When someone’s angry There’s a problem within them They’re trying to solve If they aim that pain your way Step back, it’s not about you ©2018 Annette Rochelle Aben
APPOINTED TIME TO DIE
We all have our own
— True of all, including leaves —
Appointed death time
AT four o’clock in late October
I sat alone in the country school-house
Back from the road, mid stricken fields,
And an eddy of wind blew leaves on the pane,
And crooned in the flue of the cannon-stove,
With its open door blurring the shadows
With the spectral glow of a dying fire.
In an idle mood I was running the planchette—
All at once my wrist grew limp,
And my hand moved rapidly over the board,
‘Till the name of “Charles Guiteau” was spelled,
Who threatened to materialize before me.
I rose and fled from the room bare-headed
Into the dusk, afraid of my gift.
And after that the spirits swarmed—
Chaucer, Caesar, Poe and Marlowe,
Cleopatra and Mrs. Surratt—
Wherever I went, with messages,—
Mere trifling twaddle, Spoon River agreed.
You talk nonsense to children, don’t you?
And suppose I see what you never saw
And never heard of and have no word for,
I must talk nonsense when you ask me
What it is I see!
• Planchette: “a small board supported on casters, typically heart-shaped and fitted with a vertical pencil, used for automatic writing and in seances.” — dictionary.com
• Christopher Marlowe: author of the tragedy Doctor Faustus.
• “Mary Elizabeth Jenkins Surratt was an American boarding house owner who was convicted of taking part in the conspiracy to assassinate U.S. President Abraham Lincoln. Sentenced to death, she was hanged and became the first woman executed by the US federal government.” — Wikipedia