By John Lars Zwerenz


I have decided to publish this final volume of my verse in this life freely and without any cost to its readers, students, young people, all others, poetry lovers and the like. You all have plenty enough to pay for in this world. I believe my vocation as a poet was chosen for me by God to serve my fellow man out of a spirit of humble service to the common good. May God love you all and bless each and every one of you.

John Lars Zwerenz, June, 2021

This Book is Reverently Dedicated To Mary, The Immaculate Mother of God


Moaning reverberates within the halls;
Candles flicker eerily on cold, stone walls.
Behind an old bookshelf souls do plea
Where they are engraved
To be set free.
Yet no one shall be saved
Within these castellated towers
Nor shall they behold the florid, golden bowers
Of the merciful sun -
No - no one.

For within one chamber a piano plays;
Its keys are caressed by ghostly fingers
In the ancient parlor where a melody lingers,
A nebulous hymn of stony grays
Floating on the air to the window’s veil.
The musician, once lovely, is now deathly pale.

Why does it seek me, this concerto of gloom
Which fades on the glades beneath the room?
Who is this wraith who wears the face
Of the wife I knew in a happier time
When I would weave my sunlit rhyme
So very very long ago
In the bright, sweet boons of a summery place?
I am haunted by the tune she plays with grace
Now, as then,
Dying on the dales below
On the reedy, dismal glen
Through the dreadful, dark haze of the half opened window….


I often have this strange and poignant dream
Of a lady fair who is sweet and dear;
A beautiful maiden of yesteryear,
She kneels with reverence beside a stream.

And then in the night she comes to me,
In the moonlit mountains, tender, of the spring,
Which inspire songbirds in the trees to sing,
In a minor tone, near the fountains by the sea.


I ventured out beneath the pale
Oceanic sky in the summery heat;
My thoughts were of my lover, soft, discreet,
When I found her dreaming on a rosy dale.

Her eyes were dark and of ancient lore;
They shimmered like diamonds in the gilded lights,
And beamed like streams from angelic nights,
From that lovely Carolingian gaze she bore.


On soft, autumn evenings, I shall wander
Beyond the old village to the yellow plains,
To the lush, green hillsides over yonder;
I shall drink from paradise mystic rains.

And when the moonlight glitters on the trees
I shall pray to Mary upon the grass
There by her shrine, seen only by the breeze,
As clouds in the sunset serenely pass.


How I did grieve
When my lover did leave…
Why? - She did not say…
She faded into the nebulous mist
Of our final, shaded, silhouetted tryst
One cold and wintry, December day.

Beneath a lantern aglow,
I watched her go
Into the dusky gray
Walking away
On the still and ivory moonlit snow.

Now I weep, not knowing
A tear does always grace my eye.

(The wind keeps blowing,
Low and high.)

Of all of life’s sorrow
The worst is to die
To the joys of yesterday, now and tomorrow
Never knowing why
My heart has all this sorrow….


In a hushed lament, in December I go
Beneath bare boughs in the wild air
Which swirls in torrents, everywhere,
As I wander like a wayward leaf in the snow.

Meanwhile the wind weeps dolefully
In the languid dusk of the winter chill
Forming ivory wreaths on the pearl white hill
Speaking your name - to torture me.


I ventured out in the dew at dawn,
To the florid countryside,
Walking on an emerald lawn,
Dreaming of a youthful bride.

There brooks of blue,
Lit by the sun,
Ran flowing through
Gardens and glades.
One by one,
In the scented boon
Of amaranthine shades,
I discovered at noon
And did behold
Forested promenades
And gilded glades of splendid gold.

Then I came upon a marble square,
Where a princess roved, with sable hair;
(She was dressed in an ancient, lovely style.)
There were rhapsodies in her diamond eyes,
And moonbeams in her silver smile.

Then the rays of the amber sunlight,
Ascended with a redolent breeze,
As our impassioned sighs
Reached their flowery height
In the canticles of the turquoise skies,
In the sacred cello of our ecstasies.


The grasses swayed
Not far from the sea
As a piano played
In a maiden’s lonely Victorian room.

A mist did settle amid the gloom
In the cryptic bower
Devoid of any flower
Beneath her purple, curtained window.

Then, massive, high and low,
A baleful fog did slowly caress
Her castle’s gray and teeming wall.
And in a profound and dark distress
The fair maiden paced
Down the long hall.

She was clad in a long, white, glittering dress,
With hanging, Patrician, ruffled sleeves.
Where orphic voices the wind bequeaths
In shades and shadows of the barren wood,
Amber, fallen leaves
Formed round, deathly wreaths
Beneath dead boughs where the linden trees stood.

