Emmelyne //

Emma wakes as golden ribbons of light stream through the open blinds and over her eyelids.
She turns over in a panic, as she notices half of the room’s usual furniture missing,
unintentionally rolling over onto a book beside her.
Scrawled on a note taped to the cover of the book reads:


Emma,
I apologize, I’m leaving.
Thanks for the inspiration,
I completed the book late last night.
Sincerly,
Ezra

Prelude

All the history made emotions.
When the defenses made me apathetic,
Something of affection and youth made me pathetic.
I’ve been here looking over the future,
While she was waiting for 1922 to return.

Part 1: The Fall
Chapter 1: And Eight

A bright sunset plays the background of the world.
Under a vanilla violet twilight, they fall for each other.
While the last one walks alone in the city,
distinguished in freshly fallen snow, his spirit drifts, calling his lord for purpose,
who fails to respond in an understandable voice.

A door collapses and the dusted, worn figure of a man passes through.
Love’s brother infects his heart while love fills his brother’s.
A television flashes red and white but fades to static,
while ash embraces the fallen snow.

Shadows creep out from under debris and bodies
and slowly make their way across the ocean.
The cool water of the surface calms the lost spirits of the loneliest of adventurers.
Poets sing their dreadful songs as the world crumbles.
Across the universe, golden bells sing hope aloud in a frostbitten wind.

And eight cages stand still upon a low platform of the cave.
Water drips from the ceiling, disturbing the silence.
Vivid colors flash through the entrance of the cave,
but no other noise can be heard from within.
Outside, death makes her cry known widely,
fusing with the cries of her prey, her’s is indiscriminable among.

The frigid path through the fields below leads one man to God to glorify his platinum soul.
God says, I bought your future, I own the rights, your grave awaits, my son.
The man replies then dies in the field,
joining death’s screams.

When the water turns to wine,
Cries stop in the field below.
The cave weeps for his guardian son,
the man says the war is over,
God says it’s only just begun.

Everyone is the same,
the cave was a home of heart for a heart of fire.
The lovers sleep in the fields, worried for his brother.

This town, near the field
holds onto nothing.
Time slips through their hands before they realize it.
Dusk soon arrives, disguising ash and death.
The girl, Emmelyne, now sits alone,
Her lover and his brother now dead.
Under the violet lighting of the city, she asks God why the man never changed.
He replies,
his purpose, this town, your grave, are the reasons.
We’re all here because you lost control.

Chapter 2: Clouds

Clouds are forever changing and disappearing.
Gabriel is laying in the field;
his father was right, the war is over.
The breeze blows softly over him as he reminisces.

In an era of peace, he’s still alone.
He stares at the clouds everyday,
noticing that one cloud is remarkably more beautiful
than the others, and looking more so with each day.

All the other clouds, not so much;
most simply disappear or fade into black
every night, as he dreams.

Thoughts float up,
toward arctic night skies,
fireworks in the northern lights.
The sky glows of distant flame in the early dawn,
as he awakes with hopes and wishes for the day.

He wakes in the fields morning after morning,
composing himself after dreams of lost reality.
He records every dream, crying for a life,
one he doesn’t have and one he doesn’t hate.

He calms down as he watches the billowy clouds
float overhead, carrying his dreams and imaginations,
as the tears dry upon his weathered face.
He has forgotten that there’s someone up above,
or maybe he’s ignoring him,
exactly as He ignored his father.

Dark clouds rain tragedy, joining his tears.
He leaves them behind for a brighter one in the distance,
one that never left his sight.
His heart now in bloom,
he follows his favourite cloud,
which then descends to join him on earth,
materializing into a wonderful enigma.

His eternity now weaved through the life of another,
lacking in regret and hate from before,
and lush with newly found purpose in life.
He hears for the first time since the enmity,
I love you.

Chapter 3: Fear

In frozen wastelands,
survival doesn’t even exist,
there’s only struggle for time
as sliding masses destroy life.

He walks among the icy ledges,
given up on average life
and its lack of excitement.

Marine lights reflect upon his marbled face,
aqua blue and violet.
He glares seriously on his path,
attempting to ignore the fatal drop into the frigid below.

One foot slips from the ledge,
and dances until his heart nearly explodes.
The support beneath his feet collapses
and his hands grasp wildly at the chilled air
finally taking hold of a lower ledge,
seconds before the heart would beat away from equilibrium.

Fear creeps its way back into his nightmares,
which are no worse than his average day.
Shadows of enigmatic beasts and entities
in the night, drag him further from sanity,
by his blood-stained ankles.

He hears the wind call his name
with its rough yet quiet and seducing, beautiful voice.
He calls back, both hoping none others catch a glimpse of his insanity
but that someone finds him.

He sits alone, staring up
at the bright sky lights
He smiles at the only peace in this world of his.
An image enters his mind,
a girl standing behind a window
begging for help, done with hoping.

He pushes darkness from his brain
with piercing pain of forgetting,
paralyzed, alarming, and numbing pain
of never really caring.
With seconds left to live,
he leaps for the sky’s lights
and falls into the sea.
Fades to black, the end of fear.

Part 2: The Dark
Chapter 4: Delirium

A dim amber lamp swings down,
lighting up the space between two men,
sitting opposite each other.
They’re each resting their heads on their palms,
elbows on a cold stone table under the lamp.

Empty and negative space between their minds,
they glare intently into each other’s gray eyes.
Lights are running across them,
reflecting the memories and changes.

