The Council of a Coward

I lost the words that I was seeking
And with them, any meaning
Of the cowardice that plagues me
And the meeting in my head

Of all my paltry virtues
And their tyrants, and the fortunes
Of failures that ever seek me
And the mistakes that keep them led

And the demons that I’m keeping
And every grim that does a reaping
And every chance that almost meets me
But then finds that I have fled

To a place worse than the last
A darker mirror of the past
Endless reflections staring back at me
Endlessly filling me with dread

But I find I cannot look away
(Or else will not — who can say?)
And the only thing that’s clear to me
Is the glass and what you said

That the choice is mine alone to make
The power, mine alone to take
But the only truth that stays with me
Is that when I broke the glass, I bled.

Ruined Worlds

Running away into ruined worlds
Where things can always be fixed
And fears can fly faster than father or brother
And daydreams and dangers are mixed.

A mask of the making of under worth the taking
Can hide away a ravenous soul
But there always are waking demons of the quaking
And demons, they never are full.

Falling down into rabbit holes
Where events don’t have to be fixed
And the failures that follow and the sadness that swallows
Can from life’s booklet be nixed.

It’s a mask of the making of truth that we’re faking
To take on a different role
But we never are slaking thirsts of demons we’re making
To be the villains that make our play whole.


I am tired of tomorrow;
I am clinging to today,
But not because I wish to borrow
One more hour so that I can stay.

I merely have no wish to be there,
To have to face another day
When there is nothing here that I should fear
And yet, still I feel my life is frayed.

Not Me: Thinking Out Loud

I’m so sorry… Of all the things I could have been, I became this. I could’ve been like my brother and reached out and made a life for myself where I could.

But instead I’m here. Still just sitting here. Waiting for something to befall me, be it destiny or accident.

Probably accident. Screech, crash, bang, and then I’m gone, in all likelihood. It would be just like me to not be paying any attention and accidentally step in front of a car. It wouldn’t be on purpose, of course. But it wouldn’t be exactly unwelcome.

I sometimes like to pretend that I can see the future. The prediction is always the same: I’m going to die alone. It’s not even a future anymore, it’s a fact. I’m going to die alone. So what’s it matter if it’s distant or soon?

I’ve lived nineteen years, going on twenty. So young, and often much younger than I should be. And yet those years, these days, they crawl by like an eternity, and they’ve never changed in form, not really. The world is still a distant thing, and I am still… what I am: The person who walks on the path before me. And it’s still a circular one.

My brother sees this. He sees us all going in circles, ducking our heads, diving into whatever we can to hide. He wants it to change. He wants it to change — but he doesn’t want to change it. None of us do. It would be like organizing a junkyard… while being attacked by a pack of wild dogs. Nobody wants to take that on. Especially when the thing we’re taking on, is the nothingness of never taking anything on. Someone has to start. But each of us vows, it won’t be us. 

A Choice I Would Not Seize

We had come there for a purpose.
I tried hard not to be nervous;
But when he saw me and half-started,
My heart beat out of my chest.

He approached and kissed my hand;
Not at all what I had planned.
He was the captain of the ship;
And I, supposed to be a simple guest.

A spy was meant to blend in;
But, my companions saw a win,
And their eager nods to our captain’s invitation
Saw us that night around his dining table.

He spoke nearly to no other
And I so wished to run for cover,
For he was charming, and sweet,
And to consider harm from me, he seemed unable.

His name, he said, was Nikolai;
No other name he’d let me call him by.
And a fond familiarity with post-it note poetry
Grew over the course of the next few days.

The poems were left to me anonymous
But, they were really no less obvious
And I couldn’t help but blush and smile
Every time another came my way.

My companions, for their part
Wanted me to use his heart
And gain what we had come to get:
An edge for those we served — his enemies.

But I found that I no longer could
And so I did what I then always would,
And ran from cause and captain both:
Losing all to a choice I would not seize.

Drawn from a dream I once had, involving an interstellar civil war, an infatuated Russian spaceship captain (who left me little love poems on post-it notes, it was kind of adorable), and a choice that I refused to make — that last seeming to be a recurring character flaw of mine.


Hello again
Old friends and new
Too oft have I
Been the one untrue
And I wish I could make it
So that it wasn’t so
But in my life I’ve done it always
And I’ll do it again, I know.

Has never been my forte
I could blame my family,
Say they made me this way:
I could blame my genes,
Or the way I was brought up…
But I need to learn it doesn’t matter,
Because it’s me who messes up.

Mothers cannot always
Be there telling what to say;
And fathers cannot always
Protect you from the fray.
Brothers will not always
Be there to pick you up;
And sisters will not always
Be there when you’ve given up.

Ultimately, your actions
Fall on you and only you;
A terrifying thought to me,
But I’ll try to see it through.
Maybe one day, in the future,
I’ll look back and see
That my life changed for the better
When I took responsibility.

In the interest of communication, I will note that I’ve been a tad unwell these last few days… and unfortunately, have been using that as an excuse (to myself, as well as others) for letting pretty much everything slide.