She wept against the old, stone wall
For her long lost lover,
There in the hall
Where a demon leers,
Where cold and unlit chandeliers
Speaks of only death when dead stars hover;

Then suddenly she heard the tune in her cell;
It sailed like a ghost -
A melodic, dreary host,
Casting upon her a dreadful spell;
As it filled the slender corridor,
It instilled in her a terror
She never knew before.

And the nascent night arose
Outside of all time
And the stars that were dead
Howled behind the clouds with grief and dread.
Then the dusk did close
Yet the moon did shine
Upon the figure in her haunted room
Who played that grisly, malevolent air
Which brought horror to her heart,
And to her soul complete despair.
For she beheld a man who from life did depart,
A wraith her eyes could only abhor:
Her long lost lover - alive once more.
Then he spoke as his gaze renewed his spell;
And the pale half moon
Arriving too soon
Enlightened his face as an angelus did knell:
“Welcome my dear - to the nethermost hell!”


In the clouded, dusky afternoon
As you hear the clang of a swaying bell
The rising ring of its dreadful knell
Ascends to the dreary, lifeless moon.
As cryptic winds through dead boughs pass
Below one tombstone's familiar name
Another soul the demons claim
Beneath grim reeds and yellow grass.
And when dawn arrives with miasmic dew
Upon the wanton meadow and its horrid grave
A being there moans, too late to save -
None other than the likes of you!


In the still, sanguine peak
Of an Autumn sunset
When russet and meek
Wilting reeds are wet,
Cold, silver stars of the nascent night
Gleam upon the graves
Like the glitter of billowy, cryptic waves.

Now and then, here and there,
Black bats dart
In the thick, dead air;
With their burial shrouds gleaming bright,
Phantoms depart
From their caskets in the night.

Assembling in a misty mass,
They pace upon the amber grass,
Passing beneath the decaying oak trees,
Its dead and cryptic barren boughs,
In the cradle of the haunting breeze,
Out of sight,
Delivered from their purgative plight
At this time which God allows.

Yet one dark being was left behind,
Despairing in his tortured mind
Over dire crimes which he committed.
The bats around him cursed as they flitted.

And in an insatiable, feral, horrid state
Of infernal gluttony
Where it is far too late,
(Where Satan swallows damned men whole)
Where one can not escape the fiery sea,
Those ghosts threw into the deepest hell
As the devil’s laughing bells did knell
One wicked, hopeless, empty soul -
None other than the likes of me!


She passes through a courtyard's gate
Amid a throng of crimson shades
Shrouded in her mysterious state,
Pacing upon the barren glades.
And every stone on which she does tread
Beneath the solitary moon, wintry and round
Emits beneath her vacant gazes
A dreamy sort of silent sound.
For in the eye of my my mind she still amazes
With a loathsome and fearful, fiery dread.
And my heart she emblazes -
Although she is dead.


Dews on wilted petals, ephemeral hopes which die
Wrap around frozen trees, as white, thorny briars;
In the miasmic air
In the moonlit square
A fountain, forgotten, does lament and cry
And starlessly expires.

Next to the dreadful, solitary park
A breeze blows forsaken, ominous and dark,
Consuming the night, and its prescient fires.

Two dead figures raised from below
Wander on the glades, the dales and the wheat;
One wraith asks the other in the still of the snow:
"Does your heart still beat
To my heart's beating?" - "No."
They walked among reeds and grasses that were dead.
And they passed as ghastly spouses, no longer entwined,
As their forms were cloaked by mists, nebulous, unkind.
And the night alone heard the words they said.


When the nascent moon descends over the old, stone towers

Of your castle on the hillside, beyond the emerald glades

A breeze carries the hymn of your name as it softly serenades

The stream that rushes by me where I stand among the bowers.

I will grant you roses from the sea and its scarlet bays,
And as a lover's fragrant, eternal souvenir,

Their perfumes shall embrace you, my only love, my dear,

And heaven I will show you, in timeless, mystic ways.


A rosy faced charwoman knelt down to scrub
As I walked into a seaside, ancient, English pub
Where sailors sat around mahogany tables
Drinking brownish ale, and telling Saxon fables;

The scent of mignonette mixed with thyme
Descended from holly and mistletoe.
As I reclined in a booth weaving my ryhme,
I dreamt of a square where a stream did flow.

And in the beer scented thick of the drunken din,
I saw a princess with flowers in her hand
Kneel beside a shrine, as sunlight graced the land.
And lo and behold, that same sun shone in
And touched the sailors’ heads and hearts
With Mary’s love and Cupid’s darts.


