Gloom colors teardrops in yesterday’s rainfall. Phantoms grin lurking from innocent doorways. Shepherds walk stumbles, seeking their flock. Marlene casts eyes forward, wishing misery gone yet disabled resolve renders dreamlike in chasm …
Full circle relents somewhere chaste and obscure in a saddening heartbreak or maddening cure lost in ageless bell tolls from this churchless grim season, as prostitutes wander the streets without reason.
There’s a gathering tonight in the hall by the park, glowing chanted illusion unmeasured in cue of timeless race blunder of father’s dismay, as Marlene slides catlike to check yet this pulse, and water-snakes glow in obscene uniform, as buttercups dance in the heat.
In this gathering frost like some prophet of old or some buttery mold on the table, never shunned quite so much to a poetess touch, Marlene kneels in slick, snowy mud. And some long-lost child Christ cries from his cross. This mud carries need in some Socrates’ creed, as Queen’s head stares blank from her basket.
She can burn all this down. She can thrust some cross-like iron into the doors, trapping this irreverence inside, and delight at frying body screams, leather-clad, kneeling in muddy snow, reveling justice delivered.
But justice delivered to whom, the thousand or so here inside?
Marlene walks on. Here, at this once proud house, now guarded by grinning phantoms, mothers lay their babies down to sleep, sweet as the morning once was.
Marlene walks on.
Where there once was such good in this Ruined City, where there once was a kindness delivered so certain now nurtured by handmaidens trod in the dust of the inverted cross and the glorious lust lay the remnants of hope felled to false-given trust of a creature now legend and ne’er to return, Marlene still walks on in this city now ruined.
Five, she had saved from this darkening death, five, she had only just walked from the city, were there anymore hidden here in its bounds, or were there only now those lost who’d proven their worth, and that worth meant nothing. She turned to a doorway, to sit for a while, “Get out, cursed Phantom!” but said in a whisper, for this phantom reminded her only of self.
Can a phantom remind us of whom we once were? Can a phantom bring jelly and toast to your grandpa, can a phantom stop doorways from being thus entered? – questions lay firm at the entrance to heart, alas unbespoken by biblical riddle, alone like the cat in his crumbling thistle.
She makes her way back to her sad, lonely street, she makes her way back to her bleakened cried room, she makes her way back to her forsaken hovel, and loosens the leather around her at last, for the mirror casts reflections on nobody’s past. She will stay in her city ’til blood drowns in sin, she will go to the bar for a cheap cup of gin. She will sit all alone on her worn wooden seat, as the patrons fade soft in her glass.
As the hummingbird flitters where flowers bloom sweet, she buttons her dress and walks out on the street.