Poetry Compendium (2017)

A compendium of all the pieces in my daily poem practice for 2017. I started this practice in a resolution to write something every day, and figured I could spin it into something a little more interesting. Each poem was inspired by a piece of art that can be seen with credits via the title links. They are presented here in a more standalone form, largely unedited save for legitimate errors – I wanted my change over time to be fully visible.

I maintain my ongoing daily poetry practice on Tumblr, at TheRealVagabird.


Desert Camp

“Upon a glint of summer’s set

I cast my gaze as if a net

To find a jewel that shone more bright

Than the moons in the sky at night

I’ll trade it at the coming morn

For something I too long have worn.”

 

Sweat

“Shipment’s off

Face is hot

Yet I still have to pack.

Could go for some water.”

 

Let Me Help You

“Could you know a soul

If you saw it in a mirror?

Through a pane of glass?

Could you see past the shine

Into the blackened pool

And yet the ember beneath that?”

 

Call to Adventure

“By hammerhorn

and golden dawn

Hark rapture over parapet

I see her there

Ascending proud

Beyond where evil could beset”

 

Druid

“A sacred task is never done

For then its purpose too has gone

Like grass beneath the autumn leaves

In long forgotten forest meads.”

 

Submarine

“I thought at length on the direction

Of the waves beyond the glass

And on the nature of body

When one is so out of place

What is there to do but wonder

To distract from the yawning peril?”

 

Towering Forest

“For ten thousand years these forests have grown

For five thousand more we have stood among its great shadows

My own life, the length of a falling leaf

In freedom I would jump to the high boughs

Unburdened and unbeholden to any soul but mine

The insurmountable heights of one’s will.”

 

Arrival of the Archmage

“Herald now forth his lordship

Noble grace and majesty

He who takes the longest trip

He whose mind is truly free

He holds the arcane scepter

Of dragon bone is his wand

But he could not expect her

Who now shares his sacred bond.”

 

Crisalida

“Within those woods lurks the deepest of sorrows

And the darkest nightmares to ever be

Where the dawn and dusk lack nights or morrows

And more things hide than you could ever see

But I tell you, do not quail, do not flee

Seek the light within the forest of dreams.”

 

Valura

“Upon a wooden ship I sailed

Across the greying sea

Though in trust my soul had never failed

I knew I would be free

Say farewell to grief and hunger

Welcome prosperity

My sore eyes are filled with wonder

My heart is filled with glee.”

 

Dwarf Lord

“With armor strong, and hammer true

He stands among the chosen few

His body stout, his heart stands tall

Dark flies before his battle call

Heart unwearied as the stone

That guards above the mountain-home

He’ll never cease upon his quest

Until he finds his final rest.”

 

Night

“I feel naught of horror, I fear not of death

All shall bend before the tide of Ending’s blackest breath.”

 

Relic

“It’s not over

We’ve come too far, we’ve spent too much

In hope. In blood. In soul.

No darkened fog is so thick, so immune

To the candle we hold, the flame we keep alight

We create the time, the moment

That is immemorial.”

 

Inquisitor

“I strike with thunder from my throne

My hammer clutched in hands of bone

Your fate is writ upon the stone

That now is your eternal home.”

 

A Last Glance Back

“What once I railed against

Climbed and suffered for the sake of life

I now keep inside of me

A beautiful scar, a reminder

That I have the strength I need

And I cannot look back.”

 

Cyber City Alley

“I’d pine for loneliness

When the eyes of the world were upon me

I’d crave a single touch

When I sat alone, in dark, and cold light

I turn my eyes inward

And my soul outward, for a chance at peace.”

 

Derelict

“What did you leave me, grandfather?

Don’t say, I don’t care

You gave me one thing of value

These hands have brought me all I need

My inheritance

I’ll pull from your long-dry casket

I have greater need.”

 

Airden Fields

“Oh, travel forth across the glen

And smell the autumn air

Lie upon this pure land

Can you say it is not fair?

Please bury deep my tired bones

Beneath this soil black

Always love this verdant land

And in turn I’ll love you back.”

 

Costa Insidiosa

“Perilous fools!

Blinded misers!

Did I not tell them the book was priceless?

Its toll could not be paid in gold and gem!

Oh, how they writhe.”

 

Casting Spells at Sundown

“Heed to my song, you who flicker through the trees

My trilling melody, my lullaby

Hurry forth, for my doors lie open, waiting

My hearth is stoked and warming

Tril le da la!”

 

Bar Cascade

“Ruminate on the idea of weight

A memory is worth more than can be paid

And weighs nothing, in truth.

But I find it hard to sell memories

And when I’m told I lack the credit

There’s nothing to do but heft more junk.”

 

Alien Examination

“On days like these I float and dream of the emerald seas I left behind

But as days go by I have little left now to remind.”

 

See There

“See there!

Round the shaded mountain bend

There are yet many things hidden in this world

Still wisdom that must be sought

See there.”

 

Natural

“Wander under changing sky

Watch the wayside pass me by

Lantern light and golden sun

See me on until I’m done.”

 

Along the River

“I’ve learned a great many things

From the places I’ve been

I’d teach them all again to you

But I’ve not yet had my fill.”

 

Desert Poet

“I swear, if you read

Just one more ‘desert haiku’

I’ll blast your head off.”

 

Barrow Downs

“I’ll tell you to sing a wandering song

To uplift your spirit and keep it bright

Sing now, traveler, tra la! Sing and call!

For in silence rambles the restless dead.”

 

Night Traffic

“I’ve messaged you for three days in a row

I know the nights blur in this glowing world

But in a city of bright neon shine

You’re like a fireplace, warm and welcome.”

 

King’s Ruin

“Ah, sweet blanket of silence, gentle kiss of shaded fog

I’ll rest here a long while, ‘til I’m as one with the ruin.”

 

Errantes

“A soldier boy went marching yon

In sadness then his song did end

His soul, still living, marches on

To find those it can still defend

But broken hearts it cannot mend.”

 

Journey Long

“On and on and still yet on

‘Til limbs are weak, ‘til breath is gone

I’d say I’d go ‘til break of dawn

But now it’s to my bed I’m drawn.”

 

Old Shed

“Would you like to know where your future goes?

Never mind the sound of crows

You’ll find my wares much more enthralling

Do not heed to your friends calling

Sit and look a while.”

 

Art of Meaning

“He asked me one day, ‘Where was our failing? How did such mastery lead to destruction?’

I said, ‘see how we speak now, and think on those who are now silent. Was theirs’ failure?’”

 

Dark Trade

“’You know I don’t like waiting’

‘They’ll be here.’

‘The city noise is grating.’

‘You’re just a bundle of cheer…’”

 

Four Witches

“On trudging go they witches four

Minds burdened with forgotten lore

Their bones are burdened under robes and skin

Trinkets clatter whilst they through stalk the fen

Their bodies coat with the marsh’s mold

That rots at their four blackened souls.”

 

Jay

“In you I see a kindred soul

Though mine own is grey and yours is gold

I’d wander by your side awhile

For the chance again to see your smile.”

 

Remnants

“I never said I didn’t enjoy it, or that I hate these wounds

But with no end, there was no meaning.

All I ever wanted

Was peace.”

 

High Elves

“In my humble experience, trust not that which holds such ethereal beauty

Though my heart would break if I did not admit such radiance to be marvelous.”

 

Ljorot (Brandr Saga)

“Bold Brandr, brave war-son, fare ye well

Scalded and scorned by cruel kin

Who knew not of sacrifice nor sorrow

Gathered him a golden hide

Tyr-torn and Baldr-blessed armor

Whenst Brandr returned to Ljorot

Therewith thanes in throngs

And bought his birthright in blood.”

 

Canyon (Hrothgar Saga)

“Twas here that Hrothgar did lay down his sword

And take up the oaken branch of wisdom

Though his body remained as temple stone

His kindled flame cracked the ice of his soul.”

 

Who You Are

“I tell you friends, knights and men-at-arms both

When thoust stand in glory, regard His light

And question thy soul: ‘Would I hold honor

Still fast, if his gaze was not upon me?’

Those who affirm are beyond purity.”

 

Coolant

“01000011 01101111 01110101 01101100 01100100 00100000 01100111 01101111 00100000 01100110 01101111 01110010 00100000 01110011 01101111 01101101 01100101 00100000 01100011 01101111 01101111 01101100 01100001 01101110 01110100 00101110”

 

Gate of the Noldor

“Lead forth, lost son, across the wave

Father’s vengeance thou must fulfil

Face the darkness if thou art brave

Emancipate the Silmaril!”

 

Arrivals Shift

“I need passports from Landing Bay C

Customs scans on those alloy shipments

A translator for this squidy fuck

And another friggin’ cigarette.”

 

Quiet

“My future has come

With the dawning sun

I leave behind death

Though not like the rest.”

 

Caldera

“In demon days when forests flamed

Twas here first fell Her cleansing rain

The fire drew from deep ravines

And gave way to these silent streams.”

 

Ram Tribe

“The fools thought they could take our land?

Show them the fury of the Ram!”

 

The Fisherman

“Murky calls and lazy trees

No other spot could be so good

Life thicker than the eye can see

Yet all the fish here taste of mud.”

 

Portal

“I thought my mind lacked the strength to be free

But I’d do it all again, for the things I’ve seen

Np’ht kt’dlw’i

Rthgm s’cp”

(I would take the pain

Peace is mightier)

 

Custodes

“I shall hold those of your Order in the highest regard

Though you stand alike in armor and blades, your pasts forgone,

Remember it was for your unique souls I chose you all.”

 

Greenhill

“And lo, by Her light was Good formed

From the ash as life more verdant

All rejoiced and supplicated.”

 

The Last Stand

“Neath mountains grey and caverns dark

By hammer fall and fire spark

Lurk things that hunger, pine for war

Embittered wait since times of yore

The bane of all the Great Smith’s folk

What evils there have they awoke?”

 

Coldness (Hrothgar Saga)

“When Hrothgar heralded his neighbors near

Not one took notice of the call

Hrothgar the haughty took to tread

Born by oak-braid and filled with flame

Those whom words could not woo

Bent to the beatings of wooden wand.”

 

Fireball

“To know what it is to conjure flame

One must know the sting of smoke and cinder

The crackle and the scream of charring wood

One must know the inferno of fury

And the heat, the warmth, of burning passion

Be warned! Tame your cinder, lest it scorch you

And keep hands away from face at all times.”

 

Pantano

“I wish you well, but know the meaning of this simple phrase

Death is the sweetest mercy you will find out in that haze.”

 

Falls

“Heed not those who speak of might or power

They know not what strength it takes to protect this peaceful home

All-Mighty Ruin, Undefeated Love.”

 

Winter Wanderer

“Ah, silent wood

What do you keep quiet from me?

What secrets do you plan for my evening?

We have not met before

Enchantment? Danger? Silence?

I’ll enjoy our time together, nonetheless

For in time, you will be a memory

And I’ll be gone.”

 

First Day as a Pilot

“The speed, the unbounded direction

As my own sense of freedom

The roar of engines

My own roar of exhilaration

The velocity, the heft

The weight of earned responsibility

My very own.”

 

Far Coast

“Past the worldly edge

Law and sense crumble

Like stone to the waves,

All is oddity,

Both good and malice

There lies your fortune.”

 

Headless Horseman

“Wand’ring in white

In a late autumn’s eve

Lost, with no clue where to go

I heard a faint echo, a gallop through the trees

And I saw a sight, too stark for a scream

A ghoulish nightmare, the darkest of dreams.”

 

Bastion

“There are a great many places where goodness still hides

Where freedom yet waits, caged like a bird, waiting to fly.”

 

Shipyard

“They just came back from the frontier

Dark tidings upon the far front

But we will not stay down for long.”

 

Lover of the Sea

“To journey far across the land

His sails unfurled and storming caught

Such is the fate of Aedelstan

Taken to lands he knows wherenot

In tattered hide and shining steel

He tarries on by wide acre

To joys and pains of freedom feel

‘Til called at last to Folkvangr.”

 

Eirnland

“Most comely land that I have seen

With mountains white, and forests green.

The stones that clutch like Maker’s hand

In river fields, in emerald-land.”

 

Hilltop Cottage

“Oh, do come in

The fire’s warm

The stew hearty

The air thicker.”

 

Moth to the Flame

“Tiny fragile wings

Caught within the wheel

Seen so many things

Time will always heal”

 

Roth

“Ya, ya!

I can see all the little things.

Don’t leave!

There’s no place else you can go to.

Brown land, dry land,

Cold, yet parched. Where did I put my wheels? Lost in the hollow!”

 

Throne Room

“’He is false!’

‘Usurper!’

‘Foul creature…’

The lord waited for retort

But the hero stood silent.”

 

Into the Sky

“Sometimes

I don’t feel my body

Am I

Living on, or dying?

Is there

Time yet left for our dreams?”

 

Object

“She looked, eyes unseeing

Content, with mind empty

While pain drifted in time.”

 

Fall Forest

“Autumn is grand for maidens

For though nature is a crone

The stag with horns is laden

On the winds regret is blown.”

 

Vestigios

“Of the fallen, in their empty halls

I will sing, since they can speak no more

Nothing remains of them but whispers

Faded carvings in mossèn ruins

Unfinished tales ‘pon the tattered pages.”

 

North Bridge City

“Trouble lies on that lake

Better to tarry ‘mongst the terrible

Garner to me some gold

Rest my weariness, reave some warriors

When I go on my way.”

 

Homeworld (pop hit in 2717!)

“Said my boyfriend was a xeno

Tell my daddy, well don’t he know

Look around but I can’t see no

Human boys good as my xeno

No no no.”

 

Demonkind

“There are those who were born of fancy

Made flesh by will

Who dwell in places men dare not tread

And then there’s Them

Who by the standards of the fey-kin

Were still too dark.”

