Thorning My Heart

He lives in the mirth crinkling your eyes, the rose says. I sniff in her words, invite the scent of each sound to carve itself in my bones. My blood feeds on old realities. This flower isn’t sick, my heart says, but my scars and I have trouble trusting tales told by a rose—so many layers… Sick or not, I think, no one knows what lies within, where souls and stories of living and dying bloom unseen. I know, the rose says, her petals dancing your kisses on my cheek. And I believe.

a rose spoke to me,
chanted of springs without you,
thorning my heart’s loss

.
the not so wee notes…
– I rarely pay attention to roses. They’ve never been my favorite flowers, but they were my little brother’s… and he has been on my mind a lot these last few days. He really liked spring weather, the color orange, and roses… So I’ve been smiling at the blossoms… and, perhaps, crying a bit.
– I was not thinking of “The Sick Rose”, by William Blake, when I wrote this poem. But “This flower isn’t sick” is so close to the line in Blake’s poem, that I felt the need to point it out.
– I hope my little brother’s soul is smelling the roses in the Summerlands (or wherever he likes).
– Linked to Open Link Night, over at the dVerse and to Sanaa’s Prompt Night (Take time out and stop to smell the Roses).

Orange Flower
(the weeping angel behind my little brother’s rose was painted by Shelle Kennedy)

She Runs Twisted

Sherry Blue Sky, over at the Imaginary Garden with Real Toads, invited us to Play It Again. I can’t say no to Sherry, so I said yes, and chose to Take It to the Streets. While I was at it, I said yes to Prompt Nights, too. I agree, Sanaa, Imperfection is Beauty(full)… with extra character. And because I’m feeling quite wild, I’m also linking it to Poets United (Poetry Pantry, 303).
.

“She Runs Twisted”

She runs twisted, from life to death,
the asphalt of her skin potholed with stories
of living, dying, and reckless loving.

She likes it slow in storms and at night,
fast when the sun’s a kiss away from setting,
with music roaring all her hollows full,

at any time, with wheels speeding caresses
over the surface of her heat. She loves it
when rain whittles poems into her middle,

leaving her beauty-marked with life,
marking her beautifully towards dying,
loving her marks with tales of living.

She runs twisted in life, in death, in love.

.
Abstract Nude, by Aja
abstract nude, by Aja
see more of her work on Sagittarius Gallery

*I deleted the first image I shared with the poem…
It did not feel quite right.
You can here it here, if you like.*

Eccentric Discredited Diseases, Thirteen Hallows, and Mabel Bunt’s Mouth

I’ve spent the last week or three studying questionable diseases, watching a maniac decorate other people’s houses with the dwellers’ innards, and smirking with a generously breasted wench with a whip for a mouth. Aren’t books just the best things in the world?

The Thackery T. Lambshead Pocket Guide to Eccentric & Discredited Diseases, edited by Jeff VanderMeer and Mark Roberts is a hoot. The “Enthusiastic Introduction by the Editors” is funny, the “Reluctant Introduction by Dr. Lambshead” is hysterical, and the details about the diseases have made me laugh until my gut hurt. One of my favorite illnesses is the Third Eye Infection, a malady that produces “trance-like states… [that] resulted in the publication of many philosophy Master Theses in the mid-1970s. Numerous artworks were attributed to it, as well as the creation of… Meta-Infectional Fiction, literature intended to spread itself as an infectious mental illness.” And to my never-ending delight, the Neil Gaiman story is signed by the author… a fact that makes me all giggly and stuff, since I paid less than a dollar for the collection. Go me!

The Thirteen Hallows, by Michael Scott and Colette Freedman, narrated by Kate Reading (one of my favorite readers) has been a glorious surprise. I started reading it under the impression that it would be some lighthearted young adult dark urban fantasy—I was introduced to Scott’s writing, via The Alchemyst, a young adult novel. Well, what I’ve read of this tale about old magic running wild in a modern city is very grown up… and bloody. The mythology weaved within the tale is quite magnificent. And the imagery is startling at times. This bit stuck: “…the dots of her unconcealed freckles were connected with dried blood. Her eyes were deep in her head, black smudges edged beneath them…”

Mabel Bunt and the Mask of M’selle Moppet, written by our own R. Collins and B. R. Marsten is a dance between sharp swords and Mabel’s witty bantering. I’ve been laughing (and nodding) at so many of the things that come out of Mabel Bunt’s mouth. The woman tells it like it is, and the telling is hilarious. Like when she tells her co-protagonist, “If [he] kills me, bury me arse up so people know where they can kiss.” I mean, who doesn’t appreciate that sage sentiment?

And that’s what I’m reading right now. I’ve also finished a handful of books these last few weeks, of which I highly recommend Sparrow Hill Road, by Seanan McGuire. If you like ghost stories and old urban legends made deliciously new, then you might enjoy this one. What about you, my Luvs, what tales have you been delighting in these days?

The Thackery T. Lambshead Pocket Guide to Eccentric & Discredited Diseases
from “Diseasemaker’s Group”, by Neil Gaiman