In the State of Furzyth

Psychological Phenomenon

Photo by Holger Link on Unsplash

Furzyth [fər´zɪð]
Noun (21st Century)

  1. Psychological phenomenon or concept of furzyth.
  2. Having furzyth or being in a state of #furzyth.

Description: A state of secret or disguised identity either by change of name, being, thought process, familial relationship, appearance, or other forms of altered truth in an attempt to better life’s perceived circumstances or outcomes. Outwardly, furzyth has the closest connection to the act of a chameleon through deception of others and self. The state of furzyth may be known or unknown to the person in the state. Others may recognize that another is in the state of furzyth even if they could not recognize it in themselves. Sometimes a person will deliberately pursue deception in order to be perceived as the outcome they desire only to then lose sight of who they were before.

Origin: Latin [fur] — secretive, deceptive, furtive. Hebrew [Zyth/Seth] — appointed, named, Seth.


Furzyth

A Poem

one scholarship away
from my father’s mouth
whiskey and some other 
unknown flavor

smashed against
my forever (forgotten)
childhood.

only two street weeks
out of the thirty two
until I am sixteen.
no one noticed (I hope)
early for work
early for school
trying to shower before the
swim team
hand dryers in the grocery store
hand soap crust

my braces need care.

then seventeen (I counted) 
other people’s couches
cat sheddings and cigarettes
the crumbs of other people’s 
midnights
away from her complicit
silence.

one court order away
(he won’t show up) 
I represent myself
my sister, younger
lost to online predators
that’s her way
no witness to what will 
happen later
but I will not be victim.

one judge to let me 
leave the system
one day
I will paint him
a glorious horse 
dyed every hue of freedom.


© Samantha Lazar 2019

Torn Leash

A Poem

Photo by Martin Adams on Unsplash

when at the edge of getting caught
I knew nothing more 
beyond 
what he told me 
the moon would light our walk
that night
the car rumbled off
I laughed at the jolt

the woods weren’t new
of course I figured out
blindfold off
I stood just beyond the 
soccer fields
where the dance team
stole away to smoke
and my sister

warned me not to tell
and watch my back 
if ever he would take me here
I laughed her off
and caught her eyes
lupine in their coloring
my lungs caught short
from memory

of thoughts of being hunted
like when I was locked outside 
her friend sneered at me
the window where our
grandma slept
those final years
that friend’s silhouette 
eyes in the dark

let me in
or keep me out
you don’t fool me 
for one bit
I slashed her tires
that night, I did
my sister had 
it coming

the trees outlined
traced by clouds
his breath along my neck
a desire 
and a sickness
all at once
the breeze carried rain
his sweat suffocating

my rage, boiling
wishing away
his hand 
pushing me down the trail
crunch of twig
came to an end
suddenly, “Run!”
and he let go

into the darkness
with the plan
spoiled by fear
chased down
and delicious
sisters feast 
the blindfold
in his hand


© Samantha Lazar 2019

Happy Halloween!

Someone Let Him In

But No One’s Held Accountable

Photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash

An elementary school
One dead set on security
One with bills to pay
Just like all of us
One dollar away from closing
One family trust shy
Of the things we thought 
We paid for

You can hire a new person
Who won’t recognize faces
The ones who can’t hurt us
The solidarity of community
Hate splayed on the inside
Where maybe my child
Sat for lunch last week

Some stranger’s scribblings
The need to feel power
Let in with a key
Who has the key
Who knows the combination
A man with some ink
Who chooses White Power

A statement so bold
Written where our children eat
How did he get here
A friend of the family
So bold to hold witness
To the comfort we seek

When I was a child
It was better to hide
Where the ones before
Me arrived from
Could be shot by a kid
Who said it would happen 
At recess

This mother won’t be quiet
This is not what she chose 
For her son
She chose at least hoping
For the illusion of safety
He wouldn’t have to run

Graffiti so loud
Drafts of future lives
Quaking
You were not supposed 
To be here
But someone let you in.


Samantha Lazar 2019

Other work by Samantha Lazar:Cut Yourself Open (And Let Your Writing Heal You)
What locked boxes are hidden deep in your closet?medium.com

Safari

A Poem

Photo by Sergey Pesterevon Unsplash

How exotic to be a part of your family
Your grandmother adorned in Shanghai Jade
Dreamy-eyed when your grandfather
Arrives home from the airport
Still very much alive
And celebrated widely
Kisses her, exhausted from healing,
Legacy beginning,
Doesn’t stop to sleep yet
And sits in his study
Clinking bourbon soaked ice
Between his cheek and his teeth

You and your sister
Not yet breathed life
On this earth
Will inherit these gestures
His folded-arm stance
Her slight secret humor
Their society’s gaze
The mountain view
From your own safari jet

And how as children
You will play
And read and dream
And not know
That I look at your class picture
Now with the others
Teenagers become
Perhaps moving on
From their loss of you


Author’s note: This is a poem I wrote in 2006. That year, a previous student of mine was killed with his entire family when their private chartered plane went down over Kenya.

