Saturday, November 30, 2013


Good evening, world. I'm trying to do this writing thing again.


There is a man in an old house. The house is dark, which makes it stand out among the other houses on that blurry and antiquated street. The man knows where he is, but not why he is here. He can smell his father's cologne in the air; he can almost hear the cries of "Happy Birthday" as his young ghost blows out candles that exist only in his memory. This place is full of stale melancholy. This place is a trap set for his spirit. But nonetheless, he is here. He continues.

Despite the darkness he knows every corner, every nook. He grew up here, in this rotting skeleton of a building. When it still shone with the light of day and the bright promise that only a young family with young children can hold in their still and inexperienced hands. Now, in the silence he can only conjure these phantoms as far as his closed eyes will let them live. The floorboards creak. His hands tremble slightly.

He takes heavy steps, through the old kitchen with its cracked and desolate tile and peeling wallpaper. He remembers a time when this place was the entire sphere of his knowledge, when his whole world tilted and turned on an invisible fulcrum that rested somewhere inside of these four walls. He knows he could still find that place if he looked but he dares not. The decomposition of those old cherished dreams would surely unnerve him even further.

Rounding the corner, we find our man descending a carpeted stairway. The torn, beat-up shag smells of dust and neglect. It's as though he can feel the house whispering to him, asking him how things came to be as they are now. Screaming at him, demanding to know how such hope can signify nothing. He doesn't have any answers. The stillness is broken only by his breathing, the only life in this truly lifeless place.

The man reaches the bottom of the steps, and with the right kind of eyes looks out into the gloomy shadows of the basement. Here his memory can see so many things, so many different events that had taken place. He marvels at the ease in which one's entire life ends up as just so much junk in a yard sale, and from there becomes meaningless and void. His heart aches. This place cries out to him, perhaps to display to him the piece of himself that he was forced to leave here and which has since been claimed by the silence and the dust and the fleeting, lonely echoes of whatever noises from outside manage to penetrate the pall of stillness that hangs over the property. The man knows that nothing that was once here ever truly escaped. Even those bits of junk and personal treasures that ended up scattered across the proverbial four points must have some imprint of his time spent here. A sort of material nostalgia.

He looks to the corner of the room, where there once sat a very large and very old wooden sofa on which so many of his childhood misconceptions became bleak, adult truths. His first kiss. His first time using cocaine. His first time making love.

These memories are like plumes of acrid smoke, wafting from some dreary, underground source up through the stuffy basement air and into his eyes. He can't remember how things got this way, how the horrifying question of a potentially ruined future became this mystifying and stagnant present. How all of his fears were eventually realized, in the most ridiculous ways.

This melancholy man remembers the days spent down here as a boy, flipping through basic cable channels on an ancient television set and simply existing without a thought as to why. Or a certain night as an older boy, still not yet a man, sitting in front of that same T.V. with all of his friends gathered around and finding out for the first time what it was to get high. Then he sees in his mind's eye himself just two years ago, with his aging father, tearing apart that old wooden sofa with a couple of sledgehammers because they weren't going to be able to get it upstairs in anything other than a million pieces and the bank needed the entire place empty in the next week.

Fear. Foreclosure. Separation. Drugs. Divorce. Death. Estrangement. Finally, now. The man is alone, and wonders how he came to be here.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Shower Poetry

Good afternoon, world.

As always, I've been thinking of a woman who has passed gracefully out of my sphere of worry.

I'm always looking for a muse. Enjoy.


Whispers into windy trees
The secret heart that no one sees
Goodbye hello farewell, my love
It seems the pushers came to shove

It seems our movement came to rest
I aced the quiz and failed the test
Now walk alone, sweet mockingbird
It seems you've seen what I've not heard

I took my time, you took my breath
I'd promised life, I brought you death
And now I'm here and you're away
I love the night; you need the day

Things are strange now, not the same
Still, I can't forget your name
Love's not here to make us smile
It's here to show us what's worthwhile

Monday, November 19, 2012


Good evening, world. This is something I came up with while at work, and it sort of just formed itself in the back of my thoughts all day.  I got some advice today that maybe it might be time for me to really chill and step back, and I think an intellectual massage could do me some real good. I'm slipping backwards into cynicism. It's gotta be the weather.

In any case, dig it.


Gravitate to what you hate
Kiss the steel and whisper "Fate"
Pull the trigger, love the lead
Wake back up inside your bed

Fight the fire, feed the flame
Roll the dice and play the game
You’ve figured out there’s nothing more
What’s out there worth looking for?

