Sylvia Stout



i was found.
once the hands on the clock spun off
time was another man’s concern

in the still sweat of the day,
the heat of our sun was extinguished
not a moment before we burst into flame

clouds rolled in, heavy on the horizon…
rain drove droplets into the concrete
like nails into love’s coffin

the heat caused steam to rise like fog,
flowing down these sullen city streets
sweeping our sin downstream

a river of mistakes, emptying itself into the mouths of gutters
until those gutters sputtered and choked
like so many this tide had touched before

i followed it, lost without it
a word with no meaning
a singer with no song 

without my sin, what will define me?

my yesterdays ran from me, and I chased that wave
passing tomorrow’s without a second glance
where is my compass? but– i was found!

the soles of my feet bled through to the souls of my beat;
each step leading me further from found and closer to lost
each step drumming a metronome to tap the rhythm of my map…

even when you’re lost, you’re somewhere.

before I knew it, i was there.

our lies found stagnant in the bellies of sewers after the storm
full of wicked, but they lay perfectly still
forced to hear a truth that would unravel them.

we only live until we die.

Then we are free.
Then we are found.



O bitter, blanketed, blackened stars-

Frigid, forlorn, and charred despite

The icy cold- subsumed by night…


O burning ball of

Noxious fire

Writhing beneath a halo

Of poisoned light


Kiss me like Icarus,

Hungry for the burning bliss,

The blaze of the sun’s tongue,

Kiss me so I, too, can sleep

With a mouthful of salt-

No more time to keep…


If it means soaring high

Rather than remaining

Etherized upon your table

If you’re able,

that is…

to spare a kiss

in times like these-

I’d cherish to be free.


Check your facts and figures twice

always look straight-

never left or right…

from so high above

being right fits like a glove.

what afflictions your opponent suffers

at the hands of his own inadequacies,

as you relish your convictions!

well versed are you, it seems

in all of life’s intricacies…

a word of caution a twig may lend:

you’ll surely break without a bend.


Homage “Dawn” | WP Daily Prompt

Here’s an ode to the style of Jeffrey McDaniel- one of my favorite poets.

trying to imagine you is like
taking a picture of a sunrise in a mirror; solely glare
so far removed, it’d be a mere copy of a replica
you are only burning bright

your lips taste like the fruit of knowledge
without the price
sin, without the penitence…
kisses only sweet

your whispers float like the breathe of angels
dancing, suspended
the siren’s call to my weary ears
a future written in dissappearing ink

your skin sings a tail of redemption
soft and inviting
morning dew gathers perched on her petal
i can trace my salvation in the crooks of your palm.

your absence smells of lilacs caught naked,
battered and bruised in a spring mornings’ soft rain
subtle yet unmistakable
this fragile strength

dawn breaks with her heart

Dear Zelig

Long live the Zelig!

In the Queen’s parlor

Or the pauper’s squat-

He’s a million faces

And all of them fit.

Infinite places

He’s welcome to sit.

Like the lyre bird,

He’s an echo for hire-

Paid in invites

And handshakes

And tea with the squire.

He’s a empty man

But he tries so hard to fill himself,

With “how-do-you-do’s?”


And, “have-I-got-news-for-you’s!”

It’s a forsaken soul who

Feels so alone

In a crowd of his own conjuring.

When the throng disperses

And the last vapid visage

Fades from sight,

What face should our dear Zelig adorn?

The mirror stares blankly back,

Reflecting, instead, the wall behind.

Not an idea stirs,

Not a thought is birthed-

Without an audience,

He ceases to exist.

An empty chair

In a vacant house-

He waits for the charade to begin again,

To lend meaning to our

Dear Zelig.

Make Sure It Works

Don’t fear

The lyrical con artist;

He’ll hijack an idea

And act like he started it…

Mentally lethargic-

His rhymes are tired,

And they’re only working half the time.

There’s a veritable cesspool

Of inherited design-

A failure of the divine.