Dawn of The Dragons

Invictus

Sonbather

The Snowman

Somewhere Off Again

ADRIAN VINO

It is imperative I blurt out in blunders, swing swiftly from branch to branch, duplicitous whilst the duped deal dauntingly the day. Beneath their feet, against their walls, humbly standing, kneeling tall, I ejaculate the gesture infinite–the sinking waves of cosmic ecstasy–the tongue a tiny flame unable to be tamed, igniting an unrestrained holocaust. Frame by frame, like a jaundiced junky on a train, I slouch bent aching backbone slightly pained…the agony–a friend. How dare I ponder at the poignancy of shame, the alabaster talons of the angry bastard I became. The expediency of immortality a surge now running through my veins. The ardent crayola sun gyrating before the endless pastel-blue, depleting now the deity I’ve become, and run, I do, to showers on a darker side of my quiet, ever-quiet glowing moon. This mortal madness, masterpiece engaged, now hanging on my wall, by a golden baroqued-frame.

 

“Hey, man, what are you thinking?” came the voice from a coworker laced in feigned interest and mild complaint.

 

“Nothing,” I replied almost whispering, caressing my lips and staring somewhere off again.

 

My First Ritual At Thirteen or Breaking The Wall

ADRIAN VINO

I was a precocious and, at times, prurient child, thirsty and hungry for another world, another time. I wasn’t aware of the disguise I was to claw out through at the aching age of thirteen. Mother didn’t love her baby, and Father was nowhere to be found. On thin ice, I tip-toed through the world, with dread of being the ever-present bother of a child imposed on those unfortunate of being entrusted with my care. Daddy was not across the ocean, but he sure left some memories: a milk crate full of drawings, writings and Pink Floyd vinyl. I found the aforementioned green plastic package under a few boxes in an uninhabited room in my aunt’s two-story house. I reached in slowly with wonder and discovered The Wall; white and arrayed with brick drawings and bizarre caricatures with angry faces, bearing my father’s autograph on the bottom right-hand  corner of the inner-sleeve; I ran my small index finger across the debossing of a hard pressed cheap blue pen. What satisfaction to know that this man, frequently talked about, was real and here was irrefutable proof. Adrian, his first name, like mine, I thought. I smiled and held the album with both hands and lifted it to eye level and realized, I had to listen to the music therein–maybe my father lay within these notes, these songs. But it had to be the right time, a perfect time…where I would be undisturbed. And such time did approach, unbeknownst to myself.

 

It was a fastidious Friday evening when my aunt and uncle ( of whom had custody of me at the time ) decided to leave for a party in another town. My cousin, the only other person in the house, besides yours truly, was going to spend the night with a friend elsewhere; he loathed me and I didn’t blame him, for his mother made us share a room despite the many other vacant rooms adorned and furnished for no one. They put on their Weekend best and said, ” Do not act stupid while we are gone. You’re old enough to be alone. Don’t let anybody in. We’ll be back later.”

 

I exploded inside with trembling excitement while trying to hold still so as to not give myself away. I kept staring at the television set of which displayed upon its glaring screen a man with razor-sharp knives for fingers in a dark alley, as their carpeted steps faded out down the hallway and into the staircase.

 

As soon as I heard the garage door close, signifying they had driven away, I jumped atop the bed and began undressing and jumping and wailing. After I had  exhausted myself, I turned off the VCR and the television and ran for the album I had stashed in the closet on my side of the room. Completely naked with a pounding heart, I turned off the lights and with the moon light penetrating the half-closed blinds, I pulled out the platter and placed it on the record player. I was not allowed to touch anything in the room, for all things belonged to my cousin, who was older than me. The dusty and scratchy sound came like a gentle zephyr with the words that to this day haunt me: “…we came in.” I had been generous with the large, heavy volume knob.

 

That maddening riff tore at me deeply with tender torment and Water’s thin metallic voice, like a mourning madman, was the voice of my father that moment and henceforth. Organs swelled and ascended into heavens too high for mortals, the sound of a church calling me from the future…the past..the never, with a fallen angel furiously bringing down all the airplanes in the sky. And then, a baby weeping…this was me, and I understood, my birth was the aftermath of a war between two people who may have loved each other fiercely but separated ferociously.