Waking up and coming down
It might be time to skip this town
Trade your soul for something less
Continue being unimpressed

Hate yourself for who you are?
Tell the guy behind the bar
Drink the liquor, pop the pill
You've got thoughts you need to kill

Friday, July 13, 2012

Austere Memory

Good evening, world. I've found our protagonist in another situation here, one that is almost certainly a dream. The bad news is that I don't know where things go from here. The good news, which I would go so far as to consider great news, is that I'm finally able to see what he might really look like.


"You've got a question; please, don't ask it."

He whispers these last few words to her, his voice a hoarse echo. He doesn't know what's coming exactly, not quite, but he's heard enough so far to know that something possessed of a terrible finality is about to escape his lover's lips. A lifesplitting pièce de résistance. He thinks slowly to himself,

This is how the world ends. This is how a man is destroyed and a phantom is created from his ashes. 

He doesn't know what causes him to think that. He suddenly realizes he doesn't know why any of these things are happening. He can't remember what came before this conversation, or how he came to be here.

She's dead, he thinks, dead and gone. She can't be here, and if she is here then I must be...

The thought is stolen from him by the quick upward turn of her face toward him, her eyes two shining jades. She smiles at him sweetly, and his earlier notions are forgotten. She is dead, and she is here. He knows both of these things, and the thought of their mutual truths causes a small pain to flare up briefly in the back of his skull. The world shimmers in his vision, an image in murky water.

Her lips part, he hears the sharp, quiet intake of air; she is about to speak. He stares dumbly at her, not understanding the things going on around him as he is swallowed wholly by her infinite sweetness. The pain in the back of his skull has wrapped itself around his entire head now, he sees bright explosions of color that overlap the image of the woman before him. He is on fire in the presence of the only truly beautiful thing he ever knew, and as the first syllable of the first word escapes her lips he remembers a moonlit night in early August, not long after they had celebrated their first year together.

"Who are you?"

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

A Man and His Friend

    Hello, world. What follows is the first in a series of very short stories I wrote a few years ago, based off of nightmares that would plague me with annoying regularity. This is my first foray into the realm of horror, so be gentle with the critique. Enjoy.

The First

    The bedroom was entirely dark, save a tiny candle on the floor; the light of which cast strange shadows onto the face of the man kneeling before it. His face was pale and gaunt, and the brown eyes within their sunken sockets were wide open as if in shock or fear, although within them there was nothing that betrayed emotion.
    Across the candle say the man's friend. He could see it very clearly, though if another person were to enter the room they would see only a spot of darkness on the floor that was unnaturally darker than the shadows that surrounded it; a darkness that did not yield to the light of the candle's flame.
    The man's friend did not hide itself from his eyes, though. It sat opposite to him, kneeling in fashion similar to the man with its hands folded neatly in its lap. It had its head bowed as if in prayer, though after a moment it slowly looked up and met the man's unblinking gaze.
    With a modest pass of its hand, the man's friend moved its long, dark hair away from its face. Its features were those of a beautiful child, fair-skinned with shimmering blue eyes like stones cut from a glacier and a grin of youthful mirth painted on its lips. As they sat there it whispered softly to the man, though its mouth remained motionless.

    "You've been a good friend."

    The words had a strange and confusing echo to them, a swarm of mental bats that bounced violently through the channels of the man's mind. The words came seemingly from everywhere. His friend laughed innocuously before continuing.
    "You've listened so very well," it said in the sweet, breathy voice of a child, "and you've done everything that I've asked of you."
     At this, the man's friend blinked quickly once, and when it opened its eyes once more they were a bright yellow hue, their pupils so small as to be barely visible. Its grin grew ever wider as it continued.
    "But now, my good and dearest friend..." it said to him with laughter in its voice, "I don't need you to do anything else." As it finished, the man's friend began to reveal its true appearance to him.

