Christopher Bernard reviews Cal Berkeley Performances’ show 17c

Scene from 17c, by Big Dance Theater



A review by Christopher Bernard



Big Dance Theater

Zellerbach Playhouse

Berkeley, California


Diaries: those curious amalgams of introspection, examination of conscience, honesty (or the lack of it), performance of the self in the mirror of the mind, costumery of the soul, writing of one’s own story, exhibitionism, exploration, assassination, and secrecy. Some claim the modern diary—part narcissistic parade before oneself, part genuine confession of faults, part self-indulgence, part self-flagellation, which today has morphed, from the soul communing with itself into social networks’ exhibitionism and the genius for banality of writers like Karl Ove Knausgaard—was invented by Samuel Pepys.

Pepys was a Londoner, an administrator in the Royal Navy, and member of Parliament, who kept a regular diary for ten years, between 1660 and 1669, between the ages of 27 and 36, which was discovered and published to instant, and continuing, fascination by the public. People have been poking at Pepys ever since, with multiple editions, the earlier ones bowdlerized, the more recent ones even more complete than some might want, and including an online version,, which provides a typical entry for the day on which you visit (on the day I visited, it was the entry for December 14, 1665), and is constantly being annotated by fans and others.

One can find little to pity the poor fellow after exhibiting his own weaknesses with as much relish as this philandering, self-absorbed, self-promoting, epicene, self-deceiving, obsessive recorder of his own misbehavior—even if he never meant it to be read or (heaven forbid!) published!

Of course this begs the question haunting all diarists before and since: doesn’t every diarist secretly hope to be read, published, honored, become “famous”? (Full disclosure: I have been myself a more or less regular diarist since I was eleven.) Of course we do! We lie if we claim otherwise; at the very least, we hope some particular person will look it over with a sympathetic eye: a parent, a lover, oneself when old, God.

We rarely daydream about a critic, scholar, artist, interrogater who, though in all good humor, is as frank about you, sir, as you seem to be about yourself.

Which brings us to 17c, which, as part of its stimulating, and much-needed, RADICAL Women’s Work series, Cal Performances brought into town in mid-December: Big Dance Theater’s award-winning, dry-eyed exploration, witty send-up, and political meditation on Pepys’ voluminous self-revelation. And after the wave of political gains by progressive women in the last elections, it could hardly be more timely or more welcome.

The smart, juicy, often funny piece plays with dance, monodrama, dialogue, music, sketch comedy, play-within-a-play and mime to create a good-humored but well-deserved deconstruction of the life, as self-depicted, of the legendary diarist—and notorious disrespecter of women.

Pepys lays himself completely open to a feminist interrogation of his life: a compulsive philanderer, he is caught at least once by his wife in flagrante with the family maid, and he describes, briefly but indubitably, a rape. Both incidents appear in the piece, the first in an extended reading, updated to modern argot, in a very funny monolog by Paul Lazar, the second in a brief, devastating recitation of one of the diary’s darkest entries. Though, unfortunately, not its darkest.

For all the comedy, tragedy, and farce of Pepys’ depiction of his own life, the soul of 17c is not to be found there: that lies in the invisible words, the burning diaries, of Pepys’ wife, Elizabeth, or Bess, performed with grace and wit in a 2017 Bessie Award-winning performance by Elizabeth DeMent.

Bess’s silence plays in counterpoint to Pepys’ logorrhea. And the two come together in clash to reconciliation, to clash again, to bedward bliss to masculine displays of economic power parading as acts of contrition, until the fatal day comes when the diarist’s profound cruelty goes on display for all to see: when he discovers that Bess is also keeping a diary, rips out the pages one at a time, and at last burns them all. And he is not even ashamed to report it, though the irony of his action seems lost on him. He never seems to occur to him that the only way to spare himself eternal exposure would be to destroy his own.

The script sometimes suffers from a certain intellectual myopia (the claims in the introductory monologue that life and existence are “meaningless” are tendentious at best; my own response to such contemporary shibboleths is “prove it”) and from moral anachronism: that Pepys married Elizabeth when she was fourteen needs richer exploration than a flippant self-righteousness.

