Monday, 25 June 2012


“Murder is born of love, and love attains the greatest intensity in murder” - Octave Mirbeau
“Touch of Evil” is a classic, Orson Welles film noir made in 1958. It is a stark, perverse story of murder, kidnapping, and police corruption in a Mexican border town. Orson Welles, Charlton Heston, Vivien Leigh and Akim Tamiroff give stellar performances and the movie is gripping and has a plot line that is engaging and keeps you on the edge of your seat. Magpie Tales this week has selected a still from the movie as a point of departure for the creative endeavours that are highlighted by her blog every week. Here is my contribution:


He kills with ease, his hands are quick;
A knife, a gun, some rope
A “blunt object”…
His actions are deliberate,
He thinks long and hard
Before he executes.

He watches still, unmoving
And dispassionate, as his victims die;
His face a mask,
A waxen simulacrum of humanity,
As he snuffs out life
And gets a surge of power.

He touches slowly,
His fingers cool and probing,
Taking the coldness of steel
To give it to flesh expiring:
The touch of evil
Carries deadly caresses.

And as I watch him
Carry out his execution
With surgical precision,
I let myself be washed into
The tide of death’s oblivion
As my heart falters, trips, stops.

Unable to stop him,
Incapable of any reaction,
No cry, no struggle, no protection,
No instinct of self-preservation,
To end his assassination
Of a heart that loved too much.


  1. Steely cold and scary...your last line surprised me...

  2. oo great last line turning the rest on its head...was just thinking how scary a calculating killer can be...its not a crime of passion but deliberate...

  3. A cold blooded, chilling tale so well crafted.

  4. ... 'carry out his execution with surgical precision' is steely-blue cold and calculating! Nice writing.

  5. “Murder is born of love, and love attains the greatest intensity in murder”? Sorry Mr Mirbeau.. you are wrong.

  6. Thought provoking poem. With thought provoking comments. And as always you did your research well. And your verse better.