No Bargaining & Last Legs

No Bargaining & Last Legs

Poetry by Brian Kelly

February 19th, 2023

Last Legs

I grieve and grimace
at knotted calves
and vulgar veins
that were once
my pierced and punctured playthings.
Those days of dashing
to nearby needle banks
delving not depositing
to rummage in the remnants
of others’ residue.
Until an old friend came
never to leave.
Not my brother in blood
but a brother when broken.

Gifting me his time
his presence and his words.
Funneling my flashes
of temper and torment
into serenity and sanity
Looking at my legs again
this time through a different lens
they work, they move.
Like me they’re here
supported by a kind countenance
counselling one step at a time.
Until a day comes
when my legs and willpower weaken
for just one more hit
to get me through life’s shit.
His disapproving glare
is now a curious stare.
This time his choice to follow,
our veins subside and swallow.
My turn now
to hold his falling head
this soothing madness
is where our legs have led.

No Bargaining

In the homewares aisle
of a bargain store
a woman scooped her breast.
No suckling child in sight
instead, a friend.
She bared
they stared
eyes lingering
on the longtime lump
willing it away.

Brian Kelly lives in rural County Down in Northern Ireland, halfway between his home city of Belfast and the beautiful mountains of Mourne. He is now retired from full -time employment having worked in the Healthcare and University sectors for some 38 years. Despite some alleged prowess in English at school he procrastinated successfully from embracing any creative writing during his career! In the past two years he has taken up his fountain pen and finally mastered two-fingered typing to revisit his love of writing. Brian has been fortunate to have both poetry and prose submissions accepted for publication in the UK and USA in this time. It’s never too late to start!

Artwork by Kita Das