For so long, been travelling through the shadows alone,

Fear of the unknown, distrustful of most folks,

Got the fam by my side, but flying solo through these skies,

No applications for a co-pilot, been cruising smoothly so why change it?

Mingled with others previously, fell flat most of the time,

Their fangs came out at random, no escape once they bite,

So, for now, divorced from the masses, for sanity and self-preservation,

“Keep an open mind’, they say but, truthfully, never wanted anyone.

Gotta thank Zuck for the invention of that app, myspace is threatened, soon enough rendered irrelevant,

Reunited with a face from the past, one of few that wasn’t a fucking ass,

Got to talking from behind our screens, asked him how he’d been,

‘Seen better days’, said he, heartache is all too real,

By now jaded and hard-boiled, who am I to play master motivator,

I ain’t no Tony Robbins or Dr. Phil, sure as hell ain’t no therapist,

Nevertheless told him to man up and be strong,

She’d played her part, done him dirty then moved on, a real one wouldn’t string him along,

‘Twas a strange feeling, helping out a brother, butterflies swirling, unknown forces within surging, helping out is a beautiful thing,

Been quite some time, guess it feels unfamiliar,

Such is the life of a self-imposed loner.

That interaction being the key that opened doors, will it be for better or for worse?

We won’t always be in control, forces unknown may do all the work,

Either way, changes are inevitable, what was once comfortable quickly becoming unfamiliar,

But this was for the better and then some, feeling like I’d been rewarded,

Stayed in touch with him, found out later he’d found himself a new one,

Twelve years later, two little ones, still rock solid, safe to say that he’d won,

A new challenge suddenly arising, Pops the one who made it happen,

This art that we’re learning requires full concentration and some special type of relaxing,

Some new characters joining the main cast, the loner suddenly stepping out from behind the glass,

Knocking down walls, opening the gates, stepping out the darkness, clean air never felt better,

Thriving on the work front, trekking down a new path,

Pieces of the puzzle coming together, life can’t get better than that,

That old world in the rearview, finally, eyes forward, hitting the accelerator,

Top down with the radio turned up, headed towards a brighter future.

Cruising wearing rose-tinted glasses, soon the lenses were shattered,

Paradise suddenly threatened, six years later the bubble busted,

Thunderstruck just as momentum was firmly in my favour,

Came out victorious but the scars may last forever,

‘Twas but a speedbump, knocked off-kilter but still standing,

Still hanging with the crew, first real friends since forever,

Whether in person or online, the loner phase finally left behind,

Then the second decade of the third millennium arrived, here’s where the smooth path unwinds,

That big old pandemic locking the whole world down and that was just the starter,

One bad copper triggered a mass brawl, repercussions felt all around the world,

That NWA anthem once again front and centre while society’s big mad over vocations, opinions and differences,

Folks from all walks can no longer come together, unions once solid crumbling like The Towers,

For our former loner it came at a price, a long absence cost him that sanctuary away from home,

Quietly parted ways with fellow journeymen and women, they were heading down different directions,

Coming to a sad realisation, damn near making the skin crawl,

Ain’t nothing changed at all, life came full circle, the darkness of the shadows, truly, was where I’d always belonged.

Fast-forward to the present, that big old pandemic came to pass,

Not out and about celebrating, it’s back to the solitude of years’ past,

Been quite a blast, those years outside the proverbial shell, living the life of a lad-about-town, so many stories to tell,

Retained a few happy to tag along, perhaps all is not lost,

But for the most part back on the road alone, only Lord knows for how long,

Might be for the best, it’s a crazy world out there, sticks and stones still break bones while words act as weapons of mass destruction,

Bringing to mind that chap named Edward, created from scratch by some guy likely gone mad,

Passed before he could give the lad some mitts, left him with scissors at the end of his wrists,

And so he lives alone in that big and lonely home, discovered by some random lady, took him back to town, the townsfolk equally amazed and wary,

For a while he was one of them, a new life seemed in order, but several unfortunate events and misunderstandings later got him cast out like a fucking leper,

In the end, returned to where it all began, away from all others, accompanied only by memories from a brief period of acceptance,

Can’t say it ain’t the same, shit’s feeling kinda relatable,

Not as bleak, perhaps, but the trajectory somewhat similar,

Perhaps just a dip before the next round of ascendancy, never know what’s around the corner,

But if this is fate I’ll take it, already seen the flipside, I can say I’ve lived it.

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