Monday, May 30, 2011


By: James Dubeau

Twice on Friday
I was told
To have a blessed
But not it is over
I wonder to myself
Have I lived up
To what strangers
Had wished upon me
No harm had come
Through my actions
Or inaction
Good times were had
With friends
And alone
But I don’t know
If I would
Truly call
My Good weekend

Friday, May 27, 2011

Only A Few More Days

Only A Few More Days
By: James Dubeau

Only a few more days
To go
Only a few more days
To live
Only a few more days
Until I die
A painful death
Beside the road
With an exploded knee
Gasping for breath
Crawling across gravel
And burning asphalt
Attempting to absolve
My soul
In sweat, blood, and tears
And like always
Falling flat

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Local Theater

Local Theater
By: James Dubeau

Quaint little theater
Hidden away
Back from the
Torn up
Main thoroughfare
Of the beatnik neighborhood

Three rows of seats
Flank the stage
On three sides
Theater in the round
Or semicircle
As it were

I had never been
To this venue
Never had supported
Those friends who had
Put it all out there
Living the dream
In local theater
Enjoying the laughs
And applause
Of those few
Who ventured fourth
On these quiet

Monday, May 23, 2011

Monday Morning

Monday Morning
By: James Dubeau

Eyes hang heavy
Legs are restless
As I sit here
Keeping the desk
From floating away
Slowly seconds pass
Away the time
Away the morning
Away any desire
To do anything
But sit
Staring off
Into space

Friday, May 20, 2011


By: James Dubeau

What is this life
Where decisions
Are made
And words
Are said
That do not
Move things forward
To a skewed sideways
Is in a tenuous balance
Where the littlest movement
The smallest thought
A miniscule word
Can send things
Flying off the handle
In random directions
That cannot be judged
Only the aftermath
Can be reckoned

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Who Are You

Who Are You
By: James Dubeau

Who are you
Looking back at me
A man who is
So close
But yet
We can
Never touch
Never converse
Never know each other
I do not recognize you
Not your eyes
Your hair
Or even your nose
Where did you get
Those wrinkles
And gray hair
How can you
Be I

Monday, May 16, 2011

Casino Night

Casino Night
By: James Dubeau

When the night
Is still young
The young do say
Lets us go out and play

And before you know it
You are thrown in a car
To travel two states away

On a mighty quest
In search of drink
And a bit of trouble

Before too long
Drinks are drunk
And dice are rolled
And one arm bandits
Are wrestled

A stranger at the bar
Buys a round
For all the couples
Making assumptions
On a pair of cousins
Free drinks which cannot
Be refused

Just before last call
Two fistfuls of drinks
Are pounded down
Except for the Irish
Which is slowly enjoyed
Hidden away
In the Styrofoam cup

Minutes turn to hours
Stars and moon
Set outside
While the revelry continues under
Unsetting fluorescents

Second winds become cashed
Pockets are emptied
And eyes grow heavy
The young ride off
Into the sunrise

Friday, May 13, 2011

Half-Priced Thursday

Half-Price Thursday
By: James Dubeau

Out and about
Margarita in hand
Music thumps
And bumps
As dancers
New friends
Good times roll
On this

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

The Torment

The Torment
By: James Dubeau

No matter where I turn
Or try to think
The torment
Is ready for me
Mental anguish
Which stops the brain
From being rational
Or being sane
There appears to be no end
To the pain and suffering
I seek
At least not any time
For which I can see
Forever more
This is baggage
Which I must carry
Until the time
When the torment ends
And the cool black hands
Of night embrace me
Envelop me
Into darkness

Monday, May 09, 2011


By: James Dubeau

There was once a time
Where I would not
Could not
Have done the things
That I do today
Was it just
That I was lazy
Oh no
That was not it
It was that
I had no pride
Nothing to be proud of
But now I do
With a smile
I wipe the counters
Clean the toilets
And do the chores
That I had never been
Motivated to do

Friday, May 06, 2011

Saffron: Part 3

Saffron: Part 3
By: James Dubeau

“Please stop,” Saffron begged Lord Hagen. “Do not waste the life of a man who did not know of our dealings.”

Lord Hagen grunted and tightened his bear hug. Heat radiated from the pooled blood in my face. The steal trap would not allow my chest to heave. Only air connected with my kicked feet.

“You win. It is in my purse.” All emotion had drained from her voice. There was no joy, no fear, or sadness. This woman had given up. She had accepted defeat at the hands of Lord Hagen to save a stranger who attempted to defend her.

“Fire!” Someone yelled. The vacant table which I had been knocked across was engulfed by flames. A lone candle on the floor had ignited the draped tablecloth.

Lord Hagen’s grasp loosened. My legs kicked a stone pillar. The sharp blow upon the brute’s leg loosened his grasp. I fell, a crumpled mess on the hardwood floor. Lord Hagen looked to his empty meaty paws. Disbelief of my freedom before death washed over his face.

Saffron may have only been a flapper who spent an evening or two with my lonely cousin back home, but there was something else to her. Something deeper. Deep down she was a good human being and did not deserve the same death the giant brute had in store for me.

Rusty mental gears ground out my next move. Saffron needed help more than I had first imagined. Crouched, my fist fired low and hard. I rolled out from below the wounded lord and rushed from the dining area. Lord Hagen clutched his family jewels and fell to his knees. Saffron’s purse was held tight against my ribs.

