Wretched Old Man

You’ll do best to go back where you came from,

You don’t want to be much around me—

For I’m lost, and I’m weak,

And I’ve heard that I reek

Of the workers of hell and their fiends.

 

I lost my soul to a man in a matchbox,

Gave my body to surgeons unclean—

But when judgment day came,

Through my begging and screams

They walked on.

No one came back for me.

 

I have wandered these roads hence untraveled,

I have planted my roots in the sand, in the sea—

But for all of my knowledge,

For all of my pain,

I still hate what the mirror tells me.

 

I have emptied the chalice of malice,

I have swallowed the pill of despair—

Yet, despite all my sins on this terrible fringe,

Still I wander what good might live there.

 

But I ramble too much for good hearing,

Pray go back to the place whence you came—

For if you linger with evil,

Good things start to change:

It becomes who you are, just the same.

 

You’re more stubborn than first I expected,

It’s no wonder you’re nobody’s wife—

See my patience grow thin,

Hear my warnings and cringe—

Have you now disregarded your life?

 

I will tell you one thing, if you’ll hear it,

I will tell you a rumor I’ve known—

Through the smog and the smoke,

There’s a legendary hope,

That this curse might be still overthrown.

 

I will give you my heart, though it’s broken,

And a chance to be mended, if granted by Time—

But if all that I feel must be spoken,

Then, my dear, we may this way expire,

Your fingers in mine.

 

I will hold your dead hand if you’ll bear it,

I will answer your questions as best I can—

For my sins were so bold,

And my heart was so cold,

But you gave an old shadow a chance.

 

You’ve resurrected this wretched old man.

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