Old Joe

The way his life
Crumbled in stages

As the world
Took one step back

Was the final
Stuttered joke.

Skin that shone
Like peanuts,

Warm and salted
In a bowl,

A face of maps
And hands like leather,

Old Joe
Was a drowning folk song;

The only time
He ever smiled
Was singing in the toilet,

Eyeballs bathed
In smoke and drink.

An old dog
Orbiting his shadows,

Socks upon the carpet,
Strangers’ tears
Between his toes,

Old Joe used to go
With the flow
Like draught beer,

But the fears
He was fading
Were real.

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One Response to “Old Joe”

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