songs I never listened

I was young

& bless me

I thought you were ancient

playing songs by Merle

Hank & Johnny

out of respect

I’d sit & nod along

more for company

than any new thing

I might hope to find

& now

you’ve been gone

some long time

& all I have is

those songs I never listened to

to remind

papers the walls

the shame grows

heating head between ears

the things i said

tried to mean

just to keep her a little longer

tho’ you knew

anything you had was long dead

didn’t stop you trying

from this feeling of alone

here in this blue room

as the shame grows

hope papers the walls

another lover gone

a cold bed once more

another day to try again

putting the music on low

hoping to find a song

a lyric something

to make sense

escape the heat

in this sad stupid head

gone long gone

when freedom was a full tank

gone long gone

the excitement of those summers

holding off the light rain

doing things with each other

we had yet to find names

driving around no money no place to go

just hanging out with anyone everyone

going through the night laughing

bringing in the dawn the sun

playing music that changed our feelings

the way we felt about the world

& those people are gone long gone

to different places around the world

working stiffs each & every one

pulling their collars up against the rain

putting the hours in for sunny days

paying to go travel soak up the warmth

we had once for free in those years

now gone long gone

consignment

that get to be gone place

where the Friday Saturday night girls went

they’d appear by my side for a while

be fun companions stay the night

then gone with the dawn next day

& some might appear again

stay for a month or so

then be lost forever

consigned to history

distant memory

& now I wonder

is that the same place

where my dead friends go?

here for a while only

like all of us fools are

making the most of what we can

then consigned to history

memories of times gone

some to be forgotten

others to haunt

in idle moments

long nights cool mornings

with a wry smile

& a warm feeling to come

done with me

in truth

she had very likely

been done with me for a while

had waited

to find the right time

to let me go

& we all know now

there is no right time

for the unlover

to tell the lover

this is over

stick a fork in it

we’re done

I don’t recall pleading

tho’ I certainly

felt some bleeding

tears coming on

walked away the pain

& when I

turned to look back

she was gone

proclaiming her deep growing love for me

I didn’t want to go

but she insisted

needing more booze

more cigarettes more life

than I had in my rooms

so we went & I tried

with the few people there

slowly getting drunk

talking nonsense

meaning nothing of weight

to anybody might listen

& then she was gone

found some other fella

could give her more

& I was hoping against hope

he wouldn’t just fuck her

& send her right back

I wanted more for her

than just that

wanted more for me

the last thing I needed

would be her pounding the door

past midnight ‘round three

proclaiming her deep

growing love for me