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.

Monday, April 30, 2012

Waiting For

Hello world, once again. The following is a little bit of my latest. I do hope you like it.


There is a passion born bloody from his loneliness, a terrible confusion. It amplifies light footsteps on wet pavement in the darkest hours just before dawn, it creates a madness that is both beautiful and intolerable. It feeds slowly, whispers quickly, it is the thing beneath the bed. Having never seen it, he might not know it if not for the hollow cold it spills into his veins. It's profound, really, the way it makes his head spin and his heart collapse. It brings to mind severed links, burned bridges, old lovers.

He sees through sick eyes, a recovered addict who lives in the constant mentality of the relapsed. Any day now could be the day, the one that kills the rest of him. More and more he finds himself hoping for that day to come, when he might finally stop caring and get on with the business of dying. He's spent so long staring into Hell.

At this junction he finds himself utterly alone. Every time he tries to live up to the expectations of the others, it feels as though he's telling an intricate and bitter lie. He was never meant for this place; he was either born hundreds of years too late or thousands of years too soon.

The midnights spent hallucinating in gutters and empty streets. The phantom sigh of pre-dawn wind that blows Dixie cups and crushed cigarette packs across the cracked tarmac of an ancient and sterile gas station parking lot. The silhouette of the cold moon in the Autumn sky that dances with the sweet nostalgic smell of falling leaves, the knowledge that knowing isn't enough. He wrestles with these things, the way a sinful and bitter old man might wrestle with Death in the last hours of his life. But Death is the welcome stranger, isn't he? Death in all his the pill, and the bottle, and the bullet. The distant old friend that stops by from time to time just to tell you he'll be back again soon.


Well, that's about all I've gotten down at this point. With the way this is coming together, it might just be the next part of "The Last Thoughts of a Man On Fire", although I guess it's still too early to tell for sure. As always, any feedback is appreciated.

Until the next time, world...enjoy.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

The Last Thoughts of a Man On Fire

Hello, world.

Here's a sort of fragmentary idea I had, in the form of a letter to a named but as-yet-unknown recipient. It's a part of what I've begun to think of as "The Last Thoughts of a Man On Fire". This man is becoming violently insane, or perhaps already has. Where the work is headed from here isn't altogether clear to me yet, although this is already a very stark change from what I usually produce. Thoughts and criticism are welcome, as always.


November 23, 1884


As I write this, my mind is in anguish. Reality has forced me into a corner and surrounds me on all sides. The truth, sordid and ugly, closes in to steal my joy and leave my sanity in ruins.

Granted, I have earned this forceful siege of my mental defenses through poor choices and bad company. My passions have always been my bane, and it would appear that the same principle applies even now in my crisis of the mind. I have loved past the point that my love is sanctioned; I have indulged in pleasures too great and numerous to be called pure. Slowly, the innocent and harmless became evil and poisonous, and the mark that was being gently branded on to me became more and more prominent. A new part of me was formed...or rather, collected its many horrid pieces hidden across all aspects of my life and became whole, making itself known.

It was the other side of the coin of my heart, mind and soul; a cruel mockery of the man I once was. Just as Dorian Gray had his accursed portrait, so had I my dark caricature...hidden within my mind, ever-changing and ever-deforming with each new sin I committed. At times, this monstrous phantom would take hold of my thoughts and words, tainting them and soaking them in hatred and rage. It grew - this black thought, this devil in my conscience - to the point where I would, from a state of absolute placidity, become violent and enraged. It taunted me with its mere existence, a shattered mirror whose reflection showed only regret, darkness, and self-destruction. For although my ghostly doppelganger steadily gained strength and influence over myself and my actions, I knew with a certainty I cannot explain that the thing wanted only to destroy us both. At times I wondered if the beast was formed as a penance of sorts, a horrible kind of punishment for the wrongs I had done. Other times I would question whether any of it was even real, if such a thing could truly be possible. Were those thoughts placed in my mind by my vile inner twin, a discreet tactic to make me blind of its presence as it did its evil work?

It had become obvious at that time that my mental stability was quickly beginning to deteriorate. My lifestyle had become reckless; danger intoxicated me. I took risks without any sort of premeditation, seeking refuge in the bursts of adrenaline that would come naturally to one who flirts with Death in such a way as did I.

I reached a point in this descent into madness where the darker side of me began to really win, and its death-wish was brought to slow fruition through the actions of my own hands. I, the unwitting servant of that dreadful imagined tumor in the back of my mind, began to mutilate my own body in an attempt to quell the violent urges I experienced, as these were becoming progressively more frequent and terrible. In my mind I thought I was protecting the people around me, my family, and the other men I worked with at the foundry, by casting that vivid and terrifying urge to kill, tear down, and destroy onto myself instead of them.

Looking back now with a retrospective eye, as I write these words and my soul and psyche crumble away at their foundations, I know the truth of the matter. I was merely following the orders that came sweetly whispered from that hateful inner voice, an unknowing and unwilling soldier in the war to bring me to ruin. Now, with my pen to this page and my mind inching toward the brink of insanity, my hateful twin is suddenly silent. I suspect this change in the behavior of my tormentor is out of satisfaction, stemming from the knowledge that it has achieved its goal and that I have been beaten down to the very edge of sense and reason. Whatever speculations I may make, however, do not change the stark truth of what has happened to me, your old friend and teacher. I have lost the fight, and let the darker part of my nature desecrate and take over who I am. Who I was.

