Poetry Blog by Holden Moncrieff
A will-o'-the-wisp wields
too much power, phosphorescent
as it is evanescent, invites
the traveler to mistake
the swamp for ground
But the ignis fatuus caresses
those weary irises for
moments of reprieve, then
proves just as vacuous
as a midsummer night's
Friday 26th February 2021 3:09 pm
Alcyone and Ceyx, queen and king,
stepping on the toes of deities,
thinking it all a little game
to call each other an Olympian name.
But Hera and Zeus don't find it much fun
and, quite gleeful to unleash their wrath,
they feel that Ceyx deserves a gift:
yes, a thunderbolt on his ship.
A metamorphosis then for Morpheus,
god of dreams, turns him into Ceyx,
Wednesday 24th February 2021 3:19 pm
A Doomsday Clock ticks
while hope is on hiatus.
To relinquish control: a feat
of herculean proportions.
How long before a knuckle-duster knock
forces you to timidly open the door
to whatever checkmate now has
your king decidedly under siege?
Monday 22nd February 2021 3:38 pm
This pain is protean.
It was born to shapeshift.
It morphs from bitterness
to fear, frustration
to regret, and
the tracer fire you deploy
as you traverse war zones
in a past tense, illumines
nothing more than a child
trapped in thought,
made to believe that
existence sans achievement
never belonged in the
Saturday 20th February 2021 5:37 pm
Names carved on weathered bark
With a futile conviction of forever.
They've seen the seasons change, sighed
The occasional 'O tempora, o mores!',
Pled guilty to the charge of hoping too much
That a forgiving breeze could still
Dress their wounds, shush their shoulds,
Then erase every trace from the bark...
Thursday 18th February 2021 3:46 pm
Cassandra in a coal mine:
A canary meant to reign
Over the genus of the accursed,
Destined to be burnt
At stakes not invented yet.
Why does every age crave
Its dose of witch-hunts?
Always ready to indulge
In a delirium of scapegoats
Skinned and lashed?
Tuesday 16th February 2021 3:31 pm
On a scavenger hunt for Excaliburs
to marvel at but abandon in stone;
the lofty goal carefully selected
to grant the mirage of aspiration,
assuage mundanity's machinations,
plant cobblestones on unbeaten paths,
all the while knowing that
the final wave of triumph
must come from Fate's false flag.
Sunday 14th February 2021 8:15 pm
Who truly gets to spin
the wheel of destiny?
Is it a prime mover with a grudge?
Or man, according to his
rarely compos mentis plan?
Perhaps it's a universe
with shoulders that shrug
whenever we play with knives
in our neighbour's backyard...
Friday 12th February 2021 7:12 pm
Ripples of fear soar
to form rogue waves.
Cells leak uncertainty.
Cue the short circuit.
The chaos gives cover
to the cronies of Time.
So they coalesce
to resurrect every
fleeting thought of Death,
as they compose
their master's magnum opus:
a cheap pastiche
of a prince's
"To be, or not to be"...
Wednesday 10th February 2021 4:36 pm
Delilah speaks scandals sotto voce,
Delights in sealing Samson's fate,
A temptress of such calibre and skill,
A taunting tyrant welcomed in.
Then again, Samson chooses the fool's fetters,
Relishes his time spent in tethers,
Surrenders vigilance for pleasure's sake,
And so: misses the gleaming of her blade.
Monday 8th February 2021 3:40 pm
Would we be better off
If life had a blueprint?
A cipher for the pitfalls,
For the obstacles a rubric?
But wouldn't that drain
Discovery of its delight?
Who wants the poetry of dreams
To turn prosaic at the seams?
Fortune's quicksilver acrobatics
Might draw out a gasp,
But grace is only forged in fire,
With a pirouette on high wire...
Saturday 6th February 2021 7:50 pm
Pronouncements made with an air
Of that 'je ne sais quoi'
And a dose of Delphic grandeur,
Harbouring the same obscurantism
That served the Pythia so well.
So our demand to have a prophecy substantiated
Gets scrapped, lest the mysticism be vitiated,
And we're left scratching our heads,
Wondering whether there was indeed
A special something in those oracular leaves!
