A Prayer Before Sleep

Jack searched the neighborhood as if he’d lost something.

Looking up and down the street, crossing sidewalks, he meandered auspiciously as if he’d forgotten where he was going.

Jack found himself in a state of neither here nor there.

The chill of February hung round his shoulders like a thin shawl.

It was his morning walk but to what ends—to what means?

Tires squealed in the distance.

Birds began their daily routine.

Automatic lights turned themselves off.

And what emerged from the tree line? Sure enough, as it had so many times before, the sun.

Jack knew that it would be long before the sun warmed his chapped fingers but at least it shed some light on his path.

Nothing was right or wrong, indeed, it was too early for such nonsense.

But still Jack did all he could to remember what he was looking for and why he’d been so eager to rise this morning before his alarm clock could shout obscenities to his ear.

It was the reflection of the sun off an old car window which caused him to touch his brow, where when removed, his hand revealed a thin layer of blood.

He couldn’t remember how or when he’d received such a gash, which the window now showed, laughingly.

Realizing where he was, he’d found what he’d been looking for, though it was as fragmented, cracked, and littered as the sidewalk that led him home.

Before entering the thought of knocking crossed his mind, but why? He lived here. This was his home.

The house was silent except for Jack.

He laid in bed as if it were the evening and since he wasn’t a praying man, he sang softly to himself.

It was more or less what praying had done for any other man before him, and would do for anyone else who’d find him thereafter.

It was then he turned off his alarm clock and shut his eyes.



Far off in the distance they scream.

“Someone is going to die!”

Passing by the window now is another.

“Someone is going to die!”

Turning to page 359, I’m reminded.

“Someone is going to die!”

And I could describe the flashing lights.
Or the screeching of tires.
The anxiety.
The awesome routine of the Ambulance Driver.

Though my better judgement tells me other wise.

Not do describe the pain.
The wailing.
Or the fact that Sirens are neutral.
And that red is the only conceivable color to match.

“Someone is going to die!”

Turning to page 404.

“Someone is going to die!”

And another passes.

“Someone is going to die!”
“Someone is going to die!”
“Someone is going to die!”
“Someone is going to die!”

Farther off in the distance now,

like a tribal chant, you can almost dance to it’s rhythm.

Wee-Woo, Wee-Woo
wee-woo, wee-woo