Enchanted majestically to be of a simple purpose, the Crane Wife, a sea-faring vessel of moderate proportions, was created for transport. She holds no treasure, but yet many seek to find her. She requires a crew of twelve. But her Captain may never worry for her well-being, nor should he (or she) chain themselves to her helm to live with her in a watery grave. She is a feather on the seas, swift to port, and light in the breeze. She picks her Captain and will stay with them whist they prove to still be worthy. This treasure is neither gold nor gem, but is indispensable. Because, if the Captain settles at shore and calls for her, she folds her white wing masts, tucks her nose into the folds of her feathers and sinks into the wooden bones of a fine crafted statue. The Crane Wife shrinks smaller and smaller until she floats into the palm of her Captain.
-Written for a world building game at Roleplayer Guild.com
Putrid and low, crawling between the roots of eight massive spinney tress, hangs a glimmering fog. Myth has spoken in whispers of a black spider, Rom, with her tenfold skittering offspring. She was birthed unholy in the beginning when there was only darkness. With her children on her back she wandered the seas, as her eight legs were long enough to touch the bottom of all but the deepest seas. Even wandering, searching with million orb-ed eyes for a nest for her brood, until here, in a mouth of an eroded volcano, she was able to find solace. Rom folded her enormous legs beneath her, her rump facing the highest peaks, and her fangs dipping lightly into the sea at the coastline. For many years the sun rose to glint in her flickering eyes, beacons in the massiveness of the sea. And perhaps that was her downfall, as it is unknown what events actually transpired next. Perhaps, her demise was dealt by the hands of gods, humans, creatures or something as old as she that festers in the depths of the sea. As Rom died, she died as spiders die, on her back, legs reaching towards the sky.
All that is known of her struggle is the aftermath; her bones left to rot and spawn mold, her belly to be the birthplace of spiny vegetation thick with leaves of lavish white webs. Her children have reclaimed her, small though they are as they are no gods or goddesses. But they pay tribute to their mother, and at dawn, her island glimmers just as her eyes did once, sunlight glinting on webs of intricate designs spread between her legs. And perhaps Rom still protects her children, because at the place where her fangs touch the sea, just along the top of the salt water waves, there spreads an oily substance, thick and viscous. It slowly boils, secreting a mist that rises and falls with the tide, sea faring winds pushing it back into the basin where her children roam.
-Written for a world building game at Roleplayer Guild.com
This forest is lewd in it’s beauty, with vapid flowers and rocks the color of red soft flesh. Huge girthed willows whisper names so familiar you could believe one to be your own. And between roots drifts water milked clean of dirt, feeding towards the slick lips of waterfalls. But the creatures are hollow. Clinging below on branches, claws and talons gripped on a hair trigger. Like bats they hang, birds, beasts, dogs perhaps even something magical if your eyes are sharp enough. But danger comes, as look too closely you will see a split in their skulls from widows’ peaks to the base of their necks. They contain no organs, no blood to drip from their wound. And perhaps you have thought what being a wolf may feel like, what songs you would wind if you had the lungs of a sparrow. In this place you would find that answer. Just stare long enough into an empty skull and listen for the click of a trigger. A shichk as these skins release themselves from their mother trees, to fill, no longer hollow, with you. Stitched into a bird or wolf or beast from the widow’s peak to the base of your skull. And some say, near the depths lie the soft bodies of empty humankind, prime picked in every shade and sex. But only if one not be a frog before one gets there. Unless you wanted to be a frog, then congratulations.
Hunger seeps between,
the spine, head, heart, devours the dream.
The poor man’s sickness,
you heaving hunger victim
stuck slick in city pitch,
yearning a bate and switch.
They leer, stalk, just at bay…
skritch-scratch to trap you in a cage.
Wary of your claws dipped
in ethnic skin.
These city lights keep the wolves from naked throats. Linger too long in darkness,
Shadow slowly devours the street lights, there, in city slick sick pitch,are people with slithering tongues,wrapping wet on heels of high hoofed woman,sliding around wrists of wistful children,meandering behind the shadows of well-to-do men, there the wolves stalk, because hunger is their sickness
they are feral, born below the system,beaten before the were born, alive because they barked,
because they bit the father who beat them
These wolves who prowl these dark spaces,the places where the stars shine sinister.
But especially be strength before words.
Because words are made more powerful
only by those who speak them.
Words are a privilege,
actions speak louder then words.
Mrs. Kham, Head of a village cluster heath center from the Ahka ethnic group in Phongsaly, Lao PDR. Photo by Adrian Gnaegi
The world exists in a vacuum of sand and sun,
cut between wind and rock,
stained red and veined in black.
Above earth and under heaven mingle spirits,
painted purple, orange, and blue
by the fingers of the cycling Sun.
Heat breathes between ink night and bleached light
devouring mud, moist from desert rain.
But the pine buries white roots deep,
circumventing the Sun,
dipping into sweet water springs.
The world is vast,
sacred in its menace
and trusted to the few.
Pushed and pulled through the sand,
they wedge their toes between red cracks,
presiding across their their rigid earth.
Determined to stand between the mountains,
they rise with voices fronting the migrating heat.
But still, their four sacred watchmen
shutter their gazes, only blessing those within.
And beyond, the ones who were taken?
They press towards the sky:
burning brown irises for only a glimpse of
their kin through the Sun.
They are the People,
thrice and once born from under the earth
into a vacuum of sand and sun.