Alan Falkingham

My tormentor wears a tired look, to the bone,
Tired from years of carrying all the weight,
Of guilt and of all the God damn lies.
Who can ever sleep again after innocence is stolen?
Who can rest when there is no respite to be had?
From memories carried over the steaming coals of hell.

Hungry newshounds click away, urged on and on,
In time to the rhythm of the accusations,
Another story, every day, relentless,
Steady as blood pumping from a severed artery,
The truth revealed at last, the guilty exposed,
Each one emerging from the shadows of their lies.

I have watched as the others have been crucified,
Heard the prosecutions and the protestations
Their silence and all their evasions,
Or the groveling apologies and regrets, laid bare,
As if that matters now; as if that helps,
I have shaken my head, as the truthfulness spills

But now it is me, walking in Gethsemane,
Her kiss tells a story, twisted by imagination,
And those hungry dogs lap at it, feasting away,
Burying me with their words, without a sound,
Their soil inters me, and I cannot scream,
No matter how loud I shout, no-one hears.

For what is clear is murky, like mist,
Hugging the contours of the earth,
Her true intentions are jumbled,
And a story has a beginning long before its end,
Which has no demons and no angels,
Until this moment of her final act.

My friends too now shake their heads,
My wife looks at a lover she does not know,
Her doubts fragile, taut as a heart string,
My children see the hands that lifted them high,
Then read about those same hands on social feeds,
Left alone to reconcile the unreconcilable.

But what is left to protest if the gallows are set,
And the hangman has already tied her noose?
Truth falls with me, hard through the trap door,
A life broken, like the snapping of a vertebrae.
The crowd cheers, another man is downed!
Soon there will be no-one left.