Weekly Poem #87

Sound Barrier

 

I think I’ve broken sound.

It’s been cut down and rewound.

Organs shatter and collide,

Drumsticks skitter, off to hide

And violins evade the violent tide.

I stamp my feet to no avail

And wrestle out a silent wail

As some cruel god ignores my hails,

Windows shatter, calm prevails.

My feet crack a hole beneath the world

And light breaks too, a brittle pearl.

Like a spotlight crushing a pretty girl

It falls victim to this numbing whirl

And come apart, disconnects, unfurls.

Now I fear there’s nothing left,

I’ve beaten all of it to death.

Such a heinous and unruly theft

To leave thought so far bereft.

There’s nothing now to comprehend,

No longing love remains to mend

We can only bask in this dull end.

I didn’t mean to break what’s real

But I can’t help just how I feel.

Weekly Poem #81

Rodents

 

My shadow is alive.
It’s a colony, a tribe.
As I walk it lives and dies,
My private kingdom, my other eyes.

My shadow feeds,
It bites, gnashes and bleeds.
Growing hungrier as it breeds
And gaining ground, gall and greed.

My shadow hates,
It rallies, rails and it waits.
Listening for breath that bates
And hunting down unfortunate fates.

My shadow feels,
It writhes and worries at my heels
Like a pulsing mass of electric eels.
A split, spilled soul that can’t be sealed.

Weekly Poem #74

New World Order

 

I was so late, far too late.

Always in for 07:55, I had 08:01.

08:01 of the next morning.

 

Time had fallen apart

Between those two points.

It had shattered and splintered

Like an old, tired rope bridge

Beaten by angry winds.

 

I’d barely hit the motorway

When the sky turned navy,

The air sparked and howled

And brought everything down.

 

A clean pass with no minors

Doesn’t count for much then,

When you’re swerving away

From telephone poles, twisted wreckage,

Mangled bodies and collapsed concrete.

 

I pulled into a service station,

Threw myself screaming from my car

And into a Travelodge, into a cupboard.

I hid there for 23 hours,

Listening to the world thrashing.

 

Me and 34 others emerged,

All of us late for something.

Cornered, no working cars,

No signal and no power.

 

We rebuilt, started anew.

Made a temple of a Little Chef,

A home of an overnight halt,

A sentence of a comma.

 

Our new plastic world,

Brimming with hope.

A reef built on irony,

8 miles from anywhere.

A beacon of humanity.

 

Eventually wars raged.

The zealots of Burger King,

The infidels of Costa.

35 became 16.

 

A Magna Carta on a Smith’s notepad

Brought us reconcile

As what remained picked up

And started again.

 

When they finally found us

On our precious concrete island

They thought us savages,

Derided our new ways

And left us to rot.

 

They were all fools,

Wasting their time

Reviving the old world.

It’s already dead.

 

We are the pioneers,

The architects of evolution,

One day they’ll see us

And know we were right.

Weekly Poem #72

Apollo

 

So here I stand

 

My thoughts started and ended there,

Mounted on the observation deck

Of the Herald Arctic Research Facility,

Gazing skyward at a red, dying star.

 

The world is an ugly patchwork,

Coated with new man-made nations

That cower upwards from rising oceans

But do not dare pierce the smog choked sky.

 

Our grey, staving planet will end.

It will end without dignity,

Burning away in a coat of sickness,

Dead satellites and celestial rage.

 

Nobody wanted to heed his pleas,

Everyone looked at them sideways.

To them, he wasn’t addressing the world;

He was speaking in codes to their fractions.

 

A sunspot heralded his fall,

The largest we had ever seen.

Then an ancient being, born of great legends

Was made flesh and truth in purest white fire.

 

Death Valley was his landing strip.

His giant body withering,

His beautiful face worn with tears of flame.

He lay across the sands as we gathered.

 

There were those of science, like me

And there were those of religion.

All were silent, all were fearful and still.

His voice shook the air like volcanic heat.

 

You have drawn too much strength from me,

I can no longer sustain you.

You have grown greedy, vile and dangerous.

My kind can’t carry on protecting you.

 

You all owe me a heavy debt

And I have come here to collect.

You can see how desperate I’ve become,

If I die, I will take you all with me.

 

We saw such promise in this world,

As we observed it from afar,

But you spat on us and squandered our gifts.

You have no pride or stature left to claim.

 

Consider this your last warning,

Revive your planet, with all haste.

It is the only thing that matters now.

Do not waste any time, you have none left.

 

Years passed and wars began to rage

Fueled by his potent fiery words.

Each side knew they had heard his real message

And clamored to justify all their claims.

 

Corpse piles rose bearing his grand name,

Ruined lands lay at his altar.

Yet he did not return or sound his voice

And the planet slowly wasted away.

 

Those of us who still saw reason

Could only plead and beg for change.

We toiled away to find better answers,

But then the Sun God came and gave us his.

 

So here I stand, watching him die,

Not knowing who else understands.

Perhaps this is the ending we deserve,

I wish I could know what will come after.

 

 

Weekly Poem #68

Reflection Rejection

 

Somewhere down the line dancing got sadder

As the beats sped up we lost our grip on the ladder

And now we shiver back and forth, bitten by an adder.

We’re all twitching and itching like we’re on a full bladder.

I could be madder, but the rave has sucked shades

From my name and face and I can’t fervently fight the fade

Or fake a smile when my brain is stained with ingrained

Disdain and strain, it wanes, wilts until it spills

Out of my gills like the ink I didn’t mean to knock over with the quill.

I’m ill, I’m ailing and I can hear my innards complaining

A pain that was ordained by a diet of shame

Force fed to me by flashing lights and endless nights

That would even grip Marguerite Chopin too tight,

It’s a blight to indulge into these artificial delights

Until age bites and burns and shatters and spurns

As it finally takes its turn to help you learn.

