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The Dark Verses of Richard Bell

Richard Bell


I LOVE DARKNESS – in novels, films and television. I never knew how much I could love dark poetry, until I discovered the work of writer Richard Bell.

Bell has been writing for over ten years, including flash fiction, but focuses heavily on poetry – dark poetry full of the macabre and creepy. He has had his work featured in several anthologies and websites, and I am pleased to be featuring two of his poems here.

So, lower the lights, turn off the TV, and get caught up in the world of Richard Bell.

Subtleties of Spirit Sounds

Call unto the never end and never shall it be
Call unto the graven stones awash with pitted grief
Susurrate a tone below the cochlea sea foam
They scream inside their silence
Once departed from the bones

Call to cameos of life
Remembered as a dream
Call to their recorded trek
The dead discerned as steam
Breath that glides electric chills
On curdled starlit wings
Carried from the there to here
By dark before dawn sings

Call unto the candle dance
By those attuned to loss
Call unto the brittle air
By those who’ve been across
The Bell, the Lamp, the Likeness Spell
For those come forth to talk
The linking skin feel hope within
Where highways meet and fork

Call to those gone much too soon
Beloved, wrenched out hearts
Call to hints, reminded glimpse
In states and worlds apart
Plunge in pools of ectoplasm
Teeming with our prayers
Submerged in swirling liquid dirge
Yet breathed as light as air

Call to shining spheres of them
In warmth devoid of pain
Unbridled joy, they cry “Ahoy!”
And be with us again.



The Ouija Tablet.

“Daddy, wake up, he wants to speak
I can’t shut down until he’s talked to you
A voice in the darkness, my screen has gone blank
Help me! I just don’t know
what I should do.”

He grumbled and coughed, sat up in bed
Looked at the clock in bleary dismay
His shift would begin in less than four hours
Yet another grim fourteen hour day

“Why are you not asleep in your bed?
I told you no games to be played after ten
Who wants to talk to me? What does he want?”
“Daddy, the man with the red eyes again.”

She handed him over her tablet with caution
He tapped twice on the blank screen yet to discover
The darkness stared back, but a much deeper blackness
Then slowly two terrible eyes were uncovered

A dread that he’d known only once in his life
Passed over his soul with awful despair
Knocking at death’s door in the heat of a battle
He swore that he saw them above in the air

“I am brought forth from behind the child’s mirror
What strangeness is this realm that keeps me from yours?
One soul awakened me
one soul I shall claim
The spirit board’s power hath opened hell’s door.”

He laughed at the horror then noticed the address
‘Virtual Ouija’ in brittle red script
The lump in his throat hit his gut like a gunshot
He needed to barter her clean soul for his

“I will bequeath my life force for her gentle soul
If that will appease the one I now address?
She could not know of the danger, in innocence
Attraction to floundering fish in distress.”

The tablet screen flashed and it fell to the floor
Spinning three times to counter the clock
“Daddy, he’s gone!” She smiled in relief
Then cold breath descended and all lights went off

From shallow and panicked to deep with relief
A breath on the pillow and he was asleep

“Daddy, he wants what is rightfully his
You are the sacrifice, you made the bargain.”
The little voice growled through a stirrup pump rasp
The screen of the tablet it burst into flames

He grabbed the girl and ran into her room
Blocking the door with a table and chair
She was asleep the whole time as her eyes rolled
Something was making its way up the stairs

The flickering lights saw a shape at the door
Three giant raps on it followed by hush
She fell to the floor laughing hysterically
He shouted “Begone!” in an adrenaline rush

“I have crossed over the spirit division
Called to this realm through thy looking glass board
Surrender your shine that escapes with the last breath
Fall with dark angels beyond rule of law
Bleed until pain is thy boatswain’s command
The serpent’s tooth sharpness of obscenity
Rivers of death thick with black sails, emblazoned
Bound for the gates of the kingdom
Of He.”

He picked up the child and put her to bed
As silence duped hope that the sound dissipated
The door split in two with a terrible crack
And breathed as he breathed and waited and waited…
And waited…

Then darkness with nothing from modern design
No lights and no motors just sibilant hiss
Into his left ear a little voice uttered
“Will you take the summoner’s place with a wish.”

“If I make the trade she’ll be spared, you will swear
and I will breathe hell’s stench ladened air?”

Morning it broke like an egg
in the pan
She heard her tablet say ‘message for you’
The eye of the planchette grew large in the screen
Her father appeared but not one she knew

He grinned and he pointed just off to her right
She turned with dread to face the foul demon
The tablet claimed two souls in one awful night
Transported to realms beyond natural seasons

Message for you from the Ouija Board Tablet
Click it to contact someone you once knew
Ask as the planchette sweeps over old letters

Beware the dark forces that are out to trick you.


Find more about Richard Bell:


Twitter: @rick_nightmare


A big thanks to Richard Bell for allowing me to share his work.


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