Tuesday, February 28, 2006


Nothing frightens me;
It's not that
I am brave,
But only that
Nothing frightens me.

Is it true, then, that you
see deeply?
I am not sure I see at all.

A cat is not a creature
To he trusted, trifled with,
Or played with. A cat is
Only, just, this: A cat.
If you do you understand,
You are only fit for dogs.

When I play games
I am merely testing you.
And you'll never know
When you've failed.

There is a special place
for those who remove
the claws of a cat.
It is very dark, and cold,
and you are very small
as you hunt cheese only
to find we still have teeth.

Monday, February 27, 2006

Shackled Love

I wrote you name in the walls but
It came out red as blood;
I tried to tell you I loved you but
It came out as shrieking moans;
I tried to hold you in my arms but
Floated, cold through instead.
You fled our house in fear and pain but
I'd only tried to show my love:
The dead and living shouldn't, but
I just want you to be mine.
The clanking of chains was in Morse, but
You never heard the code;
I howled your name to the stars, but
You thought it was the wind;
I thought for worse include this, but
You've called an exorcist.

Sunday, February 26, 2006


The taming of the children was
Not simple at all because
They'd learned life from TV:
A kind of rarefied reality, you see.
They thought they could be
Absolved of all worries:
In 30 minutes, or two parts,
All matters of the heart
Would be solved and I
Found I, too, liked this lie,
So each day we watch TV, and
Live in a land we'd long to be.

Saturday, February 25, 2006

New World

There was a loss, when I was young,
Of a world both magical and strange,
Of wonders and gods that were the sun
And no fear of any form of change.

Back then had we fate and destiny
That steered a path, a course,
And in place of the world of faerie
We have this, for better or worse.

A world where magic only lies
In invisible visiblities
Only shown to our eyes as
A chaotic complexity.

And magic is replaced with math
And wil with quantum mechanics
Making a new modern path
Of calculation and physics.

Friday, February 24, 2006

Disconnected Verse I

Where are the stories
Left written on skins
Bones and sharp cries
And soft, hallowed wings.

Things we never think of
Dreams we never say of
Hopes we never dream of
Wondering that we're made of

The song is in need of a singer
Like a dreamer and a dream
Searching through all forevers
In fire, water, and steam.

The last dream I ever had
Was a poem I never writ
The last thing I said was
A hoping you're still sad.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

I knew we were meant to be

- until the day the ninjas come.
The glorious day when the revolution
begins again for the first time.
And soft hands strike you dumb
and deaf (though that is no change, no change).
And on that one momentous day
we will be having sex, and they will
strike from all angles, swords as saints
Hai! We will be die so brightly! So bright
and real in that one terrible moment
that when the revolution comes
we will know everything, and nothing,
and we will watch the tv,
and we will drink beer , and be mocked,
but we will have each other
- until the day the ninjas return.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Upon Finishing A Novel

There are no words
      left   at the end
only the desire    not to
begin, but continue on
with a new story and
      the same faces
All because of this    only
that I want to hear
new voices     and bid old
friends  farewell

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Repairman Jack, as a real repairman

And I knew when I went
out the door that the moment
to say I'd love you had come
and the words I had begun
to say would never be said
save in the space inside my head.

But in that clarity I can se
I'd just come to fix your TV
and tell you I loved you
in the moment that was true
would have led to a closed door
lost job and fear forevermore.

Even know that I wish I had
Seized the moment, grabbed
Your hand, said: "I love you,
I do, even if you
Have six kids, and our
A couch potato - you're my star."

But the pickup line falls apart:
Cupid it can't reach your heart,
Not only because you're fat
It's never just that, only that
You'd think it was pity
That moved me, not beauty.

Monday, February 20, 2006


The last time we made love
Was when I asked you
For the truth:

A kind of proof:
If I was better than
The name you whispered

Each night when you sobbed
In your sleep and
Said sorry

To someone
I could never see, and
Flinched as I wiped tears away.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Some Thoughts

Life requires more courage than death.
What is one unknown to many?
Place no trust in martyrs who
Escape suffering in oblivion.
The only real choice we make
That is a sacrifice, and not options
Falling away is to be ourselves.
Only this and     not giving our consent
To evil, or do those things
That make us like ourselves less.

There Is No Journey

Every decision a leaping
Down into dark, trusting
Evidence coming after
Intuitions gleaming laughter.

We find who we are just in
Those truths lying deep within:
As in a mirror you find you see
What was there already.

We find no thing in the mind
That was not always there to find.

