Nurture

Such sorrow do I feel

For those who never knew

My heart aches for the lost, unloved

And pain that they’ve been through

I’ve tasted life when sour

I’ve sampled it when sweet

True happiness, I tell you

Is who we love and meet

Let not the things around you

Cloud judgment, nor your sight

For life is meant for living

Do not waste it, do not fight

Dance when strings are playing

Kiss under mistletoe

Take this world by hand

And don’t ever let it go

Live with limits, never

Be generous, and love

Do not hold back anything

We know not what’s above

Such sorrow do I feel

For those who never knew

A heart that warms and comforts

Whose love was meant, for you

Ours

Tell me what you’re feeling cause my heart just started healing and I’ve poured my very soul into the words on this page

I need to understand you because I don’t want to go through all the things that locked my heart into a cold, dark cage

I’ve tried so many times and I have witnessed all love’s crimes and I don’t want to start the war my shattered heart might wage

The only thing I ask is to make honesty our task to get past each other’s pasts and make it into old age

Please tell me what you’re thinking I can’t let our love start sinking just pull back all of the curtains see, this world is our stage

Navigating

Days of old I envy, much realer all these feelings were

Now it seems it’s so fast-paced that every day and night’s a blur

Heartfelt talks under the stars are now boxed into tiny screens

And half the time when she’s not here I can’t tell what the message means

 

Context comes when eyes see eyes, the words we hear and understand

Its more sincere when we’re both here, when we can touch and hold a hand

I know the world’s exciting and the crowd is always calling us

But these things take the substance out and make love seem superfluous

 

Right now real is hard to find and so much harder to hold on

Those blissful eyes are nice, I know, but once you blink they might be gone

Why is it that we seem to care more for our fears than what we love

Emotions push, we build a wall, just to make sure they don’t shove

 

Its like we’re not supposed to feel or open up for weakness sake

Well I don’t want to live that way I want my soul to stay awake

I want to feel the ups and downs, and everything that’s in between

To know why I’ve been doing this, to know what all of it might mean

The One: First Entry

Can we be honest with ourselves for a moment? I want to talk about some things. Things like Facebook. Twitter. Instagram, perhaps. Hell, even Tinder…anything that lets people advertise who they are (or at least who they want to be) without having to concern themselves with the real world.

Yeah, I know.

It’s not easy to examine one’s self. We’d all much rather be judging someone else. But right now, let’s do the hard thing and focus the lens introspectively.

Sure, it’s easy to look on at the spinning wheel that is social media, watching as the people we know and grew up with move on with their lives. Comparison is the theif of joy, ain’t it? That’s what they say, at least.

It’s funny though because everyone’s aware, whether consciously or subconsciously, that social media is just a highlight reel. If only we knew who we all are after each one of those many layers of social graces and obligatory formalities got peeled back. The real, you know? Because as much as we market how cool our lives are, at the end of the day…it’s validation that we really want.

Most of us, that is. And you know what? That’s perfectly normal. Not at all a thing to be ashamed of.

After all, most of us just want someone who knows us. Who understands us. Who IS us. We want to enjoy life with a person who gets, more so than anyone, who we truly are. And I’m not talking about the person at three o’clock, bringing in coffee with the same fake grin we all wear knowing we’re just waiting for the hour hand to get knocked ahead a couple notches. I’m talking about the person we are when the day’s facade is over, the candles go out, and the door closes. That person you see when the ambient light from the TV flicks on as it highlights the it-was-a-long-day-fucked-up-hair and feetie pajamas silhouette. That’s the person we’re searching for.

And you want to know something? I bet you’ve already met them.

I know I have.

Feelings

New to me, these feelings are

I thought these thoughts all dwelled afar

For years they have alluded me

Now here, tonight, my soul’s set free

Comparison: the theif of joy

I’ve longed for this since just a boy

I’ve watched, observed, the ones who love

And always wished I’d rise above

Such reservations I have had

Since yesteryear and just a lad

Now here, tonight, under these stars

It feels like this whole world is ours

And as we dance under moonlight

Those eyes of yours, they shine so bright

Such luck it was that I found you

Let’s live this life, as we’re meant to

You Might Be A Writer If…

“All real writers are published”

Hang on a second, that statement’s wrong!

What say you of bloggers, huh?

