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The Butterfly Effect

by Rae Smith 4 months ago in social commentary
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Poem by Rae Smith

I saw it from a thousand years

I caught it’s breath inside my ears

I heard the splash of dewdrop tears

Fall down into the River

Old men watching in the black

(Their haggard faces gaptooth cracked);

Their hearts on tattered sleeves retract

Their bones begin to shiver

And as this winged beast came gently

Falling through the whisps of grey

The riverside based men of gentry

Clicked their tongues with much dismay

‘Here comes the thief of night

To steal all life away’

And softly as a heart could beat

Raised this beast the Earth to meet

His brown and fur of body resting twixt two wings like eyes

And loud and harsh as day could break

Ten thousand sets of eyes did wake

And from their concrete towers shouted ‘Death!’ with fearful cries

Twenty thousand footsteps down five thousand sets of stairs did clatter

As ten thousand tongues came wagging through the frosty air of dawn

‘Such a nasty, nightly creature

Only could have been a feature

Of the streets of hell, yes surely this is Satan’s spawn’

As I watched with bitten lip, sinking heart like river ship,

Heard them did I speaking of a legend once forewarned

All twenty thousand ears had heard, spoken as though truth were word,

Of a creature’s wings that with one stir could cause a storm

I watched each earthly father and each earthly mother gushing

Causing every earthly child in their arms begin to quake

And fear like hand was clutching at the hearts and therefore rushing

From the mouths and therefore causing all the atom air to shake

My hands were lifted from my sides, I couldn’t watch, I hid my eyes

As human hands and mouths and feet caused human earth to split

And with the earthly movement caused by movement only human

Came the one human conclusion that ‘the creature causeth it!’

Yet all the while sitting, was the creature,

Barely flitting,

With it’s heavy creature eyes and wings

Closed tightly as it slept

And all the while watching was I,

Through my fingers held to my eye,

With my heavy tongue to mouth, glued tightly as I wept

‘It isn’t wings from beast of hell or even beast of heaven’s dwell!”

I wished my muted lips to simply part and cry aloud

But in silence I stood viewing

All the earthly dwellers spewing

Forth as though themselves became a beast when as a crowd

Into the creature’s wings they thrust

Their fists, their knees, their feet, their busts

They tore the veins and bit the fur

and pierced the eyes with sticks

They cracked it’s skin and drank the blood,

Snapped bones and threw them in the mud

They held their children up to beat it’s skull with rocks and bricks

And slowly as they gorged and feasted

Sunlight rose and darkness shifted,

Each could see the blood and madness stark upon their brother’s face

But in the misty dawn of morning

Not a soul was close to dawning

Not a heart was near to mourning

Cruel humanity’s disgrace

Mothers hugged their children tight

Men shook hands and yelled ‘good fight!’

Lovers pressed their dripping torsos tightly breast to breast

And as each sat and barely moved

This new found stillness they said proved

That disaster had diffused

Now the beast been suppressed

But from afar I stood and cursed

As all the city folk dispersed

Disappearing into shelters for to wash and get undressed

And I knew that such a horror

Dwelt in father, child mother

That though this beast lay now in stillness

Never would it lay to rest

social commentary

About the author

Rae Smith

intersex, trans, non binary creator with ADHD, OCD and CPTSD

Reader insights

Nice work

Very well written. Keep up the good work!

Top insights

  1. Compelling and original writing

    Creative use of language & vocab

  2. Easy to read and follow

    Well-structured & engaging content

  3. Excellent storytelling

    Original narrative & well developed characters

  1. Eye opening

    Niche topic & fresh perspectives

  2. Heartfelt and relatable

    The story invoked strong personal emotions

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Comments (1)

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  • Brian Warner4 months ago

    Excellent work. I really enjoyed reading your prose.

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