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ISSUE:� #2 "Dream Toys & Nightmares"
DATE :� Spring 1996

For those of you not fortunate enough to recieve trendy, over-hyped music magizines from your desperately-seeking-to-be-hip grandparents, something alternative in the way of poetry, short stories, reviews and the like.

Apocalypse Playground: A GothLiterary Electronic Publication



CATEGORY:� misc.
AUTHOR:� d.k

Divebomb Angelic Attack:

At any given location and at any time. It is entirely possible that an overhead passerby (namely a plane) my drop it's cargo from the friendly skies onto just about anyone. This is not very likely.

It is more likely that one would find themselves struck by another weight: a mind. At any second, in any location, any one can be struck by something with a magnitude more powerful than that of any mangled hunk of scrap metal. It is entirely possible that an idea might wreak havoc on one's mind for even a second.

It is the intent of Apocalypse Playground to stimulate this kind of 'accident', because one never know how much time remains for dreams to be dreamt, or what may be looming above...



AUTHOR:� d.k

An Introduction . . .

If you close your eyes, all the light of the world fades to red and then recedes into blackness. That is the way the first things to go. Light is such a fragile thing. Simple thoughts begin to dance away from in front of the mind: grocery lists, phone numbers, names and the like. They all walk away into the red glow, join with it and then fade with the last whispers of light. If you remain lightless long enough you might find that you can see in the darkness. There are things to see in the dark of sleep, in fact entire universes of sights lie beyond that velvet curtain. Granted, everything in the dark is a bit twisted and different but it is there to see.

Another shard from the world before open eyes is the residual sounds. Sound remains even after the most complicated thoughts have dissolved from the mind as it passes through the curtain of sleep. The mind doesn't know that the dishwasher was mistakenly filled only halfway, and it may not even remember what dishes are. The sounds of the waking world are not disfigured the way sights can be during sleep, instead they are sharpened but removed from the things that made them. Sleeping eyes are not open to see the cause of such musical discord, instead they create the next most likely source and view it through the eyes of sleep. The sleeping can hear the gentle mechanical whir whir of the thing in that far off realm of 'kitchen'. The sound has become the rustling of impossibly green jungle grass. The rush of plumbing has become an ocean torn to pieces.

Thus, distortions create reality.

Sound is the only connection that sleepers have to those whose eyes are open. Even the heaviest of sleep can be interrupted by the sound of a train or voices down the hallway. If you scream a nearby sleeper would feel the blast of screaming shattered glass. What is this distortion of the sleeping mind? It is dream. Dream is perhaps the most powerful and gripping thing that anyone has ever had the opportunity to put out of mind. Ten bucks says that most people take full advantage of that opportunity whenever possible. (Feel free to prove otherwise) Dream is the reason for any and all emotions felt by human kind during the majority of the time they spent engulfed in shadow under a mournful moon. While your body is comfortably sprawled across a mattress in a decadent bliss, your mind is busy hammering out the details of another lifetime. Dream is a ticket to realm of impossibilities. Dream will take even the most innocent sleeper into fields of unlikely battles, the most heartless into the pangs of eternal love, the meek are thrust into positions of improbable glory and the fearless are welcomed into the cold arms of sheer madness. Dream is both faery tale and tragedy, love and hate, beauty and destruction. But most importantly dreamers unwittingly create a new twist on an ancient concept: reality.

Dream is an important play toy here in the Apocalypse Playground. It is also the children's favorite decoration.

Dream can be such an elegant thing. We hang dream chains around the gate and stuff nightmares under the bottom of the slide, to catch the unwanted things and devour them. Without dream it may not be possible to survive here for very long, so I have given you a taste of it across these pages.

Dream is my favorite holiday, come celebrate it with me

Sleep Tight.



I'd Like To Thank The Academy

If you saw the Academy Awards, you might know why I gave up 5 minutes into that sorry spectacle! The first thing that caught my attention was a fashion show thing that set out to display the costumes of various films from this past year. I thought that would be cool considering that I've seen some incredible costumes recently. (See Angels and Insects) But the show was rather dismal.

As soon as a model stepped onto the runway, the camera did a close up of his/her face. The announcer gave the name of the movie the costume came from, and said something like

"modeled for us tonight by... Buffy."

Why do models only ever have one name, and why are they all so strange. I suppose I wouldn't mind so much if they had names I liked.

