There are lost sign posts

when you skid off the road

and in swerving, miss

safety barrier

your car hurtles

into a careless nomad land

chosen by fate

in the flicker of a second

you think of what mattered

come up with less than you expected

a plane downed from the sky

weeps at your apparent disinterest

in living

a certain relief

ugly, painful and searing

like a burn blister that has popped

and stands, sore and unrepentant on your arm

fuming even more for its rancor

a relief yes, in knowing

you won’t have to play nice

or put out energy you don’t have

at dinner parties you long hadn’t wished to attend

you won’t need to explain why

despite the best of everything, you didn’t

do enough after launching

like a firework into the night sky

only to come down unlit

damp and ineffectual

you shall never need

explain cause for not wishing

to inhabit a cubicle and type away

your years to people who couldn’t give

three shits whether you live or die

or how you got to be here

unable to pay for your own funeral

you wish no one would attend

it is the mirth of dying

unexpectedly, with no lingering thought

of missing someone, or not doing something

but a terrible, terrible relief

in knowing it won’t be protracted and horrifying

but quick, violent, certain

and you laugh maniacally

thinking of Isadora Duncan

her lovely long neck

beautiful scarf tied

garroting like expert lover

the very thread of life

snuffed out

in a pinch

by an elegant, unseen

fatalist who knows

you couldn’t take a minute more

not a minute more

of

the charade 

16 Replies to “The Charade”

  1. There was a time long ago (seems a life time or several) when I noticed every situation that a moment’s distraction or twitch of wheel or blown tire could take Sartre’s only important decision out of my hands. How this resonates with that memory. That story remains yet unwritten. Perhaps its time.

  2. Wishing fate treated YOU more kindly, Candice.πŸ™
    Love your work so much ❀️
    (but am not very good at leaving comments).
    I feel such admiration for your great talent, and achievements.🌻

  3. I so appreciate you dearest Ken – for your support and friendship xo

  4. Yes you are so right, sometimes even before then. Those who have people who care, are very lucky even when they may think they are not. I believe they are.

  5. Ah! You deserve far more.✨
    Please know, you are an inspiration to me, Candice!🌟
    Ever since first discovering your site and writing.
    I saw you as on a level high above me. Beyond my reach.
    (And treasured each of those “likes” from you!❀️)
    But feared causing embarassment: expressing my clumsy adulation, on your site.
    Then, recently, hearing the way WP had treated you, I was deeply upset.
    It kept me awake at night. Outraged but powerless.
    Then I felt ashamed, about never quite managing to fully express how much you meant to me, all these years.
    So I gave in to the longstanding urge to praise you more, here:
    seeing a strange lack of appreciation, from others, beneath this post.
    After all, no poem of yours should go unremarked.
    They are much too good for that.β˜€οΈ

  6. Dearest Ken, I find it absolutely incredible that you think you are any less than any writer out there. It makes me like you more though because this world badly needs a little humility. However, despite the abundance of ego, it saddens me that it is always the very best of us who have no self faith and I would have it the other way around where those who were talented knew they were, (withoout being nauseating fat-heads!) and those who gloated about their talent but possessed none, would be a little quieter. I suspect that will ever happen! Until it does or in spite of it, I think it is high time you believed in YOUR abilities and whilst I love to inspire you and feel the same, you should never consider yourself a lower level or anyone a higher level. I don’t think it is accurate my friend. We are all equal. True, some of us are ‘better’ writers, whatever that means, but ironically those who usually succeed are not the ‘best’ and those who are often unknown, often are the ‘best’ and so forth, so it’s all really silly at the end of the day isn’t it? You should never be embarrassed to be you, because you are a lovely person. I only hope time will give you more faith in what YOU write. I am sorry I don’t always read your work I do often, and I often try to also, but I have been less and less on social media owing to my eye issues, and I know that makes me a little selfish and ungiving which I hate, but wen I am online I read you. Thank you dear one. Ever since I have been away from WP I have received less comments, I think because any site not ‘part’ of WP gets less showing than those who are – who knows? I try! Thank you for your support – it means more than words can say and helps me to continue when many times I think of stopping. We stand together in appreciation.

  7. Well, let me explain, a little, some factors behind how I came to value you so very highly (as I STILL do) Candice:

    (I think first impressions tend to affect us more than we often remember.)

