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The paper man rustled, crinkled his arms,
Awoke.

Yellowed with age and coffee stains,
He croaked

A sigh, and with a flutter, floated above a clutter
Of notes

Ivory-hued and rumpled. He rounded a crumple -
Somebody'd wrote

A sign: "Romantic Lane" - over a trail of guilt and pain
That wound

To other paper men. But that was then.
He assumed.

And, trudging now, he ambled in - 
yellowed voice, tattered skin,
Breathing

A wrinkled crease to the marker
Manning the tattooist's parlour,
Easing

His lined back upon a wooden chair,
Noting the irony embellished there,
Waiting.

Waiting

He felt the pencil digging in,
Breaking bone and flesh and skin,
Writing 

Writing 

And then it was gone. He flexed,
His torso, scribbled with lines, bedecked
Charcoal black.

He mumbled a muttered thanks,
And, quavering frailly into the ranks,
He went back

And never woke up again.

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