Monday, November 29, 2010

The Princess and the Pee

"The Princess and the Pee"

Once upon a time there was a princess named Bethie who lived in the land of Puponia. She was settling in for bed one night high atop her pile of mattresses when suddenly she felt an extreme discomfort in her bladder. "Drat," she muttered to herself. "I knew I forgot something."

"BUTLER!!" Princess Bethie called out.

From across the castle she heard a loud commotion as the butler roused himself from his own bed and scurried through the halls. It was the king's orders that the princess be escorted to the bathroom after she had fallen from her pile of mattresses in an effort to obtain a ho-ho forgotten on her bedside table far below.

When the butler arrived, he let out a world weary sigh and grabbed a ladder that was leaning not far away. He laid it against the great stack of mattresses and Princess Bethie carefully descended.

Hand in hand, princess and butler made their way across the castle to the building's only royal bathroom. There had been more than one bathroom once, but in the Great Toilet War with Japan Puponia had had all their toilets stolen except for one. This one toilet was now exclusively for royal use, being the only toilet remaining in all the land.

The butler waited outside the door, trying not to think about his own need to use the bathroom, which in this case would require a long trek into the cold to use an outhouse. The butler grumpily contemplated stealing the miraculous toilet plated in gold, truly a fitting throne for a king too cheap to buy his subjects more porcelain.

All done, Princess Bethie emerged from the bathroom, humming and wiping her hands on her nightgown. "Didst thou wash thy royal hands?" the butler questioned, thankful that was the only thing he was required to ask about. Previous butlers had been forced to ask more specifics, such as whether "number one" or "number two" had been the reason for the late night visit to the commode.

And heaven forbid the answer was ever number two. A change in policy had been necessary when too many butlers quit over the indignity of being forced to question the princess on whether she'd remembered her "wipey poo".

The princess shook her head then returned to the gold plated sink and spent nearly ten minutes playing with the bubbles made by the soapy water while the butler struggled to maintain his composure, and the integrity of his bladder.

Finally the butler and the princess made their way back to the princess' chambers, which were (naturally) on the far side of the enormous castle, opposite the building's only operable bathroom. The butler wished to hurry, but Princess Bethie was no longer interested in returning to her chambers. Instead, she brought up all the things she thought that she and her servant should do instead.

Thereby the butler was forced to inform the princess that there would be no roller skating through the ballroom, no playing with dolls in the dungeons, and certainly no construction of dynamite out of nitroglycerin and play-doh.

Upon returning to her chamber, Princess Bethie once more carefully climbed her ladder and relaxed into bed. The lights went out and the ladder was pulled away. The butler withdrew, moving with more speed than she would have thought possible. The princess however, could not sleep. She could not put her finger on the exact reason why. She rolled back and forth, wondering if a pea had been slid underneath her lowest mattress.

And then she realized the cold, brutal truth. A pea wasn't the problem at all.

She had to go again.


Sunday, November 21, 2010

The Little Manatee

The church I visited today was somewhat abysmal. Basically the worst sermon I have ever heard. So I got kind of bored, and mentally composed a short story. Here it be.

"The Little Manatee"

Once upon a time, there was a manatee named Charlotte. Every day she traveled to the edge of the florida swamp, to a sandy beach where fisherman brought their boats, hoping for a good haul.

Oftentimes she would catch sight of a particular fisherman who caught her eye. He was the only one who was careful with his boat. Others had hit her manatee friends, bumping them on the noggin without care. Charlotte liked to watch the kindly fisherman work, and wished she could talk to him. The manatee had come close to his boat before, but the fisherman had taken no notice of the comely sea cow.

One day, Charlotte decided to do something about it. She traveled away from the marshlands, out into the deep ocean where the waves grew as tall as sailboats. Further from home than she'd ever been. The dark infinite sea scared her, but once she left she did not look back.

Charlotte the manatee traveled for miles till she found a cave where a giant squid dwelled. Charlotte was frightened of giant squid but was reasonably confident they did not eat manatee. The giant squid stared at the sea cow with one giant, unblinking eye.

"What do you want from me?" the massive creature demanded gruffly.

"I have heard that you can grant wishes," the manatee replied timidly. "I would like to have my wish granted."

"I can indeed grant the wishes of manatees. Unfortunately I can only grant the wishes of manatees, not a specialty that has served me well so far from Florida. Business has been poor, so I will be happy to help you, if you do one thing for me."

