featured in the poetry forum August 4, 2019  :: 0 comments

they stand on the corner
waiting for the bus
junior high, probably
they stand in groups, chatting
or in pairs
or alone
with long, sullen faces

they wear the yoke of routine
like an ill-fitted mask
frost damaged flowers
drooping under its heavy weight

most will grow into it
their spines will stiffen
as they pretend to smile

but not all
some will go crazy
trying to peel it off
like dogs clawing
at those lampshades
we make them wear
so they can’t tear out
their stitches
and lick their own
still bleeding wounds

editors note:

More won’t, when inspired by those who don’t. So, don’t! – mh clay


featured in the poetry forum May 9, 2019  :: 0 comments

first they were outside
the words
the voices
of parents and grandparents
and counterfeit gods

then came words
from other adults
from songs on the radio
from people on tv

from a barrage of ads
for things i should have
shiny things
that made people smile

and still more
from the mouths of classmates
in the schoolyard
hurled like stones
or sand in the eye

a blitzkrieg of them…

i should be this

i should be that

and then one day
the voices weren’t out there

they were in here
closer than inside

like the ringing
of hammer blows
as a mob of blind sculptors
chiseled a beautiful stone
down to a nub

editors note:

They can wind up or wear down, careful how you wield them; inside or out. – mh clay