Saturday, January 28, 2012

Blasphemous Collaborative Haiku

This was a group haiku project I participated in a while back. I wrote the first and last haiku. The second, third, and fourth were written by Ella Jeffery, Laura Praytor, & Teresa Banko respectively. What I found fascinating about this project was that it honestly felt like I wrote the entire series, that it gelled together as a fairly cohesive piece; I suppose we must have all had a solid, twisted mind link the day we wrote this. I saw Laura at school this past week and got the "OK" from her to post this, but I'm sure Ella or Tess won't mind. If either of you ladies happen to come across this page at some point, well leave me a comment or something!

castrated in church
prayers melt into screams that sing
pews are rotten teeth

stained glass windows stained
catching sunlight in their mouths
hymns swallowed by dark

mess of writhing limbs
on an altar of quicksand
biting and aching

dark sullen angel
gargoyle baring bloodied claw
christ crucified hangs

serpent semen drips
come all ye faithful black dogs
the new flesh is nigh

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Bloom (Late)

Here's a (very) short little oddity of a poem. Upon re-reading this, it certainly comes off a little creepier than intended. Oh well...I still like the way some of the words work here. Just remember, kids: the writing does not always necessarily reflect the writer...ha!

or, "the hell of a delayed libido"

lust came tardy to the party
las chicas were never knocking
though plenty mentally stalking

the passion of rubbers
is for sex said me
(not peter murphy)

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Untitled Short #2

As promised, here's the other Fénéon-inspired short. This one may be a tad more risqué...haha. Oh well. I've never been one to turn up my nose at pushing buttons.
Also, I think I've enabled comments so that anyone can leave one (not just members or whatever). So please feel free to leave your thoughts on any of the previous posts, or those that will come in the future.

Here's the short:

Sweet Miss Lily Brown of Derry, New Hampshire, is a bashful girl just shy of nine years. Never been kissed under the bleachers. Nevertheless, D. Hess, 40, felt that the grass on her field hollered “Play Ball!” Violated the virgin violet. Little Lily had the last laugh. Vagina dentata.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

New Short Published on Linguistic Erosion

The online magazine Linguistic Erosion just published one of my shorts yesterday. The title is "Instruction for Class." Check it out here:

This particular piece is part of a questionable series of "instructions." The instruction aspect is the only thing they have in common (and even that is arguable), so they realistically make a lot more sense when read separately. You will see those published elsewhere in a few months, so I'll put up the links to those sites when the time comes.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Untitled Short #1

     For those who have not read Félix Fénéon's Novels in Three Lines, it is certainly worth a look if you want to see into the twisted/brilliant mind of a French anarchist and read his versions of "true stories of murder, mayhem, and everyday life." For a class, we were instructed to write a couple of shorts influenced by the ones that Fénéon had written and published anonymously in a newspaper. It's sort of amazing how ridiculous a great deal of these news blurbs (for lack of a better description) were; the pieces I wrote are honestly not that much crazier than the real ones. Okay, granted, mine stretch the limits of reality just a bit, but there are more than a few in the book that are difficult to grasp on a similar level. Félix Fénéon's flippant, calculated humor is what makes the horrible so popcorn-friendly. 
     Here's the first of mine...I'll post the second one later this week.

Señor Miguel Montoya Márquez, of Yreka, was vacationing in Bangladesh when he was bitten and molested by a wanton rhesus monkey. Though Márquez showed no immediate symptoms, he eventually developed the dreaded Banana Fetish, soon abandoning his wife and children.
In times of personal crisis, always blame the simian.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

The Pane of Duality

This poem was originally published in a journal called Synesthesia. After I wrote this, I felt it deserved to be developed into a short story, which is currently being submitted to other journals/blogs.


is it the frosted windows that terrify me, or the simple fact that i cannot recognize myself
in their reflections, so pale and wispy
they remind me, days later, that i am still being followed
i spied the grotesque villain across the barren street tonight
jaundiced jowls so sick with ire, eyes so tainted with the failings of nature
yet, though i squinted, i could not discern a proper face within the hooded presence
i walked briskly until my legs were taffy, and he remained creeping in the corner of each eye
     {seductive thoughts birth a new image aphasia
      is this flesh vital and real--should the layers be grated away to reveal the sinews beneath?
      this beast betrays my very self
      can it even be called confusion when the truth is so clear?
      is it still a vampire when it does not subsist on blood?
      is poison known by another name when it nourishes the body like a rare fruit?
      the pasty face of death is just make-up,
      a low-budget special effect deserving of proper lighting for full effect
      identity is shaped by forgery, nurtured by deception
      my name is called (my name is not) the name i knew}
at the carnival i bend and blend, the tilt-a-whirl dizzies my reason
whispers behind me, a dark mind dead ahead, inevitable fate hanging askew nearby,
honesty sheds its costume and i should have known
all along that which gestated within me was not sick or fantastical
my adversary descended from carbon; a birth name ripened into simulacrum
what once was hatched was soon ignored and locked away in secrecy
("the more you ignore me, the closer i get")
cotton candy colors bring swirling insanity
i dash into the funhouse, somehow comforted by this intent pursuit
fate leads me to the house of mirrors
the clown mask tossed aside, the ugly visage revealed
i'm staring back at my infinite self--
not through a window, nor a mirror, nor a pool of water
not a different age, nor a twin, nor an illusion
the doppelganger bellows with triumphant laughter
in his fist he clutches a certificate of authenticity
two exist on the same plane, but this town was only built for one
it is still me (the other me)--which one wins?