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Drinkin' With The Mates

It was a wrong thing to do
In a bar, like joking about high noon
In a Western town. But it was true
And I had to speak, I had to say
"No way." I had to say: "Hey."
I said: "I don't care about the game.
We're none of us just the same.
I come here to drink and for company
And conversation that I never see.
We never talk about anything,
We never mention important things."
And everyone laughed, said it was game night
And asked, kind and cold, if I was all right.

I should have seen the signs. Dear Lord I should have seen.
I know that men can be mean. I know. I know.
But I said: "What about when we were young?
Before we were boys, long before we were men?
Were you a girl too, way back then?
Would you want to be one again?"
The silence fell like wound in the noise
The shocked look of men who had only been boys.
A few were startled, almost remembering when -
But they'd put too much work, O too much into being men.

I asked them if they missed the little things
All those small and simple things
Like being able to cry. When's the last time you cried?
I asked, and I swear something in me died.
Because none of them understood, or would admit if they could.
And they asked me just where I thought I stood.
And I wondered if being a man meant
Being a coward in the end. I swear I began
To say something, but my mouth said something else.
It said: "A round for everyone, on the house."
And I dropped two fifties on the bartop
And the bartender leaned in to talk.

"You're money ain't no good here," he said, so soft and lonely
Was his voice, that for a moment I could see
The time he'd played with his sister, making dolls
Until his father found him out and the fall.
And he turned away then, handed me the money
But made sure that no one else would ever see.

I almost didn't go back the next night
Filled with a kind of numbing fright
But my wife would ask me: "Why not?"
And I've never asked if she was a boy, never thought
To wonder, and maybe feared an answer.
I almost lied then, to her, but then I said to her
I'd had a fight with the guys, you know how it is
Even if she didn't, she pretended this.

So I came back anyway, slinking my way inside.
But no one joked or mentioned it, and I sighed
And life went on, but sometimes when taking a piss
There's tears and conversations that I miss
From when I was a girl all those years ago
But I guess almost no one really knows
What it was like, to be me, and sometimes even
I can barely see just who I used to be.

Friday, February 17, 2006


(February 2005)
Josh MacLeod

I often wish I was an alien. I doubt I am alone in this. Most people I meet wish to be special, be unique. I offer it to them, sometimes. They all refuse me, my offer, I. None of them would pay that price, they say, not seeing that I see no price at all. I am a voyeur, wanting to experiment. I am waiting to be let into the zoo, put crudely.

I think more of the time that everyone else is an alien. This is not the same delusion. It's roots run deeper, harder. Further. Even those words bring to mind taught images, but nothing else. Nothing real. I am not real.

In the other room, Frank and Emma are Making Love. I am huddled against the far side of the couch, trying not to cry. Trying to be silent. Trying, too hard, to understand.

When people ask me who I am, I can only say: "Not you." Not like you. Not. I am empty of what drives you. I am empty of your wants, your needs, desires, all, everything. I am hollow, and sheer, and water dashes at the cliff. The rocks are unmoved, unharmed. The bed moves, jerking in a private earthquake. I wish I knew what they feel, in there, together.

It is a myth, their love. A thing of romance novels and movies. Stories make it more than - than lust, than carnal desire, than - words! All I have, and not enough. I don't understand them. I don't know what they mean, what they are, what gives them their - the power, their strength, their nature.

It is stories that makes things beautiful. It is lies that make them eternal. Words, again, but I have nothing else. I watch, sometimes, but there is nothing to it, nothing under it, nothing. No thing. None. I hug myself, skin pressed into the couch, wishing they wee done, wondering why they hate me, wondering if they even care.

But I do not understand them. How dare I presume they understand me? SOMEONE HAS TO! It's too hard, too hard, too hard. And men would make jokes about that word, but I have no jokes. I have - I am - I. I. I want to die. Sometimes. For lack of reality. For lack of - closeness. I just want to be cherished.

That's all. And the only ones who see me as - as a body, see me as a child. And their voices get furtive as they ask about the hole, and what I feel (nothing) and why I allow them to (nothing), and why don't I stop them (nothing) and they blame me (something) for what they feel. But I do not cause it. I can't cause anything, in their world.

I am nothing. It rules their lives, and they never notice. It is too deep, past the obvious, burrowed into generations and genes and memories and traits and natures. Sex. They can't escape it. They can't not - not be. And. I am not. I do not be. I am nothing.

There is a joke. I don't tell them, often, because few things are free from their Sex. I make an exception, once. Everyone should, at least once. There is a woman, and she doesn't want sex with her husband, so she opens her legs for Britain. I see myself in that story. "Sexless doll, open your legs for Britain." And then there is silence.