One lone tree in the corner of the graveyard
Seemed in the deep, pale, solemn night
Not to share in nature’s natural light.
Its bark was black, forbidding and hard.

Its barren boughs wavered in the wind which grieves
Silently, thick, morose and dour;
And for some
The dreaded, solemn withches’ hour
Had come
Arriving like a ghost in its dark, dead leaves.

And then without warning,
That hour with its tree swallowed me whole,
Into a base of rotten wood.
And as the clouded day was dawning
With hatred it stole
Every fragment of my soul
As much as its clutching branches could.


As I remember it was the spring,
And every creeping rustling
Of each long veil which cloaked my window
Swayed like a ghost, to and fro.

A bat did flutter in the light
Of the clouded, dead moon which hid the night
From any semblence of anything bright.
And as a fire grows from flame to flame -
Sudennly in the horrible wind
In the morbid moan of a tamarind
I heard HER name….

The bride I killed one autumn day
When her fair, white back was turned away,
And now I live within a room,
Forever gone from the outer world
Where eternal terror is unfurled -
Sleeping in her horrid tomb!


I sailed long enough upon the ocean,
Too bitter to sip, the brine was always cold.
I witnessed my ship descend in the old,
Fierce Atlantic, with a desperate emotion.

In two days time
I awoke on the English shore
Not knowing how I survived the wreck.
And of my mates
From the baleful and torrid, grim effect
Of the billows’ violent crime
There remained no more.

I began a course eastward on a splendid steed
Traveling over hills and glades and roads.
I was guided by my orphic dreams
Where holly green hills met purple abodes,
Where many rustic, azure streams
Seemed to befriend me
As they gratefully did lead
My horse and me from the baleful sea.

Suddenly it came to my stark awareness
That the ancient, English sun had met the night,
And my gelding quivered as the moon did rise
Over the carmine colored, British skies.

So having to harness
My horse in the moonlight,
I slept near Bath, in a piney wood.

Bats circled my psyche, and doing what I could,
I did not wait for dawn to ascend.
So beside a mound where the grasses did bend
Beneath the firmament, flushed with every cloud,
I soon found myself near the town of Shroud,
In a place called Staple Hill.

I ventured forth
Over lush, emerald glades of the daffodil.
And going further north
I approached a Gothic manor, massive and old
Where no lights were to be seen in its many windows,
Where no breezes stirred its ponds where no water flows.

And I heard in that darkness only the din
Of the moaning, wintry cold
Which appeared to have an eternal hold
On the gruesome loneliness which I could see lied within.

No warmth was to be had in the forest outside,
So tying up my steed, I approached the main gate
Of the ancient mansion where the sun, too late
No longer shown there
A tangible mystery did indeed reside.

My footsteps rang heavily on the gray marble floor,
As I passed over the threshold beyond the old, oak door.
The foyer was vast,
And after so many years
Only the past
Claimed all my fears.
And all of those souls whom I loved and love still
Beset me with a nebulous thrill
Like a throng of ghosts
Unseen, but there.

Phantom-like hosts
Seemed to move through the air
Descending down a staircase where
Dreadful candles upheld by no hand
Resembled Satan’s contraband.

And finally reaching the upper floor,
I noticed the plaster upon the walls
Bled like spirits damned in the halls.
Then I slowly opened a solitary door. -

And within that chamber in terror I did see
The woman that once did marry me.
And in my horror knowing that she was dead,
I heard her speak in my state of dread:
“Mark me well,
You have indeed entered hell!”

And the night alone heard the words she said.


One night in December I proposed
To my fair, dear love who held my hand
In a silent glade, by the sea and sand
Although her soul was of one that was closed.

“Be gone!” was my maiden’s hushed reply
As a red moon rose above the dale;
Her mood was livid and her countenance was pale,
Such as people look who are about to die.

Her bosoms did burn beneath her dress,
As a thirsty vampire in the making.
But they never gave off a pleasant scent
When my soul was in distress
And my heart was aching.

And so she walked into the chill of the dark,
Where the wintry reeds were tall and the grasses were bent,
Into the breeze where a haunting tremelo
Sailed through the aspen tress where a lark
Witnessed her death,
Her final breath
Taken in the horrid snow.


I can not express
My loneliness,
My sadness
Which does never sleep.
I can not cry,
I wish I could weep.
I try and try.
But no. -
The fog
By the bog,
It wavers high and low.
The deep, dour sky,
And utterly black
Has fallen like a stone
Upon my naked back
As the wind howls like a baleful hawk
In my isolated zone.
I can not think, I can not talk -
I simply walk.
I walk


In the still of her bedroom
Candles on her mantles glow.