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Bad Mother

This one is basically a companion story to "Wag Alone", in case anyone was wondering why poor Max met the fate that he did.


     I'm coming, Maxie-boy.

     Maria's 1985 Yugo zipped amongst the winding mountains at just past 2AM. The road (hell, the whole world) belonged only to her; her parents were worm food and her only human friend fast asleep back in Solvang. Driving 10 MPH over the limit, operating on a younger woman's sleeping habits, the soothing sounds of smooth-fucking-jazz on the stereo, Maria never even felt the curve that did her in. The flight was about as graceful as a grade school ballet recital. Did she ever hit bottom? And in how many pieces?

     I'm not coming anymore, Maxie-boy.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Wag Alone

My first fiction post here will be one of my personal favorite shorts from the past few months. Any other dog lovers out there will understand that this was very tough for me to write, but also very cleansing to be able to create something out of these paranoid fears.


     His final true excrement consisted of strands of grass, strings from a rope bone, and a baby carrot, all of which were promptly re-eaten. The future looked grim for dear Max; his human was way damned late this time. The next few days: a drinking binge from the toilet, a spiteful bout of Hershey Squirts on the couch, magically removing his leather collar for a tasty treat, howling for the non-existent neighbors. Max's spirit weakened each morning; the meat on his leg, buried deep beneath the coarse fur, grew more appetizing. Unfortunately, Max was all out of gravy. 

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Let the Day Begin

Greetings all ye who seek absurdity. Welcome to Subvertbia. This is meant to be a space that will (eventually) focus on spreading my mad gospel via fiction and poetry. My name is Chad Stroup and I am an MFA Creative Writing student at San Diego State University trying to stay sane through excretion of words.

Here's what to expect/the rules of the game/the law of the blog/etc.:

-Most of what you will read here will be on the shorter side, as I typically have my longer pieces making the submission rounds, though there will likely be some longer tales featured from time to time.

-The content will often (though not exclusively) be focused on the darker side of fiction. This includes horror, black humor, and (very often) a strange combination of the two. I have a deep respect for horror; it's been ingrained within me since I was a small child (thanks Mom). I hope to occasionally take the genre to new uncharted territories. But I also don't limit myself to labels—I enjoy surprising myself both within and outside of the genres I prefer to maneuver through.
-Some of my favorite writers include Clive Barker, Joe R. Lansdale, H.P. Lovecraft, David Cronenberg (sure, he's predominantly known as a director, but he has also written most of his films), Anthony Burgess, Sam Kieth (why does it irk me so much that guys like Kieth and Barker are so infinitely gifted in more than one medium?), Rex Miller, and David Wong/Jason Pargin. If you like any or all of these writers, you are almost guaranteed to find their influence tapping into my stories at any given time.

-I may branch out to write about music and/or film at some point since those are two huge passions of mine, but we'll see where that goes. I may also spew out some creative non-fiction at some point. However, little (if any) writing about my personal life will appear. I don't think that contradicts the idea of “non-fiction.” This is not meant to be a Livejournal or whatever the kids are publicly embarrassing themselves with these days. Merely creative expression with open possibilities.

-At some point I will likely feature pieces from other writers that I feel gel well with what I'm trying to represent in this blog. Please note: these writers will be 100% sought out by me, NOT by unsolicited submissions. Sorry, but I simply don't have the time to deal with that at this point in my life (maybe someday...but not for quite a while, if ever. Got it?). Obviously, I sympathize with the other struggling writers out there trying to make a name for themselves, but I am a full-time student, full-time working stiff, have a wife and two furry, barking children, and need to fit in time for my record collecting/listening/obsessing and horror film viewings. Sleep? What the hell is that?

So, without further ado...
“Let the day begin, let the horror start...”