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On The Brink; Smoker's Lament by Mitchel Montagna

On the Brink


The mountains stretch behind me

Wind blew me out of town

The morning sun will blind me

I rode the highway down


My friends won’t let me settle

I begged for scraps all day

Their mouths turned harsh as metal

They tore my heart away


The sweep of time will bleed you

It forces you to roam

Somebody else might need you

To find their way back home


A gauze of fog has lifted

As dawn broke through the cold

Bright banks of snowflakes drifted

I saw foothills painted gold

Smoker’s Lament


I pace the halls like a zombie leaking

blood and fire:

It must have been the fog, injecting a 

disease I cannot bear.

But when I tried to set it down,

it burrowed into my throat.

I will never sing

at birthday parties again.


Turned out that sip of molten lava was

really an invitation to the cosmos.

All ‘round the rooms, explosive

tangles of lightning and wire.  

Their sizzling and thunder orchestrate  

like a sadist’s tune.


The waiting, at least, is familiar:

Remember those vacant afternoons

stoned on lethargy, confusion

dissipating to disgust.

Creeping shadows reflecting

the loneliness in your eyes.  

When you touched your face

you found it numb as earth,

like you were buried already.


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