Life

by Ben Shapiro 
My life is weird and wondrous 

An amazing amalgamation of

Extraordinary experience

Artistic aspiration and

Fulfilling friendship. 

Whene’er I expire

Leaving lovely life,

Departing in death

I will whisper,

“‘Twas terrific, ”

And from there, fade.

Sisyphean Dreams

By Benjamin Shapiro 

Sisyphean Dream

Cinereal stone spins, 
Pushed upward by 
Labor-hardened hands.
Retribution 
Demanded by deities.
For trickery,
They say.
For loving life,
I say.
Tyrannical titans,
Sitting sternly, silently,
In judgement of
The Crimes
Of their own
Creation.
Hades, hardened to
Man’s plight
Came to me.
To take me
From my immortal Merope,
Cherished sprite
That I so loved.
She, most beauteous of her sisters.
The truth belonged to her alone,
The rest received my rascality.
For her, my magnanimous muse,
I would deceive death.
And thus, I did.
Hades, hard-hearted,
Head-harder.
Handcuffs held happily
heaved a heady huff.
Shackles, seldom seen,
Supply strategy to supple synapses.
Curiosity culled from crumbs,
Feigned for fatuous Phantom,
Daft deity dares not deny demonstration.
Fool fettered.
World
Devoid of death.
Goodbye grief,
No more mourning.
All men immortal,
All-new gods.
Pedestal dwellers
Go unworshipped,
Sacrifices won’t wither.
Only old deities die,
Along with old systems.
Men, formerly fodder,
Become Father.
Zeus zealously objects.
Phantoms and Furies
Descend decisively.
Kingdom’s uppance come.
Hades, hubritic,
Deals death,
Strokes his scythe.
Sisyphus, me, shackled.
Styx’s still-
Waters await.
Merope, mine.
Dear defender.
Pleads as only Pleiades can.
God’s, unhearing in their anger,
Banish bright Merope’s
Once luminous star
To dark, dim domains.
Punishment for both
Her and I.
Dear divine muse,
I deceived death
To join you in immortality.
Now we shall be ever, eternally,
Apart.
This boulder I bear
Is of nothing
To that burden.
Persecuted and prosecuted,
Tried and tortured,
The verdict was their victory,
The pride was in their punishment.
Bound to a boulder,
As attached to it as
I adhered to life.
Pushing, pulling,
Never ceasing.
No summit in sight.
I push on,
Through centuries of struggle,
Both mine and mankind’s.
Watching while
Kingdoms come and crumble.
Proceeding upwards,
Faltering, then falling
Both boulder
And man.

To The Stranger Crying Next to Me in Traffic 

By Benjamin Shapiro
The world doesn’t end with heartbreak, 

Though it becomes more dim, 

Just like an ocean can’t fit in a lake, 

Emotions tend to burst brims

And overflow, out of control 

When jabbed with bad intent,

Take a deep breath, with punches roll,

And soon the hurt will be spent. 

Don’t force a smile to cover your scars 

Don’t push yourself too soon and too far

Move slow, accept the pain,

Sun’s always brightest after the rain.

Existence Caught Up

Sometimes existence catches up, 

No matter how fast you run

No matter how you look up

Or ignore it with fun 

And existence is ugly, an empty hole,

If you look too deep

It takes a toll.

Existence will keep

Taunting you

Haunting your

Every step 

Until there is 

Nothing left.

Rules for Life

Rules for life:

By Benjamin Shapiro 

– never hate anyone; hatred gives a toxic person space in your soul better left for positive people. 
– Don’t create drama where otherwise none would exist. 
– feed your friends good food; accept good food from friends. 
– allow yourself to feel what you’re feeling. Faking happiness doesn’t lead to happiness, it just buries realness between a false smile. 
– Don’t seek to be offended unless you want to succeed in being offended. 
– there’s always someone suffering more than you, find them and help them. 
– go outside, it’s beautiful out there.

Mother’s Day

By Benjamin Shapiro
Magic healer of scraped knees 

On this bless’d day may you be

The happiest you’ve ever been,

Heav’n’s angel e’er seen,

Encourager of childhood play

Relish this, your Mother’s Day.

Dreams in Flight 

By Benjamin Shapiro
Spread your wings and take flight,

Though your heart is full of fright, 

For your dreams are up there

Floating in midair,

Grab them with strong hand,

They may sift through like sand, 

But as long as one grain

On your palm remains,

Then hope will stay 

And you shall win the day

The Drunk 

By Benjamin Shapiro

I sit across from her

Distracted by the crowd

She talks as I look around

The restaurant is loud

At the bar he sits

Inside, drinking his beer

Guzzling more like 

Giving phantom cheers

Head is nodding

Order another

Perhaps mourning

A lost brother 

Or just sits there

Everyday

Wond’ring how

Things got this way

Barkeep avoids

Smile is fake

Hates the drunk

But money takes

He tips well

Money goes

Helps make

Liquor flow

Reminds me

Of days past

Days of living

Way too fast

Time wasted

Can’t be retrieved

Stories forgotten

Scars received

New beer 

Old glass

Head down

Prayer at mass

Wife talks

But I don’t hear her

Watching that drunk 

Through a mirror.