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the man beneath the lamppost



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Tue Mar 20, 2018 2:51 am
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TheSilverFox says...



How to Deal with the Buzzards Poking at Your Eyes (2017)
these are the words that are an offense to sanity (2016)

Yay, 30 more days of my amateur poetry. 8)
S'io credesse che mia risposta fosse
a persona che mai tornasse al mondo,
questa fiamma staria senza piu scosse.
Ma per ciò che giammai di questo fondo
non tornò vivo alcun, s'i' odo il vero,
senza tema d'infamia ti rispondo.

Inferno, Canto 27, l 61-66.
  





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Sun Apr 01, 2018 8:15 pm
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TheSilverFox says...



Poem 1

April 1st, 2018

blockade

Spoiler! :
I can't remember you.

I see your picture in the yearbook,
but it's blurry; somebody spilled a soda
on the page, soaking through the paper
and leaving a muddy mess
that almost completely masks the braces
and bleeds away the ink of your quote.

Did I do that?

Your signature is still on the front page -
blue, in permanent market, as if you knew
that I wouldn't read it well in a blue background,
except for the single case where you misspelled
love.

Despite these twenty or so years,
enough to find a family and live in a house
with two stories and a white picket fence,
I can see everyone else: Pablo skateboarding
on a railing, Jeremiah handing me tobacco,
Clarice trying to push my head in the water
when I told her I didn't want to swim.

Yet my mind screams and throws up walls
when I reach even for your name,
trying to snuff out the spark of mystery
it can never quite kill,
no matter how many bricks it makes me eat.

I'm afraid that's for the best.
S'io credesse che mia risposta fosse
a persona che mai tornasse al mondo,
questa fiamma staria senza piu scosse.
Ma per ciò che giammai di questo fondo
non tornò vivo alcun, s'i' odo il vero,
senza tema d'infamia ti rispondo.

Inferno, Canto 27, l 61-66.
  





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Tue Apr 03, 2018 12:51 am
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TheSilverFox says...



Poem 2

April 2nd, 2018

viking funeral

Spoiler! :
the oil slips down the stairs -
drip, drip, plop, drip -
and puddles on the hardwood floor
in little black droplets,
mixing with the white drywall
spilled out like Jackson Pollock painting
on that long hallway to the front door
where the kids said bye to daddy in the morning
and tackled him in the evening.

but you wouldn't know that, would you?
you always slept in the closet under the stairs,
pretending you were a wizard
and thinking the world was one tear-stained corner
to the other, where you could live out any fantasy
if it meant dragons could carry you into their caves
and bury you in their gold,
because they thought you deserved
more than a whip or a belt.

and when the kids went off to college
and daddy focused his bloodshot third eye on you,
it was only a matter of time
before you stepped into the cockpit,
strapped on goggles over your eyes,
and pressed the red button on that joystick.

or, to say it better, you climbed onto your dragon,
grabbed onto it with your little scarred arms,
and told it to breathe fire.

if you still had eyes to see through,
or a body that didn't blow away in the wind,
I think you'd be proud to know
you are the greatest wizard of all time -
you killed the villain and escaped life,
the biggest closet of them all.
S'io credesse che mia risposta fosse
a persona che mai tornasse al mondo,
questa fiamma staria senza piu scosse.
Ma per ciò che giammai di questo fondo
non tornò vivo alcun, s'i' odo il vero,
senza tema d'infamia ti rispondo.

Inferno, Canto 27, l 61-66.
  





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Wed Apr 04, 2018 2:48 am
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TheSilverFox says...



Poem 3

April 3rd, 2018

seasonal

Spoiler! :
On the equinox
you fled to the ancient oak tree
outside the math classroom,
climbed through the white branches,
and nestled in the pale green leaves.
They parted to let you through
like you were a persistent gust of wind
and so you thought you'd found your birthright.

You made the tree your throne
and crowned your head in sticks;
you swore to join the robins
and the kites and the hawks -
you would learn to fly like spring.

Mother Nature sent her armies of pollen
from the boughs of your palace
and those of the squirrel lords nearby
to sting your eyes, stick in your hair,
and drive you back to your calculus.

Yet you persisted, and in the summer
made the wooden bones of your wings;
in the fall, you snatched falling leaves
and glued them onto the knife-carved wood
so that you would carry your throne,
in all its red and yellow glory,
upon your back.

And, come the solstice, you took off
from your tree, it and you now as white
as the snow that fell on you both.

Perhaps, as you hurtled to the gravel,
you realized it was winter.

At least the leaves freed from your glue
hurtled into the sky farther
than your broken bones.
S'io credesse che mia risposta fosse
a persona che mai tornasse al mondo,
questa fiamma staria senza piu scosse.
Ma per ciò che giammai di questo fondo
non tornò vivo alcun, s'i' odo il vero,
senza tema d'infamia ti rispondo.

