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The Man in the Crooked Hat



"No one will know," said the man in the crooked hat.

"No one will guess. See, I'm very well respected."

"I'm a pillar of this community,”

"I wouldn't even be suspected.”


But I will surely know, I thought,

I will have to carry this shame.

As well as a guilty conscience,

But I'll never carry your blame.


I can't remember your facial features.

I remember your rough hands and disgusting breath.

As well as an undesired closeness between us

Those thoughts will remain until death.


"Stroke me," said the man in the crooked hat.

"Play with me, you know you want to,"

"I bet you enjoy this as much as I,"

"Of course you do, I know you do."


No! I don't enjoy this; I want to stop!

I don't enjoy this. Don't make me!

I don't want to do this again!

Can't we just be friends? Please, can't we?


"Undo it there, oh yes, that's right,"

"Gently, take it out, gently, oh, that's fine,"

"Now I'll do yours," said the man in the crooked hat.

"While you care for mine"


"Good, Oh, that's very good,"

"You're doing so well; that is so good."

"Now just a little harder, like I am with yours,"

"A little harder if you could."


But I don't like this. I want it to stop.

I delve inside my mind to search.

I still can't believe this could be right.

Alone together inside this church.


"What are you doing next Saturday?"

"Come to me, I know a safe place for us to play."

"If you wanted to, you could get away from home,"

"Say yes, we can be together all day."


First, we're in a church with God looking on.

Now in a playing field toilet, so licentious,

His pleasure now has come, and gone,

He soon absconds, to remain inconspicuous.


Four years of hell that nobody noticed.

Every night I cry myself silently to sleep.

My choirboy Sundays I loved, but now dread

My faith in God, now buried in hate so deep.


He moved on, the man in the crooked hat.

Not another church, but another boy.

He moved on, the man in the crooked hat.

Not a different game, but a different toy.


He is still with me in my dreams of youth.

I've tried banishing him from my mind completely.

Each time I thought I had won my past,

The man in the crooked hat defeats me.


"No one will know, it's our little secret,"

"Who would believe you after all said and done?"

"No one is going to take your word for it, lad,"

"Over a law-abiding churchwarden."


The man in the crooked hat is now dead.

Only a tombstone bears witness to his life.

Yet in all those quiet moments of mine,

He still stabs my memories with a jagged knife.


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