You can lie through you mouth and eyes but not your bones

And goodness knows that entropy takes what it’s owed.

Time flows, grows and tiptoes up your spine

With designs to start making your climb

Ever higher hills that can’t be cured with booze and pills

Or any other cheap thrill that might flush your frills

Because you’ve had your fill, you’re done,

You’ve had your fun and now you’re searching for the sun

At the tip of a this final tongue, this real-life Logan’s Run

Have you won? Find out, peer over the precipice

And measure it as you gaze back on the line you stitched,

Did you pleasure it, leisure it? You better have treasured it

Because it was a mountain from the bottom, from the top it’s a pit.

Jump.

Weekly Poem #67

Nocturnal Syndrome

 

I haven’t seen the sun in seventeen years,

It crisps my skin and wraps me with fear.

It’s not a condition or an internal struggle,

I just wasn’t born to emerge from the tunnels.

I’ve blacked out my windows, bolted my doors

And recoil ever deeper as daytime endures.

Dark is not absence, it’s thick and it’s safe

And in my chambers I horde it so it won’t go to waste.

My eyes have narrowed and increased in scope.

My fingertips quiver and tighten like rope.

Some say I’m a ghost, that I died some years previous

While some others call me inhuman, deadly and devious.

I’ve no qualms with the outsiders, no axe to grind,

But their willful self-destruction often plays on my mind.

I try to move past it, I just bottle my darkness

In preparation for nightfall’s last carcass.

Yes that’s right, one day the sun will decline to set,

It will linger, loiter and boil mankind to death.

You think me misguided, unhinged and deluded

But deep in my purest blackness there is wisdom secluded.

A child who was hounded, beaten into the light,

But I’ll outlive you all, I’ll win this last fight.

Weekly Poem #66

Colder Shoulder

 

Am I a genius? I’ve written more symphonies than Mozart

More tales than Chaucer and more memoirs than Seyssel

But no note has found string and no word has found paper.

My mind is thick with pulsating vines of nervous trees

But my mind is mine, I do not share it.

 

I bundle it off out onto the icy shelf and let it expand

While I perch motionless, letting my body take care of the primal,

The primitive, the instinctive. The mind the genius, body the hunter.

I’ve no patience for the others, I keep them feed on fish

While I dine on solitude, they let me be.

 

I’d always assumed it was fear, but it might well have been respect.

Some presumption of a deep-running understanding of the way of things,

Some aura emanating from my silent, diligent instrumentality.

Because when that thing came crashing out from under the ice

They sent me to deal with it.

 

Imagine that? The lowly fisherman sent to slay the vicious monster,

Armed with only a spear and a club, meant for execution, not combat.

You don’t slay a dragon with a guillotine, do you?

I doubt that ever entered into their consideration,

Fear makes you stupid.

 

Fear can also keep you quick, keep you alert and keep you alive

And I was overflowing with it when I followed those heavy, angular tracks

Out past the furthest limits of our known territory to find it.

I didn’t even know what I was looking for,

Theseus was blind and he had no string.

 

Soon enough though it found me, ice offers no clarity but the water beneath is light as air.

Crystal as the pair of eyes I saw staring back across the frozen ocean,

Framed in skin of perfect marble, an edged, angular shell

Coating a 15 foot frame of four arms, two legs and a fluke

Which dragged heavily across the frosty floor.

 

Thick, heavy hands that hung past a heaving, harsh heart-case

And a skull that splayed out past the eyes like an ancient headdress,

But I never saw beyond the eyes, gently gleaming in the perpetual light

And helping me to understand why I, of all of them, should have come.

The solitary, ghostly fisherman.

 

This creature was no threat, no pest, it was nothing to us because we were nothing to it

It had no concern with beings so young and naive, the synaptic gleam of its eyes

Told me everything, told me that we were the same.

This great, marvelous beast was a stranger among humans.

Just like me.

Weekly Poem #59

Three Roses

Some angular white-haired sapling
Lets the ocean clutch at her ankles.
The waves are patient, slowly lapping
And the breeze is gentle, thankful.

A thinly wrapped gift to Mother Nature,
With her back to gestures of mankind.
Three roses spelling longing pleasure
That she fully intends to leave behind.

The painted arches of her human past
Are eaten away by the smiling sun.
Her cells spread out with salt and grass
And her walking, waking days are done.

Weekly Poem #57

Someone’s Coming

 

She used to feel like she had to set herself on fire,

Before falling through cold water to harden her skin.

She had to walk backwards to temper the beating winds

And narrow her vision so that the bright light had no way in.

 

She was no stranger to professions of fortune and love

But these notions shattered and left nothing but greed.

The braying, nuzzling dogs would turn and bare teeth

When she pulled her hands back and refused to let them feed.

 

So she turned away from it all and wrapped wings around her face,

Beating back all the suitors, false friends and stalkers

And wrestling the world free, forsaking pursuits of joy.

She had no time left for affection, no stomach for such torture.

 

Was someone really coming? Someone with no plan or agenda?

It was becoming harder to believe, her good nature rotted away.

Too many users, too many who maligned her for her kindness

But still deep inside, she knew she had an equal, someone who would stay.

Weekly Poem #56

Heartburn

 

The calm surface of a cool, iced lake

Can erase many horrors.

I let the old VW roll beneath the surface

And let myself go numb with relief.

Somewhere within myself I knew

That there was no going back now,

But I still allowed myself a moment to breathe in.

Murderer, liar, criminal, fiend

I carried none of these names mere hours before

And now they bind me like Marley’s chains.

I would have to run, rinse my name clean

And become lost to the waking world,

So I rewarded myself with a final moment

To look at it all wrong.

I did the right thing.

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