Dark Lady Poetry - Volume One, Number Six




Volume One, Number Six

March 2010




Sarah Springer


Olympic Harvest


Inch by Inch

John Stocks


New Year's Eve (Part Two)



Sonia Halbach

Birth of a Sappho


Upon Entering a Late Night Coffeehouse


Una Xoto

A Night of Madness and a Dream of Childhood



Amber Victoria Tudor

A Song

Mammon is their Father






Sarah Springer 



Your Adonis-front, what walls

did it mask?

I ask what

has my Narcissus hid?


In your testament I found

self; a lie

aligned with

a vague and clandestine truth.


Lovingly, I was cloaked

in your wit;

it fit in

my buttonhole, green petals.


But those coverings faded

in brightness

amiss in

their weakening paper paste.


So I cleave to Ireland

as brutal,

futile as

England destroys its gilt art.


Salome wanted your head

silver plate,

latent thing!

You lay in Paris instead.


But the wallpaper held fast

a battle

that had all

the pain, and little glory.



Olympic Harvest



Battalions of wind forge forward,
Charge through sleeping trees.
Their cold gusty spears conspire
To conquer the summer breeze.

They sigh of total destruction
And demolish their chosen foe, 
Reenacting the battle
That happened many years ago.

When Persephone was as Helen,
And the gods took up the fight,
The crusade, not just to aid her,
Was to champion warmth of light.
His army prepared and ready,
Hades arranged his campaign
While, breastplate gleaming gold,
Athena spoke in clear refrain,

“In the name of Zeus the Mighty,
leave be your hostage wife.
Return her to Demeter’s breast
And free the world its strife.”

The death-king did not budge;
His bride had made her pact.
Olympussaw no other choice
for the Hand of Zeus must react.

That war-wail that was sounded
Touched Greece with dread severe.
It singed the hearth girl’s supper
And pierced the plowman’s ear.




Their armor glowed and glistened,
While Artemis guided their flight.
The chariots and horses rumbled,
Dueling with Phoebus’s might.

The swords of Hades were strong,
The tang of blood rent the air.
But both sides had volition
Guiding blades in this affair.

Despite the bloodshed full 
Both sides yielded the war
Raised the conch to end it
And grieved the dying gore.

Hades would share his queen
With Demeter, fair and mild.
The mortals would have warmth 
After winter with winds wild.

So when those gales blow frigid
And snows freeze the candle flame,
Remember that struggle of lore
As you look for one to blame.

Leaves fall silent to the ground,
A mass of orange and red;
Recall that endless battlefield
And revere the ones who bled.
Springtime is to be fought for
As time marches wearily on.
It is only beauty of charming youth
That outshines even the sun.

For it is not man’s place to challenge
The gods; they have their plans.
They change alliance with a whim
And leave fate out of our hands.






Their comrades have fallen

While these cleave to failing posts

As death marches on.



Inch by Inch


I will take this house and

Inch by inch

Kick in the cobwebbed walls

Inch by inch

Strip the faded filthy carpet

Inch by inch

Beat the broken bathroom tiles


(Those notes you left on them

describing your little Rorschach test)

I will take this house and

Inch by inch

Rend the funereal green drapes

Inch by inch

Splinter the moldy floor

Inch by inch

Smash the pristine Blue Willow


(The only thing you ever

bothered to love more than yourself)


I will take this house and

Inch by inch

Yank out the rusted plumbing

Inch by inch

Annihilate the green furniture

Inch by inch

Slice the idyllic dusty foxhunts

(Though I feel a connection

Between those bugling men and you) 


I will take your hand and

Inch by inch

Sever your promises

Inch by inch

Eradicate your composure

Inch by inch

Remind you that you have failed


(And you did such a beautiful job)







John Stocks




There would always have been beauty

A shared benefice

An indiscriminating sunset

Falling on the blood red tide

The dismembered limbs, hacked heads

At Martyrs bay

Sensuous, sublime unknowing.


On the bronzed faces of tourists

Clicking ‘Canon’s’ back toMulland Oban.

Or the faces of the grieving mother’s

With sons lost in the mud ofFlanders.


At twilight, pagan and pilgrim

Would feel the same creeping sense of awe.

The hermit frying sprats in his cave

A pious monk; lost in cerebral prayer

The witches knitting ‘popetts’ out of hair.


The roar from the Ocean’s mighty swell

The majestic indifference

Of Gannett, Sea Eagle or sonorous Whale

Would resonate with all.


There will always be beauty here

Long after the words have died

And the cottages have crumbled into dust

One morning from the edge of time

A new, tempestuous sun will rise.




