Ballad of The Black Hound Of Depression

Along life’s bumpy dirt-covered road there’s an animal you ought to know well, he’s wrought with terror, and born from thunder, during the howling winds of hell. His eyes have a ruby red glow, his coat is slick and fine. He’s called the black hound of depression, or so some people say, and no amount of medication can scare the black hound away. It would mean your demise, so please people be wise, do not allow the black hound inside your mind. On some windy night you’ll awake with a fright and onto the city bridge you’ll find.
Leaping to your death, you think, is the only escape to keep the hell-hound at bay. Downward you’ll plunge into the great abyss, giving the water below a sapphire kiss.
Your mind’s videotape spins it’s last reel, the final frame will show the black dog, still nipping at your heels. ~ Poet Stoker



Winter in Nova Scotia


It’s funny sometimes, how one thought can lead to another, and before you know it, you have an entire novella, nearly. When September came to my small Canadian town it brought with it feelings of melancholy, and fear. I was an only child, a mere boy of ten, yet I could not help noticing that the sweet-breezes which once whipped across my sweaty-brow in mid summer were now beginning to feel cold against my young skin. It made the little white hairs on my youthful arms involuntarily stand at attention. I hated that. Yes, my favorite season, summer, was losing the battle to keep us tucked away in it’s velvety comfort zone of warm weather. Slowly the kaleidoscope of colors in nature’s pallet, specifically the beautiful green surroundings, began to fade and die—transitioning into a manure-colored brown. For some of us, along With the arrival of Autumn, there suddenly came forth a depression like no other.
Just thinking of it filled our minds and bodies with internal-goosebumps, and crying spells for no obvious reason. Perhaps brought forth by frozen memories of winters past. Our sleep too, began to get restless and our hearts sank low as we gazed out of our front window at breakfast and saw the first sign of morning frost on our once carefully manicured lawn. A warning sign that, in a few short days, we’d be reluctantly returning to that awful dreaded place called school. And that depressing thought was followed by another reminder about the months ahead, that there would soon be another dreaded word, called snow. Snow gives me a case of the “heeby-jeebys. Those big ‘ol dark clouds coming over the horizon—resemble a pack of hungry wolves. This thought caused me to remember one of my grandfather’s god awful phrases “The Dead Of Winter.” It seemed to me, in my young mind, that summer should also have a phrase such as that, seeing as Summer is “dead in the water” most seasons. It’s my favorite time of the year but it’s over before it begins—at least it seemed that way to me, at ten.
Summer is short by design and winter is hellish long. Winter is a season which seems to have all the powers of Hell at it’s command—except for the heat.
Wintertime also meant bed-time came much too early. And with the help of the grandfather clock in the kitchen, winter turned day into night even before we’d had our supper. Darkness was upon us. And if a blizzard came, and it was bad enough, it could lay to waste everything in it’s path. Ten feet tall snow drifts made streets impassable. Once, a particular snow storm, named “White Juan” turned my entire city into a war zone. It was surreal. It was like we humans were suddenly forced to play movie roles, starring in some primitive and Darwinian spectacle where everyone had to fight for survival. There was no electric, so therefore there was no heat nor any hot water. No lights, no TV, It was like death. I hate winter.

~ Poet Stoker

Lost My Virginity in the Summer Of ’78


Nineteen and thin, a sexual beast, her skin was a feast of coffee-mocha brown; the poor boy was lean and not quite sixteen as she spun his head around. It was an awkward approach, but she sparked-up a roach as they revved-up her burgundy car—drove around for a while, too nervous to smile, as the tape-deck played Hendrix guitar. Parked by the lake, it was no mistake when she killed-off her front headlight beams. It was late at night but he’d put up no fight, as she slowly unbuttoned her jeans. The leaves rustling in trees, mixed with their love moans on the breeze, seemed to echo in nearby streams. ~ Poet Stoker