“We Eat Our Own” Dark Poetry by Victor Cypert

Children of Titans, 
we eat our young, 
we eat our dead, 
but neither prove 

The young— 
too ephemeral, 
incapable of supporting 
the demands of bodies 
long ago transformed 
into monsters.

But they taste 
like forgotten dreams 
soaked in the wine 
of half-remembered tears. 

The dead 
are made of tougher stuff, 
rugged and grizzled, 
like us; 
rusted through 
—vast cyclopean husks 
dotting the ashy terrain, 
seeping chlorine 
and formaldehyde 
into the pus-stained air 
of midlife.

We eat our dead 
and we eat our young, 
and in our madness forget 
that we ourselves, 
in Dionysian fashion, 
were twice born.

About the author: Victor T. Cypert is a writer of short stories, poetry, and speculative nonfiction. His work has appeared in Lamplight MagazineIllumen, and Wild Musette Journal. He is the second place winner of the 2017 Parsec Ink short story contest. He lives in Alabama.

Three Surreal Poems by Mark Fisher


none but dreamers sail
these wine-dark skies
roaming between island worlds
wandering amongst the stars
with some unknown helmsman 
	at the watch 
for dawn in an unending night
amid all the Milky-Way 
	wraiths of ancient ammonites 
lost and undying
within the gravity waves
washing away everything but time
craving a new creation
or perhaps an end of this one
in the belly of some Scylla 
	or Charybdis 
but who can ever decide
to wake from this dream

many eyes
for tragedy 
is disguised within as hope 
providing a tool to cope
with indifference 
the universe 
throws out, as
time’s sand
the bones
of longing, 
ghosts of ancient myths
drifting against cosmic winds
where darkness itself transcends 
the shining of stars
brief instances
of meaning
all of
an empty
vain universe 
continuing its 
trifling with our brief lives
and meaning itself derives 
hollow equations 
that finally  
we know

listening to the indifferent piping of an unseen flute
as the black stars rise over Aldebaran’s misty spires
and tragedy lingers unassuming, waiting resolute
haunted by pain within the cosmic nebulas’ gyres 

as the black stars rise over Aldebaran’s misty spires
even still echoing with haunted voices speaking lost words
haunted by pain within the cosmic nebulas’ gyres 
and all of the dying worlds crumbling into crystal sherds 

even still echoing with haunted voices speaking lost words
of stranger gods, cold and hard, gnawing on the bones of life
and all of the dying worlds crumbling into crystal sherds 
all of their struggle and clinging earns them naught but despite 

of stranger gods, cold and hard, gnawing on the bones of life
amidst the desolation that remains at the end of time 
all of their struggle and clinging earns them naught but despite 
‘cause even at the end the gods themselves play at pantomime 

amidst the desolation that remains at the end of time 
and tragedy lingers unassuming, waiting resolute
‘cause even at the end the gods themselves play at pantomime 
listening to the indifferent piping of an unseen flute

Mark A. Fisher is a writer, poet, and playwright living in Tehachapi, CA.  His poetry has appeared in: Silver Blade, Penumbra, and many other places. His first chapbook, drifter, is available from Amazon. His poem “there are fossils” came in second in the 2020 Dwarf Stars Speculative Poetry Competition.

“Final Account” Dark Poetry by Will Griffith

Don’t search just yet
for the buried trowel,
forgotten in a line 
of Ryecroft Purple
(between Myatt’s Ashleaf
and Ninetyfold).

Let it dream untroubled dreams
of Russet and Yukon Gold
guided through 
shallow channels
by unsentimental hands.

Galaxies of seasoned earth
it birthed in its time -
star dust wrought by bronze blade -
knowing times of late spring frost,
corners of uncomplicated soil.

A darker patch, barren,
slumps beside espalier pears.
Unloved by hand or trowel,
melancholic, like an oboe unravelling
the stout weave of a Brandenburg.

Beyond, a gardener’s tabby
snoozes in the Kennebecs.
X marks the spot 
where undiscriminating roots
cradle what once tended them.

