edgar-allen-poeYep, ’tis Tuesday “and the slithy toves did gyre and gimble in the wabe; All mimsy were the borogoves, and the mome raths outgrabe…” or somesuch, according to Lewis Carrol.

Tuesday means it’s time for the annual #CoffinHop DEAD POETRY SLAM! Your chance to win some quality dark and dreary poetry by displaying your own mastery, or meager understanding, of the craft of the bards. We all of us, should love poetry – deeply, inherently, and with all of our essence – poetry is what music we make of Life goddammit. I’ve been writing poetry since I was 6 or 7 years old. Much of it awful and derivative, some of it pretty damned good, a couple of them even recognized as worthy of praise. All of them carried a little piece of my heart out into the world to bleed all over the carpet.


This year, we have an extra treat, as many of our #CoffinHop authors belong to a little dark poetry collective, known as The Kintsugi Poets Society.  What is a Kintsugi Poets Society, you may well ask? Well here’s a little missive from their Lord and Master, Kim Koning:

Kim Koning founded the Kintsugi Poets Society in 2013. She had belonged to another dark poetry collective called the Undead Poets Society but sadly the Undead Poets Society returned to the graveyard. So in 2013 she decided to put together another dark poetry collective and The Kintsugi Poets Society was born. Pulling in a few fellow Undead Poets from the graveyard, she quickly began recruiting more dark poets who wanted a place and community to pen their dark thoughts. The Kintsugi Poets Society has become a thriving community of Dark Poets.

What is “Kintsugi”:

The story of KINTSUGI may have begun in the late 15th century, when the shogun Ashikaga Yoshimasa sent a damaged Chinese tea bowl back to China to be fixed. It returned held together with ugly metal staples, launching Japanese craftsmen on a quest for a new form of repair that could make a broken piece look as good as new,

or better. Collectors became so enamored of the new art that some were accused of deliberately smashing valuable pottery so it could be repaired with the gold seams of kintsugi.

Kintsugi ~ That means “golden joinery” or “golden seams” in Japanese, and it refers to the art of fixing broken ceramics with a lacquer resin made to look like solid gold. Chances are, a vessel fixed by kintsugi will look more gorgeous, and more precious, than before it was fractured.

The poetry shared by The Kintsugi Poetry Society is written by poets who have mastered the art of Kintsugi. Each poet has taken the dark, cracked and broken fragments of their own pain and turned them into golden seams of light.

fridge-poetryWhich is all pretty goddamn cool, if you ask me.

Speaking of Japanesey Poetreezee, I was out at many long-waited appointments with Miz Liz and the boyos yesterday, and The Koj and I had a little Haiku match of our own. So here is #1 son’s amazing offering for this year’s board of fare.

Disturbing noises
Creeping Monsters are stirring
Halloween is here

He’s freaking NINE. When I was nine, my poems were, like “Life is a bowlful of cherry pez. Eat em all and you’ll be dedz”. He is a brilliant little bugger. Must get it from his mama.

Here’s my retort:

Skeleton Forest
Standing in supplication
Gold death in moonlight

Miz Liz had some awesome, and per usual, hilarious offerings as well. Hopefully she’ll post them here later.


Let’s have us a DEAD POETRY SLAM. Leave your short (or long, or whatevs) poems in the comments.

*I, Axel Howerton, and AxelHow.com, hereby decline any rights or reservations on any and all intellectual property shared upon this page, specifically in this post and it’s comments, that I have not created or posted myself, subject to individual copyright to each items original author* just to make you feel better.


The contest will run until Friday, when I will pick winners at random (names in hats kid of deal) for the plethora of prizes I have amassed, including eBook copies of Michelle Scalise’s The Manufacturer of Sorrow, (Michelle was just annouced as HWA’s Poet of the Month)Tom Picirilli’s Forgiving Judas, and Night Shade Vol. 1, put out by fellow Hoppers Katie M. John and Little Bird Publishing House (which just happens to feature a couple of my own dark poems. as well as some stuff by my ol’ pal and partner Red Tash), in addition to those fine tomes, I have also been gifted an eBook package by the beauteous poets of The Kintsugi Poets Society, including:

