He entered our pub at nine
camel-hair-coated and silver-haired
a wealthy man
far from home
but walking to a tune of wealthy woodwind
and persuasive percussion,
he carried a frown on his lapel,
sinister and silencing.
… and we ceased talking,
about football and women hiding behind
the foam of lukewarm ale,
but the barmaid did her best to smile
she straightening her shirt
pulled the bangs from her face and asked,
“What can i get you…. sir?”
He stared with acid eyes,
and his penetrating pause
tickled each of us until he’d made sure:
“She’s not here… “,
his voice much smaller than his hands.
The barmaid poured a glass of rye,
and he drank as we watched
him shrivel to another empty husk…
… just like us.