Saturday, June 18, 2016

Dark Goodbye

Dark Goodbye

He tripped and fell in the dark of the night.
The edge of the sidewalk was broken there;
Hooked the toe of his shoe and fell from sight,
Into a ditch near that dim thoroughfare.

The collision of a rock and his head,
Made little noise for anyone but him,
And he couldn't see that the rocks were red,
Or the facial gash that made him look grim.

Tried to sit up, but his arms wouldn't move.
Heck! He didn't feel his body at all!
Until someone gave his spirit a shove,
Then he drifted upright and very tall!

He screamed when he saw his body supine,
His eyes staring blankly at the night sky.
His face looked tragic in the weak moonshine,
And yet, he could not bring himself to cry.

Then the hand that shoved him touched his shoulder,
And he spun around, staring into a face
With ancient skin, though the eyes were older —
Dark green and leading to another place.

The other was thin, a minstrel by dress,
And he stood by a fire giving green light;
Then began to sing, his words to caress
A soul torn from life by death in the night.

The melodies made his terror subside,
The harmonies bathed him with hope and peace.
The words were so beautiful that he cried;
He felt all his ties to the Earth release.

He felt so much joy he wanted to fly,
But stayed to talk to the Minstrel awhile.
He asked his questions about how and why,
But the Minstrel would only sing and smile.

“Why do I do it?" He said with a groan.
"These two reasons will have to be enough:
Because no one should have to die alone.
Because we are all made of the same stuff."

The Minstrel stiffened and tried not to cry,
When the brave little boy hugged him goodbye.

Mick McKellar
June 2016

Death can catch us unaware, at any age, at any time, in any place.


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