Eventide [fiction]

It was eventide over their heads, like old bourbon in a brandy glass, straight up. They came shyly as mosquitoes near still water, their flashlights adrift over dark girls in secret boxes. Their nights belonged to the wind.

The lake loved Sarah in secret. In her canoe, she was an enigma from the shore, carved twenty-odd years ago from the memory of a young girl sleeping beneath the inward sky. Her left hand covered her forehead. The fingernails were black and white. Her right hand rested shadowless in the lake. Her eyes were wide open but closed to the lurkers behind dawn’s door.

The south wind scampered ghosts across a lonely spider’s web. Delicate creatures fell wild on Sarah’s forehead and asked to see her brain; there was no tomb to rise dead from … no apples to bleed from … no dragon to claim as her own.

Her old man limped away. He stumbled to a blind horse amidst last year’s horses. He had been drinking again. Drunk horses left green droppings in blue patches of crab grass, but her old man paid no mind. He staggered home as quiet as the evening … as quiet as the dark girls at rest in the black earth of silence.

Perfect Moment [poetry]

For a perfect moment
I turn to touch you with my lips
I give you sweet kisses down
making you tremble with anticipation
I take you to the edge of a precipice—
a teeter at the edge of a fall

You cling to me
but you fall in the rush of your sweet release
crying your passion
into a beautiful embryonic abyss of mind and soul

You open your eyes and smile at me
You tell me how perfect everything feels
making us sigh and wish it were so
We return from the depths of our reverie
taking our time while we go

Love [fiction]

Again, Sarah was moved, obsessed, reaching out, entwined. Next to her open window, moonlight covered them as they climbed higher; the peak ever closer, closing in; all the right switches connected. And in that moment, she found it, or what she believed it to be: Love! It embraced her in brilliant colors and strengthened her raison d’être. It shattered the darkness of doubt deep within her. Like a new day dawn filling a long night’s sky, life became love.

Only for a moment until the moment was gone.

And in her return to lonely singleness she started over again.

Our Love [poetry]

We bedded with moss and leaf and sand
drenched in that evening’s rain;
a shimmering surf at our feet
where diamonds and poetry wept on ocean waves.

We stirred to passions rising in us,
caressing below an unwatched moon.

  • our
  • love
  • open
  • we
  • found
  • heaven

Your breath and sweat filled my senses
blossoming and mating with the heat;
like joyous roses in morning light,
they grew to swim in our ocean waves.

I consumed your fire and fed you mine—
even the trees shut their eyes.

Human [poetry]

About being wrong:
Swallow it on down, you, deep down inside you.

I never implied that pride is never an embarrassing empty taste inside
We learn soon enough that the pain-lump we swallow can be rough
It shows on our faces, even while we try to hide the suffering we feel inside
Passions burn strong to find a purpose for deception

Don’t let your soul hollow for a reason to believe in the lies you have swallowed
Show your face well to all who are ashamed to look foolish
Remember to remember the bad end of a deal when you give every part of you that you can give
Belief and good intentions don’t always win you laughter, love and comfort

To never try again is to die of fear and fright
I give you warm space in the ice so you can grow
Swallow it up, you, deep warmth inside you
I give you again

It is only human to be wrong
Be human

Loving a Leanan Sidhe [fiction]

Sarah was 20 when she first met a Sidhe. Leanne O’Brian was new to the college campus. She was Irish and believed very much she was an actual descendant of a Leanan Sidhe (pronounced lan-awn she). She was beyond gothic-punk and World of Darkness games. She was real and beautiful and captivating, with long and flowing, silky black hair, creamy elfin face and skin, and a lithe and shapely body.

Leanne became Sarah’s roommate and fascinated Sarah with her Sidhe tales. Sarah knew little about the Leanan Sidhe, so she visited libraries and researched the creature who had captivated her interest 24/7. The Irish name Leanan Sidhe translates to “fairy, love of my soul,” which described Leanne perfectly. Sarah loved Leanne like a sister.

Irish folklore says Leanan Sidhe women are female empaths. Surely, Leanne felt Sarah’s love for her. Folklore also says the Sidhe are high status members of the fairy world because they look almost human. Utmost bedazzling women would be a better description.

