FOR MARCEL GIROUX

“A Montreal gas-station attendant was tied up, doused with gasoline and set on fire yesterday.¨                           The Montreal Gazette, April 2, 1989

 

Not the regular guy gasing

tonight Marcel’s in Hotel Dieu

eyes and mouth torched shut

by a thief for a money box.

 

He waits mute

for his charred skin to cement

stiff and heavy like burnt steak

in the hospital baths

it peels off

in black chunks and floats

like dead  fish in the Black Sea,

new skin resurrects

in tight purple furrows

the raped whiteness irreversible.

 

Thief’s silver pieces weren’t enough

urge to crucify

to spike Marcel’s delicate skin

with the sharp flames darting

from inside his ravaged mind,

he skipped away in triumph

wiping Marcel’s spit from his cheek.

 

My child strapped in her car seat

distracted by all the monster tractors

blinding neons

skyscraper yellow arches

drops her umbilical Teddy without wailing

and for that mesmerized moment is transfixed

by all the deafening motors

glitter of plastic lights

oblivious to the womb

warmth of her friend.

 

Was it so for the thief?

that temporary distraction from humanity,

did he not recognize his own

brother’s brown eyes?

or smell the sweat of human fear

as he struck

the match?

 

From the darkened back seat

an impatient cry,

I reach back quickly

to nurture

that fragile link.

 

McRites Press                                                   ©Murielle Cyr 2012

 

 

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About Murielle Cyr

Writer, organic gardener, soapmaker, listener.
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