Chiaroscuro

*An old creative writing prompt, so Mr. Gowan if you see this, this was from your class.  I found a lot of my old writings from the class.  A good amount of it is on here already but this was one I thought I lost that I really liked.  About wandering the streets and reflecting on the world…Some British slang is thrown in here as well… there are parts in quotations, I can’t remember at all where they are quoted from but I remember it being part of the prompt to use them.  So this is the original. Anything in quotations is not mine unless the words are in italics to express the character’s thoughts.*

 

“Upon a rain-slick, chilled asphalt street,

Particolored neon skimmers like wormy rainbows into corners.

Glutted with green and brown aluminum beer containers.”

He walks alone int he city slums, on the broken asphalt of the boulevard.

The wanderer looks around to see the masochists with their fags lit.

He turned at the corner onto the avenue in the district.

The red light was burning bright, with the hypocrites paying with their quids.

He looks at them in disgust, the Spitzers and the sinners.

He looks down at the torn newspapers soaked in the rainwater.

“The dull white newsprint absorbs the crying red light.”

He wishes it were good, but the words just say the same as what’s on the subway walls.

The taggers, the junkies, the toms, and the thieves.

He just doesn’t understand how things got this way.

He looks over to the alleyway to see the nutters tripping from the Charlie.

“Nearby, a railcar clackers across hissing stems of steel.”

He hears the noise and sees the beaten and bruised on the car.

He sees the sorry bloke choking up his claret.

This is just the aftermath of one missed payment to the boss.

He becomes scared as he makes his way back home.

He takes notice of all he’s seen so far, and starts to cry.

He’s normally strong but tonight is too much for him.

Peter can’t grasp the world he sees at the east end.

He bows his head and starts to wonder:

“How the politicians were taken in by what they sought to defeat.

How the hellish gangs took over the streets.

How the red light thrives in the view of the daylight,

How the junkies suffer out in plain sight.”

Alone in his thoughts as the sounds of the streets surround him.

“No footfall breaks the hissing cacophony;

No hand slides shut a window to close out the rain.”

He’s Alone, and the only one who seems to care.

He passes the broken church and the hypocrites who inhabit it.

He sees the funeral hearse drive the doctor who betrayed his religion.

He again wonders what this small world is coming to:

“How did it all come to this?

How did the world throw itself into such an abyss?”

He remembers a time when things weren’t so bad.

A time, when his own life wasn’t all he had.

After he left his past behind, this became his new life,

Stuck in a cardboard box in the side streets without even a wife.

He would cry himself to sleep that night.

 

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