| Whiskey Lullaby |

In an era of little more than mayhem

Of rattlesnake bites and violent delights

Of war cries and whiskey lullabies

A duo stood prepared to duel

Betwixt the gritty milieu

Of makeshift tombstones

Rotted driftwood crosses strewn

Among precarious blooms of kingcup

High noon rays unabashedly splayed

Across the Mojave cliff sides

Shadows loom like Sioux saddle hides

On a scorched horizon whose motley sunrise

Eyes the brutal territories that lay below

He was an desperado without a horse to thieve

She was a vigilante without a posse to lead

Would-be lovers who one day

Became volatile enemies

Flanked in kamikaze tumbleweeds

His was an emptiness most tempting

Her’s was a fury most alluring

Each wrought with their own

“Unique” brand of havoc

The misanthropic glare of a renegade

Met by the wild stare of a maverick

For the outlaw and the provocateur

The time had come to settle the score

With a drowsy pivot on rusted spurs

Their rigid backs were turned

In unison, counting aloud commenced—

Twenty firm steps

Not a pace more, not a pace less

His cold, bandit hands cradling the muzzle

Of a slowly corroding colt

Sweat stained bandanna concealing mouth to throat

His lucky dice burning a hole

In the pocket of a stolen preacher’s overcoat

Her feminine avenger fingers

Poised on the trigger of a pearl handled derringer

Legs longer than the Rio Grande

Creaking in sand dusted chaps

Her last wishes scribed like a sonnet

On the back of a old miner’s map

It was far too late to back out now

For only one contender

Would be returning to town

The vitriolic little cesspit

That neither was willing to peaceably split

Make no mistake

Compromise dies when reputation’s at stake

Lingering in the periphery

A modicum of macabre gawkers

Ragged gauchos and bordello whores

Their cheeks doused in chuparosa rouge

Straining to stifle their whispers

“….it was always gonna end like this,

in kisses or pistols.”

Such is the paradox when pride

Demands a ransom of love

Thus, on the twentieth stride

As fire and gunpowder ignited

Prairie falcons scattered frantically above

In that fleeting moment

Before the voyeurs could even discern a victor

She closed her eyes and imagined

That gambit smile of his

The bad omen she wanted so badly

Hovering between her thighs

As did he, envisioning her crescent grin

Those spade-esque curves of hers

Burning in his hands like an ace-high straight

Liberated from the chafe of her leathers

In their minds, they were always pressed together

As mouths to sacred peace pipes

Even as lady Fate decried

Their standoff a tie

For vanity’s folly they were both to die

Extinguished like lamp light

To the ground fell both foes

Love’s severance

Evidenced in their hemorrhaging

For never was a story of more woe

Than this of the vigilante, and her desperado

a. duncan, 2019

 


 

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Amor et melle et felle est fecundissimus || Love is rich with both honey and venom

16 thoughts on “| Whiskey Lullaby |

    1. Tom – of all my readers, I had hoped you would be approving of this piece – since it’s more “story” like, and you’re so skilled with narration. I am SO immensely flattered that you enjoyed this and that it gave you a visceral response!

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Oh!!! And… oh!!

    “….it was always gonna end like this,

    in kisses or pistols.”

    Pretty sure I actually audibly sighed at that line…, the desire painted in these words, between these two… palpable. April, this is magnificent, everything, the rhyme, the tension, the raw passion, the lacing of guns and death with desire.

    Maybe it was more like a gasp than a sigh??

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ahhhh!!!!! I’m bouncing in my chair reading your response!! Yes, yes, YES! This was so much fun to write and there’s so much passion woven into these words. I am beyond THRILLED that you felt this one, enough to gasp/sigh/faint/smile/biteyournails/swoon. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I sensed a futurism in the old west co-existing with the future of 3095 west.

    Man, your voice intelligently beautiful as always and you took me into your world of the old west that I love very much and man…so brilliantly well expressed and your word choices are outstanding and purely good.

    This song is for you.

    Muse – Knights Of Cydonia (Video)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. ps. My all time favorite song by Muse is “Blackout”…. what an orgasmic, operatic build that song has. The way his voice raises and falls octaves on certain words…. ❤ I was lucky enough to see them play live before they became well known, in this tiny little club and it was breathtaking.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I just finished listening to that song. It’s been a long time since I’ve heard Absolution. I love Stockholm Syndrome. 🙂

        Yes, listening to blackout the symphony in the background is hypnotic and truly beautiful. His voice is divine. 🙂

        Really? a tiny club…yeah, I believe it. I think any band that started off playing at small clubs. Somewhere down the line they we’re bound to reach for the stars. 🙂

        You are lucky you got to see them at their beginnings. 🙂

        And speaking of music. Have you gotten any tickets to go see the reunion of ‘Mr. Bungle’ live?

        Liked by 1 person

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