ode of a dealt hand
Ode of a dealt hand
Neither sorry nor proud am I to have blooded people,
For to do so is wrong in the eyes of those who have taught me all.
Yet! I know that I would do it all again, should the circumstances call,
And to that beckoning I would rush, with every sinew of my body calling for ‘Full steam!’
Not until the end would I count the tears, especially of those who had not wanted to see that happening; for them I would feel sorrow, but none would I feel more sorrow for than myself...
..The victor, and yet… the victim!
The Victim of those stories of good and Evil from where my Black and White world was formed. All shored up by the Evil of my grasping days, which rained bombs, sank ships and persecuted unarmed innocents merely because of their birth-rites.
That black and white World became so strong that I would fear nothing, so long as I was in the right for Right [by now to me] was Might, and I was strong due to the many, many years I had labored in hard work.
Those bullies, who had never had the good guidance in the way of earning a living or had never been taught respect for anything other than force, were but putty in my hands when caught at their blustering. So too were those jackals of thievery who preyed on ladies purses. ..Not that I looked for such, but my [then] job as a doorman in a city nightclub caused me into frequent collisions with those foes of peace and honesty, those robbers of dignity, those lying scoundrels who would sell their mothers or sisters for a nights’ drunkenness, those loudmouths who would insult for the sake of a laugh and those who would laugh at the sight of unfortunates… all blooded by me. - - - And yet they have never laughed at themselves even though they were the most unfortunate of all; for they had never been properly taught right from wrong nor to respect anything but force!
They respect me now, those who I have blooded, but I feel no gladness for I would sooner have had their respect for the person I am within… for the person my Nan and her’s taught me to be; The one who mirrors respect given. Why did those people have to lose teeth and eyes… and even a life before realizing that I was –and am- not here to fight, merely to live my life in a respectful way and treat everyone similarly. No! I am not proud –nor sorry- that I have blooded people.
…Prison brought color to my Black and White World whilst I waited for those long years to pass; missing my wife, family and friends and knowing that my little girls were living and dying their tender ages without me. ‘If only I had’t killed!’ I so often thought and yet I knew very well that I would do so again… given the same circumstances. It is wrong to do so ‘They say!’ but enpower people to drench you in the kind of entertainment that condones such things as the elimination of bullies!
Bad/evil must go to jail –or die! Ha! What a laugh. What is Bad/evil? That which proffers to lead… and yet misleads and steals at will. Or that which practices nepotism whilst ordering all else to exist on merit alone. Those who reproach whilst they -thankfully- hide behind the cloak of irreproachability, scurrying from bench to bed the wench he must tomorrow jail for prostitution. Ha! Is that not Bad/Evil???
I fiddled my gas meter! Was the cry of one within my cell. The other bowed his head in shame as he quoted his crime of brutal dishonesty against an elderly woman; Too easy a target to all cept the coward he was—no quarter for that rat! Not even for his admission to the fact of his cowardly act, but somewhere in me is a minute pity for this shit whose mother’s afterbirth contained his guts. “So fucking what!” says a visitor to our cell as he swipes the rat with a slap then takes his cigarettes; “He’d never admit it only that we would find out anyway!” He’s from next door; a regular inmate and testimony to youthful realization that we are all being donked by those who are suppose to lead us whilst having their hands in the till or some other lucrative agenda paid for out of the public purse….
….And now my eyes are open, but will I change due to this better understanding of their ways and beliefs? Maybe, maybe not… but I shall be more tolerant of those I think to be offensive until I can be sure they mean no harm to me or mine. Yes prison had put some color into my Black and White World.
Next … I ran the Eagle and Child, my sword still sharp but my temper now mild. Bloodshed in that pub became rare during my days… but only due to my [past] violent ways.
Such is life, I’m sorry to say
I don’t want my son to grow up this way.
So I watch and wonder; The worst in the area are those least taught respect… some no teachings at all; left to fend for themselves so long as peace reigns without circumspect.
No checking clips nor watching eyes, all cause for anti-social and moral demise.
The children of those who care without tough, become fodder for those waifs and stragglers of the parents who have not cared enough.
Street wise, one might say, but without respect it becomes the violent way.
Then drugs flew in to roost; The lack of moral fiber giving that edge a boost.
Now given the sight of all that wealth the hungry forgot the meaning of stealth
Becoming animals they hack and claw to gather and hoard the cash they’ve hungered for,
To feed their wants of glossy things; the cars, the dress, the diamond rings.
Once got, they flaunt in front of hungering throats, which –in turn- changes mice into vicious stoats. That then invites the climb that I am watching all of the time from my podium where my temper is mild as I run that Eagle and Child.
..At first, the police tended to shun me because of my past, but toleration set in as ‘The Peace’ seemed to last; No Meat wagons outside in worrying wait, no ambulances requested for the closing time date. The unruly began treading warily whilst the good people unwound, the growls and snarls gave way to happier, chirpier, sounds. Where once there were worry-lines creasing the heads, a grin or a smile rested there instead…
…For once I was real happy just being me; working by serving or just making the tea. Cracking a joke as I brush the floor, contentment in my belly—who could ask for more??
Nothing comes free… most people say, I was happy –that’s true- but this was the pay:-
Getting them out was a terrible task; If fires were burning they’d still want to finish their glass.
They’d put up with punches, insults or smacks, but taking their ale was the ultimate axe!
To have traveled so far only to be drawn so near, to that thing ‘violence’ all over a beer
It caused my brain to heat up and then to ignite; with the effort of forming a plan to dodge such a fight. My grey matter churned to think of a way; how to placate those drinkers but be rid for that day???
A bright light shone in my head one night, after sighing relief at the door closing tight.
‘A shebeen could be born in a flat up above, a heaven to some into which we could shove, all those boozers whose hands were like vises when holding a glass, even the quiet ones showed defiance by saying: “You can go kiss my ass!”
Enter ‘The Swedish’, a bar like no other; cans and shorts being their only blubber.
Worked like a charm when it came to vacate, ‘for more you went up stairs, or home to your gate’. To the police who wanted the pub closed spot on the time, they wide-eyed –but ignored- the result of my committing such a crime; An empty pub said the peaceful darkness appearing to be, whilst the unlicensed bar upstairs was making lots of money for me. Not that I wanted that side of the ball, my plan for peace was placation for one and for all. The extra cash was not really part of my strategy, But came in useful for other things to be….
….Things like taking lots of kids out – for free- on our bus made to measure
Out in the country to visit the woods for lots of fun and trouble free leisure.
Out from the city to where air is fresh, no matter what the weather.
Out to other cities such as historic York or festive Edinburgh.
Away from the norm that would drag them in,
Away from the temptation to make them sin.
I can now honestly say, to all, just this!
I played my dealt hand to keep kids out of the abyss.
I can say ‘don’t!’ to most who will listen… then recite a real problem, which –to them- may be a lesson!
As for those who know how to dodge all trouble…. Stay on your good path and don’t let anyone burst your most beautiful bubble!