The Garden of My Mind

In the garden of my mind,
Fruits of fancy flourish,
ripen, and fall, baskets fill,
Until I discard my very will.

But the little men of the trees,
Dance amongst the leaves,
Tipping baskets, Picking fruits,
Slipping them into their sleeves.

Again fancy frolics forth,
Freeing fortified finites,
Breezily blowing baser ideals,
Into the garden’s heights.

And the little flowers of imagination,
Broken at the stem,
Laced in a garland,
And thrown away on a whim.

Clouds of dreams foment and foam,
Pouring torrents of terror into the trees,
Giving fright to the little men,
Frightened fancy turns and flees.

Too often, the master of the garden,
Is called by name, Fancy and Whim,
But it is beaten back, again and again,
By the sinister dreams within.

 

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The Words in the Wind

The man pulled himself up to the top, looked around, and did not care for what he saw.

He saw a world trying to hurry and rush, who knows where other than its own eventual end. He saw what others all saw, but refused to acknowledge the inevitability of it all. Misery was there, hand in hand with apathy and ego. No life seemed to matter, life itself seemed not to matter. There was a lot of energy here, but little purpose to it all.

Sighing, he settled down to meditate on what he saw, hoping to find a solution to the mystery of life. What was the point of it all, what was the plan, was their a plan? The man pondered these questions and all of the myriad questions that sprang forth wherever his ponderings led him. Age crept up upon him like the evening shadows, caressing first his skin, then settling in deep to chill his bones, and yet still he pondered the questions of life. As the sun set on his life, the shadows of age became more rapacious, springing up suddenly and seizing him in a cold dark grip, squeezing the very last drops of his youth out of him. Ravenous, age drank all the life that spilled out, lapping up every drop like sweet honey.

Finally, the last drops fell out of him. Age had consumed his very flesh, which now fell fully lifeless, hollow, sallow, and wrinkled to the ground, there to shatter into dust and blow away on the strong winds of time. At last, there was no longer any trace of the man, and the very memory of him was forgotten by those still rushing around in the world below.

And yet, as his lifeless husk fell to meet the ground, there could be seen on the face of the man, a serene smile. He had thought of a solution before he passed. He had solved the mystery of life. Every so often, if you close your eyes and listen right, you can hear his ashes whisper it in the winds of time, laughing softly.

The Shattered Ones

In the minds of the shattered ones, there is not but despair. In the halls of the shattered ones, there is not that still care. At the behest of the sacred ones, the shattered ones do stay. With the thoughts of the sacred ones, the shattered ones do say,
“If you go upon the road the darkened ones did tread, the light of the darkened ones, around your feet will spread. The lives of the darkened ones, ended so long ago, amongst the path you tread upon, and amongst your feet do flow.”

In the morn of the lightened ones, the shattered ones do sing. In the dusk of the lightened ones, the shattered ones do bring, to the halls of the shattered ones, all the things they lose. With the will of the sacred ones, the shattered ones refuse, those that seek the sacred ones, gifts of wealth to bring. In the morn of the lightened ones, the shattered ones do sing,
“Whilst you go upon the road, the darkened ones do wait. Watch out for the darkened ones, their teeth do gnash and grate. Run away from the darkened ones, their claws do snatch and tear. Your flesh for darkened ones, in their claws will snare.”

In the halls of the shattered ones, the winds do twist and claw. In the minds of the sacred ones, all thought is made law. In the ways of the shattered ones, all but not is true. In the dance of the shattered ones, there is not but all to do. To the lands of the lightened ones, the shattered ones can go. In the lands of the lightened ones, the shattered ones will show, to the sacred and the lightened ones, the things that will entrance, the dancing of the shattered ones, and thoughts they left to chance. As they dance the dance of the shattered ones, the shattered ones will pray, and in their prayers to the sacred ones, the shattered ones will say,
“On the road of the darkened ones, protect those who tread, protect them from the darkened ones, else they will be dead. Guide them to the end of times, the times that never end, that they may see the lightened ones, and finally comprehend, the will of the sacred ones, hidden from all but few, that life is but one long dance, all but a few steps true.”

In the halls of the shattered ones, many are the lost. In the halls of the shattered ones, few know the cost.

Heather, Missed

I’d miss your witty conversation, if you’d ever bother to call.
I’d miss your comforting company, if you’d comfort me at all.
I’d miss your ideas and insights, if you’d ever stop to think.
I’d miss your sober celebrations, if you’d put down your drink.
I’d miss your gift to listen, if you’d ever let me speak.
I’d miss your self confidence, if you’d stop saying you’re a freak.
I’d miss your humble aspirations, if you’d turn the mirror away.
I’d miss your permanence and presence, if you’d ever stay.
I’d miss your praise and admiration, if you’d meant a word you said.
I’d miss your drive and determination, if only they weren’t dead.
I’d miss your joy and happiness, if ever did exist.
I’d miss your being with me, if only you’d be missed.

A Leaf Floated Slowly

A leaf floated slowly, twisting, spiraling ever so slowly, dancing on the wind. Finally, it settled, next to the sole of a black shoe. A shoe, worn to match an ebon ensemble, worn, to signify sorrow. A guest, a friend, invited to mourn the passing of a life. The loss of a father.

