Friday, August 31, 2012

She Plays

She Plays
By: James Dubeau

She smiles
Blissfully unaware
Of the world around her
Laughing at it all
Seeing life as nothing
But a joke
Even amongst the squalor
The debris
The filth
Even as the lights go dim
When the power is shutoff
Silencing air conditioner
And TV alike
She was sad
For only the briefest of moments
Before returning to chores
Cleaning the kitchen table
One item at a time
Five minutes between each
While scolding the puppy
Who drags her shoes
Across the house
Which should have been put away
Days before
But he keeps tugging shoes
She tries to pull away
With a gleam in his eye
Thinking she’s playing
While she laughs and yells
And perhaps even the dog knows
Behind the mock anger
She truly is
Just playing

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Hexed Perseverance

Hexed Perseverance
By: James Dubeau 

Doused in gasoline
The hard black husk
Was ignited
By a single spark
Completely engulfed in flame
Burning bright
Until cracks appeared
And opened wide
Glowing orange embers
Once alive
Full of vigor
Reduced to nothing
Licking flames
Turn to powdered gray ash
To be blown away
In the slightest of breeze
Forgotten about

Monday, August 27, 2012

Unrequited Love

Unrequited Love
By: James Dubeau

I walk alone
Along a dusty path
Headed toward the horizon
The desert
Then the sea
And the edge of forever
A land I do not know
A future unsure
She doesn’t know
She doesn’t care
My words go unheard
My gestures unseen
Just as the emerging stars
Twinkling above
Cannot comprehend
My screams
Does it even matter?
Did it ever?
Once before?
But I cannot turn away
Lock her out of my mind
No matter how hard I try
That is how it goes
So I must continue on
With an outstretched hand
To be filled
By another’s

Friday, August 24, 2012

San Francisco by the Moonlight – Part 3

San Francisco by the Moonlight – Part 3
By: James Dubeau

“Oh how the calf fears slaughter,” Lauren stood over her fallen prey. Her greedy eyes savored her next meal.

“You, you are a vampire.” Murphy stuttered as he grabbed the pickaxe off his pack. He scrambled to his feet and swung wildly with the tool. She leapt back but the steel blade sliced her flesh. Blood did not drip from the gash in her thigh.

“You got a little fight in you, I like that.” Lauren limped as she circled Murphy.

“A wicked beast must be destroyed.” Bravery begun to bubble from Murphy’s intoxicated heart. If she can be hurt she can be killed.

The young man advanced and swung the digging tool. Lauren easily sidestepped the attack and knocked the weapon from his hands. Her fangs sunk deep into his forearm. Blood boiled into her mouth. Searing pain radiated from the bite. He kicked and thrashed, knocking her away. Once free he grabbed the pack and ran from the grave covered hill.

“Your passion and rage tastes of coriander,” Lauren licked her lips. The wound in her leg had disappeared, not even a scar remained. She sniffed the air and pursued the scent of blood.

Murphy ran into the night. He knocked over a gravestone and narrowly avoided the rest. At the base of the hill was one of the few structures in the cemetery, a mausoleum. The door was unlocked and he slipped inside. His shovel worked to bar the door shut.

“You can’t hide all night.” Lauren pounded on the mausoleum door. The old shovel groaned with each impact. A beast of the night could not be held at bay for long.

No escape or weapon could be found inside the bare mausoleum. Only a few dying bouquets and locked burial vaults accompanied him. Murphy dug through his pack for something, anything, to help his plight. A bandage for his wounded arm. A weapon to defend himself with. A tool to reinforce the door.

In a thunderous boom the shovel splintered and Lauren slammed through the door. Murphy snatched the first hard object his fingers touched amongst his supplies and stood to defend himself. She lunged and knocked him against the stone wall.

The pair stood face to face, their bodies pressed together. For a moment neither one moved. No words came to either of their lips.

