Reaping the Harvest

There was beauty here they’d say
the remains are black charred crows
because of that horrific day
nothing green dares to grow


corn stood tall and harvest ready
livestock munched on fresh-cut hay
our crops productive and steady
“each year better” the old folks’d say


 the earth moved alarming, concussed
no explanation for the disturbing din
rational farmers we never fussed
mouths and eyes wide agape, open


the air split with blood curdled screams
each second clicked death’s hand
no where to go, no place to flee
darkness moved over fertile land


pitch forks were all that we had
as blood flowed beneath our feet
we intended to make one last stand
“what Hell’s bane need we defeat?”


The threat rolled steadily forth
we bustled women, children and granny
futily we barred the door
hid love in nooks and crannies


Then something sucked out the air
we left with nothing to breathe
look at our foe we didn’t dare
our souls in mortified unbelief


coming, coming was all we knew
inexpressible feelings it caused
on knees “let this terror be through”
“Keep steady lad” I heard pa


Courage I gathered at the last
I stared down its fire filled eyes
bravely my legs would not let it pass
from its foul mouth flew about flies


It stripped me of my straw hat
mumbled words spoke in my head
“I’ll stop now I’m feeling quite fat
you’ll find hundreds are missing, more dead”


“Someone to clean up my mess
you boy are the one for the job
Go, you have passed today’s test”
bloody stench rose, his head bobbed


“I should be too,” I thought as I scoured
my world flipped inside, upside down
all that breathed had been devoured
friends colored prints in the ground


the green place that I’d known
had been watered red and died
nothing was left to atone
the sun on that day must have cried


There was beauty there they’d say
all I see are black charred rows
it was our harvest’s price dearly paid
nothing green dares to grow

~ Leslie Moon

© Copyright 2013 Leslie Moon. All Rights Reserved.


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About moondustwriter

Thank you for visiting Moondustwriter. In 2019, we have an exciting project. We are developing elementary curriculum for Ugandan children. As a writer, it is a thrill to help children who want to learn. Along with the curriculum, we hope to develop simple fictions about Uganda for the children to read at school. Trust me books are in short supply. We will use our trusted story tellers: a butterfly and a lion to make the stories come alive. Stay tuned as Bethany and Me put pen to paper. I've been part of the blogging community for more than 10 years. Some old timers may remember the award winning (2012 Twitter Shorty ) blog community - One Stop Poetry. I was the (quiet) originator of the idea and co-producer of One Stop Poetry. I am a published writer, poet, artist and photographer. I have written, as well as edited, for periodicals, radio, blogs and fellow writers. There are many facets to this moon - thanks for stopping by.

32 responses to “Reaping the Harvest”

  1. slpmartin says :

    A dark and intriguing tale within these lines.


  2. DMiller says :

    When autumn is so productive and colorful your poem creates a chilling contrast


  3. blazemcrob says :

    A dark poem indeed to usher in the beginning of October, Leslie. Amidst all that is good at harvest time, and all that starts out with so much peace and promise, you remind us that joy can be fleeting. Damned Dark, my friend. In the best of ways.



  4. Dan Dillard says :

    Reminds me a little of James Whitcomb Riley–The goblins will get you if you don’t watch out.
    It’s the kind of tale told by a great grandmother to her many kin on the front porch of an old farm house. Those are the best kind. And usually, those willies are served with hugs and cookies. 🙂


  5. ladysknight says :

    I love the imposing presence of a “monster” that is never given a face just smells, flies and a stolen hat…


  6. weshootcrime says :

    strong visuals – I see the photographer in you creating a horrific picture with your words


  7. knightsheart says :

    Horror in the corn
    Blood soaked roots in fields of death
    Lives flow like water
    Great poem of horror Leslie ! It sticks to you like blood


  8. Daemonwulf says :

    What a wonderfully dark and entertaining tome. Like the other demon, Dan, I to felt this read very much like a legend told ’round a cracklin’ campfire to spook the kiddies and adults alike. Very, very nice (in the sense that horrific is ‘nice’ *toothy grin*) imagery and quite the fulfilling read as usual. *poetic bow* *exit-stage-left smile*


    • moondustwriter says :

      Thanks DW – ya never know what bones will be tickled for the reader do you? As a story teller I’m not surprised it has that feel. It was inspired by an historic place that will never be quite as it was


  9. Tyr Kieran says :

    Wonderful yarn spun with beautifully dark lyrics,Leslie! I enjoy the fact that the monster is unseen and the hints that the grandfather has experienced this “Period of Recompense” before. Well done!


  10. Thomas Brown says :

    Hello Leslie,

    What an absorbing poem! I think the narrative aspect really draws the reader in. There is some gripping imagery that fired my imagination, especially the black charred crows and the mouth full of flies. And seasonal, too – what’s not to love?!


  11. Joseph Pinto says :

    What darkness you have woven within the lines of REAPING THE HARVEST, Leslie, what sinister presence you have infused into your rhymes! Post by post, you seem to shed more of your earthly skin as you plummet deeper into the depths of your own Damned self! 😉

    I loved this, Leslie. Every element of your prose meshed. A truly fitting way to kick off the ghoulish month of October!


  12. Nina D'Arcangela says :

    A deliciously dark and dismal poem, Leslie – in all the perfect ways! Very, very nicely done, sweet poet! 😉


  13. zkullis says :

    I don’t know why I am only reading this now, but it is one hell of a poem!
    GREAT stuff


  14. Hunter Shea says :

    I swear, all of you are making me like poetry! That was something I thought would never happen. Fantastic work!


  15. Lori Joyce Parker says :

    Nice! Creepy like “The Raven”.


Trackbacks / Pingbacks

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