Poets logo

The Old Bartender

by Clare Strayer 4 years ago in social commentary

Stepping out from Behind the Bar

His fingers are rough and calloused

As they grasp the glass cup

Crows feet dance around his eyes

Matching his skin that is like a paper

All crumpled up and hurriedly made straight

His feet shuffle along the linoleum floor

His back hunched over his work

His hands work in a rhythm

Knowing where they're going to go

Because they’ve poured the shot

Over a million times

His movements are deft and sure

His hands not shaking as he pours

Whiskey with a splash of bitters into the glass

Sliding it down to me across the wooden bar

3 feet of oak between us

Keeping his distance on the other side

His conversation is light and courteous

His voice rough and gravely from years of

Smoking Camels in the back room of the bar

All alone, after hours when the sky was charcoal grey

And the last customer had left the rail

Only when everyone has gone

Could he step out from behind the bar

The thick wood that protected him from the outside

Only when he was alone

Did he feel that he was truly free

social commentary

Clare Strayer

I just want to make the world feel something✨ Leave a gift if you like what you feel✨

Receive stories by Clare Strayer in your feed
Clare Strayer
Read next: A collection of prose poetry and poetry

Find us on social media

Miscellaneous links

  • Explore
  • Contact
  • Privacy Policy
  • Terms of Use
  • Support

© 2021 Creatd, Inc. All Rights Reserved.