The otherwise intensely clever script was written and adapted by Anne-B Parson, and includes texts from Euripides, Eugène Ionesco, and Claire Tomalin as well as from the unperformed playwright and contemporary of Pepys, Margaret Cavendish, a stripped-down version of whose satirical and “radical feminist” play, The Convent of Pleasures, was performed as a play-within-a-play. Some of 17c’s most entertaining and perceptive scenes are based on the often wonderfully weird visitor comments from The other players included sprightly Kourtney Rutherford and Cynthia Hopkins and a wittily voguing Mikéah Jennings.

EDITOR’S NOTE: On a personal note, Christopher Bernard was inspired to create this poem about Samuel Pepys after seeing 17c:


I Do Not Love Thee, Samuel Pepys


By Christopher Bernard


I do not love thee, Samuel Pepys.

Alas, and zounds! I cannot see

what all those readers see in thee.

Thou givest me, always, the creeps.


Inventor of the diary

as paper version of FB

in the seventeenth century,

I’ll give you that, most willingly.


But nothing more. He sows who reaps.

You are too close to that which keeps

me up all night. He dreams he leaps,

to drown, who can’t escape the deep.


We laugh, we glare.

But will we dare

when we’re laid bare,

and Samuel peeps?


He falls who cannot rise; he sleeps.

But acts are hard, and words are cheap.

I do not love thee, cannot bear thee.

In thee I see me, Samuel Pepys.


Christopher Bernard is co-editor and poetry editor of Caveat Lector. He writes on dance, drama, and art for Synchronized Chaos. His most recent book is the poetry collection Chien Lunatique.

Christopher Bernard reviews ‘Custodians of Beauty’ from Pavel Zustiak and the Palissimo Company at Berkeley’s Zellerbach Hall



Viktor De La Fuente, Justin Morrison, and Emma Judkins in Custodians of Beauty (Photo by Liz Lynch)

Viktor De La Fuente, Justin Morrison, and Emma Judkins in Custodians of Beauty (Photo by Liz Lynch)


A review by Christopher Bernard

For beauty is nothing

but the beginning of terror . . .


Custodians of Beauty

Pavel Zuštiak and Palissimo Company

Zellerbach Playhouse

Berkeley, California

One of the many peculiarities of our post-postmodern age (though a clearer term for it would be “hypermodern”) has been the attempt to deconstruct (a polite word for “demolish”) certain terms of value that have come down to us through the ages of Western civilization: “truth,” “goodness,” “equality,” “freedom,” “liberal,” “democracy,” and the like.

One of the terms that has received special scrutiny in certain purviews of academia (where such demolitions are practiced, frequently under the innocent eyes of college students) has been “beauty.”

I always ask myself why such demolitions are performed: why would anyone want to deconstruct “truth” or “freedom” or “love”? Why would someone want to destroy “beauty”?

Knowing who will gain by such demolitions is often more fruitful than knowing who will lose. For, if we lost “beauty,” most people, I think, would agree that we would lose much that makes life worth living. But who would gain by it? One can understand why some feminists might, with good cause, resent “beauty,” since “beauty” has been used against women by men since the beginning of time: men have a weakness in worshiping beautiful women and despising ugly ones. And the most beautiful woman in the world knows that her beauty is only temporary: it is only a matter of time before she will lose it and fall into the worthless category of the ugly.

One common argument is that “beauty” creates “ugliness,” and that if we lost “beauty” as a value, we would lose “ugliness” as a pejorative. This, however, remains to be proved. It strikes me as, at best, unlikely: without “beauty” we would not lose “ugliness.” We would merely end up with nothing.

Which brings us to the modern dance performance, “Custodians of Beauty,” by Pavel Zuštiak and the NewYork‒based Palissimo Company, which was performed over a recent weekend in Berkeley as part of Cal Performances’ dance series.

