“Donnybrook”

Poem 22 ska-doo. Very close to the end of this run. Just 8 more to go after today. A hearty thanks to Carol S. for dropping today’s inspiration on me. This is for all the tense moments in my youth that were surrounded by faux machismo. Concentrated moments of ultra-violence. Although, they were few and far in between, I still had my share of uncomfortable situations that were reduced to violence for the lack that age’s wisdom provides. It’s laughable how indestructible we all thought we were. Now that time has got a hold of us, and a bunch of folks I grew up with have passed on out of this life, I can see the fragility that was the reality.  It taunts me for having really good luck in not getting caught on the wrong end of a punch that could have had consequences. Also, why have most fights I’ve been involved in or witnessed consisted of at least one or more males taking off their shirts?

 

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“Donnybrook”

The tension is tempurpedic.

One swing at a bystander and we all fall into the mix.

Shouting, spittle, and red faces.

Rocking, lilting, back and forth,

back and forth.

If that prick looks at me the wrong way,

I’m gonna elbow him in the face.

The beer bottle flew past me,

and thick spittle landed in my ocular cavity.

It slid down my nose and hung from my nostril.

I didn’t see where it came from.

Cheapshot.

Eruption.

Rage.

Brawl berserker.

Doffing shirts and tumbling into the fray.

A veritable donnybrook

Lots of sizing up and flinging.

The biggest guy on their side just went down with a busted nose.

He’s crying like a child.

Two guys over there are flailing at each other.

Straight up toe-to-toe, hockey saw punches.

I ran up to two of them and while one was sucking on a cigarette,

I pointed at the other.

Neither expected me to take that pointed hand and smash my elbow into the smoker’s face.

Sparks, buckled knees, blood.

The second guy got the hook return and was laid out cold.

The cops were on the scene, I knew one.

He grabbed me by the shoulders and told me to “get the fuck outta here!”

As I fled, I caught a cheap shot from one of theirs.

Real grinder. Looking for any reason to drop dukes.

He couldn’t gain traction with anyone else,

so he clipped me while I as scurrying away.

I didn’t fall.

I took the punch.

Saline solution gargled for days in order to keep the cut from infection.

The adrenaline felt good.

Almost as good as the time I stood the drunk asshole up,

only to knock him out.

Violence in small doses.

Feeling the lethality of the anxiety pre-fight,

is worse than the blows sustained in the fight.

Tempurpedic tension.

Honorable mention.

That moment when you know its going to go down,

and there is nothing to stop it.

Madness, chaos, purging of anger.

Pepper-spray feels like razor blades slicing through your eyes.

Flushing the red pollution out with Emergency Room toilet water.

Waking up with stained pillows.

The heat is on.

Unscathed.

Pride worn, and served.

An elbow shattered by a pipe.

Litigation.

Dufflebags full of courage.

Put some pins in Doc,

I can handle it.

Apprehension puts you in a box.

Sometimes the only thing violence understands is violence.

 

 

 

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David Redpath

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