Spice (an acrostic poem)

 

She turned up the heat in the chili, drop by evil-looking drop of ghost pepper essence

Perspiration beaded along his forehead and dribbled into his eyes at first bite

It gave his body an illusion of cooling, but the heat just kept climbing

Couldn’t believe there was a time before the all-consuming fiery pain

Eventually, his mouth recovered, but he knew round two was coming

 

Image: thespruceeats.com/thmb/nsjMWi7TBf7AVMBFulYM3XQOYiQ=/2400×1350/smart/filters:no_upscale()/bowl-chili-98839917-56a8c4ab3df78cf772a0723d.jpg

Triangle (an acrostic poem)

 

There were three sides to this story

Reaching across time and space

I took control of the situation

As I fought various fantastical creatures

Navigating places of extreme cold and heat

Gaining great weapons and armors while cooking yummy food

Leading me to the ultimate battle of good and evil

Eventually, the triforce will be mine!

Top image: i.etsystatic.com/9283235/r/il/3fec7a/1867786431/il_570xN.1867786431_j3uv.jpg

Bottom image: gamepedia.cursecdn.com/zelda_gamepedia_en/thumb/7/70/ALBW_Triforce_Artwork.png/320px-ALBW_Triforce_Artwork.png?version=6ca790b87f8c10fc724547d5d5c2123f

The Fable of the Mountain Lioness and the Dragon

Once upon a time, there was a mountain lioness.  She was a proud, majestic animal.  She was proud, but fair, to those around her.

A strange shadow fell over the land.  Everything seemed to shiver as the sun was obscured.  The animals were frightened.  They didn’t understand what was happening.

The mountain lioness was afraid as well, but she felt sure down to her paws that she was the one to rid the world of the shadow.  She set off on her quest.  Her travels took her to the plains as the shadows continued to grow.  She searched far and wide to figure out what was happening.

The rumors started creeping along the plains.  The shadow was being caused by one of the fallen, a mythical dragon come to enact his wrath upon the light.  It wanted the darkness to clothe the earth.  It wanted the light to disappear forever.

The mountain lioness stopped in her tracks.  She thought, “How can I go up against something that powerful that can actually consume the sun?”  She wanted to flee back to her mountain and enjoy what time was left for her and her family.  She knew no one would blame her for doing so.

But she shook her head and growled.  She was a strong lioness.  She was a hunter and a killer of prey.  She was fierce enough.  She was strong enough.  She knew she had to do something.

So she continued on, heading to the ocean.  The journey was long and arduous, and by the time she could hear the crashing surf, the sun was almost gone.

She set paw on the wet sand with her head bowed from the exertion of covering the distance in a short time.  She had not hunted.  She had not slept.  She was fur and bones, held together with resolve and determination.  The water lapped at her feet when she finally forced her head up and took in the horrific sight.

There in the sky, there was a dragon.  The dragon was sucking in light from the sun.  It had consumed so much that the sun was dimmer than the moon.

The mountain lioness summoned up the remnants of her once great strength and shouted, “Stop!”

The dragon paused in its eating and turned its head to look upon the lioness.  Its eyes glowed fiercely and when it spoke, its voice was punctuated with flashes of light, like fireworks.  “Pitiful creature,” it boomed, “you cannot command me.  I am almost done eating the sun and committing this world to darkness.  Leave me alone to my task and when I am done I will bless you with a quick and merciful death.  If you interrupt me again, your death will be painful.”

The lioness thought about turning and running right there.  She thought, “Who am I to take on such an awesomely powerful creature?  I am a mere lioness, I can hunt, I can prowl, and I can lead my pride, but I am not a force of nature.”

She took one step back, then two.

There was no one there to stop her from running.

There was no one there at all.

That’s when she stopped.

There was no one else there.

No one else that could do anything.

She stiffened her spine.

She crouched down.

She stood tall and roared, “STOP!”

The dragon paused, the sun a mere shadow in the sky. The stars were twinkling in mirth at its inability of the sun to obscure them anymore.

Surprise followed quickly by anger shown from the dragon’s fiery gaze.  “You dare talk to me again?”  The dragon shoved its maw close to the mountain lioness.  “You dare tell me what to do?”

The lioness didn’t flinch.  “You dare complain?  I ask you who gave you permission to consume the sun?”

The dragon chuckled a dark chuckle that almost knocked down the lioness.  “No one needs give me permission.  I take it, like I will take your life!”

“You can have my life you cursed creature,” she said, “but why must the darkness win?”

“The world must be doomed to darkness.  It is too painful to see in the light.”

“But why?” the mountain lioness asked.  “What is so bad that the light must not touch the earth?”

“Don’t you see,” the dragon roared, rising again to its full height.  “The earth is covered with evil.  The light doesn’t do its job and sear it away under its powerful eye.  Since the light will not do its job, I will condemn the earth to the darkness it deserves.”

The mountain lioness roared.  “You fool!  Yes, the earth is covered with evil, but it is also covered in good.  You are cursing and condemning those good ones to hide that evil you despise.”

“Where do you see good?” the dragon demanded.  “I see it not!”

“Do you claim I am evil? The lioness challenged.

The dragon stared deep into her eyes.  He looked down into her soul.

The mountain lioness almost broke again.  Those eyes laid her very being naked in front of the dragon’s hungry stare.

But she stood her ground, never blinking, never showing her fear.

As a matter of fact, she didn’t even feel the fear now.  She was burning it to fuel the anger and courage she was using right then.  It burnt bright and hot.  It hurt to stoke that fire inside of her, but it was the only thing she could do.  She mentally dared the dragon to touch it.

The dragon blinked first.

“Doesn’t matter,” it said.”

“What do you mean?” the lioness roared from the depths of that fire inside of her.  “I do not matter?”  She took one step, then two steps toward the dragon.  “How dare you!”

The dragon took a step back, then two.  “But you are just one,” it said softly.  “The evil is overwhelming.”

“You are overwhelmed?” she laughed.  She took another step forward.  “You are able to consume the sun.”

The dragon took another step back.  It looked smaller, frailer.  It didn’t speak.  It didn’t meet her gaze.

“With your power, we can strike fear in that evil.”

The dragon stared at the mountain lioness again.  “We?”

“I will join you.  Release the light and together we will banish the evil and not the light.”

The dragon paused, then lifted its mouth to the heavens and roared.  The light the dragon had consumed was released to the sky above.

The stars screamed when the sun flared back to life.

The mountain lioness unleashed her roar as well, unleashing her fury that she had inside of her, and the sun shone even brighter.

They are still finding evil and bringing the light to scour it from the earth.  If you doubt, go outside on a sunny day and feel their promise and decide if you want to become part of the “We”.

 

Image: kids.nationalgeographic.com/content/dam/kids/photos/animals/Mammals/H-P/mountain-lion-on-rock.adapt.945.1.jpg

Stakeholder (an acrostic poem)

Simple tasks for the minions, that was her motto

Too bad even that was too complicated for her underlings

As she watched her latest plan dissolve into dust

Killing a few of them would help with her anger

Eventually it might even teach them a lesson

However, that was wishful thinking

Overlords had it really tough these days

Looking over her monitors, she frowned

Didn’t having partners mean you work together?

Even as she fumed, her collaborator completed the task she had started

Really having allies suck, especially when they steal your evil schemes

 

Image: ungerboeck.com/images/blog/header/stakeholder-theory-and-trade-shows.jpg

100 Days

Is humanity inherently evil?  That is a loaded question for sure, but something I thought about today when I saw a blog post about the 100 day anniversary of the abduction of the school girls from Chibok, Borno State, Nigeria.  Their cause has been blunted by the news cycle and the attention span of a public that sees a new tragedy daily.  I shudder to think of what these girls have gone through, and still face, and it  leaves me wanting to either scream or take all my girls up in a big hug then lock them in a room.  Why do we do things like this to each other?  Why can’t we respect individual differences, may they be in race, religion, sex, or ideals?

That is one of the problems of course.  The people who abducted those girls do not see themselves as monsters.  They have a way of justifying what they have done.  I will not speculate motive, other than the obvious of wanting the girls under their control, but whatever the motivation they see at as doing “right” on some level.  Because of this, why do I have the right to condemn them for following their differences in ideals?  The answer I hope is obvious.  They are imposing their ideals in such a way that it takes away other’s rights to the same.

This is especially true when it comes to kids.  These girls have done nothing wrong.  They wanted an education and a chance to make something of their journey through this world.  They ended up being easy targets.  We as a world community are accessories to the crime.  We will send troops in for regime change and to restore governments, but why not for restoring humanity?  The group holding the girls have a “justification”, but do we for our lack or response?  Maybe there are teams on the ground that I do not know about, looking for the girls.  Maybe one day soon we will find out about the heroes that went quietly about their job while the world cried out why nothing more is being done.  I can only pray for that.

Going back to my original question, are we inherently evil?  I would like to answer we are not.  I would like to say that the evilness is just seeing the world through distorted lenses, and that maybe the “bad people” can wake up one day and find their humane compassion restored.  Days like today, though, I find it hard.  Instead of doing something about the missing girls, we will to them slowly decay into history.  The additional tragedy of this situation is that I am sure that if we had used ten percent of the intelligence used to stomp out terrorism on this problem, we could have accomplished something meaningful, like the restoration of the young ladies’ freedom.  That would have struck a blow against evil and showed our true humanity.