    The creature's fingers slowly grew longer, the bones and knuckles popping and crunching loudly as they shifted beneath its skin. The fingernails became black and claw-like, and stretched outward to the point that they almost matched the length of the spidery fingers they sprouted from. The man's friend reached up toward its face and, as it placed a jagged claw in either corner of its smiling mouth, began to tear ragged slashes up through the flesh of its cheeks to the place where its jaw hinged together. There was a terrible ripping sound as skin and muscle and tendon gave way to those abhorrent, black claws. 
    The man could hear the vividly audible pop! of the thing's jaw as it was dislocated, growing and stretching open to an impossibly immense width. Its teeth turned black with rot and fell out one by one, replaced by countless thin, grey needle-like fangs that emerged from bleeding gums. The monster made sickening choking noises from deep within its chest as more and more of the nightmarish teeth filled its ever-widening maw. The man remained motionless, though now his eyes darted about in every direction. As he looked on in terror, the man's friend rose upward and forward, its spine snapping and fracturing in countless places as it stretched far past its natural length and brought the thing steadily closer and closer to him.
    The last glimpse that the man had of his friend before its monstrous form passed over the candle and silently snuffed out its light was of a creature that seemed to have been stitched together from the fabric comprising the darkest corners of his nightmares. Its chin had stretched so far down that it reached the center of the beast's chest, and thick runnels of bright crimson blood ran out of its mouth and spilled onto the floor, passing between endless rows of thin, terrible fangs on their way. His friend's eyelids had peeled away from its face, and the monster's terrible yellow gaze was set upon him like that of a predator savoring the meal to come. The long, bony claws that had before been the delicate hands of a child twitched eagerly as they reached out to grab him, and with a sudden forward lurch of the creature's spine the room was plunged into ethereal darkness.

    On the roof, an audience of crows that had gathered to witness the macabre events of the night suddenly took flight and dispersed in fear, as a petrifying scream of utter and absolute horror resounded from within the man's house. The scream abruptly changed in pitch, becoming lower and then shifting into a guttural roar that echoed over the rooftops of the surrounding neighborhood. Then, all was silent.
    A moment's eternity passed, and at length a faint glow was once more visible through the thin curtains of the man's window. Inside, the man stood up and looked around; the dim light of the candle reflected in his bright, yellow eyes.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Emerald Pariah

Good afternoon, world.

I've been playing around with this paragraph for a couple of days now, and I think it's right where it needs to be. To paraphrase James St. James, if you could publish a paragraph I really think this one would be a ringer. Not exactly sure what our Fearless Narrator is doing here, or what happens between him and this as-yet unnamed gorgeous stranger. I'd love to keep writing about her, but she just isn't talking today.

In any case, dig it.


"He rolls over and stares into the eyes of his present damnation. He met this tattooed siren shortly after she fell out of the sky, a visitor from some far-off planet where things are harder to understand and much more beautiful. Next to her, he had experienced nothing. She was an emerald pariah, she was every single thing nobody had told him was out there."


Until next time, world...enjoy.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Every Day the Same Dream

Good evening, world.

There's a man walking down a barren stretch of outskirt road, near a little suburban town in the heart of America in the infant hours of the morning. He's got heavy eyes, and heavy hands, and oh...isn't everything just so heavy? He's headed home from a friend of a friends, he's been seeing her regularly for a few weeks now and sleeping with her for a bit longer than that. He still doesn't know her.

As he's walking, it's the same scene he's looked at so many times. His feet pushing away the cracked ground with hypnotist's rhythm, a blurry film beneath him that always ends in the credits rolling just as his legs swing up and over into his own bed at home, and his eyes close on a fading script that wasn't ever put to paper. His life, this life, these lives.

He sleeps, and he dreams like a dog might dream. There's a lot of running, and it's all old Polaroids and raw emotion. In these dreams he isn't sick; maybe the sickness hasn't come yet, or perhaps it's long gone. But for whatever reason, he knows that in his dreams he is the best form of himself. He's with her here, not the friend of the friend...but the other one. Her.

There they lie, an embrace of souls. Two of the world's living, breathing dead in a tangled tempest of silk sheets, on a beat-up full-sized mattress that has seen businessmen and hookers in fair turn. A run-down motel room on the corner of Hell and Nowhere. She is as faint as static from a far-off radio tower; he sees her and he does not see her. She smiles at him, but the smile says it won't all be all right. No, not this time, lover.

She is a small bright light in a dark and lonely room. She is the last whisper of foam as the waves that smashed rocks and roared across the slick planks of beaten-down piers recede with temporary finality into the vast coldness of the ocean. She is a still flame set deep into the folds of a thornless rose, one that can find life only from beneath the cracks and fissures between tired places. He lays there, lost with her, and knows she is as dead as the day is long. She is gone...and her force of balance, the love that kept him together and pushed his sickness into remission, has left with her.

He wakes up, all shaking hands and sweat, and knows that his princess isn't in another castle. He lives in a world without roses.