 

Song of Time

“I find grimoires to be as like poems

So many ideas in such a small space

To flow through you beauty

To drive you to madness

And just like the first tome

Of a budding apprentice

Nobody cares about poems-nouveau”

 

Beowulf

“On storming seas their journey fraught

But long had bonds of kinship stood

Their axes cold, their blood was hot

To fight there when no other would

On Danish land, at Heorot.”

 

Merchant’s Lagoon

“Cat-Eyes caught much fish

But Goggle found shiny scrap

I still need a boat.”

 

Gate to the Drained Lands

“Hail, ally

I know not to what place your travel’s deigned

The border’s nigh

Beyond these walls lies the lands of the Drained.”

 

Darkness and Nature

“There lies the Pincer Gate! The oppressor,

The Shogun of Sorrows seeks to hem in the ancient wood

But magic and bramble will not be stopped!”

 

Marsh Boatman

“River man, goes float on his way

River man, floats on down for days

Float on forever just to get away

By Yù Huáng, someday you’ll be free.”

 

Coming Home (Brandr Saga)

“Brandr! Beloved boy!

How held thine thanes

That thoust left at yon Ljorot?

For certain, thine father would be aflame with joy

Were he but breathing still.

Stay, renowned warrior, and rest a while.”

 

Wasps

“See how they scurry, scuttle, fly

Their hidden master close at hand

‘Neath limestone ruins, prying eyes

Past scarab-wall, in desert sands.”

 

Pilgrimage

“‘Neath cloth and skin, within the soul

Everywhere you’ll find this yearning

Each one’s struggle is their own

Each one must make their own journey.”

 

Automaton Scout

“When the old forges fell

Many units were left without true minds

Their cousins shepherd them

But they too found themselves without purpose

This unit is self-aimed

It has decided it is a trader.”

 

Repairanoia

“Five days

And the ground is still wet

The sky deceives

Every solitary inch

Danger.

I smile, I laugh

They’ll think I expected.”

 

The White Wolf

“Such lengths to go for sake of love

Endless heights, that strength of will

To sacrifice, and to protect

To learn every way there is to kill

Yet hold blade still, the might of mercy.”

 

Quiet Relay

“They lived and farmed in buildings charmed

Unalarmed, they’d yet to be harmed.”

 

Sinking

“The Dragon came to the city of Frühlhalde

Where the lords seldom left their towers

And simply watched the country about them

Even as with each passing year

The river drew closer, and the falls grew higher.”

 

Lazy Bum

“Pay no heed to the big-hat.

Every day, for hours on end, he sits there.

Be thankful his chants are drowned

In the rushing falls.

Lest the monotony wear

Upon your refined ears, m’lord.”

 

Rendezvous Point

“But the general was smart:

‘They will not attempt the land,

So fortify the river.

If they think they can stand cold,

We’ll challenge their high egos.’”

 

Sky Pirate’s Cove

“Oh, patch up the hull with canvas and wire

Lest we all burn in hydrogen fires!

Fly along from cove to cove, skyward up and skyward ho!”

 

Noble

“Hast thou met mine first advisor?

They are of most noble bearing.

Though removed from noble comport,

I’ve had odder things in my court,

And a fool I’d be to pass up

Fine advice in trade of jewelry.”

 

Scrap Ship

“I’ll show that smarmy bastard

I may not have his hair

Nor his finery

Or supposed ‘wisdom’

But damn if I can’t make

A pile of junk

Fly all the same.”

 

Static War

“I supposed art would stand wonderful

In lazer-scar and lightning stars

But one might mistake this memorial

For little less than scattered scrap

Ruins of noble tragedy.”

 

Crusader

“He scanned the dust for Saracens

Yet none stood that he noticed

He took some time and searched again

Abundans cautela non nocet.”

 

Song of Spirits

“How can you live here?

Not all hauntings are so horrid.

Do ghosts keep good homes, then?

No, but their tea is marvelous.”

 

Before the Journey

“And lo, did the Elder Ones leave this land

Once it was left as naught

But dust and sand.

There was no ‘easy way’

They knew now

This journey, they all would have to take.”

 

Roof of the World

“Why hast thou comest here?

Answer not, for there is but one.

Lay thine possessions in the grave,

For it shall taketh a lifetime

To learn that which thou wishes;

And thine new birth is upon this day.”

 

Let Them Come

“If I said I was not a man to be fought with

You would agree

And though you’d burn my farmstead, Gutty Michael Smith

You won’t get me.”

 

Desert Smith

“Come and buy a gun

Save yourself from harm

When all’s said and done

Don’t be caught unarmed

Danger there abides

Sand is where they hide.”

 

Lady Winter

“In northern woods where secrets lie

There darkness shrouds in evermist

‘Neath river-ice do secrets die

In northern woods, by winters kiss

Where light and dark together twist.”

 

After Storm

“He was harrowed on the roiling seas

There where souls of number untold lost

When salvation came on calmer breeze

And from icy jaws at last was freed.”

 

Nordic Cave

“They hold such respect

For the still and silent ice

That which holds their history

That which covers their dead.”

 

Forbidden Lands

“They heard the far tremors

They knew next their lands would

Fall.”

 

Surrealscape

“Look witness feel

Upon this currents

Your searing of

Human new terrible

Mind dawn possibilities.”

 

Dark Jay

“Gaze not upon my blackened soul

For it can burn from ashes cold

I fear to journey by your side

Lest I should slip and you should die.”

 

Hero’s Struggle

“Time and trials weigh upon you

You march along

That’s all there is, hero

Now ‘til the End

Very End.”

 

Church (Hole in the soul)

“A hole in the soul,

In that well there is Hell.

Lest you fill it with bone, lest you fill it with stone,

Lest you fill it with gold. If you leave it to mold,

You’ll wonder why, no matter how you try,

You still cannot fill

That hole in your soul.”

 

Garden

“No matter the days

They stayed the same

Even once changed

They stayed the same

And it was magic

And it was good.”

 

Derailed

“His mind wandered a moment

Void in such a little space

Within a great universe,

And he saw a reflection

Before waking to violence.”

 

Dryad’s Call

“Come with me

Sit, will we?

Ever free

Here with me.”

 

Windmill Lesson

“I was sleeping by a windmill old,

When the Dragon came to speak with me.

His voice was warm, though the air was cold

While he brought my eyes to golden leaves

And beauty hidden in mushroom mold.”

 

The Way

“I stopped after a mile

Been here for quite a while

Look out over the drab

Only the fog is free

Now that the wistful green

Lies buried under stones

With so many powdered bones.”

 

Ghassan Outpost

“I never wished to return here

The soil they dig holds my own blood

This dust in now red; my blood—ash.”

 

The Last Magic Place

“When

The eyes of the world turned dim

Where

Could we go to find respite?

Who

Would care for the many books?”

 

It’s Time to Go

“Do not mistake me

For I do know what you speak is true

But there is virtue

In knowing death is a new beginning

Brighter than before.”

 

Walkabout

“How pleasant a thing

That we never need bring

More evil and strife

Into this one life

For to struggle and slave

Is to be good and brave.”

 

Silent Journey

“Like a funeral, they proceeded to the Empty Lands

Where nothing lived, and nothing died.”

 

Forest Guardian

“I withawill a-wander go

Down each new path the forest shows

By riverside, by canopy

In green begirdled panoply.”

 

Windy Plains City

“What wondrous days, I’d find my gaze on all that we had built.

In ancient bones our humble homes were with compassion gilt.”

 

Nørthern Møød

“On isle’s shore and highland peak

By icy sea and mountain steep

In soil black, in valleys green

Where chilling flows the ancient stream

There stand the fanes of dour kings

While in the belfries sparrows sing.”

 

New Tales

“Such strange times to live in,

Where nothing is as it should be.

But what am I to judge?

When the bones are still the same

Once laid bare,

And the company’s good.”

 

Underhive

“In ancient worlds built upside-down

With sky for ground and turned around

With fairy lights of earthen blood

And dripping with a flood of mud.”

 

Scrapper-Walker

“Scrapper come and scrapper go.

Where shinies find? Well, scrappers know.

Pay them well and they will show;

But trust as far as you can throw.”

 

Urban Ocean

“I can’t help but smirk

As I watch the grav-rails rocket past

And see the man with the arm

Of plasteel and lights

As I eat my ramen from a wooden bowl

And trace the brickwork in the walls.”

 

Ashes (tribute to the Silmarillion)

“As I traveled in the wasted East

Where storm had scoured the endless plain

I thought back to those words

Told to me by the Dragon of the West.

‘For he that attempts destruction

Shall but devise things more wonderful

Than he himself ever imagined.’

And I knew the Way.”

 

Temple Ruin

“It was another skeleton, a Martyr to

The eternal mission of Knowing

Not just knowledge, but Truth.

The ever-onwards search for Heaven.”

 

Song of Home

“I’ll go and build a perfect home,

With mellow sky and blackened loam,

Of pearly steel and magic fair,

I’ll plant a fragrant garden there

Tech crafted in an ancient wood

Where old and new give way to Good.”

 

Foreign Traveler

“My wonderment might never cease

In every land, another beast

Another rider up astride

Exotic blade upon his side.”

 

Unauguration of the Night Queen

“What little lives you mortals lead,

Slight and swift as bony reeds.

When blood is spilled, it’s such a huff,

Yet you cannot seem to get enough.

Kill me now, I’ll feign and scream.

Pretend it was a sour dream.”

 

Future Tokyo

“Neon: pink, green, blue

Jumps from black-grey concrete walls

Clear rain drizzles down.”

 

Knights Errant

“The many things that they have seen

Under the green, a-journeying

For ev’ry hour to run and race

Another place, for tourneying.”

 

91

“They were an odd people

Who knew, however thin, Peace

When their children, and sires

Saw only annihilation.”

 

Hag

“There once was a crafty old crone

Knew more spells than could ever be known

When a witch hunter said,

‘You’re better off dead!’

She turned him directly to stone.”

 

Old House

“Don’t go too far astray

For that which shouldn’t be sought

As time will soon decay

And hopes and dreams will rot.”

 

Ice Wolf

“I always wonder why

The most ornery ones

Are the last to freeze

And the first to thaw.”

 

Epic Quest

“Tarry on, ye noble lords, unharrowed, without fear!

Fear no beasts of forests dark nor cliffs of mountains sheer.

Fight from the lowest barrows

To highest parapets!

By silver blade, and golden helm, and shining spear.”

 

Fair Tales

“She wanders from the cloying crowd

Like Venus from the brine

Her noble heart is pure, unbowed

Her beauty beyond time.”

 

They Live

“Perhaps your eye is overkeen,

Seeing things that are unseen.

Not all ills are as they seem

In your dreary wilder-dream.”

 

Wounded (Brandr Saga)

“When first he fell

Brandr was born home on horseback

To the village of Vjall

To train ‘til terror was lost

And courage climbed aloft.”

 

Future Plaza

“A day enough to make you sing

Just how could we have come so far?

When a tramp lives almost like a king,

And I finally got my flying car!”

 

Henge

“On highland hill a tower stands

On sturdy land, up in the clouds

With stones as black as lowland night

A striking sight, the stones unbowed.”

 

Black on White

“Great monoliths

Which don’t fall,

Why stand

Beyond?”

 

Musician

“Oh, a-stumbling on

That burden on my shoulders

The only thing that’s carrying me

A strange sight, a strange song

A windswept rambler stumbling on.”

 

Intoxicated

“A taste of evening fog

Head swimming like the bog

Eyes of palest moonlight.”

 

Hailstone

“I fall through the paths of my life

Rather than treading

Eyes blinded by cold flurries

Face frostbitten and red

As my wits pour from me to freeze.”

 

Minimalist Glow

“Under

Weather

Pure

Light.”

 

Apocalypse Canvas

“With waterfading color

Sun dips night dies

Shot thunder roaming thunder

Green eyes green bones.”

 

Amon Hen

“Far, far, gazes drawn

O’er mountain-bend and darkened dale

My burden here is not yet gone

A vision grim of burning sails

If I should not complete my tale.”

 

Heretic AI

“High

Upon the static clouds

Unseeing and unfeeling

Hear

Their voices calling out

Deep within their dreaming.”

 

Meditation

“A simple purity, an underlying balance

Free from corruption, from decay.

I found the spark of humanity within,

And nurtured it with beyond human love

So that it too would be eternal.”

 

Frozen Land

“Wherefrom came such diamond ice?

In lands once green as this?

The first to fall to entropy, in irony

Was entropy itself

And so here remains frozen.

Madness!”

 

Kvaslr

“On warmer days

I would go down to the water

At the edge of the docks

And fish for supper.

Ah, those fleeting days

When all looked pleasant.”

 

Agnes of Blood

“Oh, divina domina,

Phoenix-winged, shining

With all the light of heaven,

Strong and pure of soul.”

 

Overcome

“A touch is such a wondrous thing

Through eye or hand or distant soul

Two separate halves together sing

A light is cast on grudges old

Dispelled for tales yet to be told.”

 

Lower City

“White light pings

From point to point

Red blood feels

Move the whole

Uncanny synthesis.”

 

Early Bazaar

“Sight and sounds and wafting smells

To set your tastes a-trembling

Herbs and spice will see you well

At that grand assembly.”

 

Oriental Style

“A far-apart exotic place

Where anything atwixt is seen

Strange assortments one may face

And ancient wisdom also glean.”

 

Farm

“Gentle, impossible, little land

South of snows and north of sands

Carved of rivers, sprinkling rain

Free of want, and free of pain.”

 

Night View

“Despite what they’ve done to me

Despite what I’ve seen

I am free.”

 

Ocean Getaway

“What traces of magic

Bubble white froth from the deep

The sunken darkness, washed clean

To give way for pure whimsy.”

