Conflict(ed)

The ticking clock moves my bones.
Vibrating to a new chorus.
Such fear and bravery dogfight within.
Triggering the gunfire in my heart.
Bringing other humans to their knees, and staining my soul.
Cast out of Eden
Ordered here, directed there by badges that shimmered in the sorrow;
and a broken moral compass, scratched by time.
Left stranded out to sea.
Struck by the passing grief of that tide.
The one that washed over me.
Seeing death in the eyes of those all around.
Feeling hope strangled, feeling fear take hold.
Who really wins the fight, when we lose ourselves in the struggle?
Stretched and stricken, sunk by the force of your hate.
Every tear here brings the ocean higher.
With every cry, a family welcomes in a stranger.
A void, the blackness. The stories to tell a generation.
Of the great fight, that felt so wrong.

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Land of the free and the home of the brave

Her eyes flickered from the calendar on her desk to the phone quickly as the device in front of her rang out shrilly. She knew who it would be on the other end of the line, she pictured them, slumped against the phone booth while the hot July sun glared in through the tampered glass. Her arrangements were all unfolding as she had anticipated, each one of her children doing exactly what she had expected them too. All was coming together, there was just one thing left to arrange and this phone call, she hoped, would finalize that. She let the phone ring once more before lifting it from the cradle, placing it up onto her heavily powered face.

She did not speak, she waited for their voice.

“Mame?”

“Yes.” she said, curtly.

“It’s all arranged. She said she will be there for the 4th of July.”

“Good, thank you Perkins. She is aware of the situation I trust?”

“She is aware yes. She wasn’t surprised at all, but it’s strange as she…” He began, but was interrupted.

“Excellent. See to it that money is arranged also.” She said, and hung the phone back quickly into the cradle, her mind now dancing over the weekend arrangements.

In a phone booth in downtown Boston, Robert Perkins held the phone to his ear, trying to hear against the traffic which sped past him outside his glass shell. He heard Veronica Van-Black, his employer, hang up the line her end; yet he finished off his sentence that he had begun, as if trying to figure it out still himself.

“…it’s strange, she said she was already there.”


This fourth of July, come and spend the weekend with the Van-Blacks who will delight you with wit, suspense, good food, séances and murder. A good time to be had by all, except maybe one.
Keep it together – out now in paperback and eBook. More stories here.

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Oh Deer

She lived her life in seclusion.
Away from the world beyond.
Lost in a forestry delusion.
In a time that’s long since gone.
With a wounded heart and stolen child.
She fed and ran with her kind.
Hunted for her meat so mild.
Life and death so intertwined.
Despite it all, she raised her young.
On her own and with no other.
Help from a male, and though it stung.
She did her best to be a good mother.
A quiet creature, rarely seen.
Yet magical to the eye.
Fur so soft, and eyes of green.
T’was a shame she had to die.
On that snowy day, when the men with guns.
Were hunting, and being hunted.
And other beasts were forced to run.
Two worlds collide, and then were shunted.
For a wolf you see is not so aware.
Or prone to live in fear.
And this is why, she fell and died.
Trampled to death by the startled deer.

Recapturing

The silent soul who wades this world.
With brittle bones and sad inclinations.
Arrives at a place in memory, strung up with words that bind.
Does he fall deeper into the despair of an age?
Of that turning sun that snatches all that lay in his hands?
Or does shift, and arches his back to the march of time.
A solider in war of change.
Corrupting from within.

(s)wallow

Dirty soul licker.
Causing us to stutter.
I know you want to stop.
Been smoking that thing too long. Been praying to the wrong God.
That One you trust in.
Confiscate such liberties and inconsequential humanity.
Swallow it down.
Feel it shudder.
Suck on the bruise until the nation rolls over.
Those bears in your head, scratching the cave wall.
Their arms a tangle of fur and blood.
Does it make you perspire?
You are the one. You oxygen thief.
Back firing and closing up these holes in our veins.
Choke this Trojan horse. Slipped in when no-one was looking.
That fascination in the situation.
Ready to cum.
A Climatic cabaret of guns and hate.
Mop it all up with that spangled banner.
Did it do it for you?

Little terrors

Once upon a night, when his mother had gone to bed.
Sam took a loaded gun, and aimed it at his head.
He did this for reasons that were many and few.
And you would have done the same, if only you knew.
What had become of Sam and the nightmares in his brain.
The horrors that sped into his soul, faster than a train.
He had tried to subdue them, pretending they weren’t real.
But they’d come all the same, leaving no other appeal.
But to end his life and to disappear completely.
So he tied up his world, and ended it so neatly.
He closed his bedroom door, and took a sip from his glass.
Placed it on the table, then watched the clock till ‘quarter past.
The midnight hour, when the ghouls were at their most.
The demons that terrorized him. The sad haunting ghosts.
He placed the gun in his hand, shot once after praying.
Fell to his knees, as another innocent slaying.
For Sam wasn’t mad, and he wasn’t even crazy.
Sometimes he was wrong, and definitely lazy.
But the devil was alive and well, and spoke to him every hour.
Wanted him to do these things, and made his dreams so sour.
But Sam was just unhappy, and mentally possessed.
And he saw this his only ending, because he was so depressed.

Dangerous

Whisky breathe and Ritalin eyes.
Ones that drag me across the floor.
Bleeding and wrist tied.
Black and blue. Shaking into territory.
Tracked me down, run me down.
Scuffed jeans and wicked.
Metal to my temple, finger on my heart.
The smell of this masterpiece.
This smith and wesson smile that cries;
‘Just love me’.

