Tag Archives: obsession

“Stalker”

A traditional ballad by Paul Burgess [Traditional ballad form=stanzas of 4 lines; lines 1 and 3-unrhymed iambic tetrameter; lines 2 and 4, rhymed iambic trimeter; ballad writers are encouraged to use strategically placed anapests.]

“Stalker”
While resting in her lover’s arms,
She whispered quietly,
“Wherever you decide to go,
You’ll never escape from me.”

Then gently he replied, “My love,
I’d rather not be free.”
Again she said, more quietly than before,
“You’ll never escape from me.”

In time he’d had enough and thought,
“She surely will agree
To end our love,” but she only said,
“You’ll never escape from me.”

One day he rose before the sun,
To leave at five ‘til three
And found this message scratched on his car:
“You’ll never escape from me.”

Some months he passed in soothing peace,
Enjoying liberty,
‘til seeing carved on his door these words:
“You’ll never escape from me.”

Another time he came upon
His kitten nailed to a tree,
And its collar held a note that read,
“You’ll never escape from me.”

The kitten’s killer called to say,
“You have no empathy,”
Then these familiar words of hers,
“You’ll never escape from me.”

He sensed a person in his house,
Though no one had a key.
With ev’ry bullet fired, she screamed,
“You’ll never escape from me.”

She put the gun inside her mouth
And counted, “One, two, three,”
Then whispered quietly sev’ral times,
“You’ll never escape from me.”

The trigger only clicked in vain,
For no ammo left had she.
While loading one more slug she hummed,
“You’ll never escape from me.”

Before she could destroy herself,
A threat’ning man she’d see
Who aimed his weapon while he said,
“You’ll never escape from me.”

Then Sergeant Jones prepared her to live
In police custody
Where prison walls to her would say,
“You’ll never escape from me.”

“A Compulsive Scratcher”–a Children’s Poem by Paul Burgess (from 2006)

I know I’ll only make it bleed and scar,
But still I pick and scrape and scratch it raw.
I’ll keep on clawing ‘til I reach the bone.
So hard it is to leave an itch alone.

My fingers have become ten useless nubs.
Alas, those sorry digits did erode;
But such ill luck my progress scarcely slows
Because upon my feet are healthy toes.