Friday, January 28, 2011


By Maxwell Cynn

I glimpse her hiding in the shadows, between a heartbeat and the next faltering breath. Her alabaster skin gives stark contrast to the black satin corset over her flowing black dress. Black lace and gossamer wings accentuate her onyx eyes. The pale beauty of her thin face, high cheekbones, and stringent jawline, frame her luscious lips. She smiles, a smile that would shame the full moon of October, and I forget to breathe.
I stare at her, my only thought a need to taste those lips, to feel her rapturous embrace. Her hand reaches out to me. Fingers as cool and fragile as a china doll trace the deep furrows in my aging flesh. I sigh, the last wisp of breath escaping my tired lungs. Her fingers pass through my graying hair soothing away all sadness. Her cool lips brush mine and blood pumps into my blushing cheeks. She is gone.
Like a fool I chase after her. We play our lovers' game like deer in the early spring. But it is late fall for me and the cold of winter descends like icy shards into my bones. Too many years of life have passed, too much hardship and pain. She comes for me and I reach for her embrace. Her kiss I fear and desire beyond reason; that cold eternal kiss. But she whispers in my ear, "Not yet, my love, not yet."

The way of things...Some thoughts about loss
By Alan Gilbert

I am not gone
Please never think me so,
The world must turn
Tides ebb, and spirits grow.
Our souls evolve
As everything must do,
Though bodies fade
My essence stays with you.
It's natures way
That everything must change,
All bodies grow
Then fall to rearrange.
But nothings lost
Just takes a different form,
Our souls remain
Complete as when we're born.
Some summer days
You'll feel me close at hand,
The softest breeze
That whispers in the sand.
A gentle touch
Much lighter than a kiss,
And you may know
That life is more than this.
So talk to me
And wait for my reply,
For every soul
Was given wings to fly.
And I will answer
Everything you say,
I won't forsake you
For a singe day.

Now and Then
By Joann Buchanan

Stone guards the part of my heart that holds 
my memories of you. 
I can't look 
for fear of breaking.

Life is anew now. 
Sweet and tender. 
Still I guard the walls 
that contain you. 

The pain of your touch 
and the scars you caused 
can never be healed. 

I move forward 
ever watchful over my shoulder 
Will you appear today? 

Forever hoping my new heart won't break 
the pieces stay together. 
Such is the sweet tender joy 
of my new life. 

Please dear walls 
Please don't break. 
Don't steal my life away.
a companion poem to Tami Snow's 'Gone'
by C. D. Bennett

Thoughts of you are whispers on the wind
Echoes of love too faint to recall
A smile at sunset
The sound of laughter in the hall
A knowing glance
A breathless dance

We were a spark
The world set to burn
Now with masks to hide our torment
Each of us now take our turn

We had our chance
You turned away
No mask can hide
What our souls did say

Another life it seems
Too far, so far away
When I reach for you there is nothing
Only memories, damn memories

I'm here
You're gone
Numb and speechless
I face the dawn

Without a word
With barely a tear
I can't help but wonder

Were you ever really here?
By Tami Snow

My head was filled with thoughts of you today. 
Creating your memory in a thousand different ways. 
The ease with which you'd make me laugh. 
Those things you'd do that made me gasp. 
And then I wondered... where have you gone? 

Not long ago you dangled my heart on a string. 
Filled me with happiness, caused me to sing. 
My world seems a little bit broken now. 
I'd paste it together if I only knew how. 
Oh, how I wish I knew... why have you gone? 

So empty and longing my soul has become. 
You were my morning, I'm blocking the sun. 
Wearing a mask of indifference, I hide. 
Protecting myself, retaining my pride. 
Hate to admit... It hurts me... now that you're gone. 

Eventually all of this pain will abide. 
My simple request, to once again fly. 
Till love and words once again bring back. 
Only one thing that would be torture to lack. 
Even through the agony, I’m glad you’re gone.

(see alternate ending on Slaves to the Muse)



As I sit here, fingers snapping,
on the keys I’m gently tapping.
Words appear and lightly shimmer, 
often without any glimmer 
of a route I may be mapping.

