A single candle (beyond the rainbow)

a poem by Dale Costello, Australia - poetry writer, author, poet

We were both twenty-one
that new years eve
soldiers to our older hearts
joining the revelry-on Hindley street
standing within the joyousness
quite apart in our strangeness
our inability to let these demons go
and dance around like 'bent gazelles'.

I remember
what you told me
the inescapability of a name
how cards would turn-revealing aces
while four deuces stole the game,
it was not madness in your eyes
in part I felt the same
yet, I saw every battle leading
like an overaccumulation of tattoos
towards a lack of space
converging to nothing.

Ten years can find us free
they can find us-mired where we began
I can picture the violence of colossus
within the exterior of a solitary man
yet, there are moments
hell will wither-beating at its own flames
search with honesty for water
having never known the sound of rain
while within a barest sense for heroes
as we shared my last cigarette
you told me my poetry was my deepest anger
as there is no rhyme
in the cards we most regret.

I remember when you died
how they spoke of a life,
yet not once a man
mentioning an overaccumulation of bullets
issuing a defeat no fists ever could
a mindless death, equally, the media recital
of every scar born of a world unknown
sheer will of this capture unguarded
I walked away while you fell to their dues
while those three beautiful aces
never came close nor held regard
to blind luck nor circumstance
or two dubious pairs of twos.

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