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On the Night I Died

by Darren Swift

On the night I died
I lay still, tubed;
the machine's rickey tick tick
forcing air in and out.

Aware but unaware
my heart beat, birded,

I danced then
with a vengeful god
his vile thoughts meshed
with mine. He showed me
the stars, mere holes
in a fabric of time,
of which I no longer
took part.

We flew low over
terraced hills where I
once walked with love;
he smiled as he smote,
smoothing, shaping until
I recognised nothing.

We trod amongst
detritus and debris
as he replayed my kills;
righteous or not those
men still bled
into spouse's sleeves,
lover's laps.

Finally we met the gates,
patrolled and peter'd
he stepped through
before the barrier fell.
I was dismissed before the dawn
battered back into a body
ill-fitting for a warrior.

Warrior no more,
I walk a new path now;
not to enter the gates
but to help others avoid
the journey I took that night,
the night I died.


Posted on 10/12/2006
Copyright © 2024 Darren Swift

Member Comments on this Poem
Posted by Anne Engelen on 10/16/06 at 01:11 PM

this just leaves me quiet and reflective. Most enjoyable read!

Posted by Paganini Jones on 08/13/07 at 08:03 PM

Yes. One of the best things I have read in a good while. I like the suggestion above of trimming the first two verses.

Posted by Laurie Blum on 08/20/10 at 12:03 PM

I am so glad this is POTD, I might never have come across it other wise. This is a great poem Darren, you are a skilled story-teller. This is intriguing and captivating. It flows and wraps around me as I read it... again and again. The message is one I need to be reminded about too. Excellent choice for POTD!

Posted by Wendy Sparling on 08/20/10 at 02:59 PM

I am so taken with the message in this poem. It makes me reflect on my own life and how I can improve. Congrats on your POTD, it is well deserved.

Posted by Chris Sorrenti on 08/20/10 at 04:10 PM

Nicely worded twist to the old "second chance" theme. I sense a video gamer sub-theme going on here, considering the message in S5. Cool poem all round.

Posted by Linda Fuller on 08/20/10 at 05:04 PM

Adding my kudos on a well-deserved POTD.

Posted by Sigurdur Haraldsson on 08/21/10 at 12:27 AM

Congrats on the POTD and well deserved! Loved it.

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