Always and ever, silence. And he - or she - or hir - would stare. And nothing would be said that could be said, and there would only be laughter because some things are beyond tears, beyond knowing.

The silence is where I walk, alone. I do not understand them. They do not understand me. I try and explain things, and am told to stop feeling bitter for what I'm missing.

But I'm not missing anything! Why can't they understand! Why won't they understand that?!

Frank and Emma come out later, grinning. Asking if I had a good sleep. I say no. They do not ask why. They do their rituals, their dances, binding and loosing as they eat, playing and toying and pretending, and they all think I can't understand it.

I want to tell them I am not a child. I am twenty two. But they only see what is missing. And for them there is nothing else beyond it.

After Reading Sylvia Plath

Death is waking
In the still quiet screaming
Voices words never hear
In a living ear.

Night is a rain falling
In a dry wishing well,
Fell echoes whispering,
whimpering, whispered out.

The forest, here, is trees
All cut down, pale stumps
Glorious sublimity
In the sigh of a breeze.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Reply to Gemm's Self Portrait

A reply to this poem.

It's okay, really,
deep breaths staccato firing
like naked chicken, chick peas:
we will get you another bed,
a bunk bed, and you
can have the bottom one,
and the top, because I will
jump on it, until it coalesces,
collapses, wave form a
sandwich, squishing you beneath.

Werewolf Porn

After we made love, her and I
Howling blue faced under the moon
I went home alone.

Fumbling a latch not meant for paws
I scratched for hours alone in the dark
Wondering if she knew
Wondering why she'd never said
Wondering where I could find flea repellent.

Fragments Day!

There are songs we never sing
There are birds never given wing

There is a star that never fell
In the sky after all

The road between
What we do, and
Who we say we are
Is only bridged
By laughter.

every time we
      make love
you remind me
      i am
only real

Wednesday, February 15, 2006


There never was born a car that
Could see itself barelling down
The roads careening over overpasses,
Hanging suspended over the blue water.

If they could see, would they stall
In front of stop signs, huddling curbs,
The odds of their deaths known when
You get behind the wheel each day?

If they could speak, would their horns
Bleat desperate prayers of warning or
Would they continue, as they always have,
Never cease from any journey?

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Five Minute Valentine's Day Poem

          And it is
the moment between breaths when
our eyes meet, shy, fluttering,
and strangers find some common bond
beyond the play of flesh and words.

          And you are
something I dare not define if
I hope to evade the chasm of understanding
and just accept you as you are,
a mystery with a smile.

          And we are
not quite so strange after all even
if we are not sure where each begins
and ends; in the binding
and the loosing, the taming
and being tamed: this is love.

Valentine Haiku

Valentine Haiku Written For Someone Who Wanted Something Short That "cuts through all the optimism of getting a teddy bear and chocolates from the guy you made buy you a promise ring"

The ring he gives you
Gold and blue, matching hues:
Beer cans, and bruises.

Valentine's Day Poem

[Written in 2 minutes]

Did you cut the heads off?
They're only good with the heads cut off
and black juices flowing like coffee,
blood of the devil. Hell hath no fury,
and Hell does not have alimony payments
and judges who think that - just because
she pushed out some small watermelon -
she is better at raising it than you.

And the judges think that she can decide
if the baby is born or dies. But what
about your rights? What about fathers?
And they wonder why today is a red, red day.

Monday, February 13, 2006


I'm tired of people waiting
For the ending of the days

I'm tired of the dreaming
That fades into a haze

I'm sick of the strangers staring
Who won't ever meet my gaze

I'm scared of this feeling
That I have lost my way.

I've been walking round in circles
But I feel I'm in a maze

And there's nothing chipping away
At the eyes that are glazed

The world seems lost of colours
All shades of blue and grey

Everyone's speaking words of warning
Yearning for words of praise

And in the quiet shadows waiting
For someone to light the blaze

Sunday, February 12, 2006


I will not kill them, the Warrior said.
Not if I can love them instead.
The god laughed low and long and deep.
"O mortals and vain promises you keep.
The only death that matters is
Done with a quiet heart
And honour to your enemy is
Knowing in you's a part
Of them; and in them part of you and All.
There is no honour in rising, none in a fall.
Only in leaving the wheel of returning:
Dying to new life only hastens unbirthing."

Harf Porn

Harf porn is
Change falling through the fingers,
Dancing through the brain to
Hollow cavity within, with
Dentist drill sound effects
Of bodies twined together,
Head beating on the floor.

Bondage breakage and the wish,
To the sound of bees buzzing
Haiku prophecy, that there had never been
A harf that bled.

The coins have all been touched,
devalued, smudged: you are not the first.
Others have harfed before you,
A silent fraternity who
Never look anyone in the eyes again.