On my Muse’s door I’m rapping, 
hoping that the thing’s not napping.
But that hope is getting slimmer 
as I sit here.

Adjectives and verbs I’m scrapping.
Broken-winged, my thoughts are flapping 
while my mood is getting grimmer 
trying to hold on to dimmer 
thoughts my tired Muse ain’t trapping 
as I sit here.

By Wayne De Priest

Lust is power
By Elyzabeth Snow

Lust is power, but not comparable to a dictatorship—it is a bond between two.
It is a force in which two people share between each other; unbreakable, sometimes unbearable.
It is the power that increases blood flow in your accelerating heart even when only the slightest thought of the significant other comes to mind.
Lust is love’s seed.
It is the reason to breathe once it is embraced; to thrive and to make the other smile and feel the same about you.
It makes you tingle from your head to your toes. Your insides kick start yet your body starts to weaken.
Pain in your lips from biting them as you try and hold yourself back from making your dreams a reality—tongue dancing behind your clenched teeth: its so hard to hold back.
Twiddling thumbs try and veer your attention from something so beautiful… its going to happen… you both know it.
Your heart beats faster and faster as your mouth begins to open—lips softened. And there it is. A sweet, simple yet amazing kiss planted so lightly on each others’ lips.
Physically, it’s like a butterfly landing on the most beautiful of flowers; mentally, like an atomic bomb has been planted in your gut and an explosion has taken place in your soul.
Caught in the moment, more is craved.
You want more!
More everything!
This firework feeling utterly consuming.

Billy came to me just the other night,
his body was battered, what a terrible sight.

But nothing could prepare me for what I saw next,
poor Billy's arms burned by cigarettes.

He pleaded and begged me not to tell of what I knew,
but I couldn't do that, could you?

I heard on the news Billy lost the fight,
he died in his mother's arms tonight.

By: Paula Claire Hamel (Roberts)


you slip through my fingers
grain by grain
like sand
like slow death
steal away 
nothing left
but ash and memories
and false hopes
On a beach
under a gray sky
looking out over an empty ocean
I wait in vain
For your return
But the waves
They crash in
leaving nothing
but grooves in the shore.

By Megan Bostic

I Remember Well

The ocean waves were cold that day
You tiptoed near then ran away,
Then giggled like a child at play
Dancing through the misted spray.
I felt my heart just slip away
Yes I remember well.
We walked beneath the cloudless sky
Then raced a sail boat drifting by,
You stood and watched a heron fly
But turned with moisture in your eye
And asked, “Why do we have to die.”
Yes I remember well.
I’m sure it started on that day
You turned inside, just slipped away,
No longer does that child play
No dancing in the summer spray.
And I will never hear you say
“Yes I remember well.”

By Alan Gilbert

Saturday, January 22, 2011

For the Adoration of Writing. An Offering of Friends

It is few and far between that we as individuals are touched with a moment that changes us as human beings. For many years I have been writing fantasy, and I love it. I wish to continue creating worlds of the fantastic, otherworldly and profound. But there is definitely something to be said of the tragic and heroic realism that our species experiences and pushes through on a daily basis.

We struggle through hardship, monetary, medical and else wise… Stretching our capabilities and attempting to do what we feel is impossible. We must remember, always, where we come from, the United States, a land and a home full of infinite possibilities.

I feel honored to be a part of what it means to be an individual blessed with the freedoms that living in this country allows… freedom of speech and creativity. And as such, I wish to provide you with a smile and perhaps, an occasional tear.

My life has been recently touched by hardships such as illness and the absence of a family member fighting for our freedom. I am thankful to say, that time is near over, as my warrior brother is on his way home to our beautiful country. And as an individual, in humble honor and celebration of our freedoms, I offer you a taste of the drive behind such artistic endeavors…

I am calling this piece… For the adoration of writing… an offering of friends…

Shadows Between the Pages
by Joann Buchanan

"There are places between the shadows, worlds within the printed page. There are things that live beyond the grasp of conscious thought, things both wretched and beautiful, horrible and fantastic." — C. D. Bennett

No matter how many times I read this, I will never forget the first time. I felt like a sharp cold pen had been used on my very soul and it sent me crashing deep into a world. I love it when a couple of lines written on a page send me to the edge and back. It makes me chase the written word and I become intoxicated by the very thought of the world that is created.

