The Alleyway Stranger

Darkness…

Shadowy images 

An ever-shrinking corridor

Walls of ancient brickwork 

Uncomfortable…

In their stacked perfection

Higher and longer 

Cold and unreasonable 

Unflinchingly stronger

Secretive…

More dangerous

Than prison walls

This gauntlet

With one way in

And one way out

Debris…

Hidden obstacles 

Closing in

Hiding places

Secret spaces

Someone’s waiting

Someone’s always waiting

Lurking…

An alleyway stranger

Casually leaning

One foot on the wall

The other on the ground 

Waiting…

Halfway down

Too late to turn around

Face shadowed

Without a sound

Watching…

A sentinel 

Measuring things

Keeping tabs

With shifting eyes

Silently…

Striking fear

While the night

Closes in 

Heart pounding

Traffic growing quiet

Moving…

Glancing yet not looking

Gaze down

Quick but not yet running

Fear growing

Listening…

For footsteps

Echoes on cobblestones 

The distance shrinking 

The stranger watching

Looking…

End game

Where alleyway ends

Street begins

Lighter shade of darkness

Passing…

Nods his head 

Without really looking

Or collecting

Or even questioning 

Relief…

For a moment

Until somewhere

Breaking glass

Shatters the illusion

Challenging…

Renegotiating the balance

Or repercussions 

Of an improper passing

Or transgression 

Turning…

A fools errand

But nonetheless a look

Behind and below

Nothing but darkness

Running…

The alleyway stranger

Nowhere to be seen

The fear returning

A shattered reality

R J Schwartz

I write about everything and sometimes nothing at all.I'm fascinated by old things, rusty things, abandoned places, or anywhere that a secret might be unearthed.I'm passionate about history and many of my pieces are anchored in one concept of time or another.I've always been a writer, dating back to my youth, but the last decade has been a time of growth for me.I'm continually pushing the limitations of vocabulary, syntax, and descriptive phrasing.

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R J Schwartz

I write about everything and sometimes nothing at all. I'm fascinated by old things, rusty things, abandoned places, or anywhere that a secret might be unearthed. I'm passionate about history and many of my pieces are anchored in one concept of time or another. I've always been a writer, dating back to my youth, but the last decade has been a time of growth for me. I'm continually pushing the limitations of vocabulary, syntax, and descriptive phrasing.

3 thoughts on “The Alleyway Stranger

  • February 18, 2019 at 3:19 PM
    Permalink

    Most creative. Could imagine it all and heard those echoing footsteps down an empty alleyway…

    Reply
  • February 18, 2019 at 6:05 PM
    Permalink

    Suspenseful and drawing me into the alley, seeing, hearing, chills, all of it with your great imagery. Well done, Ralph.

    Reply
  • February 24, 2019 at 9:23 AM
    Permalink

    Your word choice and imagery are perfect! You create a dark and sinister place where suspicion lies behind every corner. Well penned. Jamie

    Reply

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