There is a child - a baby - who long since kicked off her blankets. Her skin is ashen and her mouth open in a perpetual yet silent scream. She isn't old enough to roll over, to sit up, to climb. So she lies there kicking her fat legs against the footboard of the crib, eternally calling for her mother. For food. For flesh.
Song after Battle:As the young men went by I was looking for him. It surprises me anew That he has gone. It is something To which I cannot be reconciled.Owls hoot at me. Owls hoot at me. That is what I hear In my life. Wolves howl at me. Wolves howl at me. That is what I hear In my life. -American Indian Songs
I steal one glance over my shoulder as soon as we are far from the foreboding luminance of the neon glow, and it is there that my stomach leaps into my throat. Squatting just shy of the light and partially concealed by the shade of an alley is a sinister silhouette beneath a crimson cowl, beaming a demonic smile which spans from cheek to swollen cheek.
Could it be that this house is haunted?I'm face to face with shapeless shadow,Though I stand alone.Could it be that there's a presenceInside this house,Besides my own?The garden fades from green to grey,The fading focus of Goodbye.I let out a sigh.I swallow the urge to cry.Out of this house and onto the street...Vacant, empty spaces in the faces I meet.Anywhere on earth, Any time of day,The echoed sound of all I say,Of all I hear and in all I see...Shadows,Phantom faces,Not haunting places. Haunting ME.
Each leaf that brushed his face deepened his sadness and dread. Each leaf he passed he'd never pass again. They rode over his face like veils, already some yellow, their veins like slender bones where the sun shone through them. He had resolved himself to ride on for he could not turn back and the world that day was as lovely as any day that ever was and he was riding to his death.
Here and there and not just in books we catch glimpses of a world of once upon a time and they lived happily ever after, of a world where there is a wizard to give courage and a heart, an angel with a white stone that has written on it our true and secret name, and it is so easy to dismiss it all that it is hardly worth bothering to do. ... But if the world of the fairy tale and our glimpses of it here and there are only a dream, they are one of the most haunting and powerful dreams that the world has ever dreamed...
Of four infernal rivers that disgorge/ Into the burning Lake their baleful streams;/Abhorred Styx the flood of deadly hate,/Sad Acheron of sorrow, black and deep;/Cocytus, nam'd of lamentation loud/ Heard on the rueful stream; fierce Phlegethon/ Whose waves of torrent fire inflame with rage./ Far off from these a slow and silent stream,/ Lethe the River of Oblivion rolls/ Her wat'ry Labyrinth whereof who drinks,/ Forthwith his former state and being forgets,/ Forgets both joy and grief, pleasure and pain.
The silences after his last gasp were sung together by a blackbird. I lay there, my eyes unable to close. His were unable to open. I listed the places where I hurt, and how much. My loins felt ripped. Something inside had torn. There were seven places on my body where he had sunk his fangs into my skin and bitten. He'd dug his nails into my neck, and twisted my head to one side, and clawed my face. I hadn't made a noise. He had made all the noise for both of us. Had it hurt him?