Can poets not come tag along?

“Ha! We scoff with tilted heads”

“Real writers do those on the side”

“We know that true art lies in sales”

“For money validates our stride”

“So please, a blogger? Some stupid poem?”

“You think that these can pay the bills?”

“Don’t make me laugh, you amateur”

“Just the thought gives me the chills”

Bite your tongue, pretentious fool!

It’s not for funds, why true arts made

Passion, love guides pen and brush

‘Tis by-product, when we get paid

And cut! Fake convo ends as Matt chimes in

On wars of words, “label” affairs

I cannot help but ask them this:

WHO THE FLY’D FUCK EVEN CARES?

 

Just shut up and write, you dweebs.

 

Hard to Get

A damsel in distress she’s not, though nights are all besot with her

Affection widely chased more than even gold, frankincense and myrrh

Aged better than Venetian wine, smoother than a fine liqueur

Treat her as the Queen she is: this maiden we call Literature

 

Sought by many, caught by few, to court her is a Fool’s Errand

Exceptions only granted when one’s dedication’s apparent

Gentle, patient one must be; to nothing she can come second

For absolute commitment is the quality of all legends

 

Everybody’s knocking but the owner just turns out the light

Fight to find a way inside and find the lock is far too tight

I smile as I watch them shout and beg her for one night’s invite

Because this pen unlocks the pad where Writing lays her head at night

 

So intimate we’ve grown to be, forever I’ll be in her debt

For it was I who was distressed, and she who saved me from regret

Sincerely now I thank her for becoming my one true duet

Eternity I’d wait for her: this love who was so hard to get

Ask and You Shall Receive

I think you need to understand

That we’re all in this, hand in hand

And that we all stay up at night

Asking if this world is right

Or if its some sick trickster’s joke

And though we all think we are woke

Ask yourself, is this real?

Is this how I’m supposed to feel?

What is it that this life’s about?

I thought I knew, but now I doubt

What does all of this mean to me?

They say I am, but am I free?

My beliefs, and all my dreams

I thought were mine, yet now it seems

That everything is just a lie

A way to cope, an alibi

I understand, I really do

So long and hard I’ve thought it through

Our lives are up to us, you see

We, alone, we hold the key

My once dim light’s become a star

I see things how they really are

What once was so long locked away

Has pierced the dark into the day

Tasks ahead are much more clear

I’ve shed the shade of yesteryear

The dawn; it comes, it’s here at last

And answers everything I’ve asked

Winds of Change

Softly cup my hand to ear

As wind blows whispers that I hear

Sadness, loss, regret they bring

All shadows from my yesteryear

Words escape me, ones I’ve lost

I never knew how much it’d cost

When I thought not to buy a ring

The path I should, I never crossed

Now I’m forced to walk, move on

Time has passed; those moments, gone

And though I wish to have them back

I must stay focused on the dawn

For life is cruel, it won’t concede

Regardless if I pray and plead

And though I may not be on track

Faith in myself is all I need

Things in life, they come and go

And as I lift this small window

I look outside, only to see

That we reap the things we sow

Every action, every word

Is seen, or felt, or tasted, heard

And whether it is you, or me

Life’s purpose always seems so blurred

So, to you, who has a past

Do not let your transgressions last

We’re here, together, throughout our time

And everyone has sins amassed

Live with love, try to arrange

The life you want, an open grange

Do not break rhythm, just to rhyme

And always, ride, the winds of change

Woe is Me

Friday night, bars are closing

I don’t know why I’m here

Feelings hit me deep inside, stepping in this Uber ride

It’s loneliness I fear

Every time, inside my head

I say that she’s the one

Naïveté and ignorance have got me acting with no sense

So why oh why do I keep saying this is pointless and I’m done?

Finally things are going well

But like every other time

The real comes out and causes doubt

I cant stand the paradigm

I don’t think I’m wrong but

You don’t think I’m right why

Can’t we get along and

Not do this every night

I’m tired of the fighting, and

I’m tired of the arguin’

This only causes breakups and

Makes people want to live in sin

I wish more than anything

To find someone who’s struggling

Someone who sees the world like me

Who doesn’t judge and lives freely

A person who embraces flaws

Instead of these unspoken laws

Who’d rather sit and talk with me

Than go out for a shallow drink

Sadness sweeps so subtly

The more I think of you and me

I wish this world was different, see

Filled with love, and yet sadly

It’s superficiality

That guides our actions, you agree?

