I heard that crack. I heard the swing and creak

Of splitting steel and wood so long ago.

Since that single day I’ve dwelt in the half-light 

Of scorn and tears and choked off screams that I know.

 

A congested traffic of feet and mutters crowded 

The scene where it happened. Lifeless guilt 

Was borne out on the stretcher, breathing hard 

Like the injured whose faces looked like silt.

 

The black stoplight that swayed then turned green,

I now remember. People, cars and choices 

Then went separate ways beyond that point.

Then my past had left the coffin's grinding voices.

 

Each day now brings the oiled confab with friends;

Each week now fast forwards birthdays and dates.

Each year now dogs my mind with the rake of screeches,

The sound that rattles my head with fanged debates.

 

I muscle through the probing grim inquests 

And shuffle fears into smiles to get ahead.

But one glance at your discoloured photo 

And progress comes slowing down, seeing red.