The way the blood feels on my fingers
I forget how long
It’s been sometimes, Darling.
The last time
I saw you
you fled into an empty night
screaming at me you were going to throw yourself
from the top of an apartment building.
We had both laughed but
our laughs were different then,
weren’t they, Darling?
The time we argued,
I can’t remember what about now,
you gave yourself to the traffic
and I’d gone after you,
the horns blaring and
the lights screaming,
flashes in the night.
Following you into that damp darkness, Darling.
And yes, there were all the times
you shared yourself with others,
and smiled with lips like Babylon.
Little deceits grown grotesque.
And I took you
I always took you
I remember the way your hair
felt underneath my fingertips,
but tonight I’m running
my fingers over
these ripened tight scars
that you left behind when you left here.
Jagged glass lovers,
That we were, Darling.
You were married when I met you,
I was married when I met you.
We both lied together
we lay together.
But things have a habit of ending
the way they started
don’t they, Darling?
I forget how long
It’s been sometimes.
The coffee doesn’t taste the way it did
The mug has a chip on its lip
and the music that flows from the old speakers
leaks stilted down the wood paneled walls.
The black and white
photographs are still hanging there
but I sit here alone now.
I heard you’d got engaged.
I drink from the mug,
the tip of my tongue
touches the rough porcelain.
The coffee doesn’t taste the way it did.
I’ll stand up, unknown, uninvited and unloved.
I’ll pay and I’ll leave.
I’ll not come back here again
A cold Sunday
I sit in darkness and I wonder,
Where has all of the poetry gone?
Or was it ever here?
Am I the aging pug,
punch drunk, punched out, out punched,
gassed and tired already?
Already thirty six and on the abyss
of a meaningless divorce and the
meaningless unemployment line.
The poetry beaten out of me, like
a heart I’d never really had
I wait for the sound of a bell
to mark the end of the round,
but it never comes
there’s only the night
and the cold
on the ropes always.
Stephen J. Golds was born in the U.K, but has lived in Japan for most of his adult life. He enjoys spending time with his daughters, reading books, traveling, boxing and listening to old Soul LPs. Glamour Girl Gone, his debut novel, will be released by Close to The Bone Press on January 29th, 2021