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Long Truth Poems | Long Truth Poetry

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Long poem by Mario DE PAZ | Details |

Divine Comedy, second canto

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 Brian Johnston | Details |

Driving Alone Through the Sand Hills of Nebraska

My love is light (a fairy kiss?)          
               Like the pressure of sunbeams on your cheek, 
        Ineffable, and yet capable of changing lives…
		Darkening skin to a more attractive hue, 
		Pushing spaceships to distant stars (given time) , 
		Even causing cancer given sufficient lack of love for self.
        For love is not about just getting needs met by another, 
        No, love is more like a laser's coherent beam….
                For in reflecting back a portion of what is given, 
                The power of what is being created grows
                Until it can cut through the hardest steel
        And span the gulf between galaxies.

Poetry too grows through the cross-fertilization of newborn lines, 
        The lines of this poem insist that I record their birth.
 	        Each new line grabs me by the scruff of the neck, 
		       Forces me to hit the brake, grab my pen, 
		       And claim it in my family bible…
	        My only children, clamoring to be set in ink.
         As these Voyagers' pass into the present state of my art
                (Some that I barely recognize in their profligate parentage
	               Of older verse's new verse's newer verse still)          …
		               Somehow still carriers of my own genetic code.
                They press my design against the blank page
	                Flying in search of, homing on… your heart.
 
My love's intent is simply truth (do you want less?)          
	 Would you have me downplay 
	 	The warmth of our connection
                        Because it is complicated by here-to-fore
			        Unacknowledged passion, spiritual connection, 
			        And the remnants of former relationships
			        (Even those still gasping for breath) ? 
		        Or feign a lack of attachment to it's denouement
			         In a solitary attempt to feel safer? 
	 No matter can restrain the effects of gravity
		On the orbits of other bodies in its field of influence, 
		 	Gravity that binds us all in deep wells of space-time.

 Your kiss of greeting…
	After so many years of imagining such a possibility, 
	Imprinted deeper than even my memory of our first meeting, 
		Our moonlit shadows touching as we soaked naked
		In the steaming waters of a volcanic mountain spring.
	This new conjunction of souls occurred in God's clear view, 
		Without artifice or scheming on our part
			And rocked my inner core to it's depths, 
	Organizing molten currents of confused turbidity
	Into a magnetic flare of such intensity
		That iron flew to my spine
	Inspired me to finally declare my love
		To acknowledge your impact on my life…
	And after a period of gestation
		Gave birth to this poem of celebration.

 Back to Nebraskan reality and a new mystery…
	I pass an overturned car, 
		Its wheels tied by yellow police tape, 
	A metaphor for my life perhaps
		'Damaged but still salvageable.'
	The windows are broken out, 
		The occupants removed to a distant hospital somewhere
			(Hopefully arriving alive) , 
		Their odds and ends of life scattered like garbage
			On the inverted ceiling of their car.
	The explanation, perhaps, is the water still standing
		Several inches deep on the road side near the wreck? 
	A sudden orgasmic release of cloud in a desert….
		The car tops the hill to find the highway
			Buried by a lake of dimensions only God can know.
		Who would expect such a thing in Nebraska's sand hills? 

And what does it say about me finally
	That I am so drawn to distant objects, 
        That the two women given access to my heart are
		Both still tied to failed marriages
			By dark chapters I am not part of
			And innocent children who need their love? 
	And at our age where is the partner without a past? 

 Is this all that God has planned for you and me, 
	That we 'just miss' every thirty years or so? 
		I know there are times I am afraid to trust another's love, 
			Cannot even hear words of genuine affection.
		Perhaps this explains my attraction to women
			Whose availability might really be in question? 
		Maybe I'm afraid to let a real lover in? 
			Is the simple dream of love a better choice
				Than the chance of finding real love anew
				(Even love with an expiration date) ? 
		I think I'm more distrustful of my own heart's passion
			Than I am of women being unreceptive to my love.
		Do you struggle with similar feelings? 
	And is it my lot to only remember passion like this in a poem
		While you spiral away to unimagined rendezvous'? 