 

If you want to find out what’s behind these cold eyes, you’ll just have to claw your way through this disguise. Lights!”

 

My tears were seething and cutting down the sides of my temples, falling into my ears and unto to the carpet leaving two small puddles–one on each side of my face. I lay in christ pose in defiance of what all adults held sacred and felt a million microscopic spiders crawling from behind my neck and up the back of my skull. I began to sweat profusely as children began the rebellious chant, “…all in all you’re just a…’nother brick in the wall.”

On my feet and light-headed and slightly staggering, I walked cautiously towards the bureau with a battered bounce in my step. I opened a drawer as if something within had called to me…it was a razor blade.

I made a few nicks on my forehead and watch thin red ribbons travel over my eyebrows and eyes and down to my neck, chest and then halting. I kept staring at my face of which it seemed like an eternity. Cackling and then clamoring, weeping then wanting, I rushed out of the room into a dark and silent home: down the hallway and then jumping off the balcony into the pristine sofa in the living room.

 

Look mummy, there’s an aeroplane up in the sky.”

 

Bound for my aunt’s bedroom, I was a naked and bloody banshee caressed by the skipping touch of the moon from one window frame to another.

I reached into her drawers for her underwear and gave it a deep sniff, like maniacal men in the movies did and I slipped into his cowboy boots and did the moonwalk with mad laughter.

Once I had my fill, I would return all things to their rightful place and walk back upstairs and find the scariest room in the house. I would bring myself to my knees in the corner challenging whatever lay in wait to come and take me. It wasn’t a surrender, it was a defiance. In that position, eyes closed, at that moment, I had become a deity–one which would no longer be afraid of any man or any lurking shadow or uncanny sounds undeciphered.

Minutes later, I would be back in our room and would lay in the spot where it all began. Random television conversations came from the speakers before synthesizers accompanied the voice of a sullen ax aficionado.

 

“Would you like to watch t.v. or get between the sheets…would you like to learn to fly...?

 

And I spoke words into the sweaty, bloody night, ” I am here… come to me, Darkness. I am here. Come to me. You are the empty bowl for all light to fill.”

Did I mention I was an idiosyncratic urchin?

“Come to me, Darkness,” I uttered while envisioning hazy and sultry scenes from Ridley Scott’s Legend. And as the organs came back on and blaring with hot angry breaths, entered the ‘ooh, babes’, I begged with all that was me, as far as my feeble, young mind could understand, “I am ready. Come to me and empower me. I am tired of being afraid…I am done with being weak. I will escape this hell.”

 

A hot shower ended this peculiar ritual of things unplanned and emotions unrestrained. Is there anybody out there?, I wondered eyes closed and soap laden. I am no longer comfortably numb. I will not wait for the worms. As soon as I can, I am going to run like hell.

 

How did I manage to escape? In retrospect, I feel as if I had summoned the strength from an abysmal heaven–it had heard …and it had answered.

 

I sit here alone in my own home, outside that old wall, at the devil-approving hour of 1:23 a.m. and smile a salty smile with tears no longer cutting, but empowering…releasing and comforting like and old incense once bitter now sweet. The catharsis did cut and I did bleed. I am certain, that if I were to return, a bloody smear would read:

      ” I WAS HERE.”

 

 

“Isn’t this where--”

 

 

Notable Quotes

ANTON SZANDOR LAVEY

“Love is one of the most intense feelings felt by man; another is hate. Forcing yourself to feel indiscriminate love is very unnatural. If you try to love everyone you only lessen your feelings for those who deserve your love. Repressed hatred can lead to many physical and emotional ailments. By learning to release your hatred towards those who deserve it, you cleanse yourself of these malignant emotions and need not take your pent-up hatred out on your loved ones.”

