Hopeless Night

Moonlight shines through barren trees,
The frightened man begins to wheeze.
His sweat drips onto long-dead leaves,
He wipes it onto cotton sleeves.

Then, in the distance, candle light,
A beacon in the hopeless night,
But far behind, a rumbling growl,
A woman's scream, a wolf-like howl.

He finds the cottage in the clearing,
The monster howling, clawing, nearing,
But in the window shines the candle.
Fumbling, the door, the handle.

Wooden table, wooden chairs,
Cobwebs float like ghostly hairs,
Cracked stone floor and plastered ceiling.
The man falls, breathing fast and kneeling.

The door slams closed, the candle dies.
"It's just the wind, the wind!" he sighs.
His breathing slows, lets panic pass,
And peers out through the murky glass.

There's nothing visible outside,
The smell dwells where the candle died,
Takes one last look around the room,
And heads downstairs into the gloom.
A quiet drip is all he hears,
He forces down his growing fears,
The cellar now before him lies,
And in a corner, glowing eyes,

The monster leaps, the eyes glow bright,
Betraying scenes of desperate fight,
Reflecting on a silver dagger,
Flash, grab, slash, stab, stumble, stagger.

As it dies, the monster changes,
Grows much smaller, rearranges,
On the hand, a wedding band,
"My love!" he cries, he cannot stand.

The other monster now appears,
He wounds it quickly through his tears,
And now the other monster dies,
Beside his wife, his brother lies.

The man alone remounts the stairs,
While cobwebs float like ghostly hairs,
Leaves the place his heart has killed,
Prayers for understanding willed.

Moonlight shines through barren trees,
The broken man begins to wheeze,
He stops and stands, he turns death white,
And yearns to leave the hopeless night.

(C) Mark Callanan 2004

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