Hound Dog Love

He barks at the window
He barks at the door
His nose goes to the ground
No one can escape him!
He’s a hound dog
He’s ever alert
Except when he’s asleep
Then he’s flatter than dirt
His ears hang low
His jowls tremble
When his hound brain takes over
His eyes separate
in each direction
His throat vibrates
The glasses shake windows vibrate
Hound dogs howl!
They howl with a growl
Than they bay and with
A gasping snarl, they’re off to
He has no brain when he’s part of the pack
He’s the best guard dog I’ve ever had
He’ll kill rats and mice and even bugs dead
Keep the house safe from any ingress

When he comes back from the Baying time
He’s as soft as a puppy
He wants to cuddle and love
Never mind his claws are adamantium
Never mind he dropped a dead rat at my feet yesterday
He’s keeping the house safe
From the postman
From hornets
From rats
From flies
from the neighbor walking by with that little dog he hates
He’s a hound dog and his ears are velvet
his nose can smell out anything
He’s half dog and half machine
One hundred percent loving loyalty!

Walking Naked and Obscene

**Trigger Warning- trauma discussed**

If you speak of your pain
You’re too much for people
They look away
They fear pain is contagious

If you keep silent
say nothing about your scars
You’re a liar
Woe betide you’re ever caught clothed

Trauma forces you to walk naked
All the while
You are called obscene
If you don’t expose
Every wound and scar
There are those who will say,
‘they’re hiding something’

If you tell the world of your pain
They’ll say you’re looking for pity
That you’re probably lying anyhow

The world is a loaded gun
For any victim of trauma
No matter your race or your background
Generational Abuse can run deep

Trauma isn’t a race
It isn’t a comparison of who had it worse
I’ve won that fight too often
To feel good about how it makes the ‘loser’ feel.
Trauma is a dialogue
Sadly there’s not garage or shop to
Get ‘fixed’ at

Neither is trauma something that we should
Think anyone ‘virgin’ of
Nor should we prize it
We should protect each other from more harm
Never punish for harms past or out of our hands now

The more danger in the world
The more often it seems victims are punished
Treated like freaks of the moment at best
Survivors are heroes with strength to

Writing and art helps to tell
Those stories of survival
The stories of strength
Give courage to those who need it
For one more day

For some, writing is the only way
To let the poison drain
From the wounds
Support each other
Love each other

every wounded vessel
Needs to be mended with gold
If it’s to be whole again.

Adulted Too Young

Adulted Too Young
Virginia Carraway Stark

It didn’t take long
As a little child
To see that adults
Needed lots of help

When I was small
My mom crawled into my bed
She said, “now you have to take
care of me, daddy left.”

I held my mother while she cried,
Knowing I wasn’t allowed to cry myself.
My heart was skimmed over with cold
Abandoned and alone,
She stole my comfort for herself

Years later:
My mother died while I was gone
I hadn’t spoken to her in years
She couldn’t take care of herself
She couldn’t take care of me
And my little brother called me,’mommy’
He cried in my bed,

I taught him to swim
How to read and do math
I read to him bedtime stories
Shakespeare, Plato and other classics
The other boys didn’t get

It took me years to learn how to cry
My own tears for myself.

But I wasn’t there when she died
Somehow I should have known- they said
She drank too much water- and died
How could a daughter have known?
Why was I the one to blame?

all those years long ago
She crawled up my leg
a monster in the dark
she put the adult curse onto me
an infernal game of tag,
‘you’re the adult now, tag,
no returnsie!’

Adults everywhere with abuse
But no power to help, or no will to help
(the same thing, aren’t they?)
But old people would shelter me,
Feed me, and hide me, teach me…
There was something to look forward to there?

I thought the old were wise
Until I realized they could be cruel
Perhaps crueler than the young
They can be kind as well, but
Like every human under the sun,
Or over the moon
They must choose love over hate
Not covet the youth of the young.

you live life and learn many things
Ways to make things look better,
Work better, grow stronger, all the things
We strive for in life
Some have a pocketful and some a wheelbarrow
But each lifehack saves the generations a world of growing and pain

Some are generous in their sharing,
Others are stingy and unkind
Cruel that you don’t already know
What took them a lifetime to live

I realized this, when I saw a very young girl
Bring in some art, she didn’t know a few easy tricks
I had only recently learned
I thought, ‘oh, she should have–‘
Then I realized, how could she have known?
If I didn’t tell her(in a kind way)
It could take her a decade to learn what I learned
If I was cruel as people can be, and chase her away
How awful for the arts and what a loss that would be!

