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The Rikweb Forum • View topic - NaPoWriMo 2005 drafts

NaPoWriMo 2005 drafts

Various miscellanea concerning Rik's poetic endeavours

NaPoWriMo 2005 drafts

Postby Rik on 03 Dec 2008, 15:38

Originally posted to the pffa websites - this thread is just the poems, no fluff.

Current status of poems (5 Dec 08):
Abandoned - 5 days
In abayence - 1 day
Untouched, awaiting redraft - 21 days
Undergoing redraft - 1 day
Redrafting complete - 1 day
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1 April 05 - Snowdrop: 39.5 & 39.6 (Virtues and Vices)

Postby Rik on 03 Dec 2008, 15:40

"Each day I turned: a revelation! Leaves
would grow and die, the rain would dry and soon
I found that folks would lie: they’d call a broom
a shovel if it served their purpose. 'Thief'
the kids would scream at me and pull my hair,
spit in my face. 'The smelly Gyp ain’t got
no dad: let’s make her cry, let’s tie a knot
of rope around her neck and hang her high ...'"




"A newborn son cannot afford to fail,
but mothers can. Whatever! Who are you
to tell me what the fuck to do? This dream
could never end: I don’t care! The scales
of luck are stuck against my life. I’ll do
nothing that helps the folks who don’t help me!"



Status: Untouched, awaiting redraft
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2 April 05 - Snowdrop: 39.7 (Virtues and Vices)

Postby Rik on 03 Dec 2008, 15:41

"Courage and love will help to see you through
the curse I've placed on your forgotten grave!
I don't need your advice to find my cave
of treasures, bitch, and nothing you can do
will stop me having what I want. I'll string
a necklace made from jaws of those who made
my life a joke; the eyes of men who played
with idle thoughts of fucking me will spin
from chains around my wrist! I'll take the world
and slip my foot across its throat, I'll break
the gates of hell, unleash the rotting hoards
condemned by gossips, teachers, lords. I'll hurl
the cogs of galaxies at God the Fake -
the universe shall reap a rich reward!"

Status: Untouched, awaiting redraft
Current version:
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3 Apr 05 - Snowdrop: 33 (At the Foot of the Cross)

Postby Rik on 03 Dec 2008, 15:43

Wiping the spit from the side of his mouth,
the preaching soldier stares at the fire
that crackles in the apse of the empty hall -

rags of a uniform rope across shoulders,
its pigments masked by a mantle of dirt,
a tattered chevron torn from the sleeve.

The wooden pews pile in the corner,
their simple carvings a source of tinder
for heat and light. Ligament smoke

caresses a body broken on a cross,
flaking the paint, peeling the Christ
to reveal his grains and varicose knots.



This man is taller, his tapering face
a skull in the gloom, his grin a memory
of comradeship, commanding attention:



Status: Untouched, awaiting redraft
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4 Apr 05 – Snowdrop: 34 (A Song for the Harvest)

Postby Rik on 03 Dec 2008, 15:44

Old Grandad Time, ‘e’s buggered off
An’ left us in a mess!
The lack of sunshine leaves me cold
An’ scared, I must confess.
There’s magic 'ere, an’ witches too
An’ packs of demon dogs,
But none of ‘em will get me down -
No, none of ‘em will get me down -
None of ‘em will get me down
While I goes turnin’ sods!

Old Boney’s army’s disappeared -
They never turned up ‘ere;
An’ Blighty’s safe from invasion
For which I gives a cheer.
I wishes I could go ‘ome now
‘Cos Corporal’s gone all mad,
But I won’t let ‘im get me down -
No, I won’t let ‘im get me down -
I won’t let ‘im get me down
While I goes rakin’ mud!

We’ve got a magic garden ‘ere:
I digs up spuds and roots
An’ plucks dry beans from spindle pods
That pops under me boots
The work is ‘ard, it breaks me back:
I ‘as to dig with spoons
But I won’t let it get me down -
No, I won’t let it get me down -
I won’t let it get me down
While I sings me silly tune!

An’ once we gets the crops to church
Our Bob will make a stew
An’ add some ‘erbs an’ salt an’ stuff
For sharin’ round the crew.
It’s tasteless grub, more ditchwater
It barely swells our guts
But we won’t let it get us down -
No, we won’t let it get us down -
We won’t let it get us down
‘Cos we’s the fighting Buffs!