Thursday 4th February 2021 1:21 pm
Lost in a crescendo of lament
while the crows of terror portend:
you're the hostage they needn't perfect:
sightless in a shrinking universe of self.
Soon a micrography will suffice
to render the demise,
as you play the lead
in Vishnu's vaudeville.
Yes, the drowning is violent
in this reality distilled,
and Galileo hasn't yet
with a dethronement intervene...
Tuesday 2nd February 2021 7:45 pm
Will the family tree forever forbid
the construction of a hamlet of hope,
insisting instead on a Potemkin village
primed for sardonic remembrance to pillage,
with all those anachronistic injections
of melancholy and ire and rejection?
Perhaps the bloodline is too boisterous,
the pedigree far too traitorous...
Sunday 31st January 2021 9:36 pm
The stamped envelope is self-addressed,
the poison pen letter it protects
knows to hurl the vitriol
where it lands best,
where caveats are ignored,
The recipient shall hardly flinch
at the abuse, won't dare
regard it as libel or slander,
for, after all, when has ink
on paper spilled ever blazed
more alive, more convincing?
Friday 29th January 2021 9:02 pm
A panopticon is not a panaceia.
It does not preclude the optical illusion,
Nor the potential for delusion.
The scale on the map does matter;
For this is not the Lilliput royal court,
But a court of public opinion enthralled
With deciding the song and dance du jour,
Dispensing the diktat of the zeitgeist,
And though the suitors swarm the palace,
Telemachus is bitter and ...
Wednesday 27th January 2021 9:14 pm
When the posturing is potent enough,
the hologram of holiness
may be mistaken for the original.
When the memory is fervent enough,
the reticence of reality
could prove parochial, and dull.
When the aphorism absolves one enough,
the poltergeist of guilt
knows to retreat,
for forty winks, at least...
Monday 25th January 2021 7:52 pm
Orestes, by Erinyes hounded
For the hubris that amounted
To child morphing into murderer,
Acting on Apollonian advice;
And what could go wrong
With a god on your side?
Now the Furies won't forget
To exact their pound of flesh.
So what if it's sins of the father
That spark the spiral of doom?
It's Iphigenia, Electra and Orestes
Always draped in funeral festoons...
Saturday 23rd January 2021 6:11 pm
They hold you by the hand
All primed, proper, and prim,
Your excuses clad in egoism
Like children made to grin,
Your bondsmen of bail
When the mess turns byzantine.
Thursday 21st January 2021 6:21 pm
The chorus chants approval
As you dance your demise;
The erosion of insignia
Regalia, suddenly alien, sold
For pennies on the dollar.
Frayed corners and sepia
Might seem like comfort now,
But as it seeps into the
Remember: there's a bite
Tuesday 19th January 2021 7:01 pm
The thunderbolt of Zeus
incinerates the Titans
and the soot gives rise
to the sin we've called
But what do you expect,
being birthed blind
as a votary,
from the post-mortem
of a Titanomachy?
Sunday 17th January 2021 6:41 pm
There's that sadistic soundtrack
From your strange feedback loop:
It's your aria of errors,
Artfully woven by woes
Into a tapestry of terrors.
You can plug your ears all you want,
Scream 'La la la' like you're 5 years old,
The voices with few choices
Must now uncrown clarity;
It's the shadow self extorting parity.
Friday 15th January 2021 5:22 pm
The art in a covenant of hearts is
to break that treaty first,
gather belongings and
memories of yore, and
from safety lament a
Wednesday 13th January 2021 9:21 pm
The skies are full of pies
For the dreamers who dare not
See that the cynic they condemn
Used to be one of them
Till the moon gave him a glimpse
Of the dark side of idealism,
Where the quixotic isn't merely hypnotic,
But more akin to kismet's Ponzi scheme.
Monday 11th January 2021 8:54 pm
There's a pretender vying for the throne:
He's raised the drawbridge from self to sanity,
And schadenfreude will stain his lips
As you struggle in the moat;
But perhaps there's fortitude enough
In a herald of arms who's learned
That bells shall sooner ring in plangency
For one who chooses virtue over pageantry...
Saturday 9th January 2021 9:47 pm
Have we not been sufficiently drenched
in the acid rain that is pseudo-politesse?