This dance clearly belongs to the ongoing discussion of the meaning and value of beauty. “Custodians of Beauty” takes its title seriously and with less irony than one might have expected. Zuštiak’s dance is (as I read it) about exploring the boundaries of what we think of as “beautiful” and “ugly,” and breaking threw them, in order to find “beauty” where we might least expect to find it: for example, in industrial noise, in half-broken bodies, in mind-numbing repetition, pointless posturing and semaphores of nonsense, in asexual forms of nudity, in inelegance, cross-dressing, smoke and darkness and embarrassment and silliness and shame. There is even some dancing that pretends hard not to be—as dance is, for some of us, the very definition of classic forms of beauty.

And it almost succeeds. Though that “almost” is a bit wider than one might have hoped.

The roughly hour and a half work is broken into some fifteen to twenty scenelets, performed against two large movable  panels, one of them a greenish-gray, the other a heavy scarlet red scored over with Cy Twombly-like marks and scratches. The three dancers dance before and between the screens, often making alphabet-like shapes, or taking enigmatic poses, or deaf-mute signing; their shadows thrown in dramatic shadows against them, creating phantom crowds.

At one point the three appear, seminude, wrapped in and around each other, with rumps thrust in the air like mushrooms and, in a long choreographic tour de force, role together complexly across the stage, uncoiling limbs and exposing torsos without once revealing their faces, until at the very last moment they rise to a stand and turn to the audience, defiantly human after recapitulating an evolution from some primordial fungus.

Other scenes include words spoken, screened, sung: a song based on a poem by Emily Dickinson, words spoken to the audience (in one instance, three audience members were invited to the stage, and stood, awkwardly but good-naturedly, defying us to think them less worthy of attention than the dancers they momentarily replaced), words screened against the back wall; taken from what appear to be typical comments after an avant-garde dance performances, and echoing no doubt what some in the current audience were thinking or would share with each other after the show: “What was that? Did it mean anything? I almost . . . liked it.” This dance certainly displayed a good-natured sense of humor.

At one point the smoke machine was put to use, and a cloud of steam rose in the dimly lit auditorium, slowly dissipating over the audience’s heads. At another point, an enormous black screen was pulled over the heads of the audience, from the front row to the back, one row at a time by the audience themselves after being initiated by the dancers.

At another point, an extravagant shadow was thrown against the back screen and a man in a dress appeared, mincing grandly in defiance of classic attitudes of masculine beauty (always more conservative than the feminine).

And there was a spoof of a grand finale, as the three dancers trembled and shook and pogoed around the stage to dance-club music like wound-up puppets, before a coda where, in half-seen shadows, one of the male dancers strenuously waved a huge, indecipherable banner, though whether in triumph or in futile defiance we will never know.

I found my best experience of this dance while writing about it: while watching it, on the other hand, I often felt vaguely irritated, despite the first feeling of intrigue as each part began, then out-stayed its welcome. The dance as a whole would have been a feast if, so to speak, it had been closer to a snack; as it was, it felt undernourished, repetitious, and thin; editing it down to an hour would probably strengthen its overall effect. Also it was not quite as original as it intended: these motives and these moves I have encountered more than once since deconstruction’s hey-day in the 1980s and the advent of “antidance” in Europe over the last decade or more.

Pavel Zuštiak provided “direction, choreography and olfactory design” (though, to be frank, I failed to detect any untoward smells, good or bad), the simple but effective lighting was by Joe Levasseur, and the eerie, sometimes deliberately needling, and (when called for) effectively ironic music was by Christian Frederickson. The able, brave and vulnerable dancers were Viktor De La Fuente, Emma Judkins, and Justin Morrison.


Christopher Bernard is co-editor and poetry editor of Caveat Lector. He writes on dance, drama, and art for Synchronized Chaos. His most recent book is the poetry collection Chien Lunatique.


Christopher Bernard reviews the San Francisco MoMa’s Etel Adnan exhibit



Explosion Florale




A review by Christopher Bernard

New Work

Etel Adnan

San Francisco Museum of Modern Art

Until January 6, 2019

It is tempting to call Etel Adnan a contemporary instance of the “late bloomer”: someone whose work came into its own after most people’s lives have begun winding down.

But it may be more accurate to call us, in this instance, the “late bloomers,” almost scandalously delayed, as we have been, in recognizing what has been blossoming vigorously among us all this time.

Because, at 93, Adnan is finally receiving her due for a body of work she has been creating for more than half a century and continues to create, oblivious to age, at a dazzling rate.

The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art’s exhibit (curated with particular perceptiveness and sensitivity by Eungie Joo, the museum’s curator of contemporary art) succeeds admirably in introducing us to Etel Adnan’s spirit and gifts in oil painting, tapestries, and ink drawings (she is also an important poet, novelist, and playwright, but more about that later).

The oils paintings (fifteen in all, and all created this year) dominate the show: small, powerfully composed color-field works, with flat, brilliantly balanced colored geometric forms (anchoring squares and sun-like circles dominating some, dramatic valley and mountain forms dominating others, and sinuous root and mineral-like shapes dominating yet others), that consistently fascinate the eye, both stimulating and calming the emotions, with the economy that is achieved in only the maturest art.

Adnan’s simple forms indeed display the care and practice of a long lifetime, their economy balanced with vitality and the artist’s subtle and invigorating sense of color and tone. One looks at these paintings of an unsurpassed simplicity impressed by how they also manage to be so dynamic.

Adnan’s ongoing recognition has included retrospectives in major galleries, appearances in important exhibits of work by woman artists in New York and in Europe, including dOCUMENTA (13), and two magnificently produced monographs published this year. This is her first exhibition at SFMOMA, in the Bay Area where she lived for many years – years, appositely for this exhibit, when she discovered herself as an artist. In fact this museum is an important source of Adnan’s deceptively naïve and childlike aesthetic, as it houses the Djerassi collection of Paul Klee, whose work (and that collection in particular), had enormous early influence on her own art, as the artist herself has attested.

It is worth noting that Adnan is not only an artist of concentrated grace but, having begun her creative life as a philosopher and poet (in French and, later, English), is now accepted as one of the most innovative and influential modern writers from the Arab world.

Etel Adnan’s life spans several continents: born of a Turkish father and Greek mother in Beirut (where she was educated in French; French becoming her first “literary” language), she won a scholarship in 1949 to the Sorbonne in Paris, where she met the writer André Gide and studied under philosophers Gaston Bachelard and Etienne Souriau. Six years later she moved to the San Francisco Bay Area to pursue doctoral work in esthetics at the University of California, Berkeley. During her years in the Bay Area, she began experimenting with painting and drawing, creating her first leporellos (a specialty of the artist’s), books made of long, folded paper opening out like long friezes, in which Adnan incorporates both poetry and art.

Late in the 1960s, while teaching philosophy, Adnan also began designing tapestries, two of which are on view here. In the early 1970s she returned to Beirut, where she edited a leading newspaper’s culture section. With the outbreak of civil war in Lebanon, she settled briefly in Paris, later returning to the Bay Area where she published her award-winning first novel, Sitt Marie Rose, her most read and translated book.

Adnan lived just north of San Francisco, near the foot of Mt. Tamalpais. The mountain, which dominates the northern skyline across from the Golden Gate (I can see it from my window even as I write this), became, in its many moods of shadow, sun, and rain, one of the most important motifs in both her poetry and painting, as clearly evidenced in this show. She lived, wrote, and painted in that place for a number of years before, now in her nineties, finally settling permanently in Paris.

The show’s two tapestries (one from 1968, a ragged dance of oranges and yellows broken by rivers of blue; the other, a swirl of blossoms and petals against an azure and purple background, titled “Explosion Florale,” designed in 1968 and completed in 2018) are amoebic swathes of shape and color. The drawings in the three leporellos display dramatic flourishes of ink and energetic marks of an almost ecstatic joyfulness.

In fact, the note struck by Etel Adnan’s work over the years, whether in paint, drawing, tapestry, or words (and a disclosure is due here: I have known Etel Adnan since she lived in the Bay Area, and have been following her career in writing and art for a long time), is the very note she strikes in person: an overflowing of love and affection, joy and gratitude for the life and people around her, for everyone who meets her, and for those who are lucky enough to enjoy a greatness of spirit that radiates like so many suns from her art.

It is only right that the Bay Area, one of her many homes, and the one where she discovered herself as an artist, should celebrate this triumphant art that rose among us.

There are a few artists who blossomed throughout a long lifetime, rising to ever greater heights in their great age: Titian, Matisse, Picasso, Michelangelo, Renoir, Rembrandt. Only time will tell, of course, but to this select number it may one day seem perfectly appropriate, even obvious, to add the name Etel Adnan.

The museum store offers for sale, along with the monographs mentioned above, three of Adnan’s most recent books: Premonition, Night, and Surge – thought-provoking, beautifully written works of philosophical prose poetry as accessible and enlivening in words as her art is in form and color.


Christopher Bernard is co-editor and poetry editor of Caveat Lector. He writes on dance, drama, and art for Synchronized Chaos. His most recent book is the poetry collection Chien Lunatique.


Synchronized Chaos December 2018: Daydreams and Reveries

Welcome to December’s issue of Synchronized Chaos Magazine! First off, here’s a scholarly paper on Chaos Theory from Femke Reitsma of the Graduate School of Geography, University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee. 

Our theme for this month is Daydreams and Reveries. 

Poet Mahbub’s speakers step out of linear time and place to process grief, love, and other strong emotions. One of Joan McNerney’s pieces concerns a literal dream, along with speakers who are dwarfed by the machinery, trains, and violence of urban life.

Michael Robinson takes us through the understated journey of a black boy, or man, through various forms of pain, including racist violence and personal loss, towards healing. He also reviews poet Jamel Gross’ new collection A Knight Without His Lovers, which is a tour-de-force through various kinds of romantic and family love. Interestingly, Gross also writes paranormal horror and action adventure, another angle on the subconscious.

Chris Nold relates a disjointed set of ephemera – emails, notes, drunken texts – that convey the life of a traveling salesman, along with narrative that reads like diary entries. Norman Olson details his journey through Scotland and Iceland, which includes a museum exhibit on the pre-Raphaelite artists and a historical illustration on the old Scottish weaving industry, now outsourced. Chimezie Ihekuna contributes a story of a holiday celebration nearly lost, then rekindled with a sudden blessing, in his excerpt from his new collection Christmas Time! 

Rui Carvalho renders life on Earth as a dreamlike island retreat, where we drift together with other creatures through sleep and wakefulness.

Ryan Quinn Flanagan’s clever, but tough-minded vignettes include a piece on going back to childhood to experience the awkward stages of learning as the very young learn. Mark Young reflects on our brainpower and creativity as human beings and ponders the many ways we can choose to use our lives and insights.

Joan Beebe describes how talking with loved ones and turning one’s thoughts to the future can help people survive traumas, including medical crises. When we move our thoughts out of the immediate present we can benefit from a larger and more hopeful perspective and rejoin community to share our insights with others.

Sheryl Bize-Boutte also shares a tale of family love, where a husband brings his wife back to the days of their youthful love with the gift of a special dress.

Lil Snott’s poetic speaker also changes himself while recovering from a personal trauma, and becomes more conventional, more the way he feels others wanted him to be. It’s left ambiguous whether this change is positive, though.

J.J. Campbell offers up dreamier-than-usual ruminations on lost love and vitality, while probing the thin line between pain and pleasure. Sylvia Ofoha carries readers through cycles of ragged emotions: from grief to relief to joy and then back again. James D. Casey also journeys through grief, as his speakers lament the loss of parts of themselves along with formerly idolized loved ones.

John Patrick Robbins explores self-deception, the difference between your exterior and interior. The way people see you, the way you want them to see you, and the way you see yourself may be three totally different matters.

