War

Swords clash
Cries of battle envelop the moans of the wounded
The face of the earth
Cackles intermittently
As it swallows men and demons alike
It does not discriminate

Clouds scream and burst
As they cover the ground
With their blood red spit
Men raise their shafts
And spears and swords
As they engage in war
Fighting for primitive notions of control and power

I crawl, a lone cowardly sight
With my metaphorical tale between my legs
A  shield covering my chagrined face
Survival is the endgame

I hide beneath a pile of dead bodies
As vultures tear them apart
And dig into their soft, fleshy parts
I pray to strengthen my resolve
And wait for my wounds to heal

Tomorrow,
A new battle begins.
I will come out again, stronger.
War never ends.
It may adjourn for a little while,
To fool you into thinking that everything is alright
But it is always lurking in the dark,
Loitering in the shadows
Waiting, for you to slip up,
For you to make a mistake
And then, it strikes.
War never ends.

Hollow

He tugged the rope one last time to make sure it was strong enough. It was. It’d easily hold something as hollow as a person with no hope, no faith and no morale.

When the door was slammed open, just a piece of paper was left behind to wipe the world’s tears. A piece of paper to justify an unjustifiable act.

“I request everyone to not pursue my case. It is in all consciousness that I am attempting to end my life. I was just an ordinary boy trying to live an extraordinary life in a strange, strange world.” As I stood there I did not know whether I pitied the boy more or this world that we live in.

The Great Unknown (Part 2)

Click here to read the first part: The Great Unknown (Part 1)

For three days and nights
They lived on,
Afloat on wood and rubble
Barely alive,
Searching for light,
And an eye out to look for trouble

But on the fourth,
They gave up hope
And looked to the heavens and cried
Driven to madness,
Fury and torment,
The mariners, they wished they died

Fog and mist,
Devoured them whole,
Laughter, echoed all around
The sailors, scared
Looked around in despair,
There was no mistaking the growling of hounds

As blind as bats
Scared and scrawny like rats,
The sailors had no choice but to be
Little did they know,
They were surrounded by ghosts
Heading towards them with glee

Skeletal, paper-thin hands crept out from the water
And grabbed the sailors one by one
The sailors’ last thoughts,
Of the wives and daughters
As they were dragged,
Deep into the depths of the ocean

Pale, ghostly living dead,
With eyes as red as blood,
Clamped their mouths,
And clutched their wrists,
And heaved them down
Towards the ocean floor

The sailors wide-eyed,
Were in for a surprise
And they prayed,
To each his own,
Yanked down they were, into the dark
Towards the Great Unknown.

The Great Unknown (Part 1)

Few men of yore,
Put ship to sail
In the days gone by
They bid adieu, and left the shore,
A storm brewing in the sky

The wind blew hard
And the sky was pitch-black
Lightning struck the mast,
Into the storm the ship sailed on,
Towards the Great Unknown

Thunder and Lightning,
Moans and groans
And muffled prayers for help,
The tyrannous ship had a mind of its own,
Full of water and weeds and kelp

The sailors, powerless, looked up
Towards the perpetual sky,
A bolt of blue
Split the ship in two,
And all the men, oh, they did cry

Pieces of wood, rock and stone
Were latched upon by men,
They kept afloat,
on barrels and drums
And at long last the Sun shone once again

The wicked sea,
Had downed the ship,
The Sailors were its slaves
All alone, not a soul in sight,
Should the sea be their grave?

All alone in the silent sea,
Dying of hunger and thirst,
The sailors, they did not know
What was to come
Would be the worst.

Click here to read the second part: The Great Unknown (Part 2)

Eagle’s Eye (Part 2)

Click here to read the first part: Eagle’s Eye (Part I)

A strange man
With deceitful yet modest eyes,
Entered the city’s gates
Knowing that ahead, someone awaits.

Once a bustling market
Now stood lone,
But perhaps it was just night
Not villager’s plight.

It was a peasant who asked him,
Who was he?
He looked up, it was dawn
And without a word, he travelled on.

It was just time, when
Into the rotten heart
Of the city, he had reached
To begin the final deed.

He stood before Eagle’s Eye,
Though nothing was clear
In the growing mist;
His arms were now
Wide open, calling to it.

Without any delay
To his shoulder it plunged;
It shall always follow
Its master’s tinkle,
The white-headed Eagle.

Eagle’s Eye (Part 1)

Creaking floors
Hinged doors,
In its walls
A thousand secrets dwelled;
The whole neighborhood gazed.