On the religious platform, according to more folklore, all fairies are fallen angels of heaven and cursed by God, which was likely why Sarah’s friends scoffed when she told them about Leanne being a real fairy. Or it may have simply been that they did not believe in fairies. All the same, they warned Sarah to be careful. The Leanan Sidhe was, depending on whose books one drew from, a cousin to the vampire.

Sarah knew from her research that the Leanan Sidhe were vampiric. Instead of drinking blood, however, they are afflicted with the desire, and indeed the necessity to consume the living spirit of mortals. The Leanan Sidhe who tried to quit cold turkey, vanished, and was never seen or heard of again.

Sarah did not want Leanne to quit being what she was. With Leanne around, she became adept in art, music, and poetry. But Leanne barely seemed to notice her talents. She slept most of the time.

The day after Sarah’s twenty-first birthday, Leanne said goodbye. She was going home, back to Ireland to finish her studies.

Sarah ran to her, hugged her, and wept in their embrace. For a moment, two sharp teeth grazed the skin before Leanne kissed Sarah on a cheek. And then she got in the taxi and was gone.

That day, Sarah quit making art and music. Her daily poems are of the love she has for a certain Leanan Sidhe, nothing more.

Wanting Bob [fiction]

Sarah met Bob in ’92; she was a Goth seventh grader like one of those kids from South Park. She read Kerouac and Roethke and Ginsberg and Plath; not really understanding their works, but making a connection to their words: music to her soul. Abstract expressionist art had grabbed her attention, too, and she became a 12-year-old “hippie chick” born during the era of Reaganomics and discomfiture: vague disorientation and cynicism that  followed her and her colleagues into their adult lives where heads of state have no backbones and heroes are felled by corporations and money.

Feeling bruised from surrounded by the wall (to steal a title from Pink Floyd), the Internet became Sarah’s escape: the road that Kerouac may have hitchhiked had he been a product of Reaganomics and discomfiture. She traveled daily, mostly at night, reading everything, looking at everything she could conjure on her little PC. Bob’s artwork caught her eye. He was Roberto, and he painted spiritual Don Quixotes battling windmills of all colors, shapes, and sizes. These were images from her dreams. She was a Don Quixote. She had a place in this world after all.

Then with a click of the mouse, she found his poetry and fell in love. She liked and followed everything he added to his blog. She was his number one fan, and she told him so in a comment at his blog. They became instant friends. Their conversations became lengthy, so they traded emails, then partook in lengthy online chats. And all that time, while she grew from a disoriented seventh-grader to a spiritual college woman, she knew he was old enough to be her father, that he was married and had a family, and considered her no more than an adoring fan. But she was more than that. Even now, she is in love with Bob in the truest, signified sense of the word.

How wrong of her to want to break up his marriage and have him all for herself, to align her life with his.

Sages have cautioned men about women like her since humans first set words into motion. They have given her horrible names to shackle her in shame. But she has done nothing so far as to fall in love with him, this guy named Bob … the man she spies on outside his home, inside her car, watching, waiting to have all her own.

Kiss Her [poetry]

Lower your lips to her heart
Where your souls touch and flame
Where you are ageless in her embrace
Protected enough to say you love her

Lay with her over moss and leaf
Drenched in last night’s rain
The shimmering surf at your face
Where diamonds and poetry love to weep

In this discovery you descend with her
Her sweat and breath fill your caresses
Like blossoms joyous in formal delight
Mating when they wander from the sun

Even the trees shut their eyes to your pleasure
Bending on you bald and wild
Bearing witness to the moments born
When you finally kiss her

Writing Is An Obsession

I love to write stories—the fulfilling process of creating life from the imagination.

Currently, though, writing stories is an obsession. I live it, breathe it, consume it—am absolutely possessed by the “thing’s” very essence. Ideas for plots and characters bubble in my mind. Yes, I’m the guy with the blank stare that fell out of conversation five minutes ago, or awoke in the middle of the night and nearly knocked over the lamp while turning it on because a delicious story idea came to mind.

Even on days when I’m in my basement office working on a story, I’m obsessed with new ideas. And when I’m done for the day and I’m heading for bed, my stories call out at me from my office to go back to work. After all, I still have one more word to add, one more sentence to fix, one more paragraph to tweak, one more chapter to write…