Why did she have to leave a message?

by Ralkkai

Meetings at sundown
with an old friend
and I mourn over thoughts
of yesterdays gone by.

Why did she have to
leave a message?

Slowly,
the past creeps up like bile.

I write words like
the devil writes promises.
I write tomes
like the roach writes
screams from
scared little girls.

Why did she have to
leave a message?

The walk through the mountains
didn’t clear it up

and

I’m too weak or strong now
to drink it all away.

It would be there again in the morning.

I can’t cut it out
as I am now part of this
living machine
of networked roadways
and I am the roadsigns,
I am the overpass
the underground tunnels,
the hitch-hiker,
the street corner evangelist.

And when I wake up in the morning
I will still be all those things.

Why did she have to
leave a message

when

an obituary would
have been
better suited?

I push my glasses back
up my old nose,
take a deep pine tree and charred
deer shit breath,
listen to voices inside
playing slap bass
and think to myself —
I am a better person now
my breaths no longer
rattle with
the whimper of a defeated soul
my hands
are grey with wondering over keys
and the deer scurry
and the deer scurry.

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