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Best Poems Written by Graphite Drug

Below are the all-time best Graphite Drug poems as chosen by PoetrySoup members

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War or Peace

In temperament of speech, gray fades to black.
When tempers start to cool, gray fades to white.
Ugly people speak until others crack.
They want nothing more than to see a fight.

Such are ways of modern provocateurs.
They desire nothing but entertainment.
Behind doors they speak of adventures, 
exaggerating how they can torment 
people who have vested dreams and goals, 
people without numbers for their defense.

Gray fades to black when people change roles.
Gray fades to white when people have their sense 
to empathize and help or understand 
rather than provoking a violent hand.

Copyright © Graphite Drug | Year Posted 2015

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The Cost of Education

Ossenburger, the business genius, 
when he graduated from college, 
he started a budget mortuary service.

Five dollars a corpse!
He was the Wal-Mart of death.
Burry ‘em, burn ‘em, float ‘em down the river, 
get ‘em by the gross like a bag-o-chicken wings.
Bodies stacked like cord wood rotting beneath an eve, 
he had a secret process for sorting, storing, and disposal.
He hoarded the cadavers like a squirrel hoards its nuts, 
buried and forgotten, 
never wondering where they’ll pop up.

Dough rolling in from all the strapped families, 
Ossenburger was the drug lord of putrefied flesh.
While puddles of fat caramelized within the soil, 
he donated excess funds to his fondly held private school.
He wrote off all his charity, 
he hoarded up the dough, 
with more babies born daily, 
he kept profits up with our death toll.
Pencey held him in architectural esteem.
For all his generosity 
they used his name 
for their new wing.

Tell us Ossenburger about your fancy car, 
how you dream of stiffs between each shift 
and Jesus ignores our prayers to say how lucky you are.

Our only bit of justice, some smidge, 
some smear of slight relief, 
is hearing Marsalla’s flatulence 
during your puffed up prep school speech.

Copyright © Graphite Drug | Year Posted 2017

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Humane Struggle

In the Congolese Jungle three men are training for a mission.
They train to detain and disarm poachers.
They hope this will be the conclusion of their efforts.
They also train for a formidable alternative.
Poachers are opportunistic and have only self interest.
Poaching of an entire species will break ancient circle of life.

Congolese rangers are armed to protect the circle of life.
Supporting generations of all species is their mission.
They invest their lives in an important and altruistic interest.
For them there is no tolerance of poachers.
Killing fields of wasted animal carcasses is no alternative.
A better world for all species depends on their efforts.

Intensity shows on their faces because of their efforts.
There is anger and determination expressed for defense of life.
They seek surrender from poachers, but prepare for alternative.
African rangers prepare for their dangerous mission.
Rifles raised, knee on ground, they are ready for poachers.
There will be hands tied or bloodshed to defend their interest.

Rangers and humanity have a shared interest.
There is need for pressuring greater and continued efforts 
to stop any extinction of species by poachers.
The rangers’ trainer shouts and points as if saving life.
It is important to emphasize dangers during a mission.
If anything goes wrong there may be no alternative.

As long as species have breeding populations there is an alternative.
Continuing our circle of life must not be a debated interest.
Keeping our circle unbroken must be everybody’s mission.
More rangers and training are needed to improve efforts.
In blue fatigues and camouflage hats rangers defend life.
Their appearance is forceful and their gaze threatens poachers.

It is difficult to find, stop, and educate poachers.
But these undaunted rangers press and carry on our only alternative.
They crouch in jungles and pursue takers of life.
They grasp their rifles and nothing deters their interest.
An unrecognized, unseen enemy resides among them and their efforts.
In the grasses and leaves of jungles rangers take their mission.

Poachers and their self interest can no longer be tolerated.
Efforts to remove poachers’ damage to our circle of life, 
depends on the mission of rangers to give species an alternative.

If you are intrigued by this work read and review G. D. Master’s book, “Interpretations,” free in PDF format on Simply enter “gd master” or “interpretations” in the search bar of SmashWords to find it.

Copyright © Graphite Drug | Year Posted 2016

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Paradox of Civilization

In Jordan’s desert, a building façade 
has been carved into the face of a vertical cliff.
Stairs leading to the structure are lined with lanterns.
Looking up, a view standing right of center, 
stone appears orange near the base fading to black at its top.
Where cliff’s edge meets the night sky, 
darkness brightens into starlight.