After showing off the fact that this particular model could go about grimacing the camera then switched to the face of a "new" model. (They're all so similar) never once paying heed to the fact that this was intended to be a costume show and not a grimace swapping session!!!

Then Brad Pitt lost a shot at best supporting actor in his part of 12 Monkeys. That angered me as well. In my opinion, he MADE that movie in a way that no other supporting actor has made any movie I have ever seen. (I just might be stretching a little.) He deserved that award. And I'm going to tell you why I think so.

Before 12 Monkeys, and probably many others, saw Mr. Pitt as nothing more than some kind of sex symbol. Was not all that impressed with his role in Interview With the Vampire. He was good, but I think there are people who could have done better. Because of the image I had of him I tended to avoid most of his movies. Because of this, I can not honestly say that he served no purpose other than hormone inducement in every single movie he was in. But I can say that was the overall impression I had of Brad Pitt. 12 Monkeys broke all of that I think, And he should have been given the award based solely on the face that he proved to the world that Brad Pitt is more than something people are supposed to drool over.

It was shortly after the anger concerning Mr. Pitt's loss coupled with the tearing upon my attention span due to the overly fast paced racket of the prime-time slotted "spectacle". The childish part of my mind set to the difficult task of creating a way for the rest of my mind to survive this ordeal without getting lost.

I began to inadvertently create a new reality, a world not unlike our own. I made a universe in which grueling thanking sessions could actually become enjoyable, And all it took was a few simple letter substitutions. At first I didn't feel this change in mental location, and I wouldn't have noticed at all if it hadn't been for the ensuing laughter. I found my self drifting in and out of attention to the Awards show. And from somewhere between my living room and that place that a childlike mind would have one stay I heard something accompanied by loud applause, canned most likely :

"Oh wow, I .... I never thought I'd ever see the day when I'd be standing here in front of all these people" (who probably hate me for this already) "receiving this award (for the eighth time)!!! But now that this wonderful dream has come true." She pauses. "I have a small, but heavily rehearsed list of people that I would like to... mention. First, I would like to schpank the academy"

yes, I could distinctly swear I heard that woman say "spank". Did this woman really want to give a good behind bruising to those responsible for handing her a prestigious award? I couldn't help but agree. It took me a while to notice the television after this sudden revelation.

".....who drove me all those long hours to the lake, you know the little green one with the beautiful docks. Yes, mom schpank you too"

There it was again, not once but twice. This woman isn't really all that horrible. Despite her rather tactless display of cleavage, I am once again forced to agree with her. I too would like to broadside the woman responsible for creating this boring mockery of the human psyche. Yes, schpank your mom and do continue, I'm interested.

"....I would like to schpank my little sister, just because she's there" OK. Maybe the childlike part of my mind wasn't responsible for this confusion after all. Get this sick pervert off the platform.
"I would certainly like to schpank all the little people"

as if life wasn't tough enough for the extras in your crappy movie

"Oh, and I would like to schpank god, or, for Political correctness' sake, I'd like to schpank the divine presence of your choice"

I'm sorry!!! But there is nothing Correct about schpanking. And as for the political implications of schpanking... Well, that's another matter.

I completely lost interest in the sickening display of gratitude on the stage. Yes I'll admit it was a rather heartfelt and emotional display of gratitude. More so than I would ever show for a little naked figure, so perhaps it is the emotion that draws people to watch these things. But, one must keep in mind that the reason they are even allowed to express such warm feelings of thankfulness in the first place is because they are all ACTORS, so just how heartfelt is it really. I mean, how sincere can someone be when they say something like:

"And finally, I'd like to personally spank each member of the audience, spank you. Spank you, and spank you. Spank you all so very much!



The Rocking Horse

by Dylan Kinnett

With leftover bedtime stories in it's mouth and a smile in its eyes (but most definitely not on it's face). The vampire crept from its temporary toy box abode.

"You were talking again. You were talking again!" The rocking horse cackled. The vampire ignored this mockery.

"Mother is.... other than here. Is she not?" The words slithered from between its teeth like worms. The horse moaned on its creaky rudders. Mother wouldn't have heard the moan, not from all the way down in the basement. The vampire stalked its way across the room to a round little window that looked down on what had been a courtyard. It began basking its bald head in the moonlight.

"Get off that horse and come over here" With that, the way water is ripped from a twisted sponge, life left the tired old horse, leaving it cold, wooden, and not more than a toy.