Chimezie Ihekuna, in the final installment of his drama The Success Story, presents a dream fully realized, while Elizabeth Hughes’ Book Periscope reviews titles that concern perseverance towards one’s goals. These include Marshall Ginevan’s law enforcement action drama The Wrong Side of the Badge, Patricia Thorpe’s children’s book The Canada Goslings: Lilly and Scooter, and Everton Robinson’s parenting title A Child’s Guide to Wisdom, ten-year-old author Sebastian Deras’ adventuresome Space Rangers  and Bonnie Ring’s sensitively rendered Women Who Knew Jesus. 

Finally, poet Vijay Nair presents two pieces about making the most of your life, and becoming your own hero by how you choose to live. Scott Thomas Outlar joins him in that sentiment with a philosophical essay on how to create positive change by focusing on creating what you would like to see rather than tearing down the negative.

This is from our friend and colleague Rui Carvalho: 

We are very happy to announce that the literary contest ‘Nature’ is about to start. This year’s theme is “The Nature of the Universe”,
with Earth’s terrestrial nature remaining central to the theme.

All are welcome to enter by submitting a piece of writing on the theme of nature and the natural world. This can be a poem, a short essay, or a short story. American author Janine Canan, who has a long and established reputation writing on these themes, will serve as judge, and Portuguese author Rui Carvalho sponsors the contest and prizes.

Further details and deadlines can be found at:

Poetry from Mark Young

the benefits of technology


Determined to honor the

father she never knew, a

polaron & a soliton lattice —

sort of the homely under-

dogs of the whale world —

were included as special

cases. So that the dangers

of non-lethal blast waves


on the same or the following

day wouldn’t affect any

other relevant products, she

added a silly dance track —

directed toward a retirement

investment in the stock market—

that had finally gotten some

traction earlier in the year.


drowning calling


a knife all blade

an endless mystery

an unheard-of incident

not months but moments


can by & far more

end up melancholy

& fatalistic can retrain

become guest judges


to become a part of

our reality shows

which have become

a part of our reality


& deepen the mystery

a kind of wild justice


a high end sports drink


Assiduity is a core dimension

of appropriate intervention, en-

courages her to be either an

anonymous maker of perfect

pianos or the force & inspiration

behind the carbs & electrolytes

of a natural hair color. This

discipline stems from the appli-


cation of theological biology,

which, even without its spiritual

leader, promotes an inflexible

dogma that favors totalitarian rule

& the need to perform repeated

rotations around arbitrary points.


Mark Young lives in a small town in North Queensland in Australia, & has been publishing poetry for almost sixty years. He is the author of around forty-five books, primarily text poetry but also including speculative fiction, vispo, & art history. His work has been widely anthologized, & his essays & poetry translated into a number of languages. His most recent books are les échiquiers effrontés, a collection of surrealist visual poems laid out on chessboard grids, published by Luna Bisonte Prods, & The Word Factory: a miscellany, from gradient books of Finland. Due for publication are Residual sonnets from Ma Books, & an e-book, A Vicarious Life — the backing tracks, from otata.