You don’t care about them?
I haven’t, they left me out there to die.
Or their lives? They’ve returned to find you.
They don’t matter a thing to me if I don’t to them.
What happened? If you don’t mind.
I do mind.
If you don’t mind,
He says sternly
as his weapon is revealed,
clicked into preparation,
and held to the other’s head.

Now, if you don’t mind.
I owed them some money.
How much, do you recall?
I don’t remember.
Sure you do.
Those are only memories I used to hold.
You’re lying, now explain.

Sharp metal clicks again in his ear.

Isaiah replies
Alright, I will explain.

The waves reply softly,
as the oars pass through
over and over again.

Three men are seated in a small row boat.
A storm torments the sky in the near distance,
but the water sings quietly under the wood planks.

Reaching an insignificant pacific island,
the men pull the boat upon the shore
and gaze up at the ironically placed stone tower,
with a thin halo of ominous clouds around the top.

Leaving partial footprints in the hard sand,
embedded with countless stones,
they make their way towards the tower.

The entrance is fogged over by a dark cloud,
that not even their flashlights could penetrate.
The men cautiously enter through the solid stone door,
almost too heavy to even pull open.

Very little light infiltrates the shallow darkness,
but shadows can be seen running up the walls,
screeching as their forms blindly crush into the ceiling.
More shadowed figures peer in through the low windows,
laughing at the shrill howling produced by their fingers scraping the glass.

Three men there are,
holding up their heads
to hide warped visions,
while smiles fade
to smug oversight of one another.

Two men remain,
as shadows perform their dark crusades,
sprinting from wall to wall,
and slashing through the heavy air.

One last man walks silently alone,
creeping towards the paragon of his desired wealth.
Vague and illogical, murky in aqueous definition,
umbras appear before him as spectral images,
developing as final effigies of his delirium.

Chapter 5: Paralyze

Painting black roses beside a shuttered window,
Isaiah whispers sharply to a young boy sitting next to him.
The boy responds with controlled animosity, afraid of his mouth.
Isaiah stands as the sunlight crosses his face.
Spiders of his mind are still bound to the webs of his lost memories,
as he aches for some way to recover.

He says to the boy:
There’s no more ways to tell you,
your story is left behind.

His anger burning brighter than his fever,
his crazed eyes meet the boys’ as his temper takes over.
Hallucinations are kindled behind his eyes,
resulting from the broken part of his heart called home.
Jealousy of the boy’s opportunities smolders at the base of his pain.

He screams to be set on fire as an escape,
but the boy protests hate with love.
However, there’s nothing in between suicide and sacrifice,
and Isaiah chooses to be alone.
Devouring all fears and conceptions, he gives way to impulses.
It’s time that I be heard.
He artlessly breaks out of his final barrier, pride,
and a knife intrudes into the home of the boy’s blood.
Crimson flows down his paralyzed, statue figure
as if water from a tortured fountain.
His puppet lying dead in an ocean of life before him,
Isaiah bridges his mind with that of his horror.

Chapter 6: Skylit

The shadow of an hourglass tower dominates the field below the ridge of
the city, which is saturated with calamities and wraiths.
Seven times the clock strikes on a propane holiday.
Fireworks grab the ceiling of their skylit bounce house
of mystery and silver nightmares.
Shouts and hollers of joy resonate in the depths of the human heart.
People from the city, scared and scarred, give up apprehensions
for the benefit of the beautiful shared time
on the field below the city.

A young man, Isaiah,
stares at the moon
with fascination and love.
He sings softly to himself,
calming his spirit after the wicked city, his home.
Phantoms creep up the inner walls of his heart,
relieving his tired body of its guilt.
Wings, woven out of thin air,
guide onlookers to their brightest of imaginations,
as they dream a nation of song.

Silence burns down the peoples’ hearts with anticipation
until Isaiah cries out, silence is the enemy,
and so begins the midnight affair.
Thieves take the moment of allure to their advantage,
pirating the people of their assets and dearest values.
Antipathy forms in their hearts,
but dissolves as the fireworks hit the sky,
bursting into delicious, enchanting reveries.

Isaiah yells again with rapture,
as he covers both his ears.
Love of the summer months
embeds a beautiful fruition of freedom
into his rigid mind.
His hair catches fire in the wavering sunlight passing over his body,
as the orange glass sphere lies down to rest beyond the horizon.
He sits above the field of people,
playing his guitar and sounding his loved voice.

His music dives into the field,
splashing colors and delight onto the people below.
They lust for the zeal his music produces,
and the taste, so tempting with sweet emotion.
Isaiah draws their hearts under the summer twilight
now becoming early morning amethyst.
Stars now recline in the smooth curves of the distant hills
as Isaiah sings life into the morning,
affecting the entire field to join him in ecstasy.
Summer joins the stars in sleep with the admittance of winter.

Chapter 7: Buried Alive

Isaiah stands alone in the cryptic tower.
Alarming opposition and blizzards force every bit of energy against his tattered mind.
He clutches at his final grip on sanity,
already past the danger line.
He reaches into haze and obscurity as his memories lapse into recent events.
Isaiah’s hand stops above the darkest patch of dusty fog.
The wire is cut from his brain, flooding the present vision with phantasmal incubi,
screaming his name in shrill notes.

