Asmodeus Dreams

“The world is full of magic things, patiently waiting for our senses to grow sharper.”
― W.B. Yeats

In a propitious time they came to build, not a House of Love
But a house of doom; the bidden guest left to unmake the world
That love built, if possible the stated effect of trauma made visible.
Objects worldly or other, dimensions even a ghost hunter, unhinged
Comes masked with all the devices of an electronic god, can neither
Trace nor circumvent what is not a god: a slow demon thought crossing
Night’s loft, the witching hour let’s loose all star riders fallen labors.
Slow the castle turned to wood, the occupants gray aged among its timbers,
Rotting proud with the eyes of tears not fire, bleeding the shadows substance
From fear to the tumbrels clang that undoes the sun and moon at last.
Let it pass this curse of silence, only speak the word that is not the Word.

©2021 S.C. Hickman

The Mighty Dead

“All autumn, the chafe and jar of nuclear war;
we have talked our extinction to death.”

― Robert Lowell, For the Union Dead

Soldiers still roam these bloody fields, eyes fierce
And deadly, their lips moving in unison; the bare plenum
Of a chancel empty, the clergy hung upon a dark tree,
And we the living dead remind ourselves this is life’s comedy.

Striving even now they bellow war chants in the streets,
Cries of liberty against the dreams of the mighty dead;
A time of memory gone south where falling heroes pull
Their weight in bronze, erased, no more than twisted metal.

Hanging heads despair their days are numbered,
Knowing sleep is worse than death’s lonely songs;
Wiped of all trace they stand among these stones, broken,
Hollowed out to meet the silence of this sea of hate.

We’ve buried freedom in a mausoleum built of pride,
Where the stains of war contest this day’s rage;
And like children dancing in a sacred circle, soldiers
Sing in innocence of such tragic consequence.

©2021 S.C. Hickman