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ALONE AND STILL

May 12, 2018

You needed to look up,

You looked left, and there was the terror.

What were you looking for, over your left shoulder?

A boulder? Crushing blows? The end?

You saw a void, a sorry state,

Trains piled up, one upon the other.

They were trapped within a forcefield,

A type of nothingness. No exit.

A black hole, to another universe,

Where all the world’s ills are born.

 

Through it all, we go bumping along,

Thud thud thud. Beggars, gypsies, et al.

She would have been a good whore,

In another world. On the street, etc.

Slight acne, she begs. Clothes well-kempt,

She’s young. We’d say seventeen.

Abused by her father, most certainly,

Abuse, not necessarily of a sexual nature.

But she seems broken. Her spirits are blacked out,

Day upon day blends into one. Hour upon hour.

She’s lost. Riding the rails her life through,

At every terminus, it starts all over.

 

She’s found a quiet corner,

Here, she spends her nights.

Most alone. Most free from harm,

She hears laughter. It’s ne’er hers.

On trains, on the street: always laughter,

She observes: the guilty looking stranger.

What’s he stole? What’s he done?

He stands and runs upon the train’s depart.

To make his way through slowly closing doors,

He’s on his way.

 

A demure young lady,

She bows her head to her love.

As she leaves his side, his gift in hand,

A loving gift, a bracelet, handmade.

She thinks ‘thoughtful’; he thinks of her,

No kiss is shared between them.

Not yet. He knows it’s a long road,

But it’s all worth it, so he says.

He’s got his own home among rubble,

But we can be at ease.

The young gypsy is not alone,

Nor the young man.

 

A young lady in tears,

We know not why.

She arrived, tears flowing,

And I feel no responsibility.

I’m not culpable; I’m implicit,

I plead my case –

I’m believed, surprisingly,

I surprise myself, it’s true.

For I’d believed in the tears of young girls,

And I’d believed that I was always the cause.

 

The young lady in train cars,

She holds a sturdy figure.

I’d like her name. A coffee with her,

I’d rip the bracelet from her wrist.

Her love’s too far gone,

It’s a mere adolescent romance.

Our love will be real,

We’ll meet in train cars, all smiles.

But she’ll be well occupied,

Her young life depends on this task.

I’m but along for the ride,

I take her hand briefly.

As usual, she bows her head,

She turns from me. I smile.

 

She never takes me home,

For a home is not a mattress on the ground.

I’ve not the right to walk her home,

Though I know it’s near.

She promises that it’s near,

That there’s a strange man there.

He must be infirm, I think,

She longs for young love.

She’s skinny, bony, sickly looking,

We kiss, in my home.

Frustratingly demure, she is,

But, that’s why we love.

 

She takes care of a man at home,

He’s taken her under his wing.

I’m not moved …. the old cretin,

Let her out of your grasp.

She has to live, this girl,

You can’t give her any life.

Not the kind she needs,

She needs someone by her side.

 

Strangely, we meet, before a cinema,

Nor she, nor I, will see a film.

It’s already been months,

But there’s a recognition.

She’s going further: ice-skating,

I’m going further: drinks, etc.

Of course, we’ll see each other

Again, in early summer eves.

Now, there’s a poet, under a bridge,

And he breaks your heart –

I hear this story and smile,

The story reminds me of something.

 

Now, I take a stimulant,

It allows my day to flow.

I no longer return to bed

Mid-morning. There’s no more urge.

I sit and think of stories in my head,

Stories’, evidently past.

In the present there’s nothing more,

Nothing else to speak of.

I left a love to her own labours,

I left her for another, whom I won’t see.

Infuriating’s the word, and I smile,

For love is meant to be infuriating.

And hence, I love, alone,

In silence, surrounded by music, always.

And music brings only jealousy,

Jealousy at the god given words.

I’ve nothing to say in response,

For a time there was much to say,

To add. But now, it’s a peaceful retreat,

And I let loves rest, alone and still.

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