Steward of Nothing

- jan-u-wine
How my mind
glances,
unsteady intent
lighting
and
fleeing
sharp images:
 
the vast, hard
shell of sky......
 
prism'd,
lace-edged
white
blanketing
darkly sleeping stone -
 
the glint of gold,
nesting,
too far-off
upon the unrelenting
face of the mountain.
 
The warmth
It
spread
like an open hand
against
my throat
grows cold
in Its absence.
 
My breath
fails,
fear
and
want
warring within
me.
 
A very large hand
falls
with startling
swiftness
upon my shoulder,
stays
the words I had
thought
to speak.
 
The other hand,
grave with
quiet purpose,
finds
the hilt of the sword.
 
His voice
has not
its usual
murmur'd
pull -
 
sharp,
like a drawn blade,
it calls
the name
of the man
who should be
his steward,
 
then
speaks my own.
 
Taunting -

the spill of silver
just
beyond my reach:

curved gold
sings
and turns
against the sky.
 
Need,
like the bright lance of the Sun,
holds me unmoving.
 
I cannot take
It from him.....
 
not
 
as I would like……..
 
Helpless anger
plays
through me,
fills my eyes
with salt-heat.
 
Words
that I must not say
fill
the darkness
of my mouth....
 
Madness
gathers
in my mind,
 
stills my
heart like
a band
of iron.....
 
 
Close.
 
Too close.
 
My hand
folds
about the
small perfection
of It.

I breathe again.
 
Already,
It warms me,
whispering
soft
in my mind.
 
He is laughing
as he turns
back to face
the mountain...

Laughing
at one
who
must seem,
in his
war-ready eyes,
a spoilt lad.

Steward of Nothing:
 
Do not think
I
will forget.
 
Do not think
 
you
 
will touch It
again.

Have a care,
insolent
keeper
of the Tree
which has died.

(my own laughter rises,
caught un-born
in my throat,
like evil light):

I know
you

more

than you
know
yourself.