Poetry from George Gad Economou

thoughts between the 4th and 6th glass of bourbon

we killed the poets,
we murdered the writers,
we burned the artists on the stake, letting their bones rot under the unforgiving sun.
graveyards vast littered with
shallow, nameless graves.
no one to carve a tombstone,
not a single word of praise, or love, or even compassion uttered. 
only few we kept near,
those who were too important to be forgotten;
even them, we disregard wildly, 
reading them only because we termed them classic, vintage, what else have you. 
it’s the era of decadence, the desolation has begun,
there’s nowhere to run.
dry tears in dark street corners,
every empty needle a reminder of a dead childhood dream,
talent drowning in the bottom of bourbon bottles, 
vision burned up inside cold glass-pipes. 
it's alright, the rainfall comes,
streets flooded, cars not moving, stillness,
perfect fucking stillness. 
no one breathes, no one thinks,
no one lives,
we altogether smile in unison,
a chorus of emphatic victory,
singing the songs of childhood, 
remembering dreams that were written down in white papers and with red pens,
smiling over the possibilities that would never be. 
someone somewhere throws away the trash,
someone's watching a movie,	
another reads a novel and feels enlightened, despite the retardation of the human mind;
a bonfire is lit at some distant beach, primal dancing around the flames, 
whilst elsewhere, someone runs away, 
speeding into a highway without a destination, only a sacrilegious purpose; 
a single tree in the middle of the desert, 
alone, standing tall, 
fearless, sturdy, stubborn;
no lumberjacks, no birds, no rain.
only the sand, the tree, the storm. 
the bartender pours me a bourbon neat, 
I down it, I ask for another;
it's on the house, he says—after four paid glasses, he finally gives me one for free. 
bring me the sixth; this one, he says, you have to pay for.

Bottle Thoughts

drinking once more in solitude, 
the music keeping away the whispers. 
every sip, another memory of something lost, 
a year wasted lies in the bottom of each bottle, 
and I do not miss the nights of sobriety
I forced upon myself for her sake. 
it's alright, I tell myself; I didn't quit the drink for the one that mattered,
why should I cry for the one that turned out to be irrelevant and insignificant? 
memories, mistakes; have I ever done something right?
NO, the unified answer of all the ghosts and it manages to be heard
despite the loud music through the headphones. 
one more dark, empty night. alone, yet never lonely. 
every sip tastes like different lips, as in front of me I see
all the pair of eyes I once stared into during cold nights,
as we laid under blankets made of snow. 
every sip, the reminiscent of yet another false promise,
of lies muttered in dive bars and strip clubs. 
it’s alright; another sip, it’s all gone. 
I’m once more concentrated on the darkness.
on finishing my business on this planet, 
dreaming still of the bar I saw only once, when she thought she had lost me to the needle. 
I was already given to the bottle, at 14 I had my first real sip and ever since
I never wished to escape. 
it's all a dream, an acid-trip; the forest, the mist, the ocean filled with hungry sharks. 
the shipwrecks. I'll awake suddenly, in a different bed. next to a stale wife.
a teenage son will curse me under his breath during breakfast. 
I'll lecture him, when he comes home drunk on a sunday morning. 
I'll scream at him, when I discover a pack of cigarettes in his backpack.
he'll wish I wasn't alive. and I'll lay down next to my wife, 
knowing she hates my fucking guts. 
and I'll seek refuge in dreams, but be visited only by nightmares. 
another sip, I'm still here, still plaguing the world.
still not giving a damn for all the tears I've caused, 
still unable to shed real tears. the graveyard, it comes back; 
threw my very first poems into the hole, over the coffin. nobody has ever read them,
I can't recall them. she was taken from me by the needle, along with a baby that will never
grow old to hate my fucking guts. 
I see her on a bed that isn't mine, kissing lips that aren't mine; she's happy.
and I'm happy. I still drink, and I would have ruined her, like I ruined her.
and somewhere in this ugly town still lives the third one, the cheap substitute of the other two;
potentially back in the arms of the one she betrayed for my sake. 
I don't give a shit. another sip, and she becomes, again, the bad acid-trip she truly was. 
another sip, hundreds of kisses all at once swarm the soul;
there's no warmth, only the coldness of the lies, the falsity of the promises.
another sip, time finally to embrace the darkness once and for all
and stop tormenting a heart that got tired of beating.

Gone into the Dusk

daydreaming of embraces
doomed to remain unfelt. 
more promises to be broken,
more lies to be uttered. 
shadows on the couch, 
reminding me of the yesteryears I wish never were. 
empty bottles on the floor, 
soon I'll be gone; the stains will remain 
tormenting whoever moves in next, 
pity the poor clueless soul. 
former loves, moments the heart did skip a beat; 
all gone, forever lost. 
trying to recapture the magic,
no strength left in a broken body.
the wheels keep on turning,
no reason to run. 
a syringe on the coffee table,
junk heated, the vapor penetrates the nostrils, 
back to the colors, the music; 
time to chase dragons once more,
nothing else to do.
nothing else I excel at. 
memories overwhelm the numb mind,
the hazed heart skips another beat
as images pierce the haunted dreams, 
lambent smiles of someone who’s been dead for 6 years now, 
lustful kisses of someone that forced me to break the junk habit.
gone, forever. all alone I sit in the absolute darkness 
preparing for my departure,
the return to the collapsing streets of childhood. 
visions of the nights,
wine dreams, 
I’m gone.


one final ride, 
alone in the sunset
towards a destination unknown. 
fueled with all the necessary, 
the desert filled with a crowd most bizarre,
a carnival most grotesque. 
forests, oceans, metropolises, 
all and nothing rolled into one, 
for in the last ride
you’re both alone and surrounded. 
friends and enemies alike, 
strangers and acquaintances
talk, laugh, and bicker, 
for there’s nothing else to do. 
some beg for you to stop,
others plead for you to go. 
nowhere to run,
but forth
as behind lies all that must needs be forgotten. 
one final ride, 
and it’s long, seemingly endless, 
destination elsewhere
but via vagueness grandness is born. 
nevermore time shall matter, 
nevermore love shall torture. 
one final ride, 
it commences, 
and all’s left behind, 
dreams unfulfilled, 
dragons uncaught, 
people unloved. 
one final ride, 
and it all starts anew, 
for only without the old
survival can ensue.

Currently residing in Greece, George Gad Economou has a Master’s degree in Philosophy of Science and is the author of Bourbon Bottles and Broken Beds (Adelaide Books), Of the Riverside (Anxiety Press) and Reeling Off the Barstool (Dumpster Fire Press). His words have also appeared, amongst other places, in Spillwords Press, Ariel Chart, Cajun Mutt Press, Fixator Press, Horror Sleaze Trash, Outcast Press, The Piker Press, The Beatnik Cowboy, The Rye Whiskey Review, and Modern Drunkard Magazine.

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