Inferno, Canto 27, l 61-66.
  





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Thu Apr 05, 2018 2:07 am
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TheSilverFox says...



Poem 4

April 4th, 2018

desolate

Spoiler! :
mama always told me
the new moon was the scariest phase
because the lights of stars
couldn't catch the backs of hungry wolves
or stop the man in the alleyway
with a gun in his pocket
from shooting the first unlucky man
in the back (then again,
she always told me much didn't stop him
anyways, because no man's so desperate
as a killing man.)

i guess she's right; i can feel the ice on my numb fingers
and i'm not even at the window,
where the snowflakes bury the pane
while they fight for my attention,
crawling along the glass like ants
as they scribble out elaborate spirals
and ask me why in the hell I'm still waiting,
wrapped up in a green blanket
and shivering on the floor.

the moon can't save me now.

but beyond them there's a lady singing.
and i don't know what about, i can't hear her that well,
but her voice is honey to my lips;
it patches up the cracks and soaks up the blood.
she bandages my blue legs,
peels the ice from my fingertips,
coaxes the callouses away,
sucks the frost out of my lungs,
shakes the water buried in my hair,
and soothes my shivering bones to a sleep
that i know i'll wake up from in the morning
(i didn't think that i would an hour ago)
S'io credesse che mia risposta fosse
a persona che mai tornasse al mondo,
questa fiamma staria senza piu scosse.
Ma per ciò che giammai di questo fondo
non tornò vivo alcun, s'i' odo il vero,
senza tema d'infamia ti rispondo.

Inferno, Canto 27, l 61-66.
  





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Thu Apr 05, 2018 2:52 pm
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TheBlueCat says...



<3 Your poetry is beautiful. I am especially in love with viking funeral. c:
Unofficial Blue Cat of YWS =^-^=

"You can never look at a book the same way once you've read it"

My PM box is always open for anything and everything <3

~Never stop looking up~
  





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299 Reviews



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Fri Apr 06, 2018 2:41 am
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TheSilverFox says...



Poem 5

April 5th, 2018

grim reaper (cinquain)

Spoiler! :
autumn
death's pale shadow
carving the trees and earth
charming with a mask of red leaves
fall


Poem 6

April 5th, 2018

hollow (pantoum)

Spoiler! :
the dog flops down on its side;
the couch watches the dawn
as I pull myself out of bed to hide
inside the kitchen, stifling a yawn.

the couch watches the dawn,
filled too full with stuffing to feel me
inside the kitchen, stifling a yawn;
it wonders what it's supposed to be.

filled too full with stuffing to feel me
the sated dog ignores my reaching hand;
it wonders what it's supposed to be,
now that there's nothing to command.

the sated dog ignores my reaching hand;
as I pull myself out of bed to hide
now that there's nothing to command;
the dog flops down on its side.


Poem 7

April 5th, 2018

the adventures of doggo (pantoum 2)

Spoiler! :
the dog then scampered over the fence,
pawing its way through the neighbor's grass,
because that night someone left the door open
as they'd had too much to drink.

pawing its way through the neighbor's grass,
the tiny dog scanned the pool for men stumbling
(as they'd had too much to drink
and alcohol keeps good company with water).

the tiny dog scanned the pool for men stumbling
where only an orange cat reclines now;
and alcohol keeps good company with water,
so they lounged the night on a chair.

where only an orange cat reclines now.
because that night someone left the door open,
so they lounged the night on a chair;
the dog then scampered over the fence.
S'io credesse che mia risposta fosse
a persona che mai tornasse al mondo,
questa fiamma staria senza piu scosse.
Ma per ciò che giammai di questo fondo
non tornò vivo alcun, s'i' odo il vero,
senza tema d'infamia ti rispondo.

Inferno, Canto 27, l 61-66.
  





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Fri Apr 06, 2018 6:18 pm
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Ventomology says...



Oh, it took me a moment to figure out how the pantoum is put together, but I like it! It's a nice challenge, and the building of the world/story is pretty fun.
"I've got dreams like you--no really!--just much less, touchy-feeley.
They mainly happen somewhere warm and sunny
on an island that I own, tanned and rested and alone
surrounded by enormous piles of money." -Flynn Rider, Tangled
  





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Sat Apr 07, 2018 2:46 am
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TheSilverFox says...



