THE STROKE

A life
has been stomped upon.
And all our pleasant certainties are sunk,
And all the things you thought you owned
– legs
– arms
– words
are confiscated.
Dad: why didn’t you listen when I told you any pleasure that sits easily after the word “guilty” is no pleasure, it’s a predator in camouflage.
Why didn’t you listen when I told you demons are real and you pay to drink bottles of their piss every night, every night glug glug glug it away, why didn’t you listen
When you told yourself sitting watching endless TV quizshows glug glug glug chomp chomp chomp is no life, is a death in life, an injury to the brain.
Or maybe it had nothing to do with these little addictions,
The booze, the fast-food and the factoids –
Anyway we are built to break
Anyway white bones turn grey
Anyway we are meat turning black in Time’s oven
Anyway

Generous in a mean world
– Prisoner of inertia.
Bombastic in a small world
– Prisoner of inertia.
Romantic in a cold town
– Prisoner of inertia.
Couldn’t you have found a better way to quit that fucking job?
Clogged up and starved of life in that job:
This month’s wages is a hole in the head, is lying for God-knows-how-many hours on your floor by your radiator now off now on calling my name in a voice diminished.
The retirement you lived for is here.
The bright future is now and dark.
A mumbling monstrosity on a hospital-bed:
Today, my friend, is the first day of the rest of your death.

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