Archways

This allegory
Is a heterosexual story
But can be applied
To any relationship in mind.

He felt lust
A status, not trust
Her thighs were the gateway
All he knew was hurry

She wanted a toy
Disguised within a ploy
Of attraction and need
She must sample and feed.

He wanted to break the rules
Be the bad one at schools
Lure the ripe peaches
With honeyed tempting speeches.

She wanted to be grown
Leaving the parents at home
Hopped that crotch rocket
To hell, or the next sunset.

He needed to show and put out
A big boy now, he shouts
Bitch I’m a man
This is all my master plan.

She needed to feel whole
Add more boys to her role
And she passed right through them
Like a pig trampling gems

He needed tactile notches
To feel clever like foxes
Because he doesn’t know himself
He’ll grab any trophy from the shelf

She lines up to the left
And struts right through his heft
He’s just another passage
Rights of a greedy savage

He struts to the right
And thrusts through her light
She’s just another cave
Selfishly, a method to self-save

And so, they march through each other
Blindly mislabeling themselves a lover
They dynamite past with bludgeoning force
Trample each other like the stampeding horse.

Then wonder at the wreckage they left behind
Gaping at wounds inflicted in kind
Never realizing that their fancies of love
A mere battlefield, both guilty of the fatal shove.

He was never the goal point
She was never the venture joint
Just doors standing in the way
A passage to pass the day.

An archway crumbles without a keystone
Relationships wither without water sown
A sanctuary of entitlement
Is no home of enlightenment.

Know thyself then find a lover?
Just use them to hide and cover!
They don’t know any better anyway
Love drunk works the same every day

 

Photo Credit: Massa

I Miss… I Crave-

The tease of the ivory keys caressing my fingers
Swaying to the lullaby of the notes so precious
And ever present -they take me away
To a magical realm of sight and sound and harmony;
I want to return to the space of silence and meditation,
The resonance of the chords, the light aria of the melodies,
The foundational left to the playful and free right;
Together, sound the partnership,
Play a perfection,
Bring the heavens of the sky closer;
Sight unseen, yet I can hear them sing,
My heart beats wildly, my breath -an afterthought
As all I can hear, all I can see is the sound of emotion
Pouring from my heart to those ivory keys.

The mystery: how can your notes still give meaning to my effort
And my emotion?
Written hundreds of years ago, what a gift!
So beautiful still, so relevant still,
Salvation in my darkest hours…still…

These hands are so rusty now
Like metal in the rain, they are misshapen
And slow, eeking out a painful melody
Echoing a memory of perfection and speed
Ahhh, how it torments me!
But I can’t stop.
Broken I may be, but in no less way talented
The memories of ear and muscle return
I just work twice as hard now.

I no longer curse the gifts I do not own
I now cherish the talents I have been bestown.
But now, am I the pianist or the swooner?
Does it matter? It is no risk to be beguiled by the arts,
To be drawn aloft by the emoted voices of the keys.
Keys? Yes, keys
They unlock this rusty soul and alight the musty rooms
With passion so palpable, the heart bursts
With color and taste so potent
Even the brain cannot put it into words…

Give me the eyes to see
The total count of fingers to play
The full scope of memory and technique
To bring it all to life
Again.

Once again, once again,
Grant me the privilege to grace your keys
With my fingers…
Once again allow me to be in your presence;
Let us renew our partnership
Let us be one -together- again…
Sweep aside the guilt and time
And let us renew our passions-
Let us dance as we once did
Let our desire fold us, each into one another,
Let us lose ourselves to the beauty of possession,
Twirl to the heights of rabid obsession
Just you and I…

Life is what you make it

Fear can be the cement block weighing your feet 1000 ft below the surface.
Hope can be the wings that lend lift to your soul 1000 ft above the clouds.
Despair can be the inky scent of swamp and graveyards.
Peace can be the clean-smelling air after the rainstorm.
Family can be a group of strangers with one accord.
Destruction can be a single word of pain and hurt.
Battles can be a single, spoken “No”.
Surrender can be silence in the face of adversity.

Success can be one step, taken every day.
Failure can be one stop along the way.
Birth can be a strangled inhale.
Death, a solemn exhale.

Life can be fear and hope delving into peace and despair wrapped round family and destruction with battles and surrender striving to make success out of failure and celebrate the birth despite the deaths.

Life can be one second, of every hour of every day.
Life can be a laugh, a smile, exhilaration, and play.

Life… is what you make it.