    Picture me, back in 2017: as a clueless newbie, who is almost unknown, gets hardly any likes, let alone followers or comments; looks at his stats in despair. Feeling a failure at blogging…

    One day I find your lovely site, which looks so professional, and read your poetry: which entranced me.❀️
    Plus you had thousands of followers, massive numbers of likes, and as many comments as I’d seen on a poetry site.
    People obviously LOVED you and your work, as much as me.
    (You seemed everything I was not. For me to get anywhere near your level of success felt unimaginable.)
    Next I noticed pictures on your site of a beautiful woman, which I thought might be of a model used to compliment the poems.
    But no! This stunning beauty was YOU!🌟
    I thought of you as the Sappho of WP (hers was the first book of poems I ever bought).
    I confess, I was captivated. (Hence I listed you as my top Poetstar in my Blogstars list.)

    Then you posted heartrending pieces about your health problems and people being unkind to you. Thus my protective instincts fired up, as well.
    (As a little boy I had been traumatised by my Father’s beatings of my Mother (and me).
    Her cries and tears.
    I tried to protect her, and failed: being just a weak child.
    For years I tried to make her happy, yet could never manage to.)

    I always find it painful to see or hear of a woman suffering, in any way.

    Anyway, Candice: these are a few of the things that affected me.

    I think of YOU as just the kind of person it would have been so WONDERFUL to know in real life: but that I was never lucky enough to meet.

    And seeing one of your “likes” appear on my site still makes my heart leap;
    still feels as if a Muse (descended to earth in human form),
    has blessed me with an approving glance, from her enchanted realm. ✨

  8. Thank you my friend for your support and your creativity which despite you believing it doesn’t exist, it most certainly in everything you do and write. I hope you will continue to write and do. Remember this, how many follow us etc, means nothing. I was on WP in 2016 I had around 10,000 followers because every evening I would go through WP and comment on others, etc, a game almost. then I quit because I had a stalker and closed down and reopened probably around the time you and i began to talk and I have less followers, less likes, etc, and I’m happier, because for me it’s never been a numbers game. An author friend of mine she’s ‘famous’ etc and successful, said your friends and followers will rarely buy your work, ususually it’s a stranger, meaning it’s more about exposure, marketing, etc, outside of what you personally do. She wasn’t wrong. The most successful book I ever worked on including my own of course, was SMITTEN and the most sales were not related to what we did as a company but where the ball rolled. So I think the illusion that having ten million likes and followers will guarantee something, anything, just sin’t the case. It will however, get you a publishing contract quicker than if you have 1 follower and 1 like. I think this is one reason people do it, the other reason is younger people than me, tend to spend all their time online. I am really glad I don’t. I am happier when I don’t. I think if you wrote more you would get a huge following and if that is what you want you should – but I think you should write more often because you are talented and that’s MY reason for reminding you that you should ALWAYS WRITE xo

  9. Yes: I’m sure what you say about followers is true.
    Though, to be fair, my circumstances are slightly unusual.

    When my pancreas failed, people thought I was dying, and Doctors gave me no hope of recovery.
    I felt horribly alone. And grew desperate not to disappear from this world without trace.
    Being extremely isolated, without sources of help or contacts, I decided (to prevent its loss) on putting my art and writing online.
    The feeling of time running out gave me anxious cravings for gaining an audience as fast as possible.
    However, once all my poems were posted, I calmed down a little.

    While I don’t think I’m much good as a blogger, I don’t think my poems are too bad.
    I’m quite fond of some of them, actually (though I try not to show off, LOL!).

    Also, I think it’s nice to look up to fellow writers.
    And see you as a special talent. ✨

    Anyway, please forgive my little outburst of adulation.
    (I shall try to revert to my usual, more restrained, English self.πŸ˜€)

    I’ve been feeling rather emotional recently. Then, hearing the sad news about your eyesight, added fuel to an already strong, pre-existing, urge for expressing how much your work has meant to me (instead of just leaving a “like”).

    Thank you for all your generous replies (and patience!), Candice.
    Sending you a digital hug: πŸ€— !

