Dark Poetry
Poetry by Holly Day and Judson Michael Agla
The Weight of Dirt
                     By Holly Day

under the carved stones dotting
the soft hills spaced every three feet lies a woman
planting dirt stuck to her dress legs stretched out arms
crossed resisting still the

inexorable crush of
decay eyes sewn shut her hair perfectly coiffed
tied in a small knot behind
her head eyes still shut unmoving as the shovel tip
splinters wood

he trusted her so completely but then
she died he says he leans against the
handle puts all his weight behind the blade
uncovers enough of the coffin to open
the lid flashlight patient over her clothes
remembers the color of her eyes
pulls the ring off of her finger

to give to the next wife.
To read other short stories,
click one of the titles below.
About Holly Day

Holly Day’s poetry has recently
appeared in Plainsongs, The
Long Islander, and The
Nashwaak Review. Her newest
poetry collections are A Perfect
Day for Semaphore (Finishing
Line Press),  In This Place, She
Is Her Own (Vegetarian
Alcoholic Press), A Wall to
Protect Your Eyes (Pski’s Porch
Publishing),I'm in a Place Where
Reason Went Missing (Main
Street Rag Publishing Co.), The
Yellow Dot of a Daisy(Alien
Buddha Press), Folios of Dried
Flowers and Pressed Birds
(Cyberwit.net), and  Where We
Went Wrong (Clare Songbirds
About Judson Michael Agla
Bomb Shelter
     By Holly Day

I built my bomb shelter because
I want to see what will happen
to my garden after The Bomb.
I fully intend to go in
when the first sirens go off, plan

to shut myself up tight and live
through however many blasts of
intense radiation we all
get hit with. After a month or
so, I’m going to come back up, pop

my head outside, take a look at
the back yard to see how the plants
are doing. It’s not so much that
I’ve seen a number of horror
movies featuring man-eating
plants, poisonous plants, angry plants,
brought to mobile life by a blast
of radiation. It’s more that
I just want to see how far this
whole gardening thing can go, to

see what’s beyond watering
and basic fertilizing. I
desperately want to see some
beautiful, drastic mutant change
in my garden, to see snaky
tendrils waving threateningly
at me from beneath the birch tree,
tiny green heads snapping at my
feet through the grass, the tree itself
taking a good, hard swing in my

direction. I think that’d be
really cool.
Bad Intentions
     By Judson Michael Agla
How can you lay there with your fake tan and Bermuda shorts

There’s men walking the streets with meat cleavers and bad intensions

Life was less complicated when the world was flat and a ship disappearing under the horizon was the
latest thing.
The Wind Carries My Bones
By Judson Michael Agla

The skeleton of a raven brought me a message, he left laughing, towards the sky and the moon, and there
was no moon that night, I saw fire in the sky, I saw blood on my hands, I looked at the message, it was
written on a piece of rolled up skin, I did not know who’s or where it had come. The words moved as if
seen through glistening waters, I had no need to decipher, I had seen the Devils script before. It was my
death sentence, and this also I’ve seen before. The Devil taunts me with these promises, these invitations
to walk through the forest and cross the river into the Abyss. I’m always left standing, holding a piece of my
skin, blood on hands with the skeleton of a raven laughing in the moonlight, where there is no moon.
The Vines Have Stopped Creeping
By Judson Michael Agla

The vines have stopped creeping, the walls won’t have them, and they bleed on the dead flowers that have
lost their keeper, dust and rust are all that remains in this garden. I’d give my bones, my flesh and my
crippled mind, just to see a single bud, a sparkle of color, but the bolt already flew and there are no other
offerings because the vines have stopped creeping.
     By Judson Michael Agla

The first time we met I couldn’t take my eyes off you. It was the same when I thru the first shovel full into the
grave. I’ll always remember you sitting on my balcony watching you in the see through dress you’d bought,
it   danced shadows and beams of lite over the meat clever in your purse. The sun brought your beauty to a
higher level and the energy ignited your girlish laughter as we indulged in what seemed like pools of
endless champagne and diamond bowls of blackberries. We both knew the day would come when one of
us would be killed by the other. It was none negotiable; if we disobeyed we’d both become targets. I
thought it was odd that she wasn’t wearing any makeup; she’d always do herself up like Cleopatra or
Lauren Bacall, it was a mask of sorts, but who was she hiding from? Herself? I liked her in the morning,
fresh, no makeup, and no gun straps. The meat cleaver made no sense, she never used one at work and it
was part of my basic arms ensemble. She could hide four guns; six knives, eight throwing stars, three
grenades, an asp and a grappling gun and you’d never see anything but her curves. She’d never leave a
weapon exposed even with me. There are laws and codes that we live by in the organization and she had
her back to me, a punishable offence within the context of carrying out a “Dispatch”, meaning (kill). Behind
my shades tears were forming in my eyes as I now knew her intensions, she wasn’t going to carry out the
job and she didn’t want some stranger coming up from behind and popping off a couple in her head. She
wanted me to kill her, then and there with her see through dress and a glass of champagne.
The Things We Want Most
                             By Holly Day

The buildings stand abandoned, tilt
at right angles, shifting sand dunes
slow waves for dead boats. Satellite
picture number one: flames flicker
in empty windows. People must

still be alive here, fighting for
some sort of piss-poor survival.
Satellite picture number two:
A group of men sit around a
fire. The tattoo craze has gone so

far that bare skin is the status
symbol now. The primitives flaunt
Harley buckles and beer can hats,
new holy relics in a pile
beside them: crumpled photographs
of refrigerators filled with

condiments, needlepoint samplers,
censers, silver candlesticks, and
life-sized oil paintings of Jesus.
My Enemy Is Resting
By Judson Michael Agla

I can hear breathing like calm ocean waves
Claws and teeth in atrophy somewhere close
One day I’ll build that Treehouse
A place where our thoughts won’t betray us
My enemy is waking
I hear labored breathing and claws digging through dirt and stone
You died before you became famous
Your absence born a silent revolution like those that they make documentaries about
I’ll have to start moving now
I am the hunted and my history will be painted black like coal
My enemy is here
For poetry by Meg Smith,
Stanley Wilkin, Brian
Barnett and Chris Ingram,
click here

For poetry by John Grey
and Donna Dallas,

For Holly Day and Judson
Michael Agla,
click here