Fate’s Laughter

We mourned him as the rain poured down

and mingled with our tears.

We watched him shrink in on himself

through dark and lonely years,

a bitter man whose bitter soul

was conquered by his fears.

He faces an eternal judge,

no jury of his peers.

No counselors or comfort now,

no riotous crowds with jeers.

He’d seen death coming for us,

but his cries fell on deaf ears.

He begged and begged us for their lives,

but still we killed the seers.

So now we wait here for the end,

surrounded by our biers.

And through the silent, empty hall

we hear the demon voices call.

We run, and run and fall, and fall.

Fate’s laughter washes over all.

We killed the heralds of our hell,

and did not hear the killing knell,

the minor notes of broken bell.

And me, the one who’s left to tell,

was once a man, but now a shell.


Blood Writes

The spells ignite.

The runes writhe and undulate to

make strong the binding spells that

keep me here among

the ivory skulls

and black candles.

The innocent blood

in the ink jar

smells like copper roses.

A scarlet droplet

poised on a silver nib

shines in the firelight,

an unholy star

chained to hell.

It desires to spread

and seep into the vellum,

recording for all time

the gibbering words and thoughts

of madmen,

and the noble speeches of

martyrs and kings.

More often than not,

blood writes them

the very same.


The Hollow Offering

“And is there nothing left to say?”

the ancient goddess cried.

“No, we have nothing left to give.

“We heard that you had died.”

“A goddess cannot die, you fool!

She feasts upon your prayers.”

“But none has come for centuries

to walk these haunted lairs

of marble stone and precious gems,

now rubble on the ground.

The prayers have all gone silent, here,

since you could not be found.

“You only have such power, goddess,

as we choose to give,

and it seems our decision has been

not to let you live.”

And with those words the goddess

slowly faded out of view,

and all her power left her

for her reign was truly through.

But sometimes when the moon is new

and hidden from our sight,

a crystal constellation

shows her crying through the night.

Weeping at the empty altar,

crying through the night.


Fortune Untold

A glowing candle in the dark,

an old man sits alone.

Across the dusty table,

there sits an older crone.


“I’ll tell ye of yer fate,” says she,

her eyes aglow and wide.

“I’d like to know if good or bad.”

He sat his chair astride.


She closed her eyes and muttered

at a fast and fevered pitch.

He didn’t see

the demon woman form

behind the witch.


She smiled with a dripping grin,

and stared with hungry eyes

so longingly, she’d come to cause

his dimming soul’s demise.


She pinned his body to the chair

and feasted on his heart.

“Your fate is bad,” the old witch said.

“And that completes your chart.”


She laughed as she got up to leave.

“Enjoy your meal, my dear.”

“Well, why stop now?” the demon said.

“The two of you are here.”

The Story Worm

The words rasp like a pitted file against my mind.

They are whittled, pondered, sundered, and then reformed.

‘Reworded,’ if you will.

What is it that you want to say?

This story is a worm squirming through my veins,

writhing against my consciousness,

twisting into boneless loops

that pulse and sting and tickle and hurt as

I try to sleep, and close my senses to its persistent cry.

But it will not stand to be unwritten.

Do you fall asleep, now?

“The thought of you will wait, and remain until I return.”

Are you sure we will remain,

or sure you will return?



*The Worm* 3D art by Jon Botros



Forsaken Souls

The fallen, forsaken, forgotten souls

are ashes in urns and bones in deep holes,

Consumed by the likes of the earthworm and voles,

That tunnel and burrow as deep thunder rolls.

Washed out with the deep tide of shallows and shoals,

The fire for the pyre burns white hot on black coals.

And you can now rest with your incomplete goals.

Blood Writes

The spells ignite in the light of a dying sun.

The runes dance and undulate to form

the binding

that keeps me here.

The blood of the innocent

smells like dead roses


the ink jar.

The scarlet droplet is poised

on the silver nib of the

black quill, ‘

waiting to be spread

like an offering,

to seep into the deep vellum,

recording for all time

the midnight ramblings

of madmen,

and the noble deeds of kings.

Embellished on the banished ether

into eternal celestial splendor,

even if our curious eyes

will never read them.



Perhaps the artifact you unearthed

was waiting for you.

Perhaps not.

The ancient wraiths of your fathers bear witness

to your own thievery.

Doubtless, the dormant curses will

begin to manifest.

The sleeping souls of the past

stumble as they walk toward the light

they’ll never reach.

The old soil encrusting your stolen treasure

is crumbly with dreams, fertile with memories,

and yet, nothing grew.

The redolent scent of the earth’s loam

gives way

to an afterbirth of blood.

Perhaps the artifact will break your clutching fingers

and release itself.

Perhaps not.

Worlds Within

The blood on my fingertips

is mine.

It holds worlds within its oxidated spheres

that some, walking down this city street,

can taste on their tongues

like vipers.


Their eyes change color and form

when you look deep enough,

the eyes of reptiles


things that fly in the night

to hunt.


They smile at me,

knowing I see them

as they think to

savor the worlds within

my blood,

rich with learning.


Their leader smiles at me too,

ferocious, flirtatious, and feral

as she mouths the words, ‘No escape.’


I drip the blood on the tip of my tongue,

and offer it to her.


Laughing, she approaches,

eager to begin

the dance of worlds within.