"What must I do?" Charlotte asked.

"Travel to the coral reef to the west. A great white shark has been terrorizing the fishes there. Defeat the shark, and you shall have your wish."

Charlotte didn't know how to stop a shark, but she felt she had traveled too far to turn back now, and she was a very clever manatee regardless, so she felt she might think of something. The manatee traveled west until she found the coral reef, a beautiful place of strange plants and even stranger fish.

She asked all of the fishes where she might find this terrible shark, but no one would tell her, terrified for the naive sea cow's safety. It wasn't long before the shark appeared however.

Upon seeing the bulky, out of place creature floating about, the shark's stomach rumbled. The manatee seemed to transform into a giant cheeseburger before his eyes. His mouth began to water as well, but it was difficult to tell, since he was underwater anyhow.

Immediately the shark charged Charlotte the manatee down, eager for a meal. Charlotte stood her ground, or rather floated in place. She was terrified but determined. Closing her eyes, she braced for impact.

It never came. For all the fish, seeing how this brave manatee stood up for their safety, all the fish in the reef rallied together and attacked the shark as one. Apart, they had never been able to accomplish anything, but together they were able to drive the great white shark away.

He was never seen in the coral reef again. Charlotte traveled back to the great squid's cavern and made her request. She wished to be human. Immediately the manatee fell into a deep sleep. When she woke again, she felt sand beneath her flippers.

But no, that wasn't right. Her flippers were no more, replaced now by hands. Long red hair flowed past her shoulders, just as she'd always longed for. Struggling awkwardly to her feet, she saw the kindly fisherman walking towards her.

Upon seeing the stranger washed up on his beach, the man dropped his catch and ran to her aid. With strong arms he helped her to her feet. "Hey, are you alright man?" the man asked her.

Man? Charlotte took a moment to examine herself, and realized the cold, brutal truth. She hadn't been terribly specific when she'd made her wish, and that made all the difference.

She'd gone from being a manatee... to being a man.

The End

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Out of Sync

Yes. I wrote another poem. Not going to stop while I'm on a role, ok?? I wrote this one stemming from an idea from my last untitled poem. I always feel out of sync with the people around me, so I wrote a poem about it.

"Out of Sync"

Tick tick tick
the clock tocks the same for me
as everyone else,
I must assume.

But sometimes it all feels so wrong
I'm one step back,
or two steps ahead,
or seven steps back,
living in yesterday's domain,
or the future's unseen kingdom,
but am I ever in the right moment?

Am I ever in sync,
or does every moment slip past
as senseless as the one before,
while everyone lives their synchronized life
I manage stories and peoples
in my cluttered china shop brain
waiting for a bull to break all the dishes
waiting for a tornado to sweep me off my feet

Am I ever in sync,
or is everyone else,
simply as disoriented as me?
I haven't told anyone my suspicions,
but I think maybe nobody has it together
I know I'm out of sync,
I know I've got it all wrong
but maybe
I'm too out of sync to care.

Perhaps what I'm trying to say,
is that I don't mind being
out of sorts, out of sync
I'd just like it
if there was one person
two steps back,
when I'm two steps back,
seven steps to my seven,
backward or forward
out of sync,
but perfectly in tune.

Red Truth

Another new poem. The idea for this one popped into my head kind of randomly while I was working on my book. I was working on the current plot in chapter 28, then somehow I got sidetracked into a story about a girl turning invisible because everyone ignores her, then got further sidetracked with random lines about finding a lost book abandoned in the back of a library. Maybe this doesn't literally happen with bibles very often, but figuratively, it happens all the time, doesn't it??

I was going to call it "The Answer" but I liked allusion to red as a counterpoint to my last poem.

"The Red Truth"

Every library has them in limitless supply,
pages and pages,
to offer me all the wisdom
of gathered minds,
pooled into pulp,
and trapped in inky black words

I searched book after book,
looking for answers,
asking all my questions,
but the words I sought were never found
and as the black words,
collapsed under their own weight
into black holes
I thought maybe the answer,
was silence
No answer at all.