An’ when we’s done old Corpral comes
An’ says some holy words
An’ three night’s soon the crops is back
All ripe like donkey turds
Then on me knees I’s back again
A-harvestin’ the food
But I won’t let it get me down -
No, I won’t let it get me down -
I won’t let it get me down
Beneath this cruel old moon!

Status: Untouched, awaiting redraft
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5 Apr 04 - untitled

Postby Rik on 03 Dec 2008, 15:45

Juddering Johnny, the star of the show
recently suffered a terrible blow -
he went to the cupboard to preen his black cat
and found to his shock she was terribly fat!
Her paws were like melons, her claws were like thorns
and in place of her ears she had grown pointy horns.
The fur from her tail had dissolved in thin air,
her manicured whiskers had curled in dispair.
So Juddering Johnny, the star of the show
was left inconsolable: "what shall I do?
I need my black cat to accompany me -
she sits on the stage and plays tambourine
but now she's all fat and as ugly as hell:
I'll have to perform with the girl who can't spell!"

Status: Abandoned
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6 Apr 05 – Snowdrop: 39.8 (Virtues and Vices)

Postby Rik on 03 Dec 2008, 15:45

"The universe shall reap a rich reward
when you fulfil your destiny. The paths
of justice stray like roads across the Marsh,
with turns and banks to spin the most assured
of journeys into grand adventures! Yes,
your life so far has been unfair; we folk
who should have guided you with love, we broke
our promise, left you when you needed us
the most – I ache to cuddle you, to take
the pain away. I wish I could! But all
that I can do is watch and hope that you
will find a way to heal your pain that makes
the world a better place, that breaks the walls
so everyone can win, not just the few!"

Status: Untouched, awaiting redraft
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7 Apr 05 – Snowdrop: 39.9 (Virtues and Vices)

Postby Rik on 03 Dec 2008, 15:46

"So everyone can win, not just the few,
I’ll eat the world. And as it will be hard
to swallow whole I’ll take my time, and start
by serving up your corpse – a salty stew
of arrogance and lies. I’ll skewer Gran
and sew her vicious lips; eviscerate
her liver. Then I’ll chew the bricks and slates
that make our home; I’ll grate the Marsh and scan
the streets of Hythe for folk to pluck and peel;
I’ll scoop the Kentish Downs and drink the curls
of the Thames; I’ll pick my teeth with London Town,
then batter England – Scotland too! I’ll kneel
to gorge on Europe, Asia, all the world!
Then I’ll be on my own, and you’ll be gone."

Status: Untouched, awaiting redraft
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8 Apr 05 - Snowdrop: 35 (The Power of Names)

Postby Rik on 03 Dec 2008, 15:48

Javelins of frost joist together
the flints and chalk-dust that form the soil
of the narrow field. Fighting the clods
with his battered spoon, the boy harvests
each treasured root – a turnip here,
a carrot there – and calls to Girl
as another worzel is wrestled from its nest.
Glad for activity, she gathers his prize
and drops it beside the diminutive haul.
The older man mechanically picks
twisted pea-husks from a tangle of briar:



His eyes are open, an itch of a smile
twitching the lines that track past scabs
back to the burnsides brushed past his cheeks.

"Ain’t got no name, but Girl will do me fine."

Slowly his hands squeeze on the husks:
the wrinkled beans bounce on the ground
and scatter, grateful for their sudden freedom.
Girl turns away, aware of a pulse
at the base of her jaw, better ignored.



Status: Untouched, awaiting redraft
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9 Apr 05 - Hazel

Postby Rik on 03 Dec 2008, 15:48

They dangle like chains
of silk buttons: sunshine and cream
on twigs. Soon the leaves
will unfurl; stretch
their hands. Smile.

Status: Abandoned
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10 April 05 - Snowdrop: 39.10 (Virtues and Vices)

Postby Rik on 03 Dec 2008, 15:49

"Soon I'll be on my own, and you'll be gone
to mould the world to your designs. So listen
to me: you'll need restraint and moderation -
success will come to those who wait! Your tongue
will weave you trouble - guard it well! Now hold
your rage and make it work for you, with thought
for how your words can shape this game; then sort
your actions - pick the fights that you can fold
to your advantage. Use the folk who wish
you harm in ways to suit your needs,
not theirs, and learn from them - their plots can be
diverted with a smile, a look, a flash
of nipple, snatch. Ensnare them with the seeds
of your desires, and soon you will be free!"

