Noir (3 Sketches)

Azure haze: smell of cheap tea leaves, chicken noodle
remnants. Boiling broth chatters, flares.

Ashen Dragon flickers: veranda casts shadows soaked
through under sheets of rain, my coat the same.

Calls himself blue: that’s all he has said, but he’s
seen something, shows on his face, in crescent.

He ran: not before handing me a paper man. He’s
now lost among the ten thousand alleys, fathomless concrete forests.


It’s my only clue.
A dark enigma,

roving in a great hollow. It’s lead
me down innumerable concrete gorges,

brocades of glass and shadow, taking
an inevitable blur everywhere it goes.

Near it, looking at it people fall silent,
by choice or otherwise – unfathomable faces want it, need it.

Diner after diner
alley after alley
waterfront after waterfront,

it folds realities on top of realities, something new abounding
from each fold, ten thousand mysteries emerge from pregnant emptiness.

The there is stands in lamp light, gleaming
between badge and gun, the paper Unicorn.


Her husband is missing
or so she says.
Been a week,
she assumed a business trip
but now she’s getting nervous.

She says his behavior changed.
Started frequenting dive bars
running with the shifty kind
going down by the waterfront
he said it was business she says.

I retort the waterfronts a tricky place
innumerable things happen under its
ten thousand miasma folds
not all of them good.
In this vast hollow, it’s a blurred enigma.

And besides I have a full case load.

Shes been fidgeting the whole time
something in her hand.
Fine she says, fine
thanking me for my time
she rises and leaves.

A slug of cold black coffee,
gaze and gaze on the city below
I turn and see
on my desk
standing on its edge.

Maybe mocking
maybe daring
maybe nothing.
A gossamer film
as a paper chicken.


First picture:

Second picture:

Third Picture:

These are test beds, run throughs for something I have in mind, so would like some feedback if possible.

Also tried mixing in some Buddhist language with these, so we’ll see how that works out.

Also, I am aware that the man is made of a matchstick. But for the purposes of this (and my love of Blade Runner) he’ll be of paper.


About skyraftwanderer

A person who enjoys writing short story things, poetry and other random things that come into my head.
This entry was posted in Poems and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

19 Responses to Noir (3 Sketches)

  1. Lindy Lee says:

    The third Noir sketch is especially interesting to this reader. Would only suggest ending with the next to last line…

  2. claudia says:

    very intriguing write…plays all together very well..and leaves us guessing…esp. loved..
    it folds realities on top of realities, something new abounding
    from each fold, ten thousand mysteries emerge from pregnant emptiness…nice..

  3. Mary says:

    Beautifully intricate weaving of words here! The 3 Sketches play together very well.

  4. brian miller says:

    nice…this is really fine story telling…love the paper man, the missing man and the paper chicken…all fine touches but you set a great tone with the language you use as well…i like…

  5. Aaron Kent says:

    Lovely and excellently constructed poem. I’m glad I took the time to fully read this.

  6. Emma says:

    I enjoy your differing formatting within the same poem, it adds to the overall effect for me. This begs to be read more than once to really absorb what lies within, I think, but the mood draws me in and I like the use of the paper elements. These have to be my favorite lines: A gossamer film / as a paper chicken- there’s something there that’s irresistible. Great piece.

  7. Gay says:

    I read this as one poem; then read as three different sketches headed in a similar but not exactly the same direction. I like the paper chicken – it has a number of meanings within the “noir” context. The 3rd detective sketch has the grainy movie feel. Makes me jealous, I didn’t find my way to it in my noir poem
    (though mine was just a bit of a joke). The first sketch gives us the grit of a chinatown – probably more Frisco (with its nod to Dashiell Hammett) which is more obvious than the subtle reference to Chandler’s Marlowe in the third. The second far more abstract. I liked them all. I think the Asian subtext works to enhance the shadows and the mood. Really well done!

  8. hobgoblin2011 says:

    very cool. Love that each has it’s own voice, it’s own tone and it’s own birthing. The first piece is creatively abstract, the second is perfect, from it’s origami nature and especially in how you end it..
    it folds realities on top of realities, something new abounding
    from each fold, ten thousand mysteries emerge from pregnant emptiness.

    The there is stands in lamp light, gleaming
    between badge and gun, the paper Unicorn.
    and the final stanza is a story of reflection and priorities, which ends on such a cool note, with the paper chicken..

    Very cool. Thanks

  9. poemsofhateandhope says:

    As a fan of blade runner- I definately caught the scents and scenes you were painting – especially in the first sections of the poem- as it turns out the poem stands very well on it’s own, and is actually quite epic in its size and abstraction- conjuring many different meanings and images…in the same way that blade runner was considered quite post- modern- the same could be said of this poem- a pastiche of imagery and meaning- this is the kind of poem I could read get and over because I’ll see something different every time…

  10. Really nice! I don’t even know if you have to expicitly state the presence of the paper chicken–just imply it–Great work!

  11. marousia says:

    I love the play of light and shadow – not sure you need the sixth verse in the second sketch – I think the overlaid realities are already there implied…..

  12. I am not versed in noir so I can’t be helpful like Gay but can say I loved the premise, that you present them seriatim, and the cool veneer of it all. Nice work!

  13. poetcolette says:

    I love your little animals, abounding from each fold.
    And your writing ain’t no slug of black coffee, cold!

  14. 1emeraldcity says:

    This is intriguing work… The second noir resonates with me particularly… I like much the oxymoronic phrase “pregnant emptiness” Fine work all around!.

  15. D... says:

    I love the noir genre, there is such a wonderful sooty quality to it. Fog, lamplights, smoke, and hard characters. I think you’ve captured that feeling really well. Now I want to slick on a coat of red lipsticks.

  16. Tino says:

    This was like experiencing a waterfall that links pools. One flowed into the other and on to the other to join the watercourse. I truly like what you have done and common denominator you have used, very unique.

  17. I like the sketches..though it seems to me, they are separate stories. I specially like the last one, as it leaves it open to our interpretation and imagination ~

  18. Blue Flute says:

    Like the way you tell your stories, well wrapped up in the end

    Maybe mocking
    maybe daring
    maybe nothing.
    A gossamer film
    as a paper chicken.

  19. Chazinator says:

    This is so great. What an amazing feat of creativity and imagination. You have suckered me in to the story and I am glad to be there. You have all the details down when it comes to setting the mood and tone of the noir. I really enjoyed the introductory narrative, identifying the noir that fills so much of the story but ultimately our lives it seems. Excellent write.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s