They quiver and gleam
As a demon does dream
In the fog near the sheets
Which cover her window.

And on the terrace where she meets
The solitary moon,
The nascent night
Arrives too soon
With gloomy clouds,
Traversing the firmament.
Like burial shrouds -
All death is permanent.

A hopeless sinner moans and dies
And is banned as he crosses the despairing skies
In silence over the wintry dales
Where the last of the sunlight
Perishes and pales.

And in Ophelia's lifeless, stony gray eyes
There dwells no sadness
No sobs, no cries,
As she retreats into her chamber of mortal sin.

A wanton madness
Wanders through the rattling din
Of her vacant soul,
Unchaste, unwhole,
As a baleful breeze
Sails through her hallway as a dark disease.

For evil reigns whenever it allows
The laughs in her head.
For her husband lies dead -
Damned in a lake of scarlet red,
Where he lies stabbed twice in a bath of fleas
Outside below the boughs
Of Satanic, black and leafless trees.


Shall I taste the soil of death
When the bark is lifted
From the shell of my canoe?
For after I exhale my final breath
I must offer up all that was gifted
Prior to rising into a state I never knew.

Shall I swallow with my mouth
That unhallowed earth
Falling quickly south
Departing from the finite route
Which began at birth
Before my soul shall be cast out
Into that realm of terrible doubt?

Or if, by Christ, may He choose to spare me
From that awful union with the mire
Be it with ice or be it with fire,
Not to be condemned to my requiem's attire,
To the baleful, endless, briny sea.
And if it be so
I shall escape from that fate
Before it be too late
Never to go
Into my rest
It will only be so at Our Lady’s bequest.

Yes, It will surely be due
To The Virgin Mary's merciful desire
To raise me into the blissful blue,
While cheating a hell so black and dire.

One cold and forsaken February night
If my tortured mind remembers right
In the thick, morose and isolated dark,
In one accursed corner of a dreadful, dreary park
(More horrible to conceive and see
Than any specter from a terrible dream)
A demon named Satan smiled in a moonbeam
Beneath the bare boughs of a solitary aspen tree.
And no one being other than me
Witnessed that specter there where he stood.
In an ecstasy of fear, I attempted to flee
From that baleful and black, cryptic wood.
But that fallen angel, the evil one
Followed my steps with a glutenous glee
Above the mounds of the park, below the firmament’s sea,
Beneath the dead sun,
Through a wild throng of fallen leaves,
Over a frozen, sickly pond
Surrounded by grasses where a gale still grieves.
Alone into the aura of a baleful beyond,
My spirit moaned and lament-fully did depart
Into heaven’s righteous hell
Where Satan’s wrathful, binding spell
Grasping, instilled
Within my empty, sullen heart
A deep and profound, eternal despair.
For his terrible touch,
His clutch,
It killed
My soul in that grim and horrid realm
With Satan at the grisly helm -
The spirit of the air!
Beneath shaded boughs, a lifeless maze
Among several thin and solitary lanes
Of moss covered benches near the displays
Of corpses alive beneath the skies which died
Spoke of perdition in malevolent ways.
Then, in an instant, I began to know pains
As the ground beneath me opened wide
A reedy, mystical door
Which in all of my existence,
I never saw before.
And at Beelzebub’s insistence
With sharp, grasping fingers,
I was taken under the grassy floor!
Now only my name does forever echo
Carried in the nebulous, wanton breeze,
Sobbing as it lingers,
Wailing to and fro,
Over the tombs,
The sepulchers, the death rooms,
Clothed with miasmic rats and fleas.
For that demon brought me far below
Any hope of attaining life’s banished chance.
And now he smiles, proudly in the dark
With his lifeless, red eyes
Grinning with a glance
Below the bane of the pale and starless skies,
Over the glades of the massive park
Where my damned soul cries
And my living body lies.
And this demon so proud
Eternally laughs
As I contrive to uncloud
In fiery baths
The flames which consume me,
Punishing each and every deliberate transgression. -
In despair I make a futile confession.
In an astonishing, stark and blackened sea
Of hopeless, despairing, infernal dins
Which emanate like blood from my many sanguine, mortal sins
I am steeped in scorching, burning ice;
Abysmal company now forever I keep
As I gnash my teeth and pitifully weep,
Praying this nightmare will come to pass.
But alas! -
It is far too late to escape the never ending price,
And my soul burns whole below the snow covered grass.
Meanwhile, up comes the moon; The park
Lights up the mist which clings to the bark
Among the many demons, dreaming in the dark.


