What’s the Use?

What’s the use of a friend who doesn’t listen when you call for help, 
when you cry in anguish because your breath is spent?

What’s the use of a friend who tramples your life into silence, 
who ties you in wire, 
suffocates you in plastic and clothes you hollow words?

What’s the use of a friend too busy waging war on themselves
to notice your suffering, your dying, 
your voiceless plea for help?

What’s the use of a friend who’ll risk all for love of nation, 
of faith, for the great human project, but who’ll risk little or nothing for you? 

What’s the use of a friend who’ll risk all for a thrill, a love affair, fame, 
fortune, but who’ll risk little or nothing for you?

What’s the use of a friend who sees only what they want to see,
who fits you neat into their own self-image, who’ll whine and wail
when asked for help, when asked that they, for one small moment
wear your paws, your claws, your hooves, your days, your fear, 
your hope that the hour stays safe
and life stays warm?

Stephen R K Fender

I am currently working on a PhD in Creative Writing at Northumbria University in Newcastle Upon Tyne, England. I enjoy experimental writing. I do not see myself ever fitting in with, and following, the standard literary route. I am a creative writer which means I like to experiment with words, styles and platforms.

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