Tony and Vicky

A poem by John Grey

Tony’s family lay in waste behind him.
But he still had more bridges to burn,
and houses and bodies too.

At least he knew that he was screwing everybody over
Such self-realization was a break of a kind.

He went out that night
because he couldn’t stand to be
in the room any longer
with nothing but black thoughts
and tight throat.

But then he was afraid of being by himself.

He had to talk to somebody,
somebody so screwed up themselves,
they had no choice but to listen.

That’s when he met Vicky,
a new conquest
to be left bloody and burnt
in his wake.

Except she was just the same as he was.
Maybe worse if that were possible.

Their life together was like two punch-drunk fighters
stumbling about the ring, too weary, too ham-fisted,
to land the final blow.

A few that knew them were convinced that
they’d found true love at last.

Or a fair contest at least.


John Grey is an Australian poet, US resident. Recently published in New Plains Review, Perceptions and Sanskrit with work upcoming in South Carolina Review, Gargoyle, Owen Wister Review and Louisiana Literature.

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