[This is also a poem that perhaps a dozen people on this planet will understand. Ah well.]

Saturday, February 11, 2006

Memories Redux

Out beyond the shores of joy
Where only beginning and endings lie
Beauty waits in a quiet space
Made visible only to the eye
That knows all things born die
But sees in this dance      no reason
To grieve for loss or cry

Cheery Thingy

The stars are dying in the sky
But you never wonder, wonder why
And you don't think that it matters
That I heard your laughter
When you told me no.

          It was in your voice, under your words,
          Sad sympathy like carrion birds
          You sounded nice, but your face said
          Cruel and cold things in your stead

In the winter time we're waiting
And dying from the hating
The world falls apart around me
But it's nothing without you besides me
Though I sometimes wish it wasn't so.

          It was in your voice, under your words,
          Sad sympathy like carrion birds
          You sounded nice, but your face said
          Cruel and cold things in your stead

The breaking of my dreaming was
The breaking of the world because
I have no illusions left
Not after my heart was cleft
And I know you'd say no again.

Friday, February 10, 2006

A Song in Two Versions

Damn Odd Song

[So named because it veered into a jig at one point. Which turned out to be the only part I really liked, so I made the second version from it. Both are here.]

And the wind is howling
And the sky is full of thunder
We're waitin' for the world to die
In times of awe and wonder.

There's the peace the tao brings
And the one that living sunders
all the mouths are filled with lies
As we fall further under.

And I told her that the season
Was now and she was mine - in time
She'd understand why it was so
And would not go outside and scream
Cuz the bombs fell and the dreams died
And the sky was lit with a thousand suns last night.

And the wind is howling
And the sky is full of thunder
We're waitin' for the world to die
In times of awe and wonder.

Those swords turned into ploughs are doing
Nothing in the darkening sundered world
They girls and the boys don't have any toys
And we hide from the sky under here.

And I told her that I loved her
And I asked her to be mine
I said the sky a-breaking was definitely a sign
O, she said she wanted someone else
And she ran into the nice white house
But everyone was mutated but me.

I told her, don't you see, there's a reason
For every price, a sacrifice to be.
Even for the love that gives me wings
There are things I'd never do
Thoughts I'd never say were true
Even if the old fat lady sings a final song tonight
I'll still tell my love it's all right
I'll still tell my love it's all right.
I'll hold her when she's crying and then
Tell her it will be all right again.
Tell her it will be
Tell her ....

When Irradiated Eyes Are Glowing...

And - I told her that I loved her
And I asked her to be mine
I said the sky a-breaking was definitely a sign
O, she said she wanted someone else
And she ran into the nice white house
But everyone was mutated but me.

Oh, the sky rained down fire
And nuclear hell
And despite what they say
On the radio each day
We know everything's not well.

I said I was the last man standing
And shot down my two brothers
And for good measure a neighbour and a few others.
I told her if I was the last man
Then she'd be my last woman
And we'd be together forever and all.

Oh, the sky rained down fire
And nuclear hell
And despite what they say
On the radio each day
We know everything's not well.

And I told her that I loved her
But she ran and screamed and cried
I told her I'd do anything, and she asked me if I'd die.
I said she wasn't being nice
I hit her once or maybe thrice
And she ran from me out into glowing hell.

Oh, the sky rained down fire
And nuclear hell
And despite what they say
On the radio each day
We know everything's not well.

She came back a week later
All mutated and well baked
And she asked me if I was a man and would I take
And make her mine
Lord, I hope this is a Grand Design
Cuz I said yes and she loves me.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

A Bar, One Evening

A Bar, One Evening
(February 2006)
Josh MacLeod

His left index finger trailed the rim of the shot glass once, then twice. Halfway through the third revolution he took notice of it and his hand dropped to his side. "I was thirteen years old when I ceased to exist."

Daniel looked up from the glass, his grey eyes haunted. "We all do stupid things when we're angry. I've never done it like that since; it was probably the first time I did it."

"Ceased to exist, you mean?" Gil Cooper aid, helping herself to some more peanuts.

He nodded, his eyes dropping down to the table as if studying old stains for some mysterious clue. He raised them, not quite meeting her gaze. "Have you ever woken up and not been the person you were before that day? In a way so fundamental no one who knew you knows you anymore?"

"Yes," Gil said shortly. He waited: she didn't elaborate.

"This was worse." Daniel paused to look outside at the streetlights and shivered. "Maybe worse. I don't know your story. I don't need to." He stared at the empty glass but made no move to order another. Gil's cigarette smoke curled around his face, making his already gaunt features look almost ethereal.

