THE AGREEMENT-word count 2,633
For rich college student and speeder Brice Conrad, the last town to be incarcerated in, is the abandoned Roseville jail. With an “agreement” between the town and a permanent demonic “guest” only the unfortunate ones know the truth, but don’t live to tell.

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THE UNEMPLOYMENT OFFICE

I wait patiently with the others,
and pray they choose me.
The one with the children and rent to pay.
The one who searches the want ads each day.
The one who will make beds or answer the phones.
The one who has three kids and lives on her own.
There’s only room for one more,
as another unwanted is discarded through the door
Each one with the look of fear or joy on their face.
All hoping for the same small slim chance.
Are they here, because they must?
Some seem so out of place.
They stab our hearts with another hope,
of cruel words I don’t want to hear.
They say they are here to help,
but offer nothing solid for under the belt.
The uncertainty I had, now subsides to lust.
My dreams of a job, now turns to dust.
So I put on my happy fake face.
The one that gets me through all the long days.
I wipe off the tears before I walk through the door.
My life has never seemed so empty before.
I tell my babies I love them and that life is unfair.
Then go about my life, pretending I don’t care.
Reality has now completely taken hold.
I’ve already spend the money from everything I’ve sold.
My head is spinning, don’t know what to do.
Cant give up though, ‘cause my kids are to precious to lose.
My fear of failure was not my imagination.
As my inner voice says you’re a beautiful creature.
The world is an evil place, filled with pain, hate, must.
My day was fruitless, filled with perfect disgust.
They stand there gloating at my futile attempt,
to provide for my children and earn a living.
A evil smile slashes across their face,
like an infected wound.
Their masterpiece is complete.
They can move on to their next evil feat.
No remorse, no regret, not a single trace.
Just breaking spirits in their usual hostile ways.



At Books and Paintings by JoAnne, you may view and purchase artwork and books directly. My poetry book “Poems About Life, Love, and Everything in Between," is available here for $10 or at
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