The vampire felt its invisible roommate beside him now, looming from above, blocking the blessed moonlight, but only a little. His presence noticed in a faint, but lively manner.

"Where is she..." the vampire whispered. The moon caused thin skins to shed themselves from his eyes; they fell to the floor like dead insects. Crunch. The vampire's eyes were clean, and even glowing a little, but its roommate remained invisible to it.

"

I believe she's 'other than here', the way you put it." This twinkling voice came from behind the cedar dress-up chest.

"Not that one!" it hissed back "The Emily."

A Barbie doll on the bed spoke in response from behind the lace of a pink pillow.

"I believe she's retired to the tire swing for the evening, she has a habit of doing such things."

The vampire dropped its dangling legs from the window sill the short distance to the floor and slipped toward the door. Gracefully and without a sound it slipped through the crack between the door and the wall. It vanished into yellow light.

"Barbies don't have that kind of accent, and they don't use such words."

Brute laughter resonated in response from under the bed.

The night sky was a grey blanket; the moon was an orange Halloween pumpkin light. And the stars were a jar of glitter knocked over by one of the gods, and probably still stuck to the bottom of his feet (glitter has a nasty way of doing that, it never comes off.) And Emily's eyes never came off of it, every night on the tire swing she would spin, staring at the sky, trying to stick the glitter of her eyes to the bare skin of whoever it is who sleeps behind the grey blanket sky.

The vampire's feet sunk deep into the forest of red carpet. The polished wooden ball at the top of the banister post reflected moonlight in its eyes with a sheen more radiant than that of the vampire's own dome, which was not more than three feet from the carpet.

The vampire wound itself down the spiral staircase. Down and around and down, down again. Father wouldn't hear. Emily said he was always making funny noises with the maid in the kitchen. The vampire would have to wait to put them in the basement with mother. The right time would come. The kitchen was a long walk from the other side of the house.

The vampire slipped through a pair of double doors at the bottom of the stairs, slid off the veranda, and scuttled into the trees.

Emily's swing stopped on its own accord as the vampire neared her oak tree.

"Come, my child. It's time to grow" Emily smiled, her teeth almost as white as the light in its eyes. "Will I really reach the stars like you said?" Only her yellow dress with ruffles was brighter than her smile now.

"Play with me" it hissed, "and we will reach the ends of the sky"

The ambulance sirens having faded for three nights (they made her cry), two pairs of eyes, with smiles in them, but not on the faces below them, peered out from the bedroom door.

"Run along now Emily" it slithered "I'm right behind you" Two figures, now much more than eye level with the banister post, twisted down the staircase.

"I'm hungry..." Emily moaned.

"Pleased to meet you, hungry." It laughed like a machine gun, behind those teeth Emily adored.

"No, let's go to the kitchen again" She pointed down a hall lined with red forest carpet. It seemed such a short distance to the kitchen yes, and so easy to eat.

The vampire tugged at what used to be a yellow dress. It was only reddish tatters now, and altogether too small.

"No," the vampire snarled "we're grown-ups now. Grown-ups have to go into town for food, you know that"

The two vampires stepped into a cold starless night, leaving the house even colder without them, and not more than a tool.



Other Judas

Fiction, by G.A. Speer

The Painter and his companion sat in the small room awaiting the arrival of the old man. The summer heat seemed to congeal in the air. Dusty shafts of sunlight peeked through minute gaps in the heavy curtains over the windows.

"I still don't like it!" said the Painter. He gazed at the rough table. "It goes against my sensibilities. I may refuse to complete the frieze." The companion looked up at this, and a slight frown fled across his aged countenance like a flurry of grey snow.

"You can't quit." the man said, his native Sicilian accent laying heavy on his thick lips. "You can't... the contract..."

The Painter stood up suddenly, knocking over his chair. He slapped both hands on the table in a fit of fury. "It's blasphemy! It's wrong! It's... it's... obscene! Wrong! I don't give a damn about the contract! I... "The heavy oak door eased open and a frail old man peered in. Tight-lipped, the Painter bent over, picked up the chair, and seated himself. The old man walked slowly to the table. He laid a small gilt portfolio on the scarred tabletop. He took off his small round red cap and laid it beside the leather folder.

