Garment of Pain


Trying to forget

pain sewn into

the hem of my life,

with stitches 

straight and precise.

No scissor 

can cut me free.

Adamantine thread of dolor,

pulled tight,

knotted and 

tucked deftly.

Perfect garment of malaise, 

worn without

a thought of redemption. 

Cold truth filtrates

through loose woven cloth. 

Frayed edges 

hold a nebulous reality,

that pain cannot escape.



A Fool’s Paradise


Confinement wraps its silken rope 

around the throat of desire,

captured by our daily wants

and imprisoned by lack.


As humans we are prone to delusion,

believing what we want to believe.

Seeing what we want to see.

Denying all else.


There must be moderate attacks

of unpleasantries

that swallow truth’s right hand.

Sworn upon ancient book of trust.


For in that very moment 

that we find our way, 

we lose our innocence.

Trapped in whims of a fool’s paradise.


The deconstruction of a system

brought forth from shame and guilt,

we confine ourselves in tiny cubicles

of the humanity we scorn.



Dancing the Dance


Common-day words

with uncommon meanings.

A 55 mph smile beseeching one

who entered the hallowed,

thinking it all was for fun.


Standing on ground

that turns upon spinning.

Head that explodes 

when hearing the truth.

Practiced potion of lust and desire.


Pocket full of dreams and bones.

Closing a door

that never went behind. 

Singing a song of reluctance,

under a garish neon sign.  


Evoking a distant universe,

calling all peoples unto itself.  

Stranger than strange day into night. 

All the while …

dancing a dance that ends out of sight.



Running out of Words


Struggling by, 

another day grows weary.

Fragility of life,

I wallow through the shallows.

I am running out of me,

soon there will be no more.

I run,

I hide,

I search inside.

The words I seek do not come easy.

A storm brews within.

Another day,

another verse,

will this one save my soul?

A severed thought,

fragmented lines,

between tight spaces.

I am no longer whole.

I fade within the mist,

disappearing into nothingness.

So many words, just out of reach.



Madness of Mind


Now I see myself

going quietly out to sea.


Fragility of mind seeping 

through the sieve of time.  


Thoughts no longer coalesce

in images of reality.


Spinning off in all directions,

I am lost within the changing tide.


Lying in a bed of doubt,

reaching for conclusions.


Tidal wave of trepidation

crashes at my sanity. 


Many miles of ruins,

scattered on my shore.


Being so old is a blessing,

losing so much is a curse.


I float away on illusion.

What once was, now is gone.



Ann Christine Tabaka was nominated for the 2017 Pushcart Prize in Poetry, has been internationally published, and won poetry awards from numerous publications. She is the author of 9 poetry books.  She has recently been published in several micro-fiction anthologies and short story publications.  Christine lives in Delaware, USA.  She loves gardening and cooking.  Chris lives with her husband and three cats. Her most recent credits are: Burningword Literary Journal; Muddy River Poetry Review; The Write Connection; Ethos Literary Journal, North of Oxford, Pomona Valley Review, Page & Spine, West Texas Literary Review, The Hungry Chimera, Sheila-Na-Gig, Foliate Oak Review, Better Than Starbucks!, The Write Launch, The Stray Branch, The McKinley Review, Fourth & Sycamore, The Academy of the Heart and Mind.

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