A Mortal Scream Epistle: a #shadormaprose #letterpoem


Edvard Munch [Public domain or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons


You would not understand were you still on my side of the veil. I only hope that on your side, you do, and will forgive me for bearing witness. Just as I hope to someday forgive you.


Three AM

you dare scream my name

wake me up

so I see

you, a horror before me

sprawled on the cold floor


And what was I, but a child courting adolescence? Why did you think I could save you? You, who shredded my dignity with every poisoned word from Absolute-odored breath?

Why did you think I wanted to?

Of course, I did. The fact that I could do nothing tormented me, inspite of the impossibility of my making a meaningful intervention.

How could a pubescent boy stop a grown man driven to the edge?


twilight mist

around the headstone

both your names

soon obscured

now you rest so quietly

peacefully, at last


Accept my petunias in the summer, my wreath in the winter. May I lay down the remains of my grief with my next gift. Some day.



a fox’s cry

in the dark



dVerse MTB: Phantom form–Shardorma, Amaya pubtending

Real Toads’ “dear” poems

Poets United–midweek motif–scream




42 replies »

  1. Beautiful! And agonising. A wonderful combination of the three prompts, and of haibun and shadorma. Your final haiku is perfection.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love the way you have combined the prompts and forms, Frank. You’ve included various screams, too: I’m familiar with the three am scream, the adolescent scream and the fox’s cry in the dark, but oh, that silent scream of grief is so deeply felt.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. A haunting story of a boy, then man, haunted. This line spoke so much to me,
    “May I lay down the remains of my grief with my next gift. Some day.” And then followed by the haiku, almost as if the boy is resolved to forever hear those screams, even if there’s a vague hope that he won’t have to. Great writing, Frank!

    Liked by 2 people

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