 

Drained Lands Raider

“In distant lands a-darkness stained

‘Neath greying sky, ‘bove soil drained

I’ll march unfettered. Sterling. Free!

And glowering gazes shall not see

My journey’s course. I walk unpained.”

 

War Base

“Bloody sky and ruddy fire

By nightly fog and ocean blue.”

 

Man and His Pet

“Wealhmær went wand’ring off again

Through snowy winter’s wood

He made a most unlikely friend.

That warg couldn’t bring no good

But then, Wealhmær neither could.”

 

Empire

“There far away on deadly sands

The palace of the Emperor stands

Grim upon the dunes.”

 

Transilvania

“Up shoot the walls,

The walls foreboding darkness.

The castle of the duke,

The pale abiding lord!

Hear the distant howling, the screeching in the skies!

Tremble at the fog, as sunlight fades and dies.”

 

Eleum Loyce

“Still.

More still than the very air around it.

Nature’s grim and beautiful irony,

Wrought in silver and glimmerwhite.

No sight of the pale flame

I knew in that open window.”

 

Fallen Titans

“What a land this once was,

And is now!

For those that once strode throughout

Are again with the earth.

Feel their strength within and without,

The Mother’s power.”

 

The Architect

“See here what I’ve made

In high defiance

In joyful pastiche

Ever radiant

Unyielding splendor.”

 

Eastern

“On between the mountains green

Carved by gentle dragon-streams

Past the forest leaves of jade

Over the bridge we two have made.”

 

Distant Future

“I’d be proud to say

It has all led

To what you’ve seen

My grand progression

Pure industry

The silver dream

But something’s amiss

First and last, ah!

A touch of green.”

 

Mountain’s Base

“There shrouded in the starless grey,

Pale at night and pale in day.

Blanket wove of brown and green.

What treasures up there lie unseen?

To climb and face the mountain tall

When evermore adventure calls.”

 

Free Temple

“Our fields are rich

Our houses tall

Our souls, our bodies free

In faith do we hold our kin

Now free from the Dragon Queen.”

 

Golden Fields

“They called you foolish,

Setting your roots into the stone.

But who in this wide country

Can claim a roost such as mine?

When you see me at the horizon,

Across the comely steppe,

Know that I am truly home

In your arms.”

 

Raven

“The wind has turned cold,

All hues have darkened

Under the growing wings

Of the Raven.

His feathers long and fine-laden,

As his eyes peer

To the silver horizon.”

 

A Dark Lake

“The Cold does not always come

On bitter winds under glooming storms.

I have seen the Nameless

Walk as mortals.

Lonely. And still.”

 

Dark Temple Ruins

“Liberated, one can see

The many things that yet could be.

Though even by the light of dawn

That visage speaks to hope forgone.”

 

Sprite

“A fool would call Them mercurial,

Fickle, evil, other things.

Would you say the same

Of the wind and sea?

Rain and earth?

Treat their home with respect

For their eyes are on your own.”

 

Forager

“Called back to the marshes,

I’ll be gone, gone, gone,

Lookin’ up those old, old cliffs for days.

Over the yawning tunnels the willow-vines a-sway

I say ‘honey, where you been so long?’”

 

Titan’s Castle

“Thy next story tells…

Of a dark and deathly mother…

Her lover drew the sickness from the earth…

By her hand, life returns.”

 

King

“From on this throne his gaze was wide

And filled with light, his kingdom lasts

By power of the elder king,

Til’ in the end his life had passed!

Though clean will blow the misted breeze.

His people free, under the sun,

And elegies the bards will sing,

His victories forever won.”

 

Ancestors

“They never left

Blood of starlight and tranquil water

Challenging the mighty

Mystifying the wise

Frightening the young.”

 

Dam

“So often do things feel unreal.

The sky wheels and wounds don’t heal,

But today your arms are warm and soft.

I know not how oft my heart flew aloft

Unworried by that wheeling.”

 

Lonely Fire

“Walker in rain, walker in dark,

You care not of the grim cold,

Even as your blood flows to the soil.

For then the warmth of fire

Is all the sweeter.”

 

Frontier

“Out on the frontier,

There is no law here.

The daily order

Is danger and fear.

But for adventure

There is no other place to go!

My heart is called there every day.”

 

50000 BC

“We strove so long

To ascend beyond the bonds,

And languished for millennia

In the primal mire,

But each mistake is but a lesson;

The spark of hope

For the next kalpa.”

 

Fallen Empire

“Little things hide tucked away

Apart from eyes and light of day.

What secret prize? Who can say?

Still more die and are led astray.”

 

Pilgrim’s Bloom

“Danger lies beyond the edge

Where many turn in fright.

But those of strong and stable soul

Will be there basked in light.”

 

10,000 Days

“The wind sings over the earth,

Deep and high, dry and stormy.

Fates move with the gales,

In the blood of the storm’s child,

‘Til at last his fury is tranquil,

And he sits like the mountains,

To weather.”

 

Fighting the Giant

“What tragedy of discovery

With each step closer

To heaven or hell

We must think as demons

For the sake of demons

And taint our hope

For angels.”

 

The Storm is Coming

“Stand stolid, warriors,

To ice and sleet and shivering storms

From the darkened depths

Of Niflheim, and nearer still,

From over squalling, shrieking seas

But still they shall not douse nor drain

Your heated heart and stony strength.”

 

Cernunnos

“In deepland green far from the screen

Of man’s industry and tread,

There’s held the court of the Wild King,

Crown of horns upon his head.

He who hunts and plays within that dream,

Through call and reed you hear him sing.”

 

Bloody Rose

“Bloody rose

Golden hem

Silken snow

Bloody rose.”

 

Grim

“Soon centuries became millennia,

And within their minds the brand stayed,

Stained in black and grey.

When those who still stood

Under golden skies

Looked upon them

They could not tell past from present,

And felt disgust.”

 

Night Lights

“When she first stepped out

On that balcony

And I saw her leaning there

I watched her hair just softly blow

As she drank the evening air.”

 

Top

“How odd it was

When I found myself at a new angle.

For my whole life

I’d been looking upside down,

And now, once righted

I could even recognize

That I’d been mistaken.”

 

Ziant Ship

“Fire upon the water;

The cold flame

Of a chemical reaction.

What shining alloy will be born?

Or will the air cloud

With smoke and precipitate?”

 

Ceremony

“There are those who’ve danced ‘pon the threads of life

And those who’ve yanked and spun.

There are those who’ve seen in them pain and strife,

And those who’ve seen but one

Snipping until they’re done.”

 

Exiled

“Gentle thing

Sent away

I fought you once

But not again

I see in you

A common shame…”

 

Children’s Grave

“Hush now

For but a moment.

All is still, buried underneath

The white and black and grey.

For a moment

Death and dark

Find their peace.”

 

Glitterdelve

“On highest peak on farthest chart

Lies entrance to the mountain’s heart.

In ice eternal and caverns old

Line shining gems and glitt’ring gold.”

 

Biomancy

“Fear not, far comer,

For the spring is pure

Under decay and affliction,

Stained in tune with that around me,

But clean of soul,

As a grim doctor

Amongst the diseased.”

 

The Stone Wolf Inn

“There is an inn on the riverside

Where many have lived and many have died.

Near forests green, on fertile ground,

It’s there they brew a beer so brown.

So if you be parched or your waist gets thin,

Just turn and take a stop at the Stone Wolf Inn.”

 

Beached

“Forsaken, forsaken to squall and storm!

Like Odysseus of old, haggard mariner

Waylaid where they are unwelcome.

There winds that pierce the ears,

Into the mind and soul,

Carrying the sea with it,

Leading your very senses to treachery.”

 

The Return

“Unblemished, untarnished,

And still all the finer

For the earth and sky around it,

Imperfect, and yet pure.”

 

Rest

“No light but the coldest glint

On silver edge and mirror black,

Sucked to shadows with never a hint

That light could ever issue back.

There in repose lies the king of gloom,

In a mind he’ll not see yet.

Contemplating every doom,

And a peace he’ll never get.”

 

Magiculpture

“Striking, what comes

Forth when laws

So graven are flexed,

To create something

Even more glorious.

Like a statue

Contrapposto.”

 

The Puffel Inn

“Stick ever to the road, young thing,

Lest harm upon yourself you bring.

Heed not light within the bog,

Travel not by shade of fog,

Rest not where you hear the howls

Of beast, or man, or things more foul.”

 

Death Knights

“The air grew cold.

Warmth drew from the very lips

Of those who beheld the sight.

Legions of wrath and

Shields of gold

Fell under blackened ruin,

To rust in shame

As their bones now marched, turned.”

 

Mother

“A ship may be called as ‘she’,

Or the wind, or sea, as fickle dreams.

And the earth, so fair, may be marked in turn

As motherland and goddess pure.

But few have seen such lady’s charm

As the mellow lands where I was born.”

 

Defending

“It matters not by dark or flame,

By skill or might, or old or lame.

Know your virtue, have no shame,

And you may hope to rise again.”

 

Hold

“I have walked

‘Cross dark and abyss,

By fire and ash,

In sickening curses,

And now, no crystal of frost

Shall stay my soul.”

 

Shepherd

“Why does the stream flow to the sea?

And not away from its end?

What is the value of a thousand stars?

Opposed to a million blades of grass?

I am as I should be, forever and always.

Master of one, lover of all.”

 

Macni the Heartless Wizard

“Oh, Macni was a wizard,

A mage of some renown.

He could read the future in the stars,

Pull spirits from the ground.

But one star had his attention,

Though she wouldn’t be wed or bound!

She turned his heart to diamond,

And buried him in the ground.”

 

Frost

“Some find the cold a nuisance

The north, a bitter waste.

But there’s nothing like a fire,

And sturdy, ancient walls

To bring people together,

And warm their souls.”

 

Black Pine Forest

“I would not travel back to that land.

Colors fade, yet gleam sharp,

As the line of Life and Death blurs.

The heathens there stand

Between grim melancholy,

And rage hot as the ice is cold.

I shan’t return.”

 

Gaels

“Two steps south and they’re soft as the soil

Which they sow for the southern sires.

But nary a step north and they’re nasty as the nettle,

Which grows on the gravel shores.

There horned hellbringers wail woeful horns,

To make a man think home. to his misty shire.”

 

Jotunn

“Oh yes of course, m’dear, you know

The avalanches are something wild.

Hurling boulders huge and old.

An explanation straight and mild!

Now cease your talk of this ‘mountain troll’!”

 

Wheel

“I see a broken mind,

I see the broken ring,

Of all your broken kind,

The doom you all shall bring.”

 

Lights

“At least when I felt alone

I could still see the humanity

In their gleaming faces,

As they fought,

And failed,

And died,

Like they did in the flesh.”

 

Dead Rain

“Unjust men fear the light

Which shows the world their deeds.

How grim must one be

To still hide

In an age of darkness?”

 

Sci-fi Market

“I’ve seen oddities far and wide,

In carbon skin and glowing eyes,

In neon hair and rain-soaked skin,

Tattoos with flashing light within.

All in all, it bothers me none.

As long as I’m here, I’ll get my work done.”

 

Portrait of a King

“A noble king, that mighty lord,

Who gathered him a dragon’s horde,

Guarded by his warriors score,

In ancient hall, on golden floor.

‘Til darkness came with winter frost,

And all his treasures then were lost.”

 

Orpheus

“I met him once, on a rainy day

In a memory, so far away.

I knew him then for years on end,

So many quests, both here and then.

That shade of glory I wish to know,

To stand within his midnight glow.”

 

Fear Him

“The frightful mirror

Of watery eyes

That peer from blinding light

And shivering dark.

The cold world has bred

Such fearful majesty.”

 

Dread Carrier

“Cower from the growing dark,

As day grows pale, and shadows stark.

The black sun, the black sun!

Signals when our time has come.

Hornets fill the eerie skies,

Souls descend, and spirits rise.”

 

Jungle

“Strange folk live there far along

In ancient realms of oddity.

Strange folk sing their foreign songs,

‘Fore returning to their families.”

 

Crypt

“Times like these, I feel obliged

To choose the way that I would die.

By evil blade, or baked by sun,

I’ll choose which way might be more fun.”

 

World Spirit

“The iron fist will rust,

The ancient stone will weather,

The flock will wander,

And the crops shall wither, grow, wither…

Be in all things, and nothing shall harm you.”

 

Ancient

“Such gloomy mages that inspire dread,

And make the masses bray.

I think more people should speak with the dead.

They have so much to say!”

 

Robot Wishes

“01010111 01101000 01100001 01110100 00100000 01001001 00100000 01100011 01100001 01101110 01101110 01101111 01110100 00100000 01110000 01110010 01101111 01100011 01100101 01110011 01110011 00101100

01001001 00100000 01110111 01100001 01101110 01110100 00100000 01101101 01101111 01110011 01110100 00100000 01101111 01100110 00100000 01100001 01101100 01101100 00101110”

 

Amor

“I never learned to avoid danger,

As it always came to me,

And any way I went

Misfortune waited for me,

And with death yet not an option,

There’s just amor fati.”

 

Old Pains

“Darkened minds grow shaded clouds

That only they can’t see.

All the watchers skirt around,

And let the mad ones be.”

 

Warrior

“Mighty atop a mound of the slain,

He takes for him a trophy each.

His burden grows every day.

Though he has no conscience,

Still his sins weigh upon his body.”

 

Glacier

“Around the edges of his helm

Ice creeps and webs

A crystal patina

That would coat his very skull

If given the chance.”

 

Pacifist

“Do not scoff at the passive,

The tame, the gentle.

While so many others must weather

The storms of life,

They sit unfazed, fluid.

Even sinners and fighters

Might learn from their touch.”

 

Tomb King

“In other lands, they ate their dead.

Threw the bones of their elders

To the dogs.

