One He Was by John D Robinson

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ONCE HE WAS

Of a rugged stocky muscular
build; bald head and tattooed
knuckles; a one time gangster’s
henchman, or as he prefers,
‘a bodyguard to one of the most
ugliest and ruthless men known
in the criminal world’
an ex-addict
an ex-jailbird
an ex-husband and father
an ex-drug dealer
an ex-money launderer
and car thief
pimp
burglar
bare knuckle fighter
and presently, now,
a frightened and weak and
haunted man who doesn’t
walk out alone, who suspects
every sound and movement
outside of his apartment
who has become a prisoner
of himself and of his past
afraid of now
and not back then
when he was without mercy
when he was fearless and
felt invincible
and now he is lonely and vulnerable
and he is looking for
help and mercy
and he looks at me for it
and I’m not in a position to
offer him a great deal
and he tells me that at one
time he’d had slit my throat
and walked away without
another thought about it;
well, I thought
this is now and not back then
so
fuck you
and I walked away
without a 2nd thought about it.

C_UsersJohnPicturesJohn-D-RJohn D Robinson was born in 63 in the UK; his poems have appeared widely in the small press and online literary journals including; Rusty Truck; Red Fez; Hobo Camp Review; Rats Ass Review; Down In The Dirt; Yellow Mama; Outsider Poetry; Chicago Record; Horror Sleaze and Trash; BoySlut; In Between Hangovers; He is a contributing poet to the 2016, 48th Street Press Broadside Series.

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