Coffee #23 – What the F**k am I doing?

“Never permit a dichotomy to rule your life, a dichotomy in which you hate what you do so you can have pleasure in your spare time. Look for a situation in which your work will give you as much happiness as your spare time.” ~ Pablo Picasso

Happiness –if I don’t feel it, I’m doing something wrong.

I can mark, very specifically, the moment that happiness began to drain away.

I can’t even draw anymore, all my creative outlets are practically dried up. I can’t seem to make music, or write stories, or even draw. The only thing left are words and poetry, anger and rage.

Not exactly a recipe for happiness.

Continue reading Coffee #23 – What the F**k am I doing?

We’re not perfect…

I bite my lip nervously, our eyes hover in the moment of hush. We kiss again, deeper, hands moving from shoulders to neck, back, arms, and skimming down to chest. I inhale his exhale, suck in her breathy moans, fingers roaming wildly.

Our caresses transition to desperate groping- I twist my fingers in his hair, forcing him to tilt his head as I seal my lips to his. I shudder when she laps my neck with her tongue and wraps her fingers around my throat with a gentle squeeze. A switch’s paradise…

His hands cup my ass as her palms glide beneath my shirt. I release his lips when she pinches my nipples, and I don’t recognize the moan that escapes. It sounds wanton…and hot. I turn and push her to the bed, gently straddling her hips and wiggling up her long body to kiss her pouty pink lips. Succulent, I suck on her strawberry lipstick, and lick inside her mouth for her unique spicy flavor. She wraps her arms and legs around me in the softest cocoon. I can’t stop stroking her hair, carding my fingers through corn silk as the kiss goes on and on.

I tense when I feel his fingers reach for my belt, foreign territory and fear, but she lures me back as he soothingly strokes my back. I slide down, laving her neck and licking my way down to her breasts. Not too big, not too small, I can’t resist suckling them through her tank top. Gingerly, I nibble with teeth -will I hurt her? No… she seems to like that -oh, he’s reaching between us and… there goes my jeans.

 

Five days later…

“MotherFUCKERS!!!”

I fume angrily as I catch them together, without me. I clench my fingers so hard they dig into my palms. “What the fuck is this?!”

They try to speak but I slice my palm into the air.

“Know what? Don’t even. At least we – no I -can stop wasting my time with this farce!”

I slam right out the door I stepped through moments before, slam-dunking the bouquet of orange tulips to the bottom of the garbage bin as I stomp out the back.

Fuck!! I knew this was too good to be true…

 

Late that afternoon…

“Beauuuu, you knew better!” Frienemy 1 gushes morbidly, her lipstick red lips slobbering at her margarita. “Two is a couple, three is a crowd. And you’re -literally- the odd man out.”

She stares pointedly at my crotch. Really? 

I am not my genitals, ya know…

“Yeaaaahhh-shhhh,” slurs Frienemy 2 as she reaches for another frothy concoction. “Three-zzzzz …. haardddddd.”

Gee, thanks Belinda.

I idly slosh my bourbon in circles, wondering if answers can be found at the bottom of my glass. They never are…but it never hurts to try.

Can’t be as bad as the last thing I tried.

Fucking threesomes…

 

The next morning…

knock knock Knock Knock KNOCK KNOCK KNOCK KNOCK!!!!!

“Whoever it is, I am going to FUCKING KILL YOU!!!” I announce, clutching my head. Barreling to the door, I snatch it open. “I swear to HADES-!”

She stands on my doorstep.

And there I am, frozen and gaping like a fool. 

I slam the door in her face.

 

Ten minutes later…

“Come in,” I grumble, squinting through my hangover, clutching a pain-reliever in one hand and a glass of milk in the other. “Just stop your infernal banging!”

She shuts the door and sails right past me into the living room. Staring in disbelief, I follow her in.

“This does NOT mean I forgive you!” I shout, then wince and gulp down the pills. “I’m in pain so make it quick.”

Frowning with concern, she steps closer, raising her hand to touch me. I step back, raising my eyebrow –I dare you, bitch!

Damn it, I hate her so much now.

“I’m sorry, okay. I might have fucked up-” She begins.

“No, you definitely fucked up.” I correct, pointedly.

“-But it was your idea!”

“Cuz you couldn’t stop whining about dick!!”

“Well, it’s not like you have one!!!” she screams in my face.

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is the true crux of this bullshit.

I shove her away. “Get the fuck out of my house!”

