Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Guest Writer: Stephen Stribbell

A Halo of Flies

Dead, it is white all around
Biting cold, buried in the frozen ground
Icy silence inside my eyes
Bodies bloated, attracting flies.

Often thoughts are not recorded; the movement of time is something we can
sense but never see. Is it greed that spurs the soul on through life, the eternal want of more?
A mist swirls and disguises the painted symbols on the walls. It is suddenly dark.

Insane laughter resounds throughout my head
Yet there is no smile upon my face
Voices calling me to empty rooms
The walls don't care what I say

I am Stephen. I am becoming words on paper. I am that which is and that which is not, depending
on how you wish to consider me. Changing shape, texture, patterns: a fluid, pulsing and flowing like
blood sinking slowly into the page. Drifting through the sheets, into the dark, the black, is void. Nothing.
Picture a moment frozen in time - in space, a steady clicking, millions of revolutions per second. I congeal. A life: images imprinted on burning retinas, a collection of hopes and dreams, torn and fading on rotting newsprint.

It's eerie when everything moves - molecules, not love
Light on the face, shadows for eyes, bodies in black
Is it true that we only live for the reproduction of DNA?
Faltering steps tick by like an old clock, an hour gone:
It is lost, and can never be again.

Why are you shivering, Stephen? Are you cold? Is everything dying around you? Can you feel the slow decay?
Why don't you do yourself a favor and draw the cold steel through your wrists? Listen, Stephen. Listen to us
laughing. Can't you cry anymore? The pain is getting worse, isn't it? The frustration is unbearable, you know
it is. Don't you wish you could die? You can't shut us out for even a minute! And we're laughing!

Insects and worms are climbing the walls
The laughter, increasing in intensity, echoes through the halls
A halo of flies for the son of society
Crawling in my eyes. I cannot see.

© Stephen M. Stribbell 2010

Stephen Stribbell is a self-proclaimed "Artistic Mercenary," practicing his creative skills, which include visual art, music, writing, and theater, to survive in the brutally hard underbelly of the world. You can find some of his work at


  1. Stephen You have crafted this beautifully. I feel honored knowing that I was put up between great writers such as MJS and yourself.
    Well told and very visiual.

  2. Stephen, this was deliciously wicked. I will see all the references to eyes in my sleep tonight.

  3. On the merit of your imagery alone, this is a winner! I like writers like you who are this proficient with language.

  4. That was pretty intense, Stephen. Not sure how to comment, really. Intense.

  5. Dark, twisted, visually intense. Works particularly well on the dark background of MuDJoB's website. Well done!

  6. Like a modern day Poe you are slowly but surely making your way through the darkest corners and erecting signposts to help those of us who chance to wander off the path of safety and awareness. I don't read enough poetry, and think if I was made aware of more pieces like this one, perhaps I would feel a greater impulse to do so. Easy to absorb, scary to contemplate, and yet deliciously, darkly cinematic.


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