New Years Eve(Part Two)


Only the naïve will anticipate

An end to war, a global harmony

Or imagine that we can change our course

And not press on to self destruction.


Let us focus on some private beauty

The unique innocence of a small child


Or a love that can transcend anything

The hope, if anything, is in the detail.


Presently we will try to hold a glass

To the future, we know that it is out there

A glass of champagne and an uneasy toast

Our thoughts are random, indecisive.


Love has no politics or division

Just an essence, an essential secret

That prevails, in blizzards of destruction

In any heaven, we wish to enter.





‘The Jews are not the men that will be blamed for nothing’


It was not the rain, but how and where it fell

beating an insidious tattoo on tin

splashing into east end pavement puddles

the streets that once had a name

as welcoming as the rippers’ kiss.


This is Limehouse

this is death


transcending eras.


It hangs in the air

in codeless dislocation

beyond the west winds soulless murmurings

‘Annie Chapman, Cathy Eddowes’

In the creeping gloom of twilight

the coal back eyes, the leering smile.


On half lit streets the cobbles glisten

a girl in a hoodie, leggings, hurries past

a disembodied voice yells

‘Ere, over ere!’

(Someone screams-is anyone listening?)


All is disquiet, all elusive dread

blank faces at the bus stop

unclaimed bodies in the morgue

the dizzy angst of resurrection.







Sonia Halbach



Birth of a Sappho


A martyr before I could walk

on water

or even walk at all;

my baby blanket was

threaded with unearned praise

while those early days

were glorified and warm.

But had all those givers

of myrrh and gold known

of my later fate, they

would have left me

as I had entered,

gay, naked and cold.






I like the smell of women,


not the store purchased aroma
of artificial fruit with a manipulated
unreal scent, cleanly masking
the pure nature of her; of it all -


I want the hidden fruit
wafting from below in a foamy current
river, fresh water lightning sparked flow
washing over me; over you -


and the aged wine red bitter
taste of sweet dewy morning
moon beamed soil in which
I bury deep all I know; a little I don't.





Upon Entering a Late Night Coffeehouse


I’ve been drinking

and I notice how

hair lingers in

midair -

on those who haven't.


She whirls around and

I'm amazed

at how it avoids

the gravitational pull

of it all;

settling back to shoulders

on its own terms.

Her brown curls

contradicting the tightness of her

clasping black shirt,

hips swaying ever so slightly

to music from hidden speakers.


She doesn't smile -


yet she stands on a table

with this glow on her face.


I wanted that glow.








Una Xoto



A Night of Madnessand a Dream of Childhood



It comes 

when you least expect to find it

The dreams of childhood & the joy of the Sunday bell house 

To recall the rain against window & the pull of maternal hand rapt 

big 'round 

tiny bone finger child 

to feel warmth & know smile & father whiskers poke'd silly against face 

familiar vistas & pumkin'd terrain 

to feel the breath of memory lip the kiss of fortune 

To know the nest of safety & feel the softness of pacman jeans against leg & ankle 

A room, a table, a small lamp, basket tree of apples wormed brown 

alone with mirror 

alone with face 

cigarette death machine 

another push of whiskey 

in another room, narration of myth from formula

 The rise & fall of Icarus

 the vinyl hammer clicks the rocking horse to tremendous pause

 a half note of distance

my throat bleeds out when wet or sickly

Some where down the hall the tiny mirror

 another voice, another room

 a murmur...No, a choir for the mind to devise

 A divine Host shall glimmer the lunatic into

 patterns of recognition

 a host of stars burnt fast against my eyes

 & somewhere out there

 the two are laughing

 at the trace of shadow to lung

 or is that here? Is that now?