When those who remembered

Felt at their backs

The weight of a hundred-thousand shields.”

 

There was a River Here

“A hundred score of teeming calls

Come soaring over iv’ry walls.

Stone and darkness meet the brave,

Where those walls reflect the day.”

 

Frozen God

“A long arm reached down

From dark clouds and frozen ground.

Ill-born tidings within its grasp,

The hope this winter would be the last.”

 

Port Dragon

“There lies a cave, the eyes to please,

In misty shoals beside the sea.

It did not glitter for years of old,

‘Til filled at last with pirates’ gold!

The shanties sung by the scurvy host

Would make you think it’s full of ghosts!

But the seadogs know there’s naught to fear,

As dragon bones compose the piers!”

 

Return of the Paladin

“’Twas a sharp land I came from.

The old pines to pierce the sky,

The castle spires and steeples high,

Black against the grey and green.

And so I wear this armor always,

Silver and bright.”

 

Transhuman Castaway

“He might have wondered

At what point enlightenment

Became madness,

As the local creatures

Looked upon the strange man,

And he paid them no mind,

Chattering about immortality.”

 

Seabird

“The great bird

Of the horizon

Its black-feathered vanity

Its broad-winged might

The winds howl.”

 

Steel Pawn

“The journey did not matter

If there was no growth,

The end would come in time,

Again and again repeating

Until they might learn.”

 

Fae Mirror

“The sprites that leapt from mortal brains

Once ran with rivers and circled trees.

Now their forests and lakes are drained,

So they live in circuitry.”

 

Cite des Domes

“The dome of the firmament;

Black-blue, perforated

With the faint light

Of distant eyes,

Gazing through

The dimensional dome.”

 

Mountains of Madness

“The hills of the north were grim and stout,

But journey up and onward still,

Beyond the ice of kraken’s spout:

The pinnacles of ancient wills.

A fence to keep all others out,

The howling mad, the chitters shrill.”

 

Horns

“Forever clean

Within the lines of the shining city,

But cast out

To the green and uneven stone,

He knew not his place.”

 

Blind King

“Come ye lost souls,

And look upon the ruin

Of all the kings of old

Who ever thought they could win

Against the great abyss.”

 

Witch Night

“Saw her the other day,

Dressed in a petticoat,

Like this was 1000 years ago.

Riding like she didn’t care;

That was her style.”

 

Fallen Gods

“Why does the past seem so large?

The cosmos looms overhead,

Yet without the romance

Of crashing blades,

Majesty and pride,

It all feels—hollow.”

 

Antithesis

“They didn’t glimpse the head of death

Within the pristine halls

Of their cathedral of technology.

The code of their souls

Was corrupted

As the virus laughed.”

 

Collapse

“A piece falls out from the brickwork,

Rust-skinned but sturdy.

I look to my rifle, the same hue.

Each new thing, each birth,

Tainted – stained by what came before,

Yet no weaker for it.”

 

Androids

“Crickets chirped and leaves rustled,

Down to the still waters,

While the world was awash in color.

It wondered if such things were true,

Those sensory inputs.

As its companion tried to speak,

Rather than think,

To break the silence.”

 

Death Valley

“Resting still, quiet’s best

For sleeping deep—forever rest.

Rest until the soil meets

Your tired bones, and darkness greets.”

 

Green

“Nature is not pure,

But it is mindful.

It is not merciful,

But all are free.

Such is the nature I serve

With the fury of beasts.”

 

Master of Sand

“The grandson, the pupil,

The deathless progeny

That stole the voidborn’s secrets,

Though he was never free.

Even as he conquered forth,

The hungering gaze watched from the north.”

 

Agartha

“The ancient city,

The seat of kings.

A shimmering light in darkness brings

The rule of law,

The mortals true,

Held in stone by chosen few.”

 

Mideast Rooftops

“Milling river that switches colors

By light of sun or crescent moon.

Gold by day with shaded streets,

And fiery steams in midnight blue.”

 

I promised I’ll be back before spring

“You worry for all and everything,

And it’s been so long since I’ve heard you sing.

Stoke the hearth and I promise you

That I’ll be back before the spring.”

 

Jumper

“His garb glittered

With the wealth of a thousand worlds.

Bandit, king, magic lord;

Each second an eternity to grow

In soul, if not body,

But his heart was cold

For all the loves he’d lost.”

 

Scaphander

“Sealed within the synth and steel

I felt unstoppable,

Graceful as a warrior god;

But beneath and between

The ports and wires and un-organs

My flesh still yearned

For the gentle caress.”

 

Brown Lands

“Brown, brown, all around;

Sky and wood and sour ground.

Now and then some blue or green,

But nothing like I once had seen.”

 

Decay

“What do I fight for

Now, in a world

With no past or future?

Barely a present

That I must be present for.”

 

Skyship

“Distant noises, clamor and commerce,

As soft as the falling leaves,

Here, in a faraway park,

I spotted the ship you came in on,

With the sun heralding your return.”

 

Witch and Her Young Students

“The robes to flow and hold within

All the things you wish to hide.

The hat a tower to the heavens,

And keeps the sun out of your eyes!”

 

Reaver Queen

“A true fury,

Unfettered by cold or storm.

From swirling seas

On southern shores,

To deepland woods a-east and west,

Even the north can scarce contain

That true and joyful fury.”

 

Cernunnos and His Druids

“Above the green-top aerie

Where faeries on swallow-wing

Sing a grand fanfaronade,

On promenade: the Hornéd King.”

 

Cat

“Tricksy creatures, long and lithe,

Bladed claws, teeth like a knife,

Filled with magic—despite their size—

That shimmers out from nocturne eyes.”

 

Death’s Calling

“The swift will trip up, left to die.

Fluttering minds will grow still.

If borne on wing, or wave, or foot,

Your walls must stand and weather.”

 

Blood Oath

“Bound in blood, bathed in blood.

Earth blood, flesh blood.

Red and bright, iron strike,

Hot it flows, day and night,

‘Til cool at last upon the ground,

Where all the blood will rust to brown.”

 

Forest Giant

“In deepest slumber,

In fogs of grey,

Brown, green, old and tall.

A selfish blunder,

Reclaimer’s day,

Thunder, stone, a wrathful Fall.”

 

Graves

“Many-named, older than words;

The last cinder, the cooling ash;

The gift to mortal sufferings;

Dark enshrouded sickle-man;

A kiss, a gentle touch.”

 

Far Future

“Deep in a far pocket of my mind

I can sense something.

Something so very basic, yet important;

Like the thought of drawing breath.

What are such thoughts

Doing in the minds of angels?”

 

Blue Shadows

“Brighter lights cast darker shade,

By building-side or forest glade.

Neon lights like lamps of fey,

And beasts won’t put their claws away.”

 

Argonath

“Nothing is eternal

Unless tended to each day.

The span of life

Is the span of one’s care.”

 

Sunset March

“Each step forward

A shining fractal of chaos.

Each journey’s end

A warm and quiet solace.”

 

Defile

“I saw the past

Where lay at last

The bodies of the slain.

That tragic host

Could never boast;

None left to spread their fame.”

 

Lord and Magician

“More insults are yet brought to me,

Catastrophe and mockery,

Hurled from in the darkened wood,

Like cowards would, cacophony.”

 

Path to Aerie

“Such ancient things can but exist in myth,

Older, as they are, than rightful reckoning.

The abodes of elves and drakes and fae

Will forever be beyond our touch, our sight,

Hidden in the far places of the world.”

 

Break at Work

“Said the dwarf king

‘I want to build a hall

To reach up and touch the mountaintop!

Bring me hundred beams

Bring me thousand beams!’

Said the dwarf king

From his mountaintop,

And we sent the thousand beams a-down the stream.

Lord, some rest.”

 

Catacomb

“Secrets hid in dusty realms,

Green-hued stone and rusted helms

Of heroes long and past forgot,

Still watching over treasure sought.”

 

Apoc Daughter

“Grown in sour soil,

From a broken water spout,

You’re still so pure and green,

My little budding sprout.”

 

Cold Silence

“Dark creatures from beyond the stars

Spoke in fear of a dread force,

A flame that could grow from the tiniest spark

To engulf whole worlds, galaxies.

They called it ‘compassion’.”

 

Susuwatari

“Soft shadows that slink from

Slithering silent streams, to

Smooth stones and shutters.

Soot within the ceiling and

Secrets in the shade.”

 

Northwatch

“Leering from the greying skies,

By raven rawk, on mountain rock.

Icy glints from hidden eyes,

The banners raise, a town to raze.”

 

Ranger

“Son who bears the weight

Of all his sire’s guilt,

Fight everoff your fate,

The legend you have built.”

 

Event Horizon

“Within the maw of the great devourer

There floated through its mind and body,

Grim facimilies of all it had consumed,

Blanched and corroded,

Processed by the toxic madness

Within.”

 

Serpents

“People fear the skittering dark,

Where no good things seem to tread.

Instead the vermin slink about

Through gutters and the dead;

But monsters also need companions,

And if given thought or heart

Might come to love our sparkling light,

As we may come to love their dark.”

 

Deep Forest

“What once were men

And spirits good

Now monsters lurk

In deepest wood

They know no lords

Home is no land

But call of void

Long-fingered hand.”

 

Eden

“With a pocket full of worthless coins,

And a magnum by my side,

I hustled through the glaring city lights.

The shadows grow so long down here

In the metal city depths,

Where everybody’s lookin’ for a fight

And there’s nothing much of value left in sight.”

 

Antarctica

“A monster died,

Horror of the ancient age

In time its body burned away,

Left to carbon dust,

Pressed beneath the earthen crust,

To a great and snowy diamond.”

 

Dark Fire

“Even in that distant age of thought

Beyond flesh or mathematics,

The race of man still reached for the darkness,

And by their power, it was made manifest;

Tangible, mutable – but mortal.”

 

Dark Throne

“The weight of the mountains

Displaced the skin of time itself,

And within the well it formed

Were hooked the blades of his evil,

Infected and bleeding.”

 

Reaver

“Free as one can truly be,

A ravager to swoop and reave

Upon the greedy, droning fools,

Riding on their stolen tools.”

 

Deathless

“The world was new, the mountains sharp

The forests rang with faerie-harps.

The oceans sang with spirits’ song,

In ancient days now far a-gone.”

 

Martian Winter

“Red soil,

Red spires

Drenched in blood

Red-spilled, under

Red banners,

On the Red World.”

 

Sacrificed

“The great irony of magic

Was that those most suited

For the endless focus and study,

Had to draw their truest energies

From the hearts of the people

They couldn’t stand to be around,

Having left to study magic!”

 

Conflux

“Some likened it to a Veil

Thin in places, translucent.

In truth, the energies joined

At places of conflux,

In ways Man could scarce control

Or predict.”

 

Ulysses

“Through many weary, wand’ring days,

He came at last ‘neath sunny rays.

Through dark and mist he’d tarried long,

By darkened touch, and siren song.

Now here at last to hold the light,

That at first he couldn’t bear the sight.”

 

Dystopiandroid

“Try as they did

To dissect and extract

Their souls forth

From their bodies,

Its power was irreplaceable

However fallible.”

 

Flight

“Looking at the sunny sky

A simple human lets out a sigh,

‘To be carried up on missing wings,

Is our eternal dream, it seems.’”

 

Neofeud

“It was in middle days,

When the dawn was yet

Grey-blue in the passing of the years;

The dawn of a new age,

Where a golden light

Would rise in time

From the blackened bones

Of the dead.”

 

Picking Up

“Nothing mattered in those distant times.

We had seen the highest mountains, and the clouds beyond.

We had waded in the deepest valley-mires.

Each thing came and went.

We struggled with the emptiness of it all,

While wiser souls still found pleasure;

Meaning.”

 

Darkiron

“Down, down underground,

Where all flowing ills are bound,

Where never light of sun has kissed,

Where missing things will not be missed!

There scuttle imps of bitter pale,

Armed in dark-forged iron mail.”

 

Agonize Star

“The pale star, it was called,

On distant, fearful worlds.

In truth its soul was blacker

Than the darkest void;

But its grim halo

Could twist the flesh of reality.”

 

Lofty

“Here at the end of all things,

Looking out over all there

Ever was or will be.

Surrounded by the grim facades

Of those ancient ones

Who saw this sight the same.”

 

Orialien

“Like easterners from grim lands

Beyond the borders of ancient

Empires in the cradle of Man,

They came in odd garb,

With odd ways, and odd manners,

From the dark void beyond

The light of hope and faint knowledge.”

 

The Orb

“It forever annoyed me

That the height of simplicity,

The cosmic standard,

Was something as inelegant

As a ball.”

 

Atlantis

“List the line of priorities

Starting in the caves of old:

‘Get some food and shelter.’

Follow with the age of stone,

Bronze too, and what then?

‘Build a thousand puzzle rooms,

So future guests might be entertained.’

That’s what was taught to me

By all those video games.”

 

Taktsang

“Places of peace built

Where they are hardest to reach,

To ward off bloodshed.”

 

Treetop

“Head in the clouds,

Roots in the ground,

Though the wind,

Might sway you about,

Stand above,

Live free and shout.”

 

Black Magic

“Such ancient daemons

Forever sought more power,

Until the weight of their pride

Sank them ‘neath the earth.”

 

Kratos

“To those who risk drowning

In pools of spilt blood:

Which is a greater test

Of might and will?

To feed the rampant lust,

Or defeat it as you have all others?”

 

Godscript

“The universe was hardware,

And our souls the data within;

But the Old Gods were of such power

That they could not be processed,

Lest the circuits burn out.”

 

Sapphire Samurai

“And what have you achieved, wretch?

Power? Wealth? Other heights?

Yet I have done all that and more

With my honor yet intact,

And such is your defeat.”

 

Scum and Villainy

“Evil men ask

If their true nature can be defined;

But those who say they’re villains

And nothing but a grand time!”