I knew then that ‘wisdom’ wasn’t any different than ‘lifehacks’
and the old are only as wise as they learned
There first lessons: to be good sharers in grade K!
With the internet we are all each other’s elders now
We all share our wisdom
We may have lost our families
But we have life hacks
We have supports our parents never dreamt of

We know we don’t like adulting
We don’t make our children adult for us
We own our lack of adulting
We share our lifehacks
WE earn new lifehacks

The selfishness of the elders is on their heads
If they want a captive audience
To turn away
They can keep their pockets full of secrets
We will learn another way

I thought wisdom came with age
That was before I became friends
With the old
I thought adults knew everything
That was before
I adulted too young

Dappled Afternoon

Laying on the mossy cool
I watch the living skyscrapers
Green and drooping with their
Burdens of leafy bowers
Scented cedars spreading their
Carpet of soft needles
The incense of the cool forest
Delightfully assaulting my every sense
As clouds sail through the periwinkle sky
They seem close enough to spread themselves
Over the tops of the everlasting sentinel Forest Rangers
Who sway in the gusting breezes
To the beat of the music of the wild world
Long ago I abandoned gumboots and socks
To sink my toes into the fragrant moss
Losing myself in the sound of a small trickling
Pouring all of its tears of wonder
Into a talking creek that wanders past rocks
Under the fingers of trees
Dripping with lichen
A bird trills high notes of euphoria
I long to express
This wonder, of a little slice of the undisturbed world

The Feast of Fools

The hunted hare
Became the hunter
The hound dog ran in fear
“Blow the horns!” yelled the Hares,
“The Lord of Misrule is here!”

When darkness overturned the world
And day ceased to rule the land
The Lord of Misrule took the Throne
and all that was thought to be
the True and Only way
For a The Feast of Fools
Became the order of the Day

The Fool has put down the Mighty from their Seats
He has taken the Precanter’s Staff
He has released the prisoner’s from their cells
and placed them by his sides
While Bishops and Cardinals serve them food
And the Condemned may light of their broken pride!

Hares and Hens ran through the halls riding the backs
Of hounds, horses Nuns and Men of the Clothe and shouting
In the voices of Men!

The Fool made Papal Decrees that Bishops oinked only
And Cardinals could both moo and neigh
(He was a generous Fool, they mooed).
The friars danced in women’s frocks on the tables
In women’s frocks
Serving wenches, dressed in Cardinal Red
were served by oinking Bishops

You may think this tale too tall
Perhaps even sacrileges
To imagine the sacred halls
Of Notre Dame de Paris painted
With sigils decreed by this garish fool
Who by lot, had been but a stable boy
Been chosen to be The Lord of Misrule.

But it’s true that up was down and down was up
And Hares talked quite a lot
So much so that not that many years ago,
One was heard to be worried that he was running late!
It was this very party that caused Misrule to change,
‘Maybe we need Fool-proof rules,’ rued aching Cardinals
The end of Misrule Tide.

Hidden away in the twelth century were some of the
Last times animals casually chatted in Notre Dame
They ran out and all about and lived a very long time.
Misrule continued in various forms until Queen Elizabeth
Took the British Throne
But still, hidden away, Misrule, the Fool and it’s Magic rules
There’s no stopping the power of the darkest days!

The Assassin

Leaves listlessly
Rustling, Sighing, Seething
With thoughts of Rain
The rain that does not come
With it’s sweet smell
Of Innocence and Ozone
This Rising Assassin we call Heat
Rising before the sun, he comes
With his Great Killing Swaths
Bleaching the world of Color
Sapping the strength of those
Who would Fight him
The Assassin laughs at their efforts
They perspire, offering up more of their water
To Him
He kisses it off of their body
A lover couldn’t be more thorough in their embrace
He is the vampire who walks by day
Drinking not blood, but water
Leaving only iron and cellulose
Where once there were plants, animals and humans
Cities fall before him into dust
Even building are too tired to
Do anything but lay down in submission
Before him
Bridges crumble, damns drain dry of water and crack open.
He is Soulless
The once nurturing eye of our yellow sun
Turned ruthless, heartless, brutal
Death himself is more kind
He would bend himself down
And put his cool hand on our brow
Now we bake in The Assassin’s oven
Listlessly waiting for death to bring ease
The trees pull their roots from the ground
To escape it from burning their feet
No escape for any of us
We have entered the Valley of Death
Where The Assassin never sleeps

Power Brownouts possible… Advice?

Because of the heat wave we are POSSIBLY having power brownouts in my area. I’m crossing my fingers that all will be well, but I wanted to let you guys know that at any time I could lose internet. We’ve never had brownouts here before so I don’t really know what to expect.

I know in years past we relied on the honor system to write down the time we wrote the poem and to post them when the power came back on (fortunately I was always able to post my poems but it seems the poetry marathon often has interesting things occur around it :))

I can see if I can go on fb with my phone and post there to prove that I’m still posting, but I’m not sure if the internet will be up if the brownouts happen. I’m in Canada and our internet towers are independent of the power so it’s even possible that we may lose internet and keep power. We aren’t used to these temperatures at all here, everything is new here for temperatures like this. I’m not sure if we have ever had temps like this before here!

