was weak
His king, so to him whom France as king saw”
I don't know if I was with mind oblique,
Since I responded him just in this mode:
“Ah, tell me now: which treasure had to seek
Lord of ours to Saint Peter just before
Giving to the lordship of him his keys?
Nothing else rather than ”follow my core”.
Nor Pete nor others from Mathias seize
Gold or silver, when he arose by draw
To the place where his bad soul lost through these.
For this it’s right, you are damned by good law;
And now good care take of the money took
Which made you against Charles so proud with flaw.
And if I were not hindered by the hook
Of obeisance for keys so highest then
Which you held in happy life but mistook,
I would use even more hard words again;
Because your greediness makes the world sad,
Crushing good people and lifting bad men.
Of you Pastors the Vangelist known had
When woman who on waters takes a seat
As whore he saw with kings in a way bad;
That who was born with seven heads complete,
And from five horns had power great indeed
Til hers husband could to virtue compete.
You God of gold and silver could concede;
How differ idolaters then from you,
But that they pray one, and you hundred feed?
Alas, Constantin, how much harm could do,
Not your conversion, but that wealthy gift
The first rich pope of story you gave to!”
And while such notes singing I had to lift,
Either was bitten by conscience or rage,
Strongly both legs was pushing with strong shift.
I truly think much liked this my duke sage,
Since he attended with so happy face
The sound of words with truth I could engage.
So with both his hands me had to embrace,
And after he had at his chest all me,
He climbed back the way then leaving the place.
Tired to hug me he didn’t seem to be,
So he brought me up of the arch to top
Which from fourth to fifth bank is designee.
Here weight to ground he could gently drop,
Gentle respect to rocks dirty and steep
That would oppose to goats a severe stop.
Then I discovered a new valley deep.