"I was angry at my family. I don't know why anymore. I'm not sure I ever did: it doesn't take much to set kids off. So I wished, really hard, with the kind of intensity only youth has, that they'd all forget me, that I'd cease to exist, and then they'd be sorry. I woke up the nest morning to my sister screaming about Goldilocks being some guy and sleeping in the spare room.

"The police were called. I thought it was some big joke, that my parents had overheard me and - well, it wasn't. No one knew me, no one remembered me. They'd stare at pictures of me and just - just not make any connection. I'd run away, or something, and someone else snuck into the house."

He picked up the shot glass slowly and breathed on it, running his fingers over it. "No prints. I don't have them, unless I want to. Sometimes it works better, sometimes worse. But all it means if that people can't find me if I don't want to be found. They'll walk right by me, see someone else, get distracted. Not make connections."

Daniel set the glass down slowly then met Gil's gaze and smiled crookedly. "It could be useful, if I'd wanted a life of crime, or to be a serial killer or something. I didn't. I just wanted my family back, and I couldn't have them."

"We make our choices. Sometimes they're made for us. Sometimes there is no difference," Gil said quietly, shaking ashes off her fingers and onto the table. "It was a rule our family lived by. It's better to do things than have them done to you."

Daniel took some peanuts. "I never wanted it."

"Sometimes we get what we don't need." Gil laughed, her voice low and husky. "Life's a bitch, Danny boy. Then it has puppies and runs off with some brush salesman and demands alimony and hates your guts but you can't ever forget each other."


"Life isn't fair. We're in the fucking wrong universe for fair. We just get dealt a handful of shitty cards and expected to play them as if they were a full house and we can bluff the dealer. Sometimes we even bluff ourselves."

"Sometimes we get jokers," Daniel said dryly.

"And sometimes we're just jokes." Gil lit another cigarette. "I am a cynical bitch. Sometimes it's a problem. Cynicism is a good hobby; bad lifestyle. There's lots of ways to destroy ourselves without adding a realist worldview to the mix."

"Like smoking?"

"Choice, again. At least destroying ourselves through physical means is honest. I'd rather be betrayed by something I understand than something I don't. Cancer's fine; my own mind, no thanks." She took a deep puff. "It started when I killed the cat."

"You don't have to tell me anything."

"Shut up. I don't like being condescended to, Danny."

"Daniel. And I wasn't."

"Shut up anyway. They'll be after you, too."


"I wasn't hitching rides at truck stops for fun," she snapped, then softened. "It's never been like this before."

"Like what?"

"Having someone else here, in danger. Staying." She shrugged. "I'm not sure it's worth it."

"Most things are worth a little fear," he said softly.

"I'm not afraid," Gil has said in the truck stop, where they'd met at the only free table. 'Not of anyone. Do you know what that's like?"

Daniel has taken in her sweat, the slightly wild look in her eyes, and smiled his crooked smiled. "Maybe."

It had been enough to intrigue her and now, two days later, they were in a small-town all night diner, waiting for something. She hadn't told him what, but he didn't look worried. She hadn't seen anything really worry him in two days, and has resisted the urge to hit him in order to disturb his disjointed serenity.

"They aren't any anyone," she said quietly, her voice low even to her ears. "I think the cat made them. Or maybe I do, or my brother, or something else altogether. I call them Mooneyes."

Daniel said nothing, picking up enough of her nervousness to scan the windows.

He'd hit them both, somehow, but she doubted it would last forever. They'd find her. Maybe tonight, maybe tomorrow. Gil palmed another aspirin, swallowing it without water even if, for the first time in a month, she didn't have a headache. There were worse things to be addicted to, after all.

"My family has luck," she said, taking the glass from him and setting it on an adjacent table. "We always have. If we want things to happen, then generally do happen. Everyone has luck, we just know how strong it is and how to tweak it. Always have. We never called it a talent, or thought it magical. It was just something we did, something we were."

She paused to watch the sliver of the moon break through grey clouds, then looked back at Daniel, who hadn't moved. He was an eerily good listener. Most people waited to talk; he actually heard you, made a place for his words inside you. Gil hoped he wasn't falling in love with her; all the nice guys did.

"I was thirteen. Lucky thirteen, maybe. my friend Cinnamon has borrowed her brother's BB Gun and she and Kris were shooting at a cat. Just to prove they could be tough. It was that kind of town; if you managed it, it was a signal you didn't like boys. I needed to do it. I shot the cat, right though the eye. Instant kill."

She took a longer puff, letting it out slowly. "About a week later things began to go wrong. People got hurt around me. I got angry, and things broke. People started to notice me, and our family. They never had before. I left when I was sixteen."

