Poetry ~ Outside the Margins with Edmond Manning

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Edmond Manning OTM

Every now and then, a fiction writer gets the urge to write a little poetry. I can’t resist giving into occasionally wearing a beret and thinking deep thoughts while smoking a clove cigarette. I know that image is a terrible stereotype to put on poets everywhere but I do so in the spirit of play, so it’s okay, right? I mean, if they wanted, they could retaliate by saying fiction writers are overweight, symbol-heavy wannabees with one fist jammed into a bag of Cheetos while simultaneously–hey, that hurts. No more stereotypes.

Without further ado, I’d like to share a few poems.


I know you, Sacrifice
sadistic vampire towering over me,
Me – pale, drained, gasping and you lean down, whisper,
“Is that all you’ve got?”
Maybe that wasn’t you –
– maybe –

maybe that was deprivation
wearing your clothes
parting his hair same as yours.
They pointed and said, ‘that’s sacrifice,
be afraid.
He drinks your passion and
when they find you, your soft
fingertips are charred black.’

Here in my doorway,Sacrifice stands
hand in hand, gentle grin,
face basking in warm firelight.
You’re not so fierce. Or angry.
So why am I stuttering, afraid to say,
“Welcome, Sacrifice.”


Vulnerability Sucks


If I show you my soft underbelly, you will laugh

And say, god, he’s pathetic.

I had no idea he was so lame.

Well, I’ve decided that’s what you’ll say.

It has been said

about me



So I’ll show you something soft

That is vulnerable

well, sort of.

Say, 74% vulnerable.


74% more packaged vulnerability

(and 26% me still in control)

but I guess

that’s not exactly vulnerable, is it?


Nakedness is not nakedness if I’m still covering my dick.

But nakedness means

You will laugh and say, god he’s pathetic.

It hurt too much the first time

to endure


The alternative is careful, measured vulnerability.

Choosing to go deeper in slow, steady steps.

Choosing who and when and saying, “No, not now.”

Which is valid

I guess

but it takes years

To descend

That mysterious, shimmering staircase

toward radiant treasures, unclaimed


If I choose, tonight

To descend,

to leap over a dozen gilded stairs –

heart pounding nakedness,


Please, don’t laugh at me.

Don’t give me your advice.

or simplify what I said,

it’s hard for me

and i am

i am very afraid.


Dragon Tears

I knew a dragon once

Swallowed his firey river of grief instead of

Smiting it into the barren earth

Where it belonged

And when he finally stopped

Poisoning himself

With false responsibility,

He breathed it out,

  • the wretched roar –

And collapsed

With sobs.

The dragon crumbled.

And the townspeople

came out and cheered!

And shared his sadness

And rubbed his scales

Which made him

Cry harder.

For the townspeople,

they loved him

And had been waiting for

dragon’s roar

for years.

Everyone knows, of course,

That dragons

Were made

To love

~Edmond Manning


About Edmond Manning

Edmond Manning is the author of King Perry, King Mai, The Butterfly King andFilthy Acquisitions. He spends a great deal of time standing in front of the fridge with the door open, wondering why it’s not stocked with more luncheon meats and cheese.

Farewell Giveaway
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.

Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,

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2 thoughts on “Poetry ~ Outside the Margins with Edmond Manning

  1. Oh my, Edmond, this:

    “maybe that was deprivation
    wearing your clothes
    parting his hair same as yours.”

    wow. truuuuuuuuuuuth and beautiful phrasing.

    and this:

    “I knew a dragon once

    Swallowed his firey river of grief instead of

    Smiting it into the barren earth

    Where it belonged”

    yeah… these words make me want to draw or paint them.

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