"Gentlemen," the old man whispered. His voice like the faint susurrus of wind in a bell tower. "This is the paper." He opened the case and withdrew a manuscript crumbled at the edges, filled with spiky writing. It smelled faintly of sand and sun. It had thirteen carefully executed profiles of bearded men drawn in ink gone faint with time. Each profile bore an inscription, the Greek letters neat and small. The old man rasped, "This was found at the Holy City in the desert. These are the faces you will use. Only..." At this, the old man looked intently at the Painter. His heavy gold ring flashed in the smoky candlelight, the ruby reflecting bloody flames as he tapped the ancient manuscript. "These two you will change... If you wish to paint again" The Painter looked away.

The first picture was of a man, apparently of Mediterranean extraction. He had a large nose, a patchy beard and mustache and a definite overbite. He also appeared to have a prominent wart on his chin.

The last picture was of a handsome, faintly angelic man. His hair was straight and long, he had a strong nose and a gentle mouth. His light skin was smooth, without blemish. He seemed perfect, where the first picture almost seemed to be that of an idiot.

"Very well," the Painter said tonelessly. He had studied the faces, read the Greek inscriptions beneath each. "Very well. I shall paint the faces... as you direct ,Father" The old man nodded.

"Good, my son... A wise choice, a very wise choice indeed" the old man sighed. He took the aged piece of papyrus and eyed it. "No one wants the Messiah to look like that. That is the face of a traitor" The old man held the manuscript in the flame of the candle. His mouth made a small smile. Dry as bones, The paper burned quickly and brightly. The painter's companion made a noise in his throat.

Slowly, the old man picked up his small red hat and placed it on his head. "God be with you." He left quickly and quietly. "You heard his Holiness." The companion said. "You had better get to work" The painter grunted and looked at the pile of ashes on the table. The companion smirked slightly, then turned to leave. "Hurry up." he said as he exited the small room. Leonardo the painter turned to his folio of sketches of the inside of the roomy chapel rectory he had been commissioned to paint. He bit his lip in concentration and anger while staring at the faces in his mind. A sad, sad day it was when Leonardo daVinci protected old men in red caps by exchanging a handsome Judas for an ugly Christ in the Last Supper. Taking a blank sheet from his satchel, the painter began to map out his painting.



"Dwelling on the negative"

I can not purge these thoughts,
I can't kill these violent memories,
try as I might it's all for naught,
this is all my legacy.

Give me the feel of the forgotten,
take from me what I've given,
show me my own words,
then maybe I'll listen to myself.

Standing on the edge of a rock cliff
windwisps burrowing into my mind
it's turning and burning inside.

I let it fly, leave it all behind,
purge these thoughts !
Leave these violent memories behind.
slipping into dream, it's all for naught.

This, your violent legacy-



Glowing in the Cold

glowing in the cold,
your eyes
make me forget masks
and other things
lies

I can smell your hair
sometimes
and feel your hands
burning, but cold,

I'll never be alone



Did I Know Your Name?

did I know your name,
when september sunsets faded?
or did you know mine,
did you know my name
as I passed you by?
with you in the Ground
and Angels dancing down the Sky.
or did you only know my name
after this Embrace with Earth ?



Staircase

Something important to me but I don't remember why. Used to sit and watch the people go, they always come back again.

Taller through the eyes of a child and, important for another reason. But, lost in their own monotony.

I rather liked to sit there and watch them, I don't remember why. Now, I've lied and left.

Of all this childhood winding, remains a staircase sentinel post, and I don't remember why



Shadows

Shadows grow long
against the wall,
they wither and fade
then they blend and die with age



The Tally Man

blistering haze, wandering days,
in blackness dark and deeper,
spirits, black as coal
tearing at my soul,
and still I run from the reaper.

scream of pain,
pray for rain,
in desert wallowing in sorrow,
while running,
running, running,
and still I knew it would follow.

twisted faces,
familiar places,
wasting time not mine to borrow,
made to pay,
longing, longing
afraid of what happens tomorrow.

around me,
a chain,
this bane, ties to you
woe to you, the sleeper
wandering forever
and evermore
beware the reaper



Children Can Remember

Children can remember
all the forgotten things
like oracles and nightmares
and the other name of oranges,
the one from before the color.
And, when they awake,
they eat their breakfast and tie their shoes
(as children are often wont to do)
while swordfighting nightmares in their mind.
Questions without answers
logick on the back of a cereal box.
There was a time last week
when I could remember (why?)
just exactly did my father
make a kitchen to melt into the sky
with not more than blue paint.
the kind from before the color in the morning



"Our Death as One"

"out with the old
and in with the new"
men of the new order
are telling us, exactly,
what to do

" you will succumb to the change"
they tell us we have two options
two options,
yet...
One

"out with the old, and in with the new"
"you will succumb to the change"
"the many, not the few !"
"the glory of those in power
is more important than you"

the human race has become disposable?
Not many of us are left
few....
but one

we're dying



"Faded Mockery"

Grandmother smells different than she should
like the faded petals of a flower fair
a smell, like no other. New, but old,

She used to dance like childhood in summer
and even at times would care,
then time made childish faces fold.