I beg your pardon, woe is me

This world is just…melancholy

King in all but Name

Put my whistle to the wind, there’s naught another ‘round

Divided is the road I’m on, my choice shall prove profound

“Go left,” says he, “Go right!” says she

The demons, they’ve misled

I ask “which way?”

“That way!” They say

And so I point my sled

Every choice we make is a decision in our head

A string of choices, such is life, that’s all until we’re dead

When these choices come to you, what ever will you say?

Will you take the high road out or will you run away?

Make the choices that they love, My Lord you’re looking great

Undermine the ones they want and soon you will find hate

Treat the people as you would yourself, and you’ll find fame

They’ll sing your praises, call you King, in everything but name

The Old Unknown Aristocrat

Some people get it, most people don’t

Some people will, most people won’t

Some people love, most people hate

Most people: good. Some people: great.

 

Maybe I’m the one who’s been mistaken after all

Maybe all this fighting’s a good reason for a wall

The more I see the more I hear the less I seem to understand

It’s almost like this world is pieced together and events are planned

 

Confusion is the currency they’ve built all of their kingdoms on

White homes do not host their crowns they’re places that they place a pawn

Puppets playing House is what we’re looking and we’re pointing at

And all the while he’s up there, the Old Unknown Aristocrat

 

We don’t even see all of the strings and pieces he commands

But he’s the one who wrote all of the things for which your flag now stands

His name: unknown. His work: unknown. He dodges notoriety

The master of this game knows this is how you mold society

 

Five steps ahead, he always knows which side he has to pick

Its easy when you know the things that make the people tick

This Old Unknown Aristocrat said of Earth, and all its flaws

If I control its money, I care not who makes its laws

Pages

A never-ending story is what all of this appears to be

This book of life we write together seems to me a tragedy

The prologue speaks of hope and faith, introducing you and me

Act One of Three disguises the forthcoming, sad reality

 

Characters, they come and go, most are just supporting cast

Center stage through Chapter Four, by Five they’ve faded to the past

Teaching us that friendships; love, they’re delicate and rarely last

As subtexts teach the die of trust is earned instead of blindly cast

 

A world that works as advertised, that’s what we learn and buy into

Coasting through our story with a smile and five-star review

Thinking that this book’s motif is happiness; our point of view

That plot twists are just fiction meant to entertain; that they aren’t true

 

Life’s first Act is ended by the bookmark of naivete

As Two begins, foreshadowing the darkness written in this play

Sadly, most don’t see the signs; lost among their day-to-day

Not reading what’s between the lines, faith is weakness some might say

 

This is where our story starts to show its face without the mask

The greatest writers realize that pursuing truth’s our only task

Revealing life has always hidden sadness bottled in its flask

It laughs as those who victimize, mocking the “why me?” they ask

 

What follows next I’ll spare for now, for the sake of brevity

Not to mention that this story needs relief and levity

Yet such is life, is it not? And if you want longevity

Its comedy to those who think; for those who feel, a tragedy

 

Now I speak to you directly, sharing what this poem’s about

One moment life can mere whisper, then the next become a shout

To deal with things we all go through, we all must learn to cope with doubt

And if you need to turn a page, just rip the whole damn chapter out

His’trys Writ

The fire raged as Nero played

While Rome was burning bright

And yet the man had not betrayed

As they all say, that night

He was not the man you thought

At least, who bards all say

The truth is far from what they’ve taught

No songs were sung that day

Till second world war’s burns had blazed

In Hamburg, and Dresden

No other fire since had razed

None other was akin

Pliny the Eld, Cassius Di

They’ll give you their account

But Tacitus says no, you see

That’s not what he found out

As the flames turned bread to crumb

He wasn’t even home

Nero was in Antium

During the Great Fire of Rome

Remember this; do not forget

When judging others’ sin

His’trys writ in blood and sweat

By only those who win

Editing Sucks (but Marriage is Great)

I’m wedded to Words, yes I’m smitten with love

But like any such marriage, we fight

Sometimes it gets tense, and push comes to shove

As they shout, “Don’t give me your bullshit tonight!”