His cold and ghastly body hits the floor with a horrifying sound,
followed by an effervescent pulsing across the floor and through the basements.
His attempts to move are visible as wretched squirming,
as he coats the floor with scarlet.
The mortal downfall of his body alone is not enough to end his life,
but the following nightmares torment his inert body.
The creeping sensation of frothing, seething flesh puts his body into a state of never ending draining.
Isaiah’s placid and nearly lifeless body is left in the hands of the only remaining inhabitant of the tower.

The man enters within hours of Isaiah’s deathly collapse.
His graveled voice coats the air with a tinge of unbound disorder and psychosis.
Isaiah’s eyes flash about the room, trying to separate hallucinations from reality.
Repeated blows to his chest force Isaiah to cry out in grim pain as his wicked end comes near.

Betrayed by his own mind, fed with too many horrors and illusions,
Isaiah falls to his chest upon trying to lift his body with gaunt arms.
The man gives Isaiah a final trial of fate or ability,
but all fades to black for Isaiah.
He is carried through stone corridors and out of the infamous doors,
through the fog of the cemetery, waking the dead,
and buried alive.

Part 3: The Sea
Chapter 8: Immersion

Light breaks the surface,
begging for them to return,
change their minds,
and believe the truth.

Immersed in an ocean of lies,
they come together under the light.
When everything is said to be said,
they separate.
When everything is done to be done,
he surfaces.

She drags him back under the waves,
away from the island, away from help.
Ocean dwellers freely welcome him back down

Well,
I can fight this, but I may die
and you’re the one to be the ocean in my eyes.

Too much too soon,
too little too late,
it’s in their eyes
this has been a mistake.
She refuses his hands,
his shoulder to lean on,
and his heart to care.

Struggling to reach the light and heal his wounds,
free of the salt water.
She grasps at his ankles again.

Falling down,
Will you pick me up again?
Dead in the eyes of my friends,
take me out of here, an escape.

To set desires on fire would be impossible,
drenched, soaked, and immersed in the ocean.
Sinking deeper into increasing pressures,
hours in the crushing conditions,
his eyes open.

His hands finally break the surface,
eyes exposed to the sunlight,
and not filtered by the fogged, hazy water.
Searching and grasping for the land,
he pulls his ocean baked body
into reality.

Chapter 9: Radiance

In the cursed city, James runs from death.
Orange lights hang over the streets and shops
as his footsteps echo through the alleyways.
Propane nightmares infect his freshly awoken mind
with a curious retrospective view of his visions.
As midnight envelops his body, with the sunset on his sleeve,
his memories of the island are forced into his eyes.

The frigid water he couldn’t emerge from,
the warm surface calling his name and providing life,
as his conscience screams:
What are you waiting for?
I have the answers of reason,
come undone.

Dawn approaches while he is still thinking and regretting.
The calming sun creeps from the heartless ground,
up his back, and over his neck and head,
revitalizing him from his gloom.
He stands, attempting to be patient with his loss of self.

The lights flicker out of life,
and gray moths emerge from their nightly hiding places.
They flutter over his head,
releasing dust and sad fragments of young wings.

Radiance glows over his shoulders,
as he walks away from the sunrise,
ignoring all signs leading him toward it.

His nerves are bound to his regrets,
and have reached the limit bordering insanity.
His fears of repeating his immersion prevent communication and love.
He has become too broken, from her,
to move on in the city,
to leave memories behind,
and forgive himself for his mistakes.
But the sunset behind him never stops calling.

Part 4: The Suburbs
Chapter 10: The Kids’ Stratagem

Insomnia is a lonely drug.
I’m sitting beside myself on the floor,
blue lights dance about the room,
as my eyes deceive me.
Sometimes I can’t believe this feeling.
I glance down at my emaciated body,
my knees pulled up almost to my chest,
my arms securing myself,
as I lack my other half to hold me together.

The darkness of my room surrounds and envelops a central light,
by which I cry as I remember.
I’m moving past the wasted hours,
and now I’m ready to stop, but I can’t.

As memories relapse,
I’m standing in a doorway in front of a dim sunset.
A dusty car sits outside,
orange light refracts through the windshield,
and is caught by the leaves of a nearby palm tree,
as if by open hands.

I look around the center room of the house,
then turn and step out onto the brick porch way.
In the month of may,
these suburban streets are singing and screaming,
of children, pure and wrong alike.
So much pain for so many so young,
they spin, jump, yell, and run under the early summer sun.
One dances up to me,
asking where the owner of the house has disappeared to.
I reply that I’m not sure,
the escaping lie burns my already dry lips.

The kids want to know so bad
how to get out of here,
but all of them have always known
that it’s better not to know.

The same child comes knocking on my door,
but I’d rather be alone than act like I care.
I can’t sleep at night with the broken kids,
out on the street, their dreams are my responsibility
and my nightmares are a result of my own apathy.

Plants crack the street and wind around my legs,
between the cobblestones, as I stand in disbelief.
Stricken with pain, the tormented and the punished
fall to love, as a girl screams out it’s in your mind,
not your heart.

The girl climbs a weeping tree, crying age and dust.
The rosy flash of the suburban sun shines through the branches.
With a glimmer in her smile, her contests with fate threaten the night.
Black luster penetrates her soul, sinking lies and synthesizing bleak stratagems.

The boy finds a charm on a dark night,
splitting the ignorance between asleep and a sleep.
With a voltage in his hands, he defines his generation
through a single shock to the foundation.
Standing before me, as the sun blazes through his scarlet hair,
the girl focuses as light confuses her storming blood.