 

Romantimech

“Broken souls in broken forms

Of metal and of flesh,

Acting in disharmony,

Awaiting each their death.”

 

Darkroot

“Yes indeed,

Though flaming wrath

Gives way to darkened gloom,

Comforting warmth

Might feed calming cool.”

 

Hookah

“Why do I ever spend my days

Looking through a swirling haze?

Music sweet and colors loud

Might distract from dreary clouds.”

 

Sands

“Dust, ash, specks on the wind,

The little mites of entropy,

Eroding and converting.”

 

Ever On and On

“The road is more than a path

Through lands or through life.

It is a friend free of time or place,

Always welcoming, always offering.”

 

Cyberpunks

“When the resistors were too small

To stem the tide of electricity,

It had nowhere to go but out,

Into the streets.”

 

Crystal Clear

“I do not understand this speak

Of Light and Dark,

As if each were pure and opposite.

There are but the shadows cast

By the glowing fire,

And the silver hues

Of the biting snow.”

 

Redhorn

“Long tales of longer travels,

Carried on the wind of tongues,

As the heroes within them

Are carried on the winds of trouble.”

 

Marred

“Many are the stories in the lore of mortals

That before this world came another,

Greater and more magical;

Before it was broken

By gods, men, or nature,

Leaving us with the ruins.”

 

Space Pirate

“So many in this universe are slaves;

To tyrants, to their vices,

To the limits of their power.

My kind and I have but been slaves

To our dreams, and nothing before!”

 

Unwelcome

“01010100 01101000 01101001 01101110 01101011 00100000 01110111 01101001 01110011 01100101 01101100 01111001 00101100

01001111 01110101 01110100 01110011 01101001 01100100 01100101 01110010 00101110”

 

Hidden

“High upon the mountain’s peak,

Where fall the strong,

Where die the weak.

There hidden things are locked away,

In windswept song,

From light of day.”

 

All Destroyed

“I see mirrored in your scarlet hair

The shimmering flames I also love.

The red of your lips,

As the blood of the pitiful slain.

Your skin, not sallow,

But white as the snowing ash.

And yet the green of your eyes—

I cannot place…”

 

Before the Gunfight

“A clockwork symphony.

And with vocals! Synth!

As I now look down the barrels

Of a dozen instruments.”

 

Vampiria

“I was once told

By an ex-slave in a backvoid pub,

That you can tell much of a man

By the company he keeps.

Obvious advice from one

Who suffered under the Emperor,

And his bloodsucking concubines.”

 

Till the End

“What is it about ruins that stirs the heart?

The pieces that remain,

Or that which has fallen?”

 

Yngvarr

“Such irksome talk of playing nice

From those who’ve never tasted steel

Kissed by blood and northern ice

The burning in the northmen’s breast,

To carry them through bitter grey,

Hard as stone, to pass the test.

Lest they pay the winter’s price.”

 

Astrogothic

“Once everything came at a whim,

And all were equal, more or less,

They remembered why they’d made such wonders-

The truth behind the utility;

And made the universe their adventure.”

 

The Fallen

“The Universe is not unkind,

Though she is yet a god beyond morals

In every vista I see her smile

Glinting back at me;

And in every Fallen

I see the cold leer of her eyes

Looking through my people’s own.”

 

Wanderers’ Return

“They did not see the eternal change

In themselves and their homes.

Driven once from where they lived,

They returned to find it worn,

Just as they themselves had been.”

 

On the Roofs

“It’s strange how I could feel so peaceful

In the midst of this shining hell.”

 

Stargazers

“Perched in the sky,

The wise men were closer

To the cosmos they courted,

And yet could see the breadth

Of the lands they called home.”

 

Neptune

“Oh, ocean-bearded father,

Please wash away our sins.

Send us forth your bounty

On iridescent fins.”

 

Marco Polo

“The warhorns of the Khan,

From upon a mighty horse,

Thund’ring ‘cross the steppe,

Bow drawn with lightning.”

 

Götaland

“Hail to that high huscarl

Whose words wooed the wild king,

And brought peace and prosperity

To a lawless and lethal land.”

 

Homecoming

“Pah strah raak zek

Ativ staad kolos daar gon;

Kolos diist sos

Nahpok mahyun od.”

(All roads lead back

To the place where this began;

Where first blood

Sullied fresh snow.)

 

Desert Seeker

“Seek thy prize

In the endless wasteland.

It yet holds many secrets,

Some deeper than others.”

 

Ruby Samurai

“For my honor is a pecking order:

First I shed the blood of the mighty, then the innocent,

Then the blood of the loyal—then my own.”

 

Cyberpump

“Spark the lightning in my wires,

Stormy lady, deadly honey.

Through acid rain and neon fires

You keep me running sunny.”

 

Descendant

“When I gaze upon such ancient majesty,

I wonder how my own brief life

Could ever compare;

Before I remember those who built it

Are long dead,

And it’s but their babes that live there now.”

 

Apoc Dance

“Moving along for a taste of purer air,

In a haz-mat swaddle, but I don’t know where.

Maybe a little bit farther

I’ll find some water,

While the days grow hotter, and I just can’t bear.”

 

Days of the King

“At end of days I’ll be a king

Of whom the wretched poor will sing

In highest praise, my many deeds,

All those lost whom I had freed

From bandits now all lying dead,

Their crowns a-laid upon my head.”

 

A Long Way from Home

“Rough times lay abroad,

Hostile land and angry gods,

But for the sake of good adventure,

It’s where you’ll go!

For hidden at the end is paradise.

Paradise!”

 

Tirith

“Defences set strong

In steel and stone.

Where sunlight was scarce,

And shade swept the lands,

Warriors of such cities

Set their defences strong.”

 

Pilgrims

“Pilgrims walk and never stop,

From valleys low, to mountain tops,

In search of faith’s true validation,

They know no home, they know no nation.”

 

Demon District

“The city’s in a pit like a termite mound,

Smoke is in the sky, and the blaring sound

Of sirens fill the streets at all hours of day,

Or maybe it’s the night – I just can’t say,

With no sun in the sky to light the way.”

 

Arms Dealer

“I wonder how much money we could save

If we sold the stamp machines, and stencil-paint?

All the people we sell to

Are just going to scratch off the serials

Anyways.”

 

2077

“Could I have a real connection,

Without my black magic mirror?

Could I know some true affection,

If we both got that much nearer?

Alone together in heady clouds,

Away from real or digi-crowds.”

 

Wode

“I spoke your language since my birth.

I felt it in the wind and earth.

The words you speak were later learned;

Steel and blood are all I’ve heard.

You think you know of death and war,

But I shall show you something more.”

 

Stormherald

“It was only a madman who could speak their language;

The darkness that went before the light.

By his words was the veil pulled from their eyes,

And they did tremble and fall before him.”

 

Cerulean

“Yeah, I also loved my music player,

But I didn’t staple it to my ear.

Enjoy your ‘ultimate power’,

And I’ll settle for my indulgences;

The softness I still have inside.”

 

Hideaway

“Hideaway,

A place to keep apart,

That I kept within my heart,

Where new love could start.

I have my reasons why,

It’s yours and it is mine,

My worries: gone.”

 

Burden

“That burden on your back will crush you

If you continue to stoop under its weight.

Perhaps strap it to your joys yet left,

And swing it like a hammer?”

 

Refugee

“Come ye dirtied wanderers,

Dispossessed gods and beasts

Of a cold universe.

Come to the land where passion is free,

And drink cheap.”

 

Illuminations

“When I see the world that we have built,

My heart is freed of all the guilt

Of misdeeds many as desert sands.

I’ve made paradise with my own hands.”

 

Things

“I never trusted bluest ice,

For though I loved its sheen,

Things less pure oft lurked within;

Sealed and yet unseen.”

 

Dusk

“In a golden land did creep a seed of darkness.

Though the denizens there were bright

As their magic, and kind of heart,

They cared naught for that outside the light,

And as their drops of repression flowed down,

They pooled into a great Abyss.”

 

Super

“I want to be something more.

Something new yet familiar.

I want the power to be free,

And the wisdom to know

What that means.”

 

A Sage

“Each of us has a name

And a role we play

In the game of life.”

 

Swamp Town

“They don’t like outsiders in that place.

Not for hate, but I’ll tell you why:

Fell folks creep in there all the time,

To scare the fools back where they’re from.

There’s nothing bad about a marsh,

It’s the tourists who bring it down!”

 

Service and Slavery

“Beneath the mess of cold metal,

And the fury of lazer heat,

I saw something lacking

In the marauding droids:

A warmth found only

In the embers of loyalty.”

 

Hunter and Hunted

“As they sought to rise above the mire

They became ever more as beasts,

Devoid of Sense,

Slaves to the same old laws.”

 

Hearth and Homecoming

“The most ancient and powerful magic

Need naught be sought in distant lands, over mountain and sea,

But can be found above the hearth of home.”

 

Red Eyes

“I hold a fire deep inside,

Once flames of fury, now they hide

Under the smoke of cloying black,

And I know there is no turning back,

So I soon must die.”

 

Questor

“Fate’s eternal mule,

With his killing tools.

Take another quest,

The worst for the best.”

 

Hard as Ice

“Everything is hard in the North,

It’s a popular turn of phrase.

The sky is frozen, the castles stone,

Nothing touched by the sun’s rays.”

 

Busybody

“Character sits where perfection ends.

Where humanity can begin again.”

 

Dark Secrets

“So antithetical were those dark gods

To the order of the universe,

And so transparent was the veil,

That the Hungering Ones had no choice

But to writhe in hatred at the bounds

Of their enemies’ sight,

Waiting, thirsting.”

 

White Crow

“Ancient spirit, dear departed,

Of mine old father’s dearest friend,

How fairest thou in thine new form?

Art thou contented and joyous,

Oh wise and snowy-winged bird?

For thine spirit is free indeed

To soar the wide winds unbounded.”

 

Spring Waking

“Walk a little, hear a fiddle

Soarin’ ‘bove the trees.

A faun’s out there with horns ta whittle,

His music’s but a tease.”

 

Spaceship Earth

“I once heard the Earth was like a ship.

Space ship, that is, and I can’t argue,

While I haul the loads down below

To keep this sinking bitch afloat

For a bit longer, o’ ‘captain’.”

 

Amarillo

“The seas are receding,

And the storms swell in the sky.

Lives are a-fleeting,

So many asking why. Please,

Put a little love into my

Lonely soul.”

 

Colony

“The frontier:

The refuse of utopia

Cobbled together

By the wild and ready.

A pressure cooker

For the scholar

And the conqueror.”

 

The Gentle Guardian

“They found none, in that cold, uncaring universe,

Save for the ancient kinds,

The type to make your mind bleed.

So they made their own angels.”

 

Snow Shrine

“White petals in the winter

Mirror sakura.

The shrine is covered again.”

 

Desertpunk

“The insufferable irony

That every one of these sweltering

Orbs of dust

Must be impregnated

With rare treasures.

None would settle otherwise.”

 

Hunting Monsters

“Monsters lurk in every land.

No, not these ugly things!

The name that you would give these beasts,

I’d give to lords and kings.”

 

White Dragon

“White as first snow of December,

From the heavens unseen,

Each scale glints like a falling star.

Power and wisdom beyond me.

Where it desires pearl,

I would accept a grain of sand.”

 

Old Man in the Grave

“The old man stood ‘pon his own grave,

Knowin’ his soul could not be saved.

To eternally roam, like the Wandering Jew,

So much to see but so little to do.

He’d not stand before the maker’s throne,

But at least he’d never leave his home.”

 

Shelter Sense

“Keep your shelter-sense about you,

For though you’re not yet dead,

Take stock of those around you,

As some may want your head.”

 

A Faceless Man Approaches

“The northern god was clad in grey,

Like winter’s sky all times of day.

For though he brought forth love and life,

There followed with him blood and strife.

In guise of sage enwreathed by crows,

His eye speaks storms no mortal knows.”

 

The Gathering

“In one mortal life, we’re caught between

Blinded action or stagnant learning.

Such things will merge in halcyon days,

When the fighter may heed the sage.”

 

Last Ocean

“Time is a formless abyss

Where stones move as water,

And minds drift like polyps

Across the endless tides,

To find themselves returned.”

 

Lonely Alone

“Come back to me, forgotten life;

You who’s sailed into the west,

Leaving me on barren fief,

Forgotten, poor, and dispossessed.”

 

Swain Errant

“I’ve walked the lands of fairies,

And prairies, where live the gnomes.

I’ve been ‘cross dales and snowy knolls,

Where lowland trolls do build their homes.”

 

Dwarven King

“Deep in grandest halls of stone,

Where no tree has grown or sun has shone,

Crafts and engines are free to sing,

And fortune bring, to the dwarven king.”

 

Los Cielos Inversos

“Free of the restrictions

Of true substance,

Such gods chose forms

Not by need,

But by memory.”

 

To the Crucible

“Banditry’s the moss of men,

That creeps by night from darkest fens

To coat the ruins, choke the streams,

Paint the land with envy’s green.”

 

Long Night of War

“I wonder at my own survival

Won by blessings, luck, or skill?

With all those greater warriors

Now in the mire, lying still,

Betrayed by glory’s bloody will.”

 

Red Moon

“The first men saw the sky turn bloody

Like an omen of war from the heavens,

And they saw no recourse

But to bemire the ground

In a fearful and murderous mirror.”

 

Olympus

“Up high where the air is pure,

You must be careful, to be sure,

When walking on the land of gods,

Where naught but chilling winds have trod.”

 

Strange Powers

“I have wielded the skills of magic,

Like a surgeon upon the bones of the world,

With the power over life and death

Such a position holds.”

 

Things Betwixt

“The keepers cast their flick’ring light

On sights to raise one’s gall,

But for all the fright, it was better still

Than seeing naught at all.”