Poem 8

April 6th, 2018

psychedelic

Spoiler! :
the man with the tiger head
places a hand on my shoulder
and tells me that, if there's any inch of myself
that i haven't explored,
i should get my fedora and my bullwhip,
because he's tired of the way
i swallow my peyote in the dusk
and leave him to clean up the vomit
in the dawn.
S'io credesse che mia risposta fosse
a persona che mai tornasse al mondo,
questa fiamma staria senza piu scosse.
Ma per ciò che giammai di questo fondo
non tornò vivo alcun, s'i' odo il vero,
senza tema d'infamia ti rispondo.

Inferno, Canto 27, l 61-66.
  





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299 Reviews



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Points: 24185
Reviews: 299
Sat Apr 07, 2018 10:15 pm
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TheSilverFox says...



Poem 9

April 7th, 2018

check and mate

Spoiler! :
I've never been good at chess.
My opponent knows in their mind
ten-thousand ways to wipe my pieces
from the board, exterminate my side,
whether it's white or black;
I only have a one-track mind
that jumps off the rails
to think about how pointless existence is,
plan out the following day's chores,
or seethe as bishops corner my king.

If I'm on a staircase,
they're on the balcony above, rifles raised
and ready to reenact the massacre of the Mameluks
while I stumble for cover, vision narrowed
to a single step and nothing beyond.

And, in spite of it all, I'd like to run
all the way to the top and cry out my glory
(I just don't want to move my feet).

Chess is a game of memorization;
it's for the patient, not the intelligent,
and I was never patient.
S'io credesse che mia risposta fosse
a persona che mai tornasse al mondo,
questa fiamma staria senza piu scosse.
Ma per ciò che giammai di questo fondo
non tornò vivo alcun, s'i' odo il vero,
senza tema d'infamia ti rispondo.

Inferno, Canto 27, l 61-66.
  





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Points: 24185
Reviews: 299
Mon Apr 09, 2018 2:52 am
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TheSilverFox says...



Poem 10

April 8th, 2018

jeanne d'arc

Spoiler! :
Where she stepped, the flowers bent away,
the men and women crumpled, the sun grew spots;
when she rode on her horse, wielding her lance,
there was no escaping the fire that radiated
through her arms to the tip of her lance,
through her legs to the hooves of her horse -
she was a nuclear bomb disguised as a woman,
poisoning the streams and spreading boils
on even the faces of those lucky enough
to escape her endless wrath.

The leaders assembled but briefly to stop her.
After she cleaved the first tank,
and they saw the pallid face of death
adorn her head with a crown of bones
and pile skulls onto her throne,
they fled into their bunkers, grabbed their rosaries,
and prayed God would be merciful enough to hide them.

She either had His endless fire,
or perhaps she could see fear
like a shark sees a trail of blood;
one by one, she committed regicide,
stopping only to maim the commoners
who had massed around the shelters
for a spare drop of water and a piece of bread
not turned to salt and ash by her weapons.

I was hiding in the corner of a closet
when she found me
(I think she would've ignored me
if my convulsing limbs and frantic heart
hadn't bled the truth into her eyes) -
she grabbed me by the chin, pulled me close,
and said, "There is nothing I've done to the world
that I haven't already done to myself;
how else can I see it fit to destroy the former?"

And I could see the lashes on her arms,
the slashes on her face,
and the hoofprint that stamped out her eyebrows
while coloring her eyes in blood
(though none of these marks were as gaping
as the scar she gave to my neck).
S'io credesse che mia risposta fosse
a persona che mai tornasse al mondo,
questa fiamma staria senza piu scosse.
Ma per ciò che giammai di questo fondo
non tornò vivo alcun, s'i' odo il vero,
senza tema d'infamia ti rispondo.

Inferno, Canto 27, l 61-66.
  





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299 Reviews



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Points: 24185
Reviews: 299
Tue Apr 10, 2018 2:52 am
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TheSilverFox says...



Poem 11

April 9th, 2018

rattling

Spoiler! :
Pause when the green skies start to break,
sparking from cloud to cloud like the messages
you frantically send to a friend as you cower
between the seat and the steering wheel
of your pickup truck, and you'll find,
just before the rain breaks the air and splatters the ground,
here the shadows of the dead linger.

Peek out of your window to see the bodies
crawling up the lightning rods, shirts charred,
sunglasses broken, bony jaws exposed.
And if they look back (it's hard to tell,
but you can usually see a gleam
from behind their eye sockets), they're judging.
Are you worth joining their ranks,
they fortunate enough to climb up
to the world of the living
and wait to come alive in the split second
they reenact their violent deaths?

But they're fickle, because they were the daredevils,
and they can tell when you'd rather stay in your coffin
when the sky starts to boil again; all you need to do
is crouch beneath the steering wheel, count to ten,
and listen for the cracking of the storm's whip,
casting each spirit, one by one, to where they came
(Heaven or Hell, nobody quite knows).

