If you ask me why I run to your arms 
                       when the rain raps my roof
                       and thunder roars,
                       it’s ‘cause underneath,
                       I’m still a child
                       frightened of the storm.

                       Now my safe space is out of reach, 
                       swept by spaces in between,
                       and in this storm I sit alone,
                       through cold and dreary days —
                       like a child,
                       but without a home.

                        — hazel joyce

To the mediocre

If it takes bruises for you to play, 
and your hands would bathe in blood, 
may the thirst for thunder remain; 
may you never nip it in the bud. 

Some have all and some have nothing, 
and though it’s disheartening to have little, 
will you move past the cynics, 
or settle in the middle? 

In time, 
may the ones in the middle 
take center stage.

— hazel joyce


The sky’s ashen — does it mourn? 
Or is it laughing to provoke 
those icy hands gripping a stem of thorns 
whose petals have withered like an ageing joke, 
and whose frozen leaves have fallen below 
on cold, pale sheets of regret and disdain. 

Like the blood trickling from her fingertips to the snow, 
it was innocence lost, it was the dawn of pain.

— hazel joyce


My guts bleed, leap, echo 
the beating of a drum 
Rolls, rumbles, thunders 
the vices of a scum. 

I hold, clench, cradle 
the ending as it starts, 
a poison vine creeping 
the corners of my heart. 

“Enough,” you scream, 
cutting the obnoxious weed 
may be a selfish favor 
but an act of good deed. 

I stir, rise, tremble 
as the sky takes my woe 
is never felt, even 
when a friend becomes a foe. 

Walk away, walk away 
from the rubble, from it all. 
May you find peace in the ending. 
Alas, the curtain falls!

— hazel joyce 


Here it is — I have mustered courage,
I have swallowed that choking fear,
but my guts are no leverage
when cacophony's all I hear.

"You'll get stomachaches from dreams
if you swallow too much on a daily dose,
and words would tarnish your bloodstream
once you get drunk on purple prose.

Here it is — the end to all my dread,
one step forward, one missing jigsaw piece.
But, "Open your eyes," they said.
"You're not a puzzle, but a cog in the machine."

"Wheels won't turn and lights won't blink
on dreams you take on a daily dose.
What glory is there in talking limericks
and getting drunk on purple prose?"

They haven't faded — these hopeful hues,
and this flame is weak, yet it grows.
But I feel as though I'm delirious,
crazed, blinded, drunk on purple prose. 

— hazel joyce


When there's nowhere to go
        and no place to run,
        you were my home
        when hope was gone

You took me away
        from demons running deep,
        when monsters came
        to take me in my sleep

When nothing felt true,
        and there's no one I could find,
        I've always had you—
        —but only in my mind. 

                         — hazel joyce

Double Aces

These naysayers would put us down,
‘til we crumble and fall,
‘til they steal our sound.
And thieves would rob us of renown
they would stall our success
and keep us in ground.

Summoning storms to our sail
          flunking our flagship
          beating us to bail.
Cynics only hope for us to fail
          ‘cause they had a couple
          of tigers by the tail  
— hazel joyce