© Samantha Lazar 2006

Thank you for reading. Some other writings by Samantha Lazar:Reaching Hill
A Short Story (Part 1)medium.com
Franklin Street Sidewalk
A Poem About Running Into An Old Lovemedium.com

Hurricane

A Poem

Photo by NASAon Unsplash

This is the wind
A force you only 
Know through 
Consequence

This is the sea
Shoving your waste 
Returning it to you — 
How are you are surprised?
We’ve been here before

This is the power
To shift what we knew
Into counting 
What we still hold

This is the mystery 
Of all of our paths
No one to lead
Followed by death

This is the earth
Pleading to take
Her back after
That repeated argument
You’ll never win

No chance.

But she’ll always 
give you
Another try

Next time you’re free
A new generation
Born into debris


© Samantha Lazar 2019

Thank you for reading. You may also enjoy:

When Words are Lost
Translate it quickly, Melting weapons Back to metals, Where they belong.medium.com

In the Wilderness
Faded as an autumn petal With nothing left to hide…medium.com

Wednesday Morning Walk

A Poem


Photo by Jonas Weckschmiedon Unsplash

one of the last days
through my old neighborhood
dewy empty soccer fields
Gatorade, a sock, someone’s chair
from last night’s practice

gravel road 
to the water
treatment plant
poison ivy 
thriving

encouraged by the creek
frogs awake hearing
our crunching steps

heron patient
at the pond’s edge
hawk huge
in flight before me

majestic white tree
still standing 
though choked in kudzu

the small trail
my dog, Annie
smelling possibility
everywhere

my favorite willow oak
I bow to it
spring is strong
and I am alive.


© Samantha Lazar 2007

Thank you for reading. More poems:

My Grandfather this Morning
My grandfather this morning,medium.com

In this dream…
In this dream you ask for me
Instead of the other way around
I am staring in the mirror
Scraping at bits of misapplied…
medium.com

Dogs

A Poem

Photo by Matt Joneson Unsplash

Do the dogs know pain
Time just passes
without want
but for the moment

How I want to laze — 
Run like them
Free

From waiting
for the car to show up
To pull into the driveway

Like it’s nothing

And everything
to hug your daughter

And remark on the pride
of seeing her grow and rise
to eminence
before your very eyes

Waiting for the showing up
is different from chasing

With chasing there is something
to go for

Even if it is imagined

How I long
to chase free
and have the dogs
tell me what to do

so I can walk away
from the bay window
of my childhood

Give me a reason to stop
watching the hill


© Samantha Lazar2019

Thank you for reading. Here are links to more writing:Paper Dolls
A Short Storypsiloveyou.xyz
This Canyon (2)
Courage looks deep into that canyon
and says — I see you
and I am coming down to feel
the pain
and what blossoms in…
medium.com

Driving My Grandfather Home

A Poetry Memoir in Free Verse (for Poetry Sunday)

Photo by Matt Alanizon Unsplash

My father drives his father home
Too weak to fly to the other side

It happens
Again

We’ll leave his condo as it is
For now

The braced grins of my sister and me
Glued to the fridge

Children and grandchildren and great grandchildren
Frozen in time on the humid porch

Crabgrass and palm trees
Neighbors who knew him

And watched him
Perhaps his puzzles half finished

Still spinning
The music he could whistle flawlessly

To his wife
Her memory still staring from her chair

Beautiful knowing as time passes
We do what we can

My father arranges his one
Bedroom apartment

Then brings his father
Home

© Samantha Lazar2019

Thank you for reading. You may also enjoy:The Silver Briefcase: How, as an Adult Child, I Learn to Let Go Over and Over
I held my dad’s hand — thumbs like mine, familiar as if I had been holding it for 38 years.medium.com
My Grandfather this Morning
My grandfather this morning,medium.com

Rewind

A Rubaiyat Poem

Photo by Jordan Whitton Unsplash

I watch the world crumble to its core
As media shouts our latest gore
After hearts and bones are left behind
Shattered, no longer live like days before

And who decides life isn’t worth
The beauty humanity shares at birth
But truth will see lies are entwined
With how we spend our time on earth.

Oh massacred, you never had the chance
To wander through life’s great romance
Or find yourself lost in all the choices
For your swollen voice to take a stance

Shields, if only for our children, provide
For ghosts of shame dare you not to hide
Leave only those who demand to dream
That soon a day will turn the tide

© Samantha Lazar2019

Poetic Form Challenge

Where Will My Child Be Safe?

A Poem in Response to Prompt: Maps

Photo by Matt Popovichon Unsplash

We all sleep, and breathe and dream in this city —

But do not go east at night, dear child.

I have mapped these crimes,
These grand indictments.
These crossed lines 
Extend past daybreak too
I’ve heard these tales, and steer clear
Of the latitudes and longitudes.

And south of here, right by school
Where you want to just look at Lego sets
Even though we have groceries to get — 
This parking lot becomes territory
To lost souls who are not here
For Starbucks or weekly shopping peace.

And yes, all 12 voted, first degree
Behind your soccer practice fields
Mark on your map, a felony.
Don’t be alone for crossfire then — 
Please hold my hand,
Just hold my hand.

And north of course,
Where you were born
Suspicious vehicle left to emergency
A man, left to bleed, 
a kid, really — 
Only 16.

Does his mother weep?
Her sweet son lost in the same driveway
Where first we both drove home,
Nursed our newborn boys
To sleep. 
Mark the north spot. Ink it, deep.

Well west, you said,
Mama look how the sun sets — 
It’s so beautiful, Mama. 
Please look away my child.
I learned that predators are out on bail, 
And I have no more ways for us to sail.

© Samantha Lazar 2019

Originally Published Here.