The Tender Age of Twenty

by Tar McClure.
(Northern Ireland)

By the tender age of twenty,
She had smoked too heavy and drank too much.

Too many fingerprints covered her skin,
Of lovers past and lovers lost.

Time which had once sped so fast. Suddenly went slow.
Time was measured in cigarettes smoked.

Suddenly, her beauty faded into nothing but normality,
And bruises flowered over her porcelain skin.

Violent words and violent actions
Made her lose sight of the beauty in everyday life.

By the tender age of twenty,
Our head hung,
Our voices broke,
Our tears streamed,
As we placed that last shovel of dirt over her grave.

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