With a desk, a cluttered room
Through cracks in shutters I catch the moon
Whirl my tangible face once around the threshold
(Maybe my focus can be found).
What is this I grapple with?
Desire? Or hope?
Perhaps the thought that imprisoned I might choke,
That the dust I lick from a crevice or a floored shirt
Might poison this feeble mind beyond the brink.
Ahh tell me what this is!
By day I sleep till I hear the voices
Those impalpable whispers
Emerging like a wind from uncertain distances
What creature do they speak of?
I cannot appear
With fright I ponder
Would they shut as I bend an ear?
So longer I remain
Inside a clod of splintered fear
For could I spin the brutal revolver
And rasp down the side of a phone
"Hello, there's a caf? not far from here."
I?denote? I proclaim?
For I have picked a hundred reeds
And scratched a hundred incantations
I who stretched across the plain
With arid hopes and dried temptation.
I who scrawled upon your name
To count each card
To time the spin
To watch the table
And dwell on 'begin'
Even then I doubt
Doubt is like a father
You, who I dream of
I perceive voice and smile
But I doubt you should smile with me.
And in age I ponder on another thought
What would have happened?
What could I change?
Had I clung to some notable face
Drawn it as a mask for some loneliness,
To live long in dependence,
Empty hobbies and deafness?
To filter out from the last acquaintance of youth
And sit bitter at opposite ends?
With no quiver I think not to stir
To the infinite decision:
At what point is life not worth the effort
I wrote this for a competition, then realising there was a limited on the lines, but I thought I'd upload it anyway, even if not entering the competition, didn't really want to shorten it. Would be typical me to write a poem for a competition before fully checking the requirements.