The love of the written word is like a drug. A single thought can turn into miles across the ocean or a night in bed with someone you love. They are the very essence of my soul; I breathe them in everyday just to live.

When I read this by my friend, the first thing that crept across the squeaky wooden floors of my mind was, 'You must be talking to me.'

My heroes aren't the people who are rich and famous. They are the ones who aren't afraid to tattoo my soul with the words they write. The shadows between the pages are the undiscovered worlds and minds of the person who writes them.

Writing is a glimpse into the deepest essence of the writer. For that I thank you, the soon to be discovered writer or the one who is already sitting on my nightstand. Thank you for giving me my fix. I can already feel the beating of my heart and see the new world I want to create.

On Writing
By Tami Snow

Thievery of my soul began
Across the widened expanse of time
A secret pleading discovery
Within a book of song and rhyme
Your eyes a looking glass of fear
The color of the sky
I look upon their languid gaze
As you go soaring by
How much longer will you leave me here
Disguised as wafting need
Limbs desiring to grow and stretch
Out from a fertile seed
On paper spill my heart and soul
My deepest desires expose
My life held in your timid fingers
Show them so they know


Where Stories Come From . . .
by Gae Polisner

This morning after my swim, as I floated and stared up at a sky so pure blue-gray that its solid, monotonous color was the only thing in my line of vision save for those little floater things (you know, the little paramecium that slip along the periphery of things, viscous, scientific and strange), a line came to me that I knew would likely be the last line of the novella I am working on, if, in fact, the novella ever comes to full fruition. And, trust me, it may, or may not.

That, and a conversation last evening with my dear friend Evelyn's husband, the gorgeous and gregarious (if slightly giddy ;)) Karlito, got me thinking again about where my stories come from -- my beginnings and middles and ends -- and how differently I seem to write than many of my friends who (enviably) write from well-formed ideas reduced to detailed outlines, their chapters and plot (oh dear god when will I EVER learn to plot?) mapped out before them in bulleted, organized glory.

I write with no such bulleted, organized glory.

For example, evolution of The Pull of Gravity: I read an article about this guy, see, and something about him intrigued me and I found myself wondering what his real life might be like. How what he had done (set out to walk across America to lose weight, in this case) would affect his marriage and, more importantly to me, his children, his family.

Here. This is a real photo of him walking:

He became the first central character driving the story, except that I knew that the story would be told from his son's perspective (I do not remember if the real guy has a son).

The second thing that happened was, as I was thinking vaguely about the story, my younger son spiked a fever, which brought the first line of the book to me, and the few lines that followed:

"A fever was what started everything. That, and the water tower, and the cherry cola. Well, also, Dad and his condition, and Mom being in Philadelphia and all."

Nothing else about the story had come to me yet. But I just started writing, and eventually a story unfolded.

Little known fact (nearly forgotten by me): the first working title of the book in my computer files was Fat Man Walking -- a far cry from Steinbeck, The Scoot, and the Pull of Gravity, now just The Pull of Gravity, eh?

Anyway, this is how I write, despite that all I had in this case was a character or two, some lines that appealed to me, and my own desire and intrigue. Lord knows how I got here from there.

For example, evolution of Jack Kerouac is Dead to Me:

The title came to me one morning as I woke up. Nothing but that title. There was a reason that Kerouac was on my brain, and I was ruminating on my next YA, but other than that, and the sudden realization that somehow butterflies were also to be involved, I had little else when I set the manuscript in motion. How the rest unfolded remains a mystery to me.

For example, evolution of Frankie Sky:

The first line, "The first time I see Frankie Schyler, he’s diving into the deep end of the Lawrenceville Country Club pool," came to me together with an image of a small boy, angelic looking, diving confidently into a swimming pool surrounded by onlookers, appearing to swim sort of miraculously, then drowning instead. I was in the pool, underwater, when the image came to me.

