I have wanted for that

Which I do not possess

I have envied others

Their talent

Their beauty

Their content


I have wanted for suitors

For men over whom I hold

Intractable power

(Is worth not more intrinsic

Than opinion?)

I have wanted for the dignity

Of a well-lanned ambition

To create alien landscapes

From an eclectic syllabary

To weave dreams like Morpheus

Into starched collars

And patent leather shoes

That none may depart



I have hungered

For the prosaic

For food

For security

For a family whose love

Do not falter with utility


I have known poverty

In its literal sense

Survival above novelty

And still I have found

No absence greater

Than the human heart


Well-lanned means well-informed, knowledgeable, connected, and supported it actually comes the game Planescape Torment so it’s not technically a real word but it’s a good word so feel free to use it!


The Divine Actor

Ken-WongArt By: Ken Wong

An ambiguous heart

Is easy to misplace

Still my odyssey shelters

No reprieve

Born to the wind

My only consolation

Is verse


I find myself somersaulting

Between this world

And the nether

Impoverished but for ink


My snakeskin notebook

Sheds culpability

Through the exaltation

Of an anathematic muse

“It’s no longer enough

For me to be one man”

I must know all men

As I know myself

And on exhausting one life

I must be ready

To assume another

That is what it means

To be a genius

To step into the maw

Of a predatory madness

And find amongst horror

The courage to speak clearly

That which is unthinkable


This poem was influenced by Rimbaud’s theory on writing. A theory that I, as teenager and young adult, embraced. To a lesser extent of course, as I am generally well-behaved. The quote is Rimbauds.

Incubus (warning slightly explicit)


The moonlight slips unbidden into my womb

It was never my intention to serve him

Between us there is no love

Only the suspicious ache of a pernicious hunger


His insignia extends the length of my spinal column

My nerves remember what my eyes cannot conceive


In the same way that blood forges hope

By maintaining a predetermined course

He settles deviously on the chest

That the lungs may not drink enough

To arouse resistance


He is an intractable savant

The night is his emissary

His bastion as well

He drags his obsidian claws

Across my inner thighs

Thirsting the milk

Of an illegitimate desire


Being dreamless he depends solely

On artifice to communicate

It’s such an authentically human trait

To disguise through application

That one cannot but wonder

If he did not exist first as a man


Each night astounded by the realization

That one can be multi-orgasmic even in hell

I find my life force slipping like an exclamation


Influenced in style by Jim Carroll

Book of the Dead

Did I allow an affinity for suffering

To calcify or mitigate?


Will I hunger indefinitely

Like a ravaged ghost?

Or will I find in death

Both coherence and communion?

A soul subservient

To neither Mara nor ID

A soul free of preference

And illusion


All these faces

I have worn

Both monster and God

They are but incarnations

Of the same entity


If in the path of delirium

I come to know

My Buddha nature

Will I banish all construct

And reemerge divine?


I painted this picture of the after life




My words

Never diminish

Your insecurity

They are impotent

Divided by an ego

Set on extinction

Dismantled by a logic

That holds society

In contempt


When did your heart

Render unfit all orifice?

Forcing your voice

Through stitched lines

Your words are

Bloodied fragments

Too mangled for counsel


Do I conceal violence

In the guise of praise

Or do you hear only

Your mind’s

Grisly translations?


Am I the bearer

Of your pain

Or the unsigned savior?

I no longer know

If the victim

Or the rogue

Your Depression

Shapes us both

And beneath

Her murderous fingers

We are equally depraved


Will we lie here?

Covered in blood


The causalities

Of our

Combined insanities


Your red-rimmed eyes

A carnivore bates

Is it not fear

Devising of sadness

A presumptuous threat?


You silence me

With a dismissive wave

Is it my mind you fear?

Its inscrutable workings

Or the surmised end

Of an inevitable love?



You are deception

The face behind

An occipital moon

I know you savagely

In the residue

Of a forgotten youth

Hands and hearts




I wear you

Like a noose




A breathless


To death

Choking, Choking


We tread cautiously

As though beneath

Our feet

The molten earth

Were irreparably cracked

We live in strained silence

Prisoners of war

Struggling, Struggling, Struggling



Underneath a grim sky

Fluid with specks of dust

And the rapture of a fertile moon

I wonder will it always be thus?


