View Full Version : Coddling the Warden

Chesters Daughter
January 31st, 2010, 10:26 PM
Deeming me unfit,
with a flush you offered
my tiny gold shackle
to the sewer rats
years ago,
but the digit still peels
shedding flesh like tears.
What an ingenious way
to brand your prisoner.

The barred windows
have the inspector's greedy paw
begging for grease again.
I wonder if you'll remit
or resort to brick
denying me the sunlight,
sullied by striped shadow,
that assures me
the world still exists.

Your key violates the padlock
and I jump to attention,
waiting for inspection,
ready to pipe up
"Prisoner number one
reporting for orders, sir!",
as number two
resumes her shrieking
from the basement.

Just a corner crack whore
incarcerated without a rite;
she's no hope of a gold shackle
but still bound to wear your brand.
Singing the chorus of Disco Inferno,
you stoke the fire
and then simply stare
until the poker assumes the shades
of an African sunset.

"Bath then dinner!" you bark
before descending the stairs.
I lean upon the wall
toeing an idle jack,
making a note to dust it
before it results in attack,
when the screams
of a million demons
come barreling from below
and a hint of singed skin
seasons the breeze.

Shocked into action
I bustle to the bathroom
to entreat the tap to exact
the perfect temperature
then hustle to the kitchen
to guard the roast.
Bloody rare is a must
or it's another piercing
by a needle dressed in rust.

Silence abounds
as prisoner two's pitiful pleas
are thwarted by adhesive.
(gotta love that Crazy Glue)
I arrange your plates with a smug smile,
almost slaphappy
at the new inmate's induction.
Perhaps she'll replace me
as your prized plaything.

I pull out your chair
as you run twisted fingers
through still damp hair.
I place a napkin upon your lap
and then curtsy with care
so as not to bare scars.
With bowed head, I giddily whisper,
"So good of you to throw a party
most wonderful Warden,
it's a joy to have some company."
and I spy a glint of gloat
in the flint of your eyes.

I offer you a bite
with a silver fork
so far beneath your grasp
as a dirty little ditty
bounces about my brain:
Please spare her the boneyard
beneath the basement floor,
unlike the whores
who came before,
let this one be a keeper.

This is far too long, but for the life of me, I can't decide which bits I should lose even though I know it's overkill. Being a stickler for detail is going to be the death of me, I know I did not give the reader room to breathe, yet again, so my question is, which bits are the weakest? They are all equally important in my silly mind, but good sense dictates that's my imagination. I would truly appreciate any suggestions. Thank you my lovelies.

February 1st, 2010, 01:53 AM
Man! Talk about dark, my dear! This has got to be the darkest I have seen yet, from you!
You are the Dean Koontz of poetry! Or, if you don't care for him, how about Stephen King? :twisted: Actually, I can't think of anyone who does this kind of dark humorous poetry, so maybe you are in a class of your own!

As to what you can trim, for the life of me, I can't see anything. All seems to be a necessary part of the whole story. If I think of anything, I will certainly suggest. :smile:

February 1st, 2010, 02:34 AM
You need every damn word of this poem. Each stanza tells of the "Master" and his self indulgent, self important and smarmy actions. The recipient of this "keeper's " acts shows a helplessness and fear and ,to me, almost a self loathing because of an inability to break free of the situation, Thus the prison within one's self and the Warden who takes advantage in so many cruel ways.

That feel of seething decorum is done with great skill. Wow..


February 2nd, 2010, 08:08 AM
I cannot see any weak parts here or any redundacy in words, it may be a bit long but that does not break the pace or the strength of it. I feel the whole thing works well and you really cannot take anything away without hampering the piece. I enjoyed it. Thanks for sharing this.

Chesters Daughter
February 10th, 2010, 11:54 PM
I did not expect the response this got, I figured I would be flogged for the length. Needless to say, I am pleasantly surprised.

Dear Cindy, Oh, I'm in a class of my own, all right, but not because of my pieces, I'm a strange one, indeed. lol. I am honored by your comparison, love, like Koontz, absolutely adore King since I was 13. I'm really backed up on their recent works but once I get glasses, I'll catch up. I suppose it would be safe to say they are mentors for this mental case.:lone: I'm glad you enjoy dark stuff, not everyone finds this type of stuff appealing, but it's the stuff I always enjoy the most so it's what I prefer to write. If this were a piece I'd be hanged for repetition after that sentence. It's good to know you think all the aspects are vital to the story, but still, Drew's suggestion may be the way to go with works of this length. Thank you, hon, your words gave me a walk in the clouds.

Dear Sondra, I am so pleased that you really got what I wanted from this piece. Your words tell me the amount of time I invested to come up with ways to describe the dysfunctional relationship of this duo without actually "telling" was time well spent. The fact you were able to embrace the depth of my lady's plight and articulate that understanding so completely makes me believe that some of my methods may actually be keepers. Thank you, my dear, for bolstering my hope for continued progress.

Dear Shawn, I am truly elated you enjoyed. I know you took the time to read through this with a fine tooth comb, your past responses are proof of your valued attention to detail. Your findings, or should I say lack thereof, mean a great deal to me for I respect your opinion. I am thrilled that you found it reasonably solid despite the length.

