Buried Under the Rose Bush

We never mastered houseplants.
Above and beyond, but a foot to the left.
A green thumb was never our best asset.
If you didn't shoot, the leaves would be green.

The potted plants thrived on the terrace:
In the house they just repeatedly cried uncle,
Their roots wiggling like an old b-movie.
Do all new killers go blank in the stare?

Gardening was worse than getting an instrument:
Another substandard, low average hobby
Intended to expand the pointless talking points.
Maybe your urge is due to seasonal pollen?

The effort level of the cactus was minimal.
Yet in a humidity it was still kindling to burn.
Should never have made them my central focus.
The hardware store had a shovel clearance.

I have to straighten literally anything out
So I don't pace 'til the hour of judgement!
You think I could pretend I wasn't here and hide?
If you go down, will you bargain for my pardon?

You Were Right

My Dearest Armistead,

I hate saying you were right, 
But you were. 

The smile on my face 
Was a temporary mask 
That has been peeling away 
Ever so slowly. 
My insecurity has bled through 
The white linen robes of my naivete 
And caused me to run to dark corners 
To bleach them clean before anyone sees them. 
Perhaps one could blame 
Our re-acquaintance; 
Nonetheless, I fear this feeling, 
It, would be dreadfully lonely without you.

My eyes feel extremely drowsy, 
But they are failing to rest. 
My mind feels heavy and intoxicated 
By the recurring nightmare of emotion, 
It haunts my every waking hour. 
And my heart is too preoccupied 
With its' reminiscing 
Wo live with the rest of me.

Armistead, 
You have trailed us back 
Through every corner of our suffering 
And imagined them feats of ink.
Do you not see these moments 
Are open wounds? 
They are the episodes in our life 
That we wrap up in neat little stories 
To hide the scars they are transcribed with. 
Yet, for some reason, 
I have removed the bandages 
And allowed you to lick and 
To gorge at the fresh lacerations.

That grief you see 
Sat upon my shoulders 
It is ours to share. 
Are you prepared to split the burden? 
Because Armistead, 
It will continue to grow.


Lovingly,
Armistead

Mrs. Delora

Come take a seat with Mrs Delora.
Find the answers to your questions,
Discover your truths,
Explore your future,
And marvel at her talents.
But, beware,
You may find more than you seek,
You may learn more than you need,
And you may leave... Liberated!

I took the man up on his offer,
And sat on a stool inside the tent.
Across the large wooden table
Sat a Fortune teller
Drowning in hemp cloth
And gold charms.

Her face was haggard,
As if she had seen a thousand lifetimes.
Her breath, strained and heavy,
And the smell of stale smoke,
Mixed with burnt herbs choked my lungs.

She placed her hand out on the table,
And coughed, wordlessly
Demanding my hand in hers.
In my open palm she placed a red stone,
And closed my fingers tight.

Are you a whore child?
I gasped, offended,
A whore! How dare she!
I guess you’re just promiscuous,
Don’t be offended,
I’m just teasing, child.

She started laughing,
Throaty and coarse she cackled.
But her humour was fugacious.

You’ll be barren of life,
You’ll just be a stand in,
A temporary.

Her words spun around my head,
As they tightened the garotte
Around my throat,
Pulling burning breaths
And twisting them under my tongue.

Would you like some tea?
It helps with the truth,
Makes it palatable…

I sip the mossy coloured liquid,
It burns my mouth,
But I can breathe again.
I can breathe much slower,
Pulling air deeply 
Into my famished lungs.

Yes child, that’s it,
Breathe.

I nod, and bare my hand,
The red stone in my open palm,
It was tinged with black,
Like a plague was spreading
Tainting its surface.

You won’t have to worry,
You’ll not be left a spinster,
You’ll be left,
Penniless, naked,
Alone in a ditch.

Wha… Wha…
The words slur incomplete.
My breath long but shallow,
My eyes open,
Unblinking.

Just breathe,
Let Mrs Delora liberate you,

Come take a seat with Mrs Delora.
Find the answers to your questions,
Discover your truths,
Explore your future,
And marvel at her talents.
But, beware,
You may find more than you seek,
You may learn more than you need,
And you may leave... Liberated!

You’ve Returned

My Dearest Armistead,
​
What has kept you for all this time?
Has the pen weighed too heavily in your hand?
Did the words seem too fleeting to write?

I hope you were happy.
We shared such dark times before,
Times that only a writer and their mask can share.
Are we picking up where we left off,
Broken and shattered?
Or have some pieces been reassembled?
Let’s hope this glue is stronger.

I see your life is very different now.
You carry more grief upon your shoulders.
I worry Armistead, will those shoulders hold?
And your smile, how long 'til it fades again?
Aren’t you scared?
We tend to bring out the worst in each other,
Focus on the wretchedness of your life,
And rip the last bandages away,
Exposing the emptiest parts of your soul.

Oh how I have missed you.

Now, Armistead,
Let’s get to work again, shall we?

Regards,
Armistead.

What to do if you crash land your spaceship in England

Step one:
Exit the space craft from the nearest exit,
Leave any unimportant belongings behind,
Regardless of their worth,
And stand at least half a mile away from the crash site.
Ignore the flames,
They are typical of a crash site,
And will likely fizzle out on their own.
It might be worth notifying the authorities,
To do so, please call 999,
Inform them of your location using GPS if possible,
But beware they likely only speak English,
Which could be highly inconvenient.
 