Fighting frontiers

It’s when that hunter calls to you.
And you brace for the arrow, the shot to the heart.
Feeling like an animal.
Fighting to be heard and tolerated.
Breathing in new corrosive air that erodes your lungs.
Deeper into the jungle.
You earthquake proof your soul, and it shakes with the rain;
with the look from these eyes and the sound of their name.
Fighting to fly, to keep these wings feathered down and peacock pleasant.
Stretched over time and the eyelids of a stranger.
Keeping it all in, keeping it all safe.
Fighting against the rules you never made.
Fighting frontiers of tomorrow on the soil of yesterday.
Running with the tigers.
Forever fighting to stay alive.

Black heart down

Our cover is blown, this black on my face is useless.
The black in my heart now permanent.
I shoot into the air, reaching up to God.
Cutting a line of bullets across the seas as you say your goodbyes.
Scrambling in my camouflage heart. Losing all self-control.
I’m fighting for the fate of our love. Such desire.
I’m dying from the weight of our love.
Dangerous forces, twisting like fate rip me from this place.
A turn around and a tourniquet, waiting for the rains of remorse.
What is this thing? What is this love we’re fighting for?
What am I killing you for everyday?
I’ve been that person, for the last time. I’ve been your lover for an age.
God knows I tried. God knows you cried.
I see all this, when the anger shows and you shoot to kill.
Leaving me on the floor. Covered in blood and sawdust memories.
The grave pulls me under, that well-worn hand of comfort.
Sweet relief of death and freedom from tomorrow.

Remittance of the love that is lost to the ways of the world (part II)

Your eyes dared me to ask you what it was, like I didn’t know. The deluded pleas of the guilty, while all around the judges think of what punishment would be best fitting. The dying cat of curiosity rose and fell within me, and I turned away. I could not look, I could not commit to the ending so willingly. The metal felt cool against my temple, though it was your smell that made me aware of what you were doing. It crawled over me like the scent of the sea. The gun clicked. I felt you near and shut my eyes, longing for you to turn my head and kiss me. Those days were long gone. A quick stab in the back, the knife that had, but till a moment ago seemed mysteriously absent, sent the tiny nerves in my body cascading like fireworks. Your mouth came close to my ear and you whispered the words I never believed you would utter in this scenario.

(Truth is, you never said these three words with any conviction that would render it believable in the past, yet something told me this was the cold hard truth that my mind was digesting).

The sound of birds filled the room, and forced me to open my eyes. I turned and saw you there, eyes aflame and soul locking its door forever on me, never to be seen again by my pathetic searching pupils. Feathers fluttered down upon us as the ceiling filled with vultures, gathering and yarring with their hungry beaks. Their black hisses and calls split my ears. The box on the table flew open and out poured the remaining blood that flowed towards us like a lava stream. The contents bobbed on the surface momentarily before submerging into the crimson depths. I sighed, you grabbed me and kissed me full on the mouth. You sighed as I turned the gun and shot us both.

Remittance of the love that is lost to the ways of the world (part I)

You motioned for me to quietly enter the room. I could feel the tenseness of the air. The walls seemed to contract and wrap themselves around me. You sat there with no expression on your face. That face, the one I had touched so many times. Kissed it, smelt it, longed to be near enough I could count your eyelashes. Now it glared back at me like an empty pool. The lights began to flicker, stuttering out their watts in a rhythm I can only attune to the beat of your heart. The gun didn’t bother me, it was aimed at my head throughout but I knew this was all leading to something. The beginning of the end.

(I noted that it was aimed here and not my heart…maybe you’d finally figured out, there wasn’t one in this body of mine)

This part of the Jeykll and Hyde, this side of crazy. You asked me to sit down, the first time you’d spoken. Little daggers aimed at my ears, rushing with the blood and fresh thoughts to my head. You were so cordial, yet each word spat at me like kids on a council estate. I choose to stand, my one last defiance in our petty war. You told me there was something for me on the table, I looked down to see a wooden box. You told me to open it. This was not what I expected. Your look gave nothing away, nothing expect hurt burning from your eyes, and anger that could not by concealed. The box lay in a pool of blood, thick and viscous, floating on this horrific sea…..

Burning the circus down

A sweet parade that rolls in from somewhere we’ve both known before.
The turpentine love is everywhere, seeping into cracks we thought we’d patched and sealed.
Flags are flying that signal everything from alarms to the falling of arms, a serenade of surrender.
A day like any other.
Your friend’s gather, ready to pick up what has been sold over to you and to count the spoils of war.
Those that revel in you acquired freedom, ready to fuck the victory.
Your eyes are all over, counting faces and seeking out the wrong to fall head into.
The fanfares begin and the lions roar their procession of emotions.
I stand in the middle, decorated in the best I can be. My hair out of place and my heart in my hands.
The crowd cheers, the revolver found its way so quickly into your hands.
Placed by someone, or there all along?
The pump from the heart and the blood gushes out, red and chunks of blackness: by-products of the ego.
You eyebrows raise, the ‘I knew’ mask covers your face to a perfect fit.
The music dies, and I run. The death of me will not come from your fingertips.
You find me in the forest, my secret place. God you know me too well.
Kissing their lips you kill me over and over in a million heartbeats.
Then I’m alone.
Fumble in my pockets for the ticket, an emotion or a cry for help.
But the circus has left town.
Yet unknown to me, it burned to the ground.
You stand there smoking.
All I’ll ever be.