Saturday 8 October 2022

Five Poems by TS S. Fulk

 



The Forest Wife

Ratta tat ratta tat
the woodpecker’s message
morse-coded just for me
adds to the cuckoo’s call
they’re insistent these birds
too long I’ve ignored them

Even the squirming of the ants
whose fluidly forming patterns
pierce my brain like the banshee’s wail
as I cover my ears and scream
The message is plain and simple
— In the heartwoods They’ve been waiting
waiting years for me to return
where dryads and huldras roam free

Sorrow joy and tears dance
as I turn my back toward my young

 

Salvage 

Parsecs from the nearest system
with an inelegant 
pitch and yaw botched cabriolé 
swivelled the Fitzgerald

Ingesting chaff and detritus
like bats eating midges
our scavenger drones cleared the way
for me and my shipmates

Engineer sent some of the drones
whose subtle caresses
retarded the wild pirouette 
allowing us to dock

With the climate control long dead
we didn’t even fear
encountering bacteria —
the sterile kiss of space

An explosion inside the bridge
had blasted through the hull
ridding the bridge of air and crew
gifting them to the void

The containment seals on each door
would eventually leak
making the ship a lifeless hulk
or so it seemed to us

A dark silent and empty ship
with limited salvage
unless the cargo held treasure
to make it all worthwhile

The cargo hold was cramped and tight
so we let the loader
transfer all the trunks and cases
until it revealed a great prize

Organic strands and filaments 
a comforting cocoon
hid the pupa of a young queen
whom we must now protect

We serve a higher purpose now
delivering our charge
our thoughts and hers are now as one
as our ship warps back home

 

A False Fresh Start

We were a sort of Noah’s ark
two people from every country
who were chosen by lottery
so we represent a rainbow
of colours, genders and ideals
ages, educations and skills
a mini sampling of mankind
planted as seeds on foreign soil

The philosophy was 
that we’d be united
by the toils and trials
that we would face as one 
leaving behind earth’s gods
we would forge our own path

Years later they sent faster ships
so we arrived as slaves

 

The Prisoner

I don’t know if she’s a princess
a political prisoner
or an unruly teenaged brat
whatever the case she’s locked up
in four-square meters of damp stone
Maybe it's for her own damn good
or for the sake of the kingdom
whatever the case she shivers
the chill of public opinion

The mildew on the walls
like eternal despair 
circles around the room
save for the lone window
where she sees a mocking
eagle’s silhouette fly
above a long-dead ash

But its cries of freedom ring false
mixed with raindrops of tears

 

Old Magics

In the edge of the woods
there is a sun-draped glade 
where rosemary and sage
spearmint and mistletoe
play amongst irises 
in druidical bliss

From an Elysian cabin
emerge a woman and a man
together the caretakers bless
their herbs, vegetables and flowers
with a magical infusion 
of devotion and nurturing
designed to deny the slowly
emerging darkness of the night

Yet what can old magics
do in the face of tyranny?




TS S. Fulk (born in Cleveland, Ohio and raised in Amish country), a neurodiverse English teacher and textbook author, lives with his neurodiverse family in Örebro, Sweden.
 
After getting an M.A. in English literature from the University of Toronto, he taught English at the Czech Technical University in Prague, CZ. Later he would settle down in Sweden.
 
Besides teaching and writing, TS S. Fulk is an active musician playing bass trombone, the Appalachian mountain dulcimer and the Swedish bumblebee dulcimer (hummel). When not playing music, reading or writing, TS S. Fulk enjoys playing geeky games like Marvel ChampionsArkham Horror and Wingspan. If you have trouble finding him in the summer, it is probably because he’s escaped the hustle and bustle of city life by staying at his summer cabin in the woods.
 
His poetry has been (or will be) published by numerous presses including The Light EkphrasticThe Button Eye ReviewThe Fairy Tale MagazineJourn-E: The Journal of Imaginative LiteratureThe Red Ogre Review, Perennial Press, Lovecraftiana and Wingless Dreamer.

Instagram: @tssfulk_poet

Website: www.island-of-wak-wak.com


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