R.E.M. Verberg

writing fantasy that makes you think and feel

podcast

Far-Fetched Stories is a podcast that offers original speculative fiction shorts. It’s currently dormant, but there is a lot of content there – not in the least my 14 part audio series The Raven’s Toll!

poetry / spoken word

My poetry focuses on deeply personal subjects like mental health, independence vs. loneliness, and connection vs. codependency. It always draws from the natural world, feminine experiences, and musicality.

about me

R.E.M. Verberg writes poetry. A long writing career gave her a deep appreciation for her craft, while personal experiences like mental health struggles resulted in a profound sense of empathy and interconnectedness.

The bottom

Some people are afraid of the bottom of the ocean

they think that to sink means to drown, and

going down is always the beginning of the end, 

a descent into doom, a down-turned arc

 

and sometimes they are right, sometimes

the bottom beckons, the sinking sticks

the ocean never lets up its boisterous embrace

and the arc ends in the cool, calm, weighted dark.

 

But there is always hope, and often the descent

is just another journey, not the end. The bottom is

no burden, the darkness just a friend, a deeply

seated presence that lends you graceful hands

 

and in those times you gather strength by being

under water, in those times the dark is just

another way to see, your arc another way up

to the surface. And the bottom teaches you 

 

new ways to breathe.

IMPLOSION

The tables were thrown

into the restaurant sideways

crashing into each other

in the middle of the floor

 

Then came the vases

crystalline bombardment

flowers holding each other, fearing the inevitable

shock waves of stale water and destruction

 

After that, the cuttlery

steak knives raining down like hailstones

shards of china ringing across the floor,

chiming bells of chaos and alarm

 

Too late: along came the food

pizzas impaled on splintered table legs

Splattering their innards dramatically

over the mariachi band that followed, still playing

 

And finally, us.

Holding hands, flying face down towards the inevitable,

a linguini strand still connecting

your mouth to mine.

 

 

All you really
talk about

There comes a day you realize, no matter

what you talk about – the endless rain, the neighbor’s missing cat –

that all you really talk about is grief.

 

Your life reimagined in negative space, wild strokes

paint memories of things that never happened, like

that time you missed a crucial beat to kiss your lover’s face.

 

You will find yourself in the eye of a tornado, grief particles

flying all around; the found slipping through your fingers

and becoming lost again – so close, just out of reach.

 

Until finally, one day, the grief subsides. The wind

dies down, and the things that were never meant to be

rest calmly on the ground, feeding a newfound peace.

 

And a day comes to surprise you. A day you realize, no matter

what you talk about – a hot date, a new takeout place –

that all you really talk about is love.

 

 

about me

After being a writing coach and copywriter for over ten years, I’m now spreading my wings as a poetry/spoken word author. I love to write dark worlds with sparks of love and connection.

My journey into poetry started with a breakup – how cliche – but is quickly snowballing into a new step in my writing career. I find that by embracing and examining my own demons, I lay bare glimpses of hope and interconnectedness that also speak to others, even in the darkest of (mental) circumstances. 

 Currently, I’m publishing my poetry on Instagram and exploring collaborations with various artists. Future plans include submitting my poems to magazines, distributing my first cycle of poems as a zine, and finding stages to practice performing my words. 

In my free time I make a lot of illustrations. I like to spend time inside my own head and am into knitting, crochet, art, reading, film and dancing in the living room.
Have any questions? Ask away!

R.E.M. Verberg wearing a tentacle

The raven's toll: meet the cast

The characters that play a major role in my 14 part audio series.

The raven | he/him

Vanta, Keeper of the Balance

Starts out wanting to right the wrongs that his race and their deadly powers have caused, but ends up using his own powers to do so and causing even more harm. His arc is one of being humbled and realizing that sometimes the best thing you can do is let go.

zori | they/them

Contellian, natural leader

Starts out as a servant / ‘util’ to Curas Laas, but ends up as the leader of a squad of deserted soldiers fighting for social change. 
Their arc is one of self-realization, empowerment and forgiveness.

R.E.M. Verberg Curas Laas

curas laas | he/him

Zornan commander and aristocrat

Starts out as an arrogant, selfish prick but ends up sacrificing his own needs for the greater good.
His arc is one of redemption, growth and self-sacrifice.

Any questions?

Let me know, I'd love to help.