"Nothing kept you there?" Daniel asked.

"No. Kris and I broke up a few months earlier. She left me for Jesus."

"So she was bi then," Daniel said with a quick smile.

Gil laughed, surprised. "That's good. But it was Jesus because she was scared. Breaking pencils. Rocks. Balls. A car door, once." Gil held the cigarette in her hand absently, then dropped a handful of ashes onto the table. "I break things, now. Sometimes when I want to. Sometimes when I don't.

"It would be useful, if it didn't hurt."

"We can't hide here forever," Daniel said, brushing the ashes off the table.

Gil opened her mouth to ask why not, given the nature of his talent, but closed her mouth on the words, leaving them unsaid. She hadn't been raised to be mean, and she knew what he meant under the words.

"I'm not hiding," she said, to be sure he knew. "I'm taking a break from running."

"From them?"

"No." Gil smiled, but didn't think it reached her eyes. "What does anyone run from but themselves?

Daniel smiled slightly in return, his looking a lot like hers felt. "Some of us run to ourselves, I imagine." He looked out the window. "Something is there. Trying to find us. I don't know why: I never felt anything like it. It's like there are searchlights looking for me, but no one is there. I've never felt anything like it, but I've never tried to hide anyone else before either."

Gil nodded and stood abruptly, dropping a twenty on the table. "There's worse things, if you stay the course."

Daniel stared at her, his expression searching hers for something. He must have found it, since he returned her nod and stood, standing as well.

Gil walked outside, the night air cool and refreshing. She breathed in deep, smelling nothing more rotten than a coming storm and threw her senses open wide.

Daniel was solid behind her, transparent rock, invisible but unmoving. Ahead of her nine shapes moved from the shadows of parked cars, coming across the parking lot haltingly like drunken spastic ballet dancers There were nine this time, and Gil knew there would be thirteen next time.

"I call them Mooneyes," she said softly, not turning around as the door closed, the bang causing her to jump a moment.

The Mooneyes were thin and big, like two-dimenional figures from one angle, three from another Blurred and twisted, with bright silver-blue eyes that reminded her of moons or crystal quartz, sharp teeth on mouths that moved around, sometimes visible and othertimes not. The claws remains, small and sharp, like doctor needles with strange formulas gleaming a sickly green somewhere deep inside their hands and whatever passed for bodies.

They moved slowly in a silence devoid of all sound, and the other shadows seemed pale and silly things next to them as they moved between shadows in the places where dreams and fuzzy logic lay. She remained free of them, with Daniel beside her.

He was whispering the twenty-third psalm quietly, without conscious knowledge, and she drew some strength from his fear, and more from his presence.

She reached, in a way that wasn't reaching, and the Power rushed through her in a wave, leaving a hollowness behind it and a stabbing pain behind her left eye. She waved her hand, the gesture curt and angry, and the nine shadows tore apart like cardboard left out in a storm.

"Break," she said, her voice soft and deep, and pain hammered a greeting inside her head, and further in. She ignored it, shoving it aside for later. There was always a later, or they was not and the pain didn't matter.

"There's something else," Daniel said, his voice cracking slightly.

Gil turned, staring at him, then followed his gaze to her right.

The man standing silhouetted by passing cars on the other side of the road cast no shadow, or at least not anywhere Gil could see.

"Revenant," she said.


"Dead body."

"You sure you just killed a cat?" Daniel demanded.

"I'm not sure there's such a thing as just a cat," Gil said. "I can't hurt it. It's dead. There's nothing to break."

Daniel stared as the corpse waited at the crosswalk and than began to cross the road, the actions terrifyingly normal.

"Now what?"

"We run," Gil said, not moving. Her voice was pale, and her face matched it.

"If being lucky never hurt, why does being unlucky?"


Daniel stepped past her, walking towards the man. "Blame is okay, it's guilt that's bad. I know that." He didn't turn around. "I have too much of it. So much I can never say, too many things I can't make right, because there is no way to fix them. You could. Destruction is a creative act, after all. Hiding things isn't."

"Daniel!" She said sharply. It came out of her, with the words, lashing at him, but he didn't move, wasn't there for a brief moment, hanging suspended in her mind between memory and dream.

"All I can do is hide," Daniel said, touching the creature, who has stopped moving, watching him. "Even when I don't want to. It leads to doors I can't open, jobs I lose, people that don't know me, invalid IDs.... I'm tired of it, Gil. This isn't your fault. I was looking for an excuse."