She glares defiantly for a few moments. “You started this. Don’t be mad at the outcome -bitch!”

The door shudders on its hinges on a gust of fury. I sigh, collapse on the couch and wipe the water from my eyes.

Shit… how did this go so bad so fast?

“I’m not a bitch!” I shout, belatedly. I’m devastated.

 

Seven days ago…

“Babe?” Her crystal blue eyes stare in mine with curiosity.

“Hmmm?” I caress her tummy, pulling her into a tighter spooning position.

“Have you ever… no, it’s stupid.”

“Have I what?”

“Have you ever been with… a guy?”

I sputter in surprise.”Lol, why would I? I like girls more.”

“Yeah, but…have you ever had dick?”

“…What are you getting at?” I ask, frowning.

Sigh… “How do you know for sure if you’ve never had the alternative?”

Annoyed at her line of questioning, I cut to the point. “Okay -One, I just do. And two, that’s a bit ignorant.” I pull away and turn on my opposite side.

 

The very next evening…

“Hey, this is Kevin. Blah, blah, blah, blah…”

A chorus goes up “Hi Kevin!!”

I wave my arm vaguely in his direction, my focus on my girlfriend who’s sulking for some reason.

“Kevin, this is Heather and Gareth,” the host introduces, shuffling poor Kevin through the numerous clusters of people in conversation. “They live up your way in Platty County.”

Heather’s eyes light up. “Nice to meet you, Kevin,” she says with a giggle.

Ohhh, I see where this is going.

“Hey,” I grunt, stepping closer to Heather. It’s futile to hope that my proximity would dissuade her appreciative gaze.

“….I just moved to the area, know any local coffee shops?” Kevin’s honey-tinted eyes glide to me for a few seconds.

Heather butts in eagerly. “Depends on what you like to drink. The best coffee is BurGlasses….”

I mentally roll my eyes as Heather subtly pushes me away. To be fair, he is attractive, in a sweet sort of way. And I’ll bet those muscles don’t hurt things. I gulp down my beer and wash the thoughts away.

Shit, if Heather doesn’t stop grabbing his arm, I’ll-

Waiiittt. I can kill two birds here… Satisfy her curiosity and get him out of her system.

 

Thirteen Months later…

“Please welcome Mr. and Mrs. Kevin Gates!”

The guests burst into whistles, shouts, and happiness as Heather and Kevin meander down the aisle. The triumphant entry of the newly wedded couple is accompanied by flower petals and rice thrown through the air. The wedding guests follow and begin drifting toward the buffet set up on the green, grassy lawn.

I lag behind, my emotions in turmoil. On the one hand, I can’t believe that I -again- am the odd one out.

I should have just said no to the invite…

On the other hand, I shouldn’t be jealous of the cheating bastards. They’ll probably be at each other’s throats in a matter of months. Didn’t mean I wasn’t jealous, though.

No girlfriend. No partner. No friend to accompany me to this function.

Sighing, I sit at my name tag and stab my fork through the flower salad. Eyes drifting, they settle on the bartender across from the buffet tables.

Thank fuck there’s an open bar.

 

Three hours later…

The bartender sure is taking his time. 

I try once again to get the liquor guardian’s attention. But he’s distracted by the demands of the Father-of-the-bride at the far end of the crowded bar.

Attention hog… There are thirsty people here!!

The bartender finally notices my existence just as an inscrutable brunette slinks to my side.

“Hi! I’m Wren.”

Don’t care. I smile vacantly and turn back to the bartender. “Another whiskey double,” I say, swirling my empty tumbler.

She wouldn’t be dissuaded. “So, nice wedding, huh?”

“Sure.” I sink my face into the liquor trough for a long pull. I am nowhere near drunk enough for this.

She seems to sense my disinterest. “Look, I’m sorry, I just wanted to ask if you wanted to dance… Obviously, you’ve got other things on your mind,” she trails off.

I sigh, raising my eyes to her disappointed face. She… Damn it, she’s making me feel guilty.

“Wass your name? Wren?” She nods.

“Kay, one dance. That’s it.” I drain the glass and slam it back on the table.

She smiles and her face lights up like the sun. “Damn!” I mutter, attracted despite myself.

We approach the dance floor just as a new song starts. “Milady,” I drawl politely, bowing slightly while extending my hand.

Her warm, soft hand takes mine and we whirl onto the dance floor.

 

One sweaty hour later…

“Oh my Gawd!” She laughs, breathing heavily. “Who taught you how to dance?”