It’s coming up to the hot part of the day, I’m not sure if it’s more likely to be then or when people sit down to enjoy the evening when brownouts would happen. If anyone has experience with brownouts I would be happy to get advice on handling them.

Wish me luck and power and internet!

A Man Named Campbell

I knew a man
He goes by the name of Campbell
Never did I see anyone
Who liked to cause more trouble
It was coming up to the time
When they say
Lucifer fell
Into the brambles
The time we now call
The feast of St Michaels
Campbell thought he had a win
and not unlike
Lucifer before him
He put his pride ahead of commonsense
And everything else that
Had come before
Campbell wanted to the superior
Than the man he considered his competitor
Most of all, he wanted that man’s wife
To chose him over her true love
I knew a man
He goes by the name of Campbell
Never did I see anyone
Who liked to cause more Trouble!
He attacked the woman that he coveted
He attacked the man that she loved
He thought that because he himself
Was a liar; every man else was the same as himself
Campbell fell into the briars
He had tread on sacred ground
‘Let what God has put together,
No man pull asunder!’
Campbell had wronged the laws of God, Man and Woman
The Woman he had coveted pulled a curse down on his head
The Man pulled down the laws of earth
God pulled down the laws of God
For Campbell had sinned by heaven and earth

The Magic Black Diamond

There first was a little girl
Then there was another
Soon there were more and more
The first little girl
Assumed this was
The Order of the World
and modeled her life after
This in every way

‘First there is me,
Then others follow,
I know the way of things the best
Because I’m the one who came
The first; I will always no more
Than the rest.’

When she was near to grown,
Many things in her life had changed.
She had a different father
She had a new religion she
Was directed to believe in and
She was told when to bow and pray
In an entirely different array.

One thing that never changed was her knowing
That she was smarter than those around her
Especially her mother
Who always obeyed whatever new father
Came her way
She also knew she was superior
To her six sisters
She knew that women other than herself
Had little purpose
Needed to be treated roughly
And men were a waste of resources every day

She was then given a large black shard of diamond
It was almost bigger than her finger at that age
Her mother told her she had earned it
But the girl was unhappy and wished she could throw it away
It was too ornate, too gaudy and kind of scary
she could see a distorted version of her face in the black diamond
She looked fierce and evil, angry and vengeful
It was the only thing that she’d ever been given of worth in her life
So she kept it tucked safe away

Her sisters, one by one, were each given a stone
The eldest knew that it was a stone that they were seen to be suited
Not a birthstone or anything so banal,
With each stone given, this sister a ruby, that one an amethyst,
this one an orange one she didn’t remember the name…
It was a pink sapphire that made Eldest angriest
She punished each sister according to her rage.
Her face distorted until each day she looked like
The reflection she wore on her ring.

When she became an old woman, she could never be
Around more than one sister, without the black diamond
Coming out to play
Like jewels in a box the old women rolled and fought
They could never stand to be close to each other to stay
It wasn’t just the Eldest
Although, without her present the others discussed,
‘it’s much better’, until they began to fight
Over who was next worse and they left wounded and hurt

Each sister had learned many lessons
Though there were seven, they were no rainbow of light
Starting in darkness and ending in silence
None would discuss the lessons they learned
Inspired by pain and fear, sewn up in solidified carbon diamonds
Their pain festers on
In generations gone wrong
Silent angry dinners with their second and third husbands
And those who have children who will speak to them

This is a the shortened fairytale.
I assure you it has everything a good fairytale needs
(all but one)
Witches, stepmothers, magical prisons, princes and kings!
Fairy godmothers, castles, magic spells, enchantment and magical rings!

But never oh never will you find the one thing, every good fairytale has;
A happy ending will never be found in this story
Because it’s a true story in the end.

Little Golden Heart

On little paws
She walks like a queen
She’s sweet and nibble
Until she trips and falls
She glances around, hoping
It was unseen!
Tiny golden lady,
She was born to run through trees
Tumbling with other puppies
She only reached for grace
Amongst the city streets
Little ears raised
Short hair
Broken nose from rough puppy play
She wishes to be all the things
That she isn’t
Narrow and trim,
She wants to be curved
She wishes for long ears
Instead of her ones so pert
She bemoans her broken nose
But she still loves to fight
She still trips over her own feet
When she gets excited or forgets
Her wee self
Her ears only hang askance from
Her pulling them to hang low
To try to look more like other dogs look
She trims her nails with her teeth
For the always perfect manicure
Don’t point it out
You’ll embarrass the Dear
We all have our vanities
Even tiny dogs
We all wish sometimes
To be someway that we simply are not
My beautiful girl, my sweet golden heart,
You’re perfect the way you are,
From the tip of your nose to the points of toes
She’ll never believe me
The same way any human won’t see
How others love the very things
About them
That they wish they could change
Lets not pull our ears down
And make them crooked with longing
We are what we are
And loved dearly for being