Lies pass through mouths, numbed with pain.
The dying star in the city sky stops providing light for the lost.
Religion crumbles and fades in their eyes,
neighbors lose importance,
friends unintentionally become enemies,
and enemies, friends.
Knowledge dies as black-hearted mirrors lie to their greatest of admirers.

I watched the end of a century, the end of a culture.
Deep blue in my heart, I’ve started to care.
Signs in the city remind me of the kids,
and my mind plays tricks on me as I pack up my things.
The sky changes colors over the road as I return home,
home to the suburbs where my past resides in the hearts of the children.
The kids left life behind and began living as if death starts from birth.
They accepted pride and vanity, shattering the mirrors of their image-obsessed past.

Chapter 11: Future Memories

He sees the sun, looking into the distance
carrying the poison with his eyes.
In the silence of night,
he fails to find the future.
He stops to paint a picture of life
exactly as he wants it.

In the middle of the park,
he stops to think of a place no ones been.
He’s going to let it go.
The time of night speaks in his dreams,
revealing hopes and wishes
along with apprehension.

Perfect is possible but not.
Finding perfection through a lack of it,
It’s only an opinion so he measures against others
rather than a flawless entity,
which threatens sanity.

So he gives up, watching lights pass by in the eastern ocean,
legends and shadows to be hidden
from eyes forever,
free of criticism and realization of betrayal.

Blood and rain falling in equal amounts,
he joins the efforts for peace
only to discover the real meaning
of peacekeeper.

Static is upon the people,
the fail of our foundation
we’ve been dependent on for far too long.
The same trees grow over and over again,
lacking originality and security, they wither.

Meteors crash down on his haven, his home.
He falls to his knees,
begging for survival
but not of loved ones
instead of loved things.

He is breathing
regretfully, however.
Life can carry on,
despite selfish attempts at control.
Justification will soon break the barriers
answering his useless questions
and mystic reasonings.

Part 5: The City
Chapter 12: Haze

Ever feel that shiver of haunting nostalgia?
That screaming psychedelia of your dreams?
I have, and believe what follows,
nothing but the truth spills from my pen.

I’m still here,
At least I got away with it in this world of make believe,
and after all the love and all the death,
I’m still not alone.

In the clouds, I buy my way and build a home.
No one cares, I’ve left alone,
but I haven’t yet.

Only in my mind,
I’ve built a home of brick and stone
to contain my rotten soul and blistered heart,
worn by endless days in the figment of haze that is my mind.

In the center of lost dreams
lies my own,
but I’ve left it there for the more ambitious, for someone who could use it.

I step down from the cold, bleak steps.
The frozen sidewalk guides me home
when my own brain cannot.

Corrupted, disfigured mind.
It asks for help, but I only give it more.
It’s become accustomed by now to the relentless storm.
I haven’t though,
I stumble and trip towards home.

The space between my love and lust is lost.
What if I died now?
While I’m at my high?
At least, I’d find what I believe.

Reaching the steps, he takes over.
Not home, no, I need more.
But rest is what I need,
release from this torment, out of my body,
that would be alright, or better than this
but he’s in control again.

Swirling, twisting dreams,
colors fade and dark clouds drop over my eyes to conceal the world
on the brink of destruction.

Lost all control, haven’t slept in days,
time slips, I try again.
Last trip’s still on my mind,
it’s bound to burst from my skull.

It’s too much to avoid,
delirium flashes again, burning my eyes from within.
A wave of electric crashes over my being, devouring me whole.
Darkness arrives and stars paint my path almost to death.
Unconscious, face down, on my way home.

I wake under a coat of dust,
left by two evening’s moons.

Eyes red, I can feel it.
I look up and around at the hot summer streets
with orange autumn leaves on the sidewalks.

Where did he leave me?
After he took control.
What am I waiting for?

Yellow dress glides gracefully towards me.
Are you okay?
Are you the first to ask? I muster through deep breaths
No, all night people have been worried, are you alright?
I’m fine, I don’t need your help
Yellow joins back with blues, greens, and reds.

A cheer for blind humanity cries out.
Among the crash, two are lost
to their loss of grip on finite living.
Night falls and hides my path once again.
I rely on the rusted, detailed streetlights to find my way home.

Mind not spinning out of control anymore,
I’d rather fall asleep now,
but this insomnia is trying to kill me,
maybe I’m trying to kill myself.

I’ll just think of her for a while.
eyes like a calm, smooth ocean swallow my heart
her beauty cools me and excites me at the same time
excites me, happier than ever
just enough to fall asleep with hope.

In dreams,
I will drink all this hole collapses,
a vortex of violet and red water spins around my eyes with tempting flavor.

My head drains of all images
filling back up with more, of fields and skies above,
fireflies buzzing and humming around a moonlit field.
Skies of orange and purple in a contrasting manner
begin to spin and contort again.

Images, new and old, fusing despite the imminent martyrdom.
Insomnia awakens and spears its fangs into my neck,
light escapes from the front of the brain,
darkness fills my eyes as I struggle to see,
blinding yellow light floods back into sight and I collapse on the floor.

Lightning metal strikes the right side of my head back against the shelf.
I struggle to stand up,
I attempt to run but the pipe crushes my skull.
Vision fades near to nothing,
I lean on my right knee to avoid the next blow,
but the pipe glances off my left shoulder.
I grimace in pain and exert the last of my energy to run,
head draining, as I escape the hell interrupting my dreams.

Carelessly, I smash through the thin door.
He chases me, yelling and shouting of debts owed,
echoing through the halls,
waking nearby vacationing families.