It moved, though Gil was never sure if it meant to push him aside or step around him, but Daniel leapt at it, ploughing into it with a vicious right hook she wouldn't have attributed to him had she not seen it. The creature reeled, moved, and stumbled, unable to see him, but bows connected with flesh regardless.

Daniel hit it again, and then again, and finally dropped to his knees and screamed. The scream hit Gil like a freight train, thrusting past paralysis, but he was on the ground and not moving by the time she managed to spot him again. The creature was gone, and Daniel simply - faded, from the world if not her memory.

She didn't ask why. She didn't scream, or call him a bastard. She just drew out another cigarette and lit it slowly, her gaze still and quiet.

The bartender never understood why the woman cried when he came out with her change, saying she had paid too much for her single drink. Nor did he understand why he was glad to see her go, but he closed up early, saying something about a meeting, and went home to call his ex-wife who he hadn't thought of in a week and ask if his daughter wouldn't mind visiting her father.

The parking lot was never haunted, though some drunks sobered quicker outside than they normally would, and one cancer patient, once, bled and found his cancer gone, but he was wise enough to never tell anyone, and the little magic left behind never went away.

Childhood Memory

I went with my mother
To hold her hand,
cuz daddy was crying too hard
and wouldn't come.
Mummy sat quiet, even when
people stared at me, and whispered.
She said it was going to be
just like the dog. Only without the dog.
And she laughed, but no one
else did. We went into the room
and the doctor said hello. We said hi.
He asked if I should stay.

Mummy said I never would have wanted
a little brother anyway. She barely squeezed
my hand, and after said she was
just relieved. I just remember the nurse
after I went to the washroom, who leaned
down and whispered: "You will be just like her,"
so spitefully, but I said I would never
take anything to the vet, and the nurse
laughed, but it wasn't funny.

Haiku Song

In winter the summer
Nestles in greenhouse flowers:
There are doors we enter.

The sky's rainy grey
For tomorrow and today:
Finding the centre.

And it soaks us through
Winter clothes, world smelling new:
Enough to tell us:

The hills are baked dry
Withering under the blue sky:
What did we wish for?

Everything changing
Bright colours - death exchanging:
We're watching leaves pour.

And they fall to mush
It's not too much, but it's just
Enough to tell us:

Winter is coming
Door jammed with cold, shoveling
New ways to enter.


A psychopath is really
This: a person well-
Adjusted to the modern life
Style, embracing contradictions &
Condemning them, and
smiling too much

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Grand Theft

Stealing from the future we
mortgage the present past

Left with no excuses
we cling to justifications

an oil spill slinking
over water

After Reading Fashion Mags

she had decided she wants
to die beautifully, unblemished,
in a glass casket like snow white
so no tears will mar her.
The only challenge is how
to die prettifully, and which drugs,
of the many in the cabinet,
will help her one final time.

She thinks the world would come
to an end if there ever was
a self-help book that really helped
Everyone. She just wants
to be left alone.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

They watch us. Always.

Billboards scintillated with neon
Dull bombardment of faceless adverts
There is a state of Inner Being
                                 Outer Shopping
-- Of mind, not product. Only credit
And plastic smiles.
The only thing to sell is image.

Do not read this line.

We are not people:
Voices for slogans;
Ad spaces &
Walking mannequins.

When was the last time you thought you could change the world?

          Where have all the bards gone?
          Gone from street corners every one
          When will we ever learn
          It only matters if it earns.

We can go rebel now; they have given us slogans,
Causes & catch phrases burned into the ether.
We can take down the signs.
We just need something.
Something new to fill
All that space with.

78 Pickup

The only thing we hold,
Holding to the lies we're told;
Anger's another name for fear,
Fear the thing that keeps us here.
Danger is the drawing of the cards,
Cards seeing futures in falling shards;
The deck falls to the pale ground,
Ground up footsteps fluttering around.
You dropped the tarot and so now
now, fingers broke, can't tell futures anyhow.

Monday, February 06, 2006

But not in vain?

In the magic of the moment
The breaking of the days
I swear to you I understood
All the ways you could not save.

I know the magic of the miracle
Doesn't cover the end of days
Jesus cured lepers, not leprosy,
And Heaven has cloudy days.

But even so I wish, I wonder,
For wonders like the past
For madness and for miracles
Though I know they never last.

For the story comes together
Even as we come undone
For our love and all your sorrow
The light of a thousand suns.

And in the darkness that follows
We can hear the mocking laughter
Of those you swore you could save
And the emptiness thereafter.

"The paddle of the women soldiers"

The paddle of the women soldiers
How I hear it back through time
Like the pounding of the footsteps
Marching forthwith down the Rhine.

