Please Stay Alive

Like a spent gladiator,
Crawling in the Colosseum dust,
Who can count on his remaining limbs,
All the people he can trust.
Like the one who stands behind him,
Cheering him on.
Ecstatic when he stands defiant,
Wild with abandon when he's gone.

Just stay alive.
Keep your eyes on the palum.

Like a village on the steppe,
About to get collectivized.
When the men emerge with rifles from the haystack,
Everybody looks surprised.
Like the mice in the forgotten grain,
Way up on the top shelf.
Like someone who's found a small town to escape to,
Keeps one eye on his abandoned, former self.

Stay in the game.
Just try to play through the pain.
Like a fighter who's been told it's finally time for him to quit.
Show up in shining colors,
And then stand there and get hit.

Like the clock that ticks in Dresden,
When the whole town's been destroyed.
Like the nagging flash of insight,
You're always desperate to avoid.
Like the bloody-knuckled gunman,
Still stationed at the breach.
Like that board game with the sliders,
And the children on the beach.

Stay alive.
Maybe spit some blood at the camera.
Just stay alive.
Stay forever alive.

_________________________
"These days I just try to keep to myself,
well aware I've lost touch with everyone else.
I understand that I'm fading away."