Runcible Spoon

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The evening paper and the scuffers

brought revelation. Sammy wasn’t even

his name I discovered and the prayers  

I’d offered were misplaced and useless

or somebody else had stolen salvation.

He wore Doc Martens, Ben Shermans

and a Harrington jacket but a uniform  

wasn’t a suit of armour and a five-inch blade

punctured his stuffing, left him clutching

at nothing, writhing out of his element.

Dreams of vengeance were only ephemeral

and after all he was more lighthouse than candle;

a warning of rocks not a flame to follow.

I shredded Ben Shermans, buried Doc Martens

and denied all knowledge of a Keith.

Not a name you’d fashion into a religion

though I like to think he died for my sake.