Livin’ on a Prayer

Tommy stood atop the stack of containers and stared down at the gap between the ship and the concrete pier.  The steel toes of his work boots hung over the edge, suspended above the churning black water, and he contemplated stepping off.  After all, he was worth more dead than alive—at least until tomorrow when the strike started.  If he tumbled from the stack tonight, it would be hailed as a tragic accident instead of the last, desperate act of a broken man.  The union would make certain of that, if for no other reason than to improve their bargaining position.  Just one little step and the insurance would settle, and Tommy would never again have to see the disappointment in Gina’s eyes or hold her while she cried herself to sleep.

“Halfway there,” Tommy whispered.

He lifted his foot, but his will faltered before he could step out into the waiting abyss.  He was too weak.  He knew it was the right thing to do, but he also knew he would never be able to go through with it.  He had been holding on to what he had for so long, he had forgotten how to let go.


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Livin’ on a Prayer — 1 Comment

  1. “Tommy used to work on the docks: the union’s on strike, he’s down on his luck, it’s tough… so tough.”

    –Requested by Travis D. and inspired by “Livin’ on a Prayer” from Slippery When Wet.

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