shared darkness by Stephen House

a tall thin man
dressed in a filthy frock
shuffles along these streets each day
i drag myself along them too

on trodden grime
we separately seek our own evaporating reasons
for these solitary rambles to anywhere else
but the wasted now of this

weeks of passing each other
without word spoken
no nod or flick of friendly smile
no wink or silly boyish smirk
just numb solitary loping

and it unhinges me
dragging me deeper into my festering core
of wondering how and why

yesterday
as our paths collided on a muddled corner of ill fate
i glimpsed a reservoir of tears in his milky eyes
i’m sure he heard the plea for help
screaming out of mine

today
i can’t face him
entwined in his insane crawling
or tread those medicated roads to zilch

i can’t move from where i crouch
suffocating in the bleak realization
of what i have become

and i loathe him and his part in my dreaded demise
for i know as i gulp at a gritty breathe
we are both destined
to dwell in shared darkness
forever