The Pale Woman (a poem)

Down the winding path, you go deep into the forest –

the dense birch trees make it so dark that only

a faint light breaks through and illuminates

the leave-strewn path.

You were told to avoid this place – a place

where corpses dangle from branches and

lay twisted on the forest floor, their faces

stuck in a final moment of eagerness to

kill a lifetime of sorrow.

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The Witch Queen (a poem)

The Witch Queen nurses you to health and assures you

she means no harm – the people fear her because she’s

ageless and has wandered these woods for centuries,

speaking with wild animals and traversing the dark

landscape, looking for lost travelers.

She tends to their wounds, offers medicine in her hut,

then devours them in sexual ecstasy like they’ve

never experienced before. They all leave feeling better –

the Witch Queen is your friend, not your enemy.

(Photo by Miriam Espacio on Unsplash)

Note: This poem was inspired by a character in Old Gods of Appalachia, a horror anthology podcast that I’m currently obsessed with.

American Masks (a poem)

What terror hides behind manicured grass

and lush flower beds? Outside the office complex,

the manager scolds us for cigarette smoking.

Months later, his cold stare is in a newspaper for

unspeakable crime. Am I too naïve to think the masks

we wear are true windows into our souls?

(Photo by John Noonan on Unsplash)

The Monk in the City at Midnight

The monks say that without an absolute zeal for God, religion becomes just another opiate. This is referring to Marx’s famous statement, that religion is “the opiate of the people.” Who’s correct – Marx or the monks?

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Pandemic Nothingness (a poem)

There’s unreality in this isolation –

survivalists buy ammo, preparing for what?

In ancient times, this was an act of God –

a scourge caused by our sinfulness,

we’d bow at altars and beg for forgiveness.

Today, we fear nothingness.

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Carnival Games (a poem)

It’s 6:48 am and I am walking onto a bus
We are no longer able to be alone
The government has deemed we must stay together

This is my first day on the bus – I thought I would be on it longer
My start time is at 11:42 am

As I am ushered off the bus after twenty-five minutes
I am given directions on my phone and told to stay with the group
I must plan my escape, I must be alone

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Demon in the Garden (a photo)

If you’ve visited my blog before, you may recognize this picture. I took it in late 2018 during a little adventure Rachel and I took in the Old City neighborhood of Philadelphia. It’s one of my favorite photos that I’ve taken from the past few years.

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Murder on the Moon (a poem)

There are no rules on the moon –

at least there weren’t until the murder.

A scientist’s blood drains down a shower sink;

let the detectives sort this out.

Spirits drove him to the brink.

Is that why he killed her?

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Descent of the Forest God

Here’s a short story that’s my attempt at a horror story, or weird fiction, at least. I’ve been reading about pagan mythology for a novel project lately, which inspired some parts of the story. Enjoy!

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‘Graveyard Carnival’ is published!

I’ve had my second short story published by Bewildering Stories. This one was put on the website around Halloween, and it’s my goofy ode to Lovecraft and Poe.

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