The Window

Staring at the ragged stranger reflected in the glass

he clutched the bottle to his breast as if it were his last

His withered eyes just could not leave the dark and twisted form

that watched him from another world with neither praise or scorn

And as he gazed a cold tear dropped upon his dirty hand

to sting with sharp reality, as only bare truth can

He stood frozen like sculptured stone before the polished light

in witness of his portrait; astonished at the sight

He had created what he saw; with fear his sharpest tool

for only he was held to blame for punishment so cruel

And only he was made to pay for all the sour words

that he aimed at society for many bitter years

He stared into reflecting eyes yet strained to turn away

The thing he feared glared back at him and dared him to betray

Now trembling with an emotion he thought had long been dead

His tears welled up into sobbing to bear the guilt he shed

Desperately he struggled to turn; the vision held him fast

Crying out, pleading for mercy; from the truth, from the past

His knees buckled, body collapsed, beneath the awesome weight

Breathing heavy, light with relief, he whimpered out a laugh

Indulged with his triumphant self; stared at the empty sky

He raised the flask to trembling lips, swallowed, and closed his eyes

N.N. 5/15/79