Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Reposts for Christmas

Hello again dear readers. We are getting ready to go out of town, and I'm not quite ready or able to come out of my hole, but I feel strongly, as I read your poetry, that I should have something here for you to read in return until I get back. So, I am going to post an old poem once a week or so, not linked to any prompt, or with any expectations. Feel free to comment or not, read or not--just my attempt to give back to those of you whose work gives me so much comfort right now. Here is one from last June.

Incubus VIII

Untitled, by Zdzisław Beksiński

Incubus VIII
(Bloody Hell)

Hell is lonely without my demon--
my personal one, I mean, because
there's no shortage here of devils.
Basting on the liquid lava's lips,
I'm alone in brimstone sunscreen,
no ruby pitchfork's flip
when one side gets too burnt,
no serpent sapient tail to scale me,
just the brisk popping of my cookery.
I thought my demon knew there's no
vaccine for the maenad's bite, that
nothing says forever like damnation.
I was killing more than willing
to lie griddled on bloodred coals
and call it love; but I missed his
listening kiss in the hissing steam.
Hell is lonely, bloody
empty without my demon.
I thought this blistered blaze might power
his blade-heart's forge, and this hammer pain
might twin us bright as living never did
yet after the first in-twisting, after
first blood spilled
he disappeared
and that is Hell for you.
~June 2013
[ This was originally posted for       dVerse Poets, where Karin Gustafson (Manicddaily) challenged us to write of twins, twining, combining or uncombining. Though I thought I'd finished with him, as I've written many little scribbles about my twin the Incubus, still he seems to linger somewhere at the back of Hell's waiting room.  If you'd like to read the others in this series, you can find them  here.  ]



  1. First--what a nice idea! It is great to see activity here--kind of heart-warming (especially with this one!) I remember this poem and always liked it a great deal for its sardonic wit and very vivid imagery. Was it Sartre said, "hell is other people"? Yes, but you have a kind of anti-existentialism going on here--hell a torment one must suffer, in this case, alone. The playing out of the metaphor is especially compelling--the devil is in the details as it were--and one's demon here seems more like the demon lover (damn narcissist) who gets you into trouble then disappears at the first sign of blood (or probably in the more typical case in the first month without blood) rather than a true inner daemon, who might stick with you to the bloody end. Safe travels and thanks for thinking of us (your readers.) K.

  2. I wanted to say that it was a cool pic. I have a good friend who makes these weird big translucent clothing as an art installation. Here's one you might like. https://katehamiltonstudio.files.wordpress.com/2011/06/kate.jpg

  3. "That is Hell for you" -- Or that's a devil for you, or the Devil. Or a man ... Infernity is the reward for our sins, as Paradise is the bilious blight of one's blessings; eeeevil love can only double-down on lupine delight, which down under is chilling balefire indeed. I get Persephone here as Tammy Wynette, rueing the demon who did her wrong. It would be a hoot if it didn't hurt so much. Moonshine without the yeehaw is cold comfort. So good to find something alglow in Hedge's hearth. This one's a Yule burner ...

  4. I was killing more than willing
    to lie griddled on bloodred coals
    and call it love; but I missed his

    listening kiss in the hissing steam.

    What a treat to read your Incubus poetry - always so rich and fulsome.

  5. I like the hare in your garden. We are having snow here, too.

    Reposts are always a good idea. It's a shame that, in poetry blogging, such excellent stuff gets buried in the archives. Hardly anyone ever goes into them, I don't think.

    Hopefully, you are recharging.

  6. "nothing says forever like damnation."

    I just love what you do with words... ♥

  7. Thank you for your generous sharing. I missed this first time around so I appreciate another chance to savor your words. I especially liked the image of a listening kiss which is the lover's preocupation with himself in this instance but could be wonderfully sweet in a true love.

  8. Thanks everyone--so glad you enjoyed this one. I hope to be doing a bit more reading and visiting when we get back after Thanksgiving.


"We make out of the quarrel with others, rhetoric, out of the quarrel with ourselves, poetry." ~William Butler Yeats

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