Of course that’s unfair, Words just don’t understand

Just like any ole husband or wife

Its worked to the bone, this here writing hand

Far too much for that “editing” life

Why can’t Words just listen, do what I say

And tidy things up on their own?

I’m only one man, and its been a long day

Must I do so much work all alone?

As carpal tunnel sets in, Words just lounge and relax

Can’t even say “Good job today, Matt”

Oh its cool Words, I got this, ya’ll just lay on your backs

Like I’m hitched to a fat fucking cat

Hell, I even invent those new friends that you like

“Words Night Out” exists ‘cause of ME

The least you could do is be more sportsmanlike

And help edit occasionally

I mean how hard can it be? Just shuffle your feet!

One step and that loose screw is tight

My spelling is solid, my grammar’s is neat

Its not like it’ll take you all night

But whatever I guess, I know they think I overbear

I truly feel marriage is great

I just get so worried they might have an affair

With that douchebag songwriter I hate

 

 

 

 

 

My Life

The sand, the dirt, the grass, the trees

The sticks, the stones, the light, the breeze

The things this world has made for me

Have warmed my heart and set me free

I look at the stars as I rest on my knee

They twinkle and spark, this light that I see

I gaze at them wondering, what could they be?

As I listen to waves hit the rocks under me

So calm it all is, out here with the leaves

No fear of the world, or it’s warriors and thieves

My mind is at rest, this feeling I’ve sought

A needed reprieve from the torment I’ve thought

The darkness within isn’t something I share

I keep it behind the false mask that I wear

It’s not that I’ve feigned, and not that I’ve lied

I just don’t want to release all the pain that’s inside

I want to be happy

I just want to live

Her death, it has gripped me

And it’s hold will not give

My words carry weight

Of this, I know

But now I see nothing

Through her bedroom’s window

It used to be filled

With her smile, her love

As she watched us all playing

With a ball and a glove

Those days are all gone now

And it hurts me so much

Please take this away, God

Please heal me, your touch

I don’t care if they read this

It’s my only escape

These pages have saved me

From a much harsher fate

I beg you, my Father

If you truly are there

To take this away

And heal my despair

These words that I’m writing

They’re the realest I’ve penned

I beg of you, God

Will I see her again?

Letter to My Lost: 1

My love. My all. Such memories do we share. Memories such as the times we’d awaken to the sun’s shimmering rays darting through the window, on those soft linen sheets as you’d rollover, greeting me with the morning’s first kiss. Memories of your fingers gently gliding, cusping the back of my neck, holding me as if you’d never let go.

I so long for these moments. I cannot help but wonder where you are and what dangers lie ahead. Each day, without exception, I sit gazing out this window at the calm beach and its soothing waves; the soft sound of the salted water drifting to the shore. I think of us, my love, walking along that cool, flawlessly smooth sand with our hands clasped tightly together, enjoying the warm breeze as it passes through us without a care in the world.

The days are proving harder, my love. Each day without you further shatters my soul, as my thoughts are imprisoned by the uncertainty of your welfare. I miss you every waking second of the day, and am greeted by your embrace only in my most deepest of dreams.

Tell me you will be returning soon. I cannot bear the thought of going through this every day. I miss you, my Braden. I hope my letter finds you well.

Please come home to me.

With everlasting love,

Your Lilliana

The Ward & the Bone: 13

“Bites of the Round Bowl!! Please, lend me your ears.”

Standing valiantly on the balcony of Cage Spamalot’s Keep, Grr Barker tells the entire Realm of the quest he will embark on, with no puns intended.

“Realm!” He shouts, “I shall commission my bravest, most chivalrous Bites to accompany me on this epic quest! We will weather the challenges that lie ahead. No obstacle shall stand in our way as we courageously mush our way to the artifact of old; the fabled Excalibone!!”

“HUZZAH!!!!” The Kingdom roars before him. “LONG LIVE GRR BARKER!!!”

“Calm yourselves, constituents,” Barker howls as he raises a paw. “Yes, this quest shall bring much glory to our Kingdom, but we mustn’t forget the severity of the threat which lies to the East! My advisors have informed me that there still remains a Phelyon, by the name of Corgin La Fey, who wishes to reclaim our freed lands!!”

“NAY!!!” The crowd shouts, fully in support of their leader. “You must vanquish her!!”