Lauren blinked and took a half step back. An oak tent stake was lodged into her stomach. It pierced deep into her flesh, angled under her ribs just missing the heart. Feeling real pain for the first time she fell into a heap upon the floor.

Drunken exhaustion overtook Murphy and he too collapsed. Resting against the mausoleum wall he watched the vampire for signs of life while struggling to catch his breath. Lauren lay unmoving on the cold stone floor. Her large eyes stared vacantly towards the ceiling. The monster appeared to be dead but he had to be sure to finish the job. The young man searched his pack for a second stake to hammer into her heart. Once he had hammer and stake in hand he looked up to see that she was gone. Only the oak stake remained on the barren floor.

Murphy’s head pounded when he returned to the tavern the next morning. Ben remembered him from the night before and said the young man had been drinking alone until he stumbled off as an incoherent drunk. The bartender also did not know Lauren and said no woman had ever worked for him. He laughed off the vampire story and bite marks upon Murphy’s arm as nothing but a nightmare and dog’s bite.

As the day wore on the memory of the night’s events faded from Murphy’s mind. Beautiful monsters that lurk in the shadows to hunt young men’s blood did not exist. Vampires were nothing but a bad nightmare. The only niggling reminder of Lauren was the aching pain of twin puncture wounds where her fangs had pierced his flesh. It was a pain which lingered to the end of his days.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

San Francisco by the Moonlight – Part 2

San Francisco by the Moonlight – Part 2
By: James Dubeau

Lauren and Murphy had spent many hours talking in sparsely populated tavern near the edge of San Francisco. Candles were all but burnt away by the time they were the only patrons left in the establishment. Ben closed down the tavern and the pair stumbled into the cool night air. Not another soul was out on the moonlit streets.

“I love the sanguine moon when it is bright and big and full of life.” Lauren sighed as she walked arm in arm with Murphy through the deserted streets.

“Man was not meant to gaze up at the sky from the middle of a city. There should be grass under our feet and nothing but the heavens above.”

“I know just the place,” Her red lips opened wide to expose a broad white wolfish grin.

The moon illuminated their journey to the farthest edge of the city. Lauren had grabbed Murphy by the hand and led him through the streets. The inebriated young man was slowed by the heavy pack upon his back. The heavy straps cut into his flesh and he stumbled a few times. It was not long before the pair arrived at the main gates of the Yerba Buena Cemetery.

“We shouldn’t be here so late at night.” Murphy said when they stood before the cemetery.

“Best place in this city to watch the stars,” she danced through the open gateway.

Lauren walked between the graves with a ballerina’s grace. Her large eyes never looked left the heavens. Murphy grew courage and followed. At the top of a small hill they stood together.

“It is so beautiful when the moon and stars sing poetry from the heavens. Tonight makes me feel alive.” Lauren ran her fingers through Murphy’s sandy hair. “There could be no better companion this evening. It was the fates who brought us together.”

“Aye. Who would have thought my first day in San Francisco would have found me standing in the middle of a cemetery watching the stars with a beautiful woman?” The young man leaned in and kissed her cheek.

“I have one more thing to show you.” Her lips met his.

Murphy’s heavy pack dropped as they kissed. Lauren’s tongue darted between her lips to meet his. She locked him in a tight embrace as her lips wandered from his in a lustful flurry of kisses. Her lips were moist upon his flesh. Teeth lightly grazed his neck and nibbled his ear. He returned the passion and found her skin to be cold in the night air.

For a brief moment their passion subsided as they struggled to breath. Murphy lovingly kissed her forehead. Lauren looked up to the man in her arms with large doe eyes which turned red and mean with hunger. A pair of fangs extruded from behind ruby lips.

Murphy let go of the beast and stumbled backwards over his pack. The cold ground rushed to meet him. A scream escaped from his lips.

