The Dark Man

The Dark Man
Written by Stephen King

Finally, after years of searching for the perfect piece in his bibliography (one that was under five minutes and that hadn’t already been done by someone more talented than myself), I have found a work of Stephen King to record.

My mother’s favorite author is Stephen King and there is no memory I have of the eighteen years I lived with the woman that did not include an entire bookcase containing most, if not all, of Mr. King’s books. It was only a matter of time before I picked one up and started to read it for myself. That occurred in the summer before I entered the 6th grade, and the book was The Dark Tower: The Gunslinger. I picked it up because the book had an utterly badass cover:


I mean, look at that thing. I knew Stephen King as an author who primarily wrote about creepy ass things happening to authors and children in Maine, but a cowboy? With a crow? What the fuck is the dark tower? And why the hell is its distant shadow above the sunset?! That ain’t no physics I ever heard of. I opened the book and read it twice. I had no idea what the hell was going on, but I did know I loved it. I would spend the next sixteen years, more than half my life, riding the Dark Tower train, and I’m excited to narrate something directly attached to the DT universe.

For those of you who don’t know, The Dark Tower series is King’s self-described magnum opus, and it is connected to many of his other works. It details the adventure of Roland, a gunslinger (a sort of western knight) in a land that has “moved on”, and his quest to reach the dark tower. I could extrapolate more, but I’m not sure it would make much sense (Ka like the wind; I aim with my eye, shoot with my mind, and kill with my heart; 19; Bango Skank; I’ma kill all dem honk muhfuhs; I left the world I knew to watch a kid try to put booties on a fucked-up weasel; Blaine’s a pain; Go then. There are other worlds than these.) If you like sweeping sagas full of violence, honor, love, destiny, betrayal, loyalty, friendship, lots o’ shooting, and some simply fucked up shit, then pick up The Gunslinger and thank me later.

This poem deals with one of Roland’s main antagonists, a wizard who goes by many names and many faces but always wreaks chaos and destruction wherever he treads. I hope I do the character justice. Stephen King is one of my artistic heroes. His words have been a part of my life since the day I was born, and so I hope I do the work justice. If I have fallen short, I cry your pardon. If I have done well and remembered the face of my father, then I say thank ya, big big.

Note to Stephen King, if he happens upon this: If a phone call/IM online chat thingy between you and I could be arranged, I have one question I have been dying to ask you. It’s not for a job or a critique on my own work; just a question that popped into my head after reading a lot of your stuff. Thanks for doing what you do, and for all the books.

We All Have Things

We all have things
Things we can live with and things we can not
Habits that get under our skin and begin to rot
One friend I have hates the word “Caress”
Preferring to use words like brush, rub and stroke
But don’t caress any Styrofoam together
As in another of my friends ire it’ll invoke

Some folks hate posers, hipsters and such
Others detest gigolos and sluts
Some abhor the passive objectors
And others people with sticks up their butts

I myself, though hard I do try
Have a list of things that’ll make me decry
That you’re nothing but a beast, an animal, who I
Will slaughter and eat whole, perhaps with stir-fry

These things, in no particular order, are listed below:
Leaving the lights on, not locking the door
Burping with no “Excuse Me”, either after or before
Not using your turn signal when driving on the street
Refusing a cookie, but I think that one’s more about me
We made toilet lids for a reason, they’re not superfluous
And while you’re there, please please please please please flush

And most of all, the thing I can’t stand
Chewing with one’s mouth open, or slurping a drink
I lose my concentration, and I’m not able to rhyme
It doesn’t just bother me, it causes a headache, actual pain
And I don’t really know why

But I’ve sat down and pondered why I can’t let these go
These annoyances and grievances that bother me so
And I found these things, while a pain, were all harmless
And my aggravation was merely personal, and I must confess
That even I do things that cause others to turn
Like snoring, singing and the incense I burn

It dawns on me the two-way street I’m on
And wonder what I’m annoyed by might say about me
That we can’t be judged by the rude things we’ve done
But by how we’ve dealt with things to which we disagree

So keep quiet for once, and just silently suffer
While the inconveniences start to sting
And remind yourself it’s not so bad
Because, like, you know
We all have things

Thank God I saw this sitting on my shelf, or else I wouldn't have posted anything today.