The archaic arachnid
her stinger protracted
hunts from her foul lair
with guile and tongue acrid

Beneath cirith ungol
fed by the wretch smeagol
exchanged for protection
from mordor and its evil

Then baggins was brought there
by gollum who could not bear
that the hobbit held precious
and the ambush was quite unfair

But the phial of galadriel
was used by samwise well
his sting saved frodo then
when shelob fled ‘way from them

So their journey continued on
through darkness and woebegone
to bring ruin to the one ring
and the threat of the shade sauron

art: Shelob’s Retreat by Ted Nasmith


He marvels before the irony, feeling
guilty for the guilt; he knows, surely,
that it is the guilt keeping him alive,
an aphrodisiac and a bane staying
his executioner’s hand

Warning of the wreckage wrought,
aware of the afterthought, that this
poison in its wake would spread plague-
like through the innocent veins of the
hitherto guiltless

So he can only wait and anticipate, for
the saprogenic day when he will no
longer feel that which drives him, when
the hangman no longer need stand as
vigilant crier and heroic tear drier

What a cruel and fantastic guardian
he’s found in this towering killer,
this friend and wish fulfiller, this
fiend and turmoil tiller, a beast –
logical, paradoxical, and defeatable

Because he knows well the irony here,
too, the axiomatic twist of this dark
tale, for he could stop the guilt at any
time and would have never of ever and
ever of naught to feel its iron clutch

tsk tsk tsk

tsk tsk tsk wagged the metronome
who watched over
her delicate

ting ting ting sang the ivory
as she taunted
the sweet baby

no no no seethed the pedagogue
he was a talentless,

sob sob sob rang the little girl
forced alone
with the tutor
so cruel

psst psst psst whisp’d the wretched man
these secrets
you mustn’t
tell a soul

rip tear bruise I’m your biggest fan
dear, i promise
to you
the lead role

sob sob sob the instructor cried
told police
he’d done
nothing wrong

click snap squeeze they cuffed knowing he lied
and wondered
when they’d stop hearing
that song

wink wink wink shot the little girl
her parents
would now take
the lead

wash wash wash her hands of vicarity
misjudging her,
a dire assumption

Pretty smiles, pretty walks

When he’s distracted – by a pretty smile
or pretty walk – when ego has distracted
id, he senses the existential moments

Moments when his evanesce into periphery
isn’t paramount; he’s inconspicuous in
a spotlight, living amongst the living

Not a shadowed pock at its center,
quaquaversally thrusting hands with
fingers of hands in fractal perpetuity

But a being like any other, with the
same chances and lack of chances,
iustitia and prudentia upon his shoulders

Then nature takes hold, quite without his
own intervention, rampaging id reminds
him who he is, what he is, how he is

Reminds him that pretty smiles seek
out pretty smiles and pretty walks travel
in vastly different circles

So his eyes fall upon his path, his heart falls
out of favor, his walk leads him tangentially,
and his id bears the only smile

He’ll exist in this life out of focus, and
remain off-center of attention, before he
finally disappears in a blur

art: Verklärte Nacht by © Antonio Palmerini

Premature complications

They’re premature complications

And predictive stipulations

Of mentally strained gyrations

In infinite preparations

Overwrought and overthinking

Details sought and in them sinking

Not yet moments but in a blinking

Overwhelming disaster linking

Ever breathing, but forget to respire

So smell the roses, and duck the crossfire

Read the daily prompts and let them inspire

Then write this dumb poem so your brain can retire

A bit o’cheek

try as he might
to keep it supressed
this torturous feeling
deep in his breast

it’s infecting his mind
his heart and his soul
in danger of changing
to diamond from coal

the comments and likes
for wrongs that he’d write
made him feel good
and showed him some light

the senations are gross
and not quite to par
but he’ll never admit
that they carry him far

how many followers
e’er read what he’s sent
he feels like a rich man
so, like one percent

thus a hid agenda
this thanking surprise
is doomed in the end
to fall on deaf eyes

alas ne’er a quitter
he’ll fight to amend
this wanton violation
until his bitter end

he’ll brood in the darkness
and spill all his ink
but of surrounding lit candles,
he’ll gratefully think