In the vast, haunted wood, beside the sea
The wind, it sobs
My heart, it throbs
In agony.
On the grass clad plain of the dusky lit knoll
A death bell begins to drearily toll
Near the foot of a hill
Where I have come to die.
And do what I will,
I can not deny

About this poem

THE BLESSED AND THE DAMNED COPYRIGHT {C} 2021 By John Lars Zwerenz A Collection of Verse By John Lars Zwerenz

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Submitted by angelab.83996 on October 25, 2021

Modified on April 15, 2023

18:21 min read

Quick analysis:

Scheme Text too long
Closest metre Iambic tetrameter
Characters 19,360
Words 3,662
Stanzas 97
Stanza Lengths 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 10, 6, 12, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 6, 5, 3, 2, 5, 4, 4, 1, 4, 11, 5, 6, 5, 4, 6, 7, 6, 7, 18, 12, 7, 6, 8, 4, 9, 1, 12, 6, 3, 9, 1, 4, 3, 1, 4, 4, 6, 4, 6, 7, 4, 7, 6, 4, 7, 8, 4, 3, 6, 6, 4, 6, 10, 5, 4, 6, 1, 1, 4, 4, 5, 7, 23, 2, 4, 8, 5, 4, 6, 7, 6, 7, 11, 4, 32, 29, 6, 1, 10, 3, 11

John Lars Zwerenz

About John Lars Zwerenz John L. Zwerenz is an American journalist, essayist, novelist and poet. (1) Zwerenz was born in 1970 in New York City to a wealthy family. His father and mother both descended from multiple generations of Anglo Saxon Americans. Zwerenz' father became actively involved in local and state conservative politics, and contributed both time and money to further the power of several right wing elected officials. Zwerenz' poetry first appeared in many literary publications during the late 1980's and early '90s. Hundreds of poems written during this time were composed by Zwerenz as an undergraduate student at New York City's Queens College from which he graduated with honors in 1992. (2) After a failed attempt to earn a living in conservative employment, Zwerenz began an extensive period of travel, writing what would eventually make up the bulk of his later published works in such places as London and Paris. In 2014, Zwerenz was hired by Emage Magazine International, a widely published in print arts publication as the magazine's poetry writer which resulted in the wide exposure of Zwerenz' vanity published poetry books leading to a series of contracts with traditional publishing firms, both in the United Kingdom and in the States. His subsequent published poetic volumes were highly successful and his earlier works rose dramatically in price. (3) Zwerenz' productive and inspiring career was brought together in a single anthology, spanning eleven volumes. Published by Green Frog Publishing in February of 2020, The Complete Anthology encapsulated Zwerenz' entire published poetic catalog. Often examining the pain that comes with romantic love, many of the poems in this collection were built around the theme of that sensation. From Visionary Wanderings to Mystic Wines, each volume offers its own unique approaches to the craft. The prolific output of the author in this tome reflects a sharp mind, educated in and inspired by the poetic greats, as well as an identified and honed passion for the craft. The main elements of Zwerenz' verse are romantic and impressionistic in nature. Zwerenz’s structure and meter are provided with a natural feel that many poets fail to capture. (4) (5) (6) One example of Zwerenz' poetry is printed below, taken from his "The Grave and other Poems": The Grave In the clouded, dusky afternoon As you hear the clang of a swaying bell The rising ring of its dreadful knell Ascends to the dreary, lifeless moon. As cryptic winds through dead boughs pass Below one tombstone's familiar name Another soul the demons claim Beneath grim reeds and yellow grass. And when dawn arrives with miasmic dew Upon the wanton meadow and its horrid grave A being there moans, too late to save - None other than the likes of you! John Lars Zwerenz © 2020 The Grave and other Poems JFBradley (talk) 16:53, 3 January 2021 (UTC) ~~~James Francis Bradley References Sources: 1:[1] 2: [2] 3:[3] 4:[4] 5:[5] 6:[6] Photo of American Poet of John Lars Zwerenz.jpg Notes This article "John L Zwerenz" is from Wikipedia. The list of its authors can be seen in its historical and/or the page Edithistory:John L Zwerenz. Articles copied from Draft Namespace on Wikipedia could be seen on the Draft Namespace of Wikipedia and not main one. You are outside the CCPA jurisdiction. Share  more…

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    "THE BLESSED AND THE DAMNED" STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 15 Jun 2024. <>.

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