 I am not well. I may not ever see her well again

 to drown by thought is to drown by sea

 To erupt from the tree & to lust for

 the plum

 tongue licked

 sweet for something higher, something sacred

 my ears burn the worm & leave me with traces of

 the throat boat slowly burning Britannica volume by volume


 an echo more akin to rust accumulating oil from tube

 then of howl from breath


 there are fields out there 

Acres of memory which lay waste to harvest 

I am a shell fish greedy for the hook 

hungry for the worm 

I was once painted blue & whispered Golden 

raised above the hopes of 

all who came before me 

in the symphony of youth all tongues may recall 

the thought wheel of charity & the thickness of gravity 

The morning cock which stirred & crow'd us happy & sprite 

which pull'd back our hair & taught us delight 

the weekend sun who peeled 

away slumber & children's sleeping games 

to embrace & tumble down grassy hills into 

the arms & hearts of sisters who welcomed us home 

from trains & packed cars quick for leaving 

In my waking hours I knew only of 

promise & the gilded ceiling fans of possibility





Here we salute the onion

 the audience of stars & molecule

bead to thrash the tussle of rushes

which inhabit the framing hirsute node of skin between us

last night the lunar landing was a bathing point

motes do gloat the magnificence of our watery island

the sour facade of milk to skin to basin gold


  sparks sativa, burning root, ashen oak

  the voice of Oz

  a moment of tinsel supremacy


in between the days of sun & conception

  we left the bed in disarray

we painted our faces in flour & lead

& ran through windows to the sea

we reversed the twin turbine kaleidoscope

  reinvented order between our toes

From our gowns, Jehovah by helicopter

from our gowns, Stonewall & Gods promise delivered in a rainbow

Ah from our gowns, we kissed ourselves thirsty & loose


Forgive me (Aegri Somnia)

I have burned these shoes & been unfaithful

to this disease

  worn mustache & pantyhose overSt Paul

have skipped second meal in exchange for cheap labor

(talk) Talk (talk) to other gods, other monSters, other creeds

but only because they are not so jealous or paranoid

found peace inChinatown11th & Vine Saturday 2:22 am Febuary 23, 2004

I wasn't there but I knew a few who were

They glanced the moving wheel which spoke blue & mechanical

under xeroxed reproduction

Drew pictures of Mohammed in dirty washrooms under weak lighting

Salaam, Salaam,

he kinda looked like Don Rickles in drag (Salaam)

Read hadiths beneath jubilant banners

dancing naked & pure we stirred certain stars & quietly consumed the

others within a soup of her own design



Shalom, the war waged the struggle waned

Shalom, we turned our tulips toward the match & the stick

  all the while; sulfur burns

Shalom, my love is an ocean salty from your jeans

I was born from burning churches... shalom

firebombed for the pity ofAmerica...shalom

I was born from a lather'd bathroom stall

  Saturday 1:33 am 23, February 1974...shalom, shalom

  Born under fire within the brushstroke of the Minister Grandmother



No more for the old iron horse

we threw halos 'round the heads of the Great Mother

  & flipped chairs in the order of their exile


  from the shore

  trees, gardens

  vines ripe from the mather

From the yard

  ethos, dreams of trespass, open doors

  the taste of nicotine

From fingers

  foreign teapots,petites Madeleines

things once past, now modern  Glass

  & the softness of form

within the palm: Satori,

  Oh Trolleys into the sun

within the belly: an unfolding naval without

  Vishnu's lotus twirled Nabhija, gave way to

ebb'd flowing units of memory

No not easy, never that

                    only the shadow which

         falls softly upon us all

              Only the ovens of modernity which

jitterbugs between days

             marching with the yellow captains of industry

the revolution balloons were in turn considered hoax & slight of hand

when held before the spectacle of vacuum tubes of pixilated reality


  this is not enough

                    this is never enough

          from the dawn tothe dust

we have been promised something beyond the skin, beyond the  


                 we were bathed within the vocabulary

of thunder perfect mind

                            we were cherished above all else

       pebble fish: the golden egg will crack plates spinning the cosmos

and from withinJesus will tweet forth swirling tiny crackles of eggshells

& a thousand million smilingJesus wings will implode into the cacophony of sound & vision

  Out of life, some breath... La petite Mort

  These sleeves, far from ordinary

  from your hearth bread of multitudes (love) fingers caked with snow

  wiping away any labors lost  only hearts

  beating, eyelids stirring

 a bit of flatulence & the taste of whiskey on my fingers as

I stroke sleeping hairs goodnight

  deep from the sidecar train





Amber Victoria Tudor 





A Song




With the shadow



He was

Weaned on

Muses milk


Let me be

The Nymph

That sways


To the

Sweet sound

Of Spheres


Surrounded by

Celestial synesthesia


I could be

The apparition




A captivated



Graciously Salvaged

With a lyric call


A Classic





Through his



Touching Grace




Let me go





Mammon is Their Father



I’ll name my daughter Silver

My son, Gold


Eternity will shimmer


Like spectrums in summer


Dreams sparkling down

White walls


Sparing any unnecessary



Poetry will play in gardens

Dazzled with raspberries

And roses without thorns


The days of stopped time


Will stop


While whimsical air

Spreads seeds

In places never known


Uncertainty has been a Master

Where slaves are rarely born




This will cease in Whispers


Hope is never found in pockets