On Writing…

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Everybody wants to
write power,
speak power,
be powerful,
but nobody wants to 
splatter red on the doors
of their conscience. 
Nobody wants to unscrew
the hinges 
and throw them away.
Nobody wants to 
go to jail
and remove their heart and bones
so they can escape
through the bars.
Nobody wants to set fire to the night
for a friend 
so the cops chase burning 
tire streaks 
stead of xenon glow. 
Nobody wants to make themself 
a goblet for lover’s blood 
pouring from between pine trees.

Everyone wants to write 
the big things,
the moving things, 
the powerful things,
but they don’t want to
have to take chances 
like a vagrant on the 
405 expressway through 
Los Angeles.
They don’t want to have to 
pour risk out from their 
esophagus
like a single mother working 
four jobs. 
They don’t want to have to 
scrub self-loathing from 
their skin
and beg for redemption from a 
city that does not listen. 
Nobody wants to have to wake 
up to morning bird lullabies
and watch the
cowards use them 
for graffiti paint on 
the walls where men 
of all colors have been executed.
Everyone wants the stories,
but nobody wants to have to 
hold dying friends
where you are the mortar 
and your arm is the pestle
for the letter home to their 
loved ones.
Everyone wants the stories but no 
one wants loss like the 
Wisconsin trees
preparing for winter.
Everyone wants to feel deeply 
but no one wants to 
run out of skin 
which has not felt the pressed metal 
of a gun’s barrel.

Everyone speaks of living 
but so few do it,
like they are waiting for the 
morning birds
to lift and carry them 
so they can play at having moved.
They want to write like the 
rhino hunter 
without cultivating the rhino hunter’s 
courage. 
They want the tales of the fisherman
without practicing the fisherman’s tenacity.
They want to write blood and guts 
without chewing the broken glass 
of life—
without swallowing the broken bottle.
They want to speak of emotion 
without
betrayal riding like a locomotive 
down their throat.

They don’t want the blackness 
breaking all the light, 
but they want the words, 
the words, the words, the words,
and yet they have never been toppled,
careened, beaten, wrecked, imprisoned, sacrificed, left to die. 
The judgment of the world falls like a hammer 
beating through
concrete,
but so few are strong enough to take this 
and make it into words. 
They want the words to open themselves 
like an envelope from a long-lost lover—
no war and no fight.

Pluck the petal 
without the gardening,
and life goes on
and on……
and on…….
until it does not.

Your words are as strong 
as your greatest sadness,
and they fly as high as 
the birds you have let out 
of your heart,
and as well as you have sung
with the people you despise,
and with the length you
wish you
could
give to
yourself.

by: Roman Newell



Graphic Compositions:
by: Darlene Carroll

Graphic work can not be accomplished without the incredible resources made available to this Author and his team. THANK YOU to the following artists for the gift of their artistry and generosity in sharing their beautiful artwork, photography, and fonts.


Background Imagery:
o. Petra Pezibear – Pixabay



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  1. Excellent! I loved this exploration of the self each writer has to meet to find the source of their real truth. Their only truth. Great job!

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