Leaving

Down through the shadowy alleyways
passing half drunken doorways
always looking for light,

If the day ever comes when the night’s
at my back and the Sun’s far ahead
and the wind doesn’t whistle it
plays a guitar
or the cats on the doorsteps
allow me to pet them
then
I’ll know that I’m home

if a wish is a wish
and a coin in the fountain is
all of its price
I could have been nice and
spat thrice
when I walked past the
graveyard,
but
life in the backrooms is hard
never a bride
not even a groom for the horse
of his Lordship

I ship out at noon and
not a moment too soon
for the rope is all I can see
and the hangman
is waiting on the gallows
for me.

© 2016, John Smallshaw.