Inside the epitome of magnificence,
Children’s cries echoed
And voices of damsels chimed;
But all was once upon a time.

Suns rose and suns set,
The wretched day arrived.
The Royal Family disappeared,
Believed to have been massacred.

No witness, living or dead,
Just an Eagle with a white head.
On the old Oak it perched
And days and weeks passed.

What and who was a mystery,
Though everything was considered,
From the enemy kingdom
To a beast and a phantom.

Since it has been covered in mist,
The reticent, ancient giant.
Broken where dread had been,
Not another soul was ever seen.

The hawker who once passed near it
Claimed to have seen the Royal Family,
“The Queen and the King, didn’t at all grow,
It was a merry family, just like twelve years ago.”

Villagers called him a mad man
Threw him out of the town,
The Eagle saw it all
As it circled the ancient walls,
And to this day
Continues the moot mystery,
Of the place called Eagle’s Eye.

Click here to read the second part: Eagle’s Eye (Part II)

The Wait

She sat silently, waiting, looking out the window towards the brick laden path surrounded by green, neatly trimmed hedges which led to the front gate. The gate, barely visible, shrouded by fog and smoke, led out to the main road. The road, she thought. Always crowded, bustling, full of chirp, noise and life. But not today. Today was different.
A tear rolled down her cheek. She choked a sob and cleared her throat. She could still hear people screaming, scurrying, wailing for help, dying.
They had come unannounced. Like predators, soft and silent in the dark of night. Machines and men, cold-blooded, full of pure evil, shooting and bombing, killing the innocent. She could still hear them screaming, gunfire ringing in her ears.
She waited, for news of a man she may never see again, her husband. But she couldn’t lose hope. The sound of a car cleared her thoughts. She straightened her hair, rearranged her clothes. A dark black sedan pulled up in front of the gate. An old man, wearing a black pin-striped suit, with a white beard and a black hat came through the gate. His eyes were full of tears and he looked like he hadn’t slept in months. She ran out through the door and stopped in front of him, expectantly, searching for answers in his eyes. There were none. He took of  his hat and bowed his head, as if in mourning. She cried.
The waiting was over.

Where Shall We Hide The Body?

One step at a time,
Keep steady on your toes
It’s three O’ clock in the night,
Not a single sound should be heard.

Hush! Be still, darling,
Where’s the colour in your cheeks?
Go get me an odd farthing,
And wipe the blood off of the beams!

Not a soul to be seen,
In the fields or in the town.
Let’s get our hands clean,
And feed him to the hounds!

Let’s wipe our bloody trail
And find a place to hide,
Why, O Why do you look so pale,
When there’s no one in sight?

“Oh, I’m just a little shaken, Hon,
Surrounded by this deafening silence,
Oh, look, all the hounds are gone,
Let’s hope that no one knows of our dalliance!”

Here we are, alone and stranded!
A few steps shy of our goal,
A good chance of being caught red handed,
May God have mercy on our souls!

The town’s awake and the bells are-a-ringing,
Someone must have told the chief,
Everyone wants to witness a hanging,
While our heads are downcast in defeat!

We have a few minutes to spare,
As we look around in despair,

“Where shall we hide the body?”

Prison

Link to the first part of this story, Catalyst. This can be read as a separate story, but I’ll suggest you start with that one.

Tick. Tick. Tick.

“Are you alright, lad?” Asked Fred, with genuine concern.
“Eh, he’ll be fine. First day of prison, what else do ya expect?” Grunted Sal.

You make your own destiny, your own fate, luck, or whatever you believe in. Or so the saying goes. He made his. He chose to tell the truth, when he could have so easily lied.
He chose to save an innocent man’s life.
He chose to live a life without guilt.
He chose to condemn himself to a life in prison.

Cell 12B, a 6×8 feet prison cell, with the basic necessities required for human survival, was to be his home for the next twenty two years.
Cell 12B, with dull, grey, cemented walls, three bunk beds, one tarnished mirror and one closet.
Salvatore Treville and Freddie Peterson his new cellmates.

“I’m Fred, but the lads around here call me Freddie. This big ol’ piece of junk here, is Sal. Funny case, his. His mam’s French but he was born and raised in Northern Ireland. Y’could say he gets the worst of both sides. Enough about us, you haven’t uttered a word since you got here. What’s your name, guv?”

But are we really in control of the choices that we make? Or ourselves? Some say our choices are already set, in place, aligned with the movements of the universe. We don’t control our choices. We just get to make them.

“Harold. My name is Harold Law, and this is the longest day of my life.”