Monday, April 12, 2021

last call

long away and far away
life was a brand new broadway play
folks looked rich but were really broke
did nothing all day but drink and smoke

style and class were tattered dreams
not yet awakened from or so it seems
no one entered without knocking
a few things were still considered shocking

peyton crull was the last of his race
he had a drink in his hand and a scar on his face
his life had been a total waste
he was reputed to have peculiar tastes

every afternoon at five
peyton almost came alive
he switched from gin to whiskey
and his eyes grew misty

the fire in his brain burned low
as he thought of days of long ago
but he had other thoughts as well
on which he would occasionally dwell

he dreamed of a future bright
in which everything would be all right
a happy day to come
in which he would not be a bum

in which one happy human race
with a single smile on its happy face
would hold him in its warm embrace…
the fantasy faded, leaving no trace

caught like a fly between two spiders
trampled on by the other riders
on the nostalgia-future train
peyton lifted his glass again

and drank to those who came before
and those still wandering on the shore
and those on the horizon dim
marching with glittering eyes toward him

he drank to the damned and the elect
and those who showed him no respect
yes, those were the worst of all…
did he hear a footstep in the hall?

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