"Runner-Up of the Open Community Poetry Contest for the period Jan 31-March 31, 2017."

the ghosts regretfully floated all about 
as tiny wisps of cigarette smoke choke
a soundtrack of yesteryear tried its best
to rhythmically drown out today's tears
alas, no one and nothing could conjure up joy 
within his sorrow-laden room, saddening still...
every ounce of willpower seeped into the thirsty 
flood-boards as his eyes grew weaker by degrees
but, he kept a chain of pain linking himself to them,
lest they sail as boats unto an unseen eternity, plea
james kenneth blaylock