The coldness of space is not after-all
		The simple absence of heat…
	No, in human dimensionality it is more the absence of others…
		Others who both shine life force toward us
			And reflect our own light back to us, 
		Who collide with us physically and emotionally
			Altering our pathways forever, 
				And who crater the façade whose design
				We imagine belongs to us alone.
	The void of human space-time is a true 'black hole'
		Sporting only star death fragments of the 'Big Bang.'
 
This is all I really know…
	I treasure the memory of our 'fly-bys'
		Even if that's all they ever are.
	And if I'm lucky this joy, 
                This celebration of your existence, 
	Will continue to pour out of me in songs and verse…
		For your ears always (if I am so honored) , 
			For God's heart (as I was born to honor Him) , 
	And to the stars alone if I have only them for company.

Brian Johnston
August 2009
     
This poem, like 'A Walk Near Blunt, ' began during an actual drive from South 
Dakota to Oklahoma and then took on a life of it's own. These 'real life 
narrative' poems are part of an attempt on my part to give precedence to truth 
and content over form and rhyme. For readers with an interest in science, I 
hope you also enjoy my attempt in this and other poems to bring my love of 
Physics into the world of poetic imagery.


Long poem by Mario DE PAZ | Details |

Translation of Canto XVI Hell by Dante

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 |

Canto XVII Hell translation

“Here the fierce with the thin pointed tail,
Who passes mountains and breaks arms and walls!
Here who with stench can the world assail!”

So my duke started to talk with his calls;
And hinted then it to get the bank close,
Nearby to end of marbles and of falls.

And then that filthy image which fraud sows
Came close, and  just arrived with head and chest
But on the shore its tail it did not pose.

Its face was of the honest man at best,
So much benignant had its outer skin,
And of a snake was all its body next;

Two hairy gills it had to armpits twin;
Its spine and chest as well as ribs both too
With knots and wheels had like painted had been.

Vivid colors much overlapping do 
Neither Tartars nor Turks drapes never made 
No such canvas ever Arachne drew.

Likewise sometimes barges nearby shore stayed
In part in water and in part on ground,
And likewise there within the Germans strayed

The beaver prepares its war and to hound,
So the bad and evil fierce remained there
On stony rim of sandy soil around.

Its tail was flickering in void to scare,
Up twisting its fork poisonous indeed
Which armed tip like a scorpion unfair.

My duke told: “To modify now we need
Our pathway until we finally reach 
That evil fierce which there lies, careful heed”.

For this we down got toward the right beach,
Ten steps we did then on the limit rim,
The flames and too the hot sand to breach.

And when at end we arrived close to him
A little farther I see just on sand
People sitting near the site with no vim. 

Here the master “Now you have at hand
The truth about this circle in full just”,
He told , “go and their fate then understand.

Your reasoning way down there short be must,
Meanwhile you come back, I will speak with this,
So he will offer us his limbs robust”

So again up to the top of abyss
In that seventh circle now alone
I went, where sad people sitting exists.

Through their eyes the internal pain was shown;
Here, there defended themselves with hands
Now to steam, and now to hot soil of stone:

Not different are dogs in summer stands
Now with mug or with paw, when are bitten
Or by fleas  or by flies  or horseflies bands.

After I put  on some my eyes  smitten,
On whom the painful fire to fall saw,
No one I knew; but I saw as written

A pocket hanging from the neks to draw
With blazons and colors and well clear sign,
Of which they looked to be proud with no awe.

And as looking at them I joined their line,
In yellow bag I saw a sky-blue tint
Which of lion had face and clear design.

Then going to follow of sight the hint,
I saw another which was as blood red
With a goose that whiter exist didn’t.

And one who of a light blue sow well fed
Had his white bag clearly painted just so,
Told me: “How did you come in this ditch shed?

Now you can leave; and since you alive go,
Learn that my near Vitaliano still
Will seat then here at my left below.

These from Florence, I from Paduan mill;
So many times my ears are stunned nearby
From shouting: “Should come the sovereign will,

Who will carry his bag with three necks by!
Then he twisted his mouth and extracted
His tongue, as ox which nose to lick may try.

And since my stay could not be protracted
To shun master's regret asking be fast
I came  back to souls badly impacted.

I found my duke who already had passed
Sitting onto the croup of the fierce beast,
And told me: “Now be strong and bold not last.

