Saturday, March 16, 2013

pals, part 5: no escape

by horace p sternwall

illustrated by eddie el greco and konrad kraus


click here for previous chapter

click here to begin at the beginning





in the pitiless whirlwind of the everyday
where we never know what to say
and time shreds our dreams
and throws them in the universe's disappearing streams

sometimes a moment comes
when we hear the sound of pounding drums
cutting through the constant buzz
like a message that ever was

as henry resumed his spiel
explaining what was and was not real
my eyes apparently became so glazed
that even henry was fazed

he stared at me and then
said, " i hope i'm not boring you, ben"
i tried to laugh it off
and with a mendacious cough

i said, "of course not, henry
your conversation always fascinates me"
he gazed at me in silent contemplation
and then resumed his dissertation

on the secret causes of world war one
or maybe the exact moment the universe had begun
in his even voice, as always before
nothing less, but maybe something more

my mind and eyes kept wandering to the door
as they had never done before
henry, who was actually somewhat perspicacious
eyed me in a manner not quite gracious

suddenly he stopped
his face took on the look of a good cop
"i am boring you," he exclaimed.
"no doubt i have only myself to blame"

although i did not get down on my knees
i was full of apologies
"i am sorry, henry," i mumbled
on my secret had he stumbled?

but what was my great secret?
what did i have cause to regret?
my feelings were no nebulous
even i would be incredulous

if i tried to in words to explain
what i felt about jane
who still had not come through the door
as i glanced at it once more

now henry, following my glance
looked at me askance
"expecting a visitor?"
his eyes into me did bore

"ah, just as i thought all along
the same old sorry song
you are certainly not the first
it happens to the best and the worst -"

"please," i heard myself say
"i have had a long day
and your wisdom, though rigorously distilled
is still a bitter pill

i think i need some fresh air"
and under henry's incredulous stare
i slowly rose from my chair
looked at the door - still no jane there

and departed the premises of ray's
oh how many nights and days
had passed, since once immured
in my seat, i had so stirred

before closing time was announced
in my step there was no bounce
as i stepped out into the night
had my old life taken flight?

or was this only a blip
in the steady downward course of life's trip
from nothingness to nowhere
into the darkness i did stare

my feet i began to move
as i felt it did behoove
me to leave ray's behind
was i losing my mind?

nobody called my name
the street looked just the same
the yawning emptiness of the night
somehow felt just right

a few hours alone in my room
would not be a sentence of doom
and so without remorse
i set forth on my new old course

my paychecks i would save
to booze i would no longer be enslaved
and so i had made up my mind
but fate could not be so kind

and to my doom i was lured
for a voice behind me i heard
my head i could not restrain
from turning - and there was jane


part 6



No comments: