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Poem: "Thunder Without Rain" - The Wordsmith's Forge
The Writing & Other Projects of Elizabeth Barrette
ysabetwordsmith
ysabetwordsmith
Poem: "Thunder Without Rain"
This poem was inspired by prompts from siege, janetmiles, jenny_evergreen, and meeksp. It was sponsored by jenny_evergreen. It belongs to the Monster House series.


Thunder Without Rain



That boy at school who sits behind me
and always tries to dip my ponytail in the paint
during art class whenever the teacher isn't looking
has this black cloud hanging over his head
that he doesn't even know is there.

So that's where the grumbling is coming from.
I'd been wondering since I met him in kindergarten.
I could always hear it, low and mean,
like a thunderstorm somewhere over the horizon
busy making tornadoes to tear the roofs off people's houses
and drive straws into telephone poles
like my grandmother says she saw once as a little girl.

The morning after my sixth birthday,
when I wore my new necklace to school,
the Eye of Fate showed me the world in a whole new light.
I could see the trails that people made
as they moved through each other's lives,
and some strange things and creatures -- though oddly
some others disappeared when I wore it.
It only seemed to show things that mattered,
or things that had a Fate, or something like that anyhow.
That was the first time I saw the cloud over his head
and the black look on his pale face
and his blank eyes like the eyes of a dead fish
lying on the ice in the supermarket when nobody wants to buy it.

In art class, I sit facing forward, with that boy behind me,
because I don't want to look at him,
because when I do, sometimes I start to see flickers
like lightning in that overhanging cloud,
and I don't want to see anything by that light, ever.
That thing that hovers over him
isn't the kind of monster I'd want to live with.
Not even the bogeyman makes the hair on my neck
stand up the way it does on a stormy day
when the sky is full of thunder and lightning but no rain.

He's not a nice boy. I don't like him.
The teacher says I am silly and won't let me move
but I know better, and now when I sit down
I pull my ponytail over my shoulder, onto my chest.

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Current Mood: busy busy

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Comments
thesilentpoet From: thesilentpoet Date: August 17th, 2011 02:11 am (UTC) (Link)

Oh, I like this one! Love that we're getting one from the daughter's POV.
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: August 17th, 2011 04:28 am (UTC) (Link)

Yes...

eseme From: eseme Date: August 17th, 2011 02:40 am (UTC) (Link)
Oh man. That is scary.

I hope she can meet someone who can exorcise demons... if there is one as opposed to the more mundane explanation of a terrible home life.
the_vulture From: the_vulture Date: August 17th, 2011 03:45 am (UTC) (Link)
Sometimes, it's the person. When you look into someone's eyes, you are not meant to be met with the blank, emotionless stare that is more appropriate on the visage of a shark. There are people in this world who are just wrong despite whatever background or upbringing they have.

And they begin as children...
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: August 17th, 2011 04:56 am (UTC) (Link)

Hmm...

There are various ways such a problem can manifest. In this case it's most likely a combination: black clouds tend to attach to someone who already has at least a slight inclination toward moodiness, and then drive them into deep depression or dire evil.

Exorcising them ... not so easy, and they're not really demons.
the_vulture From: the_vulture Date: August 17th, 2011 02:44 am (UTC) (Link)
This poem is especially creepafying for me; I know that kind of look on that kind of kid all too well...
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: August 17th, 2011 03:07 am (UTC) (Link)

Yes...

It is a creepy poem.

One of the interesting things about today's fishbowl is the diversity of tone. Monster House has always had a few darker poems, but often runs to humor. It wasn't straight humor today.

Ironically, of all the serials, this one is probably the most inspired by actual experiences or things I've read about in newspapers. It's really only about a half-step stranger than this world. Monster House just makes certain things more visible or material than they usually are. But the underlying energy is very much there.
fayanora From: fayanora Date: August 17th, 2011 04:03 am (UTC) (Link)
Creepy! And awesome. I love this round of the fishbowl!
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: August 17th, 2011 04:10 am (UTC) (Link)

Yay!

I'm glad it worked for you.
catsittingstill From: catsittingstill Date: August 17th, 2011 12:10 pm (UTC) (Link)
Creepy!
kitrona From: kitrona Date: August 18th, 2011 12:51 am (UTC) (Link)
I've known boys like that. And girls, come to think of it.
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: August 18th, 2011 01:00 am (UTC) (Link)

Yes...

So have we all, I think.
aubergine_pilot From: aubergine_pilot Date: September 21st, 2012 07:40 pm (UTC) (Link)

I'm sorry about your inbox, for what it's worth.

You do keep track of everything in this 'verse. Oh. Oh my stars. Just when I'd almost forgotten this qualifies as horror.

(I think I had a cloud like that once. I'm not really sure if it's gone or not, sometimes.)
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: September 22nd, 2012 01:20 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: I'm sorry about your inbox, for what it's worth.

Don't worry about the inbox, I love it when people comment. Feedback is candy!

>>You do keep track of everything in this 'verse.<<

I try to, though the success is variable in the big series.

>> Oh. Oh my stars. Just when I'd almost forgotten this qualifies as horror.<<

Monster House has an exceptionally varied tone. It goes all the way from cottoncandy fluff to quite disturbing horror. The average is dark suburban fantasy, where family life is just a bit freakish; kind of like The Munsters or The Addams Family. I might actually worry that it's too wide, except that it's also one of my most popular series. It really makes hairpin turns in some places.

>> (I think I had a cloud like that once. I'm not really sure if it's gone or not, sometimes.) <<

O_O
siege From: siege Date: October 8th, 2012 07:47 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: I'm sorry about your inbox, for what it's worth.

They dissipate, but the effects can linger for a very long time.
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