Can you not hear the crunching
of eggshells under the soles of our shoes?
Are we no longer entitled to honesty,
and satire, and sharp wits?
But be warned: sharp wits demand sharp tongues,
and your obsession with offence stains
the canvas of intellectual largesse.
Thursday 7th January 2021 8:35 pm
Marching on with a soul that sighs,
Grabbing grace from within,
Confronting confession with a grin,
Tittering at the indulgence and the tithe
Tuesday 5th January 2021 3:50 pm
All hail hypocrisy:
The one hiding in plain sight,
Mask intention in pretension,
Camouflage the sick, the vile.
Is that indignation really righteous?
Firm enough the moral high ground?
When every mirror's taken hostage,
Forgiveness gagged and bound?
Skin under their fingernails.
Slap. Scratch. Shout.
Now, now, don't waste that breath!
No one listens when ...
Sunday 3rd January 2021 9:57 pm
Does each sip aim at sanctity?
As in, In Vino Veritas?
But why would liquid courage
be required to express solid convictions?
Sure, Dionysus winks and grins,
but Apollo whispers: Aequanimitas...
Friday 1st January 2021 4:56 pm
The rose was succulent and red,
Spoke of passion and desire,
"Put it away," the raven said,
"Lest their ire we tempt."
You thought yourself invincible,
A knight, an angel of steel;
But what are you willing to fight for
When it's fire you breathe?
Wore the rose in your hair,
The raven be damned,
The smell forever trapped in air,
Hail ignorance, oh gloriou...
Wednesday 30th December 2020 4:14 pm
When that idyll looms large in the horizon,
it becomes ever so hard
to kill those false idols;
for they're cashmere after rain,
knock-off panaceia to the pain,
the road seemingly less travelled,
and the seasoned warrior in battle.
They're all that you crave but cannot be,
because the fear of feathers ruffled
gilds the cage of safety.
Monday 28th December 2020 8:11 pm
If only the bristles of a paintbrush,
The powder of an Etch A Sketch
Would a personality provide,
Make you master of your chiaroscuro,
Let you determine and decide
Just how much chaos
Good people get to criticize...
Saturday 26th December 2020 4:31 pm
Once upon a time, a reticent raconteur
encountered a professional flâneur;
the former asked the latter if a point
lay hidden in his picaresque existence,
at which our wanderer took no offense,
but simply said: "At least my path
I respect; I search-find-lose,
while you swell with tales yet choose
to never burst, even though you know
that in a sea of everyday shells,
Thursday 24th December 2020 4:20 pm
In the age of slogan veneration
And the vortex of misinformation,
Can you hear that hammer?
It's meant for the penultimate nail
In the coffin of nuance.
There's a bumper sticker serenade
Spreading and puncturing
The ear drums of the susceptible,
But perhaps La Déesse Raison
Can still swoop in ex machina?
Tuesday 22nd December 2020 4:04 pm
The anthems of co-dependence reign supreme.
Simple words, an artificial beat.
Love songs they call them.
In cars and bars and clubs they blast them.
But in the quiet of the real
that beat sounds obscene.
Because it takes a world more
than a catchy tune to make
one out of two.
Sunday 20th December 2020 10:59 pm
'Cherchez la femme' and heartbreak,
even for the prince of pirates.
Mary has his son in a barn,
alone, without Black Sam.
But it's Barnstable's Old Jail
she now haunts.
A child born; a child lost,
and she waits still
for her Robin Hood of the Sea.
She waits in Eastham,
for one who'll never come...
Friday 18th December 2020 7:08 pm
Living through an age
during which you are blessed
to be able to annex
the Wisdom of every sage
the human race may boast of;
yet you choose to engage
in the trade of Narcissism
unbridled and reprobate?
Wednesday 16th December 2020 11:46 pm
You built a castle of confidence,
the confidence of innocence,
the innocence of ignorance,
and the ignorance of hope.
You hope the castle into a fortress,
yet the first stone still is cast
by the sinner and the brazen;
see? - already, there's a scratch.
More stones, more scratches,
if you can't beat' em, join' em,
throw stones from the inside,
Monday 14th December 2020 9:30 pm