“Kneeling Before Anubis, Lazarus Wept” Poem.Joseph Armstead

Atop the Temple of the Sun,
bathed in radiant gold,
starlight blasts away our masks…

i.) Kissing the Eyes of the Dead

midnight oxygen flows to earth, littered
with dessicated pumpkin seeds
and the fading remnants
of communal nightmares,
haunting the City Primeval,
we dance a jingly-jangly foxtrot
across oil-stained, debris-strewn streets,
not daring to look one another
in the eyes,
never catch our taffy-pulled,
Francisco de Goya-esque
in the windows
to someone else’s soul —
it is a brittle kindness,
it is a neurotic’s etiquette
— wanting, lusting,
desiring, thirsting
to place our lips
in icy benediction
upon the closed lids
where old copper pennies
are destined to rest.  

ii.) This Pillow Of Cadavers

It’s hard to breathe
— pant? wheeze? gasp? choke? —
when you’re wrapped
so tightly around me,
and yet a comfort
against the maelstrom
abroad the screaming face
of this shrunken head world,
we lay our heads down
on a bed of broken yesterdays,
eyes happily shut
against the relentless
of our whirlygig minds,
seeking stillness,
wanting a suspension
of painful animation,
praying for sleep
atop an altar of flesh
we inhale and the scent
of dissolution
lulls us into dreaming,
and, finally,
our lungs grow still.

The thing struggling in the mud
at the great temple’s base weeps,
frustrated and blind…


Joseph Armstead is a suspense-thriller and horror author living in the United States’ San Francisco Bay Area.   Author of a dozen short stories and ten novels, his poetry has been published in a wide range of online journals, webzines and print magazines.   A mathematician, Futurist and computer technologist, Mr. Armstead’s poetry often defies easy description, but frequently includes neo-classical imagery, surrealist viewpoints and post-modern themes.









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