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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Poetry  |  House: Booksie Classic


You may cheat it once, you may cheat it twice,

but death is a spiteful creature, insensitive to propitiations, and

when a third time comes along he takes what’s his, then puts you

on a train so ordinary you stare out its window like you normally would

imagining a stick figure running over the passing landscape alongside

the train jumping over fences and houses, creeks and ditches

before disappearing in the all-concealing, yet serene, thickening mist.


Averting your gaze from the now view-less window to the man across, that

attracted your attention because he tensely taps a terrible non-rhythm on

his armrest and takes you back to middle school, banging on a xylophone

following the teacher’s pace, but paying no heed to tone

nor volume and continuing to do so long past miss Bennett’s

gentle signal to stop, while staring at her challengingly only

to end up in the hallway for a time-out so you can wave

at that cute girl in the class next door.


Overhead is your suitcase, in the therefor intended racks,

full of things unknown which you felt odd for bringing along but

the winged women in white wearily wove you off when you asked about it

and exasperated you like only Jim Donahue could when he inadvertently

insisted on impeding you of achieving momentary greatness

by begging to stop when you were finally ready to take the leap

to start the most dangerous wingsuit flight ever attempted and he still

urged you to think it over, and in hindsight you realize it might have been

wise to listen as that was the first time you poked the bear called death.



After the brief darkness upon entering a tunnel, the lights turn on

in the compartment of the train and you see a woman,

eyes wide from panic and red from continuous crying, hunched

over her teenage child and you are reminded of your wife as she

laid over your hospital bed, after your second prodding of death,

crying and longing for a long lost love after a terrible flurry

of incoherent curses, all inexplicably implying that your carelessness

needs to cease in order to protect those dear to you from the pain of losing

one’s father, one’s son, one’s husband.


The woman suddenly gets dragged from under her child by an unseen force

to your side of the train, right before it gets ripped in two down the middle

from front to back, the space between each side broadening as each

follow a different track, and she screams to her kid as he cries for her

like your son did right before you met death a third time

posing as a tree and together with gravity granted you a grand exit, then

you watched as death hauled you from the hollow host that was your

former body and testily ignored your tenacious struggle and dragged

you toward the train that takes you to through the abyss to a destination unknown



Submitted: March 25, 2017

© Copyright 2021 RandomPenName. All rights reserved.

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Add Your Comments:


B Douglas Slack

Nice to see you writing again, Rorick. This piece is especially intriguing. A combination of dream and reality, but headed ina singular direction as all our lives are.


Thu, March 30th, 2017 9:13pm


Hi Bill,

I'll send you a PM right after this. Just wanted to thank you for your wonderfull comment!

Tue, April 11th, 2017 11:56am

sara westwood

I’m new to this website and I was just looking through some stuff, but this is definitely the best one yet. You really have an amazing writing style and you use the perfect words. I really want to thank you for sharing this marvellous piece. You should write more!

Fri, April 12th, 2019 7:40pm

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