Nicole Long’s work has appeared or will shortly appear in Ampersand Literary, Belle Rêve Literary Journal, and Exit 109. She is a graduate student, earning her MFA in Screenwriting and Film Studies, and received her Bachelor's degree in English from Radford University. Her biggest influences are Poe, Frost, and Joyce.
Read to me, Child
The rift in your voice,
Fractures the locks,
That chain my eyes to the void.
Barred from visions of nautical day and The Lost Boy's crows.
"Har-de-har," cackles the gloom in my closet.
But read to me, child;
I need your tones to light the black brick road
Tearing through the canyons;
Stale fissures of blank pages
Etched across the map of my sanity.
Let Us Pray
Let us go to the temple.
Hold our crosses,
Kiss our hands,
The price of our sins
Paid for in blood.
I shall be a vagabond on earth,
and everyone that findeth me shall slay me.
Blood of the vengeance,
The sweat and the spunk
I can smell it.
The things we've done
The bills we have to pay
Why go to hell!
When the Devils are here to play.
Does Your Mother Know,
In The Attic,
Time Moves Slow.
Hold Your Head Up,
Casper's Coming Home.
Through the mists of frosted grass and icy underbrush,
You may think you hear him creeping.
Singing exquisite songs to rival that crafty Wood Thrush,
Even though he should be sleeping.
He might sound sweet and pleasant, and look just as such.
With his soft and silky coat, dull, but lovely just as much.
You'll want to travel far, simply to see his face.
He'll run and duck for cover, leading you into chase.
Mindlessly you'll follow, watching broad horns disappear.
Gallivanting, flitting, you leap across the weir.
Exhausted, exhilarated, your feet carry you on.
You can't quite seem to catch your breath; praying to Amon.
Since when did you have such devotion, to gods you couldn't see?
Since the demon of your frozen nightmares, tripled into three.