a sour old man smell
to the interior,
and stale urine.
the house is triple glazed
against all invaders,
fresh air, friends and the future.
the curtains never drawn
but heaters on full blast.
he shivers, feels the cold,
not to mention
the years of holding
everyone at bay,
never letting anyone in.
he dwells on grievances,
the grist of them sustains him,
nurtured by decades of distrust,
trodden into the very fabric of his soul.
his paranoia a corrosive acid
that has eaten through to the bone.
he’s isolated, keeper
of a lighthouse,
its lonely beacon obsolete.
he stands guard at the window
and watches all the neighbours come and go,
their cars and kids and trips away
as if his own personal TV show.
Photo of lighthouse at St Joseph’s, Michigan by Belinda