May God have mercy on my soul, for the terrible sins this monster has committed.

Dr. Charles M. Kilner


Until the next time, world...enjoy.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

On Natalia Kuznetsov: The Character

Good morning, world. I've been working at a pretty horribly slow steady pace on my magnum opus, the novel that this blog was named after, meant to centralize, and progress - at least on some level - into. I've made a dent in the story, and much of what I want told has been put to paper. So I thought I would share a small excerpt from it, in hopes that some form of feedback would be in order.

"I didn't know it was possible for an angel to have the Devil's sense of humor...until a woman named Natalia Kuznetsov fell seemingly out of the sky and into my life. She was a foreign-placement student studying abroad here in the States, on a temporary student visa. That girl was the entire package, and I had never seen anything like her. Part of me knows I never will. I was hooked. As a writer, it was damned near impossible not to fall head-over-heels for a beautiful Russian dame who could end an argument with a word I'd never even heard before. An English word, at that. Never mind her fluent native tongue, or her insatiable appetite for marijuana. I couldn't believe the turn my life took after that first night, and the subsequent craziness that ensued. Half the time I thought I was dreaming, had to be, that any minute I would wake up to a hospital room full of doctors and surgeons who would tell me that I was in a coma for six years and they couldn't save my legs. I didn't even look the same after awhile, every facet of my personality began to shift. I was no longer Tyler Dermott, meek and mild, trying to live vicariously through friends that were much wilder than I. I was Tyler the Conqueror, Tyler the Destroyer, Tyler the Taker of Anything He Wanted. Life was good, and although I didn't have love, it seemed as though I had everything else."

Until next time, world...enjoy.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Today in History

Good evening, world. Had some down time today, so I went about fixing up an old piece I've had sitting in a desk drawer for a year or two now. Only parts of it have seen the light of day until now, but considering my readership it shouldn't really make too much of a difference. Dig it.


Lost in my head, I feel so dead
I paint my mind a vibrant red
There are no signs to guide my way
So I come back here every day

I wave hello and kiss goodbye
But most of me still wonders why
The clouds still move, the grass still grows
I ask around but no one knows

Directionless, misunderstood
I failed just like you said I would
I just can't shake the shame I wear
Sometimes it's more than I can bear

The stars burn out without a sound
A backdrop for a burial ground
I wonder, when I see the rain
If that's how Heaven shows its pain

There's nothing quite within my reach
I'm just one grain upon the beach
I'm trapped somewhere that makes no sense
I can't find any evidence

I've come to learn I'd been deceived
By everything I once believed
The open hand became a fist
The rainbow faded into mist

I'm looking for a land that I'd once seen
Advertised on the cover of a magazine
A savage garden where I'd go
To hide from all this silent snow

Now all I know is I can't stay
I've got to somehow steal away
The birds and fish and hills and trees
All protest what the blind man sees

The darkest dark, the blackest blue
I made these plans, they went askew
Emotionless and full of rage
I kill myself with every page

You lied to me, you said you heard
The truth I hid between these words
I know it's there, but I don't care
Enough to try to point out where

The whole world's useless anyway
I really don't know why I stay
It's something in the way she talks
A funeral march dressed like a walk

Agreed, it's quite a good disguise
Two empty holes that look like eyes
A kind of down that feels like up
A cure inside a paper cup

This map was drawn out upside-down
Turns out you can't escape this town
There's something here that feeds on death
It inhales every exhaled breath

A leech that sucks up broken dreams
Then slithers back into the seams
Struck down by the hand that feeds
Expecting life to meet my needs

I'm thinking no but saying yes
I'm counting on a lucky guess
The same old thing for twenty years
Laughter followed up by tears

Ascension followed by collapse
Recovery and then relapse
I think if I can't break this chain
I'm surely bound to go insane

I've already lost so much
I'd break just from the slightest touch
Outside's in and inside's out
Reality diffused my doubt

Laugh to show me I'm alive
Convince me not to take this dive
I found out from a previous dare
There's nothing else but rocks down there

They'll fuck you up but let you live
They'll take what you don't have to give
So what if you're still in one piece?
The crossfire still has yet to cease.

Until next time, world...enjoy.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

You Can't Fight Fate

Good evening, world. This isn't really any good.


We all looked like crippled monsters. Our eyes showed the clouds, our tears showed the rain.

There was something in the air during those cold winter months that told us things were going great, even if everything at that given moment went to shit. It was so easy to slide backwards into that idealistic muck; our thoughts were few and our heads were full of fake love, drugs, and peace of mind. Change took place at an amazingly ridiculous pace, and we could barely stumble along fast enough to keep up.

We would screw each other over for nothing, though, despite the feel-good toxins permeating the very air we breathed. Our only real friend was the guy with the next light, the next good Samaritan who would feed us pills or give us a ride to where we needed to get. We talked about loyalty like it meant a damned thing, and we knew it didn't. Lying to your closest friends with a handshake and a smile was the order of the day.

Looking back, I really think the only truth to be found in all of that terrible madness was this: we were alone. We always were; our kind came into this world alone and I know now in a way that is both terribly final and terribly true that we will remain so until the drawing of our last breaths. A man's character is his fate. You can't fight fate.