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The Gates of Death

Updated on April 17, 2016

Home was a safe place,

He held that grim expression

On his face,

Nothing could offer relief,

And his throat was dry with grief,

Staggering under his load of anguish,

He couldn’t believe his eyes,

His entire family slaughtered,

And he couldn’t quiet the cries,

A home invasion, that was clear,

His dear wife was found on the top stair,

Sprawled on top of dried blood,

She was cold and stiff as a stone,

As sorrow rose up in him like a flood,

He had tried to catch his breath,

As he knew his family had passed

Through the gates of death,

His heart filled with rage and fear,

Delirious, he fled down the stairs,

Passing his children still on the floor,

Not shedding a single tear,

He stormed out the door,

Didn’t know where he was going,

Or why,

Nothing seemed clear,

But he just knew he wanted to die

Before he got there.

© 2013 Frank Atanacio

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    • wayne barrett profile image

      Wayne Barrett 3 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Oh, Frank! I know it's dark, but you are in you element when you write like this. Well done...and very, "Poe" Poetic!

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton

      hey wayne barrett thank you for the comment bless you bro :)

    • Theater girl profile image

      Jennifer 3 years ago from New Jersey

      Dark and sinister....but it's great! Votes up!

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton

      thank you theater girl

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      I would want to die too!!! Gruesome and chilling, and great writing. I could sense the tension and forboding fear as I read.

      God bless, Faith Reaper

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton

      Faith thank you for always showing up..:) bless you and happy mother's day? LOL

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      I will always show up . . . faithfully! Thank you very much. Hope you are a good son to your mother, if she is still living.

      God bless, Faith Reaper

    • Deborah Brooks profile image

      Deborah Brooks Langford 3 years ago from Brownsville,TX

      Frank good evening I think we should bring in CSI UNIT to investigate.. lol .. great poem .. I didn't expect anything less of you.

      blessings

      Debbie

    • Vinaya Ghimire profile image

      Vinaya Ghimire 3 years ago from Nepal

      Death is sure thing, but it terrifies people when it comes this way.

    • Mhatter99 profile image

      Martin Kloess 3 years ago from San Francisco

      Gripping from the get go. See my round (coming soon). I'm sure you will get ideas.

    • Alastar Packer profile image

      Alastar Packer 3 years ago from North Carolina

      Frank this is so similar to a real-life tragedy that happened around here about 2 years ago. Your the writer with deep insight on these for sure my friend.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton

      bless you Faith again and again and big-time.. good to see you Deborah Brooks...:)

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton

      Vin and Mhatter thanks for stopping by.. and Alastar wow that must have been tragic to say the least

    • BlossomSB profile image

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 3 years ago from Victoria, Australia

      Terrifying, but so well expressed in your poem that it really could have happened. God bless.

    • LaThing profile image

      LaThing 3 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      Wow, Frank, such grief-stricken and sobering poem! I agree with Wayne, you are at your element! Great write...... It reminds me of that Cheshire case!

    • duffsmom profile image

      P. Thorpe Christiansen 3 years ago from Pacific Northwest, USA

      You really have the ability to paint word pictures that stand out as vivid as a photograph. Wow!

    • Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

      Gypsy Rose Lee 3 years ago from Riga, Latvia

      Now that gave me the chills and all those films I've seen just flashed through my mind. Your poetry is vividly expressive.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton

      thank you Gypsy, Lathing, good to see you Lathing, Blossoms, and Duffsmom, good to see you Duffsmom bless you guys for stopping by

    • prashant angiras profile image

      Prashant angiras 3 years ago from shimla(india)

      I really loved your poem,you truly have the art of writing..

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton

      thank you prashant :)

    • tobusiness profile image

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 3 years ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

      Frank, another excellent write, dark and heart breaking, but this is where you excel as a writer, you are in your zone.

