November 3-November 9, 1999: Joseph Kershbaum and Michael Cruthird

Week of November 3-November 9, 1999

Joseph Kershbaum and Michael Cruthird

Joseph Kerschbaum


Joseph Kerschbaum currently attends Indiana University and is majoring in english and history He has appeared in a number of publications on campus and other places Joseph is working with Tangled Hearts Publishing on a new publication, A Moment In Time Joseph is also the publisher for a literary magazine at IU, Canvas

The following work is Copyright © 1997 and owned by Joseph Kerschbaum and may not be distributed or reprinted in any manner whatsover without written permission from the author.

A Funeral of Sorts

An invisible breeze whispers
in my ear just enough so that
I can’t hear the minister Him
reading his standard text
in his standard, overpaid,
monotone voice In the other the semis
and Hondas drive by and block
the rest of the bored, unfeeling
voice talking of an empty god
that the deceased didn’t even
believe in
The grave diggers stand by
in their blue overalls with
grass stains leaning on their
shovels waiting to get to work
on the ground
The arranger of this affair rushes
around in a slow manner trying to hide
his impatientance with the whole
affair I watch him as his
fake words in the ears of
the mother and guests:
“I’m sorry”
“Thank you for coming”
“He was such a nice boy”
How would he know? I wonder
what the salary for
pseudo-felt sympathy is
Afterwards I shake the
fat of the minister,
nod to the men with the shovels,
said that it was lovely
to the busy man,
and joined the semis and Hondas
to get on with what I call a life.

Filthy Snowman

A year ago you came back A year ago, a long December, I found myself again
The cool air on my face, your warm kiss on my lips The snows you brought washed me clean,
and woke me back to life
I looked into your evergreen eyes I felt the softness of your snowflake skin I let you melt into me I watched your snow fall in the black of the night I cried your tears, and I burned your candle
as I danced in the flurries of our winter
But now I sit without myself I stare at a faded grey sky
as snows of dust and dirt fall upon me The snow is cold like a memory forgotten Drunk on the past, weary of the future
I build a filthy snowman.

Michael Cruthird


Michael Cruthird is a Public Health offic0ial living in Wiggins,  Mississippi A retired United States Air Force Medical Service Corps Officer, Michael has seen the darker side of humanity and also the hope of a bright future He writes poetry and prose as a therapuetic device and for the pleasure and enlightment of those who would ponder life and love Currently, Michael works with families of children with disabilities.

The following work is Copyright © 1997 and owned by Michael Cruthird and may not be distributed or reprinted in any manner whatsover without written permission from the author.


Images of the past haunt me Violent images confused
with exotic fantasies of youth Life and art parallel dimensions in a tortured soul Visionary release in
spurts of fury .conflicting emotions invoked by history
She was a seductress .but her blood was not virginal she had been raped for centuries and her revenge visited itself
upon freckled-faced farm boys who saw only honor, glory and
exotic fullfillment
She lay open for the invasion, warm and moist inviting deep penetration and cruel violation Allowing herself
to be denuded, scarred and exploited .she waited for her time
to exact her vengance

I stepped out into her world and smelled the mystical, magical
aromas of her inner regions I bathed in her liquid pools of
life Dreamed of browns and greens and fleshy delights, 
my mind decended into a stupor of rationalization I came to save her .to set her free and violence was the order of the day Confronted by the
reality of blood, broken bodies and bent minds .I slowly
began to see her as a whore .reaping profit from misery
I sought escape .and healing .release from the entrapment
she had become

Time heals, life renewed itself away from her seduction hindsight reveals a more simple and honest truth no whore .no seductress .a dynamic culture clashing with
its own identity and a young man facing the reality of WAR
Survival and maturity .a separation of passions .a bittersweet
first love Dreams and nightmares .time heals .time .heals.

Hunting Trip

The cool autumn breeze wisp through your hair, the sunlight flits about
your angelic face in rays of gold, red and blue Your eyes tear at the cold spikes
of Canadian air and teardrops cascade slowly across the rose of your
cheeks .and I realize why I love you BEAUTY

Your breathing halts and your pulse races as the proud, tall buck wades silently
from the pines into the field You smile with glee but don’t utter a sound as you
turn to look straight into my eyes .willing your excitement and pleasure into my
soul .and I realize why I love you INNOCENCE

I feel you tremble with an explosive mixture of fear and excitement as I hand you
the gleaming blue-black steel and polished cherrywood of my rifle You lean back
against me as you raise the barrel towards the deer I smell your scent .the scent
of womanhood, woods, autumn and desire I feel the warmth of your rounded
curves pressing hard against me You shiver as you grip the trigger I
smell your hair, like sour apples and herbs from our garden, stirring me to a state
of arousal and desire .and I realize why I love you PASSION

Your weight shifts against me as you line up your shot .the proud buck munching
on the tall clover, his tail whipping side-to-side I feel your entire body stiffen as
you squeeze the trigger {{click}} .the safety slides on .you turn, putting
the rifle against a tree, pulling me close for a passionate kiss You turn back
towards the field, taking my arms around you, sliding my hands down to your womanhood
– moist with confused desires, as we watch the buck walk quietly back into the
pines .and I realize why I love you COMPASSION

For these reasons and more .I LOVE YOU yesterday, today and tomorrow.

“Tempest Temptress”

Standing on the granite outcrop
high above a world below,
clouds, dark and angry, claw at the mountain’s face,
and creep up to surround in a blanket of chilled, moist air
Below the flashes of lightning skittering from cloud to cloud The darkness grows and insulates
thunder echoing all around,
the air alive with energy
The wind roars up the mountain face, 
lifting slightly as its fury races
through the tree tops all around

A dark, grey cloud like the smoke of an immense industrial fire
rises around and charges the air with negative ions
invigorating every inch of exposed flesh with tiny
electrical sparks that tickle and sting

Alive with sensations senses alert to every change
mind acutely aware of the danger
body filled with adrenalin produced by a heavy dose of fear
fear like a potent drug
short-circuiting reason and logic, allowing emotions to control
‘Oh, dear God, this is wonderful
and your power, your presence your creation’
Mother Nature in all of her glory
seducing with an overload of visual, aural, tactile, and
emotional sensations
warming the inside with fear, excitement and apprehension
chilling the exterior being with sweet smelling rain and clean,  brisk air
Robbing mind of its logic and reason
with sensual caresses and dazzling visions of light and sound
‘A temptress in the form of a tempest’.

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