Now we have to descend such stairs so pieced;
Come up ahead, at middle I must be
So that for you the tail’s danger is least”

Similar to one whose disgust is close to see
The quartan fever, with nails just pale,
And looks back  trembling at high degree,

So I became when heard the words assail;
But I was ashamed by his threats to me.
That a good lord makes right  his servant fail.

I found my place on that back hard to see;
So I tried to tell, but no voice I had
As I thought and desired: “Let embrace thee”

But he, who times before to help was glad
Maybe for other, when I was there sat
With both his arms gripped and sustained me sad;

And told: “Geryon, you should move now at;
Be the circles wide, and the slope down short;
You must be careful with such weight as that”

Like a small ship leaves off its  place in port
Backwards and backwards, so started then it;
And when he felt to be free to transport,

Where the chest was, he put his tail to fit,
And after stretching, it moved like an eel,
And with gills, inflated air to admit.

More fright I don’t believe would deal
When Phaeton unrestrained became then,
So that sky, as still seen, was burnt to seal;

Nor had Icarus with his sorry  loins when
Losing feathers perceived for the wax hot,
His father screaming to him “Bad way amen!”,

The fright I had, when I saw where I got 
Everywhere in air, and turned off  I saw
Any scenery out of the fierce spot.

It goes away swimming slow, with no flaw;
Rotates, descends, but I am not aware
Except for the wind which comes from yaw.

I felt just on right hand the eddy mare
Doing an indeed scaring roar below,
So that with eyes my head to jut I dare.

Then I became more bashful to that flow,
Since I saw fires and heard tears of pain;
And trembling all I snuggled in me so.

Then saw, since view on I could not attain,
Descent and turning those great pains around
Which came close from various parts again.

Like falcon whose wings long flied up from ground,
Without sight lure or any bird at all
Pushes the fa lconer to tell “Stop hound!”,

Descends tired while it moved easy and tall,
With hundred rounds, and then volplanes quite far
From its trainer, with disdain and fierce gall;

So Geryon put us on rocks which are
At foot at foot of the profound barrow
And, after discharged the persons of our,

It sudden vanished like from bow the arrow.


Long poem by Scott Howard Myers The Gypsy King | Details |

Wall Street

      

Set upon the new world stage within the burning fires of hell. Silently posed factions of the elite, suppress the true inherit of Mother Earth. The meek children bending over for millennium, taken spankings of bare bottoms, pelted slavery. 

Upon entry to rule, the open stage of smoked mirrors began to reflect back upon the podium of lies. Taught by scholars from university books of political science. Fearful of leadership matching mirrored images, of false pretense, babbling rhetoric. The stirring masses of discontented, individualistic, thought of as dead - enders, trouble makers, and rebel rousers, rallied aimlessly.   

With super hero, Captain Do Gooder, bleeding helpless on the floor of Wall Street. Weary lost hope combatants mustered courage, and accepted destiny. To this point, someone shouted against the wind of change. Felt by all who sensed the importance. 
"To death do us part of the purpose to which we, the united, stand for justice". 
The chant began, as Captain Do Gooder was dragged away, and cuffed, once bleeding helpless on the floor of Wall Street. 
Damn the torpedoes. Damn the torpedoes. 
Captain Do Gooder, fallen, bruised ego matching skinned knees, lays helpless. Who will save them now.

Second glances from high rise penthouses. Serving champagne and caviar. Brought iron clenched hands once hidden, to draw the stage curtain down. 

With Captain Do Gooder nowhere to be found. The voice that came from pain of pupil. Born within broken dreams of promised lands. Realized nothing was coming cheap on this occupation. 

The dusty streets found Captain Do Gooder aimlessly stepping against the winds of change, down Wall Street. The well-intentioned, arrested and broken spirited, lost hope of recycling any salvage rights taken from them by Metro. 

Was this the end of the well thought out, pushed down occupation.  
Was this the beginning, of the underground faction. Where was senior generation X hiding. Only Captain Do Gooder and the well-intentioned, world stage occupiers, hold the key to that Pandora's box of hope. 

