My brother walked down a darkened street,
head hung low and shuffled feet.
He happened upon an alleyway,
met a man who said he was the way.
So my brother emptied his pockets, explaining it’s all he had,
the man patted his shoulder and graciously laughed.
So my brother let him be,
turn his back and headed to the street.
In a stagger, he tripped on a stone,
he fell flat on his face and let out a moan.
A whisper of a prayer came out in his breath;
“Years of drinking will lead to death.”
A shout of a curse echoed down the street
but enough strength came, and he rose to his feet.
Dizzy and dazed, he could barely see,
so my drunken brother had himself a seat.
It was just then midnight, so the bell told.
Rain drizzled down; the wind blew him cold.
On the bench at 12:05,
there he promised he’d change his stride.
He promised to God he’d change his life,
if only the Lord would sustain him through the night.
And though the Lord is loving and kind,
there on that bench, my drunken brother died.
Archives: Spring 2010.