Rat Race Club Ship

Bludgeon the lust with this pretty little club

It’s a lonely heart requirement for membership

Holding open elections for captain of the bleeding ship

Adjusting the rabbit ears trying to fight through the static

Every card punch leading to that free lunch

Has your depression running manic and frantic

Life’s a bitch and happiness a slap to the face

Cut up that card and get out of this place

Your fortified walls only keeping the other ones out

The ones who can stomp out this worry and doubt

Reaching out seeking for another drug

Another shot of endorphin coursing through your freeway

Stoplights flashing down upon the lane paint

White and yellow lines carve the pathway to heartache

Take your medicine for the pain grinding on your tongue

Scarred up with bite marks from keeping thoughts to yourself

Deep down only wanting it to leak out from the floodgates

But the sandbags you throw up reach way above the waist

Ball and chain locked down tight on you slowing your pace

The pretty scribbles on your speech note cards transfer to your face

Written down your neck under your plain clothes from a thrift store

Money stretched thin and you count your emotional quarters

There’s a hole in your pocket and you know you can’t afford this

Can’t borrow anymore credit to drink and try and forget it

So you keep stuck in this pine box accessorized with padlocks

Lost keys jingling somewhere in the outside world

Fumbling around for a pick or a screwdriver

Just trying to unlock the cell so you can reach inside her

Then pull out all of your mutual demons through a courtship

The waters rushing in and this ship is still sinking

And all you can do is stand dumbfounded steady blinking

Reaching deep down for words that aren’t there

Since that cat came and ripped your tongue from your mouth

Drug it through the house and got it caught inside a mousetrap

Where every waking moment feels like the sting from a spinal tap

Freedom only comes with the familiar click and sound of a gun clap

Liberty in a bullet carved on the shell is a ticket straight from hell

But the cowardice of what comes after shreds that paper

So save your departure for a day that comes a little bit later

Keep strong as an ox on the outside but dig a little deeper

On the inside you find a broken music box with a neglectful keeper

The notes drag on and on never sounding the same

No melody remains no harmony contains what you feel there

Only plays the tune as the ship is going down

Choking on the saltwater runnin’ down your written up face

Drowning in the ashes she left when she burned that lace gown

Leaves you with a dry mouth and a thirst for the thickness of blood

But the only IV you have is the one in your own arm

So drink deep then relax in this little animal farm

A crooked gate at the entrance to your personal little zoo

All you keep doin’ is running to pace in love’s rat race

Keep lookin’ at that finish line just over the horizon

Then pray to whatever god you have that one day you reach it

Until then just revel in your madness

Keep pressing for her to find in you what you do in her

Till one day you cross that line and you have finally won.

© Jesse Cole 2011
Published by Short Stack Story Time 2014

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