Martin McLean


Lone Walker


On my street walk intriguing life stories.
Secrets are revealed in stride and posture.
Those of extreme gait are most emphatic
Yet so mystifying that I could write
For each, alternative biographies.

The woman is old yet tall and big boned.
Her upper body is angled at least
Forty five degrees to the hips and waist.
She climbs the modest hill to the bus stop
Like a mountaineer up a sheer rock face,
With stick, half an hour for fifty metres.

She never relaxes her determined scowl,
Avoiding eye contact with all who pass.
So insistently self-affirming that
To offer support would seem insulting.

Long term residents know another story.
In a wheelchair, she was pushed up the hill
By a man, for who she was little more
Than a convenient theatrical perop.

Similar age, he looked much fitter, yet
Overdramatised his toiling effort.
When a woman or girl passed he paused
To make lewd, crude and suggestive remarks.
His task gave him relative immunity.
For his charge repeated ignominy.

The man has gone. Perhaps an odd woman
Welcomed his proposal. Or another
Battered him so badly that he is
Now in timeless medical custody
Either outcome is possible in my street.

Poetic justice would have his patient
Gather her strength, murder, put the body
In the freezer. As elderly care goes
In our community, none would notice.
And the women of the locality
Would swear he had gone to Vladivostok.

Many morals for this tale are possible.
The obvious will do. Solitary
Self-sufficiency is never worse
A state than intolerable coupledom.

Submitted: Monday, November 11, 2013

Do you like this poem?
0 person liked.
0 person did not like.

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Comments about this poem (Lone Walker by Martin McLean )

Enter the verification code :

  • Karen Sinclair (1/17/2014 10:07:00 AM)

    Wonderfully realistic yet how the mind wanders further than the hill ahead. My favourite of your works. Just so easy and uncomplicated yet with twines meandering. Tyvm karen (Report) Reply

Read all 2 comments »

Top Poems

  1. Phenomenal Woman
    Maya Angelou
  2. The Road Not Taken
    Robert Frost
  3. If You Forget Me
    Pablo Neruda
  4. Still I Rise
    Maya Angelou
  5. Dreams
    Langston Hughes
  6. Annabel Lee
    Edgar Allan Poe
  7. If
    Rudyard Kipling
  8. I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings
    Maya Angelou
  9. Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
    Robert Frost
  10. Invictus
    William Ernest Henley

PoemHunter.com Updates

New Poems

  1. Silence breaker, SALINI NAIR
  2. I Died in My Dream Last Night, Monk E. Biz
  3. Jelousy, Karen Thornburg
  4. Knowledge with Wisdom, Joseph Narusiewicz
  5. voice of thee, binod bastola
  6. DREAMS, Philo Yan
  7. I need her in my eyes, Pradip Chattopadhyay
  8. The Ocean Swallows Another Day~~~, Monk E. Biz
  9. Dreams of Mind Reading, Brian Johnston
  10. Fences. They Are Everywhere, Lawrence S. Pertillar

Poem of the Day

poet Sara Teasdale

I thought of you and how you love this beauty,
And walking up the long beach all alone
I heard the waves breaking in measured thunder
As you and I once heard their monotone.

...... Read complete »

   
[Hata Bildir]