Time- an original poem

"Sad Goodbye" by Mariana Vieira
Sad Goodbye” by Mariana Vieira

Time will be your only friend, my child.
It will cloak you in years that I will never see,
and watch you grow in the palms of its hands.
You will hate time, my child.
You will think it your fiercest foe.
But it will be all you have.

Some nights the wind will scream your name,
some days the rain will douse your flame-
but never leave time’s side, my child,
and wander into the shadows alone.
Remember time, and keep it close.
For though it’s short, it is your own.

I have to leave you now, my child,
for where I go, the storm weeps on.
I know that in years to come you will scorn
the faceless man who abandoned you to time.
But time is my old friend, my child,
and I trust it with your life.

The Red is Gone- an original poem

"Coalescence" by Lanie Loreth
Coalescence” by Lanie Loreth

In a sea of gray,
the red bleeds out
like a brilliant flag amidst the smoke,
coming to life in a burst of crimson-
I marvel at the sight.

But then it’s gone,
and the beige swallows me up.
The fleeting flare of color collapses
and I am returned to the bleak cave
that is the underground.

I become one with the crowd,
a gray fish in a gray school,
striving for the stairs that rise out of my reach-
they are the deliverance from this pit
that festers with sound.

I am bumped and nudged,
elbowed and overlooked,
like a bobbing leaf in a raging stream.
Curses and whistles drizzle in my ear,
and then I see the red.

As the stairs ascend beneath my feet,
the red pulses past the pack,
a flash of color in the stilted sunlight-
a bright bloom that lifts my soul.
I long for it to stay.

But it is all gray,
everything is gray,
and I climb the stairs with heavy feet;
the train whistle below fares me well
as I abandon the gloom.

Finally I break away,
emerging like a wrinkled sprout from the mud.
I feel rejuvenated, I taste the air-
only to gag on the curling smoke drifting
from a man’s pipe.

Above is just as soiled as below;
there is no difference, none at all-
and the gray is fierce with teeth that tremble,
devouring everything. There is no color;
the red is gone.

This poem is sort of long, but it’s the result of a writing exercise. The object was to take a piece of your writing, whether it be a narrative, fictional setting, etc., and transform it into a poem. This was from the opening chapter of a project I completed a while ago, and I decided to give it go. To be honest, it didn’t turn out exactly how I planned…but it did give me a whole new perspective on that scene.

When The Stars Swallow The World- an original poem

Unknown Artist
Unknown Artist

One day
the stars will swallow the world,
and on that day, I will be sitting here,
by this tree, waiting for you
to come and sit
and watch time crumble with me.

One day
the parchment of past and present will tear,
and on that day, I will be holding my pen,
waiting to write my last regards
before the binding melts
and the book shuts forever.

One day
the dirt beneath our feet won’t be enough
to keep us from plummeting into tunnels of space,
and on that day, I will close my eyes,
and dream of fluffing my feathers
and flying through infinity.

One day
the stars will swallow the world,
and on that day, I will be sitting here,
beneath this tree, clinging to pieces
of what could’ve been
if the world went on spinning.

The Lily Lords

Three hundred days of red we stayed,
and the grass grew with bones in its leaves.
And three hundred days of black we blazed,
as the lilies were picked by the thieves. 

Oh, have you heard of the Lily Lords?
with blue and black petals they lay
dead on the ground, hey, dead on the ground
as the night wept into the day.

One satin eve they met their hands,
and with silver lips fought with words;
they sought to restore the peace between lands,
but their tongues were honed into swords.

Not even a scream could the rose howl
as the weed wound its nettle-wrath roots,
for the Lily Lords’ tremblin’ voices were fouled
by the raw soil they did dispute.

Three hundred days of red we stayed,
and the trees soaked the blood up their leaves,
And three hundred days of black we blazed,
as the land was torn up by the weeds.

Oh, have you heard of the Lily Lords?
with blue and black petals they lay
dead on the ground, hey, dead on the ground
as the night wept into the day.

This is actually supposed to be a “song” for the project I’m currently working on. I’m in the process of writing the music to it. It’s got a fairly extensive background, so it might not make total sense when taken out of context…but oh well.

I Tremor This Prayer- an original poem

"Fire Temple" by Jamshed Jurabaev
Fire Temple” by Jamshed Jurabaev

I tremor this prayer
while the knowing flame quakes,
and velvet as the night,
my voice carries your name.
I breathe it over ashes,
I hum it into smoke-
my prayer lives within the fire
that furls and chokes.
Your smile is painted
into my song’s melodies,
and the lapping red tongues
twirl its tune readily.
I tremor this prayer
as the wet wax burns low,
and like a seeping chorus
your symphony flows.

Beyond The Void- an original poem

"The Dead End" by Cyril Rolando
The Dead End” by Cyril Rolando

Beyond the void there is
a door, murky and menacing
against a wall of thorns,
and choked in vines
that whisper
my name.