All of my stories are like this -- springing from bits and pieces, vague ideas, images that pull at me, call to me while I swim, or drive, or sleep. I suspect this is not the best way to write, and worse, I suspect it is why, while my writing is repeatedly praised, editors continue to struggle with my stories, my plotting, the way things unfold in my novels, over and over again.

Perhaps it is not the best way to write, but so far, it's the only way I know how.

We Write
by C. D. Bennett

We write for our souls
We write out of hope
of passion
of tears

We write through the pain
the emptiness, the loneliness

the fear

We write to save ourselves

For our souls
For yours

When the wolfbane blooms
by C. D. Bennett

The Moon has always been a source of strength and inspiration for me, and I suppose it could even be said that it has become my Muse when times were at their darkest, though in the beginning of my writing career, I was seldom granted such graces. Writing became my only outlet to survive in a world in which I truly felt alone. I conjured dreams of madness and horror, using my new-found medium to fight back in my own way. I never would have survived without it, I know that now. It was a dark road, and it would've been so much easier to give up and fall apart. It was never pity I sought or even acceptance, it was merely understanding. Even this, I learned, was a lot to ask, and for many years I wondered if I even had the strength to go on. But against all my critics and despite my own demons, I survived.

Every writer has a story to tell. It's not a profession you take on lightly, and for many of us the Muse's first gift is pain. For anyone merely starting along this path, it may be years until you find peace with your gifts. The important thing is to never give in to doubt, be it from others or your own misguided fears. It won't be easy, but as they say, nothing worth having ever is. There will be darkness, and there will be light, but we must never lose who we are to the changing shades around us.

We're all a little crazy. Let's face it, a "normal" person would never commit to this kind of life. So many people are content with just milling through life with nothing to say and even less to offer, braying to no end about the state of their world, but too timid to do anything about it. It's sad really. As writers we must find that Muse within ourselves to reach higher than that, to shout louder and write boldly. The world has enough sheep. A writer really only has two paths to choose: are you a shepherd, or a wolf?

Candy Worlds
by Tami Snow

Sugary sweet the passage flows
Rainbow dancing ribbon curls
Bubblegum floating miniature worlds
Spiral lollipop adventures unfurl

Silky smooth like chocolate streams
Licorice ropes they twirl and bend
The dialogue found within my dreams
Creating sprinkled worlds of pretend

Join me down melted ice cream rivers
Whipped cream clouds gaze from above
From within my Sweet Tart heart to give
Is a decadent treat of marshmallow love.


Monday, January 17, 2011


A Poem by Tami Snow

For you I'd sing across the miles

Touch your heart, make you smile

My song a tune of happiness while

Truly longing like that of a child's

A canary only sings when it's lonely

My melody soothing all of your tears

A warbled symphony erasing your fears

Locked in this precious cage for years

Are you really listening, can you hear?

A canary only sings, because he's lonely.

Falsetto hymns flow from my meager form

Easily disguising, just how deeply forlorn

From realizing the truest of love, I'm torn

Heart bleeding harmonies fated to mourn

Canaries only sing tragedies, they're lonely.

Monday, January 10, 2011


Welcome to my literary love affair, Lyrical Lip Service. I hope you enjoy poking around these pages and peeking at the videos. It is hard to believe that a mere week ago this idea was borne into my overactive imagination and now here it is—in all its puckering pink splendor. How in the world did that happen? Hmm… Magic, perhaps?
It is my hope to be given an opportunity to highlight the literary and artistic works of my friends on the LLS blog, as well as my YouTube page. (Pretty please, let me feature your talents?) I have felt a great sense of comradery while sharing blog space with my fellow Slaves to the Muse writers, and would love to offer a continuation in assisting writers to be heard. It is a very fulfilling endeavor, indeed.
My love for reading has molded this site, as well as the idea behind the YouTube channel. May it bring a smile to your face, and warmth to your cheeks. May it inspire its visitors to pick up a book, and find love and wisdom through the written word. May it inspire a few to spill their souls on the page, as so many of us do. Happily, willingly and with much sacrifice.
This adorable setting for my soul spillage would not be possible without the time and talent of a truly amazing friend of mine, Chris Bennett. Thank you, Chris. <3
All My Heart.

Powered by Blogger