"Sylvia" from Shout You Killed One Man, Shout You Killed Two

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Poetry  |  House: Booksie Classic

"Sylvia" is from my collection, Shout You Killed One Man, Shout You Killed Two.



Counting the red stars, plum-colored ones too – 

Wishing they’d all fall out of the sky like a rainstorm.

Can’t seem to get life to fit together properly.

Always blamed for taking the wrong form.

No matter how much glue is pasted on,

The pieces won’t stick – is all hope gone – for you?


Sylvia – Oh, Sylvia,

That raven-tamer with his blackbird cunning – 

Entranced your artist’s core with visions of well-penned 

Adjectives dripping with honey – 

He was the poet.  He made the money.

At least that is what the critics would bark.

With you – shrunken-down to only the wife, the missus – 

His domesticated, happy lark!


Domestic life tried to catch you in her barbed-wire snare,

Nearly took you over – taking and taking and devouring – 

Until you were barely even left standing there!

An engine – locomotive, powering right thorough the soul,

Endless cycle looping ‘round the void, never filling the hole.

Oh!  Sweet torture of the social graces – 

Oh!  Lovely sink of crusted dishes, piles of dirty laundry – 

And those children with their never-clean faces!


Sylvia – Oh Sylvia,

Shout you killed one man, shout you killed two – 

How were we to know – the one man – would be you? 

Something’s cooking – forgot to light the fire!

Nothing left to ignite your inner poet’s pyre.

Hollow vessel, emptied-out so the world may feed,

Only after you gassed yourself did the masses finally gather 

At the feast you’d prepared – to read.

Submitted: April 14, 2014

© Copyright 2021 AlexCarolOates. All rights reserved.

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