Apple by Greg Richards

At a table made of ash and
Edged with birch and hazel,
The serpent set the apple down,
Then slithered soft away.
Dark the room
Not lit by City lights,
Atop the Urban tower,
Apartment block,
An old and fading structure
That stood above the light,
And drew the dark within.
The stone and wood was frail,
As was the man inside,
Tenant first and last,
Beset by loss and sorrow,
His future now a blight
Infected by his past,
Which wracked the troubled present
That now he found himself within.
The Apple sat, its red waxed skin
A beacon, burgeoning bright and red
The sensuous skin that pulled his senses thither,
A fruit he ached to touch,
To hold, to drink deep of its scent,
To peel and sink within.
And as he sat,
The chair beneath him hard and cold,
He saw the moon draw into view,
Through cracked and cobwebbed grimy window,
And daub the room with soft faint silver light.
A draught blew soft and subtly in,
And dust motes danced,
In argent beams of faintest light,
And for the moment he held fast,
To that memory long since past,
True loves kiss, he yet kept,
With Golden Key locked tight,
For now secure,
Within a safe of oak and iron
That rested ‘gainst the mildewed wall.

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