 
The peoples across the oceans were already springing far ahead in their own, more brutal campaign. For they had no cushion on which they were raised to kneel against. Tyranny ran over them.  A lesson yet not felt, or learnt, or taught, in the new world.  No chance of city mayors issuing eviction notices. Bullets, tanks and bombs were of the order. Brought down the line, traced back to the ones our United Nations to this day, refuse to acknowledge.
While leaders there home internet shop, and pump out the lies. Everyone dies. 


In the heart of the continent of center, where unto which as mankind sprang forth, for its first and ever conquest.  
The lights kept dim, to obscure the violent cleansing. A facade to disguise once moreover, the brutal tyranny for which the greed of the elite, control the dimmer switch. Diamonds and oil fuel the fire of war and oppression, on this stage of greed and guilt. Too far away, and too many distractions upon center stage for one to see or care. Thought and looked upon by most as racially motivated.  The origins of all mankind, to be left, far too far, behind. The true forsaken people. Why is man unkind.


So..........will Captain Do Gooder raise the bar to which drinks for the house, and all around, will quench the thirst felt by ninety nine percent of the people............mother knows best.   
Yet, still, self-inflicted roadblocks of appointed destiny, drop kicked long days past. Faint light shining far ahead, within the tunnel of hell, brought up to land. Firm above the depths to which it sprang. The truth of world order.  

Wait......what do we see......do our closed eyes deceive our cries........................................

We see Captain Do Gooder catching second wind. 

She breathes deep now and all can hear her war cry, no longer whimpering softly. As in past tense situations, given way to dazed and confused wall street *****es.  
She builds momentum, as our brothers and sisters lay dying and bleeding. On the streets of some not so distant for telling, of what's to be, will never not be coming full steam ahead and plowing through the hidden agenda.  One step beyond the line drawn in the sand of time, we thought would never be crossed. Give way thoughtless future tellers, and takers. Still holding firm with paper cuts, deep into the hands who printed and prepared such slave papers, kept by the elite bankers. 

Captain Do Gooder returns renewed and refreshed. Our true Mother.  
Captain Do Gooder feels strong, as bruised knees and scraped hands heal. 


Brush of destiny sweepstakes,  allots winnings of earth shaking, volcano erupting, tsunami tidal waves, with bonus draws of worldwide chaos. Future draws are to be held with worldwide winners. Grand prize, dead oceans rising.  

The next generation have no fear digest writes the next chapter. 

 
Hold the press down firmly wall street backbiting backbenchers. Drawn into the crossfire, on her mark, place the x on the next general who dares not fall into civil disobedience.  
Captain Do Gooder has grown teeth, and she is biting down hard against the line to pipe riches, spoiled from her lands. Stolen from the first pilgrimage, fifteen thousand years old, lost empire. 

How dare you steal from, and pollute the minds of her children. Yet old enough to drink and drug and die in war.  How dare all of us. 

Meanwhile back at the ranch.  Captain Do Gooder hugs tight that tree of life, to which sprang all this elbow rubbing and diversion. Wall street huddles in her corner, painted red to match the lengths to which an end will surely bring to it. 
Painted red for all to see. 
The end to friendly letter writing, give peace a chance, make love not war, generation taking a bow, and snow birding it, to false sense of security land. Like the ostrich with its head in the sand. 



Long poem by Jack Clark | Details |

The Beast of the Cave

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 Trisha Sugarek | Details |

The Ash Can

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 Isaiah Zerbst | Details |

A Poem of Ruth

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 Demetrios Trifiatis | Details |

KNOW THYSELF

Know Thyself
(one of the two Delphic commands of Apollo)



For years before the narrow windows of my senses
                                                                       I stood,
Trying to pierce the nebulous world of outer reality,
                                                                   Hoping to find GOD,
One year was following the other but I was: 
                                                                 Still wondering,
                                                                          Still inquiring,
                                                                               Still demanding.

I was lost in the tenebrous world of materiality’s
                                                                  Phenomena, 
While the true essence of things, evasive 
                                                           As ever,
Persistently escaped the grasp of my confused
                                                                  Perception, 

Unable to see behind the impenetrable veil
                                                             Of Isis,
And disappointed with reason’s constant 
                                                            Failure,
My impatient voice towards the starry heavens I lifted,
                                                                   Asking aloud:

              Where are Thee, oh LORD?