“Yes!” Barker asserts. “And vanquish we shall!! But first, I must unearth the fabled weapon of old!! For without Excalibone, I might as well be riding into a sea of Jellyfish!”

“But wait, my Liege!” A random peasant shouts from the crowd. “What do jellyfish have to do with this narrative? Alas, they don’t even remotely relate to the topic at hand!”

“Aye,” Grr Barker barks, “your words are true. Jellyfish are not, in fact, related to this quest at all. But alas! We shall recover Excalibone and send Corgin La Fey back into chasm from whence she came!!!!” He howls, awoo’ing at the rising Moon.

“AWOOO!!!!!!” The crowd repeats, even though many of them are not Kaynine. “Tomorrow,” Grr Barker shouts, “our quest shall begin!!”

Hide & Seek

Sweaty brow, aching back, home packed lunch and the sleepless nights

That’s how things were done when people worked, reaching up for higher heights

Dirt and grit, skin and bone, not a moment thrown into the waste

Men would own up to the challenge, no obstacle they wouldn’t face

Things got done, cities built, on the shoulders of their work

They didn’t need a safe space, they built these things from grit and dirt

Now, today, we watch as our children have their feelings hurt

Instead of saying “toughen up”, we tell them “get revenge and throw some dirt”

Paint the people disagreeing as bigots and misogynists

As they yell and cry aloud, raising pickets and their fists

Its sad to me, watching as we become so weak

Many years from now, the stronger will destroy the meek

Its not immoral, its not unjust, to teach your children to be strong

Look out at this harsh, cruel world and tell me that you know I’m wrong

And if you do, then friend, this is the only thing I’ll say to you

I hope you taught them hide and seek, cause hiding’s all they’ll know to do

The Ward & the Bone: 12

“Grr Barker, you’re up early.”

Trotting aimlessly through the hedge maze outside of Cage Spamalot, Master Squirrelin spots the new King on a morning stroll.

“Aye, Master. I found it difficult to slumber this morning. I am used to my princely duties, but now that I have inherited the Bone, I find that the responsibilities weight heavy on my conscience.”

“This is understandable, my Liege.” Squirrelin says as he pats Grr Barker on the back. “Your newfound tasks must cast an unimaginable burden.”

“They do, old friend. They do.” Barker sighs.

“My King, there is something I must share with you. I have spent much time digging through the archives. There is something I believe that must be addressed.”

Intrigued, the young King raises an eyebrow.

“Go on,” he barks.

“Barker, I have known you since you were just a pup. You know that I have always had your best interests at heart. May I speak freely?” Squirrelin asks.

“Of course,” Barker nods.

Stopping their pace, Squirrelin places a hand at the King’s chest. Looking up in surprise at the gesture, Barker turns to the mage to give him his full attention.

“There is much peril brewing in the East.” The old Squirrel says.

“Peril?” Barker asks, caught off guard dog.

“Yes, my liege. Peril. Much of it.”

Squinting his eyes and slowly casting his gaze toward the rolling hills to the East, Grr Barker suddenly wafts his hair back.

“These lands are as secure as ever!” He barks with confidence.

“My liege! You must listen.” Squirrelin pleads. “There is one who remains. One who was not felled during the War of the Realm. She is a Phelyon known as Corgin La Fey. She is mustering a massive army to reclaim what was once theirs!”

Recognizing the sincerity in Master Squirrelin’s plea, Grr Barker’s arrogant smirk fades into a look of concern.

“Are you certain of this, Master?” He asks.

“I am.”

“Hmm.” Barker hums, stroking his beard. “I shall consult my Bites about this. We must purge the Realm of any evil if it does, in fact, remain.”

“It remains, my liege. It assuredly remains. There is more…”

“Oh?” The King Barks.

“Yes.” Squirrelin asserts. “The prophecies have foretold there is but one way to defeat this scourge. You must recover Excalibone! The sword your father wielded during the War of the Realm. It is the only way that this Corgin will be defeated.”

“A quest, you say?” Barker barks.

“A quest!” Master Squirrelin repeats.

“Then it is so!” Barker shouts, head held high. “Myself and my Bites will take on this quest with honor and return balance to the Realm!”

“Excellent!” The magic-wielding rodent exclaims. “Excalibone!”

“It shall be mine!”