I planned a walk down a narrow lane
full of yellow weeds that looked the same.
If not for the heroic, fallen tree in my way,
I’d have reached my tempting goal yesterday.
Instead I wondered through a field,
brushing the grass feathers that refused to yield.
Scolding sun smiling upon my neck
as I foraged a path they’ve yet to trek.
The flowing field rolled further on
coming to halt near a cottage, whereon,
dithering at the striking pink gate,
I went in to knock the window and wait.
A young girl answered, her hair in plaits
and, in her left hand, splintered baseball bat.
The bat she held, dripping red with life
was the reason I offered her my only knife,
Silvered handle, blade sharp and ready
she took it gladly; I held her steady.
One whispered sentence, my eyes fierce and burning
“I wish you the best in your time of mourning.”
My stroll continued in the obnoxious sunshine,
leading me towards a looming, tutting line
of glaring trees, ever green and oak,
while my hand shifted quietly underneath my cloak.
Leaves green and gold, the colours of memory
wafted their solemn, warning song over me,
stumbled, fell into a fenced off clearing,
I found a caravan with a horse, and old woman jeering.
Peering from behind a gnarled, bitter Willow,
I spotted an innocent, a young man who, though
his fists were spotted with the bruises of time,
was marked by the sadness of a blameless crime.
The old woman exited her caravan of torture,
to throw an empty bottle at the man – he grew smaller
in every conceivable way a human could.
I stalked his shadow through the creeping wood.
A river, turbulent in it’s hurrying motion,
was his destination. He stopped beside with a healing notion.
Crack! The branch alerted him to my spying
so I handed him the toxic vial – “Keep trying,”
I told him, my words clear as the water,
“Her life is worth less than the pig gone to slaughter.
Be resolute in your actions and happiness is yours.”
“Thank you,” said he. ” I’m sick of the wars
my actions bring down.” And as he said that
he put the glass vial underneath his hat,
to be squirreled away for a time of great need,
like the next time vicious words make his soul bleed.
Out of the wood, I walk further astray;
the path is found at the ending of day.
Back on my map, I collapse to the ground,
my thoughts turning to those I had found.
Strength cannot be created nor destroyed,
though this bitter career to which I’m deployed
may sap my soul and purge my force,
the light of their lives is worth it, of course.
I took a walk through the lives of the deserved
and ensured their dreams and freedom were preserved.
I took a walk, at the expense of myself;
my own dreams and future still left on the shelf.