For I have been seeking for Thee so many years now,
But I have found Thee not!

I have kept my eyes wide-open in order to see,
As many colors of Thy creation as possible,
And not even for a moment have I shut them, 
For fear I missed Thy resplendent light,
But I saw Thee not!

I have kept my ears wide-open in order to hear
As many sounds of Thy creation as possible,
And not even for a second have I covered them up
For fear I missed Thy sacred voice,
But I heard Thee not!

I have kept my hands extended in order to touch
As many things of Thy creation as possible
And not even for a minute have I held them back,
For fear I missed Thy spiritual touch
But I touched Thee not!

I have kept my nostrils wide-open in order to scent
As many perfumes of Thy creation as possible
And not even for an instant have I held my breath
For fear I missed Thy holy aroma
But I scent Thee not!


I have become a famed gourmet in order to taste
As many delicacies of Thy creation as possible
And not even for an hour have I withheld my appetite
For fear I missed Thy heavenly feast
But I tasted Thee not! 

                           WHY?

Then, the thunderous voice of the Lord, 
Coming deep down from the twilight of time,
Tearing the eternal heavens apart
Answered me and said:

Dear innocent child of Mine; hasn’t time taught you,
That I am neither to be seen by eyes
Nor to be heard by ears?
That I am not to be touched by hands
Nor to be scent by nostrils?
That I am not to be tasted by palates
But I am only to be felt by enraptured hearts?


Trembling and puzzled, in a shaky timid voice,
                                                          I dared ask:

How could this be done, oh Lord?
For I am so weak and ignorant, I do not know
                                                               The way

And the compassionate voice of the Lord answered me
                                                                    And said:

Don’t call yourself weak and ignorant for
I have endowed you with power and knowledge
                                                                     So great,
You have only to unearth this incalculable treasure
Hidden deep down in your soul and you will be 
In touch with Me, with eternity, with the universal law,
With the light, with the truth and every single existence,
But first you have to listen carefully to what I command:

Close your eyes for they cannot see Me
And cover your ears for they cannot hear Me 

Pull back your hands for they cannot touch Me
And hold your breath for it cannot scent Me

Shut your mouth for it cannot taste me
And stand completely still in order for you 
To sense Me 

At once I rushed to Obey His divine command, so:

I closed my eyes and saw no more
And covered my ears and heard no more

I pull back my hands and touched no more
And held my breath and scent no more

I shut my mouth and tasted no more
And stood dead still for a moment,
                                  Just for a moment alone!

And BEHOLD:

I felt His ethereal presence enveloping my heart
And I saw His celestial light caressing my mind
And I heard His heavenly voice calling to my spirit
And I touched His angelic essence with my elated thought
And I scent His seraphic aroma with my sacred, now, breath
And I tasted His rapturous divinity with my blissful soul. 

Then, immendiatly, the gates of revelation opened their 
                                                                               Passages wide
And in a magnificent lofty parade, in front of my soul’s 
                                                                               Dazzled eyes
The mysteries of life, one by one, were unveiled to the last
                                                                   Thus making everything known.


And now my enraptured self, jubilant before the eternal truth,
                                                                          In ecstasy exclaims:

Thank you, oh Lord for showing me Thy blessed Essence,
                                                      Thank Thee, for I know Thee now!

And the Lord enigmatically smiled at me and with His 
                                                           Divine thought tenderly declared: 

No my loving child, you only know YOURSELF!



                           © Demetrios Trifiatis
                               
 


Long poem by Richard Lamoureux | Details |

Watch

You might wonder what happens during the course of the day with a profiler. I'm known as the watcher. Little insignificant things can make the difference in cracking a case. A subtle glance, a dilated pupil the tightening of a jaw. Let me take you back to yesterday so you will understand.

"Rick I need you to come in here." "Alright captain, what do you have for me?" "We have an Arson on our hands, Rodrigues is interviewing the family now." "What do we know about them captain?" "Husband and wife are separated, the daughter was living with the mom in the family home. Nothing left of the home, burnt to the ground." "Do we know where the fire started?" "Yes it looks like it started in the girls bedroom. Enough talking Rick lets pay attention to what's going on."

