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Tommy Austin


Suffolk, VA, US

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Tommy Austin

As I descended the staircase, childhood memories
flooded my mind...I somehow held back tears.

The warm sounds of laughter, hugs, prayer and
newborn life.

A strange feeling of another presence amongst
us overwhelmed me...perhaps it was God.

Stepping outside, I noticed such a glorious sight...
three brothers in the shadow.

Moving closer I chose to remain silent, for this
was their moment.

They sat listening to numerous tales from the past,
each patiently awaiting the stage.

I saw the body movements, heard the voices, felt
the depth of togetherness...they had the same eyes.

As a refreshing breeze settled within the trees, I
suddenly realized that the visitor beside me was
not God at all, only a proud father watching his sons...
three brothers in the shadow.

Black Hands


Tommy Austin

She stood trembling at the front of the box,
ready to deliver the last gift, clenched ever
so tightly in her fingers.

I watched as she edged closer, wondering if
she possessed the courage to complete this final task Without tears, absent of sound, only the tremors of her body.
Upon lifting his cold hand, her body calmed.
Sounds from within her were now present.
She placed this priceless coin in his palm, he proudly received his new award.

After delivering the token, silent moments passed. The lady knew she had left a piece of her heart behind, that will never be replaced.

As we turned our backs to leave, the man with the black hands smiled.



Tommy Austin

She limped into the morbid chamber, surrendering to the abrupt touch of fright, only to find silence...void of life.

Perched confused, aware of a familiar presence...she had blank eyes.

Leaning over she saw a small blood colored flower...the corpse absent any usual response.

Canine anxiety of more death nearby, the black dog now eager to depart.

Jess grimly glanced back one time, satisfied, for she too...was old.

The Funeral


Tommy Austin

Walking into this holy place,
between the gathering of
people...I saw the man sleeping.

I noticed the wife's once bright
eyes were permanently etched
with pain, the wet eyes of
the son.

While he slept, the two brothers
were seemingly awkward, without
him, they knew it will never be
the same.

As they were dimming the lights,
she kissed him goodnight for the
last the darkness the
man slept.