Raven Cage Zine – My Debut Publication Issue #57

Industrial Madness Issue

My Poems:

Previously published in Wombellrainbowblog

Phantoms in my Mind
The Institute Quadrilogy – A poem in four Parts




The Poems:

Phantoms in my Mind

Demon Alley – Each liquid dead of night nightmare continues to deliver a blinding glare of my inner light darkened by familiar fears snuffed out by freezing whispers of false rumours of my former self – My childhood nightmares and insecurities clashing in a nightly showdown of my inner sanctum my perceived existential survival, compounded by recurrent mocking voices singing their cutting questioning of my existence, my brave resistance –

I used to take their punches even their toxic repetitive slashing remarks but I am better now, so I willingly enter demon alley – Just to make sure none of them is left to jeer and sneer or chiselling my former brittle veneer.

Emergence – My mind now calmer as I reflect on my former neglect of my inner core my personal war but I have won that battle against myself as I emerge renewed healing my mood…

© Don Beukes


The Institute Quadrilogy

Part One

White noise cracking in my headspace
phantoms in their nightly forced circus
A horse dancing on a rainbow beckoning
me to follow – I just want to lie my head
down and crawl through my safety tunnel
Where I can hear myself think maybe whistle
my favourite tune – Where I choose the paths
in the backstreets of my mind, master of my
own symphony unlike the invasive unwelcome
poking into my private psyche room where
my mental defences are muted by unstable needy self-elected pharaohs enacting random
healing punishments – I am so done with this!

Dear Self

I am slowly drowning in this mental haze choking
me repeatedly – I need to hear your voice again even just a faint whisper to remind me I am still here. Here comes that choking red mist again, darkening my vision – My existential
failed mission, no escape…

Are you there?

© Don Beukes

Part Two

Dear Self – I am drowning in this blinding haze of red, locked in this current state, ‘shut up! Leave my headspace or I will end you!’

Are you still there? I cannot go on like this. Last night another one made herself known to me taunting me, mockingly. I can hear her in the walls of my deepest most private secret space – ‘A voice, a voice! No, I refuse to submit to you! Stop this ridiculous lie you knit every chance you get!’

Flashback – I am back in my childhood room, thirteen again. I hear my parents bang the door down. I struggle to breathe. I feel my dad forcing my fingers open as I clamp them tighter around my throat…

‘Good morning Mr and Mrs Sullivan. No need to look so sullen. Rachel will be treated with the utmost respect and care here at Clarence House. My name is Ms Marsh. You have nothing to worry about. Are you ready Rachel?

The Confrontation – ‘Ow, You’re hurting me! Where are you taking me? Shut up you spoiled brat! You will soon find out how we heal misfits like you. “Let me go you old hag!”

Now you listen to me you pathetic little creature. You better get used to me. After all, you have been placed into my care, so don’t you dare! You will soon realise you’re not that special at all. The others will reveal themselves to you soon. You better get some rest my dear. No need to fear, I promise.

Dear Self – I feel so lost. I heard it again last night – A faint tapping deep inside my head. Someone also tried to reach me but it was a faint whisper. What is wrong with me? What is making my head burst? Please show me a way out!


 © Don Beukes

 Part Three

The RevelationDear Self,

I finally woke up to my reality. As that wretched red mist cleared, my surroundings were finally revealed. At first, I became aware of an annoying hovering buzz – Invisible but audible. As my eyes adjusted to where I was, I could swear I saw a cluster of microscopic drones leave my body. ‘Oh, you are awake!’ I heard a familiar voice say. I instinctively realised where the voices in my head originated from and why I thought I was going crazy. Next to me in similar pods were identical bodies like mine where I was attached to. One of them spoke directly to me! ‘I tried to warn you but you were too stubborn to listen. We’ve got to get out of here before dear Marsh returns to command more drones to replicate me’ –

But who are you? I don’t understand. ‘What do mean?’‘It’s me, my name is Rachel.’

What? Impossible! I am Rachel! ‘Calm down dear –We are all Rachel…’

© Don Beukes


Part Four

The Prequel – ‘ Welcome back Mr and Mrs Sullivan, I finally have the news you’ve been waiting for. One of our cloned samples has survived the delicate procedure. However, it will have to grow here until its fifth birthday, Just to ensure total success. After all, we owe it to you to return a perfect specimen. Have you decided on a name yet?’ Ah yes, her name will be Rachel. We trust that you will do your best, doctor…

Dear Self – It’s me, Rachel. You don’t know me yet but I somehow know who you are. I saw you in a memory not even born yet but quite significant to my survival. I finally left that strange place, after getting rid of my overly attentive nurse – A bit too keen for my liking! The more I insisted for her to leave me alone, the more she repeated, ‘There, there my dear child, Nurse Marsh will take very good care of you, after all we will be together for five years!

HomecomingDear Self, I am in my new home. The Sullivans are weird but I cannot complain. Five years is long to wait for a new home. I made sure my new mother understood when I jabbed my finger deep into one eye and just giggled about it – It felt good, even though father had to call for help.

Are you still there, hello?


 ©  Don Beukes

Who is Don Beukes?

© Don Beukes
© Raven Cage Zine

Raven Cage is a pdf distributed zine and recently we have begun this blog. The blog is extracted jpeg from the pdf document.

Raven Cage was founded by the Germany based / U.S. born poet, Jerry Langdon, in 2017.

It is a free magazine distibuted through sharing. We can not offer payment at this time.

Raven Cage is a monthly zine that is divided into sections. These sections include:

Poetry: We accept 1 to 6 poems per author

Emotional….Make us laugh, cry, feel loved and so on. The more emotion the better

General……………..Anything that is political and / or does not fit in another section

Gothic…………..Religious(Mytholigic), Vampires, death and dark romance.


Haiku and Micro………….. Micro being anything 6 lines or less also including Visual Poetry

Dark / Horror

Erotic………………………….. We do not accept overly graphical poems that include triggers.

Explicit………………………. Sometimes we include poems with explicit text again not overly graphical that include triggers.

We will gladly include another Section if the writer or we feel it to be appropriate. These could be:

Surreal, Concrete, Form etc. Let us know when submitting which section you feel your submission belongs in or should be created.

We sometimes have a theme which will be announced when calling for submission. The themes will be in an extra section.

Short Stories and Flash Fiction:

Sci-fi, Fantasy, Horror, Bizzaro, Romance etc. We will only accept erotic stories when these also follow the general rule of not being overly graphical or containing triggers.

Flash fiction word count up to 1000 words.

Short story word count from 1000 to 7500 words.



or use the contact form:


When submitting via email please include a name for the headline and copyright.



Jerry Langdon.deviantart.com


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