Reflections of Poetry – A.F. Stewart
Amazon Link:
Go through the looking glass into the world of verse and discover this eclectic collection of poetry. The poems range from musings on Celtic heritage to embracing emotional turmoil. Throw in a little moonlight, the soothing sounds of the sea, and mix well with some sci-fi and fantasy for a lyrical medley of reading enjoyment.
A Poem A Day Won’t Kill You – Amy K. Marshall
Amazon Link:
The purpose of poetry is to illustrate the splendor and agony of nature and the human condition in such a way as to elicit a visceral response. Usually. These are not those poems. This new collection by a non-poet who simply loves to experiment with poetic forms wanders through myriad themes and styles. Some poems were created as challenges, some are amusing, some are just, well … beyond words. It’s all in good fun, and you may even find some poems in here that speak to you.
The Dark Horde – Brewin (Andrew Drage)
Amazon Link:
1989, rural Victoria, Australia. Something is preying upon the township of Howqua Hills. Brian Derwent, head of the local Police Station, must simultaneously grapple with the investigation, his disintegrating personal life and unseen forces that are not of this world.
Part thriller, part crime-fiction, all supernatural horror, The Dark Horde tells of the return of an ancient evil that is neither stoppable nor comprehensible…
Dreams on my Pillow – Irina Dimitric
Amazon link:
In this collection, her first, Irina Dimitric ponders over her journey through life, from childhood in her wartime homeland to migrating to Australia. Her poems reveal her dreams and disappointments, joy and pain, the value of forgiveness and gratitude, her love of nature and her love of laughter without which, she maintains, life would be unbearable. Writing poetry and photography, her pastimes born at the time she cared for her aging mother, help her to make sense of the world and to go on loving life. She loves both free verse and form poetry, the latter learnt from her mentor Susan Budig at Mindful Poetry, who also baptised Irina’s creation of a new form of tercet – tercetonine. Readers will undoubtedly discover an affinity with many of her poems.


You could win stuff!



For more info on The Kintsugi Poets and their group check out these links:

Website: The Kintsugi Poets Society
Twitter: @KintsugiPoets
Facebook: The Kintsugi Poets Society


24 thoughts on “#CoffinHop DEAD POETRY SLAM”

  1. I’ll even start you off with a little ditty that just popped it’s lid:

    In precious moments of broken slumber
    When the veiled night falls into dreaming
    And the true darkness emerges
    Bright as your sins
    Lit by lives once lost and loves been
    When the skeletons dance and the nightmares sing
    And the monsters reveal their faces
    Here is the place where your own heart stops
    to deliver you into dark places
    The coffins are placed one by one in their rows
    Each tenant still, cold and rotting
    Awaiting the week of the month of the year
    When the fiends and undead come a’Hopping

    -Axel Howerton

  2. Here’s a haibun poem from me:

    A Night in the Cemetery

    A quiet evening and a soft wind, where the wisps of dried leaves and dust waft gently. A full moon cracks the darkness that settled like soot on cobblestones. The graveyard silence drapes in beauty and gloom…

    Cold, pallid—lost soul
    waxen moonlight flickers across
    bones rising from graves

  3. Been a while since I wrote poetry… bit rusty. Here’s something that will inevitably happen to my jack-o-lantern, perhaps later today, perhaps tomorrow, thanks to my living in LA:

    On Carving a Pumpkin A Week Before Halloween in 80 Degree Heat

    Your heavy head relieved
    of veins and orange-matter and seeds,
    and re-capped with stolen scalp—
    empty, it does not bleed.

    Your eyes open only
    at the knife’s insistence;
    you grin widely and breathe
    for the first time in existence.

    I’ve given you life.

    In the dusky hue of night
    your new-made face alights.

    But in the baking heat of day,
    your vacant grin, your eyeless sight,

    grows over with mold and decay
    and slowly rots away.

  4. Here’s one taken straight from “The Dark Horde”:


    I am darkness, I am death.
    I am light, I am the breath.
    I am creation, all possibility.
    I am destruction… Entropy.
    I am your enemy, your darker twin,
    The voice of evil, calling from within.
    But I am outcast, I am hated.
    Alone I have suffered, but I have waited.
    Until the time, of my return,
    To claim what is mine, the world to burn.

    I bring you misery, insanity and rage.
    I herald the beginning, of a dark new age.
    You cannot resist me, for you are only man.
    You cannot defeat me, nor understand.
    On winds of revenge, my spirit flies free,
    Merciless my power, to destroy all that be.
    Every barrier broken, every chain, every ward,
    Now feel the fury, of the Dark Horde.

  5. I’ll bite. I only write “poetry” when I depressed or pissed off. 😀

    Watch This and Learn

    They scream endlessly
    Foul and so obscene
    Desperate wails of a twisted fate
    Bemoaning the lack of compassion
    Mother Earth’s denizens
    Threw at them
    With such unfeeling callousness!

