Mike Spidle

List Poem

by Mike Spidle



The decimation, turmoil, and ruin,

The revulsion and inhumanity of this place,

Could not kill the warrior.

The sight of smoldering cars and ash,

Of the destroyed homes and shops,

That littered the streets with debris,

Such as office papers, fruits, and poultry,

Could not kill the warrior.

Visions called forth by scattered and empty

Shells of ammunition, and by dried bloodstains

Of faded vermillion,

Could not kill the warrior.

Echoes of battle rose over the pillars of smoke,

Over the ravenous fires, the lifeless bodies,

The sound of thumping explosives

Resonated through the shattered windows

And exposed interiors of houses

Now lacking their facades.

The clearing dust revealed much

To the battle-scarred warrior,

Who now stood upon a rocky cliff

Just outside the town.

He could see the retreating tanks,

The few praying people on their knees

Beside stolid and gear-clad soldiers,

Crying mothers shed their tears in desperation,

A countless number of random possessions

Were strewn through the war-torn alleys:

A buzzing radio half buried in sand,

A small blue blanket, now tattered and abandoned,

Dishes, pictures, toys, and baskets

Were all without belonging since the siege.

Walls were dotted with bullet holes,

Screams of affliction ripped through the choking air,

The once happy town is gone,

And in its place, the seeds of hatred were planted.

Now this warrior, this 4 year old survivor,

Stood alone, helpless, and lost.

All of these atrocities could not kill him,

So why did he wish they had?

Microfiction: Reborn

Until two weeks ago, Anthony Garmin had never believed in Heaven or Hell. But one look at the streets of Manhattan through his new eyes reminded him that Hell was quite real. Everything was in the sharpest focus, every detail looked as if it were under a magnifying glass. His new ears made each noise sound like it was amplified through a speaker. He hadn’t learned how to shut it all out yet.

Clad in a black hoodie and gray jeans, he walked calmly down the city block. The sun had set five minutes ago. He looked to the darkening sky reassuringly. In the window of a passing plane he saw a young girl’s face clearly.

There were many names for what he was now, some of them not so pleasant. But he preferred to call himself a hunter. In all fairness, that’s what he was. He passed newspapers that glided like tumbleweeds down the sidewalk, and by streetlights that hurt his skin but only enough to annoy him.
He halted, sniffing the air. People still inhabited the streets, but he had to check for what he wanted. Through the bitter city air, the scent was present. That sweet, merciful aroma.
He spotted a woman, early 20’s at least. He caught her scent, then snorted in revulsion. A heroine addict: impure blood. He kept sniffing. Finally he sensed it. A teenager, blood pumping with hormones and very fresh. Anthony smirked under his hood, let the games begin.