A Prayer for the Old, Mendicant Wretch

She’s sat here for a hundred years,
here, at this bar.
Before it was even built,
before the old jukebox was even installed,
she was here
winking at Johns, and Jims, and asking their story.
Asking them to buy her a round.

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Since before time began, she’s been here.
Many men have known her love,
and her fury.
Many a butcher, tailor, and sailor alike
have kicked her from the bed
in the middle of the night.
They’ve cursed her name, and her craziness,
swore up and down they’d never do this again.

There’s no need to weep for her.
She wastes not a tear for herself,
why should we?
But if you would simply pray,
spare a prayer for the wretch.

O God, if you do exist,
and are indeed merciful,
strike this woman dead, this ageless beauty.
And we will erect a pile of stones
by the jukebox, in her honour.
And each passing sailor will pay respects
she never had the pleasure
of enjoying from the likes of them
and their sort
when she still drew ragged breath
through cracked, painted lips.

BSB

Original artwork by Leszek Harasimowicz
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A Man’s Respect and Admiration

9

I admire the muscles of your arms and the flatness of your stomach
I respect the softness and length of your neck and your legs
I have nothing but respect and admiration for you and your eyes
the bridge of your nose, and cheek-bones
your lips and the metal stud you sport with such class

I would respect you in the morning
In the cold light of tomorrow
with tonight’s make-up faded and smudged
I would admire you as you waited for the bus home
With your panties crumpled and soiled and crammed in your pocket

derrek-gores-recycled-magazines-collage-art-1_2th8t_11446There might be shame creeping at the corners of your face

But don’t let it take you over

You are nothing but beauty and desire

And I have nothing but respect and admiration for you

Even as I came into your mouth

BSB