Look up after the final bolt to see the rainbow
spilling into your eyes, you who decided
a long life drawn out slowly was better
than the opposite.
S'io credesse che mia risposta fosse
a persona che mai tornasse al mondo,
questa fiamma staria senza piu scosse.
Ma per ciò che giammai di questo fondo
non tornò vivo alcun, s'i' odo il vero,
senza tema d'infamia ti rispondo.

Inferno, Canto 27, l 61-66.
  





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299 Reviews



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Points: 24185
Reviews: 299
Wed Apr 11, 2018 2:55 am
TheSilverFox says...



Poem 12

April 10th, 2018

alluring

Spoiler! :
It took too long to figure out
that the playground was a farce;
rust lurked in the limbs of the seesaw,
holes breached the center of the slide.
I cut myself when I peeled back the fake rubber
and found spikes peeking at me.
All around this silent deathtrap bushes had grown
to cover the concrete walls, lash them in vines,
and block all but the smallest exits
in thorns.

The light above my head flickered -
it had pulled me here, it had carried me
through the abandoned streets of Chernobyl,
and, when it had been convinced
that I would follow it anywhere (and I,
blinded, couldn't see where else to turn,
no matter how many windowpanes I broke
and how many cuts crisscrossed my body),
had ensnared me like a venus fly trap.

I grabbed the light between my hands
and smashed it, but to no effect.
The shadows slowly enveloped me,
pulling me into a ground that glowed green,
emanating from a concrete prison
stuffed with jars of lifeless animals,
save for the one empty one
whose lid slowly opened
for me.
S'io credesse che mia risposta fosse
a persona che mai tornasse al mondo,
questa fiamma staria senza piu scosse.
Ma per ciò che giammai di questo fondo
non tornò vivo alcun, s'i' odo il vero,
senza tema d'infamia ti rispondo.

Inferno, Canto 27, l 61-66.
  





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299 Reviews



Gender: None specified
Points: 24185
Reviews: 299
Thu Apr 12, 2018 2:54 am
TheSilverFox says...



Poem 13

April 11th, 2018

two of a kind

Spoiler! :
we made our boxes
out of straw and the wooden boards
lying around in a warehouse
long ago abandoned (there'd been an accident;
a man had fallen into a batch of boards
with their rusting nails pointed up,
though i didn't find this out until later),
peopled them with snowglobes and candy bars,
and called them our palaces.

it was just something for two scared kids to hide in
while their parents paced the room and shouted curses,
pointed at the lipstick on each other's cheek,
and demanded how he or she could abandon
their two precious angels for the sake of a devil
(never mind how the winner walked out the door
following a pointed tail).

when the fire came, we wrapped ourselves in blankets,
stuffed ourselves into our boxes, the snowglobes broken
and the candy bars eaten, and waited for a pair of arms
to carry us from the ashes.
i thought we'd stay forever, because we had no choice;
our parents' bodies were bones clutching each other's neck
like predatory-prey dinosaur fossils, while their spirits lurked
in Acapulco or some place like that.

but different people found us and pulled us close
to their chests.

i'm starting to crawl out of my box again,
now that i have myself a diploma
and i'm a safety inspector in warehouses
making sure nobody will ever be as unlucky as we were
when we needed to hide somewhere
and accidentally made our lairs out of a curse -
i can only hope you've left yours too.
S'io credesse che mia risposta fosse
a persona che mai tornasse al mondo,
questa fiamma staria senza piu scosse.
Ma per ciò che giammai di questo fondo
non tornò vivo alcun, s'i' odo il vero,
senza tema d'infamia ti rispondo.

Inferno, Canto 27, l 61-66.
  





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299 Reviews



Gender: None specified
Points: 24185
Reviews: 299
Fri Apr 13, 2018 2:51 am
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TheSilverFox says...



Poem 14

April 12th, 2018

nascar

Spoiler! :
he didn't wanna be a race car driver;
he didn't wanna drive around in circles all day;
he didn't wanna slam his hands on his helmet
and let the tears pool on his chin, to drip drip drip
onto his lap.

he didn't wanna get so close to the edge,
but he didn't wanna get in the way of the others;
he didn't wanna slam into that barrier
and pitch the car over the spectator's heads,
headlights blaring until they smashed into the ground
and the hood with the horse decal whinnying
until it burst into flames and spilled oil
onto gift shops and food stalls.

he didn't wanna die, mama; nobody does,
but we gotta get in the car to make it
to the finish line.
S'io credesse che mia risposta fosse
a persona che mai tornasse al mondo,
questa fiamma staria senza piu scosse.
Ma per ciò che giammai di questo fondo
non tornò vivo alcun, s'i' odo il vero,
senza tema d'infamia ti rispondo.

Inferno, Canto 27, l 61-66.
  








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