What Stirs the Darkness
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What is that ... there ... in the darkness?
What is that hollow creature, cold and callous,
that shrouds its image in the deep, remorseless black?
Careless, the coal-red glint in its eye ... ragged-edged teeth
to tear truth and sensibilities - to rip the flesh of loving and kind intent,
Imbibe its worth, and spatter the dregs into my face, sodden.
I can see it moving there ... squirming and slithering in the frigid gloom,
its skin pulled taut over bones like a painted skeleton ...
broken, twisted fingers of conscience scratching at the dirt floor,
Tearing at its own eyes for the sake of regret, bleakly consecrated,
relishing the pain, exquisite - an anguish of introspection, suffused.
It trembles there ... innocent, wan ... it shivers in the crepuscular quiet,
the agony of alienation and loss, dripping thick from its hide.
What is that monster, there? I fear I know it, and IT knows me ...
yet I shall not give it a crumb of satisfaction or satiation.
Better that it lurks there in the dim and dank, rather than give it identity.
Let it wallow in its own waste, and feed on the scraps of disappointment ...
Regret and realization lapped cold from the floor.
Let it starve for want of my better aspirations and intents,
I shall hold no heed nor pay no pity, else it surely devour me ...
happy to taste the metallic tang of my lifeblood,
Sharp on its sordid and duplicitous tongue ...
quick to digest all that I had meant for worth,
and all that I had given to benefit and blessing ... and belief.
Oh, what is that ... there ... in the tenebrous depths??
Who is that hollow hellion ... who wears my face?
~ 1st Place ~ in the "Strand Select H Any Form Any Theme" Poetry Contest, Brian Strand, Judge & Sponsor.
~ 1st Place ~ in the "Hallucination" Poetry Contest, Brendan J. Simons, Judge & Sponsor.
~ 7th Place ~ in the "Loss Of An Innocent Mind" Poetry Contest, Kai Michael Neumann, Judge & Sponsor.
Copyright © Gregory R Barden | Year Posted 2018
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