Lurk's Lair "The Lurkening"

Once there was a man, that nobody liked;
And before you think it, this man is not me;
In fact,
I like to think I am well-liked.
So I'm told;

I work hard, at being liked;
Like its a club membership;
Paid in manners, and courtesy, and smiles, and favors.
And yet can be voided so swiftly.

But the man that nobody likes is alone;
Was alone;
Endangered as a species and just as avoided.
My dad, especially didn't care for the man that nobody likes;
But submerged opinions in a lake of silence;
I cared not to break that dam with probing questions.
But small leaks still pushed through;

Bad parent;

I've seen gray faded photos of the man that nobody liked;
With smiling people in them even.
But a photo never says much.
Rather, I will have to fill in the blanks;
With stories of unknown faces and places.
A library of a lifetime that nobody bothered to read.

I met the man that nobody likes quite a few times;
And surprisingly…
Felt no strong feelings in the matter.

And when the man that nobody liked lost a home;
And was put in a strange new bedroom.
I'm sure regret was there as a roommate.

I gave the man that nobody liked my phone number;
"Call me anytime." I said.
My last words to him.
Bastard, I can be called that now.

But I had things to do;
I had a trip coming up;
And college finals;
But hey, call me anytime…
Because I might not have time to call you.
Selfish, I can be called that now.

The man that nobody liked died on a cold night in February.

I didn't make the funeral because, hey…
Call me anytime.
I think now that if I made a phone call;
That maybe loneliness would not have made that night colder.
Because that is what really killed my grandfather.

A loneliness as wide and as still as a salt flat;
And just as barren.

I am not scared of death in particular.
But I am scared of facing it alone;
In a strange room that I wouldn't call home.
With strange roommates.
While I try to hold onto time like loose sand in my arms.

It's the debts we owe to our ghosts that can't be paid;
Even if they weren't well liked.
And how many unlikeable people out there;
Are just waiting for their grandson's phone call?