I grin. “My older brother. He liked to consider himself the ‘Casanova of Dance’.”

“With moves like that, he must have his pick of the ladies,” she chuckles, molding to my side like a missing puzzle piece.

“Actually, he’s gay, so it’s guys he’s fending off on the dance floor,” I laugh at the image of my brother actually turning down the attention of his worshipers. Not a chance.

“Lucky guy!! My half-brother is the clumsiest person in the world.” Wren leans in conspicuously. “Actually, my entire family is notorious for our lack of coordination.”

I take the hint and wrap an arm around her. “And you still asked me to dance?”

“I figured you’d make me look good. Either that, or you’d break my fall, like a true gentleman.” She grins at me, laughter sparking in her green eyes.

Damn… she’s… amazing.

“By the way, I never got your name,” Wren says, her hand sweeping around my waist.

“Oh, right. My name’s Gareth.”

“Gareth…” she rolls it on her tongue. “Nice to meet you…”

Suddenly I realize how close she’s gotten to my face. Is she?

Oh.

Wren tastes of honey and vodka, a heady combination that mixes with the softness of her lips, the strength of her tongue and her bold grasp on the hair at my nape.

Dammmnnn. Firecracker.

The kiss concludes. I rock back on my heels, as she licks her lips with the look of a cat sampling cream.

“W-w-wow…” I stammer. Dammmmnnnnn GURL!!!!!

Wren smirks knowingly. “Wanna go to my place?”

Uhhh, YEAH! 

I nod dumbly, wondering how this woman managed to steal my tongue and my brain in one fell stroke.

 

The next morning…

I recoil at the large gray eyes inches from mine. “Judas-fucking-priest!”

“Mmmmm-whaaaa?”

Ohhh, it’s a cat. Where? Oh, right…

Wren.

“It’s just Truffle, babe.” Wren says sleepily, burrowing her back into my chest, little spoon to my big.

Now that I look again, Truffle appears to be a large gray cat that nested on the pillow next to me. I turn back to the woman in my arms, how she fits so well, and…

Be still my beating heart… shit.

I don’t wanna go anywhere. I just want this to last a few more minutes.

Wren starts to stir. “Babe, I gotta go to work…”

Crap. Well, this was good while it lasted-

“How about dinner later?” Wren finishes, twisted beneath the covers to face me. Bedhead haloing her head, Wren’s face remains angelically sleepy and open like a flower facing the sky.

How did I get this lucky?

She’s amazing.

“Yeah,” I croak, a crooked smile on my face. “Dinner sounds great.”

 

Ten hours later…

“You hooked up with someone at the wedding?!” Belinda screeches, slamming down her ever-present margarita glass. “You man-whore!”

“Ohh, give it a rest! It’s only right he meets someone new at that bitch’s wedding, it’s good karma!” Frienemy 1 retorts, sipping her second Long Island at a sedate pace.

“Lindsey, you dumb broad, what the fuck do you know about karma?” Belinda turns her razor tongue on a new victim.

“More than you know about celibacy, you slut!” Lindsey retorts.

Belinda gasps. “You!! You…CUNT!”

I sigh and wave for my tab as Belinda and Lindsey start cat-fighting. I head for the door as one starts yanking on the other’s hair.

 

Four weeks later…

I wake up to sunlight streaming through the windows and Truffles eyeing me hungrily. “Hey Truffles,” I whisper as he casually licks his paw.

“He thinks you’re food.” Wren mumbles, kissing the back of my neck and massaging my shin with the leg she swung over my hip during the night.

“I think I can take him,” I reply, shifting to face Wren. She meets me in the middle for a morning peck.

“Mmm, that’s what he thinks too.”

I pull back and look into her eyes. “Think you can take me?”

She smirks, clutching the hand I raise to her face. “Absolutely.”

I sigh in contentment.

 

Later that afternoon…

Surfacing from the chlorine-doused pool, I sweep my shoulder-length hair back and swipe the water from my face. I hoist myself out the pool and collapse on the poolside lounging chair, next to Wren who’s getting her tan on.

“Random question, promise you won’t be mad?”

I turn to Wren curiously. “Yeah, what is it?”

“Have you ever been with a guy?”

The day suddenly seems cold and dark. I force my muscles to relax.

“Yeah.”

Slipping off her sunglasses, Wren pins me with an intense gaze. “Do you miss it?”

What? “What?”

“Do you miss dick?”