The priest, the only one in white, intoned holy blessings to the Father, as the widow wept. The guests, some friends, others, fellow workers, stood in silent testimony to the departed one.

Only one stood apart. Alone in his grief, alone always, the son awaited the end of it all. He listened half-heartedly, as the holy man droned on, not hearing the words, or his mother’s grief. Lost in himself, he looked on, dry-eyed, as his father was painstakingly lowered into the waiting earth. He watched as the coffin disappeared forever into its final showcase.

It was beautiful; a pale white, embossed roses lining its rim, polished silver handles, a pair of doves carved into the top. It was magnificent. It had cost. The son smiled slowly, enjoying the irony. A bitter, cruel man, never very pretty, in soul or face, had wished to be buried in a work of art. No worry, they were rich. They knew it; with limos for every guest, tuxedos too, flowers by the hundred, expensive chapel, expensive priest. No, there was no want for luxury, but it would not buy a tear from the son. He felt no loss today, only joy.

The son moved to his mother, to comfort her in her anguish. The funeral ended, all left. The gravediggers set to work, covering another plot. Another grave, another stiff. Just one more satisfied customer.

Benediction for Wallace

May your path know little sadness, and much joy, may your wanderings be as interesting as your destinations, may you know good people as well as you can, may you be good people to know as well as you can. May your days be many and long even if they are few and short, may your regrets fall away like so many bad dreams to be replaced by serenities and epiphanies. May your love know no bounds and your anger know no target. May you live in interesting times and may you die at peace with all.

A Word

In the waning years of the galactic Empire of Man, in a remote archival station on a distant mining planet, a young bureaucrat, twelfth level, rediscovered a word. A single word of power and importance such that it had been removed with great passion by fire and death from human memory over the course of several millennia.

When the great and bloated departments of the Government of Man decayed from within and broke into more primitive forms of tribalistic territorialism, when the Empire ever more irreversibly cascaded from de facto to de jure then through nomine tenus, finally coming to rest in memoriam, the young bureaucrat, twelfth level, learned the word. Spreading it to others he knew and trusted, he soon encountered resistance to its very existence. This did not deter him, as the resistance was sparse and unorganized, as those offering it were much more thoroughly occupied trying to not lose their heads in the midst of the empire’s collapse.

As such, the ranks of the adherents to the word of power quickly swelled, as they latched onto what appeared to be a growing movement of strength in the face of looming chaos and hardship. Many of these new recruits had little understanding of the true meaning of the word, having never encountered it or its fruits in their short lifetimes. Thus lacking a reference to guide them, they often engaged in actions in direct opposition to the true meaning of the word. Yet, even these well-intentioned fumblings added to the power of the word, as their actions served to draw more attention to the word and thus bolstered their numbers against the now strengthening resistance to its return to the course of human events. This resistance was most readily embraced by those who had most directly benefited from the old order, as well as those factions rising up to take its place.

Violence inevitably broke out between these two sides, and the young discoverer perished while championing the word to his followers. The passion with which these same disciples struck back shocked any who observed it. Simple brutality and skirmishes escalated almost instantly into pitched warfare, as both sides elected martyrs and heroes from amongst their own ranks and those of their opponents. Soon, those factions previously not aligned with either side found themselves swept along into the heightening conflict, as the forces of the word and the forces who wished the word had remained forgotten turned world after world into a battlefield on which they tried their best to obliterate their enemies.

As their vague causes turned into far more single-minded crusades, logic and wisdom fled before the unforgiving warzone, seamlessly replaced by fanatical devotion and sacrifice. Those that dared question the intent of their leaders suffered for their lack of faith in manners designed to dissuade others from following suite. Even the higher orders of those who followed the word with blind loyalty dared not speculate on the actual meaning of the word itself, as to do so would be to challenge the now certain interpretation of the word as a weapon uniting them against their foes. So it was that the intent of the word was lost in the swelling wave of its standard bearers.

Eventually, many centuries of bloodshed and destruction later, with their grand civilization, that had taken millenia to build up, in ruins about them, finally those few who remained who were capable of research began investigating this cursed word, disregarding the still not inconsiderable danger this presented to their persons. Against the condemnation of the established priesthood of the word, these rogue scholars presented their findings to the galaxy. The uproar of anger against those who had so fervently co-opted the word for the exact opposite of its defined purpose made short work of the remaining forces of the word. The equally exhausted opposition forces stood little chance of resisting the populist groundswell of the common people, who had tired of both factions long ago as their loved ones died for causes that ultimately meant nothing and served no purpose other than to kill the opposing side.

While this final tumultuous upheaval against the dying movements which had drug mankind back down into destitution ran its course, smaller regional governments began to form, applying the word in its true form to their governance, finding success as they did so. Peace returned as the word of power finally took hold. Mankind recovered gradually, rebuilding what the oppressive empire had so methodically erected before, this time in more gentle and natural forms. And so it was that a word so long obliterated from human memory realized its power to alleviate misery and ignorance wherever it was spoken with understanding and without fear of the consequences.

Once again mankind embraced the word ‘freedom’.