Faustus

What Earth? This Earth
shall no longer harbor me.
This life, written
red in a charter, sees
no salvation but the
swift and cruel release,
and then to hell —
I sell my prayers of peace.

What stars? These stars
will not freeze my fate,
nor render for me
those ivory gates
that I thought too small
to quench my appetite.
Ah, they’ve grown so tall —
and I so slight.

What soul? My soul
was slashed by the pen —
no, by avarice.
I scoffed at wise men
who shed feathers in my lap
and begged — no, prayed,
when my blood sapped
that my hunger be staid.

© 2016 Stellular Scribe

Corporeal

i am tired of this
corporeality, the
stones look to be swelling
changing
climbing towards
my face

as i walk
with fat
unfeeling feet

that thud
with lodestones
in my toes —
it would be nice
to collapse into
unconsciousness

i forgot to eat
today
but i feel
full

© 2016 Stellular Scribe

Writing: The Early Bird

ideas wake me

I feel like we hear a lot about the writer who works into the dead of night, scraping out word after sleep-deprived word until the morning light creeps through her window.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m guilty of the stereotype. It is currently 1 a.m. as I am writing this and I haven’t even eaten dinner yet.

But I think there’s a lot to be said for the proactive early bird, who wakes ready to write. I think — and this is shocking, coming from me, the ultimate night owl — that they might actually have a brilliant thing going for them.

I don’t need an alarm clock. My ideas wake me.
— Ray Bradbury

I am an incredibly unpleasant person in the morning, so of course it was a good idea for me to try out this waking-up-at-a-reasonable-hour-and-actually-being-productive thing. Yeah…maybe not. The first day I snoozed through the alarm and had barely enough time to get myself ready for school, let alone make time to write. The second day was the same. And the third. And the fourth. And the — you know what? Let’s just skip ahead a week.

Finally, finally, I forced myself out of bed at the bright and beautiful hour of 5 a.m. On a Saturday. Ugh.

I had a plan that I was determined to stick with. No coffee. No food. No checking my phone. No email or social media. No distracting, click-bait websites. No leaving my room. And absolutely no rolling back into bed.

That last one was the toughest.

I moved to my desk, drank the glass of water I had placed there the night before, and opened my notebook. That’s right; I went at it the old-fashioned way. Ol’ pen to paper, the hearty handwritten word. At first I found it foreign, trying to process my waking thoughts onto a physical page.

I wrote random thoughts, micro observations, pieces of half-remembered dreams and broken poems. Honestly, it felt like word vomit.

But then I settled into something tangible, an almost-narrative that was unlike anything I had written at night. I can’t even describe what made it distinctive. It just felt different.

I felt clear-headed, my words felt clean-cut, my writing felt straightforward and on task. I still had the dark blanket of night to block out any unwanted senses, but I also had the unhindered mind of someone who had just gotten her full eight hours and was ready to seize the day.

There’s something about waking up and writing without letting the stress of the day sink in yet that makes you hyper-aware of your thoughts. You become conscientious of what you have not yet started, thorough with what you have already begun. When you write at night, the day’s strain has already piled on top of you, and you write with it bearing on your back. And while this can allow for incredibly creative, inspired, and meaningful works, it’s not the same as waking and writing with nothing but the raw, original word.

So, what have I learned from this? Will I change my night-writing ways? Eh…probably not. I mean, the time’s now 1:30 a.m. — so there goes that prospect. But I do think everyone should at least give it a try, and I want to carry with me the concept of waking up with ideas rather than irritabilities. I enjoyed this little experiment. And now I’m going to sleep.

© 2016 Stellular Scribe
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The night mocks me.

The night mocks me. Do you
see it turning? Stars moving
across the sky, the moon at
the lead, all racing to hide
behind the horizon. They can
escape this when it’s done,
and then start anew.

A puff of air escapes my teeth.

They seem like a cowardly lot.
Always chasing the end
of the day or night, never
facing each other. I can’t
imagine why anyone
would pray to them.
They’re so inconstant.

A squinting voice. But they always
come back. Some people
might find comfort in that.

A palm cups my mouth. I
speak through fingers.

Stupid sky, stupid stars.
They watch us shrivel
into dust, thinking they’re
eternal. But I’ve seen stars
fall from the night, breaking
apart before they can ever
touch us. They’re not eternal.
And they die for nothing,
just like us.

A shadow closes my eyes.

I am not some people. See how
the night mocks me.

A squinting voice. Yes.

© 2016 Stellular Scribe

You can take back your cloak.

You can take back your cloak. It
is too big for me, and I don’t
like the way it smells.

No, it’s not you. Not your
smell. You smell like ash and
returning and sweat that beads
in the heat of a nightmare.
Your cloak smells like
the bottom of a pond, where
the fish sleep among dead,
curled fingers.

It was kind of you to lend
it to me. Your cloak.
It was warm but not too warm;
it felt like you. But it is
too loose around my shoulders, and
in that way it reminds me.
Of you, that is. And thinking back is cold,
far too cold.

You can take back your cloak. It
was never mine, but I suppose I
was never yours, was I?

© 2016 Stellular Scribe

 

 

Music Mondays: Part X

Spring is a month of transition. If you blink, you might miss it. It only takes a few seconds for a bud to blossom, only a moment for an egg to hatch. It’s dead and cold and then it’s alive.

In a way, spring doesn’t happen unless you catch it.

With these two playlists, I hope you catch it. That moment of clarity, when what you write becomes more than what you say; it becomes what you mean.


I would argue that life is most
rife when all is still, because
quiet itself can be such a thrill —
take that moment when your
heartbeat skips, or in the
shuddering seconds of
a passing eclipse, like when
a forgotten dream settles
in splendidly and you’re
left suspended
in serenity.


Oh Rose, will you wake from your slumber?
Oh Rose, will you climb from the dirt?
There are shadows approaching;
they darken the sun —
Oh Rose, find your root, take the world.


Here’s to spring! Happy writing. 🙂