Monday, August 20, 2012

San Francisco by the Moonlight – Part 1

San Francisco by the Moonlight – Part 1
By: James Dubeau

“I’ve never understood why they call it Irish coffee,” The petite woman standing behind the bar said as she topped off the whiskey filled clay mug with coffee. Her short red hair was a stark contrast to the black dress and pinstriped suit coat she wore. A single strand of pearls clung tight to her neck, a strand which attempted to add a splash of coloration to her pale complexion.

“It’s a drink we created back home to keep the late autumn chill away.” A young man in his late teens said when the bartender slid the steaming mug in front of him. His sing-song voice was soft and cracked under the pressure of her beauty. He sipped the drink and bunched up his freckled covered cheeks in disgust. “Arbuckle and ‘shine is not quite the replacement for our Irish whiskey. Have some cream to sweeten this up?”

“Pouring liquor into coffee is a tradition older than the Irish, makes little sense to name the drink after them. Are you new in town?” She retrieved cream from the icebox and splashed it into his drink. Her doe eyes washed over the stranger. His clothes were a size too big for his emaciated frame, hand-me-downs most likely. He had walked into the tavern with an overloaded pack which he had laid at his feet. Tied to his pack was a shovel and pickaxe, nicked and dented from many years of hard farm work. A look of desperation was in his sunken eyes. It was a longing which she saw upon most men in San Francisco, except for the few who had found their gold rush fortune.

“Boat got in this evening. This drink was just the pick-me-up I needed before finding a place to stay for the night. Come morning I’ll be off to find a chunk of land to call my own.”

“Aren’t you a little young for prospecting? All the best claims are already taken by bigger and meaner outfits. Save yourself from frustration and an aching back and go home.”

“There ain’t nothing in Ireland for me anymore. Potato blight starved us all. I’m here to prove to ma, bless her soul, death is not all life has to offer.” His voice trailed off.

“If you aren’t going to take my advice then I might as well make your first night in San Francisco a hospitable one. It is hard to find a friend for good conversation in this town. Nothing but dirty old prospectors or vile hard frontiersmen and sailors walk these streets. Ben can take care of the few in here tonight.” After nodding to the other bartender she circled around to take up the space next to Murphy. She smiled and extended her hand. “I’m Lauren.”
“Pleased to meet you. Murphy is the name.” They shook hands and he blushed.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Dance Becomes Me

Dance Becomes Me
By: James Dubeau

Living on the razor
I step cautiously upon the blade
The knife edge slices into my flesh
Greasy blood trails in my wake
Careful not to slip
Not to fall
To either side
A cough emerges
From my parched throat
Keeping me awake
Though the midnight hours
Not permitting sleep
Peaceful rest
To rejuvenate my body
Hunger aches deep in my belly
My soul cries
With a cracking voice
I can do this
Silent at first
But growing
No longer do I fear
Swirling storm clouds
Or a heaven turned black
Big wet drops plummet
Washing away my blood soaked trail
And razor transforms
To a moss covered garden path
I am drenched from head to toe
Dance becomes me

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Cross Word

Cross Word
By: James Dubeau

Up and down
Over and across
The rope does tie
It does bind
No more struggling
No more screaming
From the battered and bruised
Locked away
In the dark little boot
As we bounce
Along old dirt trails
In search of a hidden land
For a shallow dug
Deserving resting place
For what was said 

Monday, August 13, 2012


By: James Dubeau

Soulless days
Spent punching 9 to 5
For a soulless company
Only filling space
Only filling time
Only a number
A lonely cog in the machine

Soulless life
No true friends
To hang out with
Talking about this and that
Being real
Being true
Being there

Soulless love
No one to come home to
To be in love with
No one to cheer for
No one to be cheered by
Empty bed
Empty heart

Soulless home
No family left
Parents are gone
Along with all others
Who bear the same name
Dead and buried
Or left estranged

Go out on a limb
Make an effort
Fill the days
With life and love
And home will sing
Happiness and joy
An overflowing soul