I know I must reach
that door, for beyond it lies
the answer, I think-
but the way is vast
and dripped in smog,
and the bridge rots
in ruins at my feet.

The end lies dead,
and I’m stranded on this side,
clinging to brambles and scraps
of the past that reek
of desolation.
The door, swirling in stilted light,
mocks me from afar,
singing a song that
can never be reprised.

Words Are My Weapons

Nothing feels half as sweet as wielding a finely honed word.

Steel and iron are of no use to me when I can bring battle-bled soldiers to their knees with a single sentence.
Releasing a well-aimed arrow can not compare to the adrenaline rush of unleashing a battalion of bitter words on an army outfitted in ebony armor.
The swing of a thousand swords does not deal nearly as much joy as showering a deserving party in good news.

Yes, words are my weapons.

But they are also my poison.


From You- an original poem

"Father and Son at the Ocean" by Carol Jinier
Father and Son at the Ocean” by Carol Jinier

From you
I’ve learned that no fish
is too big to be reeled in,
so long as the rod you wield
doesn’t splinter in two
in the process.

From you
I’ve learned that sneaking
snapping turtles into the back of your car
and driving them home to show
off to the kids is a perfectly
normal thing to do,
so long as the bugger doesn’t
bite your heels off
before you get there.

From you
I’ve learned that growing
potatoes is no planting venture for the faint of heart,
and that when over-encumbered with spuds,
there are countless ways to cook them,
so long as you use your

From you
I’ve learned a lot of things,
like how to talk to science fair judges
without melting into a puddle on the spot,
and how to gut a fish without
getting the intestines all over my fingers.
I learned that softballs don’t fly when
I don’t keep my eye on the prize,
and that you have to be very quiet
when stalking night-crawlers under the stars.

But from you
I’ve learned perhaps the most important lesson:
that no matter where you are, what age you claim,
what wisdom you boast and what knowledge you name-
you are never done learning.

This poem was specially written for my incredible father. Happy Father’s Day everyone!


The Ever-Present Plea For Diverse Characters in Fiction


We all know that it’s desirable, and necessary to create a society of open-mindedness and acceptance. So why, in 2014, is fiction with diverse characters so hard to come by? In my perusals of the bestselling bookshelf, I’ve found that protagonists are mainly comprised of white, heterosexual, ‘attractive’ characters. That’s not to say that there aren’t books with beautifully diverse characters and concepts (because, trust me, there are many gems out there), it’s just that compared to the norm, they are in short supply.

Before I jump headfirst into the issue of ‘diversity’ in literature, let me say that I’m not condemning authors and the way they write. A big part of writing is the  freedom to express one’s inner musings and designs without risk of conviction. So, please, write to your heart’s content about what you want- but all the same, take into account diversity.

What I classify as a diverse character is (but not limited to) someone who:

  1. comes from a rich and distinct culture
  2. doesn’t fit into society’s limited idea of “beauty”
  3. is racially and ethnically diverse, in both appearance and manner
  4. identifies with a different gender, sexual orientation, etc. (essentially, the LGBTQ community)
  5. defies the standard for gender (example: women taking up leadership roles)
  6. is emotionally varied (in other words, a character who has real emotions, vulnerabilities, and strengths)
  7. has disabilities (whether it be physical or mental)

Obviously, diversity isn’t limited to just race, though race does play an important factor. We live in a world swimming with different cultures, languages, values, and mindsets. So why shouldn’t literature reflect this? As the renowned English crime writer, D. L. Sayers, said:

The vital power of an imaginative work demands a diversity within its unity; and the stronger the diversity the more massive the unity.

Diversity doesn’t diverge characters: it unites them. It’s a bringing together of the beautiful, the ugly, the easy, the tough, the different and the similar elements of life. Writing is in many ways the most powerful relayer we have. When we read, we are impacted. We are impressionable creatures, and whether it be voluntary or not, we absorb what we read. That’s why diverse characters are so important.

This is important in all literature, but especially so in YA. May it be fantasy or science fiction, historical or contemporary, young adult books play an essential role in shaping the younger generation’s minds. Being a young adult myself, I always get excited when I come across a book with a main character of Middle Eastern descent, or one that centers around the life of an individual who is genderqueer. The reason? Life is diverse. The world is diverse. And it’s about time that people start growing up accepting this fact.

Above all, diverse characters shouldn’t be written for the sole purpose of being ‘diverse’. They should be written as people. I’ve come across many novels that throw in a few diverse side characters just to make some statement about ‘culture’ or ‘society’. This is all well and good if done in moderation and good taste- but if you are going to incorporate characters like this, make them more than just a message. Make them people.

When it comes to diversity in fiction, there are no end of arguments and comments that can be made. I could go on for another ten paragraphs about the lack of diversity in fantasy alone, or detail the reasons why some writers don’t feel ‘qualified’ or ‘obligated’ to write diverse characters. But perhaps I’ll leave all that for another post.

In the end, write what you want to write- just remember to write widely and diversely.

Do you think there is a need for diverse books and characters? Do you try to write diversely?