Poetry from James D. Casey

Screaming from a Secret Oubliette
In my heart, there’s a spark that screams out to the child in me. In my dreams he’s alive. In reality, he died a hero. In a battle to save my soul.
My tired third eye screams for peace of mind. Mind over matter isn’t easily achieved in doubt. Doubt is hard to overcome in sadness. Sadness is hard to wash away when Happiness is a state of mind. 
Pale white bones. Pale white horse. Pale white clouds. Pale white snow. Pale white ghost in pale white clothes in a pale white room. All mixed up in black days turning a pale shade of grey like the ashes of bones, but bones are the hardest offerings to burn.
That ghost is the child in me. Screaming back at my heart from a place so deep there’s no way out. A secret oubliette built long ago by my own hands. Betrayed by the very soul he tried to save. So it goes. The battle rages on.
Jack Shit
keep the secret
hear the call
of fear
behind wasted
cigarettes &
strong coffee
can’t fix it
they help
they listen
more so
when Old
joins the
if the
thing you
have control of
is the title
of this poem
Portrayed State of Delirium
the dream body
exists apart from
the physical
one trick
to control them
is to see
for dreams
have only one owner
at a time
change the world
in a dream
change in reality
will follow
deeper the dream
longer the sleep
darker the night
brighter the stars
in a portrayed
state of
James D. Casey IV is a southern poet with roots in Louisiana & Mississippi. He currently resides in Illinois with his Beautiful Muse, their retarded dog, and two black cats. Mr. Casey has authored six books of poetry, and his most recent title is Death & Love/Love & Death released October 13th through Cajun Mutt Press. His work has also been published extensively by literary magazines and small press venues including Medusa’s Kitchen, Outlaw Poetry, Beatnik Cowboy, Triadæ Magazine, The Rye Whiskey Review, Dope Fiend Daily, Under The Bleachers, Zombie Logic Review, Horror Sleaze Trash, Pink Litter, In Between Hangovers, Tuck Magazine, and several others internationally. James mainly spends his days writing poetry, but also enjoys practicing magick and cooking Cajun cuisine. 
Links to his books and other projects can be found here:

Poetry from Sylvia Ofoha


I don’t have a life,
I don’t have a dream,
End me now,
Claim my soul,
I’m sure you’ll reject it,
As I’m not worth it all.

Oh leave me alone,
I’m weak and feeble,
Strength is below my desires now,
As the grave is just within my grasp,
But fear of rejection from you is not certain,
As I am forgotten by you also.

Grave oh grave,
Beautiful are your beneath and within.
I’m too weak for second chances,
I want to go down as it is all I see,
Take me now,
As only you will accept me.
Face your fears and calm your heart,
For I have never forgotten you,
I am always behind and before,
I see it all,
I can calm the storm in your heart if you just let me,
I can bury you in the grave of my love,
And you and well within the confines of my heart,
Just leave yourself to me.

Calm your heart my child,
I am lord of all,
And protector of many,
Shield you I shall,
If you just let me,
Bless you I will,
If you accept me,
Another chance you are given

Take it and live,
My strength is yours.
You are never below my thought,
For you are mine,
And I love you,
And dwell in the abyss of my love,
For you are worth all,
And more.


I am crying,
I am hurting,
Come take me from here,
I dwell in the filth of my past,

Save me from me,
Save me from pain,
Take me to a safe place,
Where lullabies are sung,
I want to be free,
I want to smile,
I want to feel.

That day came,
I was free,
I ran faster than a stallion,
My heart beat faster than a cheetah’s,
Oh I felt the breeze on my face,
The rain covers my tears,
And the moonless night my fears,
I was happy,
I was at peace
I was free,
I was home.

But as fast as lightening,
It all came to an end,
My freedom was taken from me,
My soul was clouded again,
Why is my fate as dark as the depth of the sea,
Oh grave just open up and swallow me.

I have the right to freedom,
I have the right to smile,
I have the right to feel at peace,
And fight I would,
To keep up with the claim on my soul,
I would fight,
For it all,
Fight for all the good things of life,
I would fight,
Even till the end,
I will fight,
Till a smile never leaves my face,
I will fight,
Until my soul finds home and the freedom it so craves,
I will fight,
Till my nightmares are all over,
And the early morning sun creeps in.


Day has turned to night,
Night has turned to burning flames,
Fear creeping in like on gold as time.
Calamity kissing pain,
Failure embracing hurt,
Kindness clouded by greed.
Compliments drowned in savagery,
Smiles slapped by tears,
Happiness resigned to emptiness.

Deep in the abyss,
A plea for the morning rays,
Sings louder than voices of souls.
Dream begone,
Pain bestilled,
Fear be silent,
Listen to the voice of the sun,
Bathe in the depths of its righteousness,
Let thy eyes swell in its beauty.
As it all come to naught;
But an everlasting peace,
As you let thy heart embrace its awakening