Autumn’s brutal fork 
will determine what is still owed
to the old potato trowel
and to ourselves,
caught between fertility
and the gathering cold.

Will Griffith is a secondary school teacher who is new to the craft of writing poetry. He is set to appear in a few forthcoming anthologies (FromOneLine by Konayaashi Studiosand Arcane Love by Spectrum of Thoughts). He has appeared in the online magazine The Organic Poet and writes short pieces regularly on Twitter and Instagram under the handle @BunglerBill.

“Night” Dark Poetry by Robert Ronnow

Whereas last night the full moon made the night resemble a cold day
Today clouds give the night its old shrouded, crowding demeanor.
Ghosts stalk the forest gleaming (at me) from just beyond the circle
      of light thrown by the fire.
You, old night, I wish to make my peace with.
Eventually I know even I (I think, I’m told) must enter naked, a cold
      north wind in winter or a gentle September breeze instructing my
      sole spirit . . . . 

There exist powers overwhelming for the human body and mind.
The aborigine’s untold night of meditation on the mountain, coming
      away with his life-long totem and power.
The mountains tonight are alive with benevolence that could (for one
      lacking humility and respect or the hunter’s perspicacity) flame up
      into insane malevolence.
You, old complete night, I wish to make my peace with
Being utterly a creature of the water and the light.

Night on the mountain, the human animal alone, without cohorts,
      speech and music inane without other ears to listen
Yet blasting, blasting against the night
Even after fire dies, its skin still the halo beacon to nothing in nothing,
Mind pouring on the electricity, outward to friends back in the cities
Receiving in return only strange sounds.

The ear must differentiate and protect.
Just as fluids within keep the body balanced so must the ear when the
      eyes are blinded by night
Balance the mind. Eyes, heroes of the day, enjoying orgiastically
      autumnal delights
Are now slaves to every primeval passion of the mind.
But the ears:  it is a sound they have heard before and can identify.

Night, old strange night (were we once acquainted?), I wish to be at
      peace with you by becoming  knowledgeable.
Fear like fire clings to its fuel.
I wish to dampen passionate fears by attuning the five senses to all
      that is normal dark and day.
To know the habits and cycles of everything I live beside
And my inner spirit become a silent tide attuned to nature’s lunacy.

Robert Ronnow’s most recent poetry collections are New & Selected Poems: 1975-2005 (Barnwood Press, 2007) and Communicating the Bird (Broken Publications, 2012). Visit his web site at www.ronnowpoetry.com.

Two Dark Poems by Katrenia Busch

The Origin of Baal 
Mother of Demonic spirits  
Diabolical powers held—  
For the soule— who then visits  
A foreign world when expelled—  
Tossed out from within—  
A demon is said to be bourne—  
The mind— its mirror, a twin  
To thoughts that had warned—  
Executioner of will and thought  
Combined and then reflected  
Manifested— when fear is fought  
And the body— is made timid 
The Crow 
Mournfully dark, black you are 
As you sat up well—so high 
Perfect as you imitated from afar 
The image held in prophecy 
The image that was held 
So close and dear to me 
Was that— of one that spelled 
What was already a known decree 
A decree— to which 
You may know— 
“As you may switch— 
Places to show” 
That what’s within the darkness known 
Was nothing more than my shadow alone 

Katrenia G. Busch ORCID ID:  0000-0002-7377-4571 and Web of Science Researcher ID AAU-4227-2021is a Journal Reviewer for The American Psychological Association, you can find her on Publons. 

She also serves as a Film Critic for Hollywood Weekly Magazine, a Celebrity Interviewer and writer for Heart of Hollywood Magazine, a Journal Reviewer for the American Psychological Association, as well as a Reviewer for Prospectus: A Literary Offering and has worked as an Editor and journalist. Some of her published works can be found in The Screeched Owl, IO Magazine, The Chamber Magazine, Literature Today, Westward Quarterly, Trouvaille Review, Riverrun, Police Writers, Senior Care Quest among others.  

