-25- 1000 Nights of RainThat night the darkness covered Sickleberry Street like a black ocean: deep, thick, and suffocating. Rain poured down in an endless tempest, loud as the thunder that ripped through the sky.
And in her bed, Lucy Crane sat, wishing she wasnt. She hated the rain and she hated the dark and, frankly, she felt that there was far too much of both. She wasnt quite sure why she had been jolted from her slumber, but she hardly had time to wonder.
Whats wrong? asked a distant, metallic voice, emulating the sensation of ice on raw nerves. Scared, are you?
Lucy bit her lip. No, she said firmly and kicked her comforter off. And, she continued, suddenly realizing that the voice she heard was a new one, Who are you?
A cold cackle slithered up her spine. You know that already, mi amor, the thing said. Lucys brown ruffled,
-47- My Maiden on the SeashoreShe sat in her own stillness, a part of something
that neither I, nor anyone else, could see. There,
on the bridge, I saw her warm breath mingle in the air,
dancing atop the falling snow. I listened to her
sing Finnish folk songs every day for a long, long time.
I didnt think she ever saw me, not until I realized
she had eyes all over.
One day, I asked her name.
Oh, came the reply, always the exact same words.
Thats Anne, the Bowens youngest daughter. Shes
a little always a pause here weird in the head.
Talks to ghosts and all that. Always there on that bridge.
I listened to them sing like canaries, everyone who tried
to tell me what she saw, though they too could not see.
Then, the blizzards came. The days grew shorter until,
eventually, They were gone altogether. Then,
she was gone too.
It was one grey morning, a sign of the spring,
-96- Oyster Shell.
I met her by chance, the way you find a five dollar bill when youre looking for spare change. Wings protruded from her shoulder blades, a little matted, a little dusty, but white as an angels, beautiful. And as the world turned around her, I could feel her stillness. A kind of quiet sorrow warmed her like a thick winter coat, even though it was the middle of autumn.
My first gift to her was a smile, and a tip. For the pretty cashier, I said. She smiled, half mechanically, half embarrassed, half angelic, and said, Thanks. Her smile haunted my dreams for a week after that, a welcome phantom in my attic.
The thing I remember most was his smell. It was sweet, but bitter, sitting atop the thin wall between tea and coffee. He was so close that his scent infected the air around me, enveloping me like a beautiful, cancerous cigarette smoke. I think he must have come
-36- Blanc en NoirAnd there she sat atop the highest hill
with snowy blue cast light across her face.
And through her coat she could not feel the chill,
but wished with all her might to leave this place.
Her heart, it ached for places warm and bright,
for sunsets during summers long sojourn,
and winters with a little more than night,
until again the sun made its return.
She wanted something fresh and full of life,
where flowers shone and trees grew green and red,
and winds hugged soft and did not cause one strife,
and souls lit up and never were they dead.
That place would always live inside her heart,
although she knew that one day they would part.
The Lovestruck CherryTwas a morning in spring
when the birds sang their call
that the cherry trees bloomed
and the flowers took fall.
Then born were the cherries,
deep black and bright red,
and each one awoke
and lifted its head.
And each fruit was paired
with a partner for life,
one that would stay
through its troubles and strife.
But alas, there was one
who refused to agree,
who pondered and asked,
Whyd they choose this for me?
She looked at her love,
attached at her stem,
and then shook her head
for she didnt love him.
She said, Oh, my sweet,
were the fairest by far,
I the juicy red queen,
you my vibrant red star.
But my darling, our love
is illusion at best,
for I just cant feel you
are above all the rest.
Im sorry, my love,
but its time that we part;
just remember, youll always
be near in my heart.
And with that and a kiss,
a goodbye without sound,
our Miss Cherry broke free
and she fell to the ground.
-89- Augustaugust, like a summer wind,
here today, tomorrow gone again.
feel you in the autumns kiss
and wonder if its me you miss.
august, like the death of spring,
fires up as the funeral bells ring.
tears dont fall once the fare is paid
and Love is left in River Styx to wade.
round and round, the seasons turn,
but when will I learn
to stop writing letters and get better
for the winter?
down and down, the leaves are falling
and Im not calling
august, kiss the sun goodbye
and give no thought to the reason why.
lotus blossoms sing their sunrise song
and dance all the springtime long.
august, feel the breeze on skin
and know the place Im in.
feathers fallen soft and white,
breathe again as day turns to night.
ash to ash, my heart is beating
but the airs not heating;
it isnt fair, but I dont care
and I dont miss the summer.
heart to heart, a little late,
but I wont wait
-10- a g a p eWith her,
I always smelled oleanders
and my nightmares turned to dreams.
While she sleeps,
I watch her, face tinted blue
through the curtains.
Rain never seems to fall
when shes around.
-09- Not a BuoyUnderneath the sea,
thats where I be,
underneath rogue waves
and the sky so free.
On the docks by the sea,
just my wheels and me,
felt a tilt and a lurch,
now Im under the sea.
-17- E minor to Done.
blood red, like his
crimson tube of paint;
but now it paints him.
i could feel deep, sorrow blue
in my stomach.
it tasted like paint, like
water with dreams and soap,
i think that must be
how colors taste.
blood black, like the spots
on the moon.
her eyes looked like caverns,
dark and soulless and blind,
she wore Death
on her cheeks and
Fright on her eyelids;
i guess no one told her
she was pretty on
blood blue, like exhalation.
i wish someone would
tell her not to
that final breath