I once met a man at the local church,
Strangely enough in the children's ministry.
He was an older gentleman of sixty, perhaps,
And after I introduced myself, I thought him kindly.
When I asked him his name, he said something odd
To the ears, that I could not repeat. Smiling, he said
To call him "G.R.", which I assumed were his initials.
But I silently vowed to learn to pronounce his name.
We were good friends, G.R. and I, despite our different ages.
Together we watched over little children in Sunday school.
How fondly I remember those days;
We would talk as the children played.
He once told me that he came from very far away.
He hailed from the land of Belgium, he said,
And he added, a bit mysteriously, that he was a spy.
I didn't believe him then, of course, but now I think I might.
Because one fateful day, my family moved away,
And of course they took me with them.
I lost touch with many friends, including G.R.
I didn't even get to say goodbye.
When we returned, perhaps a year later,
I revisited my old church haunts.
I inquired of G.R. expectantly,
Only to find that he had died.
I was told by his family that he had taken
A gunshout wound to the head.
They said it was suicide,
But they couldn't quite explain why.
I still remember the days we talked,
The times we laughed, the paths we walked.
G.R. was like an uncle or grandfather to me.
I was greatly grieved when I was told of his demise.
Remember, I never got to say goodbye.
Now I never will. unless...that was just a cover story.
I can still pretend that G.R. is still out there,
My kindly Belgian spy.
And now I can pronounce his name.
It's impossible to step outside of alcohol.
It's like finding a new road map, curious and invigorating,
Until you wake up to the old, brighter consciousness.
The binging of drink is Life Immobile.
The non-creative dream-state of
Fools and heart-ache.
I write such a thing in such a state.
Art in rum and Belgian beer.
Art with chamomile and wounded cheer.
Art underground and minted and cold.
Art in heaven with cellulose toes.
Art in art with hearts and charts.
You get the picture. Of a car.
It's just a bunch of parts. On the ground.
You make your shape and I'll make mine.
You stay sober, I'll get the wine.
We're all swimming together anyway,
Some just smile as they drown.
Others breathe, wearing a frown.