 

The Orc Mage

“There was an orc what left his tribe,

To study lore of stars and skies.

Where others hunted, smithed, and died,

Nobler paths he learned and scried,

Though none had earned his tribe-kin’s pride.”

 

The Plague Star

“The Elder Thing had told the Soul

That is was naught but a virus.

The Soul had found the insult ironic;

But now, within the bowels of

The Thing’s biomechanic realm,

The Soul did seem a microbe.”

 

Baraz

“Oh, dark and stony precipice,

Your foothills shroud in evermist,

Painted stark with icy snow,

The night is dark, the winds a-blow.”

 

Le Retour

“I’ll look upon my homeland soon,

After my soul has travelled long.

Those gleaming spires of crystal hewn,

Where magic chimes do sing their song.”

 

Red Years

“War spreads across the land.

Armies like swarms of locusts.

The farmlands, razed.

Even the peaks, conquered.

There is no place for the peaceful.”

 

Many Stingers

“The bee stings once,

And the bear still hunts.

The bees sting thrice,

But it won’t suffice.

A thousand stings to the thieving beast,

And it will wander away, at least.”

 

Village of Theseus

“Boards rotted through by the rain and sun

Replaced in their time, one by one.

The elders die, their children ascend,

People leave, people die, again and again.

Though the holistic soul still lives on.”

 

Fortress’ Veins

“No fortress is invincible;

Not in the face of nature.

A castle shall stand firm

So long as it has blood.”

 

Witchcraft

“If they say the very oldest lore

Holds power fit to feast.

Then it stands: the greatest magic,

Is not from men, but beasts.”

 

Waystone

“The ritual without variance,

First falls prey to chaos.

The chaos without limit,

Consumes itself in time.

Such is the Wheel,

Such is the Way.”

 

The Reward

“Walk with me, my dearest friend,

Through the journey, ‘til the end.

O’er mount we go, through sun and snow,

‘Til bitter death or golden trove!”

 

Enlightenment

“I take my place upon the Wheel:

Upon the axis, from which

I can see in full its beauty.

At last I see the way

That dark may give birth

To even brighter lights,

Unique and renewing,

Pure and nourished.”

 

Amon Sûl

“Empty lands and empty halls;

The hilltops sigh with empty calls

That ring of hollow, bitter woe

From bloody curses long ago.”

 

Magic Future

“Circuits flicker with the light of gods,

Like suns compared to that which was;

Yet shrouded under hood and scarf,

Trinket, totem, all a part

Of cycles born within the mind,

And brought to life by sense and time.”

 

Robot and Girl

“01010100 01110010 01110101 01100101 00100000 01101100 01101111 01110110 01100101 00001010 01001001 01110011 00100000 01100110 01101111 01110010 01101101 01101100 01100101 01110011 01110011.”

 

Shellworld

“A perfect sphere without an end,

With smaller worlds contained within.

Gemstones shine like stars or snow,

And lava flows like astral glow.”

 

Frontiersmen

“Outward borne to dusty stars for fortunes yet unknown;

Risen from the cradle of a doomed and ancient home.”

 

Leadclad

“Slow burning doom.

No joy in metal things.

True hope is swift,

And flies with swallow’s wings”

 

The City of Caves

“Drunks go splash and trees go smash,

Down from the clifftops, shanty trash.

Rickety walkways, clamoring caves,

Come if you’re foolish, live if you’re brave!”

 

Heroic

“Restless soul, be the death of me;

Willing me to darkened seas,

By flight of fancies, here to there,

Without a hope, without a care;

Intoxicated by things I see.”

 

Back Again

“Returned from lands of fantasy,

Where mountains scrape the purple sky;

I’ll homely live here as I please,

And watch the seasons pass me by.”

 

Yon Hart

“With antlers tall as branches hewn

Of skyward-stretching ivory,

‘Fore felled by winter’s arrow soon,

Aft’ autumn’s shrouded finery.”

 

Eastwatch

“Winter comes on wings most fine,

Deathly-blown, ice breaking stone.

Why persist ‘gainst destined time?

Struggle’s home, where beauty’s known.”

 

Caravan

“Fortunes flow in great demand

On veins of gold between the lands.

Fragrant spice, the finest prize!

Attracting deadly highway-flies!”

 

Font

“The tides of magic swirl about

Ancient ruins like water spouts,

By weight of long-forgotten deeds,

That plant the slowest-growing seeds,

From which new magic sprouts.”

 

Traveler’s Prayer

“Grasslands’ whisper, breath of stars,

Take me somewhere near or far;

Guide me where no one has gone,

Make me worthy of a song.”

 

Tradition and Knowing

“There is not a story left untold.

So do not quail at the unknown.

Such ideas were not unpondered.

Such things are not undefeatable.”

 

Grey Flight

“Travel at evening,

Arrival by latenight,

As rain pours in rivulets

Down reflecting glass,

Blurring the lights.”

 

Greenskins

“Down, down from mountains, then

Through forest brack and foetid fens.

Crash and clamor, orcish call

Of wolf, and boar, and goblin all!”

 

Grey and Green

“Lively city, peaceful country,

Salty-sweet and complementing.

I go for both, since I am free.”

 

Crash Site

“Perched afar,

A falling star.

The land reclaims what

It gave birth to.”

 

Ghost Mine

“Skeletons a-mining coal,

Forever trapped there, down below.

The snows are falling up on top,

Accursing ghosts to never stop.”

 

Vania

“Toil, toil, over mystic oils,

Shining stones, and magic roils.

Darkened arts of ancient fame

Arise in smog-choked iron fanes.”

 

Rookridge

“Down past the cliffs of the gnashing sea,

Blood soaked stones where the bandits be,

Just ‘fore the gates to the city din,

There’s a stop must be made at the Rookridge Inn!”

 

Marshfield

“The mud is churned from the storming showers,

Yet from blood-soaked mud peek seedling flowers.”

 

Sunrise Musing

“I only wish for that sweet caress

Of which those lucky souls are blessed,

Shimm’ring mist at summer’s set,

That maiden not encountered yet.”

 

Crusading

“Blood on the sands of the golden coast,

Spilt in turn by zealous hosts

Of gilded and blessèd warrior bands,

Staining their souls with crimson hands.”

 

Wretched Hive

“Fast I fly to lands of scum,

To know I’m free beneath the sun,

And have myself some bloody fun!”

 

Thu’um

“Nol lein ruus

Wah dilfahliil gekenlom,

Tol zul drey zaan,

Ahrk drun niin hind.”

(From Mundus’ throat

To Dwemer moat

That voice did shout

And bring them hope.)

 

Down the River

“Another of the great ironies:

That those who get their wish,

And find a grand adventure,

Want only for it to conclude.”

 

Giant Bones

“Ancient giant rests its head

Beside the stony rivershed,

A mountain on its rocky bed,

A mountain still when it is dead.”

 

Fiora

“Fire spreading ever faster.

Fires in the mountain heart.

Fire ever knows no master.

Ash is but another start.”

 

Overlook

“My insides churned at the feeling,

Like dangling over a sheer precipice,

But to take in the view beyond

Was worth the risk of falling.”

 

Darkest East

“I looked in the fuzzy pages

Of that pulpy old print,

And I envied at the wonder

Of a world where things

Still lurked in the dark.”

 

Autumn Amore

“My lady, my fire

That I sit beside at dusk.

My love for all things autumn,

The sleeping season’s lust.”

 

Dwarves

“Carved from the stones of their delving home,

Hard of soul and short of bone,

The smithsons toil beneath the soil,

Their sorrows as dark as the mushroom loam.”

 

Montana

“No matter where the winds a-take me,

I hear the reaper at my back.

Wild ones and lawmen make me

Always wander off my track.”

 

Soup is Waiting

“Oh, the luck of the working man.

For the gods pay back that which you give,

And every day of labor

Earns a day of sorrow.”

 

After-world

“The after-world was filled with ghosts,

Those like mist, and those with hosts.

As they had no fear of death,

They sought with fury others’ breath.”

 

Journey and Reward

“Far away,

By ocean, plains, and sea,

Feel the wind and know you’re free.

We’ll searching roam;

Be brave and follow me,

The reward is but the journey.”

 

Red Legion

“Army ever on the march,

And me, unwearied, at its head.

I’ve conquered all the lands we’ve passed.

I’ll see this new one painted red.”

 

Nubivagant Epitaph

“Silver towers reaching up to starlight’s distant glow

Trying always to escape from that which waits below.”

 

Domain

“From high plateau to river bends,

Past the monts to lowland fens,

Beyond them: storming valleys, then,

My journey’s yet to even begin.”

 

Steppe Borders

“Beyond the eastern hinterlands,

Where roving bands a-prowl along,

Lie treasures under grass and sands,

And highland strands echo with song.”

 

Might and Moral

“True freedom was the knowledge

That none had the power to end me.

But such freedom was no invitation,

For I strived to be free of wrath as well.

But with so many souls still powerless,

It was my duty to ensure their freedom.”

 

Krakenhammer

“When the tides grow dark, and the waves crash to parapets,

When kraken-spawn and ravening beasts come forth,

It is time to hoist blades as the heroes of the sagas did,

They who would become the gods, mightiest of all!”

 

Entropy

“Mighty one’s unmaking hand,

Found in water, found in sand,

Creeping in the orange rust,

Turning all things into dust.”

 

Clifftop

“High astride the mountains tall,

Where drifting clouds obscure the land.

Careful that you do not fall,

But in the light forever stand.”

 

Autumn, Out Again

“Gold, red, and orange

Leaves like the flickering bonfires,

That warm against the chill;

And all things dance and celebrate,

In regal, burning colors,

Against the fading light.”

 

Raven’s Eyes

“A rawking cry and flurry flap,

From treetops thick and high.

Secrets old and dark, they bring,

Up to the greying sky.”

 

Hardware

“Gods cannot fight in our world.

So great is their power,

That the hardware of reality

Cannot process them.”

 

Winter Air

“In the winter air, still as it is,

All things become as crystal,

With noises ringing out

Like thunderclaps in the

Delicate white, threatening

To level the very mountains.”

 

Scenic Fishing

“Freshwater fish by the falling mist,

Scales a-shimmer with sunlight’s kiss;

Silvery, pearl-like, with jet-black eyes,

Each an elusive, delicious prize.”

 

Germania

“Slain by cold, and icy steel,

Snow piling on their bodies;

In a land as harsh as this,

Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

 

Soldier Boy

“The lowly eyes forever see

Banners waving in the breeze.

Lands are restless more and more,

With sons all marching off to war.”

 

Jyukai

“Beyond the farthest ranges, down

Where foggy marshes dreary lay,

Still marvels ancient can be found,

Where midges dance and goblins play.”

 

Wormwood

“Tomb of gods, where lies

Ancient power to rule

The earthly laws, and

Sear your very soul.”

 

Looking for Shelter

“When my skin is damp with sweat and fog,

And my mouth is wasting dry,

There comes the time to move along

When light fades from the sky.

Where mild shelter may be found,

With crystal creeks and dryer ground.”

 

Candle and Books

“The petals fall, red as the freshest blood,

While the sky is dark with midnight, moonless and infinite.

These promises of wisdom threaten you

With endless, unfathomable insights,

But such things would not frighten if true beauty wasn’t there

To contrast, like a candle in the gloom.”

 

Fishbowl

“Two souls, swimming through the currents

Of time and space, forever.

Always seeking, never realizing

They are already one.”

 

Perfection and Splendor

“In far-distant years

When humans could be anything,

Things still became more familiar,

Even as they changed

In ways unimaginable.”

 

Exploring Lost Lands

“Certainly, this land is best

Of all the others on my quest.

Rich with gold and wonderment,

Adventure buried under it.

Yet I’m sure I’ll find a better place

In my never-ending race!”

 

Trelleborg

“’Yon winding, windy mountain miles,

Troll-land brims with treach’rous trials.

There vicious Vikings battle and boast,

To see which one is master of most.”

 

The Kraken!

“Water roils and islands rise

Over giant lantern-eyes,

Arms as long as mighty whales,

Strength at which all sailors quail.

Kraken! Kraken! The hung’ring maw

That last they saw.”

 

Hussar

“Wingéd angels, now refined

From roving Huns of older times.

Laurel wings and helms of gold,

Glory to the brave and bold!

Yet in their souls a shame they hold.”

 

Searching Graves

“Damned by their ignorance

To the sins of their fathers,

Deathly men came back

To those deathly lands

That had given rise

To their stained progeny.”

 

Eastern Front

“Fight not winter’s war

The land is harsh and fruitless

And the daylight brief.”

 

Magenta

“Sweet fragrance of everything,

Warm yet cooling, faint yet pungent,

Like the colors that bloom

From the grey sky and stone,

Tasting faintly of tea,

Sweet and mild like flowers.”

 

Industrial Planet

“Creeping silver canopy

Of industry, claws sinking in

Past the crust to mantle fires,

And silver spires ascend the din.”

 

Spymaster

“I saw a beast with a thousand heads,

And beheld with dread its million arms,

But on closer look it was but a crowd,

A human shroud, bereft of charms,

Each member looking to be lead.”

 

Beyond the Wall

“To live free and die as such,

Knowing your death was pure,

By the hand of nature

Or by the spell of true evil,

Lacking in the cruelty and lies

Of a death amongst the ‘noble’.”

 

Lizard Rider

“Lovely emerald, powder-dusted,

Gentle blood warmed by the sun.

Sweet companion, ever-trusted,

Riding ‘til the day is done.”

 

Cyberian

“Protector of the ruins,

Revival of the fallen,

By light of spark and soul-flame,

Hardened armor cold as void.”

 

New Atlantis

“First they reached out, piece by piece,

But multitudes slipped through their grasp.

Taking what was simple first,

They built foundations meant to last,

Braced for the worst, ‘til they had peace.”

 

Taking in the View

“Violent light and endless shadows

Cascading over the hellish miles,

But what else would I call home?”

 

Nuit

“Late-time lights are neon-bright

Beneath the moon and starless night,

But the shadows of the concrete reef

Still hide the rebel and the thief.”

 

Maybe Tomorrow

“Maybe – this life will be hard,

When I’m working, waiting, all alone.

But – maybe – you’ll come to me,

And together we can build a home.”

 

Kosciuszko

“Thunder rolls across the plains,

Bringing wind without the rains,

Lightning strikes a single tree,

A holocaust of burning pain.”

 

Killer, Warrior

“The tide of bloodshed, never stopping;

But is it wrong? I ask myself,

Thinking of the achievement,

And those that have lived better

For the things I’ve done.”

 

Sector F-1

“Iron creeping, hunger never stopping.

People bleeding, lenses always watching.”

 

Forerunning

“Ancient ruins standing tall and gleaming ever-bright,

Undamaged yet still vacant from the horrors of the night.”

 

Wintering

“With dread in heart, I returned at last

To my father’s home, the memories passed

Of terrors great and filled with rage,

But I found only an empty stage.”

 

Drowning City

“With immortal eyes, I witnessed the cycle:

As wood sunk into the fetid depths

More was built on top, trying to survive,

Built from the timber grown

From the very marshes that consumed.”

 

My City Bright

“A poem for my city bright,

Ascending, sprawling, gleaming white,

Built by fortunes our chieftains won,

Preserved eternal ‘neath the sun,

A prosp’rous beacon ‘pon the heights!”

 

Red Viper

“Mighty warrior hoisted spear

And lover’s heartfelt token.

Royals mocked him, peasants cheered,

Terrific doom was woken.

Ended there on foreign soil,

Left bowed and bent and broken;

Lover’s tears ran black as oil.”

 

Black Tree

“Come to me, oh wayward soul,

Your life devoid of sunshine and of mirth.

Draw nigh, you who’s paid the toll,

And rest beneath the soil of the earth.”

 

Mother’s Day

“Warriors scream in battle to the heavens,

Invoking the blood of their fathers

As they hoist with wrath ancestral blades,

Heeding not to the lessons learned

From the true source of their life,

As they hurtle towards their deaths.”

 

Dragons of the Hills

“Have you walked amongst the highland ruins

And heard the banshees wail?

Or seen a dragon, bright like jewels,

Fly ‘cross the ocean pale?

To wander groves in deeplands

In the emerald lands of Gael,

Hear reveries that thunder through the trees.”

 

No Fear

“‘Til the levee breaks,

Draining salt from lakes,

And the fierce winds blow from the east;

I’ll still be standing ready to face them—

All my fears, those big shaggy beasts.”

 

Hero’s Destiny

“Standing together as an unyielding wall,

Or surging forward like beams of light,

No suffering can deter us from action,

No darkness will choke out our hopes.”

 

Gothic Romantic

“Shrouded in mist, off which reflects

The moon’s gentle kiss, in silver bedecked,

In the shadows like a sub rosa tryst.”

 

Riverside

“I’m sitting in a trance. I just want a chance.

My time to fly, if they’d just let me try.

Back home there’s no good to be found,

While I’m stuck wasting on this dusty ground.

I want a life worth writing down in memoirs,

Of my adventures had out past the stars.

The only escape from my endless guilt trip

Is to hitch a ride on that fantastic spaceship.”

 

Flier

“Such flights of joy are taken on

When riding high on sparrow’s song.”

 

Blood Days

“People call ever for vengeance,

Demanding blood be paid with blood.

Yet it was never the enemy

That claimed the blood of their kin,

But the thirsting dust of the earth,

Which will also claim the repayment.”

 

August Savannah

“Wand’ring in lands where the grass is dry,

And nary a cloud strays cross the sky.

Where the flora and fauna tower above

The riverbanks, wading in cooling mud.

As I marvel and meander on by.”

 

Darkest Shores

“A curious thing, that, the untamed frontier:

Where even the mighty learn something of fear.

For little can stand against the unknown,

And who know what shadows might call that place home?”

 

Crater

“Wings clipped, a god came crashing down

From the heavens, fire trailing in its wake,

To smite the landscape like myths of old.”

 

Obsidio

“Iron gods are we;

Like a great millstone,

Or a hammering forge:

Crushing the world

Into useful form.”

 

Village Home

“How I long for my home, my humble abode,

Down cobbled road at the thawing of snows.

How I would love to see those emerald trees,

Humming with bees all gilding the eves.”

 

Halls of the Capitol

“Golden crown upon fair country wide,

Like the crown on the head of its king.

Sunshine and praises rain from on high,

Whence seraphs and cherubim sing.”

 

Ghost’s Shell

“Flesh wrought in forges

Like its cladding steel,

Mind sharpened on whetstones

Of light one can feel.”

 

Trenches

“Sleep now, warrior, your life a-fades,

Soul now pure, you’ve made amends,

Rest earned standing ‘gainst the dark,

Hope you do not rise again.”

 

Surviving

“Even when the paths of life turn down the darkest way,

All one needs to save their soul is to make it through the day”

 

La Révolution

“A red day all around,

Dawning sky and bloody ground.

Hearts a-pounding, passions high,

Liberated voices cry.”

 

Desert Colors

“Turquoise, cyan, sapphire,

Rust, and gold, and tangerine.

Horizon shimmers with sun fire,

But in the distance: specks of green.”

 

Screen Blue

“Radar pings sounding in time,

Like echoes off canyon walls,

As the light of the sun fades,

And gives way to screen-blue,

Alone in the desert night.”

 

Astromantic

“Beauteous time, when the sacrifices

Of untold generations—such things endured—

Could let the dreams of ages

Come to life in the here and now.”

 

The Ancients

“Mountain crafted by ancient gods,

And valleys carved by war.

The signs are present far and broad,

Steel peaks to storming shores.”

 

Pagan

“Old gods carved in rock and stone,

In lands far from my pious home.

Gods of nature, gods of war,

Gods the faithful should abhor.

Yet darker things are yet unfound,

And secrets everywhere abound.”

 

Acropolis

“I looked at the marble ruins,

Still gleaming and white

Beneath the patina of time.

How much history contained

Within those old columns?

And how much more history

Had they inspired?”

 

The Bear

“Brown like soil but stout as stone,

Forests and caves where it makes its home.

Claws like axes, eyes like glass,

To slay a hunter, or catch a bass!”

 

Arrest

“Never have I done any wrong,

Save by your laws, of course.

But I have not harmed a soul!

So what good are they, then?

All of your laws and titles?”

 

Three Pistons Lodge

“The raiders always say

‘Comforts are for the weak.’

Yet why’s there still good money

In food and drink and bed?

I will have to ask them

Next I’m gunning them down.”

 

Nordic Wastelands

“Last sight of grasses,

Where rain still falls

‘Fore the land is dry

Under ice and night,

In the grim north,

Where naught lies.”

 

Gods of the Past 1

“The wild beast untamed,

Laid low by others’ destiny,

Like the lands it once roamed.”

 

Hill Dwellers

“Green place, peaceful place,

Yet still gives birth to a fearsome race.

With no misfortunes to distract,

Their minds are turned to bloody acts.”

 

Primal

“Weapons made of stone and bone,

Each horizon a new world.

Making do with what we have,

Into this this life we’re hurled.”

 

Coastal Droid

“What spirits lay in the open sea

That call to the mind like sirens?

The children of flesh freeze,

And the metal ones rust

At the embrace of the waves,

Yet still we are captivated.”

 

The Torch of the Blind

“Most subtle of evils,

Founded, as they are, in truth.

Not wholly of darkness,

Despite all appearances.

No, their evil is a sad one,

Born of so many dreams

Left to rot and die.”

 

Freedom

“Better to die in the wind and rain,

Than feel as though my soul’s been drained

By the iron clasps of tyranny.

Best to die than be not free.”

 

Seamage

“Magic’s born of sympathy,

Compassionate or painfully,

Like the song and fury of the sea

Reflect what depths are found in me.”

 

Nøkken

“Trust not ponds, trust only streams;

Water clear, not brown and green.

Like ocean depths beyond the reefs,

Thou dost not know what lurks beneath.”

 

Ice and Fire

“And as that first voice clashed against the others

And brought discordance to the world,

First to form was the disparity of Ice,

And the equal bite of its twin: Fire;

But ‘twas also evil’s first failing,

To birth such unexpected beauty.”

 

Alexandria

“Praise, praise the Emperor be:

He who delivers artistry,

And spoils rich, and learning too!

Such knowledge, if you only knew!”

 

Mononoke

“Where flora’s fauna, and beasts like trees,

Mighty, tall, with horns like eaves,

Lumb’ring silent, drink of streams.

A verdant land with soil of dreams.”

 

Campfire

“Orange from white,

Fire at night,

Flickering bright,

Under the starlight.”

 

Your Place

“Gentle, mild country wide,

Blooms ‘pon green ‘neath robin’s sky.

Mountains white and distant high,

Icy, azure streams they cry.”

 

Wildland

“Creeping streams bubble hot, vegetal steam

Into the foggy sky, punctured by green-covered mesas.

A strange wilderness, hostile ad wild.”

 

Last Guardian

“Darkness I see growing

I’m watching you, my friend.

As quick as you’re going,

I’ll find you again.

Though I do not pretend

It won’t be my end.”

 

Maker and Son

“Technology’s a sibling, neither father nor a son,

For we’re dependent on each other, and there’s no end to be won.”

 

Progeny

“Roving out on darkest edge

Of the firmament, holding back

The terrors of the night of nights,

Progeny of ancient ones watch,

For the sake of those

Who’ve forgotten them.”

 

Into Pieces

“What makes a home? I wouldn’t know.

A place to shield from wind or snow?

A place to eat, a place to rest?

Perhaps defining’s not the best,

Such names from long ago.”

 

On the Wings of the Wind

“On the wings of the wind,

Fire burning within,

And storms in the skies high above;

In cacophonous fashion,

With that furious passion

I find in the land that I love.”

 

What it’s Good For

“I won’t say war’s not an awesome thing,

There’s beauty within what destruction brings,

But war without purpose? Tears would be shed,

For I just wish to know the reason I bled.”

 

Ingwar the Witch

“Battles raged in elder days,

When demons worked their darkened ways.

Yet heroes stood opposed to night,

That doom ‘gainst which they had to fight,

For the light’s still gleaming rays.”

 

Settler

“Life is hard, and often short,

But I count my fortune nonetheless,

For I see the sun rise every day,

Chasing wolves and dark away,

And my heart can still find rest.”

 

Gods of the Past 2

“Nature’s fury and vengeance,

Slow but indomitable,

Like a true colossus.”

 

Ruined Burg

“Darkened burg under the moon,

Whose fading light’s the only boon

In time when dismal shadows creep

From mire low to chapel steep,

And peace comes no time soon.”

 

Changing Seasons

“Beauty’s born and beauty dies;

You see it more with age’s eyes.

Winter falls, springtime blooms,

I see the beauty past the gloom.”

 

Baldr

“Northern lands, past mortal time,

Where heathens breed with elvenkind,

Where magic swirls upon the winds,

Where nature grows yet unrefined.”

 

Lonely Rock

“Salt-scoured and clean,

Lit by turquoise reflections,

Nesting gulls flock ‘round.”

 

She’s Strong

“Reach out with your mind.

Just your soul, ego left behind.

Feel crystal pure static light,

And shadow darker than night.

There’s so much more.”

 

Port of Call

“A galaxy of hardship,

Yet a life that’s led in ease.

My tribulations chosen,

For I am truly free.”

 

Starship

“Here we are, upon the prow,

Like angels drifting ‘pon the stars;

And yet somehow, our home seems closer

Than ever it has before.”

 

Dusty Stranger

“No name, for I’m a stranger.

Strange they call me, strange I am.

Life always just in danger,

Like a cracking leaking dam.

But no matter what new place I go

A little love I’ll always sow.”

 

Polanian Resistance

“The ruin-lands I name my home,

Where flowers grow on tsars of old,

Where iron boots do beat the earth

Against the farmer’s tilling work.

I bear the vengeance of the dead,

Whose pleas are fresh within my head.”

 

Mountain Fortress

“Shields and lazers skyward face,

To hold the tides of sky and space;

But on the land, old methods hold,

A mont and bridge, all things be told.”

 

The Quarry Wall

“Green and blue, those subtle hues,

That creep across the stone.

They wait for ruin, yes, they do;

To claim again their home.”

 

Watchtower

“Once upon this coastline,

Great warriors kept the view

Of all the ships that came and went,

Now their spirits watch here too,

Though no ships sail in this time.”

 

Aesir

“Lakeshore laps at lilting lilies,

Rising from rugged shores, ‘neath the ruins.

How peaceful and pleasant now, this place,

Where once Wodin himself waged war.”

 

Cavern Breeze

“Hear the whispers on the wind, the secrets they carry

From the gods above, sweeping down to ravines,

Into caves where they sell their rumors to the dark.”

 

Expedition

“Sleet falls across jagged stone,

Reminds me of Earth, and my northern home.

But I cannot detect the scent of rain,

Nitrogen-shielded by plexiglass pane.”

 

Gods of the Past 3

“Once, the land of leveled by fury,

Blind rage and force unbounded,

But all things must tire and fall.”

 

Duskborn

“Twilight people, by setting sun.

The children of the forest gone.

Gone like summer, slipped of life’s hold,

Finery dulled and tarnished old.”

 

Age of the Deep Sea

“Waves lap the ashen shores,

Hungry, waiting, dark and deep.

Firelight fades and the gulls are gone,

Each ember sputtering, dying,

As they sink to the deep sea.”

