selective focus photo of alcohol bottles
Photo by Clam Lo on
Remind me, again… remind me.
Tell me the tale of my triumphant father:

With pleasure…

In smoky daze,
awash with commotion
stuttering through the yellowing
cavern of the working man,
barfing, bowing heads
soaking in the numbers
tumbling from the cackling machine,
hope etched into each man's impaired focus.
Deeper still savage packs of tradesmen,
popping their sweat-stained blue collars,
tipping swilled beer and exhaling bluer air
at the expense of grizzled flat-capped snowy-tops
grumbling at them from the
protection of the fruit machines.
In the midst of this chaos, this caterwauling din,
his shining pate beacons his position,
like a sleek golden embroidered sarık
in the heart of the seedy, dusty souk.
He holds up the bar, like Atlas, with his nonchalant pose,
to drown his parched interior
even with shivering, clenching
breath expelled with the pain of a punch,
as if two iron hands gripped his lungs
to stifle the natural motion.
But, regardless, he's drawn to that glimmering clatter,
like a brain-washed shooter.
Evidently the thickening sludge gathering
At the rim confounded him into retreat,
battered him to return because he tottered back
to his home for the final time.
Wasting his final hours on cigarettes
and more pensive introspection, the malady consumed him.
He can resist it no longer, his reserves utterly depleted,
and finally, he's smothered within himself,
descending to that place where
he is free to try to love himself again
without the dragging chains of rejected lost love
pulling him under the sands
to suffocate in his own desiccated heartbreak.

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