I leap the lowest section of balcony to my demise, nearly.
He stops short, considering it but decides not, bolting down the stairs.
Broken ankle,
still draining blood
he approaches me with undeniable speed, as I stand.

Out of my now reduced field of vision
black and gray clad figures rush toward him.
Feet away from me
he is forced to his knees,
as I collapse to my own,
nearly all of my strength wasted
at 3 in the morning.

Infamy,
I never thought it would be mine,
When I least desired it,
When I wanted out,
When I escaped.

I sit here, head patched up,
dreams still vortexes and vibrant colors fading to death before life.
I meddled in the dark affairs,
created a name for myself,
obviously not a good one.

They’re still looking for me,
home destroyed, the handshake securing my fate,
assassins about the roofs, tempting with my fate,
all for what purpose?

I make a call.
Help me, please, they’ve found me.
Where are you?
The hospital.

He promises,
I’ll be there.
Run, now, out the back door,
Ignore the doctor, he’s only worried.

Through the door, light blinding me,
contrasting with my dimmed vision.
Through the center parking lot,
free from their vision,
their control over my fragile life.
Hot fumes and haze rise from the black-hearted ground
to provide me with cover,
all that it can do to be of certain aid and kindness for once.

The black melts at my feet,
sweating from every pore.
The van appears before me as shots sound out, reflecting off the pavement.
He saves my life.

Black dust rises as we speed from the parking lot.
Golden hexagonal figures aligning through the windshield,
obliterated by the shielding darkness, where I sit in the back.

Whispers calm me, distinguishing from the space-ripping sound of gunshots.
I apologize for my delayed arrival.
Only by seconds, I’m trapped by time
As are we all, at bay to the never-ending demand of the ticking hand.

A swirling stream barely misses the van
breathing fire onto its frame.
He drops me secretly to avoid inevitable death.

Heavy iron door,
padded with innumerable locks,
blocks my path.

Dark alleyway,
crowded by under-lived ones,
distorts the arts.

I walk alone,
through streets and by lights, turns and detours, sparse and hidden.
A straight road leading to irreversible conditions,
I’ve found help, I’ve lost help.
I’m wanted on the wall but I continue towards the unknown.
Until there,
I walk alone.

I fall asleep in a corner of rocks and bricks,
hiding from the dead city beyond my safeguard.

In nightmares,
time is distorted.
A python strikes at me
before I fall into space,
continuing in revolutions around me,
fangs sink into my throat.

Screams cry out in all directions,
but none are my own.
Black essence wells up in my being
and spills from my hanging mouth,
turning to vibrant colors as the venom drains.

Flashes above, drops from the sky,
holes open up, swallowing the stars and the moon.
Light escapes through the voids,
leaving me in complete darkness.

A hand brushes my face
and weaves through my hair,
then disappears and I am left to myself
in a palace of gold,
walls collapsing,
sandstorms leaning their immense weights on the structure,
all crumbles but turns to vapor as it does so.

I freeze in the remaining desert with the angel of death,
then bake in the frigid icelands with the master of fear,
as the landscape transforms at its own will.

It settles on a final decision,
back home,
I walk alone.

Does it sound familiar?
Do bells ring, in the distant lands of your mind?
They will,
but then again
I’m a liar.

Chapter 13: Home

Azrael

Platinum souls eventually shine brighter than intended.
In a trial of self against self,
flames left courage in my veins,
and pride in the scattered memories.

I’m lonely, a sonic from a sound you could hear.
I told you, you don’t know who you are,
I’ve told you, screamed, cried in your ear,
Clutching your chest, scratching and testing your patience,
Tears of pain raining down, you sat with me,
Revealed the end, the end of life and the end of love,
Love I thought was mine, mine forever,
But I guess it belonged to the desert.

Lies of reason, mischief, artwork, death;
call it what you like, I stole it.
A story embedded in my memories, deep under my skin,
kills my past and those left behind,
so I write down fading thoughts,
chains of memories unlinking and falling to the grave.

I never thought it would come to this.
Say all you want, it’s your fault.
This is just as much your fault.
It was your betrayal.

Seven Weeks Before

Green cushions, gold ornaments, ghosts of Christmas,
useless tokens of useless purposes.
Hope hides under the empty plates,
behind clay walls, and under the sand
of the sad desert called home.

I walk into the living room,
immersed in curiosity and lies,
followed closely by my brother, Alexander.
Azrael, tell me now, what’s going on?
We’re moving, Alexander.
What? Why? As tears are born into his dreary eyes.
I don’t know, but father bought the house last week.
Well where are we moving to?
To the city, I’m leaving to sign for the house this afternoon.
But we’ve lived out here since I was born.
I know. The desert is smothering our family though, we have to leave.

Alexander storms from the room,
the shadow of his anger dropping a nearby lamp,
smashing onto the carpet and sparking to death.
I sigh with contempt towards Alexander’s temper.
Why can he never just talk to me?
Everything eventually comes to an end.

I decided to walk to the city rather than drive.
Sulking and sweating on an irregularly hot December day,
I regret that decision.

The dunes fade into cold shadows,
the city reigns overhead, skyscrapers
candles of new opportunity
and relics of modernism.

Our new house is on the third block from the desert side.
Although I was born in the city,
before we moved to our rock canyon outskirts,
I have about as much experience here as Alexander.
At least I’m open to change.

