The Hands of Eternity


Yesterday’s a story,
Perfect skin, curious. frolics in the garden
Today that boy is me,
The man who once had it all figured out,
Crossed fences, opened doors,
Knew what it was about,
But yesterday was now…just moments ago,
And if then was now, then now is…
And tomorrow…Damn. Tomorrow.
It must be late,
It’s dark outside.
I sit here wondering, maybe dreaming of a garden.

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How it all Begins


by L.P. Stribling

 

With a thought,
That’s all you have a first, even before the blank slate,
A thought of something great,
Something that elates you, makes your eyes say, “Ooh my!”
It tickles all through you then,
Because you think, “I can do that!”

And you move,
Through fields, buildings, obstacles,
And you pass people,
They don’t notice, though,
Oh there’s this social media thing that they’re sort of sucked into,

But they don’t feel your passion,
They’re not hooked like you,
Books are loot, you read and gain,
And then, of course, the pain,
There has to be pain,
The insane are, in the end, those who’ve never hurt,

And you fail,
Part of the game (full sail now)
All you have to do is get back up, on your feet,
Most cannot meet this objective,
But you can. The next morning you take one breath
More easily than the day before.

People enter.
You don’t know them, but they know (of) you.
You talk, you trust, you let them do their work,
And you wait, drives you berserk, but you wait,
Because you’ve had wounds, and they’ve had to heal,
By degree.

And you doubt while you wait.
What if this isn’t right? you think. What if it never was?
What if it was a waste.
And the pain returns.
Leaving burns on your person, in your life, with your wife? Your husband?
Perhaps,

And you stand tall when the day comes,
You’ve been running so long,
You’ve been waiting, wanting, hungry.

And they know that;
They knew it all along.

Regardless


by

L.P. Stribling

Start over, you need to start over.

Not entirely, but with your thoughts,

With where you think you need to be.

Start over.

’T’s cold outside. Empty.

Don’t see many people walking around.

You’re not them. Focus on you.

You’re ready to meet your own people,

Remember, we’re starting over.

I’m a writer. Regardless.

Regardless of what words are,

Written on my lanyard, of what it says

on my driver’s license, my résumé,

or what comes of the mouths of my loved ones

Pertaining to the question of “what it is I do.”

I’m a writer.

And I recognize that,

Because I’m starting over.

Quick drive down. Cut the engine.

Now I’m with them – the only ones who know

Who I really am. I know them too.

We smile, we laugh as we snack.

Because we all get. Regardless.

Regardless of what words are used out there.

We’ve started over.

Chasm


by
L.P. Stribling

Wicked games they played back then,

Childhood trickery (painful trickery), all masked in fun,

One was called the Sin of Chasm,

And she was the lucky one,

The chant still sticks –

First comes Faith, at the end, Reward,

Don’t look down,

At the Chasm of Gore,

The chittering teeth, the rot of the pits,

Lose your wits and they’ll ask for more,

But think of the reward!

The rope was taught between the rooftops,

And night around us – starry and cold,

The schoolyard dirt was the chasm below,

But naught to be seen in the frosty chill

of those evenings.

“Next Walker, Next slave!”

“Fallers force the Daybreak!”

Erma was a friend that night,

A friend of a friend,

She came not to be seen, but to watch,

Last girl in sight,

But the Chasm hungered, and forced a growl,

“Next Walker, Next Slave,

Chasm’s Worms on the prowl!”

She shook her head, shook her legs,

Tried to shake herself from their icky hands.

They pulled and prodded and forced her to stand,

Feet on the edge, and pushed up her hands.

She balanced and shook, and tears filled her eyes,

And the first step she took held our breath in the night,

Three steps across, we could hear her sniffles, her whines,

Though not a word did she yell, when her feet missed the line.

Not a second passed then,

Plop – crack, plop.

She was still.

I looked down at the rope,

Eddie picked his hands off the line,

Wiped them on his outer vinyl.

His words loosed a gasp of smoke into the air,

“Nope!” he laughed.

“The Chasm claims another victim!”

Victory hit him and his arms darted

Over his head, Over his head.

He cheered in the night.

It was cold, so cold,

And under the stars, who knows how long she lay,

Before they found her,

Dismembered, I imagine,

A quiet girl, a lonely fall,

Victim to the Chasm.

As the Games Begin


rio

AS THE GAMES BEGIN

By

L.P. Stribling

In Rio, some thousands of miles away from these words,

An athlete, a confused young star, sits in a quiet room in the dark,

Outside the window, perhaps he listens on a small handheld device,

And the Games begin.

Tomorrow, next week, perhaps three nights from now – she will exhaust her body,

She will push herself to the an extreme her earthly form has never known,

She will scream, her pores with gush in a furious flush of sweat,

Perhaps they will bleed,

Perhaps they will not feel a thing,

Failure or success, it will be over in a matter of seconds, and

Regardless of how they view these seconds,

In another matter of seconds, they will be near death,

And they will at least have their story.

But now in the dark, there is only the athlete and the sounds

Of the Games as they begin.