The Empty

Sometimes, I feel a darkness inside of me.

An inky blackness that taints the world outside

In harsh red and emptiness.

Everything is far too loud, too bright,

And all I want is to be left alone forever,

Or at least until I am finished.

 

Any utterance of sympathy feels false.

I don’t want the touch of a familiar hand,

I just want to sit for a quiet while.

I want to hear something happy.

God, I would give anything just to laugh.

I’ve always found humor in bleak situations,

But that ability seems to have left me now.

It’s swirled down the drain

With the rest of my chuckles and giggles,

And I’ve scrabbled and screamed

And scraped my hands trying to get them back.

 

When I feel like this,

Like I would trade my life for some peace and quiet,

I sit still for a moment

And

Let

The

Silence

In.

I walk away to any place that doesn’t have a sense.

No one who knows my name or cares if they’ll see me again.

I sit.

I sit and wait.

I sit and wait until I meet with an old friend

Who I know will lead me out of this emptiness of apathy.

 

Everyone has met my saviour,

Though to some, they are a demon,

An avenger of hate and bad decisions.

But them and I,

We have an understanding.

I love them because they pulls me back from the edge.

They are sometimes the only one who will.

 

Anger.

 

The sweet, white hot thrill of their presence throws all problems

To the wind.

They are a wake-up call that everything is not as bad as it seems,

And though the world is not pulling its punches

I cannot afford to leave the ring.

How dare this emptiness

This apathy

Try to take the sun from me?

My long walks amid nature?

The taste of ice cream and chocolate and carbs?

I am so angry

That I am whole again.

I’m sorry

But life is beautiful,

The stars are magnificent,

There is a sense of everything embedded in me.

 

And now I don’t want to go.

 

Thank you, anger, my knight in white hot flames.

I’m me for the time being.

When happiness had abandoned me as a lost cause

You swept in to take its place.

I know it’s wrong

But I’m so glad

To be angry with you.

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Seize Determination

If it is brave, and it is good, and it is just, it is yours.

Take it.

Run with it.

When you reach the finish line, scream that you have made it.

Face those that still have a ways to go and grab their hand.

Offer assistance and levitation,

Tell them that while their burdens are heavy

You will lighten the load.

Then cheer and shout and whoop and holler

As they cross their own finish line

And make a dream for themselves.

A Letter For My Father

Dad,

 

Sometimes it’s difficult to put feelings into words.

They tumble outwards, the dam bursts.

They bubble out like a geyser,

Like a babbling brook.

But the words are unsorted, unspecified.

They’re uncooperative, they hurt.

 

So allow me to weave these words

Into a coherent “letter”

Though I guess it’s more a poem

This format suits me better.

 

I want you to know I love you,

Though I might act the opposite.

This time has been difficult

Silence is how I deal with it.

 

I’m curt because I’m unsure,

I’m quiet because I can’t think,

I’m angry because I hate repetition,

I’m sad because I’ve seen the brink.

 

Your words,

Your promises,

They sound so sincere

Like you believe every sentence

Like you can deliver.

 

But to me, to the receiver

They’re empty

I’ve heard them before

I was disappointed then

Heart broken

Why move the hand back

When it was just bitten?

 

I want so much to believe you

Forgive you

Embrace you

But

Every

Single

Time

It falls through

This go ‘round

I’m asking for solid proof.

 

I’ll admit, I don’t understand.

But I will soon,

While you’ve been bleedin’ and fightin’

I’ve been readin’ and writin’

And soon I’ll come through.

I’ll know what you’re going through.

 

I’ve got a question for you.

That man I once knew,

The one who’d joke and laugh

Make me giggle, pat my head?

Is he locked away

Or is he dead?

 

So do your best.

Relax, heal, and rest.

And let this be the last

Test you pass.

 

You want forgiveness?

You need to work for it.

It ain’t as easy as you seem to think,

And don’t forget it.

 

If this is a disease there must be a cure.

Though I’m not always sure,

It’s pure

Bullshit

That I gotta’ sit here all demure.

I assure you,

If this happens again.

There will be no forgiveness.

So get better, man.
Sincerely,

Your daughter

A Letter For My Mother

You called me sunshine,

Your little sunshine.

You kept me happy

When thoughts were gray.

You’ll never know, Mom,

How much I love you.

But your sunshine is going away.

 

You shed a long sigh,

Then your knees crack,

A long day over,

And now you’re toast.

But still you smile

As if it’s nothing.

Crack a joke, then ask about my day.

 

Your taste in TV

Could use an upgrade.

And you say my shows

Could rot your brain.

But you’re still quick, Mom.

Quick as a whip, Mom.

Your intelligence too high to decay.

 

You taught me early,

Treat others kindly.

But retaliate

When you’re done wrong.

Respect is tricky

But give it easily

Big hearts beat egos any day.

 

Some days

I came home empty.

Cheeks stained with teardrops

Mind heavy as stone.

You hushed the world silent

Shooed off the darkness

Held me close, kept reality at bay.