Lights refract through nearby windows and glare my way,
more shades and colors than ever before brush my face.
But these blue eyes glow brighter than any color I’ve ever seen,
my arms drop to my side and I stop.
Forget the desert, forget home, forget Alexander.
You must be Azrael Shapira? I just need you to sign here, then it’s all set.
Oh, yes. I apologize, I’m from the desert.
That’s fine, you’ll be ready to move in soon, I assume?
I believe so, that’s up to my parents.
Alright. Well, have a safe trip home.

I wake to a thunderous series of sounds above my room.
Yelling, movement, and crashing convince me
to go upstairs, mostly out of sleeplessness.

What are you doing Alexander? As I slip through the slightly opened door.
Packing.
Packing shouldn’t be able to wake me up, what’s the matter?
I’m sorry, you know I’m not too happy about this.
It’s fine. But let me sleep next time.
Did you sign for the house yesterday?
Yeah. I’m going back to the city today.
Why? We’re not moving until next week.
I know, I’m meeting someone.
Okay.
Stop this Alexander, I know you’re not loving the move, but the rest of us actually like the city.

My feet pound through inches of snow and sand, the former left over last night’s sleep.
With a frozen tendency, my hands shake uncontrollably.
The sun sets on the horizon again, spreading a frigid sadness through the sand.
The lights of the city dance on the sand dunes, fading into gray.

I meet her on the first shadowed corner of the city.
Her bright blue eyes shine with anticipation,
burning into my soul, leaving a violet scar.
I grab her hand and we walk silently into society.

Six Weeks Before

Azrael. Wake up, Emmelyne is here to pick you up.
I’m not going with you?
I guess not, she insisted on driving you to the house.
I’ve been with her every day, can’t I drive to our new house with my family?
You seem to desire her company equally Azrael. I’m leaving now.
I’m sorry. Wait, can you tell her to go without me?
That’s your problem, brother.

And with that he left the room as if a host of dark, a cloud of dawn.
I sit up in the hazy state of waking and my mind registers the previous conversation.
I think I’ve sold my soul to a face I can’t even recognize, and she’s waiting at my door.

A shadow falls from each eye of each person sitting in the living room as I pass through.
The one black heart shines in a view of luster, transposing nightmares over reality,
closing the ridge between imaginative death and instinctive impulses.
The careful fringes of our world fold over into the new dimension, modern life.

Dust and sand reach for the sky as we move towards the city,
where modernism emanates from within.
Lights glance off every building and highlight the life of below,
the life of the high and the black water running through their veins.

Four Weeks Before

What are the odds of doubts, the odds of me letting you down?
Do what you want, I’ll love you either way. She whispers in an understanding voice.
She kisses my lips and I pull away, pretending to check the time.

We go out for dinner and a walk.
Colors blend together on the streets,
our violet fuses with lustrous maroon,
street black, and the white light of ecstasy.

The last night in the city with her,
she draws silver lines through the crowd,
to match my platinum void of a cadaverous heart.
I don’t see all the secrets she eases through,
I can’t see lies when all the lights are bright.
I float over her consciousness, drawing out obsession
and reconstructing the necessity of making amends
to empty friends, to ones already left.

As we walk toward the outskirts,
the houses are increasingly abandoned,
brick crosses they bear,
as time slips through their hands,
blame passed from past to future,
and the zeros never change.

Two Weeks Before

I hold in shrouded screams from daylight dreams.
On winter weekends, I lie by her side,
deep breaths slowing the endless beating of my own heart.
White light from the clock on the night stand penetrates my sleepy eyelids,
creating scarlet and orange scopes into the cloudy future, where I sleep alone.

You will never change,
Washing your hands in blood won’t take away the stains on my hands,
the stains you caused with your path of torrential life destruction.
Since there’s no room for me, is this the end?

Under the crushing waves of her questions, what’s happening, why am I changing,
I’m losing myself even more, I’m falling down.
All I know is I’m being taken from my desert home, and I let it happen.
When worlds collide, the lights destroy our eyes, projecting hallucinations into our dreams,
breaking visions of the past, we’re now never able to return to.

One Week Before

Nightmares cloud my former dreams,
illuminating the vacancy of my bed.
The light from under his door leads me blindly
to deception and duplicity of a woman clad none,
and a man I used to call a brother, with a hint of shine in his turning glance.
Dark, lead me out before hell decides it’s satisfied with registering his name tonight.

The Days Before

Come back home, I have all you need.
The desert had all I needed without the lies, the city only has all that I want.
Please Azrael, find a way to stop thinking about the desert.
Alexander was right.
You wanted to move out here, though.
Because I met you, but now I want home back.
You are home for me.
Our house was my home. I have to go back.

As she cries into my trembling hands, I calmly wipe the soaked dust from her face.
What did I do?
You didn’t do what you say you did.
Are you saying I lied to you? I never thought it would come to this.
Say all you want, it’s your fault.
This is just as much your fault.
It was your betrayal.

Two Weeks After

Alexander

As if days fell from the sky,
I look through jade flames after the angel of death.
Gems of storm cross the azure above, as red light and sovereign sound
drop dry to unleash anger of chaos and calamity lost.

The amber moon cries into melting lives of the night,
and my eyes wield too much emboldened pain to show blue.
I look down, behind me my fading shoes leave a fluid mirror of what’s passed and what’s past.
A certain ignorance labels me, where unrest reconstructs mortality.

My brother’s determined, impulsive escape from the city drained beryl of my dying soul,
along with compassion and empathy for betrayal.
But I understand one betrayal, the one that divided and shattered Azrael.
Something descended into shrouded speech, never to be swallowed by the ears of him.

