shore leave on sunday
local priest smirks condescendingly
dark knowledge spilling out over the rim
of that pristine white collar.
watch that boy ducking into the cracks in the wall
wife alone and
desperate for a taste of something new
stirring the pot with
a thick wooden spoon until
hubby gets home.
back of the local grocery
bereft of passion scorned by life
waiting for the man to meet him and
sell him joy for the modest price of
his independence and
the kids are chasing the dog
squealing with impish delight
saliva pouring out their serrated maws like so much cake batter
stabbing into it with vicious lisps and howls
slinging rocks like arrows as the blood lets.
she saw the face of god and cried that day
sitting on the ashen hill which overlooks the old west end.
her brother died in the fire that took it all out
locked in a crib as they ran out screaming
her mother wailed that night but lost her voice.
and her mind.
she’s making her way down the hill towards the waterfront
as the good lord instructed.
won’t stop til she’s in over her head
and a few fathoms extra.
the principal sat there
searing holes into the downturned scalp of the young boy with his sharp eyes.
long-sleeve button up crawling out over the edge of his thick leather belt
tie undone, greasy combover clinging to the pasty flesh of his prodigious forehead.
snorting between strained gasps of dank blighted air.
he rose from the tattered rolling chair
rattling and creaking
released from its burden.
walked around the desk to the sheepish youth.
placing one meaty unwashed palm
on his frail shoulder.
the cruel world of polite society