He was the perfect soldier, like a white
pawn on an inky board. Innocent fray:
'Unstained', they named the better man
Who swore to find the other side of Day.
He followed every order graven in
Cold stone. He never broke the dusty chains
Of honor, twisting close around his heart;
The iron singing thunder in his veins.
He dreamed about Tomorrow, the other
side of day. Tear-streaked morning never came,
Rain-washed. The only dawn was drowned in blood
And ringed in coiled dragons: rising flame.
The tide of blood that stained horizons, weep-
ing, splattered gently on his brittle face,
He buried, dead, in rushing water deep.
His hands were clean, without a traitor stain.
His men lie around him, dead at whispered last,
The light of life drains out behind their eyes;
(The clanging horrors of his dreams, cracked glass,
Were false. Despair in icy silence reigns.)
The only color left to him is red,
To mock brave, innocent and silent white:
An afterglow of symmetry he once
Believed could end the screaming, endless night.
His shield shatters. Hopeless to the bone,
The footsteps of Death echo in his ears,
In the final stand of a man alone.