Behind The Bars

Behind The Bars

the chamber door slammed shut
with us behind its bars.

closed in and hungry to see the sunlight
(we have no windows, no air currents,
it gets stuffy after a while).

nothing to look at
except one another.
boring.
very boring.

we’ve been here a long time.
too long/they say not long enough.

sometimes we sing and
take turns playing the cold,
steel bars.
we each have different styles.
i like to play melodies.
he just bangs.
loud, cold, steel bangs.

sometimes we count the bars.
but each time we count them
the result is never the same.
never.

the walls here are ugly.
the paint is chipping.
there is no window
so the walls will have to do.

once a week
maybe longer/shorter
separately
we leave.

they show us the sun.
they give us a good meal and let us drink wine.
they let us play solitaire.

then they take us back.
they never talk to us though.
do they know how?

sometimes while we are trying to sleep
we can hear laughter.
they are probably drunk.
they drink the wine we do not finish.
we think they are crazy.
but at least they can laugh.

what do they think of us?
would knowing really matter, ’cause
we’re behind bars.
boring.
very boring.

the paint on the walls is chipping.
it keeps peeling off.
maybe some day we can count the
coats of paint.

one day
i started playing a song on the bars
and they came.
they took him away.
i think he is gone now.
he never came back.
they will not tell me.
can they talk?

i am alone.

there is no window.
the paint is still chipped.
we never got around
to count the coats.
the bars are still cold.
the walls still ugly.

i wonder if it is spring yet?
i do not know.
they have not come around
in a long time to let me
see the sun, eat well, drink wine and play cards.
i don’t hear laughter anymore,
did they run out of wine?

am i the only one here?
or am i dying into these ugly chipped walls
behind these cold steel bars?

boring.
very boring.

_______________________________© dld (1978-79)

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