The Dark Side Holds No Fiction by Paul Tristram

It has a stark, brutal Reality all of its own.
Beggars, Pocket-Thieves & Tuppenny Uprights
are much more than squalid, scenic decoration.
Violence, close-at-hand, but, not felt by impact,
ricochets in sounds…
Razors, a screeching whistle,
Kickings, bass drum beats,
& Strangulation, sounds just like a broken sewer pipe
a-hissing & a-gurgling.
Each Corner, inhabited by Foot Soldiers…
learn to read Gang Graffiti
or pay the way of the snare.
The Muggers refer to themselves
as Moonlight Tax Collectors.
Shoe-Shines are Lanterns (Lookouts)
& Errand Boys
are simply the best dwelling Scopers in Town.
The Abortion Clinic, at the back of the Abattoir,
pulses like a heartbeat
& smells of almonds & marzipan
as you saunter on past.
This is not the way of the tourist,
nor lightweight weekend-warrior.
There is nothing romantic about VD,
broken ribs whilst itinerant,
the DTs in a police cell after bleeding…
or bedding down where the stray dogs don’t even piss,
in the Winter rain, with busted mind & shipwrecked soul.

Paul Tristram is a Welsh writer who has poems, short stories, sketches and photography published in many publications around the world, he yearns to tattoo porcelain bridesmaids instead of digging empty graves for innocence at midnight; this too may pass, yet. Buy his books ‘Scribblings Of A Madman’ (Lit Fest Press) ‘Poetry From The Nearest Barstool’ at And a split poetry book ‘The Raven And The Vagabond Heart’ with Bethany W Pope at You can also read his poems and stories here!

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