The poetry of George Gad Economou

Denying Love

like Saul denied Jesus,
I denied Emily and our history.

when caught by surprise by an intervention by my friends,
they asked me about Emily—apparently, I had semi-drunkenly spilled
out my story to some acquaintance I don’t care about.

I denied it, said it’s all fabrications of my mind.

and at that very moment, I heard Emily crying and the Devil laughing,
as they drank shots of Jack in Hell, playing poker and betting
on my eventual arrival.

I’m sorry, my dearest love. I was taken aback by the question.

I just couldn’t admit the things we’ve done, the craziness
we lived every day.

I’m still in love with you, even though you were taken away
8 long, dark years ago.

I’ve a dark past, spent in dives and in a small kitchen
cooking ice.

and yet, you’re the biggest part, the great love.

unfortunately, the damn spike took you away.

and I don’t have a Kerouac in my circle to keep me going,
to accept my faults. they’re all straight edge and it pisses me
off, and I can’t find new friends, because there are no real dives
around.

I’m stuck with the bad hand dealt, I can’t bluff my way out this time around.

and so, I had to deny you; had to deny our history.

now, three gin and tonics in, I’m crying, because you’re alive once more,
next to me.

I’m sorry! I cry to the empty walls and search for your phantom hand.
catch air and pour me another.

 

 

 

 

Empty Chair

went out for dinner tonight, had a couple of Chinese beers;
out with parents, a short-lived familial obligation,

and all I could look at was the empty chair next to me.
the one ought to have been occupied by Emily.

whether we’d have made it thus far, had it not been
for her way too early demise, no one can tell, but,

that empty chair reminded me that we never got the chance to find out.

downing gin in midnight to drown that harrowing pain in the heart,
the nails piercing through the soul.

wandering back, mentally, to the streets she and I used to loiter,
as we roamed high and in love between self-conscious citizens too afraid
to let loose. a passionate kiss under the moonlight abundantly showering us
at the beach, we had the whole fucking world in our hands and we did
nothing
about it.

the empty chair brought back all the cruel memories, the cold
mornings of smack, the mindless nights of ice. when cocktails
never stopped arriving, when wine and vodka was nothing but
breakfast.

as we stared at the tight confines of the world outside the dirty window,
drinks in hand, her head on my shoulder; I’d read her Beckett,

she’d discover Fante in my bookcase. we talked, and kissed, and everything else,

until one fateful afternoon, it was all over. OD.

the empty chair right here, next to me, as I write,
draining gin down my throat, trying to find light

in the years of perfect darkness.

 

 

 

 

Broken Bottles of Beer

mimicking Buk, we threw each empty bottle on the wall,
not caring about the treacherous sea of glass cutting our feet.

we had to find a way to feel alive, it was the one thing that did it;
there’s a reason the great are called sages.

after 14-15 beers, madness crept in; we’d punch the closet, the walls,
we’d wish to run naked in the woods, howl at the moon.
we often did all those, and even more, but, mostly we remained
locked inside, in the absolute dark and peace, unwilling to emerge,
to mingle with people.

we had our own demons, even though the biggest hadn’t yet arrived
in our lives, and we kept drinking beer and watching pro-wrestling,
though most matches were lost in the haze,

and my blurry explanations for the sport were gone in translations made
by stoned interpreters that spoke no language but that of Martians.

it’s all right, we used to lie to each other. we didn’t care for the stupors,
we in fact relished them, yet,
on occasion we wished for a break, for a way to acquire the dream house
by the lake, wherein we’d hide from everyone, just drinking life away,
one broken beer bottle at a time.

nothing came to be; bigger demons took over, the same demons
still making me unfit for society, unfit for literary pages, unfit
for everyone but for the sane locked up in asylums.

we broke another bottle, we kissed; passion, fire, desperate desire.
lust.
it’s all gone, my friend; you’re gone, and with you I lost a lot.
at some point, I even lost the longing for the insane vices. then,
I rediscovered myself, when I left my soul at a second-hand store
and my heart outside an orphanage.

since then, I’ve simply chased the moon, the moonlit lake housing
ghoul whales and intergalactic policemen.

every day new fires, new reasons to cry out in pain and in despair; no drinks,
no bottles to throw at the wall, nothing but sweet memories from a blackout
year staying warm inside your embrace, honestly believing there’s a
happily ever after.

the curtain fell, Beckett laughed from the Bar,
and in your grave I threw the only true masterpieces coming from
a heart bleeding ashes.


George Gad Economou, born in 1990, has a Master’s degree in Philosophy of Science, graduating from Aarhus University in 2016. Currently, he resides in Athens, doing occasional freelance work, while experiencing the demise of a country with rich history and bleak future.

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