The frigid eagerness left in our house slowly fades to another time,
as the family waits for the escape that Azrael stole in the night of day.
Eminent thoughts preside in my mind, where the world crumbles in a frame,
a frame shattering with every step of the darkness treading into the deepest caverns.

Memories flash through my mind as if lost in the cataclysm,
The frigid water he couldn’t emerge from,

I watched the end of a century, the end of a culture.
Deep blue in my heart, I start to care.

I freeze in the remaining desert with the angel of death,
then bake in the frigid icelands with the master of fear,
as the landscape transforms at its own will.

but all of them have always known
that it’s better not to know.

A young man, Isaiah,
stares at the moon
with fascination and love.

You will never change,
Flames left courage in my veins,
pride in the scattered memories.

Brothers given to inhuman feelings followed the stricken path the wrong way,
each letting their partner fall to isolation.

To beautiful end hear this single plea,
Your nightmares never fail to poison rest;
And though the tempests catch and raze me,
I float on dreamt clouds, still unimpressed.

To your door I surround and pretend change.
I ask and beg, please leave me here at last,
But flows in your mask a glimmer so strange,
As if through my heart and my soul delight glass.

But once I hold the light of winter in palms,
Never again doubt your vim and voltage;
With fire and zeal, without time, your voice calms.
Within the orb I’ll lie with apt dosage.

No proper rite or veil is here or will,
But to sleep I hazard with just the chill.

Three Weeks After

Home echoes in my heart, where once the heavy bells of dark left a way out,
often leading to the desires the thief left empty.
The thin walls crumble as I lean on them,
searching for a way out of the new desert, deserted love.

Letters return unopened, blanketed by dust and raw bled emotions.
By whom, I have not an idea, but I place the pieces of the future away, covering despair.
I bury my soul in armor, to cover life lost in the city,
where colors of ambiance and radiance immunize the corrupted streets and faint walls.

I walk in the city, steps bounding from island to island of august red.
Dawn’s waking tears splinter the street I walk upon, and people begin to cloud into buildings.
My arrival on the hidden passage of the sun clears my heart,
where life begs me to surrender to the light.

Alexander steps into the old house, where shadows creep from under the door,
seducing and enticing tired souls ardent to be sold to the angel of death.
A voice fragments the air between his eyes and his brother’s, where the beautiful end resides.
Candles hide their fires as immortal paradise permeates his vacant eyes.

Chapter 14: Past Shadows

Fragments of fiction lie on the outer rim of his imagination,
beyond the transparent border, unforgiving and permanent.
Out of his second story window,
he watches beasts gather in the soil below,
listening to the squealing, screeching, and howling.
He shuts his eyes, afraid of his own deadly thoughts.
He leans his face onto the window beside the bed.
The shadows of dead leaves and sad skies kiss his face,
behind weary, worn lips.
Pleased to be broken and darkhearted, he glares into the forest below.

Where once the spring trees cried melting ice,
now fight two dark figures.
The restless conflict in the dead of night attracts his curiosity.
The damp surroundings and fallen leaves blur the forms of the figures.
The figures argue relentlessly,
Where the heart ends and hate begins,
brothers given to inhuman feelings followed the stricken path the wrong way,
each letting their partner fall to isolation.
As dawn’s hibernation comes to a close with a vision he believes,
he falls asleep in the early morning.

He wakes with the image of calm lucid waters
caressing the soft sand he lies upon.
He realizes that he’s delirious out of insomnia.
A girl urges him to stand with confidence.
Her soft lips meet his as he rises from the sand.
He embraces love with a collection of his past.

In his mind, in the darkest corners of the past,
he has walked on streets paved in gold,
after rising out of cold rain trenches.
He threw his family into the prisons of his psyche,
separating himself and watching in contemplation of control.
He sat on golden sidewalks, learning how to manipulate to his advantage.
Moving on from deliberately lost opportunities, he pursued personal gain.
He found resort in groups, people who gave him console and pulled him further from his past shadows.
In tents under northern dusk, they taught him to ignore and forget.
Upon his restoration into reality,
he couldn’t give or love.

Now he lies with the girl, having transformed her into his lesser,
he, her master.
He glances up from his pillow at her face.
For just one second, he regrets every mistake
and his father’s words of warning echo in his dreams.
He refocuses his concentration back on the girl’s face,
but now it’s too late to fix his mind and relieve him of the control.

Chapter 15: Obsidian

A soft whisper shatters the silence of the dark study.
I open my eyes in alarm, to the rear facing window,
but now I hear it more clearly:
There could be something outside your window,
but you’ll just never know.

The whisper overturns a hidden region in my mind,
the past rushes into my conscious vision,
a light to leave me stranded, exactly as he did.

Without reason or intent,
I open the bottom drawer of the dark wood desk,
removing a weathered and dusty journal,
where the forgotten sleeps, bound in leather.
Retrospective fabrication turns back to the obsolete and the antiquities:

A black jet dashes overhead through the winter breeze,
as the cool taste of peppermint whisps down,
manipulating and tormenting my melancholy tongue.
The wasteland parades a flash of every colour between coral and amber,
as frost dances and arcs over every edge.

He stands disjointed from the rest of us.
Isolated by the beam of golden sunlight glorifying his figure,
James says to all of us children,
We will stop here for the night.

