The Shine Journal

Exceptional Flash, Poetry, Art and Photography!

Three From Paul Hellweg



 The Man Not There



As I was going up the stair,

I saw a man who wasn’t there.


Light refracts and reflects

and enters the iris

where it stimulates

rods and cones

and they in turn send

electromagnetic signals

to the brain,

and we can see,

but you can’t see me.




He wasn’t there again today,


I can’t remember how long

I’ve been invisible, 

I just know I’m not here

and I’m not there,

and even though you think

you can see me,

you can’t,

not really.




                                                 Oh, how I wish he’d go away...


Not to be gone forever,

                                                not to come again another day,

but to be visible,

to stimulate someone’s

rods and cones,

            I wish.







Acknowledgment:  Italicized lines are from “Antigonish” by Hughes Mearns








                Ode to Maldoror



I was sitting at the computer,

torn between writing

a dull e-mail

or a brilliant poem

(my muse willing)

when a spider speed-rappelled

down my line of sight,

my hand chased

as he sprinted around the desk,

first hiding under the keyboard,

then making a mad dash for

a pile of books and papers

and I finally cornered him

halfway between a poetry mag

and Lautréamont,

and I was able to catch him

only because he hesitated,

perhaps shying away

from L.’s self-proclaimed

“sombre and poison-filled pages,”

and maybe this poem

will have a happy ending,

(the spider survived

but with a change of locale),

or maybe it won’t --

I intend to keep reading L.

despite his warnings

to desist,

or more accurately

because of them,

and time will tell

who was brighter

and it might just

prove to be

            the spider.









You left

at 6:30pm

to go camping

up on the mountain,

and I left the porch light on

            all night,




you’d return

but you didn’t,

and I can live with that,

but I don’t want to live

without you.                                                                           


So please come back,



I’ll leave the light on.


9pm and I’ve had 7 drinks,

and I know that were you to come back tonight,

I’d blow it,

I’d need more

than you could give

and I don’t want that


so do your thing

be yourself,

then come back.


I’ll leave the light on.



                                                11pm and I just heard a knock at the door

but it wasn’t you

it wasn’t anyone

it was just my fantasies

and wishful thoughts

and delusions

all of them



always wanting to come in,

they don’t understand

the light isn’t for them.


 I make my living writing reference books, but I'd rather be known for my fiction and poetry. (I'm working on it at this very moment.)


 Man: According to psychologist Nathaniel Branden, people commonly make themselves invisible by not expressing their true emotions – pain, fear, despair, and so on. This is true for me, and "The Man Not There" is my attempt to capture that feeling in words.

Maldoror: I live in a small cabin commonly overrun with spiders. They are muses in the sense that virtually every time I encounter one, I am inspired to write a poem about the experience.

You, C.: Yet another poem about unrequited love. I write these all the time. Sigh.

Click the pics to meet the members!

Sue CampbellRandall 

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