“Wha- NO!” I make a face. “I like girls, I’m not into guys whatsoever.”

She releases a breath. “Okay… Good. Sorry, I had to ask. I’ve been burned before and I’d much rather be upfront about it at the start.”

I can feel my shoulders settling down from their perch near my ears. “I can understand that,” I say finally. I lean back in the chair and settle my sunglasses over my eyes. “My last girl ended up marrying the guy she begged me to bring into our bed for a one-time threesome.”

Wren’s expression is murderous. “Who’s the bitch and can we kill her?”

My reaction is halfway between a sputter and a chuckle. “Nah, she isn’t worth it. Plus, it worked out. I ended up meeting you at her wedding.”

Her eyes widen. “No, way! You were dating my sister?”

“…Your sister?” I stare in disbelief. “You’re Heather’s sister?!”

“Technically half-sister, but yeesh!” Wren shakes her head. “Sorry you got burned, but that’s typical for Heather. She has… interesting ideas on fidelity.”

“Yeah, no shit!”

“Gareth, can you take off your sunglasses for a minute?”

I slide them to my forehead. “Wassup?”

Wren leans close, and I mirror her so we meet in the space between our chairs. “I’ve gotten to know you pretty well, “she begins, a hint of nerves in her face. “I want to be upfront about the fact that I have feelings for you. I’ve been burned before, I’m a jealous person when it comes to my relationships and-”

“Yes,” I interrupt. “I’m all for an exclusive relationship. I get what you’re saying.”

She pauses, then that brilliant smile reignites the sun in the sky. “Damn, Gareth, I fucking love you.”

Grinning, I pull her out of her chair and into my lap. “Love you too, Babes.”

The last thought that floats through my fading brain?

I’m so glad that Heather cheated on me.

Cuz I found paradise with Wren.

 

 

Copyright © 2016 by Opalflame

Death is always the Present

Inspired by LIFE Season 1 Episode 10, and CSI Season 3 Episode 10

What did you see?

In that last moment, as the dirt covers your face. As the ice froze your lungs. What was the final synapse? That last flash of electricity as your final exhale fluffed through the dirt.

Like a noose around my neck, this sinking weight in my gut. Like Icarus you soared so high. Like Icarus, you surpassed the final limit. The limit to death.

Continue reading Death is always the Present

Flash Fiction Day #5

Inspired by Life (2013) Season 2 Episode 21 and the tragedies of Orlando, FL in 2016 and Aurora, CO in 2012. This is a work of fiction.

Flash Fiction Day 2016

Part 2: One plus one equals 1

The professor strides to the front of the room as the class volume lowers to a low hum. He scribbles “Professor Halmen” on the white board before turning to address the students.

“Good morning, class. As you can see, my name is Professor Halmen. In case you stumbled into the wrong classroom, this is GSNI 101 – Introduction to Culture and Diversity…”

Three students pack up their laptops and slink out the door. Professor Halmen watches them go, eyebrow raised.

“Yep, always a few of them every year… Now that we’ve gotten that out the way, the core concept for today is-”

Turning to the white board, Professor Halmen picks a blue marker and writes:

ONE + ONE = ONE.

Continue reading Flash Fiction Day #5

Hope & Insanity

The fine line
Between hope and
Insanity, is
Innocuous.


 

He couldn’t help but watch. They looked so good together. The sandy, sunkist man. The flaming red-haired woman. From their frequent kisses, and gentle touches, he could tell they were in love. Deeply entwined within each other.

The light of their affection blinded him. But it was the flash of light on the waves, spearing sharply into his eyes that caused the tears.

He pulled the brim of his hat lower as they passed. A moment for them, a counter to his  eternal agony. His chest felt like it would explode from the seismic tremors slipping from his soul.

How could he? How COULD He?

A dented smile cracked his face. I guess, he and I have different definitions on forever.

The light glinted off the small gold circlet as it arched towards the ocean.

 

Coffee #17: Dreams and Crushes

“I’m infected with you. Pull the plug already. Tell me before I go, That you’re infected with me.”  ~Infected by Demon Hunter

No coffee in ages. No rest for the weary. I’m exhausted in mind, body, soul, heart, and spirit.

But triumphant. -Ish.

Pull up a chair, let’s talk about life. I can’t wait to share, so tell that barista to shake a tail feather!

Damn it, who put vodka in my hot chocolate? Barkeep-erista!!!

Continue reading Coffee #17: Dreams and Crushes