The other children scatter and begin gathering firewood,
some drag trunks and driftwood from the shallow waste marsh,
while others snatch branches from black and bare trees,
scattered and few across the lowlands.

One of the other children, Isaiah, approaches me as the others scatter,
Gabriel, I can see a small tree beyond the river,
would you help me carry some of the wood?
I nod at him as he points into the distance,
where haze and orange hexagons build stairways into the sky.

We walk together over rocks and through a mahogany creek,
until we reach the statuesque tree he pointed out.
It resembles a tall, angular ghost,
rising from the desolate grave of the dead mother earth.

Isaiah helps me onto the highest branch I can reach, and I lift myself to the next,
nearly slipping on the damp and crumbling debris hanging from every branch.
I break a few of the larger branches from the tree
and lower them down into Isaiah’s coarse and unkempt hands.
He nods up at me, signalling his satisfaction, then walks back towards camp.
I look around in disbelief then drop from the tree, following Oliver’s path.

James looks up at me as I near the fire and says,
Here, Gabriel, take a seat,
while he pats the spot beside him,
Tomorrow we’re hiking up to the plateau,
as he points into the clarion night sky ahead of us.
I promise all of you a white dream, of paradise,
just as I promise every night.
You just have to trust me, and I’ll lead you into your reveries.

He stands to part with us for the night’s sleep,
and for the first time, a crown eternalizes his mysterious soul.
James becomes our father with the simplest of actions,
his love for us and for humanity’s future.

I wake to a glaring orange light lining the seams of my tent,
and a shallow puddle of marsh water gathering near the entrance.
Through slowly fading dreams and images,
I hear James’ voice in the distance,
a faint and fragile reminder of his promise.

He’s talking to the others,
There could be something outside your window,
but you’ll just never know,
Unless you consider every possibility, every opportunity,
you can create the future.
My soul is far too early for my ideas,
but they’re yours now…

When I wake again, the tent and our few belongings have already been packed,
Isaiah’s sitting at my side, he smiles as I open my eyes and says,
James said the sandstorm ahead has cleared,
the desert is now visible so we’re moving today.
He helps me stand and points at the clear pyramidal horizon,
where the soft lights of the city outline the desert.

Through slowly fading daylight, we tread towards the desert,
where we will follow the path into the city, into impulse and vitality.
The inanimacy of the cold ground creeps up our heels, our legs,
and into our hearts, sad with the approaching night.

Night consumes the bright sky,
blanketing vision in layers of stars,
and revealing the desert sand to our weary feet.
A small car followed by a larger one passes us,
acquainting sand and dust with the frigid breeze.
Several men in black coats of the night follow the cars.

James collapses as the obsidian shadows surround him
and inhale his hallowed breath.
Isaiah’s weak voice fades into the desert wind,
leaving the final stains on the last page of my journal:
Although I know how much you hate this,
you were supposed to be the one to save us
from the empty and hopeless feeling
when the end came reeling?

Chapter 16: Brothers

Azrael

Blood drips from the air, crystalizing into ruby shards, only to shatter on the ground
And melt about the remains of Alexander’s body, staining the vivid memories pouring into the wood floor
Azrael’s eyes flicker to a bright red as he catches a shard in flight
His holiday of temptation leaves his life in ruins
His family in shambles, dark shadows seeping back into the sand

Before I saw Emmelyne’s eyes in the dark,
softly screaming into my veins,
a sacred explanation of losing control,
I had no intention of continuing or falling,
but everything else did.
The radiance returned in my bruises,
the fear in my mirror taunted me,
and I fractured countless dreams and memories just to see her face,
to lose control for just one second,
While in the dark I crawled towards home.

Daniel

As the third brother, whom Azrael previously ignored,
I now see the future,
the longest night and the blindest apathy.

The sun glares through the window past my eyes and through the floor.
The wood boards and soft earth shudder to the contrasting warmth below.
The light creeps in through the thin walls
towards my weak and vulnerable life,
where eager hands pull the future inside,
as if folding a paper of everybody’s lost promises to be saved and loved,
wishing for something more, something real,
trusting in something that was once true.
For the moment the soft ribbon escaped the tongue to turn to black lies.

Mother’s here, her sharp eyes peer through my intentions and poems, my music, and my art.
Our eyes have the night embraced in arms of daylight.
One step forward she avoids my glance,
as small diamonds of ice fall from the ceiling,
as quiet as orange autumn leaves seducing the cold earth.
She says, I only want to leave here,
We could go to the city, where Azrael’s hiding.
We belong here, if we follow Azrael we’ll only find Alexander.

Azrael couldn’t afford to see me that night with her,
so he saw Alexander’s guilty face from his memories,
and handed down contempt into the ridges of his black heart.

Not only could Azrael not bear to see me in the dark,
but he also couldn’t see her anymore.
Her face lost its glow and striking love which originally made her the thief of his heart.
A new face rose in his heart,
with petals of guilt and something unknown,
an excitement lost with Emmelyne he found elsewhere,
and she blamed him.

Rachaele called him her brother.
Something in the name allowed for the I love you,
whispered in her sweet voice,
without guilt or threat of jealousy.
I watched him follow her into the city night after night,
while Emmelyne turned to Alexander and I,
but we wouldn’t tell her where Azrael was.

I think she knew however,
she could hear the faults in our voices,
covering our brother’s impulses,
and blinding her from the reversed world she once held in her hands, smiling.
But now lost and resentful,
betrayed and replaced,
she returns back to 1922,
when he loved her.

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