“incense and white wine” Dark Poetry by Joseph A. Farina

in this afternoon
as river fog creeps
dragging it's thickness
licking us in heavy air

in this time
that is not time
we amenities shall speak
of what went unspoken
shall see and place
the invisible signs

.  .  .  .  . .

afternoon: the whistle summoned
its great silence
the omnipresent shroud of grief
the sewers cheered its sound
rustled its rusted soul
giving up its secret sins
to a slow drying
of an incipient wind

children in unholy air
forgetting themselves
beyond hope in despair
lie in promise inhaling artificial prayer
deceitfully free
in manufactured immortality
young gods in destruction
serving enchanted eyes
from dreams awakened
and came to an end

light within light
light without light
in an eternal horizon
the exquisite perfection of a void;
flying, promising, expiring

the Intercourse of troubled air
and smoke in waning light
the infinite of incense and white wine
calling witness

in this moment
in this time

from the vaulted silences
climb the stairs to
exchange the word
descend, give sermon
and climb again

at the given hour appointed, consumed
as we lie in plastic passion
our synthetic love shared

touch my lips and feel my words
and hold my soul to breathe them
together drifting
made gods by by our union
of multifoliate frailty

perhaps once we were vestal
pure and coveted
touching the undefinable
as we began to explore

devoured or deflowered
both an ending
satiated in the void
of the light: artificial

Joseph A Farina is a retired lawyer and award winning poet, in Sarnia, Ontario, Canada. His  poems have appeared in Philadelphia Poets, Tower Poetry, The Windsor Review, and Tamaracks: Canadian Poetry for the 21st Century. He has two books of poetry published ,The Cancer Chronicles and The Ghosts of Water Street.

Two Dark Poems by Edilson Ferreira

Nocturnal Refugees

-After ‘Night Hawks’, oil on canvas, 1942, by Edward Hopper-

Night that brings with itself lack of love, 
hesitation on living, even fear, as escaping  
and fleeing from world’s demands. 
Night passing far away from others not long ago, 
paraphrased by so many poets always praising, 
since ancient times, beauty of mutual warmth
and human complicity.
People hidden in a furtive safety of a dull bar,
unable to come out of their shells and share   
some good news, perhaps hidden desires or 
love secrets, yet distrust and uncertainties. 
Yet unable to reach that souls’ communion, 
entire and unique humans’ purpose,
fearful to break supposed barriers, 
walls and fences separating us. 
Where the firmness of our ancestors, never afraid  
to penetrate dangers of dark and haunted nights? 
Where the joy and smiles, where the words that had spoken  
their dreams and drawn their desires? 
Words and desires that built the world they bequeathed us
which we are about to lose, deaf and dumb for its beauties. 
Unhappy and disinterested, we will transfer to our sons 
only aridity and dryness, our aloofness and our despair. 

First published in Young Ravens Literary Review issue 6, summer 2017 issue.

Gloomy Days

My dead, those I loved in life, 
I do not bury them. 
They remain forever unburied, 
at least as long as I can stay alive. 
When I die, they will be buried beside me.
I am sure they know this, knowing also  
I am still counting on their help and support. 
We talk about everything and everyone, 
we laugh, weep, love and hate; 
they rest with me at night and give me strength, 
at the dawn of a new day.  
Every victory of mine, they applaud and rejoice, 
as faithful crowd, that accompanies their team.
Morbid desires, unnatural cravings, some will say. 
But no, it is just great and honest one love, a pure one,  
that understands and consoles me on certain days.
Days full with doubts, shadows and ill feelings, 
those that fate has marked for me, 
which, by sure, I will not be able to avoid.  

Published in Poetry Poetics Pleasure, March 2021. 

Mr. Ferreira, 77 years, is a Brazilian poet who writes in English rather than in Portuguese. Widely published in selected international literary journals, he began writing at age 67, after his retirement as a bank employee. Nominated for The Pushcart Prize 2017, his first Poetry Collection, Lonely Sailor, One Hundred Poems, was launched in London, in November of 2018. He is always updating his works at www.edilsonmeloferreira.com