I lowered my shoulder and rushed from the dining area. The stunned crowd was bashed out of my way. Before anyone realized what had happened my feet had propelled me down many airship corridors. My mind raced. How could I escape from Lord Hagen on the cramped ship? My lungs burned and my legs ached. My whiskey-filled belly had not been prepared for such a hard sprint.

It was not long before my travels had found me lost deep in the great ship’s bowels. In a dark corner I rifled through Saffron’s purse. Hidden inside a compact was a sealed letter addressed to the ship’s captain. The letter had to be what Lord Hagen was after. An end could be brought to this mess if I was able to deliver the captain’s letter.

I adjusted my fedora and loosened my four-in-hand tie. My sides were on fire and sweat poured from me. Luck had seemed to be on my side.

Then I vomited.

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Saffron: Part 2

Saffron: Part 2
By: James Dubeau

Sprinkled about the dining room were a handful of late-night patrons. Romantic starlight dining was an airship mainstay. Solitary candles upon each table should be the only illumination. Their eyes should be locked upon each other while rich deserts would be shared. Nervously each couple avoided eye contact with Lord Hagen. Most people shied away from an agitated lord.

Alone, I entered the dining room. My cousin’s weak willed ways left him in refuge at the bar. His fascination with Saffron had not instilled courage like whiskey had done for me. He would not confront a lord, even if it was to defend her honor.

“Did you not hear me? I said, leave her alone.” I marched across the dining room.

Saffron looked up from the crouched man by her side with terror-filled eyes. Lord Hagen turned and erected himself, his full height towered over me. Olive skin contrasted with a starched white shirt and red bowtie. Black suspenders strained to contain a barrel-sized chest. A heavy black mustache hid his lips as velvety words slipped through. “I have business with this woman.”

I hesitated for a moment under his full height and power. He may be a full foot taller and wider than me but I was not about to turn tail and run. I slipped off my coat and stood toe to toe with the brute. “It sounds like a business which she wants no part of. Why don’t you pay us the niceties and be on your way?”

His meaty paw slammed into my jaw and knocked me across a vacant table. “So that is how you want this to play out,” I pulled myself off the floor and returned the candle to the table. Lord Hagen stared me down.

“You caught me unawares on that one,” I raised my fists and danced around the table. “I’ll let it slide though. Only fair, since you are a lord and all.”

The freight train slammed across my jaw again. Once more I was knocked across the table. Saffron screamed. Lord Hagen grunted in satisfaction.

“You don’t talk much do ya?” I spat blood as I spoke.

“This matter does not concern you.” His sausage fingers flexed and cracked.

I rushed forward and ducked another blow. Quickly I jabbed. Once, twice, three times. My fists bounced off his brick wall chest. My knuckles screamed.

Lord Hagen laughed. He wrapped me in an unyielding bear hug. Life was forced from my lungs. My legs kicked out as I was lifted off the ground. His strength and size spelt my death.

Monday, May 02, 2011

Saffron: Part 1

Saffron: Part 1
By: James Dubeau

“Lord Cillian.” The bartender smiled at my outstretched cabbage and left the blonde waitress at the bar’s far end. Money was the only way to get service with a mug like mine.

“I never understood your taste for that whiskey,” my cousin said when my snifter and his tea were slid in front of us.

“Keeps out the cold on these long airship flights,” I tugged on my fedora. Several other passengers had shared my thoughts and had not changed out of their hats and coats. Unseasonably cold thin air seeped through cabin windows and chilled the lounge.

“See her?” a bony elbow jabbed my ribs.

She was a fallen angel. A slender fiery headed woman glided through the airship lounge. Long green silk gown flowed over her gracefully malevolent body. Delicate fingers were encased by long white silk gloves. Golden strings glittered with diamonds draped a willowy neck. Mischievous green eyes washed over us. Her keister swished and held our gaze until she disappeared into the dining room.

We weren’t the only ones who stalked her progress. Every eye was firmly upon her. Fixed upon every curve and dove into the same gutter.

“That dress hardly looks warm.” I drained my glass.

“There sure is a tail on her.” A wistful glaze consumed his eyes and soul.

“And horns too I’ll bet. You know that succubus?”
“You can say that, she’s a flapper from back home. They call her Saffron. A few good nights at the craps table were had with her by my side.”

“She blow your dice?” My empty glass slid across the varnished countertop to the bartender. He topped it off and picked a bill from the small green pile before me.

“Blew my dice and my money, was a good time though. Too bad her luck was not as divine as those luscious lips.”

“Leave me be.” A feminine voice rang from the dining room. The background cacophony of voices and glasses ceased. Only the outboard prop engine hum filled the void between outbursts. Trouble seemed to brew for Saffron.

“I do not have what you are looking for Lord Hagen!” Only her half of the conversation reached my ears.

“Unhand me.” Her desperate protests grew louder.

“Leave her alone.” My once again empty glass slammed onto the bar. The caramel liquid insulated me from the cold and fortified my courage.

“Would you like to say that to my face?” A soft masculine voice slipped from the dining area.

“You don’t have to go in there.” My cousin grasped my arm.

“Her honor demands to be defended. Besides,” I winked, “I’ve never known a lord to back up his words and fight.”