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I wander as a ghost through lamp-lit streets,

Subdued with rain and mist and fog.

The heaviness weighs on my beliefs,

From happy houses a cast-out dog.


I drag behind me sad thoughts lingering

Like a wastrel's baggage he must carry.

Accusing eyes my collars fingering,

Whereaver I go, or stay, or tarry.


This is no land for me, this cannot be.

A dusty shell of once I was

In streets of shame my wandering.

I played in them in my youth,

But wander now as a recluse.

It costs me bitterly to remember them,

As things are now with what was then.


They look the same in my mind's eye,

The friends I knew in this worn town

Still stand by church and chimney

Like steadfast islands defying change,

But only ghosts possess them now,

My only friends when I am down.


The brightest and the best have fled,

And left me dying as I bled.

Others I knew are now dead.


Even then my days were blighted,

Predetermined, forever nighted.


Forgive my sadness, my excuse

Is that I tried to cut too loose

From the rut I was born in,

But only tightened more the screw,

Ploughed deep the rut I'm now in.

I wish I knew.



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