  10. I had no idea you went through so much. I am so very sorry my friend. I would also have felt as you did that urgency, that makes so much sense to me. I am hoping somehow your pancreatic diagnosis was premature or incorrect in some way? Because you are among us still. Is there a way for you to continue to live with it diminished or slower or not as effective? This must have been very frightening and I would have felt exactly as you did. What I have learned and this is my very simplistic, shallow learning in comparison with others, is that Dr’s are often wrong. I hope they are about you. I am sure this doesn’t resolve the other health things enough that you can live the life you deserve but you are a writer and poet and I am glad you continue to be and forge forward. I miss living in Europe. I feel moving to America wasn’t the best idea in final analysis. there is something about Europeans they don’t value people based on how much they earn or how much they work, they allow holidays and vacation time and down time, in healthier amounts than here. I left Europe because of how expensive it was and to have adventures, but sometimes a dream can turn into a struggle which mine did, and whilst I think these things all add to who we are, in sum, I would have done things differently. I miss the countryside of the UK very much, there is a solace there I think I still harken back to when I feel dried out by all the sun here and the chaotic need to be perfect. No patience required, I’m far more of a navel gazer my friend than you ever will be and I admire you greatly and am so glad to know you here and have your friendship. Please continue to write, you have many admirers and followers. It makes a lot of sense to me now with a time frame and I am sorry if i came across as insensitive as that is never my intention xo

  11. That’s OK, Candice!
    Frankly, chronic vertigo is most frightening thing I suffer with,
    but the pancreatic issue is more dangerous.
    Was told (in 2015) my life would be 20% shorter due to it.
    When asked if there was anything I could try, a Hospital Doctor (in 2018) snapped back with:
    “There’s NOTHING you can do: it will just keep getting worse and worse!”

    Not happy accepting that, I decided to follow my intuition, and attempt decalcifying my soft tissue (via food and supplements).
    I enjoy being mainly fruitarian: it makes my body feel very clean.

    (Hadn’t eaten meat since 1996, in any case.)

    When tested a year later (2019) my pancreas had begun to partially function again, for
    the first time in 5 years (no thanks to the NHS).
    I’d proved the Doctors wrong, and improved a supposedly incurable progressive condition.
    They were shocked, yet had little interest in how I did it.

    I don’t know what my status is now, though, because it’s so hard to see a Dr, since the lockdown last March. (They are hiding away in their surgeries as if the Black Death has returned LOL!)

    My weight has stabilised. Am still very thin.
    But, on the plus side: I have cheekbones now and look more Goth than before.
    (Sorry: my sense of humour is a bit dark at times).

    (Thanks for asking, Candice!)
    Sending another hug for you: πŸ€—β€οΈ

  12. This is a fantastic story. Have you written about this? If you have, can you share the link? If you haven’t YOU SHOULD. I love stories about overcoming and proving the Dr’s wrong, I do believe it possible. I used to read a magazine called What Doctors Don’t Tell You and whilst some of it is obviously rubbish, a lot of sense was imparted too. For me it’s a bit of both, common sense and healthy choices with some modern medicine for the more serious things. But taking a mouthful of pharmacutical pills should always be questioned and a last resort. I tried everything when I got sick (alternative) without success which threw me in a tailspin but I still believ,e I think it just depends on many factors. Your story however is quite marvelous, and I would love to know more in detail. The worst part being what little interest they had in it once you proved them wrong! URGH! Hey I love Goths so it’s all good (I do understand, people think being too thin is great but it isn’t always is it?) you really should be proud of going on that diet. I’ve been vegetarian since age 13 and whilst I didn’t do it for health reasons (save the badger) I have rarely regretted it. I don’t drink milk either but I do eat eggs. Do you? Or are they too high in fat? I’m so happy about your pancreas news thus far but I understand it’s not something you want to be too positive about because you never know, and I’m superstitious about that too. VERY sad about their not caring how you fixed it though, no wonder there is no progress in conventional medicine. I just read a book about that which you would enjoy – about how it’s completely stalled and nobody is bothering to progress it because of financial reasons and corruption. The chronic vertigo issue, stupid question I’m sure but have you tried those exercises for that? I know three people who have it and they all tried the exercises and they worked but I know it’s not always that simple. I can only imagine how hard that is, as I felt dizzy (not nearly as bad) and that was bad enough during the worst of my illness. It can really be anxiety provoking, unsettling, and cause nausea. Dark humor is the best xo

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