Status: Untouched, awaiting redraft
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11 Apr 05 - Snowdrop: 36 (Vegetable Stew)

Postby Rik on 03 Dec 2008, 15:50

"Hear my words, my Lord, the voice of my rally: to You I pray - even though morning has deserted me, still You shall hear my voice! No evil shall live with You, nor will the deserters stand in Your sight. March me, Lord, to righteousness despite my enemies; make Your route straight before my boots. For the folk of the woods hate faithfulness; they worship wickedness; they welcome the tomb; they service each other with their tongues. Decimate them, my Lord! Cast them beyond Hell for their disloyalty; for they have mutinied against You! But let us who serve You rejoice: let us parade for joy, because You, great Lord, will bless the righteous regiments; will bless our colours and shield us!"

The smell of the broth snatches Girl's throat.
The older soldier sorts a collection
of wooden slats, selects a plate
cleaner than the others and adds a portion
of potato and turnip. She takes it quickly,
not willing to thank him, aware that a hunger
growls in her stomach. He grins as he hands
another serving to the silent boy
and then the corporal. Threads of gravy
dribble as Girl drops to her haunches,
burns her fingers. The first morsel
scalds as she wolfs it, a warning pain
to bite with more care: she barely feels it.

"I sought orders from my Lord, and He heard me. When the daylight deserted me, I screamed in madness. I remembered the Lord, complained, and the mists overwhelmed me, shook me to my boots. I lost command of my voice! I tried to remember the old stories, the songs of my heart - had my Lord cast me from sanity forever? Where was my Lord in the chain of command? Why was my Lord's mercy, His grace, denied me? I said to my crew: this is the time for an old soldier to beg for coppers, to sleep in the gutter, his victories gone from history; but I shall

"remember my Lord in all His great works, and how I fought the heathen Bonaparte in His honour, and the King's. For there is no God as great as England's God! He is the Lord who does wonders, who will redeem us, the children of proud Britannia and gruff John Bull! And then the clouds gathered and blocked the light of that idolatorous moon. The Lord's arrows poured from the clouds, and His thunderous voice echoed from the hills to the Heavens. Lightning brightened and burned the mists: the very chalk shook and the folk of the wood gibbered like monkeys in fear. My Lord came to tend us, His flock, and led us to this, His temple! His glory is revealed and we must praise Him!"

Once she has met the demands of her belly
Girl slows her pace, practices chewing.
The soldiers ignore her; they sit in a huddle
close to the fire with their faces turned
to watch their commander, whose meal is untouched.

"The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures: He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul: He drills me in the paths of righteousness! Even as I march through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for He is with me; and comforts me! He built me a shelter before my eyes in the presence of my enemies: now I know goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of my Lord forever!"

Status: Untouched, awaiting redraft
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12 April

Postby Rik on 03 Dec 2008, 15:52

Murcury Meeps from Mosul
Owned an old boat with no hull
When asked: do you sail
In that boat, or just bail?
He said: I prefer just to scull.

Arsenic Angie from York
Murdered her man with a fork:
Though her stab missed his heart
She succeeded in part
By using the tines as a torque

Gallium Gordon from Tring
Chose to deport all his bling:
When sent down by the beak
For crimes against chic
He screamed: I’ll not wear prison string!

Status: In abayence
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13 Apr 05 – Snowdrop: 37 (Girl Resolves)

Postby Rik on 03 Dec 2008, 15:52

"How can he know the truth? Does his belief
in ornaments give him some influence?
It’s stupid – nonsense – nothing here makes sense!
This nightmare’s only gift to me is grief
and pain; a madness trapped inside my skull
of folks who sing and dance and hunt and fuck
and pray in churches built from mist! I’m stuck
in someone’s acid trip, too sick to fall
asleep. I need some help! I need a sign
to tell me what to do to end this joke –
a book of rules, a building guide, a map
of stones and trees that cannot move. A line
of arrows pointing home. Even a bloke
would do, as long as he could beat this trap!"