Captain Branson is an impatient man, he thinks this watcher stuff is a pile of bullshit. He's all about old fashioned police work. Still here I am detective first class with a pile of successes under my belt. So the upper brass have thrust me upon him.  He tolerates me, in private he tells his buddy's I'm a lucky sh*t and one day my luck is going to run out. 

I looked through the one way glass into the interrogation room. The dad was sitting furthest away. He is dressed impeccably dark blue suit, white shirt and a red tie with matching handkerchief. He also sports a hundred dollar haircut and speaks with controlled precision. While he speaks he looks at Rodriguez with a certain disdain. His arms are folded and he keep looking down at his watch.

The daughter is a contrast in opposites, unkept purple hair and wearing a black loose fitting dress. There are scratches on her arm that she is picking at. Several piercings adorn her lips nose and eyebrows. On her shoulder there is a broken heart tattoo that says Daddy's Girl. 

The wife is a thirty something beauty with long blond hair. She is casual yet elegant, a natural look that has taken hours to achieve. She is on the opposite side of the table from her husband and somehow it does not seem far enough. As her husband speaks her left eye has a subtle twitch. 

Rodriguez fidgets with the earbud as he asks the dad if he wants something to drink. The dad snaps back " let's just get this over with I have to get back to work." Rodriguez just smiles and asks the wife and daughter if he can get anything for them. The daughter continues to pick at her arm. The wife politely says "no thank you." "Well then we can get started." Rodriguez gets up opens the door and a large matronly officer enters. Rodriguez asks the daughter and mom to accompany her. The daugter rises and walks with a slow detached gait, her mom follows with a practiced elegance.

Rodriguez looks at the man and says, "let's start with what we know, we know the fire wasn't accidental. There was an accelerant used in your daugters room." The dad looked Rodriguez in the eye and said "so why are you talking to me? I don't even live there anymore." Rodriguez asks the dad where he was between nine and eleven that morning. The man quickly responds that he was working at the office with his assistant. Rodriguez asks if anyone else may have seen him that morning. He says not that he's aware of.  Talking through the earbud I ask Rodriguez to end his questioning for now.

Captain Branson says, "we checked the Navigation on his BMW, it shows his vehicle didn't leave the parking lot till three this afternoon. Personally my money is on the crazy daughter, I checked and she started a fire a few years ago behind their neighbors shed."  "Ok captain we'll start with her next. I'll be back in a minute I need a cup of coffee." I leave the room just as the dad leaves the interrogation room. Rodriguez motions for him to sit down. As he sits he crosses his legs and I notice he is wearing a new pair of shoes and there is a small white stain on his cuff.  Once again I notice him looking at his watch. I walk by him to the coffee machine  without him even giving me a glance.

Back in the interrogation room Rodriguez is sitting with the girl, she has yet to make eye contact with him. I tell Rodriguez to start the interview. He does the usual attempt at rapport building but it garnishes no warm and fuzzies. Enough of that he asks her where she was this morning. She says she was out behind the bleachers at school. He asks if anyone can verify her being there. She says no, she was by her self. He asks about the fire behind the neighbors shed. She says "it looks like you have already made up your mind. Why don't you just lock me up?" This is the first time she looks him in the eye.  Rodriguez says he just wants to get to the truth. "The truth? No one cares about the truth, why would I burn down my own room?" She looks defiant and hurt, the look of someone who has been accused of many things. I tell Rodrigues enough for now. The captain says "what? Is that it?"  "Relax Captain she's not your girl. Rodriguez bring the wife in."

The wife looks a lot more relaxed without the husband in the room. She sits back easily in the chair with her legs crossed gracefully at the ankles. She pulls out a lighter and cigarette and asks if it is okay if she smokes. Rodriguez apologizes and says there is no smoking on the premises.  She says "that's okay I'm trying to quit." She tells him she started again after the separation. Rodriguez asks her who she thinks started the fire. She says she has no idea but she can't imagine who would want to burn down their home. She loses her composure for a moment and starts to cry. She looks up at him with her big blue eyes filled with tears. Rodriguez passes her a tissue and asks if she is okay to continue. She says sure she just needs a moment to compose herself. He asks her to tell him about her husband.


Long Poems