The Bar's Tool

Written by: John Heck

Scorned coquette
perched so solemnly
upon your death stool,
claw deep the fresh flesh of victors
bearing armfuls of decaying flowers
stolen from your mother’s grave.

A diverse parade -
clairvoyants and gigolos
tyrants and schizophrenics
junkies and Jesus freaks;
you seem to attract
an unending assembly line
of tarnished beggars
you’ve at one time
longingly called 
“lover.” 

Tainted transients -
now live as smudged chalk marks
upon the mammoth gray blackboard -
hanging askew
upon your barren bedroom wall.

Precocious sorceress
perched atop your fragile Hepplewhite
feigning the airs of a barfly madam -
look a bit closer
at the species of insects you entrap.
You’re not a spider woman by trade –
Nor was your mother a queen bee.
Understand…
burning security blankets
during one’s wonder years
may now be considered
a latter day memorial service.

Bedouin to the barstool 
wrap once more
the quilt you crocheted,
from momma’s discarded doilies,
around your sleek white shoulders.
Remove the scratched liquor labels
that live underneath 
your pillow cases
and look.

He’s out there, precious -
somewhere
behind the mist in Glasgow
or hidden 'neath
the sands of the Gobi –
Somewhere…hiding,
lurking
ready to erase away
faded white chalk marks.

His minted breath
will burn  
your cold, gray
slate.