Archive for Hydroxia

Fragments for the Griff

Posted in Hydroxia, love poems, Poetry with tags , on January 16, 2016 by Manuel Paul Arenas

Fragment #1

My hummingbird heart races in my chest, where you lay your ivory cheek

I take in the heady fragrance of your titian crown and respire slowly to slacken my pulse

As I look across the darkened room to the flickering light on an adjacent chair

I make note of this perfect moment and exhale a happy sigh

Fragment #2

I miss her hair, I miss her face

I miss her awkward gangling grace

I miss it all, but of all the misses

The thing I miss most are her fairy kisses

Fragment #3

I just want to set the world on fire

In tribute to  my love which smolders on a funeral pyre

Then I’ll fiddle and play as it burns away, with my congeries of untapped desires

I just want to set your heart on fire

With the ardor of my gambol and gyre

Fiddling out woe on my heart-strung bow, as the devil joins in on a lyre

This is a drawing I did back in 1991, which I call "Pelirroja con araña", or "Redhead with spider". Whenever I see it now, it reminds me of my friend Hydroxia.

This is a drawing I did back in 1991, which I call “Pelirroja con araña”, or “Redhead with spider”. Whenever I see it now, it reminds me of my friend Hydroxia.

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Goodbye 2015

Posted in 2015, Planet Poe, Year End Review with tags , , , , , on January 1, 2016 by Manuel Paul Arenas

2015 was an odd year for me. Some very big things came up, but never quite came to fruition as it were. Most of my accomplishments and failures revolved around my book, “Black Hymeneal”.

With the help and guidance of my good friend Michele Bledsoe, I put together the content and layout for the book, which I had been talking about making for twenty years or so. We arranged to have the fund raiser, through Indiegogo, but didn’t even come close to reaching our goal of $2,000. Now, we are changing our original plans and seeing how we can cut costs and use the money we do have. It will still be published, it just won’t be the hardcover art book I hoped it would be, and it may take longer than I’d hoped to get it done.

portrait

Michele Bledsoe’s portrait of me for the “Black Hymeneal” book cover.

Michele is looking into other options, even electronic, which might get us more distribution and still allow us to use our collected funds for a few books for the folks who contributed to the fundraiser. A new goal for 2016, I guess…

come hither.jpg

“Come hither, my little darkling…” one of the many great pics from the Black Hymeneal photo-shoot by Hydroxia.

Also associated with “Black Hymeneal” was when I asked my good friend Hydroxia to do a photo-shoot promoting the book. In our travels to find the appropriate props and costume for the shoot, we realized that we had a strong connection, which blossomed into a very promising relationship, which unfortunately went awry and eventually imploded. As fraught with drama and high emotion as it was, however,this proved to be the closest I have come to a real reciprocated love relationship. I acknowledge that my inexperience in such things, added to my social anxiety,  probably sparked my friend’s misgivings about the whole affair, which translated into her slowly but surely pushing me away until I couldn’t deal with it and hastily put an official end to everything; but I still feel that not all blame should fall on me, as she was a bit impatient with me and also did not follow through on many heavy proclamations she made at the start of things, which gave me expectations that I fret over (perhaps too much, admittedly) when not realized. Even so, there’s no use crying over spilled milk as they say. What’s done is done and if I had my druthers now, I would have forgone the failed romance to save the friendship. She is a smart, beautiful, talented, fun, young lady and I miss her terribly.

IMG_0782_resize

Me and Hydroxia at the Planet Poe show in May of 2015.

In my attempt to process what I was feeling, I tried to write some poetry about it. However, the memories hurt too much for me to get much done, so all I have are fragments of poem ideas which I shall share at the end of this post. The only good which I consider having come from this is that I have some great photos, some great memories, and now know what not to do or say to a prospective partner if and when I get another chance at love.

Part the Second

Drummer Geoff Chse’s cover art for the follow-up Dark Young album, “Part the Second”, featuring a Posada print.

2015 was also the year that my old band the Dark Young finally released the long-awaited follow-up to our 1994 debut album. It is composed of recordings made in several different countries over 20 plus years, and it sounds at home along side of the original album. I wish we could have had a reunion gig to promote it, but we all live in different states now and our saxophonist lives in India at the moment, so that wouldn’t be practical.

Last, but not least, 2015 was the year I joined the Planet Poe theatrical troupe, run by Robert X. Planet, and which specializes in dramatic recitals of various works by Edgar Allan Poe. I have done two shows so far, and have enjoyed it immensely. I love the work and my companions are wonderful people, from whom I have learned a lot about the art of acting. We have plans to do another show in the Spring, so keep an eye out for more news on that in the future.

A snapshot of me, in costume, with the skeleton prop from "The Oval Portrait", taken by fellow troupe member, Joy.

A snapshot of me, in costume, with the skeleton prop from “The Oval Portrait”, taken by fellow troupe member, Joy.

Anyway, I did not quite meet my goals for 2015, but I got close and learned a lot. Hopefully 2016 will prove to be the year I finally realize some of these dreams. I wish you all much joy and prosperity in 2016. See you all next year!

