passing laments on the highway of the blessed

Lamentation (The Mourning of Christ) by Giotto

lamentations and lust 
and sometimes we just fight 
making love for a moment 
and it doesn’t feel right 
these children a’ crying 
these dogs that don’t bark 
superstition and faith 
holding hands in the dark 
and i met you once 
on the way to success 
and where you are now 
i can only guess 
and me, i don’t know 
i must still be here 
waiting for the smoke 
of ambition to clear 
or just walking in this mansion 
of circling dreams 
with uneven floors 
and busted out screens 
and the wolves howling 
outside like the rains 
that lash so fiercely 
against these windowpanes 
or stuck in the lull 
lying somewhere between 
the stillness of nothing 
and something unseen 
and i had to get out 
the air was too thick 
all these freshly painted regrets 
were making me sick 
so i punched my way 
through these thin gypsum walls 
and i won’t be there 
to answer your calls 
and maybe i never was 
really, at all 
an aberration, a spectre 
a spook in the hall 
so send me a letter 
if you know how to write 
and i’ll read it like scripture 
in the dark of the night 
because somehow 
i forgot my lines in this play 
and the costume i wore 
never fit so much, anyway 
and these visions, johanna 
they never made any sense 
and now they’re torn and they’re twisted 
like this old wire fence 
and the farmer’s a memory 
his cows are all gone 
and i got drunk last night 
and i slept past the dawn 
and i woke to revise 
these thoughts in my head 
but perspective had left me 
over something i’d said 
and now there’s nothing 
but the hallowing roar 
of the lingering spirits 
that don’t dance anymore 
and i hear them, maria 
and how can it be these footsteps 
they’re always following me 
and i hid from you once 
and i might hide again 
and if you close your eyes 
we could try to pretend 
that laughter and love 
are always to find 
hiding like children 
in the back of your mind 
and this world has no rules 
just boundaries we define 
and illusion likes to smile 
when she crosses those lines 
and sometimes i can’t breathe 
sometimes i’m okay 
rising like the sun 
turning darkness to day

Greg Alston is a gardener, cook, father and some other things, too.