Christopher P. P. White
What The Booze Did - Poem by Christopher P. P. White
I look around for solace or a place to run to
But all I see are empty shops and lonely benches.
The promenade was once filled with laughter and ice cream—
Now it's full of silence and sadness.
A sorrow being judged by its own worth;
I feel its pain.
I know its story.
I have lived amongst these waves for sixty years.
Countless people have inhabited this space,
Bringing joy and making memories with every penny they spent,
Whilst I lingered in the shadows, or a bar,
Drinking to forget what I have known from the start.
I am old and alone thanks to my own priceless jealousy.
I had it all;
Everything you could ever hold onto.
Now, she's in the arms of another,
Fifty years on in a home not a box
With children to pass on their life stories to.
Just like the one about the disenchanted fool
Who gave it all up because he didn't know how good it was.
That fool was me.
You probably guessed that.
Shutting out all of the hearts that bleed for you is a mistake.
I'm clever enough to know that now
But back then,
Before I had time to think,
I chose to listen to the bottle and not my girl.
With every sip came another heartache;
Another headache for all the heartbreak.
I'll never get over her,
I'll never want to.
I'm so frail and broken that my heart rattles around my ribs
When I breathe in.
I'm eighty-three and my ticker's given up the ghost.
This is what the booze has done for me.
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