“Bleeding to Ecstasy” and More Poems by F. B. Poussin

Fabrice Poussin teaches French and English at Shorter University. Author of novels and poetry, his work has appeared in Kestrel, Symposium, The Chimes, and many other magazines. His photography has been published in The Front Porch Review, the San Pedro River Review as well as other publications. More information here.

Fabrice has been previously featured in In Parentheses. Artwork by Fabio Sassi.

Bleeding to Ecstasy

A little death on a bright Sunday morning
sipping on the sweet nectar of another day
they watch the fading Milky Way.

Under cover of their secret garden
they share memories of ancient times
resting at the feet of ancestral oaks.

They sense a balm leaving their veins
as they exhale soft breaths into the breeze
dying to the world, more alive to their dreams.

Their eyes long ago closed to another light
they rest upon invisible walls
letting go of those old fragile moments.

Peace rules in the space between corpses
a precious ointment bleeds like a cure
healing the bruised lovers forevermore.

Letter to my Brain

I do believe I was once quite insane,
and perhaps yet again from time to time;
for I do count the needles on the pine,
I do stare at the rays of the stars.

In years of many months I rely on warmth,
relish in the cold, and seek the tempest,
in the morning glory of sweetest dew;
wishing a squirrel, I could frolic for acorns.

Swimming among the blades of grass,
I commune with the worm as he smiles to the Earth,
my body enrobed in a shroud of silk and life;
sparks flash as I turn to the azure skies.

It is certain that once, too many a time, and again,
I played with the marbles, won from friends,
of rainbows, crystal, ice and diamonds, only
to lose them and find myself without a home.

No doubt, in that which may have been a mind,
that this soul found boundless joy in its freedom
to run, to soar, to fall, and yet bounce once more,
under the gazes of a great many incredulous eyes.

Waves of an enchanted ocean taken by a tsunami;
nothing can ever match the changes in this life;
insanity yes, but so comfortable, so potent,
that it has borne more infants for the four winds.

I do believe I was once blessed with insanity,
so this day, to seek it anew, I offer myself whole
to the lightning of the hurricane, so I may be lifted
into ethers where all languages speak in the instant.

From time to time and sadly, also I cease my plays,
and morose, crushed by the weight of a million eons,
I impatiently await another flight, for sane, grounded
I know the answer lies elsewhere.

The race takes these aching remains through the forest
Where bruises, cuts and incessant assaults;
Insane yes, pained of course, nonetheless fulfilled
For now, the universe entire knows me.


Never was I in a war
to see the bombs kiss the fields
changing the plains of green
to eternal sparks of crimson red.

Yet everyday I travel
through an almost forgotten world
boards on the eyes of old histories
scars in the ground where man once lived.

I carefully drive in the safety of my tank
eyeing to old military jargons
through a periscope and night vision goggles
slowly a spectator more than a fighter.

Little is left of what hopes had been made
castles of clapboards and found blocks of mountains
they echo of lives left vacant in the midst of sadness
I have visions of DMZs on the late news shows.

A futuristic landscape of apocalyptic films
surrealistic images truer than harrowing nightmares
it is the place I call home
my land, my living DMZ.

Shadow of a Vision

Sitting on the corner, made of limbs strong and square,
the stranger lives, unmoved, permanent fixture there.

Head bowed, eyes closed, ears open, looking straight,
untouched by the passers-by who push him ceaselessly.

Dressed in newest shoes, socks immaculate,
felt hat, and gentle silk shirt, it is hot today.

He prays, silently, heard only of the secret one,
still, unwilling to utter syllable, keeping a heart in check.

Ghost in the machine, his hopes are high and fair,
yet he makes not a move forward, takes not a step.

No one seems aware of him, all always see him,
sitting on the milk crate blue, shell of Wall Street.

An entity most times, a real man but a few hours,
unknown, unwilling, he remains without a friend.

Yet he is, yet he plays his part, even smells and grunts;
at home he sleeps, warm and safe, and well alone.

The Shell

Tapping on the leathery pouch I echo
wondering what happened to the contents
of this second-hand shell.

I imagine the foundation of the old mansion
crannied to its core after the earthquake
an old cask empty of its many treasures.

It resembles the abandoned citadel next door
left to die by the ancient tenants
hidden among the overgrowth of dead hearts.

In the faded mirror of the dilapidated hall
just a halo marks the outline of a former self
and no one knows there once was a smile.

From the Editor:

We hope that readers receive In Parentheses as a medium through which the evolution of human thought can be appreciated, nurtured and precipitated. It will present a dynamo of artistic expression, journalism, informal analysis of our daily world, entertainment of ideas considered lofty and criticism of today’s popular culture. The featured content does not follow any specific ideology except for that of intellectual expansion of the masses.

Founded in late 2011, In Parentheses prides itself upon analysis of the current condition of intelligence in the minds of these young people, and building a hypothesis for one looming question: what comes after Post-Modernism?

The idea for this magazine stems from a simple conversation regarding the aforementioned question, which drew out the need to identify our generation’s place in literary history.

To view the types of work we typically publish, preview or purchase our past issues.

Please join our community on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram at @inparenth.

In Parentheses Magazine (Volume 7, Issue 3) Winter 2022

By In Parentheses in IP Volume 7

32 pages, published 1/15/2022

The Winter 2022 issue of In Parentheses Literary Magazine. Published by In Parentheses (Volume 7, Issue32)
In Parentheses Magazine (Volume 6, Issue 3) Winter 2021

By In Parentheses in Volume 6

56 pages, published 1/15/2021

The WINTER 2021 issue of In Parentheses Literary Magazine. Published by In Parentheses (Volume 6, Issue 3)

%d bloggers like this: