Monday, August 8, 2011

"Cathartes Aura on the Road from Nowhere" Sneak Peek: Chapter Ten

For nine weeks I've been picking and choosing stanzas from the second episode of the Cathartes Aura series.  I've selected stanzas that can stand on their own as an interesting piece of writing, introduce characters from the story, make the reader curious about the book and can achieve all of this without giving away the climax of the story.

There will be no Chapter Ten Sneak Peek.  I can't do it without spoiling the whole thing.  I worked hard to build drama, tension, and surprise for the end of "Road from Nowhere" and I won't blow it all by leaking chapter ten.

I'm proud of it.  At least I will be in a couple of weeks when it's published.  I rewrote some of it today, but I'll get it just right by the end of August like I promised.

Until then, read "Cathartes Aura and the Apocalypse Zoo".  Won't take you more than two hours.  It's still free at  If you've already read it, please write an honest review.

You did come here for poetry, and I thank you, so here's a little something:

          Apples for Sale

“What lovely apples you have.”  His face bugs

In their candy-fender gloss, all forehead

And cheekbones.  “Says here: ‘Poisoned’.  Is that French?

Some new hybrid?”  She swivels in her chair,

Re-crosses her pulled-sugar legs, replies

Like honey stirred in tea: “I poisoned them.”

She swishes through the curtain of beads, slow

As a pendulum submerged.  “Pesticide?”

She shakes her head, tents her fingers, and squints

Sideways and green.  “Paralytic toxin.”

He wrinkles his forehead, lifts an apple,

Studies his reflection and looks beyond

To her posture and aura.  “Already

I’m paralyzed.  What will you do with me?”

Her eyes widen.  She answers: “You’re my slave.”

He’s frozen to the ground.  “What is my toil?”

“Your folly,” she responds, “if it serves me.”

“For how long am I indentured, My Queen?”

She spreads her hands, shrugs, walks back through the beads.

“The paralysis is voluntary.”

The sun descends, blushing into the hills.

A breeze builds to a gale, blowing wrappers,

And newspapers throughout the carnival.

One drop sideways in the dirt.  Two then three

Then buckets of rain.  He remains mortared.

She re-emerges from the beads, one word

On her tongue-moistened lips: “Voluntary.”

He shakes his head.  “A kiss for antidote.”

The wind whips her hair.  Rain runs down her cheeks.

She grabs him by the collar and cures him.