Broken Bells

Hear the toll of broken bells

Over hillsides

Down the dells

Angels sing in seven hells

Dead things crawl up out of wells

Demons crack their human shells

Ringing din at midnight swells

Night air’s rife with graveyard smells

Devils laugh discordant knells

At the sound of broken bells

 

Vanquished

Vanquished now,

I return

to find

all bare of life,

and stilted, stifled purpose

laces the air that has

disguised her

earthy scent,

rank loam in the ruins.

The stones of my home,

my fence,

tumbling

atop each other,

as my men

from their horses,

ungainly unseated,

and skewered

for their lack of skill,

or a champion.

Grasping, bare, black branches soon

reach to pull me into

the shadows

of my mind.

As did she.

Merciful

was the

headsman’s ax,

and swift.

The sky and ground

joined hands

to somersault

in sun-dappled motley

 before my eyes.

And

I returned home,

now

Vanquished.

These Vaunted Halls

The history

of the world

decays within

these vaunted halls.

 

Bones of men

whose legacies

have long passed into dust,

now scattered,

or drifted into drains

to swirl and sink

amid the sewage

 

These vaunted halls

of vainglorious scholars

and savage soldiers,

 

This labyrinthine lair

of painted women

and holy mothers,

running children

and feral dogs

 

This ornate gauntlet of

open secrets and

private trysts,

 

This once- proud venue,

where learned men

hammered out their thoughts and beliefs,

vociferous in their ferocity,

gesticulating like tribal dancers

 

This enviable marketplace,

with its bright colors, shady deals,

and the rush of winning a well-wrought

haggling session,

 

Is now the place I skulk,

and stalk, and catch the rats

that bite me in my sleep,

and take the bodies and coin

of unwary travelers.

 

My kingdom,

a silenced ruin of

damp and crumbling marble,

dim sunlight,

and solitude.

 

These vaunted halls

will return to their glory,

stone by stone, page by page,

man by man.

 

But for now,

I feast.

 

 

 

Kairi’s Serenade

Kairi comes down

by the

moonlit water

to play for

me

on random  summer evenings

 

Not of this world any longer,

I cannot hear her,

but I can see.

 

Ah, there she is.

Fair and dark are her features,

Dark and fair is her song.

 

Spinning, playing a bright flourish,

she smiles at a memory,

and I feel the press of its

warmth against my molding bones

as if she hugged my spirit.

 

I wonder if she feels

my presence?

 

At times, when she plays,

there are tears.

 

I long to take them away, to

wipe them tenderly

and tell her all is well,

before we kiss,

before we part.

 

I hold onto that moment

that never was,

never will be,

and it will ever have to be

enough.

 

As Kairi turns to go,

the melody is severed,

and the notes are interwoven

with the stars.

I feel what I can only call

a smile pervade my being.

No, there will be no tears tonight,

just the song, dark and fair, it’s plaintive echo

traveling through the lichen covered

headstones of the forgotten, as Kairi, fair and dark,

vanishes into the mist, and over the hill.

Making Warr (new chapter)

Check out the latest chapter of Making Warr.

He’s in WAY over his head, but that’s where he thrives…

 

Making Warr:

Warren Bradley was retired, the victim of a failed experiment that not only would have increased his strength, but his intelligence as well. When a decision is made to re-launch the project, a botched attempt to bring him back in by force results in his wife being killed. 

He is now determined to obtain and destroy the information that led to her murder, and get the people responsible.

There’s just one problem: The information’s been stolen and taken overseas. And an ex has re-entered his life on the side of a rival agency. And the chemicals in his system are starting to degrade. Okay, that was three problems…

http://channillo.com/series/making-warr/

The Days Were Few and Happy

The struggle to breathe

grows harder and laborious,

and soon, not worth the effort.

 

The heartbeat softens to a

padded thudding

of arrhythmic improvisation

 

The light, both sun and lamp alike,

grows dim

 

And the features

of your faces

so familiar

are now only

sketches in sepia

drawn by rheum,

inked in cataract,

and blindness creeps with

a serpent’s crafty slowness

to seize small sight

in its unrelenting

coils of darkness

 

But the memories

of grand carnivals,

of dire hurricanes,

laughter, tears

prizes, penalties

trials, victories

unity, dysfunction

safety , strife

 

holiday dinners

and birthday songs

 

pride and humility

for good or ill

all said and done

except the last

goodbye

and  giving the last remnants

of my love

 

The days were few and happy,

and the honor of growing

beside you

made it all

worthwhile.

 

 

The Ancient Moon

Ah, look you, men of iron will.

See, fools of tender heart.

Behold, those of noble birth.

Attend, lowest of the low.

 

In all majestic splendor,

the gentler orb turns

soft and saddened eye

to sodden field.

 

There is no one to greet her,

to write a sonnet to her beauty,

no one left now even to ignore it,

or wish in hope upon it.

 

Yet on your ancient quarrels,

as she always has, she rises,

and gazes on your stillness,

wonders at your silence,

and cries the falling stars

to soak, and cloak the folly

of your war-filled hearts.

The ancient moon,

in tranquil glory,

in timeless diary,

writes once more…

They do not love.

Haunting Melody

You haunt the lake now

Melody?

What are you searching for?

 

You cry aloud so mournfully!

It pierces to the core…

 

I see translucent tears aglow!

How can a spirit cry?

 

It’s me you look for,

Melody?

I didn’t want to die.

 

I ask forgiveness,

Melody,

for holding you below

 

The dark and murky

water where

you didn’t want to go.

 

Do not approach me,

Melody,

with eyes of fire and hate

 

You said you loved,

but I did not,

and now it is too late.

 

So I insisted,

Melody,

that we could both be free;

 

I didn’t know the

end of you

would be the

end of me.

You Are Most Welcome Here

Approach in reverence,

my friend.

You are most welcome here.

The fires will light your way

to me

and calm your doubt and fear.

Long years have we been waiting for

your soul

to bring its light.

And patience is its own reward.

Now welcome

to the night.

For when the doors are opened

friend,

there will be no return.

And hidden from

celestial sight

you’ll burn

and burn

and

burn.

 

Do the Bones of Men Remember?

Do the

bones of men

remember days

of brave and

daring deeds?

Do they long for

love and battle

when they rode their

noble steeds?

Do they mourn

the silent rhythm

of a strong and

beating heart?

Do they miss the

lilt of melody

and master works

of art?

Do they once recall

the clamor and the clanging

of their toil?

And the scent of

perfumed women

and the seasons

and the soil?

Do the

bones of men

remember night

and moon and sea

and star?

Do they contemplate

the faulted flesh that made them

what they are?

Do the bones remember

holding onto children, home

and wife?

Do the bones remember

anything at all of

loving life?

When we return to dust

I pray our bones will only sleep,

instead of dreaming

of the things of life

we couldn’t keep.