Dear Drew, I'm loving you, nightmare stuff means a modicum of success. Forgive me, hon, but I know nothing of flash fiction and since you mentioned it, could you point me in the right direction to read some really good pieces? Your suggestion is very appealing to me. A great many of my pieces are too long and flash fiction may be a more suitable vehicle for the long ones. I know nothing of writing prose, but I do learn from example, so where is the best place to go?

Thank you all so much, your time and kindness are truly appreciated as always.

All my best,

February 10th, 2010, 11:58 PM
This keeps me reading! There are some really funny lines in this!

February 17th, 2010, 02:59 AM

Lady S
February 17th, 2010, 02:39 PM
You seem to have a real mastery of these dark pieces. I wouldn't trim any of it.

Chesters Daughter
February 22nd, 2010, 09:14 PM
Dear Dylan, I'm glad it held your attention despite the length and that the humor was palpable however slight. Thank so much for sharing your feelings on this one.

Dear Whitaker, Perhaps one day I'll branch out into short stories, who knows. I hate writing dialog, though, and poetry serves me well in that respect. Length is continually a problem for me, so it may just be time for me to actually try my hand at prose. As for Disco Inferno and Crazy Glue, I wasn't sure if I should use either and am considering removing both. I couldn't get the image of him singing burn baby burn out of my head so I included it. It makes him all the more vile. Same thing with the glue, I though people would assume duct tape and gluing lips together again makes him all the more evil. But if those references pulled you out of the piece, then I haven't a doubt it will do so to others. Yes, I need to rethink this. Thanks for your input, you always hit on things I initially found iffy.

Dear Vicki, I am most comfortable writing dark pieces but I fear I will become trapped in my comfort. Nothing worse than stagnating in a puddle of the same old muck. Truth be told, most of my pieces start out as nice normal stuff and then always turn to that direction without my trying and then I have to go back and rewrite the first stanzas. If I embraced reincarnation, I would have to believe I was a serial killer in a past life. :pale: The fact that you wouldn't trim anything means an awful lot.

Thanks to all for sharing your precious time with me, which as always, is deeply appreciated.

All my best,

Chesters Daughter
February 25th, 2010, 07:56 PM
No need for apologies, my dearest Drew, you handed me an entire banquet on a plate with that link. Thank you so much, love, I'm looking forward to some happy hunting. Hope you post a piece soon, I could use a little of your joie de vivre, I'm starting to get frown lines. Thanks again, hon, you're the best.

Love ya,

September 17th, 2010, 02:57 PM
"needle dressed in rust," "entreat the tap," and curtsy so as not to "bare scars" are all great images.

i'm on the fence about his eyes like steel. the image is a little hackneyed, and you could dress it up into something else. run with steel though.

i see what you mean about wanting to take some out, but you can't do it in a sweeping gestured. i checked for useless stanzas, but you need them all, so its going to be a whittle project.

the narrative here is really strong. i don't know if this could hold as flash, and i don't know if i'd want it to.

September 17th, 2010, 06:35 PM
Where have I been! Oh that's right, in therapy discussing my demons and writer's block. Why I'm so unhappy because I can'ty portray gloom. I bow to you for creating a piece which my favorite guy, Alfred Hitchock, might read with great zeal. I know you like to cook but you cooked up a mean witch's brew, here! I do think you're venturing near prose (though this poem holds!). And you're correct. The practice of writing verse will only imporve narrative writing. I'd give it a shot, if you're so inclined. May the black clouds hover over us for "there" is real mystery and foreboding. But don't loose that sense of humour I can never pull off! Morticia

September 18th, 2010, 01:34 PM
I remember this, Lisa Still full of impact. Where is my butcher knife. Or pinking shears. Or, most probably, toenail clipper. Sondra

Chesters Daughter
September 20th, 2010, 04:49 PM
Dear Loki, This is one of my favorites of my own, possibly my most dear, and I am extremely grateful to you for resurrecting it. I'm glad you enjoyed those images. You zeroed in on the one thing that I thought I was too lazy in this piece. I punked out with "steel of your eyes", and as old as it is, now I'm seeking to replace it. But it can't be something ho hum, it has to be stellar and it's giving me a hard time, but I'm still pondering. I've tried the whittle, couldn't bear to part with a single line to my chagrin. Doubt I'll ever do flash, it's a whole different genre which is beyond my grasp at the moment, but perhaps in the future... Thank you again for bringing this baby back.

Dear Morticia, No fair, if you're Morticia I have to be Lily Munster, how come you get to be hot and I have to be ugh? You are far too generous with your words, Laurie, I'm sure even in his current state, Mr. Hitchcock has far better things to do than read my drivel, but I am honored that you think he might enjoy. You're right, back when I wrote this, I was leaning toward prose, but you know I have no patience for true prose, so I've since tried to keep my pieces shorter and more manageable. Humor and I are joined at the hip and there will never be an amputation same goes for dark. Being a fellow dabbler you know once it's got you, it's for keeps. Much appreciated, my dear Morticia.

Dear Sondra, I am so honored you saw fit to stop in again, thank you so much. Nix the clipper, love, nails are quite the handy weapon. Anyone who followed the show Oz will tell you Beecher had great success with his.

Thanks again my friends.

All my best,