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What can I do?- a poem

Updated on July 17, 2016
Sand Storm from h_h54 Source: flickr.com
Sand Storm from h_h54 Source: flickr.com
Desert from Moyan_Brenn (I'm Back) Source: flickr.com
Desert from Moyan_Brenn (I'm Back) Source: flickr.com
Desert from Alireza Teimoury Source: flickr.com
Desert from Alireza Teimoury Source: flickr.com
strewn bodies from ckoukkos Source: flickr.com
strewn bodies from ckoukkos Source: flickr.com

What can I do?

By Tony DeLorger © 2012


Each step impetuous,

each thought racing,

a blur of notions,

I forge a path toward a dream,

the ground littered with the bones,

of those before me.

Faint ghostly cries fill my ears,

tortured souls yearning, warning,

yet I move on,

the cracked parched earth,

brittle beneath me.

Dust and a hot airless breeze,

raises strewn paper to flight,

words in the wind,

curling, twisting,

formless and alone.

I brush them aside and gasp for breath,

the red dust choking,

the heat burning lungs.

I see a man hunched by the path,

covered with dust, dishevelled,

his right-hand limp, hanging,

a pen half covered with dust below it.

In his left hand a letter,

half crushed with anger.

He ignores me,

mumbling ‘what would they know’

so I move on,

fleetingly looking back,

to see his body turn to dust,

in a swirl of red particles

he is lost to the wind.

My steps are now lethargic, forced,

and the wind is beating harshly

against my face,

my eyes clenched tight,

my hand raised for protection.

Then bodies begin to appear,

first one then a dozen,

bones bleached, flesh torn like paper,

words on every square of flesh,

like tattoos, marking, remembering,

foretelling and accepting.

I now stumble over the bodies of thousands,

their weak and dried flesh giving way,

beneath my feet,

a terrible crunching,

turning my stomach.

In the distance I see a light,

and I grasp my book, determinedly,

trudging on.

Sometimes I wonder

why I’ve chosen to be a writer.


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    • Tony DeLorger profile image
      Author

      Tony DeLorger 5 years ago from Adelaide, South Australia

      That is true Princess P, we can be nothing else. Take care.

    • Tony DeLorger profile image
      Author

      Tony DeLorger 5 years ago from Adelaide, South Australia

      Thanks khadeejah, glad you appreciated it. Thanks for reading and your comment.

    • Tony DeLorger profile image
      Author

      Tony DeLorger 5 years ago from Adelaide, South Australia

      Glad you liked it SomewayOuttaHere. Thanks for dropping by.

    • Princess Prisca profile image

      Princess Prisca 5 years ago from Heaven living on Earth

      Tony,

      What a wonderful piece!

      I like it a lot...

      (Writing has chosen US...)

      Blessings!

      Ciao...Princess Prisca

    • profile image

      khadeejah 5 years ago from Nigeria

      Beautiful I like the way you used nature to describe your struggle.

    • SomewayOuttaHere profile image

      SomewayOuttaHere 5 years ago from TheGreatGigInTheSky

      that was really good!