Tag Archives: homage

Grendel Christmas

Twas the night before Solstice, when all through the hall

Not a person was stirring, except for the thralls.

The axes were hung by the chimney with care

In hopes that Grendel soon would be there.

The vikings were nestled all snug in their beds,

While visions of murder danced in their heads.

And Frigga in her hjalmr, and I in my hatt,

Had just settled our bloodlust for a long winter’s nap.

When out on the armaments there arose such a crash,

I sprang from the bed to see Brogin turned to ash.

Away to my claymore I flew into a rage,

Tore straight for the battle and onto the stage.

The moon on the breast of the hoarfrost below

Illuminated the blood on the new-fallen snow

When, what to my murderous eyes should appear,

But towering jaws and a man flailing in fear.

With a spine-splitting crack, the man’s body fell

I knew in a moment it must be Grendel.

More savage than bjornkin his talons they rent,

And he growled, and he rampaged, and their bodies he bent!

“Now Agni! now, Alrek! now, Olaf and Gunnbjorn!

On, Ottar! On, Egil! on, on Brunin and Hallbjorn!

To the top of its skull! To the front of the hall!

Now hack away! Hack away! Hack away all!”

As woodland creatures before the great fire burn,

When they follow their wyrd, and are pierced by the thorn.

So did Grendel tear apart the brave fighters,

With a mouth reeking of death, the one called the Blighter.

 

And then, in a crippling, I heard a great yawn

The growling and scratching that came with the dawn.

As I averted my eyes, and was saying a prayer,

Down the hall stomped Beowulf the serpent-slayer.

 

He was dressed all in hides, from his head to his foot,

And his clothes were all tattered with war wounds and soot.

Then he stripped the clothing right off his back,

And he looked at the monster while cracking his neck.

 

His eyes-filled with madness! His jaw lines drawn tight!

His clenched hands were bleeding, anticipating the fight!

Drool came from his mouth and he wiped it away,

And the stubble on his chin stood right at end.

 

In Grendel’s own teeth, the stump of a man,

And billowing around it was the fog of the land.

He swallowed the limb right into his belly,

It cackled with laughter, my legs turned to jelly!

 

Beowulf’s spirit was not lessened, a terror as well,

And he stood and he laughed at this creature from Hel!

A wink of his eye and a twist of his head,

Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread.

 

He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,

And took Grendel’s arm and it tore with a jerk.

And twisting in pain, the beast howled in alarm.

It escaped from the battle, but left its own arm!

 

Beowulf raised up the limb, jumped on our table,

And growled with a bloodlust more than the monster was able.

But I heard him exclaim and it was quite a sight,

“Who’s next, all you dogs? Who wants to fight!”

 

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Filed under Flash Fiction, Session XX

I Smell Trouble

Sittin’ at the bar with time to kill. Nothing to think about except my own damn life. Then there she was like vinyl potpourri. Or devilled Geminis. I smelled whisky lemon drops wafting through the door. Who’s that bombshell walking through the door? Who is that wicked sinful poisoning my vision? Brother, this can’t be real.

Sittin’ at the bar in my favorite seat with the hole in the side (so I know it). I always get her early and I had too much to drink. All I was thinkin’ about was my own damn problems and there she was in leather thigh-high boots like a dominatrix principality. Who’s that night terror walking through the door? Why’s she drilling holes in me with her eyes? Sister, you can’t be for real.

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Filed under Flash Fiction, Session XX

We were Werewolves

We headed home. And although one thought raced through our minds, we barely spoke. “We were werewolves,” the air seemed to say, quivering as it did. “We were motherfucking werewolves.” We’d only been gone three nights, but somehow the town’s population seemed much smaller than it was.
Time went on and we saw less and less of Roger and Fish, until eventually they became just two more meatbags waiting for death. It happens sometimes. Werewolves just quit being werewolves like part-timers in department stores that don’t give two-weeks’ notice before leaving. I heard that Fish got married, had four kids, and is now working at a company that makes bathtoys for children.
Roger, who would always snack on squirrels and rabbits, saying “Dog can’t live off man alone!” now works at a pet store selling pet food. Some of the gerbils go missing sometimes but I have a hard time believing he’s eating them.
Darwin stayed a werewolf. He terrorized the county with me, and although it was deeply disturbing, he continued his habit of gutting his victims and hanging up the remains. Last week, he was on an almost-empty train and got hungry. Just ahead of him, two men were sleeping. Darwin, who had always done his best to make sure his victims didn’t die until he let them, didn’t see that the other
passenger had a silver-cast knife. He was stabbed in the throat. He died almost instantly.
Although I hadn’t seen him in more than ten years, I know I’ll miss getting high and listening to “Teenage Wasteland” while eating campers and howling  at the moon.
I don’t know anyone who has friends like we did when we were werewolves. Does anyone?

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Filed under FEATHERTON II, Flash Fiction