The Questioning Way


There have been times in my life
When I’ve felt unspeakable pain and fear
And times when I’ve seen
Those whom I love
Suffer mind breaking pain as well
While I watched, unable to help
Of the two, I can tell you
The second is far, far worse

I’ve known love with another
That runs so deep in our souls
It will never know death
I’ve also seen and felt
To the very core of my existence
The simple joy
That quietly lives in all things
Like a pond of pure, clear water
And I’ve listened to something
Of the great lilting melody
To which all life moves

Joseph Campbell once said
“Find a place inside where there’s joy,
And the joy will burn out the pain”
Which, I think, are very wise words
That couldn’t be more true

When I was a young man
Hanging out with my…

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Short Stories

Skull candy (991 Words)

The sweet ringing sound of birds whistling, rises from the trees of the Omaha forest. Rawock hastens to reach his destination before dark. The forest is a dangerous place to cross during the night. The weary traveller can easily fall victim to the treacherous quicksand pits. Once you step into one of these pits the gravitation pull at the centre of the pit sucks you in within a matter of seconds. No trace of you ever to be found.

He crosses the grassy patch between the trees carefully scanning the vicinity for pits. Then slowly proceed on his way towards the village at the foot of the pass.

The wind starts to blow and Rawock looks upwards while the color starts to fade from the sky and the moon slowly rises on the horison. Then an eerie sound becomes audible. Rawock takes the looking glass and raises it to his right eye. He looks towards the sky right where the moon is blooming. The golden orb hangs suspended in the air above the forest. This is indeed fortunate for Rawock, since he will be able to use the light on his journey that still lies ahead.

The noise is slowly growing louder and more ominous. He turns his head and tries to place the origin of the sound. He lifts the looking glass up to his right eye once more and looks in the direction from where the sound seems to be originating.

Shocked he lowers the glass and secures it in the leather pouch hanging from the belt around his waist. Then he looks around for a safe hideaway. The sound is increasing in volume and the wind is tossing and turning the leaves on the trees. Rawock suddenly spots the funny shaped rock and runs towards it. Then he takes his cape. He huddles against the rock and puts his feet on both corners of the cape. Then with his hands he takes the top of the cape and pulls it over his head as he lay against the rock. He keeps as still as possible. The wind is pulling on the cape as the swarm of Asirama passes over him. He barely breathes. They will attack at any sign of movement.

As the wind calms down and the noise starts to fade slowly, he removes his cape and stares at the dark cloud of creatures, just as they disappear in the distance. It is facinating. The Asirama is a deadly bee-like animal species, that can expand itself to the size of an elephant from its original catlike size when they attack.

Although they are deadly, they only attack instinctively at unexpected movement or when being provoked. The fact that their shape and size can change so dramatically is frightening since the amount of poison increases proportionally as well.

Rawock looks up at the sky again. This time he is searching for the Streypia constellation to establish in which direction he should continue. He spots the stars and resumes his journey.

Just before midnight he reaches the small village. He keeps a watchful eye on the doors of the quaint houses. Welcoming light is flowing from the windows. He stops at the inn and walks towards the door. He raise his hand and knocks two short knocks. Inside he can hear a shuffling sound. Then the face of an old woman looks around the side of the opened door.

She looks at him, then lets him in without greeting or saying a word.

Just as he enters he hears a flutter behind him. He realizes that the hooded figure had been watching him since he had entered the village. The figure enters the inn just after him, walks towards a table and sits down without removing the hood of the cape. He is intrigued.

Lady Paldinah slowly raise her face. Just enough to look out from underneath the hood. She watches the travellers’ face. The face she had seen in her dream three days before. This is no mere coincidence.

As a former princess of Siantis whose entire family and nation was wiped out, she moves around without attracting too much attention. Thus avoiding unnecessary scrutiny or unwanted questions. The kingdom now lies in ruins after the enemy took over. She still struggle to accept the fact that she is the sole survivor of her people.

She calls the innkeeper and asks for a bowl of skull candy soup. The innkeeper returns with the bowl of sparkling soup and places it on the table. Lady Paldinah takes the spoon and finishes her meal then she walks to the stairs and to her room closing the door and bolting it behind her. She unhooks her cape and throws it on the bed. As she turns around she becomes aware of the sensation that someone is watching her. She stands frozen when the traveller steps away from the wall into the light. This is the first time that she sees his face clearly.

“Paldinah?!” The frown on his face is mixed with a look of confusion and shock.

Paldinah’s shoulders start shaking. Is this possible? She has been suffering for eighteen months struggling to survive. Doing odd jobs to earn money in order to eat and have a place to stay. She looks at Rawock. The love of her life. Her fiancé whom she was sure had been killed by the raiders, is standing infront of her. Alive!

She throws herself into his arms and her tears stains his face as she puts her arms around his neck. Sobs tear through her body. A floodgate of thoughts rush forth. Her people will live on through their kids. She carries the royal line. Rawock will rule as the new king. Tomorrow she will start to gather an army of volunteers who can help them win back what had been taken by force.

Long live Rawock! Siantis will be reclaimed.

© Velma J Barnard

Time Travel

Time travel

Time Travel

The door slides open with a whoosh

One determined step after the other

I look through the two windows

Windows to the soul of my ship

There is motion as my journey’s underway

A pit stop in the past that fleets by

A memory of yesteryear that causes me to cry

The currents of time sway my time ship

I press the brake at today thinking it looks ok

and proceed further at light speed, future ahead

Reaching the shores of space in my mind race

Behind me I see only the battles I faced

I lean forward and my nose touches the glass

Suddenly my ship runs out of dream fuel

Reality drive kicks in and the ship starts to spin

Time travel ends fast since the fuel didn’t last

©Velma J Barnard

The Pedo and The Kiddo


Hey, diddle, diddle! The pedo and the kiddo,

The witness jumped under the moon;

No words, no ears, no eyes

willing to expose all the lies

The little hypocrites laughed to see this sport,

And the government ran away with the law

Hey, diddle, diddle! The pedo and the kiddo,

The social system slumped and the moon turned shadow

Oh what a pity our world is in such calamity

cause none are open to proclaim objection

Hey, diddle, diddle! We can continue with this riddle

if social disability reigns our future stays defiled

Hey, diddle, diddle! No play and no fiddle,

when will blind see, deaf hear and mute speak?

© Velma J Barnard

Poems to create awareness against child abuse and molestation

We need to stand up for the youth in our country. We have a duty to protect our future.
We need to stand up for the youth in our country. We have a duty to protect our future.

 Sweetest Little One

sweetest little one don’t say a word

uncle will buy you a squeaking bird

if the squeaking bird’s song stays quiet

uncle’s gonna give you a lucky packet

if the lucky packet stays sealed shut

uncle’s gonna read you a bedtime story

if telling the bedtime story gets done

uncle’s gonna give you a green bill note

if the green bill note gets saved away

uncle’s gonna get you a nice new bike

if the nice new bike cannot keep you quiet

uncle’s gonna get you a dog named Spot

if the dog named Spot just barks and barks

uncle’s gonna get you a nice soft pillow

if the nice soft pillow lands on your face

you’ll stay the most innocent little one around

(Dedicated to all the innocent little children that

gets molested and murdered without a chance to

voice what had happened to them)

© Velma J Barnard