As promised, here are the fragments for Hydroxia:

https://mannysbookofshadows.wordpress.com/2016/01/16/fragments-for-the-griff/

 

The Greenwood Manse Poetry Cycle

Posted in Greenwood Manse Poetry Cycle, Poetry, vampire poetry, Weird Poetry, werewolf poetry, Women Wielding Words in the Alley, Words in the Alley with tags , , , , , , , , , on July 22, 2015 by Manuel Paul Arenas

Back in the 1990’s I wrote a couple of Gothic Horror poems about a family, over the span of a few generations, focusing on strong female characters and told from the point of view of an unnamed young woman in Victorian times. The name “Greenwood” is a reference to the street I used to live on in Seattle, and the manse is the place where all of the action in the cycle takes place. In “The Bed”, the young woman tells a tale of how she liked to stay at her grandmama’s house (the aforementioned manse) and sleep in the ebony posted bed of her great aunt Lucretia, who was haunted by a dead lover. In the sequel, “Luvian’s Pelt”, she tells the tale of her great uncle Luvian who is brought to his doom by his sorceress wife. There is a third poem telling a tale from when her grandmama was a girl, but it remains unfinished. Perhaps some day I shall complete it and create a chapbook featuring all three poems.

In October of 2014, my friend Hydroxia read the two completed poems at Women Wielding Words in the Alley. She looked lovely and did an awesome job. If and whenever I finish this last poem I hope to have her read it as well. For more on that event, see here:

https://mannysbookofshadows.wordpress.com/2014/10/09/women-wielding-words-in-the-alley-10-07-14/

For the poem “The Bed”, go here: https://mannysbookofshadows.wordpress.com/2015/07/22/the-bed/

For the poem “Luvian’s Pelt”, go here: https://mannysbookofshadows.wordpress.com/2015/07/22/luvians-pelt/

Black Hymeneal Photo Shoot

Posted in black humor, goth, gothic, photo shoot, portrait photography, promotion, skulls, voodoo with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 26, 2015 by Manuel Paul Arenas

On May 15th, I did a promotional photo shoot for my upcoming poetry collection, Black Hymeneal. I decided that I wanted to put a face to the book, which already has a Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/BlackHymeneal) and let people know what sort of project it is. I felt a bunch of fun photos with a Gothic twist would project the appropriate image for what I have in mind. I asked my friend Hydroxia to take the photos, since I had seen some work she had done in the Gothic vein and could see that she had an understanding of the aesthetic I was aiming for. Of course, I was correct in putting my faith in her talents because (as you see here) she really caught the essence of what I was trying to get across. She helped me find the right props for my surroundings and she also helped me with my look, which is very similar to what I used to wear in my Dark Young days, although the “guy-liner” was her idea (I must admit it does make my eyes stand out a bit more) and she helped me find the amazing robe I am wearing, which we located through Redhead Sadie Vintage:

Redhead Sadie Vintage business card

Redhead Sadie Vintage business card

We staged the shoot in the living room of my good friends Richard and Michele Bledsoe (authors of the children’s poetry book “The Secret Kingdom”); we drank some wine, took some pics, and had an all around fun evening. Here are some of my favorites:

Not sure exactly what this sphere is, but it makes me think of Pinhead's puzzle box.

Not sure exactly what this sphere is, but it makes me think of Pinhead’s puzzle box.

Effervescent crystal ball:

Effervescent crystal ball: “I see a bottle of sparkling Spanish Cava in your future!”

This one's got a voodoo vibe to it.

This one’s got a voodoo vibe to it.

Whispering swart nothings...

Whispering swart nothings…

Me in my colonial days

Me in my colonial days

Can I help you?

Can I help you?

Sepia tone pic of me in my new robe, wearing Richard Bledsoe's glasses. They look nice, but I couldn't see a damn thing through them--LOL!

Sepia tone pic of me in my new robe, wearing Richard Bledsoe’s glasses. They look nice, but I couldn’t see a damn thing through them–LOL!

I'm ready for my close-up, Mr. Bava

I’m ready for my close-up, Mr. Bava

My paranormal romance novel cover pose:

My paranormal romance novel cover pose: “Come hither, my darkling dear…”

Surprise! Note the bottom cuspids, which almost make me look a little lupine here.

Surprise! Note the bottom cuspids, which almost make me look a little lupine here.

Another paranormal romance cover pose: love the flowing locks and the inviting gesture.

Another paranormal romance cover pose: love the flowing locks and the inviting gesture.

Some behind the scenes shots:

Candle detail

Candle detail; I love the sparkly cobweb drapery: magical!

The set: how many skulls do you see in this picture?

The set: how many skulls do you see in this picture?

Table detail

Table detail

One of the many skulls on our set, replete with votive candle for that extra eerie look

One of the many skulls on our set, replete with votive candle for that extra eerie look

Michele feeds me grapes

Michele feeds me grapes