While appearing more ancient, 
this façade has features of Roman architecture: 
columns, shallow gables atop flat roofs, carved figures decorating idle spaces.
It has two stories.
It’s first has six columns.
Two are set back from the entrance that is supported by four beneath a gable.
Two horses are carved on wall between first and second column, 
two more are carved between fourth and sixth column.
Inside a portico behind the center four columns, 
steps lead up to a tall entrance, black, 
an opening to a large chamber inside the rock.

The second story, as wide as first, has a block cut from its center. 
At each side are half gables, supported by two columns.
Statues are carved beneath each gable.
Between these gables is a turret supported with columns.
A statue of a human figure stands within the turret.

The grand scale of the western façade should be alien in the Jordanian desert.
It should be, but is not.
If taken from the rock and perfectly constructed in Washington D.C., 
with a coat of white paint, it would not look out of place.
A fusion of West and East, this place begs questions about the people who carved it,
political and religious beliefs of their civilization, 
its purpose in a desert, 
and how it could be ahead of its time.

Copyright © Graphite Drug | Year Posted 2015

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River's End

Wherever our Colorado River ends, 
life recedes with its water, 
it no longer has a delta. 
There are only miles of cracked earth.
Far in the distance deep fissures spread.
Crags, low mountains, stretch across horizon, 
separating empty sun baked clay from high desert clouds.
Dark clouds, with their life giving rain, appear to float, 
migrate over low mountains. 
Darkness covers this portion of earth: shadow of cloud, 
depth of retreated water,
vast emptiness expanding from neglect.

Some light penetrates openings in clouds.
Pink and purple illuminates their edges.
Sunlight reveals mountain sides.
Atmosphere lends interest to an otherwise barren plane.
It is unusual to see a landscape with limitless potential and no life.
Potential has not been drained from this place yet.
In time countless people will have bled all water from the river, 
leaving a truly empty place.

Light reflects from hardening clay. 
Sun’s halo reveals lifeless matter, 
like Saturn’s frozen rings,
but no ice crystals here.
Only baked earth where water ran, 
Colorado River’s temporary end.

Copyright © Graphite Drug | Year Posted 2015

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Still Swinging

After chewing shoe leather they called steak, 
in the Pencey cafeteria, 
Mal, Ackley, and I enjoyed a winter afternoon on campus, 
on the bus, and in a restaurant.
We walked across a puffy white quilt 
as students conversed, laughed, and threw snowballs.
I held my snowball until the bus driver told me to leave it outside.
We had intended to see a comedy with Cary Grant, 
but Mal and Ackley had already seen it. 
We hung out in the restaurant played pinball and ate burgers.

Arriving back at our dorms at a quarter to nine, 
Mel left for a bridge game 
and Ackley shoved his acne ridden face into my pillow 
until I told him I had a paper to write.

I couldn’t write what Stradlater wanted.
I couldn’t describe any rooms without elaborate furniture.
I couldn’t describe sporty rooms 
with trophies on dressers and pennants on walls. 
My brother Allie played baseball.
He wrote poetry on his catcher’s mitt with a green pen.
He stood in right field and recited verse from his imagination, 
in his mind.

He died from leukemia very young.
I fell into a depression, 
a garage, 
a gym with windows to punch out.
I broke my hands against our station wagon’s windows.
I cannot make a tight fist.
I curl my fingers enough to type excerpts of Allie’s poetry 
for a paper that will never be appreciated.

My red headed brother Allie, 
such a good natured kid, 
he had a good combination of extrovert and introvert, 
avoiding anger.
Sitting on his bike fifty yards away 
with his hair shining in the sun 
as I teed off, 
hoping to make a distant green and shoot under par.
Mom had scored a hole in one with him.
I still try to overcome unidentified handicaps 
on a hazardous course.
If you are intrigued by this work read and review G. D. Master’s book, “Interpretations,” free in PDF format on Enter “gd master” or “interpretations” in the search bar of SmashWords to find it.

Copyright © Graphite Drug | Year Posted 2017

Details | Graphite Drug Poem

Cross Species Awareness

Cross Species Awareness

Beneath a calm ocean, man watches a shark.
They are same in size, but one has advantage.
Man is wearing a wet suit and long swim fins.
Shark is naked and is not bearing its teeth.
Water passes silently through gills of stealthy predator.
Bubbles rise from apparatus of explorer.

A camera and lights fill hands of explorer.
Teeth and cunning fill front of shark.
Black tiger stripes and dark eyes of predator 
intensify beauty and exclaim an unrevealed advantage.
Locked behind its inquisitive nature are rows of sharp teeth.
It circles the diver, dipping and bending its fins.

A menacing fin on its back and long pointed side fins, 
the shark does not appear as clumsy as explorer.
A man clamps on to breathing device with his teeth, 
watching effortless movements of a curious shark.
There seems to be some wariness in the predator.
Its large dark eyes seem to measure any advantage.

Any threat to the sea’s occupant is from surface advantage.
The wary man’s feet rest on white sand trapped in fins.
He could kick and flap beneath waves, but is no predator.
He is either a very brave or very stupid explorer.
If the sea is a playground or battlefield it belongs to the shark.
If it decides, the king of the deep can bear its teeth.

It can open its gaping mouth and expose rows of teeth.
It can clamp on to soft flesh with an easy advantage.
Such things happen often in the life of a shark.
It swipes its tail side to side and climbs and dives with fins.
The only help for the diver is another explorer.
A spear gun or repellant may offend the predator.

There is not much comfort offending such a predator.
It will only find another place to sink its teeth.
It is a distracting thought for an underwater explorer,
to learn and gain knowledge under this creature’s advantage.
It may not speak; it doesn’t have hands, but does well with fins.
Ruling the depths, it is a majestic presence this shark.

A vicious predator with acute senses and sharp teeth, 
the shark patrols oceans riding currents with strong agile fins.
The explorer has the advantage of meeting it at peace.

If you are intrigued by this work read and review G. D. Master’s book, “Interpretations,” free in PDF format on Simply enter “gd master” or “interpretations” in the search bar of SmashWords to find it.

Copyright © Graphite Drug | Year Posted 2016

Details | Graphite Drug Poem

Holden Looks Back

It happens when you’re debilitated, laid-up, sick; 
random images, memories 
coalesce within the unoccupied reason of your mind.

Maybe you have a memory, standing on a hill, chilled, 
watching the final high school football game of the season.
Maybe you are a fictional character writing about mixed emotions: 
your youth transcending societal doubt. 
You could be a real person 
fictionalizing a pubescent experience 
upon a million future pages 
describing insecurity at a time of social transition.

Agerstown Pennsylvania wasn’t a bad place to live, 
but Pencey was a haven of unforgiving classmates.
Absent mindedness was no excuse 
and a lack of self-discipline was grounds for expulsion.
The History instructor was an engaging and affable fellow, 
like instructors are.
He was concerned about you,
 that instructor that spoke with you 
and was aware of the student unable to apply his self 
in the presence of teenage shenanigans and impulsive drama.
It seems you were a victim 
or a misapprehension of circumstance.

The lack of women at Pencey Prep School was obvious.
The slovenly plain and fidgeting daughter of the headmaster drew your eye.
A growing libido and an ailing fantasy life is no way to grow up.
And while such things make for an interesting read, 
they are thin of poetry, romance, and sexual deeds.

Upon the hill pondering flashes of memory, 
physical youth seems pleasurable compared to a bleak, unknowable future.
Some good-byes are worth waiting for, some are not.
We always seem to remember bad good-byes.
It is remembering what could-have-been 
that keeps us recounting such random and undesired images.

Copyright © Graphite Drug | Year Posted 2016

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A Man and His Cigar

A man in his later years enjoys a cigar.
He holds a fat brown rolled stogie with his fingers to his lips.
He puckers at the end of the stimulating stump, pulling a large puff.
He lights his vice with a blow torch.
Blue, red, yellow flame jets out the end of a curved steel tube.
He is balding and grey with whiskers.
Puckering and squinting casually his skin reveals fine wrinkles.
A dark green frame with round clear lenses sets on a large triangular nose.
His clothes are plain: 
a button collar shirt with tiny blue checks, 
a dark blue puffed coat, a tan denim bib.
His hands are large with fingers like sausages.
He holds his cigar and torch like a gorilla enjoying fruit.

At times only a moment matters.
The best things in life are not always sophisticated.
Experience and simplicity allow senses to be the only luxury needed.
People relish their vices 
after youth and excess have revealed what is common and uninteresting.
It is the process of feeling what is familiar and different about the moment 
which drives people in later years to enjoy an awareness of their senses 
rather than any perception driven by language.

Copyright © Graphite Drug | Year Posted 2015

Details | Graphite Drug Poem

Educational Dispersion

The instructor, she/he, at head of class 
scans the classroom and sees all the students.
They inhabit the room like Inert gas, 
atoms of reason float in abundance.

Who will learn and who will remain inert?
The instructor may not ask of such things.
It is enough to keep a group alert, 
to teach them rather than keep them guessing.

Many moments are spent in discussion, 
helping fresh minds understand the subject.
The instructor must avoid confusion.
Answers are tested to see if correct.

Future students may let their knowledge fade.
Others will find work and careers will be made.

Copyright © Graphite Drug | Year Posted 2015