 

And so, Mom,

I want you to know, Mom.

You are perfect

Despite all you say.

You raised a good kid

So cut the bullshit.

Keep up that smile, your sunshine’s okay.

Separation Anxiety

I don’t know what it’s about yet,

I just know it doesn’t feel right.

A pit forms at the base of my stomach,

My insides squeezing,

So,

So,

Tight.

 

Your voices aren’t raised yet,

But it’s on the horizon.

This room’s my safe haven,

But still I keep my eyes on

Him.

 

I do it for you,

I take those feelings,

Lock them up tight,

But these wounds aren’t healing.

 

I want to shout

“Stop it!”

“Figure it out!”

“Make a decision!”

“I just want out!”

But I tamp it down,

Hold steady.

Don’t even frown.

 

It’s hard these days,

Because I’m going through things too.

I’m finding myself,

Figuring it out without you.

 

Every day another scare,

A deep-seated unsettling.

I want to let out these feelings,

Throw that vase, tears streaming.

 

But I can’t.

I won’t.

I’ll keep my poker face,

Stop asking if I’m fine,

Just.

Don’t.

Life in a Library

You don’t always know

Where the books go.

The label’s smudged,

The pages, torn.

 

You tape them together,

Glue the spines,

Buff the disc,

Distribute fines.

 

You smile amiably,

Give help where you can,

Sometimes it feels like plaster.

A bright face,

An emotional scam.

 

A scream echoes through the halls,

Children demanding more.

Often you want to shake them,

Give ’em what for.

Remind them it’s a library,

And don’t you have any manners,

You tiny spore?

 

Patrons don’t believe you.

They ask for miracles.

The sounds of complaints,

Begins to feel lyrical.

They didn’t look,

The evidence is empirical.

 

You return home,

Back aching,

Feet sore,

Shoulders stiff,

Fingers raking,

Through locks newly freed,

From that severe bun.

 

You wonder why this job called so.

The pay is abysmal.

The patrons, awful.

The treatment, reprehensible.

Why do you stay?

 

Then,

One day.

 

A small, grubby hand,

Taps you,

Demands attention.

Eyes wide,

Sparkling,

Filled with imagination.

Seeking information.

 

They smile,

Request something simple,

Science-related?

Your fingers search,

Nimble.

 

You find it easily,

Their face lights up.

They thank you breezily,

And your heart melts

As they ask

For something else,

But nothing breezy.

You see.

 

This kid’s dreaming big,

And can’t have the baby

Books, anymore.

They think maybe

They’ll study everything.

They have to know more.

 

You remember your reasons now.

It always comes back to you,

Somehow.

Through the darkest nights,

And bleakest days,

You’ll forever be swayed,

By these displays.

 

The hunger for knowledge,

Not dampened by failure.

This beautiful behavior.

As they stare,

Clearly,

Desperately

At the stacks,

And you see a bit of drool.

You’d be a fool

To deny that child

What they’ll never learn

In school.

 

Sure,

Life at the library

Is trying

But there’s no denying

That the vying

Children and patrons,

Who only want to seek,

Make this life worth living.

Lifts a smile,

To your cheeks.

Cthulhu Isn’t the Surprise, Surprisingly

At the beginning of the year, my Creative Writing teacher asked us to write a story to surprise her… and I think that’s all I need to say.

I walked slowly down the winding suburban lane at night. The streetlamps stood, tall and flickering, and so did not cast much light on the road as I made my way home. My footsteps echoed solely in the brittle air; the sound clued me in on the complete absence of life surrounding this little square of the universe. I wondered briefly what it would be like to truly be alone, but pushed away this thought as I continued down the path.

The house gleamed warmly in the distance, and it struck me as odd, since I hadn’t lit the fire when I’d left. I had assumed everyone had left for the evening. My housemates, despite their harsh personalities, easily found others to provide a pleasant distraction. The rent was more than fair, however, so I responded to their escapades with a heartfelt shrug.

As I begrudgingly climbed the icy front steps, a deep pang of uneasiness shot through me, as if beyond my door something unearthly were waiting. I crossly shook off the gloom and pushed myself beneath the thin oaken lintel. I had expected a silent welcome from the photos shoved haphazardly into their frames, but the sightless eyes of the past were not what greeted me this twilight.

Cthulhu, lord of all evil, was camped in my favorite armchair. His sparkling black eyes were drifting over a newspaper, glazed over with an unknown emotion. He looked up as I padded closer, tentacles sloshing and slurping into a grotesque grin.

“Why are you here?” My voice quivered dangerously.

Cthulhu stood, his rubbery legs slapping the floor embarrassingly. Towering in stature, he stared me down with a coal-black eye.

“Happy Birthday, Pazuzu.”

That’s the final piece from my Creative Writing class this year! I hope you enjoyed reading these, and that you look forward to more.

Could this read as a fanfic between the Babylonian and Cthulhu mythos? Oh well, it’s all subtext.