      Well done my friend.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton

      thank you tobusiness :)

    • xstatic profile image

      Jim Higgins 3 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

      Sounds like a prelude to a mystery/revenge novel Frank, well done!

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton

      LOL thanks for stopping by X-man :)

    • MrsBrownsParlour profile image

      Lurana Brown 3 years ago from Chicagoland, Illinois

      Ghastly but very creative. You know your niche/genre well!! ~Lurana

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton

      thank you MrsBrownsParlour :)

    • profile image

      Valleypoet 3 years ago

      A horrifying killing spree...at your ghastly best bro:-))

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton

      thank you Valley Bro for leaving footprints on my pages today bless you :)

    • profile image

      Ariel 3 years ago

      Thumbs up

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton

      thanks Ariel :)

    • tillsontitan profile image

      Mary Craig 2 years ago from New York

      Not too far from the horrible truths we face every day but written brilliantly as only you can do!

      Voted up, awesome, and interesting.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
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      Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton

      thank you Tillson... for reading my older stuff bless you

    • PegCole17 profile image

      Peg Cole 2 years ago from Dallas, Texas

      Such a horrible event and yet you've captured it clearly in so few verses. Anguish and anger all balled up in one package. That poor man.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 16 months ago from Shelton

      thank you pegcole for bringing this one back

    • RJ Schwartz profile image

      Ralph Schwartz 16 months ago from Idaho Falls, Idaho

      wow, I was there, in that house, the rage building with each passing line of verse - amazing immersion into such a ghastly topic

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 16 months ago from Shelton

      thank you so much RJ :)

    • AudreyHowitt profile image

      Audrey Howitt 16 months ago from California

      This is a wow!

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 16 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Dark and morbid Frank, but you are the master of this genre whether fiction stories or poetry. Great stuff.

    • Vellur profile image

      Nithya Venkat 16 months ago from Dubai

      I agree with AudreyHowitt, this poem is definitely a big WOW! Great write.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 16 months ago from Shelton

      thanks Audrey, Jodah the Poet and Vellur for stopping by and reading my Gates..:) bless you guys

    • Cyndi10 profile image

      Cynthia B Turner 16 months ago from Georgia

      Well, Jodah said it all earlier. Besides, anything I say would be a repeat of what I've said of your other works. Love it!

      Take care and always be safe.

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 16 months ago from sunny Florida

      In the face of such pain, one can feel his anquish....so powerful Frank.

      Those in France must feel this way today...

      Angels are on the way to you and to those in France who have endured such grief.

      ps

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 11 months ago from Shelton

      thank you Cyndi and pstraubie 48 for checking this out.. sorry replied late was working extra now I have a few weeks of reading to catch up on today.. bless you both Frank

    • Shyron E Shenko profile image

      Shyron E Shenko 11 months ago

      Great writing Frank,

      But I don't think my heart could stand

      The sight of carnage done by such an evil man

      For the one who lost his family my hear just sand

      This page of his family tree is now complete blank

      *

      *

      I know if this happened to me I would die on the spot.

      Blessings my friend always

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 11 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      Dark and frightening....I felt panic & my heart raced. You must be drained after writing these scenes of madness!

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 11 months ago from Shelton

      thank you Shyron and fpherj48 for stopp1ng by the gates of death bless you guys

    • Cyndi10 profile image

      Cynthia B Turner 11 months ago from Georgia

      Unfortunately, the title could be "And in Today's News." All too often the news is filled with the demise of entire families at the hands of some madman or woman. The survivors have to find a way to live with the pain of such devastating loss. Your works is always so raw and unforgiving. Excellent poetry. Take care.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 9 months ago from Shelton

      thanks Cyndi10 for revisiting my Gates..:)

    • Deborah Demander profile image

      Deborah Demander 6 months ago from First Wyoming, then THE WORLD

      Wow. That was intense.

      Namaste

    • Frank Atanacio profile image
      Author

      Frank Atanacio 6 months ago from Shelton

      thank you Deborah for reading my poetry here

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