Sunday, September 15, 2013

the peaceful village, part 2

part two of two

click here for part 1

the monster curled his sneering lip
and slouched against his silver spaceship
and considered the little town
and whether to swallow it whole down

he had traveled through all time and space
ravaging worlds with an ill grace
sometimes he got bored
and wondered if he should cut the cord

which bound his fragile existence
to a universe which made no sense
and then on the radar of his ship
another world would make a blip

and he would think, just one more
and land on its blue or grassy shore
terrorize the population
and leave behind him desolation

he had once been wild and free
but now he suffered from ennui
and could hardly summon the energy
to level a village or uproot a tree

and the creatures he crunched between his jaws
sometimes almost gave him pause
the neurons in his brain grew loose
and he wondered, what's the use

but his fragile ruminations
were cut short by the sensation
of a living creature approaching
on his radius encroaching

it was none other than johnny smith
who had taken it upon himself forthwith
to challenge this monster in his own domain
and did it not for fame or gain

but because it was the thing to do
his resolve was firm and his heart was true
though such considerations
on the monster's brain made no indentations

he only detected a pest
and you can just guess the rest -
or can you? can you say
with total assurance who carried the day?

is there a final cosmic text
to describe what happened next?
or only endless wind and rain
obscuring what happens again and again

stories unfold and refold
are over and over again told
all hear what they wish to hear
as into the fog they peer

in endless universes
you can supply your own verses
johnny might get eaten
or the monster might get beaten

or johnny and the monster become good friends
and head off to some other earth's ends
or both be hit by lightning
as they are heroically fighting

in endless possibility
there is a dark city
where the monster slices the pie
and johnny is a private eye

in the window there is a dame
who plays her own game
playing johnny and the monster for chumps
as they endlessly take their lumps

on a street with no beginning
where all the suckers are winning
and the wise men bide their time
until the final flower of crime

when the final case is cracked
the last lion and tiger tracked
as the saints and angels slumber
for a good time call this number

the peaceful village, part 1

part one of two

once there was a peaceful village
with no murder, rape or pillage
everyone did honest labor
and was friendly to their neighbor

every door was opened wide
so that folks could come inside
all elders were respected
no crime was ever detected

they had no silver, jewels or gold
but through the valley a river rolled
bringing water to boundless crops
that folks could eat until they dropped

mom and dad got up at dawn
and polly put the kettle on
all day long they did their chores
so that they were never bored

grandmothers were round and wise
and made excellent blueberry pies
grandpa though his hair was grayed
enjoyed his pipe beneath the shade

little boys ran and spread the news
little girls minded their p's and q's
it was the way that it should be
for all of eternity

and then one day a shadow fell
across the world they knew so well
thunder rolled across the land
the distant horizon was fearfully scanned

nightmares visited young and old
strange tales around the fire were told
people kept their doors shut tight
and could hardly sleep at night

outside the village a monster lurked
skulking in the fog and murk
waiting for the silent hour
the unwary traveler to devour

no longer could the children play
even in the light of day
birds abandoned the cloudy skies
the villagers scanned with frightened eyes

laughter was replaced with fear
throughout the long and dreary year
the leafless trees felt winters chills
and the monster laughed behind the hills

things might have gone along this way
and the village perished, who can say?
but fate would not be so forlorn
because a hero had been born

johnny smith, a faceless sort
showed little sign, by all reports
of standing out among the crowd
not too quiet, not too loud

even johnny's mom and dad
little suspected that johnny had
the stuff of heroes in his being
none indeed were so farseeing

the night was dark, and wet and drear
the little household huddled in fear
mom and dad and johnny and sis
as the rain against the windows hissed

dad whittled at his favorite stick
you could hear mom's heartbeat tick
sis stared into space and wiggled her toes
then johnny from the table rose

his algebra homework he put down
and looked around with a puzzled frown
he listened to the rain and scratched his head
i think i'll go for a walk, he said

sis looked puzzled, dad looked sad
mom cried, johnny, are you mad
this is something you must not do
outside, certain death awaits you

aw gee ma, don't talk like that
said johnny, putting on his hat
my clouded brain needs a fresh air shock
i will just walk around the block

so without saying anything more
johnny walked over and opened the door
and disappeared into the wind and rain
would he ever be seen again?

part 2

Sunday, September 8, 2013

pals, part 6: devastation and retreat

click here for previous chapter

click here to begin at the beginning

"an early night, ben?"
jane casually enquired, and then
although it may have been my imagination
i thought i saw a deputation

of angels of compassion
(but in no emphatic fashion)
flit across her pale face
but they quickly passed without a trace

i was at a crossroads
my brain staggered under heavy loads
and its barely connected parts
after a few fits and starts

stopped functioning altogether
and i didn't know whether
i was dreaming or awake
or if the world was real or fake

how much time went by?
i will not even try
to approximately calculate
but it probably determined my fate

jane's eyes began to glaze
her brows she slightly raised
there was nothing left to say
i knew i had better be on my way

my brain contracted with cosmic fear
i mumbled a goodbye she probably couldn't even hear
and staggered away with a flea in my ear
(to use an old fashioned expression so drear)

the night was dark - what else would it be?
but somehow i was able to see
my way home to mrs brown's front door
as i had done so many times before

it was late - very late
no one wondered at my fate
or questioned my steps on the stairs
as they had their own cares

mrs brown slept the sleep of the good
and the other boarders understood
that everyone's world was their own
in which they could silently squirm and moan

replays danced and twisted in my head
i tried to remember all that was said
in the fateful hour just flashed
in which all my dreams had crashed

one thought especially thundered
through my brain as i wondered
what henry and jane were saying
about my premature straying

if i had stayed one minute more
my head would not be in this uproar
now i could picture henry's smirk
because i had been such a jerk

beer and pretzels they 'd be quaffing
as at me they were laughing
and then another terrible thought
went through me like a shot

i could picture their lips moving
in conversation most improving
i could hear their voices rise and fall
as they never mentioned me at all

not even in mockery or scorn
i might as well never have been born
the little man who was not there
vanished into thinnest air

i felt a strange reassurance
at contemplating this possible occurrence
and with this thought so deep
i finally drifted off to sleep

but not without a final musing
on the dream i was losing
but the dream was - what?
maybe it was no dream - but

images of henry and jane
fell like raindrops in my brain
henry turned into a yellow dog
and jane to a doorway in the fog

to be continued