The Crooked Shutter

The crooked shutter bangs against the jamb
Then flies back out in an uncertain arc
Weathered by the passage of time
And left in disarray

Thick grime covers the small window
Shadow-thick with erstwhile spirits
Prancing in faded memory
Dancing in slow circles

Reminiscence of time gone by
Faithless in its scrutiny
Relentless in its brutality
Stripped and bare

The old man sits in the upstairs hall
Back flat against the sloping wall
Cautiously timid and afraid
Waiting for yesterday

The house is his steady companion
Faithful and undiscerning
Blinded by love and sympathy
Settled down deep

And he feels it in his ancient bones
As steady as a metronome
Counting deep into the night
Breathing shallow and still

The crooked shutter bangs against the jamb
Shoved aside by the viciously cruel wind
That slides in through the wooden slats
And leaves just as fast

Fading away.

Sam

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