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THE PRISONER (in the tower)

THE PRISONER (in the tower)

The grumpy judge sentenced him to jail for life
for he had killed three men for raping his wife
they had beaten her until she was in comatosenes
six weeks she had been in hospital, such a mess
they said she may stay that way a long while
and he could not see her, that made him so vile
as he was imprisoned in remand all that time
his heart ached but he never regretted the crime
he was sent to the maximum security prison
in an dirty isolated cell at the top of tower one
inside he sat soundless upon the concrete floor
with an old friendly guard just outside the door
they let him out daily to exercise for an hour
the old guard always saw his face was so sour
this went on for weeks without a word spoken
until one day when the silence was broken
a tennis ball he had requested from the guard
so he can do something in the exercise yard
the guard brought him the item the next day
and for the first time he smiled in a joyful way

The guard observed him as he played with ball
as he sat bouncing it hard against the cell wall
he would catch it on the rebound and squeeze it
for many months he did this until the ball split
the guard renewed it wondering why he did this
and asked him why, but the only reply was a hiss
more tennis balls were damaged as time went by
the guard quickly supplanted them with a sigh
in his left, then the right the prisoner squeezed
and each time he did it he seemed to be pleased
also in the yard he did many push ups constantly
on his fingertips for the hour, the guard could see
for another six months this went on without fail
the prisoner never received visitors or any mail
the guard felt sorry for him but not a word said
left each night wondering when he went to bed

It was nearly two years when he decided to go
he approached the barred cell window very slow
he was alone, the guard had finished for the day
the tower was built with bricks made of hard clay
he wrapped his fingers around the metallic bar
in the distant night he heard the sound of a car
he pulled with a jerk, the bar came loose easily
and soon all of other bars were wrenched free
the full moon was visible and it glowed through
shining on his smiling face as if the satellite knew
he hoisted himself to the window in the cell wall
with a quick glance inside at a crushed tennis ball
legs first, he dangled as he gripped onto the ledge
far down below he could barely just see a hedge
he reached for the mortar gap above a nearby brick
the space between each ceramic was 10 mm thick
into the crumbly mortar, his fingers gripped firmly
the other hand, he reached as far as he could see
he was now clinging to the wall of the high tower
time to test the capability of his fingertips' power
he edged his way down the brickwork very slow
the pain was immense, but he continued on the go
eventually the skin tore from his aching fingertips
his face contorted and saliva oozing from his lips
as he moved further down, blood began to seep
made it slimy and his determination hard to keep
a few more grips had worn his tips to the bone
but he kept his painful screams to a low moan
just below his feet, he could now see an opening
amid the blood, sweat and tears he began smiling
onto that window ledge it did not take him long
in his heart he felt he could sing a joyous song

He entered the room, exhausted, it was so dark
then the a light switched on as quick as a spark
he blanketed his eyes with his bloodied digits
with the bones projected, skin falling in little bits
once his vision adjusted, his sight was barely able
in front of him he noticed a full bottle on a table
he looked up and saw the old guard sitting there
the guard gestured for him to sit in a nearby chair
''today is my retirement day'' softly said the guard
''I wondered why you squeezed that ball so hard''
the guard pushed the bottle of rum to the prisoner
''I knew escaping tonight was the night you'd prefer''
he stared at the guard amid the dust in his eyes
and in the distance he could hear the dingos' cries
the guard continued, ''I had waited for this day
I would not retire 'til I saw you do it, I must say''
he took a drink before the guard said some more
also he could not speak because of feeling so sore
''today, I had found out something about your wife,
a few months ago the, the doctors ended her life''
the prisoner just lowered his head without a word
he could not believe at all what he had just heard
''crikey I am really sorry mate, I, I wish I knew
but we were alone in the tower, just me an' you''
the guard rose from his chair and approached him
''they said her chances of coming to was very slim''
the prisoner's heart inside his spirit began to mourn
before dropping his hands to his side, fingers torn
the guard went to him as night turned into day
before realizing that the prisoner had passed away
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Submitted on April 19, 2016

4:45 min read

Quick analysis:

Closest metre Iambic hexameter
Characters 4,729
Words 949
Stanzas 5
Stanza Lengths 1, 20, 16, 32, 30

Mick Reid

I like to write all sorts of themes in my poetry. i mainly use rhyming poetry, some from personal experiences and some from characters i develop in my mind. i can be very strong with emotional use in my poetry. some have little twists, real life situations, humor and of course love, sadness, ect. more…

All Mick Reid poems | Mick Reid Books

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