Step two:
Take a moment to gather your thoughts,
And go and grab a cup of tea.
It is advised to go to a regional tea shop,
But a café will suffice if one is not available.
Be warned these places are like witch doctors,
And so, the medicine must be used with caution.
It is widely believed across this alien land,
That a cuppa will cure all ills.
Whether this is emotional or physical ills,
Well that’s unsure to many,
But add too much milk and…
Well the locals are known to pounce.
 
Step three:
Take note of the weather.
The rain falls precisely 100% of the time,
Or near enough to that.
It is customary to comment on this,
So the following phrases might be useful:
‘Miserable outside, innit?’,
'It's really coming down out there', and
‘It’s raining cats and dogs!’
This is not meant literally though!
If it does literally rain cats and dogs during your visit
DO NOT consume!
Many animals are treated for fleas,
And therefore, lack proper seasoning.
 
Step four:
Complain about Europeans taking your job.
Unusual, I know.
Especially considering you don’t have a job here,
But believe me,
That’s because of the EU!
Failing to do so will lead to societal rejection,
And vilification for not being aware
Of the local lands real problems.
But it’s okay,
This does not make you racist!
 
Step five:
Learn to use sarcasm…

Will I Understand?

If love is shown in red,
Then why do my eyes burn,
Why do they melt, when I see it,
Why is LOVE shown as I see anger?
As a tormenting pain inside,
Contorting, twisting, crippling,
Making me hate all that everyone sees as love.
Why is love shown as the color that induces death?
The color that drew an angel away.
The color that drew the last part,
Of my first love away?
How is love red when red stops?
It halts, intrudes with it's imposed rules,
Controlling the world as it moves.
Why is love red?

Betrothed to Betrayal

In an Ivory gown, I waltz,
To meet my maker,
Or face my ultimate breaker.
In the eyes of all those I trust,
I see a conspiring plan,
To share, universally, the feelings,
In their new related form,
That originally came from my heart.
I vow to be there,
In sickness and in health,
And betroth myself to life,
Imprisonment by betrayal,
Regardless of my feelings,
Without notice of my honesty,
I marry myself to be hated,
Suspected by my spouse,
Harmed by my home bird.
Betrothed to my Betrayal.

The End 15-8-15

We enter the room.
Car running in the center,
Fuel tank pierced,
Petrol dripping.
He sits in the driver’s seat,
You sit next to him.
I find a match,
A small piece of wood
And with the first
I light the second.
Wood, unlit end first
Pushed under the car.
I get in the backseat.
I cry, I'm scared.
You look back.
You nod.
Smoke. No flames.
No noise.
No end.


We enter the room.
Car running in the center,
Fuel take pierced,
Petrol dripping.
You take my hand
Comforting my cries.
I nod.
He sits in the driver’s seat.
You sit in the passenger’s seat.
I light a plank of wood,
I place it below the car.
I sit in the backseat.
I wait and wait.
I'm crying and crying.
You reach back.
You give me your hand.
You tell me you're sure,
That you'll be there,
You'll hold my hand to the end.
That you've seen it,
The cruelty of the world,
That it's enough.
We wait.
No smoke, no fire.
No end.


We enter the room.
Car running in the center,
Fuel tank pierced,
Petrol dripping.
You hold me close.
Lead me to the backseat.
I sit, crying and broken.
You sit beside me,
Warm, comforting.
You hold me while the pain
Escapes through the silent,
Distraught, and shattered sobs.
He used the wood,
To trail,
Line,
Trace.
The petrol, his instrument,
The final piece of art.
He lights the end.
He walks to the car.
He sits in the driver’s seat.
You stroke my hair as you watch
Flames dancing in smaller circles
That stop. Too Early.
No continuance.
No End.


We enter the room.
Car running in the center,
Fuel tank pierced.
Petrol dripping.
You tell me it's okay.
I listen.
He takes my hand.
He leads me forward.
He knows what comes after.
You sit in the driver’s seat.
He and I trail the petrol.
One straight line.
We light the end.
He sits in the backseat.
I sit next to him.
Calm, collected.
You say nothing.
You mean nothing.
You show nothing.
He holds me in an embrace.
Kisses the top of my head.
Tightens his grip around me.
I know he loves me.
You mean nothing in your silence.
I look at you,
Silently beg for a word,
A murmur, a mumble.
I ask for your hand.
You move.
​You open the door.
I beg you with my tears.
You put your leg out.
I crumple into him.
You leave the car.
His grip holds me.
I call out your name.
He comforts me.
You walk away.
He wipes every tear.
You pause once.
I look up.
You walk on.
He pulls me closer.
You leave the room.
The fire spreads,
Engulfs - Consumes.
You close the door.
You regret.

The car explodes.
The flames dominate.
He guides me on.
He knows this place.
He tells me he missed me.
I grip his hand.
This is it.
The End.

Words

Have you run out of words?
Is that why there is silence,
Empty, cold silence?
Let me in, let me know,
It's fair to assume I'll be there,
I'm always here.
Just Tell me.
Use your words.
The words I fondly look into,
The words I see move slowly,
Let their warmth back, please.
Speak the truth, or even lie,
Anything is better than nothing!
Everything is better than nothing,
Silence, like this, is unbearable.
You can even tell me to go,
I happily will,
Just break the silence