Grandmother sang sad songs, more than she should
lovely-lost lyrics from forgotten bards,
a smell, like no other. New, but old,



"Else, a question"

have you, with you
the forgot?
I thought, or not,
the forgot.

Are you really what I think you are?
i am only what I pretend to be,
Do I see on you what I think I see?
pretenses are what pretence sees
What do you see when you look on me?

Then, you are what I think I am?
yes, but only in this dream,
Pretence is what pretenses see?
that is what would seem to be.

What is it I am when You look on me?
nothing more than i used to be.
Are You really what you think you are?
seeing me is a pretens' dream

I am the man that no man thinks and nobody ponders
a mystery, am i of unfathomable simplicity
a grace-land of wonders



"Ask them this"

If I pounded your face,
would you hear me then?
Of course you'd listen
if I stared you down with eyes of fire.
Would you notice that
there is fire in me,
or would you see only water
simply because you're thirsty?



"Vanity in Darkness"

I'm here with a candle
in front of a mirror,
vanity in darkness is a lie
for there is no reflection here

I look to the water
I look to the rain,
here with a candle
in front of the bathroom window pane
silence is broken by rain.

in front of a mirror
I look to my eyes,
vanity in darkness is a lie.
nothing behind them all
save, lonely cries,

vanity in darkness is a lie

Come Forward ! Midnight times,
take from me this stolid grey,
the broken love in these eyes is a painful sight.
Take from me this light!
(Shatter it like glass)
bring me, deliverance into night.

Alas, vanity in darkness is a lie.
no comfort, or reflection there.

rain on my mirror
broken window behind,
eyes coming nearer broken from the inside.
vanity in darkness is a lie,
there is no reflection here.



"Window Mind"

I've been with you in dreams,
while keeping secrets never thought to keep
I've been with you while you sleep.
I know where you are when not awake,
While telling answers mine to take.
I've been with you in your dreams
I sing the song of scilence
and dance across your mind
I take away your science
and take away your time

I've been with you in your sleep
while stealing secrets never thought to keep
and sounds, not heard, but seen
I've been with you while you sleep.



ThE NiGhtmArEs

"8 paper"


7,8,9,10

it doesn't matter in the end
you see me as paper through glass
strong enough to be ripped in half
yet hidden on the other side of a mirror
reflective, all knowing, but clear

7,8,9,10
I was only ever in your head

you see me as paper through glass
strong enough to be ripped in half,
yet blank, virgin, untouched and white,
so far away and yet so near,

7,8,9,10
I won't be here once I'm dead

reach to me with pencil and pen,
-freedom from this blankish state-
put on me a piece of you, and then
know that I can do the same

7,8,9,10
I will only ever be in your head

it doesn't matter in the end
these numbers have become my name
a digit I am, and fractions before....

You see me as paper through glass
strong enough to be ripped in half

he speaks again of shadow
the man that lives in my head
he sees my every word and hears,
then he speaks again of shadow

"And My television said to me"

This is the nowhere story
I'm about to tell,
If you don't like it...
Well,
you can go to hell.

Stuff your feelings in a paper bag
and don't ever let them out,
light a candle for them at Christmas,
stuff your mind (for me?) up your ass,
you won't need it where you're going to go.
This is the nowhere story,
and these, the nothing times,
you can welcome your minds
to it's new found hell.
Mind all the time
is up your ass.
(Except at Christmas).

I did it too, and look at me,
the perfect model of conformity.
I will take your ass (mind) and give you dreams,
just like the ones on your TV screens.
Your feelings are a talk show.

This is your nowhere.
And this, your nothing mind.
I cut it open and looked inside;
the talk show story it tried to tell,
was put in a bag and mailed to hell.

All the time in conformity,
you dream while hating me.




"If Man scorns Nature, so you think he would care about Words?" �- Thomas Moore, Utopia


Dylan Kinnett � 2004.