    Laughing at your idiocy
    Shaking heads at your
    Asinine behavior

    Arrogant asses offer up
    Their innermost selves
    To exploitation

    readily …

    readily …

    Slide in the wicked blade.

    Gluttony rules
    And you mindless fucks
    Scramble to be Kings.

  6. Okay I don’t really write poetry either, but I’ll bite.

    Here’s a poem from my book 32 Seconds. And I’ll add to that.

    Forget me not
    Wherever you go
    Memories are like daggers
    And your heart holds the truth within.

    Fear not the darkness
    As the light of hope fills you whole
    Step by step on the path of redemption
    You’ll know which turn to take.

    It is not easy to be you.
    It is not easy to be anyone.
    But with pain comes knowledge
    And with change comes wonder.

    Life is but a journey
    Not a destination
    And from the darkness you’ll grow wise
    A loving soul, a caring heart, finding happiness at last.



    Johanna aka The Manicheans

  7. #CoffinHop A Midnight Weary by richard lynn livesay

    dark poets ponder in pits below ground
    hang out with bodies in smelly alleys
    live with the living dead, hell-bound

    boots slosh through muddy bogs
    where bats suck their necks at night
    where shadows growl like rabid dogs

    they write midnight blogs to sleep
    dream of werewolves bloody paws
    then snakes and spiders slowly creep

    they wake to ghostly shadows lurking
    then check the mirror for signs of madness
    obsessed with horror they write, smirking

    as the created zombies begin hopping
    jump upon graveyard coffins stomping
    (rising from the grave)
    Ghostly Axel, covered in moss begins bopping

  8. Thanks, Axel, for this opportunity to share. Here is “The Loss of Faith”
    The Loss of Faith 

    Sister Faith had a horrible dream
    her eyes opened wild and red
    terrified, she coughed a muffled scream
    and bolted naked from her bed
    then barefoot fled down the frigid stairs 
    ashiver with unnameable dread
sinister voices wracked her head
    murmuring madly  “God is dead is dead is dead!”
    moonlight lit the rusted spade
    through the cracked glass door in the garden shed
    she grabbed the shovel with arthritic hands
    and through the open gate she made
    deep into the forest glade
    there below the burning stars that godforsaken night 

    she began to hack into the sod
    digging with all her might
    spooked above in the hickory tree
    hoot owl took to flight, moaning low and eerily
    but Faith could neither hear nor see
    something dark possessed her brain
    ’til finally she felt no pain
    doomed dreamer lost her earthly light
    break of dawn dissolved the moon

    the bellman rang the morning toll
    that woke Father John for his daily stroll

    six hours before the chimes of noon
    he found the corpse crumpled in the hole
    Sunday choir sang a funeral tune

    Father John led prayers for her soul
sisters whispered and grieved in the hall
    warm tears fell fast for the loss of Faith
    sweet mentor to them all 
    that priest alone, saw satan’s smile engraved
    upon her pasty face like a hideous wraith
    and he pondered on her curious fate
    what evil force would drive a nun
    to crave such an awful end? 
    to hollow out her earthly grave
    then to fall and freezing die
    not knowing what or even why
impossible to comprehend
    a year from her death on Halloween
    the villagers say her ghost was seen   
    a wispy specter digging there
    pale moonlight on her silver hair
    spade in hand on bended knee
    beneath the gnarled hickory tree
    muttering an obscenity

  9. dearest Edgar
    we feel your pain
    ravens scream
    as dead hearts beat
    and yet
    my friend
    collar’s white
    your hair combed back
    you sit upright
    with fear
    and hunger
    you do write
    your demons
    haunt you
    day and night
    your cool shades
    block out the light
    keep you from
    most ugly sights
    but hear you this
    my author dear
    tis you
    who spreads dark nights
    of fear
    your words
    live on
    you are gone
    and ravens sing
    your lonely song

  10. Thanks for the Kintsugi Kudos Axel! 🙂
    WooHoo!! Damn…I love me some Dead Poetry…
    Will get back here to join in the poetic shenanigans later today.

    I concur with you Oh might CoffinHop a Overlord: All fantastic poems here already!
    – Kim

  11. Bare feet trample,
    undeterred by shredding thorns.
    Heart beats louder
    Pounding through her shaking form.
    Howls grow closer
    Something massive charges on.
    One foot catches,
    The body crashes down.
    Hand is grasping,
    only dead leaves to be found.
    Heavy claws slash,
    ripping , screaming, gushing blood.
    Sight fades away,
    Shouldn’t have gone to grandmother’s house.


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