But in the back room,
of the furthest library
on the back shelf,
thick with dust
and neglect
I found something different,
a book of red words
and red truth

I looked at books full of answers,
and found only questions,
but in the end
I found a book full of questions,
and now I have my answer.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

As the Crow Flies

I was digging through my old Xanga for buried treasure and I found this old poem. I think it could use a little editing, but I rather liked it, so I decided to repost it. I recall being disappointed with the song "As the Crow Flies" by Thrice. I think I just felt like the name had so many possibilities for storytelling, having it merely be about raising a crow felt sort of boring.

"As The Crow Flies"

As the crow flies,
we're ten miles from home,
and you can still turn back.
The eternally winding road,
the weight of this knapsack,
and these swaying rows of corn,
they're all I know.

But in ten miles more,
you'll be homesick for sure.
As I wander through mazes of city lights,
and desolate farmlands sentried by the scowls,
of ragged scarecrows,
following caravans to the courts,
of the wealthiest kings.
And robbers into the darkest forests,
Where fireflies cavort in nightly shows,
and the light of lantern globes dance,
in every maidens' hair.
and rains soak every lane to mud.

Far from home and fresh bread,
and clean sheets, and morning coffee,
but oh so near the stars.
The trees will whisper your name,
and I will sing of winter snows,
and around campfires,
down mountain trails,
in graveyards and dusty libraries,
I know you'll be missing home.

As the crow flies,
we're only eleven miles out.
You can still turn back,
I want you to know.

(Originally published April 21, 2008)

Sunday, November 14, 2010

The White Dress

Second new poem. Guess I'm feeling kind of prolific tonight. This one is kind of a story. I got the inspiration a few days ago. I can't remember what from. It didn't turn out as well I'd hoped, but it isn't as bad as I'd feared it would be either.

"The White Dress"

Hesitation bears us away,
across an ocean wide and cold
lifeboats without pail or paddle
filling with seawater,
crashing to strange and foreign shores

Wait wait wait,
but one can only wait so long,
till the years fly,
and fizzle like spent birthday candles
and in the back room, there's a white dress,
Maybe it waits the longest
Collecting dust on a lonely dressmaker's dummy

And in my closet, there's a pair of white shoes.
If I could only bring myself,
to scuff them up,
to drag them across the asphalt seas,
and turn them black as coal,
maybe I could ask the question
burning within,
but I let my shoes sit in my closet,
I let my words pile up in my brain
like unattended car wrecks
and I brave the storms of this world alone
in another land, on the other side of the world,
you quietly do the same,
and we wait.

But the most senseless thing of all,
to bury away my thoughts of you,
for I would rather go the distance
with no shoes at all,
and tear my feet
to a shredded mess
than live one more second
on the wrong side of the world.

Untitled #7

New poem. I have lost count of how many untitled poems I have written, but I am reasonably sure this is number seven. If it's not... then I have two poems with the same title, not the end of the world.

"Untitled #7"

Never have I understood this thing
they call sacrifice,
never have I known,
how to close my eyes
give my all,
but if you can teach me
I'm willing to learn.

Teach me how to give,
tell me how to love,
and what does it mean,
this crazy talk
of dying to myself
I know there's so much,
that I'm missing in my shutterspeed life,
moments pass in the blink of an eye

Give up an eye or an arm
I swear it's worth it
Sacrifice your eyes,
because we're all blind anyways
and when one eye closes
to the sins of this midnight world,
does it open,
to beautiful golden light?

If I'm blind,
maimed and mute,
may my tongue rejoice,
clap my hands for joy,
and let my eyelids
follow my lips into a smile
For I do not need
beauty in my skin,
I need it to behold.

Let my eyes rest on you,
and you're all I need.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Newer poem.

I wrote another new poem. This is my now customary intro to keep the poem from being jammed into a paragraph on Buzz, which I do not like. I wrote it late last night, reflecting on the idea of darkness meeting light, a common enough songwriting foil.


I've always been told,
things will get better,
when the darkness meets the light,
but that only happens twice a day.
In with the dawn,
out with the dusk.

If I miss the sunrise,
if the day slips past my eyes,
will you still be there,
when the sun's about to go down?
Say you'll be there,
say you'll be there

Twilight is taking root in my mind,
following the rout to go numb,
I think the gray is winning out,
losing my way amongst
shades and shadows,
But I can't forget your face.

I'll close my eyes,
ignore the light,
ignore the stars
and keep my focus,
on something more permanent
than days or seasons or years
I'll keep my focus
on the one thing I love.
I'll keep my focus on you.