Status: Untouched, awaiting redraft
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14 Apr 05 - Snowdrop: 38a (The Chant of Summoning)

Postby Rik on 03 Dec 2008, 15:53

"An oracle made from some beads and old bones:
the skull of a sheep can bring freedom alone?

"Who knows what a skull on a pole can achieve -
great lords used such flags to succeed to their thrones!

"But I am no fighter, and heroes are rare;
the only hopes I have are seeds on sharp stones.

"This place is a prison, a curse and a test -
it cannot be solved with just pleadings and moans!

"My true name is Snowdrop, so listen to me:
just show me the way out - I need to go home."

Status: Untouched, awaiting redraft
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15/16 Apr 05 - Snowdrop: 38 (The Oracle)

Postby Rik on 03 Dec 2008, 15:55

From the church, the soldier chooses a track
that leads downhill, dipping between
the strands of briar suturing the cliffs.
Girl follows him, her focus sharp
on the path as it dips and deviates.
No animals call; the coiling mists
dampen all sounds, dapples their clothes
in sparkling hues of argent light.



The path levels along a ridge
of ancient cliff, its cuts smothered
in grassy mounds that make Girl trip.
The soldier stops and seals his hands
round hers and stares hard in her eyes:



Status: Untouched, awaiting redraft
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17 Apr 05 - Snowdrop: 39.11 & 39.12 (Virtues and Vices)

Postby Rik on 03 Dec 2008, 15:57

"Of your desire, that soon you will be free,
I have no care. Enjoy your death, and I'll
enjoy the touch of dirt, the smell of bile.
My snatch is mine to do with as I please!"



"Such songs can lead to babies, poverty -
must my escape depend on pregnancy?
A fuck is all I need to set me free
from mist and monsters? Bollocks! End this dream!"



"Through acts and choices I must find a way
to break this spell - this much of what you say
is true. But where, and how? I need to know!"



"The Tallyman - I've heard his name. Okay,
you start to vomit wisdom, mother! Pay
your debts and tell me where I have to go!"



Status: Untouched, awaiting redraft
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18 Apr 05 - Snowdrop: 39.13 (Virtues and Vices)

Postby Rik on 03 Dec 2008, 15:58

"The bitterness that wraps my bones, sweet mother,
was earned through tears, confusion, panic and loss.
But I no longer piss my bed, or cross
my arms in prayer for you. I grew another
childhood where I learned to survive alone.
I managed it! I don’t eat shit no more,
nor suffer it from folk. And I’ll not whore
my way out of this mess. I’ll take a stone
to Tallyman’s head and knock it hard until
he gives me freedom! Where does this man live?
A hut in the wood? A hole in the chalk? I’ll find
his hovel, mark my words, and serve a bill
to make him pay for playing games! I’ll give
such a piece of my mind he’ll wish he could resign!"

Status: Untouched, awaiting redraft
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19 Apr 05 - Snowdrop: 39.14 (Virtues and Vices)

Postby Rik on 03 Dec 2008, 15:58

"Some peace of mind - I wish you could resign
from what awaits. Don't rush to find him; take
your time and use your head - so much at stake
and I am barred from helping more. Refine
your plan, be careful who you trust! (Dear Lord!
To hug my daughter one more time!) There's danger
here - old things beyond your knowledge. Strangers
lie, but sometimes tip the truth - unformed -
within their tricksome tales. You'll have to play
detective, hunt for clues. Oh shit! My eyes
are clouding over - just a minute more,
I beg! Remember the sun, my love, the way
it warmed you, naked, sat in your pram outside.
Take care of yourself: I loved you once, you know ..."

Status: Untouched, awaiting redraft
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20 Apr 05 – Snowdrop: 41 (Grief for the Dead)

Postby Rik on 03 Dec 2008, 16:00

Her limbs make a nest of supports round her chest;
her face is cemented. Tears grout the cracks
as she rocks to the shuddering cramps that molest
her limbs, shake the nest of supports round her chest
now heaving, rake down the air to her breast
and release in a whistle of snot. She restacks
her limbs, makes a nest of supports round her chest,
her face. Cerement tears grout her cracks.

Status: Untouched, awaiting redraft
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