My face pale and wane

My eyes dull and lifeless like a sharks

A mouth that speaks of trivial things

With a high timid voice

That understands nothing of words


The tender dialect of lovers

Will it ever move past my lips again?

Tiny shards of wisdom

That linger and endow me

With strange enchantments

Will I ever be inspired again?


My hands occupy my time with work

Daily I labor

For nothing in particular

Like a barren woman

Who tracks her ovulation

Even knowing she shall never bare any fruit

I am empty like that woman

And just as insatiable


Each night I fall into consecrated bliss

Yet even my dreams are ashen and uninspired

Silence gives me hope

With its ominous turnings

That both frighten and consume


This poem was Plath inspired and one of the only poems I’ve never edited. Though very old it remains curiously close to my heart. It is one of the only poems I have never hated.


Painted Dragon


She could’ve been beautiful

But the makeup on her face

Amplified every imperfection

Made her seem unreal

Like a slipshod animation


We talked for hours

About philosophies

Too convoluted to consume

About ambitions

And the despair

That shapes realities

She would have sacrificed

Everything for the stage,

Instead, on her knees

Choking down creation


I find myself standing

On the same corner

Night after night


To the instincts

Of inhuman men

Selling pieces of my soul

For the abstractions

Of a primed syringe


We bought

An apartment together

On the lower end

No furniture or food

Only conversation,

The sustenance of fools

I remember

The hours piled upon hours

Of words so casually strewn

I remember

The weight of her shrinking skin

Defenseless beneath

The weight

Of our transient bones

I remember

Watching her fall


Into addiction

My spirit too weak

To stall the descent


I opened the door

To find her on the toilet

In my sagging robe

Hair unwashed

Body slouching lifeless

Against a tiled wall

And neither my hands

Nor my breath

Could draw her back

From the widowing shawl

Of a commiserating death


I couldn’t stop screaming

I love you

Until my voice was gone

And I had to mouth

The words instead

I wish I’d told her

When I had the chance

When she was crying

For hours on end

When she was screaming

I’m better off dead

When she hated me

For getting in the way

And herself more

For what she’d become

Those words never

Hurt so much

As when unsaid

I wished I’d screamed them at her

Over and over again

Until she went deaf

So no other words could ever enter

And cause her pain again


Now I am standing

In her place

On a modest stage

A modest crowd genuflecting

As I start to play

And whisper the lyrics she left me

I imagine her in my place

Squeezing the microphone

Lips as round and full

As an orgasm


Here I stand claiming

What time could not

From my heart cleanse

In her place

Picking up the dreams

That she left


This together with Paper Heart is the remnants of a novel abandoned and lost long ago. Paper Heart was written from the female’s perspective and Painted Dragon from the male’s perspective. I’ve done extensive editing of this poem over the years but I’ve never been satisfied by my efforts.

Paper Heart

How long have I dwelt here

On the ocean floor

With the weight of the world

Pressing down

And no air to feed my lungs

Screaming but soundless

As I struggle to the surface?


There are beasts

Beneath the water

In places so dark

That light cannot pervade them

They wear the faces of men

But bear hearts like glaciers

Impregnable fortresses of ice


I have swallowed creation

A poisoned, anonymous lust

Existing bitter within me

I would have given

Anything to escape

No distance, no matter how great

Could take me there


To know the nature of man

At his worst

Is to see my own reflection

Such horrors as I face everyday

Moments that even nightmares

Will not claim


I know the other side of love

The hate that breeds violence

The hate that makes men falter

And surrender to controversy


I used to want to live,

As though an allegory

A white feathered muse

Unblemished by memory

How soon

Till I wield my mask again?


Behind closed doors

Alone in my fragility

I allow the disease

To continue its course


To survive a man would kill

To escape a man would torture

If for even a moment he thought

He were held against his will

To be forced to face himself

He would destroy everything

Until naught but cinders remained


No one ever hurt me

Quite like myself

The sacrifices I’ve made

Amount to little

When measured

Against my dreams

But how easily I discarded my soul

For a life I did not want to lead


I dwell quietly in addiction

So no one has to see me consumed

To fall into nothingness

That I might for a moment forget


Even love can not save me

For my heart is swollen with rage

And can no longer take anything in

Nor feel anything but pain


This is  fictional work