March Madness Top Ten: Conflagration/Nathan McCool

From among rampikes where I study ancient things,

I think I could reach up with my ponderosa arms and

pull down all the gods. I could bring them

here to earth, but people would only know them as


Know them in that same way that the

general population will always know

beauty and brilliance.

I’m society, some things are outside of it;

and gazes are always turned to those things

like the barrel of a gun. Scoffs are shot from

perfect, lipstick painted mouths like bullets.

But to be perfect is to have never burned.

Things that have not endured burning cannot

give light. And in the absence of light,

no one ever sees anything.

What I’m saying is, each person can set themselves afire in some way and endure –

can be stars speckled against darkness.

To be or not to be is a question of suicide,

but I ask, “To march in bright, radiant, conflagrant madness…or to simply spectate

in dull content?”

The thing to really remember is:

If you are to spectate, it is only because

more enkindled “mad” things allow it.


The Editors Top Ten

Ligeia, under dimmed lights/Oloriel

A Moment of Dying/Kindra Austin

The Magic Quilt/Zelda Reville

Marching in Madness & March Madness/1Wise-Woman

Conflagration/Nathan McCool

A biography? What would I tell you? That I am a drunk miserable sod that writes and plays music and wanders nomadically? That I try fruitlessly to scatter around whatever goodness is in me in hopes that maybe someone else wouldn’t feel as miserable as I do? That I’m just some dumb, angry man that cares too much despite wishing I truly didn’t give a damn?

Do you really think that would matter? Anything I could tell you would just be what I think and feel about myself. Is that really who anyone is?

The point I’m making is that it doesn’t matter what I tell you. Anything anyone needs to know about anyone else doesn’t come from some shit they say about themselves. What people are and the way that they choose to exist as a conscious human is what a biography should say, but those things are actions and reactions and the outward representations of what is inside someone. You can’t tell that in words.

You can find Nathan on Instagram at God of Dregs

35 thoughts on “March Madness Top Ten: Conflagration/Nathan McCool

  1. A really well written, sobering piece that really kicks back. Wonderful work!

    (Also appreciate the bio and the various names you’re commenting under, but I think everyone is a fan of that!)


  2. Pingback: Sudden Denouement March Madness Top Ten: My Own Ghost House and Dog & All – sailorpoet ~
  3. No She Poet hipster tween popular crappity crap here.This is real writing.On the edge and it’s finest.Thank you for not being another hippie whiskey bent or sobering wannabe Bukowski and for writing with your guts!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • That means a lot. I always try to write from the gut. Sometimes my guts seem a bit sour though.


    • Serpentor– so glad you thought Nathan’s post rocked. We all liked it too. I am curious though whether you think the rest of our pieces are “She Poet hipster tween popular crappity crap” and/or “hippie whiskey bent or sobering wannabe Bukowski.” Just wasn’t sure where you were going with that. . .

      Liked by 1 person

      • I think he means more of what is very prevalent on instagram and such. Just the generic bullshit that so many people feed into.


      • No,I was referring to the fluff and click-bait you see on Instagram mostly.I’m enjoying what I see here thus far in the content.Looks like really great poetry.And the layout is excellent as well as the fact that you tell a little about the writers and where to seek their words.

        Liked by 1 person

    • I prefer all the others much better but that means a lot to know you think that. There are such talented writers here.

      Liked by 2 people

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