Wayward Devil

Another wayward Devil strikes

Hits his targets in the night

Preys on them while they are sleeping

Especially when they are freshly grieving

He finds his pleasure in others’ pain

He sees his joy where they see rain

He delights to hear them scream

He lurks in shadows, not what he seems

He wears his disguise unusually well

So that, who he is, you cannot tell

Just beware of all whom you meet

Lest you find yourself struck at the Devil’s feet

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Autumn Leaves

An orchard-ful of ancient trees

Set on fire by their leaves

Flames on stems, the crimson golds

Burn brilliantly, despite the cold

And flaming leaves crunch on the ground

Leaving fires burning around

An evening chill is drawing near

Autumn-time at last is here

Lesson Number One

A.N. Apologies. This took far too long for far too poor a result. 

Lesson number one is clear

Don’t let anyone see your fear

Head up high and straightened back

Keep vigilant, lest they attack

Lesson number two is a little bit harder

It’s keeping your wits when the storm turns calmer

You can’t relax; no, you must recoup

Build up your strength. You know they’ll regroup.

Lesson number three is a bit of a twist

Stay light on your feet, and their hits will miss

Dodge their attacks, and you’ll rise on top

But lesson number one is the only way they’ll stop

Hope

I found Hope one Friday, shiny and smooth,

As it reflected sunlight in its shallow tide pool

I picked it up gently, and turned it around

Brushed off sand it had gathered on the ground

The low tide was rising, and the boats were coming in

Leaving behind my old life, suffocated with sin

Everything I found here was brand-new and strange

Just what I needed — a clean slate, a change

Away from the shadows where demons roam free

Away from the nightmares which keep haunting me

Here in the sunlight which shines off the sea

I see a new life, where maybe I can be free

And check off my checklist of things to forget

Leave the past in the past. It’s no longer a threat.

Climbing out of this hole is a slippery slope

But it helps when your handholds are made out of Hope

Ways to Say Goodbye

Eighty-five ways to tell you goodbye

Arranged in a list, all of them lies

How I love you and miss you, and wish you were here

When reality is that I can’t stand you near

I hate everything you do, and all that you are

Wherever you go, it can’t be too far

Your lies and your games make a terrible truth

And the mess that I’m in, it’s because of you

You never were good; I was just blind

And innocence led me to think you were kind

And supportive and loyal and devoted and true

But you weren’t in love; I was a plaything to you

Something to pet and keep tied up in chains

Something to mess with when you wanted a game

Something with no heart to be thought of at all

You let me fly high, and then watched me fall

So I don’t feel bad, now, saying goodbye

Watch how I go — I won’t even cry

I’ll stamp out your memory and erase all your texts

I’m moving on to whatever life offers next

Everything’s beautiful and happy and new

Now that I’ve finally bid you adieu

1950’s Honey

One day I woke up and thought I could be

Something incredible, uniquely me

I thought I’d move mountains and change the world

But I’d forgotten, of course, that I was a girl

And girls can look pretty, and girls can smile big

And girls can wear makeup and dresses and wigs

And girls can be daughters, and sisters, and wives

But girls don’t have freedom to live their own lives

At least, so they tell me, wherever I turn

How many slammed doors before I finally learn?

The things that they say are strange and insane

But they laugh at me like I’m playing some game

They call me a ‘darling’ and push me away

But I’ll show them all, I’ll show them, one day

I’ll show them exactly what it means to be me

Not bound by chains, but entirely free

I’ll dance in the sun, and I’ll ride high in style,

Not keeping my thoughts hidden in exile

But until that day comes, I’ll stay pretty and prim

Keep my smile empty, and keep my tongue trimmed

Keep getting pushed around, never fighting back

Until the Apocalypse arrives, and I can finally attack

Hell at My Heels

I’ve seen Hell, seen it through their eyes,

That empty abyss, a clever disguise,

Hell wears it well, makes you think nothing’s there

But I’ve seen too much for it to catch me unawares

I’ve seen Hell, I’ve seen it face-to-face,

The way you sweat; it makes your heart race

It’s a sight to behold, yet impossible to describe,

You might try to forget, but it’s forever inscribed

Yes, I know Hell well; you could say we’re old friends,

Unfortunate companions until the bitter end

I know no life outside it, it’s what makes me feel at home

With misfortune on my shoulder, I know I’m never alone

Paparazzi

I open my window to flashes and screams

An utterly chaotic sidewalk scene

They all want a quote, want a pose, want a smile

Looks like I’m stuck here for the next little while

Don’t show that you’re tired, don’t show that you’re scared

You’ve spent time rehearsing. You know you’re prepared.

But they push and shove, not all smiles and waves,

And sometimes it’s hard to keep yourself brave

Because the magazine covers are designed for attention

And some of their headlines border on aggression

And some of the comments cut deep to the bone

And then you are lost, and feel horribly alone

It’s a freak show, a game, full of smiles and flashing lights

But your eyes are glued open as you lie awake at nights

All their words run around in your mind, in your head

And you’re not safe anywhere, not even your own bed

They twist all your thoughts, and they twist how you feel

They blur all your memories until you’re not sure what’s real

Some tell you they love you, but they must be lying

Because these magazines are the ones everyone’s buying

They tell you stay cool, tell you brush it off, move on

Tell you don’t listen, they’re idiots, they’re wrong

But it gets harder each day to face all the lights

When you know that they’ll haunt you all through the night

The reporters don’t care. They think it’s a game

I guess, in the end, that’s the steep price of fame

Homemade Cyanide

His words are poison; they strike inside

And leave me shaken, like someone’s died

Though no one’s dead, I know he’s scared

And that’s a good thing, that someone cares

Yet each word flies like a poisoned dart

I’m the target, and they find their mark.

Everything hurts and it’s dark and I’m shaking

I try to stay calm, but I can feel myself breaking

I then try to leave, but my feet won’t move

And he won’t stop; he’s got something to prove

But why prove it to me? What did I do?

I agree this is nothing he should go through

Yet here his words seep, and it kills me inside

To my heart from his lips, it’s homemade cyanide

I’m paralysed and blind, stumbling through his pain

Even after he’s done, I won’t ever be the same

No Vacancy

There’s no vacancy in heaven for travellers, tonight

Those lost in the firmament, wandering through starlight,

Their bodies are trapped in hospital beds

Fluorescent lights shine on unmoving heads

But their souls are on fire, and they’re far more alive

Than they can remember (at least, in recent time)

So why does each heartbeat take more time than the last?

And why does each breath start and end with a gasp?

Where are they wandering, so far from home?

Are there comrades-in-arms, or do they wander alone?

Maybe it’s pretty, with so much to sight-see,

That they’re forgotten those below, still on bended knees

Watching so expectantly for when the end will come

Will your last breath be tonight, or are you waiting for the sun?

Why does it take so long for you to search out heaven’s gates?

Or were you there all of this time, and simply have to wait?

Some say there’s nothing after death, but I’m not sure that I agree

If there’s no quota, queue, or wait, then why’s there no vacancy?