Richard P J Lambert CC
Tartarus Eastern State Penitentiary
We are the ghosts.
we want to see
what torture looks like here in the sunlight.
what humans can do
to the damned.
oh how Tartarus looks lovely
steeple crushed into its place
oh how the ceilings arch .
the stench of us lingers
we have propped up the dead
to sing for us
and won’t we suck the silence
from their bones
there are skylights
in the cells.
heaven is above you.
You cannot touch it.
it is the sun’s blaring eye.
your sins, wallow in them.
and we will bag your head in the sun.
you. are grain to be reaped,
and burned for the old gods
incense for their cavernous halls.
don’t you know?
This is freedom.
I used to think that people who love
when they know
it’s killing them
wanted to slowly kill themselves.
slowly, one magnificent
blue smoke signal after another.
But love is not about dying.
Love is about truly embracing life.
Listen to the long sighs of a lover as they exhale.
You will hear a red smolder
riding the coattails of their indigo breath:
I am love. let me flare.
Can’t you hear the
Roar of flame rumble in their vena cava?
your love has nicknamed you “Kitty”,
you say. “Yes, let me arch my back for you.”
you say. Can’t you hear the bloom of their soul.
souls, murmuring in deep
deep ripples under porcelain skin
pink smoke swirling around our heads. you say,
oblivion. (has got me).
I say, no it doesn’t. Hold my hand.
Today we spit in the face of oblivion,
and bear down on the nape of god.
The chapel is burning.
And none of the mahogany notices.
and we are the arsonists.
I was told by my father’s eyes today that
I am weak.
I am a wildfire burning the world in front of me today.
I said I am Shiva today. I have one thousand hands each holding a pen and I will break every one on you, today, Sir.
I said today I am a lion. I see now that I
am the whole PRIDE.
Weakness? I swallowed giants that tried to break me and I spat their splintered bones at the foot of my Molten throne.!
Me, weak? I lived with monsters under my bed for DECADES. I climbed into the darkness and hunted them down
Their blood is nothing but warpaint to me now.
I am a gladiator in my own rib cage.
Weakness hasn’t been in my vocabulary since the age of three.
Tell me I’m weak again. I dare you.
Mental Illness as Tempest
I am holding fast at the helm
sky black and brooding
my pale face spattered scarlet
wind lashing my blood
swells the horizon line
embolism become mountain
mountain become pantheon.
My name is God-killer
Today I will cleave the impossible in two.
David Sabol was born in San Diego, and flipped pages to kill his thumbprints in Ronkonkoma, NY. Now, he’s studying English Literature at SUNY Geneseo.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.