A Writerly Obsession- Part 2

Posted: December 16, 2015 by Jaden C. Kilmer in Poem, Revenant
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Below are a series of poems dealing with adolescence through the eyes of a children’s book character- Alice from Alice in Wonderland. Adolescence and Alice in Wonderland make appearances in my novella REVENANT, on sale now at amazon and available for free with Kindle Unlimited. This is part of a series of pieces for Vampire Week in promotion.

There’s no vampires in here… but still relevant.

US store link


 

I. Once

Once upon a time-

Which I hear is how stories should begin

There was a child

 

A child of kind and curious heart

Who followed a hare and talked to a mouse

You may have heard of her

 

But she has not heard of you

Oh I weep, the poor thing must feel ensnared

In her prison of ink and paper

 

Perhaps it would be possible-

Perhaps it would do her a great good to know

The touch of snow, the chill of wind

 

Perhaps…

 

II. Hatter to Alice

 

O! Why it is so effervescent to see you-

Why- I’m practically brimming

Quite literally glowing-

And essentially effusing

Or is it enthusing?

O dear, it appears I am losing

My voluptuous and vociferous vocabulary

But please- never mind my ramblings

Sit! Sit and pray tell

Why it is you look so uffish

 

What? Simply nonsense

You speak under false pretense

Of course, ‘tis true-

If you were a mirage then how exactly

Would we be speaking?

Conversing, comidulating, commencing

This articulation of artifices which are not artificial

Alice, my dear I’m afraid

You’ve gone mad- madder than last we spoke

How silly the very thought!

That you are a spectre or a ghost

 

So please, have some tea

And I assure you it is real

And take care not to spill it-

For the table is certainly no illusion

There is no mirage to see

No lies to unravel-

You are you and no less, my dear precocious child

 

III. The Garden

 

A flower, wilting

Bent in my direction- an obsequious servant

As if the garden was a palace

And the hedgerows its columns

 

But the garden makes no sense

It surely could not exist

In a dream- perhaps- but one that lasts forever

And I do not believe I am dead

 

So it follows- if one is to sit and think

That if I am not dead and therefore not asleep

And yet I am not awake

Therefore I must be nothing at all

 

And contrariwise-

There must be a world where real things are real

Outside this garden and outside the croquet grounds

Peeking in at me- watching

 

Yes, this is my fear

That I am a dancer in an Arabesque

And some outsider holds my world in his hands

And shakes it and tosses it and my fragile non-existence

for a moment is in peril

And the snow cascades and the ground shakes

Before settling again

And he winds me up,

so I may dance for him once again

IV. The Painting

 

I leapt out of my painting

And I fell on clouds most peculiar

Soft lettering and nothing more

Descending

                lower

                        and

                             lower

To an alabaster floor

 

And I tried my best

To read the text upon which I stood

But it was upside down

ssɐlƃ ƃuᴉʞool ou ǝɯ uodn pɐɥ I pu∀

ɹǝɥdᴉɔǝp oʇ ɥɔᴉɥʍ ɥʇᴉʍ looʇ oN

ǝɯ oʇ pǝssǝɹppɐ ǝƃɐssǝɯ ǝɥ┴

 

And I know it was meant for me

For there I was far below

Looking up at me looking down

Frozen- a stillframe

Unblinking and silent

 

And there was my name

And the names of all my friends

Etched into the ink sky

Ascending into the papyrus heavens

 

I remember in my readings- something from

the Bible, I know not the verse

Of a tower called Babel

And think I must’ve stumbled upon it

A most curious construction indeed

Letters and words replace

Concrete and stone

 

I clambered down my alphabet ladder

And in my haste the letters rearranged

A T knocked      an   left dangling

                                    E

                        free

But Babel remained standing

 

And when I alighted

I regarded the face of my stillframe self

I touched her face and found it damp

and soft, her skin was ink

The strangest of reflections

The strangest looking glasses

 

Her eyes searched for something

The something for which Babel was stretching

The something which for so long I had been searching

 

What would I find, up there at the top?

The strings of a marionette?

The maker? The father?

Would it be questions or answers?

 

So once more I ascended the alphabet ladder

 

                          Up

                   Back  

       Climbed

      I

And

 

Stretching my fingers towards the ether

And they caught- oh they caught! upon that something

A ceiling

A canopy

A dome

So I tore and I clawed and I shrieked

And soon I tore myself free

And I leapt from my perch upon the alphabet tower

Tearing down the very sky

To kiss the stars

 

I shattered the Arabesque

Finding myself in a child’s bedroom

A tattered book beneath me

And a blinding lamplight sun above

 

The child lay sleeping- almost certainly dreaming

I dared not wake him

Lest I scare him

 

And yet I heard the sound

of voices crying in the dark

of grief, of sorrow, of mournful pain

of loss and silence and dreams cut short

 

And yet I saw

children clutching books

sobbing into ruined pages

and half-remembering passages

 

And this child before me- despite his dreaming

Stifled quiet sobs, his chest heaving

And dreamland tears trickled down his nose

And rained upon me

Bringing with it

A resounding truth

And purpose

And identity

And light

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