All my nightmares and my dreaming
Haunted by that lonely sign
Of the paddles swiftly crashing
Thunder breaking grand designs.

Harken to the daylight breaking
And the drawing of the line
Men bare bottomed paddle-scarred
Traitors to the plans of mine.

How my mighty army's fallen
To their paddles and to time
Left alone I wait and fear
Soon they come for me and mine

The paddle of the women soldiers
How I hear it back through time
Like the pounding of the footsteps
Marching forthwith down the Rhine.

[I was researching music sheets for work. I came across "The Paddle of the Women soldiers", obviously a misprinting on my part. (It's really "The Parade of the Women Soldiers") So I thought: "What if?" and ran with it. This is the dubious result.]

Sunday, February 05, 2006


A reply of sorts to Waiting

There is a poem
never written
the sky veinred blue
and songs


it fled in the noise
of waking worlds
the death of dreams
and birth of hope

and i

just plain forgot

what i meant to say.

Wings Are For Wussies

In an abnormal world
Sometimes all the normal
Thing are the hardest to do
(You know this to be true).
There are people who won't
Believe that they can fly
Never reaching up to pull
A piece down of the sky.
If we never reach we never won't
Find a path free of the ground:
When the time comes for the fall
Everyone should make a sound.
But if you never flew you'll never know
That you ever fell at all.
Trapped inside a normal world so
Sane and never free at all.

Short Poem In Six Lines

We give and give and all our loss
Is just another's gain.
We take too much and all our love
Takes too long to explain.
And we're left with nothing of
The dreaming but its cost.

Lack of sleep is ...

Lack of sleep is
worry rats at the edges
gnawing inward, cheese wonder
ing - just ing - why have I
not been eaten? (eatening?) Why
not slept? Two days, and
nothing has become unreal
surreal (but would I know [if it had?])

The stars fall out of the sky
even they sleep, the milky way
cold milk, to lull them into
silence. There is no stress
so why? No answer, only pills
that fail and home remedies
- the terrible long list -
tried with fatalistic superstition

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Love In Four (4) Verses

Every Where we go
Every Thing we know
Just another kind of joke,
Just another name for love.

Where are you thinking of?
The words comes out choked
Of meaning we can know
In the radiated afterglow.

We fall so very high
We fail to touch the sky,
Dreaming only that we know
Nightmares we have made.

For every price that is paid
We sink further into No
With nothing left to Deny
Only a whispered name to sigh.

The road isn't paved / Because the construction workers are union

The road between heaven and hell's as wide
As the tears from a dead man's eye.
Every wish we make, ever step we take
Leaves us nowhere left to duck and hide
And every choice not true becomes a lie.

We need a hole to put our selves in:
Avoiding replies, huddling in our skin,
For its sake (needing something to forsake)
Imagination the royal road far within
Haunting, hunted, betrayed by the din.

Friday, February 03, 2006

Ubroken Pieces

The path which we can see
Only leads us nowhere.

The desire we can give a name
Only ever does us wrong.

The love that we can limit
Only leads us far astray.

The desire that we can tame
Is just a handful of ashes.

The dream we can hold onto
Is false as it is real.

The truth that lies beyond the telling
Is the only truth that Is.

The Shattering

Before we are, we were.
Before we were, there was
- what? Potential? Something.
Surely, something that was,
and then was not. A candle
put out, made dark
before it could ever burn, or
know it was a candle at all.

Before eighteen weeks, the fetus
feels nothing. There is no pain
upon it's removal, though
there is a void of sorts. Something
missing that could have been.
And to it we have no words,
only justifications, only beliefs.
Only the assumption that a lack
of pain makes it right. Only that
the shattering of souls
does not diminish us at all.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Bodies; always bodies

The story of the past is read
In the gravestones of the dead.
And there are none who dare believe
What our futures may achieve.
All the promises of pristine science
Never make a lot of sense.
It doesn't matter what they've said
If those wise men are still dead.

Our imagination sees all
Immortality - a fall.

Morning After

Memories that are not mine
They thunder through my brain,
Full of madness spoken in
A language I don't understand,
And full of pain I can't explain.

These shattered hopes hold no design
But somehow still they make a claim,
A terrible meaning has broken in;
I know a beach devoid of sand
And that all ends feel the same.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006


clown haiku

And her make up ran
a red nose, bleeting in the rain
still droplets falling


Walking through the memories
Of lives I've never lived,
Dreams and hopes and stranger things
That I know but never knew.

Every choice I've ever made
Were made in lifetimes long ago
When I loved and died and everything
I thought was true was only me.

All the stories ever told
Are a reaching back in time
Given by past selves we never know
But someone always are.