 

 

No Place Like Home

ADRIAN VINO

The world was unbearable today

 

vertigogitrev

 

work with its fading faces    the bodies of those I share space with

           if I go away                   another body will replace me        another pair of hands that move

          like mine do now          maybe better                       inside a set of black latex gloves

          across cold skin             I wiped away the scarlet ribbons draping across trembling thighs     a sharp needle stabbed a million miles per hour              I shifted in my apron and closed my eyes hoping for sleep                       swallowing my pride         so to not admit            some kind of regret

 

         and there I was      with the smell of disinfectants in the air     rock and roll music through the speakers        wailing      breaks   verse   chorus   verse

         the hive with its buzzing sound of tattooing machines working for their pound of blood

 

no more     finesse

 

schubert’s 8th in B minor on the grey matter while drums and screams filled the brick building where I suck away at bleeding wounds       and my client looked at me with watery eyes

       it’s father’s day   he says

       with the windows to his hole      he tells me what I want to say

       that it hurts         I have been doing this for thirteen years

       I’m a professional       which allows me to continue through the tears

 

my father weeps on the telephone to my sister

I didn’t answer his call

he was a rock star to me rolling stone personified

he left us and I admired him for it

o father, there are no such thing as sins

 

keep rolling

while I keep rocking

  he left a few things behind not for me he just forgot them or didn’t care

            the wall on vinyl   dark side of the moon    a saucerful of secrets drawings poems

I found it one day and realized he had passed some of himself to me

for better for worse

I have changed

              I don’t know if I was wrong    I know I am wrong now   and never have I been so right

 

       Daughter, if you read this somehow–someday, know your father did his best without a beating heart

      know that courage was sought after

      understand  the brain malfunctioned

      and home I never had

        the 8th left me and the longing song took front stage

 

 

    psychopathy can be added to the list of things dismissed

    or, like I choose to say, low empathy levels

 

    fear with its fangs and claws rendered me limb from limb      a boy like a beaten toy

    lost and hearing voices suicidal under bridges drugs yes women yes and the void remains

 

 

     another golden brick in the wall

let us hope this new block does not chip

 

     there is no place like the void

     there is no place like the void

     there is no place like the void

 

 ∞

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Belong

ADRIAN VINO

As I walked into the restaurant, my lungs filled with the pretty perfume of jubilant youth as I beheld most seats taken and a constant chatter, movement, cackles and moronic mannerisms. The furtive femmes and the less-than-genlte gents didst ballet in their not so subtle subtleties. The only thing that impeded a jarring avalanche of jealousy, was the notion of such neurotic behavior already visited in decades prior by yours truly.

Must I share space with these slobbering sycophants, I wondered while adjusting my glasses and unlocking my knees as I approached the line to the cashier. Coughing and cell phones in hand, the herd almost crawled over tables and booths to capture moments dubious of merit; their moment was yet a moment to be, and for whatever reason, had to be immortalized and eventually confirmed by those not present. The subjects who were to be the confirmers, on an alternate and authoritative universe known as Facecrook, were having their own monumental moments, no doubt. Instafag, Titter, Mumbler, MyCraze, Chatsnatch, and countless other social media outlets awaited mankind with the gracious promise of unification, by ironically, segregating him with glowing small screens.

 

I exhaled deeply and began to ignore the veracious voice at my side, with its taunting words of trembling truth: “This is your species.”

“There is hope,” I proclaimed mildly feigning conviction.

“There is no escape. You don’t belong with them.”

“Not all of them are sheep.”

“Find me at least one and I shall grant you peace tonight.”

“The girl over there…the one with the image of a doubled theater on her shirt.”

“You think simply a quick read into Artaud grants her the integrity of individuality?”

“Peace is worth fighting for, ” I said as I approached her and sniffled at an attention-grabbing volume. “Excuse me.”

“You scared me, ” she said with black and long beautiful raven feathers for hair.

“That’s a great shirt,” I said smiling kindly, “it really brings out your icy-blue gorgeous eyes.”

“What?!” she said alarmed and clutched her electronic tiny savior to her chest and walked away head down, almost rushing out of sight.

 

“You are right, I don’t belong,” I said turning the ignition of my car in the parking lot and drove away as I caught a glimpse of the young lady in black locks–she was holding her cell phone in the air, while she puckered up her lips, head held up high, in my rearview.

Beach House

ADRIAN VINO

Sometimes the slithering song of the siren would suddenly wake me from a feverish dream, calling from beyond the village; summoning  softly…