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Updated: Apr 18, 2021


A single bead of sweat rolls down his cheek.

Death strapped to his thigh.

A vulture on gnarled tree cleans its beak.

Waiting for one of them to die.

One was old, and jaded,

rust spattered across his metal.

One was young, but lightning fast,

and had a score to settle.

The old man had cheated,

concealing hidden cards.

The youngster’s eyes, quick as his hands,

had seen through the façade.

He called him out.

The old man, he had nowhere to hide.

He challenged the youngster to a duel,

to restore his wounded pride.

The old man enraged,

smashed down his glass of scotch.

On the butt of his rusted shooting iron,

this youngster would become another notch.

But the old man, with tired eyes,

had failed to recognize the youngster’s face.

And as the bullet tore through his heart,

death welcomed him with a cold embrace.

He had learnt a mortal lesson,

had made his final bid.

Never cheat at cards,

with a youngster named Billy the kid.

by Neale Lucas

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