 

Rest

“May I court thee, Death?

For my heart flutters at your thought

As much as any distant love.

Might I sleep with you a while,

Like the world does in autumn?

So that your winter brings me peace,

And I might someday know spring.”

 

Hunter

“Hunter in a dying world,

Where so little life remains.

Steal what motes of blood you can,

Before your own is drained.”

 

Homefields

“My home, my country, ever fair,

Despite the battles old.

From soil soaked with knightly blood

Rise towers shining gold.”

 

View from the Peak

“Snow covers the highland passes,

Falling from clouds low enough

To mingle together in the white.”

 

Unknown Seraph

“Angel that breaches the firmament,

Whose name is written of words

No scroll or tablet may hold,

Just as mortal eyes and minds

May not perceive its bright form.”

 

Raiders from Viken

“Gods gift gold for worthy blood.

Riches rising from trials and toil

By battles bold or journeys broad.”

 

Jersey Devil

“Hornéd king without a home,

People’s blood shed long ago.

The pale-fleshed ones forgot to fear,

Abasing that they once held dear,

Forgetting faeries old and cruel

Are found in New World forests too.”

 

Toward the Sun

“Light cares not whence it falls.

It graces only that which dares

To rise above and stand before it.”

 

Hurricane

“Faces blown by the wet and cold,

Chilling pilgrims down to the soul.

Hoods turned up and eyes cast low,

Yet trudging on where they must go.”

 

The King in Yellow

“Dark is wood where the old trees grow,

Canopy dense as the fresh-fallen snow,

Paths winding on to

Lost Carcosa.”

 

Descendants

“Flesh and iron, earth and soul,

Push and pull me ‘ere I go.

Nightly falling to deathly dreams

Until the dawning sun is seen.”

 

Walk Across

“Walk across the line

For a chance to stand in the sunshine.

Day after day,

It’s easy to get lost in the haze.

Both sides aren’t so different, and yet

What matters is you took the first step.”

 

Timestream

“Time, that ever-flowing river.

Stop for a moment to think

How ancient you already are.”

 

Castigator

“A fort to weather any storm,

But when that storm is through,

Thou assailants quail and tremble,

For the fort brings storm to you!”

 

Fortune Faded

“Fortune’s faded like traveler’s rags,

Like the blue of the winter sky.

My bones grow weary and start to drag,

As I try and try and try.”

 

Long Time No See

“White ribbon, red flag

In the heady country breeze.

Though fires rage, my heart remains

In a place beneath the trees.”

 

Exiled and Wandering

“Sorrow hangs on those exiled souls.

Aeons gone by, and still such evils

Lie like plagues on the living world.

Yet they bear the scorn upon them,

For it lets them know they can feel;

Their souls are real enough to hurt.”

 

Quarried

“Tarnish, rust, rot, decay,

Washing what was pure away;

But still souls are drawn from near and far,

Here to admire ancient scars.”

 

Winter Patina

“The old winter comes, with icy grip

Like the bony claws of the dead,

Even as it’s dressed in the silver-white

Of the fairest bride to ever live.

A fey time, moonlit and terrific,

Here in the never-ending north.”

 

Brego

“A haggard ranger without a home,

Wand’ring wide o’er grass and stone;

But faith unshaken, head unbowed,

One day at last he’ll don his crown.”

 

Grim Homecoming

“No respite for the living now.

Chased and tormented by ghosts

Into the arms of older specters.

Deadlands, where nothing’s quiet

While there’s no peace in my soul.”

 

Dungeon

“Creeping, sneaking, treasure seeking;

Into each hall tentatively peeking.

No telling what could be abiding,

What secrets deep that they are hiding.”

 

Gods of the Past 4

“Elder wilds are now tamed,

The beasts tilling the land

They once spilt blood on.”

 

Poet

“What purpose lies within my words,

When days slip by like autumn leaves?

And many things are left unheard,

And many sights are left unseen.

Might feelings yet be stirred?”

 

Kepler

“Beneath the rain and blackened stone on planets far and dim

Slumber things best left unwoke, for minds and hist’ries grim.”

 

Swatch

“What am I, but a cloth in the breeze?

Fragile thing to be blown to the winds.

So at the very least let my true colors

Stand proud against the empty skies.”

 

Farmstead

“Take me back, with dying steps,

To that home I once built in faith,

Before time took my strength,

And knowledge, my soul.”

 

Ice World

“What things live there I’ll never know;

Beneath the miles of diamond ice;

In a land that’s always scores below.”

 

Winter Journey

“Winter heights, white and grey,

Day and night the snowfall stays,

Trees fallen into deep malaise,

Snowdrifts track my wand’ring ways.”

 

Resting Place

“Green places where the air is slow and wet,

Like the rivers that seep between ancient roots and moss-stones,

And silent footsteps fall under the leaves.”

 

Firestarter

“Long were my years in limbo,

Tried as I might to free myself

Into that final embrace;

But my soul wandered adrift,

Forced in beauty and toil

To grow and bear witness.”

 

Obliskura

“Deep, deep beneath the soil and stone,

Where all turns to echoing black,

Like an eternal night, starless, moonless,

Where even gods might slumber.”

 

Vigil

“I saw the breadth of the cosmos,

The infinity of light and matter,

But I did not lose myself to the void,

Like a candle in the blowing wind,

But found at last immortality.

My soul between the atoms.”

 

Conquered Peasant

“I say I’ve become color-blind.

And not for spending my days

Awash with brown and grey.

But when banners of blue

Are raised on the parapets,

I can’t tell the difference

From the red ones before.”

 

Ice Cave

“Crystal beauty, cold and still,

But saps the lifeblood, saps the will.

Mirrored walls of ocean cave,

See within my waiting grave.”

 

On the Edge

“In some ways, I welcome the little imperfections.

The pains that let me know I’m still alive,

That give me perspective and tell me

That the world has not changed,

And hope remains.”

 

Tower

“Sword that stabs the sky,

Pin that holds the land,

Memorial reaching high,

Like finger of god’s hand.”

 

Talons

“Time of reclamation!

Seraphim descend in fire!

Titans walk the earth!

As the Lord bids it so.”

 

Sign of Mourning

“What does it mean, this cursed mark,

That I’ve born for all my memory?

For it seems of such importance,

Ever-present and glaring like an eye,

Yet nothing can I discern.”

 

Retired Veteran

“At last I have my grandfather’s hands,

For all my years of trying.

Wrinkles like paper of tomes I’ve read,

Weathered by work, noble or foul,

These hands that built my life,

As my grandfather did before.”

 

Byroad

“Now this is a relic I would never give up.

Centuries old, you can see in the stone.

I come here for tea, for supper, for fun,

Like my ancestors did, so long ago.”

 

Dreamcatchers

“I feel the currents

Of spirituous winds,

Carrying the dreams,

Projections of souls,

Like iridescent

Fish in the ocean.”

 

Ancient Force Warrior

“Sticks and stones replaced in time

By weapons fueled by lazer shine,

But one power reigns, however old:

The might of spirits brave and bold!”

 

Encounter

“Eyelights passing in twilight,

Like specks of luminescence

In the ocean of sour grey.”

 

Lake House

“Silent, but only in the sense of cold damp.

No crackle of fire, no creak of wood, no life

Save for the bubble of murky waters,

And the calls of birds through the mist,

In the dew-soaked morning melancholy.”

 

Gods of the Past 5

“Strength born of long peace,

Free to grow unbounded,

Unravaged by war’s fires.”

 

Salvaged

“Lost within the far wastes of my own mind,

Without a ship, without a map, or a star.

Fated to sink into blackness, my bones

Blending, bleached, into the barren salts.”

 

Dirty Job

“Well death’s a part of life,

But perhaps there’s more in mine.

I walk along the edge of a knife,

And I risk losing my mind.”

 

Gold Bazaar

“Golden domes over golden sands.

A land where gold flows like rivers

On the backs of golden camels

Under the golden evening sky.”

 

Liminal Arch

“A space between horizons,

At the center, the borderlands.

Such liminality in mundanity,

Moving in the transfer.

Neither here nor there.”

 

Sandbird

“Desert crow, where do you fly,

Upon the heights of winter sky?

From whence you’ve come there is no green.

Are you wand’ring lost along with me?”

 

Snowy Ruins

“Winter sun cuts through the gloom,

Laying across the fields of white,

As their ghostly surface springs to life

With shimmering crystal hues,

And the spell of death is lifted

For but an hour in this long season.”

 

The Crafty Merchant

“Rarest baubles tucked away

Deep in the maze of market stalls.

Go and heed the merchants’ call,

Let yourself be led astray.”

 

Project Anomaly

“Clean, pristine, and gleaming.

Silver, white, and crystal glass.

Illuminated, body, mind.

Progressing to a gentle hum.”

 

Deathworld

“What draws humanity to such hellish worlds?

Whether by ice, or storms, or whipping sands,

No pain may halt the advance, the victory.”

 

On Target

“Climbing high on fortune’s wheel,

Bound in steel, fueled by will.

Conquest borne on arcane light,

Bring the fight and crest the hill.”

 

Rebel Sanctuary

“The sunlight reflected off the endless dunes,

Scattering dull heat up to the void above.

All sensors became muddied, and so

Old methods were returned to,

As the rebels squatted in hidden ravines,

And jackboots stalked the sands.”

 

Nuclear Spring

“I look at the moss and grass, so fresh and verdant.

It has taken the ravages of the years with more grace

Than those abandoned things of stone and metal.”

 

Saturnine Custodian

“I am the bulwark of humanity.

The shining mont of gold,

Standing fast amidst legions.

The palm of His fist.

Bane of the darkness.”

 

Golden Hour

“Golden hour breaking through

The silver left at dawning’s rise.

Frozen, shimm’ring flecks of dew;

And not a cloud in pastel skies.”

 

Iron Harvest

“How mundane these marvels,

That must take so much

To work their wonders.

I might take flight

On wings black as my cares,

And leave it all behind.”

 

Departing

“The creatures of paradise looked through the crystal pond

And saw the crucible of souls, churning, waiting.

The question being what form the souls would take

When they left their hell behind.”

 

Starship Oil Checkup

“How ya been? Where ya been?

Same old story o’er again.

No matter place, no matter time,

Hist’ry always seems to rhyme.”

 

Black Dame

“I gothic soul, I know it well:

The fluting on your armor tells,

Like the fluting in your graceful voice.

Your calling is a noble choice.

Hair dark with blood from Ostrogoths,

Eyes grey as storming ocean froth.

I see your beauty, darkness through.

Would you get to know me too?”

 

Drained Marshes

“I see a burning angel above the gloom

Of the fog-laden wetlands, eastward,

Flames of searing wrath, like a forge,

Seeking to stir the cold, pale faces

Of those resting beneath the still waters.”

 

Second Watchtower

“Silence on the watch tower,

No one keeping view,

No sound of footsteps come or go,

None left but lonely you.”

 

Freyja

“Wild woman, I hear your creatures call,

As I lay lonely in this war-torn wood,

Awaiting your enlightened embrace

To depart my soul, send me to darkness,

And awaken anewed in the far forests

Of free and faerie-lit Folkvangr.”

 

Too Late

“Too late, too late, you autumn soul,

Winter has come at last.

You’ve lost your strength, you’ve gotten old,

Your fleeting time has passed.”

 

Ambaróna

“Ah, the fertile springs of the deepest woods,

Carrying drink from spring and mountain,

Wetting roots and nourishing creatures

Stirring in the black earth beneath the brush.

Dig deep, ancient children of the green,

And raise your arms high to sunny canopies.”

 

Camden

“Snowfall on the rooftops,

Hoofbeats past the door.

Crackling from the fire,

Pages on the floor.”

 

Jamaa

“Follow me, oh curious stranger,

Past the olive groves and market stalls,

To where the sun falls only at noon,

And the spices stand high in pyramids,

Fresher than any fare you’ve known,

If you have but the time and the gold.”

 

Nordlings

“Cold, unyielding, ice and steel,

From axes old to cogs and wheels,

Spark electric, wrathful storm,

Yet at home the hearth is warm.”

 

Crew 1

“I do not know if I am pure,

A soul redeemable, I cannot say;

But I’ll live with honor sure,

And serve day by day,

‘Til death be my cure.”

 

Farron

“Heirs to the blackened seal,

By wolf’s howl are we guided.

Raven-helmed and crimson cloaked,

Purging kingdoms darkness-choked,

Noble blade and bestial claw,

In our wake, the carrion caw.

Bring the fire, serve the light.

Even death shan’t halt our fight.”

 

80.5000° S, 94.0000° W

“Little ant, so far from home,

Without your hive around you,

Stay away from giants’ tomb

To keep your wits about you.”

 

Old Factory

“Abandoned temple, another monument lost to time,

Now ringing silent, manufacturing only rust and shade.”

 

Attilla

“Twice can I say of a certain time

When the Auspicious One descended

To wreak his work in mortal form.

Twice emerging from the far plains,

And riding the red horse of war.”

 

Cybercity

“Moving in the twilight midden,

Where the sun shines

Only as bright as the neon,

And the horizon is a silver line

Between black abyss

And shining spire.”

 

Voyager

“Tiny things are we,

But blessed be our eyes,

Far-seeing and wide,

So we might behold

The wide world around.”

 

Deathwing

“Monolith rising on the horizon,

Beyond the reaches of the dark forests,

About which great storms gather

Of raven-cry and battle-horns,

Sounding glory, dread, and doom.”

 

Heavy

“The skies wavered and sprung into new life

As the earth withered into decay and death.

Everything looked straight out of a dream,

Or more apt: a hazy and surreal nightmare.”

 


Great thanks to every artist who inspired me, and every one to come.

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One thought on “Poetry Compendium (2017)

  1. Pingback: A busy 2017 #4 Writings | Marcus Ampe's Space

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