Do you feel lucky, punk?
But no, do you feel?
Do you feel the sun upon your face,
Warming you in the last race
Against the cold death
That you can feel waiting with tightened breath
In your stomach?
Can you feel that heartbeat
Spurring against your sides like the feet
Of a galloping runaway horse?
Can you feel
What the cold lead will push aside,
Bleeding black till you die?
Do you feel the sense
Of knowing that you want another chance?
Don’t do it, kid.
Don’t make me
Take it all away from you.


Before the Threshold

One day I will find myself standing before that unmortal arch,
That stretches to encompass earth’s mighty bourn,
And all those born will surely pass its bound.
Beyond, who knows?
A door may yield both ways,
And outside the mere entrance to a grander in.
The crowd that sways in agonized expectation floods through,
The throng sighing in whispers of all land’s tongues,
And yet each man walks through coldly alone.
Yet not unlit: for gleaming in the crowd stand tall angels of humanity
Casting light not theirs, for the blind to see.
Their steps are clustered round with those that fear the dark.
Black veils and empty arches hold no fear for these,
Beyond them lies the home they always sought.
I, too, am prodigal from that land:
Be patient yet one minute, oh Father:
My feeble light forbids but feeble steps.
I give my last breath to the world’s restless wind,
Unweighed by sorrow’s cursed gravity.
Home on the horizon, heart raised like a victorious banner
Soon to set foot upon the firm, strong soil
Of that good land.