Felique Dupré in the Haunted World: Whose Hell is This?

Persephone plods relentlessly towards Hell.

Great drifts of snow form a tunnel along Union Turnpike.

Everything is grey: grey snow from a grey sky on grey
buildings.

Persephone rolls her eyes at the writer; perseveration of
thought is the sign of an overwrought mind.

Yet, she does consider the landscape grey

Illustration of Persephone made from a photograph of an avatar
Union Turnpike

Alla Saints an’ Mother Theresa coul’na saved me!” laughs Hades
with a puff on his cigar.

He’s just told the story of how, as a young Catholic converting a Jew in Switzerland, he was chased by a pack of Protestant dogs.

“My twisted sister!” Persephone hikes her skirt; that story never fails to impress.

Hades,” she says, “about Felique…”

“I don’t have your precious Felique!”

Nevertheless, she persisted: “But you must!”

Hades relaxes and chuckles affectionately: “Of course I must. She’s in the Garden playing with dolls. She’d love to see you.”

Persephone is confused: “What was that business with the hag in the mirror?”

“You know how the writer likes special effects.”

“And Felique…?”

“She’s a little girl named Trina.”

“I see…and, whose Hell is this?

“Cocteau’s, do you like it?”

Surrealist photograph of virtual reality avatars to represent Persephone and Lucifer entering the Garden
Persephone and Lucifer enter the Garden

Persephone examines one of Lucifer’s paintings and smiles: “Life is like a skyscraper on quicksand.”

(c) Rob Goldstein 2017 All Rights Reserved

Felique Dupré in the Haunted World: Headed to Hell

Persephone is headed to Hell but first she decides to
meet Christ in Manhattan.

She takes in the sights of 7th Avenue; shards of rain
slice the sky.

She stops at the Cafe des Poetes for a cappuccino:

“Ex-presso! she orders.

“How fast?” asks the waiter.

“Oh, the puns,” Persephone sighs. “Please stop!”

“Make him.” the waiter points through the screen at the writer .

Persephone gives the writer an irritated glance, “He never stops!
Ex-presso please.”

“But you came in for a cappuccino.”

“But I ordered an ex-presso.”

“Not stating your intention! This is no way to meet Christ!”

(c) Rob Goldstein 2017 All Rights Reserved

Born Into a Carnival of Souls

Here are a few words I’ve seen scrawled in the alleys of San Francisco’s
Mission District:

We can’t know what we won’t comprehend.

We can’t stop the damage we won’t believe we cause.

These are the crazies, the dregs of the earth, the losers, and every other demeaning and dismissive word used to dismiss the powerless who suffer
the worst of the GOP’s abuses of power.

These people can’t afford to vote their conscience because they’re dying from the lousy choices of people who can.

I saw this scrawled on a wall in late 2016: Why do u want 2 Kill me?

That’s a damned good question.

A mind that ain’t inquisitive really doesn’t got
shit to live for if you can’t explore the
realms of thought you ought not test lest
you be chomped up, like a pop rock, stopped for a
bead from the weed lady, thought it was the bomb
Really wasn’t nuttin but a bag of strong palms

A human ain’t a human if he doesn’t make mistakes
And the name of this song is Swan Lake

Save

Save

Soul Searching

from Poet Rummager

Poet Rummager

WQGR0456
Illustration by Poet Rummager

I’ve hung the missing posters –

stapled them to light poles.

Only the wind answers back

in haughty undertones.

Fool, it huffs, as it slaps my face,

Humanity is a runaway.

No use looking.

No one cares.

In this desolate terrain,

you’ll be soul searching in vain.

United States ranks 50 out of 55 developed countries in healthcare efficiency, life expectancy, and healthcare spending per capita (Bloomberg). Our senators and congressmen are covered under government health plans for life, yet they quibble about offering the sickest and poorest children the right to the same quality of care. Where are these people’s souls? I certainly can’t find them.

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