End of the Line

(In response to  ‘End of the Line’ (oil on canvas) by the American artist, Adam Scott Rote; dedicated to Ernest Hemingway)

 

Everything is still here:

his old typewriter with its rusted keys;
the inevitable whisky glass, complete with amber residue,
and the up-ended bottle; defiantly the finest of malts,
though its bouquet has long been displaced by
sea-breezes infiltrating the broken pane.

The dust is new;

or at least that covering the fallen flakes of paint is new.
Older, accumulated layers long preceded the décor’s demise,
cushioning its fall onto the sun-scorched pine table,
where fragments of yesteryear now lay scattered
like discarded words;

lost and abandoned words;
words lacking ordered meaning;
words fallen from the disused roller that,
but for the want of paper, could
say so much, yet explain so little

if it wasn’t for the keys;

two keys;
house and car, clinging for security
to the dry, faded leather fob on which
the outline of his initial can still be traced
like a tactile echo,

driving the eye to beyond the window,
where palm trees and vivid blue sky
contrast with the internal decay,
and the gently lapping waves on sand
have long since obliterated his footprints.

© Copyright Robert M Jaggs-Fowler 2012

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